Sunday, 31 July 2011

Not enough hours in the day!

I think these gingerbread men will definately agree that there are not enough hours in the day.  I attempted to complete a reading book with my daughter in the 10 mins they required to cook.

Look, they even left there own little Shroud of Turin, well, Shroud of Dolgellau really.

I did carry out the 'draw' as promised.  I just didn't get around to blogging about it until now.  The winner was, Ali, over at Ali's Craft Studio.  Ali chose the lilac beads, for her heart necklace and earring set and I finally made it to the Post Office on Thursday.

I've had a delightful start to the school holidays.  And both I and the children are still alive.  The key appears to have been, taking things slowly.

And for those of you who expressed an interest.  The youngest is enjoying hoovering so much, that he asks to do it every day!

Monday, 18 July 2011

Handmade Monday, Goodbye and Thank you!

Time is always short in our household. I didn't post a Handmade Monday Blog last week and I only just snuck in to WOYWW as the 124th person!

I asked my OH to look after the youngest child whilst I upoaded my photos.  This was the scene that greeted me when I came downstairs!

So in the interest of reducing child labour I shall be taking a blogging break over the school holidays. (Well not posting very often anyway).

However, I shall be supervising a lot of this:

Encouraging a lot of this:

And clearing up a lot of this.

I shall of course still be busy designing wirework jewellery, attending markets and craft fairs.

I had a bit of a grumpy weekend the other week, and my Monday comments really lifted my spirits.  So as a thankyou I thought I would do a giveaway.

There is no catch, I'm not recruiting, just saying thank you!

On Friday (when I've made it),  I shall draw a name out of a hat. You just need to be on my followers list (and have an e-mail or blog contact on your profile).  And the 'winner' will receive a heart necklace and earring set which was how you cheered me up!

Thank you once again, and see you back at the regular spot in September!

Thursday, 14 July 2011


I know I'm late again, but I knew when I could do it, and I never touch my desk on a Wednesday, so hasn't changed.

Don't you find WOYWW (What's on your workbench Wednesday) a great way of spotting what you should have put away, but haven't?

I can see some 1.2mm wire that I used to make a larger necklace for an order with, (must put that back on the shelf).
I can see a bit of fleece used to make a new pushchair cover for my daughters dolly pushchair, that was urgently required at 4 minutes passed 4 on Sunday, (must put that in the bin).
But the main thing that I can see (passed all the untidiness) is lots of bits of offcuts from the flowers I tried to make in a rush on Tuesday.

I've made a few of the pink coloured flowers, but I thought I would try the black ones.  The black ones, require trimming after you sew them together.  Now, the state of my desk would suggest that I need a bin on my side of the room - not just the communal one in the centre of the room.

I still can't get the black flowers to sit right, if anyone has any advice please let me know.

Is the desk up to your standard? Wel pawb at y peth bo (yn gymreig), so take a trip over to stamping ground to see a few more.

Wednesday, 6 July 2011

WOYWW Bad habits

Well, WOYWW (whats on your workbench Wednesday) eh?  Oh, dear!

To re-cap, a fortnight ago I tided, and set off on holiday.  I intended to keep my stock levels in the studio to an absolute minimum.

So what happened?
Thursday I returned from holiday
Friday I placed all the stock in a shop
Saturday I went down to the studio, to start building up the stock levels again!

On Monday I returned to the studio to find a note I had left myself ...

It says:
  • Work through part finished tray
  • Exam shop list, have replacements
  • THEN start on new ideas!

I obviously know myself very well, as I started out with good intentions. I finished two pieces from the tray, then I picked up some earrings that I couldn't get right.  I figured out the problem, and suddenly I was making a few more,
finished the necklaces, made the earrings ...

and then that was it, I was off, instructions forgotten I was off on new ideas again!
It took ages to get the two hearts to hang together well!
 But boy, was it loads more fun than doing what I was supposed to!

Take a trip over to Julia's blog and see all the neat freaks who put me badly to shame

Monday, 4 July 2011

Handmade Monday - To craft fair or not to craft fair?

I have just returned from a few days in Cornwall.  So a refreshed and rejuvenated blogger is typing this.

On Mondays I partake in Handmade Monday, hosted by Wendy of 1st unique gifts.  HM is a way of seeing what people have been up to during the week, but it also helps me realise what I've achieved (or not).

In April I arranged to rent a cabinet in a shop, in Machynlleth.

By May I decided that I was not going to another craft fair (OH let me down twice for childcare, and attendances were very poor).

So in June I kept my jewellery stock at a limited level.

And on Friday 1st July, The Emporium, Machynlleth opened its doors. (read all about it here - well my cabinet anyway!).

So back on my workbench, there sat my earring rack, empty.

But then the voices in my head began:
What NO more craft fairs?
Not even at Christmas?
What about Dolgellau farmers market?
What about the Dolgellau Country Market?

By Saturday 2nd July I was back in the studio filling the earring rack!  I concentrated my efforts on glass bead earrings, but my real joy is wirework jewellery so roll on next week!

 So I guess I'll be going to a few more craft fairs!

Saturday, 2 July 2011

Ding Ding, Shop's Open!

(Title is a reference to under 5's TV - if you don't do Groovy Moves, then don't worry about it!!)

After a few delays by the builder (totaling 30 days, so not bad really)
The Emporium in Machynlleth is now open.

The building was converted from offices back to retail and a brand new shop has set up business. As you may or may not know, I have rented a space in this shop.

I had a panic in May that the shop might open for the Spring Bank Holiday weekend so I went into mega production mode.  I continued making things throughout June, until I read a blog by Ros Made Me, where she wisely wrote - no one but the cupcake seller ever actually sells out!

When the opening date was finally set for 1st July, I had to sheepishly say I was on holiday, and passed all responsibility to Sue, the owner of the shop!

To cut a long story short, I persuaded OH I would take him out for lunch and we would finish off the display.  (I had handed Sue a basic display to fill each shelf).

There I was tying a few price labels on to a few extra items and OH sudden showed his true colours.  He dived into the cabinet and began rearranging everything - he was brilliant!

None of this 'what do you think?' 'How about this?' that I would have done, dragging it out for hours.  No, he dived in, re-arranged, instructed me what he wanted. And finished the job in half the time.  Obviously it remains to be seen whether he would be quite so efficient if his stomach wasn't rumble-ing!

shelves 1 and 2 are similar
The shop is vintage and craft - so there is quite a bit of costume jewellery, but I am the only handmade jewellery cabinet.

I was concerned about lighting on the lower shelves so I wanted lots of colour to encourage people to look at my jewellery.  So I made some of Dreamstar's flowers to accompany my glass bead jewellery.
The shop is very light and airy and there was a really good footfall whilst we were there.  Machynlleth has an excellent market along the main street every Wednesday and coach trips stop off at it.  So here's hoping some of them want to buy from my cabinet!
Bracelets and teeny tiny gift bags