Thursday, 29 January 2009

Planning the mansion!

The beginning of December saw two new additions to our family in the form of .....

Pini the gerbil


Pip the gerbil.

Currently they are living in my old hamster cage which is plenty big enough but they have managed to massacre the inside. The once cosy little house is now missing half the roof and one of the sides, the excersise wheel is just a spinning disc with no where to run on and i fear they will soon break through the metal bars! They are very hyperactive and no matter how much 'play time' they have they still insist on chewing anything and everything!

So i have been thinking and scheming for a few weeks to get them a new, fun house. I finally decided at half 11 last night to just take the plunge and spend a rediculous amount of money and buy them the luxury Rotastak Creepy Castle Mansion! It really is a gerbil mansion - it hasd a large living area, two smaller living areas, three small watch tower areas, a wheel and much more!

They are very excited about their new home, and we can't wait for it to arrive!

I will put up some pictures when it has arrived (and when we have managed to put it together!).

x x x

Monday, 26 January 2009

An exciting step forward and a big question!

The exciting step forward
After a few more days of thinking, a lot of research and discussion and talks with various people I am motivated more than ever before to do something about fulfilling my shop dream! I have enquired about rental costs for a larger unit at Botany Bay and am starting to put together a business plan and do scary things like cash flow forecasts! hehe.

I want the shop to be an eclectic mix of hand made goodies from across the country, I will obviously stock my own handmade creations but I really want to stock as many different types of 'craft' by as many different crafters and makers as I possibly can. I see it as being a handmade treasure trove!

And the big question!
I want to see if there would be an interest out there for placing products in the shop on a sale or return basis? If anyone would be interested in in this or knows any who might be I would really appriciate to know about it. I really just want to see if there would be any interest at this stage.

Please feel free to spread the word to anyone and everyone and please leave me a comment if you are remotley interested!

I'm excited!

x x x

Friday, 23 January 2009

Mmmm cake!

I don't think i've mentioned it before but i have a little unit in a place called Botany Bay near to where i live. It is an old mill that has been turned into a large centre full of little individual units that are rented out. It is a treasure trove of goodies ranging from home made cards to baby clothes.
I have been renting a small (20sq ft) unit there since July 2008. I stock it with jewellery, some that i make but most that i buy wholesale. It has been doing well and sales each month have continued to increase, which is always good.

Ever since i was a little girl and helped my mummy out in her lovely bookshop i have wanted a shop of my own. I would fill it full of handmade treasures by lots of different people and generally lovely goodies!

The ground floor of Botany Bay is set out like victorian streets, with little individual shops (its sooooo sweet). These shops are rented out also, and vary in size from 100sq ft upwards. I have been thinking for sometime about renting one of these units. There is a minimum term of 6 months, which compared to normal retail premisise is good. Also there is the benefit that the shop will not have to be manned all of the time - handy if i need to go to the bank, doctors, shops! hehe.

I am still very much in the 'thinking about it' stage but i would love it if it became a handmade treasure filled reality!

As well as dreaming about my little shop i have also had a busy evening baking. I successfully made some coconut macaroons.

I was going to make a moist banana loaf but as i have no loaf tin :( i have made banana muffins instead. They are, as i type, slowly cooking in the oven but here is a picture of them before they went in! i will let you know how they turn out.
Martin's at work until 10pm tonight :( so i'm having a quite night in with a big glass of apple juice (i don't really drink unless i'm out) and some mindless tv. He's been doing lots of hours latley - he just got a new job. Before christmas he was working part time for Toys r Us but has had his hours cut down so much, post christmas lull, that he has got another job in an off license, not ideal but it keeps the pennies coming in.

Well i'd better check the banana muffins!
x x x

A surprise message...

...landed in my facebook indox today. It was from a lovely girl I went to school with but have not spoken to in over 7 years. It brought a tear to my eye.....

'I am well impressed with your website. I love crafting too, however never worked with felt. lol. Just finished a degree in advertising nr manchester which was cool. but now tryin to do someting fun and creative... n what ure doin is really good. with your own buniess set up and everything. Good luck with that, n i might follow in your footsteps if i ever find out how to set up my own website. lol. GOOD LUCK, not that ure needin it ,. xx'

I have not being doing this crafting thig for long but its things like this that make me want to continue. It has made my week and I am dancing around my living room as I type!

x x x x x x

Thursday, 22 January 2009

Cuteable giveaway and new launch

I was very excited when i got a message this morning to say i was on Cuteable! I have given one of my handmade badges to the amazing Cuteable giveaway and today i am featured on the website *squeel*. You can see the badge on the Cuteable website here. The giveaway features the talents of many 'crafters' and everything that will be included is featured on the website.

You can enter by leaving a comment on the giveaway post here, Lynsey will send the prizes to anywhere accross the world so get entering!

This is my contribution....

(I must appologise about the picture - my camera is playing up so i'm having to use my not so good phone!)

Secondly i am very excited because my new website went officially live today. So hopefully i will get lots of visitors! hehe.
Thirdly i am busily collecting things for the Mug Swap - my first swap is soooo fun. I can't wait to send it off!
x x x

Tuesday, 20 January 2009

A new arrival

I forgot to mention a big thank you for all your lovely comments about the arrival of martin's not so little brother. After the disaster that was him living with us last year i was presently surprised when he walked through the door and announced 'ey, help me find a job sarah'. granted not the most polite request but a request with the right intentions.

So off he went on yesterday morning into Preston and arrived back later that day with at least a weeks work at the place he worked for a few months last year - success. he is still looking for another job - i must admit he is making an effort.

He is still messy and loud but he does seem to have discovered that we DO have a dishwasher and that it is easier to put the dishes in it than have me nag him all day! He even hoovered for me while i was out and i only had to ask him once!

So i must admit that i am impressed at how much he has matured in just a few months.

Fingers crossed

x x x

Short and Sweet

Just a quick one today, i spent a lovley afternoon yesterday with Alex and Nathaniel - it was my first visit to sams (a super dooper crafty store near us). I got some lovely things!

When we left we were greeted by over an inch of snow! I was also shown how to finger kinit by Elizabeth! A new skill under my belt.

I have had a busy day in uni today so am tired tonight, i have found time to sew some lovley hearts tho!

I'll write more tomorrow i promise!
x x x

Sunday, 18 January 2009

Unsuccessful yet sparkly day

Today started bad and then got worse! When my alarm went off at 7.30 i felt like i'd only been asleep for an hour. After driving for an hour to get to the craft fair (in the snow and gale force winds) we got there late.

The morning was slow and i only sold a couple of little headbands, the afternoon was slower! It was nice to spend the day with my mum (again). We had a natter and i got a bit more of my knitting done too. I also found out about the Cumbria Steam Gathering that happens in July. A lovely man o one of the stalls told me about it - its £50.00 for a pitch for two days. I am definatley doing it!

Martin's little (nearly 18) brother is also coming to stay with us for...well i'm not exactly sure how long. He is not coping too well at home and there is the mutual feeling that both him and his mum need a break from each other. This will not be the first time we have him staying with us, he lived with us for a few months at the beginning of the year during which time he stayed in bed all day, didn't turn up to work and generally was idle. Hopefully this time will be different and to be fair on him he seems to have grown up ALOT over this past year - i actually enjoy his company now!

We'll just have to see how it goes, and if i can cope with having someone staying in my office/craft room! He only asked if he could come this morning and he already has a job interview lined up for tomorrow so fingers crossed.

As the craft fair was in Penrith we were already 45 minutes nearer home so it only took just under an hour to travel home. I have madly rushed around trying to clear a space for him to fit among all of my craft supplies and Martins new Xbox chair so now the living room and our bedroom looks like a tiny and much messier version of HobbyCraft!

Oh i did manage to pick up a little bargain in the form of these lovely sparkles from the fair....

...arn't they pretty!

Saturday, 17 January 2009

An exciting day

Today i took some of my handmade things to a shop in Carlisle that have asked to stock them! To say i was excited is an understatement! I only took a few bits and pieces to see how they do so fingers crossed they will do well!

My mummy came with me and we spent a lovely afternoon - we went shopping, had a drink and some lovely homemade pea and ham soup in a little coffee shop, them we bought a film to watch tonight. She's coming with me tomorrow to the craft fair in penrith to lend a hand, i also plan to make progress with my knitting as a week on from starting it and i've only done 24 lines :(

I also made a little cupcake felt badge before going to town this morning....... made me smile!

I also received the name of the person who i will be sending my mug too, as part of the mug swap! Very excited!

I still have lots of things to do before the fair tomorrow and where setting off at 8am (unorganised as usual)


x x x

Friday, 16 January 2009

Early morning = rubbish post!

It has just been pointed out to me, by Daisie, that my last post was ashamedly undescriptive! I blame my lack of explanation on the early hour it was written (remember i'm a student so i'm not actually ment to rise until the afternoon you know!).

I am infact contributing a little handmade treasure to the Cuteable giveaway.

Thank you Daisie for being on the ball!

Love sarah

Giveaway fun...

I'm really excited this morning - even if it is stupidly early for a 'student'!

I am taking part in the Cuteable giveaway - this excites me greatly! The general gist is that Cuteable are giving away a basket full of handmade treasures made by artists and crafters from all over the UK. The giveaway is open to anyone accross the world. If you want to enter click on the Cuteable logo below and comment the post.

Thursday, 15 January 2009

Swap, Swap, Swap!

Just a quick one thonight to let you know that I'm taking part in my first swap, a mug swap to be exact! I'm soooo excited. The swap is being run by JennyFlower and if you want to take part just go to here but you'll have to be quick because i think you have to register before the end of tomorrow (i could be wrong though!).

I've had a very busy day today, making lots of lovelies. I got three parcels through the post this morning, but i'll have to wait until tomorroe to tell you about them because my camera battery died and i left the charger at my mum and dad's *sob sob*.

I am nipping up to see my mum and dad for the weekend as i have another craft fair, this time in Penrith, on sunday. I will get the camera charger and get snapping!

Much love
x x x

Treasures and Traffic

Today was spent coming up with a few new ideas for more hand made treasures and a few trials of bits and pieces.

I made a simple flower that makes a cute little girls headband...

A simple pocket purse...

with this little chap on the back....

A small heart stuffed with my left over felt scrap and decorated with some spare brads and...
a padded pink cupcake thingy that i'm not quite sure what to do with!
They are all just trials but i definatley like the dragonfly chap and the cupcake!

I've had a lovely evening with my friend Sarah who picked me up and off we headed to the cinema. Little did we know that a usually 10 minute journey would take us over half an hour - traffic! The film (Bride Wars) was better than i expected even if it did nearly put me off the whole idea of weddings - not quite tho!

Tuesday, 13 January 2009

Learning to Knit...

After a recent visit to my wonderful Aunty Mamie in Aberdeen, encouragement from my mum and inspiration from the wonderful Daisie, i have started to knit!

I started by trawling the markets in Carlisle until i found the most amazing wool - all pink and fluffy!

I then spent just aslong trying to find a pattern that i would be able to follow and that was simple enough to allow me to produce a reasonably decent outcome - or i fear i will be dissappointed and give up - i need to stay positive!

I eventually found one that only required me to knit two very large rectangles, sew them together and hey preston...i shouold have a poncho!

So far i have done about 1/3 of the first rectangle...

So stay tuned for the outcome!

Much love



My cooking success!

Even though my cooking trials took place over the christmas period i feel way too proud of myself not to mention them!

When me and Martin moved into our first house just over a year ago i was full of ambition - i was going to bake everyday, make lots of lovely goodies and generally live in domestiv bliss. Suffice to say none of the above happened, life kind of took over! So i decided that i would use the christmas break to change this. I spend 19 lovely days at my mum and dad's over christmas and have discovered lots of lovely food i can now make!

I made a lovely broccolli and mushroom quiche......

Some cheese scones....
a loaf of chocolate bread (yummy yummy)........

and some coconut macaroons and a greek stew called Kleftico!

I feel very proud of my attempts, even if the loaf was a bit sad! I intend to keep up with my cooking experiments - next on my list is banana loaf! I'll let you know how i get on.

Much love


Hello there.
As this is my first post i think i'd better introduce my self. I'm a 23 year old student just finishing my final year of my degree based around advertising, but my main love is for creating things! I am also busily starting to develop a business for myself, hand making and selling jewellery and accessories. My favorite material is felt (i love it) and i'm currrently working on badges and headbands. I am always looking for new skills to learn and new materials to work with so suggestions are welcomed!
I am starting this blog to keep a record of my progress, the ups and the downs, mainly to allow me to look back and see how far i go, but also to make new friends with a mutual love for all things "crafty"!

I live with my wonderful boyfriend, Martin, and our two lodgers in Preston but i spend a lot of time at my parents house in Cumbria which is also where my two ponies Monty and Rhona live! I dream of living in a cosy cottage by the sea with two dogs and a gaggle of children but for now i have to settle for my two cheeky gerbils, Pip and Pini!

Martin embracing the country side dress code!

My wonderful family!

I'm going to try and post on here as often as i can although i'm not promising it will all be very exciting!

Thank you for taking the time to read this!

Much love