Make it Monday #makeitmonday

My thing for 2017 is to try and make more. In the crafts department if nothing else.

So every Monday I’m going to try and post something I’ve made the previous week whether it’s a card I’ve made or something else.

In the last week I’ve been practising some different techniques with my watercolour pencils and I’m fairly pleased with the results so here is what I’m up to so far.

A New Year Begins Here

Well OK, my first posting for a while but if you are making things for people who read your blog then you’re pretty well stuffed if you want to write about it.

But, dear readers, Christmas is over for another 12 months so I can at least tell you about the makes in the preceding weeks before Christmas 2016 now.

If you have read any previous festive blogs of mine, (if not, why not?) then you will know that I have a tradition that the staff I work with get a hand made decoration every year from yours truly. I really love making them as much as they enjoy receiving them and for me half the fun is coming up with an idea that I think they’ll like.

Some of the lovely ladies I work with are grandparents, one is a Christmas addict, I’m sure there’s aa word for that but I don’t know what it is, and another is a young mum so I need to come up with things that suit everyone. Again, that’s half the fun for me. Also you’ll probably know that I and many millions of others are addicted to Pinterest which aids the the little grey cells but wastes an inordinate amount of time!

Anyway, the point in Pinterest is that you save all your ideas to boards and then plough through them every now and then thinking “Crikey! Have I really saved that many crochet hat patterns” and other such things. If you’re on Pinterest you’ll know exactly what I mean and if you’re not then just believe me, its true. Having saved things, and then going through them, I decided that I would make small wire framed fairies for everyone and set about the task which began with a YouTube video.

I didn’t have that long to make them as we were due to go away on holiday for two weeks in late November/early December so began my task. Pictures next!

In the meantime at work I had agreed to share my office with one of the stock managers who was then invited to our Christmas meal. Now let me assure you, he’s not a fairy kind of bloke. Saying that he does like Christmas so I had to come up with something else.

These are so not him!

They were quite intricate and a bit fiddly but the hardest thing was finding the correct sized silk flowers to make them. They have wire framed bodies so will wrap themselves around a branch or sit on a shelf.

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I had to make eight in all. In the meantime I was busy making my Christmas cards and also had some birthdays to make cards for. I’m not going to go into details but out came the Big Shot and here are some of the results. I was quite pleased.

See, in all the excitement I nearly forgot to tell you all what I decided to make for our new male member of the team.

whilst perusing the internet I saw a die from Concorde and 9th. An American company but found one singular outlet in the U.K.

The die is called “Take a bough” and is gorgeous, I had to wait for new stock to come in but look what I made.

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The first tree I finished was given to the log man who we buy our logs from as he found a tree trunk that was about 25feet long ang chopped off some bits about 2 inches deep for me to “plant” my trees in. I had to say Thank You and the best way, so I thought was to give him and his wife the first tree. Luckily they loved it.

As if that wasn’t enough I decided to make my own air drying clay! Don’t ask, just blame Pinterest.

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Better start planning next Christmas………

Let Them Eat Cake!

Last week Simon’s mum Judy had what you would call a significant birthday. She celebrated her 80th. Everyone was ready to celebrate, including Judy, who loves to be surrounded by her family and friends. Above is the lady herself celebrating with her three children.

She chose the venue, The Golden Lion at Tipton St John, the scene of her 70th. People were invited, menus emailed and plans for the event made.

My contribution was the cake. In fact it was a very large fruitcake. 16 inches of cake using my go to recipe. I worked out how much of everything I needed and bright and early one Sunday morning mixed it all up. I have to admit that it was so large that it took me an hour to mix it and another 4 hours to cook it. I wasn’t planning on going anywhere that day!

Once it came out of the oven it took several hours to actually cool down enough for me to feed with some whisky and wrap it ready for marzipanning the following Sunday.

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imageNext Sunday came the icing and decorating but what I haven’t actually said is that during the making of this epic cake, I had been making fondant roses to decorate it with. Now, I had never made them before but I had made some daisies to top some cupcakes a few weeks before and fancied giving it a try. Plus I’d made paper roses before and well, the principal must be the same right!

I bought some modelling fondant and that was it. These are my first attempts. I bought metallic pink and used some of that mixed with white to change the colour and then added some gel food colours so I ended up with four different shades of pink.

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My poor work colleagues had to put up with me talking about them for about a month so for that I sincerely apologise. They’re probably really glad it’s over with but dreading the next thing.Anyway, I left the icing to dry out for a week before putting on the flowers and I will admit now that my newest favourite thing is edible glue. Fantastic stuff. Without it there would have been fondant roses all over the boot of my car!

Enough excitement I think. Here is the cake in its stages of decorating.