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Showing posts with label presents. Show all posts
Showing posts with label presents. Show all posts

Monday, 11 August 2014

I made a moth!

embroidered moth brooch

This craft project was born out of a weird midnight in-joke that went too far - Something about an enormous, clumsy moth called Caleb that met an untimely demise after an encounter with a bleach-filled toilet... I've been friends with Eleanor for 16 years now, and this is by no means the first of these bizarre characters we've concocted. It was her birthday last week, and I thought that it was the perfect excuse to crack out my embroidery threads and make a moth! I'm a needlework novice, but I'm pretty darn (haha, get it?) proud of this attempt at an embroidered brooch!

summer wrapping paper
innovative gift wrapping
needlework brooch idea

I didn't use a pattern for this, I just used a picture of a moth for reference and then stitched it freehand onto some old felt that I had lying around. I used a safety pin as the brooch closure, although you can buy little brooch pins very cheaply. I am surprised by how intuitive it was, once I started. I mean, the back of the moth looks pretty gnarly but the front looks great, and that's what matters, right? I think that half the battle with these things is threading the needle, and once that's done, you're off and away and you can start to be creative! The hardest bit to do was Caleb's little antennae. I wanted to make sure they were firmly anchored, which meant I had to tie lots and lots of tiny little knots. So fiddly! All in all, he took me a couple of evenings of gentle sewing in front of Australian Masterchef reruns. Best use of my time.

flower crown kimono fashion

Here's Eleanor, being a stylish so-and-so, outfit completed with the addition of Caleb, chillaxing on her boob there. You probably won't be surprised to find out that Eleanor is a costume and performance designer, and she is really bloody good at it. If you're ever in need of a designer for your... performance, hit. her. up. Here's her website! Anyway, she says she loves Caleb very much, and that's encouraged me to do more freestyle embroidery, so watch this space! What should I make next?

It looks a bit like Caleb is in love with Eleanor's dragonfly necklace!

Sunday, 6 April 2014

How to wrap an Easter present!

Easter gift wrap
When I was little, I never finished my Easter eggs - they would still be hanging around in their boxes by the time Christmas came around. So after a while, my parents decided that it would be much more sensible to get me a book or a video (showing my age there...) for Easter. Presents need wrapping, and Easter is a great excuse for some adorable chick or bunny-themed decorations, so let’s get started!
I’ve gathered together some brown wrapping paper, raffia, colourful washi tape, and those iconic little fuzzy chicks that seem to pop up everywhere from the beginning of March. Washi tape is available from most craft shops, as well as places like Paperchase. You can use normal sticky tape, but I think this cheerful stuff makes a nice little statement!
washi tape gift wrap
how to wrap a present
present wrapping chick
Wrap your present as you normally would, and don’t worry too much about it being perfectly neat – you can cover up all manner of sins with cute accessories. (A mantra for life). Tear the washi tape rather than cutting it with scissors as this gives it a more rustic look, which goes well with the brown paper.
raffia for giftwrap
Tie the present with a few strands of raffia so that the bow or knot is on the opposite side to all of the washi tape. I trimmed the ends so that they were all a similar length. Oh no, the little chicklet fell on his face!
fluffy easter chick
Tape the little chick next to the knot in your raffia. It also secures the raffia so it won’t slip off in transit.
Pretty easter gift wrapping
Finish the presents off by writing the recipients’ names on the presents. I chose to just monogram them, using a fine-tipped pen.
Easter gift wrap
These presents are for my little brother and sister who (unlike my childhood self) absolutely LOVE chocolate. I wrapped the chocolate eggs up in this adorable tissue paper which I saved from a recent trip to Tiger. They change their packing paper with the seasons and I always try to save it whenever I buy something from there.
So that’s how I wrapped my presents this Easter. I am obsessed with packaging, wrapping, crafting, and making things lovely, so stay tuned for more seasonal gift-wrapping posts.
Oh and I’d love it if you checked out the article I wrote about blanket-forts (ie my favourite thing in the whole world) over at Mookychick a fabulous alternative online zine with a feminist outlook. Let me know what you think!

Thursday, 25 December 2008

Another Long Blog.

Every now and again, I get an urge to write in this blog. Some might say more often than is really socially acceptable, but then nobody reads this blog anyway. Once I realise that, I usually lose my impetus. But never mind.

Today has been Christmas. Even though technically it is Boxing Day as I write this, it has been Christmas today, as far as I am concerned. This Christmas has been a sparse and frugal one. We couldn't afford a tree, or presents, so we had a table cloth with a tree on it, which we hung from one of our bookshelves, and all of our presents were either home made, or from charity shops. Mum made me two pairs of pyjama bottoms, a hot water bottle and cover, and a dressing gown. Andrew got me a book about religion from a charity shop.
I did get a hard drive though, which is REALLLLLY USEFUL! I have a really old computer so, it has absolutely no memory, and I listen to quite a bit of music, which means I need memory space.









Dan got me a couple of books. One by Neil Gaiman, which I have already finished! And also the Alchemist, which is really lovely. Eleanor got me the DVD of a film that I really like called Eagle Vs Shark. It is a film from New Zealand, and it has the guy from Flight of the Conchords in it. (Another comedy which I adore)
That's the cover of the DVD/Poster for the film. I do love it. :) Andrew made me the DVDs of both series of Twin Peaks to take back to Cambridge when I go up.

So, now onto the rest of my holiday... I went to Dan's, and stayed with him and his family. Then Dan and I went to Venice. It was amazing. He took loads of photos. I took some too, but his are better, because he has an amazing camera which lets him take lots of high quality photos. Also, he has a lovely computer and software which allows him to edit them and make them lovely. I am more than a little jealous! :P

We spent hours and hours wandering the little lanes, passages, and bridges of Venice. We drank coffee in numerous little bars, and we did the usual touristy things, like going to St Mark's Basilica, and the Accademia. The hotel was nice, and we had some lovely food of course. I was expecting Dan to be able
to speak some Italian, being half Italian himself... but alas, he was somewhat linguistically challenged. Plus I kept speaking french, which was a bit of a problem.

Then when we returned from lovely Venice, it was my birthday! I am now 19. Crazy... I don't FEEL nineteen, but apparently I was born over nineteen years ago now. So yeah. Weird. I spent my birthday at Dan's, and we made an amazing brownie. The recipe is as follows:

  1. Look in cupboard and find a brick of year-old muscavado sugar, which miraculously weighs exactly 200g.
  2. Add this to 200g of melted butter, and stir a lot. A LOT.
  3. Add the remnants (about half) of a tin
    of golden syrup. You know you have some in your cupboard. Everyone does. Keep stirring.
  4. Melt an entire massive slab of Dairy Milk chocolate in the microwave, or in a bowl on top of hot water. Pour this into the mix. You should now have a bowl of brown, sticky gloop.
  5. Pour 200g of plain flour into the concoction. Do this bit by bit, to avoid having to deal with a massive flour explosion and a really dry bowl of gloopy flour.
  6. Break a couple of eggs in, and keep mixing.
  7. Pour messily into a brownie tin, and bake until you are bored.
  8. Take out the brownie and enjoy its unhealthy wonderment.
So, Dan got me some scarves, a ridiculously cute teddy bear, and a bracelet. And he took me out to eat at a Japanese restaurant in Cambridge. I will talk more about Japanese stuff in a minute. This appears to be turning into rather a mammoth blog.

The day after my birthday (The 22nd of December), Dan and I drove back to Brighton for my birthday meal with all of my Brighton friends. It was really good to see people again. Dan seemed to get on with everyone really well, a
nd Kim said that Dan and I were really cute together. Kat said that we were "unbelievably cute" too actually. I got some really thoughtful and nice presents from my friends, which made me very happy indeed. After the meal, Dan, Patrick, Tilly and I went to the pub for cider.

The week before we went to Venice, Dan and James came to Brighton and visited. That was so much fun! We went to the pier, and we went to the pub for lunch. Then we had a race back to Cambridge in their cars. They made me feel much better because that morning I had received the news that my cat had died. :(

On the 27th of December, I am off up to Dan's again, and he is giving me a lift to Stanstead airport the next day, (The 28th) so that I can g
o to visit my Dad, in France. I am going to miss Dan so much. But on the 27th, I am meeting his grandparents and his cousins and his aunt. I am nervous of the cousins most of all, because they are the same age as me, and I am scared of being judged!

On the 3rd of January, I am going to visit Laura in Luxembourg, and then on the 5th, we are going to Paris with the T.O.D.S plus a couple of others. This means ten days without Dan. The thought seems unbearable. I am tr
ying not to dwell on it.

Here instead is a picture of me and Emma, from the Winter Ball in Cambridge:

Saturday, 22 December 2007

My 18th Birthday- 'tis the season to be jolly!

On the 21st of December it was my birthday! I had my first ever party. Loads of pictures were taken, but I haven't managed to get my hands on many of them yet, I am afraid. Quite a few of my friends brought their instruments along and we had lots of jamming. It was great. Patrick and I played 'Hallelujah' by Jeff Buckley, and we also played Scarborough fair, and some others. I received some amazing presents from my friends too, including
  • felt tips,
  • a teapot for one,
  • scarves,
  • hats,
  • mittens,
  • biscuits,
  • mugs...
  • a CD: 'The Magic Position' by Patrick Wolf (check him out!)
  • a top,
  • my Evenstar pendant! (yes yes, i am a Lord of the Rings geek!)
  • and of course, my Dress! Elbe made it for me!!!
My dad gave me some red converse, and my mum and her boyfriend gave me some perfume. 'Flower' by Kenzo.

After the party, Kim, Tasha, Elbe, Tilly, Kat, Hannah, Alice, Zoe, Becca, Dan and Richard all went to Pablo's for pizza, and after that, i went for my first legal pub-drink. I felt all grown up! Becca gave me money to get Pear Cider, and beer, and we all sat outside. Unfortunately, we got moved along because I was the only one with ID, so that was a bit annoying. The bar-guy did give us plastic cups to be going along with though!!

here are a few pictures: I don't think the evening could have gone any better! although the day was a bit ropey, as our car broke down in the middle of the motorway, and it was mightily stressful!!!

In other news:

Elbe managed to get us second row tickets to see 'The Mighty Boosh' in November! And I got another university offer. Cardiff wants me to get two Bs and a C! wowee!