Monday, 25 April 2011

The Sun Has Got His Easter Bonnet On, hip hip hip hooray! :)

Hi everyone!

What fabulously gorgeous weather we have been having over the bank holiday weekend! I hope you all had a lovely Easter break, and ate lots of yummy chocolate eggs and hot crossed buns!

Simon, Lucy and I have been making the most of being off work for the Easter break, and of the lovely weather by tackling the garden, mowing the (tiny!) lawn, getting rid of the dead plants etc - well, I was mostly supervising Si and my brother Rhyes doing the garden, whilst I was sat in the sun with a lovely cold lager, a housey magazine :)

On Thursday, I also realised how unfit I am by going on a bike ride with Simon along the canal, it was the perfect day for it....

....and we had fun feeding the swans when we stopped for a rest!

On Good Friday, my sisters and I decided to drive over to Dunelm Mill, a local home ware and soft furnishing store, as I wanted to pick up some fabric, and bias binding to make some bunting to go on my stall (more on that in a mo!) and I managed to pick up some end - rolls of polka dot oilcloth for just £1.50 per metre, which may just be big enough to use as a table cloth on my stall, so I was a happy bunny!

Easter Sunday, my friend Gem brought all my fab new Stampin' Up! goodies, and we had a great couple of hours playing with my new stuff, munching on chocolatey Kinder Bueno eggs (well, it was Easter!) and experimenting with designs, patterns and colour combo's for the packaging for my handmade bath and body products, ready for selling on my very own stall at Otley's craft fair in June! 
It should be fun, as both Gem and Kerry are also having stalls - Gem selling her fabulous handmade cards, and Kerry selling vintage treasures - I really cannot wait!
Here is a sneak preview of one of the mini milk cartons Gem and I made:

How cute is this lil' box? The picture is actually one Gem took, and I have shamelessly stolen it, sorry Gem!
After all the playing around with the Stampin Up! stuff, we headed off to the local pub's beer garden for a much deserved glass (or several!) of refreshingly chilled WKD apple cider, yum!

To finish off a lovely few days break from work, today I managed to finally get some herb, lettuce and spinach seeds planted, that I bought awhile ago,and have been meaning to do, so fingers crossed for lots of delicious homegrown salad soon :)

Hopefully this week will see me cracking on with my bunting, more packaging designing, and finally picking up where I left off with my patchwork quilt, (which I started ages ago, and only have a few rows sewn together - shameful!)

How have you spent YOUR Easter break?

Thursday, 21 April 2011

Beautiful Bargains And Fabulous Finds #1

Hi everyone!

Despite my self-imposed shopping 'ban', I have somehow managed to acquire some lovely vintage and pin-up inspired dresses, books and nicknack's via charity shops and my good old favorite, eBay! :)
Well, its almost rude not to when the bids are so low - isn't it?!

This stunning Pin-up style red cherry dress is simply gorgeous, it was a great bargain from eBay, and with postage, came to less than £5.

The dress length is not too long (which is unusual for me, as I'm only 5''1) and the hem falls to just below my knee, which is perfect for the vintage inspired style of the dress :)
Now I just have to find some lovely vintage style cherry jewellery to accessorise it!

Another bargain, I actually got a few months ago, but I simply had to include in this post given the title:

Isn't it gorgeous? it is child size (rather than the normal adult size) in height, and I think it's so cute with the faded purple patterns (check out the cute heart!) and little frill to the 'skirt'

When I saw it in the charity shop I couldn't believe it, as I had been wanting a mannequin/dummy for ages, and when I saw that it was priced at just £4.99 I handed my pennies over there and then!
It goes perfectly with my purple boudoir style bedroom and has my feather boa's draped all over it!

I couldn't believe when I spotted this gorgeous wicker picnic hamper/basket in another charity shop for just a fiver, as I had just commented on a blog post saying I was jealous of her fab picnic basket find  - It must have been fate!
When I opened it up, all the plastic 'crockery' and cutlery was still in the plastic wrappers - brand new!

As the weather was so gorgeous last Saturday, the picnic basket had its first outing, and Simon and I took a radio, magazines, delicious food and drink, and headed to the local park, where we spread out a blanket on the grass and had a picnic with my three gorgeous nieces (all under 6!) and Lucy, who had a great time playing ball with the girls :)

I was in another charity shop (there seems to be a pattern emerging!) when I saw this amazing Toile De Jouy blanket/cover and pillow cases, which looks new, for just £2.99! I adore this pattern, so french chic!

As I always seem to have lots of 'favorite bargains', I think this may have to become a regular feature!

What are your best fabulous finds?

Tuesday, 19 April 2011

Stampin' Up!

Hi everyone!

Last week, I attended my friend Gem's (from Stampin' Up! mini catalogue launch & workshop, with the main focus being around the new 2011 mini catalogue, and the fab new shape cutting and embossing Big Shot machine:
It was fabulous! We all got to make a card, using the Fun Flowers die, Square Lattice or Spotty embossing folders, Swirls Scribbles die and Timeless Type Alphabet dies, (all of which we used on the Big Shot) and picked which gorgeous Springtime Vintage Designer paper and buttons we wanted to use to decorate our cards.
This is my first attempt at card making, which I was really pleased with:

Until I compared it with Gem's fabulous card - and its not hard to see why she is the Stampin' Up! Demonstrator!

Gem had laid out some of the fabulous new bits and bobs that can be ordered from the catalogue (some of which were perfect for my handmade bath products!) and handed round both the new mini catalogue, and the Idea's catalogue so we could have a nosy, and place orders (which, of course, I did, as I couldn't resist!)

I was so tempted to buy everything in the catalogues, as its all so gorgeous - especially the Paris theme stamp set, which I'm definitely splurging on come payday! How gorgeous are they? I'm really loving the Paris theme that's everywhere at the moment!

I cant wait until my goodies arrive later this week :)

Have you tried Stampin' Up! ?

Wednesday, 13 April 2011

Im back with a (rambly) update :)

Hi everyone!

Sorry for the lack of post's recently, I have been really busy with coursework, work, and life in general, and couldn't seem to catch up, or have any proper free time to read my favorite blogs or do any post's of my own, but fingers crossed, the madness has passed and normality will soon resume!
I have recently been given different awards and tags and things, and although delayed (as always, with me :/ I am so bad for procrastinating! ) I promise I WILL catch up :)

I also noticed that since my last post, blogger seemed to go mad, and my sidebar photo's and things disappeared to the bottom of my blog for some unknown reason  although all appeared OK on my template thingummy (has anybody else had this?) but after a bit of messing about, I seem to have corrected it, phew!

Anywhoo, one of the thing I have been busy with is my handmade bath and body products, both trying to sort out a 'brand' name and a facebook page for advertising and selling my products, which hopefully will be up and running soon (thank you for all the helpful comments, particularly to Angie at bumblebees craftden for all the fab advice!) once my 'branding' is sorted, and I will keep you updated with my progress!

I have also been trying out and making new products, using different fragrances and blends, since I had a few requests from male friends/relatives saying they would definitely buy and use the products (in secret of course!), if they were 'less girly', so I have been on the hunt for masculine scents, which I am struggling with a little bit, particularly in essential oils, does anyone have any suggestions please?

Im also really excited for tomorrow night, as I am attending my friend Gem's (whom I met at Buns & Roses Women's Institute) Stampin Up! mini catalogue launch, as we get to do some lovely craftiness and make some gorgeous cards and tags :)

Some of Gem's fab cards!

Stampin Up! catalogues, as many of you know, offer some amazing stamps and accessories for greeting cards, scrapbook pages, home decor, and lots more, and as tomorrow is the launch of the new catalogue, I'm sure I will end up buying lots and lots (it all looks so gorgeous and colour co-ordinated!) so I think I had best take my purse!
To see some more of Stampin Up! demonstrator Gem's beautiful hand made cards check out her amazing crafty blog Make Do and Gem :)
Im hoping to take along my camera and hopefully get some nice (fingers crossed!) pictures to show you, so look out for that!

Have you hand made any cards or tags before?

Wednesday, 6 April 2011

Swaps Galore!

Hi everyone!

This last week or so, I have been as giddy as a kipper(!) because I have been expecting not one, but TWO Swap packages to pop through my front door! How lucky am I?!
I was absolutely gutted therefore, when I came home from work, to find a card through my door stating that I had missed delivery of TWO packages, and must wait 48 hours before I could collect them! boo!
After an agonising wait (it felt like it!) I finally had my little hands on my goodies!

The first package was part of a Spring Makes Me Sing Swap, in which I was partnered with the lovely Lynda of hookin' with laalaa (to see what I sent her, click the link :)
Lynda sent me an absolutely gorgeous boxful of goodies, every single item very thoughtfully picked out, and I adore each and every item :)
When I opened up the box, a gorgeous familiar scent wafted out from the box, and I was greeted with lots of beautifully wrapped packages, each tied with a lovely co-ordinating ribbon :)

How gorgeous are these?!

After ripping open two intriguing looking (and gorgeously smelling!) packages, I was greeted with these two! A gorgeous Lush Bath Ballistic and a Bubble Bar!
Although I adore Lush, I have never tried these particular two products, so I was very tempted to run a bath straight away just to try them out!
The pink one is called Think Pink (tonka bean and vanilla scented), and the white one Amandopondo (rose, lemon & orange scented) As you can imagine, both smell simply lovely!

My next few goodies speak for themselves - Cath Kidston!!
I think now I am going to have to collect the other colours to match this mug (any excuse!)

Next up - more Lush! The solid perfume in Tuca Tuca smells lovely, and is the perfect size for my handbag, for when im on-the-go!

This has got to be my absolute favorite item from Lynda's box, for two reasons - one, its a fabulous book about Burlesque, which I have a definate passion about, and second, for the sheer thoughtfulness of the gift, so thank you Lynda!

Last, but certainly not least, Is this fabulous aptly named chocolate bar - which is the perfect accompaniement to munch on whilst I soak in my Lush scented bubble bath, reading my new Burlesque book  - perfect night in, in my opinion!

The next parcel, was a mini-swap I did with Stacey from Nude-Obsession (again, to see what I sent, click the link!)
Stacey very kindly offered to pick me up some Seche Vite nail varnish top coat, and instead of me paying her for it, she suggested a swap!
I was really excited for the swap, as Stacey has a fabulous beauty blog, so I could be sure to receive some great beauty finds, and I wasn't wrong!

Sorry for the terrible photo, for some reason I couldn't seem to get a good one!
Stacey included:
  • Seche Vite top coat
  • Schwarzkopf Got2b POWER'ful volumizing styling powder
  • Jean Marin body firmer, 2-in-1 fluid cleanser, deep nourishing body veloute, age defence day cream.
  • Vitamin E skin oil
  • Philosophy pink frosted cookie lip gloss
  • Alida beauty tool set - how gorgeous are these?!

Thanks for a lovely swap Stacey :)

Didn't I do well in my swaps? Have you had a bloggy swap yet? I was thinking of hosting a swap after Easter, if you are interested, please say so in your comment :)

Thanks for a fabulous swap Lynda - will definitely be doing one again!

Saturday, 2 April 2011

And The Winner Is.......

Hi everyone!

100 Follower Giveaway Winner!

Thanks so much to everyone that entered my 100 Follower Giveaway, I loved reading all your reasons for entering, its just a shame you couldnt all win :(

I decided to pick the winner in the old-fashioned way by picking the lucky 'ticket' out of a 'hat' (or in my case, a floral box!), although when I started, I almost wish I had done it via the Random Number Generator, as my hand started aching after awhile!
I decided the fairest way was to let Simon pick, so without further ado, The Winner Is............

 drumroll please..........


I have emailed Pink Poppy for her address, so I can get her goodies sent off :)

Thanks for entering guys, I will do another giveaway soon, possibly with my handmade bath & body stuff as the main prize? What do you think?