Sunday, 13 December 2015

Merry Christmas x

Hi everyone, 

I hope you are all well and not getting too stressed out with all the planning and organising that usually goes into this festive season. 
I am trying to take it all my stride this year...I normally let everything get on top of me and that's not really what Christmas is meant to be about is it?
It's our granddaughter's first birthday this week. We visited today as her Mum and Dad were having a little party for her but we will pop up to see her on Wednesday too (her actual birthday). She's a little cracker, full of smiles and mischief and she coped admirably today considering their house was so busy with people. 
I've been busy this week getting some Christmas orders together and I finally managed to add a review section to my Facebook page so hopefully customers will start leaving some reviews for me.
I have four frames to finish for Christmas...two are done and the other two are nearly finished. I'm also busy putting some Secret Santa things together for work (we've to be imaginative and not spend alot of money) and a memory page for a friend who's turning 50 on Christmas Eve. Everything else is having to wait (Christmas wrapping, cleaning, ironing etc) and for the first time ever, I'm not stressing...long may it continue! 

Cooper

This was ordered by a lady for her grandson, Cooper. The brief was blues, reds, cars! I've done a few 'car' themed frames now and it is getting a little more challenging to make them each unique. I painted a curvy road pattern on the frame mount in grey. The cars were easy enough to glue on using a hot glue gun. I put some coloured button letters on the roofs of the cars to spell his name then dotted some other cars around the road. 
The 'C' was painted and I tried a bubble effect by using some glue in the paint then heating with a heat gun. While I quite liked the effect, I felt it was a bit messy for this frame so I decided to use some squares of red felt instead which I layered on the letter. A lovely blue and white striped fabric was used as the backing for the letter. The lady who ordered it has left some positive feedback on my Facebook page too!
Nikole
This frame was great as the brief was pink, purple and glitzy. I find it much easier to do frames for girls than boys as I can really go to town with ribbon, beads and sparkle! 
Nikole loves hearts so these had to be included. I had some small wooden ones that I embossed to turn silver. I glued on some ribbon and gemstones. The 'N' was painted pink and embossing powder in silver and some gemstones were added to give it a bit of sparkle. I had some lovely purple ribbon with wire edges which allowed me to twist it but keep it sticking up from the letter. I added some more of this ribbon along the top then some chiffon ribbon in pink and purple along the top and down the side. The letters of her name were actually just some gold card letters. I curved them slightly so that at certain points, they sat out from the base. Gemstones were added to each letter. I added a string of beads in purple, pink and silver along the bottom. It was ordered for Nikole for her Christmas and her mum thinks she will love it!

In case I don't get back to blogland before the Christmas holidays, I wish you all a very merry Christmas and hope you all have a chance to enjoy some quality time with your family and friends. 
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Saturday, 12 December 2015

Blown away by the Christmas Fair

Hi everyone, 

It's so lovely to have new followers. Thanks for clicking that button; I really appreciate it!
I was so pleased (and surprised) to get top 3 in the Butterfly Challenge. It's the first challenge I've entered but I hope the first of many! 
Saturday 5th was a very stormy wet and windy day but our local Christmas craft fair went ahead and though it was not as busy as the autumn fair due to the weather, it was still a great day with lots of lovely and talented people selling their wares and some lovely folks braving the weather to come along and support us!



This post was supposed to go on my blog last Sunday but technical issues stopped that happening! Since then I've been busy getting some Christmas orders together so this has been my first chance to get back on the laptop to fix the issues. 
I hope you have all had a good couple of weeks and are enjoying some festive crafts.

Take care and
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Friday, 27 November 2015

Christmas fair crafting!

Hi everyone,

I hope you are all well this rainy evening. I'm not long back from our school Christmas fair where I had a wee stall for the afternoon. I was up late last night creating two more frames to add to stock for this fair and another fair I'm doing next Saturday. 


As you'll gather from my blog name, I love butterflies so I decided to create a wee butterfly themed frame. The central butterfly is a layer of three to make it stand up from the base. It was then covered with a gorgeous black and silver tissue paper. I added some more silver with some embossing powder as I wanted it to shine! The feelers were covered with buttons and pearls (I have an obsession with both and love using them in frames).
I had some wooden butterflies in different styles which I also embossed in silver. I then added some die cut butterflies on the top of these. A beautiful lilac fabric to back it (although you can't see much of it due to the giant butterfly) and some organza ribbon with a butterfly print on it finished the frame off. 






I had made this owl from felt a while ago for another project but it wasn't quite right for it and I've been trying to think what to do with it ever since.  An owl themed frame was just the ticket! The felt owl was cut, sewn and stuffed and I then added the different coloured layers with some button eyes. I also had a silver owl charm and I thought it would be fun to give the owl an owl necklace! The fabric backing was from a fat quarter pack I picked up a while ago in a sale. I used a spotty satin ribbon and some cream hessian down the side and along the bottom where the words were then glued down. I also used a few red button hearts. It's a bit quirky but hopefully someone will like it. 



It's fun to create new frames that are for stock as, although I'm hoping someone will buy them, I don't feel the pressure I feel when completing commissions. 
I got two more orders from today, one for a little boy who loves cars and the other for a girl who loves pink, purple, sparkle and glitz...can't wait to get started. I also want to have a go at finishing some of my altered puzzle piece bag charms before next Saturday's fair.
I hope you all have a fabulous weekend and 
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After seeing the comment below from Mrs A, I'd like to enter the butterfly frame in the butterfly challenge quadruple. Thanks Mrs A x

Wednesday, 18 November 2015

Red, black and gold

Hi all,

I have family visiting this weekend, my aunty and my cousin from up north (my mum's coming over too), so I have to get busy organising the spare room and shopping for supplies!  
There will be no blogging for me this weekend but plenty of fun and laughter with my family!

This red, black and gold frame was one I didn't have long to do given other commitments and the date it was required by.  Another sixtieth birthday frame which I did last night (after work, making dinner, getting KB out to his Taekwon-Do, getting the washing done...you all know how it goes).  Needless to say, I was up until around midnight completing it ready for collection today.

The 'J' was prepped with white acrylic then once dry, I layered it with black and white spotty tissue and a lovely black/grey/white/gold flowery tissue combo. The background fabrics were all from a fat quarter pack (my Mum used the fabrics to make me a patchwork wine bottle carrier and these were leftover bits). I threaded some lovely small glass beads in red and gold onto jewellery wire and looped three strands around the 'J'. The gold beads used to hang the 'sixty' were from some I had in my collection from a long time ago. I used a mixture of black and gold embossing powders to ensure all the letters toned in with the theme of the frame. The border on each side is red satin ribbon and I added a slim gingham ribbon at the bottom. The bows at either side of the ribbon were layered up and the top one was embossed with gold to give a sheen (they were from some Christmas card toppers, again of old). Hopefully it is well received!

I know it's a little early but have a great weekend everyone no matter what you're doing and 
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Saturday, 14 November 2015

Lazy Saturdays!

Hi all,

It's so lovely to have some new visitors to my blog. I've also had the chance to check out some of your blogs too which has been a pleasure and a privilege.
I hope everyone is having a great weekend; I have been having rather a lazy Saturday on the laptop, perusing blogs and watching Mona Lisa Smile. 
It has been a much needed restful day but, I feel, still productive as I've seen lots of ideas on other blogs that I'd love to try! 
Here is a frame I did a while ago as a raffle prize for an event at my son's school. It was for a boy named Aaron who told me he liked basketball and played for a team called the Wolves,who play in blue and orange and his number was 5.
This is what I came up with for him and he loved it (thank goodness).



The 'A' was painted in Phthalo Blue acrylic then I painted a white line border to attempt to make it look a little more like a shirt! Letter buttons spelling 'WOLVES' in orange with a blue 'E' were stuck in a curve at the bottom of the 'A'. I used some orange gingham fabric as a background (I was swithering what to use 
here as I needed to keep it quite masculine).  I wanted to make it look like his name was taking a shot with the basketball so I put three basketballs on to show the motion of the shot (each one made by wrapping wool around a circular shape with black embroidery thread to make it look more like a basketball). The net hoop was made from an orange pipecleaner with lengths of black embroidery thread crisscrossed to represent the net. 





Thanks for visiting and 
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Thursday, 12 November 2015

Love...

Hi all,

I've just dropped off a wee raffle donation for a charity event that's happening in Livingston this weekend. It is in aid of Jak's Den, set up in memory of Jak Trueman, an inspiring young teenager who was diagnosed with a rare form of cancer. He passed away earlier this year but had a dream to create a centre for young cancer patients and those suffering from other life limiting illnesses and their families.
TeamJak have been raising money to make this dream come true. Check out their website, teamjak.co.uk
There are so many wonderful prizes available in the raffles and I hope the winner of the frame likes it as much as I do. 

This was created using some plain wooden letters from Hobbycraft which were covered in a beautiful vintage style spotty paper. I drew around the letters on the reverse of the paper then cut each out. I glued each paper letter onto the respective wood letter and, after it was dry, filed the edges to give a neat finish. Each letter was sealed with PVA. 
I did the same for each of the wooden hearts then used a small stencil to emboss an arc in silver. I then glued some small paper flowers to each of the hearts in an arc shape below the embossing. I glued the hearts together at an angle and attached a small heart charm to the back, letting it hang down slightly. 
The heart banner at the bottom was among some die cut shapes a friend gave me. I glued a pearl on every second heart then added two fabric hearts to the top right and bottom left of the frame. The fabric flowers were from Hobbycraft. 
The last thing to do was to glue everything in place within the frame. Almost forgot...I used a white fabric backing because I wanted the hearts to really stand out but the white fabric does have a beautiful slightly raised pattern on it which you can see much clearer in close up.
I wish all involved the best of luck and I hope they raise enough to help make Jak's wishes come true.
Thanks for visiting and
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Tuesday, 10 November 2015

Happy Birthday!

Hi all,
So I've just finished off a few more frames to complete orders for some special birthdays, two fortieths and a fiftieth.

When I asked about favourite colours etc. the person who placed the orders didn't give guidance but instead asked me to just create what I wanted (when it comes to orders for adults, it is so much easier if you have a bit of an idea of colours and what their style is e.g. modern, vintage etc) so this was a challenge!
This was for Yvonne and I decided to have a blue period! The letter was painted in cerulean and then bronzed a little with Tim Holtz distress spray stain in antiqued bronze. I wrapped some chiffon ribbon around the tail of the 'Y' and bronzed the 'forty' and glued it in place. I wanted to do a pearl chain around the letters of the 'forty' but it didn't quite work so decided to glue a single pearl on each letter (these were from Hobbycraft). I have an extensive collection of beads from when I was into jewellery making and found the most beautiful blue glass bead in it which I threaded onto wire and wrapped around the tail of the 'Y'. Gingham fabric that I had was used as a background then pearls and blue beads were threaded on wire and wrapped around the mount. 



This little number was for Isobel turning 50. I went for a flowery theme in pinks and whites using some fabric I had from a fat quarter as the background and some paper flowers from Hobbycraft (some of which had little pearly details in the centre). I placed some  ribbon around the mount (which you can't see very clearly in the photo as it is quite transparent) as it had a lovely subtle sheen to it. Along one of the lengths of ribbon, I added a string of pearly and pink beads which I had in my collection. It did look very pretty once it was finished.
Finally for Lorraine, (this edwas my favourite as I'm a fan of bright colour and pattern) a slightly brighter creation using beading and quilling! I made lots of different pink shades by adding different quantities of white to a magenta acrylic. I painted a subtle swirl pattern on the 'L' using the different shades of pink (it's not clear in the photo but it looked effective). The swirl pattern was then echoed in the quills in shades of pink made by curling slim strips of paper and gluing in place. I had some beautiful crystal beads I wanted to use so threaded them on wire and glued in place on the back of the 'L'. I used embossing powder in silver to colour the wooden letters of 'forty' and then threaded some silver and glass beads on to wire to and glued the letters in place along the wire to look like bunting. 



I love creating these frames and although I'm not a big fan of the 'age' ones (I'm not sure I'd like a reminder on my wall of how old I am) they seem to be proving quite popular as unusual gifts...I've just received an order for another for a sixtieth birthday! Very happy indeed and I'll post some pics once I've finished it.

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Friday, 30 October 2015

Times have changed!

Hi,

I noticed when looking through my blogs that the times were all very strange...I was talking about getting to bed and the cool autumn evenings but the blogs are time stamped morning! After some playing around, I finally managed to correct the settings on the blog...yay! 

I also had a little play with signatures which was fun and there was meant to be one on my last post but apparently I had saved the URL incorrectly! Looks like that's sorted now too as I can see a dancing butterfly as I am typing...yippee!

Thought I'd do a quick post just to show you this wee table I did for our caravan. It was an old table of my Mum's (one of two, and I do plan to do something to the other one in time) and I decided to give it a makeover. 
I tried the Rust-Oleum chalky effect finish paint in sage. The paint needed a few layers to cover this old table and although it says no sanding required, in hindsight I should have given it a light sand just to give me a smoother surface to work on. It needed a few coats but I really loved the colour. 
I had found a beautiful good quality gift wrap in Waterstones that I really wanted to use (it had a beautiful print that looked like water colour paint) so I drew round the table top on the reverse side of the paper then cut it out. I glued this with some PVA to the top of the table.
Once it was completely dry, I filed the edges of the paper with a nail file (a trick that a good friend showed me - check out her blog, www.cuilliesocks.blogspot.co.uk - so a big thanks to her as I've used this technique a few times now) just to give it a smoother finish so that it appeared to be part of the table top rather than an addition to it. 
The Rust-Oleum chalky finish paint only requires a wax coating but I decided to varnish the table to give it a more hard wearing finish and to seal that table top well so that it was a usable piece of furniture. Before I did this I sanded the table a little on all the edges to give it a more distressed and aged finish. This little table looks fab now in our caravan by the sea!
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Flutterbies and heffalumps are as cute as a button!

Hi to all the crafters out there on this slightly cooler autumn evening.  

It seems all my issues setting this blog up came from trying to do it on a tablet. Once I booted up the laptop, things became much easier...lesson learned! 

So tonight I am on the laptop and hopefully I won't be spending two or three hours trying to figure things out as I have some crafting to do for an order I received...a 40th birthday gift!

I have been trying to do more craft fairs to see if there is any demand for the frames I do and if there is, to see if I can make some pennies for all the crafting supplies I just HAVE to buy! 


For the fairs, I thought I should come up with a name for myself which I could put on a wee card for folk if they were interested. After quite a few name ideas with none quite hitting the mark I thought about my love for butterflies and elephants. I've a small collection of elephants (given to me by my son mostly) and slightly larger collection of butterflies (not real ones) displayed all over the house. I wanted a name that was a little whimsical and my Dad, when we were younger, always used to switch consonants in certain words when speaking to us which I'm sure a lot of mums and dads do to entertain their children. (I used to love hearing my son say the word balloon when he was learning to speak as it always came out as banoon...so cute!)  

Flutterbies came to mind instead of butterflies so that was part one of the name. However, for elephants, my Dad used to say ephelants but I also really loved the Winnie the Pooh stories and A.A. Milne's creation, the heffalump...there was part two of the name!

Now for the crafting portion...


I've been trying to come up with some new ideas for frames that I can sell on the day of craft fairs (previously I've only had some examples of personalised ones and an order book) and starting playing around with some ideas using idioms.



This was my first attempt...cute as a button!

I wanted it to look quite rustic (code for homemade) so I got some small scraps of fabric and sewed them together in a patchwork formation for the centre of the frame. 

I sewed some large buttons onto this in places then secured it under the mount. 
I used buttons for the clouds and the flowers. 
For the flower stalks and the sky I used some white hessian style fabric to make some strips with raggedy edges. I then used embroidery thread in green and a simple running stitch for the flower stalks. For the sky, I just did some random stitching back and forth with blue embroidery thread. 
I had some letter cubes (which I think I got from Ebay) which I used for the 'cute as a' part then for 'button' I had some letter buttons which I bought a while ago from Hobbycraft. I was fairly please with the finished frame (although for my patchwork I definitely need more sewing lessons from my Mum) and hopefully somebody will like it. I will be taking it along to the next craft fair I am doing on the 27th November so fingers crossed.




Wednesday, 28 October 2015

Blogging...apparently it's been going on for a while!

Hi,


Amanda here for Flutterbies and Heffalumps!
I'm new to blogging - a friend of mine said to give it a try but it has taken me a while to figure out how to set everything up! I thought of myself as quite computer literate until I tried to do this!


There are certainly plenty of blogs and vlogs out there already - all I'm really hoping for with this blog, is to connect with other crafters and share some ideas. 

I guess I should start at the beginning - 


I've always enjoyed being creative and trying new things. Over the years I've done some jewellery making, glass painting, tried my hand at drawing and painting - the list goes on! I have always wished I was more artistic than I am (my godmother is a beautiful artist and I have always admired her ability of being able to put brush to canvas and create something quite breathtaking) but I've settled quite happily into creative and crafty instead. 



When I learned in February 2014 that my husband and I were going to be grandparents to a beautiful granddaughter, I wanted to give her a unique gift that I had made myself.  Little did I know at the time that this would develop into quite the hobby (with a few commissions on the side)!

This frame is now hanging in our granddaughter's room. It took me quite a few months (in between work and everything else that goes on in life) to complete. The cardboard letters were each decorated individually with fabric, ribbons, buttons, paint, decoupaged papers and other little decals. 

Fabric was secured inside the mount and butterflies were layered to create a 3d effect. The top butterfly was decorated with fabric and buttons.
Everything was carefully glued into place before I sealed the frame. The large frame is from IKEA. They are the best value frames I have found so far so I journey there on a regular basis to stock up! 
I've been learning as I go and some things have not worked as well as I'd hoped but how else do you get better at something other than by practise! 

I'm going to sign off just now to get some rest before work tomorrow but hopefully, if I remember how I did this, I'll be back later in the week!


Carry on Crafting, Amanda x