Sunday, November 30, 2014

An Itty Bitty Xmas Gift

Last year, I nearly gave myself an ulcer making fabulous gifts for the fabulous women in my mothers group. It was ridiculous, and just another example of how I often expect too much from myself.

Do you do this? I'd like to think it was a mum thing, something I could be at least a little smug about, but it turns out that motherhood has just put a great big magnifying glass over the habits, traits and "issues" that were already there.

Anyhoo. This time I was good. This time, I made an effort without breaking a sweat, and talked myself down from going over board.

You might say my mothers group were ripped off this year.

All they got this year, was this itty bitty box of homemade chocolates.

And when I say homemade, what I mean is, I poured some melted chocolate into a mould and put things like almonds and crushed mint lollies in them.

You don't have to make the chocolates either. Buy some wrapped ones and pop thoses into a little box. Or tailor it to the recipient. Do they love Skittles? Fill it with Skittles. Make a bunch and keep them hany for those times you realise it would be nice to give Rhonda from work who you only see in the tea room, a little something for xmas.

1. Fill a little box with chocolates or lollies, homemade or otherwise.

2. Tear strips of fabric (for that rustic look) or cut lengths of ribbon, so they're  not quite as wide as your box. Oh, and it doesn't have to be "xmassy". Trust me. It's quite freeing.

3. Tie a bow. To get it looking perfect it takes a bit of faffing. I always do a test run first, then cut my lengths (or tear) to match. To get an even length, you need to start with one side longer than the other. Or simply trim and be done with it!

4. Repeat.

Voila! Cute little pressies people will be happy to receive, and you'll be even happier (and ulcer free) to give.

We're off to France for Xmas (please pray for snow!), so if I don't see you before we leave,

Shop Local, Buy Handmade, and remember, Happiness is a New Handbag.

Joyeux Noel!


Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Pressed Metal, The Not Quite Tutorial

Remember these box/shelf thingy's?
My Wedding Expo display

I thought they looked great at the wedding expo. Black and white, bold, simple. Mr Frog/Mr I-Always-Have-A -Bloody-Opinion thought they looked too modern. "Your style is "Vintage"" he said.
He's right.
Although it did look great, something a little more vintage would look even better.
But what? For awhile, I was thinking black and white damask scrapbooking paper. Easy Peasy.
But then I remembered something I saw on Bloody Pinterest.
Pressed Metal.
I adore pressed metal. I dream of having a Silver Pressed Metal splash back in my kitchen.
I didn't actually go to the original source. It seemed pretty simple. And it was.

Simple, yet I think, incredibly effective.

First, cut your cardboard to size. I used a random piece of cardboard and stole the giant box of un-opened Cornflakes. (Remember, Already had = Free)

Then I marked out my pattern. You know me, I kept it simple. This is a little less fancy than I imagine in my dream kitchen.

I then went to town with the hot glue. If you're doing this with kids, you could probably use P.V.A glue, it'll just take longer to dry. So scratch that, and just let the kids design while you take command of the glue gun. (There's gotta be some perks to being the grown up).
Be careful not to make the glue to high/thick. It'll tear the foil.

Next, lay the foil shiny side down and put your cardboard glue side down. Fold over the edge of the foil, carefully, and tape down.

 Flip it over and gently rub your hands over the foil.

 Then go over again with more attention to detail.

 Now remember when I said gently and try not to make the glue too thick...? This is why. The foil won't like it. And neither will you.

 Nevermind. Pretend it didn't happen and continue with the next two pieces.

 It's about this time I heard a little voice in my head saying " It doesn't look as good as you thought huh?".
Doubting bitch. I Ignored her and carried on.

It looked promising. I had such high hopes.
Hmm. Not quite how I imagined. I stared for a bit. Maybe it'll look better with a bag in there?

 Maybe up close?
Maybe with the black bags instead. Yes, that's it.

 I couldn't work out why it didn't look like I thought it would. The first piece I did was awesome. I even posted it on Facebook. (So it must be true).
Then Mr Frog chimed in.
In his "I'm trying not to sound like the critical pain in the arse you think I am" voice, he said "Do you like it babe?". I paused for a second too long and he continued with "It just looks like foil".


He is a critical pain in the arse, but when he's right, he's right.

Now it just looks like a conspiracy theorist has gotten a little fancy with the foil on the windows.

Sometimes, things don't work out the way you think/hope/wildly assume they will. And part of the "fun" of being a crafty minx is working out how to fix things when they don't quite work out fail completely.

I went back to plan B. well, plan A really.
And I got to go to Kaisercraft. So, that's a win.

 A black damask acetate (After Five Collection,  Champagne), on white paper.

Simple, black and white, bold, Vintage.

And I didn't swear once.

What have you stuffed up and then fixed lately?


Thursday, November 6, 2014

My Ladies and Friday Nights

A while ago, I started a page here to show off my own collection of much loved handbags.
Crappest pic ever.

I posted once, and couldn't work out how to do it the way I wanted, so I didn't do it again.

I'm now showcasing my Ladies and (I hope) providing a little inspiration for a Friday night out on the Madame Clochette Facebook page. (Just type Madame Clochette into the FB search bar and you'll find me easy). The aim is to pick out an outfit as if I was going out ( if only) and team it with a bag I own, and one or two from the Madame Clochette range available on Etsy.
I felt the need for Colour today...

I've blathered on a bit on Facebook about gorgeous ladies pairing their giant handbags they use all week with fabulous outfits over the weekend. It just hurts me to see this happening. It's just so unnecessary. As you'll see from the coming weeks, most of my own collection cost very little. You don't need to spend a lot to look fab, and more importantly, you don't need to stick with the safe black clutch. Although, you will need to at least own one.

I hope to have you dusting off your own collection and maybe even trying something a little different. And hey, maybe you'll even buy a Madame Clochette Cocktail bag. They're one of a kind, just like you. Perhaps you'll just downsize your current monstrosity and stop killing me.

It's a win no matter what.


Oh, and apologies for the not so great photo's  coming your way. I'll aim to actually model the outfits and bags, but nap time is all too fleeting most days!