Tuesday, 2 June 2015

Little Birdy Ceramic Creatures

So many of you will have seen me mention Little Birdy over on Instagram in the past - run by the incredible Liz who hand sculpts the most adorable creatures and objects from clay before decorating them and prettifying them in her own magical way. Well, at the Bristol Outlaw fair a month or so back (wow, time sure does fly!) I finally had the opportunity to meet the lady behind Little Birdy in person and it was basically the best weekend because of that! Even more so because I now, after probably a year of lusting after them, have two Little Birdy pieces all of my own! It was almost impossible to pick which ones to go for, but I settled on a push me pull you, and a hanging sloth, both decorated in the most gorgeous candy colours.

 I actually spotted the hanging sloth on Liz's Instagram feed the day before the fair, and basically ran to her stall as soon as we were done setting up to make sure no-one else got their hands on him. Also when I realised the colours Liz used on the creatures matched my new crocheted wall hangings I couldn't resist snapping a few photos of them together in all their pastely goodness!

 If you don't already follow Little Birdy then GO DO IT RIGHT NOW! (just a heads up their Instagram handle is @littl_birdy) 7Seriously, how could you not love those little creatures?!

Crochet Pineapple Garland

Everyone goes through phases of being obsessed with a particular thing, right? A certain colour, fabric, pattern, whatever. For me right now it's pineapples. Cannot get enough of those bad boys! Eating them, wearing them, crafting them, all of it. And I think what started it all was pinning this awesome free pattern for a crochet pineapple garland from By Hand London. Literally the same day I pinned it I started crocheting pineapples galore to make my own garland! And here are the results....

It's a super simple make once you get the hang of shaping the pineapple, and each one took me maybe ten minutes, so pretty quick too! And portable, which is very important to me when looking at crochet projects. No-one wants to be carrying a ton of stuff around on the tube. I'm hoping to try and make some crochet pineapples to turn into appliques or pins - might try backing them with felt for a bit more stability. I'll let you know how I get on!

Monday, 1 June 2015

Folksy Meet the Maker

So I'm super excited to announce that I was Folksy's Featured Seller last week wooooo! I totally didn't get round to blogging about it last week, but I was so honoured to be chosen as there are so many amazing shops over on Folksy.... And to celebrate you can get 20% off in my Folksy shop till the end of the week with the code HELLOTHERE.

They also featured me in their Meet the Maker spotlight over on the Folksy blog - you can read the interview with me right here. I'm chatting about things that inspire me, how I started Ladybird Likes, and a few tips and tricks for running your own business! Below are a few screenshots from the feature....

Hope you enjoy having a good old read - and thanks to the lovely team at Folksy (particularly Camilla!) for such an awesome feature.

Crochet Wall Hangings

I found a pattern/tutorial for an amazing Carnivale Cushion Cover from My Poppet Makes over on Pinterest. I loved all the different stitches and colours, but really didn't need another cushion to find a home for! So I decided to use part of the tutorial (I only did up to round 8) and create these crochet wall decorations. Well, that's what I'm using them as, but I think they would make awesome doilies or something.

 I'm pretty much a novice at crochet, and I managed to work these up pretty quickly as they only use simple stitches. They do use a couple of stitches which I'd not used before (invisible join and standing stitches) but they provide you with a tutorial for these and they're pretty easy to get the hang of once you've done them a few times!


Although I do love these pastel colours, I'm excited to try making them in some other colourways too. I also really want to experiment with ways to show them off - I'm thinking maybe sewing them on to some fabric and framing in an embroidery hoop? After making these ones I've found some other patterns for similar ones (usually called crochet mandalas) so am excited to try those out and see how they compare to these! Anyone else crocheting up anything fun? I finished my first crochet lap blanket yesterday so will be sharing that one here very soon!

Sunday, 31 May 2015

Vivienne Westwood x Alice in Wonderland

On Thursday the lovely Ella from Ella Masters Illustration invited me to be her plus one at a Vivienne Westwood event, inspired by the Mad Hatter's tea party! The whole shop was decorated like something straight out of Wonderland, and they were serving up the most amazing teeny cakes and biscuits, plus cocktails in jars and teacups. So much eye candy! The event was being held to celebrate the 150th anniversary of Lewis Carrol's Alice in Wonderland, and as part of the celebrations Vivienne Westwood had created a new cover for the Penguin edition of the book.

 Hands down the best part of the event was Vivienne herself making an appearance to talk about and read an extract from the book! Since I was about 13 I have been such a huge fan of hers, not just of her fashion work (which is obviously incredible and groundbreaking) but also of her whole attitude, and the work she does for numerous charities. It was amazing hearing her speak - she is every bit as eccentric and outspoken as I imagined she would be!

It feels amazing to be able to tick off meeting one of my heroes from my bucket list - now I just need to accost David Attenborough and I will be one happy lady!

Saturday, 30 May 2015

Clutch Bag Sewing Workshop

A few weeks ago I went to a sewing workshop at Tea and Crafting in Camden, to learn to sew a clutch bag with a metal frame. I adore this style of bag, and since I took my beginner's sewing class I've wanted to have a go at making something like this, but didn't think my skills were strong enough to be let loose at a pattern on my own! So I decided to opt for a bit of supervision whilst I made my bag....

 We cut our pieces from the fabric - I chose a blue polka dot heavy cotton for the outside, and a grey squiggly patterned lighter cotton for inside, plus pieces from felt to bulk up and stiffen the bag so it would fill the metal frame. Our teacher showed us what order to stitch the pieces together - it was a fairly simple process actually and the sewing took almost no time at all once we had it figured out! The hardest part by far (well, for me anyway!) was glueing the fabric bag into the actual frame. I got glue all over myself, which I'm used to of course, and luckily avoided getting any on the fabric! But two and a bit hours later and we each had a finished clutch bag!

We were given the pattern template plus the instructions to take home so we can make more if we like. The teacher also explained how to adapt the pattern easily to fit different size frames. I'm really excited to make more of these cuties, and think I'll definitely be whipping some up for gifts! Have any of you guys been making anything recently, or learnt anything new? If you're ever looking for a fun new skill to learn then I definitely recommend check out Tea and Crafting as they always have fun new classes listed, in everything from crochet, to sewing, to jewellery making.

Friday, 29 May 2015

Velvet Marie

Earlier in the week I met my lovely friend Daisy from Make Thrift Ldn in East London to go check out the Velvet Marie cafe. We had both seen lots of photos on Instagram so were excited to check it out in person, and it didn't disappoint! Cute knick knacks and signs galore, plus amazing coffee and cake, meant we were pretty much in heaven!

I highly recommend checking out Velvet Marie if you are in the area - I can personally vouch for the iced coffee and banana cake! Oh and they have a selection of super cute cards too which I picked up a few of to send to friends.... We were supposed to be discussing plans for an upcoming photoshoot, but we got carried away nattering, so maybe we will have to go back for round two!

Friday, 22 May 2015

Silver Ring Workshop

Last month was my baby sister's birthday (I say baby, she is now 23 years old!) and I took her out to a silver ring making workshop for her present. Held at Drink Shop Do in Kings Cross (I am obsessed with the place, I've been there about four times in the past month!) the workshop is run by Workbench London, and basically you get a wax ring blank to carve however you'd like. The girls at Workbench then take your carved blank and use it to make a mold from which your silver ring is then cast. HOW AWESOME IS THAT?!?!?! You can create a totally one of a kind piece of silver jewellery to treasure forever.

Me and Jadie both made two rings each because we are super greedy - it took us ages to decide how to carve them as we stupidly hadn't really thought about it before we got there! We were so absorbed in carving our rings that the three hours literally flew by - you wouldn't believe how long you can spend carving out one little ring. I decided to make both of mine fairly chunky, as I already own quite a few thin rings. The first ring is chunky and faceted and looks very handmade which I really love. The second has a v-shaped chevron on the front and is a lot smoother, but still has some of the marks in from where I was carving.

The finished rings arrived a few days ago, and I could not be happier at all. They are so beautifully tactile, I haven't really taken them off since I got them! If you're looking for a fun evening or craft activity I cannot recommend Workbench London enough. They are so super friendly and accommodating (even when I annoyingly had to cancel our first booking as my mum was recovering from her op), and so patient even when my sister managed to break one of the rings she was carving!