28 September 2014

Six Things Sunday


How have you been? What's new? Tell me EVERYTHING.

Here are six things that have recently made my face upside-down-frown:

1. Surprise Mid-Week Chocolate Brownies
My new co-workers are THE BEST.

2. A nice photo of my face!
I usually approach photos of my face by peeking through my fingers, not unlike someone watching a horror movie starring a hideous swamp monster. My fingers were poised for action the moment that the Flapper Hen Do photos arrived, so I was rather pleasantly surprised to discover the photographer had somehow managed to photograph me NOT looking like a swamp monster. It's a September miracle! 

3. Getting my craft on
This weekend I've been playing with the goodies from my Hobbycraft Haul. I decided my first project would be re-covering a lampshade I'd previously made-over in 2012. I was far from happy with my original, half-arsed attempt, which is why it never featured on here. 

Here's the "before" - a very sloppily stitched patchwork cover.

And here's the after:

I'm much happier with the second attempt, and the pompoms (which are actually bright pink, and not red) look awesome when the light's on too. 

Which version do you prefer?

4. Reorganising
I spent this morning decluttering and rearranging the furniture in our dining room, which moonlights as my craft room. I'm going to share the whole room later this year as part of my house tour, but here's a cheeky sneak peek:

I'm utterly in love with my new yellow trunks, and how well they go with the candy cane striped box (which is from Ikea) and the floral suitcase I made earlier this summer.

5. Awesome art
Yesterday I drove Tom and some friends to Hopfest, a free, local beer festival hosted by Dark Star Brewing Co. I'd planned to straight head home and craft up a storm, but after discovering there was a stall selling brownies AND moustachioed men singing sea shanties I ended up staying all afternoon. Tom and our friends spent the day drinking pint after pint of FREE BEER (I kid you not, it was absolutely free!!!), while the highlight of my afternoon (aside from the epic brownies) was the lovely Dark Star staff giving me and my friends copies of a seriously awesome poster I'd spotted in the shop, in return for a small donation to their foundation

Totally worth it, eh?

6. Call-Centre Twenty Questions
This week I had a(nother) hair dye-related disaster, although this one definitely wasn't my fault! The dye, which promised to turn me blonde(r), was defective and ended up colouring my already-blonde hair a horrible shade of browny-grey I can only describe as Geriatric Squirrel. Not quite what I was looking for...

I was contacted by the brand after ranting about it on twitter, and the sweetest girl from their customer services team gave me some tips on how to fix it and sent me some vouchers in the post. I try to see the funny side in all hair-related disasters, especially as the alternative is crying while super-glueing a hat to my head, but this time really WAS funny, because the brand I used don't make the shampoo which fixes dye disasters. This means the staff working in customer services aren't allowed to tell you the name of the shampoo, so you have to GUESS until they confirm it. Which meant the conversation ended with me asking "Is it part of the song that ends "knees and toes, knees and toes"?", and both of us laughing for about five minutes.

What's been making you jump for joy recently?

Katie xxx

P.S. I'm linking up with the fabulous Hannah's The Week That Was Captured, which is being hosted by Aby this week because Hannah just got married! Eep!

25 September 2014

Hobbycraft Haul

Hello lovelies!

How's tricks? 

Yesterday evening I realised a childhood dream of starring in my own crafty version of Supermarket Sweep, but without a time limit. This seriously magical experience was all thanks to my ex-colleagues, who gave me a Hobbycraft gift card as my leaving present. 

I had no way of knowing how much it was worth until I got to Hobbycraft, so finding out I had £70(!) to spend on crafts was a rather overwhelmingly brilliant surprise! Naturally, being a lover of all things thrifty, I'd already signed up to the Hobbycraft Club to get the 15%-off discount code to use on my first in-store (or online) purchase, meaning I actually had £83 to spend!!!

After I'd recovered from my excited squeaking, I grabbed a wheely basket thing, and got stuck in. This is what I ended up with:

1. Fillable Christmas Baubles

I'm already excited about trawling Pinterest for inspiring ways to fill these beauties to go with the as yet undecided colour scheme for this year's tree. That said, there's no reason they have to be Christmassy - I might fill them with different things (/snacks) for every holiday! 

2. Boodles t-shirt yarn
I've wanted to try crocheting with t-shirt yarn for ages- it feels so cosy! If you've got any project recommendations, I'd be very grateful for links in the comments below!

3. Springform cake tin

I'm looking forward to the luxury of freeing cakes from their hot tins without having to push the loose bottom out with an oven glove and catch the tin on my arm and/or set up a cunning upside-down pudding-bowl system. My arms are pretty excited about it too.

4. Glass beads

These were probably my most impulsive buy because I'm not really sure what I'm going to do with them. They're just so colourful that I couldn't resist! I'm considering stringing a few of them on a simple chain to make a necklace, and perhaps using the others to decorate Christmas presents. I'm feeling strangely psyched about Christmas today!

5. Leopard-print Duck Tape
Because sometimes you need to fix things in a damn classy way.

6. Pompom trim
I've got so many projects I want to use this for! I have a sneaking suspicion that this weekend will mainly revolve around trimming anything I can reach.

7. Screme Eggs
These were my final, only-got-£2.39-left choice. Mostly because they're delicious, but also because they remind me of Dr Seuss.

8. Felting wool
My Mum mentioned last weekend that she wanted to learn to needle-felt, so I decided to get her a kit and some wool to get started. She chose natural colours so she could try and felt a hare. 

9. Homemaker magazine
I wouldn't normally spend £5 on a magazine, but as this one was free to me I grabbed it to be the perfect accompaniment to a cosy evening on the sofa. With a screme egg or two too, obviously.

10. Paintbrushes
Something I actually needed, as all of my current brushes are at least 10 years old and so scruffy-haired they look like this:

[image source]

Obviously not EXACTLY like that, or I would marry them never replace them.

11. Needle felting mat
Again, for my Mutti. Although once she's perfected felting I'm definitely putting in a request for a homemade version of these beauties

12. Crochet hook
This beast is seriously chunky, but apparently it's what one needs for crocheting with t-shirt yarn.  

13. Putty rubber
My Mum asked for one. Seriously, a whole warehouse of glitter-encrusted, neon-trimmed, leopard-print crafty goodness, and she wants a putty rubber. Sometimes I wonder if I'm adopted. 

14. Felting tool
AKA a plastic handle with four needles stuck in it. 

15. Embroidery thread
Because cross-stitch is quite possibly my favourite craft. Mostly because it's easy to transport and work on while watching a film. And I plan my patterns with graph paper, which makes me feel all smart and maths-y.

I'm feeling very lucky indeed after gathering all these treasures :) What's the best leaving present you've ever received?

Katie xxx

23 September 2014

Three ThingsTuesday

Morning m'dears!

How are you? 

This is the first post I've ever written before work, but I just could wait to share these three things with you all:

1. Overheard Quotes 
I'm really late to the party with this, but these quotes overheard in London are hilarious. Some of my favourites include:

"Croydon is like a horse. It smells, everybody thinks it's dangerous, but ultimately it's INCREDIBLE."

"I love the idea of a hero in a half shell. It's like chicken in a basket."

"Isn't cauliflower just the ghost of broccoli?"

"Imagine how long it would take to butter a towel"

"I am to biscuits what "Breaking Bad" is to crystal meth."

There are new ones every week, and there's always at least one that makes me laugh out loud. 

2. Discovering the wonders of Monty Bojangles
I can't speak for the chocolate, because I haven't actually tried it yet (I know, I know- what is WRONG with me?!) but the packaging is INCREDIBLE. Any truffles which are marketed by a feline version of Phileas Fogg in rainbow-coloured steampunk have got to be pretty epic, right? And the Choccy Scoffy ones have won a Taste Award too.

[image source]

I've pinched the picture above from the dieline's article explaining why the packaging above is so much prettier than the version currently on Monty's own website. If I ever get a tattoo, I definitely want it to be designed by Springetts. You can buy the beautiful versions in Waitrose.

3. 100 followers
Yippee!! Yesterday morning this little slice of the internet reached 100 followers :) Although I know it's actually more like 102, as my in-laws are both avid readers and my biggest fans :p

Thank you so much to each and every one of you for being so darn lovely and leaving such sweet comments. You've made writing this so much more fun, and turned my incessant Googling of Jo Manganiello into legitimate "blog research".

Keep your eyes peeled for a giveaway coming up here in the next week or so, once I've tracked down a prize that's suitably awesome enough.

Have a great Tuesday!

Katie xxx