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Welcome Back

The Virtual Crafting Challenge theme for October 2012 is:

Season’s

Great I hear you say, but now what? Well for those of you who would like a few ideas to get you started, here are some  colours, products and techniques to help you choose, where you could go with this month’s theme. Feel free to use your own ideas for the Season’s theme.

Colours

Here in the UK we just arrived at autumn, so a warm colour palette of earth tones for us

  • Reds
  • Greens
  • Yellows
  • Browns

Of course if you live outside the UK you are likely to have a different colour palette to match your own current season, choose from that for your project this month.

Techniques & Styles

Lets go off the wall a bit this month, how about trying a different craft for the first time. Here’s a few to get your ideas going

  • Art be that painting/drawing or paper crafts
  • Jewellery making
  • Knitting. There are some fabulous yarns around in all the colours you can imagine
  • Holiday projects. There are plenty of holidays coming up, where ever you are in the world jump in early and save yourself some stress.
  • Baking. (My cooking is awful but I bet yours is great) How about baking up your favorite supper/pudding with seasonal products.

The most important thing about this challenge is that you have fun and explore. Don’t feel pressured to have a finished item at the end of the month. Explore different styles and techniques either in person, if you have the supplies, or through research, looking online.

You learn so much more when you take away the rules and just PLAY. Adapt this challenge to a creative style that interests you. Enjoy :)

Best wishes and thanks for reading, see you soon

Billie :)

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Welcome Back

This month on Create & Craft they have been talking about Get Britain Crafting, a new campaign to encourage people to try new crafts for the first time, or get back into crafts after a break. Inspired I began a shawl, but this has proved a bit of a big project. So I also began knitting some slippers. (They are the same height honest! It’s the way I stuffed them for the pic that makes them look uneven, DOH).

Winter slipper boots

Winter slipper boots

Regular readers will remember the slippers I knitted recently that I’d enjoyed so much. The pattern is on Ravelry by Yuko Nakamura called Non Felted Slippers.

Cozy Knitted Slippers

Cozy Knitted Slippers

Now its turned cold and my ankles were feeling chilly so I tried the pattern again and freestyled at the end. I added some 2×2 rib (knit 2, pearl 2) to the top of the pattern. This has worked brilliantly, they look good with 5, 10, 15 rows of that rib at the top. I’ve added 20 rows of the rib as I wanted to cover my ankles, but this also gives the option of folding the top down for a different look.

Winter slipper boots with folded down top

Winter slipper boots with folded down top

As long as I understand what I’m doing, then I do enjoy and find knitting relaxing. My RSI hampers how much I do, but small projects on larger needles like this, work up quickly and so build confidence. This pattern would suit a new knitter, other than knit stitch and pearl stitch and of course casting on and off, the base pattern (without the rib top) only has knit 2 or 3 together and also to. Slip, slip, knit, wasn’t a bit like I thought it was and woohoo to my knitting book and You Tube tutorials for explaining it.

There are lots of new fashion yarns around now, for those wanting super fast project and are ideal if you are totally new or have limited dexterity as you don’t need to worry about tension but get the hang of knitting techniques. You Tube has a great selection of tutorials, just type in the technique you want to learn into its search box. I’ve put links to sites I use a lot or have found helpful in the Yarn tab at the top of the blog.

Links

  • Yarns (My knitting tab, which has links to; manufacturers, retailers and tutorials too)
  • Knitting Tips by Judy Highly recommend this channel, great demos filmed from behind Judy so you see what you would see when you are knitting. She explains things really well.
  • Ravelry If you are new to knitting Ravelry is a fantastic online community people share projects there are forums and lots of freebies on there for knitting & crochet too.
  • Pheonix Knitting forum. A super friendly forum, a great place to chat to other knitters and swap ideas.
  • Get Britain Crafting
  • The Knitting Book. THE best instruction book for all kinds of knitting. Step by step photos.

Now we have long winter evenings to ‘look forward too’. Why not give knitting a try, snuggle up with your favorite TV show/music and create something wonderful for yourself, or as gifts for friends & family. A handmade gift really does make someone feel special. They know you have given the gift a lot of thought and your own time, a precious gift that cannot be purchased in a store.

How about you? What have you been making lately?

Best wishes and thanks for reading, see you soon

Billie :)

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Welcome Back

Earlier in the week, I gave you a selection of cards to help you gather supplies for your own custom-made creative retreat. In today’s episode; Follow your Dreams.

I know not all dreams are possible, but some ARE. Take one small step toward your dreams and it could change your life. Dreams are important, follow your dreams, the small ones, the achievable ones. The ones that will lead you to the bigger ones you never thought possible.

Print out the next set of cards to help you find your dreams. Write them down and you will then see the smaller steps that take you towards them.

Staycation Turned Art Retreat: Part 3; Follow your Dreams

Staycation Turned Art Retreat: Part 3; Follow your Dreams

How to Use

  • Click on the Download image you want to print, to open the picture to full size.
  • Right Click with your mouse and choose ‘Save As’ from the list of options.
  • Once it is on your machine, you can print it as, is or open a Word Processing programme and insert the image. This will give you more control of the final size of the page.

Options

  • You can of course use the retreat concept for any kind of creative style not just art.
  • Print out the new page and gather your dreams for S.T.A.R.

Hope you are playing along with STAR, what are your dreams?

Best wishes and thanks for reading, see you soon

Billie :)

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Welcome Back

If anyone spots Olympic Archery of whatever kind on a freeview available channel, pretty please can you tweet me?

@BillieCraftRoom

I’ll RT so others can see it too. Here’s my Twitter channel: https://twitter.com/BillieCraftRoom

I then promise to stop posting stroppy tweets bemoaning whats going on, where did the archery go.

The plan being with enough of us keeping an eye out, we’ll notice if it comes on.

Somewhat off topic today, and I promise the ONLY blog post I’ll make relating the Olympics., not everyone is a fan and that isn’t what this blog is about.

Reason being; DH has tasked me with recording all archery coverage available on freeview during the games. This was fine when I could set it and walk away but the schedlues have gone to pot and now you need a bank of TVs like on Springwatch to have any hope of finding whats on and when. Perhaps a crystal ball would be of more help. Have tried ‘following’ BBC sport etc for updates but until this morning they didn’t say a word about schedule changes.

We have limited internet access so haven’t the option of watching it online nor do we have satalite, just freeview, so here is my request.

Many many thanks

Billie

Back to more creative projects and posts next time x.

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Blog Tour 2012

Welcome Back

Many people know me from You Tube tutorials that I regularly post and I hope this video will encourage some of them to visit me here. For my regular readers you may have noticed that last year I re-designed the blog a far bit and I hope this little tutorial will help you get the most from Billie’s Craft Room. It’s no ordinary blog, I hope it will be useful resource tool for your own creative projects.

I’m also very proud to share the news that Seth Apter’s book; The Pulse of Mixed Media is now available from Amazon and there is a little something in there from me.

I am honoured to be involved with the project and the finished book is amazing. Congratulations Seth and many thanks for including my work too.

Check out Seth Apters Blog for more information about the book.

Best wishes and thanks for reading see you soon

Billie :)

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Welcome BAck

Today I’d like to share the complete bundle of goodies I made for my MIL for Mother’s Day.

Mother's Day Gift Bundle

Mother's Day Gift Bundle

I started by designing the card using Serif Craft Artist software, using digikits from Daisy Trail. Once I had a design I copied it and reduced the size to make a gift tag and the topper I used for the mini book. Before you laugh at the fact the gift tag is as big as the book, we have bought her other things too, so it won’t looks oversized in the end ;)

I have to say I’ve really been bitten by the digicrafting bug. I am a start from a blank piece of paper kind of crafter, ink/paint stamp from scratch. Thing is you can’t always find the same image in multiple sizes for using on the main card and then on a gift tag sized project. Thanks to digi kits I can resize any element to whats needed, reduce the opacity for a velum look inside my cards and make mini versions for the back of cards/gift tags and make papers to create gift bags too.

With digikits I can still craft from scratch, using elements and have so much versatility that I love it. Its also handy that you don’t make ‘quite such a mess of the dining table ;) Quick clear up for meal times ;)

If you haven’t tried Craft Artist yet, please do, its amazing. Lots of print n play projects for total newbies but so much more scope for getting creative and adding your own personality to projects than you get with a lot of other ‘craft cds’. Check out the links below to find out more about the programe. Get yours now, and you can still using it to make this years Mother’s Day really special.

Links.

Daisy Trail. This is the online community for Craft Artist software, from here you can buy the software and digikits.

We all love freebies, if you want to try before you buy there is a cut down version of the software available for free and lots of free digikits to play with too. Going forward the digikits start from as little as £1.99 and there are often freebies too.

Treasure your Mother, you only get one. If you still have yours, let her know how much she means to you. I miss my late Mother so much, and at this time of year especially.

Best wishes and thanks for reading, see you soon

Billie :)

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Welcome Back

Today I’d like to share another watercolour painting I recently made.

Watercolour Rose 3

Watercolour Rose 3

At Christmas I received a book and DVD set by Billy Showell about painting flowers. I’ve been studying and practicing and this was my result. I have a long way to go, but I’m pleased with my progress so far. I added ink over the top of the sketch, on this one.

Best wishes and thanks for reading, see you soon

Billie :)

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