Friday, 22 December 2017

Classic Christmas From Docrafts

Hi everyone.

So this is Christmas (again) as someone once said. Hopefully you are able to take a few minutes out from The Madness to do a bit of crafting, or at least think about what you can craft when The Madness is over for another year.

As it is the season for reflecting, I have been reflecting on the fact that even if I live to be 150 and craft every day, all day, I shall never use up all my crafty "stash". To that end, I have just done an inventory of all my paper kits, digikits and crafting CDs in an attempt, not only to get on top of what I own, but also to get rid of some of it. And how much did I get rid of? Precisely nothing.

One good thing that did come out of this exercise though was that I re-discovered some amazing paper kits that I've not looked at, let alone crafted with, for years. One of these was Classic Christmas, a beautiful kit from Docrafts, which may well have been one of the first paper kits I ever bought. It has some fab festive papers, really useful chipboard embellishments and great toppers. I love the colour scheme too. It is black, red and green which is perfect for Christmas.

One of the advantages of crafting with a kit like this one, especially at this hectic time of year, is that you can make a whole range of items from just one kit without having to search high and low through the aforementioned crafty stash. And to prove my point, here are four quite different festive items, all made from just this one kit, Classic Christmas.

The first two are Christmas decorations which were made using wooden MDF plaques decorated with papers and chipboard embellishments from the kit. I used the traditional method of "decoupage" on the first one, which is where you tear up pieces of paper and glue them at random, overlapping as you go, over the entire surface of the item, before "varnishing" it with PVA glue to seal the papers in.

I then made a DL card using a card blank from my stash and one of the papers from the kit, as well as some small toppers. I matted the toppers onto gold mirror card first and also used a star punch to create the three central stars that match the background.

Finally, I made a piece of free-standing home decor, using a cheap frame from the local charity shop, more papers and toppers from the kit and a die-cut flourish in gold mirror card. I think that this black, red and gold combination always works well for festive themed items, don't you?

Anyway, that's my Christmas crafting done for another year. I hope you have a good time over the holiday period and I look forward to catching up with you again in 2018, when one of my New Year resolutions will be to blog here more often.

Happy Christmas and Happy Crafting!

Sunday, 24 September 2017

Quilling Shredded Bank Statements

Hi everyone.

It's been a while!!

During the time I have been sadly neglecting this blog, the craft of quilling seems to have undergone something of a revival. If you're not familiar with quilling, it is basically the art of rolling up thin strips of paper, usually with the help of a small tool, gluing them together and then creating different shapes with the rolled up pieces. From these shapes, you can create some incredible designs such as this beautiful basket of flowers below. 

By © Inna Dorman /

I was into quilling in a big way many years ago. At one time, I was even a member of the prestigious Quilling Guild. Then I began to find it a bit of a strain on my eyesight and even though I tried using larger strips of paper, I began to lose interest in it and went on to other things.

My thoughts have been turning to quilling again after seeing it being demonstrated quite a lot on the Create and Craft Channel recently but I hadn't got round to actually doing any. Then one day, I was shredding some old bank statements and realised that the strips were the perfect size and shape for quilling.

I decided to start quilling with the strips and see where it led me. I didn't follow a pattern but simply"freestyled", creating shapes and laying them down in a design that was pleasing to the eye. I must admit, I had to look back at an old quilling book (The internet hadn't been invented when I was into quilling the first time round!) to remind myself of some of the basic shapes that it's possible to make.

This is the finished result.

I put each section of the design straight onto a sheet of black card but you can quill the design, stick it all together and then glue it to your chosen surface if you prefer. It's a good idea to quill on to a piece of acetate first if you are using this method.

I'd also forgotten that you need a white glue that dries clear, as however careful you are, it is almost impossible not to get glue on the backing sheet as you are having to put glue on such a thin surface. Using a cocktail stick helps.

Here are some close-ups of parts of the design so that you can see the individual shapes better. You will notice I have also added some gold sequins to some of the shapes as a finishing touch.

Just a word of caution. Although it is highly unlikely that anyone could steal your bank details from shredded statements, especially once they are part of a quilled design, it's probably wise to be careful where you display your finished project, just to be on the safe side.

If you'd like to find out more about quilling and have a go at it yourself, there is lots of information on the internet. Here is a link to get you started:

In the meantime, I really will try not to neglect this blog any more.

Happy crafting!

Melissa x