Making a Crackle Paint Effect Using Gorilla Glue – Transforming Plain Objects into Beautiful Ones

One of the things I love to do in my spare time is to turn ordinary objects into something wonderful. For example, plain tiles transformed into beautiful coasters in THIS POST.

The lovely team at GORILLA GLUE recently invited me to come up with a craft project using some of their product range. There is a glue or tape for every possible need in their range, all very high quality, so I was really excited to be part of this. I immediately knew what I wanted to make. I initially had one in mind, but it turned into 3 as I enjoyed making it so much.

I have often admired objects that have been painted with Crackle Paint, which cracks as it dries, creating a really pretty distressed effect. This special paint can be fairly expensive though. Luckily it is easy to achieve the same effect using just Gorilla Glue Wood Glue and some cheap acrylic paint. You only need a small amount of glue so it is a much more cost-effective way of obtaining the result. One bottle of glue will transform loads of objects!

For my project I decided to transform some plain wooden boxes into a beach-finds box and a buttons box. I wanted the beach box to look a bit like driftwood, fitting in with the theme of it. One of my happy memories from childhood was going through the buttons that my mum kept in an old biscuit tin. It used to fascinate me how many different shapes and designs there were, so I now have a tin of buttons too. I wanted a nicer way to store them though so decided to make a button box, using some of the buttons to decorate it. After I had made the 2 boxes I wanted to see if the same effect could be achieved on glass, so decided to try it on a clean empty jam jar. It worked! So that became a toothbrush holder for the bathroom. The beauty of this project is you can make boxes or storage jars for anything at all! Boxes for baby keepsakes, ribbons, beads, bits and bobs, small stationery items… endless possibilities. Likewise with the jar version. A holder for toothbrushes, pens and pencils, craft tools, straws, kitchen utensils… again endless uses.

For this project you will need Gorilla Glue Wood Glue and Gorilla Glue Super Glue (if you want to stick decorations on). They have thought of everything with their super glue. Super glue often comes in a little tube or bottle and you have to carefully squeeze a little bit out, trying not to get too much but often ending up with a blob of it oozing out from underneath whatever you have stuck down. To make sure you get the exact amount of glue you want in the exact place you want it, with no big blobs, Gorilla Glue have brought out a bottle with both a brush and a nozzle to apply it. You can choose whichever works best for you. I loved the brush, as it was so easy to control the amount I used and place it only where I needed it.

As well as the glue, you will need plain wooden boxes or clean glass jars, acrylic paint in 2 different colours, and paintbrushes. If you want to stick any decorations such as buttons on, obviously you will need those too.

You can buy plain wooden boxes in craft stores such as Hobbycraft, or from Amazon. You don’t need to use expensive acrylic paint. I’m pretty sure mine came from a shop such as The Works at a really cheap price.

To begin, you will need to completely paint your box with one colour of the paint. Bear in mind that this layer will be the colour that you see in the cracks, not the main colour. I chose a yellowy-brown colour for the beach one and a dark green for the buttons.

Paint your box in the first colour and leave to dry completely. I left mine overnight to make sure it was thoroughly dry, but you can leave it for around 4 hours. If you want the inside to be the same colour as the cracks you can paint this too. Make sure you use something to prop the lid open while it dries though so the paint doesn’t get ruined.

This is where the fun starts. When the box is dry, paint a layer of wood glue on to one small section. The glue still needs to be wet for the next stage, which is why you MUST do this one section at a time.

Don’t worry about the glue going over the hinges. It dries clear so won’t be noticed when it is all complete. If you want thick cracks, paint the glue on in a thick layer. If you want fine cracks, paint a thin layer of glue on. If you want a mixture, paint it thinly with the glue but with a couple of thicker patches.

While the glue is still wet, use a different paintbrush to paint your main acrylic colour on top. (I used white for the beach box and lilac for the buttons). Make sure you do this gently but quickly in one layer, before the glue dries. If you apply too much pressure or paint the same area over and over you will end up mixing the paint into the glue, and it won’t crack at all. It doesn’t matter if it looks a bit uneven or patchy, as the cracks will hide that.

You will notice the paint start to crack almost immediately. As the glue dries it slightly contracts, pulling the paint layer apart and causing the cracks. You can let it dry naturally, but that will be time-consuming so it is best to help it along with a hair dryer on the coolest setting. This will speed up the process and let you move on to the next section within a minute or two. It is lovely to watch the cracks appear before your eyes!

Repeat this process on another section. Glue, paint while wet, then dry. Keep doing this until the whole box is complete.

I then painted the inside of my beach box in white to match the main colour on the outside.

When dry, you can fill it with whatever you choose.

If you want to add decorations, I would recommend using the superglue with the brush.

Simply brush a small amount of glue on to your decoration, and position it where you want it! Press it for a few seconds to make sure it has bonded, although it dries very quickly.

I glued buttons on to my button box, sticking some on top of others, until I got the design I wanted.

You can use the same method to paint your glass jar, although I managed to do each stage in one go rather with the glass. It was a lot quicker to do! Paint the whole jar in one colour and let it dry completely. I chose white for my bottom layer.

I couldn’t photograph the next stage as it had to be done super quick, but I then painted the jar in a layer of wood glue and quickly added a layer of dark blue on top. I used the hair dryer to dry it and finished the look with a matching blue ribbon tied into a bow around the top.

(Quick tip: if you have some sticky residue left on your jar from the old label, this is easily removed with just normal glass cleaner. Simply spray it on your jar then use the back of a dinner knife to softly scrape it off. It comes off so easily)!

Don’t they all look so pretty and effective? If you decide to have a go at this easy craft, I’d love to hear what you make! Have fun transforming the plain into the beautiful.

 

DISCLAIMER: I was sent the Gorilla Glue at no cost to be used in a craft project of my choice. All views and opinions are my own honest thoughts. This post contains Amazon Associate links – I will earn from qualifying purchases.

 

 

 

 

How to Make Beautiful Glass Pebble Magnets – An Easy Craft Activity for the Whole Family

I recently had a wonderful subscription box called the Sunshine Box (see my review HERE) and part of that was a little craft activity, making glass pebble magnets. I had never heard of or seen these before, but my son and I had so much fun making them! The supplies in The Sunshine Box were enough to make 20 magnets, and one was included ready made as an example. As soon as we had made the 20, Luke asked if it would be easy to find the supplies to make more. Luckily it is very easy and very cheap, so now we make them whenever we have free time.

These were the ones we made from the supplies in The Sunshine Box:

Photographing them clearly is a bit tricky with reflections, but you can see how lovely they are. The beauty of these is you can make them in any design you fancy. They would make gorgeous wedding favours if you used the same colour and design as is being used on the wedding invitations and save-the-date cards. We love geocaching, and part of the fun of that is swapping little treasures. These are perfect for geocaches as they fit in most sized containers. They also make beautiful token gifts as you can choose the design to suit the individual person. They are perfect for rainy days to keep your children occupied, or as an activity for childminders (as long as young children are supervised so they don’t put them in their mouths). It is also such a therapeutic activity for yourself, just to unwind and feel creative.

Here is a list of what you need:

  • a selection of magazines, old cards, brochures, catalogues, wrapping paper, or anything with a design you like the look of,
  • PVA glue,
  • a small paintbrush,
  • a pen,
  • a pair of scissors,
  • self-adhesive small round magnets/magnetic dots (I bought 132 which were 12.5mm across from Amazon for £3.49)
  • clear round decorative glass pebbles/stones (I bought 100 which were 18mm across from Amazon for £3.99)

Look through the brochures or whatever paper materials you have and find a small design you like. It doesn’t matter if it is tiny, the glass magnifies things slightly. Place a pebble on top of it to check it fits, and if it does draw around the pebble. We found lovely designs on a letter from Morrisons:

and a Lakeland brochure:

as well as book brochures and magazines:

When you have drawn around your pebble, cut the design out just inside the circle you have drawn so it fits perfectly. Brush a thin layer of PVA glue on the back of the pebble (the flat side) and press it down on to the cut out design. Make sure it is perfectly positioned – you might need to trim a tiny bit more off from around the edge. Brush another thin layer of PVA over the back of the design and leave the pebble face down to let it dry.

When it is dry, simply peel the backing off one of the magnets and press it on to the back of the pebble. Polish the front with a cloth to make sure there are no glue smudges or marks, and there you have your beautiful personally chosen pebble magnet! It really is that easy! If you prefer you can paint the back of the design before you stick the magnet on so that you can’t see any other print if you turn it over, but we didn’t bother with that.

Here are a selection of ones we have made so far:

I also had the idea to maybe try using some pressed flowers we had to see if they would work. I hadn’t got many small enough but I did have a few:

For these, I drew around a pebble on to plain paper and cut out the shape. I brushed a thin layer of glue on to the paper and carefully placed the flower on to it, then brushed a layer on to the pebble and pressed it down on to the flower. Finally I brushed another layer on the back and let it dry, before sticking a magnet on. I absolutely loved how these came out:

These would be perfect wedding favours too if the bride’s bouquet has small flowers like gypsophilia included. You could buy some well in advance, press them and make up some magnets using them as lovely keepsakes. Or use bits of confetti instead of flowers. The possibilities are endless!

Have fun and happy crafting!

 

How to Make Beautiful Coasters from Tiles and Paper Napkins

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A good friend of mine organises a Craft Fayre every Christmas and makes a lot of gorgeous items herself for it. A few years ago she started making these coasters and I was knocked out by how easy it was to get such a lovely result! She used any pretty napkins but I absolutely love designers such as Emma Bridgewater and Cath Kidston, so I decided to only use designer napkins. I became a bit addicted to making them and lots of people asked to buy them. I gave sets of 4 to people as gifts, and love going to their houses and seeing them on tables and tops of cabinets, still in use and looking like new.

They really are simple to make, and with Mother’s Day coming up soon, why not surprise your own Mother with a practical gift made with love by you? Chocolates get eaten within a few days, flowers fade and die, so how about this year making and giving a gift that will last? I’ll include photos of every step of the process so you know you’re doing it correctly, but I’m sure you’ll have no problems anyway.

To make a set of 4 coasters you will need 4 plain white tiles measuring 100mm x 100mm. You can buy a box of basic tiles from large DIY stores such as Homebase or B&Q. (I buy mine from B&Q at £5.50 for a box of 25). You will need 1 paper napkin of your choice measuring around 30cm. All the ones I ever use are 33cm square, and 3 ply (made from 3 layers of paper).

Here’s how to make them:

YOU WILL NEED

4 ceramic tiles measuring 100mm x 100mm (10cm x 10cm)

1 paper napkin (see note above)

Felt material of a co-ordinating colour to the napkin design (20cm x 20cm)

Polyurethane Gloss Varnish (I use DecoArt Duraclear Gloss Varnish from Hobbycraft)

PVA glue

Double sided sticky tape

A co-ordinating ribbon for presentation

A paintbrush (art/craft type, not house decorating sized!)

Scissors

A pot for the glue

INSTRUCTIONS

  • Mix PVA glue with an equal amount of water in a small pot. This will be used to stick the napkin on to the tile.
  • Open out your paper napkin and cut along the fold lines so you have 4 equal squares.

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  • Very carefully, peel away the top layer of paper from each square. This is the piece you need for the coaster as it has the design on it. If you stick all 3 layers on, you will get bubbles and it won’t look as pretty. Keep the other layers to use later on.

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  • Take one tile and completely cover it with the PVA mixture using the paintbrush. Make sure you cover the edges too.

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  • Take one of the top layer squares you gently saved, and position it on top of the tile so you have the best part of the design on display. Make sure there is enough around the edges to fold underneath in the next step.

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  • Scrunch some of the plain layers of napkin (the bottom layers) into a loose ball and very gently dab the napkin on to the tile. You will get creases, but that adds to the overall look so please don’t try and straighten them out. If you try and move the napkin at this point, it will rip. When the napkin is in place, carefully pick the tile up and turn it over. Brush more PVA glue on the bottom of the tile and fold the edges of the napkin on to the glue. You can either dab the edges down with the scrunched up layers, or use your paintbrush to smooth them down. I use my brush for this stage. Make sure there are no air bubbles on the sides of the coaster. If there are, very gently smooth them down with your brush.

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  • Leave on a plastic bag or similar covering to dry. When the top is dry, turn it over so the bottom completely dries too. Repeat all the above steps for the other 3 coasters.
  • When they are completely dry, coat the top and sides with the varnish. It brushes on easily, has no nasty odour, and is non-yellowing, which makes it the best for your coasters. I brush on 3 coats, allowing each to dry in between coats. You can brush on as many as you want to get the sheen you want.
  • Leave the coasters to dry overnight.

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  • Cut the felt into 4 squares, just slightly smaller than your tiles.
  • Place strips of double sided tape on the backs of the coasters.

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  • Peel the backing off the tape and position one square of felt on each. Press down firmly. And that is the coasters complete!

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  • To present them as a gift, stack the 4 coasters on top of each other and tie a ribbon around them.

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And there you have a wonderful gift to give for any occasion. My son has given his past teachers a set at the end of the school year as a thank you gift. I’ve given sets as housewarming presents and as a gift for my Mother-in-Law for Mother’s Day. I have a lovely friend who adores Emma Bridgewater designs, so I made a set for her just for being such a wonderful friend!

The felt on the back protects your surfaces from scratches from the roughness of the underside of the tiles. You can use cork sheets if you prefer but I like the way you can use matching colours of felt. The polyurethane varnish will protect the coaster from drips, and is easy to clean with a damp cloth.

I hope you enjoy making these. I’d love to hear how you get on and who you give them to! Happy Crafting!

Crafty Creatives… The Art of Papercutting

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Crafty Creatives is a fantastic subscription box which delivers an exciting craft kit to you every month. I love crafts and am keen to try out new ones, but the thought of buying loads of equipment only to discover I don’t like the craft after all scares me. That is why Crafty Creatives is so perfect! Every month you receive everything you need to complete a wonderful craft project, so you don’t have to spend a small fortune to see if you like it. I have to say though I subscribed around 6 months ago and have loved everything they have sent! Thanks to Crafty Creatives, I have made a fascinator, mosaic hearts, lip balms, a rolled wool trivet, and Hama bead coasters.

The October box was amazing! I have seen some stunning works of art made from papercutting and have admired their intricacy. I had wanted to try it but hadn’t known where to start! Luckily for me, this box gave me everything I needed to make 2 beautiful designs.

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Included in the kit were a self-healing cutting mat, a finger tip swivel knife, a picture frame, and the 2 designs to cut out along with the paper to mount them on. I was a bit nervous when I saw the swivel knife as it looked like it might be a bit tricky to get the hang of, but I was wrong thankfully. You hold it like a pen and it hooks comfortably around your finger, which makes it so easy to manoeuvre, and provides support when you move it around. The blade is what sets this knife apart from other craft knives. It turns smoothly as you change the direction of your hand! That means you can cut out any shape without having to move the paper or take the blade off the sheet. Fantastic! This box was worth having just for the knife!!!

The two designs were lovely modern ones…. words with a little symbol linked to the word. I cut out Star first as I knew I would prefer the Love one if my first attempt went wrong. I needn’t have worried though as they both turned out beautifully. I have kept Love in the frame provided and as my son is my little star, he has the star one in a frame in his bedroom.

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I definitely feel confident to carry on with papercutting projects, especially with this amazing swivel knife! It was such a therapeutic relaxing activity. Some crafts can take ages to produce finished pieces. This was relatively quick and easy, so great for people who like to see results fast!

(EDIT 12/09/2018: Unfortunately Crafty Creatives has just closed their subscription box). 

DISCLAIMER: This is my own honest opinion of Crafty Creatives. I receive no fee/discount/compensation and I pay for my subscription in full. All views are my own. 

A Triveting Crafty Creatives August Box

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The August Crafty Creatives box was a visual treat of beautiful bright colours. The box contained everything needed to make a stunning rolled wool trivet: different coloured recycled wool strips, a long straight needle, a curved needle, extremely strong thread, and a page of easy to follow instructions. The kit was created by Rag Art Studios exclusively for Crafty Creatives.

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I have to confess, when I opened the box it arrived in, I had a quick look and thought it would be a very easy, very fast kit to complete. I was wrong on the time part. It took me quite a few hours to make! The idea was easy enough: place different coloured strips on top of each other, roll them up tightly and sew in to place (that’s the basic idea). Obviously though you need to make sure no stitches are visible on the top, but it needs to be sewn well so that it holds together with no chance of unrolling or falling apart when you pick it up. I thought the curved needle would be brilliant for hidden stitching, but I found it quite tricky to use, so completed my trivet using just the straight needle.

I would definitely make more of these. Maybe make some colour co-ordinated ones to match the decor of my friends’ kitchens. As well as being used to protect surfaces from hot pans, they would also be great to stand vases on to protect tables from scratches, or to protect them from the hot bases of candle holders. The versatility of it means it would be a beautiful gift for anyone to receive. With Christmas coming up (sorry for dropping the C word) these would be great made in traditional festive colours to use in place of table mats. I want to also try making some using different materials for different effects. The possibilities are endless! I loved making something that was pleasing to the eye with it’s pretty swirls, but also practical. It will be well used in my house!

I had never seen trivets like this before, only metal mass produced ones. This is one of the things I love so much about craft… the fact that no to items will ever be the same. Every piece is unique. This kit would have been sent to countless other Crafty Creatives subscribers, but every single trivet made would be slightly different, and each made with love.

Crafty Creatives sends out a kit for a different craft every month. You never know what you will get, it’s all a wonderful surprise. To have a look at past kits they have sent, have a look at some others I wrote about…

 

https://confarreocreates.wordpress.com/2016/08/08/crafty-creatives-feeling-the-mosaic-love/

https://confarreocreates.wordpress.com/2016/05/27/crafty-creatives-may-subscription-box-hama-time/

https://confarreocreates.wordpress.com/2016/05/11/crafty-creatives-surprise-craft-subscription-boxes/

 

(EDIT 12/09/2018: Unfortunately Crafty Creatives has just closed their subscription box)

 

DISCLAIMER: I pay for my subscription and get no reward for writing about it, other than the happiness of being able to recommend something I love. All views/ideas/opinions are my own and I only write honest reviews. 

 

 

Crafty Creatives… Feeling the Mosaic Love

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I absolutely love Crafty Creatives. A subscription box for craft lovers, in which you get sent a mystery craft project each month to complete. Everything you need is included and each project has clear instructions, so that everyone can complete it no matter what skill level they are at. The best part of it is you get to try a new craft every month, so you can find out if you want to carry on with it, without having to spend loads of money on equipment only to find out it’s not for you.

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The July Crafty Creatives kit was my favourite so far. I have always wanted to try my hand at mosaic work, so you can imagine how excited I was when I opened the box and found this mosaic hearts kit waiting for me. It contained 2 wooden hearts, various mosaic tiles and pieces of crockery and glass pebbles, glue, grout, disposable glove, spreader and ribbon to hang the finished hearts. There was a sheet of very clear and easy to follow instructions, and I was so excited to get started!

The first part was to glue my chosen pieces of tile and crockery on to the hearts. My 9 year old son was keen to try too, so he chose to work on the smaller heart and I used the larger one. It sounded very easy… stick the pieces on leaving a small gap between each piece so that the grout can fill in the spaces to hold it all in place. Easy, right? I think I can honestly say this part took the longest time. It was like doing a jigsaw, trying to find the right sized pieces to fit. After my son and I had covered the 2 hearts that came with the kit, we had a lot of pieces left over so we used them to cover some smaller wooden hearts that I already had in my craft stores.

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We left them overnight to make sure the glue had completely dried. The next day I mixed up the grout following the instructions given, and used the spreader to spread the grout over the whole heart and along the edges. After it had been drying for a while, I used a few pieces of kitchen roll to clean the grout off the pretty pieces. It was very easy to just wipe it off. They were then left to fully dry. We were over the moon with the finished hearts. We used the ribbon to hang the two original ones.

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I will definitely be doing more mosaic work. I found it so relaxing and enjoyable, and I had a huge sense of achievement when I saw what we had created. It was a wonderful activity to do with my son too. Quality time spent crafting. My idea of heaven.

The August box will soon be landing on my doorstep and I can’t wait to see what craft will be inside!

(EDIT 12/09/2018: Unfortunately Crafty Creatives has just closed their subscription box)

 

DISCLOSURE: I pay for my subscription and receive no compensation for my review. All views expressed are my own honest unbiased opinions. 

Crafty Creatives May Subscription Box…. Hama Time!

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I am a massive fan of subscription boxes. I find every aspect of them exciting: the email saying they have been dispatched, the anticipation waiting for them to arrive, wondering what could be inside this time, and then the wonderful surprise when you open them and can finally reveal what treats you have.

Crafty Creatives is the perfect subscription box for craft lovers of all abilities and skill levels. You can find out more about them in last month’s review HERE.

I was very excited when I opened the May box to discover a kit to make coasters using Hama beads. I have seen these beads in toy shops and Hobbycraft but had never used them before. My son had never wanted them as all the kits for children looked quite childish and he just didn’t want to make those. Neither of us had realised that Hama beads actually come in 3 sizes: maxi beads are 10mm in size and recommended for pre-school children, midi beads are the best sellers at 5mm in size and suitable for children and adults, and mini beads are a tiny 2.5mm in size and best for very detailed intricate designs.

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This Crafty Creatives kit came with 3,500 midi beads of various colours, 3 pegboards, instructions, ironing paper and 14 designs for you to try. I copied one of the designs (the round one in the picture at the start of this post) but changed the colours used, and then did a couple of my own designs too. Unfortunately for me, my son saw them and saw how easy they were to make and was desperate to try them for himself. That was the last I saw of the beads. He sat at the table making one design after another and absolutely loved them. I’m all for encouraging creativity in children so, as sad as I was that my Hama fun was over, I was thrilled to see him so engaged in making things with them. Here are a few of his designs…

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I’ve had to buy more beads for him but I will be making sure I get to use them too. In case you don’t know what they are, they are small cylindrical beads which you position on a pegboard, and when you are happy with the design you have made, you lay a sheet of ironing paper on top and gently iron for a few seconds. This causes the beads to melt slightly and fuse together, so you can remove the design from the pegboard and you are left with one complete product. If you iron them too much, as I did in the bottom right one in the above picture, the beads melt slightly too much. Oops! They still look good though.

The aim of Crafty Creatives is to help you discover new crafts you might not have tried before, without having to spend lots of money buying all the equipment. This is a craft I will definitely be continuing with. Everyone used to say colouring in was just for children, but now adults have discovered its therapeutic calming effects and there is a huge craze for adult colouring books. I honestly think Hama bead craft is another such activity. I felt so relaxed making my designs, and so peaceful in myself. I would highly recommend them to everyone, young and old. I am going to buy some big pegboards so I can make some beautiful pictures using them, as well as small designs. When I was copying the design for the circle board, it reminded me so much of another craft I love. I adore cross stitch and have some stunning charts to use for that. Each little symbol square on a cross stitch chart represents a colour, and it dawned on me that it would be so easy to use such a chart and copy the design using beads on pegboards. Now, if Hama can make kits like cross stitch kits but the Hama bead version with all beads included and a beautiful chart to work from, I will be one even happier crafter!!!

I can’t wait to see what June’s Crafty Creatives box will contain! Whatever it will be, I know it will be a new exciting crafty adventure.

DISCLAIMER: I pay for my Crafty Creatives subscription, and this review is my honest opinion of it. I receive no endorsement of any kind for writing these reviews. I just like to share wonderful discoveries with you all 🙂

Crafty Creatives…. Surprise Craft Subscription Boxes

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As well as baking and cooking, I absolutely love all things crafty. Not sly crafty, I mean creative crafty. The trouble is there are so many amazing crafts I want to try, but buying new tools and equipment needed to try them can work out expensive, especially if you then decide that particular craft isn’t for you after all.

I was going through my Twitter feed a while ago and saw mention of Crafty Creatives. It is a fantastic subscription box run by the lovely Claire, who must really be Superwoman as she’s a busy mum with another baby on the way! While looking after her bundles of joy, she still manages to organise and send out boxes of joy every month to subscribers.

There are 3 boxes to choose from, or you can have all three!

Paperhaul is a box for stationery addicts. Every month you will receive a surprise box of high quality paper goods, including cards, stickers, notebooks, washi tape (and who doesn’t love washi tape!!!), notecards, envelopes etc etc. Each month features a different illustrator and all the items in the box will be co-ordinated. This box is £10 a month, plus £2 postage if in the UK. EU postage is £5, and the rest of the world is £6.

Beadhaul is a box for jewellery makers. This one is sent out every 2 months. Each box is themed, with beads, charms, and pendants for all skill levels. There are online tutorials to correspond with each box so you can have fun completing beautiful projects. Tools aren’t included in the box but you can buy those from the Crafty Creatives online shop if you don’t already have them. This box is £12.50 every 2 months, plus UK postage at £2.50, EU at £5.50, or rest of the world at £6.50.

Crafty Creatives is a box for general crafters. This is the box that started it all, and the box that I have subscribed to. This one is sent each month and includes everything you need to complete a whole craft project. (Occasionally you might need to provide your own basic items such as scissors and glue). It is a perfect way to discover new crafts, which is the main reason I chose it. You don’t know what craft will be in the box so it is a lovely surprise to open it and discover what you can make that month. They are suitable for all skill levels, so no need to worry if you’ve never tried the particular craft before. This box is £15 per month, plus £2.95 UK postage, and £5.95 EU postage. This one does not ship to the rest of the world.

The April Crafty Creatives box scared me when I first opened it, if I’m honest. It was a kit to make a fascinator headband from Hats on Heads and the picture looked so stunning I thought there was no way I’d be able to make it out of the things I could see in the pack!

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I finally plucked up the courage to try it yesterday. After all, this is what I wanted to do…. to try new crafts!

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It came with everything I needed to make the fascinator except for a needle and thread. I had both of those already so that wasn’t a problem. I had a great time making it, even though I made a very basic but big mistake! I didn’t read the very clear instructions properly. Completely my fault. It made me realise I’m a visual learner. I was meant to use the black sinamay fabric to cover the actual headband, but the instructions had photos in which they used the cream, so that’s what I did. That meant I had the wrong length of fabric left to make the bow loops so I had to improvise and use what was leftover from covering the headband too. My own silly mistake, but I think it still worked out well and looked beautiful when it was finished.

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The kit included pearls, feathers and veiling to use if you wanted to, but it said that was optional. I decided to use the pearls but not the feathers or veiling. I’ve kept those in my craft supplies box 🙂

I never in a million years would have ever imagined I would have made a fascinator, but I did thanks to Crafty Creatives, and even though I did it wrong, I am incredibly proud of it. Hopefully one day I will go to an event suitable for me to wear it. I can’t wait to see what is in this month’s box!! All I know is it will be a completely different craft to try, and that is an exciting thought for me!

If you want to try any of the 3 Crafty Creatives boxes click HERE to go to their website. Happy crafting!! 🙂

(EDIT 12/09/2018: Unfortunately Crafty Creatives has just closed their subscription box)

DISCLAIMER: I pay for my subscription to Crafty Creatives and have not been asked to write a review and receive no endorsement for doing so. I just love it so much I wanted to tell you all about it. All opinions and views expressed are entirely my own.

Easy Easter Crafts for Children…. Eggs and Nests

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The school half-term holidays are upon us already and in a few weeks it will be Easter. Where is this year going?? If you have children who are always complaining they are bored, or if the weather is miserable and you’re all stuck indoors, how about having some sticky crafty fun? These eggs and nests make beautiful Easter decorations and are a lovely unique way to give little chocolate treats as gifts. They are messy to make but that’s half of the fun isn’t it!? The only mess though is glue, and that is easy to clean up. Your child will have a great time peeling off the dried PVA glue from their hands too. My son Luke loves this part just as much as he loves the actual activity!!

Let’s start with the eggs. All you need is:

wool in whatever colour takes your fancy,

a water balloon,

PVA glue,

scissors,

a small container to put the glue in (an old clean takeaway container is perfect)

a small pot to dry the egg on (an empty yoghurt pot or even an egg cup is ideal)

small foil-wrapped chocolate eggs (we used Dairy Milk ones)

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  • Cover the bottom of the container with PVA glue, then add an equal amount of water. Mix well to thin the glue down. Cut some long strands of wool and put them into the glue. Press down until the wool is completely covered. Children love this messy bit! Leave to soak for a bit.

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  • Stretch the opening of the water balloon open as wide as you can and ask your child to push a chocolate egg into it. Push it down as much as you can and repeat with one more egg. When both eggs are inside, blow up the balloon. You might find it easier to use a balloon pump if you have one. Tie a knot in the filled balloon.

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  • Take a piece of the wool out of the glue, run it between thumb and forefinger to remove most of the glue, then wrap it around the balloon in all directions. Repeat until you have no big gaps left. You don’t want the eggs falling out when the balloon is popped! You can use more than one colour to make a really pretty effect. When it is covered as much as you want it to be, put it on to the small pot or egg cup to dry. You need to leave it overnight so the wool dries hard.
  • When it is completely dry, gently pop the balloon and use the scissors to ease the popped bits off the chocolate. And there you have a beautiful Easter egg decoration and a lovely gift for someone. This would make a cute table gift if you are having people round for Easter too. You can gently push aside a line of wool to remove the eggs inside.

 

To make the nests, blow up a water balloon and tie a knot in it. Use the same method then to cover just half of the balloon with wool. This time you want to put a lot more on to make it look more like a well-made nest. Leave it to dry on a small pot or cup overnight.

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When it is dry, pop the balloon and remove from the nest.

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Fill these with tissue paper and chocolate eggs and treats. They don’t need to be foil-wrapped for these nests.

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You could wrap these prettily in cellophane and give as Easter gifts to teachers. This is what Luke will be doing with his 🙂

I love encouraging creativity in children. So much better than them sitting in front of a screen, be it TV, tablet or computer. They are so proud when they have an end result of something beautiful that they have created themselves and even more so when they then give them as gifts.

Have a creative half-term! 🙂

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