Multi-tasking

I am working on more boxes andcant buy also some decorated hearts. I have painted pots ready for the photography phase. I delivered the commissioned boxes last week. I have completed a template for risk assessment for craft fairs and am busy researching the equipment I would need to do a craft fair, including a gazebo, tables, table why buycloths, bags, etc.

I really like the sayings on these two pictures and the second one is a good reason to go and visit my store on Etsy at https://www.etsy.com/uk/shop/DidiLouCrafts.

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Painting

I am definitely creative and a crafter, but I am not much of an artist, although I do try. I can’t draw, one thing I wish I had inherited from my mother, who is a great painter, specialising in china painting. The picture below is just a sample of some of her work. There is a definite trend towards an Australian nature theme, but that is because many of these pieces are ones I inherited from my grandmother, who lived in the UK, and so my mother would paint her items that reflected the flora and fauna of her chosen home.

ChinapaintingSilk painting is one of my favourite craft activities. I find it peaceful, watching the paint spread on the threads of the silk. Glass painting is also fun, but more challenging as the paint is sticky and difficult to work with, but looks great, especially when the sun shines through it. Both forms of painting allow me to use other people’s drawing skills (the outlines) and then paint from there, so I can be creative with the colours to make the design rather than having also done the artistic bit. My artistic skills are limited to cheating with tracing paper and the like, but I do think even those can come up well too.

plantersboxes

There are lots of items available showing my creative and crafting side at the Didi Lou Crafts Etsy store, which you can find at https://www.etsy.com/uk/shop/DidiLouCrafts.

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Animals

I enjoyed watching the birth and first few kipenziweeks of Kipenzi’s life recently, thanks to Animal Planet. Kipenzi is a reticulated giraffe born at Dallas Zoo on April 10th. Reticulated giraffes are classified as Vulnerable in the wild and whilst one can argue zoos are not the same as being in the wild, captive breeding can help to keep certain animals from extinction. (Photo from Dallas Zoo website at http://www.dallaszoo.com.)

Some of my guilty pleasures are that I check the Longleat news at times to see the new births, I surf pets4homes.co.uk trying to decide what pet I’d like, I sit and read the stories on the animal rescue site, I love Eldad Hagar’s dog teddy hug cardrescue videos on Youtube, I like Cole and Marmalade’s adventures and I keep up to date with the Simon’s Cat cartoons. It is said we are a nation of pet lovers. I would argue that it is more widespread than just here in the UK, though I admit it does not seem to be true of all nations or of all people.

We don’t currently have a pet. When we were both working full time, in my opinion it wouldn’t have been fair to keep a pet. Now that my bunny flower cardhusband is medically retired and I am working from home most of the time, it is something I have pondered, but have not come to a decision about yet.

Didi Lou Crafts does not make gifts for pets, but perhaps it is something I should look into. In the meanwhile, check out some of the cute animals on some of the cards for sale at https://www.etsy.com/uk/shop/DidiLouCrafts/Cards.

teddy daffodil card

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The great search….

The plan is to sell items from Didi Lou Crafts both online and at local craft fairs. I am aware I don’t have enough stock yet to do a craft fair, so gradually working on that, but I have started the search for an appropriate fair… it is not going well. I visited one local market on Thursday morning, only to be told by one of the regular market traders there that the craft people haven’t been at that market in months, so scratch that one off the list. Today was a much better day, no rain and the sun shining, and another trip out to check out another market, but the same thing, not a single craft stall in sight. Now today’s one is possibly more viable than the one on Thursday, being a busier time and place, but I do feel it is probably not going to work out profitably, especially when I add the startup costs of a gazebo, tables and the like, along with the expenses such as parking, the rental of the space, the travel and my time.
market tentSeems I need to keep looking to find the right fair, but for now I have items available at my Etsy store at https://www.etsy.com/uk/shop/DidiLouCrafts.

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Flowers

With very little effort, we have had flowers2some pretty flowers in the garden this spring. So far we have had daffodils, tulips, lily of the valley, daisies, grape hyacinths and forget-me-nots out in bloom and expect to see the cottontail lavender, the red and white roses and the budlea in the coming weeks. I have put in some tomatoes and mange tout this year. I’ve had success growing tomatoes in the past, but not with much else, so the mange tout is an experiment. The first flowers are already out on the tomatoes, but no sign on the peas yet.flowers1

My favourite flowers are exotic: frangipani, flannel flowers, snowdrops, and white orchids, but I also like white flowers, most bulb flowers and many roses. I like seeing fruit blossom and wild poppies when out and about. Seeing flowers out in the countryside is a true pleasure. I’ve been out walking recently, enjoying the spring, and have had the joy of seeing bluebells, blossoms, violets and primroses.

Flowers are given on valentine’s day floralitemsand mother’s day and also commonly seen at weddings, but are a nice gift for wives, mothers and girlfriends at any time (although they could be for anyone).

Didi Lou Crafts offers vases and pot plants for sale to take those flowers (and other plants). See https://www.etsy.com/uk/shop/DidiLouCrafts for these and other items.

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Weddings

Spring and summer seems to be the time for weddings. Most weddings are planned well in advance and leave the bride crossing her fingers for the weather to suit her plans, especially for the wedding photographs. A bride usually has a lot of control over the day, but the weather is one, often critical, factor which is completely out of the control of anyone. My advice is have a nice alternative planned, such as somewhere in one of the venues you have booked, and don’t panic about it. I’d also recommend planning well in advance. We pink wedding card_tnwere unlucky, our venue burnt down months before the wedding, but having booked well enough in advance, we were able to find an alternative that was available for our chosen date. The alternative wasn’t ideal, being a stark hall as compared to the medieval barn we had first booked because it fitted our medieval/celtic theme, but the staff were very understanding, being aware of the fire, so I think we got the very best of service from them and the day was amazing.

Our wedding was in April and we had a sunny day which was warm enough that I didn’t need to put on the new cape I purchased in case it was cold. We had our photos taken out on the lawns at the registry office as the venue didn’t have any gardens, but there was also places inside the venue that could have been used, with appropriate decorations to make it look festive.

favour boxOur wedding was hand crafted. I embossed the paper and then printed the invitations myself. My mother made my wedding dress and my husband’s suit. My auntie made the wedding cake. I made up all the favour boxes (from kits), adding a sticker to the top to make them look more in theme. I had friends make pottery pots for potpourri on the tables. My father-in-law-to-be and I sat and made up all the table flowers and bouquets the night before the wedding.

 

What I really enjoyed was the research, weddingcaketo try and get some of the items more authentically medieval or celtic. I learnt that the wedding cake as we know it was introduced in the Victorian era. In medieval times the guests brought individual seed cakes for the bride and groom. These seed cakes lasted a long time. With no cake to cut, the tradition was to build all the cakes into a pile and for the bride and groom to kiss over the tower. If they managed to kiss without knocking any down, they believed the couple would have good luck. So that’s what we had, a pile of individual seeded cakes. I also found out that the flowers in bouquets can be symbolic. I sourced artificial flowers and now have them all in a basket on the kitchen window sill. I chose red roses which represent love, orange blossom which represents marriage, lavender which represents devotion, ivy which represents friendship, wheat which means wealth and eucalyptus leaves to represent my childhood in Australia.

The range of items at Didi Lou Crafts includes a few items that would make nice gifts for the bride and groom or members of the bridal party and there are a few cards that might be appropriate with more to be added in time. See https://www.etsy.com/uk/shop/DidiLouCrafts for these and many more items.

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Facebook Share and Follow

So I’ve been working on the website today. You now have the ability to share posts and pages found on Didi Lou Crafts on Facebook. You can also follow Didi Lou Crafts Facebook page. I’ve also added links to the shop on Etsy and to the page on Facebook to the right hand side of the posts page.

etsy1 Didi Lou Crafts on Etsy
fb1 Didi Lou Crafts on Facebook
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