I have had a good think about this situation (whilst crocheting another cowl) and have made (what I'm calling) a creative decision...to take on no new commissions and only stock a small range in my shop for the time being ...basically have a bit of a break from wood for a couple of months. I'm hoping that the inspiration will return along with the spring bulbs!
In the meantime I've tweaked some firm favourites - including a set of two love blocks for Valentines day, spring weddings or just because:
They can be personalised on the back
and wrapped in either white organza or black raffia
I've also made some little jar cosies -
in a solid stitch and a wider version
(this next photo is for you Emily!!!)
and come wrapped up for perfect gift giving...
(all available here)
And here are some of the crochet treats I have been
inspired to make:
A lacy cowl and flower
free pattern here (not the flower)
A lovely chunky neck warmer
free pattern here
and a cowl for my sister Nelly's birthday (pattern made up!)
Nelly also requested a crochet kindle cover...
I did promise to show and tell Cleggy's latest present wrapping prowess (see other examples here and here and here)
but I have to admit my rubbish Christmas day photos do not do him justice this time round.
I was so excited I couldn't focus on pictures.
I must point out at this point that, since having children, 13 long years ago, we haven't done Christmas presents for each other. We decided this was the year to change all that and set ourselves a strict budget.
(Which I STUCK TO!!!)
I reckon Cleggy spent the budget on wrapping and postage...rubbish.
Anyway, this knitted basket (John Lewis) was full of little treats all wrapped in WOOL!
Basically he bought 2 super soft cheapo scarves from Asda (buy one get one free!) then cut them up. He then made little bags, envelopes and packages using the chopped up wool and held them together with chunky red wool, finished with some pom poms!
Wish I'd thought of that!
Here's what I made Cleggy the super wrapper
(with my strict budget!)
Firstly a moose head.
I know it's a stag but I like to think it's a moose
I've seen these heads decoupaged, covered in fabric and painted - all gorgeous. I made mine using dictionary print. He loved it.
I also made a shadow box using some wrapping paper he had for his birthday (good choice Janet) and some distress ink.
I made some of the little things inside it, but the cute little houses are magnets from Valériane Leblond
...and terribly tasteful cufflinks are from fellow notonthehighstreet seller Handmade by Peggy
After hearing that Mr Cuckoo was never seen without a hankie I decided Cleggy should adopt similarly gentlemanly ways and made him some hankies. They disappeared on Christmas day and I've never seen them again...if I come across them I'll share. They were my first play with image transfer - and could well be a new obsession in 2013.
Now, before I sign off (and go seek some creative inspiration!) I'd like to show and tell these special blocks.
A little baby girl from a town 10 minutes away recently died whilst at nursery, in a choking incident. It was a heart breaking story - but made all the more touching by Millie's parents who were appearing on television to draw attention to the charity they have set up in Millie's memory
Millie's Trust is aiming to raise awareness of the need for anyone who spends time with little people to complete a paediatric first aid course and generally encourage us all to learn more about first aid. They are also raising money to support struggling parents who could otherwise not afford to attend.
I read more about the fund raising at lovely Emma's blog Oooh Betty - as Emma is a friend of Millie's parents (small world...again!) and I know that from reading Emma's blog my sister Nelly has enrolled on a first aid course already. Good work!
The blocks are for the raffle at Millie's Trust charity night in a couple of weeks.
Emma was also giving 25% of Etsy sales on her adorable foxes, cats and badgers towards the charity, so I couldn't resist a badger for baby Wilf.
Emma - your badger in a bag is wonderful and I know Wilf will treasure him forever.
Joanne - you (and Dan) are truly inspirational. I hope your event is a huge success and hope that the help you are giving others (which could potentially save a life in the future) helps YOU get through the dark days.