So I'll start with the Crafty Pod inspiration.
|Beautiful Plastic Canvas Wall Hanging|
Diane at Crafty Pod got me hooked on Plastic Canvas last year, during her Plastic Canvas Blog Hop. I loved the bright colours she used and I loved the variety of possible makes. We made this Plastic Canvas Bunting that's hanging in my Living Room:
|Another selling point for PC is how easy it is to get the children creating with it, Venetia made 4 of these circles for me.|
Next up is Wee Folk Art, who inspired me to delve into the world of gnomes! I completely adored their Gnome House and decided to leap out of my comfort zone to have a go at creating our own Gnome House. Here it is, definitely one of my favourite makes:
Wee Folk Art are still creating lovely accessories for their gnomes. They've promised a tutorial for these sweet Gnome Bunk Beds in the next week or so:
So I think my wood working 'skills' will be tested again very soon, our gnomes would love this bunk bed! If you like gnomes and all things gnomey then you really must go and visit Wee Folk Art.
On the Quilting front, Lori at 'The Inbox Jaunt', has also helped to push me out of my comfort zone, this time with more adventurous quilting. She has a really useful list of wonderful free motion quilting tutorials. Have a look at this one, very appropriate for today!
Her instructions are always so clear and her work is amazing. The 'quilting' part of a quilt is never my favourite part. I'm often inclined to try and get away with the bare minimum to just get the quilt finished, so Lori's posts asserting that amazing free motion quilting can be done on a humble, domestic sewing machine, even with large quilts, are very much needed prods for me.
Sticking with the quilt inspiration, I'm heading to The Silly Boo Dilly next. I am completely in awe of some of Victoria's work there. Take a look at this quilt:
Victoria reckons that this quilt (find it here) has over 15000 hand stitches! I loved the effect of the hand stitching in particular and it inspired me to start a similar quilt in wool, with some hand stitching (much less!) of my own. My quilt changed a lot during the making process and ended up being a really important quilt for me to make:
|Blogged about here - Wool Baby Blanket|
And this is one of the things I most admire about Victoria's work - what a strong sense of her own individuality it has. I could look at everything she creates and recognise it as 'Silly Boo Dilly'. One of her most recent posts definitely has this individuality, a series of quilts - 'Rough Patches'
They're definitely worth a closer look on her blog and they've inspired me to start creating something with a more earthy, muted colour palette. Hopefully I might get it to a point I can share it on here with you soon.
And last up, another lovely blog - Mothering with Mindfulness. I came across this completely new-to-me craft activity here:
They're 'God's Eyes', and, if you're as unfamiliar with it as I was, there are links in Kim's posts to get you started. I loved the colours in the creations above, as well as being inspiration for a great children's craft, they were inspiring to me as great combinations for future quilts. But sticking with the 'God's Eyes' to start with, the girls and I gave them a go this weekend. Here's Venetia's finished article:
|I used left over lollipop sticks for these.|
And Maria loved doing them as well, she didn't have quite the same staying power or dexterity...
|It was just after a tomato soup lunch - apologies for the orange moustache and beard!|
But she did finish one too...
Which looks just as bright and cheerful hanging up. And I decided I didn't want to be left out! I had a go at making one with a couple of bits of driftwood we brought back from the beach, and some seaside colours to match.
It was very therapeutic!
That's it for my 5 links, but, if you get a chance, go and have a look at Diane's 5 links, I especially love the 'Zen Stitching' one.