Monday, 29 August 2011

Productive Weekend = Picture Heavy Post!

Well what a busy weekend it has been and so much so that it hasn't felt like there has been a bank holiday!  Few orders made and sent off including this lovely one off bespoke Hello Kitty bunting.  It's very cute.  It was lovely to sit for a considerable amount of time to sew this and I really enjoyed making this one.  

Lots of shopping has been done this weekend to get things ready for when James starts reception class next Monday and which will be the first time he gets to wear proper full school uniform.  He's going to look so grown up.  It has cost an absolute fortune though and we also ended up in the toy shop and came out armed with more purchases!  Oops!

Look at this mess I found myself in yesterday...

Lots of messy ribbons which I have been waiting to tidy for probably about a year now but I sat on the floor and managed to get it to this...

Still not brilliant but soooo much better, I can see what I got and what I now need to buy and at least most of it is back on their spools and I have pinned them this time to stop them unravelling.

Lots of people have been emailing, texting etc about my Christmas decorations and putting their name down for some after the launch of the website in November so I thought I had better start making some more in readiness as it sounds like they may go quick.

Tonight I started on some more robins which have now been placed on my WIP pile.  I dare say the pile will be much bigger tomorrow!

I was having a little play last night with my felt wondering what I could turn it into and since I have just bought my first ever pinking scissors which by the way is amazing I thought I would chop up a load of circles in different sizes and see what I got and this is the result.

They are brooches.  Two layers of same colour felt sewn together with contrasting cotton to make it a bit more sturdy topped with a further two layers of smaller circles of felt and embellished with a polka dot button.  I think they have turned out really well and am quite fancying one or two for my winter coat!

Once they were done I thought I couldn't just leave them as they were so decided to make some packaging for them this morning.  Nothing fancy, just plain white card with my details on the front, simple but nicer than the brooches on their own.  The hard task now of course is cutting up tons of these bits of card for all the other brooches and anything else I have made over the last couple of months - that's gonna take a LOT of time but at least it keeps me busy!

Few more decorations made.

I've got a busy day ahead of me tomorrow so I'm off for an earlier night than usual.  It's around 11.15pm which is a novelty for me as its usually between 1am and 3am for me as I am turning into a night owl crafting away like mad!

Friday, 26 August 2011

Fabric, Cake and Buttons :-)

As expected Wednesday was a super busy day.  I won't bore you with all the details but the exciting bits was my trip to Ikea and Hobbycraft.  I bought soooooo many goodies.  Card toppers, lots of ribbon, fabric, glass jars, and other bits and bobs.

I had these lovely glass jars.

And look what I am now using them for:

BUTTONS!!!!  Yay!  Looks like pick n mix!  Still got some larger jars to fill yet.

Then Thursday it was my little boys 4th birthday.  He had a lovely day spent with his cousins and we had the most amazing birthday cake - birthday cake is the best!

I then received this beautiful fabric which I am going to turn into some bunting for someone.  I will be sure to post a pic when it is done.

I'm off to pack up an order and think about what fabrics I can use to make some tote bags.

Tuesday, 23 August 2011

I've gone dotty!

Even though I said I may not be on here for a day or two I had to post tonight (this is addictive)!!

I love polka dots so I made this peg bag in readiness for the online shop (although I am very tempted to keep it for myself).  The hanger inside this one is a matching cute pink too :-)

And look how cute my matching dolly pegs are which I hand painted myself...

Is is possible to be in love with a set of dotty pegs???  Ok, so now I'm sounding strange!!

I have worked on another design this afternoon and am trying to create a little teddy bear hanging decoration. I'm still fiddling with bits of felt and ribbon but I will be sure to post a pic when done (if he turns out ok).

Finally - A BIG thank you goes to Pretty Petal Handmade who mentioned me on her blog today.  Please hop on over and have a look at her lovely blog.

Orders and plenty of Pics!

Yesterday afternoon I received two separate orders for greetings cards.  I love making cards.  This is what I made and they have already winged themselves off to my lovely customers.

Remember this:

This has now become this little fella:

I think he's quite cute even if he don't look perfect - bit lumpy - will have to correct that on the next one!

In the meantime - lovely fabric order delivered earlier in the week:

I cannot bring myself to chop it all up just yet so I have spent a few days admiring it and going ooh and aah.  Yes, I do think I am slightly mad at times!

Look at this pretty little keyring / bag charm - YAY - something I have made recently that is not Christmas related!!  I have made a whole selection of these in all different shapes (to include hearts and birds).  I love them as they include all of my favourite things - felt, buttons, ribbon and a splash of fabric (Cath Kidston on this one).  They are all double sided.

Not sure I will have much time to make anything tomorrow or indeed blog - we'll see.  My folks are collecting the children in the morning, I'm off to the capital to pay a visit to Ikea and Hobbycraft, pick up some M&S food for James' 4th birthday on Thursday, find some gifts for pass the parcel, collect the cake, wrap presents so will be a busy one.

That's it from me for now.  I am off to sort out the kiddies, admire the new fabric a little more and plan what I can do next.

Monday, 22 August 2011

Yay - the machine saw some daylight!

I have been having mega withdrawal symptoms from not using my sewing machine but an order came through yesterday to make a very cute washing up bottle apron.  What do you think?

I was ever so tempted to keep it for myself and make another one but I have already done that once before and already have my washing up bottle dressed!!

So today so far I have gift wrapped the mini apron, cleaned the house and started sorting out my mega messy craft table (not really a craft table, its actually the dining table which I have taken over).  Not bad considering it is not long after midday.

Plans for this afternoon is to hand deliver parcel, pick up my boy from my mother in law who has taken him shopping today to pick out his birthday present then home to make lots more decorations.  I really need to start making a dent in that list I made (which I haven't finished writing yet)!!

Sunday, 21 August 2011

Launch Date Announcement!

Lots of people for some time have been asking for the all important launch date of Sweet Williams. will be up and running on Friday 25th November 2011.

Yes, I know it is still a long way off but I have much to prepare for by then.  I have hundreds of sewing time to put in to finish making my products, photographs to be taken, website to be updated / finalised (which is a massive task on its own) and lots of other bits and bobs and boring paperwork to be done.

But, by taking the plunge to set a proper launch date then I have a goal and I can plan my time a bit better and I have told myself that if I haven't finished everything by then it will still have to go live.  Should give plenty of time to get in a few orders before Christmas.

AND EVEN MORE EXCITING - I shall be holding a freebie day on launch day to celebrate.  More details on this will come nearer the time.

Speaking of Christmas - look at this little chappy I made this morning...

I think he is a lonely little Santa so will be making him some friends this afternoon.

And who do you think this will be then?

 My next little work in progress.  Will post pics when he's finished.


I have actually sat down and have started making myself a list of "things I need to buy" and the all important "to do list".  It is actually starting to look quite scary already and I am not even half way through yet!

Kiddies have gone to my mother in law for the weekend - woo hoo - 1st time I have had a whole weekend to myself to do sewing in a long long time - probably about 3 years so I am making the most of it - although some time was taken out this evening for me and hubby to go to the cinema and I devoured a much too large box of popcorn so now I feel rather sick!

Here are a few pics of recently made items which will be stocked in the online shop when it is up and running.  (I shall be revealing the launch date tomorrow) 

Spotty Dotty Bunting

Pack of Spotty Dotty Tea Towels
Cupcake Tea Towel

Pack of Floral Sage Tea Towels
That all important launch date shall be revealed tomorrow and hopefully I shall have more photos for the blog.  

Thursday, 18 August 2011

Decorations have taken over my house!...

... and it's only August!

My living room is looking so festive, it's lovely!!  42 decorations made in total so far and need to keep going.  Had a lot of interest already and people putting their names down to order when I am properly up and running so I don't think what I have made is anywhere near enough!!  Will have to get cracking!

Off to drool over some Cath Kidston goodies this morning as soon as the baby gets up (he's the longest sleeper ever!  It almost 10am and he's been there since 10 last night)!  Then home to make lemon biscuits and chocolate eclairs - I'm having a fat week this week.  Hopefully I can fit in some more sewing too.  Need to make a batch of mini washing up bottle aprons pronto.

I found Oscar asleep in my washing basket - the perfect excuse to not being able to fill it up with ironing and so don't feel so guilty for spending more time on making cute things!!

Loving lots of felty goodness - felt is such an amazing material to work with.  I am still on the lookout for some glass jars to store all my bit and bobs in - I've made a start...

Happy Thursday folks :-)

Tuesday, 16 August 2011

At Last...

...some sewing news

I have FINALLY finished doing a batch of Christmas Decorations.  I am absolutely thrilled with them.  They will be added to the website in due course ready for the festive season.

So far there are snowmen, holly, robins, baubles with stars / hearts on, Christmas trees, Chrismas puddings.  I LOVE them.

I want to do some santas and rudolphs to go with them and then it will be back to the drawing board literally to start drawing up some more designs for other kinds of all year round decorations.  I have completely fallen in love with the robins - they are my fave and may just have to decorate the whole house with them.

Here is a sneak peek at the decorations

Friday, 12 August 2011

As expected...

...Today was not a day for craft / sewing.  Had a lovely day in the Capital.  Almost ended up not going due to tantrums of an almost 4 year old this morning who decided to throw every toy he owns over the floor and refused to get dressed but we got there in the end!

Ate way too many Krispy Kreme doughnuts - the Butterscotch Fudge is just AMAZING.  Spent way too much in the Disney Store - spoilt kids aye.

Since it was a kids trip which involved looking in every toy shop we could find, naughty sweet treats and to see the dinosaurs I did not get to see what looked like a new fabric section in John Lewis - most disappointed - may have to make a separate special trip.

I'm having an early night tonight - I've had a run of going to bed around 1am for the last couple of weeks and indeed it was half 3 last night so I need to play catch up now!

I am hoping that next time I post I will have actually done more sewing to blog about which is the whole point in this!!!

Thursday, 11 August 2011

Work in progress and other things...

Well, the Christmas decorations I'm afraid to say are still a work in progress!!  Was hoping to have got the majority of them done by now but it has just been manic here and with two nippers to entertain when all it wants to do outside is rain is trying at times.

The snowmen have been finished and the Christmas trees are almost done but nothing else :-(  

On the plus side I have just received an order of some yummy scrummy hand dyed flower shaped buttons and some gorgeous citrus coloured polka dot giant buttons.  I cannot wait to start using these.

I am now also on the lookout for little jars to keep my buttons in.  I am favouring the Douwe Egberts coffee jars at the moment as they are the perfect size and I like the style of the lids (v. sad I know).

Today was the first proper shopping trip in a long time.  The thought of taking two children round a supermarket scares the living daylights out of me so I was dreading it.  I usually do an online shop once a week but we were running a bit low so had to make the trip.  And I was pleasantly surprised - two very well behaved boys.  No tears or tantrums and managed to stay within budget too.  RESULT! 

Want to get some more of these decorations done this evening as there will be no chance of doing anything tomorrow as I am taking the boys to the capital to look at the dinosaurs, have a Krispy Kreme and look around all the toy shops!!  No doubt a very tiring and expensive day out, but at least it keeps the boys happy!

Wednesday, 10 August 2011

New Projects - Christmas - yes Christmas!!!

Yes I know it is August and it's the summer holidays but it is time to start thinking about Christmas folks.  I have been hard at work designing and cutting out templates to make very pretty Christmas tree decorations and I must say they are starting to look very cute and very festive.

Check them out

Needless to say that after cutting out a LOT of little bits of felt and starting to sew on little buttons my fingers are in shreds!

My almost 4 year old has been equally excited as he thinks Santa will be here any day and has asked when we are putting the tree up!!!!  Strangely we have not watched Santa Claus the Movie for a couple of months now!  I am starting to think there's a little bit of Christmas all year round in this house and usually come December I'm fed up of it.

Still speaking of Christmas I have started my Christmas shopping and have done for pretty much all the family!!!  Just got hubby and the kids to do.  James has already ticked everything he wants in the Argos catalogue - which is pretty much everything that's not pink!!

A large mug of coffee is calling so I'm off to wake myself up with that, entertain the kids on this drizzly day and do more sewing and I may even have a tinker with the website later.

Happy day to you all x

Saturday, 6 August 2011

Back on the machine

After a funny couple of days with tooth trouble - looks like I'll have to have one of my wisdom teeth out :-(  I have been back on it like sonic today and have completed another bunting order.

Whilst the website is not up and running yet, orders are starting to flow in already simply through word of mouth and social network sites which is just amazing and makes you realise how powerful these are in themselves as an advertising tool.  Long may it continue.

Here is today's completed project...

Rather please with the results I must say and I hope it makes for a very happy customer.

Next on the LONG list of to dos (which is endless of course) is to make a batch of mini washing up liquid bottle aprons (very cute) and some brooches I think.

Thursday, 4 August 2011

What is Sweet Williams?

Well, apart from being the very pretty flower it is a new and exciting business - everything handmade from soft furnishings to greetings cards to gifts.  

The website is currently under construction but make sure you bookmark so you can check it out when it is properly up and running.  Also, follow my blog as I will be shouting from the rooftops (or the top of my ironing pile its that big) when the website is ready!

What's in a name I hear you ask???

When it came to naming the business it didn't actually take that long and I think it may even have been the hubby who suggested it!  Having recently had a baby (called William) and thinking of trying to use one of the kids' names and or my fave flowers, Sweet Williams was born as this includes both and I think is quite catchy.

So what exactly does Sweet Williams make???

Cushions, doorstops, draught excluders, peg bags, tote bags, laundry bags, toy bags, lots of other bags!, brooches, keyrings / bag charms, pin cushions, needle cases, bunting, greetings cards, decorations, lavender filled goodies, make up bags, purses, pencil cases, Pandora style bracelets, aprons, baby bibs, tea towels, placemats, table runners - the list is absolutely endless!

Keep following the blog to keep up to date with new stuff and of course the exciting bit - the launch of the website :-)

About Me!

Hello, I'm Emma - a craftaholic, workaholic, chocoholic and shopoholic!!  I'm from the UK - South Wales.  I have a husband who complains there is too many scraps of fabric, buttons and glitter all over the house and two young children who probably spend 95% of the time covered in the scraps of fabric, buttons and glitter!

James will be 4 at the end of this month (oh how the time flies) and William is almost 4 months old - he will not be a baby long either I'm sure.  It is right what they say - the older you get the quicker the time seems to pass you by!!  I'm now closer to 30 and am already scared at the prospect of the BIG 3-0!  And 30 is still young - who knows what I'll feel like by the time I get to 40, 50, 60!!!

Lets work backwards on my list - 

Shopaholic - I LOVE shoes, handbags and all things pretty but when you have children you seem to stop spending money on these things for yourself like you used to and buy cute clothes for the kids instead.  I also LOVE buying things for my home and garden - there are simply too many lovely things and many bargains to be had!  I love anything with polka dots - as you can see from my lovely spotty pink jug, tins and handmade bunting (which is also available to purchase in my online shop) (when my website is fully up and running).

Chocoholic - definitely one of the many reasons my BMI is currently through the roof!  Hotel Chocolat is one of my faves and I don't get to buy it often (thankfully)!  Chocolate cake, chocolate ice cream, chocolate milkshake, strawberries dipped in chocolate, chocolate biscuits, as long as its chocolate and has lots of calories I'll have it!

Workaholic - I am a Legal Assistant for a local law firm.  I love my job.  I am currently on maternity leave until the New Year.  I am also in the process of starting my own business.  

Craftaholic - My love for beautiful fabric and buttons grows daily!  Being a craftaholic is now also being linked with workaholic as I am in the process of turning my love for crafts, sewing, card making etc into a business.  

Sweet Williams - I'll be posting another blog about the business :-)

All my friends and family ask on many occasions where on earth do I find time to make so many things and look after two young children.  What they don't know of course is that my ironing pile is usually piled up to the ceiling, the sink full of dishes but that I am also mega super duper organised when it comes to all the other tasks!

If you got this far - thank you for reading xx

Today I start my 1st EVER blog

Wow - this is a first for me - my first ever blog!

I am in the process of setting up my own business - Sweet Williams - Handmade Soft Furnishings, Cards and Gifts.  

I have been making things for myself, friends and family for years and decided now is the time to branch out and start my own business.  

The website is still under construction at the moment.  Building a full e-commerce website is extremely hard work and tedious to say the least but strangely satisfying at the same time knowing the time will come when it will eventually be finished and will look amazing.