Sunday, 21 August 2011

Free Bunting Pattern

How is my Christmas list going? Slowly, slowly but getting faster. Crochet seems to be saving the day for me. It is so portable and you can be sociable whilst doing it.

We ran a crochet bunting workshop at Wickle a couple of months ago and we had to come up with or own pattern. I have since modified it and made a strip of it for a small girl I know.

Here is a free brilliant bunting pattern!

Make Believe Café Bunting Pattern

Chain 21
Row 1. Double crochet into the second chain from the hook. Double crochet to the end.
Row 2. Chain 1.Half Treble into the second chain from the hook. Half Treble to the last stitch from the end.Turn.
Row 3. to the end. Repeat row 2 until there is one stitch left.
Finish off.
Work as many flags as you need.
To join them
Chain 20
Slip stitch into the first (beginning) stitch to creat a loop for hanging.
Chain 20
*Double crochet into each stitch across the top of the first flag. Chain 10*
Repeat from * to * until all the flags have been joined and you have chained 10.
Chain a further 30 stitches.
Slip stitch into the 20th stitch from the hook and finish off.

Please let me know if you have any problems with it. I'm not used to writing patterns.

Hope you like it.

Emma x

Bon Bons

We have been very busy recently preparing for the launch of our Make believe Bon Bons.

Bon Bons are a cross between a pass the parcel and a pinata but much more exciting than either. Each ball is made up of a rainbow of paper streamers wrapped around a central gift. Each streamer has a small present hidden with in it - something hand made, vintage, gorgeously kitch or tasty. In America they call them Surprise Balls.
The earliest evidence of surprise balls were found in the Native American culture. Traditionally, it was common practice to tell the history of one’s life with this unique ball. The first layer represented birth and for each event in life, another layer and memento was added.  They also used them to record  journeys. Treasures from the trip (a feather, a special stone) were collected and wrapped into a ball using leaves and twine. As the ball was unravelled, the story of the journey was told.

 In the 1950’s, surprise balls became fashionable in America. They became less popular in the 1960’s and disappeared altogether until recently when they have begun to make a reappearance.

Lou and I made one for Kelly's birthday. We collected all sorts of tiny treasures, an old dance card, a handbag-sized pack of pretty playing cards, a bright red nail varnish, a crystal necklace. She was so surprised by it, it took nearly half an hour for her to unwrap it.

We had a brilliant time making it and have decided to go into production. We are going to sell them on our website once we have set up our shop. You will be able to also buy them at Wickle, in Lewes. So far, we've made them for women and for children.

The children's one will have twenty four presents in it so that it can be used as an alternative advent calendar. You can use each day's streamer to decorate your room!

We have a list as long as your arm of all the different types of Bon Bon we could do. So watch this space!

In September we'll be holding classes for those of you who want to make your own.

Tuesday, 2 August 2011

Field Trip

This weekend we packed up the car and headed to the WOMAD festival in Wilstshire.

Thankfully, as I am a fair weather camper, the sun was shining and and we were able to amble around the fields and soak up the music and friendly atmosphere.

Early on Saturday I took my lovely boy to the children's field where we spent the morning making tiger masks from paper plates. I was massively inspired by The Forest Bus who are a charity that takes a cool customised bus into hard to reach communities, teaching craft and using play therapy to energise children and youths.

Elsewhere we saw great examples of recycled craft. Lots of pom-poms made from carrier bags lined the gates and an enormous skull - created from the ends of plastic bottles that had material stretched over them was a particular favourite.

Elsewhere, Oxfam were doing a roaring trade on their alteration service. A genius idea where they sold high end, second hand clothes with a £5 per item alteration charge. The result was glamorous festival goers and a tidy sum for charity - everyone was a winner.

I also liked the use of old fabric to create windsocks. Pegged out on a washing line, they danced to the music in the summer breeze. The simple sight of them lifted my heart and made me feel very happy indeed.

Enjoy your summer and seek out your making inspiration wherever you can.