LastMinuteLucie and the search for time

Posts tagged ‘motif’

Firework resolutions

I start back at Guides this week and in keeping with tradition, we often look at resolution making in January. It’s not always personal – sometimes we look at them in terms of the things they would like to try at Guides during the year.

In the past we have written ourselves letters, sealed until the end of the year, and made little matchbooks, but this year I decided to go with the firework scheme. I recently came across Popplet, which I think is a very cool mind mapping tool and I had been toying with a lesson plan to do with resolutions. In doing so came up with 5 strands to make it less intimidating to children:

something I will do less of

something I will do more of

something I will do with my friends

something I will do at home

something I will do at school (or work if you are grown up).

2015 resolutions

As you can see by the image, I have used black card – this is A5 – and glitter glue in the center for the 2015.

Strips of colour are applied (perfect for using up those scraps of coloured paper we (I) have hanging around) – these are the pretty bit of the firework and hold your resolutions – small to keep things short and to the point – and white pen was used to add drama.

I put a paper ribbon on the top for hanging. Will let you know how these went down at Guides!

 

nail art, but not as we know it

I was tidying my bedroom today and I came across an old handbag mirror. It still opened and shut but the silver outside was horribly tarnished, so I got my nail varnish out and prettied it up.

mirror mirror2

I will use some proper varnish to try and protect it, but however long it lasts, it looks so much more attractive now!

pen-pal paper-February challenge 2

As we get nearer to Thinking Day we are trying our hand at letter writing at Guides.

My friend Wendy sent me an email from a Guider in Canada who was interested in linking their girls with girls in the UK, by becoming pen pals.

As a teenager I had many pen pals and loved getting letters through the post. I still get excited if the postman brings something other than bills and in a way I am sad that pen and paper letter writing has all but disappeared.

Don’t get me wrong – I love emails, texts, phone calls, instant messaging, social media and blogging as much as the next girl, but there is still something very personal and human about ink on paper.

As part of my February drawing challenge I decided to design some Guide writing paper – I enjoy new stationery almost more than writing the letter!  I have left it black and white for the girls so they can colour it in if they wish and tried to represent some of the things we do in Guides.

Slide1

Sadly, the scan doesn’t do it justice, but represented here are cooking outdoors, cooking indoors, crafts, campfires and singing, water zorbing, swimming, abseiling, camping and making friends.

If anyone has any tips on getting a decent image of a drawing on here I would be pleased to hear it 🙂

Shrinkle campfires!

I love Shrinkles. Strange plasticky paper you can draw on which, when you cook it shrinks to a much smaller size and becomes hard plastic.

Genius – and Brownies and Guides love it.

After we made jam tarts, we had time at Guides to make some camp blanket badges featuring campfires, out of Shrinkles. The uncooked drawing went home with the girls and I’m not sure whether I will get to see them finished.

However, my own Brownie and Guide brought one home and I did one too:

Slide1

We hole punched holes round the edge so that we had a way of sewing them on our blankets later, then followed the instructions and made them small

Slide2

We are very chuffed with them. I have sprayed them with a varnish in case cooking isn’t enough to stop them fading in use. They are now in my pile of badges to sew on…. but that’s a whole other post!

Handbag makeover-challenge 3

Continuing on the theme of the month, the repair and upcycling basket, next on the agenda was a handbag I bought in a second hand shop in the summer.

I needed a little handbag while I was on holiday, just to hold the old purse, phone, keys and specs and I found one for less than £5. Ok it was khaki and it had HOOCH embroidered on it, but it did the job for the week away.

When I came home my bigger and much loved usual handbag broke. Aaaargh! Since September I have been using my summer purchase (and starting to really dislike the embroidery and the useless flappy inside pocket) so I decided to do something about it.

Here it is pre scissors and unpicker…

handbag

It took me quite a while to get rid of the embroidery, but I persevered because I wanted to use some iron on transfers I had. I also took great pleasure in cutting out the useless flappy pocket.

handbag2

I chose tree and plaid motifs that went with the khaki and followed the instructions very carefully, because I am apt to rush… As you can see I was successful.

I was going to buy some co-ordinating ribbon to rebind the edges, but during January Challenge 2 I rifled through a forgotten bias binding stash and serendipitously found the perfect colour for my bag too. Result!

I am pleased with it overall; the colours work well and the binding really pulled it together –  I’d  still rather have my old, bigger bag though…  😦

handbag3

Tattoo motif throw

I have been mulling this over for a while and, as I am pretty sure my talented neice doesn’t read my blog, I am going to put this up now.

Talented neice is a tattooist – she does the most amazing drawings and is branching out into t-shirts. I am a very proud auntie.

I took one of her more classic tattoo designs and appliqued it onto a bought throw. I just wanted to tip my hat at the lovely work she does while giving her a present she can actually use. I am quite pleased with it (it is the thing that kept me up til 3am) though it could probably have been neater and given less thinking and more doing time I may have chosen different materials.

However, it is the thought that counts 🙂

heart2

apologies for the terrible photo…

If you are into tattoos, here is her facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/Bradderstattoo

Peacock inspired nails

I was out on the razz last Saturday for the first time in a while.

It was only a chinese meal and few drinks, but I thought, as they were all the same length for a change, I would prettify my nails for the occasion.

I wore jeans and a black top with a light jacket that had a peacock feather motif. This gave me the inspiration for the nails – I went with a clear base coat all over, a dark green and a shiny teal over 2/3 of the nail and gold done with a long haired brush to simulate the feathery edge.

It’s not a perfect feather, but I think it is reminiscent – a peacock feather in abstract if you like.

Someone asked me if they were nail wraps, which in our house is like being told your cakes are ‘just like shop bought’ as a compliment 😀

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Easter ‘make’ a day – Day Four: the red car and the blue car had a race

As a student of the eighties I had a large number of headline t-shirts with slogans like ‘Cats against Vivisection’ and ‘Mad Car Disease’. My opinions matched those slogans and, although my opinions have mostly stood the test of time, the t-shirts haven’t.

DSC03663

The one on the right of this picture I wore all the time – it was comfy (and huge)!  I took it out of my drawer today after a prolonged absence in my life and noticed the paint stains and the holes and thought, ‘I know, I’ll take that fab Milky Way ad car off the front and add it to a t-shirt I will wear’.

The t-shirt I had in mind for transformation was a black marl number from Primark that had also been a wardrobe staple for some time. (I don’t shop very often) but when I looked closely, it had torn just above the elbow of the left sleeve. Undeterred I just cut both sleeves off at that point. The fabric will roll, giving me a cap sleeve of sorts.

I cut out the car and ironed it onto some Bondaweb before ironing it onto the front of the shirt. As you may have read I made a t-shirt in a similar way for my daughter’s birthday and with that experience in mind I sewed all round the motif with running stitch in a complimentary colour. Now I have a t-shirt I will love to wear – there will be a brag label going on at the hem in the very near future!

DSC03671

Aside

any excuse!

Any Excuse!

My oldest daughter had a couple of friends to stay last night – a birthday party of sorts – usually referred to, without any sense of irony, as a sleepover.

Lack of sleep aside, it gave me many more opportunities for small bouts of creativity.

before disaster struck

I watched my daughter use an icing bag recently, with royal icing in it (she has her own blog Ilovecakeandcakelovesme@wordpress.com) and I thought ‘I’ll give that a go, looks easy enough.’

Well I was right – if you can use a pen you can pretty much use an icing bag. Unfortunately for me my royal icing mix was a little soft, so when I tried to lift my handsome blue owls off the greaseproof and place them on my little squares of iced cake for the party bag, they broke spectacularly! Being of a waste not want not nature, I used them as sprinkles. They made a change from hundreds and thousands…

we ❤ bath bombs

I like to let my girls spend time doing nothing.

What I mean by that is I like to allow them time to find something to do by themselves, something unscheduled or not adult led. It’s worked a treat – except that when they come up with ideas for activities when their friends come, I can hardly say no.

With her party in mind and not wanting her guests to be bored, my daughter took due note of the Blue Peter instructions (see link below) for making bath bombs with bicarb, cream of tartar, food flavouring and colouring and water.  It was like making bicarb sandcastles.  As with sandcastles though, the water content is crucial.

When we freed these from the silicone mould we had a bit of crumblage, so I wrapped them artistically in foil to maintain the heart shape for the party bag and instructed the girls to ensure they opened them over the bath!

I’m sure they will fizz beautifully at the appropriate moment…

When I was a girl and ‘Why Don’t You’ was still on TV, shrinking crisp packets in the oven was practically a national pastime.

I can’t actually remember what we did with them after they were shrunk, but I was happy to see this particular fashion come full circle, apparently featuring on ‘Totally Rubbish’ recently. (that link doesn’t seem to be available, sorry.) Basically, heat your oven to around 120* C and line baking sheets with greaseproof paper before putting your (plastic) crisp packets on. Some shrink quicker than others. They will curl, but you can flatten them when you take them out, under another sheet of greaseproof but remember they are H.O.T !!

My only recommendation is: really make sure you preheat the oven and then watch them like the proverbial hawk. 30 seconds can mean the difference between a perfectly shrunk recognisable crisp packet and an unrecognisable blob of strange stretchy springy plastic.

I love googly eyes. They just make anything they are attached to funny. We made these fellas into brooches with a little safety pin duct- taped to the back.

what just happened?I think we just got zapped!

what just happened?
I think we just got zapped!

Finally, I have an odd penchant for patterned fingernails. I think they just appeal to the paintbrush holder in me – an opportunity to do something in miniature (remember, I bought the magnifier light).

Plus it seems to make me the best mum ever. Which is a bonus.

Aside

last minute lucie strikes again

Unusually I have had a creative moment at the beginning of the week.

Not so much a case of making time, but a case of having to – my daughter’s birthday is tomorrow. I have shoehorned in a decorated cake as well as the owl motif t-shirt I’ve been meaning to make for ooh, let’s see, a fortnight…

Anyway, here is the cake.

owl on a branch - in case you were wondering...

owl on a branch – in case you were wondering…

You can see I went for sweets as the easy option, but I love the way he’s come out. I find him most amusing.

The thing that took the longest however was the t-shirt. Here are the ingredients:

ingredients

a lovely french blue t-shirt from Primark, various pieces of old clothes fabric from my ever expanding stash and some bondaweb.

I took inspiration from the wrapping paper I’ve used on my daughter’s gifts so far ( her first phone, house keys…you can see we are growing up here) and drew some freehand shapes on the fabric. This first attempt I wasn’t very happy with – the pink stripe is way too strong.

a bit Batman and Robin this one

After that I got into the zone and the fabric started to make sense, inasmuch as the patterns began to show their affiliations, and I put together the pieces using bondaweb. Finally the built up owls took their place on the fabric branch and made this lovely design.

Unfortunately I won’t fit into this t-shirt, but as I’m pretty sure my daughter will like it we should be ok….. I am still contemplating hand stitching the edges of the motif, but for now I am happy with it and my daughter – who knows me well – will understand if I take it back at a later stage to add a little more.

11 already. Sheesh, where does time go?

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