I will be brief! Last night I had a phone call to ask could I help out and do a craft cruise to CANADA NEXT SATURDAY!! Could I help? Of course I could!
In the meantime I’ve got to:
Take 2 Grandchildren on a bucket and spade holiday to a caravan.
Write the craft programme.
Sort out all the craft supplies.
Dream up a couple of extra ideas for alternative classes.
Make some samples ( always practice, always be ahead of the student)
Pack a suitcase for next week.
Pack a suitcase for the cruise.
Get myself to Liverpool to pick up the cruise.
Sign and return contracts.
So I’m very sorry but no time to blog, no WIFI next week, probably no WIFI on the ship.
But, Hey! Canada here I come!
Another craft that we enjoyed on our recent Scottish cruise was Textile printing. We used a selection of stamps, some of which were lovely hand carved ones from India.
We had taken linen tea towels and tote bags. This is a lovely creative craft that anyone can enjoy.
The people who came to the class enjoyed creating their own designs. One lady designed a grey and black tea towel to match her new kitchen.
Another lady came who was severely sight impaired. It was a delight to help her choose the colours and print a towel. Sometimes life is so rewarding!
My latest crafting journey took me to Block printing. This is another craft that I am demonstrating on my next cruise. It’s fairly simple but feels very creative. I have been preparing samples but have realised that the possibilities are endless! I think that I will be blogging a lot more about this creative activity.
I have a large selection of blocks to chose from and there is always a shopping opportunity to buy more!
I have beautiful linen tea towels and a few tote bags just ready to print, paint and play around with.
Today was our first craft class on board the lovely Cruise ship” Balmoral “. We have cruised with Fred Olsen many times. This time it was a working holiday as friend K and I were teaching crafts On board during the cruise. This particular cruise was to North of the Arctic circle and along the coast of Norway, very exciting.
As you lovely readers will know, we have been working hard on the crafts to take with us. We arrived on board with a large suitcase, various shopping bags and a serious overflow of crafty supplies.
We are always very apprehensive about our first class and think that no one will turn up! But they did! 20 ladies arrived eager to tack and chat. Today we were making small tote bags using the iconic Liberty fabrics.
There were ladies who maintained that they hadn’t sewed for many years and girls that had never sewed at all. We chatted and sewed and it was quickly time to finish the class as lunch beckoned. It was a delight to see ladies finishing their bags in the various lounges around the ship. Good marketing for our next class.
I do find this time between the old year and the new slightly odd! Everything feels as though it’s on hold. Paused awaiting 2017! I’m still busy working on cruise projects as it’s only three weeks tomorrow before we sail. Whoo Hoo!
In between this time and that, I have a weekend away to celebrate middle child’s 40 th birthday. How on Earth have I got children this old? Glad and grateful that I have!
Well I’ve got to get back into my “little” black dress for the next cruise so I’ll just eat up the Christmas cake left overs and After Eight Mints then I’ll start the diet. Oh mustn’t leave the chocolate truffles or the luxury croissants!
Off to cut up fabric! See you soon💃
During our recent crafty Cruise we encouraged ladies to bring their own crafts to our classes. This was a great success and we had ladies who crochet, knitters and cross stitchers. We enjoyed the variety and their company.
There was a young girl recovering from an accident who whilst not able to work, had taught herself to crochet. It was good to watch her progress and help her where we could.
The age range of participants was unexpected and a great bonus. We had one elderly lady who had really bad arthritis in her hands. She decided to make herself a mobile phone case, which was her design. We watched with bated breath as she stitched slowly. Her hands were so painful that she had to keep stopping to rest them. She was delighted with the end product and we were delighted to see her success.
There was a lady who was knitting a foxy scarf and another who was knitting animals (just seen in the picture.) Everyone had a great time and I can’t wait to do it all again!
The final project that we worked on whilst on our recent crafty cruise was a gadget bag. It started out as an iPad cover and then I realised not everyone would have or want an iPad! The patchwork quilted bag evolved into a project that could be adapted for tablet case, make up purse, sun glasses case or whatever your imagination decided. This guided but flexible project allowed the crafty ladies on the cruise to sew wherever their ideas took them.
The original idea was to use a “Grandmothers Fan” pattern which is attractive and a challenge for novice patch workers. I seriously underestimated the ability of many ladies on the course. The majority wanted to give the “Grandmothers Fan” a go. We provided the template, choice of fabrics and guidance and away we went. It was great fun and wonderful to see the delight when the padded bag was finished. I
have to admit to there being minimum quilting due to time constraints. Many of the ladies wanted to carry on crafting long after the class finished. It was rewarding to see many ladies on deck, enjoying the sun and stitching with enthusiasm between formal sessions.
The cruise was a great delight. We visited Portugal, Madeira, Canaries and Spain. I explored crafting emporiums, fabric shops and market stalls. We met lovely people and an adorable crafting group of ladies ( men tended to come just to see what their wives were up to!). Most of all we had fun! We have been so very lucky to have this opportunity and hope with fingers crossed that we can do more cruises. I have an ambition to craft my way around the World so watch this space!
Whilst we on our recent cruise we produced special Textile Inspiration Packs for our craft group. These packs were put together before we left to join the ship. Each pack contained a mix of textiles including lace, leather, cotton, net, silk or tweed, to name a few. The pieces were vaguely colour co ordinated and each pack also contained a few beads or buttons or ribbon. The packs created great interest and provided a source of much imagination.
We did did not have a great deal of time to craft as we were about to dock in Madeira where there was a flower festival. Because of this I encouraged the ladies to make a flower brooch. The inspiration was all theirs and they certainly used their own imaginations. I suggested that a simple flower was made by cutting discs of reducing size from the various textiles. I provided a template for simplicity. The various discs were then stacked on top of one another and held together with beads or buttons. The edges could be embroidered, frayed or pinked with the shears. After attaching a “finding” to the back it was ready to be worn. Some people fastened them to their bags made in the days before. Others took them home and some attached them to plain tee shirts.
It was a great delight later in the day when we met a lady from the group going ashore. She was wearing the brooch that she had made that morning. Result!!
These Textile Inspiration Packs were a great success and I will certainly use them again.
The craft group that we ran on a recent cruise was a great success. We had a great attendance lots of enthusiasm and all very enthusiastic crafters. We worked through three crafts in seven days at sea. Time was a bit of an issue as we were only allocated an hour at a time. The ladies in the class would have liked to extend the sessions, which is a great compliment.
Whilst each class was organised to make various items, we encouraged anyone who had their own project with them, to bring it to the group and join us for the company and friendship. This worked as people shared their skills and ideas. Throughout the cruise we asked anyone with a top tip to share it with us. We collected thirty crafty cruising top tips which I will share in a future blog.
The crafts that we demonstrated and helped the ladies to make were:
- plain sewing.
- applique and
- embellishing. On the last day of the cruise we organised an exhibition of the crafts created on the cruise. This was a lovely event and a final goodbye to good friends and a great holiday. I will show you some of the lovely things that were made in the next blog so watch this space……
BIG news! Hooray! Holidays!
Yippee! Great excitement! Travel!
New Job! Happy Days! Cruise!
There hasn’t been a lot of time to blog lately because I’ve been so busy! The BIG news is that I am going on a cruise to teach crafts!! Whoo Hooo! My first cruise is in five weeks and I’ve been planning, organising and trialling the various project that I’m going to demonstrate. I will tell you over the next few weeks what these projects are as I now have a programme of events. I have a contract with the cruise company and I have vast excitement! My long term plan is to work my passage all over the World but let’s see how the first cruise goes!
I have finished re lining a small case that I found last summer in a charity shop. It only cost £3 and is very vintage, in great condition and looks lovely with its new flowery lining.In the 60’s we used to call these cases “beauty cases” as they were used to carry all our beauty products ( and I had a lot!) This upcycled case will be used as a carry on case for all my travels of which there may be lots! I HOPE!