Category: christmas

Decoupage candles with napkins – a tutorial

I’ve been having some super feedback recently from my lovely Instagram family as I like to call them.  As you know my crafting ‘time allowance’ is fairly limited these days due to a) having nowhere to work and b) a baby of 10 months and a 2 year old, need I say more?!
However, I discovered that I was acquiring rather a large collection of baby food jars and the crafter in me just kicked right in with thoughts of….. hmmmm I could do something with those.  So, a few post bedtime (for the kids, not me) craft sessions later and lots of trial and error and I managed to create some lovely decoupage jars.  Yes, I know what you’re thinking.  The title says Decoupage Candles? Yes, well I’m coming to that.  My hairdresser upon spotting the jars said how lovely they were and would I like a table at their school Christmas Fayre in December.  At first I thought I’d never manage to produce enough stock with such limited time but then I thought what the hell, I’ll just do what I can.  Fast forward a few Pinterest scrolling sessions for craft ideas and I came across Decoupage Candles.  I thought I’d give others the chance to see how simple these are to make and maybe have a go for themselves.

Decoupage Candle Tutorial

1.To start with you need the following items:

Church / Pillar candle
Napkin
Metal spoon
Tealight or open flame of some kind
Small scissors

Decoupage candle materials

2. Next you need to decide which part of your napkin design you’ll use for your project and cut it out.  This is where the small scissors come in.  You can see I’ve taken the centre ‘wreath’ part of the napkin and already cut it out.  You don’t need to be completely accurate as you can leave some of the background colour in there too if you think it looks OK.

Napkin for decoupage

3. Now, you need to take the napkin design that you’ve cut out and peel away the layers so that you only have the top layer of the napkin left.  I find most napkins are 3-ply so you will need to peel away 2 layers and discard them.  Peel carefully though as the top layer that you’re left with will be very thin and will rip easily.

Split napkin layers for decoupage

Split napkin layers for decoupage

Top layer of napkin for decoupage

4. Place the top layer of napkin onto the candle and smooth gently with your hand just to make sure you’re design fits. Make any adjustments with the scissors as necessary.

Napkin placed on candle

5. Take your metal spoon and hold it above the naked flame taking care not to touch the heated part of the spoon.  IMPORTANT – you will see from the pictures you need to heat the ‘inside’ or the arched part of the spoon as you will be using the back of the spoon on your design.  Your spoon will turn black from the heat so if you heat the wrong side and then rub your design you will end up with a big black charred mess!

Heat spoon

6. Take your heated spoon and firmly holding your napkin to the candle start to rub the back of the spoon in circles on the napkin. I find it best to start in the middle of the design and then work my way outwards.

Rubbing decoupage image onto candle

7. As the candle starts to heat you will see the wax start to seep through the napkin.  This is what we’re trying to achieve across the whole design.

Wax melts through napkin decoupage

8. Keep heating you spoon and rubbing the napkin making sure to keep the napkin as tight and un-wrinkled as possible.  You may get the odd small crease in the design but it will look fine as long as the wax keeps soaking through and you just keep smoothing.

Heating spoon to continue decoupage

Rub spoon over decoupage image

9. Be sure to make sure that wax has soaked through your whole napkin, paying special attention to all of the edges.

The result – one decoupaged candle!

Decoupage christmas candle using napkin

Would love to see some of your creations if you find time to have a go.  Of course if you don’t fancy the hassle of diy then you can always buy one of mine ;).

Alternative technique

As a side note, it is possible to also get the same end result using a heat gun or blow dryer.  I have tried this technique but personally found the heated spoon much easier.  The blow dryer heated the candle a little too much, creating runs in the wax and I found that I still needed to smooth the design using a spoon.  In conclusion, I simply didn’t have enough hands :)! Try both though, you maybe more successful.

Thanks for stopping by! x

Are you looking forward to Christmas?

I know I shouldn’t really admit to this being an avid crafter and all that, but I’m really not up for Christmas this year.  I don’t know why it is exactly but it just seems one extra ‘job’ to add to the ever growing list of things to do.  Anyone who knows me will know that my decorations are normally one of the first to go up in our street.  As soon as December 1st rears it’s head our Christmas tree is down from the loft and I’m busy making a Christmassy mess!  But not this year.  I’d planned to make a start this weekend but even that now seems like a chore with the barrage of other things awaiting my attention.

We’ve been through a tough month and this probably isn’t helping in the festive stakes.  We found out we were expecting a baby back in September.  I sailed off happily for my 12 week scan a few weeks ago only to find that we had in fact lost our baby at 7 and a half weeks.  I’m coming to terms with this slowly but I still have little wobbles occasionally (like yesterday when I inadvertently walked through the baby clothing aisle in Asda :().  Add to this the huge amount of expectant or new mom’s I see on my travels – I think they’ve all been sent to rub salt in my wounds.

What with all this and the fact that we’re in the process of moving house, I just can’t get excited about it all.  It almost feels like our life is currently on hold until we move onto new (and hopefully better) things in 2014 and this is what I’m really looking forward to.

I feel such a hypocrite as I’m busy making seasonal plaques and tree hangers to fill others houses with festive cheer and yet my own festive cheer is sadly lacking.  I think that Christmas has become so commercial and I know I’m definitely not alone in feeling this way.  Our families ask us for lists of what we’d like and I spend time quizzing our kids to then distribute their choices throughout the family so that everyone has a specific gift to buy at the correct price…………arrrrggghhh.  For goodness sake, it’s all got so ridiculous and I’d just like the simplicity of it back again.

I’ve toyed with the idea of carrying out some volunteer work coming up to Christmas to help remind me of those who really need some festive spirit at this time of year.  I’d love us to do this as a family as I think it’s something we all need every now and then, a little jolt to remind us of the things that really are important.

Sorry for the moany post, I just felt I needed to get this off my chest.  I wonder if anyone else feels like this?  If so please assure me I’m not alone.  I’m sure as work dies down and the decorations finally go up, a little Christmas spirit will probably emerge from somewhere.  I’ll keep you posted :).

Thanks for stopping by! x

Christmas Humphrey – Make a wish

I’m just loving the Humphrey decoupage sheets that I bought the other day by Crafters Companion.  This is my second creation and I decided to have a change from the usual red and green and instead match up the colours in the decoupage.

I’ve used lightweight card from my stash and the blue swirly paper is downloadable from Shabby Princess.  This is from the ‘Holiday Magic’ collection.  I’ve used my Martha Stewart scallop punch and the ribbon and stars were also from my stash.  I thought the sentiment was a lovely match to the picture and this is from my Daisy & Dandelion collection.  The decoupage image has been finished with varnish.

Thanks for stopping by! x

My First Tilda Stamp

 I took my DD to the local craft shop, MSA Crafts last week as a treat for doing well settling into High School.  Well that’s my excuse and I’m sticking to it! (Although I did buy a fair amount of stuff too 😉 ).  I can’t believe I’ve never visited before and I can’t wait to go back again as they had a really good selection.  We bought another pile of Promarkers, rubber stamps, decoupage sheets, card blanks and I was really chuffed to see they had a massive collection of Marianne dies.

I’ve seen a lot of Tilda stamps around on various blogs and magazines and I just love these cute stamps. So I decided whilst out ‘treating my DD’ that I would also treat myself to one of these :).  The Magnolia ‘Tilda Wants a Hug’ stamp grabbed my eye but it wasn’t till I got home that I realised it’s actually a Christmas Stamp as she has holly in her hair! Oh well, I shall enjoy using it for this years Christmas cards.

I’ve used Dovecraft backing papers and my newly bought Marianne swirl die.  The paper edges have been torn and inked with Dovecraft Forest Green ink and the stamp coloured with promarkers and finished with a little red glitter glue.  The sentiment is from Daisy & Dandelion with Mulberry flowers from ‘Flowers4Crafts10’ on Ebay.

I am entering this card in the following challenges:
CES Challenge Blog – #56 Totally Gorjuss/Pretty Girls

Thanks for stopping by! x

Quick an easy charity Christmas cards

Next Friday, hubby and I will be holding a coffee morning through our business in aid of Macmillan Cancer Support.  This is the first time we’ve attempted this so I thought, in addition to the lovely cakes and coffee on offer it may be nice to sell a few of my cards with the proceeds going to this very worthy cause.

Although I have a stock of cards that were suitable I thought it might be a good idea to create a few Christmas cards as people may want to stock up in preparation.  I scoured my old craft magazines to see if I could find a simple concept that would be quick and easy to make.  After sifting through I found some great ideas in ‘Quick Cards’ using their free rubber stamps.

As my Christmas stash of craft goodies is not the largest I used various freebies such as the ‘My Minds Eye’ papers I’d received in this months Card Making & Papercraft magazine plus other papers such as Dovecrafts Jolly Happy Christmas.

Thanks for stopping by! x

A Pepper fireside scene

I don’t know about you but I just love the ‘Pepper and Friends’ range by Trimcraft.  There’s a lovely Christmas Party edition of the range and there’s plenty of papers, decoupage and stamps etc available on Ebay.  I ordered some of the 8 x 8 papers and a small pack of the decoupage sheets and was really impressed with the quality.  Many of the papers have a lovely glittery finish and there are some lovely designs.

I think the layout is pretty self explanatory but I’ve used a sentiment stamp from my Daisy and Dandelion stamps to make the finishing touch.

The decoupage sheets were pre-cut which always makes things easier.  I always use an old nail file to gently sand around the edges of each layer, this just helps to remove any jagged bits from where they were attached to the main sheet.

Thanks for stopping by! x

I would like to enter this card in the following challenges:
Creative Inspirations – #129 Anything Goes
Bearly Mine Challenges – #19 Button It Up

Christmas with Daisy and Dandelion

I bought a lovely pack of rubber stamps on my last visit to ‘The Range’.  They’re from the Daisy & Dandelion collection and are called ‘Santa’s Little Helpers’.  Have been waiting patiently for my new red promarkers to arrive so that I could have a go at these and here’s my first attempt.

 
The papers are from Dovecraft Jolly Christmas and I’ve used my Martha Stewart punch for the red card.  The stamp was finished with various shades of Promarkers and the tag was also created with a stamp from the Daisy & Dandelion pack.  Hubby wasn’t so keen on using the stamp with the square die and suggested that next time I could maybe cut the stamp out.  Will be giving this a try over the weekend.
Thanks for stopping by! x

My apologetic return to blogging………

What is it about taking a break from the blog?  A week off over Christmas, turned into a chilled fortnight, which before I knew it turned into a neglectful month!  The trouble was, the prospect of getting back into blogging became like that ‘thank you’ phone call you should have made a month ago that you know you still need to make but now somehow seems somewhat embarrassing as it’s taken so long! (Does that makes sense?)

So, before I unleash my first post of 2011 upon you all, please accept the above ramble as my sincere apology and rest assured I am now back to full posting health!

Where to start? Well, Christmas was quiet but lovely (as always!) with Christmas Eve spent with family, Christmas Day at home and New Year at Steph and Dave’s.

Hydrotherapy Pool - Lion Quays

P and I also had a lovely night away at Lion Quays in Chirk, Oswestry just after Christmas.  This was our first visit to Lion Quays and we were very impressed.  Our room booking included use of the main pool and gym but for an extra £15 each we were also able to use the Lion Quays Spa.  I have to say this is the nicest spa I’ve ever visited and our afternoon there was complete heaven.  The spa included a hydrotherapy pool, steam room, sauna, warm room, experience showers, snow cave (yes, I was brave enough to give this a try) and sun meadow.  There were also many treatment rooms, a bistro and relaxation room with complimentary herbal drinks etc.

Lion Quays

We ate in the main restaurant on the evening and once again we were impressed with the service and quality of the food.  Lion Quays is definitely one for the hot list and we will definitely be visiting again, hopefully in the not too distant future.  Rest assured the seed has also been planted with ‘the girls’ ;).

The new year routine has now kicked back into action with our first choir rehearsal for both the school and ladies choir last Tuesday.  Both went really well, especially the school choir where we now have quite a few new members.  We’ve introduced some new choir rules where the children compete against us as leaders to win chocolate at the end of the term.  Week one saw excellent behaviour from the children and concluded in a point to the them but I remain confident that the choir leaders, ie, us, will reign triumphant and the chocolate will be ours :).  The ladies choir went well on the whole but ‘Somebody to Love’ was a little rusty after the Christmas break.  A little work on this over the next couple of weeks should have it polished and ready for April’s concert.

Work is steady but mainly spending our time tying up loose ends before our trip to…………….wait for it………………Florida! Yes, Florida!  This requires a separate post of its own, but our much awaited holiday to Florida is now only 4 weeks away and I’m so excited I could vomit!  Florida preparations to follow shortly.

An ‘A’ update

Couple of good bits of news for ‘A’.  The dancing exam she took before Christmas saw her achieving a distinction with 82 marks overall and Friday also saw her receiving the achievement certificate at school.  Her teacher comments were that she’s “an all round ray of sunshine”…….awww, if only she could see her when she’s screaming at her brother or unable to get out of bed each morning.  Seriously though, I am very proud of her and pleased that she’s settled back in at school after a rough term before Christmas.

After being introduced to the group through one of our course delegates, she’s now also joined the group Youth On Stage who put on shows twice a year in the Birmingham area.  We went to see their pantomime before Christmas and they truly were superb, especially considering they range in age from only 9 to 21.  She’s loving every minute of the twice weekly rehearsals although she is struggling with the late nights.  None the less, the prospect of performing ‘High School Musical’ at the Old Rep in May is motivation enough to keep her going.

An ‘S’ update

Not much going on for ‘S’ at the moment although he is coming close to the crucial options choices at school.  He’s decided he would like to be a sports teacher as his main love has always been sport.  He’s now in the process of speaking to various teachers to assess what subjects he needs and which teachers will accept him for their subject.

So there you have it, first post of the year.  Ok, so it wasn’t so painful (for me anyway) and now I’ve broken the blogging ‘seal’ I should be ok to spout off a bit more frequently.

Now for piccies……….bye for now!

[slideshow]

Tuesday’s Christmas Treasures – Beautiful Baubles!

This week I thought I’d show you a selection of my favourite Christmas tree decorations.

I’ve been collecting tree decorations since ‘P’ and I first moved in together and to match our lounge colour scheme they’ve always been along the gold and red theme.  Some have been expensive from local garden centres or craft fayres, others have been bargain finds from local stores and many have been broken over the years.

‘A’ now loves decorating the tree with me and we put all the hanging decorations into groups of the same kind before spreading them out on the tree.  She has her favourites as do I and here is just a few of them………

Pre December Update!

There’s a lot going on recently but nothing that particularly warranted a full on ‘post’ all of it’s own, therefore I thought I’d blog a little ‘update’.

Can you believe it’s only 30 days until Christmas? It only seems 5 minutes since I was lying on a beach in Majorca – browning nicely and now here I am, hat, scarf and gloves at the ready and precariously plodding my way to school as the dog nearly pulls me over on the icy pavements!  Say what you like though about the hype, but I do love this time of year with the anticipation of Christmas.  Cold, frosty mornings are wonder and especially so when walking a dog – why didn’t anyone ever tell me?  We’d have had him much sooner 🙂

My Christmas pressy buying is not going too badly (for once) although I always seem to make a good start and then my enthusiasm dwindles, leaving me with 26 presents still to buy come Christmas eve!  How are you all getting on?  You’re all going to tell me now that you started in July and they’re already wrapped aren’t you?

Got a busy week this week.  Monday started off with Dancing and Guides for ‘A’ as normal with an extra rehearsal thrown in ready for her Preliminary Modern exam this coming Sunday.  Yesterday (Tuesday) was our very last school choir rehearsal for the ‘Young Voices’ concert taking place tomorrow at the NEC in Birmingham.  The kids are really hyped (as am I!) about the whole thing although I think some of the younger members are a little nervous.  They’re really in for a great day though if last year was anything to go by.

Tonight I’m off to see my lovely friend Jo playing ‘Edith’ in ‘Allo ‘Allo which is being performed by Mayhem Theatre Group.  From the little tit-bits I’ve heard so far, I can’t wait! (More to come on this tomorrow 🙂 )

As I’ve already mentioned tomorrow I’ll be off to the NEC with the school choir.  It’s going to be a long but very enjoyable day.  We leave school around 1pm and won’t be returning till around half ten.  As much as I love the snow and frosty weather, let’s hope it at least holds off to allow us a safe and swift journey there and back.

Friday is a quieter day, although it is the School’s Christmas fayre which I no doubt will be attending to test my luck on the old tombola :).  ‘S’ also has a friend sleeping over Friday night as a treat for his 14th Birthday.  Gone are the days of keeping them entertained though, luckily they’ll be quite happy with a pizza and an evening of Xbox!

After such a busy week I’m relieved to say the weekend is a quiet one.  ‘A’ has her dance exam Sunday morning but other than that I’m looking forward to a nice relaxing time with a morsel of Christmas cooking and cardmaking thrown in for good measure.