Tuesday, 22 July 2014

Butterflies, Sunshine & Happy Birthday Prince George...

It really doesn't seem like a year since I did a blog to celebrate the arrival of HRH Prince George  and seeing all the pictures of him today with the butterflies (which you know I a-b-s-o-l-u-t-e-l-y ❤️...  ) just makes me like him even more -  Happy Birthday to our little King-in-the-Making!

I thought, if he is peeking at the blog from his mum's lap, that he might like to see my fluttery visitors to the garden - the one below is a gorgeous 'Comma' that came to settle on the Buddleia...
Butterfly inspirations

We also had a beautiful Peacock Butterfly settle for a little rest in amongst the mock orange blossom bush...
English country garden

...and I nearly never spotted the striking Brimstone Butterfly that was also resting in the same bush (he blended in so well!) The sunshine has really brought them all out today.
Inspirational butterfly pictures

Well -  it just wouldn't be right if I didn't mark the Royal occasion with a new butterfly inspired project would it?! So, what with it being flip flop & sandal weather too I've come up with a simple little summer anklet...

For this project you will need a selection of tools and some flexible beading wire (aka Tiger Tail)..

Plus an assortment of seed beads, little acrylic butterflies and some crimps, jump rings and clasp findings
butterfly beads

First of all it's a good idea to plan out the colour order of the butterflies...
addicted to making

Then begin threading the butterflies & seed beads directly onto your beading wire (a great tip is to use crimps as spacers between them - they look very cute!)

Keep adding the beads until it's long enough to fit around your ankle (allowing 2-3cm for clasp ends)
step by step photographs

Side on a larger crimp and a necklace clasp of your choosing.  Thread the wire end back down through the crimp.
butterfly anklet

Squash & shape the crimp with crimping pliers and then thread the beads back up over the ends to cover the wire tail.

Once you've pushed all the beads up the wire, cut the wire from the reel, leaving enough to finish off (usually around 3-4cm)..

Next, link one small & one large jump ring together as shown..

Add a large crimp to the wire end, then the linked jump rings and crimp (as before) - threading the wire end down through the first few beads.

It looks nice & neat if you use crimp covers to hide the squashed crimps or if you have a gap in the wire that needs a bit of filling..
how to make jewellery

And there you go.. a pretty butterfly anklet to wear on a summers day!
butterfly anklet

If you don't have butterflies a few crystals or other pretty small beads will do just as well. Of course if you want to you can make it shorter to fit your wrist instead and maybe add an extra such as a little charm.

Happy Making


Happy 1st Birthday Prince George 

HRH Prince George

All pictures & text (c)Addicted to Making 2014

Tuesday, 15 July 2014

A necklace for Emmeline Pankhurst...

I've been giving the blog a little bit of a makeover lately and, as you might see, it's a bit of a work in progress so please bear with me if it suddenly looks different or things have been moved around!

How to make jewellery

Anyway, despite the changes, regular visitors to the blog will have already seen a couple of Suffragette inspired projects and with today being Emmeline Pankhurst's birthday I couldn't miss the chance to make a little something could I?!  

Emmeline was certainly a larger than life type character.  She was the founder of the Women's Political and Social Union (WPSU) and leader of the Suffragettes. Born in Manchester and married at 20 she felt very strongly that women should be given equal rights to vote but Parliament disagreed.  Many women supported her from a distance but were too frightened to join and get in trouble so often just wore a small badge or discreet piece of jewellery in the Suffragette flag colours of green, white & purple.

The campaigns got increasingly militant with lots of stone throwing, wire cutting, chaining to railings and worse. Emmeline was imprisoned many times, went on hunger strike and was force fed (a truly horrendous business).  Then came the start of WWI and a kind of truce was called.  As the war progressed women were increasingly needed to fill the gaps in jobs & industries as part of the war effort and eventually that led to an acceptance that they should be entitled to a more equal standing and be able to vote - the first ruling allowed women property owners over 30 to vote and eventually (sadly just after Emmeline's death)  an equal vote to over 21's regardless of gender or status. 

I think Emmeline deserves a little ongoing recognition for her core principals of equality so I've made a birthday tribute to here in the style of an early 1900's Suffragrette necklace - to make your own necklace you will need: 0.6mm gold plated wire, golden chain & various jump rings/eyepins/headpins, 2 x green czech crystals, 1 x small white freshwater pearl, 1 x small purple crystal heart, assorted pliers/cutters.

Begin by wiring up the two green crystals - thread them onto eye pins and make small loops on the opposite ends.
Suffragette jewellery

Then thread the crystal heart onto a bail or jump ring.
Emmeline Pankhurst jewellery

Thread the freshwater pearl onto a headpin and make a wrapped loop on the end (video for wrapped loops here). Then attach it to a small jump ring and add a further jump ring either side of that (so you have a 'chain' of 3 with the pearl in the middle).

Cut a piece of 0.6mm wire and use pliers to shape it as per the picture below (tip: begin by folding in half over your round nose pliers to make the central loop)
how to make a Suffragette Necklace

Use a small jump ring (or two) to attach the crystal heart to the loop in the middle of the wire shape..
making jewellery

Next,  attach the pearl to the centre of the wire by opening the small jump rings either side and closing them onto the 'frame' as shown below.. 

Attach one of the green crystals to one side of the wire frame with a jump ring and then use another to attach it to a piece of chain...
wirework necklace

Repeat on the other side then adjust the chain to your preferred length to finish off. The wire is fairly flexible so you can tweak the shape of the frame if you need to.
How to make a Suffragette Necklace

Happy Birthday Emmeline!

Hope that inspires you to make your own Suffragette style necklace. 

I'm pretty excited that there is a new film due for release later this year called 'Suffragette' starring the likes of Helena Bonham Carter, Carey Mulligan  & Meryl Streep amongst others *rubs hands with glee* so no doubt there'll be a few more Suffragette inspired projects sometime in the future ;-)

Happy Making !

All pictures & texts (c) Addicted to Making 2014

Monday, 7 July 2014

Sewing, Pins and this old fabric scrap...

Another busy week has passed with not an awful lot of crafting time but an awful lot of computer time - I thinks it's time to correct the balance!

So... I've been watching the new Channel 4 program called 'This old Thing' about how to re-style your Vintage clothing finds and, whilst not quite wanting to start chopping up my Nan's dresses, I have been dreaming about all the scraps of vintage fabric they would be accumulating and what I would do with them!

I confess I do have lots of fabric scraps and love simple little sewing projects the best so I thought I'd make a sewing accessory tutorial for the blog in the shape of a little pin cushion ring which would be very handy to have around during all sorts of 'eek-I-need-a-pin-now!' type projects.  

You will need a fabric scrap, some toy filler, ring blank, buttons, needle, thread & scissors...

Here's the step by steps...

To begin with, draw a circle on your fabric - I used the inside ring of a small embroidery hoop as a template.

sewing a pin cushion

Cut out the circle of fabric...

Choose some cotton - I decided to pick something to contrast and complement the pink flowers in the pattern...

Sew a small running stitch around the edge of the fabric...

Then draw it to gather up the circle into a little pocket...

Stuff the pocket with filling...

Then pull the end of the thread tightly to close it and make a little fabric 'cushion' (..you can knot it if you want but don't cut the end yet)

Next choose your button and, using the same thread come up from the bottom of the cushion to start sewing it on. Pull the thread tightly underneath so the button causes a small dent in the middle of the puff then knot & trim off the end.

How to make a ring pin cushion

Next, use glue or glue gun to stick a larger button to the bottom of the cushion...

Then glue your ring blank onto the centre of the button..

Now just adjust the ring to fit and you are ready to sew!

If you want a bigger pin cushion just cut a larger circle of fabric and, if you are feeling fancy, you could give it a frill, ribbon trim or other such embellishment!  This is a great little gift idea too so hope you enjoy using it as one cute way to make use of your small fabric scraps.

Happy Making :-)

All Photographs & Text (c) Addicted to Making 2014