Tag : dont-quit-your-day-dream
Well, a life long dream is in progress of actually happening…Publishing my own greeting card ranges. 🙂
I have always loved design, stationery design in particular – and love nothing more than sending and receiving a traditional hand written card. Don’t get me wrong, I love Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest and all other social media as ways to communicate almost instantly with the world what you are up to, what you have seen that inspires you. However, it does not beat a brightly coloured envelope landing on your doormat and reading a heartfelt message whilst curled up on your sofa with a cup of (Yorkshire) tea.
The cost of stamps, is continually on the rise and part of me recently started to question will people eventually stop sending cards if it just becomes too much money? With another recent price hike to 63p for a first class stamp, and with the average cost of a greeting card around £1.44 you are factoring in at least £2.07 per card. However, to make someone smile, to make someone know you remembered, you are thinking of them, as the Mastercard adverts say… is “Priceless”. It’s less than the UK average price of a pint of beer! If you hand deliver, you can of course save some pennies AND have a beer with the recipient! 😉
The next steps for ‘The Crafty Lass’ greeting cards:
Approve the proofs, order the envelopes, cellophane bags, and then the online shop and…sales!
The first sale of ‘The Crafty Lass’ greeting cards, will be a big moment for me – let’s hope I get some ‘congratulations’ cards to celebrate! 😉
Well, I’ve done it – I’ve only gone and done it. Some people have said that I am ‘brave’, some have said ‘I could never do it’, but mainly people have said ‘Wow!’, ‘How exciting!’, ‘Brilliant news!’…
So, this Crafty Lass is now a ‘full-time’ Crafty Lass. In other words, I didn’t quit the day dream, but I did quite my full time job!
So, watch this space for future updates of how this grand plan currently in my head, on slips of paper, notes in my diary unveils into one big very real, very exciting reality.
She who is brave, is free.
This time last year, I was knee deep in petals, and panic.
It’s coming up to our first wedding anniversary – where does time go?! Of course I can’t help reminiscing about what a wonderful craft proj… I mean, day it was! 😉
Our (who are we kidding, my) colour scheme… I couldn’t decide. So, in the end – I settled on not settling and going for a rainbow palette. A vibrant riot of royal blue, canary yellow, emerald green, cerise and bright orange. They clashed, they sang and due to the very-very-very fortunate early spring (hot!) sunshine we had in March, they absolutely shone.
Obviously every girl, gets excited about her dress, and shoes (mine were bright green!) and of course gaining a husband too – but there were so many little crafty touches to the day, that had built up over the course of the year and thought about to the nth degree. I was also just really excited to see it all finally come together in one explosion of colour. In a term used regularly by my mother-in-law, it was “Paula Planned”.
We made seed packets as our favours… “Let Love Grow!”, handmade all our table runners out of hessian and ribbons, napkin holders for every guest out of matching hessian, ribbons and lace, the big table plans, giant posters of our story, the d.i.y cake topper out of a clothes peg, 100 (yes 100!) metres of bunting, moustache and lips straws. Then collecting and turning hundreds of empty jars with coloured raffia into tea lights, a ‘Dan and Paula’ crossword (and prizes), kids party packs, oh – and – the marathon of flowers…
Each table had 7 flowers (there were 11 tables), the aisle had 20 flowers, then 9 corsages, there were spare…lets guess at 10, the bridesmaids had them on their shoes or on their wrist – each flower had 18 petals…that’s 2,304 little circles of fabric. Cut out, by hand.
Phew, what a mission…and boy was it FUN!
You may be thinking I am crazy, or you may be thinking – that just sounds like a standard craft lovers wedding! I think I am just both – slightly crazy and definitely a craft lover. I just couldn’t BUY stuff, I KNEW I could make. It would be cheaper for one thing, but also nice, thoughtful and would be exactly as we would want, no compromises.
Once I came up with the ‘Wedding Grand Plan’ (yes, there was of course, a spreadsheet involved – multiple infact) it was easy to get stuck in…and I honestly used to think – what did I do BEFORE the wedding…Where has all this additional time come from to make stuff! To be honest, I still don’t really know or understand that part. I think I went out less, and definitely slept less!
There were days where I’d do nothing – then there would be evenings where I was practically doing cartwheels as I had managed to make 6 or 7 whole flowers AND watch ‘Location, Location, Location’ (we do LOVE a good bit of Kirstie and Phil!)
Everyone said to me – ‘What will you do afterwards?!’, ‘You’ll get the post-wedding blues’… Swept up in a whirlwind of fabric and lace, Pinterest and decisions to be made – I thought, ‘Ah, no I won’t, I will be excited to have a new life as Mrs Milner, I will be fine’.
Once the big day had been and gone, the family had dispersed back to their own homes, the dress hanging back in its protective case (which, I might add is still hanging up in our room, I just can’t bring myself to put it away for good yet!) I remember very distinctly the first day I came home from work. The house still looked the same, all our wonderful cards, presents. I made a cup of (Yorkshire) tea, I sat at the table and thought… Now what?
And although I was so happy and grateful – I was also sad, no two ways about it. I missed the focus, the countdown, the opportunity to just absorb myself away into something creative and that had a wider mission and purpose. I enjoyed the fact there wasn’t a time pressure of course, and actually it was rather nice to have a rest, but I missed it all the same.
It has taken me a whole year, to realise – it doesn’t need to stop. There doesn’t have to be a reason to make stuff, plan to make stuff, Pinterest about what you want to make, do, what you love. I am sure both sets of parents would love there to be a new major event on the cards to plan for – and I am sure that this time around the colour scheme would be just pink or just blue (yet to be decided) – but for now there is not. And in the meantime – I am going to be throwing myself into lots of making and baking, of all sorts, for all seasons and reasons.
So, it’s really out of one major event of a wedding, and one year of feeling that something is missing to invent this blog, and The Crafty Lass.
Over the the next few weeks, I am going to be looking back at the wedding projects on this blog, and also with birthdays for myself, the husband (it’s a big birthday for him!), there is Easter coming up – and then summer, with the long evenings and bright sunshine , there really is plenty of craft and inspiration to look forward to!
After the wedding…I submitted some snippets of the-big-day to Brides Magazine – who chose us as ‘wedding of the week’… All very exciting of course! The link to which I would love to share with you – however Brides magazine have since removed that section of their website! 🙁
I know what you are thinking – I thought this was a new blog about a craft-making-foodie&design-loving-crafty lass – not nature and hedgehogs? Don’t worry – the fabric flowers, Christmas decorations, wedding ideas and cupcake making will be here in future posts! For now, I am just happy that I have found my hedgehog. Well, nearly…
This metaphor comes from the Jim Collins book – “Good to Great” – an inspirational book that I read recently for work (yes, outside of my craft loving, there is a day job!) When the book landed on my desk, I thought – ‘Oh great, just what I need when I am busy – a massive textbook to read’. However, I was soon avidly turning page after page…It is a pretty thought provoking piece of writing that makes you question whether are on the right path forward to drive you from not just being good at what you do, but GREAT. I would highly recommend for absolutely anyone to give this a read – no matter what your age, business or dreams! To really understand just WHY the focus on a hedgehog – perhaps pick up the book and have a read yourself. Hedgehogs are pretty clever little creatures you know.
One of the component parts – is you need to establish just what your hedgehog actually is – to be focused in the right direction, and there are three main sections to this:
1. What can you be the best in the world at?
2. What drives your economic engine?
and 3: What are you deeply passionate about?
1. Now, I don’t believe that I am 100% the best in the world at ALL craft, baking, designing, planning – in fact – I would say I am more in the scenario of a ‘Jack of All Trades – Master of None’ type example – but I am pretty creative, and organised. I think with practice, will, determination and dedication to this blog – I can at least TRY and perhaps, you never know – actually get there. (It’s not very ‘British’ is it – to say ‘YES, I AM THE BEST!”)… ‘Aim for the stars and you will hit the moon’ as my favourite primary school teacher, Mrs Jowett once advised me.
2. At the minute, no – this does not drive my economic engine – hence, the aforementioned day job! However, again, if I spend time on this – perhaps again…it COULD.
3. Lastly and by no mean leastly – it is something I AM 100% DEEPLY PASSIONATE ABOUT. Put me in a room of fabrics, ribbons, paper – you’ve lost me. I can sit for hours cutting out little fabric petals and sewing into flowers. Or rolling sugar-paste into tiny little roses, or making, baking (and of course, eating!) salted caramel cupcakes or designing homemade personalised Christmas crackers for a family party. In fact, when I think about how I feel when absorbed in my latest idea or project – I always think back to the Billy Elliot movie when he is trying to describe how he feels when he dances…
Tutor 1: What does it feel like when you’re dancing?
Billy: Don’t know. Sorta feels good. Sorta stiff and that, but once I get going… then I like, forget everything. And… sorta disappear. Sorta disappear. Like I feel a change in my whole body. And I’ve got this fire in my body. I’m just there. Flyin’ like a bird. Like electricity. Yeah, like electricity.
Well, that’s me – minus the tutu, plus an apron. Just me, with a cuppa (Yorkshire) tea and my latest project.
The aim of this blog is to post inspirational thoughts, design, craft, pictures. To look at seasonal ideas, things I am thinking about, doing, dreaming of… Long term, I would love it to be more than just dreaming and minus the 9-5 day job.
I met a very inspirational person yesterday from Grace Face Boutique at the Milton Keynes Handmade and Vintage fair – her advice was “DON’T QUIT YOUR DAY DREAM”. Wise words indeed.