June's Instagram round-up

The end of the month is nearly here and so I thought it was about time for a little Instagram round-up.  If you have been watching our Instagram recently you will know that we took a little break to Barcelona and so that features quite a bit, but who doesn't love holiday pictures!  Also as usual food is a big feature, its a big feature in my life and so it would only be right to show it off.

June Favourites

Now I know I say this every month but seriously, time flying when your having fun doesn't even cover it! So here are the things that have been floating my boat this month.

Sewing Tips: Zips

Right it is that time that I am sure some of you have been waiting for, today we are going to be revealing our top tips about those pesky fasteners that lots of people are a little scared of... Zips. Warning its going to be a long post so go and get a cuppa and we will get stuck in.

Make it: Wedding mini bunting

I thought it about time I did something a little Wedding related for those Summer brides out there.  I only have one wedding to go to this year, which is a bit of a departure for me and so why not share a little DIY for those brides trying to keep it simple with this mini bunting for a cake or just a little decoration.

You will need: Scissors, paper, bakers twine, paper straws, glue stick, craft knife, pencil, sharpie or other pen in whatever colour of your choice.
Step 1:  Make a template of your bunting if you prefer, or just draw on the back of your paper, two triangles connected to each other by the top/bottom.  You will need as many as you have letters and for the & symbol.

Step 2:  Cut out all of your bunting and start to write your letters on the bottom triangle, I am trying to get better at nice handwriting and so this was a nice practice for me.  There were many test pages before I decided on the final font style!  I used a sharpie as the paper had a slight sheen to it, so I wanted it to stay in place.

Step 3:  Layout the name and see what kind of spacing you will want on the twine to make it nice and even.

Step 4:  Then glue each bunting piece over the twine in place.

Step 5:  Then when each line of your bunting is done, layout the name and so you can see where you will want it to attach to your straws.

Step 6:  Make knots in each end of the twine as then this will help them stay in place for the next step.

Step 7:  Using the craft knife, cut into the straws where you would like your bunting to sit, you could mark with a pencil.

Step 8:  Push the end of the bunting line into the straw using the craft knife, the knot will help ensure it stays inside the straw without popping back out.

Your done, this is such a simple little DIY and one you could do for parties, weddings or just for fun.  It's so cute and you can change the colours and font style to suit the type of event it is for.

Are you going to any weddings this year?  See if you can spot any crafty makes?  I always love seeing what people come up with and whether they have been glued to Pinterest since they got engaged!

Now, those sweets are making me peckish!


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Our top ten Craft books + blog birthday giveaway (CLOSED)

A double whammy of awesome for you today, We have curated our Top 10 Craft Books and because we are lovely and it is our blogs 4th birthday (where has the time gone) we are giving you the chance to win the lot! Stick around until the end for your chance to win and in the meantime, lets get into the Top 10.

We have a mix of slightly older titles and new ones too, one of which has only been out for a week! But it is that good we couldn't not include it in our ten.

We have two books in the top ten from the Queen of crafting magazines Mollie Makes (you know how much we love the team at Mollie) the first is Making it! The book you need if you are embarking on a career in the craft industry. Packed with great tips and seriously useful information for anyone looking to make it big in the world of crafts.

This is the super newbie we were talking about and it is also the second from the Mollie Makes team. We knew as soon as we saw it, it was going to be a winner for us.so much so that Sammy pre-ordered two copies knowing that it would be featuring in this top ten. Sammy love's the Paper book-zine that the Mollie team had published a few times in the past and she had a feeling that this was going to be all that and more. It did not disappoint. It is packed full of awesome projects using paper of all kinds. Sammy is going to love working her way through the projects in this one. 

We reviewed Craft, Show and Sell on the blog last year and it has been a go to tea-break read ever since. With it's beautiful images and useful storage and selling tips it is a great read for all kinds of crafters. 

The second book from the lovely Kate (the Makery) We have a full review of this coming soon, but spoiler, We love it. We loved the first offering from the Makery which we reviewed back in 2013 but we think we might love this one even more. We suppose because we are sewest at heart, the projects in this book are some of our favourite's.

The beautiful Makers Spaces by Emily Quinton is a must for any Top 10, crafty or otherwise. If you love interiors this book is an equally joyous read. Pages filled with gorgeous photography of makers homes from all over the world, 'Home Goals' on every page! 

We were lucky enough to be chosen to be Cut Out and Keep Superstars earlier in the year and you may have seen our review of the book that takes you on a tour around the USA with different crafty projects along the way.  We love the quirky projects in this book and Cut Out and Keep in general really, they rock!

Hoarders like us will LOVE Pretty Organised. You can tell, we hope, that we really only end up recommending books we love, because we reviewed Jane's book back in March. We loved it then and we still love it now, with loads of creative tips and again, beautiful photography, this book is a must for crafters and hoarders alike. 

1980's Bumper activity book was a book Sammy received as a birthday gift a while ago and enjoyed it so much she has since re-purchased it as gifts for so many of her friends! It's jammed with fun projects and activities that will have you reminiscing about your mis-spent youth for weeks! (even if you were born in the 90's)

One of our favourite people on the internet is the lovely Katie Allen and her book Just Sew Stories was always going to be in our top 10. Packed with achievable, cool, trendy projects. All of which you would actually want in your home/wardrobe and that you would be proud to give as a gift. 

Another of our fave people is Tilly (and the Buttons) Walnes. We kind of knew, didn't we, if you had been reading her blog for a while (like we had) when we saw her on the first season of the Sewing Bee that a book was on the cards. Her sweet personality and enviable style shines from the pages. Each project is wearable, would fit in anyone's wardrobe and as it is with her blog, her tips and techniques are great for beginners and more experienced sewers.

Now for the fun part! For your chance to win all ten of these amazing crafty books, all you have to do is comment on this post below telling us your favourite craft book that is NOT on our list. Don't forget to include an email address, twitter or Instagram account so we can contact you if you win.  
The Giveaway is open until Midnight (UK BST) on Friday the 3rd of July and the winners will be announced and contacted shortly after this.

H & Sammy


Your name will only be counted once, but please do feel free to comment as much as you like.
You don't need a gmail account to comment. Just go to the drop down box below the comment section and you can post as your name or anonymous (just remember to put your contact details in the comment box).
Only replies on the blog to this post will count.
The winners name will be chosen at random.
All ten books will be posted to the recipient after the closing date.
The competition is open to everyone, in the UK and Worldwide! yey. 

Disclaimer: These books have all been purchased by ourselves, with the exclusion of the Cut Out and Keep book, which was sent to us for consideration. We fell in love with it and had a spare copy which we have chosen to give away as part of this competition.

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Let's meet: Frilly Industries

This month we are having a chat with another master duo, Frilly Industries.  We met these girls at Craftacular and even after their busy morning prepping and unpacking, were on form to have Sammy buy one of their scissor necklaces.

Let's hear what this dynamic duo have to say to our questions.

Make it: Father's Day Gift

It has come around to that time of year in the UK, when it's time for the Dad's in your life to get a bit of a treat.  I thought we could have a bit of a drinking theme for this year, we are all adults afterall.  You can always take a look at our Father's Day coasters from last year if you prefer, but this one is for the lazy/ oh no I forgot amongst you, as it's so quick to do.

You will need: Jars, bottles, mugs any kind of drinking receptacle really (orange bottle - Cargo, clear bottle - Tiger, blue mason jar - Poundworld) and sweets,chocolate, favourite alcohol or any drink Dad likes really.

I went with a colourful theme this year and divided up some skittles so that it made it look like a rainbow in the bottle. If you saw our instagram a few weeks ago you will know that dividing them up seemed to please me! ha, ha, what a life hey!

Once that was done, it was down to choosing some alcohol for the bottle and then buying this great blue coloured Mason Jar from Poundworld, yes really!

I thought the combination would make a great gift.  You can adapt it for the Dad in your life, with chocolates or tea, anything you like really.

What are you going to give Dad this year?  I know that those of you around the world celebrate different times of year, so maybe an idea for your Father's day.


This post was in collaboration with Tiger

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Sammy's Holiday Wishlist

Yours Palm Print Trousers  /  Yours Mesh Swimsuit   /  New Look Tunic  /  Oliver Bonas Bag
/  Kate Spade Sunglasses  /  Forever 21 Necklace  /  Samsung Camera  /  River Island Shoes

H and I are off to Barcelona in just a few days and I still need to finish packing! I am waiting for the last few bits from my holiday wishlist to arrive before I can shut my suitcase and pack up my hand luggage. I am looking forward to exploring the city and chilling out on the beach with nothing to do except decide what to eat for dinner. What bits are you picking up for your trips away? Link up your wishlists and packing tips below for us to check out before we head off.

Have a lovely weekend
Sammy xxx

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Make it: Fabric Weights

Ever since seeing Matt use Fabric weights in the Great British Sewing Bee last year, I have been meaning to make some for an upcoming project using silk.  I don't want to pin the pattern on you see, as I am worried that I will get holes in it and so I thought what better time to actually make these weights!  This version uses the very humble washer as a starting point.

You will need:  Washers with a hole in them (I got mine from Robert Dyas, but Homebase and B&Q etc also have them), fabric scissors, Strong Glue (I used Gutterman HT2), Fabric.

I found choosing my fabric the hardest part to this project!  So many different fabrics, so little time as they say.  I went with something with a small print that I could rip, as I quite like the effect it has on the weights.

Firstly you need to rip strips up of your fabric, I made mine roughly about the length of a fat quarter which I thought I needed to wrap the whole thing in one go and it worked!  But you can always add extra lengths if it doesn't quite go all the way around.

Then pop some glue on one of the washers and press the end of your strip down.  I chose to put 2 washers together for these weights so that it gives them a bit more substance to hold down my pattern.

Now, its a case of wrapping the fabric through the hole and around the edge of the washers, going all the way around as to cover the washer.  I added a blob of glue every now and again so that it doesn't unravel on me.

Once you have wrapped all the way around your washer, just glue down the last bit and cut off any excess, so that it sits neatly on the flat edge of the washer.

Now you are ready to use your weights to keep your pattern on top of your fabric, so that you don't have to use pins all the time.

I love these weights, they will come in very handy for pattern cutting and also currently keep all my paperwork down on my desk for the windows all open in this nice weather!


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Check this out: Alice's Adventures Underground

For this month's Check this out, we go deep underground to find Alice!  Alice's Adventures Underground is based in the underground vaults beneath Waterloo station and is immersive theatre by the guys at Les Enfants Terribles.  You, the viewer get to have the adventure, not Alice!

I really want to go to this, so I thought if I put it as one of my posts, I might actually get around to it.  I have friends who have been and said it's pretty cool and of course they don't want to tell me too much, plus everyone has a slightly different adventure as you go through the experience.

I love the description on their website "Journey down the rabbit hole to gorge on cakes that will have you bumping your head on the ceiling, smoke a pipe with the Caterpillar as he tells you his psychedelic tale and take tea with the maddest of Hatters; all whilst trying to avoid losing your head at the hands of the fearsome Queen of Hearts."

Sounds fun, right!

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Barcelona 'Must Visit' List

As you may have seen H mention we are off to Barcelona in just over a week and we could not be more excited. It has been a whopping 14 years since we were there last on the college trip that made us both fall in love with the city. We are looking forward to visiting all the places we remember so fondly and discovering a load of new favourites too.

Spanish Food Round-up

Photos are courtesy of recipe websites, see below for links
In a few short weeks we will be off to Barcelona, for some relaxation, alot of culture and bestie time and so I thought the food roundup this month could have a little Spanish theme to get us in the mood for all that Catalonian food we will be eating.

First up is of course Paella, well it wouldn't be a trip to Spain without it!  This recipe is from Taste.com.au and so wings it's way over from Australia, but it looked so simple I thought it had to go in the mix.

Next up is the start of the Tapas, I mean, who doesn't love tapas.  I am looking forward to having some real Spanish Tapas, as I haven't really found any in the UK that quite hits the mark - any places I should try please do comment below.

So first up is this Mediterranean Feta Dip I found on Cookie & Kate and I think I may have just found a new food blog to follow, yummers.

Next, is the one and only Potatoes bravas, it's making me drool just thinking about it.  This recipe is from Tesco's website - who knew they had recipes!  Another one to add to the follow list!

and lastly for this post is a Spiced Tortilla, so easy to make and so yummy.  These usually get made in my house on days where I cannot be bothered with anything too complicated, but when I have a few leftovers!  This recipe is from the BBC good food blog, these guys never let me down!

What would be on your Spanish wishlist for food?  I really found it hard to choose.

H, xxx

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