Meet the Maker #3

I'm really encouraged by reading all the applications for this Meet the Maker feature. I like finding out all about the different processes and crafts. Like today's maker.


This is Lisa who is the proud owner of LKSjewelry

Tell me a bit about yourself -  I live in Oxford but i’m Canadian :) I moved to the UK in July this year. 

By trade, I’m a Cancer Nurse. I found myself lost in a whirlwind of emotions felt by my patients, families and those surrounding me while working full-time as a care-giver. I knew I needed an outlet and luckily I found two! I began my journey to become a Yoga Teacher and it was there that my focus switched in my jewellery business. 

Spiritual practices became very important to me as I connected to a deeper part of myself. I have found that creating jewellery was a meditative practice. I truly believe we all need an outlet in life whether it is through movement or creativity. I am lucky enough to offer both.

How long have you been crafting? - oh gosh, too long! About 15 + years but only became serious about it the past 3-4 years.

What are your favourite ways to get creative? - I’m always inspired by the way materials make me feel. If it has a good vibes, I need to create something special. I found that following my gut has led to more success.

So you trust your gut instinct implicitly then? Tell me a bit about your store - I now create jewellery with intention. 

What does that mean? In my shop you will find pieces created from beautiful gemstones which hold properties to allow us to embody certain intentions. Did you know that stones are energetically charged? My favourite gemstone these days is rose quartz. Rose Quartz provides unconditional love in all forms - platonic, romantic, familial, etc. It is a great stone for someone trying to have a baby, becoming a mother, struggling with depression and so many more. I want to provide the gift of healing through my jewellery and working with gemstones allows me to do just that! 
How do you make your items? - Right now, my main focus is Mala’s. I plan out each Mala on a BeadSmith and if i’m drawn to the design I will start creating. I hand-knot between each gemstone and finish each Mala with a Large Clear Quartz Pendant. Want to learn more about Mala’s? Check out my FAQ’s in my shop :)

What is your favourite item you have made?
- I think my favourite item I've created is the Boho Bib - it’s chic, trendy and full of intention which is right up my alley!

What have you learnt about turning your hobby into a business?
- It’s hard but allows you to grow. When you’re passionate about something, you want everyone else to be too. When you don’t succeed at first, you want to give-up but searching deep inside will always give you a push. Sometimes what brings your spirit down is actually an opportunity to heal. Being able to share a hobby and then create a business does have its challenges but if life was easy, it wouldn't be as fun! :)

And finally, what advice would you give other small businesses? - Never let another person’s success discourage you. Be happy for the success of your competitors and eventually that success will come your way!
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Make it Monday #40

Hey lovely's ... Welcome to my linky!

This one is for all you creative people out there to showcase your favourite craft or recipe posts. Wither your a savvy stitcher or a brilliant baker, i want you to share your posts for us all to swoon over :)


If you made it, We'd like to see it :)

I've also set up a Make it Monday board on pinterest so I'll be adding your posts there for everyone to share.

The rules are simple ...
  • Link up maximum TWO posts - They can be old or new. Please don't just link up your blog home page.
  • Comment on the 'Host' post and at least 2 others, though more if you have the time. Its all about sharing the love here.
  • When commenting use the tag #MIMLinky so that they know where you found them.
  • Add the "Make it Mondays" badge to your linked post so that others can find the linky and join in. 
Feel free to tweet your post(s) along with the hashtag #MIMlinky and mention @justacraftymama so i can retweet for you.

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Meet the Maker #2

I'm really pleased with this feature and we are only on week 2. I've been reading through so many peoples stories on how they got started crafting and I've been both laughing at their funny stories and welling up at some of their experiences. I love how crafting has become a haven for so many.




This weeks Maker is no different. And i'm very pleased to introduce Mirry, who is the proud owner of MirryMirry.

Hey Mirry and thanks for taking part in the feature. Can you tell us a little bit about yourself? - My name is Mirry and i'm from Boston - the original one; home of the Pilgrim Fathers, the Mayflower & the tallest & widest parish church in the whole of the UK

I'm a quiet content soul with a passion for watching Columbo, supping drinking chocolate & heading straight for the woofers whenever i see one! I spent a whole year entirely bed-bound once & I'm also a wheelchair rider. My electric chair is called Mabel & boasts a discreet groovy basket under the seat where i can store my lipstick, phone & goodies & embarrassingly that was one of the reasons i chose it!

You seem to have a fantastic outlook on life. Tell me how long have you been crafting? - for as long as i can remember. But it didn't become a routine thing until disability hit hard about 15 years ago. I'm mostly housebound & crafting has become my daily antidepressant.

What are your favourite crafts/ways to get creative? - everything that i craft i love. If I don't enjoy it I can't do it. Hand embroidery is one of my passions, I have tremendous patience (so i'm told!) which this is essential for pieces that take many weeks and days. Being the kind of activity i can pick up and put down at any moment it works well for me. I love being at my sewing machine too, but my poor stamina doesn't allow me to go there as often as i'd like, but it does beckon and boy do I have fun.

I love hand embroidery and your right, it can be very time consuming. Tell me a bit about your store - My etsy store is stocked with only pieces i love myself. I have a small variety of things because i adore creating them all. I've been trying for a long time to get to 100 stock items but I just can't get there. As soon as I add more, more sell - i'm not complaining of course, I love my buyers, I owe so much to them for saving my sanity : ) 



How do you make your items? - My items are made by hand, by me, in my cosy little sitting room that overlooks my sweet English garden full of chattering visiting birds. I'm mostly home alone, with my two tiny fluffy pupsters (who are now 12 & 9) by my feet & a little Gladys Knight on the stereo (drinking chocolate too - there's always a drinking chocolate).

I try not to embroider once the daylight goes; even a bright lamp isn't as good as natural light & I need really excellent light if i'm going to stitch the best that I can. During those darker hours I will 'hoop' my embroideries, prep my etsy shop stationary & craft cards & enjoy a little knitting. It's also the time when i will free my flowers from the many presses & group them ready for listing. 

WOW, so your kept busy and put a lot of tome into your store. What is your favourite item you have made? - probably the custom wedding embroidery hoops. I created one initially for my niece - used her wedding colours for the piece, loved it so much, & it has since become a regular shop item.

What have you learnt about turning your hobby into a business? - Not to ever assume you will know what people want! I've been bowled over by which has become my most popular pieces, & surprised by other items that I thought would be a hit to only fade into the background.

And finally, What advice would you give other small businesses? - give your customers a genuine reason to want to come back to you. Be approachable, friendly & amenable - it's one of the few advantages we can have over the online chains. Price properly, it's ok to charge for your time. Don't be afraid to close for vacations (or a catch up), i'm often closed due to relapses - the longest closure being 11 months, & it has never once affected my sales. & of course, always enjoy yourself : )

You can find out more about Mirry and her makes by following her Instagram too :)
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Make it Monday #39

Hey lovely's ... Welcome to my linky!

This one is for all you creative people out there to showcase your favourite craft or recipe posts. Wither your a savvy stitcher or a brilliant baker, i want you to share your posts for us all to swoon over :)


If you made it, We'd like to see it :)

I've also set up a Make it Monday board on pinterest so I'll be adding your posts there for everyone to share.

The rules are simple ...
  • Link up maximum TWO posts - They can be old or new. Please don't just link up your blog home page.
  • Comment on the 'Host' post and at least 2 others, though more if you have the time. Its all about sharing the love here.
  • When commenting use the tag #MIMLinky so that they know where you found them.
  • Add the "Make it Mondays" badge to your linked post so that others can find the linky and join in. 
Feel free to tweet your post(s) along with the hashtag #MIMlinky and mention @justacraftymama so i can retweet for you.

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Meet the Maker #1

Hey and welcome to my first ever Meet the Maker feature. I'm quite excited by the responses I've been getting about being featured and I've found some amazing crafters and some gorgeous shops because of it. I'm hoping this will become are regular feature so if you want to take part please get in touch.



So lets get to know our first maker.

This is Alya Sayer who is the proud owner of A. S. Miniature Studio.

First off thanks Alya for joining me in this feature. Tell me a little bit about yourself - I’m a geeky mum from Amersham, Buckinghamshire. I have two wonderful but hard work children.

Wow so when do you find time to run your business?
 - I run A. S. Miniature Studio in-between school runs and once everyone is in bed.

I get that, i do the same when Agent M is at school or in bed. So how long have you been crafting? - I've been crafting for just over 27 years but it wasn't till around 10 years ago that i started to enjoy building and painting figures. – I have always loved working out new techniques to painting miniatures, which I hope allows me to stand out as a commission painter.

Its great then that you have been able to turn your hobby into a business. Tell me a bit about your store
 - This will make you laugh as I consider my shop to be my third child, yet it can be more demanding than the two children I already have. In my Etsy shop I am slowly building up a stock of pre-painted miniatures from a wide variety of companies in-between working on separate commission pieces.
  

How do you make the miniatures Alya? - The detail is so intricate - I make my items using pre-cast kits, then build the actual figures with either super glue or plastic glue (depending on what the piece is made from), prime them using an acrylic spray and hand paint each figure using acrylic paints and washes. Then once the hard work is done I make sure each piece is based allowing the miniature to instantly join a game.



I know its hard to pick favourites, especially since A.S Miniature Studio is like your child but if you had to pick a favourite, what would it be? - I have always loved working on the more sci-fi themed figures as you can create some really wacky colour schemes that you hope no one else has come up with before, as well as go a little over board with the fine details.

What have you learnt about turning your hobby into a business?
- It’s the hardest thing I have ever done and I’ve been forced to change how I think about it so many times it would make your head spin. I always knew the market was competitive but I didn’t realise just how competitive it was until I went from a simple hobbyist to a commission painter so networking can be very frustrating at times.

Networking is definitely important. finally, What advice would you give to other small businesses looking to succeed in the craft market?
- Go with your gut, if something feels not right then don’t do it.

You can also find Alya and her miniatures on Facebook.
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Make it Monday # 38

Hey lovely's ... Welcome to my linky!

This one is for all you creative people out there to showcase your favourite craft or recipe posts. Wither your a savvy stitcher or a brilliant baker, i want you to share your posts for us all to swoon over :)


If you made it, We'd like to see it :)

I've also set up a Make it Monday board on pinterest so I'll be adding your posts there for everyone to share.

The rules are simple ...
  • Link up maximum TWO posts - They can be old or new. Please don't just link up your blog home page.
  • Comment on the 'Host' post and at least 2 others, though more if you have the time. Its all about sharing the love here.
  • When commenting use the tag #MIMLinky so that they know where you found them.
  • Add the "Make it Mondays" badge to your linked post so that others can find the linky and join in. 
Feel free to tweet your post(s) along with the hashtag #MIMlinky and mention @justacraftymama so i can retweet for you.

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Phone Dump - 13/11/16

Its been a while since I've done a phone dump but I'm going to need to start clearing my phone more - had over 1000 camera images on my phone, and that's not even going near the saved pins or downloaded images.

These are some of my favourite images from the past week.

Starting from the top left -

  • I was having a rough week mentally, so i decided to have a duvet day and just watch movies all day. It was nice to take a break from life and just do what i wanted. Agent M was at school and i could just sit and cry (which for some reason made me feel better and watch horror movies - which i love).
  • I managed to pull myself together to go down to the college to help my friend out with an assessment. She needed a hair up and it was nice to have a catch-up with her. Will get another one this week as I'm going in for a cut and colour - eek!
  • I hate with a passion Christmas scents that are cinnamon or ginger - Ick! So when the festive time rolls round i opt for the nicer smelling ones - Mandarin and Cranberry is what i have going just now. I'm hoping i can find a reasonably priced Sugared Apple candle though as its my favourite.
  • My planner is starting to become 'too full' - if such a thing can exist. I've had to remove some of the sections i don't use to make some space. I'm going to design a fabric cover for it soon so i can have it encased and nothing can fall out. Now that I've started making and selling my own sticker for planners, it's jam-packed. 
  • An impromptu trip to Smyths was on the cards before we done the weekly shop this weekend. I should start to bring a book with me though as Agent M could quite happily camp out in the Lego aisle for hours. I'll need to get saving my pennies to get him a nice kit though.
  • I've been getting more into colouring for stress and now that Christmas is coming I'm going to start stamping to make Christmas cards. I decided to make an at a glance chart of which pro-markers i have so that i can save time. I didn't realise i had so many - and yet i could always use more lol.


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My Sunday Photo - 13/11/16

I'm getting into somewhat of a routine with my Sundays now.

They are usually started with a long lie (thank you so much Agent D for letting me sleep in - Its the highlight of my weekend!) and the making a late breakfast and for-filling any orders i got on the Friday/Saturday. Afterwards i get started on the week ahead prep - Iron the School uniform and make sure Agent D has what he needs for work - Hoodie, Thermals, washed his work trousers, and fill the water bottles to pop in the fridge for tomorrow morning. Tonight i am making a roast chicken so i will start prep for that in a bit and then its just chilling out with my boys, watching DVD's and reading while they have a go of their consoles.

I like the chilled back feel Sundays have here in the crafty house. We stay in our jammies and just enjoy life. Its a nice way to prepare for the incoming madness that usually is our week (especially Mondays which are packed each week).

I think its especially important with Christmas fast approaching that we enjoy some down time. Otherwise i can imagine a house full of busy, cranky people ... Not exactly the holly jolly you want for the festive season.

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Millies Cookies at home

When we go to Glasgow on a shopping trip we always go to Millies Cookies before we catch the train home. Its something i remember doing when i was a child and its a tradition i have made a point to continue with Agent M.

Problem is, we haven't been to Glasgow in months. If fact I'm struggling to remember if we have been this year. The joys of living on a budget i guess.

There is no need to go without our cookie fix though as we have finally got a chance to try the Millies at home range from Iceland and we were thrilled.


They are usually £3 per box (though often are on offer) and come in 3 varieties - White Chocolate, Milk Chocolate and Triple Chocolate.

They are exclusive to Iceland and since our local store is close to the leisure centre, we popped in after swimming lessons to get a couple of boxes to try out. What better after swimming treat than a yummy soft cookie and coffee (or hot chocolate in Agent M's case).

I chose the white chocolate ones and Agent M picked his favourite, the triple chocolate. The offer we got was 2 boxes for £5 so with 6 cookies per box it was a not too bad offer. Especially since we didn't have to go all the way to Glasgow for them.

Baking them is really easy too as the cookie dough has been frozen in individual portions already. No need to defrost and roll it out, you can cook straight from frozen.


Cooking time is between 14-16 minutes and after you let them cool down for about 10 minutes - You will have a plate full of deliciousness. I managed to try both varieties before the Agents tore into them.

Shared on ...

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Meet the Maker Feature

Since starting my blog i have come into contact with so many creative people. Honestly i am in awe when i see their Instagram feed and read their blog posts. They are just so brilliant.

Now that i have opened my Etsy store, I've found, through networking, that there are so many people out there that are like myself. Homegrown crafters trying to support their families with their hobbies.

    

Its inspired me to want to learn more about them and showcase their talents on a wider scale.

That's why i am starting a new feature on my blog called "Meet the Maker". In it i want to let you get to know the person behind the crafty creation and also help you to understand the processes and time that goes into making something handmade. I think its important to help small businesses out and this is just on of the ways i plan to do my part.


I have a few crafters lined up already but i would like to open the offer out to everyone ... wither you are an Etsy seller or a crafty blogger i want to give you the chance to showcase your makes to us all.

If you are interested please send me an email at craftymama087@gmail.com or comment below with your email and I'll get in touch.

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Make it Monday #37

Hey lovely's ... Welcome to my linky!

Its been a mad house here in the Crafty household. Agent M has gone up a level in his swimming lessons so its changed our routine a bit. Thank goodness for slow cookers is all i can say! I've also launched my Etsy store and have been very luck to have 3 orders placed already. My printer and Cricut machine have been going daft all week. Am glad of it though as its all pennies towards Christmas. Still cant believe were into November by the way - Eek!

Anyways, onto the linky ...

This one is for all you creative people out there to showcase your favourite craft or recipe posts. Wither your a savvy stitcher or a brilliant baker, i want you to share your posts for us all to swoon over :)


If you made it, We'd like to see it :)

I've also set up a Make it Monday board on pinterest so I'll be adding your posts there for everyone to share.

The rules are simple ...
  • Link up maximum TWO posts - They can be old or new. Please don't just link up your blog home page.
  • Comment on the 'Host' post and at least 2 others, though more if you have the time. Its all about sharing the love here.
  • When commenting use the tag #MIMLinky so that they know where you found them.
  • Add the "Make it Mondays" badge to your linked post so that others can find the linky and join in. 
Feel free to tweet your post(s) along with the hashtag #MIMlinky and mention @justacraftymama so i can retweet for you.

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My Sunday Photo - 6/11/2016

I feel a little emotional when i look at this weeks Sunday photo - Which is crazy right? Its just a Blu-Ray!

Well its kinda not. What it is, is memories of the times when i used to go up to my papas room and sit on the bed with him and watch Carry On films.
Its memories of how he used to let me have one of his sweeties (i always chose the Chocolate lime) so long as i didn't tell Granny.
Its memories that on a good day he would be down stairs sitting in his special chair with his little brown table and on a bad day he would be confined to his bed.
Its memories about how he was really the one that fueled my love of art and drawing by getting me to copy the pictures he drew over and over, always dating my work so i could see how well i had improved.
Its memories of sitting on his bed listening to him tell stories of when he was younger and worked down the mines.
Its memories of him letting me watch horror films as a child cause i just loved them. Hammer Horror classics with Christopher Lee and Vincent Price, Us sharing the love of all things spooky. Something that no other member of my family really did with me.
Its memories that i will hold forever because i will never get the chance to relive them. They are all i have left of my papa. One of the few men in this world i have ever truly loved and felt loved me unconditionally.

And the only man i will never hate for breaking my heart by leaving me.

He was an absolute diamond.


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November Disney Craft Swap

Another month has begun which means its time for another Crafty Mama Disney swap. Since we are coming into the winter months i thought it would be perfect timing for some Frozen magic.
The sign up form can be found here.


Please download the questions and send me your answers. My email is craftymama087@gmail.com. Please have the subject line "November Disney Swap"

There are a few rules that I've made so that everyone knows whats what.
  • The swap is open internationally.
  • Sign up is the 1st of every month and will close midnight (GMT) on the 5th of the month. You should have your swap buddy info on the 6th
  • You need to check in on Instagram between the 13th and the 15th. You can show us what your making or do a close-up if your wanting to keep it a surprise for your buddy, but I'd like to see that everyone is taking part and on track. Please tag me @justacraftymama and #CraftyMamaDisneySwap so i can mark you off. If you wish you can DM me instead.
  • All parcels must be sent by the 25th of the month. Proof of postage is advisable but that's totally your call. I ask that you let me know when your parcel has been sent and when you have received your parcel. I'm keeping track of this :)
  • Its your call what you make - If your savvy with a sewing machine or nifty with a knitting needle, even if you have a penchant for paper crafts ... There are no restrictions on how/what you make so long as it fits with that months theme.
  • In the spirit of fairness all parcels must have at least 1 crafty make and 2 gift items with a minimum total value £5. By all means if you want to make/gift more then go ahead but the minimum is there so that everyone knows what to expect and no-one gets short changed.

I have made a PDF of the rules and dates which can be found here … you can save it on your phone, tablet or computer/laptop and have it to have whenever you need.

I've noted that some of the International parcels are taking up to 3 weeks to arrive, please keep this in mind if sending international. Its great that we are making swaps across the pond and so far the wait has been worth it for many of you.
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