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BAKE IT Buttercream red rose cupcakes




UPCYCLE IT Gorgeous map print lampshade

KNIT IT Soft & huggable owl cushion


52-pages of papers!

Love cats!



Be my valentine!


Real life





Welcome 30

Spread the love on Valentine's Day with this retro stitch design


Buyers won't be able to resist these cool, crocheted cats!



ove is all you need! And with Valentine’s Day in mind, we have an issue packed with romance for you this month. Forget Paris, the pages of Shakespeare or Interflora, Craftseller is the real place for love this Valentine’s Day… In your February edition we have gorgeous handmade treats to make and sell for romantics everywhere including pretty felt heart decorations over on page 94, adorable fabric 'love birds' (p84), sweet cross stitch love sign (p30) and adorable, cuddly knitted owl on page 74 – a very cute companion who will never break your heart. And of course, we have our affectionate crochet cover stars on page 16 – the love cats! This pair are particularly great sellers with craft-lovers who collect amigurumi makes with distinctive personality and fantastic attention to detail. Feature-wise, check out our top ten tips for valentine makes on page 38 and over on page 79, we take you through the rise of the handmade Valentine’s Day card. And finally, this month we’re giving you a FREE 52-page book of beautiful Oriental-themed papers – perfect timing for celebrating Chinese New Year on January 31st! Enjoy! See you next month!



Cuddle up with our cosy, characterful cushion this month

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Sew a sweet pair of love birds for newly engaged couples


Shoppers will love these sweet, felted heart decorations


this Look at gorgeous month’s rs! e free pap


OVER0 £105


February 2014 62





Projects 16





Cool cats Crochet cute, hipster cats to earn serious style points for your range 30-minute make Cute, vintage-style tags to sell alongside Valentine’s Day gifts Hydrangea heart A romantic, fresh-flower garland that will draw in loved-up shoppers Love is all around This colourful cross stitch design is a sure-fire way to make a profit More than words Get in on the trend for literary items with these love story cufflinks

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Red velvet cake This rich red and white cake looks irresistible and tastes great too! Red rose cupcakes Pretty little bakes that are the perfect Valentine’s crowd pleasers Chocolate truffles Melt-in-your-mouth bites to keep buyers coming back for more With love Heartfelt paper designs and two fab card projects for loved ones Mummy makes A sweet drawstring bag that’s perfect for little girls






From junk to funk Upcycle old maps to create a charming lampshade What a hoot! Shoppers still love owls so this colourful cushion is a must-make! Love birds This pair of pretty vintage birds are perfect for early wedding sales Make a crafty tenner Craft a pretty heart decoration using quality materials for a big profit More ways than one Use coloured felt to make a garland, table confetti and a sweet bouquet

BE AN INSIDER We want to know what you think. After all, the more we know about you the better placed we are to bring you the best magazine possible. So we would like to invite you to join our online reader panel ‘Insiders’. Interested? Log on to register to fill out the short registration survey and we’ll be in touch from time-to-time to ask for your opinions on the magazine and other relevant issues. We look forward to hearing from you soon.

Reader offer Special gift

Subscribe today and receive a vintage craft set!



Features 8





Making news Get the lowdown on the latest crafty news and views Dear Craftseller Your chance to share all your crafting and selling success stories Pin it! Romance fills the air with these pretty pink and delicate lace ideas Stash it! Buttons, beads, ribbons and more for your Valentine’s Day makes Real life: Illustrator Helen Lang How falling in love helped Helen find success selling online






10 top tips for Valentine’s makes Find out how to ensure this February is one of your most profitable times Charity bakes Bring out your inner baker and raise cash for three great causes Fab freebies Enter now and you could get your hands on some brilliant prizes Diary of a craft-selling mum Erica discovers that taking a break isn’t as easy as it sounds Handmade with love Get in on the trend for handmade Valentine’s Day cards!





Ask us! Let our experts solve your craftselling queries with the best advice My craft shop Find out how these three successful sellers make cash from their craft Crafty courses Choose from a range of inspiring courses to expand your craft skills Online loves Check out our favourite makes selling well on the web this month

e Turn to page 102 for thos all-important templates Craftseller 5


Contributors Meet three Craftseller designers who have created projects just for you…

Liz Ward Amigurumi guru, Liz, designed three cool cats this month. Find them on page 16. Amazingly, Liz only learned how to crochet four years ago when a friend taught her the basics. Soon after, she began her own business, These cats show off Liz’s cute, quirky style. She uses minimal yarn for a look that appeals to all ages and earns you a profit!

A SPECIAL MENTION TO Editor Zeena Moolla Editorial Assistant Beth Collins Art Editor Kit Cheung Publisher Alison Worthington Publishing Director Cath Potter Managing Director Andy Marshall Advertisement Director Caroline Herbert Senior Advertising Manager Jane Hendy Advertising Designer Catherine Howlett Production Director Sarah Powell Production Managers Rose Griffiths and Louisa Molter Marketing Director Jacky Perales-Morris Direct Marketing Manager Penny Clapp Marketing Executive Lucy Osmond Reprographics Tony Hunt, Chris Sutch Photography Louise Broom, Ally Stuart, Steve Sayers Distribution Frontline Printed in the UK by William Gibbons A special thank you to contributors and designers Jo Benner, Helen Burge, Katriel Costello, Liz Ward, Wendy Massey, Sarah Heys, Vicky Craxton, Tracey Todhunter, Jessica Sharp, Rhona Norrie, Dorothy Wood, Annie Bellamy, Jane Tooze, Claire Watkins, Karen Dunn, Sarah Chadwick, Steve Wright, Marie Parry, Holly Johnson, Sophie Jordan, Poppy Benner, Verity Gough, Mark Bradley, Anne MacGregor Subscriptions and customer enquiries To place a subscription or order any of our sewing, knitting or craft magazines, please call the subscriptions hotline on 0844 844 0388. It’s open weekdays 8am-8pm and Saturday 9am-1pm. You can also email your query to

Marie Parry Say it with flowers this month and make a heart-shaped garland on page 28

Join us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter Become a fan of Craftseller on Facebook or follow @craftsellermag on Twitter and you can take part in competitions, share news, tips and more.

Marie can’t wait to share her love of

Copyright guidelines for projects We have requested specific permission from authors, book publishers and designers so that you can recreate and sell the projects from this issue. Please credit the designer where appropriate and when it has been requested. Craftseller is for crafting enthusiasts who want to make beautiful, handmade items to sell. You can individually make as many as you wish to sell either for yourself, your local event, summer fete or to raise money for charity. You cannot go into mass production, which means you cannot manufacture in large quantities, especially by machine. Please respect one another’s copyright.

flower arranging, especially at this time of year, so make sure you try her heart decoration on page 28, Marie has used florals that look great but won’t break the bank so you can make a pretty profit. If you’d like more inspiration visit Marie’s new site,

Sarah Heys

Immediate Media Company Limited is working to ensure that all of its paper is sourced from well-managed forests. This magazine can be recycled, for use in newspapers and packaging. Please remove any gifts, samples or wrapping and dispose of it at your local collection point.

Feeling groovy? Send a message of love with this colourful cross stitch on page 30 Sarah loves all types of craft, but cross stitching is one of her passions. The retro-style font on her latest project is really fun to stitch and with Sarah’s use of unusual blue and green shades you’ll attract buyers young and old. Sarah is charting editor on several UK craft titles. Follow her at

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Craftseller is published by:

Immediate Media Company Limited, 9th Floor, Tower House, Fairfax Street, Bristol BS1 3BN. Tel: 0117 927 9009 Fax: 0117 934 9008 Immediate Media Company Limited is dedicated to producing the very best consumer specialist interest magazines, edited and designed to inform our readers, enhance their lives and give them the best value for money possible. Please visit for details of our other publications. We take great care to ensure all elements of Craftseller are accurate. However, we accept no liability for any misprints or mistakes that appear in this magazine. All prices quoted are correct at the time of going to print. ©Immediate Media Company Limited.

Inspirational features, displays, workshops and demonstrations for all creative crafters SPRING 2014 SHOWS SPRING 2014 SHOWS SPRING 2014 SHOWS SPRING 2014 SHOWS








Buy tickets on-line or phone Ticket Hotline

01425 277988




Making news Welcome to your one-stop shop for all the latest craft trends, dates and celebs…

SUPER SITES Our pick of the best from the world of online this month… somethingyoufancy. Lashings of lovely things by independent British crafters and designers.


great pieces of advice from ‘queen of shops’

Mary Portas

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Keep a notebook with you to record examples of good marketing when you’re out and about.

Put yourself in the shoes of your customer. How can you connect with them? What extras can you offer to attract people? Don’t try anything too big too soon. Look at what others are doing creatively for inspiration.


Make sure you get involved with the community and partner with other businesses that complement you. Make yourself an invaluable asset. Don’t forget to be upbeat and have fun – people remember happy people!

Follow Mary on twitter @maryportas for more tips and tweets in support of independent businesses, or visit her website at learn for information about courses in marketing your small business.

8 Craftseller Fantastic advice on everything from pricing to photography when setting up a business.


baking Did you know that sales of %? We equipment have risen by 80 aids! hen couldn’t live without our kitc Visit the Valentine’s Day section for ideas and inspiration for the little ones in your life who love to craft too.

with Get pinning hub ft the new cra om/ .c at pinterest . MakersUK

Best of British

To celebrate 20 years of business, Cath Kidston opened her biggest shop yet in December – at 180 Piccadilly, London. The 7070 sq ft store is packed with over 20,000 products, including an exclusive new Piccadilly Print range. “When it first began in a small shop in Holland Park, I never imagined we’d have over 100 stores across the UK, Europe and Asia!” says founder Cath Kidston.


CRAFTY EVENTS Our pick of the best crafty events around this month... The Creative Crafts Show Sandown Exhibition Centre, Surrey 23-25 January

Crafty Kirstie


Creative Stitches & Hobbycrafts EventCity, Manchester 6-8 February 2014

PHOTO: Channel 4/RTRP Ltd

t’s official – Kirstie Allsopp is the nation’s favourite creative celeb. In a recent survey by for National Knitting Week, the star of Kirstie’s Crafty Christmas was voted best-loved celebrity knitter. The survey also highlighted the dramatic rise in the trend for knitting, pointing out that the number of Google searches for ‘knitting and crochet’ increased by 70 per cent last year!


Talent SPOT

Husband and wife team Rebecca and Cameron Bailey-Price, who run the handmade craft hub, recently became #SBS winners as part of Theo Paphitis’ Twitter initiative for supporting small businesses. “Theo has recognised our hard work and helped spread the word about what we do,” says Rebecca. Find out how you can take part too at

Craft & Gift Fair Worcester Guildhall 8 February

Theo has h elped become e more succ ven essful

Chair: Galapagos Vintage 1950s Wolf Chair,; fabric:; dress:

IT WOULD SEEM THAT 2014 is going to be a year of bright, bold design, reflected in the trend for funky, zigzag prints. Seen on everything from cushions and chairs to handbags and skirts, it’s a trend that’s perfect for livening up your spring craft stalls. We’re thinking it would look great on summer bunting, too.

Ramsgate’s Handmade Markets Custom House, Kent 15 February Craft Hobby + Stitch International NEC, Birmingham 16-18 February



Valentines Craft & Gift Fair Village Hotel Leeds South, West Yorkshire 9 February

Stitchtopia Festival Wyboston Lakes, Bedfordshire 17-20 February Bright ‘n’ Crafty St Nicholas’ Church, East Sussex 22 February Make it 2014 FIVE Farnborough 28 February-2 March

Craftseller 9


Dear Craftseller Send us your latest crafting and selling stories each issue – Perched o n a branch, the star letter wins a Abakhan prize! t h e s e owls loo k right at home

Huge success I STARTED THINKING ABOUT setting up my craft business but I wasn’t sure where to begin until I saw Craftseller – it was everything I wanted. So I booked my first craft fair and got busy making Christmas decorations. Here’s a photo of me with my stall – it was a huge success! Your Dandy Deer was so popular I had to take orders! You’ve given me the confidence to get out there and make it work.


KATIE WALKER, CRAFTY-STITCH.CO.UK Ed: Your stall looks great, Katie – so professional!

Glynis surprised her granddaughter with a set of our crocheted owls

Three generations WHEN I SAW THE pattern for the cute owls on the cover of issue 25 it was just after my eight year old granddaughter’s bedroom had been redecorated with owl wallpaper and an owl theme. So, I decided to make her a set of your crocheted owls and post them to my granddaughter as a surprise. She was delighted with them and has even mounted them on their own branch so they can perch on a shelf in her bedroom. I loved that first issue so much I bought a subscription and, after borrowing mine, so did my daughter. Thank you Craftseller for all of the enjoyment and useful information you bring to three generations of my family, every single month.

GLYNIS ALDRED, NORTH SOMERSET Ed: What a cute collection of owls, Glynis, we can see why your granddaughter loved them. They look great on their perch – maybe your granddaughter will be one of our craft-selling stars of the future!

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Christmas kickstarted Katie’s new business

Creative streak AFTER PUTTING CRAFTING ON the shelf for a while, due to personal commitments, you’ve helped me to feel creative and motivated again! I’ve been working on some new designs that are proving popular, like this hand-painted porcelain teapot. Craftseller has been such a useful source of inspiration and just goes to show that you can make a profit from doing what you love.

KELLYJAYNEDESIGNS, WALES Ed: We love your stylish peacock design, Kelly. Teapots are a big trend so we’re sure you’ll do well! Good luck with your range.

I love the pinboard page at the front of every issue of your mag, I’m in the process of covering my walls with them so I am just a glance away from inspiration! Poppytalk offers the same sort of fab image collections under the inspiration tab – love, love, love!







Here are some of our favourite posts and tweets this month…

MAKING MONEY FROM CRAFT was just a dream until I found Craftseller. I had a name – Red Cottage Crafts – but that was it. After reading one issue, I signed up to my first craft fair. I enjoyed the buzz and my confidence grew, then I booked another fair, made sales through Facebook and I’m now in profit! I rely on your advice as my biggest sellers so far are the felt reindeers and the knitted owls.

Saw Bisquites in @CraftsellerMag. Your biscuits look yummy!


LINDSEY FORD, SWINDON Ed: Congrats on your first profit. Fab news! Our felt reindeer helped Lindsey make a profit

Turn to page 50 to try our Valentine’s Day cards in this issue

Not so amateur

@CraftsellerMag had great fun crafting with the free paper in the mag this month!

@SCILLYSCARVES I WOULD JUST LIKE to say how much I love the projects in your magazine! I am a complete amateur, especially at card-making, but I wanted to have a go at the ‘cool couple card’ from issue 29. After what felt like a very long time, I finally completed my card and I was over the moon with the result! I have to say, the instructions were simple to follow and the papers and templates were included in the magazine – what more can you ask for? Thank you so much for giving me the inspiration to have a go!

Star letter prize! This month our star letter writer wins £50 worth of vouchers to spend on

So happy to see my spoons in another fab issue of @CraftsellerMag!


J BLACKHURST, BY EMAIL Ed: We love this design so we’re glad you do too. Your card looks fantastic, not amateurish at all!

Can’t wait to get my copy tonight, after a day with 3 kids being sick! :’(


Polar party THANK YOU FOR THE gorgeous polar bears. I took to them straight away and created a whole family, enlarging the template for the Mama and Papa bears. Instead of the berets, I used flowers for the girls and placed beads on all of the scarves.

You have def encouraged me to sell my work. Love the mag.


REBECCA RYLANCE, BUTTERFLY BROWN CREATIONS Ed: What a sweet family, Rebecca! Why not try making the rest of the gang with the pattern for Chilled-out Charlie’s friends on

Search for Craftseller on

Have you adapted any of our designs?



Dear Craftseller, 9th Floor, Tower House, Fairfax Street, Bristol BS1 3BN

Craftseller 11




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Romance Think Pride and Prejudice this month with pretty lace, vintage cameos and delicate pink orals





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1 Mulberry Grandad armchair, £2590, indigofurniture. 2 Lace heart mirror, £15, 3 Lady Lust by Laurence Llewelyn-Bowen, £32, littlewoods. com; 4 Selection of tableware from 5 Fleurette bed, £299.99, 6 Red Herring cameo charm, £10, 7 Lace plate, £29.50 and lace jug, £35, both marksandspencer. com 8 Hourglass lace cushion, £7, 9 Lace heart bunch, £7, 10 Ceramic letters, £24, 11 Hourglass cameo cushion, £7, wilko. com 12 Cameo rose earrings by Betty Jackson.Black, £10, 13 Ceramic love heart balls, £22; Elysee dressing table, £199; Crackle butterfly mirrors, £39; all 14 Shirley dress, £75, eucalyptusclothing. 15 Birdcage lantern, £12, 16 Rosa A Tana Lawn, £22 p/m, 17 Betsy Ann A Lantana, £34.95 p/m,



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Craftseller 13 For your nearest stockist and expert advice, please contact Silver Viscount on 01933 311888 or


Stash it! Inspiring ideas for your crafty makes

Painted Wood I ♥ U Buttons '"--Zcf%$dWg amZUVf]W\cigY"Wc"i_H]Yh\Y_bchBow Charm, £4.39, treasureimports on 6]UgGYUaBinding %"()d#a gYUaghUf"Wc"i_

Grey Heart Dolly Bobbin Ribbon ) ^c\b`Yk]g"WcaCotton Poplin Polka Hearts in various colours, £6.80p/m, GYhCZh\fYYHeart Cookie Cutters '"-) XchWca[]Zhg\cd"Wca

G]`jYfD`UhYX8YWcfUhYXHeart Charm -)d gdc]`hfchhYbVYUXg"Wc"i_DUdYfaUb]UGdchgUbXGhf]dYg6f][\hgRibbon Bows &")$Zcf&$dWg  \cVVmWfUZh"Wc"i_<YUfh8ccX`YDf]bh]b<chFYXCotton Fabric &"-- amZUVf]W\cigY"Wc"i_

Craftseller 15


Cool cats With their bright colours and cute accessories, these top cats are keeping warm in style this winter. By Liz Ward


M A KE FOR £5 FOR £10

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INFORMATION Materials * 50g balls of Sirdar Simply Recycled DK in Pollen 019, Seashell 017 and Clay 013. * 50g balls of Sirdar Wash ‘n’ Wear Double Crepe DK in Denim 300, Buttercup 200, Lime 373, Cherry 278, Bright pink 375, Hydrangea 264, White 251, Clerical 289, Black 275, Duck egg 318 * 3.5mm (UK 9, US E/4) crochet hook * 12mm (½in) safety toy eyes * Wool needle * Toy stuffing * Fabric glue * Jewellery wire * Flower motif Size: 20 x 10cm (8 x 4in) Skill level: Moderate


migurumi style is really popular so these cool kitties will be all the rage at your next craft fair. They are taller dolls than usual amigurumi, because they’re standing up, but they’re made with simple crochet stitches and use up very little yarn so are great for turning a profit. They are crocheted in one piece from head to toe so you can work quickly. We’ve used Sirdar Wash ‘n’ Wear Double Crepe DK for the clothing, which gives a close texture, so there’s minimal shaping and none of the stuffing will show. These cats would be great as bespoke makes – ask buyers to email you a photo, and let your imagination do the rest.

ABBREVIATIONS sl st: dc: Htc: st(s): dc2tog:

slip stitch double crochet half treble crochet stitch(es) double crochet the next two stitches together

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How to make the crochet cats Head and body Using 3.5mm (UK 9, US E/4) crochet hook and starting with head colour yarn, start with 6dc into magic ring. 6sts. Round 1: 2dc into each st to the end. 12sts. Round 2: (dc in the first st, 2dc in the next st) repeat to end. 18sts. Round 3: (dc in the first two sts, 2dc in the next st) repeat to end. 24sts. Round 4: (dc in the first three sts, 2dc in the next st) repeat to end. 30sts. Round 5: (dc in the first nine sts, 2dc in the next st) repeat to end. 33sts. Round 6: (dc in the first ten sts, 2dc in the next st) repeat to end. 36sts. Round 7: (dc in the first 11sts, 2dc in the

next st) repeat to end. 39sts. Round 8: (dc in the first 12sts, 2dc in the next st) repeat to end. 42sts. Round 9-11: dc in each st to the end. 42sts. Mark round 9 with a stitch marker. Round 12: (dc2tog, dc in next five sts) repeat to end. 36sts. Round 13: (dc2tog, dc in next four sts) repeat to end. 30sts. Round 14: (dc2tog, dc in next three sts) repeat to end. 24sts. Round 15: (dc2tog, dc in next two sts) repeat to end. 18sts. Insert the toy eyes now. They go on the marked round, 8 stitches apart Round 16: (dc2tog, dc in next st) repeat to


end. 12sts Stuff the head now. Change to jumper yarn colour – red for Tom, yellow for Sally and white for Richard. Round 17: dc into each st to the end. 12sts. Work an uncounted round of slip stitches. Round 18: (dc in the first three sts, 2dc in the next st) repeat to end. 15sts. Round 19: (dc in the first four sts, 2dc in the next st) repeat to end. 18sts. Round 20: (dc in the first five sts, 2dc in the next st) repeat to end. 21sts. Round 21: (dc in the first six sts, 2dc in the next st) repeat to end. 24sts. Round 22: (dc in the first seven sts, 2dc in the next st) repeat to end. 27sts. Round 23: (dc in the first eight sts, 2dc in the next st) repeat to end. 30sts. Round 24: (dc in the first nine Sts, 2dc in the next st) repeat to end. 33sts. Round 25: (dc in the first ten Sts, 2dc in the next st) repeat to end. 36sts. Round 26 & 27: dc in each st to the end. 36sts. Work a round of uncounted slip stitches. Change to trouser yarn colour – blue for Tom, mint for Sally and lime for Richard Round 28: dc in each st to the end. 36sts. Round 29: (dc2tog, dc in next seven sts) repeat to end. 32sts. Round 30: (dc2tog, dc in next six sts) repeat to end. 28sts. Round 31: (dc2tog, dc in next five sts) repeat to end. 24sts. Stuff the body now. Split to make the legs. Put a pin or stitch marker through the stitch on the last row that is at the centre front of your cat. The easiest way to do this is lay your cat on a hard surface facing forward and flatten slightly. Find the middle of the eyes with your pin and then run it straight down the body of the cat and attach it to the stitch on the last worked row.

1st leg Round 32: dc in each skipping the marked st and the next 11sts. 12sts. Round 33: dc2tog, dc in each st to the end. 11sts. Round 34 & 35: dc in each st to the end.

11sts. Round 36: dc2tog, dc in each st to the end. 10sts. Round 37: dc in each st to the end. 10sts. Change to boot colour Grey for Tom, yellow for Sally, blue for Richard. Work an uncounted round of slip stitches. Mark the centre front of the boot with a pin. Round 38: dc in each st till one st before the pin, (dc, 2htr) in next st, htr in next (remove pin before working) (2htr, dc) in next, dc in each remaining sts to end. 14sts. Round 39: dc in each st to the end. 14sts. Round 40: (dc2tog, dc in next five sts) repeat to end. 12sts. Stuff the leg now. Round 41: (dc2tog) repeat to end. 6sts.

2nd leg Rejoin yarn to any stitch at the back of the body on round 31. Round 32: dc in each st. 12sts. Round 33-41: work as for 1st leg. Cut the yarn leaving a long tail and pull through loop to secure. Using a wool needle, weave the yarn through the last 6 stitches and pull tight to close. Weave in yarn ends and cut off remaining yarn.

Work the face Use black embroidery thread and embroider the face using the photo as a guide. Use long stitches to form the mouth and whiskers and shorter ones to make the nose.

Arms Make two using 3.5mm (UK 9, US E/4) crochet hook. Start in the same yarn used for the head: yellow for Tom, pink for Sally and grey for Richard. Start with 6dc into magic ring. 6sts. Round 1: (dc in the first st, 2dc in the next st) repeat to end. 9sts. Round 2: dc into each st to the end. 9sts. Round 3: (dc2tog, dc in next st) repeat to end. 6sts. Change to red yarn for Tom, yellow for sally and white for Richard. Round 4 & 13: dc into each st to the end. 6sts. Cut the yarn leaving a long tail and pull through loop to secure.

Stuff and sew in place on the body.

Ears Make two using 3.5mm (UK 9, US E/4) crochet hook. Start in the same yarn used for the head, yellow for Tom, pink for Sally and grey for Richard. Start with 4dc into magic ring. 4sts. Round 1: (dc in the first st, 2dc in the next st) repeat to end. 6sts. Round 2: (dc in the first two sts, 2dc in the next st) repeat to end. 8sts. Round 3: (dc in the first three sts, 2dc in the next st) repeat to end.10sts. Round 4: (dc in the first four sts, 2dc in the next st) repeat to end. 12sts. Round 5: (dc in the first five sts, 2dc in the next st) repeat to end. 14sts. Cut the yarn leaving a long tail and pull through loop to secure. Sew in place on the head (don’t sew Tom’s on until you’ve made his hat).

Tom’s hat Make using 3.5mm (UK 9, US E/4) crochet hook and pale blue yarn. Start with 6dc into magic ring. 6sts. Round 1: 2dc into each st to the end. 12sts. Round 2: (dc in the first st, 2dc in the next st) repeat to end. 18sts. Round 3: (dc in the first two sts, 2dc in the next st) repeat to end. 24sts. Round 4: (dc in the first three sts, 2dc in the next st) repeat to end. 30sts. Round 5: (dc in the first nine sts, 2dc in the next st) repeat to end. 33sts. Round 6: (dc in the first ten sts, 2dc in the next st) repeat to end. 36sts. Round 7: (dc in the first eleven sts, 2dc in the next st) repeat to end. 39sts. Round 8: (dc in the first twelve sts, 2dc in the next st) repeat to end. 42sts. Cut the yarn leaving a long tail and pull through loop to secure.

Brim Using 3.5mm (UK 9, US E/4) crochet hook and blue and white yarn. Starting with blue. Note this is not worked in the round, so ch1 and turn at the beginning of each row. Ch 5. Row 1: dc in 2nd ch from hook, dc in each st

Craftseller 19


to end. 4sts. Row 2: ch1, turn, dc in each stitch. 4st. Change to white yarn. Repeat row two, 38 times. Work two rows white then two rows blue to form stripe. Cut the yarn leaving a long tail and pull through loop to secure. Use the photo as a guide and sew in place to the bottom edge of the hat.

Tom’s scarf Using 3.5mm (UK 9, US E/4) crochet hook and blue and white yarn. Starting with blue. Note this is not worked in the round, so ch1 and turn at the beginning of each row. Ch 5. Row 1: dc in 2nd ch from hook, dc in each st to end. 4sts. Row 2: ch1, turn, dc in each stitch. 4sts. Change to white yarn. Repeat row two until scarf measures 25cm (10in), working two rows white, then two rows blue to form stripe. Cut the yarn, leaving a long tail and pull through loop to secure. Weave in any loose ends and tie round neck.

Sally’s skirt Using 3.5mm (UK 9, US E/4) crochet hook and bright pink yarn. Ch 36. Sl st to form a loop (careful not to twist). 36sts. Round 1: (dc in the first 11ch sts, 2dc in the next ) repeat to end. 39sts. Round 2: (dc in the first 12 sts, 2dc in the next st) repeat to end. 42sts. Round 3: (dc in the first 13 sts, 2dc in the next st) repeat to end. 45sts. Round 4: (dc in the first 14 sts, 2dc in the next st) repeat to end. 48sts. Round 5: (dc in the first 15 sts, 2dc in the next st) repeat to end. 51sts. Round 6: (dc in the first 16 sts, 2dc in the next st) repeat to end. 54sts. Cut the yarn leaving a long tail and pull through loop to secure. Weave in any loose ends and sew in place at bottom edge of jumper.

Sally’s head band Using 3.5mm (UK 9, US E/4) crochet hook

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STITCH TIP For uncounted round of sl st, make a round of sl sts, but on next round go into dc sts from previous round

and grey yarn. Note this is not worked in the round, so ch1 and turn at the beginning of each row. Ch 7. Row 1: dc in 2nd ch from hook, dc in each st to end. 6sts. Row 2: ch1, turn, dc in each stitch. 6sts. Repeat row 2 until headband measures round the head. Cut the yarn leaving a long tail and pull through loop to secure. Place round the head and sew the ends together weave in any loose and cut off. Glue flower motif in place for decoration.

Sally’s neck cowl Using 3.5mm (UK 9, US E/4) crochet hook and grey yarn. Note this is not worked in the round, so ch1 and turn at the beginning of each row. Ch 5. Row 1: dc in 2nd ch from hook, dc in each st to end. 4sts. Row 2: ch1, turn, dc in each stitch. 4sts. Repeat row 2 until headband measures 35cm (14in). Cut the yarn leaving a long tail and pull through loop to secure. Sew the ends together, weave in any loose ends and cut off. Wrap around the neck.

Richard’s bow tie Using 3.5mm (UK 9, US E/4) crochet hook and red yarn. Note this is not worked in the round, so ch1 and turn at the beginning of each row. Ch 5. Row 1: dc in 2nd ch from hook, dc in each st to end. 4sts. Row 2-4: ch1, turn, dc in each stitch. 4sts. Cut the yarn leaving a long tail and pull through loop to secure. Wrap the yarn round the centre of the square a few times and pull tight. Sew in place on the neck.

Richard’s braces Make 2 using 3.5mm (UK 9, US E/4) crochet hook and blue yarn. Ch 22. Cut the yarn leaving a long tail and pull through loop to secure. Sew in place on either side of the body.

Richard’s glasses Use bendable jewellery wire and twist together to form the glasses shape. Use glue to secure black yarn to the one end of the wire and wrap around till all the wire is covered. Glue yarn end in lace and cut off.

SAFETY FIRST These cats are not designed as toys, or for young children. Always ensure your work is well-stitched and loose parts are securely attached. Remember, if you intend to sell them, even if they're not sold as a toy, there are strict regulations to adhere to. Visit for advice on child safety.


You’ve made it, now sell it… Follow our hints and tips to maximise profits from your crochet cats


Channel the amigurumi trend by creating a special section of your online shop or website dedicated to your amigurumi makes, then add a ‘pin it’ button so others can share it on Pinterest.

2 3 4 5 6

These cats need back stories! Get creative with their likes, dislikes and hobbies. Buyers will love the detail.

Three's a crowd! Why not create a fourth or fifth character in the set? Choose a style and give them a name. Make cute mini accessories to accompany each cat, such as a milk bottle, a bag of catnip or a little fish.

Offer colour customisation. Rather than second-guessing your buyers, offer to make the cats in three shades of their choice and charge an extra fee. Make paw print and fish bone stamps by carving rubbers and create your own funky packaging!

7 8 9

Create a kitty passport containing each cat’s name, date of birth, address, distinguishing marks, lovable traits, annoying habits… anything you like!

Broaden the range further by crocheting lots of little kitties in a wealth of colours to make them collectable items. Forge a connection between maker and buyer by adding interesting crafty facts to your product: This kitty took 3 hours to make, used 2 balls of yarn, I consumed 8 cups of tea and 12 biscuits, etc…


Shoot fun product photography. Richard could be at the office on the laptop, Sally at the gym and Tom at the farmer’s market!


Etsy: Amigurumi Cat by Rotten Monster, £28.74

Etsy: Maisie the ballerina kitten by Blue Agapathus, £7.99

Etsy: Sun the Stripy Cat by CuddlyandSoft, £37.83

Craftseller 21


My craft business is all about love! B

efore we even get in to Helen Lang’s flat, we’re greeted by an adorable bundle of fur in the shape of Border Terrier Desmond, who can’t wait to say hello. Illustrator Helen admits she’s used to being upstaged by her adorable dog as she puts the kettle on and tidies away her paints. Working from her small living room in South London, every available space is crammed full of paper, paints and gorgeous prints ready to be packed up and sent to happy customers – and with Valentine’s Day on the horizon, there’s a lot of work waiting for the postman. It’s impossible not to smile when you see all of Helen’s personalised prints stacked up ready for happy couples all around the UK to receive. Helen, 36, admits that falling in love helped her change to a style which makes her handmade prints so popular at this time of year. The illustrator also reveals how she grew her business from pitching up at every market to having the confidence to approach John Lewis… “Three years ago I was working for a publishing company in Camden, North London and getting utterly fed up with my commute from South London every day. Anyone who has been in Camden first thing on a Monday morning will know it’s hardly the most glamorous of places – especially when you arrive at work to find the police fishing a body out of the canal next door! The company I was doing design work for was great, but the recession was

22 Craftseller

biting and I knew they were in trouble. I’d always been an illustrator, but while I was having to work for someone else, I started working on my own designs, too. Another person at the company was getting a group of artists together to exhibit their work and I jumped at the chance. I did a small run of limited edition prints and couldn’t believe it when they all sold out. This gave me the confidence to start preparing to go freelance and sell my own work.

“I decided to contact John Lewis and to my surprise they asked me in for an interview” “Soon after that the company went into administration and I was made redundant. I’d spent six months saving money, finding an agent and getting designs together, but it was still scary making the leap and starting out on my own. When I told my mum that I was going to sell my own artwork all she could say was: ‘But how will you pay the mortgage!’ She thought I was mad and maybe I was a bit, but I thought if I don’t try now I never will. It was around the same time that I met my partner Danielle and falling in love meant my work became a bit more lovey dovey, too.

“I didn’t have a business plan at all – which I’m a bit embarrassed to admit – but in June 2011 I set up my Etsy shop and started signing up to every market going. I did everything from big trade fairs to school fêtes and made anything from £10 to £700. I had an old laptop and went to the local library to use their A2 scanner. I said yes to everything. I was exhibiting in cafés and picking up online retailers. Some worked and some didn’t, but I soon learnt which were right for me. Things were starting to go well, so one day I decided to contact John Lewis and to my surprise they asked me in for an interview and decided they wanted to print my designs on to wash bags. I blagged it a bit and I think they thought I had a much bigger business than just me and my dog Desmond in my lounge. Luckily they liked my work enough to put me in touch with a manufacturer and before I knew it my products were in John Lewis stores all over the UK. I’m very glad now that I wrote that email, closed my eyes, crossed my fingers and hit send! “Up until this point, I wasn’t doing any personalised prints and I have to thank a complete stranger for giving me the idea! I was doing large personalised paintings, but I couldn’t figure out how I could produce them quicker and cheaper. I got chatting to a lady on a stall near mine who suggested I took a design, made some space on it and simply set it up as a template so I could just add each person’s details as

Photos: Teri Pengilley/UNP

Helen Lang puts her signature style down to falling in love, and it’s certainly proved to be a recipe for success… By Karen Dunn

Clockwise from left: Helen and Desmond the Border Terrier relax at home surrounded by some of Helen’s intricate prints; you might have spotted some of Helen’s designs on the shelves in your local Tesco; finding a way to create personalised artwork quickly and simply was the turning point for Helen’s business


Helen’s top three tips Get the right stockists for you When I started out I was just so pleased that people liked my stuff that I agreed to every offer and stocked it everywhere, but actually I find that if you have just a few stockists who really believe in your work, like the Calm Gallery did with me, you do sell more in the long run.

Always find out where your shoppers first heard of you If you sell at markets as well as online or through other outlets, it’s always a good idea to ask your shoppers where they heard about you so you can work out which markets, websites or shops are working for you. I’ve done some markets where I’ve sold nothing on the day, but got tons of sales later online so it turned out that they were worth doing after all. If I didn’t ask I wouldn’t know which were a waste of money.

Do a focus group I was doing a workshop one day and one woman told me that my dinosaur design was a little bit babyish for her taste. I changed it to suit her style better and now it’s one of my best-sellers. Hearing that one comment in my workshop was like running a free focus group, which is brilliant because while friends will give you an opinion, they won’t want to hurt you so they often won’t be as honest as you need.

From top: All of Helen’s work uses her signature, romantic style; Helen starts every design by hand; this South London home is a haven of love

needed. It suddenly seemed so obvious, but it completely revolutionised my business. I signed up to Not On The High Street, because they particularly love personalised presents, and my sales grew and grew. “It’s lovely being a part of people’s important occasions. I still do a few bespoke prints and I’m currently working on one for a couple who are using it for their wedding invitations and place settings. It’s a lot of pressure to get it just right, because it’s such an important part of their special day, but it’s lovely to get the opportunity to be so creative, too. “I’ve had some celebrities hanging my work in their homes as well. Adele and Lauren Laverne both have my prints and the author India Knight was given one. She actually tweeted about it at the time and I ended up getting tons of hits on my website

24 Craftseller

that day, so it seems a bit of celebrity endorsement really does work! “I love working from home, there’s nothing quite like being able to get a

“Adele and Lauren Laverne both have my prints in their homes” bacon sandwich whenever you want and having a dance around your lounge. However, it is getting a bit cramped in here now with my stock hidden everywhere, and my printer is taking over the whole lounge. I don’t have space to screenprint so I go to this fantastic guy’s studio in Debenham, Suffolk. I drink a lot of tea and look out

at the countryside and try and spot barn owls while he does all the hard work. I’ve recently started doing more design work for companies like Tesco on the side, but nothing compares to the day when I realised that my Etsy sales were comfortably paying my mortgage – it was then that I knew I had a really successful business in Wetpaint. This year, I’m planning on moving house so I have somewhere bigger to work and then –finally – the London commute may be behind me forever.”

WetpaintArt To see more of Helen’s pretty personalised prints, visit WetpaintArt on or follow her (and Desmond) on Twitter at @Helen_Wetpaint

Space & Performance

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FOR £3

30-minute make Upcycle old books and maps by turning them into vintage-style tags – they're the perfect finishing touch for Valentine's makes. By Katie Skilton

Spotty love tag Cut a tag shape approx. 6.5cm x 11.5cm (2 x 4 in) from Kraft card. Punch a hole 0.5cm (¼in) from the top. Die-cut the letters 'L', 'V' and 'E' from the polka dot paper. Punch a medium heart from red cardstock and a small one from polka dot paper. Stick to the tag with foam pads. Thread coloured twine through the hole. 1

INFORMATION Materials: * Doodlebug Tweetie Pie papers 30.5 x 30.5cm (12 x 12in) * Old book pages * Old maps * Kraft card * Red textured cardstock * Coloured twine * Alphabet stamps and dies * Heart-shaped punch * Red ink * Craft knife * Hole punch * 3D foam pads * Glue Size: 6.5cm x 11.5cm (2½ x 4½in) Skill level: Easy

Three-heart love tag Cut a tag shape approx. 6.5 x 11.5cm (2 x 4 in) from Kraft card. Punch a hole 0.5cm ( in) from the top. Stamp the word LOVE onto an old book page and trim around. Stick to the tag. Punch three mini hearts and stick to the bottom of the tag with foam pads. Thread with twine and tie. 2

Map-heart love tag Cut a tag shape approx. 6.5cm x 11.5cm (2 x 4 in) from Kraft card. Punch a hole 0.5cm ( in) from the top. Punch two large hearts from an old map and stick to the card using foam pads. Die-cut the word ‘Love’ from red cardstock and stick to the hearts. Thread twine through the hole at the top and tie. 3

Craftseller 27




FOR £20

28 Craftseller


Hydrangea love Our vintage-style floral hanging heart decoration makes a great alternative to roses this Valentine’s Day. By Marie Parry

INFORMATION Materials * 12 x 11.5in Oasis heart * 5 stems of pink hydrangea * Three pink roses * Ribbon * Moss pins Size: 35.5 x 34.5cm (14 x 13.5in) Skill level: Easy


he usual dozen red roses can be a bit predictable, so woo the Valentine’s Day buyer with this stunning alternative to a bouquet. This sumptuous hydrangea wall hanging in soft, fresh green has three peachy pink roses nestling at its heart. Wonderful to hang if you’re cooking a romantic evening meal! We’d even suggest this would be a good all-year-round seller and worth adding to your creative repertoire with wedding celebrations in mind. Also, make sure you tell shoppers that hydrangea still look great when the flowers have dried, so it won’t just be a short-lived romance!

How to make the hydrangea heart Give your hydrangeas a really good drink. Soak the Oasis heart by dropping it into a sink or bucket of water and allow it to absorb the water for around 10 mins or so. Do not push the Oasis into the water as this will create air pockets inside the material and prevent some stems from getting water.


the Oasis from the water and 2 Remove round off the edges by rubbing gently or trimming with a sharp knife. Attach a loop of ribbon to the reverse of the Oasis heart using a couple of moss pins.

Use scissors or a florist’s knife to carefully split each head of hydrangea into smaller clumps, making sure you keep the stem of each clump in tact so you can push it into the Oasis.


First create a border of hydrangea around the edge of the heart, by simply pushing each clump firmly into the Oasis. Next add a line of hydrangea across the middle of the heart and down the centre, effectively splitting the heart into quarters. Now fill in each quarter of the heart with more hydrangea, placing the clumps close together to give it a really full look. Continue until the heart is filled with hydrangea and the green Oasis is completely hidden.


Trim three pink roses so their stems are around 2.5cm (1in) long. Push them into the Oasis in a cluster in the top left side of the heart as shown, to finish.


TOP TIP Begin by hydrating the hydrangea. Plunge it into a bath of water, so heads and stems are submerged

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Craftseller 29


30 Craftseller




FOR £20

Love is all around This sweet cross stitch sign will add a little colour and romance to your craft stall. By Sarah Heys

INFORMATION Materials * Threads as listed in the key on page 32 * White aida 20 x 20cm (8 x 8in) * White 14 count aida * Needle * Frame of your choice Size: 10cm (4in) diameter Skill level: Easy


ross stitching is all the rage at the moment, so you’ll be onto a winner if you reflect this trend in your craft range. Our fresh, modern design will happily sit in any room of the house, and the colour palette used would suit both male and female buyers – it’s not too floaty and feminine! Mount your finished work in a simple white frame, as we have here, to highlight the beautiful lettering. You could also mount it in a circular frame for a different look altogether – a wooden framing hoop would add more of a vintage feel.

How to stitch the ‘Love is all around’ sampler Fold the aida in half one way and then the other to find the centre of your fabric and mark it. If you prefer to place your work in a stitching hoop, do that now. Start stitching from the centre of the chart.


chart being careful to check the 2 Follow colours used in the key as a lot of similar shades are used in the design.


Once finished, press the fabric then trim and mount it in a frame.

SELL MORE Offer to change the colour of the lettering to suit your shoppers’ style and taste

Craftseller 31



LOVE SAMPLER KEY Cross stitch in two strands

ee ee ee ee HHHHHH ee ee HHHHHHH eee eee GGGG HHHHHHH ee ee GGGGGG HHHHHHHHHH eee eee GGGGGGG HHHHHHHHHH ee ee GGGG GGGG HHHHHHHHHH ee ee GGGG GGGG HHHHHHHHHH ee ee GGGG GGGG HHHHHHHHHH eeeeee GGGGG GGG HHHHHHHHHH eeee GGGGGG GGG 888 HHHHHHHHH eeee GGG GGG GG 8888 eeee GG GGG G 888888 8888 ee GG GGG 88888 888888 ee GGGG GGG 8888 8888888 ee GGGG GG EE EE 88888888 ee GGGGGG EE EE EEEEEEE 88888 kk GGGG EEEEEEE EEEEEEE 8888 kkkk kkk GGGG EEEEEEE EEEEEEE 888 kkkkk kkkkk k GGGG EEEEEEE EEEEEEE kk k kkkkk k k GGG EEEEEEE EEEEE kkkk kk kk kk k k EEEEE EEE kkk kkk kk kk k k kk EEE E kk kkkkk kk kk k kkkk E 88 88888 kk kk kk kkkkk k kk 8888888888 kk kk kkkkk k eeeeee 888888 8 kk kk kk kk k kkk eeeeeeee 8888888 8 kk kk kk kk kk kkk ee eee 88 88888 k kkkkk kk kk kk ee eee 8 88888 kkk kk kk ee eee 8888 9999 k k ;;; ee eee 8888 999 99 HHHHH ;;;;; ee ee 888 999 9 HHHHH G G ;;;;;; eeee 88 99999 99 HHH HHH GG G ; ;;; eee 8 999999999 HH HH GG GG ;; ;;; e 999 99 99 H H GG GG ;; ;; 999 99 H H GG GG ;; ;;; 999 99 H H GG GG ;; ;; 99 999 H H GG GG ;;; ;; 999 H H GG GG ;; ; 999 HH HH GG GG ;; 999 HHH HHH GGGGGG ;; HHHHHHH GGGGG ; HHHHH GGG

H 9 8 K E ; G E

DMC 561 562 798 803 825 3755 3808 3810

Anchor Madeira Colour 212 1205 dark green 210 1204 green 131 912 blue 148 1006 very dark blue 162 1011 dark blue 140 1013 light blue 1068 2507 sea green 168 1108 light sea green

Stitch count 44 high x 45 wide 14 HPI (28-count evenweave) – 8 x 8cm (3¼x3¼in) This design was stitched using DMC stranded cotton on 14-count aida


DaWanda Robot Love Stitch by Mr. Snorr, £12.60

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32 Craftseller

Folksy ‘LOVE’ mini stitch kit by StitchKits, £15

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Etsy Stitch kit welcome by Keeryhome, £8

FIND US ON PINTEREST! We’ve got loads of crafty inspiration for you to browse at


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More than words

The literary trend looks set to stay and what better way to incorporate it in your crafts than with these love story cufflinks? By Dorothy Wood


2.50 MAKE FOR £

FOR £7.50

34 Craftseller




How to make the cufflinks

Materials: * 16 x 16mm (¾ x ¾in) square cufflink blanks – black * 16 x 16mm (¾ x ¾in) square, clear epoxy stickers * E6000 glue * 1mm grey board * Old book * Cufflink box to display your items Size: 16 x 16mm (¾ x ¾in) Skill level: Easy


ufflinks make a great gift for men and these attractive designs with little snippets of literature can be adapted for all sorts of occasions. For Valentine’s Day or wedding season, why not use text from a romantic novel or poem? These cufflinks are created from a love poem by John Donne. They are really easy to make as you can buy self-adhesive epoxy resin squares that simply stick onto the text. This is much easier than trying to keep the cufflinks flat while you wait for liquid resin mix to set! Find them at in all shapes and sizes.

36 Craftseller

1 Select an area of text for the cufflink. This can be an actual page from a book, or you can scan the page and print it out. Printing onto good quality paper will give you a better finish. For Valentine's Day, perhaps choose an area of text that includes the words 'love', 'cherish' or 'adore'.

2 Carefully stick the clear epoxy sticker onto the text so that it is in line, smoothing out the text on the reverse to remove any air bubbles. Cut out the text, keeping as close to the edge of the sticker as you can.

3 Measure and cut a 16 x 16mm (¾ x ¾in) square of paper for a template. Lay onto the grey board and cut out two pieces.

4 Apply a small amount of strong jewellery glue to the cufflink setting and stick one piece of grey board into the cufflink.

5 Ensure the swivel bar on the cufflink is horizontal. Add glue over the grey board, insert the epoxy resin square and push into the setting. Leave to dry.

6 Repeat the process to make a second cufflink. Leave both to dry for 24 hours and package to sell as a Valentine's gift.

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10 top tips for

Valentine’s makes

Get your craft on for Valentine’s Day and make some money with these ideas that are guaranteed to set your customers’ hearts aflutter! By Verity Gough


ith Valentine’s Day just around the corner, canny craft sellers can take advantage of the thousands of couples out there looking for that perfect gift to show their loved one just how special they are. Whether you make jewellery, clothing or paper-based crafts, tweaks to your designs and a dose of luxe embellishment can turn your makes into gorgeous Valentine’s gifts. While chocolates, roses and perfume are enduring classics, the market for handmade is more popular than ever. Read our top tips to get those buyers’ hearts racing for your gorgeous creations!


Be prepared to personalise

Personalisation is big business and makes that can be quickly customised will be great sellers for Valentine’s Day. “You never know which piece of your existing stock will be selected to mark Valentine’s Day,” says jewellery designer, Harriet Bedford ( “Last year, a customer bought my Sycamore pendant for his wife. They’d had their first date under a sycamore tree and it had become a symbol of their partnership. I was able to turn the piece into the perfect Valentine gift by asking the client to provide a personalised note which I wrote on an elegant card.”

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Tag online items with ‘Valentines’ so they appear in searches


Flower power

Roses are eternally romantic and by far the most popular gift given on Valentine’s Day. But if flower arranging isn’t your bag, fear not, says Gloucestershire-based florist, Marie Parry of Mim’s Flowershed ( MimsFlowerShed): “Dress your table or stall with romantic blooms and it’s sure to pull the crowds. Make simple floral garlands to dress the edges of your table, or mini corsages to give free with sales over £10,” she suggests.


Naughty but nice

If you want to branch out, consider making lingerie. Sumptuous lace and pretty embellishments are a must: “My frilly vintage knickers are popular because they’re a bit cheeky, a bit flirty and the vintage prints really appeal,” explains Verity Warne (Made by Loulabelle on “When I sell at markets or stalls, it’s mostly women who buy them, but online it’s often men – I think they feel a bit braver when it’s not face-to-face!”


Loco for cocoa

Loved ones will always appreciate chocolate and you don’t need to be an expert baker to whip up some chocolate fudge or decadent truffles. Simply package in boxes tied with ribbon for the perfect, cost-effective gift. Sisters Linda O’Brien and Philippa Chevalier set up Cocoapod Chocolates ( in Orpington and create fun, colourful personalised chocolates – they are inundated around Valentine’s Day. “Our ‘build a block’ chocolate is very popular – people spell out all kinds of weird and wonderful things,” says Linda. Her top tip is to keep your creations fun: “Everyone loves chocolate so you can’t go too far wrong!”


Take heart

Probably most synonymous with Valentine’s Day is the humble heart. “This classic motif can be used in so many ways: to decorate your home, give as a gift or as a table decoration for a special meal,” says Amy Mortimer, who sells her gorgeous makes at Elsie & Fleur ( Add heart motifs to cards, embellish makes with heart-shaped buttons or heart-printed ribbon or create wire hearts to hang on your stall. There’s no end of ways you can use this versatile shape to add a touch of romance.

Verity’s vintage designs make a quirky present for stylish women


Be different

iPad covers like this one from make the perfect gift for men

Wrapping is a simple way of making your items into a special Valentine’s gift. Pretty paper, silk ribbons and luxe embellishments will give parcels the wow factor. “Valentine-up a regular product by adding gift tags, ribbon and sprinkling heart-shaped sequins in the layers of wrap,” suggests Harriet. “Having an inexpensive toolbox like this prepares you for every eventuality.”


Don’t forget him!

‘He’ can be difficult to buy for at the best of times, but you can easily add some makes for men into your range. “Gadget cases are popular, with the addition of a discrete Valentine embellishment, the gift becomes even more special,” says Amy. Creating unisex items in masculine textures and colours will broaden their appeal.

Crafternoon Tea’s sweet craft kits are a great alternative for Valentine’s. “Our reusable sandwich bag is perfect for a winter picnic,” says co-founder Gemma Green. “Tweak the kit to include a pattern or design that’s personal to you, then every lunchtime they’ll remember that wonderful day!”

Cute hearts will always be popular with Valentine’s shoppers


Sweet smelling

Perfume is another Valentine’s staple, so why not create candles or soaps at a fraction of the cost? Anthony Allen of suggests rose-geranium and ylang ylang when scenting your creations: “Ylang ylang is a natural aphrodisiac which enhances and stimulates passion – it’s sure to boost your Valentine’s sales.”


Pretty-up your makes with packaging!

8More than words

Text can be seen emblazoned across all kinds of makes from clothing, bags and cards to jewellery and furniture. It’s a is a quick and easy way, on-trend way to create a heartfelt sentiment without personalising each item. Harriet recommends adding a short verse, appropriate phrase or even one beautiful word in a font of your choice to make your item more than just a possession.

Craftseller 39

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From the heart

Offer romantic shoppers a little piece of heaven with a selection of indulgent treats, handmade with love. By Jessica Sharp

We love... Rich colours and decadent ďŹ&#x201A;avours

Craftseller 43



all head-over-heels in love with our sumptuous bakes this month, perfect for serving up at a Valentine’s Day craft fair or special event. This head-turning red velvet cake looks stunning and irresistible, with its contrast red-and-white colouring and rich flavour. You could serve it by the slice served on vintage crockery, for shoppers to nibble on as they browse. Cupcakes are always popular too, and our fabulous vanilla rose designs complete with golden butterfly decoration and luscious butter icing are sure to sell out. Finally, rich, dark truffles drizzled with chocolate and strawberry will look beautiful when presented in a little gift box, or a crinkly, ribbon-topped cellophane bag. Your shoppers will love you forever!

INGREDIENTS For the cake: * 120g (4oz) unsalted butter, at room temperature * 300g (10½oz) caster sugar * 2 large eggs * 20g (¾oz) cocoa powder * 1 heaped tbsp red gel food colouring * 1 tsp vanilla extract * 285ml buttermilk * 300g (10½oz) plain flour * 1 tsp bicarbonate of soda * 1 tbsp white wine vinegar For the decoration: *250g (9oz) salted butter, at room temperature * 350g (12½oz) full-fat cream cheese * 800g (1 lb 12oz) icing sugar Special equipment: * 3 x 20cm (8in) sandwich tins * 1 x 25cm (10in) cake board Time: 2 hours (including cooling time) Makes: 1 cake (cuts into 12-16 slices) Skill level: Easy

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Red velvet cake Preheat the oven to 170°C, 150°C Fan, gas mark 3. Grease three 20cm (8in) sandwich tins and line the bases with baking parchment.


Combine the flour, cocoa, baking powder, bicarbonate of soda and a pinch of salt in a bowl. In another bowl, cream together the butter and sugar, beating well until the mixture is pale and fluffy. Beat in the food colouring and the vanilla. Add two tablespoons of the dried ingredients, followed by one egg, and beat well. Add another two spoonfuls of the dry ingredients, then the other egg, and beat again before incorporating the rest of the dry ingredients. Pour in the buttermilk and vinegar and beat until you have a smooth mixture.


Divide the cake batter evenly between the three tins (you may wish to use scales to ensure you divide the mixture equally). Bake in the oven for 25-30 minutes or until the cakes have risen and are starting to shrink from the sides of the tins.


the cakes to cool in the tins for 4 Leave five minutes, then turn out onto a wire rack and leave to cool completely. At this stage, you can wrap the sponges in a layer of cling film and tin foil and store overnight before assembling the cake. To make the cream cheese icing, take an electric whisk or freestanding mixer fitted with the paddle attachment and beat the butter until very soft. Add the cream cheese and beat briefly until incorporated.


Gradually add the icing sugar and mix until you have a smooth, glossy icing. Do not overbeat the mixture or the icing may become runny. Use immediately, or refrigerate for up to two days in an airtight container (bring the frosting back to room temperature before using).


To assemble the cake, first trim the sponges flat (save the trimmings for later). Place one sponge on a cake board and spread with a layer of the icing. Top with the second sponge. Spread this with a layer of icing, then top with the final sponge. Next, spread the entire cake with a thin layer of icing (this ‘crumb coat’ should prevent crumbs getting into the top layer of icing).


Place the cake in the fridge for at least 30 minutes to set the crumb coat. Remove the cake from the fridge and use a palette knife to cover the top and sides with a thicker layer of icing.


To create the ‘ribboned’ effect on the sides of the cake, hold a small palette knife horizontally against the bottom of the cake and gradually drag it around the whole cake until you are back to where you started. Move the palette knife to just above this first line and repeat the process. Keep doing this until you reach the top of the cake.


To decorate the top of the cake, take the reserved cake trimmings and process briefly in a food processor (if you don’t have a processor you can crumble the cake using your fingers). Sprinkle the crumbs around the top of the cake. Store the finished cake in the fridge but bring to room temperature before serving. It will keep this way for up to seven days.




FOR £20

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MAKE FOR £3 FOR £1.75

Red rose cupcakes


INGREDIENTS For the cupcakes: * 175g (6oz) self-raising flour * 175g (6oz) unsalted butter, at room temp * 175g (6oz) caster sugar * 3 large eggs, lightly beaten * 1 tsp vanilla extract * ½ tsp baking powder For the buttercream: * 175g (6oz) salted butter, at room temp * 350g (12½oz) icing sugar * 1 tsp vanilla extract * 1 tbsp milk * Red food colouring For the decoration: *Small amount white ready-to-roll icing * Edible gold paint Special equipment: * Piping bag with medium star-shaped tip * Small butterfly cutter * Small paintbrush Time: 2 hours Makes: 12 cupcakes Skill level: Easy

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Preheat the oven to 170°C, 150°C Fan, gas mark 3. Using an electric whisk or freestanding mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, beat all the ingredients for the cupcakes for one to two minutes until smooth and pale in colour.


Line the muffin tin with paper cases and divide the cake mix equally between them. Place in the oven and bake for approximately 25 minutes until the cakes are risen and golden in colour. Remove the from the oven and leave them to stand in the tin for five minutes before transferring them to a wire rack to cool completely.


While you wait for the cupcakes to cool completely make the buttercream. First beat the butter until it is very soft. Gradually incorporate the icing sugar. Add the milk and vanilla and beat until the mixture is very


light and fluffy. Add enough food colouring to create your desired shade of red. Trim any domes from the tops of the cakes so they have a flat surface. To ice, spoon the buttercream into a piping bag fitted with a medium sized star-shaped nozzle. To create a rose effect, start from the centre of each cupcake, pipe the buttercream onto the surface, going around in a circle until you reach the outer edge of the cake.


To make the decorations, dust a clean surface with icing sugar. Roll the readyto-roll icing to about 2-3mm thick and use the butterfly cutter to cut 12 shapes. Remove these and place on a board or plate to dry a little before painting with edible gold paint. Place one on each cupcake and serve. The cakes will keep in an airtight container at room temperature for up to five days.


SELL MORE Add a little food colour to the batter for pink cupcakes for an all-out romantic, Valentine’s feel



FOR £6.50

Chocolate truffles INGREDIENTS For the truffles: * 200g dark chocolate * 200g milk chocolate * 175g soft butter * 4 tablespoons golden syrup * 250g ginger biscuits * 150g red glace cherries * 150g white mini marshmallows * Christmas sprinkles and edible glitter, to decorate To decorate (optional): * 100g (3½oz) white chocolate, melted * 100g (3½oz) dark chocolate, melted * Chopped hazelnuts * Freeze-dried strawberry pieces Time: 1 hour (plus 2 hours’ chilling time) Makes: 40 truffles Skill level: Easy


leave the truffles undecorated or simply roll them in cocoa powder or icing sugar at this stage. Alternatively, roll in chopped hazelnuts.

before drizzling with melted chocolate. Keep the truffles in the refrigerator until the last moment; they will last for up to a week.

If you wish to cover the truffles in chocolate, the best way to do this is to sit a truffle in a separate bowl, spoon the cooled melted chocolate over and then use two forks to transfer the truffle back onto the baking parchment.

ALLERGY ADVICE When you are selling homemade food, like these delicious Valentine’s Day treats, make sure you label all products with clear allergy warnings. For best practice make sure you have a full list of the ingredients used available to give to any customers who ask. For more information on food safety advice, visit the Food Standards Agency at



Top immediately with the freezedried strawberry pieces or refrigerate

SELL MORE Experiment with different toppings for your truffles to suit the season you’re selling them in

Put the cream and butter into a saucepan and heat gently until the butter melts and the cream reaches simmering point. Meanwhile, chop or break up the chocolate and tip into a large heatproof bowl. Remove the cream mixture from the heat, then pour it over the chocolate. Stir the chocolate and cream together until you have a smooth, mixture


If you wish you can add flavourings to the mix at this stage (eg, a tablespoon of orange zest, brandy, bourbon, rum or Grand Marnier), or leave plain. Cool the mix and refrigerate for at least two hours.


To form the truffles, use a melon baller or lightly oiled hands to mould small amounts of the mixture into balls. Place on a tray lined with baking parchment. You can


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Charity bakes Bake some delicious eats and treats this month to help raise some cash for these three great charities

Pancreatic Cancer Research Bake and Share to help people diagnosed with pancreatic cancer Celebrity chef Lorraine Pascale has given a big oven-gloves thumbs-up to the Pancreatic Cancer Research Fund, Bake and Share event. Whip up scrummy treats to share with friends, family, colleagues and neighbours for this fantastic cause. The charity was set up by Maggie Blanks, whose husband died of the cancer just three months after they married. Maggie was shocked to discover the cancer’s survival rate was the same as 40 years ago, so she set up the fund to drive development of an early diagnostic test. The charity channels

Bakers of all ages are hosting Bake and Share events

Pick cakes that everyone will love to raise more cash

“Fund 27 cuttingedge projects worth £4 million” money into the best UK research, including 27 cutting-edge projects worth £4m. So, get baking to help – whether you organise a big community event, or a party for a few friends, the charity is grateful for every penny. Log on to craft–seller. com where you can find a delicious recipe for fudge brownies, donated by Lorraine Pascale, to help you get your Bake and Share event off to a flying start.

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Join Lorraine Pascale to help beat cancer

How you can help For more information on the Pancreatic Cancer Research Fund, call 020 8360 1119 or visit for a fundraising pack


Dinner 4 Good Sign up your craft club for a fab feast that raises cash for excellent causes If you’re part of a craft club that loves spending time together, then we think we’ve found the perfect excuse for you to get together even more often! You’ll get to eat fantastic food, enjoy great company and raise money for your favourite charity too! Dinner 4 Good is asking groups of friends to organise a dinner party to raise money for good causes. The organisation supports various charities by allowing people to arrange their dinner parties through its website. You simply log on to dinner4good. com and follow the instructions to set up your event and design your invites. The invitations are emailed to your guests, who are then able to make a donation to attend. The money is paid directly to your charity of choice, leaving you time to get on with preparing your feast! We thought this would appeal to the bakers among you – you could make your dinner a pie and mash night or

Marie Curie Cancer Care

Turn your next dinner party into a fundraiser!

a more formal dinner party, or you could get members of your craft club to take it in turns hosting dinner parties and see how much you can raise over a year. Sheila Mackintosh chose to support the Alzheimer’s Society when she held her dinner party. She says: “As soon as I heard about Dinner 4 Good I knew it was for me. I went on the website and found they’d made it all really simple. There’s loads of charities to choose from, and setting up your personalised ‘dinner page’ only takes a minute. Your guests get an automatic invite from the site and can reply online.

Hold a chic French tea party and sell delicious macaroons

Host a Tour de France themed party and raise cash for Cancer Care This summer, the Tour de France is coming to the UK, and to celebrate the world’s largest annual sporting event hitting our shores, Marie Curie Cancer Care is asking keen crafters to hold bake sales throughout 2014 to raise much-needed funds for its important work. Marie Curie nurses provide care and support for people with terminal illnesses all over the UK. They enable people to spend their last few weeks and months in their own homes if they wish, helping them live as independently as possible. They’re also a great support for carers of people with life-limiting illnesses.

So how can you help raise money for Marie Curie Cancer Care? Well it couldn’t be more fun! Simply dust off your recipe books, dig out the cake tins and get baking.

The clever bit is the fact that they can donate online, so there’s no awkwardness over asking for, and collecting, the money. For me it was great. I love cooking and entertaining and we often have friends for dinner, but this way I could have a great night, while feeling virtuous, too.”

How you can help To find out more and choose which charity you’d like to host for visit

Holding a bake sale is a fab way of getting people in your community together for fun and fundraising. Theme your event to mark the Tour de France – go for a chic French theme and bake croissants, macarons and éclairs, or you could celebrate the yellow jersey and make yellow cupcakes, custard slices and lemon tarts! Make sure you advertise the event well by putting posters up, getting a mention in the local newspaper and sending invites through social media to ensure everyone knows it’s on. Ask for an entry fee, or charge per slice, and think of other fun ways to boost your fund-raising total on the day – like a raffle, tombola or cake-decorating contest.

How you can help For more information on Marie Curie Cancer Care and to register your event, visit or call 0845 052 4184

Craftseller 49




FOR £3-£4

Tweet romance

Make the most of Valentine’s Day with this personalised card – ideal for shoppers wanting that something special. By Wendy Massey

INFORMATION Materials * Free Craftseller papers * Two A5 card blanks * Glue * Double-sided sticky pads * Fine line marker pen (ideally 0.3mm nib) * Sewing machine (for the heartstings card) Skill level: Easy


omance is in the air this month with our eight pages of gorgeous Valentine-themed papers. You don’t need to look far for inspiration, either – it’s right here in the form of two very different cards that you can make and sell to your shoppers. Personalising cards for individual customers is easy and means you’ll sell more – and at a premium price, too – meaning you can make the most of the busy Valentine’s Day period Start now with our bird card.

50 Craftseller

How to make the bird card Cut 12cm x 20cm (4½ x 8in) rectangle, four 4.5cm x 4cm (1¾ x 1½in) rectangles, 12cm x 2.5cm (4½ x 1in) and 9.5cm x 2cm (3¾ x ¾in) rectangles. Using p102 cut two facing birds, beaks and a heart.


Using Cooper Black font at 96 point. Print out the word LOVE. Use as a template to cut the letters from the papers.



Glue the large rectangle to the card. Stick small rectangles along the

bottom, spaced at regular intervals. Attach the letters using sticky pads.


Glue the heart in the centre. Stick the beaks then the birds with sticky pads.


Write the sentiment by hand, or print from a PC. Attach with sticky pads.

Using the fine line pen, create faux stitching to emphasise the shapes and letters, add eyes and legs to the birds.



of exclusive designs

With Love


With Love


With Love


With Love


With Love


With Love


With Love


With Love






FOR £3-£5

Love from..? Some shoppers will want to send a traditional, anonymous Valentine’s card so make this love heart greeting, too. By Wendy Massey How to make the heartstrings card Using the template on p102 cut out five hearts and two sentiments, plus two rectangles, one each at 13cm x 20cm (5 x 8in) and 7.5cm x 20cm (3 x 8in), plus backing pieces the shape of the sentiments.


Place the hearts on the rectangle, then use a sewing machine and long stitch to sew a vertical line through each heart and around the edge of the rectangle. Fold each side of the heart up to create a 3D effect.


Glue the large rectangle in place. Put sticky pads behind the sewn rectangle and stick in place to the left of the card. Glue the backing for the music sentiment in place and position the sentiment on top of it centrally with sticky pads.


With the sewing machine, stitch the two backing pieces of the tag sentiment together. Use sticky pads to stick into place, sticking two pads together to raise it higher than the rectangle with hearts.



Stick the sentiment tag in place with more sticky pads.

Craftseller 59



Stockists of 100% wool felt supplies, flat pad findings, buttons, ribbons, DMC threads, craft books & kits, needle felting supplies, glues, cabochons and much more!

Textile, jewellery & paper craft supplies plus some lovely gifts - aren’t we fancy!

Visitors welcome by appointment at The Craft Room in Nottingham


Craftseller 61


Mummy makes A sweet drawstring bag made from mix and match fabrics with a funky fox motif makes a great present for any little lady. By Jane Tooze


£3.50 MAKE FOR

FOR £12.50

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Craftseller 63


Let buyers help you choose the fabric for a bespoke bag

INFORMATION Materials: * 150cm (20in) yellow gingham * 25cm (10in) red gingham * 25cm (10in) floral fabric * 15 x 15cm (6 x 6in) lime cotton * Small squares of terracotta cotton, spot fabric and felt square * Brown thread * Bondaweb * White fabric paint * Black fabric pen * 2.5m (100in) cording Size: 30 x 46cm (12 x 18in) Skill level: Easy


ittle girls will love this fun, personalised kit bag, with its bright colours and big bold styling. It’s made from soft poly cottons and is fully-lined, making a strong, washable product that will appeal to mums and grandmas as well! The quirky fox motif and fun fabrics will really make it stand out, and with the cute appliqué lettering there will be no doubt whose bag it is on the school peg! You can make this incredibly cheaply if you use up stash-scraps and rummage through off-cut bargains, making your profit per sale soar.

How to make the kit bag 1 Cut two rectangles 35.5 x 53.5cm (14 x 21in) of yellow gingham (this includes 2.5cm (1in) seam allowance and 5cm (2in) top turning). This is the bag lining. Cut four rectangles 18 x 23cm (7 x 9in) of the floral fabric (this includes 1.5cm seam allowance). Cut two rectangles 18 x 23cm (7 x 9in) out of red gingham and two rectangles 18 x 23cm (7 x 9in) from yellow gingham. 2 With right sides facing together, stitch the two large yellow gingham rectangles along the two long edges and the bottom. Make sure you leave the top open. This is the lining of the bag completed. 3 Place two floral, one red gingham and one yellow gingham rectangle into a patchwork pattern of your choice, pin them together and stitch. Repeat with the remaining squares to make a front and back for the bag. Take one of these completed rectangles and add the detail.

SAFETY FIRST This bag is designed to appeal to children so it should be made with care. Always ensure your work is well-stitched and any loose parts are securely attached. Remember, if you intend to sell it, there are strict regulations to adhere to. Visit for advice on child safety.

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4 Iron the Bondaweb onto the lime green square and place this onto the centre of the bag front panel. Iron on to attach it to the bag and use a zigzag stitch to secure it in place. Iron the bondaweb to the rest of the appliqué fabrics and on the paper side, draw out the templates. Draw and cut four green leaves, a fox and the name letters.

5 Iron all the shapes onto the front of the bag and sew all the way around each one, using the photo as a guide. 6 For the strap loops, cut a strip of red gingham 25 x 4cm (10 x 1.5cm). Fold the sides to the middle and fold again so the raw edges are enclosed. Top stitch sides together. Cut this in half so you have two lengths and fold each of these so the loops measure 10cm (4in) in length. 7 Place the front and back right sides together, slot the loops into the bag (raw edges of loops to the side). Position loops 2.5cm (1in) up from the bottom. Sew the front and back of the bag together leaving the top open. Turn to the right side and place lining into the bag (wrong sides together). 8 Press the raw edges in slightly so that they won’t show, then fold again creating a 2.5cm (1in) channel. Stitch, leaving a gap at each side of the channel to thread the straps through. Below each gap make a 3.5cm (1½in) buttonhole. 9 Cut the cording in half. Thread one half all the way around the channel, through the button hole and tie securely through the strap loop. Repeat with the other cord going the opposite way around the bag channel.


Craftseller 65






Fab freebies


Be inspired by these gorgeous giveaways, and enter today for your chance to walk away with a fab prize!



12 prizes TO WIN!


ENJOY A GOOD READ Win one of five pairs of GMC knitting titles, When Bad Things Happen to Good Knitters (£14.99) by Marion Edmonds and Ahza Moore to guide you through any knitting mishaps, plus Melissa Leapman’s Knit Stitch Pattern Handbook (£12.99) of 300 stitch patterns. Visit To enter, text GMC followed by your name, address and email to 87474*


KEEP IT SAFE We have five of these handy 20 x 43 x 37cm lightweight but durable bags (£30) from HobbyGift up for grabs. Ideal for storing and

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carrying your sewing machine, enter now to keep your machine safe and stylish. Email To enter, text HOLDALL followed by your name, address and email to 87474*


GET YOUR CRAFT FIX Creative Stitches & Hobbycrafts have a pair of tickets to offer 10 lucky readers (£9) to their fantastic show at the SECC, Glasgow, 6-9 March 2014. Don’t miss the latest craft supplies, free workshops, talks and demonstrations! Visit To enter, text SECC followed by your name, address and email to 87474*


WRAP IT UP This spring, attract shoppers by presenting your makes in a rustic wooden basket, or wrapped in pretty pink and lilac trimmings. We have six lovely bundles, worth £25, to win. Visit To enter, text WRAP followed by your name, address and email to 87474*


GO NUTS Win one of 12 gorgeous, colourful twine packs (£9) from the lovely people at Nutscene. Visit To enter, text TWINE followed by your name, address and email to 87474*




6 prizes

*Melt & Pour soap kits are suitable for most ages including children, with adult supervision. Melting the soap-base requires the use of either a microwave or a hob. Always supervise children when they are required to use kitchen utensils and appliances.




SCRUB-A-DUB-DUB If our soap letter project in last issue got your creative juices flowing, enter to be in with a chance of winning one of six woodlandthemed Melt and Pour soap kits* (£18.99). Perfect even for beginners, this kit includes everything you need for sweet-smelling soap. Visit To enter, text SOAP followed by your name, address and email to 87474*


GET IN THE MOOD Get into the Valentine’s spirit with a fun knicker-making kit (£15) from Flo-Jo Boutique. To celebrate the festival of flirtation, Flo-Jo have created three Valentine’s-themed kits just for you, and we have three to give away. Each one contains everything you need. Visit To enter, text KNICKERS followed by your name, address and email to 87474*


BE A WEBSITE WIZARD Win one of two copies of WebPlus X7 (£89.99) from award-winning creative software developer, Serif. WebPlus X7 comes with everything included so even if you have no experience you’ll be able to create a unique professional-quality website. Visit To enter, text SERIF followed by your name, address and email to 87474*

* Terms and conditions apply: The Promoter is Immediate Media Company Bristol Limited. Entrants must be UK residents aged 18 years or older. Texts will be charged at 25p plus your standard network tariff rate. To enter by post: write your name, address and chosen freebie on the back of a postcard and send to: Craftseller 33, Immediate Media Company, 9th Floor, Tower House, Fairfax Street, Bristol BS1 3BN. By entering this competition you are agreeing to receive newsletters, offers and promotions by post, email and telephone from Immediate Media Company Ltd and the prize providers sending offers and newsletters to you by post, email or phone. You can unsubscribe from these at any time. If you do not want to receive this information please add the words ‘NO INFO’ at the end of your text message or write ‘NO INFO’ on your postcard. Closing date for entries is 11.59pm on 12/02/14. For the full terms and conditions visit

Craftseller 69


Diary of a craft selling mum Every month, craft seller and mum of two, Erica Martyn, who makes toys for her business Odds & Soxlets, invites us into her world…

All about me I am 34 years old, and mum to three-year-old Harry and baby girl, Lottie Rose! I have a husband called Martin and a naughty but very sweet 12-year-old Yorkshire Terrier called Mr Biggles. We live in Dorset and I began my business in May 2011. I’m still learning heaps, while at the same time juggling home life, finances, and the needs and demands of my growing family and my customers…

Harry spent his inset day taking care of his baby sister Lottie

THIS MONTH * Crafty makes – 43 * Road trips – 1 verrrrry long one * School inset days – 2 * T-shirts printed – 12 * Craft fairs attended – 1 virtual

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Day 3

Day 4

We’re going to take a week off. It’s official. Really, I am going to do it! And no cheating with emails, calls, sewing, researching or worrying! I am a bit rubbish about taking a break for anything longer than two days, but when Martin suggested that we need some uninterrupted family time, I found myself agreeing. Normally, I run through a huge list of things I need to do before I answer with a ‘no’. But as much as I have to be disciplined about work, I have to be disciplined about time off, too.

Okaaaaay… I’m not sure that sitting on the M25 in rush hour traffic after a four-hour trip down a jampacked and drizzly M4 is doing much for our stress levels! Harry’s ‘I need a wee’ and Lottie’s crying is nearly pushing us over the edge. I never thought I’d say this but thank goodness for motorway service stations. Lincolnshire here we come and you’d best be kind to us, we’re feeling fragile!


Day 12 Relaxed, rested and raring to go! Feel energised and inspired after our lovely chilled-out time away. I have a load of ideas and a backlog of work I need to get cracking on… What’s this? An inset day? Another one?! On top of the one we just had two weeks ago?! I do feel for people who don’t have understanding employers because all these inset days, half terms and holidays, not to mention sick days, really do add up. Harry, though, was delighted with his day off and spent the time reading Lottie stories and building her towers, which was so cute to watch.

Pip Lottie is made using Lottie’s first baby clothes

Day 13 Right, I really am ready to get on with things now. The last few months have been crazy with the Peepos Monster Face t-shirts. They are proving so popular, all my evenings are spent in front of the printing press instead of the TV. This is one job that has to be done when both kiddies are in bed as the heat press could be dangerous around small children. While I activate the designs to be cut, Martin gets all the vinyl ready and then picks out all the unwanted bits. I then add the designs to the t-shirts while Martin uses the heat press to set the designs. Team work all the way!

it’s just out of the question. However, I have found a way to get my fix of fairs with the brilliant Gillingham Craft Fair. No mud, no cold and no rain! It’s a virtual craft fair with the creative folk of Gillingham here in north Dorset. I add 12 of my products to their website for free and just pay 10% commission on sales I make. They promote my goods on social media and in magazines and then, if all goes well with the website, they plan to open a bricks and mortar shop in Gillingham. This could be a very exciting venture to be involved in.

Day 25 I’ve been thinking lots about knitted hats. Just thinking mind, not actually knitting because I can’t knit! I’ve tried but because I can’t do it immediately, I get impatient and give up! Lottie has a beautiful little hat made by my sister’s mother-in-law and it’s just the kind of product I’d like to have under my Odds & Soxlets brand. We’ve had a meeting and we’ve decided to work together. She’ll provide me with knitted hats for all ages and we hope to develop a range of knitted hats for my new fabric doll, too. One day I really will learn to knit, but just not yet..!

Day 18 I practically swooned when I received the post this morning! In it was a handmade toy I ordered for Lottie. I love supporting other handmade businesses, and finding Happy Bunny on Facebook made me a very happy bunny! I chose a gorgeous keepsake bunny and gave them some of Lottie’s first clothes to make it out of and I’m delighted with the results. For now, the bunny will sit on my windowsill to be admired and in years to come, I’ll give ‘Pip Lottie’ to Lottie herself. Sitting in traffic was not the best start to Erica’s family holiday

Day 20 I’ve been really missing the buzz of craft fairs recently, but with Lottie still so little

Erica can’t wait to start selling knitted hats

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FOR £ 30

From junk to funk Map-inspired homewares are still great sellers, so get in on the trend with this quick and easy project. By Claire Watkins

INFORMATION Materials * An old drum lampshade * Old map * 2m (80in) ribbon * PVA glue * Small brush * Hot glue gun * Clothes pegs Size: Varies Rating: Easy


ive an old lampshade a new lease of life with this easy upcycling project. The map we’ve used here is a Bartholomew cloth map found at a boot sale – it has a thin, material backing which makes it easier to stick to the original shade and the folds produce a lovely panelled look. You could use more modern maps though, and if you’d rather have a smoother finish, look for ones that are rolled, not folded. The lampshade base is an old cream drum shade which was still in good condition. If your shade is a bit battered, you’ll need to remove the fabric and recover it with specific material that has been safety tested – visit for fabric, tools and advice on recovering wire lampshades.

How to make the map lampshade Lay out your map with the backing facing up. Starting on one edge, place the shade onto the map and mark the top and bottom of the lampshade. Continue to roll the shade along the map, marking the top and bottom until you’ve wrapped the entire shade. If your map is too narrow to wrap around your shade in one go, mark out the remaining missing pieces on another section of your map. If this is the case, be aware of the fold lines on the map and how they will look when in place. If necessary, use two maps to produce an even finish.


Once you’ve completed steps 1, 2 and 3, leave the shade to dry for an hour or two. When it’s completely dry, trim off any excess pieces of map hanging over the edges. To create a professional finish and hide any uneven or raw map edges, use a hot glue gun to stick the ribbon to the top and bottom edge of the shade.


To get an idea of how your shade will look when it’s finished, wrap it in the map paper and hold in place at the top with clothes pegs. Once you’re happy with the positioning, trim off any excess map so that the piece, or pieces, are flush with the top and bottom of the shade.


Starting at the seam of the lampshade material, apply a good amount of PVA glue with a small brush. Once you have covered the shade with glue, stick the map down, making sure it’s on straight. Hold the glued map in place while you’re working by placing clothes pegs at the top and the bottom of the shade. Carefully smooth out any air bubbles as you go along.


SELL MORE Offer a personalised service and use maps that have special significance to the shopper

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Twit twoo! Owl designs are still phenomenally popular, so knit this cosy cushion and you’re sure t’woo some shoppers! By Angela Turner




FOR £25

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INFORMATION Materials: * 50g ball DROPS Nepal in grey (shade 0501) * 50g ball DROPS Nepal in purple (shade 4434) * 50g ball DROPS Nepal in red (shade 3608) * 5mm (UK 6, US 8) * Darning needle * 2 x white felt circles * Small piece yellow felt * Polyester toy filling * 2 x leather look buttons Size: 33cm (13in) square Skill level: Easy Tension: Using 5mm (UK 6, US 8) needles, cast on 17sts and stocking stitch 22 rows to give a 10cm (4in) square


his ingenious knit will fly out of the door as owls are sure to sell well at any time of the year. We love this design – its tasselled ears and the slight angle of the wings give him a rather jaunty air. The natural alpaca and wool blend creates a lovely warm finish to the cushion and with its easy stitches, this is one simple knit that you'll want to try more than once! What's more, this versatile design will fit into any room in the house – it would make a lovely bed cushion for a child’s room, or a cosy feature for an easy chair in a warm kitchen. The fluffiness of the alpaca and wool blend make this an ideal material for winter, but to make some for summer selling, use a merino aran yarn in crisp, bright colours.

ABBREVIATIONS pattern Patt: stitch(es) St(s): knit two together k2tog: k2tog tbl: knit two together through the back loop

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How to make the cushion FRONT AND BACK

TASSELS (make 2)

Cast on 57sts in purple. First row: Knit. Next row: Purl. Change to grey. Next row: Knit. Next row: Purl. Cont working 2 row stripe patt till 11 purple stripes have been worked. Change to red. St-st 30 rows. Cast off. Press lightly. Sew seams together leaving a 5cm (2in) gap in the bottom. Turn right side out. Add filling, starting with the top corners. Sew gap together. For the beak, cut a diamond shape 5 x 3.5cm (2 x 1½in) from yellow felt then nip the top of the diamond off. Place on front centre of cushion, with the top of the diamond lined up with the first row of red. Sew in place. Cut 2 9cm (3½in) circles for eyes using white felt. Place on owl, partly onto stripe pattern, either side of beak. Sew in place. Sew buttons onto white felt in line with the top of the beak, slightly closer to the edge nearest the beak.

Using one strand of purple and one grey, wrap the yarn round four fingers 20 times. Remove yarn and run a length of yarn inside the yarn circle to the outside and tie in a knot firmly. Run another length around the top section to create the ball at the top of the tassel. Pull tightly and secure. Cut the bottom of each circle then trim the ends so that they are the same length. Sew the tassels to the top corners of the cushions to finish.

WINGS (make 2) Cast on 24sts in red. Work 4 rows st-st. Next row: Knit 10, k2tog tbl, k2tog, knit 10. 22sts. Next row: Purl. Next row: Knit. Next row: Purl. Next row: Knit 9, k2tog tbl, k2tog, knit 9. 20sts Next row: Purl. Next row: Knit. Next row: Purl. Cont to dec in this way till 4sts. Next row: Purl. Next row: K2tog tbl, k2tog. 2sts. Cast off. Pin wings in place, each side lining up with the first row of red. Sew along top of wings, then down the sides three-quarters of the way, leaving the bottom of each wing to curl up. Pinch the corners then secure with a couple of stitches.

TOP TIP Make custom cushion pads to fit your owl so the cover can be removed and washed


You’ve made it, now sell it... Follow our hints and tips to maximise profits from your owl cushions


Play with colourful yarn from your stash rather than just three shades to create an eclectic patchwork version.

2 3 4 5 6

Vary the pattern to make a version fit for a child's bedroom or try a large floor cushion.

Group similar items together in a woodland range – team the cushion with fox brooches and bird mobiles. Tell shoppers about your materials particularly if you choose high quality, hypo-allergenic or eco-friendly yarn.

Make a natural (and free) gift to pop into packaging with your business card such as a sprig of heather tied with ribbon or a scented pine cone. Change the embellishments – swap the tassels for small bells, or stitch on buttons, pearls or gems for the eyes.

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Sell the cushion blank for a little extra and save shoppers the bother of buying their own. You can pick up bulk cushions wholesale for pounds.

Think child-safety. Shoppers may want this owl as a gift for a child so ensure any small parts are extremely well secured and add a disclaimer stating that it’s not intended for children on the info card and on your website.

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Experiment with colour-ways and make a note of the most popular, then knit extra in these tones.

Offer to stitch the recipient’s name on the reverse of the owl for a small charge – it will make it an extra special and unique gift.


Etsy: Mini knitted owl by Eight Little Fingers, £5

Folksy: Prudence owl cushion by The Sherbet Patch, £25

Folksy: Printed owl cushion by Lottie & Gil, £8

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The popular Exhibition for card makers, paper crafters and beadworkers Celebrate 10 years of Make it in 2014 with three fun-filled days of craft inspiration. Make it a date in your diary 28 February - 2 March 2014, 10am–5pm (3.30pm Sunday) FIVE, Farnborough, Hants

Book in advance and save 1 day adult pass £7.50, 1 day concession pass £6 Concession, over 60, registered disabled & students

3 day adult pass £15, 3 day concession pass £12 3 day pass offered on a “three for the price of two” basis – only available in advance

Accompanied U16’s free of charge

How to book or call 08444 771 000 NB. 50p booking fee applies

group bookings call 01784 212887 (10 persons or more)


Handmade with love Inject some passion and personality into your makes and get in on the trend for handmade Valentineâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Day cards. By Holly Johnson



id you know that Valentine’s cards are one of the most popular greetings cards, second only to Christmas? According to research conducted by the Greeting Card Association ( uk), “The UK public continues to show its romantic side with Valentine’s Day sales increasing to £41.5m in 2011, up from £40.7m in 2010.” The stats also show that shoppers spend more money on Valentine’s cards than any other type of greeting card during the year, so with V-day on the horizon, it’s time to think about how to make your cards stand out from the crowd and tempt romantic shoppers.

for a large number of cards to be printed. So, I can make a small number of a design I’m not sure of, and see if it sells. I’m often surprised when a card I wasn’t sure of becomes a best seller!”

Make it unique

Designed for you We all know that nothing says ‘I love you’ like a card or gift that is created just for you, but many people lack the time or skill to make something themselves. After the expense of Christmas, February is also a time when we’re watching our pennies. “People may not be able to afford to splash out on a big present, but shoppers see a nice Valentine’s card as a ‘must-buy’ for their loved one,” says Cath Davies, editor of Quick Cards Made Easy magazine. “Rather than choosing a pre-designed card off the shelf, a personalised, handmade card shows that the message inside comes from the heart.” At Samfire Handmade Cards (which are sold on Etsy, Folksy and in some independent shops), Louise Burgone has seen increased demand for Valentine’s cards that are a little different: “I have definitely seen a rise in sales during February. My ‘love you to the moon and back’ card is one of my most popular designs, along with my heart balloons personalised with a loved one’s name.” Louise avoids designs that are too ‘cutesy’ which is perhaps why her cards appeal to a wide audience. “My Valentine’s cards Louise Burgone’s cards offer something different from traditional designs

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Simple and fun or full of romantic embellishments – choose your style and start crafting cards for V-day

are increasingly more popular with male shoppers,” she tells us. Louise advises keeping your designs simple to minimise the amount of time spent on each one (and ultimately

“Shoppers see a nice Valentine’s card as a must-buy” maximise your profits). “I use paper, scissors, glue and a pen. It seems like a basic technique, but I think the beauty is in the simplicity, and it keeps the design simple, fun, elegant and bright. Also, it makes me look at my designs in the early stages and think about how to keep it simple when it comes to the final card design. It’s not cost-effective to spend two or three hours making just one card!” Louise minimises her outlay by drawing each card, rather than using a printing service. “By not printing my cards I can take more risks, as I’m not having to pay

Julie Gibbs, who runs Always With a Heart (, uses a range of techniques to create her romantic designs. “I use stamping, paperpiecing, distress work, die work, wet and dry embossing and I particularly love to sew on my cards with a sewing machine and add different elements like crochet flowers. Shaped cards are always popular because they are different to the norm and that is what people look for – something different. Valentine’s Day is always special and is an extra busy time for me.” Julie has found a unique way to spark interest in her cards and keep shoppers coming back for more. “I have a quirky little thing, that is personal to me, where I incorporate a heart on every card I make. This can be big and bold or small and almost hidden, but people like it and often spend ages looking for them. I love trying to find different ways to incorporate one. Shoppers enjoy my blog – if only to hunt for the heart on my creations.” After the Christmas rush, January is the perfect quiet period to spend time at home working on your card designs. Call on your own experiences of love and romance to inject some of your personality into your creations, or look at the latest trends. “The vintage, shabby chic look is still going strong, so work romantic papers into your designs,” advises Cath. “Typography is also very popular, so make use of free fonts on sites like or use stencils and alphabet stamps to make striking, modern designs.” And as always, make sure your designs are different. “No two of my cards are ever the same,” says Julie. “I try to incorporate things that are a little unusual and keep my eyes open for unique buttons or ribbons to use. This means that the cards become a lovely keepsake and because they are handmade they are more unique. Money might be tight, but a well chosen, beautiful card filled with romantic words can mean more than any present.”



5 ways to make your cards stand out 1 ADAPT WELL-KNOWN SAYINGS TO MAKE YOUR CARDS YOUR OWN Depending on your audience, you could use local slang, ‘txt spk’ or even coded meanings! 2 CREATE A LUXURY RANGE OF CARDS using sequins and glitter to add eye-catching sparkle and maximise your profits. 3 MAKE UP YOUR OWN UNIQUE CHARACTERS A pair of foxy lovers, a duo of loved-up deer or a cute caterpillar couple! 4 PAPER IS SO YESTERDAY! Why not use up scraps of fabric from your stash to create a range of keepsake cards? 5 OFFER A PERSONALISED SERVICE Ask buyers to send you a list of things that mean something to them as a couple. Incorporate maps, music or favourite memories and love stories into their card.


1 This bespoke stamp is perfect for couples who love to keep things simple. Custom Stamp for Stationery by Pretty Chic on, £23.82 2 Check out the pretty fabrics at to create a keepsake range 3 Add vintage charm to your cards in seconds with Garden Washi Tape from Fox and Star, £5.25 4 Julie Gibbs finds that shoppers often frame her designs.


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Love birds Set hearts aflutter with these cute love birds and attract the early-bird wedding shoppers looking for cake topper ideas By Vicky Craxton


M A£K2.8E0 FOR

FOR £24

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How to make the birds 2 Sew just the heads together with right sides facing, then sew the top of the body shapes together.

INFORMATION Materials * 36 x 25cm (14¼ x 8¾in) ditsy print fabric * 12 x10cm (4¾ x 4in) plain white fabric * 36 x 25cm (14¼ x 8¾in) plain black fabric * 20 x 26cm (8 x 10¼in) natural coloured linen fabric * 6 x 4cm (2½ x 1½in) baby pink felt * Small piece of pink wool roving * 3 x round 4mm black plastic beads * 3 x round 4mm baby pink beads * 33 x 1cm (13 x ½in) baby pink satin ribbon * 11 x 0.4mm (4¼ x ½in) white faux pearl beading * 15 x 2cm (6 x ¾in) white vintage lace ribbon * 2 x 47cm (18½in) florist wire * Polyester toy filling * Pliers * Wire cutters * Foam pad * Felting needles, sizes 38 and 40 Size: 13.5cm x 14.5cm x 7cm (5¼in x 5¾ x 2¾in) Skill level: Easy


hese lovable fabric birds are perfect to celebrate Valentine’s Day this year, and as lots of people will be popping the question on the 14th, our vintage-styled love birds make perfect decorations for engagement parties or even wedding cake toppers. Made with a mixture of natural coloured linen, cotton fabric and needle felting, these birds have a rustic charm – and with their very smart little outfits they are a match made in heaven! If shoppers want to buy the birds for a wedding, you can custommake them in colours or fabrics to match their theme. You could even personalise them by sewing on the names of the happy couple.

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3 Sew the long sides of the front shape to the front sides of the body shape so the pointy end meets the neck.

Templates Using the templates on page 102, cut out the items listed below. All the templates include a 0.5cm (¼in) seam allowance. * Linen fabric: cut 4 x wings, 4 x heads, 2 x tail * Ditsy fabric: cut 2 x body, 2 x wings, 1 x tail, 1 x front and back * Black fabric: cut 2 x body, 2 x wings, 1 x tail and back * White fabric: cut 1 x front For each bird 1 With right sides facing, together sew the neck of the two head shapes onto the neck of the two body shapes.

4 Sew the fabric tail shapes to the linen tail shapes with right sides facing together and leave the bottom edge open. Turn to the right side and iron flat. 5 Pin the back shape to the back of the body with right sides together. Use the straight end to overlap the straight end of the front shape by about 1cm (½in). Sew from here to about 2cm (¾in) from the curved end so there is a gap big enough to put the tail end into. Turn to the right side. 6 On each bird, push the end of the tail into the gap at the back and sew in place making sure you fold in the edges of the fabric to make it neat. Then stuff the bird with toy filling until it is quite solid.


TOP TIP Make hanging décor by adding a ribbon loop, or enlarge the templates to sew a bird doorstop

7 With the pliers, bend the wire downwards at 90°. Then at about 3.5cm (1½in) along, bend the wire another ninety degrees. At about 5.5cm (2¼in) down the length of the wire, bend it forward at ninety degrees and do the same the other side to form the legs. Bend each end into a heart shape and with the wire cutters, snip the ends at the back.

9 Sew each fabric wing shape to a linen wing shape with right sides together and, leaving the bottom edge open, turn so that the right side is facing out. Sew up the gap and iron flat. Attach the wings onto each side of the body by sewing an overstitch on the front of the wings. 10 For each beak, fold a thin 5cm length of the pink roving in half and then in half again. Stab with the needle to make a beak shape and leave the end fluffy. Stab the fluffy end into the bird’s head until it is fixed.

12 Wrap the pink ribbon round the male bird’s neck and tie into a neat bow at the front. Sew a couple of stitches at the front and back to secure the bow in place. Wrap the beading round the female bird’s neck so the ends are at the back. Secure in place by sewing a couple of stitches in between the beads at the back and at the front. 13 To make the rosette, fold the lace ribbon in half with wrong sides out and sew the ends together using an overstitch. Turn inside out. Sew a running stitch along the bottom edge of the lace ribbon and pull the thread so the lace gathers up into a rosette shape. Tie the thread ends together and sew the rosette in place on the female bird’s head.

11 Sew the black beads onto either side of the head as eyes, using the photo as a guide. Sew three pink beads down the front of the male bird’s shirt as buttons.

14 Using fabric glue, stick one felt heart shape to the male bird’s jacket and the other to the female bird’s rosette. 8 Push the top of the legs in the gap on each bird and add a layer of toy filling over the wire. Sew up the gap to secure the wire legs in place. You may need to adjust the legs slightly to make sure the bird stands.

SAFETY FIRST These birds are not intended as toys, or for young children. Always ensure your work is well-stitched and any loose parts securely attached. Remember, if you intend to sell it, even if it is not sold as a toy, there are strict regulations to adhere to. Visit for advice on child safety.

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You’ve made it, now sell it... Follow our hints and tips to maximise profits from your love birds


Get ahead of the game. Lots of couples will get engaged on Valentine's Day so make sure you start promoting these lovebirds now, as engagement gifts.

2 3 4 5 6

Create one-offs. This design suits the wedding market, or create one-offs in various fabrics to target other buyers.

Offer an embroidery service where you add the recipients’ names onto each bird for a set price per letter. Go vintage. Shoppers will pay a premium for the genuine article so use vintage fabrics and trims.

Save cash and raid your stash for the ribbons, buttons, beads and fabric scraps that are needed to make these. Choose popular patterns – tartan is hot at the moment so try different plaid hues for fashion-savvy buyers.

7 8

Little and large these birds. Make super-cute mini versions or go maxi for big-is-beautiful homeware.

Hide your little birds in nests made from shredded brown tissue paper for a sweet packaging idea. With Easter around the corner this is a great way to present chic spring versions, too.

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Keep your finish impeccable – we all know wedding shoppers want everything to be ‘perfect!’ so don't let them down with rushed stitching. Broaden your market by creating some little chicks to accompany the love birds – they'll appeal to the ‘new baby’ buyer as well as families!


Folksy: Tartan Love Bird door stop by Tartan Crafts, £25

Folksy: Love birds cushion by Velvet Paws, £22.50

Etsy: Polka Dotty Love Bird cake topper by Becky Kazana, £21.93

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Ask us Our panel of experts is on hand to answer all your crafting and selling questions Cool cushions (clockwise): Alphabet cushions, Nubie, £29; Small Town cushion range, Roddy & Ginger, from £30; winter cushion collection, Barbara Coupe, from £65

Scarf face I want to make my 12-year old son a scarf but he thinks they’re not something boys should wear. How can I prove him wrong?!


MANDY TOFT, BY EMAIL Lisa Bogart – designer, knitting tutor and author of Knit With Love: Stories to Warm a Knitter’s Heart – admits she had the same problem. ‘My son Zach, who is at university, wasn’t very keen on scarves, so I came up with a few geekchic designs for him. This QR Key scarf is knitted in the round so it is extra toasty plus can actually be scanned by a smartphone to reveal a hidden message. Go to php for the pattern. Chart A is ‘My Scarf!’ and Chart B is ‘Love Mum’. I know which one is my favourite!”


Cash register? I currently work full-time but I make cushions as a hobby, usually just for me. I have sold a few to friends but once material costs have been deducted, I haven’t made any money. I’ve decided to start producing more and selling my work on Etsy. Should I let the tax office know about this and should I inform them of the previous sales that I have made?


MRS VERA CRISSMAN, CASTLE DONINGTON, LEICESTERSHIRE HM Revenue & Customs say, “Vera’s initial sales of cushions to friends are not classed as trading. It lacks commerciality and she does not set out to make a profit. The occasional sales are a by-product of her hobby. However, once she begins to auction her cushions, she has moved into the realms of commerciality. She is systematically selling her goods to make a profit. She will need to inform HMRC about her trade, and keep records of all her transactions. If turnover stays well below £26,000, Vera does not need to register for VAT.” For more information please visit


This cool scarf reveals a hidden message when scanned by a smartphone!

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This month our top Facebook question is…


I’ve just started making my own cards and I keep seeing cardstock – what is it? LAUREN

ELSA FUSTERMEARS specialises in


contemporary hand felted designs (Milana on

Get permission to make tube map gifts like these by Wrapped and Gorgeous


Free workshops are a great way to promote your work.


Ensure your wholesale quotes include a minimum quantity.


Price things correctly and don’t undersell yourself.


Stick to what you love or it will just become another job.


Talk to everyone – people can offer great insights into future trends.

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Offer a wide range of price points.

Niche is good. Be daring!

See craft fairs as ‘promoting days’ and you’ll never be disappointed.


Don’t take anyone for granted. You never know where a sale will come from.


Don’t be afraid to express yourself in your craft.

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Map it out I’ve designed cards and bags using the London Underground tube map. I haven’t asked anyone’s permission. Am I allowed to sell my work?


little Make sure ware a bakers are fety of food sa

Cardstock is heavyweight, thick paper, and is also known as coverstock or paste board. It is used for items such as greeting cards, playing cards, postcards, business cards and scrapbooking, all of which require a higher durability than ordinary paper. It is usually smooth but it can also be metallic or glossy.

BEVERLEY NASH, SURREY Definitely not. The Underground map, logo and the New Johnston font, which is the typeface used by London Transport, are protected by copyright. The distinctive round disc with the line across the centre is known as the Roundel and is also a registered trademark. A licence needs to be obtained from the Intellectual Property Department to reproduce them. Any unauthorised use of TfL’s copyright and trademarks is an infringement of TfL’s Intellectual Property and could lead to legal action. For more information visit


Junior bake off My 13 year old daughter loves baking and crafting and is selling at local fairs as a way to raise pocket money. Are there any rules she needs to be aware of?


ALISON KITCHING, CAMBRIDGE It’s important for your daughter to know, and to implement the food safety standards. Legislation says that all food businesses must register their kitchens with their local authority unless they operate on a ‘casual and limited’ basis only. If she plans on making an income in this way, contact your local council and ask them what the rules are in your


Display your cakes on a pretty cakestand like this one from Aston Pottery (£39.99)

area, as the laws do vary depending on where you live. For example, in some places you will need to become a registered trader even if you only sell your food occasionally. If you do have to register your kitchen, it’s free to do so and the council is obliged to accept your application. She’ll also need to take a course in food hygiene. You can do this online for about £15, or your local authority might run formal training courses. If she is making anything else to sell check those regulations, too. Toys, for example, need to satisfy safety requirements and bear the CE marking. Visit and tradingstandards. for more information.


ESSENTIAL CRAFT TOOL glue spoiling my work! The coated stainless steel tip puts a 0.5mm line or dot of glue precisely where I want it and when I’m not using it, I store it upside down in a jar with the pin in place to keep the air out of the glue. I’m still using my 20-year-old applicators and have even filled them with Gem-Tac to attach gemstones; Fray Stop to hem fabrics, or wood glue for intricate wooden items. It gives a new life to all the stash I keep hoarding.”

Glass painting Q

All my efforts at glass painting have been disappointing, with the designs fading to nothing. Help! What am I doing wrong?

DEBBIE RANDALL, HULL Glass is a lovely medium to work with – it makes a great canvas, it’s smooth, reflects light and offers the artist a lot of choices. The results will depend on the quality of your glass paint though so look at transparency, colour range, permanence and ease of application. The Marubu GlasArt Paint range (, from £2.69) is high-quality, highintensity and fade-resistant. Once fully painted, bake your design at 150°C (300°F) for 30 minutes, allow to cool before handling and remember the end results are not dishwasher proof.


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You can buy glass paint at Hobbycraft, priced from £2.69


LAURA RIGNEY is the founder of Pitcher House, which helps small businesses get their products listed by retailers. She is also the author of Pitching Products For Small Business (, from £2).

Knowing your product before a pitch “Before you attempt to pitch your product to any retail buyers, you should know anything and everything there is to know about it. You should be a walking encyclopaedia, with knowledge of how the product is made, where it’s made, what materials are used and the length of time it takes to manufacture. You’ll need to ensure that it complies with any relevant UK safety standards, and, if manufactured abroad, you’ll also want to know the length of time it takes to arrive in the UK. It’s important to learn all of this information so that no matter what questions a buyer asks, you have the answer implanted firmly in your brain. This will show that you are professional, organised and know what you are talking about, and it also shows that you are ready to introduce your product to the mass market. When pitching to a store, it’s also imperative to be well informed about their business. If you have knowledge regarding their buying cycles, their current product range and where your product would fit into their catalogues and onto their store shelves, this shows that you are professional and genuinely interested in being in business with them. If you’re wondering where you can get information on retailers, simply call and request details on their buying cycles or explain that you would like to approach a buyer with your products but don’t want to waste their time and would appreciate knowing when’s best in the year to make your introduction. You should find that the receptionists are willing to supply you with the answers. After all, it makes their lives a little easier, too. “


Dear Craftseller, 9th Floor, Tower House, Fairfax Street, Bristol BS1 3BN

Craftseller 91

Pitching Products For Small Business, by Laura Rigney,, £2 (ebook)

NAME: Anne Peak TOOL: Fine Tip Glue Applicator AVAILABLE: COST: £3.50 (plus p&p)

“What I love about this applicator is that I can use it on so many things. Cardmaking, quilling, marquetry, dolls’ house miniatures and even henna hand painting - you name it, this applicator has helped me approach all these precision projects with confidence. I’ve always found other methods, such as using a cocktail stick, messy but this applicator comes ready to fill, is easy to squeeze and there are no shiny trails of





FOR £13

TOP TIP You have to handle the heart a lot while you make it so check the shape once you’ve finished

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Make a crafty tenner A beautiful love token that will add charm and sparkle to your Valentine’s Day range. By Dorothy Wood

INFORMATION Materials * 42cm (16½in) silver-plated wire 1.25mm (16 swg) * 1.25m (50in) silver-plated wire – 0.4mm (26 swg) * 8 x 6mm silver-plated puff heart charms * 1 x silver-plated star charm * 1mm leather thong for hanging ( * 7 x 6mm silver-plated bells ( * 40 x size 6 silver seed beads * Jewellery tools Size: 9 x 12cm (3½ x 4¾in) Skill level: Easy

How to make the hanging heart Using pliers, bend the 1.25mm wire in half to form a sharp V-shape. Starting about 9cm (3½in) from the V-point, bend one side of the wire around a 6cm (2¼in) diameter bottle to shape the top of the heart. Bend the other side of wire around the same bottle but in the opposite direction so that both sides are level.


Use snipe-nose pliers to bend the wire at a right-angle at the top of the heart shape on both sides. Beginning at the bend, wrap one of the wires around the other three times, keeping the coils horizontal.


Trim the excess wire at the back. Trim the long tail to 1cm (½in). Bend over above the coils at a right angle. Use roundnose pliers to shape into a loop for hanging.


Pick up a bell on the 0.4mm wire and drop down to the middle. Twist the bell between finger and thumb once to secure on the wire. Hold the bell at the bottom of the heart and wrap the fine wire around the wire heart once.



ire is an inexpensive material that can be bent and shaped to make all sorts of homewares, and it’s the perfect medium for the canny craft seller! This project uses fairly thick craft wire shaped into a heart and embellished with pretty metal charms to create a hanging decoration ideal for a window or wall. Great for your Valentine’s Day sales, but with heart motifs and gifts being such a popular trend on the craft market and the high-street, you could include this in your range all year-round.

Pick up two seed beads on the fine wire. Hold the first seed bead at the side of the heart shape and wrap the wire


around the main wire once, at an angle. Wrap the wire again to add the second seed bead on the opposite side of the main wire. Wrap the fine wire around again, keeping the wire slanting slightly to create a helter-skelter pattern. Pick up a puff heart charm and drop down to the main wire heart. Twist the charm to secure and then add two more seed beads as in step 5.


Work up the wire heart, adding bells and heart charms alternately with two seed beads between each. Use the other end of the wire to embellish the other side of the heart in the same way. Remember that you don’t want the design to be too symmetrical so add the charms at random.


Wrap both tails around at the top of the heart. Pre-form a wrapped loop then pick up the star charm and wrap the tails around above the charm to secure. Snip off and file the tails to finish.


String a length of leather thong through the loop. Wrap several times with 0.4mm wire to secure, then trim the short tail neatly and wrap wire over to cover the raw end. Now find a good spot to hang it!


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Craftseller 93


More ways than one..

Fall in love with these colourful felt fancies – they’re enough to get anyone’s heart pumping this Valentine’s Day! By Jess Byrne



FOR £7 ALL FOR £16

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Craftseller 95


INFORMATION Materials * At least three different colours of felt (10 shades used here) * Embroidery thread * 1m (40in) felt stems available from * 4 buttons * Small piece of ribbon * Hot glue gun or felt glue Size: Hanging garland 70cm (27½in) Bouquet approx. 17cm (6¾in) Table confetti 3cm (1¼in) Skill level: Easy

How to make the decorations Table confetti: 1 Cut 50 small hearts using as many different colours of felt as you like.

2 Sew two hearts together using a simple blanket stitch in contrasting thread. Hanging decoration 1 Cut out 10 large heart shapes. Decide on the order that you want them in.

2 Using a sewing machine, sew the hearts together with a straight stitch. 3 Using just a couple of stitches add a loop of ribbon with a button to the top and bottom


oft felt is a wonderful fabric to work with – it won’t fray and is available in many beautiful colours that don’t cost a bomb. It’s substantial, so you don’t have to line it and it’s so wonderfully tactile, that customers love its plump, gentle feel. The beautiful bouquet would make a great centrepiece for a Valentine dinner, and the little table confetti hearts make a romantic touch when sprinkled over a pure white tablecloth. The heart garland could be strung like bunting or just left to hang vertically. It won’t take you long to cut these sweet hearts and you’ll see how quickly the projects take shape when you piece them all together.

TOP TIP For a colourful, contemporary look use lots of different shades of felt from the same colour family

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ts of o l e k a M for a flowers nd plump a uet ouq pretty b

of the garland, as a decorative way to hang your string of hearts. Heart bouquet: 1 Cut 10 medium heart felt shapes for each flower. Cut the 1m (40in) felt stem into varying lengths.

2 Take a heart and hot glue it around a stem so it is wrapped in place. Glue the next heart in place so it is overlapping the first heart. Continue with all 10 hearts. 3 Repeat for the other stems, making the bouquet as plump as you like. Wrap ribbon around the bouquet and glue.

2 er Ov 00 rs ito ib

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Olympia Central, London 13th – 16th March 2014

Buy tickets at: • Dressmaking classes • 180 practical workshops • Make and take sessions

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galleries, demonstrations and inspirational features

Products to help you with :


Knitting – Sewing – Dressmaking – Quilting – Crochet – Cross Stitch – Interiors – Textile Art – Crafts For more information and to book tickets call: 0844 848 0159

Fabrics supplied by Fabrics Galore


My craft shop Meet a trio of craft sellers who share the moneymaking secrets behind their success

The craft fair sellers Once the nerves had passed, Charlie found selling at fairs a richly rewarding experience


WEBSITE charliedeighton on

TOP TIP rk Go to fairs to wo ck o st ch out how mu te you’ll need to crealay an attractive disp on your stand

“I’ve always been creative, and have loved the process of making things from a very young age. I studied French and Fine Art at university – but then somehow ended up working as a chartered tax adviser for 16 years, before taking the plunge last summer and quitting the day job to pursue my love of art and crafts. It was the biggest decision I’ve ever made – but it was also the best. “I love to use a variety of materials in my designs, especially handmade paper and beautiful fabrics. To create my own style I work in a mixture sewing, drawing and collage techniques. I make a wide range of products, including cards, decorative items for the home, small gifts and bespoke rag dolls. Although my work is diverse, my vision is always to create an overarching simplicity and beauty. “For me, craft fairs are a wonderful (and essential) place to network, both with other stallholders and with customers. They give you, the maker, the opportunity to promote and develop your brand, and they allow buyers to meet the people behind the beautiful products they are purchasing. “My first craft fair was pretty nerve-wracking – what you make is deeply personal, and I felt as though I was putting my soul on the table for inspection! I love the anticipation and rush of getting everything set up on time – and, of course, the delicious buzz of the day’s first sale.”

“My first craft fair was pretty nerve-wracking!” 98 Craftseller

Hook yourself one of Charlie’s stylish ornaments

Charlie loves to mix and match beautiful materials


The online marketplace

TOP TIP u Learn more if yo g in want to start earnills sk more! Identify op you want to devel and go for it


Will’s Dad inspired his love of photography

WEBSITE By William Odell on

“It was a ‘eureka’ moment”

The realisation that he could combine two artistic talents was a life-defining moment for Will “My love of photography came from my Dad – he always had his SLR camera with him so since I was a child, I’ve taken my camera everywhere with me. “Landscape photography is my real passion, but I have always enjoyed painting, too. The day it dawned on me that I could combine the two passions in my life was a real ‘eureka’ moment.

“My works start as photographic prints that are then painted to add depth and stretched onto canvas. Swanky Maison have supported the growth of my business – joining them was one of the best decisions I made. This year, I also started selling at craft fairs which has been very rewarding. I used to work in the pharmaceutical industry, managing and strengthening relationships with clients. I’ve found these skills very useful at fairs – although the latter makes my old job look easy!”

The website owner Susan used a template to build herself the perfect website – with a minimum of fuss “I started making handmade cards as a hobby while serving in the Royal Navy. It was enjoyable, but not really viable as a sustainable income once I left the service. So, I diversified and used those same skills to make personalised guest books, keepsake boxes and photo albums. I started selling in shops, but realised that I needed to be online to broaden my audience. “I set up my website using, which proved really simple – even for a technophobe! It almost puts itself together. Using a choice of templates, you can build a unique website. “I decided to keep my site bright and cheerful – and a little bit dotty, of course! I also included lots of professional photographs of my products. “The majority of my sales are to the USA and Canada. I love to think of my wedding guest books at such special occasions on the other side of the world. “The highlight of my crafting career to date was winning a small business award from Theo Paphitis in 2011. It made the long days and hard work worth it!”

Susan Bonnar from Hampshire


Susan’s website is colourful to match her designs


“The majority of my sales are to the USA and Canada”

Choose your business name carefully – Dottieed Designs has allow me to diversify

Craftseller 99


Crafty courses to Learn how l rfu create colou k r batik artwo

Why not add a new craft to your skill set? Here are some of our top courses for you to try this month

Learn batik techniques at the beautiful Rainbow View

TOP TIP When starting out in batik, be bold and make your designs large and simple!

Golden Valley Batiks It’s well known that time spent in beautiful, natural surroundings enhances creativity. And settings don’t get much more better than Rainbow View, the rural Herefordshire home of batik artist Manu Song and his partner Edi. Manu teaches this beautiful art – painting on cloth using a traditional wax-resist dyeing technique – from his welcoming home with its far-reaching rural views of Herefordshire’s beautiful Golden Valley. Manu’s residential courses offer plenty of hands-on experience and are suitable both for beginners and those wishing to develop existing skills. Courses include a general introduction to the art of batik painting, while others allow you to make

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your own batik lampshades or create beautiful batik window blinds. “The direct dyeing method of batik that I practice is a practical, versatile and fun way of creating vibrant, colourful patterns and images on cloth,” Manu explains. “We get people of all ages and abilities trying our workshops, from beginners doing it for pleasure to professional artists seeking to add to their skills repertoire.” Courses run over two days, midweek or at weekends. Accommodation is comfortable and simple, with cosy wood-burning stoves and plenty of delicious homemade food. By the end of the course, participants will have their own beautiful batik creations – as well as some brand new creative skills.

INFORMATION * Residential courses cost £200 (shared room) or £240 (private room). Price includes materials, accommodation, breakfast, light lunch and supper. Non-residential courses cost £120, which includes lunch on both days plus all materials. * For more information contact Edi and Manu on 01981 550557, info@ or visit


Stamping Obsession Sarah Piggott has run craft classes from her home in Eastbourne ever since becoming a demonstrator for the worldwide rubber stamp and paper crafting company Stampin’ Up! Cardmaking and rubber-stamping are the main focus, but learners can also create jewellery, gift boxes, mini scrapbooks and much more. “We use a wide variety of tools and techniques – there is always something new to learn!” Sarah explains. Classes take place in Sarah’s craft studio, which overlooks her courtyard garden and the atmosphere is relaxed and friendly. “Some of my ladies


much support as they need.” First-timers also receive a copy of the latest Stampin’ Up! Catalogue, packed full of inspiring ideas. “The classes provide a few hours of crafty ‘me-time’ amongst friends,” Sarah explains, “plus the chance to play with the latest Stampin’ Up! goodies and leave with some beautiful projects. “The attraction of stamping allows you to be creative, whether you think you’re ‘arty’ or not. Even with limited supplies, you can create wonderfully clean, simple designs – or let rip with something more unruly!”


“Some of my ladies have been with me from the start” have been with me right from the start – they are a sociable and welcoming group, ranging in age from early 30s to 60s and beyond,” she continues. “Most of the group are seasoned crafters, although beginners are made to feel very welcome and given as

* Cardmaking classes take place every second Saturday of the month (2½ hours, £10) and all materials are provided. Private classes and Stampin’ Up! parties available at weekends and evenings. * For more information, contact Sarah on 07970 615390, sarah@ or visit

Other great craft courses around the country Millie Moon At three sites across Somerset (In Frome, Wells and Keynsham), this thriving haberdashery boutique and sewing school teaches the arts of sewing, cross stitching, patchwork, dressmaking, embroidery and almost anything else you could wish for. Visit Craftworx Housed in a lovingly-restored barn on a working farm in East Yorkshire, Craftworx is a well-equipped metal clay jewellery studio. The principal tutor, Tracey Spurgin, is one of the UK’s best-known metal clay artists. There’s something for everyone from Beginner to Master Class workshops. Tracey even offers one-to-one tuition. Visit Chocolate Delight A scrumptious introduction to the world of chocolate making, with Saturday workshops at locations across the UK from London to Cardiff, Edinburgh to Bournemouth. Visit Waunifor Crafty Breaks Take a break with a residential course in pottery, ceramics, mosaics, bead jewellery and much more. You’ll stay in one of six stone cottages surrounded by gardens and wildlife areas in an unspoilt corner of Carmarthenshire, west Wales. Visit

Ready, steady, stamp! Meet up for some cardmaking fun

Diva Design Studios Kirsty and Christine Wallace run creative felting and textile courses from their studiocum-gallery on the beautiful Logie Estate on Scotland’s Moray Coast. Saturday workshops (maximum eight learners) run from 10am4pm and cost £55, all-inclusive. Visit

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Dear Craftseller, 9th Floor, Tower House, Fairfax Street, Bristol BS1 3BN

Craftseller 101

TOP TIP Vist craft-seller. com/free-downloads to print all our templates at 100%, ready to use


Use these templates to make the cards on page 50, bag on page 62, love birds on page 84 and the heart decorations on page 94 LOVE BIRDS (COPY AT 100%)



Cut 2 in linen, 1 in black fabric, 1 in ditsy fabric


Cut 1 in black fabric, 1 in ditsy fabric

Cut 2 in black fabric, 2 in ditsy fabric


Cut 4 in linen


Cut 1 in baby pink felt


Cut 1 in white fabric, 1 in ditsy fabric


Cut 4 in linen, 2 in black fabric, 2 in ditsy fabric

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EXAMPLE NAME Cut 1 in spotty fabric


Cut 1 in green felt, 1 in dark green felt


Cut 1 in green felt, 1 in dark green felt




Cut 1 in terracotta felt

Cut 10 per ямВower







Cut 1

Beak Cut 2

Cut 1, turn template over and cut second bird so they are facing

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Cardmaking Supplies For Every Occasion

Unit 32, Basepoint Enterprise Centre, Stroudley Road, Basingstoke, Hampshire, RG24 8UP Tel: 07749027634


Craft Creations




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For Quality products at competitive prices Wools Dress, patchwork and quilting fabrics Cross stitch Haberdashery, ribbon, lace, braids ...and so much more 79 High Street, Burnham-on-Sea, Somerset TA8 1PE

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Online loves

Here are just some of our favourite makes from the exciting designers and crafters we’ve discovered this month



* Treat someone special to Valentine’s fudge, handmade to a traditional Scottish recipe.

* This funky clutch in fresh minty shades is on our spring ‘must-have’ list. * Fold over clutch bag by The Tiny Totem, £27.40 on


* Got your Valentine’s outfit sorted? Go all Downtown with this gorgeous number… * Jane Austen Blush Grecian Maxi Dress by RiverOfRomansk, £44 on

* Scottish Tablet Hearts by PhilRao, four for £1 on



ewellery j e v o l e W es that mak lt t me r a e h r u yo

* Making breakfast in bed? Be sure to keep your teapot cosy with this cute cover.

* Hold on tight to this sweet little creature or we’ll buy him off you. Irresistible!

* Hand Screen Printed Owl Tea Cosy by robinandmould, £22 on

* Burnished Bunny Rabbit Wrap Ring by Authfashion, £6.25 on

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* We’ve chosen our next project: a trendy trio to brighten up any room. * Little sweet amigurumi girls pattern by Millionbells, £3.12 on

Everything is made easy with the DKS30 User friendly LCD screen and 30 direct select stitch keys

Easy Set Bobbin

Automatic Buttonhole Foot with Stabiliser Plate

An optional quilting kit is available for the DKS30

Dual wide angle white LE D lighting


For further information: Telephone 0161 666 6011 or visit our website

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Extension Table