Wednesday 27 April 2016

Seaside Photo Walk

Just like the song, I do like to be beside the seaside! As it was my weekend off from the day job, last Saturday Mr Writer and I took a trip to the lovely seaside town of Frinton in Essex, which is a special place to us for a number of reasons. I really wanted to share some photos from our walk- we had a lovely lunch (and cake!) and walked from Frinton to Walton and back, taking in the sea air and admiring the colourful beach huts that stretch along the front. As you can see from the photos, throughout the walk it alternated between spells of bright Spring sunshine and big, grey moody skies, but we were lucky to avoid any showers. A lovely day off spent together!

Do you have a favourite seaside walk?

Sunday 24 April 2016

Take 20% off in my Etsy Shop!

Have you taken a look at my Etsy Shop recently? It's stocked with handmade jewellery pieces that would be perfect to give as gifts or as quirky pieces to wear yourself. I'm currently offering 20% off everything in my Etsy Shop until 1st May 2016, just enter the discount code TAKE20 at the checkout! Here is just a selection of pieces to choose from, pop over to my shop to see my full range... Happy browsing! 

Wednesday 20 April 2016

New Stockist - Make Thrift London

I'm excited to tell you that you can now find Louise Dawson Design jewellery at the fab Make Thrift London, owned by the lovely Daisy, who I first met at the Knitting and Stitching show. So happy to have my work in such a great space dedicated to handmade products from designer makers and  a place that promotes making skills in Daisy's sewing workshops. If you're in London, pop along to Shepherd's Bush and take a look!

Find a selection of my Fair Isle and Harris Tweed brooches and rings in Daisy's lovely shop

Sunday 17 April 2016

Makes Using Felt Flowers

Last week I shared this How To showing you how to make felt flowers and I so was so chuffed to receive such a positive response- it seems that lots of you are in the mood for Spring inspired makes! Today I'd like to share just a few of many many ways you could use your felt/fabric flowers...

Add details to your flowers... 

There's no need to buy anything for this make as chances are you have everything you need already!
This is a really thrifty make, using scraps of felt or other fabrics left over from other projects and you can raid your stash of embroidery thread, beads and buttons to add different centres to the fabric blooms and create your own unique flowers. 

Cut leaf shapes from scraps of green felt and stitch to the back of flowers to create foliage

Crochet a chain (or use ribbon) and either stitch or glue the flowers onto it using small pieces of felt to create a pretty garland

Attach a felt flower to an elastic hairband and wear flowers in your hair!

Glue a flower onto a ring base to create a great statement ring

 There are so many ways you could use the flowers. I'd love to know what you are making with yours- share your makes in the comments!

Happy making!

Sunday 10 April 2016

How To... Make Felt Flowers

The weather here in this little corner of Essex is typically Spring like- beautiful spells of sunshine, followed by April showers, then back to bright blue skies! The countryside and gardens are looking so pretty, with the blossom in the trees and flowers in bloom and this is what inspired my latest How To. Using just scraps of felt and a needle and thread you can create your own felt flowers and bring some Spring sunshine into your home. Be sure to check back later in the week as I'll be sharing some ideas for how to use your floral creations. 

Here's how to make the flowers...

1) You will need

Scraps of felt, needle and thread, pins, fabric scissors, scrap of paper for template, something round to draw around to make the petal template (I used a cotton reel), pencil, glue gun (optional)

2) To make the template for the petals, draw around your cotton reel or other round object on scrap paper and cut out. I've found that something about the size of the end of a cotton reel or slightly smaller works really well for this technique, but you could experiment with other sizes

3) Pin the template to the felt and cut out five pieces

Now you have your five circles of felt, one will become the backing piece and four will become the petals

4) To make the petals, first take a circle of felt and fold it in half

5) Fold the circle again so you now have a quarter circle

6) Place the folded piece onto the top corner of the background circle, ensuring the edges of both pieces are flush. The straight edge of the folded piece should be facing the middle and the open folded edges should be facing the bottom of the circle. Hold in place with a pin and stitch in place with 3 or 4 stitches

7) Fold the next felt circle in exactly the same way as the previous one, stitching it to the background piece ensuring that the straight edges meet

8) Turn the piece upside down and repeat the process with the remaining two felt circles to complete the flower

9) Now to make the flower centres! Cut a long strip of felt measuring approx 1cm wide (or your chosen width- experiment to see what you like best) in your chosen colour. Don't worry if it's wonky, it won't notice in the end

10) Cut into the felt at regular intervals along the length, ensuring not to cut all the way through. Cut into strips approx 5-6cm long

11) Roll the small strips of felt and secure together with a few stitches

To make an alternative flower centre, don't cut into the felt strip, simply leave as it is and roll it up, securing with a few stitches

12) Add a small blob of glue (I've found using a glue gun works best) to the centre of the flower and press the centre into it. Alternatively, you could stitch the centre into the flower

That's all there is to it, so simple but very effective!

You can use any fabric to make these flowers but I find felt works so well because the stiffness of the fabric creates a more three dimensional flower compared with other fabrics and it's so easy to use because it doesn't fray!  If you would like to make the flowers using other fabrics, I find it best to iron interfacing onto the back first to help prevent fraying

I'll be back on Wednesday to share some suggestions of how to use your floral creations. Until then, happy making!