Fun With Fabrics

Fun with fabrics is not a thing I ever thought I would be writing about on my website! Just ask my needlework teacher from school days🥴

Although I am into many different arts and crafts, fun with fabrics has never really been a part of my arty crafty repertoire.

I’m all about paint, glue, paper, pastels, inks – anything that makes a mess really 😆.

However, that all changed when I attended a class recently to learn how to make Art Quilts – now, I am truly hooked.

My very first art quilt made with tutor Anne Robson at Studio 2, Wooden Roots, Rendlesham UK

Having fun with fabric in an arty way is something I had never really considered until Anne Robson’s class came up at Wooden Roots.

But more about that in a later post when I hope to have finished a couple of Art Quilts made from my own paintings (which I have transferred to fabric).

I know lots of people wonder how they can do this, so I will be sharing with you how I have managed to print my own designs onto cotton and how you can do it too.

fun with fabrics
One of my pastel images printed onto cotton fabric ready to make an art quilt.

The possibilities for fabric art are endless when you start to dream up ideas of your own.

Until I discovered the arty possibilities of having fun with fabrics (when I took Anne’s four week course), I had always been envious of people who could sew really well, but didn’t think it was for me.

But last year, one of my YouTube viewers sent me a beautiful gift that she had sewn herself and, I did start getting a little curious about crafty possibilities with fabrics.

Leslie Gilbert is one of the 9.5 thousand subscribers over on my YouTube channel Rainbow Lane.

First she sent me a cute little Mug Mat and then, she very kindly made me some bunting with my channel name on.

Rainbow Lane Bunting sent to me by Lesley Gilbert
This mug mat may just have saved my wooden table from more mug rings!

Lesley is no stanger to fabric art.

After she sent me these beautiful gifts, I learned that she makes all sorts of things:- mug mats, gorgeous quilts, taggy blankets and amazing fidget lap quilts for people living with dementia.

Take a look at some of Lesley’s beautiful work in the slideshow below.

As you can see, her work is very neat, bright and colourful.

I absolutely love the personalised taggy blankets; I believe these ones were orders that Lesley had completed.

And the fidget lap quilts/muffs are a brilliant idea for those living with the effects of Alzheimers/Dementia.

Thanks to Lesley’s kindness in making me such a lovely gift (which I will be showing on my YouTube channel very soon), I did start to get the glimmer of an interest in sewing.

So when I saw the Art Quilting course that Anne Robson was teaching, I was way more open to having a go than perhaps I would have been and, I booked myself onto her course.

Although I am a very clumsy and inept seamstress – no, really I am! – I am enjoying adapting what I learned with Anne to present my art in a very different way.

It’s making me think differently about what I am creating and I’m loving it.

Anne and her helpers getting everything ready for the class.

As I said earlier, I am currently practicing the sewing skills I learnt in Studio 2 at Wooden Roots, Rendlesham, here in the UK.

I won’t be sharing the actual methods we were taught for making the quilts because that is something Anne has developed in her own style and is the best person to teach it. Besides, I will be learning this art for a very long time to come!

However, I will be sharing with you the trials I have had with my sewing machine and what I am doing to overcome them.

These are the two Art Quilts I am working on at the moment.

What you see below is a very different use of what I was taught on the course – for example, you will notice there is no layering of fabrics.

I’m not quite ready to start layering at home with no tutor on hand! So I am using my own printed art work as one whole piece to begin with and I will quilt the lines I have drawn.

Cheating? Maybe. Will it be as effective? No – it will be a completely different look. And it might turn out to be terrible! I’ll show you how it turns out – even if it turns out badly – I promise!

I have already had problems with what I want to do but think I have found the answer – so I hopefully, (finger’s crossed!) I will be back here with my results in a week, month, yearwhenever! But I will be back 👀 🤞

My artwork printed onto cotton and ready to start quilting.
Another one of my pastel abstracts printed and ready to be qulited.

Meanwhile, my fun with fabrics will continue in another of Anne’s classes.

She is teaching a 3 hour workshop on February 29th near Woodbridge in Suffolk, on how to make a tote bag.

Fancy learning to make one of these?

We will be supplied with the ready cut fabric in a choice of vibrant and exotic fabrics and given step-by-step tution in how to make a fully lined bag.

And as with all Anne’s classes, it will be a fun and sociable affair 😍

If you are local to Suffolk, click here for booking details.

Check back here in a couple of weeks to see how I got on with the tote bag class and hopefully, my two art quilts will be finished too.

And I would love to hear from anyone who is dabbling in the world of fabrics and making art – so if you are having fun with fabrics, drop me a comment below and tell me what you are doing – see you again soon!

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Craft classes in Suffolk – if you want to come and learn something new this year and you live in Suffolk, UK – Studio 2 at Wooden Roots will have something for you.

Learn to make beautiful hand decorated and handbound art/writing/photo journals.

From handmade journal making to flower therapy, lino printing, landscape quilting (Artistic Endeavours With Anne) and tote bag making, to drawing for the terrified – Studio 2 holds a wide variety of exciting and original art and craft classes.

This is a brief glimpse of my handmade journal class.

If you are in Suffolk and wanting to meet friendly people while learning a new arty crafty skill – check out these classes by clicking on the links above.

You will be taken to the booking page for the class you want to explore.

You will find a very friendly bunch of people at Studio 2, along with the added bonus of hearing what goes on in Studio 1!

Studio 1 at Wooden Roots is the domain of world renowned Master Djembe drum builder Marcus Brown.

Marcus Brown of Wooden Roots, Bentwaters Park, Rendlesham.

So if learning to drum is on your bucket list alongside learning new crafts, Wooden Roots is waiting for your call! You can find a list of upcoming classes and workshops here.

Fake YouTube Emails have been circulating for a long time, warning YouTubers that their channels are about to be suspended if they do not take the action dictated by the potential hackers.

After receiving a large number of such emails over the past year or so, I have made a quick video showing what the emails look like, how you can tell they are fake and what you should do if you get one.

This is typically what the fake YouTube emails say:

With the aim of increasing easy intelligibility and transparency, We are updating our Terms of service for YouTube channels that are open to making money. Please accept our new terms of service by clicking on the link below. Otherwise, the monetization feature of your YouTube channel will be disabled within 24 hours. The new terms of service apply to people with monetization enabled. Thank you for being part of the YouTube community.

This is followed by a clickable link saying ‘click for details’.

Here is another typical message:

We’ve received a complaint that your channel has lots of spam videos. Please check and edit the spam videos we have marked by clicking on the link below. Otherwise, if you don’t edit spam videos on your channel, your channel will close in 24 hours. Thank you for your patience in this process.

This also comes with a clickable link which, if clicked will surely take you down a rabbit hole from which you will not escape with your YouTube channel intact.

Fake YouTube Emails depend on your kneejerk reaction in order for them to work for the hackers.

Us YouTubers put a huge amount of work into our channels and naturally, getting a message warning us they will be shut down within 24 hours if we don’t click the link and follow the instructions is going to cause a sense of panic.

Don’t be fooled into parting with your channel by cyber criminals

Even YouTubers who sense that these messages could be one of the dreaded fake YouTube emails are tempted to click on the link ‘just in case’.

Don’t do it. Watch my video and other videos on YouTube from other channel owners like me, who have had these emails.

I apologise for this not being a craft post but hopefully it will help someone not fall prey to all the fake YouTube emails currently doing the rounds.


landscape quilting

Exciting!

Landscape quilting is very much in vogue and in a few weeks, I will be behind a sewing machine, in a classroom, making art with a very talented fabric artist and tutor called Anne Robson.

Anne created the beautiful landscapes you see above and this week, I went over to Studio 2, where I will also be delivering courses, to see how everything is coming along.

Anne teaches in the same studio where I will also be teaching art and craft starting in January and I just love the space where all this creativity is taking place.

If you are based in Suffolk UK, then you too have the chance to come along to Studio 2 to dabble in some new arts and crafts with us.

Studio 2 is a beautiful art & craft hub over at Rendlesham, Suffolk.

Studio 2 is part of Wooden Roots, a music studio on the old American Air Force base known as Bentwaters. (More about Studio 1 on my sister website early in the New Year.)

In January, several of us will be launching our four week art & craft courses at Wooden Roots.

I will be teaching workshops in making beautiful art/writing journals from scratch – more about that in my next post.

Gorgeous art journals – learn how to paint covers, assemble pages and handbind the whole album

For now, I want to highlight Landscape quilting artist and tutor Anne Robson who will be leading the workshops on landscape quilting.

Anne has sewing in her blood. She made her first sewn item at seven years old and by her teen years, she was making her own clothes.

She later went on to design cuddly toys that were also night-dress cases in the form of dinosaurs, polar bears, lambs and koala bears.

Although Anne really only made these as novelty toys for her children, the demand for them was such that Anne and a friend had a small business selling the cuddly nightie cases.

She gradually moved on to designing gorgeous bags made from furnishing fabrics, while she was living in Spain.

Some of Anne’s more recent bag designs made with African fabrics.

Anne had discovered fabric art, back in 2006 in Santa Monica California, where she fell completely in love with it.

She didn’t know it at the time, but her love of quilting would eventually lead her into teaching others the art of Landscape Quilting.

Anne told me that seeing enormous wall quilts hanging in an exhibition at an Arts & Crafts house in Santa Monica made her want to know more about the art.

She said: “The wall hangings really left an impression on me – I was completely inspired by them and began thinking about how I could create my own fabric art.”

Landscape Quilting – One of Anne’s pieces

As Anne’s knowledge and experience of Landscape Quilting grew, the pieces she was producing attracted a huge amount of attention from people wanting to learn how they could do it too.

She often found herself being asked to show people how to produce the quilts and eventually, she decided to begin teaching workshops.

This has now grown to the point were Anne needs to be teaching in a purpose built studio where everyone can sit comfortably at sewing machines with space to layout designs.

Finding somewhere to do that wasn’t difficult because daughter Gemma, along with percussionist husband Marcus, already have a music based business where there was plenty of room for Anne to have her studio.

Left to right: Gemma, Anne and student Sarah-Jane looking at fabrics in Studio 2

Marcus, Gemma and Anne all lived in California for many years and it was there that Marcus started the very successful Wooden Roots, a business specialising in making high-end Djembe drums that are sold to musicians world-wide.

Two years ago, they all returned to the UK to continue developing the business and they moved into spacious premises formerly occupied by the US Air Force.

Studio 1 and Studio 2 nestle side by side at Wooden Roots in an atmosphere of absolute warmth and creativity, both musical and artistic.

This is the perfect place to learn something new. And as someone who is both teaching and learning at Wooden Roots, I can tell you this is the place to be if you want to explore your creative possibilities in a truly inclusive and supportive atmosphere.

I will be writing more about Marcus in the New Year and sharing my Djembe experiences with you.

I will also be reporting back on how I get on in Anne’s Landscape Quilting classes – so watch this space to see how I get on🤔. I’m sure I’ll be fine!

To be honest – I can’t wait to get started learning landscape quilting with Anne!

Although I know my way around a sewing machine and have made ‘stuff’ throughout my life, I’m not a stitchy, sewy kind of person – well I thought I wasn’t until I saw Anne’s work. Whatever happens, it will be enormous fun having a go because Anne is so passionate about her art.

Tutor Anne Robson explaining the do’s and don’ts of fabric composition.
Landscape quilting student Sarah-Jane gets some one-to-one tuition from Anne.

How can anyone resist boxes of neatly folded, colour coordinated fabrics to choose from?

This will be a compete departure from my usual creative environment which is an array of paints, inks, papers, glues and varnishes.

The boxes of beautiful fabrics that Anne has are so calming compared to my own tangle of art stuff in my home studio. It will make a change to have clean hands while I create!

Gorgeous Fabrics…
…to…
…choose from!

If you live in Suffolk, particularly the Woodbridge/Ipswich area, visit the sign up page and book your place on this brilliant four week course.

Fabric, cottons, pins and sewing machines. What more could a girl (or boy!) ask for?

What are you waiting for?

Places on this block of workshops are being reserved fast.

If you want to ensure you get a place – hop on the Wooden Roots website now to book and pay and then you will be guaranteed a place. For those who have only provisionally reserved with the office, remember, booked and paid for trumps reserved – yep, life is like that!😍

The course is over four Wednesdays from 1pm – 3pm – January 15th, 22nd, 29th and February 5th 2020.

If you fancy learning Landscape quilting – this is a brilliant opportunity to do it NOW – see you there!

Fancy paper beads are a step ahead of the usual triangular shaped bead strip that make a fairly standard paper bead.

fancy paper beads
Standard paper beads made from triangular strips.
Diablo shaped beads made from a more adventurous paper bead strip shape. As these strips are quite hard for beginners to make, I sell the pre-cut diablo bead strips online. They are currently only available as part of a kit. See further down for details.

Making these fancy paper beads in the diablo shape is easy.

I have created a pre-cut diablo paper bead strip in plain white, to make it easy for beginners to make basic diablo paper beads which they can paint and decorate in their own style.

In the picture above, you can see the diablo beads I made in my most recent film and they are painted with metallic pink and green paint with a sealer/glaze on top.

I have added some tiny gold and silver spacer beads to set off the colours.

Two bracelets I made with my pre-cut diablo srips.

If you want to see how to make these fancy paper beads, watch the video over on my YouTube channel.

I have made a short film showing the technique for rolling the strips. When you first see the strips, especially if you are a beginner to paper bead making, they can look a little intimidating and complicated.

But they really are not difficult to roll and the fancy paper beads they make are a lovely change from standard paper beads.

I show you very clearly in the tutorial over on YouTube how to roll the diablo strips with ease to make perfect diablo shaped paper beads.

If you want to get hold of these pre-cut paper bead strips, I am selling kits with enough strips to make three bracelets

The kit – a 3mm paper bead rolling tool, 36 diablo strips and 100 3mm metal bead cores.

And while stocks last – I am giving away a free glue stick with every kit.

A free glue stick while stocks last.

UK, European and other worldwide customers can buy my diablo paper bead kits from my Folksy shop below.

In my Folksy shop, the postage costs are separate. I have set this shop up especially for UK customers but I do ship worldwide from here for those who want to use Folksy.

PaperBeadToolsAndSuppliesUK

USA, Canadian, Australian and New Zealand Customers can also my diablo paper bead kits in my Etsy shop below.

In my Etsy shop, the postage prices are included in the item price and are set for the costs to send items to the USA/Canada/Australia/New Zealand.

I therefore recommend that UK and European customers buy from my Folksy shop, above, instead of Etsy.

This is because the new Etsy postage policies are making the overall cost of items more expensive for people in the UK and Europe.

ImagesForCrafts

Hope you enjoy the video.

And if you have any questions, please drop me a comment on here or in the comments section on YouTube.

Have fun making your fancy paper beads!

So easy to make!


If you are wondering how to make Christmas decorations out of paper – you are in the right place.

To make your hanging Christmas decorations, you will need the following:

Assorted Christmas themed heavyweight paper
A glue pen
Glitter
9mm split rings and some smaller jump rings
Assorted silver or gold Christmas themed charms
20mm or 22mm gauge craft wire
Tiny glue dots for crafting
Christmassy ribbon
how to make Christmas decorations out of paper
Stick on craft gems.

And you will also find the following tools helpful in making these simple Christmas decorations:

Large craft punches in symmetrical shapes but you can of course just cut by hand with scissors or crft knife.
Looping pliers are brilliant for making neat loops on craft wire.
A bone folder is very useful in making sure your creases are sharp.
Craft wire cutters are best so you do not blunt your scissors.

The instructions on how to make Christmas decorations out of paper – step by step are in my video below.

If you want to try out my, ‘how to make Christmas decorations out of paper’ project but you don’t have a craft shop near you, have a look in my Amazon shops (links below).

It’s always best to try and source your supplies and tools from local craft shops, especially the small independant ones.

However, if you live in a place where there is no easily accessible craft shop, then you will find what you need in in Amazon stores.

https://www.amazon.com/shop/rainbowlane

https://www.amazon.co.uk/shop/rainbowlane

You will find my Amazon Afflilate statement by clicking here.

Did you find this video useful?

Now you know how to make Christmas decorations out of paper – you can go and make lots of gorgeous decorations – let me know how you get on in the commnets below.

Free bottle cap images are waiting for you over on my free downloads page.

But there is a catch – when you click the link and get to that page, it will ask you for a password.

To get the password you will need to watch the YouTube tutorial showing how I made these pretty bottle cap charms.

That’s all you need to do – just watch the video to get the password – no payment, no catch!

You will find step-by-step instructions on how to make these in the You Tube video below.

You can see how I used my free bottle cap designs to make these Charms, in the video below.

When you have watched the video right through and made a note of the password you will need, click here to be taken to the free downloads page.

Click here to watch the video tutorial on YouTube.

Now that you have your free bottle cap images, do you need help getting the supplies I use in the tutorial?

For those people who can’t get to a craft store or who don’t have one nearby, I have two Amazon storefronts where people in the Amazon.com and .co.uk areas can easily get the items seen in my tutorials.

But if you can get your supplies from a local craft shop, then please do to support any independent shop owners who are struggling to compete with the internet.

These are the links to my Amazon stores:

https://www.amazon.com/shop/rainbowlane

https://www.amazon.co.uk/shop/rainbowlane

And this is my Amazon Affiliate declaration.

I hope you enjoy using your bottle cap images – let me know how yours turn out.

And also let me know in the comments below if you have any special requests for more free bottle images – what colors do you like?

easy diy halloween decorations

Easy DIY halloween decorations just for you.

And not just easy – also very inexpensive to make because…Ta dah! …they are made from bread!

Warning – these decorations ARE NOT EDIBLE!

easy diy halloween decorations

I’ll give you a brief step by step guide here so you can get the idea of how to make these cute decorations complete with holes so you can hang them up.

Continue reading

Why Do Ghouls Fall In Love? 😍

Free Halloween printables as png files may be just what you need to add the finishing touches to a Halloween project.

Whether you are a teacher needing free Halloween printables for your class to use or a crafter wanting very simple designs depicting Halloween, these designs may be what you need.

There are 12 very simple, basic designs in this Halloween printables set.

You can either print them out or drag them onto another image in Photoshop. The backgrounds are transparent, although they show as white on here.

They will print out as white but if you drag the design onto another image in Photoshop, you will only get the black part.

You will find your free, full size free Halloween images by clicking the links under the pictures.

We hope you enjoy using your free Halloween printables.

We will be adding more free printables soon so if you want to make sure you get access to them all, please subscribe to this blog and you will find out as soon as new designs are available to download.

Coming up next is a sheet of beautiful 1 inch circular designs in rich autumn colors.

I have designed these to be in intense, warm colors to match the season that September brings to the northern hemisphere.

You will be able to print the 6×4 inch sheet of designs off and cut them out with a 1 inch circular punch to make handbag dangles, bottle cap pendants, key chains or to use in scrap booking.

You can see in the pic below right what I have done with some of the designs.

I will also be giving you step by step instructions on how to use these free printable designs next time so you can make these charms too.

My newest free designs coming up in my next post.
Examples of what you can make with my free designs.

Meanwhile sign up to my blog so you don’t miss any freebies…

…And have fun with your free Halloween printables!

Digital Freebies!

Who doesn’t like freebies? Especially when they are digital freebies for your crafts.

You may have noticed in my last post, I included a link to a digital freebie of small circle designs.

I created them to use in various crafts including scrapbooking, card making or for making pendants – basically, any creative activity where you can use small, colourful circular designs.

This time, I am starting to build on my digital freebies.

I have added another 6×4 inch sheet of 1 inch circular designs that could be used in any creative craft you want, including bottle cap pendants, or 1 inch bezel pendants.

digital freebies

This design can be used with a 1 inch circle punch or cut  by hand.

Just print out onto 6×4 glossy photo paper and punch/cut the designs out.

digital freebies

If you want to access my digital freebies – all I ask is that you watch my latest YouTube Video showing how I used these designs.

The video is less than 10 minutes long and it reveals the password you will need to get into https://www.funcraftstodoathome.com/free-printable-designs where I am now posting the links to my digital freebies

This is the page on this website where you can access the free designs once you have the password.

Get the password from the YouTube video and come back here to unlock your free designs.

And while you are over at my YouTube channel, I would love it if you also subscribed and hit the bell icon to get regular updates which will include more free designs for your crafts.

This is what I used my designs for…

…what will you make with yours?

There will be more and more of these free designs coming up in the future – do you have any requests for colours or shapes of designs you would like to have?

I can’t promise to be able to supply what you have in mind but it’s worth asking me.

You can do that by scrolling down to the comments section below and leaving your ideas there or filling in the.

If you aren’t sure where to source the craft supplies I use in my videos, you can visit my Amazon stores and browse through to find what you need.

Amazon shop for US and Canada readers

Amazon shop for UK readers.

My Amazon affiliate statement.

 

Not sure where to buy 1 inch glass domes or clear resin stickers?

Check out my Amazon shop links above.

Hope you enjoy using the designs!

Don’t forget to subscribe to this site by going to the black menu bar to the left of the screen and scrolling to the place where you can leave your email address to get notifications of new posts and free designs.

You will get a confirmation email and all you have to do is click the confirm link and you’re good to go.

Enjoy the digital freebies and watch out for more free images and designs to use in your crafts.