Sunday, 3 March 2013

Ceramic Easter Eggs, Bird Coasters And Organic Rose Garden Lavender Pillows For Handmade Monday


Yay! We're into March and its officially Spring!! I've been busy with some seasonal makes... thankfully the sun came out after a week of cloudy gloom just in time for me to get some pictures of them to show you :)


Hand Painted Ceramic Easter Eggs


Making A Birds's Nest


Have you ever tried making a nest?  I've a new found admiration for birds having had a go at making one myself this week... its not as easy as it looks to get the whole thing to hold together!  I wanted one to display the ceramic eggs i've painted.





I have to say i had great fun foraging for the materials. It was one of those lovely activities that involve you so completely that you forget about everything apart from what you're doing... until one of your dogs runs off with a mouthful of your precious twigs that is!


Hand Painted Ceramic Egg Decorations



I painted these with Easter in mind but i think they'd make really pretty decorations at any time of year... what do you think? I'm wondering whether to order more of the materials and make them a permanent fixture...

They are 6.5cms long and have soft white, pure wool loops attached for hanging (which could easily be removed if someone wanted to display them in a bowl - or a nest! :))


Fabric Gift Bags


If you saw my recent post about my Birds Of A Feather fabric designs you'll know what i made these little gift bags for my eggs from...



...that's right, the samples i ordered have arrived! I'm loving how they turned out :)  The designs are much more delicate and subtle once they're printed on fabric - the eggs, you may recall, appeared quite bold as a digital image but hopefully you can see from these photos how much softer they are on fabric.



I'm really happy with how these little egg gifts turned out... I think they'd make cute Easter pressies :) I hope you like them too!

They're available in my Etsy shop now priced £9 for a single egg with cotton gift bag, or £18 for a set of three eggs on their own. (they will be listed in all my usual outlets very soon).


Nesting Birds Blue And White Ceramic Tile Coasters



Many of you were kind enough to leave lovely comments about the fabric design i came up with featuring the silhouettes of nesting birds gathering twigs (thank you!) I was pleased with that design too, so i decided to create a set of four hand painted ceramic coasters featuring the same images..


... they can be used individually for mugs or glasses or put together to hold something larger. They have wool felt bases so they won't scratch table tops.

I just love the blue and white colour combo... to me its a timeless classic :)

These will be available soon from all the usual places priced £25 for the set of four.



Rose Garden Lavender Pillows (Organic Cotton)

Do you remember when i showed you my first fabric designs a few weeks ago? (catch up here if you missed it!). Well, i ordered some small swatches printed on organic cotton to see what i thought of both the design and the fabric and i'm happy to say i am really pleased with both!

I'd really like to use more organic cotton in my work as regular cotton has pretty dismal eco credentials... the Spoonflower one i got my rose garden designs printed on is soft and quite fine with a faint sheen.. really pretty and perfect for delicate pretty things - so i made more lavender pillows!




I'm so in love with these pretty spring colours :)

They will be available to buy in the next few days from the usual places - priced £12.50 for a set of three.

All of my 'rose garden' and 'birds of a feather' fabrics are also now available to buy from my Spoonflower shop, should you feel like making some pretty spring things from them yourself!


In Other News... Economics


Its been another busy week for me... as well as nest making etc i've begun the process of adding UK postage charges to all my listings... the sums have been done and i just can't afford to offer to post for free anymore, however much i would like to! It won't necessarily be the full amount - i'm charging £1 for the lavender pillows for example. The crux of the matter is, i need Free Spirit Designs to be a financially successful as well as creatively successful business if i'm to continue dedicating the time to it that i do. I do hope my lovely customers understand..

Has anyone else had to make adjustments like this recently? I've found that the current financial climate makes it increasingly difficult to be as generous as i would like to be. I've lost count of how many times i've had to restrain myself from purchasing beautiful items created by fellow crafters that i would have snapped up in an instant in more buoyant times! I do still try to support small businesses where i can though. I'd be interested to hear your thought's and experiences of buying/selling handmade during tough times...

I'm off to find out what those super duper Handmade Monday crafters have been up to now, do pop along too if you have a moment, there's always lots to see and learn!

Thanks for popping by x
 

43 comments:

  1. I hope that you have already heard about the changes that are happening on April the 1st as I fear that you may have to make some more adjustments. On a lighter note, it is really lovely to see the objects made with the fabric you designed. It must give a really great sense of achievement. My favourites would have to be the lavender bags although the rest are beautiful. I think you did a great job on the nest!!

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    1. Oh no! Just googled it, i didn't know.... thank you for the heads up!

      It has been really satisfying :) I'm really glad you like how they turned out :) x

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  2. Your style really does lend itself perfectly to beautiful Spring things! They are all lovely, I love your photograph of eggs in a nest and love that you've made your own gift bags out of your own fabric to go with the eggs too.

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    1. Aww thank you! I'm glad you like my nest of eggs :) It was really fun making it and the gift bags too - definitely a satisfying end to the creative process! x

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  3. I love the colours of the eggs, they are so spring-like, and do look great in the nest you made.

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    1. Thank you! I did enjoy making he nest :) x

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  4. As ever, I love your fabrics so I'm glad they are now available to buy! It seems your postage is more than fair so I'm sure your customers will understand. I think it's so important to support Home/Handmade products in the face of very cheap, mass produced, imported "stuff". Good luck with your new items xx

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    1. Thank you!!

      Oh yes i totally agree... go handmade!! :)

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  5. What changes on april 1st?? groan - it doesn't sound good? I really like all your items - and I'd buy any of them if I could afford to do so! I think your eggs would make really good new baby/naming day/christening decorations or gifts!

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    1. postage is going up again..... :(

      Aww thank you! That means a lot :)

      Oooh good idea, i love the sound of that! x

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  6. Wow - I love the eggs, they look so fresh and with all the promise of Spring! The fabric samples look great. I'm always amazed at how much you achieve each week :-) Postage is a bummer - especially as it's going up again! Have a fab week, Simmi x

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    1. Aww thanks Simmi! I'm glad you like them :)

      postage is a bummer :) x

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  7. Gosh you have been busy!!!

    The eggs are lovely and the fabric bags look really good. The blue and white colours on the tiles work really well together.



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    1. Thank you very much!! I'm glad you like them :) x

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  8. I love your nest and eggs! So, so pretty! I really need to get my act together with Easter :)

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    1. Aww thank you :)

      I know, it really creeps ups doesn't it! x

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  9. So envy you having designed your own fabrics and what beautiful things you have made. I think on handmade goods people expect to pay the full Royal Mail Postage charge. You could always offer the choice of first or second class etc. (if you don't already that is).

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    1. Aww thank you! It has been great fun :)

      That's good to hear, i'm sure you're right, thank you! x

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  10. Oh my goodness, you've done it again! Such gorgeous things. I love the coaster set, the blue and white is so stylish. The eggs are adorable and I agree could be used all year round, and I love the idea of selling them in a matching pouch.
    I fear that I am going to have to adjust my pricing to account for more expensive postage soon. Although my items are really lightweight they are bulky and that puts the cost up considerably.
    xxx

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    1. Aww thank you! You're so kind :) I'm really glad you agree the eggs could work at other times of year as i'd be sad to see them go after Easter!

      Postage is just so expensive now isn't it... i'm glad i'm not the only one in this predicament! x

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  11. Your designs are beautiful, I have a decorated egg that I have on display all year round, I bought it when I was on a trip to Poland.
    I love your nest, I always have birds nesting in the garden and so admire the work that goes into them. I'm forever collecting things, hubby says that sometimes our home resembles a schools nature table :)

    Jan x

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    1. Thank you Jan! Ooooh that sounds lovely, i'm sure its beautiful :)

      He he oh me too! I love that description! x

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  12. I love the eggs, they're so delicately painted and go so well with the fabric bags. The little pillows are gorgeous and the print has worked really well and I like classic blue and white too!

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    1. Thank you very much Bev! I'm glad you like how they turned out :) I do too! x

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  13. I love your eggs, and the little fabric bags are just perfect. I guess reading above means postage is going up. I am just going to add a few knits to my Etsy shop, so will have to look into that. I still have only sold patterns though.

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    1. Thank you very much!!

      Yes, postage is going up... again...! x

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  14. Those coasters are beautiful! So clean looking in just the two tone, love it!

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  15. oh my word! love the spotted eggs and the little supa cute bags for them to live in! what a great idea and the painting is so convincing. I think the white egg with blue spots is my favourite but the remaining two are so pretty as well and its hard to decide.
    where do you get ceramic eggs? Never come across any.

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    1. Aww thanks Martha! I'm glad you like them :)

      The eggs are from Baker Ross, its a UK website with some cute things to decorate, i'm not sure what the postage would be like though... you're in the states aren't you? xx

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  16. I love these designs.The colours are so gentle but very effective.The eggs look gorgeous in the nest.About the postage-I'm always happy to pay postage if it's for something I really want so I wouldn't worry about it.

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    1. Thank you very much! I'm glad you like them :)

      Oh that's very reassuring to know :) thank you! x

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  17. I think those eggs would be good to have all year round. So pretty.

    I'm having to rethink postage too due to the increases coming up. I'm dreading what my calculations amount to.

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    1. Thank you Stephen! I'm so glad you think so :)

      The dreaded postage eh... its such a big expense these days isn't it!

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  18. oh they look marvelous :) i wasnt too keen on the egg pattern, but it works so well in the little bags, so cute.
    The pillows look adorable too!! You must be so excited to see your fabric designs come to life!

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    1. Aww thank you :) I'm glad you liked it in the end! :)

      I really am, its been so much fun! x

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  19. As always I am totally in love with your work! with UK postal prices forever going up its just not feasible to offer free postage as a handmade business, I don't think and I'm sure your customers will totally understand :)

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    1. Aww thanks Clare! That's very kind of you to say :)

      You're right, it isn't feasible... thank you, i don't feel so bad about it now! :)

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  20. Lots of lovely goodies, but my favourites are the tile coasts. Very striking colours. Hope you have a good week.

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    1. Aww thank you :) I'm glad you like them! x

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  21. You have been busy! The eggs are so delicate looking, and the nest is very impressive, a birdie would be proud! The coasters look very effective, and the fabric is beautiful.
    I didn't know about the postage either....
    Wendy x

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    1. He He :) I'm not sure its up to bird standards... but thank you, i'm glad you like it!

      As Simmi said in her comment - postage is a bummer... :)

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Your lovely comments are much appreciated x