Crafting can be seen as a particularly solitary pursuit – most people craft on their own, working on their own individual projects. One notable exception to this of course is quilting, where groups of (usually) women have got together to work on a shared project.
Regardless of whether you are working on a shared project, there are loads of benefits to crafting with friends and here are just a few:
• You learn new skills – crafting with friends inevitably exposes you to some new skills and techniques. You might find a better way to cast on or off if you are a knitting fan, or you might learn something new completely. Its also really nice to teach your friends something new, so go on, share your knowledge.
• Crafting in Public – ah the old UCC mission of crafting in public! For those that are a little embarrassed . . . → Read More: Crafting with friends
As indicated by our name – Urban Craft Collective – we are keen to establish a community of crafters and would really value input from you guys about what we could do to make UCC work for you. In particular we would love your feedback on:
• What topics you would like to see covered in our blogs – more step by step instructions, more general crafty musings….. we’re open to offers. • How we can make UCC more of a community – would you like to see interactive message boards, specific members only areas, areas where you can post your designs and pictures of completed projects. • How many of you attend crafting in public events? If you don’t, what is stopping you? • Would you be interested in setting up a UCC group in your local area? We’re really keen to help . . . → Read More: Your ideas for UCC
Now making a bead bracelet is not a craft you can do on the go – visions of pushing your way though a crowded train carriage, chasing after your beads is not an appealing one. However, you can take it with you on a weekend away or just something to do when you have a quiet moment at home Its really quick, easy and fun.
Step 1 – Getting Ready
Along with the beads (obviously!), there are a few essential items you need: small flat or long nose pliers, tiger tail wire, a clasp, crimps, a peg and jump rings. You can buy all of these things in your local craft store and there are very cheap versions which I’d recommend buying if you are just trying it out.
Step 2 – Starting Out
Cut a length of wire – cut it so it fits around 1.5 times . . . → Read More: Making a bead bracelet
As you know, at UCC we are all about building crafting into your everyday life and making most of every opportunity to get your craft on. However, once in a while it would be nice to take some time out and really immerse yourself in crafting.
There are lots and lots of great craft based holidays out there and here are our top 3 ideas across the world:
1. Visit www.craftybreaks.com to see the best Wales has to offer in all things crafty. You can take workshops in pottery and ceramics, glass painting, felt making and mosaics to name but a few all amid the beautiful Welsh countryside.
2. On the other side on the world, a slightly different approach is offered by the craft retreat near Melbourne (www.thecraftretreat.com.au). Rather than offering classes, it provides a base for you and your friends to dedicate yourself to crafting. There is . . . → Read More: Holidays with a difference
A friend told me the other day that she has got her mojo back – now that was in relation to her life in general but it got me thinking about my crafty mojo. Now as much as I like crafting, sometimes I can’t settle to anything. I’ll start a project but not finish it and just generally be a bit slack . In short, I’ve lost my crafting mojo!
So, if your crafting enthusiasm is waning, how can you go about regaining that passion?
1 – Set yourself a goal – whether that goal is to spend 15 minutes every day on your crafting or to complete your crafty project by a certain date, its really worthwhile putting a little bit of pressure on yourself. Yes its a hobby but if you are struggling to get motivated a bit of routine will work wonders.
2 – Try . . . → Read More: Your crafting mojo
Not that we need an excuse to craft but as its Valentine’s Day tomorrow, I thought that it would be nice to search the web for inspiration for romantic craft ideas.
First, I was amazed at the number of websites and blogs that are dedicated to romantic craft ideas – everything you could think of from creating a message in a bottle, love heart cookies, treasure hunts, knitting a jumper with your loved ones initials !! (not sure that would go done well in my household) or making a simple Valentine’s Day card.
Anyway, the crafty idea I liked the most was a crocheted heart pin/badge. This is great not only because it is portable but also because its a gift to yourself so regardless of whether you have a Valentine you can still make yourself a gift. Great, we like treating ourselves at UCC!
So first things . . . → Read More: A Crafty Romance
Patchwork quilting is another great portable craft and a really easy one to do in public. If you do your preparation at home, there isn’t too much to take out and about with you. The other bonus is that it is both easy and relaxing – can’t ask for too much more in a craft. It is also a great way to use up scraps of material, or you can even buy ready made ‘squares’ – how simple is that!
The following instructions are courtesy of my wonderful Mum!
1. First of all you need a template made from card to the shape you want to use. Typically you might use a hexagon, or if that sounds a bit tricky, just go for a square. Depending on what you want to make, the size of your template can vary. If you are making a cushion cover for example, you . . . → Read More: A Patchwork Quilt
Making crafting cool again is a big part of what UCC is all about but the process of creating, albeit out of necessity, is one that stretches back centuries.
The word knitting apparently comes from a Dutch word meaning to knot which makes perfect sense. The earliest known examples of knitting were found in Egypt between the 11th and 14th centuries. Who knows, in between running the country and flirting with Mark Anthony, maybe even Cleopatra turned her hand to knitting. We’re in very illustrious company .
The oldest surviving item with a knitted appearance is the humble sock – even back in the 3rd century, people were putting their best foot forward, ha ha.
Crochet on the other hand has a much more modern history, not really becoming popular until the 19th century – the wonderfully titled “The Memoirs of a Highland Lady” by Elizabeth Grant in 1812 . . . → Read More: A short and crafty history
Happy New Year to all the crafters out there. Hope you all had a fabulous 2010 and that 2011 is even better. For UCC, the highlight of 2010 was definitely being on the front cover of the UK Metro – one to live up to in 2011 that’s for sure!
I spent some of the Christmas break working on my cross stitch and my crafty new year’s resolution is to finish more projects – I have a nasty habit of starting lots of new things but not completing them. Hopefully I’m not alone in this!
Anyway, as this is the first blog of 2011, I’ll just let you know a little of what is in store for UCC this year. There will be the usual round of blog posts on a variety of topics (if there is anything you would like to see covered, just let us know). We . . . → Read More: Happy New Year!!
This post really doesn’t have anything to do with ghosts but I just liked the title and it is the silly season right? There is a lot going on over the Christmas season, the parties, the booze, the food, the in-laws…..but that is no excuse to give up on your crafting. In fact, the holidays are the perfect time to work on your projects and provide an alternative activity for your hands, rather than eating yet another mince pie or turkey sandwich. So here are our top tips for Christmas crafting and not a ghoul in sight!
Have craft, will travel
Most of us will be travelling over the festive season to visit friends or relatives. As long as you aren’t the designated driver then your journey is the perfect opportunity to work on your crafty projects. Turn up the cheesy tunes on the car radio or ipod . . . → Read More: The ghosts of Christmas crafting