Monday Blues

 I have the Monday Blues...
I put it down to a week of fun Craft Fairs and thus, utter exhaustion.
SmallFish needs an angel costume (at 48hrs notice if you please) and i still have a few more fairs to go. I think i just need a glass of something with MrsB and a decent meal.
 But i still have the urge to create and sew. I just feel nicer when the fabric is running through my fingers and my eyes are fondling the ribbons "what shall i use for this project...?"
I think my new supplies that recently arrived, have given me a new direction.
Smaller brooches - sweeter - easier to wear and slightly more subtle?

Expect many more of these in 2011
HUGE sale items in to be continued through into January and the shop cleared for new stock. I feel like i need a bit of a re-vamp. A fresh approach.
 But, to lift me from the Monday Malaise...
a huge *wave* and smile to all those lovely ladies at MaKe on Sunday. I had a sore throat from so much talking. A big thanks to Chloe for being a sweetheart. A 'have fun' all those who bought supplies and chatted to me about your projects. Truth is... i love sharing my enthusiasm and i love it when you all share yours with me.
 ThankU so much to the talented and pretty and i cannot wait to give these at Christmas. And CCccooooeeee to Emma LK and her Mum xx and also the BookShop sweetie and HER mum - stop following me! (no, don't) have the most lovely Christmas xx
 The delightful Lion is actually for me. I am putting together a great collection of creatives from other artists and crafters for my studio. Things that delight and inspire me.
Tell me to take a break?
It's just... i have so many ideas and so many fun things to share....
2011 is a fine time to roll all these out. I need to chill out and get a smile back.

Before tomorrow evenings Festive Shopping Fair (another, i know!) I think i might pop to the Antiques Cellar in the morning and a local Jumper Sale.
I need the warmth of Wool and the indulgence of vintage.

*Important News* ...if you are coming to the MaKe Fair in Wolverton - this Sunday....

 Ok, Ok, so it isn't soooo important but i wanted to tell you anyway.
I have had a few emails from lovely local ladies pre-ordering supplies for Delivery on SUNDAY at "MaKe" in Wolverton. This is more than OK with me. It saves on hassles and postage.

If you are coming to MaKe and want specific items from any of my online shops - please don't assume the whole range will be available on the day as that is far from possible.
 I will have mixed Button Bags and some Shapes & Patterns but by no means will i be bringing the entire range. if there are items you want do let me know via email on Thursday or Friday this week. I am out at a Fair allll day tomorrow too, so don't fret if i don't reply directly.
 The same applies to the Felt. i will have some smaller packs of Acrylic Felt and maybe some Wool Felt but not all these rolls. So if you want half metres / metre packs, just drop me an email.
So... what will i be bringing??
Well, lots of the decorations but again, not all.
Some Lavender Cushions and textile bits but no NeedleBooks and no Bunting that is 'non Xmas'.
As it stands right now, i have sold out of Angels and Xmas Bunting.
I will see how tomorrows fair goes in terms of stock. I still have Thursday, Friday, Saturday to do any catch up sewing.
It may sound a bit 'drastic' this Blog Post, but really, i'd hate it for a local person to come along expecting a 'something' which isn't there.
We have limited table space at any fair and i have limited car space! and physical energy to LUG this lot everywhere i go.
""phew"" AND,,,,, saving the best news till last,,,,, there is *new* stripey ribbon going into the shops, yippee! AND i will have BARGAIN BASKETS at MaKe on Sunday - filled with de-stash fabrics that i cannot find a use for. And Older Design Brooches as PaperFish gets a mega MAKEOVER for 2011.
New fabrics from Japan and the US and big bags of bargain ribbons for wrapping and *new* lush Ribbon Bags too.
Gosh, i am tired out now! 
See ya xxx

Colour Therapy....

 Time to share this weeks news in our weekly Colour Therapy session.
This is my regular group meeting to stop me going insane. There are a few other members who pop in and out, as and when they need to (you know who you are) but mainly, this is pure self indulgence.

In todays news: I waved a rather sad goodbye to my Caribou Collection. I made Santa's Reindeer last year - a set of 9 - in the secret knowledge nobody would be mad enough to buy them but i loved the project. Alas and huzzah! in simultaneous unison, they sold. Good Luck in your new home boys xxx
 New colour collections of mixed Felt Balls. The same colours as i sell but just re-mixed to inspire projects. It is an aim of mine with selling supplies - in my business manifesto "To inspire & provide"
So, the above is "Tomte Mix" (Scandinavian Elven folk colour mix)
 And these are what i call my "Gingerbread Mix" with browns, red, orange and pink - my favourite storytime colours for Christmas. I am making garlands from this mix with fabric scraps and pom-poms.
 Chaos as always.... the shop stock is mostly moved to the new Studio (which is now a heaving mess) so i have got all my own 'at home' supplies stashed messily in vintage suitcases and boxes. I cannot find a thing. I am looking forward to New Year as i LOVE tidiness and effeciency. The thought of tidying all my stash is fantastic and life can run better in this fashion.
 MiniBabushka's selling well in the online shop - again, these colours.... this riot of 'bright' is so uplifting on these colder, greyer, wetter days.
And - a pair of Lime & Blue handled scissors.
It is the small things in life (hey MrsB?) that make everything big seem posible and a little less daunting.
Whack a smile on your face people xxx

NeedleBook Party...

In honour of getting a bit of a mention here:
I thought i had better support the article and remind everyone of my awesome NeedleBooks!
EDIT - This NeedleBook SOLD already
 I haven't had a chance to make or list any *new* designs for so long, what with moving home, the new studio AND Christmas selling.... you know how it is ladies!?
 But i am super proud to list a lovely few different designs in the shop.
Folksy remains a little empty of my handmade lovelies - so sorry UK but you can always email me and shop from the Etsy shop in GBP. It is no hassle for me.
 Loving the above Book "DJ Stitch".. getting 'street' on ya and 'down wiv the kids' it just amuses me.
 And i will never apologise for loving the soft and cutesy designs. They make me happy! So these little Hedghogs get a worthy mention here.
Many designs made from selvedge so they are Unique and one-off designs, expecially for us crafters addicted to sewing.
I could go all commercial on you and say "oh yes, ideal Christmas Gifts" and all that...
But, do you know what? my busiest time for selling these NeedleBooks.... is in January. So we allllll know that these are pretties that we buy for ourselves, hahahaha - the best type of Christmas Shopping in my opinion.

This is a yummy new NeedleBook in the Etsy PaperFish shop
And this is *new* too - i love making new designs.... (must get on with the Christmas Stock now)
see at you a fair maybe??

Craft Booth Pictures...

You **knoooow** you want to see photos from this weekend's Craft Fair....
You know you want me to show you the delights and delectables from my Christmas Craft weekend....

The car is packed and ready to go. We are in a Marquee this year, as opposed to the main House, so i am dressed ready! Chunky scarf and wool layers a-go-go. Thick socks and Big Boots.
 I popped over to the venue, the afternoon before so i had already managed to nab my preferred area. In a corner and next to the heating!
We had clips and bits so i managed to hang fabric and quilts from the back of the Marquee to help keep us cosy and get the stall 'in the mood'.
(i am saying 'we' as my mum helped me allll weekend xx)
I love having 2 tables in this shape as it has an inviting shop feel to it. A cosy corner of Christmassy Crafting. It is also easier having two 'counters' to serve from as it can get very busy when chatting.

 Fat Santa Men..... Lavender Cushions displayed in Vintage a trug.... my Nans old pot stand at the back (which i spray painted about 2 hours before it arrived here)
 Lovely colourful quilts to keep us happy and let everybody see "There is a fun stall down the back here"
 And, of course, all the Christmas Decorations ready to be mauled by children who approach the stall with a kind of wild and wonderful gleam in their eye... "Mummy, loooooook"
Children and adults are welcome to fondle our merchandise. It is a scratch and sniff stall.
 And the EVER wonderful Jo & Charity were at the Fair. I love these ladies - unfortunately they have no website to direct you to, so you'll have to dream and ponder their wares....
 And, introducing my new Crafty Bosom Buddies: Random Granny & Elsie Sparrow.
I am going to find where they live and stalk them. I hope that's okay with them?
I am in love - they are truly mind sparkling.
Their stall looked divine and magical. Their creations are heart tickling.
 I bought some *cute* little girls with plaits - these 3 are destined for the SmallFish Christmas Gift Advent Calender. Don't worry, she can't read yet and won't come to the blog and see.
Also (terrible quick photo - sorry) behind 'the girls' is a quilted and appliqued Ice-Cream Van zipper purse which i bought for myself. Just dreamy :)
 I fell in love with this rug as SOOOOOOON as my friend Jo put it on her stall.
Just look at it! It is awesome. She charged me way too little for it. These should sell in Liberty's for hundreds of pounds. It is knitted..... (wait for that information to sink in.....) Yes - k n i t t e d!
Using giant needles and old rugs cut into long strips.
 It is so thick and chunky and cosy and perfect.
I should have asked her to do me a scarf....
(Which reminds me of a project i want to do with Felted wool jumpers....)
 The moment i saw it, i wanted to get my bare feet scrunched into it's chunky warmth.
I have put it in my bathroom as the colours reflect fantastically off all that bathroom white-ness.
I LOVE it - thankU Jo. Thankyou to all the Ladies i bought from over the weekend. ThankU for being wonderful and for making unique and quirky handmade goods.
ThankU for the handmade chocolates (that i ate so quick they never got near the camera)
ThankU for the knitted Guinea Pig and the Vintage fabric Angel
Thank GOD for the talents and tenacity of those who craft by hand xxxx
And ohhhhhh, thanks for a day off at home.
Squelching about in pink socks and yellow slippers. Mopping the floors and washing down the kitchen. Putting the clothes into the was machine and eating mushrooms on toast.
Lucky, happy, satisfied me xxxx

Canons Ashby House - National Trust Northants.... Crafty Fair weekend

 All weekend:
Saturday and Sunday 11am - 4pm
A large Marquee full of Crafts and Christmas Gifts
I strongly advise you to come in the afternoon - we all have plenty of stock.
The mornings get so busy!
See you There??

Also - if you're local to Milton Keynes >>>>
I'll have all my decorations and loads of Craft Supplies at the MadCap Centre MK
Sunday 28th November
Plus a table where children can sew a quick decoration to take home with them.
And that activity is for FREE!

What's new at the PaperFish House?

 Just enjoying all the colour that is going on around me right now.
I could  n o t  resist taking a photo of the felt above. A custom order cut and ready to pack. They look soooo good i want to jump on them.
 And a SnowFish customer ordered some larger stockings in these incredible colours - and i was really pleased with how they turned out. I have been looking for a project to use the spotty ribbons on and the GIANT ric-rac and these seem to be a perfect fit.
 So, i used up some larger scraps of felt and made a stack of them to sell at the weekend
(these are waiting for their buttons to finish them off)
BIG craft weekend at CANONS ASHBY house in Northamptonshire:
Saturday and Sunday 10am till 4pm
My mum and me will be there touting the wares - come visit us if you're in the area?
 Getting very Christmassy in my clothes too and realised that worryingly, i was dressed like an Elf today in various reds, grey and black. Maybe wait till December for the full on Xmas Fancy Dress?
 Post Post Post
See that queue at your Post Office? when you only popped in for a stamp?
and you are in quite a hurry....?
That's people like me that is, keeping you waiting whilst the lovely counter men and women weigh, stick and organise our parcels :)
 *Now* By popular demand.....
Mrs Biscuit - your Big Man is made and ready to send.
There is a medium Fat Santa with a cherry hat for sale HERE

and a Large Santa Man with these awesome bells on, for sale HERE
They may be the only Fat Santa's that get into the internet shops... we shall see.
Many thanks my Crafty Friends xxx

Christmas Cheer...

 These little 'Santa Men' have caused a bit of a stir! I have had some fantastic reaction from friends, family, customers, blogland-ers. What a huge compliment and thankyou.
But... it feels a little fraudulant...
 These Santa Men arrive on a yard of fabric all pre-printed in their gorgeousness.
I know, it is what you do with the fabric that creates the charm and interest of anything handmade. But i feel a little 'lesser' because i didn't design him. And when you live and work in a world, such as ETSY - i am surrounded by profound talents. It is very humbling.
 Yes, they have been 'Fished', in that i have quilted them, interfaced, stuffed, buttoned and bell'ed the chunky little Christmas Dudes (they are weighted too with a secret method, to keep him stood upright)
But i am someone who takes immense pride in my own original designs, and that is why these feel 'lesser'
The same can be said for these darling Babushka decorations.
I adore these and everyone in my family is getting one! But the true hard work isn't mine. They are fiddly little ladies to cut, stuff, sew etc... but the charm is really in the beautiful fabric.
 I am not asking for forgiveness from the Craft Gods or anything - it is just a sense of Pride i think i am talking about. These decorations are great fun to make and i love the end product but they are nowhere as satisfying as designing something from scratch.
 2010 seemed to be full of genuine stories where Artists and Designers were being ripped off - their work stolen and replicated all over, from small internet traders to large corporate giants. And i can understand that some people would say this is flattering but it must also feel very frustrating.
 And so i have concluded that my word for 2010 is INTEGRITY.
Can you look at your life, your work, your actions and intentions and warmly know that you are acting with integrity?
When i feel like stopping this handmade madness... when i see the Mass produced items people are buying for Christmas.... when i feel slightly 'lesser' for using a pre-printed fabric.... i just ask myself the question:
"Are you acting with integrity? Are you honest and true?"
 Yes, I feel I have integrity.
I love being part of the handmade movement.
I love doing what i do and staying true to my own ideas and ideals.
I am not giving out a lesson here.
Far be it from me to judge anyone other than myself.
But blogging is great place for me to sort through things in my head that have been confusing me of late.


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