Makers Monday, featuring Shopwillynilly

I’m not really one for setting new years resolutions, I usually just set myself a series of goals relating to my personal/work life. One of my many work goals was to start a regular feature on my blog which others will hopefully love to read and will find lots of inspiration from. Some of you may already know how much I LOVE Instagram. I dedicate a lot of time to it and as a result, have been introduced to some absolutely wonderful makers. My idea for ‘Makers Monday’ revolves around me dedicating an entire blog post to an inspirational maker each week, meaning my blog will be full of not only craft tutorials (and general ramblings) but will also be a wonderful resource for staying inspired and up-to-date with current makers.

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Let me introduce to you to Shopwillynilly set up by Chelsey, who is based in Truro, England. I’ve been admiring Chelsey’s work for some time, mostly through her Instagram account. Her photographs are just wonderful and capture her products beautifully. You can clearly see her excellent attention to detail, wonderful eye for colour, pattern and texture and most importantly, her strong sense of originality.

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Chelsey’s shop is the perfect place for any bride-to-be’s, looking for stylish, shabby chic wedding decor, made with lots of love and TLC. Chelsey’s shop is perfect for special gifts and wedding favours too.

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I bought lots of these adorable jars for my own wedding, as you may have seen on an older post here and wish I had of seen these personalised hearts back then. Homemade jam and chutney have been popular wedding favour ideas for a while now and I can definitely imagine these hearts looking fabulous if used to adorn culinary delights of that sort.

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I would be overjoyed to receive a beautiful keyring such as this one at a loved ones wedding. It’s such a special thought that your guests will be holding on to something forever from your big day. This seems so much more thoughtful (and useful) than the standard place card. The same thought which comes into my head again and again, of ‘why didn’t I see/think of this for my own wedding?’ makes me giggle! There is just far too much inspiration out there.

There is much more to see and swoon over in this beautiful shop. If you do go and take a peek, be warned that you are likely to want to buy everything in sight and may need to exercise some sort of self control!

I hope you’ve enjoyed my first ‘Makers Monday’ post, I really can’t wait to share the next one with you. If you’re planning your wedding at the moment, feel free to pin away! (Gosh, the hours I spent on Pinterest whilst planning my own wedding…)

If you’re reading this and would really like to be featured on one of my other instalments, please comment below and I’ll be in touch. I’d love to hear from you and support fellow makers!

Wedding Wednesday: Beautiful Cake Toppers

Happy Wednesday folks!

If you’re a regular reader you hopefully enjoyed last weeks Wedding Wednesday post, completely dedicated to wedding stationery. Due to the fabulous feedback received, I’m pleased to be featuring more inspiring designers in this weeks instalment.

Cake toppers are an essential part of any special wedding celebration and are one of the most important wedding decorations that will be purchased for your big day. I’ve been completely obsessed with beautiful cakes for many years now and I really enjoy browsing through my cake related Pinterest boards on a regular basis. (Unless you have unlimited sweet treats to hand, it’s always best to do this on a full stomach if you’re anything like me!)

  

Thinking back to last year when I was planning my own wedding, I remember sending my cake decorator endless Pinterest links containing lots of amazing wedding cakes. I eventually found an absolutely stunning handmade cake topper to go alongside the beautiful cake, which I wrote all about here. The cake decorator took full inspiration from my cake topper and designed the cake around it. How amazing is that? I absolutely love browsing the web for wedding related decorations, so it only felt right to feature some of the most stunning cake toppers on my blog.

Pictured above, are two amazingly adorable wooden peg cake toppers, handmade by Rose at Blossom Cake Toppers. These cake toppers are hand painted with plenty of love and care and are fully customised to look like the happy couple. This really is something that can be cherished for a very long time and will always bring back memories of your special day. I would be very happy to proudly display these cake toppers on my dresser, showing them off a million times over. Yes, really! When my husband and I got married last year, we didn’t have Felix (our miniature poodle) at the time, but if we did I definitely would have liked to have seen him in hand painted peg form, thats for sure.

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Next on the inspiration list are these wonderful fabric wedding birds, beautifully handmade by Emma at The Cotton Potter. Can you imagine these sitting pretty on top of your special cake? I certainly can. Emma’s birds are all completely handmade and are made to order. Each bird is carefully sewn together from Harris tweed and other pure wool fabrics. Having your birds individually designed means that your cake topper will be completely unique and truly special. How exciting does that sound?

Emma’s attention to detail is beyond words and her photography completely brings her fabulous creations to life. I imagine any wedding photographer would have plenty of fun photographing these, and you’re bound to want to display these for years to come, as you would with Rose’s peg cake toppers above. Please tell me you’re feeling inspired now? If so, you’ll definitely enjoy the rest!

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This marvellous creation above is made by Louise at Pops of Colour. Who doesn’t love confetti? Have you ever thought of having a confetti wedding cake topper? It’s something I would absolutely consider if I could plan my special day all over again. It’s such a fun idea and such a great way to bring lots of bright colour into your decor. Louise offers a choice of colours, meaning you can customise your confetti in accordance with your wedding theme. You can also choose from a range of confetti letters, so if you feel like having a ‘Mr & Mrs’ or ‘Love’ cake topper, it just might be possible! Yay! How awesome?

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You’re noticing a theme here aren’t you? More birds! Why not? These beauties are lovingly handmade by Manmeet at White Rain Designs. These ceramic songbirds can be personalised to match your wedding theme. You can even add your own initials. All of Manmeet’s products are designed and painted by herself using earthenware ceramics and non toxic paints and glazes. I for one adore bright colours and anything personalised, so these would definitely suit me to the ground. How about you?

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Last but certainly not least, are these utterly adorable hand sculpted ‘love mice’ cake toppers, made by Natalia at Heartmade Cottage. Natalia uses polymer clay and offers a selection of finishes. Each item is handcrafted to order, meaning your mouse couple will be one of a kind. I love the sound of that! Don’t you think they are absolutely adorable? Did you let out a little squeal of cuteness? I certainly did.

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I really hope this post has inspired you and given you plenty of wedding cake topper ideas. If you’ve clicked through to Paper Doily Party Shop before, you may have noticed that I absolutely love making cake toppers myself and offer a very colourful selection of them, all lovingly handmade in my home studio in Bath, Somerset. I’ve made cake toppers for many happy couples and it’s such a wonderful feeling to know that my creations have been part of lots of amazing wedding celebrations across the globe. I have no doubt that the wonderful designers featured above have experienced the same feeling.

I hope you’ve enjoyed reading and please let me know if you’d like to be featured on Wedding Wednesday’s, I’d love to hear from you.

Happy wedding planning!

Wedding Wednesday: Inspiring Wedding Stationery

Hello folks!

I’ve decided to start an exciting new blog feature which you’ll see from the title. If you’re a regular reader, you’ll begin to notice that Wednesday’s will be entirely dedicated to weddings, which will give me the perfect opportunity to feature some of the most talented wedding designers and craftspeople out there.

After planning my own wedding last year, I will admit that I really miss browsing through inspirational wedding photographs and products, and creating endless Pinterest boards. I may have been creating three or four boards a week at one point! Those who are married have all been there right? Do tell me yes!? I must mention that I’m very happily married, but these blog posts will rather selfishly allow me continue to fulfil my wedding planning desires, whilst inspiring many other soon-to-be weds. Win, win all round, right?

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This week is all about wedding stationery. It’s a vital part of any wedding celebration and in my experience, one of the first items I purchased after finalising certain aspects of the day. There are so many wedding invitations out there, how do you even begin to narrow the choice down?

The best thing about Nina Thomas Studio, is the amount of options available. There’s bound to be something you love in her collection… or in my case, I love everything and would find it a rather large task to choose. Nina Thomas Studio specialises in vintage inspired wedding stationery and paper goods. Her Summer Bloom collection, featured here, is one of my favourites.

We’ll start with the save the date cards as they are pretty important, right? The painterly effect is just stunning. The colours are fresh and beautiful, the collection is styled in an incredibly inspiring way and the font makes the whole design look pretty dreamy. Do you agree? The Summer Bloom wedding invitations, RSVP cards and place settings are also absolutely gorgeous. What a remarkable collection.

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Next on the agenda is an amazing selection of wedding stationery, designed by Norma & Dorothy. Norma & Dorothy offer an outstanding selection of handmade wedding stationery of a very unique, whimsical and rustic style.

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The surface pattern designs presented on these cards are so inspiring. There are many flower girl and bridesmaid cards available in the handmade marketplace, but these ones offer a very special, personalised touch, particularly by including the recipients name on the front. These are the type of cards of which I for one would cherish forever and I’d also be very proud to send them to my family and friends.

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The place name cards and table numbers pictured above, also designed by Norma & Dorothy are the perfect addition to your wedding table, if you happen to be a bunting and doily addict like myself.

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You may have noticed from the features above, that I have a rather large soft spot for hand painted stationery and lettering. Jade Fisher specialises in sweet and simple stationery and is the amazing illustrator of these greeting cards. I can clearly see that these have been designed with so much love and attention to detail. Greeting cards are a very important part of any wedding celebration, and what better way to send your love and best wishes? The colours used by Jade, work brilliantly together and Jade’s photography always makes me want to dive straight in and purchase everything! Are you experiencing the same effect? It certainly wouldn’t suprise me!

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Last but absolutely never least, are these awesome greeting cards designed by Joanne Hawker. I love how the cards can be personalised to feature the special couple’s names. As Joanne very rightly explains, they are perfect for congratulating the happy couple, and I personally couldn’t think of a nicer way to do so, how utterly sweet! These greeting cards are simple, yet very effective. Something which is often quite hard to create.

Are you feeling fully inspired now? I really hoped you’ve enjoyed this weeks instalment of Wedding Wednesday. As cheesy as it may sound, I’m thinking it’s one of my best ideas for the blog as of yet, and will hopefully inspire many happy couples out there. Would you like the be featured in the next instalment of Wedding Wednesday, or can you recommend a special someone I should check out? If so, I’d love to hear from you.

In the mean time, you may like to have a browse through my own stationery collection which is sold on Etsy and Notonthehighstreet. I offer a lovingly designed range of cards and stickers, which are all designed in my home studio. Here is a sneaky peek!

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Happy wedding planning!

Paper Doily Makes: DIY Envelope Liners

Beautiful envelope liners seem to be cropping up everywhere at the moment and I can definitely see why. If you’re anything like me and love print and pattern, they provide the perfect opportunity to compliment your cards, letters or invitations. They are perfect for extra special party or wedding invitations. In fact, I received a beautiful wedding invitation last week which contained an envelope liner. It created a very large smile and just felt so much more interesting and personalised than using plain envelopes.

I’ve created a tutorial for you, which I hope will be very useful if you have any special mail to send within the coming months. It’s one of those tutorials which is very simple, yet extremely effective which is always a bonus for me.

You’ll Need:

An envelope in any shape or size

Paper of your choice

Ruler

Scissors

Glue or double sided selotape

Pencil

Eraser

Blue Tack

Method:

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Step 1

Place your envelope on top of the paper you have chosen and draw around it using a pencil.

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Step 2

Take your scissors and cut out your template. One finished with the scissors, use an eraser to remove any pencil marks. Slip the liner into the envelope to assess whether you are happy with the shape. You will notice that the liner is covering the adhesive part of the envelope, which we do not want. This is where the next stage comes in handy.

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Step 3

Take the liner and position the top of it directly underneath the adhesive seal, ensuring it’s in line with all sides of the envelope. You’ll need to turn the envelope over, so you can use some blue tack at this stage to temporarily keep it in place. You’ll notice the excess paper at the bottom of the envelope. This needs to be trimmed off. Take your ruler, measure the excess and make yourself a straight cutting line. If you’re unsure about the measurement, just cut small amounts of paper off at a time and continue to place it into the envelope to check the size. Erase any pencil marks and remove the blue tack.

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Step 4

Once you’ve trimmed the excess paper off from the bottom of the liner, place the liner into the envelope and position it. It should look like this. If you’re making a lot of envelope liners, then I would suggest making a template out of plain paper at this stage, which you can use for the rest.

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Step 5

Keeping the liner secure, fold the envelope over as if you are sealing it (but don’t). You can use a ruler to score it at this point. Your liner should now have a sharp fold. Take your glue stick (or double sided selotape) and glue the envelope as shown above. Position the top of the envelope liner over the glue and it should all match up nicely. Rub your hands over the paper and fold the envelope over and back again just to make sure everything stays where it should.

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Voila! You have yourself a beautifully patterned envelope liner. Don’t feel like you have to use the same paper either, you can experiment with different pattern and colour combinations and go wild! You may have seen my earlier post on illustrated stationery? If so, these envelopes are made for this kind of thing. At present, I have a small range of illustrated cards and I’m really considering offering custom designed printed envelope liners as an extra option. How amazing would that be?

Do let me know if you decide to get creative and use my tutorial. I would love to know! Do you have any special mail that you’ll be sending within the coming months? If so, have fun and I hope you enjoyed reading.

A polite reminder: This tutorial is for personal use only and should not be reproduced or sold. ©Paper Doily Party Shop

Paper Doily Makes: Wool Felt Ball Garland Tutorial

I just love wool felt ball garlands and thought I would share a quick and easy tutorial with you. If you have a party coming up and you are feeling creative, then you must try making one. They do a wonderful job of transforming party spaces, particularly when used on or near dessert tables or hanging from feature walls.

Felt balls are relatively cheap and readily available online. A quick google search will provide you with plenty of choice, particularly in size and colour. For this tutorial, I used 14, 2cm x 2cm felt balls in a variety of vibrant colours.

If you’re feeling inspired, then go and grab your supplies along with a lovely mug of tea (and some biscuits), quick!

You’ll need:

A selection of Wool Felt Balls (Mine are 100% Wool Felt)

Yarn

Scissors

Tape Measure or Extra Long Ruler

Thick Sharp Needle

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Step 1:

Decide which felt balls you intend on using and choose your yarn. The yarn will be used to assemble the garland and will be visible, so choose a complimentary colour. Grab a tape measure and scissors and cut a piece of yarn to your desired garland length. Add approximately 10 centimetres to this length to allow for the hanging loops at each end of the garland. My yarn measured 127 centimetres. Take your needle, and thread the yarn through it like so:

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Step 2:

At this point, I position my felt balls in the order I would like them to appear on the garland. Take your first felt ball and carefully thread the needle through the centre of it. If your needle is big and sharp enough, it should easily thread through the felt balls, but may need a little tug! Continue threading each felt ball onto your garland, until each one is attached:

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Step 3:

Once all of your felt balls are threaded through the yarn, lay the garland out and position your felt balls exactly where you would like them. (If you’re anything like me, you’ll like to ensure that the felt balls are fairly evenly spaced at this point!) There should be an extra 5 centimetres of yarn at each end of the garland (or more if you’ve accounted for it) to enable you to make 2 equally sized hanging loops. Thread each of the yarn tail ends into the two end felt balls at either side of the garland. Cut the excess yarn, and voila, you have a loop. Your garland should now be looking similar to this:

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I adore the colour yellow. and you’ll see below that I used some beautiful yellow flowers as a cake centrepiece. The great thing about felt ball garlands, is that there are so many colour combinations to choose from. This means they can be made to perfectly suit your party decor. Enjoy, and please share the results if you decide to make a garland.

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A polite reminder: This tutorial is for personal use only and should not be reproduced or sold. 

Paper Doily Makes: Sugar Hearts

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Today at Paper Doily it is all about quintessentially English tea parties. Before I elaborate, you will notice the emptiness of the beautiful cake stand. I’ve been browsing through my cookery books planning special tea party bakes and will be posting more about that shortly, so do keep your eyes peeled for more tea party related posts.

For now, this post is all about the cheerful sugar hearts, pictured above. I think they are a wonderful addition to the table and definitely add a rather unique touch. With Valentines Day approaching they also offer plenty of inspiration.

These sugar shapes are a creative twist on standard sugar lumps, which can sometimes look a little plain. They are extremely easy to make, take very little effort and can be made in advance of any occasion. They can be used in a variety of ways. If you aren’t hosting a tea party, they will be wonderful as small wedding favours with ‘love is sweet’ stickers, placed in little jars or clear wrappers. They also make lovely gifts and can be packaged creatively in a variety of ways to make them look even more special.

If this is something you would like to try, do feel free to use the recipe below. I would love to hear from you if you are intending to or have made them.

You will need:

250g of Granulated Sugar

1 tsp of Water

Small drops of Food Colouring in your desired colours

A silicone chocolate mould or ice cube tray

Instructions:

1. If you are intending to have multiple coloured sugar cubes, take some clean bowls and measure out equal amounts of sugar.

2. Add a few tiny drops of water into each bowl of sugar and mix thoroughly. The mixture should not be too wet, neither should it be too dry. The sugar should form small lumps.

3. Dip a cocktail stick or other small instrument into your desired food colouring pots and mix a small amount of food colouring in with the sugar, stirring thoroughly until each sugar bowl contains your desired colour.

4. Take your mould and fill each shape with sugar. Pat each shape down with a clean spoon to ensure you have an adequate amount of sugar.

5. Leave to set overnight.

6. Carefully place a plate under the mould and press out each sugar heart. They should come out easily.

7. Enjoy!

Paper Doily Makes: Valentines Day

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I always become very excited about valentines day crafting and usually begin lots of love themed crafts around this time of year, sometimes before Christmas even! I thought I would share some of my favourite makes, some available at Paper Doily and some just for eye candy! All of the items pictured above are simple, enjoyable to make and very effective.

The wooden washi tape pegs are perfect for prettifying gifts, dessert tables or used around the house to hang favourite cards or photographs. Wooden pegs are so easy to find and it’s quite amazing how a simple piece of patterned tape can transform such a plain item! If you’re anything like me and have jars full of washi tapes, this is a great way to use your stash! I’ve also seen patterned fabric tape in a fair few craft shops, which is a lovely alternative.

I could imagine these pegs used on wedding favours/wedding dessert tables. I had several sweet jars on my dessert table at my own wedding in April of last year and I wish I had thought of this idea back then. They are the perfect addition to sweet bags if guests wish to take away sweet treats without getting covered in sugar.

The heart gift tags were also very enjoyable to make. I always seem to have lots of patterned wrapping paper left over from gift wrapping and I thought this was a really good way to use it up. I’m also a sucker for patterned paper packs and have so many floating around my craft room. The glitter paper is my favourite at the moment. I actually had hundreds of beautiful paper straws left over from my wedding and decided to use the glitter paper to add heart embellishments to them. As of yet, I haven’t started any valentines themed crochet projects, but this could be on the pipeline!

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I’ve been browsing the web for lots of crafting inspiration and wow, I certainly found it! I thought this would be a lovely way to end the post. If you’re anything like me and spend hours on pinterest, you’ll know how hard it was to choose such a small selection of favourites! Will you be doing any valentines day crafting this year and do you get as excited as I do?

The beautiful products in the above grid are courtesy of: LaLibeLula, A Field Journal, Annie’s Eats, Sisters Guild

Happy new year and happy crafting!

Paper Doily Makes: Wool Felt Cake Toppers

I’ve really enjoyed browsing and making cake toppers since my wedding in April of this year. So much so, I’ve began making lots of them out of the most colourful and ever so soft wool felt, a new material I have recently discovered and absolutely love! These fluffy little shapes are so versatile and wonderful to work with. There are endless party crafts that they are perfect for, including garlands which I have made a fair amount of and will definitely be posting another tutorial on.

I have put together a very easy and hopefully helpful tutorial on the process behind making wool felt cake toppers. if you have a birthday party, wedding or any other special occasion coming up, these could be the perfect addition to your special bakes.

First of all, I ordered a few bags of wool felt balls and shapes from a company called Blooming Felt. I did a lot of browsing online prior to ordering and this company seemed the most reasonable. Everything arrived in good time and was packaged well, which is always a great bonus. This beautiful glass jar is the perfect storage solution and definitely brightens up my craft room shelf! The other good thing about this storage method is that I can see when supplies are running low!

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To construct the cake toppers, begin by choosing your favourite wool felt shapes. You will then need to take a small pair of sharp scissors. Embroidery scissors work best but if you don’t have those, then any sharp, reasonably large sewing needle will do the job.

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Pierce a small hole through the bottom of one of your wool felt shapes. The hole does not need to go through the entire shape at this stage, it just needs to be deep and large enough for you to place a thin skewer stick through it as below.

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You should be able to twist and turn the skewer stick most of the way through the wool felt shape until it has reached the top. It should not be visible at the top of the cake topper, so if you have pushed it all the way through, just pull it back out slightly. You can, if you wish add a very small amount of PVA glue into the hole with a small cocktail stick before pushing the skewer stick in. However, this hasn’t been necessary for me as I keep the hole fairly small to ensure it is sturdy.

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Once finished, have fun placing them on your special cake and await the lovely compliments, as they really do look something special. As you can see above, I’ve really enjoyed experimenting with different shapes, colours and materials. The beauty of the wool felt cake toppers are that they are very quick to make, so you can spend time baking and making other beautiful party products!

I would love to hear from you and see your photographs if you have made these! If you love what you see but would prefer a ready made cake topper, there are several cake toppers available to purchase from Paper Doily Parties as pictured above, alongside many other handmade party products.

Happy crafting!

Paper Doily Makes: Decorative Wooden Pegs

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We’ve been very busy making lots of adorable pegs for our Etsy shop recently and we thought we would share! They are absolutely perfect for prettifying wedding favour bags or wrapped gifts. They would also look lovely in the home, perhaps hanging from a lovely piece of twine with your favourite photographs or artwork attached.

These pegs are just standard clothes pegs and are very easy to find in most hardware stores or supermarkets. I purchased a large pack of these from my local supermarket. I searched online for patterned washi tape and came across such an amazing selection, mainly on Etsy. The great thing about these pegs, is that you only need a very small amount of washi tape to cover them. This means that you will have lots of tape left for coordinating party crafts, should you be having a big DIY session.

I have decided to sell these in lovely packs of 10 here but if you decide to get creative yourself, then let me know. I would love to see!

A very kind reminder: Paper Doily tutorials are for personal use only. Please do not reproduce the above content for resale.