Behind The Scenes at Paper Doily: My New Craft Room

Hello all! First of all I would just like to apologise for the slightly longer than expected delay in updating my blog. You may have seen my earlier post about the new build house we moved into last August? Anybody who has bought a house will understand the upheaval and its possible effect on day-to-day living. In our case, we’ve had builders in pretty much every day over the course of a year, yes really! Well, that aside… whilst I’ve been trading during this time making beautiful party decorations and stationery for my Etsy and Notonthehighstreet shops, my blog has been somewhat neglected. This is now set to change as I am back in action, yay!

So, I’ve made a few changes to my workspace over the past week. I ran out of space in my original room and we are lucky enough to have a few spare rooms. I thought this post would be the perfect opportunity to give you a little tour of my new craft room, how does that sound?

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My pegboard from Block Design has got to be my most favourite item in the entire room. It’s super handy for storing all of my craft accessories, particularly the ones I use every day. Obviously no peg board is complete without pretty things… You know those things which you don’t actually use on a daily basis but just like to admire?…. (phew, glad I’m not the only one!)

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You can see a close up here. I’ve used blu-tack to display my favourite prints. As it takes centre stage in my room, I wanted it to look vibrant and cheerful and I think it looks just that!

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No craft room is complete without a companion, right? For those of you who don’t know, this is our rather adorable Mabel. Mabel is our 1 year old miniature poodle and is wonderful company. She also has a nephew called Felix, who is our much loved 2 year old miniature poodle. Together they are double the trouble but we wouldn’t have it any other way.

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Here they are together, striking a pose!

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Luckily, the craft room is big enough to house two ikea desks. The one shown above is for crafting and drawing. I love my trusty desk storage as it keeps everything nice and tidy and very easy to reach. No drawing space would be complete without pretty decorations above it and some gorgeous eye candy in the form of a jug of flowers, would it? The desk to the left of this houses my iMac, printer, scanner, camera and all other technical equipment.

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Opposite my two work desks are a number of trusty ikea shelves which house all of my craft materials, tools and accessories, packaging, books andΒ magazines etc. Even though this is a really functional space, it’s important to me that it remains beautiful, so I like to have lots of handmade touches scattered around that area to cheer me up.

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I love listening to the radio when I’m working. We live in such a peaceful area, it’s nice to have a bit of background noise to keep me inspired. The trolley shown above houses all of my glittered and patterned papers, stationery, scissors and all sorts of other handy bits. As you can probably tell, the shelves have pretty much reached full capacity now and there are still lots of things stored on the floor! Eventually, I’d like to have another form of storage in here, but it feels perfectly workable right now. The large jars you may be able to spot are from our wedding a few years ago, they were used for tasty sweets and have now taken on the role of craft storage!

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Both of my desks face the window and it’s really nice having some green space to look at every now and then. It’s a nice little reminder that I live in Somerset and it’s one of the most beautiful places to live in the country. In the winter I like to light tealight candles whilst I’m working (and I have been known to get the fairy lights out too!) This just makes the room feel extra cosy and perfect for working in whilst sipping a lovely hot chocolate loaded with marshmallows of course!

The memo board opposite my desk is super handy for staying organised. I usually stick floral post it notes to it. Β I added my own ribbon to it which seemed a bit more unique than the standard brown twine which it came with. Not that I have anything against twine – I love it, as you can see from the other photos!

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We have the most comfiest crocheting spot upstairs, in what we call the ‘daybed room’ which is located opposite my craft space. Whenever we have visitors, this is where they stay. I have a fair few of my handmade cushions in here and it’s just a really lovely, peaceful space to have a break in during the day. Usually you’ll find Felix and Mabel snoozing in here during the day. Felix likes to throw all of the cushions all over the floor… just to make things extra comfy I imagine! (It’s a dog’s life) I have been told by a few people that this room has reached its maximum cushion capacity…. Is there even such a thing?

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That’s all from me for now, although I couldn’t help but share this photo of Mabel with you, doing what she does best…. posing! I hope you’ve enjoyed having a peek into where Paper Doily Party Shop is based. Happy crafting!

Paper Doily Makes: Crocheted Gifts

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Mother’s Day has recently passed in the UK and I felt like crocheting my Mum something special this year. Whatever the occasion, whether it be birthdays, anniversaries, small celebrations, I always like to gift handmade items of some sort. If you’ve ever read my blog post about my wedding, or my recent feature in Homemaker Mag, you’ll know how much I love handmade gestures. Over the next few months, I’m actually planning to write a lot more craft tutorials for handmade party favours and gifts, as it’s quite clear just how much I love parties!

This year, I decided to make my Mum a crocheted scarf. Some could say that it’s the wrong time of year to give somebody a scarf, but the weather here in Somerset doesn’t seem to be getting any warmer despite the changing seasons, so it felt like a lovely gesture.

This particular scarf is on the large side as my Mum does a lot of walking and I wanted it to be super snuggly and toasty. I’ve only recently taught myself the stitch I used for this scarf and I’m also making a blanket out of it for my lounge. It’s called the ‘V-stitch’ and after trying out a few online tutorials, I found Girly Bunches YouTube video to be the most helpful. The technique was very easy to follow and I adapted the instructions myself to make the scarf. I have a lot of wool in my craft room, so rather than buy new supplies, I used a mixture of pink cotton and cream aran yarn. This was the result above and I was super pleased with it, as was my Mum. Yay! It’s lovely when handmade gifts are appreciated.

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I gave my Mum a few other special but non handmade items, including this gorgeous keyring. Isn’t it adorable? The wrapping paper was perfect for Mother’s Day, especially with Easter on the way, don’t you agree?

I hope I’ve inspired you to make your own handmade gifts, particularly if you have a special occasion on the way. Have a lovely day wherever you are in the world!

Paper Doily Makes: Paper Rosette Cake/Cupcake Topper Tutorial

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Hello all! Before I start this off, I’d just like to say a HUGE thank you to you, my lovely followers for coming back for a read after a fairly long absence on my part. Paper Doily was put on hold over several weeks whilst my lovely husband and I (and our furry animals) moved into our new home. Now we are all settled in, I’m absolutely thrilled to be back in business alongside planning and writing lots of crafty blog posts for you!

I’ve been meaning to work on this paper rosette cake topper tutorial for some time. They were such an enjoyable make and they really cheered up my workspace. If you have a special celebration coming up which calls for a fun, vibrant cake decoration which requires minimal effort but happens to look fabulous, go and make a large mug of tea, find a comfy chair and read on. You’ll be pleasantly suprised how easy and effective these are.

To make these paper rosette cupcake/cake toppers, you’ll need the following materials:

  • Patterned paper (Mine was patterned on both sides, but this isn’t essential)
  • All purpose glue
  • Bamboo skewers
  • Sharp pair of scissors
  • Pencil, ruler and eraser
  • Double sided sticky tape

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Take your chosen paper/s and divide it into 4 straight, equal strips. Once measured, use your scissors to cut them. There isn’t a set length or width to work by, this is entirely dependable on the size of the paper rosettes you are planning on making. Large/wide strips make for a large rosette and smaller strips make for a small rosette. You can experiment with this.

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Fold the strips in half lengthways and cut them in the middle. You should then have 8 pieces of paper to hand.

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Next you’ll need to fold your shapes into concertina’s as shown above, trying to make the folds as even as possible.

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Take your double sided sticky tape and place a strip of it on one end. You will then need to fold each of the concertina’s in half, pressing the double sided sticky tape together as you go.

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Your concertina’s should be looking like this and you should finish with eight. (This was a work in progress shot).

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Once finished, place a strip of double sided sticky tape on each end of your concertina’s. Once you’ve peeled the backing off of the tape, you’ll be able to place each concertina together, attaching them all together in a circle. Once finished, you should have a beautiful paper rosette looking similar to this one below.

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At this point, you can leave the paper rosettes as they are and simply use them as decorations, either on a wreath or as a garland, or to embellish party bags or special gifts. They also make wonderful table decorations. The possibilities really are endless with these beauties!

If you’re making these to decorate a special cake or set of cupcakes, you’ll need to take your bamboo skewers and glue at this point. If you’d like to vary the height of the rosette cake/cupcake toppers, take a sharp pair of scissors and trim the bamboo skewers down to your desired length at this point. If you’re planning on decorating a cake with them, I think they look very effective when they are cut to varying lengths as it allows each one of them to stand out.

Turn the paper rosette over to the reverse side and place some glue in one of the concertina folds. Take your bamboo skewer and place it over the glue. Leave to dry completely.

Voila! Feeling impressed and inspired? I very much hope so. I’d love to see your finished results if you decide to make them! If you’re feeling in the mood for more craft tutorials, you can check out my full collection here. Enjoy!

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