Monthly Archives: March 2015

decorated egg by hshandcrafts

Washi Tape Eggs

It feels like spring is here at last! After a weekend of wind and rain the sun has come out, the blossom is in bloom and the birds are singing. With Easter just around the corner all thoughts are turning to bunnies, chicks and eggs and what better way to brighten up your home for Easter than with some simple decorated eggs!

Lat week I was making a cake to say thank you to some colleagues at work for helping me out and I thought that rather than cracking the eggs right open I should save them for some Easter decorating.

I carefully inserted a pin into the top and bottom of each egg to make a hole. I then gradually made each hole bigger until it was 3-4 mm in diameter. Then I could carefully blow the contents out of the egg to be used for my cake making!

once the eggs were emptied I filled them with water to clean them out and then left them to drain for a couple of minutes before putting them in the microwave for 10 seconds to prevent any remaining bits of egg from going mouldy.

Once the eggs were ready it was time to string them up. This proved more difficult than I had first thought but I managed to do it by threading some embroidery floss onto a darning needle that was just about long enough to pull through the egg.

I could then start decorating. For a quick and easy result I decided to use Washi tape as it adds colour and fun patterns without requiring delicate drawing work.

So in less than 15 minutes I had 2 nicely decorated eggs!


Croquis anyone?

i have been trying to find a way to best visualise how my sewn garments will look once completed and also how to get my ideas for new projects onto paper just the way they are in my head.

A sketch would seem like the obvious way forward right? However, I’m not great at realistic drawing so I turned to the Internet for some advice. It seems that the most common idea is a croquis. A croquis is a quick sketch of a model in different poses so as to be able to draw on garments to view at different angles eg. Front, side and back view.

There are plenty of websites with tips for drawing your own croquis, and how to get the proportions right but most seem to be based on the proportions of fashion models with super long legs!nso to me these don’t look very realistic at all. So now I’m stuck do I try and visualise my clothes that I want to make on some 6ft something super skinny croquis or do I have my own sketches look super unrealistic?

Has anyone come across this problem before or any artists out there got any tips for drawing a realistically proportioned sketch?

Mothers Day African Flower Keyring on hshandcrafts

African Flower Keyring

Happy Mothers Day!

I hope everyone has had a great day treating their mums (or being treated to lovely things). Unfortunately I live a long way away from my mum and so have been unable to do so but will get to see her in a couple of weeks so I am very excited for that.

As I didn’t get to see her today I sent her a little treat in the post which is why I have held back this post until today rather than publish it as soon as I had finished making it last week! I made an African flower keyring

I really like the African flower crochet motif but have not really been sure what to use it for. I often see them made up with double knitting, which despite looking lovely always seems to be too big a design for anything I would like to make.

So I decided instead to try making one out of embroidery floss and it worked a treat!

African flower keyring by hshandcrafts

The finished hex is about 2inches across

African flower keyring by hshandcrafts

To make your own…

you will need:

  • embroidery floss in 5 colours
  • a keyring
  • 2 beads in colours of your choice
  • some wadding (1.5inches square)
  • a 2mm crochet hook
  • scissors

1. Crochet your African flowers

To start off you need to make 2xAfrican flower hexes or any other crochet hex would be great. I followed this picture tutorial

but…most importantly you need to use embroidery floss and a 2mm crochet hook to end up with your hex small enough to use as a key ring.

2. Begin to join the African flowers together

Place your two African flowers together with all the loose ends pointing inwards

Join your embroidery floss in a colour of your choosing (I used dark blue here) to one of the corners making sure to join the 2 African flowers together

Chain 1 and then single crochet in each gap between the double crochets from the previous round around three edges of your hex. At each corner put 3 single crochet into the chain space from the previous round.

3. Stuff the keyring

To make sure the key ring holds its shape you need to stuff it with some wadding or any kind of stiff fabric.

Cut this to a hexagon that will easily fit inside your crocheted hexes. (Mine was approximately 1 inch across)

Place your cut out shape in the gap between your 2 African flowers.

4. Continue joining the African flowers

Continue to single crochet all the way around the hexes with three single crochet in the chain space at each corner.

5. Join the round

Once you have crocheted all the way around and your 2 hexes are joined together complete the round with a slip stitch into the first single crochet.

6. Cut the embroidery floss

Be sure to leave a long tail to attach to your key ring

7. Add beads

Thread your beads onto the embroidery floss tail

8. Attach keyring

Thread the end of the embroidery floss through the loop on the keyring and tie it as close as possible to the beads.

9. Cut the embroidery floss

Leave enough of a tail so that the knot wont come untied but so that it still looks tidy.

Voila…your very own African flower keyring!

Have you made anything with the African flower motif recently? i would love to see your designs


HsHandcrafts African Flower crochet Keyring HsHandcrafts African Flower Crochet Keyring

Pinterest screengrab

Pinterest Inspiration

I absolutely love Pinterest!

When I have had a super busy week like this one I dont always have time for lots of crafting. However, I can spend just a few minutes (ok, it’s usually more than that!) on Pinterest and get a fix of all the beautiful things I could make.

I like to use Pinterest to keep track of all the amazing projects I want to try as well as a record of my finished items. So I have 4 boards for my projects:

as well as boards exclusively with inspiration for new projects

Today I thought I would share with you one item off each of my inspiration boards so that you to can be inspired to go and craft.

Or… if you dont have time – just to gaze at it longingly with dreams of what you could someday create!

So here goes…


I love the look of this necklace made from embroidery floss – it is so simple yet effective and has been on my to-do list for some time. I reckon it would look great in the summer paired with a simple t-shirt and maxi skirt.

Embroidery floss necklace


My crochet inspiration board is one of my fullest boards currently and so it was difficult to pick just one pin to share with you but I really love the way the pattern and colours work together on this blanket to create a really interesting texture. It also means I get two as I know from the original blog that this pin came from that there is also a really cute cowl using this same stitch pattern that I am a huge fan of so you should check that out too!

diamond and stipes crochet blanket


I’m not sure if this is cheating slightly as my chosen pin from my knitting inspiration board is actually one that I bought the pattern for a couple of weeks ago and is currently a WIP. So watch this space if you want to see how mine turns out!

Knitted cowl on Pinterest


My final piece of inspiration for the week comes in the form of this really cute lace trim for a Peter Pan collar. I think it is currenly a little bit beyond my abilities but I can hope that one day I will be able to create something as nice as this!

Sewn Lace Trim

Well, that is my round up of some crafty inspiration from Pinterest. I think this little exercise has made me realise two things. The first is that I need to learn to take better pictures if I want my crafts to look as good as this and the second is that I better get busy if I want to make all of these things any time soon as well as all the other projects I have on the go!


Sunburst Grannies in progress

WIP: Sunburst Blanket

There seem to be plenty of Sunburst Blankets on-the-go at the moment and I am no exception. I have been working on mine slowly for almost a year now. It is a really great project to pick up and complete granny whenever you are feeling disheartened with your current project or only have 10 minutes to spare.

I really love this pattern. It seems to be so versatile and looks good in pretty much every colour combination I have seen it. The most popular by far seems to be colourful circles on a white background but I think some of my favourite examples are those that mix it up a bit.

My aim with this blanket is to incorporate some of my favourite bright shades of blue, green and yellow with a couple of pinks and purples thrown in. I will then add a dark blue square to provide the main body of the blanket.

I currently have about 30 circles completed and another 30 in progress. I hope to have around 100 in total for the blanket. Although, reading some of the other blanket posts out there I fear I may have grossly underestimated this! Only time will tell.

2015-03-03 18.35.07 edit

Sunburst Grannies in progress

Sunburst Grannies in progress

To see some of my favourite examples of others using this pattern why not check out the links below

Coco Rose Diaies – A lovely mixture of pastels and brights on a grey background

Color n Cream – Brights on a white background

Massive brights on white background

Autumn colours on dark blue

and I’m not going to lie my initial inspiration for the blanket…Amy’s very own granny blanket in the Big Bang Theory!