IKEA Christmas Tablescaping Workshop

Can you believe that it’s just six more Sundays until Christmas? I don’t know about you, but for me it feels like the months fly by quicker and quicker every year! Still, at least it’s nearly the holidays!

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Earlier this year I was invited to an IKEA tablescaping event with some fellow bloggers to preview IKEA’s Autumn / Winter range, as well as take a sneak-peak at some of IKEA’s scandi-inspired Christmas goodies. I’m a big fan of IKEA, and always try and fit in a visit before Christmas.

The event was held at 19 Greek Street – a modern white event space in Central London. I was thrilled to join some blogger friends – namely Hannah from Crafternoon Cabaret Club, Tasha from Graphique Fantastique, Rosie and Hannah from The New Craft House, and Emma from Emma Jane Palin.

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After an introduction from the IKEA bods who talked us through the four new autumn / winter trends, we were invited to have a leisurely peruse, and get hands-on with our own DIY tablescapes. A credit to the IKEA wares, we soon felt at home, and were all prepared to move in within minutes.

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Christmas Maker Markets, London 2017

One of things I love most about winter is the arrival of brand new seasonal maker markets. With Christmas around the corner, it’s the perfect time to buy presents before the panic sets in. Below you’ll find some of my favourite seasonal maker markets in London – pop the dates in your diaries!

BUST London Christmas Craftacular 

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When: Sunday 27 November, 11am-5pm

Where: York Hall, 5 Old Ford Road, Bethnal Green E2 9PJ

Why: The BUST London Craftacular is back, featuring talented, crafty vendors, pop-up cafes, DJs, and DIY workshops. Entrance is £3, and the first 100 shoppers get a goody bag.

I went to the BUST Summer Craftacular last year with my sister and loved it. As well as browsing the wares from independent makers, you can also take part in fun workshops – last year we did a weaving workshop with Peas & Needles – one of my all-time favourite craft workshops.

Christmas Crafty Fox Market

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When: 3-4 December, 11am – 5pm

Where: Dogstar, 389 Coldharbour Lane, Brixton, London, SW9 8LQ

Why: The Crafty Fox Market is putting on a host of Christmas markets – this one is in Brixton, and promises the opportunity to support independent designer-makers for a festive shopping experience – with DJs, drinks, food, and an exciting array of craft workshops – more details coming soon.

If you know of any more maker markets not to be missed this winter, please pop them in the comments below. Personally, I can’t wait to start my festive shopping!

DIY Wordsearch Card

In May of last year I made my Grandma a DIY wordsearch card to combine a few of her favourite things – puzzles, and gardening. Well, a while ago, for some reason, I decided that this DIY wasn’t good enough for the blog, and I deleted it, and now – over a year later – I’ve changed my mind.

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This is one of the simplest DIY cards you could possibly hope for. There are tonnes of free wordsearch generators available online that allow you to personalise your puzzles. I used one called www.puzzle-maker.com, where you can choose between making a custom wordsearch or a custom crossword.

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Halloween Inspiration: DIY No Carve Pumpkins

Autumn is one of my favourite seasons; I love the red-tinged light that washes over everything, and it gets me thinking about two of my favourite festive events – Halloween, and Christmas! Usually I like to carve a pumpkin for Halloween, but if you hate the goo and the mess, or you just fancy doing something a little bit different, here’s my round-up of the best DIY no-carve (painted) pumpkins.

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For full DIY tutorials, check out these blogs:

1. DIY Pun-Kins, Studio DIY | 2. DIY Donut Pumpkins, Studio DIY | 3. DIY Emoji Pumpkins, Brit + Co | 4. Hand Painted Floral Pumpkin, Craftberry Bush | 5. DIY Tiny Message Pumpkins, Lovely Indeed | 6. DIY Hand-Painted Pumpkins, Simple as That | 7. DIY Paint Pen Pattern No Carve Pumpkins, Lovely Indeed | 8. DIY Mud Cloth Pumpkins, Homey Oh My | 9. Decoupage Paper Pumpkin, Brit + Co | 10. Balloon Dipped Pumpkin DIY, Paper & Stitch | 11. DIY Pumpkin Ice Cream Cone, Sugar and Charm

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DIY Wooden Planter for your Doorstep

If you follow me on Instagram you might have already seen a few snaps of my latest DIY – a wooden planter for the dahlia on my front doorstep! My neighbour actually gave me the idea for the planter – she has an almost identical one in a dark lavender colour on her doorstep, and I got jealous.

DIY Wooden Planter by Shelley Makes (46)

Looking for something similar that would make my plastic-potted dahlia feel a little more welcome (and suave), I went on the hunt. On my first stop I found a ready-made wooden planter in Homebase. It looked great, but with a £24.99 price tag, I wasn’t quite prepared to part with the cash.

With a few hours left in the afternoon, I put the question to my boyfriend – “Can we make this?” In typical Jack style, he replied, “Yea”, and so we went around Homebase picking up the bits and pieces we needed to make it ourselves instead. We found cladding for £5.99, and some spruce for £6.

To make your own DIY wooden planter, you will need:

  • 2x lengths whitewood spruce (33mm x 33mm x 1.8m)
  • A pack of tongue-and-groove cladding
  • Saw (for cutting the wood to length)
  • Table saw / router (for creating the grooves)
  • Screws and a screwdriver
  • Some clamps
  • Paintbrush
  • Outdoor paint (We used Cuprinol Garden Shades in Malted Barley)

DIY Wooden Planter by Shelley Makes (47)

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Inspiration: DIY Cupcake Topper Ideas

As it’s my birthday tomorrow (and I’ve got cake on the brain), I thought I would celebrate on the blog by sharing some of my favourite DIY cupcake toppers! From pin-wheels to pom-poms to clowns, these four toppers are bound to make your recipient smile, and you get to eat yummy cupcakes too!

Shelley Makes DIY Cupcake Topper Ideas

For full DIY tutorials, check out these blogs:

1. Better Homes & Gardens, Upcycled Book-Page Pinwheel Cupcake Topper | 2. 6 Bittersweets, DIP Pom Pom Cupcake Topper | 3. Studio DIY, DIY Balloon Cupcake Toppers | 4. Oh Happy Day, DIY Clown Cupcake Topper

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All Aboard the Paperchase ‘Back to School’ Bus

Three weeks ago I was delighted to attend my very first Paperchase event! This was actually one of my New Year blogging goals back in January. As a massive stationery fiend, I was chuffed to be invited to explore the brand new ‘Back to School’ range during the Paperchase BTS Press Bus Tour.

Paperchase Back To School Collection 2016 by Shelley Makes (1)

The event was hosted on board a shiny red vintage bus, parked outside Paperchase’s Head Office in London. The bus immediately brought back old school memories, particularly as it was raining outside, and steamed up on the inside! I immediately wanted to draw on the windows, for old times’ sake.

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The Paperchase team had laid out their four new school collections on the seats of both decks for our perusal. This consisted of the adorable Monsterosity range, featuring pixelated dinosaur designs in blue camouflage colours. My favourite item is probably the wooden dinosaur pen pot (£6) in the centre.

Paperchase Back To School Collection 2016 by Shelley Makes (12)

As well as the usual notebooks and pens, the range features a tonne of different back-packs, flasks, lunch boxes, and pencil cases, so you really can send your kids to school with everything they could possibly need. I can’t pretend that I was this cool or organised when I was at school! I wish.

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