Sunday, 30 December 2012

Redirecting.....

You will shortly be redirected to my new blog!
www.CharlotteMusha.com all Musha-Makes posts will now be on there

Thursday, 13 December 2012

'Tropical Snowball' Bath Bombs





Craf-'TEA' Break 
noun [cr,ah, fu - Tee, brae, k]
A craft or crafty pursuit that can be completed whilst drinking tea.
Example - "Today I took a Craf-'TEA Break and made..."



I couldn't wait to try out the Bath Bomb kit in this months Crafty Creative box, I've always wanted to try making them but just never got around to it so receiving this kit was such a nice surprise!

The kit came with 2 silicon moulds to use but I picked a few different containers out of my cake making cupboard to see which would make the nicest shape, the red silicon mini loaf moulds were a bit too big for bath bombs, they would probably suit soap more.
 I was surprised at just how easy they were to make, all you need is bicarb of soda, citric acid, essential oil and water. The kit came with sweet orange essential oil but I decided to also add a bit of coconut essential oil - hence the name 'Tropical Snowball' Bath Bombs
 I mixed the bicarb and citric acid with a generous helping of glitter...I decided that I wanted to make as many bombs as possible so doubled the mixture after this photo!
I mixed everything together making sure to crush any lumps, added some fragrance and spritzed it with a good dose of water. The instructions say that it will look like snow when it's at the right consistency which I didn't quiet understand until I saw it and that is exactly what it looks like!
 I decided to mould my bath bombs in little cake cases as they are pretty sturdy and I thought they would look lovely stacked in a cellophane bag as a Christmas present.
I used the back of a tea spoon to squash and compact the mixture down to about half way down the case, that way they will form a nice little block when turned out.

And this is the finished product. This photo really doesn't do the glitter justice at all, they are lovely and shimmery in real life and leave a smattering of glitter in the bath water.
I can't wait to give a little set of these to my sister for Christmas!

Wednesday, 12 December 2012

Crafty Creatives Box #6 - Icy

"Is it just us, or is it chilly in here? Welcome to our ICY box, which lends itself to wintery colours and shiny things! If you get too cold....take a wee peek at this months CC Kit...it might help warm you up!"

This months box included...
  • Art Card by featured artist Eleanor Carter
  • CC Kit! Bath Bomb - I can't wait to try this!! I've been wanting to try soap/bath bomb making for ages!
  • Sheet of snowflake stickers
  • Two glass drop pendant - I think I'll use these to create keyrings, they're a bit too big for me to use in a jewellery project
  • Bag of icy glass beads
  • Small bag of paillettes
  • Strand of fluorite gemstones - I have a stash of other beads that are a similar size and shape to these so I think I may mix them together
  • Two glass hearts in organza bag - These are going to be made into fridge magnets
  • Ball of furry white wool
  • 20m spool of shirring elastic - I've got two bracelets ready to be strung together but haven't had any elastic to hand for a few weeks, Looking forward to finally making these up!
  • Choker Wire - I've never tried to make a choker style necklace before, I'm interested to see what beads will fit on to the wire

*****
 Do you subscribe to Crafty Creatives? What did you think of this months box? Do you have any ideas or suggestions on what I can make?
  ***** 
Want to get your hands on one of the items from this months box?
There is a now a Crafty Creatives 'Trading Post' Facebook page where fellow crafters can swap/sell/buy items from previous boxes!




Sunday, 2 December 2012

Merry 'Musha-Makes' Christmas Giveaway *CLOSED*


1st Prize

 And 
£10 gift voucher to use at Musha-Makes.com

Runner-Up Prize
 And 
£5 gift voucher to use at Musha-Makes.com

 **********
 Since we are well and truly into the festive season I though I would treat you lovely lot to a Christmas Giveaway, and since I'm in giving mood I thought I'd do a 1st prize AND a Runner-Up prize!
I'm running the giveaway via Rafflecopter (it makes it easier for you to enter and easier for me to draw the winners) all you have to do to is sign into the below widget with Facebook or with your email and then follow the entry options.

This giveaway will close on the 24th December (so the winners will wake up to  lovely 'Congratulations' email on Christmas morning!)

AND THE WINNERS ARE.... 

Mrs M is the winner of the 1st prize and Lauren is the lucky Runner-Up!

Orange and Cinnamon Stacks




I know, I know, ANOTHER cinnamon stick based decoration! I did say I loved cinnamon though!




All you need for this decoration is some cinnamon sticks, dried orange slices (really easy to DIY!), some string and a dab of glue. It's easiest if you start by knotting the hanging loop to the right length, that way you know how much string you have left to work with, then you just loop it around a cinnamon stick, thread it through some oranges and loop it over another cinnamon stick. Finish the ends with a dab of glue so that they don't fray and get in the way and then you're done!


Tuesday, 27 November 2012

Cinnamon Stick Bundles






Craf-'TEA' Break 
noun [cr,ah, fu - Tee, brae, k]
A craft or crafty pursuit that can be completed whilst drinking tea.
Example - "Today I took a Craf-'TEA Break and made..."



I love Cinnamon...
The smell, the taste, the way it evokes a feeling of warmth and childhood Christmases ...I love EVERYTHING about it!
So you can imagine my delight when the latest Crafty Creatives box included a bundle of them, it couldn't have come at a better time as I had just ran out of my previous stash of them after creating these lovely little Cinnamon Stick bundles.


I started off with 3 cinnamon sticks, as anal as it may sound I had already 'tested' them together as a bundle to check if their ridges tessellated enough to create a good shape - you want to make sure there is enough contact between each stick to allow the glue to hold them together properly.


Once bundled the sticks can take a while to dry (depending on the glue you use of course!) I set these aside for a while and went on to the next step which  involved a little snowflake bell and some jewellery wire.


I looped the wire through the bell and twisted to secure...


 ...this was then also put to one side as it can't be attached until the glue is dry on the stick bundle.


Next I cut two lengths of ribbon, to create the hanging loop I found the mid section and tied a knot about 3 inches from the top, you will need to leave a decent length of ribbon on the 'tails' so that you can wrap it around the bundle. I prefer to use a wider ribbon for the bow just because it is easier to manipulate.


I find that the easiest way to tie a tidy bow is to loop the ribbon as above and then fold one loop over and under the other one to fasten....


...I then tighten and fiddle around with the shape until I am happy to secure it with a dot of glue under the knot loop.


Once the sticks were sufficiently dry I wrapped the bell wire around them, moulding it to the shape of the bundle as much as possible and securing with another dot of glue.


I then applied another dot of glue to the top of the bundle to attach the hanging loop. Once that was dry I wrapped the tail ends of the ribbon around the bundle to hide the bell wire, if you can trim both of the tail ends to meet in the same place you can then hide them with the bow!

Monday, 26 November 2012

Tomte Time!

I've had a very busy few weeks rounding up my little collection of Tomtes.

Wait...you've never heard of Tomtes before?? Well my friends you are missing out!
Tomtes (especially Musha-Tomtes!) are magical little Scandinavian Christmas creatures...

"...He doesn't live on the North Pole, but perhaps in a forest nearby, or in Denmark he lives on Greenland, and in Finland he lives in Lapland; he doesn’t come down the chimney at night, but through the front door, delivering the presents directly to the children, just like the Yule Goat did; he is not overweight; and even if he nowadays sometimes rides in a sleigh drawn by reindeer, instead of just walking around with his sack, his reindeer don’t fly - and in Sweden, Denmark and Norway some still put out a bowl of porridge for him on Christmas Eve."

I first learnt about Tomte 4 years ago and fell in love with them, I've been creating them ever since and try to come up with a different take on them each year.
This little guy is the original Tomte - I think ever single person in my family owns at least one like this!


This year I've stuck with my traditional Tomte colours and have added a set of 3 hanging decoration Tomte to the family.




AND...I've also developed a DIY Tomte Kit!! This is a project I have been working on for a long time (as you can see from various blog posts) and I'm really pleased with the finished product.


All of these little guys are either available on the Musha-Makes shop or Musha-Made on Etsy!

Sunday, 25 November 2012

Getting to grips with zips!


 (I've been desperate to do a project with my mini stash of natural linen and lace since inspiration struck me when I received the black lace in Octobers Crafty Creative Box)

I'm slightly ashamed to admit that up until a few days ago I had never attempted to sew anything that involved a zip -I've simply been too scared to!
It always looked very complicated and I wasn't sure if my sewing skills were up to the task...it turns out they are though....well, very nearly.....


...it wasn't as difficult as I had anticipated, although I did run into some issues with my bobbin thread (my Mum has been borrowing my sewing machine for the past few weeks and whenever she returns it there is always something not quite right with it!) it seems to have lost all tension and was making it all loopy messy on the underside of the stitching.

I actually wimped out of machine sewing in the zip after the bobbin issue and hand stitched it instead but I'm still pretty pleased with how it turned out.


Saturday, 24 November 2012

Shimmer Baubles


 I love creating Christmas decorations, I always feel really inspired around the festive season and have plenty of DIY's to show you over the coming weeks.

This weekend I've been busy playing with the glass baubles that I stock in the shop. I found some translucent shimmer shred in my packaging stash and thought it would be great to incorporate into a decoration.


It wasn't as straight forward as I was hoping, it's a little bit fiddly to get the strands inside, but once you get the hang of it (it involved a crochet hook and a lot of patience!) it's easy. Once the bauble was 'stuffed' I finished them off with a liberal sprinkle of iridescent star sequins that really catch the light.


I've decided to create a little Etsy shop to showcase and sell some of my creations, I've called it 'Musha-Made'...a little cheesy/predictable but like I've always said  - 'If it's got 'Musha' infront of it, you can guarantee I'm behind it!'

You can find it here or by the Esty tab at the top of the page.
These baubles are the first item to be listed on my shop!

Thursday, 22 November 2012

Mini Bell Wreath




Craf-'TEA' Break 
noun [cr,ah, fu - Tee, brae, k]
A craft or crafty pursuit that can be completed in one sitting of tea drinking.
Example - "Today I took a Craf-'TEA Break and made..."


As soon as I saw the plastic hoop and bright bells in this months Crafty Creatives box I knew exactly  what I wanted to make with them! It turned out to be a bit of a bigger project than I expected (it's probably a 3-4 tea breaks project due to wrapping and gluing of the hoop)


Items used:
Plastic hoop (from Crafty Creatives Box 5)
Jingle Bells (from Crafty Creatives Box 5 and I have some very similar ones in the shop)
Jute string
Embroidery floss
Fabritac glue
PVA glue
Burgundy gingham ribbon
Burgundy bow 

I started off by attaching the embroidery floss to the hoop with, I then threaded 3 bells onto it and wrapped it around the opposite side of the hoop, added 3 more bells and trimmed and glued the end of the floss to the hoop.
I glued the bells into place on the floss(...in hindsight I should have waited until I wrapped the wreath with the string as the bells really got in the way for this bit) and the started to wrap the hoop with string - this took quite a while but I was determined to make sure it stayed tight and neat the whole way around!


To finish the wreath off I added a loop of ribbon and a little bow to the front, I was desperately searching for a bright ribbon and bow to use to match the bells but had to settle for my standard burgundy and beige colour scheme. These would look adorable with gold bells with the cream and burgundy colour scheme.



I'm really pleased with the way it turned out and think I might add these to my list of items to make for next year too.

Tuesday, 20 November 2012

Crafty Creatives Box #5 - Nostalgic/Festive


"Tis the season to ...feel nostalgic! We've tried to recreate that happy peaceful feeling of times gone by, childhood joys and simple pleasures...with a few festive goodies thrown in!"

This months box included...
  • Art Card by featured artist Jo Askey
  • CC Kit! Crochet Mouse - Crochet is one of the first crafts I learnt from my Nan, it'll be interesting to see how much of it I remember!
  • Nostalgic Printed Fabric - This was created by Karen who has a lovely website with other handmade items.
  • 1.5m Festive Ribbon - I love the pattern on this, nice muted colours and almost Scandinavian looking.
  • Vintage Style Alice in Wonderland postcard
  • Jingle Bells - You can never have enough bells! I might incorporate these into some Christmas ornament ideas I have.
  • 3 Carousel Pendants - These have gone straight into the bead/pendant stash, I've got a few other pendants that I think they'll work well with.
  • Mini tea cup and saucer - Have a great idea for these!
  • 2 Card layers
  • 2 Wreath rings - Can't wait to have a play around with these, already have a few ideas!
  • Wooden girl and bunny - These are adorable, not sure how to use them yet though.
  • Edging scissors - This is one tool that I don't already own, I've got a collection of regular scissors but no shaped or edging scissors, interested to see how these work and what I can incorporate the pattern into.
  • Bunch of cinnamon sticks - I love the smell of cinnamon, hoping to incorporate these into a Christmas Decoration idea.
  • Sheet of Christmas scraps

*****
 Do you subscribe to Crafty Creatives? What did you think of this months box? Do you have any ideas or suggestions on what I can make?
  ***** 
Want to get your hands on one of the items from this months box?
There is a now a Crafty Creatives 'Trading Post' Facebook page where fellow crafters can swap/sell/buy items from previous boxes!




Thursday, 8 November 2012

1 bead, 2 beads, 3 beads...


I've spent most of the morning sorting and counting the new beads coming to the shop this weekend. These are the same beads I received in my CraftyCreatives Box last month and I loved them so much I decided that I had to stock them!
They come in a gorgeous array of bright colours and I can't wait to make some jewellery out of them, I think they'd look great on a bracelet or necklace made completely of shiny black beads with a few of these to add a pop of colour.

Monday, 5 November 2012

The Final Preparations!





Things are pretty much ready for the launch of my very first DIY kit!
Instruction sheets have been printed off, stickers have been stuck, felt folded and pillow boxes stuffed.
I can't wait to show you the finished product, it'll be available in the shop from this weekend.

Friday, 2 November 2012

Folding Fat Quarters

I have spent the past day and a bit cutting, ironing, folding and packaging lots of lovely fat quarters of fabric to add to the shop.
It's been freezing the past few days so we've had the heating on which has been lovely but it gets a bit too warm when you've got a steam iron on for 2 hours too, that combination makes for one hot and bothered crafter!

Friday, 26 October 2012

'The Equilibrium of Flight'




Craf-'TEA' Break 
noun [cr, ah, fu - Tee, brae, k]
A craft or crafty pursuit that can be completed in one sitting of tea drinking.
Example - "Today I took a Craf-'TEA Break and made..."



I decided to have a little rummage around in my Crafty Creatives stash today...I should have been tidying my craft area but got a bit distracted by paper and sparkly things!


I pulled out  a sheet of the nautical paper from box 2 and my eyes immediately fell on the word 'equillibrium'. I love words like this, they sound more non-nonsensical the more you say them.


I've been thinking of a few ways to use the wings pendant from Crafty Creatives 4th box and although it's a pretty tentative link I decided to create am 'Equillibrium of Flight' keyring (as you can't have flight without a perfect equilibrium of forces...it's a stretch of an interpretation I know!)


I started by  tracing around the glass cabochon to get a rough idea of the shape I'd need to cut, I had to trim it up a little to get it to fit in the pendant. I glued the paper to the pendant base and then placed a small blob of glue in the centre of the paper and pressed the cabochon into place.


 I added a keyring and clasp to the wings pendant and then a jump ring to the bottom loop, attached the 'equillibrium' pendant and Voila!... 

'The Equilibrium of Flight'

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