I am a full time mummy to two beautiful daughters and in my spare time, which is quite limited, I craft. That is my "me time".
I have been creative since birth, always colouring and making things with toilet rolls true Blue Peter style!!
I always liked school and never had a problem enjoying any subject, but my favourite subject was art and design.
After school I completed my A' Levels although I don't know how as I was always being told off for being in the art room instead of elsewhere!!
I then went on to do an art and design BTEC pre-degree course which was one of the best years ever!!!
After leaving college I went on to do my degree at University in Design, concentrating in Textile Design.
I didn't really know what I wanted to do after Uni so I applied to a PGCE course and gained my teaching qualification.
After my first daughter came along, I decided I wanted to be a full time mummy and have been lucky enough to still be able to do that after my second daughter.
Although I love being a mummy, it is the best thing in the world to spend every waking hour with them, I missed doing "my thing". Something just for me.
I often went in to my craft room an hour here an hour there but it just wasn't suitable as every time I went up there I woke the baby.
The craft room...
My craft room was the spare bedroom until my second daughter was moving in to the nursery and the oldest was moving in to the bigger bedroom. Me and my craft room suddenly became evicted!!!
After having lengthy discussions with hubby, who first suggested "I get rid" then changed his mind after a tongue lashing, we decided to empty the garage and turn it into my craft room.
This was a huge job which we started when daughter number two was on her way. Everything in there went to the local tip and we had no idea how much junk we stored until this project came along.
The old garage door came off and a new door went on. I found bits and pieces of old furniture; old dining tables, office cupboards, old shelves, anything to store stuff.
My dad then suggested he build some shelves that could hold the weight of my craft stash at a cheap expense. Every unit I bought some how collapsed - who knew paper could weigh that much!!???
So off my dad went and came back with a load of 2 x 2 and some loft panel boards....
He built me the cheapest shelves in the world but boy can they hold some weight!!
He also suggested we insulate the roof so it was warmer and a few months later he suggested the same shelves on the opposite walls. My mum got me a nice big office desk and I started to tart it up.
I painted all the breeze block walls with some plain white emulsion paint to brighten it up and make it look clean. I even recycled my mum and dads old carpet which means I can walk around in my craft room barefoot!!!
So now I have a huge craft studio where I can go to, lock the door, put the radio on and create....
My crafting style...
I have tried most crafts out there but having come from an arty background everything I tried seemed too... clean!!
Until I met... the rubber stamp!!!!
I was in love!!!
I am a complete stamp addict!!!
I tried and tested a few different stamps and as we do, began to have my favourites. I started to follow blogs and websites, found some amazing stamping magazines and started to stock up on the most wonderful products.
I love to get messy which again I think comes from the arty background. I fell in love with inking and embossing, different paints, the melt pot, all of which could be used with my much loved rubber stamps.
I love anything antiquey, shabby, distressed, I love to use MDF and upcycle things I find.
As time went on and as now I had my own studio space I decide to share my creations with other crafters and decided to join a design team.
I was so happy when I was offered a place on my first design team especially as I never applied! They contacted me and asked me to be part of their team.
I applied for and became successful on a few different design teams and learned a lot about the good side and the darker side of crafting. But we live and learn...
I then started to branch out and enter challenges on different creative blogs. This was so much fun for me as sometimes we all lose our creative mojo! By joining in with a challenge you had the challenge all set. There was no um-ing and er-ing of what shall I create today? The theme, subject and layout was already set, it was just your take on things.
I started to get on more well known design teams and started to meet super talented people who were so inspirational and became more confident in myself and my work.
Then.... along came the ultimate dream job...
I've always loved going to craft fairs and often drag my mum to them. We were at a craft fair at Leigh Sports Village watching a lady demonstrate Mega Flakes on the IndigoBlu stand. We stood for ages watching this lady and listening to her explain and describe all these wonderful IndigoBlu products. I've always been a huge, huge, huge fan of IndigoBlu so watching someone two feet away in action was amazing. I turned to my mum and said, "wow, what a fab job that is!!"
A few months later, checking out the IndigoBlu blog, there it was. The post. "Do you want to become an IndigoBlu demonstrator?" Ermmm, hell yey!!!!!
I read and re-read the post... yey, right. There's no way I would ever be successful!! I re-read it again, and again. Then thought, why not...
I trailed through loads of photos of my work to look for something suitable to submit with my application. Spent hours writing out my background, history, education, experience. It's a long time since I filled out an application form.
I held my breath and clicked send.
A few weeks later, we were on our way home from our holiday. Hubby was driving, the kids were asleep in the back of the car. I was casually checking my emails.
The subject heading said IndigoBlu demonstrators. I didn't know whether to open it or not..... I clicked it..... Then screamed!!!! Hubby almost had a heart attack while trying to control the car, I'd been invited to a two day 'interview' at IndigoBLu HQ in Retford.
I was so excited. IndigoBlu HQ....
It was the most exciting yet surreal 'interview' I had ever been on. We ate cake, had crumpets and drank cappuccino (insert personal joke here), crafted, locked people behind 8 foot gates, ate chicken and had such a laugh and all with the lovely Kay Halliwell Sutton..... 'Interview' I hear you ask???
I have never met such a bunch of lovely people in one room in my life. The staff at HQ were amazing. It was such a fun, fun two days.
We were all told at the end of the two days that we had all been successful in becoming IndigoBlu Demonstrators. I was so chuffed!! I couldn't wait to get in to my car to drive home as I just wanted to cry with happiness. I couldn't believe someone had that kind of faith in me and were willing to send me out in to the world to represent them. I cried with joy all the way home!!!
I don't want a full time 9-5 job. I want to be at home with my children. Being an IndigoBlu demonstrator allows me to be the best mummy but also allows me to be me and do what I enjoy. Going out at weekends and sharing the wonder that is the amazing IndigoBlu is such a blessing. I am utterly thankful for the opportunity, to rave about products I truly believe in to a bunch of like minded crafters rather than talking to the cat about how ace this FlitterGlu is in my craft room...
So at present, I am loving my crafting life. I get to play with the most amazing products and love sharing them with all kinds of people who come to watch me at demonstrations. Which in all honesty, is what crafting is all about.....
In the future, I am hoping to be part of IndigoBlu's demo team for a long time. I would also like to do a few video makes and tutorials for my blog. Although the Wigan accent has put me off in the past and having to write subtitles for every sentence is a bit daunting!
All in all I hope to continue to meet more of the amazing, fabulous, talented and inspiring people of the crafting world.
The nitty gritty...
Everything you see on my blog has been handmade by me and I will always try to acknowledge other people's hard work and creations which have influenced me or inspired my creations in some way.
As you may be aware, I have spend 100 of hours of hard graft on my craft work and love to share my creations for inspiration, and I hope I have had the opportunity to inspire you in some way.
But please do not copy images of my work and try to pass it off as your own for challenges, submissions or anything else. If you want to you use my work for any purpose then please ask me first.
I hope you have enjoyed finding out a bit about me and I hope you are back to visit again soon.