TangleClub – October update!

Have you joined the TangleClub yet?  If not, click here for all the different options!  Alternatively, spend $10 or more on anything else in the TangleCrafts Etsy Store and receive a Basic Membership Package absolutely FREE!

For existing members your club-exclusive freebie for October awaits you!  This month, you can print your very own ‘Ideas Grow’ mini-zine notebook, perfect for tucking in your pocket, and can be used to design your own comic rather than take notes, if you prefer!  Click on over to the TangleClub Archive for full details. 🙂

Another exclusive offer for existing TangleClub members:
Place an order anytime throughout October and receive a First Day Cover postcard of the latest TangleStamp!  The design is called ‘Star of Daphne’ and is derived from a hand-carved block print.  The postcard also tells you the story behind the Star of Daphne, an element of Tangledom’s unique folklore.

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New zines, old zines, something for everyone!

There has recently been a little flurry of activity in my Etsy store with all sorts of interesting new arrivals!  Time for an overview:

First up, I am thrilled to offer copies of Kristin Roach’s latest issue of Craft Leftovers Monthly.  Inside there is a bounty of crafty goodness, including a ZineBomb mini-zine (by me!) and a Postal Travel Kit guest article (also by me!).  The best part is the accompanying pattern for a fantastic Postal Clutch that Kristin has designed with pockets to fit all your mail art essentials. Click here for more details and to buy your copy from my Etsy store, where I’m offering two FREE mini-zines with every copy sold!  It’s such an honour to be included in this awesome zine. 🙂

My own latest zine is called ‘The Thief of Time‘ – very apt considering how time has been escaping me of late!  It is a collection of blank to-do lists for you to fill in, to help organise your own time, combined with an overview of 7 crafty days of my life – projects, pics and points of view.  It covers everything from doodle-stitching to artistamps, mini-zines to stamp-carving, and it also includes a free copy of Going Postal mini-zine, Volume 6.  Thief of Time is available with the usual plain kraft paper cover, or a special edition with a funky fabric cover, instead – check the Etsy Store now to choose your copy!

Yes, there’s more!  I am about to retire one of the old TangleCrafts favourites, Leftover Lavender.  Inspired by the lavender currently in bloom in my garden, I have put together 3 final copies, each with a bundle of beautiful overdyed embroidery threads in greens and purples.  Buy it now, while you still can (located in the Special Editions category)!

…and even more from the Special Editions category, I have  put together a bumper edition of the ultimate guide to Tangledom’s mythology and customs, the Mulberry Digest. This is lots of fun for the eco-romantics out there, with the creation myth of a land that was dreamed into being, free mulberry seeds for a spot of guerilla mulberry activism, an exploration of the symbolism of Tangledom’s arts and crafts, and two free cross stitch charts.  The Mulberry Digest is printed on A5 (half-size) mulberry pulp paper, with a ‘unique’ hand-stitched binding of my own devising!

Last but not least, we have yet another issue of Going Postal, which has now reached the giddy heights of Volume 7! Click here to find out more about the Going Postal project, and how to take part.  If you’re feeling inspired, your artwork could be included in the very next volume!

Well, I do think that’s all for now (isn’t that enough?!).  Please browse through at your leisure, and remember, you will get FREE membership to the TangleClub with any order, which then entitles you to discounts on future orders, as well as access to the TangleClub Archive with a new free project or printable available online, every month!

Notebooks…mmm…

What is it about a new notebook that is just so…I don’t know…enticing? All the unexplored potential it has, perhaps. Or just the invitation to scribble notes for nothing but your own sense of satisfaction. Anyway, for fellow notebook fans, I just wanted to add a couple of links that I found:

Are you a fan of the traditional Moleskine notebook? They’re nice, granted, but do they really justify being at least 3 times as expensive as your average notebook? Well, they do have that handy pocket, and perforated, tear-off pages… Even so, thanks to a couple of very helpful online crafty types, now you can save yourself some money and make your own! Surely not, you ask? But it’s true, I tell you! My favourite is from The Long Thread, and shows you how to make a replica Moleskine Cahier with just a sewing machine and a cereal box (see left).  If you prefer the thicker Moleskine Notebooks, try instead this tutorial from Michael Shannon.

But – and yes, it’s possible! – an even cooler notebook project can be found courtesy of Diane Gilleland over at The Crafty Pod.  This tutorial shows you how to cover a notebook with a wonderfully retro 70s fabric (it would probably work with other fabrics, too but would it still be as cool? 😉 ).  I totally love this tutorial!  It’s not just because I adore these retro patterned fabrics (honest!), but because it actually shows me to how to make something useable with the fabrics I love without having to touch a sewing machine.  Which in my eyes is nothing short of genius.  Sister Diane, I salute you!  😀

A quiet week?

Despite a lack of blogging activity here which may suggest the contrary, I have been busy busy busy all week!  Well, I took a week’s holiday from ‘real’ work – caught up with a friend, saw my mum & dad (my dad has been in China for the last 6 months or so, so that was an especial treat), and went on a day trip with Corey – the highlight of which was probably when he left his umbrella behind on the train there, but found it again on the train back!  But around these brief outings I have been working non-stop.  There are some new things very nearly ready to tell you about, but the most immediate, are 2 new zines (& something else a bit different), now available in my Etsy stores:

Contours cover shotThe first is ‘Contours’, my first art zine, which is all about doodling.  This is where my brief encounter with Zentangling led me.  I suddenly realised how the majority of the patterns I have designed as an adult all stem from one basic doodle that I used to doodle all the time.  The zine looks at how that doodle has emerged in the various crafts I have worked in, considers the possible origins of the doodle, and leaves lots of spaces for you to doodle away to your own heart’s content.

tiffanyacorns1As you can see from the photo, there are some extras included – hand-doodled bookmark to stitch, and a hand-doodled ‘fingerprint’ of lino to carve & print.  Inside the zine you will also find a 4-way Acorns cross stitch chart, Bobbin Along freeform bargello pattern, plus 4 postcards (2 printed, and 2 blank for you to doodle yourself) printed on gummed paper, freeform-bobbin-alongso that you can turn any piece of scrap card into a postcard, (these come with 4 postcard reverse labels which could also be used as envelope re-use labels, if you prefer).  Check out the TangleCrafts Etsy Store for more details.

Papertrail #2 cover shot Hot on the heels of Papertrail #1, you can now also find Papertrail #2.  Papertrail #2 is a zine full of questions and books and reading habits, with answers/opinions from me, Corey, and spaces for your own responses, too.  It’s all about books, and how we live with them.  Alongside everything else is a Papertrails ‘map’ of routes you can take from novel to novel, spaces to design your own book jackets, plus copy-&-cut bookplates & bookmarks.  And as if all that wasn’t enough, Papertrail #2 also includes a free membership pack for the Papertrail Reader’s Club!

The Papertrail Reader’s Club is there for everyone who loves to read.  The Basic Membership Pack includes:Club Package

  • 2 pre-gummed Ex Libris plates
  • 2 recommendation bookmarks left blank for you to personalise
  • and the Member Book:

The Papertrail Readers’ Club Book is a membership card and reader’s record book combined! It is a 20 page, staple-bound mini-booklet, printed on high quality recycled sugar papers. Each book will be personalised with your name and membership number, and date stamped with the start date of your membership. It includes spaces to list all the books you want to read alongside dates started & finished, and there are even pages to fill in with your own mini-reviews! Club Book

Each month, a different book is chosen as a feature title, with review printed inside the back cover.  Club members are eligible to submit their own reviews of the club titles which may earn them a free Papertrail zine!

If you buy any issue of Papertrail, you will receive free membership to the Reader’s Club, including the current month’s club review.  If you don’t want to buy the zine, you can still buy a one-off membership to the club with a Basic Membership Package.  And if you fill your record book quickly, or just want another, a Renewal Membership Package is available at a reduced price.

Told you I’d been busy ;-).  And this is just the tip of the iceberg!

Super-cool playing card notebooks

playing card notebooksThey’re notebooks, they’re made out of playing cards, and they’re very cool indeed.  What more is there to say?  Well, plenty, actually.  Check out the full post (including a tutorial for making similar notebooks) over at Diane Gilleland’s Crafty Pod.  Can you resist?  I’m not sure  I can…

‘New’ Telaic Fantasy #2 – postcard recycling/mail art kit

TF2 CoverIt’s felt like a long time coming (to me), but I have finally caught up with myself, and re-formatted Telaic Fantasy #2 into the new, bigger A5 size.  Now that all the back issues have been updated, that means I can focus on getting a new issue ready.  Actually, I have something pretty cool in mind for TF4, but because it involves allowing for somebody else’s schedule, it means the new issue won’t be out until the beginning of July (ish).  Don’t worry – I will have lots of other new stuff popping up between now and then!

For now, here’s a preview of the revised TF2:

TF2 Preview 1The free postcards now come tucked into an envelope bound into the spine, and the postcard labels themselves are printed onto (recycled) gummed paper (I recently learned that gummed paper is better for the environment than self-adhesive, as it is water-soluble, and doesn’t clog up the works at the recycling plants).  There is also an additional page of labels for you to photocopy, cut and paste, so you can recycle as many postcards as you like :-).  Ever fancied trying a spot of mail art?  I’m not sure about the realistic possibilities of a tapestry reaching its destination in tact, but it’s surely a concept worth experimenting with!

TF2 Preview 2There are lots more features crammed into TF2, not to mention the fact that it doubles up as a handy notebook, with lots of custom printed pages for you to scribble down your sketches, notes & ideas. TF2 is available to buy as a stand-alone zine, or as part of a membership package for the D.I.Y. Weaving Club.   As always, the first 10 issues will be signed and numbered.  Check out the listings at my Etsy Store for full details & all options available!

TF2 postcard stampAnother addition to the postcard recycling kit is this cute illustration that I hand-carved using my new-found lino-cutting skills ;-).  I’ve used it to stamp onto the envelope that contains the free postcard & postcard cutting template.

Today is a happy day, as it marks the beginning of my revised working hours at the bookshop.  From today onwards, I will only be working afternoons, allowing me to squeeze in precious extra time every morning to keep on top of all the crafty stuff.  Too-many-ideas-and-not-enough-time will I’m sure remain my mantra, but hopefully those extra few hours a week will make a difference.  🙂

Mmm, coffee…

Aaaah, that’s better…  Have just returned from a very pleasant coffee run, which was actually more of a stroll, under a beautiful clear blue sky, and warm sun.  I even wore a sundress!  Yes, I still have way too much packing to do (I’m far too good at talking about it rather than actually doing it), but I’ve set myself a target of 5 boxes for the day, and there’s still plenty of time.  For now, I’m just going to unwind with my large cup of coffee, and catch up on emails.

save-the-world-jpegOh, nearly forgot – while I was procrastinating rather than packing the other day, I put together a mini-zine, ‘Small Ways to Save the World’.  It was just one of those things that really had to be done, right there and then.  It’s about saving the world by looking differently at how we use paper.  The wordsearch on the cover is the only puzzle (I was just considering ways to make a title page with just a few words on it more interesting), the rest of it is full of ideas for recycling and upcycling old paper and used stationery.  The zine itself also converts into a notebook for you to use, made from rescued graph paper!  If you buy one, it will be delivered in a self-mailer envelope which you can use as a template for making your own self-mailers.  I love the idea of writing a letter that turns into its own envelope – it’s a perfect way of reducing unnecessary paper usage.  Check out the Etsy listing for full details.

‘Small Ways to Save the World’ is currently a stand-alone zine (an absolute bargain at just £1! 😉 ), but it’s possible it will grow into a sporadic mini-zine mini-series, as more small ways to save the world come to me…