Tuesday, 16 December 2014

And the winner is...

Just a reminder (in case you were patiently waiting) there is no new theme until January 15th. We are taking a little holiday break and hope you will join us in 2015 for more exciting challenges! We would like to thank all of you for joining in and being so creative this year.

So the winner of the INK challenge is...

...Nesta from Ella and Nesta who made a pretty pouch with a great text print to carry in her handbag. Congratulations you have won a $25 gift certificate to the Fat Quarter Shop!

Hope you all have a peaceful December and see you back here in 2015!

Lucy and Nat

Sunday, 14 December 2014

Le Challenge #18 - INK

This challenge seemed to come around fast and we're looking forward to seeing your ink creations!

Here's what we made:

see Lucy's vintage elf at Charm About You

see Nat's handmade Christmas wrapping paper at Made in Home

If you are new to Le Challenge find more information here - please read the guidelines!

Link your finished INK makes below for a random chance to win a $25 gift certificate to the Fat Quarter Shop :)

Please remember to include the button or a link to Le Challenge in your blog post or Flickr description and use the hashtag #lechallenge if you are linking up from Instagram.

Sunday, 7 December 2014

More inspiration from Laura at Made Peachy

Today we have an inspiring post by the wonderfully creative Laura from Made Peachy, whose beautiful calligraphy is a perfect fit for our INK challenge theme this month. 

If you’ve checked out my Instagram feed, or my blog in recent times you’ll have noticed that I’m in the midst of a love affair with modern Calligraphy.

This elegant art form is something that takes practice - years of practice, if we’re going to be honest about it. Yet, still this is a creative pastime that I can’t get enough of right now. So much so that I’m shouting it from the rooftops, so I’m here today to share the love for Modern Calligraphy and perhaps give you that little nudge that you might need to give it a go!

First off, lets dispel a couple of myths and get a few things clear…

MYTH: You need to be super artistic to be able to master calligraphy.

Well, sure calligraphy is an art form, but it is one that is learnt and developed with practice. Repeated drills of shaping stylish letters will yield stunning and highly artistic lettering, even if you claim to not have an artistic bone in your body.

MYTH: You can’t contemplate taking up calligraphy if your everyday handwriting is horrifically bad.

Calligraphy is very different from your everyday writing. Ok, so if you're starting out with a scrawl of script that is illegible at the best of times then you’ll just have your work cut out, but there is no reason (providing you put in the practice!) that you can’t achieve stunning lettering skills.

MYTH: Practice is so boring!

Ordinarily I would agree. I mean repeating the same task (that you might be pretty shabby at when you start out) does sound dull. But, here’s the thing, calligraphy practice is slow, careful and considered, it is a perfect way to stop and slow down  - and unwind - during a busy day. Don't be surprised if you find that you’ll be sneaking in a little bit of lettering practice every time you have a moment to spare!

As I’ve said, calligraphy is a slow burn of a craft so - full disclosure - I’m still learning, still finding my own style and still trying to master the art of not covering everything in the surrounding area with blobs of ink. However, in the last few months of my whirlwind romance with this creative hobby I have not only been amazed at the progress, but also learnt a few little things along the way.

Thinking of trying your own hand at modern calligraphy? Check out these handy hints for beginners…

New Nibs

While you are learning, mastering the smooth even pressure can result in breaking and bending nibs out of shape. Writing with a damaged nib is no fun and no good for achieving results that you can be really proud of, stocking up with lots of nibs will ensure that you can get the most out of your practice sessions.

Need some help with picking out some calligraphy supplies - check out these Starting Calligraphy Essentials!

Easy on the Ink

Getting just the right amount of ink in your dip pen is a fiddly business. You might be tempted to load it up with as much as you possibly can to ensure you can write out the whole entire word without refilling it. Too much ink can cause uneven strokes on the letters and often results in splodges and splatters on the paper. Load your pen

sparingly, you can always re-ink part way through a word and even work back over letters to refill sections as needed.

Stay Chilled
Relax! This is meant to be a fun creative hobby! Its all too tempting when we are concentrating really hard to tense up through our shoulders and back. This is the very worst thing for practising calligraphers - tense muscles, in your hand, arm and shoulder make it really tricky to create those lush swooping loops and flourishes that you’re striving for.

Fancy looking for some tips online inspiration for calligraphy? Check out this round up of free Calligraphy resources! 

Clean Up!
This might sound like the dullest piece of advice, no one likes to clean up! Inks will dry pretty quickly on abandoned pens, and removing it once it has completely dried is a difficult job, and can often leave your nibs damaged or in a sorry state. A quick clean up of nibs and pen holders when you've finished your practice will help to give them longevity…and they will be ready for with the mood hits for more lettering!

Learning solo can be a little daunting - it is often hard to spot your own mistakes or fathom out the tricks of the trade to get you to the next level. Why not try an online calligraphy course? 

I plan on spending a lot of time over the winter working on my lettering practice and no doubt have a lot more to learn - but what a satisfying creative journey it will be. Have you discovered top tips for working with inks or building your calligraphy skills - be sure to share, I’d love to hear them!

Blog: http://www.madepeachy.com
Twitter: https://twitter.com/MadePeachy
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Made-Peachy/201655609989556?ref=hl
Instagram: http://instagram.com/madepeachy
Pinterest: http://www.pinterest.com/MadePeachy/

Thank you so much Laura! 
Be sure to check her out on social media, she has fabulous and unique tutorials on her blog and takes the most gorgeous and inspiring pictures.

There is about a week before the INK challenge link opens so we hope to see you back here then for a chance to win a $25 gift certificate to the Fat Quarter Shop and if you're new to le challenge you can find all the details about our fun monthly link here!

Wednesday, 3 December 2014

Ink {fabric inspiration}

I have to admit this month's theme, INK, had me stumped but the more I thought about it the more possibilities there are. Since so much of what we use when sewing and crafting contains ink that you could really stretch the theme to fit anything!

Here's a few of the fun things I found at the Fat Quarter Shop for inspiration...

Brilliant pens you could use in your make: Sewline Styla Water Erasable Pen or Pigma Micron Pen

You could write something special: Airmail, Eric and Julie Comstock

The colour of ink: Inky, Paint by Such Designs

All colours of ink!: Paint Swatches by Dear Stella

Squirt some ink!!: Octopus by Timeless Treasures

I will be totally honest and tell you I've not started my project yet but there are a few days until the link opens so hopefully I can have a finish to show!

Join us on 15th December to link up your finished 'ink' makes and a random chance to win a $25 gift certificate to the Fat Quarter Shop. If you're new you can read all about le challenge here.

How are you all getting on?