Thursday, 19 January 2017

Spoonflower design competition - painting

Do you know Spoonflower? It's a great website which allows you to design and print your own fabric. It is also a great place to shop for unique and original designed fabric as many of the designers list their work in their own little store. I have a store on Spoonflower and would love it if you took a look.

They also run a weekly design competition and I love to take part as it often makes me design things I wouldn't normally draw.

The latest competition was a design based on 'Ditsy Mistletoe'
The brief was:

A hobby near and dear to many creative hearts, painting takes on so many forms, techniques, and mediums -- and in many ways it is the foundation of design. Watercolor, acrylic, oil, tempera, gouache, tempura. Abstract, impressionist, photo-realistic -- there's something for everyone!

Water colour has been a hugh trend in fabric and surface pattern design for a while now. I used to piant in water colour a lot back in mu uni days, so I thought I'd break out my brushes for this competition. I am really pleased with the half drop repeat and this this would look great on summer bedding. What do you think? Don't forget you can see more of my design work via my Instagram page.

If you like my design please pop over to Spoonflower and vote for me. Voting opens today.

Monday, 9 January 2017

Make it in Design Winter school.

I have been developing my surface pattern design work over Christmas and thought I would invest a little in me for a change and signed up to the make it in design winter school. It's only a four week course and the cost was minimal so I thought it would be a great motivator to get me working harder on my surface pattern designs. I signed up for the advanced course after reading the briefs for the beginner and intermediate.
The first task we have been given is to create a bold bohemian 70's rock inspired pattern.

My first step was to do a quick search on Pinterest and I'm sharing my board here so you can see my initial inspiration.



This morning I've sketched out a few ideas from my board and I was surprised to see so much geometric patterns being used.
Make it in Design Winter school.

I'm looking forward to inking these up and scanning them in, which I will probably do tomorrow. I will share more with you soon.

www.makeitdesign.com/winter-school

Wednesday, 4 January 2017

Gluten free Winter granola recipe

This time of year after the excesses of Christmas I long to get back to my healthy eating pattern and want wholesome food to start my day with. I always have leftover nuts and dried fruit from Christmas baking, so why not incorporate some of those flavours through into the new year.

Gluten free Winter granola recipe

For my Gluten free Winter Granola you will need:

  • 500g Gluten free rolled oats
  • 300ml honey
  • 150g mixed nuts, chopped
  • 100g desiccated coconut
  • 100g dried cranberries
  • 1 tsp mixed spice
  • 1tbsp sunflower oil

  1. Warm the honey and oil in a saucepan.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, stir the oats, nuts and coconut.
  3. Preheat the oven to 180c or gas mark 6.
  4. Pour the honey and oil mixture over the oats and stir until coated.
  5. Spread the mixture in a large roasting tray.
  6. Bake for twenty minutes, turning the mixture ever 5 minutes so it doesn't burn.
  7. Remove from the oven and allow to cool before putting in an air tight container.
Gluten free Winter granola recipe

Sunday, 1 January 2017

Happy new Year. Free desktop calendar January

Happy New year.

This year I am hoping to achieve many things, including blogging every day and developing my illustrative work. So in a great start to the new year I wanted to give you a piece of my work. A desktop calendar for the month of January. Penguins aren't just for Christmas you know. In fact our most wintery weather is still on the way. Here are a flock of serene penguins on a calming snowy scene for January.

Just click on the link and you should be able to download the image in a resolution of 2560x 1440 px. Any problems message me on twitter @craftcartwright.



Thursday, 15 December 2016

Spoonflower design competition, Gnomes

Do you know Spoonflower? It's a great website which allows you to design and print your own fabric. It is also a great place to shop for unique and original designed fabric as many of the designers list their work in their own little store. I have a store on Spoonflower and would love it if you took a look.

They also run a weekly design competition and I love to take part as it often makes me design things I wouldn't normally draw.

The latest competition was a design based on Gnomes
The brief was:

'No one appreciates getting cosy quite like gnomes, preferring to nestle into subterranean caves and nooks. Although we hear they DO love to travel....'


Spoonflower design competiiton, Gnomes

I took the word cosy when designing my Gnome pattern, I like to feel they have a felted handmade look about them. I added woodland features and gave them a hand stitched look. I am really pleased with the final design and hope others like it too. What do you think?

If you like my design please pop over to Spoonflower and vote for me. Voting opens today.


Thursday, 8 December 2016

Spoonflower design competion, Ditsy Mistletoe

Do you know Spoonflower? It's a great website which allows you to design and print your own fabric. It is also a great place to shop for unique and original designed fabric as many of the designers list their work in their own little store. I have a store on Spoonflower and would love it if you took a look.

They also run a weekly design competition and I love to take part as it often makes me design things I wouldn't normally draw.

The latest competition was a design based on 'Ditsy Mistletoe'
The brief was:

In Scandinavia, mistletoe was considered a plant of peace, under which enemies could declare a truce or warring spouses kiss and make-up. Create a festive holiday mistletoe design in "ditsy" fashion: which is defined in the design world as a small scale, scattered, non-directional print. 

Spoonflower design competion, Ditsy Mistletoe
I love how fresh yet festive my Mistletoe and red bows design looks. I could imagine this as bedding or a lovely tablecloth. What do you think?

If you like my design please pop over to Spoonflower and vote for me. Voting opens today.



Tuesday, 6 December 2016

Why I'll be giving books this Christmas

When I am given lists of what the various children in my life want for Christmas, I always take note of the lastest must have gadget or newest lego addition on there and then I look for what books they want.

Why I'll be giving books this Christmas


If I don't see a book I always pick one of my children's favourites or one of mine and give that child it along with something from their list. Because, reading and the love of books is so important. In both my children's rooms we have a reading corner with a bookshelf crammed with books and a cosy cushion to share them on. I read every night with my children not just for their benefit but for mine too. It's a great way to share time with the kids, unwind and get lost in a book.
I was so lucky to be sent some great books by Puffin books this week and I know they are going to make my niece and nephew's so happy this Christmas.

I was sent three delightful books, The Tale of Kitty-in-boots which I can hardly bear to part with as I love Beatrix Potter books. Alfie and His best friend, my children have loved Alfie books and I know my nephew will too and The fairytale hairdresser and the Princess and the pea. This is a new one to me but I'm sure it will be perfect for my niece.

The Tale of Kitty-in-boots.
"A serious, well behaved young black cat, who leads a daring double life defeating vile villains."

When Miss Kitty sneaks out to go hunting in her beautiful boots she gets herself into all sorts of scrapes, but on this particular night she meets the foxiest hunter of the all - Mr Tod!

This utterly entertaining tale is filled with mistaken identities, devious villains and even the an appearance from Peter Rabbit.
Told with Beatrix Potter's trademark dry humour and wry observations, this brilliant tale is sure to become as popular as her original classics and is illustrated by the best loved Quentin Blake.

Alfie and His very best friend
Alfie and Bernard are very best friends and together they have lots of adventures. Join them as they go to the library, take part in scooter races and make a very special club with only two special members! A heart warming tale of friendship by the award winning Shirley Hughes, creator of Dogger.

The Fairytale Hairdresser and the Princess and the pea.
Princesses from all across the land are flocking to fairytale village for the chance to marry the prince. But one princess is not all she seems...
Amid the excitements of the annual festival of food, the fairytale hairdresser must use all her skills to root out the wicked witch and ensure true love's course runs without a hitch. Featuring all the fairytale favourites, hilarious hairstyles, outrageous outfits and fantastic fairytale foods!

One piece of advice that always sticks in my mind when buying for Children.

One thing you want,
One thing to need,
One to wear and
One to read.

Happy Christmas reading.

This is a sponsored post for Puffin books working with Britmums.

Thursday, 1 December 2016

Spoonflower design competition, Snow day

Do you know Spoonflower? It's a great website which allows you to design and print your own fabric. It is also a great place to shop for unique and original designed fabric as many of the designers list their work in their own little store. I have a store on Spoonflower and would love it if you took a look.

They also run a weekly design competition and I love to take part as it often makes me design things I wouldn't normally draw.

The latest competition was a design based on 'Snow day'
The brief was:

'You know that magical feeling you get when you wake up, look outside, see the big fluffy snowflakes falling from the sky and it hits you: SNOW DAY! Somehow it always makes us feel like a little kid again. Break out the hot cocoa, parkas, sleds, soup, mittens, or anything else that says "snow day!" to you.'



Spoonflower design competition, Snow day

My design has a Kawaii look to it, I created a snowy scene against a pale blue background then created, frolicking snowmen, hot chocolates, mince pies and flames. I must admit I am really in love with this pattern and would love to get it on fleece for a great snow day blanket.

If you like my design please pop over to Spoonflower and vote for me. Voting opens today.





Wednesday, 30 November 2016

Gluten free Chocolate and Banana tray bake recipe

Gluten free Chocolate and Banana tray bake recipe
I do love a tray bake, so easy to make, easy to slice up and a great crowd pleaser. As we reach December and you want to make yours bakes a little more festive, this Gluten free Chocolate and banana tray bake is sure to be a hit.

Monday, 28 November 2016

Gluten free coconut and lime traybake recipe

Gluten free coconut and lime traybake recipe


I do love a tray bake as you may have noticed. I also love coconut and I love to bake with it. One of my favourite flavour combinations in coconut and lime. It can instantly transport me away to somewhere far flung and tropical. If, like me, you have no chance of getting anywhere tropical soon. Enjoy a slice of this and a day dream or two.

Friday, 25 November 2016

Cross stitch advent calendar.

Cross stitch advent calendar.

So here is the complete cross stitch advent calendar. I hope you like it and I hope to see some pics of the stitched up patterns before Christmas. You can find the complete set of patterns on my cross stitch patterns page.




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