Welcome to The Gingerbread Bunny! I'm Sarah, a textile artist specialising in crochet and felt based in Wigan in the North-West of England.

On my blog, you can find my day-to-day craft adventures and tutorials.

You can find details of my work for sale and workshops on my website - www.thegingerbreadbunny.co.uk

Sunday, 28 October 2012

Reader Appreciation Award!

Oooh!  How exciting! I have been awarded a Reader Appreciation Award by the wonderful Corrie of Plutonium Muffins.

So, there are three guidelines I have to follow.

Thank the person who nominated you
As I've already said.  I've been nominated by the lovely Corrie, author of Plutonium Muffins blog.  I've been following Corrie on Twitter for a while now and we got to know each other a little better when I answered her plea for someone to join her in a KAL for dog blankets for Battersea Dogs and Cats Home earlier this year.  Her blog is well worth checking out I love catching up with her through it.

Answer 10 Questions
There are 10 questions to answer so that you, my readers, can find out a little more about me.  Here goes!

1.  Your favourite colour
I love colour and my favourite does  tend to fluctuate between teal, pink and purple.  Currently my favourite is purple.

2.  Your favourite animal
I am a vegetarian who loves animals.  I do live with many, many animals - rabbits, guinea pigs, gold fish, Giant African Land Snails and a hamster.  I also love cats (the only reason we don't have any is because Mr Bunny is highly allergic to them!)  As far as non-pet animals go I think Owls and elephants are beautiful, and have lots of owl and elephant related items in my house, love donkeys, want to own goats, sheep and alpacas one day and adore whales and dolphins and am a big supporter of Sea Shepherd.  What is my favourite animal? All of them!

3.  Your favourite non-alcoholic drink
I love elderflower and Aldi do great bottles of sparkling elderflower water and apple and elderflower juice - mmmm.  If it's tea, I like Assam and fruit teas.  I'm also partial to a caramel latte and a hot chocolate when it's chilly outside!

4.  Facebook or Twitter
Both!  If you don't already you can find me here on Facebook (gingerbreadbunny) and I'm GingerbreadBun on Twitter.

5.  Your favourite pattern
Now there's a question.  It will have to be a collection of patterns - Aoibhe Ni's Tunisian Lace Shawls.   Theya are gorgeous and I can't wait to make more of them over winter to keep my neck warm.  They are great as you can make them with your ordinary crochet hook.

6.  Getting or giving presents
That's a hard one.  Of course I love getting presents but I also love giving presents, especially when it is something handmade - although that can be pretty nerve wracking to!

7.  Your favourite number
Oddly enough, 7.  Why?  I like the way it looks, it is an odd number and I always think thinks look better in an odd number and it is the number of attempts it took me to pass my driving test.

8.  Your favourite day of the week
It depends on the week and what's happening.  Weekends are a favourite because it is my time for crafting, chilling out, dancing etc etc etc

9.  Your favourite flower
Roses.  They are the flowers I had when I got married.

10.  What is your passion?
Craft.  I adore it.  Being able to make something for yourself is amazing.  Wearing clothing you have made yourself is so satsifying.  I love teaching craft and empowering people to be able to make for themselves to.

Nominate some fellow bloggers

Obviously, Corrie from Plutonium Muffins but apparently she can't be an 'official' nomination. 

In no particular order we have:

Shinybees - Jo is a very old friend of mine who now resides in South Africa.  She is a keen knitter and her blog is very well written and a great read.

iMake - Martine is from Guernsey and explores lots of different crafts.  Her blog is a treasure chest of information and defintley one to subscribe to.

Random Wooliness - Ali is a keen felter and, with my new found love of felt making, her blog is one I check out regulalry.  She makes some beautiful things!

Fresh Stitches - This is the newest blog on my reading list.  Stacey is the designer of the most adorable amigurumi creatures and I can't wait to find the time to make Nelson the Owl. 

I hope you have found out a little more about me!

Thank you again Corrie for the nomination!

Saturday, 27 October 2012

Choosing the one

This week I have acquired a new lady in my life and I'd like to introduce you all to Dorothy, my new sewing machine.

A few Christmases ago, my husband bought me my first sewing machine (much to the horror of a few of my work colleagues who couldn't believe that I was getting a 'tool' for Christmas!) I chose a John Lewis mini in bright pink. It was reasonably priced and basic. I chose it because, quite frankly, the more advanced machines scared me to death with all those dials and selectors and so I wanted something easy. It was perfect and did what I needed - straight and zigzag stitch. It was a great little machine to get me started but I needed more from my machine. It was time to say goodbye.

There are so many sewing machines out there that picking the right one is, quite frankly, like choosing a partner!

Can I live with this machine for the rest of my life? (or at least for the forseeable future?) Sewing machines are a big investment with some costing hundreds of pounds!

You have to pick a machine that is right for you and suits your needs. Are you just doing a bit of sewing for fun? Do you want to make clothes? Are you interested in embroidering with it? All important considerations when buying a machine.

These where all questions I had to answer.
My new machine is also a John Lewis model (which I'm led to believe are made by Janome) As me and my first machine got on so well, I decided to stick with what I know.

I want a machine for sewing and dressmaking. Im not interested in using it for embroidery (and am not likley to in the future) Dorothy (my machine) can do button holes and has a removable bit to make cuffs and legs easier to sew - very handy for a wannabe dressmaker!

Looks also came into it to (some people may consider this when choosing a partner!) Dorothy is a stunner! She is purple with contrasting pink dials and very sleek. I know I shouldn't be, but I was drawn to her looks!

Like most people, I was working within a budget. I could have spent a little more than I did but I certainly didn't have the funds to buy a fancy machine (which I probably wouldn't use because it would be to complicated and intimidating!!)

I have had a play with Dorothy and she is amazing! I feel like a professional seamstress.

Me and Dorothy are going to be very happy together!

Please Note: no sewing machines where harmed in the making of this blog. Mini machine has been rehomed in Freckleton (with my sister) where she is leading a productive and seeing filled life.

Now, that's not to say that we can't substitute effectively. Last weekend I discovered that a pair of £5 dog brushes work very well as carders. Sometimes we can use a different tool and get the job done equally well.

Monday, 22 October 2012

Craft Junkie

When I was sewing at 7:30am on Friday morning (it was the first day of the half term holidays) Mr Bunny came into Gingerbread Bunny HQ and declared that I was a craft junkie.  It made me chuckle as, quite frankly, it is true.  I am addicted to craft.  I love it.  I would go without new clothes so that I could buy wool or a new sewing machine.  I have swapped Cosmo for Mollie Makes.  Any opportunity to craft, I grab with both hands- I crochet in cafes, in the car and in the waiting room at the doctors.  I do it because I love it!

This weekend I have been a craft junkie all weekend.  It was weekend 2 of my City and Guilds Level 1 course in Textiles through Felting.  I am really enjoying the course and finding it so challenging and rewarding.  It is really developing the design side of my craft and, quite frankly, aspects of it make my brain hurt - in a good way of course! 

We made 2 felt pictures, inspired by our sunset paper collages.  We used carders to blend colours, which is just amazing, and used both a white and a coloured background.  I discovered that I am a 2 layer felter and that I definitley think in pictures rather than the abstract. I love the second felt picture much more than the first as it has more depth.  I wish I'd added a touch of blue to the sky, but I will be able to do that when we embroider and emblish. 

First picture before felting

Felt picture 2

We did some uneven dyeing using our accent colour, mine being orangey yellow.  This was very cool - I have discovered a real love of dyeing.  Not knowing how it was going to turn out was very exciting. My felting friends created some amazing dyed fabrics in purples and reds.  It was fabulous.

I love uneven dyeing!

Of course, there was much more going on over the weekend.  In fact, it was nonstop and we got so into our felting on Saturday, we worked over lunch.  I have plenty of homework to do before the next weekend and I'm going to be felting at home this week whilst I'm on half term. 

Here is a final treat.  We ate our luch outside on Sunday as it was such a beautiful day.  We made a new friend, a gorgeous black cat, who spent a lot of time with us.  Isn't he a cutie?!

Our new furry friend