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

Tuesday, 31 December 2013

... and in with the new

In my last post, I reviewed 2013 (if you missed it, you can read all about it here

The start of a New Year is a chance to set intentions for the coming 12 months.  To think about what you want to get out of the New Year.  I often choose a word or a quote to inspire me throughout the year - I will share this with you in a future post.

As in previous years, I'm going to set myself a crafty resolution - yes this year it's just 1 but it's going to take all my willpower to succeed with this one!


Every crafter has a stash.  Every crafter needs a stash, items that you can just go and grab when you need them.  However. my stash has gotten a little out of control.  It is enormous!

 I have boxes of yarn, fabric, buttons, ribbons, paper and don't even get me started on the number of sketch and note books I've got.  My craft room is like a small branch of Hobbycraft!

In 2014 I'm going to use up the stash.  I'm only going to buy new if I NEED it (that's NEED not WANT!) so if I need it for my City and Guilds course or for an order (and of course, I can have a small budget for Woolfest).

I have some amazing goodies hidden away that desperately need to be turned into something beautiful and be admired.

I'm pretty certain that this is a resolution I can work with and I will share with you what I've been making with my extensive stash. 

Have you got any crafty resolutions for 2014?  Do you want to join in me in my liberation of the stash?

Monday, 30 December 2013

Out with the old ....

As 2013 draws to a close its out with the old!  I love spending a little bit of time, at the end of a year, reflecting on the events of the previous year.

So, how has your 2013 been?  

I can honestly say that my 2013 has been crazy in an amazing way and, when I look back at it, has been one of the best years I've had in a while.  There have been so many new challenges and opportunities and it makes me see the decisions I made in 2012 as the right ones.

As you may remember, I made 3 crafty New Years Resolutions at the end of last year - lets take a look at how successful, or not, I've been with these.

1. To sew myself a skirt!
I had some Amy Butler fabric, which I bought in the sale way back in 2012.  I'm pleased to say that it is now a skirt!  The most beautiful A-line maxi skirt perfect for wearing in the hot weather, or with boots in winter.  I used a great book,Sew What! Skirts , which clearly teaches you how to make your own pattern for an a-line and straight skirt.  It was really easy to do and I can't wait to make a straight, needlecord skirt in the New Year.

2.  To develop The Gingerbread Bunny through: a website, teaching workshops and selling at craft fairs.
The Gingerbread Bunny has definitley grown in 2013 - having the time to dedicate to it has been a great advantage in this!  I've taught private crochet workshops in a lovely cafe in Wigan and now teach crochet classes as part of the adult education programme which will continue in 2014 with a second beginners class (my first was oversubscribed) and, fingers crossed, an improvers class to.
I have sold at a few craft fairs this year.  I've experienced the good and the bad of these.  My best fair was one I paid a little bit more for for me stall but was by far the most successful and, even better, I received great feedback on my items.
In terms of a website, I'm not there yet.  I've improved my blog to make finding information easier but really, I need a website.  I've delegated this task to Mr Bunny for 2014.

3. To blog regularly.
Ok - I started off well but, towards the middle of the year, failed miserably.  So, I've decided not to force myself into blogging regularly.  I will blog when I feel that I need to and not in a timetabled way.  I'm going to use the Blogger App on my phone to blog on the move which may mean more short posts to share what I'm making or what I've seen rather than committing to weekly, longer posts.  I do want to write more tutorials this year so keep an eye out for those.

Overall, I'm quite pleased with how I've done with my crafty resolutions - how did you do with yours?

Keep an eye out for tomorrows post all about my resolution for 2014.

Sunday, 22 December 2013

It's Beginning To Look A Lot Like Christmas!

Wow! I can't believe it's only 3 sleeps until Christmas - as the countdown in Sainsburys told me this morning.
For once, I'm not going to be spending the next few days running around like a headless chicken buying last minute presents and shopping for food.
This year Christmas Day is a little bit different for me as Mr Bunny is working. I have a day of relaxation planned. A nice relaxing bath with a penguin bubble bar slice from Lush followed by watching films, on the.couch in my new owl pyjamas, with mulled wine, chocolates and a new.crochet project for me.  You don't.know just how much I'm looking forward to this!
It may not be a traditional Christmas but, as they say, a change is as good as a rest and this year I feel more festive than ever!
How are your Christmas preparations going?

Tuesday, 17 December 2013

Handmade Christmas

Wow! I can't believe how long it's been since I last blogged. In fact, I can't believe how quickly this year has gone and Christmas seems to have sprung itself upon us.
We have finally got the decorations up and, this year, there are far more handmade ones than ever before. We have opted for a branch tree this year - Mr Bunny has worked very hard painting it and fixing it into a lovely silver plant pot so that it doesn't fall over. All of the decorations are either handmade or very special - there are some crocheted stars I made last year, 2 beautiful needle felted bunnies (My bunnies) that were made for me last year and even a weeping angel decoration I made for Mr Bunny. It is all very simple but very beautiful!
This afternoon, I finished a mistletoe wreath decoration which is now hanging in the doorway. The tutorial came from a great book I borrowed from the library (sorry I can't remember the name!).
As ever, I've got my rag wreath up and my hand made festive bunting making my home look pretty.
Have a great Christmas!
Sarah x

Thursday, 21 November 2013

How to Crochet a Christmas Wreath

I've been super busy recently completing orders and getting stock ready for a few Christmas craft fairs I'm doing in Tarleton and at the beautiful Houghton Towers near Blackburn.

One of my favourite items to crochet are crochet wreaths. They are easy to make, look amazing and, best of all, can be made in any colour scheme to match your decorations. They can even be made for year round display if you decorate them appropriatley.

As part of my beginners adult education class I teach, some of the ladies are making their own Christmas wreaths and so I've written, what I hope, is an easy to follow tutorial for crocheting a Christmas wreath!

How to: Crochet a Christmas Wreath

A half polystyrene wreath base
DK yarn in your choice of colours
Items to decorate your wreath with e.g. buttons, bells and ribbons
4mm crochet hook
Darning needle

 Covering the Wreath Base


1. Begin by making a chain of stitches, in your chosen colour, that fits around your wreath when wrapped front to back.  If you are a tight crocheter, add a couple of stitches.  You are aiming for a snug fit!

2. Chain 2 and work 1 dc stitch into each row.  Continue to work in dc stitch (turning chain 2).  You are aiming for a dense fabric.

3. Work in rows, until you have created a rectangle that fits round the whole wreath.  For a striped wreath, change colour by working the last pull through of the last stitch of the row in your new colour. 

4. Fasten off.  Lay the crocheted rectangle over the wreath. Using the loose ends, use whipstitch to secure it together, weaving ends in as you go.  This will be on the back so won’t be visible.

 Decorating the Wreath 

This is definitely my favourite bit of making a wreath.  I love to add crocheted stars and holly, pom poms, buttons and jingly Christmas bells (you can get these on eBay). I also like to crochet a chain, attaching buttons and bells as I go, to make a mini garland to wrap around the wreath.

1. Once you've chosen your items, lay them on, pinning in place, until you are happy with your arrangement and then stitch securely onto the crochet base of your wreath.

2. Finally, attach ribbon, or a hoop, to the back of your wreath.  Hang and enjoy!

There's lots of  inspiration out there if you're looking for ideas on how to decorate your wreath. Look on Pinterest for decoration ideas and Ravelry for crocheted shapes, such as holly and stars, to add to it.

I hope you've enjoyed my tutorial and found it easy to follow.  Please share any comments and thoughts about my tutorial and photo's of your crocheted wreaths!

Friday, 18 October 2013

Wool Week 2013

I can't believe that there is a whole week devoted to wool!  In my humble opinion, I think it deserves a whole month.  

There have been lots of events going on this week including live knitting and crochet in the window of John Lewis in London, and PicKnits taking place across the country, bringing knitters, crocheters, spinners and lovers of wool together.

The Wool Room on Facebook have been posting a great series of Myth Buster posters about wool which have been both informative and interesting at the same time and are well worth checking out.

Now I am a big fan of wool.  I work with it a lot, both in my crochet and my felting.  I have, over time, come to love certain types of wool more than others.  Here are my top 3:

In third place are the beautiful Jacob sheep.  With their dual coloured fleeces, they produce lovely wool, in a range of natural colours, which is great for felting.

In a very close second place, we have the Shetland sheep.  Beautifully soft, with 11 main colours, it is used to produce the gossamer lace famous for use in Fair Isle sweaters. I adore working with this wool both in crochet and felting.

And in 1st place .....

Blue Faced Leicester

Soft, lustrous and often compared to mohair, Blue Faced Leicester is my favourite of all the British wool breeds.  I love to work with this wool.

What are your favourite British wools to work with?