I am not known for being particularly crafty. This is mostly because my version of ‘craft perfection’ is working on something until I get bored and deciding that it’s probably decent. This started to change a little with the creation of my beautiful Minnie Mouse ears ahead of my October trip to Disney World, but that fact remains that I am far more creative with words than with arts and crafts.
I was recently invited to a crafting afternoon organised by Viking Stationary and I thought that it would be too much fun to turn down. If anyone could teach this old dog new tricks, then surely it would be professional crafters. And even if I did spectacularly fail, at least it would provide some entertainment.
I am proud to announce that I had a really fun time, made some cool things, and even got praised by the block printing leader. There were a few slight mishaps with origami, but I’ll get onto that later.
This was actually the first time I had been invited to a blogger event so I was a little apprehensive – but mostly excited. It was so odd to see people in real life when I only knew them as twitter handles and great blogs in the past. I got chatting to lots of lovely people while everyone was arriving. After a while, we split up into three groups and went to the first crafting station.
My group started with block printing, which doesn’t sound all that fun on the surface, but it’s actually relaxing, creative and I got a new file out of it. We started by cutting shapes out of foam, then glueing them to a little clear perspex piece. That makes your print, and then we dabbed paint onto the shape using some sponges and got painting. I chose a simple red heart shape and covered my Viking file with endless hearts, all with different imperfections.
At first, I was disheartened by how different every print was, but by the end I loved how the variation looked. This may sound like a simple task, but it was so much fun and can easily be repeated on tote bags or other stationary. I think this activity really suited me as it wasn’t all about perfection. Instead, it was being let loose with some paint and seeing what happened.
Next we moved onto Calligraphy, which I had been majorly looking forward to. I had a little calligraphy set when I was younger but got bored of it after a while. This was a whole different ball game, with cute pots of ink and proper pens. It was hard to get used to the style of holding the pen and how to make thicker and thinner lines, but everyone came to grips with how to get beautiful handwriting by the end of the hour session. I wished we could have stayed for longer, and this was the first thing I got out to have another go with when I got home.
After some more snacks and orange juice, we moved onto the last activity. This was mindful origami. It was great to hear a bit more of the theory behind the activity and there were some inspirational moments in there as well. The only problem for me was the task itself. I do not particularly like fiddly tasks, and intricately folding paper falls into this category for me. Rather than having a mindful activity, I was getting stressed. With a fair amount of help from the people around me and the instructor, I did manage to get a crane bird out of the experience.
Overall, this was the perfect way to spend a chilled Saturday afternoon. I wish there was another event next week! Thank you so much to Viking for organising it, and to Tea & Crafting for holding the block painting session, Suzie from A L’aise for teaching us calligraphy, and MindFOLDness for dealing with my poor paper folding skills.
If you’re interested in trying calligraphy for yourself, you can get 15% off at Suzie’s shop by using the code SUPER15 at the checkout.
Are you into crafting, or would you like to start getting more creative soon? I’m definitely a convert now!