Saturday, 24 December 2011

Merry Christmas!

Have a good'un one and all!  
 Thank you for reading, it means alot to me to know people are interested in my little projects :)  
See you in the New Year!

Thursday, 22 December 2011

Time for a sit down...

...with a big mug of hot deliciousness and a mince pie!  It's been a busy old day, Christmas food shopping and making crumpets for Christmas Day breakfast (from scratch!)  Now it's time for a chill out, hope you are all relaxing too!

Hand drawn watercolour and fine liner.

Wednesday, 21 December 2011

Secret Santa

I do like Secret Snta really, but I make it difficult for myself every year by hand making the present.  We are giving them out tonight so here is a quick snap of the wrapped present.  Hopefully it will go down well!

I didn't want anyone else to miss out either so I've put together little baked treats too!  Enjoy!

Tuesday, 20 December 2011

Christmas flowers

I've had a lovely day baking festive treats with my Mum, mince pies, gingerbread biscuits and mince pie muffins. Deffinitely looking forward to sweet treat feast! 

My advent post today is of a beautiful Christmas bloom that was supposed to flower on Christmas Day but lucky for me it has flowered early!  They're a lovely crisp white, like first fallen snow. Enjoy advent 20!

Monday, 19 December 2011

Mr Robin...

... likes to visit our garden every now and again.  I saw him today for a fleeting moment before he got chased off by a sparrow.  Here he is captured on top of an evergreen tree with sparkly snow fall for my Nanna's Christmas card.  I love his fat little body hehe!  Advent treat 19!

Hand drawn watercolour and fine liner.

Sunday, 18 December 2011

Gingerbread Twins!

They're finally finished!  They're so cute, I think I'll have to keep one for our tree!  I'm sure the other one will find a good home too :)

Saturday, 17 December 2011

I've been so busy!

I've not had time to finish my Christmassy makes let alone post about it! So this is just to say I haven't forgotten and here is an update of what I've been up to.

I am hoping to finish these little guys off tomorrow, I think you can guess what they'll be!  I would've liked to have made a Gingerbread House but I'd be here till next Christmas if my progress of the Gingerbread Men are anything to go by!

Friday, 16 December 2011

First flurries of snow!

And it has got very cold indeed! I have a hot water bottle under my feet as I type :) Thought I'd share with you the view from my window as the misty snow fog descends over the hills.  Firstly this is how the view is on a sunny Summer's day...

 And this is how it looked this morning...

Wrap up warm!

Wednesday, 14 December 2011

Christmas Card Commission

Back in November I undertook a commission for 45 bespoke Christmas cards, and as one of them has made a return journey 'back home' I think it's safe to share with you some photographs of my design.  It was a different way of working than usual but I enjoyed it all the same, up until the use of the sewing machine (which I'm not always friends with!), but it was the prettiest method of attaching the verse sheet to the card.  I do quite like doing large commissions, it pushes you to try different methods and techniques to meet the clients brief.  Happy 14th Advent Day!

Tuesday, 13 December 2011

And finally, meet Reind-Owl...

...the cutest member of the Christmas Owl team! He pulls Sant-Owl's sleigh as they fly all over delivering presents to all the good little Owlets.  Happy Advent treat!

Hand drawn watercolour and fine liner.

Monday, 12 December 2011

The days are flying by...

...And quick as a flash it will be Christmas Day!  To keep up with my advent treats, today's post is my hand knitted mini santa hats which look lovely as tree decorations.  They went down a storm last year but this time round I never got round to knitting more than two!  Still, atleast on here I can share them with all of you without using up any more wool!

Sunday, 11 December 2011

Christmas Tree Time!

We put our tree up today and it's fair to say I am feeling very very Christmassy indeed!  I love our tree because all the different and eclectic baubles have been collected over a number of years.  It's like a mini version of Christmas day unwrapping the baubles and remembering what we've got.  I thought I'd share with you a couple of photos of our tree, but I will apologise for the photo quality, my camera was playing up today!  Enjoy treat number 11!

Two posts today!

Because I was so super busy yesterday I didn't get time to post my advent treat!  So you'll have two to view today, an advent rollover of sorts. 

This first post is one of the reasons I was so busy,  I was in the kitchen baking 'Christmas Muffins', a muffin version of a mince pie and they are rather delicious! I adapted the recipe slightly from 'Muffins Galore' by Catherine Atkinson.

'Christmas Muffins'
Makes 12
300g self-raising flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon ground mixed spice
100g soft brown sugar
175g mincemeat (the mince pie kind that is!)
1 egg, lightly beaten
100g butter, melted
175ml buttermilk
1 tablespoon milk

1.  Preheat the oven to 200C/400F/gas mark 6.  Line a muffin tin with paper cases.

2.  Mix the flour, baking powder, mixed spice and brown sugar in a large bowl.  In a seperate bowl or jug mix together the mincemeat, egg, melted butter, buttermilk and milk.  Add the wet ingredients to the dry and mix briefly until just combined.

3.  Spoon the batter into the paper cases dividing evenly (I use a tablespoon measuring spoon and do one of each into each cup until it is even measured).  Bake in the oven for 18-20 minutes or until risen and golden and when a skewer is poked in the widdle comes out clean.  Cool in the tin for 5 minutes then transfer to a wire rack.

For the Brandy Icing

Icing sugar
Red glittery sprinkles (for decoration)

Mix icing sugar and a little brandy until you have a thick but still runny-ish consistency and enough to cover the tops of all the muffins.  Then sprinkle on the glittery sugar for a sparkly magical Christmassy finish!


Friday, 9 December 2011

2 weeks to go!

Are you nearly sorted with your Christmas bits and bobs?  If you've been busy Christmas shopping or have a weekend of it ahead, here is Advent treat number 9 to cheer you up!  Everybody loves Penguins, especially those with Santa hats on!

Hand drawn watercolour and fine liner.

Thursday, 8 December 2011

This little guy is Owl-f...

... and he's a pretty important member of the Christmas Owl team.  He helps SantOwl get all the presents ready for the big day but he's taken time out to be treat number 8 of Advent!

Hand drawn watercolour and fine liner.

Wednesday, 7 December 2011

It's only Day 7...

...of December, so there's still time to get original and individual Christmas cards for your loved ones.  Visit my Etsy shop here or my Folksy shop here if you'd like to buy online.  Or visit my stockists Fibre in Manchester, No 12 in Marple, The Pavilion Gardens in Buxton and New Mills Original Gallery in New Mills.  Or, failing that send me a little email if you've got something specific in mind! 

Tuesday, 6 December 2011

Let me introduce you to Sant-Owl...

December is a very busy time for him but SantOwl has popped by especially as treat number 6 of my Blog Advent!  Look out for more members of his Festive team coming soon!

Hand drawn watercolour and fine liner.

Monday, 5 December 2011


It has definitely settled in with all the hail showers today.  I've been toasty and warm stamping a card order for Buxton Pavilion Gardens which has made a nice change from Christmas Cards!

For 'window' number 5 of my blog Advent calendar, he may not be particulary Christmassy but he is Wintery and magnificent none the less!  Watercolour sketch.

Sunday, 4 December 2011

The first Sprinklings of Snow...

... have started today.  I think it is most definitely Winter!  I'm starting to feel rather...

Saturday, 3 December 2011

Day 3 brings...

... Christmas love hearts!  Pass the festive feeling along!

Friday, 2 December 2011

December Day 2

The weather is certainly getting colder as December kicks in.  So, sit yourself with a nice cup of tea and have a browse on Etsy for lots of handmade crafty delights and greetings cards.  Check my shop out here for new listings!  And to keep up with my advent pledge, I've another festive treat for you! Hessian tree with beady baubles and a watercolour star.

Thursday, 1 December 2011

Happy 1st December!

To celebrate the start of Advent and the countdown to Christmas I will post a festive picture up every day until the end of the year!  So to kick things off here's a dapper looking watercolour Snowman. Happy Advent!

Tuesday, 29 November 2011

It's nearly December...

... which means Christmas is creeping up fast! So, if you know a special someone who deserves a unique hand crafted original Christmas card, head over to my Etsy shop!  There are new listings for individual Christmas cards and also packs of Christmas cards too!  Check them out here!

Monday, 21 November 2011

Quiet on the Blog front...

I've been super busy getting everything prepared for my first craft fair this Sunday, which I am very excited for!  If you are local to the area please come and visit for individual and original handmade gifts and greetings cards.  Santa will be making an appearance too!  The Christmas Handmade Market, Stockport Indoor Market Hall  From 10am - 4pm!

Sunday, 13 November 2011

Stockport Handmade Market

On Sunday 27th November I will be taking part in a very Christmassy Stockport Handmade Market.  It'll be my first ever Craft Fair and I've been busying away making lots of stock for it, including cards and tree decorations.  I'm very much looking forward to it, especially as Santa will be visiting!  If you can pop along it is open from 10am - 4pm in Stockport's covered Market Hall (perfect if the weather isn't great!)

This is a link to the Handmade Market website and Facebook page is here too for more info.

Tuesday, 8 November 2011

O' Christmas Tree

I found some gorgeous Christmas tape in Fred Aldous on my shopping trip today and couldn't wait to put it to use!  I decided to use it in the same way as my hand stamped messages only the tape has more of a colour impact.  I have added a tiny hand painted watercolour Christmas Tree embellished with tiny diamante baubles. Cute!


Wednesday, 2 November 2011

Christmas has arrived in my Etsy shop!

Now it's November I've allowed myself to list my Christmas card designs in my ETSY shop.  The festive season is drawing closer so, get yourself organised and check out my shop for a special one-off original card for your favourite person!

Click here to visit HelensCardHouse on Etsy!

Thursday, 20 October 2011

Thrifty Christmassy

I don't like to waste fabric, especially not my gorgeous printed Christmas fabrics.  So with all the bits left over from the Christmas Tree design I came up with this idea.

I like the curviness to the shapes and everyone loves a bauble or two!  I still wanted to keep the design contemporary looking and I think these make a nice contrast to the sharper lines of the tree.

Sunday, 16 October 2011

Cherry Blossom

I have finally finished a new larger stitched piece of a cherry blossom tree, developed from this watercolour.

It's in the process of being proffessionally photographed and then will be framed, hopefully in time for the next rehang at New Mills Original at the end of October.  I decided to make a new piece in response to the popularity of the first blossom tree I made, which sold at the start of the month (yay!).  Fingers crossed my new piece, Cherry Blossom, will be just as popular!

Wednesday, 12 October 2011

Feeling Festive!

I thought this year I'd be more organised and make a start on Christmas cards.  I've completed a few orders for Pavilion Gardens in Buxton and No.12 in Marple already and I am continuing to stock them up for New Mills Original, Fibre in Manchester and for the Stockport Handmade Market I am taking part in on the 27th November (more about this soon!)

So, to get you all in the Festive mood I'm posting up some images of the Christmas cards I've made already.  Happy (almost) Holidays!