Tag Archives: Christmas

Our Crafty Christmas (and the year my husband and I morphed into one)

Screen Shot 2014-12-23 at 10.58.38Happy New Year to you! I’m not really one for resolutions, and I won’t be living off a diet of kale washed down with juices peppered with baobab powder for the entire month of Jan-but one thing I shall try and stick to is a blogpost once a week. Ok, well maybe once a month-that would still be a vast improvement on last year. 2014 was a big year, our 1st year in business and a massive learning curve with many ups and downs. We had a cracking December packed with Christmas markets and pop-up events, so we would like to say a massive Thank-You to all who have supported, listened, advised and generally buoyed us along in the minefield that is the 1st year of starting your own business!

Like the majority of people, I’m slightly lamenting the end of the festive hols and am mostly living off a host of stale & slightly past their best christmas delights, in a bid to eek out that tingly feeling a bit longer. I also wanted so share a few of the amazing crafty gifts given and received over my yuletide; one of my favourite parts of being involved in the craft market scene is all the other wonderful designer/maker treats out there, and what excellent original gifts they make. I was also slightly concerned that myself and my husband seem to have completely morphed into the same person, and had doubled up on his/her gifts on several occasions-worryingly tragic, or sweetly in sync-draw your own conclusions!

bird prints

Assorted animal prints by Charlotte Farmer

First up was our choice of anti-festive Christmas card-we’d both gone for Charlotte Farmers’ tropical fluoro bird prints having been fans after spying them in The Turpentine, we snapped these up (separately) at Renegade and Crafty Fox Christmas Markets, and now have a lovely quartet to put up!

ombre

 Indigo ombrè candles; Designers Guild

Next up there was a distinct ombrè theme going on as we selected matching gift-bags (Ikea…I know!) and stocking filler pillar candles-pink for the husband naturally. Something tells me ombrè is going to be making a CL.AM appearance in 2015!

soaps

Marbled soap and handmade Christmas card

Finally there was the twin exchange of soap bars for each other-something we usually never buy or use but obviously felt needed this year.

I also had to insert here my gorgeous knitted Christmas tree card, from my very talented younger sister-who completely put me to shame by creating a stunning handmade range for the family (well I was doing markets, that’s my excuse!)

face pots

Handmade face pots by Emma Carlisle

I was delighted to receive these supercute little pots curated by illustrator Emma Carlisle on Etsy, and first spotted at Renegade Winter Craft Fair at the Truman Theory. Perfect for tea-lights or mini cacti to add to my ceramic display hoard.

woven paper

Handwoven Christmas Gift-wrap

Another place I was surpassed in the effort stakes was gift wrapping (nothing new there). My husband Chris comes up with a different theme every year, this time he created handwoven patchwork genius wrapping paper, which I must admit I slightly overlooked in the frenzy of Christmas day unwrapping and turkey checking. Luckily he pre-empted this and took a pic himself in the making process(!) makes my mind boggle just looking at it, and certainly explains the hours locked away being ‘unhelpful’! Another new idea for the range perhaps…

watermelon homage tableI think you’ll agree, it was a thoroughly crafty Christmas all round. Finally I have paid homage to the wonder that is the watermelon-it was one fruity filled christmas at CL.AM HQ I can tell you! I think I have a watermelon themed version of anything you could want or need in life, but the search for new additions will never stop!

Shop our LA SANDIA range if you’re a megafan yourself, and if you have loads of Thank-you’s to send to we’ve got it covered!

We are currently working on expanding our Wedding range ahead of some exciting Wedding Fairs, dates to be announced next week. Remember Correspondence is Cool x

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MERRY CHRISTMAS ONE AND ALL!

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Stained-glass presents wrapped, Vaticano gift-tags written, and Natale cards pimped up with lashings of glitter; CL.AM is all set for The Grand Christmas Tour! Wishing you a fantastic Christmastime with your nearest and dearest, looking forward to introducing new exciting things to our range at: http://www.cl-am.com in 2014. Merry Christmas!

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LA SANDIA RANGE AND INSPIRATION

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Personally I have always been a little bit obsessed with fruit and vegetables, and find them endlessly inspiring and joyful when it comes to eating, wearing or drawing them! Nothing conjures up the feeling of a glorious hot summer holiday more for me, than the smell and sight of a watermelon. This was cemented on our honeymoon in Mexico where vast stalls of enormous ‘La Sandia’ were being sold in markets, and smocks, dresses and textiles were beautifully embroidered with miniature bananas, citrus fruits and of course watermelon.

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I was also rather delighted to discover this amazing velvet luxury watermelon decoration in the Christmas department of Fortnum and Mason’s this year! Fruit is a recurring Spring/Summer theme on the Catwalk as well, and this scarf by Anna Coroneo does not disappoint (http://www.net-a-porter.com/intl/product/414518). I defy anyone not to be delighted when receiving La Sandia through the post, and am planning to do a whole food and drink stationery range next. Watch this space!

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Shop the La Sandia range at: http://www.cl-am.com

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ENVELOPE CONSTRUCTION PROCESS @ CL.AM HQ

Thought you might like to see a ‘photo-story’ of the construction process behind our luxury envelope sets, all the flat printing is done on high quality Italian papers in the UK, and sent to us. We then construct, hand-emboss and gum the envelopes and notelets ourselves. It is quite a lengthy process, but for that hand-finished quality I think you’ll agree its worth it, and quite fun when you get into the production zone!

 

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The ‘Natale’ envelopes are all ready for the Christmas post…Merry Christmas!

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FESTIVE EGGNOG FLAVOURED ENVELOPE GUMMING TUTORIAL!

Due to high printing costs for the small runs we are currently doing, we decided we would need to start off doing as much of the process ourselves as possible. This meant cutting and making up the notelets and envelopes ourselves, and also of course tackling the gumming of the envelopes. After searching online, we found several recipes to test out at home before settling on the one below. Chris also came up with the ingenious idea of creating our own Festive flavoured gumming for our Natale range, using Eggnog flavouring!Image 

Heres how we did it……

To make the glue, you will need these basic ingredients:
3 TBSP white vinegar
1 sheet unflavoured gelatin
1 TSP eggnog flavouring (you can find this online easily enough)
1 TSP vanilla extract
2 TSP white sugar

To start, heat the vinegar -as I don’t have a microwave I heated it in a small pan on the stove. You only need to do this for about a minute maximum, so it is hot enough to dissolve the gelatine. Now you add your sheet of gelatine and stir until it dissolves completely into the vinegar.

sugar

Now you add your sugar to the mixture….

extract

Then finally your eggnog flavouring and vanilla extract, and you’ve got a delicious festive flavoured and scented envelope glue!
I think this has potential to work with a variety of different flavours, and is definitely something I plan to experiment with for our other ranges. Now you are ready to gum your envelopes, you will need to do this while the glue is still warm and runny with a small flat paintbrush-I transferred mine into a small tupperware to make it easier to apply and store. The glue should store for up to a month in an airtight container in the fridge, you will need to reheat it each time you want to use it.
Happy gumming!

envo1

paint on

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Our Christmas range 2013

Our Christmas range 2013

Our Christmas range 2013:
Natale card packs, Natale envelope and notelet sets and Vaticano hand-stamped gift tags

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