Thursday, 24 April 2014

I Make Fun Stuff: The Shop

This year is looking very exciting for I Make Fun Stuff because we were recently asked if we would open a pop up shop in our town, Ipswich. Of course we said, YES! 

Ipswich is currently part of an EU funded project called Recreate. It is also happening in other towns in the UK and Europe. In Ipswich, Recreate aims to improve the economic prosperity of our town by helping new creative businesses grow and make use of empty shop spaces. Their website at gives you stacks more information so go take a look at that. 

So we said yes to the shop knowing that we three would not be able to staff it as we all have full time jobs but by using volunteers and local arts organisations that would continue Recreate's work of supporting creative entrepreneurs. We will stock the shop with a selection of work by the fantastic people who take stalls at our regular markets and other small creative businesses from around the UK. 

We got the keys on Tuesday so we checked out the space and did some measuring and then on Thursday we drew on the window....

We also made a time lapse video of the little project. 

We plan to document the process of setting up the shop and when we change the window displays so subscribe to our channel to keep up to date with videos.

We are now busy sourcing vintage and retro furniture to use for display and contacting our sellers to send us products to stock the shop. This is probably the most exciting thing to happen to I Make Fun Stuff in our 5 years of existence!

New Product: Patterned Shapes Tote

I recently finished printing a design I'd started months ago. Do any of you start a project and then just leave it, unfinished because the momentum you had has gone? I do that too often than I should really. 

This design started off as just the three circle prints in yellow, green and turquoise. I planned to print lots of different coloured circles originally but then the other week I was inspired by some wrapping paper I bought that was lots of different shapes. So I decided to just go for it on top of the circles. 

I also was rather excited because I had a little fluorescent pigment I wanted to try so I cut these little confetti shapes and printed over the top. 

What I love most about screenprinting is the layers you can create from printing colours on top of each other. I predominantly use a print paste which has a transparent base giving you that layered depth of colour. However the fluorescent pigment works best in an opaque base and I think adds a great POP of strong bold colour to the design. 

You know it's good when you shout "OH MAN" when you lift up the screen! I printed the confetti on to 3 blank bags I had and will add to that design over the next few weeks. 

If you don't already follow me on Twitter and Instagram my handle is @jesskabroad I'm going to have some exciting news to announce tomorrow so follow if you're interested. 

Tuesday, 8 April 2014

Handmade & Timeless Market 6th April 2014

Today was the second I Make Fun Stuff market of the year in Ipswich Town Hall. We had 41 stalls offering beautiful handmade wares and the best vintage clothes and homeware you could imagine.

I didn't have time to take photos of every stall sadly but I did have time to part with some money and buy some fabulous things. So here are the awesome things we bought.....

"Wood" zine by Mister Millerchip. Inspired by a wall in Christchurch Park, Ipswich. 

"Anning" necklace by Eclectic Eccentricity. They have lots of beautiful necklaces at the moment featuring natural and tumbled gemstones. That's right up my street! (I used to want to be a geologist) Sorry to Alice for featuring the fabulous specimen card.

Front and back shots of an awesome A4 notebook I bought from Print to the People. I love these guys, so many beautiful screen printed goodies. And yes, that is a space shuttle that is also a wolf. How good is that!?!

"Make it Happen" wall plaque by Jubilique and Louise. These are new and so cute. There was also "Home Sweet Home" and "I Love You to the Moon and Back" as well as cute little triangle ones too. All very reasonably priced!

A beautifully neat handmade notebook by Shedquarters. These guys were new to the market and came all the way from Cambridge. They had beautiful notebooks, massive prints and printed bags. Go check out their Etsy shop. We hope they want to come back! 

I also bought something else for a good friend of mine, for her birthday so I can't show you that one. I'm sure I didn't buy enough though! So many other things I could have bought.

The next market is on Sunday 22nd June. I better start saving up!

Wednesday, 2 April 2014

A love affair...

...with a paper punch.

Yes friends I have finally lost my mind but I'm hoping you'll be able to see why. 

I design and print all the little backing cards that my brooches and earrings are pinned too and my business cards. I'll leave you to decide whether I do that well or badly because I am never happy with my branding. 

I use this awesome uncoated card from Eco-craft called Hairy Manilla (gotta LOVE that name!) It's the same as I use for printing my bicycle and cat cards onto. I slice them all up using a knife and cutting board, nothing very exciting there. 

Until!!! I was looking round my local The Range store and found this little chap...
It's a corner punch. What does it do? Well, it cuts the corners off your card. And look how good it makes them look... 
I mean, you can't tell me those cards don't look so much more fancy with rounded corners! 
It just adds a little sumthin' don't you think? So much cuter! 

And the best thing? The punch is like £5! I can't remember precisely how much but I'm telling you, it's worth it! Look at those lovely smooth corners.