Top 10 Stationery Essentials

If you’re reading this then it’s likely to assume you love stationery – and you may already be aware that this week it has been National Stationery Week. It really has. I ran out of stock of my handmade Coptic-bound sketch books on Notebook day, of all days!!

Depending on your needs, there are a massive range of stationery products on the market, but here I’ve outlined what I think are the essentials.

  •  Pen. A good pen, for writing or for drawing. I love a fountain pen for handwritten letters, biros for crosswords; but my favourite all-rounder has to be the Mitsubishi uni-ball eye. Smooth writing, waterproof, fade-proof, comes in various colours.



  • Pencil. A decent pencil is indispensable! And with it you need the following:
  • Eraser – often the one you get on top of the pencil is absolutely PANTS. So invest in something soft and non-smudgy, that doesn’t tear the paper!
  • Sharpener. To keep your pencil happy. I quite like this one: double hole, a home for the shavings and a lid so they don’t spill out.
  • Notebook. Sketch book/journal/jotter – whatever you call it, you need somewhere to write and draw your ideas, plans and thoughts. Handmade books are my specialty, so here are some examples of my work:

Mini coptic 1Grey mini booksMini map openKey hardback      A4 books      Notebook stack

  • Ruler – this needs to be sturdy and long lasting. Metal ones are great for craft work.
  • Paperclips. Handy for when you don’t want to staple things! The more fun shaped, the better. Paperchase and (perhaps surprisingly) Ikea do some great ones.

Ikea paper clips

  • Stapler. For when you want to permanently paper-clip something together.
  • Hole-punch. For those of us who like to print things and put them in files 🙂
  • Post-its. Other makes of sticky note labels are available! Sometimes you just need to stick a note on something. Perfect for reminders.
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National Stationery Week 2015

It’s back, baby! It’s back and it’s SOONER THAN I REALIZED.

NSW - GBW 2015 (sponsors horiz’)

NSW 2013 with date and website and partners (no website)

Also, part of the National Stationery Week deal this year is ‘7 Days Of Stationery’ – and guess what? Thursday is notebook day!! Woo!

7 Days of Stationery

That is just all kinds of awesome. And… freeze-frame jump for joy!

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Pom pom flower bouquet

Success! Using some pretty light coloured wool, my pom pom maker and some dried-out raspberry canes:

Pom pom flowers

That’s two of my Pinterest Picks that I’ve actually tried out so far. One to go!

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World Book Day 2015

World Book Day is nearly here! It’s happening next Thursday, March 5th. Get all the info and resources you need here.WBD2015_blue_leftup.

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Paper feathers


So far, so good; this is the first of my Pinterest Picks that I’ve actually attempted to make for once!
I’d seen a few tutorials for paper feathers, it looked pretty easy so I just got my stuff together and tried it out. Here we go!

Firstly, I cut some feather shapes – two for each feather – from some old sheet music:

Paper feathers 1

Next, I tightly rolled some paper, for the end of the feather:

Paper feathers 2

Then I made sets of the feather components. Paper shapes, a thin bit of wire to go up the middle (this really helps with shaping the feathers!) and a snip of the rolled paper:

Paper feathers 3

I covered the back of one of the feather shapes with glue, positioned the wire and end, then placed the second shape over the top:

Paper feathers 4

At this point I smoothed it as much as possible and left it all to dry. The last thing to do is snip along the edges to create the feather effect. I found the more of a downward angle I cut at, the better the effect; also, snip as close together as you can. These are my finished attempts:

Paper feathers 5


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Pinterest Picks

Everyone knows Pinterest is a great place to find craftspiration (sure, it’s a word… just go with it…) and I often find myself pinning project after tutorial after project on my craft board and not doing a single one. I’ve decided to try and narrow my picks down to a few a month, and take the time to actually try them out – and then post my findings! So, here are my first lot of Pinterest Picks:

  • Paper Feathers. They look so delicate and would make great displays or table decorations:

Paper feathers

  • Pom pom bouquet. I bought a pom pom maker just before Christmas and *might* have got a little carried away. Making these pom pom flowers will be a great way to make use of any extras I may have:

Pom pom bouquet

  • Nail varnish flowers. This looks like it would be so simple to do but I’m wondering if it will work that well in real life. We shall see!

Nail varnish flowers



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Signs you’re a stationery addict

As if I need a sign!

As if there are only 27!!

Etc. etc…

I think this may be my favourite:

Signs you're a stationery addict: No. 12

Signs you’re a stationery addict: No. 12



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Love Your Library! National Libraries Day – 7th February 2015

Your local library wants YOU to get involved this coming Saturday and join fellow book-lovers in loving your library.

February 7th is National Libraries Day and there’s loads of ways to get involved, so check out the link and see what’s going on in your area!

National Libraries Day 2015

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A belated Happy New Year, fellow crafters! I’ve had a slow start but am getting into the swing of things now. So far, I’ve completed one very cute knitted bunny, made from just one square of knitting:

Knitted bunny

I found the tutorial on Pinterest (naturally!). There are loads of good ones out there and it’s simple to do, so get Googling ‘knitted square bunny’ and have a go yourself.

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Handmade Christmas stock – mini book necklaces & gift tags

With just less than a month to go until Christmas, things are getting busy in The Craft Fantastic workshop! Ok, it’s just me in my living room. Still, I have been quite busy planning and making things for the festive season. Over in my Folksy shop you’ll find some lovely handmade gifts and original tags to help you wrap them. Check out these miniature notebook necklaces – the perfect stocking filler for book lovers:

Mini book necklaces


There’s also a few sets of my origami gift tags, all hand folded from lovely paper:

Candy cane origami tags

Origami tree gift tag

I’m also free to take commissions on any of my origami gift tag designs, past and present, including all these designs from last year:

Christmas origami tags

Plus the silver printed snowflake designs:

Snowflake print gift tags


They’re all 4 for £2 and you can mix and match as you’d like – postage will be £1 for one or two sets, £1.50 for anything more than that.

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