Make a Gift Day!

 

family bauble plate

Today is National Make a Gift Day and coincidentally it also happens to be one of our busiest days of the year!

We’ve had a very busy Christmas period as those of you who have been in over the last few months will know! Fingerprint Christmas Bauble

As usual, baubles have been our best sellers with hundreds of hand printed festive beauties having passed through our hard working kiln in the last four weeks alone.

2013-09-26 18.01.49.jpg

But we’ve also seen some other wonderful creations, including mince pie plates, Santa mugs and snow man tea pots. The loveliest thing for us is knowing that around 90% of the painted pottery leaving our studio is on its way to surprise a lucky recipient as a Christmas gift! There are many lucky mums and dads, grandparents, aunts, uncles and friends out there that are about to become owners of super cute baubles where tiny foot prints have been turned into reindeer or plates featuring a Christmas tree made from little hand prints. P1030713.JPG

If you’re stuck for something special for a loved one- then there’s still time to make something at Crafty Monkey and have it ready in time for Christmas day.

 

Booking is essential at this time of year, so don’t forget to call us on 01480219222 to reserve yourself a table.

Advertisements

Twit Twoo!

Owls for some reason always remind me of Autumn time, as well of course of being wise old things, so are relevant this time of year as new school years have just started and we are heading into Autumn.

At Crafty Monkey we have a large range of owl related pottery. There really are some lovely pieces in the way of ornaments, plant pot holders and cookie jars. If you haven’t seen them you’ll have to pop in as they are very popular and we know you will fall in love with them as much as we did.

Before and after our owl pottery has been painted and fired.

Thank Teacher with a Personalised End of Year Gift

P1040793.JPG

It may not feel like Summer is upon us with the current weather conditions, but I am sure many teachers and school children can feel the end of the school year fast approaching with both looking forward to a much needed break and all the fun that can come with the school Summer holidays.

For most primary school children the end of the school year can mean change and saying goodbye to special teachers or perhaps even saying goodbye to their school as they move to another school.

What seems to be a growing trend is for children to give their teacher a small gift at the end of term as a token of their appreciation for the last year. You can always tell when something is getting more popular with the emergence of more and more specialised gifts for this purpose being stocked in more and more shops.

If you are thinking of a gift for your child’s teacher then the only real way to ensure the gift your child gives is unique and thought out is for the child to make the gift themselves.  A handmade gift that is unique and personalised is likely to be valued by the teacher as the child has spent time creating it. There’s nothing quite like getting a gift that someone has put time and thought into. Of course, by giving something that is unique you know that Teacher will only receive the one rather than 30 from the entire class.

A piece of handpainted pottery makes a good solution and you are also killing several birds with one stone too as you are also treating your child to the Crafty Monkey experience while also keeping them entertained. We have already seen several children come in and paint a gift for their teacher or commissioned us to paint something personalised and we have many items to choose from, egg cups, coasters, bowls, mugs, plates, plant pots you name it, we pretty much have it.

P1040053.JPG

Decopatch is another craft activity we offer which would also be good for making a teachers gift. We have some lovely trinket boxes that look fab with our bright and funky decopatch paper on.

If you haven’t been in to see us, please do and take a look at our wide selection of pieces just waiting to be personalised. We can’t wait to see what your child will create and I am sure you can’t either!

Oh and don’t forget that from painting to glazing and firing the process takes approximately one week so please don’t leave it too late for painting your pottery (if you are running late though do get in touch as we do offer a speedy service for an extra fee).  If you are commissioning a piece we generally need as much notice as possible.  Decopatch however can be taken away the same day once it has dried.

We would love to hear what special gifts your child has given to their teachers so please feel free to share.

 

Anna Brim makes a Father’s Day mug at Crafty Monkey

Let me introduce Anna Brim who has written a guest blog below of her experience of painting a mug for Father’s Day at Crafty Monkey.  Anna is always looking of ways to live an Eco friendly life, you may want to read her ‘Our Eco Journey‘ Blog.

Image

I am very mindful at the moment of the importance of shopping locally, supporting independent traders, buying something unique, something that is not mass produced and that everyone has (this really hit home to me when I was shopping in Italy at a well known home furnishing store, that they had exactly the same products as back home in Blighty. Homes all over Europe could be furnished with exactly the same stuff, aghhhh!). It was with this in mind and with Father’s Day fast approaching that I started to rack the brain as to what to get for our Dad’s. Now the Mum’s are fairly easy to buy for but the Dad’s…not so much! In their 60s, not wanting just “stuff”, having most things they need and want it starts to rule out quite a lot of options.

OK so the list so far to cover for Father’s Day present:

  • Not mass produced
  • Handmade where possible
  • Unique
  • Locally sourced
  • Not just “stuff”
  • Something useful and not just clutter

What to get? Where to go?

Of course Crafty Monkey covers all of these points and what’s more, it is an activity for me to do so not only is it a present for Dad but also a lovely leisure activity for me to enjoy knowing that I have created something with love to pass on.

I decided to paint a mug. He loves tea and of course uses mugs. He loves his Morgan cars so I thought what a nice gift a personalised hand painted mug would be, with the all important Morgan logo design on the front and a bit of text so everyone else in the household knows whose cup this is so hands off!

So I started with my white mug. No scratch that, I in fact started by searching the internet for the Morgan logo, downloaded it and printed it out to the size that I wanted. I then took my mug, and laid carbon paper over the top and traced my design onto the mug. I’m sorry, I had to do this, there was no way that I could paint it free hand. It may be seen by some as cheating but not to me. I knew it would look better that way.

Once the design was on, I then began to paint. Blimey it was intricate. Of course you need three coats of the paint so it will be really bold and some where around coat two I wondered why on Earth I had chosen such an intricate design and I am sure I, at times, forgot where I was at! I painted the mug at the Thursday night adults session which was really nice and relaxing so intricacy and fine lines were not a problem.

After I painted the design, I used the end of a rounded brush, dipped in paint to create nice dots all over the mug. I just thought this finished it off a bit nicer than leaving it plain white. I also used the black writer pen to write “Dad’s Mug” on the side.

I can’t wait to see the glazed result.

I really enjoyed painting the mug and I know he will like it, not just for what it is but for the appreciation of the time and thoughtfulness that went into its creation. It is not just another mug bought from a supermarket and I am sure the tea will taste all the much nicer for it.

Anna Brim of Aloha Photography