Friday, 12 December 2014

DIY Tutorial - Faux Cowhide Rug

diy tutorial cowhide rug
I created todays DIY to decorate my kitchen for an Apres Ski themed party! I wanted to get that 'winter cabin' look, but after doing some research I found that the faux cowhide rug I was after would cost me upwards of £70, so I set about making my own imitation! Here's how you can make your own...

You will need;
  • 2 metres of white/cream lining fabric (I bought mine from The Range and it cost me £9)
  • Scissors
  • Brown acrylic paint
  • Paintbrush
  • Bowl
First of all you need to cut your fabric into a realistic shape.  To to this I folded the fabric in half, then drew a rough outline onto the fabric using a picture of a real rug I had found online for reference. Then I cut through both layers of fabric at once ensuring both sides were roughly even. After this I ironed it to get out the creases and ironed in one crease down the middle.

The lining fabric is actually a good substitute for cowhide, although it is thinner, it does seem to have a leathery feel to it.
diy rug for après ski party
how to paint a diy cowhide rug
Next I mixed my brown paint with some water in a bowl.  The fabric is thick enough so that the paint doesn't really seep through (unless you make it very watery!) but to be safe I folded the fabric back on itself as a safety barrier to the floor!  Again I used my online picture to reference while I was painting. You may want to have a couple of sizes of paintbrush, one to do the details in the outline, and  a bigger one for filling in the gaps!
Depending on the thickness of your paint you may need to give it 2 or 3 layers. Then all you need to do is let it dry, after which it is ready to be placed either on the floor, as a wall hanging, or over the back of the sofa!
What do you think? Would it pass for the real thing? Perhaps not on close inspection, but it definitely added something to my cabin feel!

Laura xXx
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Thursday, 11 December 2014

Macmillan Wonderland 'Apres Ski' Party!

macmillan wonderland après ski party
This year I decided for my Birthday I was going to throw a party, and after I saw this advert, I knew exactly what the theme would be!...

I thought it would be fantastic to raise money whilst also having a jolly good time, and on sunday the day had finally arrived!
après ski themed party
I printed off lots of vintage skiing travel posters, as well as the bunting Macmillan had provided. I also created the 'Frosty Ski Slope' cocktail which was basically an amalgamation of what we had left in the cupboard ;) But actually tasted rather nice!
après ski cocktailgingerbread men christmas party
Of course we had to have some gingerbread men too! Which I let the guests decorate themselves.
macmillan raffle
To raise some extra cash I decided we should have a raffle and sell tickets to all of the guests.  As well as some of my friends and family making donations, I also had some amazing support from some wonderful makers and companies!
alpine raffle macmillan
We had some lovely Christmas cards donated by claireabellemakes, Jenny Jackson and OhhDeer who also donated 2 cute notebooks.
Claire makes these cute scrabble themed Christmas cards which you can buy in her etsy shop.
You can buy these cards from
These super sweet 'Pigs in blankets' cards can be bought here.

This awesome hat was donated by The Purly Queen. Isn't it wonderful? And perfect for the Apres Ski theme!  You should stop by Cheryl's etsy shop and check out her other lovely hand knitted products!
hand knitted hat
I decided to group the prizes to make as much money as possible on each ticket, so we had 3 winners and I let them pick a prize from every shelf, meaning that they won 5 prizes each! And here are our winners...
Macmillan also created a downloadable printout to guess how many marshmallows in the hot chocolate, but I changed it to 'snowballs in the jar'. Each person paid 2 pounds to take a guess.
As per usual with our parties, I had to customise the chalkboard in our hallway for the occasion!
ski lodge sign
We also had a nice backdrop for photos which my Aunt and Cousin originally painted for our wedding, but it came in very handy for this party too!
après ski party Photo Booth
ski themed Photo Booth
après ski costumes
après ski snow
I had also bought some fake snow. You just add water and it grows, its amazing! We decided to do some slow-mo films with the new iPhone 6 camera, which hopefully I'll put up on the blog at some point too.
We played 'the peg game' where we secretly attached 4 pegs to 4 peoples clothing, then announced that if you found a peg on yourself you had to peg it to someone else without them noticing.  The people with pegs on them at 10:30 had to drink a 'dirty drink'.  I had a brilliant idea to avoid loosing which was to lock myself in the toilet a few minutes before the end. It worked fantastically, except I had made a mistake earlier, which was to peg a 'non drinker'. I had said that anyone not drinking could nominate someone else, and of course I got nominated! Duh!  Anyway, here I am with my fellow peg-ees drinking a rather disgusting drink.
après ski decorations
In the end we raised a whopping £350.60! Which I was really pleased with, and I think everyone had a great time too, which was a bonus!

Have you done any fund raising this year? Would you hold an Apres Ski party for charity?

Laura xXx

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Monday, 8 December 2014

Wedding Photos - Alpaca's, Ice Cream and Dancing the Night Away!

wedding alpaca vw camper van
It's finally time for my last wedding photographs post! :(

This time we are leaving off from the meal and speeches, after which we took our portrait photos with the photographer.  We decided this would be a good time to do it because people wouldn't have to wait around for us and could continue the party!

As I may have mentioned earlier, the field our marquee was in was next to an Alpaca farm! My Mum had spoken to the owners and they kindly brought one of the Alpacas over to see us, which was rather a surprise for me! And the other guests who were mostly still in the marquee!
wedding portrait alpacawedding portrait in a field
portrait with alpacas
The Alpaca's were very interested in us when we approached their field, I think they were wondering what on earth was going on!
Just as we finished our photos,  'Fat Sam's' ice cream van arrived! And I managed to spill some on my dress, whoops!
We had decided in advance that we wanted to have an 'open mic' session before the band in the evening started playing.  We have so many talented friends and family, and it was amazing to watch them all perform!
Then it was time to cut the cake! I'd bought and made up the cake boxes, which were 'Mendl's' from the film 'The Grand Budapest Hotel'.
cutting the wedding cake
Next it was time for the first dance.  We had the boys play 'You Make My Dreams' by Hall and Oats. They played the first verse slowly and then sped it up so that everyone could join in! We didn't want to do a slow dance for a full 3 minutes! And it turned out to be a great choice.
wedding first dance
wedding first dance
Our wedding day was also my Mum and Dad's wedding anniversary! So I had asked the band to play 'their song' which is 'When Will I See You Again' by the Three Degrees. They did a fantastic job!
After that we pretty much just partied the night away!
Once most of the guests had left, those that were camping over the night had a bit of an acoustic sing along in one of the tea tents, sat on bales of hay.  By this point I had traded my wedding dress for a ski jacket (it was cold!), and this was actually one of my favourite parts of the night. All of us picking songs to play, and trying to drunkenly work out the words!

The next day the sun came out for us!  The boys played football, we ate food from the BBQ and had lots of tea and juice! This was another of my favourite parts, as we actually got to chat to everyone properly, and it was so relaxing compared to the day before, which was wonderful, but slightly hectic!

Now we are preparing for the next family wedding on the 27th of December, which is for Chris's sister. Not long to go now!

Laura xXx

All photos were taken by our wonderful photographers Peach and Jo Photography!

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