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    Hello, hello

    Welcome to the February edition of The Designer Maker Diaries! It's been a busy month here at Claire Salisbury Studios & Creative Sparks Club HQ, learning new skills, getting new tech & eating cake.

    I realised that during 2020 I'd spent a lot of time getting distracted by shiny object syndrome, lots of shiny new ideas that have absolutely nothing to do with print & pattern design or creativity. So I decided to set myself a challenge that focused on being creative, I came up with the idea of Floral February where I would draw something floral every single day. It's been really fun & I now have a large collection of floral sketches to turn into prints & patterns. I've enjoyed doing this challenge so much & I want to make drawing & sketching part of my daily routine so I'm carrying on with a different theme in March, I may try & keep this going all year with a different theme each month.

    Here are a few of my February Florals




    It was also my birthday, which means CAKE! This monster creation took 2 days to bake & decorate (one day for baking & most of the next day mixing buttercream & arguing with fondant icing) It didn't quite turn out how I envisaged - fondant icing is my nemesis - but it still tasted good & that's all that matters 


    And of course it had to be a rainbow cake!


    I was spoiled by my family, my parents got me a big box of Lush, including my favourite perfume from there. Hubs & H bought me a gorgeous little pink Phantom from The York Ghost Merchants, I've called her Arabella & she's now sat next to Sebastian (the little blue ghost I got for Christmas) in the cubby holes above my desk


    They also treated me to this beauty!


    A sunflower yellow Cricut! I've set it up on H's old desk in the studio (she's far too cool to hang out with me these days) I've had a bit of play with it & have lots of Heat Transfer Vinyl on the way, can't wait until it arrives, I've got a week off to myself in March so guess what I'll be doing that week. I've attempted a cushion cover & a pencil case for my Cricut tools so far and I've got a few blank bags & cushion covers to experiment with.

    My cushion cover


    and the pencil case - I always call my tools/pens/pencils Magic Wands because they sound much cooler



    I've also been working behind the scenes getting ready to re-open my Etsy shop under the Claire Salisbury Studios brand (it was formerly Crafty Alchemy) There will be a mix of home accessories designed by me, printables & a whole assortment of creativity related products & kits. I'm hoping to reopen by the end of March - if everything goes to plan!

    And we finally have a light at the end of the tunnel, the government in the UK have announced that we should be fully out of lockdown by 21st June 2021! Woohoo! I'm so hoping the goes according to plan, I have a list of people I'm desperate to hug! 

    Take care & see you soon



    Hello & Happy New Year!

    Welcome to the first edition of The Designer/Maker Diaries - a monthly sneaky peek into the goings-on here at Claire Salisbury Studios & Creative Sparks Club HQ.

    2021 didn't really start out quite as we'd hoped, we're back in full lockdown here in the UK (Lockdown 3.0)  The schools are closed again too and it'll be early March at the earliest before they re-open. Huge shout of support to  all of the parents juggling home schooling, working and all the other stuff we still need to do too! Nothing strikes fear in my heart quite like my teenager asking for help with her maths - it's so complicated, I don't even understand the question!

    The live Vision Board Workshop was loads of fun and went really well, but the recording of the session corrupted right at the end so the replay of the live was lost - gutted! I re-recorded it and everything turned out absolutely fine, but I did have a 30 minute panic beofre I pulled myself together & sorted it out.

    2021 Vision Board

      I've been getting back into my creative groove after spending far too long out of it. I've chosen creativity as one of my Words of the Year because I realised just how much I missed making things. I've stuck the word creativity above my desk in the studio so I'm reminded to be creative all the time.


     I have to say it's working. One of the first things I put together was a birthday card for my Dad, cards were never my favourite to make (especially cards for blokes) but I really enjoyed making this one for him. I've also ordered some new photos & am looking forward to getting reaccquainted with  my scrapbooking supplies. 


    Getting back to my crafty self has made me realise that creativity - of any kind - is my thing. Because of this I've decided to re focus Creative Sparks Club solely on creativity, crafts & inspiration (it feels so good to say that!).

    I still really, really want to teach people how to make all kinds of things and this is going to enable me to do that. So many people tell me that they're not remotely creative, they wish they could make that or that they don't have a creative bone in their body but the reality is they just need someone to show them how to do the creative thing.

    I'm going to be archiving the existing Facebook group and setting a nice new one for us. It's going to take a couple of weeks to get a few things together then we'll be good to go.



     I'm also working on improving my handlettering skills, I've decided to practice on blank 4 x 6 inch postcards, the idea was to (& still is) to practice everyday, I'm not quite there yet but I'm getting there.

    I've kind of given up trying to get all my ducks in a row, my philosophy for 2021 is just to grab as many of the little fluffers as I can & make a break for it!

    Take care &  see you soon