DIY Craft Kits

Want to try something new? In need of some craftsperation (craft+inspiration – terrible, I know)? Or looking for that perfect gift for the crafty person in your life?

Look no further! These DIY craft kits are exactly what you need!

Embroidery Kits by KirikiPress

These a-d-o-r-a-b-l-e animal doll embroidery kits can be found on etsy. I still can’t get over their cute little faces! My favourites have to be the hedgehog and the beaver. Just look at this face!


What a stylish dude! Super cute kits, well packaged and totally do-able, with all the instructions and materials you need included.


Coil Rope Bowl


Another etsy find here. These stylish rope bowls look effortlessly cool and if you follow the instructions in this kit learning how to make them will be (more or less) effortless too. With this kit you’ll receive:
10 yards of beautifully soft 8mm cotton and jute rope / or Bright nylon rope
10 yards of waxed cotton cord
Easy to understand instructions with photos
The right sized needle
*You provide the cup of tea and scissors and you’re set to go!
You will be able to make a bowl at least 18cm x 7cm high. Other colour combinations are available in the drop down menus and other colours and styles and loads of supplies can be found in the shop.


Leather School® Belt Kit


Next up we have a belt making kit from the Leather School®. This would make a fantastic gift – whether you want to give it to some crafty for them to make it or make it yourself and then give it, is up to you.


Get Crafty Chicken Doorstop Sewing Kit


Hobbycraft UK stocks a variety of craft kits many from Kirstie Allsopp or their own brand Get Crafty. I like this chicken doorstop sewing kit for its practicality as well as cute design.


Weaving Kit – Peaches & Cream Woven Wall Hanging


Back to etsy with this kit to make a woven wall hanging. This is bang on trend, easy to learn and you can make many more projects with the hand loom included in the kit. This could be a gift that keeps on giving. There are plenty of other weaving starter kits out there, but I love this peaches and cream colour combo!


DIY Flower Crown Kit

And finally…one for the young and young at heart. Flower crowns are fun and colourful and these kits add an extra slice of creativity to the mix. Make your own before heading out to a festival…or round the supermarket…your choice.




I hope you have enjoyed this quick round up of craft kits. I will continue to add more to the list as I discover new gems.







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Ohrid – Pearl of the Balkans

Perched on the edge of the lake that shares its name, the city of Ohrid is known as the pearl of the Balkans. The city and the lake are both protected by UNESCO as cultural and natural heritage respectively.

As well as being home to beautiful vernacular architecture, amazing natural diversity, stunning scenery and a fascinating history, Ohrid is also home to some wonderful craftsmen. Traditional crafts in this region include wood carving, silver filigree and handmade paper.

Sunrise view of the lake and the old city

At the handmade paper workshop on Car Samuil you can witness the process of paper-making that has been passed from generation to generation and find unique souvenirs like handmade cards and beautiful prints of scenes of the city or people in traditional dress.

Traditional methods of paper-making being demonstrated

Just along the street from the paper workshop is the Tron woodcarving gallery exhibiting the work of woodcarver Dragan Nelovski. This craftsman will show you his work and the process of creating it, explain the different types of wood he uses and share his passion for the craft with you.

Tucked away by the Church of Saint Sophia is one shop that is not to be missed. A deceptively small shop is an absolute treasure trove for traditional, handmade textiles. Outside you will see a selection of folk costumes, but inside is where the magic is. If you are looking for a handwoven kilim rug made here in Macedonia you will find no better place. Stored away in the back rooms are all conceivable sizes and colours so you are sure to find the perfect souvenir!

Folk costume on display outside shop
And inside hides a treasure trove of handmade textiles

My final words on Ohrid: inspirational, tranquil & authentic

Current project #1: Travel Set

For Christmas I received a sewing machine and I couldn’t wait to try it out! To be honest my machine sewing skills were a bit rustier than I expected. My first attempt to make something was a apron upcycled from an old dress. However I was far too excited about getting to use my lovely new sewing machine which resulted in a rather wonky, thrown together apron. Not a very auspicious beginning.


Then I spotted this printed fabric in my local fabric shop. The colour and pattern caught my eye and looking closer I saw that it was made of old post marks and stamps. I decided it would be perfect for making a kind of travel set to hold all my bits and bobs while I am travelling.


First I made a laptop case for my little HP notebook. Like with the apron, I was a bit too eager and made quite a few mistakes. But it functions pretty well as a padded case so I’m happy with it. I also made a pencil case and two drawstring bags to keep my chargers and cables in to save them getting tangled or lost. I am really pleased with the drawstring bags. The time I put into thinking through how to make them and measuring correctly really paid off and the red cord from Norwich market is a nice finishing touch.


I still have some of the fabric left over and I’m wondering what else to make. Any suggestions?

Eggs, Eggs, Eggs at Christmas in Salzburg

It might be May, but today felt like Christmas when I discovered this amazing shop n Salzburg. Christmas in Salzburg is stocked with a vast array of decorative eggs for Christmas, Easter, Halloween and year round decoration. Decorating eggs for Easter is a popular tradition in many parts of Europe. However, this shop extends this tradition and takes it to the extreme.


These colourful creations are all made from real eggs that have been hollowed and hand decorated. They use chicken, goose, duck and even ostrich eggs. You can even buy a plain egg shell to take home and try decorating yourself.


The decoration varies in style and price, with many extravagant, colourful designs. Aside from the hand painted eggs, you can also find a range of eggs decorated with cross stitch and lace.


An American tourist in the shop at the same time as me couldn’t quite believe that they were all made from real eggs and were so delicate and breakable. She decided against buying one as a souvenir because she wasn’t sure she could get it home in one piece. Although they are safely packed up in egg boxes.


I took the risk and bought an egg decorated in a style more typical of Slavic countries. These eggs are first dyed and then a pattern or image is drawn onto the surface with a needle. The shop assistant was keen to emphasise the time and care that goes into decorating an egg in this style.


Find Christmas in Salzburg at Judengasse 13, Salzburg and feast your eyes on these:


Gent, Belgium – Handmade Heaven

Gent, a lively city in Belgium, is home to many makers and walking around the city I discovered several shops selling quality handmade items. Here’s a round up of my favourites:

Woven Stories


A shop entirely dedicated to woven crafts, Woven Stories doesn’t just sell textiles – it sells stories. Bringing together woven textiles from all over the world (and some made right there in the shop), each also tells the story of its maker, the technique used or its inspiration. This shop contains not only a wealth of textiles but also a wealth of knowledge on all things woven.


Discover Woven Stories at Baudelostraat 11 or find out more at:


IMG_20160510_175855 is run by accessory designer Mayenne Nelen and features her own unique collection of leather goods (braces, handbags, wallets) and her selection of jewellery and objects by Belgian and Dutch design talent. I spotted this wonderful crockery set (above).

Discover at Sluizeken 28 ( Oudburg ) or find out more at:

Marlies Davans


Unfortunately Marlies Davans little atelier/shop was closed when I passed by but the window display alone caught my attention. Marlies creates wonderful leather goods including phone & ipad cases, wallets and coasters.

Discover Marlies Davans leather goods at Oudburg 53 or find out more at: