Tag Archives: Flowers

My Sunday Photo 24.7.16

I don’t know what this plant is. We rescued it from the disaster that was our garden when we moved into our house five years ago. I suspect it’s something like a hydrangea (answers on a postcard please). 

When we moved in the garden was a jungle of ivy. You literally had to hack your way through it to get anywhere. It was a “designer” garden which had been left to run wild. Occasionally I’d find an especially lovely plant drowning in the ivy. I’d carefully dig it up, plant it in a pot and put it to one side until the garden had been cleared and we could plant it up properly.

hydrangeaThis is by far my favourite find and I always look forward to it flowering. Even when the flowers fade we’re left with fragile looking papery flower heads. Yjeu mostly last through winter providing some interest until we cut them off in spring. 

I’m still struggling to get my head around everything that’s been going on for me at the moment. I’ve been making a point of going outside each day and looking at some of the nice things in the garden. A bit of fresh air and nature will always do me some good and I’m just trying to be kind to myself.

So what is it? Does anyone have a better idea than me? 

Win an Instant Flower Press from Interplay

Earlier this week I got my own Instant Flower Press from Interplay. The flower press is really easy to use and great for crafting whatever age you are (suitable for ages 8+). It takes less than a minute to press a flower using this kit and we had a lot of fun gathering the flowers, pressing them and then crafting with them.

Instant Flower Press from Interplay

You can read more of our thoughts about the Instant Flower Press from Interplay and get some ideas for easy dried flower crafts here.

The Instant Flower Press from Interplay costs £9.99 and is incredibly easy to set up and use, it comes with a detailed instruction booklet and everything you need to get flower pressing. It’s great for learning more about nature as well as being a pretty essential addition to my craft cupboard. 

For more information about the Instant Flower Press from Interplay, visit their website.

WIN an Instant Flower Press from Interplay

To be in with a chance to win an Instant Flower Press from Interplay worth £9.99, simply complete the Rafflecopter widget below. Good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Terms & Conditions:
1. The competition is open to residents of the UK only aged (18) and over.
2. The prize is non-transferable and no cash alternative is offered.
3. To enter, please use the Rafflecopter widget above, complete any mandatory entries and any optional entries you would like.
4. The winner will be chosen at random from all valid entries.
5.The winner will receive an Instant Flower Press from Interplay RR£9.99.
6. The closing date for entries is 11.59pm GMT on 19th June 2016.
7. The winner will be informed by email within 7 days of the closing date.
8. The winner will be asked to provide a full UK postal address with postcode for delivery purposes.
9. The winner’s name will be available on request
10. Address details will be passed onto an agency to post the prize out to the winners, and is therefore beyond my control. I cannot be held responsible for prizes being lost in the post although I will endeavour to liaise with the agency.
11. Your email address may be passed on to to the promoter for marketing purposes, you may unsubscribe at any time.
12. Entry to this giveaway confirms that participants have read, understood and agree to be bound by these Terms and Conditions.
13. HodgePodgeDays decision is final in all matters relating to this giveaway.

Crafts: Dried Flower Craft Ideas

This week I became the proud and excited owner of an Instant Flower Press from Interplay. Admittedly it’s designed for children, but both my son and I had great fun with it and we’ve created some pretty little dried flower craft items yesterday afternoon with some flowers we picked on the way home from school.

Dried Flower Craft Ideas

The Instant Flower Press is really simple to use and comes with an instruction booklet. You open up the press, put a layer of the felt pads and the pieces of cotton material in the plastic press, place your flowers inside. Put another layer of cotton and more felt pads (all supplied) and close the press. Pop it in the microwave for 20-30 seconds and you’ve got dried pressed flowers. Slightly more moist flowers may take a little longer in the microwave, but once you start pressing your flowers you’ll quickly be able to judge what will take an extra ten seconds and what will dry more quickly.

As a child my Grandma had a flower press and I loved using it with her, carefully picking pansies from her garden and pressing them between thick parchment and screwing the press shut, then leaving it for months before seeing the fruits of our labour.

Dried Flower Craft Ideas

With the microwave flower press the whole process is done and dusted in minutes and perfect if you need some pressed flowers for some quick dried flower craft.

Quick and easy Dried flower craft ideas

Pretty Jam Jar Candle Holders

You will need:
A clean jam jar
A selection of dried flowers and leaves
PVA glue
A paint brush

These are so simple. Take a clean jam jar and some PVA glue and a paint brush, brush the glue onto the jar where you want to stick your dried flowers. Carefully press the flower onto the glued area to stick it on, then gently cover the flower with PVA glue to seal it in place. Leave to dry.

You can be as creative as you want with this, I’ve left mine quite simple, but I love the delicate little blue flowers and the daisies. It took hardly any time at all to glue on, but maybe an hour to dry properly. They look so pretty and I can see me using this idea on so many things around the house.

Dried Flower Craft Ideas

Pebble Paperweight 

You will need:
A clean stone
A selection of dried flowers and leaves
PVA glue
A paint brush

Again, this is very simple. We have a pile of lovely smooth pebbles in the garden, so I picked one the right size and gave it a good scrub and left it to dry. Then I selected a suitable leaf which I’d dried in the flower press and brushed PVA glue onto the pebble and pressed the dry leaf into place. I left it for a few minutes to stick, then I painted PVA over the leaf to seal it in place and then I left it to dry properly for a few hours.

I’ve now got a lovely paperweight, or a pebble to stop my napkins flying off the table when we eat in the garden. 

Dried Flower Craft Ideas

Dried Flower Sun Catchers 

You will need:
A laminator and pouches or some sticky backed plastic
A selection of dried flowers and leaves

Borrowing a laminator I arranged some dried flowers in an artistic way in the laminator pouch, I then put it through the laminator a few times until I was happy. I then cut my A4 sheet down into a circle and using a clear sticky dot stuck it to the window.

It’s really quite pretty and I’ve got a nasty window in the downstairs loo which needs replacing, which I’m now going to cover in these lovely dried flowers to pretty the place up a bit!

Dried Flower Craft Ideas

These are just three very quick ideas I had for dried flower crafts that afternoon. I’ve got a few more ideas up my sleeve including some nice thank you cards and other papercrafts.

The Instant Flower Press from Interplay is a cracking piece of kit and if you enjoy crafting and have kids that enjoy crafting, then I can’t recommend it enough. The small boy went to school today with a bag full of dried flower pictures for show and tell and he’s loving showing off his dried flower craft to anyone who will listen. It’s nice to do something a bit different with him and importantly he’s really enjoyed it and got something out of it too!

Dried Flower Craft Ideas

The Instant Flower Press from Interplay costs £9.99, is suitable for ages 8+ (though my 5 year old used it happily with supervision) and is available from a wide range of retailers.

Note: We were sent the Instant Flower Press from Interplay for review purposes. All images an opinions are our own.

Serenata Flowers Review

This summer hasn’t been much to write home about. I think we’ve had a handful of nice sunny days and the rest in Manchester at least has been cloudy, windy drizzly. We all need a bit of summery sunshine in our lives, even if we have to magic that up ourselves. Today was one of those miserable, grey June days. I trudged home from work in the rain, opened the door and waiting for me was a huge box emblazoned with the words “Serenata Flowers“. I knew I’d had a little bit of summer sent to me.

Serenata Flowers

Opening up the box I was blown away by the flowers I’d been sent. The Deluxe Sunshine Splendour bouquet (current price £39.98) was a huge bouquet of 4 glorious sunflowers, with 6 delicate white roses, 5 lovely chrysanthemums and a mixture of white alstromeria and stunning blue limonium. This really was sunshine in a vase.

Serenata Flowers

The bouquet from Serenata Flowers arrived in tip top condition. It was well packaged and came with the stems in a little pot which kept them fresh and watered. My Sunshine Splendour bouquet came with a sachet of liquid plant food, it was prettily wrapped in cellophane and tissue paper, and came with a little gift card from the sender. It is something which would delight any lucky recipient.

Serenata Flowers offer free standard delivery and have a huge and seasonal range of bouquets and gifts such as balloons, cakes and chocolate. The bouquets start at just £19.99, with free standard delivery, which I think is really good value. The flowers I received were excellent quality, as fresh as a daisy and just stunning.

Serenata Flowers

Beautiful Festive Flowers from Floric

There’s only one thing I love more than buying fresh flowers for my home, that’s being sent fresh flowers as a nice surprise, just because someone wants to see the smile on my face when I receive them. Pre-child we always had a bouquet of lovely flowers on our mantelpiece, a little floral pick-me-up every time I walked past them. Sadly these days floral gifts seem to be reserved for special occasions, but I hope that this might change in the near future.

In December, before the decorations go up (absolutely no earlier than the 16th in our house), I do always get a lovely bouquet of festive flowers for the table, just to ease us in gently to the season. This year was no exception, on 5th December a beautiful bouquet of 24 beautiful red tulips from online florists Floric were delivered to my door.

floric

The flowers arrived carefully packaged and protected in a box. They were beautifully arranged with some matching red festive sizal wrap and came with two sachets of flower food and a gift card. The tulips weren’t open on arrival, but once in a vase and after 24 hours in my house they started to open up. In another day or so these tulips are going to be stunning.

floric

I think it’s always wonderful to receive flowers, but I think they’re especially nice to receive in the run up to Christmas. These Christmas tulips from Floric are just £24.99 and delivery is free. They also have other styles of bouquet in their Christmas range, so there’s something to suit all tastes and budgets.

With my vase of 24 beautiful red Christmas tulips adorning my table, I can’t help but start feeling a little bit more Christmassy each day. They’re a lovely, cheery thing to receive, either as a gift, or a token of appreciation to the Mum, Auntie, Sister or Grandma who helps make Christmas extra special each year.

Note: I was sent these beautiful flowers from Floric free of charge for review purposes. All images and opinions are my own.

Didsbury in Bloom 2014

Didsbury is a fine old part of the world. It’s often referred to in somewhat sneering tones as “leafy Didsbury” because, well, it’s a particularly leafy suburb of Manchester. Today the RHS Britain in Bloom judges came and inspected the little village where I’ve spent my entire life.

Last year the judges were very pleased with the efforts of our local team of dedicated green-fingered volunteers, so much so Didsbury won gold. As far as I’m aware the judges look around the village at the planters and displays, taking in the Jubilee Gardens on the corner near Cafe Nero and then make their way down the road where we live, because (and I say this without a hint of smugness, honest) it’s a very pretty road, it has a small green at the top, it overlooks fields and leads down to the river. It’s very nearly countryside, nearly.

Today the sun shone. The road had been swept. Plants watered and deadheaded, it looked beautiful, so out came my camera to capture the moment. So for your floral pleasure may I present Didsbury in Bloom 2014: Ford lane.

Didsbury in Bloom

This year celebrates 50 years of the RHS Britain in Bloom competition, hence the rather stunning display on the green.

Didsbury in Bloom

Didsbury in Bloom

Didsbury in Bloom

As a resident, I’d like to thank all the volunteers who work so hard to make Didsbury beautiful year round, but especially for occasions like this. Fingers crossed we do well again this year!