GIVEAWAY WINNER and news with us…

It has been a ridiculously busy weekend in our tiny village.
Stafford Cottage (Our family run shop) had a fashion show on Friday.
We are glad to report that it was a huge success, and although we are exhausted….it was so worth it!

That said, we needed a little Made in Minch time, as we had missed our regular Friday Craft time….we made it up at the Birmingham Hobby Crafts and Sewing for Pleasure Exhibition on Sunday.
The selection of fabrics this time was incredible…we were happy bunnies and were eager to get home and start making. 

Which were your favourites?
(Shani loved the vintage toned florals and Jen loved the spots, the elephants and the cars….all of them infact!)

With one thing and another…this week ,again, might be a little sparse on the blog front, but rest assured that inspiration posts are being drafted out, sketchbooks are being filled and photos taken!
Hopefully next week (being half term) will lend itself nicely to our crafty endeavours!

GIVEAWAY winner is

….. FIONA!
Congratulations Fiona!
Your present will be winging it’s way to you shortly!
Thank you for your support
Have a Great week
Handmade Dreams are Made in Minch
S+J x


WEEKEND WISHES: The Cupcake Edition

Well hello there!
It has been rather damp here in our village today…the threatening clouds have hung around all day and have finally dumped the wet stuff well and truely on us!
We have had a wonderfully creative weekend, we have designed some new button jewellery.
 (These will be hopefully debuting at the Stafford Cottage Fashion Show next Friday- and then be available online afterwards

It has been a rather special few days for one half of our team.
It was Shani’s Birthday 🙂
(We need no excuse for creative sessions full of laughter, paint, buttons and cake….)
Shani is a super inspiring lady to be around.
She’s constantly full of ideas, practical advice and a warm smile or two.
I never see her more happy than when she is creating, teaching, and learning new things.
Shani is one special lady. A firm friend indeed, and there is no better way to celebrate than a birthday inspired inspiration post!

A definate must for every fashionista cupcake lover…the ultimate in edible and inspirational accessories!

Source: via Elyse on Pinterest

Cupcake in a teacup…is there a more heavenly combination?
No.We don’t think so either!

Two of Shani’s great loves….cooking and SHOES!

incredibly cute necklace

How amazing is this birthstone cupcake necklace?


These look like they could be fun to make….and more calorie friendly 🙂

Such a Shani colour combination!

Source: via Bre on Pinterest

We will leave you with this thought…

Do you have any cupcake recipes you’d like to share?
Have a great weekend
Handmade dreams are Made in Minch
love S+J


Greetings to you from our little part of the world
How is this week treating you?
We have had a rather lovely email from one of our very first Blog buddies. The lovely Ali over at Very Berry Handmade has kindly agreed to answer a few of our questions about her business, life and inspirations….
A really interesting read, we think!

Find out about the tutorial for this cute cupcake pincushion here

When did you set up Very Berry Handmade, and why?

After my children were born in 2003, I found the urge to start creating things for them, and then gradually got into sewing and crochet for their own sakes. I decided to start selling some of my things so that I could afford to by more materials, and gradually it has grown up into something I see as my part time job. I had been blogging and selling my handmade things under a rather dull name since around 2007. In 2010 I decided a rebranding was in order and so Very Berry Handmade was born. 

How did you get established?

It has been quite slow and I have had lots to learn. In the early days I had lots of support from friends who have bought my things, and then come back as repeat customers. I have worked very hard on the Very Berry blog and Facebook page to create an audience for my handmade products (although I also really enjoy blogging for it’s own sake, and for the friends I make through it!). 

Have you been featured anywhere?

Not as far as I know. My tutorials have been published on Totally Tutorials (, and my makes have been featured in Craftseller magazine and a cross stitch magazine in the USA. I have a tutorial in the next issue of Modern Quilting magazine. 

What is your favourite item in your shop ( Link please)

Oooh, tough question – they are all my babies!  But I do love this pincushion:
It’s been sitting there for a while now and I have no idea why no one has bought it, lol, I think it’s lovely.

Source: via Jennifer on Pinterest

Any up and coming Very Berry news you’d like to share?

I have lots of things in the pipeline – including a very exciting idea that I am developing with The Sewing Directory and Lily’s Quilts.  I also hope to do various techy things which will allow me to have blog sponsors by the spring.


Who are your daily reads and why?

Well I have to confess to not reading blogs every day because I worry that sometimes they undermine my confidence and cloud my creativity, but some of my favourites are: Annekata, Very Kerry Berry (no relation!), Monkey Do and Pink Penguin

 How do you get inspired?

 All sorts of things inspire me, but mostly it’s a desire to make something useful and fabulous to have around from beautiful materials. If I am really feeling a lack of creativity, I like to browse through my embarrassingly large collection of retro and vintage craft books and magazines.

What is your favourite crafting technique/material?

 Gosh, tough question! I love to crochet because it’s so relaxing and I don’t really have to think about it. But I think my absolute favourite thing is hand sewing – I love it. I like hand quilting a lot, but my favourite thing is just to do free stitching with lots of different threads and yarns.

Is there a new crafting technique that you’d like to try out?

It’s not new, but I would love to learn how to weave. I am not entirely sure I would have the patience for it, but the results are so marvellous, I would love to have a go. 

Do you have a fail safe item from your own wardrobe which is a fashion fix-all?

Not sure it’s fashionable, but my favourite item of clothing is a lovely dress from Gudrun Sjoden – it’s covered with flowers and birds and is very flattering and comfy to wear. I love it!  

Source: via Sue on Pinterest

What do you think are the trends to look out for this season?

Oh gosh, I have no idea – I just hope the enthusiasm for handmade, the unique and the lovingly-crafted continues!  

What is the plan for Very Berry Handmade’s future?

To keep my business slowly growing, to encourage creativity in others through my blog, to learn more and to enjoy experimenting without worrying when things don’t turn out quite as planned.
Thank you so much Ali, we have loved knowing a little bit more about you, hopefully our readers did too!
Find out about VeryberryHandmade at the following places

Handmade Dreams are Made in Minch
S+J xx

Dedicated to the ones we love :) – COMMISSION

It is only fitting to suggest Dedicated to the one I love by the Mamas and the Papas as a soundtrack to this post.
The reason behind this is because we had a rather special request for commisson for a dedication outfit.

We Adore the spots and checks, which combinations of fabric do you tend to gravitate towards?

Shani created the beautifully crafted dungarees, complete with poppers for easy changing, and Jen designed the free embroidered patch with personalised embellishment.

and just when it couldnt get any more cute,….. check out the booties 🙂
Fully reversable, and hopefully will be available on our etsy shop soon.We’ll keep you updated!

and here is the little man on his very special day

Here his is with his most amazingly co-ordinated family

Yes you are right to do a double take, Here is his Gorgeous big sister in one of our 4 in 1 dresses 🙂

On a rare Sunny March day in the UK, incase we don’t see a sunbeam again for a while…..This should cheer you up

A beautiful day for a Beautiful family
Thank you for letting us share your day
Handmade Dreams are Made in minch
SandJ xx

Weekend Wishes : Washi tape edition



Welcome to another wonderful weekend!
What a beautiful few days of gloriously unusual march sunshine…..
We’ve been busy, celebrating, family get togethers and creating too.
Here is our weekend mantra

Source: via Jennifer on Pinterest

We have been noticing the rapid rise of Washi tape over all of our little reads….

What is this Washi Tape, you may say….
Washi tape comes from Japan, it is a paper tape that comes in a huge array of patterns and colours. It is found in 1/4″ widths up to 2 1/2 inches.
It can be see through, and they are supplied on a roll, a little like normal masking tape.

Some great Projects on Pinterest
Just look at this iphone idea….. oh the possibilities 🙂

What about collecting some thrifted white house wares, decorated with washi bunting….

Source: via Jennifer on Pinterest

Our project using washi tape is here

Here is a gorgeous jam jar idea, how cute could you make your storage ideas with these?

Beautiful washi bunting flags, could be made for any excuse!

 There is a great tutorial as to how make your own here with MOLLIE MAKES

Handmade dreams are Made in Minch
Love S&J x

Our Giveaway is still open here – join in with the fun and you might just get yourself a cute present!

Window on our world : and a “Thank You” GIVEAWAY!

It’s a superbly Sunny Saturday here, in Minchinhampton.
We had a really productive day yesterday, and still had time for cuddles with baby!

Shani has been hard at work all week making the most beautiful white branches with fabric leaves and cherry blossoms.
We work at Stafford Cottage Shop in Minchinhampton. It is a Ladies clothing boutique with beautiful accessories…well worth a visit if you are ever in Minchinhampton.(along with a visit to THE KITCHEN – The cakes are the best.ever.created.)

We’d offered to do the windows for the Mothers Day run up, and we were a little obssessed with flowers and birds!

If you were in the village last night, you would have seen us, floodlit, battling with hanging these huge boughs in the gorgeous front windows of the shop. Hair tangles and giggles galore….it was a brilliant way to start the weekend!

Our little handmade birds are on a take over bid 🙂 They now have adorable little hanging bird houses (tutorial soon to follow) and these jolly little free standing fellows will soon be available in our etsy shop, but for now they are showcasing in the window on the High Street!

if you are a local blogger, come and see how many you can spot!


We are so pleased to be steadily gaining followers and fans, we’d like to run a giveaway!

In celebration of this we are opening a giveaway… if you’d like to be in with a chance of winning this handmade, one of a kind hair clip, leave a comment about your favourite photograph, item or feature on our blog, Good luck! We will draw a winner next Friday!
Handmade Dreams are Made in Minch

Love S+J

Look our for weekend wishes about washi tape, and also learn how to make a photo/memo holder from using a cotton reel here!

M-i-m Tutorial : Cotton reel memo/photo holder : WASHI TAPE

Hello Blog world 🙂
Welcome to our first Made in Minch tutorial- the perfect way to start your weekend!

We have been consistently asked about our little memo/photo holders whilst out on our stall.
They make lovely presents, surprises and name place holders for an afternoon tea party
(This is our favourite idea)
They are easy to make, and you don’t need very much!

* Wooden Cotton reels
* Washi Tape
* Round nosed Pliers
* Wire cutters
* Glue Gun
* Scissors
* Wire (Hard/Thicker if possible)

First of all choose the washi tapes with the best match for width of body of the cotton reel.

Carefully begin to stick the tape.
Try to make it as straight as you can, Don’t worry about resticking, Washi Tape peels and sticks back beautifully!
(Its why we *love* it!)
(You can always over lap the tapes  like we did – If you want to mix patterns)

Next, you need the wire.
With your roundnosed pliers twist the end to make a loop(s) (I made a double loop)
The loop needs to be small enough to fit in the hole of the cotton reel.
Then bend the wire just above the loop at a 90 degree angle so the loop forms a base.

Make sure the “base” fits into the cotton reel – We cant stress this point enough!

For the next step, decide how long you would like the memo holder to be and cut the wire.
Bend the top part of the wire with the round nosed pliers to make almost a paper clip shape.
Pop a little glue in the hole of the cotton reel.
Slide the “base” loop in to the reel hole and glue the top hole to secure.

Ta da! Slide a photo/memo into your clip and you are finished!

Now its a tough choice as to which tape to use!

Handmade Dreams are Made in Minch
S+J x