I have a friend. Elias is his name and socialnesting.com is his game blog. Whenever we get together a mutual love/craft in happens and we coo over each others latest projects and ideas. He popped over at the weekend for lunch and a gossip (bringing a delicious plum and almond pudding – ignore his opinion of it on his blog post here as it was truely yummy).

Here is an excerpt from our chat …

CLheadon

With her fourth solo book (seventh when you add three collabs), a busy career as fashion-bible designer and a house in transition towards craft wonderland, Christine Leech takes time to talk to Social Nesting about getting fresh, her favourite kit and channeling Snow White, South-London style…

Hi Christine. How are you?
I’m well, thank you. I’m trying to impress you with the one and only posh salad I can make but failing miserably as I don’t know how to make this salad dressing.

Forget dressing. You are not allowed to be good at everything.
Now, did you ever dream that you would be the reason that people are getting busy with their hands? Not in a rude way, of course, but with glue and scissors and ink…
Not at all! It’s so lovely that I have been able to share my ideas with people. If I wasn’t writing my books I would be making all these things anyway. It just so nice that they are getting a wider audience and I have a greater reason for doing them.

Your latest book, Fresh Prints, is deceptively not about how Will Smith’s life got flipped (turned upside-down), but about tackling printing at home. Did you purposely set out to fool the public? (I am kidding, of course)
I think that is my most favourite title for a book yet. It makes me smile (and sing the Fresh Prince theme tune) everytime I see the cover.

You have done a great job of making contemporary crafting approachable. Who did that for you?
My original inspiration for the Simple Makes books were Japanese craft books and catalogues, especially by homeware/clothing/crafty brand Felissimo. I love their clean and crisp Scandi-Japanese aesthetic. I wanted to make home made things that didn’t look home made, just simple and stylish.


If you were stuck in a deserted car park in Norwich with only five things from your kit bag, what would they be?

– Bondaweb, for joining two pieces of fabric together;
– Scallop-edged scissors;
– Scapel/10a blades and metal ruler for no-nonsense cutting;
– Glue dots and sheets for no-mess gluing;
– My jar of  bits and bobs – a collection from my mum and my nan’s button boxes, plus sequins, beads, tiny bits of things that-will-come-in-useful-one-day-I’m-sure. (Keep telling yourself that.)(Christine has printed hares on her stairs – just imagine what she would do to a car park.)

What hasn’t been designed yet that would make your life easier?
Self-sweeping floors… There are always loose threads, fabric fluff and scattered sequins all over my floor. Maybe I could try and befriend the animals as Snow White does to help me clear up after projects, though living in South London, the wildlife would be a bit more like the ones in Enchanted.

taken from blogs.disney.com

taken from blogs.disney.com

Fresh Prints, published by Quadrille, is available to buy now on Amazon or at bookstores smart enough to have snapped it up.

We chatted about many more things, Icecream, Target superstores and my future plans. To read the full interview click here


To be in with a chance of WINNING A SIGNED COPY OF THE BOOK either visit and ‘like’ my facebook page here or if the facebook is not your thing simply answer this question in the comments below …“When crafting what’s your favourite snack?” (Mine’s a big jar of nuts and seeds, rainsing and chocolate covered cranberries… though I pick out all the cranberries first)

Three of my favourite Elias projects

(click on images for instructions)

PlateBowl-Final

plate and bowl planter

Cement-Jewels-Final

cement jewesl hangers

drawer-lamp-1

Library card drawer lamp

see I said he was good.

freshprintsbookv2

To celebrate the release of my new book Fresh Prints I am giving away a signed copy to one lucky recipient. To be in with a chance of winning simply visit my new facebook page by clicking here and clicking on ‘like’ within the page. (if you really do like please also share the page with your friends). I’ll be picking a winner next Thursday.
For more information on the book click here.

simple birds nest

This little nest was actually a happy accident I made when tidying up the mess created from a very satisfying job of fraying the edge of a hessian table runner. You could also use wool, string or twine. A rough string or twine such as  garden string works best as it holds together better.

MAKE AN EASTER NEST

click to enlarge and download

Happy Happy Easter, have a lovely long weekend, I’m reupholstering a sofa … but first I have to go to Ikea to get the fabric … can I face it?

Fresh Prints delivery

Today I got an exciting delivery in the post … A lovely box of hot off the press copies of my new book Fresh Prints. This is my fourth book for Quadrilles Simple Makes series (and maybe my fave, but then I say that about each one I do! Definitely my fave title. Thanks for the inspiration Will.)

Print was my favourite medium to work with when I was at college and the print room was my favourite place to be so I loved getting my hands dirty and smelling of printers ink once again to make the 20 + projects for the book.

I had lovely photographer Keiko Oikawa shooting the pictures and yet again she made all my projects look lovely, clean and fresh.

I think my favourite project was this one …

ALphabet cards

circus letter wooden postcard

or this one?

Botanical cards

botanical greetings card

or maybe this one ….

gift boxes

but then this one is really nice.

mushroom mayhem cushion

Mushroom cushion all photos copyright Keiko Oikawa

Here’s a little more information about the book and to ‘look inside’ visit amazon.co.uk (maybe you’d like to buy a copy too?)

FRESH PRINTS

click to enlarge