Printable Christmas Cards

Meeting someone for Christmas and you’ve forgotten to get them a Christmas card?  If you’re in a last minute rush and can’t get to the shops, why not print one off?  If you have a colour printer and some card at home then this is probably the easiest way to get Christmas Cards instantly.  These Printable Christmas Cards are really cost effective too.  You can purchase your favourite designs and then print off as many as you want!  So you can continue to use it in future years too!

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Handmade cards featuring Manuscript

Yesterday I mentioned how I’ve been bitten by the calligraphy bug and pointed out a few of my favourite gifts for people.  If you didn’t read it, you can check it out here.  I didn’t mention one product, however, that I’ve really started to enjoy using and I wanted to talk a little about that today.  It’s the Manuscript Italic & Poster Set.  I challenged myself to try and make some handmade cards featuring Manuscript calligraphy products and this one jumped out at me.  It’s so perfect – and I’m really excited about today’s post.

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Handmade Holiday Cards featuring Hobbycraft

Last week, I made some simple Christmas cards using stamps from USA.  Since those stamps are currently out of stock, I wanted to show you how this technique can easily be replicated with any stamps!  Today, I’m using stamps from Hobbycraft.  Every year, Hobbycraft have a range of Christmas stamps.  They tend to start sales on their Christmas stock around this time so definitely worth having a look if you’re interested.  Like I said, these cards are really easy to replicate with whatever stamps you already own.  (Alternatively, you may be able to find free downloads online that you can print off and do something similar with!).

As it’s a simple technique, it’s easy to do quite a few cards in one go.  It does take a bit of time, however.  So I recommend doing it whilst watching TV.  It’s a great time to put on a Christmas film and get a bit crafty after all!  This is definitely one you could do at home with the kids too, if you’re a parent or need a babysitting task.

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My Christmas Planner

Earlier in Blogmas, I spoke about ways to get organised.  One idea was to make your own planner this Christmas, which is what I decided to do.  I added some pages to my planner, inspired from the Mrs Brimble’s Jingle and Mingle craft afternoon.  I thought I would share a few of those pages with you now, as I haven’t before!  It’s definitely still a work-in-progress.  There’s a few things I want to add, which I’ll add as I go along.  However, let’s show you what’s in there right now.  I haven’t included photos of every page, as I want to keep some things hidden (for example gift ideas!).  But it gives you the general gist of what it currently looks like!

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DIY Self-Care Tracker

The past few days have been hard for me.  I woke up yesterday with a reaction on my face.  It was painful and I had no idea how to fix it.  I spent most of the day applying a cold flannel to my face.  As a result, it calmed down a little.  Luckily I had today off work.  My plan was to blog all day.  Yet that obviously didn’t happen.  In fact, I spent most of the day in bed.  With Netflix on.  Being grumpy.  Not only is it causing me pain, it’s really affecting my mental health.  Self-esteem has never been my strong point.  Having burn marks certainly hasn’t helped.  While I could complain about it, this post isn’t about that.  Perhaps if I was a beauty blogger, I’d talk about it.  But I’m definitely not one.

And after spending all day in bed, I decided to get up and do something I could do.  I can’t magically remove burn marks.  They will take their time to heal.  I cannot rush that.  What I can do, however, is play with stationery and practice self-care.  Self-care comes in many forms.  I cannot tell you what it means to you – no one except yourself can.  There’s plenty of non-stationery related ideas, such as having a bath or going for a walk.  I’ve also listed some stationery related ideas in a previous post – my stationery self-care challenge.

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Handmade Holiday Cards featuring The Greeting Farm

Cardmaking is something I really enjoy but don’t always have time to do.  I’ve made it a point to try and actively make cards for Christmas every year.  Most times I manage to make a few but not enough.  This year, I’m making loads so I hopefully will have enough for everyone.  For example, just for today’s post, I’ve made 15-16 cards (though I’ve already posted a few of them to loved ones).  These cards are all very simple to do but a little time consuming.  It’s a great task to do whilst sitting in front of the TV.  Today’s cards are handmade holiday cards featuring The Greeting Farm stamps.  They are really simple and easy to recreate so definitely one that you could do with children too!

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A Year of Notes to Yourself

Today has been a very “mental health” day for me.  This essentially means that I actually took time to think or talk about mental health problems or wellbeing.  It means, I spent a lot of time focusing on my own mental health today.  “Mental Health” days are really important I think.  You don’t have to go out of your way to do something.  It’s more about pausing for a moment and reflecting.  How’s your mental health recently?  Have you been looking after it?  Is there anything you can do to improve it?  Sometimes I think we forget to do this.  Physical health is usually easier to recognise, simply because if you’re in pain then you’ll know.  Although, it’s a bit like checking for any lumps or bumps or going for regular check ups.  I think mental health is something that’s easily neglected.

So today, upon reflection, I’ve decided to try and write some little notes full of love to myself.  I’m hoping to spend the next year filling a jar with things that matter.  Then, at the end of next year, pull them out and read them.  Alternatively, if I go through a rough period or have a low day, grab a few to read.  It will be full of happy memories, good thoughts, gratitude and lots of love.

I really wanted to address this today because I think we often forget about ourselves in the holidays.  Sometimes we get so busy trying to please others, buying them the perfect gifts or worrying about money that we just forget to pause for a moment.  Christmas is one of my favourite holidays but it’s not always easy.  It comes with financial concerns, stress, a mad rush, pressure and sometimes also loneliness.  It’s definitely not easy – especially when everyone around you might seem like they are having a great time.  I don’t have much advice in how to make Christmas better if you experience any of those things.  However, one thing I can always promote is self-care.  This is one way of helping your future days be a bit happier, I think.

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Mrs Brimble’s Jingle and Mingle

I’ll be honest, my favourite kind of events to go to these days are – without a doubt – the stationery, planners and craft events.   They are amazing.  It’s a room (or several rooms) full of likeminded people who all just want to talk stationery or get crafty.  Everyone you meet is so generous and kind.  People swap their unused products with each other.  They share their washi or sticker collection.  I’ve met a lot of amazing people from these events.  The minute the event finishes, I already start looking forward to the next one.  Yesterday, I went to an event just like this – Jingle and Mingle.  It was a small casual style event, which makes it really relaxing and really good fun.

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World Calligraphy Day

World Calligraphy Day 2017
Calligraphy has definitely gained a lot more popularity in recent years – and it’s very much deserved. Scroll through social media, and you’ll find thousands of beautifully addressed letters, handmade cards or motivational quotes. Whether it’s simply to improve your day to day handwriting or to produce incredible typography, penmenship has become a trend that people strive to improve in. It’s growing in popularity daily. So, it’s great to hear that the very first World Calligraphy Day is being held today, on the 16th August 2017. This day has been founded by Manuscript Pen Company, who’ve been at the forefront of the pen manufacturing industry since 1856.

“We are thrilled to be making this announcement as the founders of this very special day. Calligraphy and hand lettering are at the heart of what we do here at Manuscript. In recent years, the art of beautiful writing has taken to new heights with the trends of Modern Calligraphy, Faux Calligraphy and Hand Lettering. These new trends have really taken off, encouraging everybody to try their hand at a whole variety of wonderful creative ventures.” Charles Stockbridge, Managing Director of Manuscript Pen Company Ltd.

Get involved

I’m a total beginner when it comes to calligraphy. I would love to be better at it.  However, a lack of practice thus far in life has prevented this from happening. My plan is to practice today so I can hopefully pick up a trick or two. There’s plenty of ways for you to get involved too and give it a go! Whether you’re a beginner or a world renowned calligrapher, there’s always a way to get involved.

If you’re based near Birmingham, there’s a fantastic event happening at the Pen Museum, hosted by Manuscript Pen Company who have brought together several amazing artists. It looks like it will be a great day full of free workshops.  So head on over – you could also get the kids involved too! Great activity for those on their school holidays.

Fear not if you can’t make it to Birmingham or find a local event. You can follow the hashtag #WorldCalligraphyDay and #ManuscriptWCD on social media to see what people get up to and share your own creations. I noticed a few sales this morning too, so be sure to check it out if you want to grab a bargain.

Do it at home!

I recently tried a few of the Manuscript products and found that they were quite easy to use for beginners. I’m not great at it yet but it’s definitely something I enjoyed creating. You can pick up the Beginners Calligraphy Set on their website today!  I used two of the nibs available in that kit in the photo below.

Manuscript Beginners Set
The Manuscript Pen Company have also kindly provided a practice template.  So you can print it off at home and still get involved. You can download this by clicking the image below.

Click to download WCD Template
Visit the Manuscript Pen Company to find out more. I’ll also be attending the event at the Pen Museum day so come say hi if you’re around! See you soon!

Valentine’s Day Stationery: Miscellaneous

Welcome to the third and final part of the Valentine’s Day Series.  If you haven’t found a present yet, well… time is definitely running out!  But don’t fear – for Reema is here!  Wow, that was pretty cheesy, wasn’t it?  Moving swiftly on, there’s only a few days till Valentine’s so this last post will contain a whole bunch of ideas that I’ve titled as “miscellaneous” stationery as they don’t quite fall under any one category.  There’s still plenty of time to do these ideas because even if you do a “simple” version of them, they could still be really thoughtful and sweet.  So without further ado, let’s jump right into the first one.

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