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  1. Hello and sorry for the well overdue blog post -it's all a bit crazy here -but not complaining! I wanted to share with you the lovely day I had on Saturday! It's a long one so get a cup of tea and enjoy!

    I was very pleased to be asked to host a workshop for a hen do for lovely bride to be Heather.  Secretly and meticulously organised by her sister Liz over the last 11 months, after the family had seen me doing craft demonstrations at the Vintage Chic Wedding Fair in Birmingham last April, I think the last thing on their mind during the planning was that they would have to contend with snowy conditions in MARCH! After contacting Liz on Friday to gauge whether there were any changes of plans due to the weather we made executive decisions that the show must go on and we would be fine.  So I added wellies, a spade, a duvet and lots of extra clothing layers and coats to my list of things I needed to take and prayed that the sunshine would come out and melt it all away on Saturday!

    My prayers weren't answered and I woke up on Saturday to more fallen snow, no car (as my husband had got snowed in with it in Lancashire) but the most determined feeling that nothing was going to stop me!! I had forseen that my husband and car might not  return so luckily I had booked a hire car on Friday just in case which I picked up Saturday and only got stuck in snow once on the way back from the hire company!  With the car packed up I set off to Althorp in Northampton.  The motorways were clear so I felt completely at ease and had plenty of time to get to my destination.  With my usual sat nav being in the car up North I borrowed my step dads sat nav. About half an hour into my journey the sat nav decided it was bored of the motorway and asked me to leave, all my gut instincts were saying 'stay on the motorway, stay on the motorway' but of course I didn't! At first I was on A roads so they were fine but eventually I ended up on country lanes which of course weren't quite so clear.  At this point I pulled over to see what settings my sat nav were on-they had been set to 'most optimal mileage' or 'skin flint' settings as I like to call it and anyone who knows my step dad will laugh at this! So after a few swear words I set it to fastest route and continued on my way.  Of course by this point the fastest route was to still continue along country lanes so I just thought it best to just carry on! Eventually I saw signs for northampton and realised I was only a few miles away from my destination - I had always known that at some point I would need to be on country lanes as the venue was in a country village so I thought to myself everyone else who is coming to the hen party will have to drive along here so you can do it! Luckily the roads weren't as bad as I was expecting and I made it!!

    The journey was totally worth it.  'The Coaching Inn' at Althorp http://www.althorp-coaching-inn.co.uk/ is a lovely cosey 16th century pub/restaurant set in a picturesque village and had a very warm welcoming! I was shown to the barn at the back of the pub that had been hired for the hen do.  When I walked in I was beyond excited as it was exactly the type of venue that I would want to hold a craft workshop in and perfect for the 'bride to be' who loves vintage, it had original features, a piano in the corner, lovely flowers on the tables, horse sadles & bridles hanging on the walls and had been decorated with gorgeous doily bunting and streamers- perfect! I started to unpack all my craft paraphernalia and the vintage china teacups and cake stands and all fears of snow and driving disappeared and I was able to focus on the aim of the day!

    The hens all started to arrive about half an hour after and were starting the day as they meant to go on -with a large glass of wine! At 2.30pm the 'bride to be' arrived with her blind fold on with absolutely no idea where she was or what the plans were for the day! She looked so shocked when the blind fold was taken off! After a couple of minutes to let it sink in Liz started to dress her up in her (very tasteful and vintage looking) 'bride to be' sash and veil and explained to her what the plans were! I saw Heather give her sister a big hug and kiss with a huge smile on her face and I knew then that she was pleased and that Liz had chosen well-it's always a huge responsibility to organise a hen do so I'm sure Liz felt very relieved at this point!

    Once the hens had all had a chance to have a chat and say hello to Heather it was time to get down to business before too much wine was consumed!!

    As there were 23 hens altogether Liz had chosen our fabric and ribbon corsages workshop as this one doesn't need sewing machines it was ideal for such a large group. I showed the hens two techniques of how to make corsages and explained how they could be finished either with a brooch/hairclip back or attaching to head bands.  A few of the hens had little girls that they wanted to make the corsages for so the headbands were ideal for this.  One lady suggested that they could be attached to ribbons and tied around the wrist- this is the thing I love about doing the workshops when other people are inspired and give me ideas that I hadn't thought of! I could hear a few hens saying that they wouldn't be any good and that they couldn't even thread a needle-but every single one of them made at least one if not three or four by the end of the 3 hour workshop so it just goes to show that everyone can learn new skills!

    I got the chance to go around and chat to the hens as they were creating their corsages and helped anyone out that were struggling or suggested any extra details they could add. They were all coping brilliantly and it was so nice to see all the different corsages that we being made! I wish I had taken some close up pictures now of them all! I even had to perform an emergency operation on the 'bride to be' sash! One of the eyelets broke so I fixed it with the glue gun-which I feel is one of the most brilliant inventions ever!

    The 3 hours flew by so quickly, the atmosphere in the barn was great & really relaxed, fab music to craft & sing along to, lots of laughter, chat and most importantly-cake! Heather and Liz told me that they were really enjoying it and that it was perfect which made me feel very happy and proud that I had helped to make someones day so special.  The day went exactly how I wanted it to go and it was great to meet lovely new people!

    I did take some photos of the day which I've added in below-I hope you will agree that its a really special and unique way to celebrate a hen do or birthday party where all ages can be involved! Thankyou Heather and your hens for being such brilliant 'crafteas' and for such a fun and memorable day! x

    bride to be

    heather cave 10

    heather cave 2heather cave 3heather cave 4heather cave 5heather cave 6heather cave 7heather cave 8heather cave 9heather cave 12heather cave 14

    heather cave 16

    heather cave 18heather cave 19