How craft can help your mental health.

I admit it, I am a complete hobby addict. A creative anyway person, but always looking at new crafts, making new things, and making old things pretty. I could sit here and blame Pinterest, as this has become a real enabler for me. Finding so many things that inspire me just by scrolling for hours on that app. Seriously the time flies by and my brain is overwhelmed with ideas.
In the past few months, life has been more than a bit of a rollercoaster of emotions. During this time I have found myself escaping to my craft desk. I like to keep busy playing with my Cricut and spending time in my own world creating different things. I cannot think of anything else that is more therapeutic and fun. Looking back the past few months and looking at all the things I have created lately it hit me. I believe that crafting has a majorly positive impact on my mental health!
By having hobbies connecting to craft in my life, I have had a method of keeping myself winning.

craft
One of my many scrapbooking layouts

Something so simple…

It shouldn’t be a major shock. This is hardly a massive revolution I have had. However, it really has gotten me to think about myself, my health, and my mindstate. I thought I would share my thoughts on how craft can lead to positive mental attitude. So how can starting a craft hobby help your mental health?
Let’s start by remembering that a hobby that falls in any arts and crafts category could be absolutely anything. The possibilities are endless and most people are able to find something that is compatible for themselves. There are so many reasons that by starting a new hobby in the crafting world will have a positive impact on yourself and your mental health

Getting your creative juices flowing.

Just by starting a new creation or project, The creative juices in your brain are forced into action from the get-go. No matter what it is that you are busy with, your craft is the doorway to a million other doors.

Once you start something your mind becomes a mental mind-map of what else you can do. From seeing something in a shop you could use to create something amazing, to taking something old and making it even better than before. You are constantly find something new that you will want to get your hands on, or even find ways to make different ideas collaborate and expand. When you are creating something the world is your oyster. There is so much too do and so little time.

Even when you are out of ideas I suggest a quick trip to Pinterest and within minutes you can be inspired by something and thinking up your own unique way to create a similar project.

craft
So many craft tools, so little space?

Being able to unwind and relax with a craft.

There have been so many times that I have seen someone say ‘Do some colouring’, and say how colouring can be a good distraction from real life and easily therapeutic. It’s not so different from having a craft hobby. With colouring, you are making your choice to pencil, your choice of colour and your decorating something nice. Craft is the same except your probably grabbing the scissors, warming up the hot glue gun and sprinkling glitter and turning an idea into creations.

I have always felt that when I am able to get really engaged in a project it really can have such a positive effect on myself and my stress levels soon shrink.
If you read my previous post on why the Cricut is any crafters best friend, You May remember I mention my love for vinyl projects, like a lot. I have a passion for printing complex and fiddly designs and spend hours weeding the excess vinyl away. It does take time and patience but this can be so relaxing. what could be better than finding a new hobby that can be used as a distraction from reality? Leaving my problems and stress behind. I always call my desk my little craft bubble, because when I am there I am in my own happy place.

craft your expression…

I know that I’ve already mentioned being creative but for me, an expression is a whole different chapter in the book of creativity. Being able to express your feelings creatively is such a powerful and amazing device to consider. There are so many different options that can be inspired by what we are feeling. Pairings, art journals, scrapbooking, drawing and uplifting. just to name a few things that you can use your emotions to empower your creations. From using colours and pictures to reflect your mood, to using tools to manipulate objects and change them to your own envisions. You will be able to find so many new ways to express yourself and your feelings.

Positive reflection.

During the years my crafting experiences have had so many positive impacts on me. I try to think of most projects as a creative challenge. being able to throw yourself into something you can enjoy leads to positive energy. There is something so amazing about that feeling that you get when you are inspired by a new idea when you found a solution to a tricky crafting nightmare, the experiences of learning new things and different ways to do things, and that final moment, Meanwhile the hours that you have spent creating something is finally finished. That feeling of being proud of yourself, for what you have achieved.

craft
Vinyl decor mugs with the Cricut! Crafting bliss.

Craft an awesome finished project … eventually.

Don’t get me wrong, I have had so many of my fair share of unfinished projects and ongoing ones. Projects that have pained me to finish, maybe they took me absolute months to finish. It doesn’t really matter. You can use your mistakes to learn from just like in real life. That feeling you have when you’ve finally got there, I didn’t give up and completed them. That feeling I love, it is such a warm amazing feeling, embrace it. I absolutely feel empowered when I can say I did that. look at what I have done, I created something and that thing, it’s amazing and it’s all down to me. That feeling is pretty epic. It’s so positive.

Do not forget that even if a project that you have completed isn’t perfect. You still did it yourself. You have still created something pretty amazing. Find the positives in what you have achieved.

Have I missed anything out?

I mean crafting is one of my major hobbies and it really does have a special place in my heart and life. When I’m having a down day I can sometimes turn it all around by challenging myself into something new!

As always I would love to hear from you guys, with your opinions. Do you have an experience where you have found something in the craft world that keeps you positive? Do you feel that craft has a good reflection on your mental health? I want to hear! Let me know in the comments. I can’t wait to hear your thoughts.

You can support my crafting journey by following Crafty Hearts Corner on Instagram!

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Why I think The Cricut Explore Air 2 is any crafters best friend

A while back you may have read my post what’s on my desk? Where I spoke about the newest technology that I owned and how excited I was. Well, I thought now would be a great opportunity to finally write a post about this wonderful machine, the Cricut.

I know a few people that are also thinking about investing in the machine. I also have spoken to my friends so much about the Cricut, Weeding, Vinyl and other bits. They have no idea what I am going on about! so what better than to write my own review of owning this machine so far.

Cricut explore air 2
Introducing my Cricut Explore Air 2.

So what is Cricut?

The Cricut Explore Air and other versions such as the maker, is a die-cutting machine, in its simplest terms. Think of it as a printer, except a Printer with a blade, and Pen option. Giving you the ability to create a design on your computer and then send it to the machine to cut. The only difference to a printer is instead of using ink you are printing designs by cutting your chosen material.

My story of the Cricut so far…

After absolute years of longing for this machine, I have not yet been left disappointed. The Cricut Explore Air 2 has got me enthusiastic with many different craft ideas. Not to mention a massive new passion for vinyl. I have a beautiful turquoise colour machine, and there is a variety of other colours that you can choose from. Although the machine and everything you need can be a little pricey. It is a well worthwhile investment when you are in the craft world.
The opportunities that the Cricut system brings are endless. There is honestly so much that you are able to do with this beautiful machine. It doesn’t matter whether you are a papercraft enthuses, vinyl, or anything else. The Cricut can do so many things for any passionate crafter.

So it has been over 2 months since my Cricut Explore Air 2 had been purchased. Playing with vinyl has now become my favourite thing to do with the Cricut so far. I really do enjoy personalising so many items with names, and pictures, or a few words. I can print on to fabric, like T-shirts and canvas bags. Personalising any decor items, so far the options have been limitless.

Cricut tools
Out of all of the Cricut tools I own, these are my go too.

When my journey with the Cricut Explore first began I felt completely new to the Cricut world. Even though I had experience using one of the older versions of the machine. Although I would mainly use for scrapbooking projects and did not have as many functions. Actually, the original machine uses cartridges only which are pretty pricey and extremely limited.

Design Space is where it is at!

One of the best features of the Cricut explore and newer versions are the Cricut Design Space. This can be loaded on to any smartphone or tablet device, as well as the computer. The computer does give access to a few extra options. I haven’t had problems using the app on my iPhone or iPad. In fact, I completely love it. There is a lot of flexibility, by having a Cricut access subscription account. You can have 1000’s of images and projects at the tips of your fingers.
The Cricut library has so many free SVG files. There are also many websites that you can download and upload to the DS. These are usually to be created for your own personal gain. This could also be a business venture when buying commercial licences for the files.

A few examples…

I know that I have already mentioned my love for vinyl, but there are many different ways to use vinyl. As well as using vinyl for decor, there are so many options you can do. Using Vinyl for a template for instance. We now use vinyl as a template for Glass engraving. I have even painted some designs on to doormats and canvas.

Cricut cutting
Pretty paper ready to go!

But like I said vinyl is not the only material that the Cricut machine can cut. Card, paper, Fabric, Posterboard, and so much more. So depending on your hobby, owning the Cricut could really be a game-changer to every crafter. Scrapbooking, engraving, painting, honestly so much more that I probably don’t even know about yet. Believe me, though, I can not wait to play and find out. Also! Did you know that the Cricut explore range can hold a Pen! Yes, that’s right! it can draw & write, another amazing feature.

I literally have a list of project ideas that I want to do as long as my arm right now!

Above is a project that took me hours, but worth every minute. Pretty card stock, a hot glue gun and a load of patience I created a beautiful load or 3D flowers. I then used these inside a 3D box frame, which turned out lovely. This project took ages, and swearing loads because the hot glue gun was hot and I kept burning myself. The projects itself I am so happy with, and I do like a good fiddly project.

To anyone questioning buying a Cricut…

If anyone was to ask me, should I give in and buy a Cricut? I would probably do a really exciting squeal. Rambling about how much I love the Cricut. then overfeeding information about what the Cricut machine can do. Then I would ask them one simple questions…
Do you have a passion for crafting?
If the answer is yes. Do it! The Cricut community is amazing, and there is so much benefit from owning such an amazing machine. I would suggest doing some of your own research before you buy. You will need tools and materials alongside owning the machine. It is beneficial to be able to get the accessories alongside the machine. Believe me, there is so much to choose from. My next stop with be saving for and buying the Cricut east heat press.

So what do you think? Does the Cricut machine sound like a match for you?

I’d love to know your thoughts and opinions, as always leave me some love below.

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Desk goals? What’s on my desk!

The last few weeks I have been absolutely none stop with wedding things for our best friend who married her love this Saturday. It has been amazing! but I am finally back to normal (be it extremely exhausted, let alone still ill). If a desk and stationery are not your things, how about reading Why I blog? Instead, here.

let me let you into a little secret… I have always been super jealous of those people who post pictures of their desk set up, the place where they work, craft, blog etc! I pretty much have a dedicated Pinterest board of all the 1000’s of things that I want to do when we have our own house one day. SO… I am super excited about this post. why? Because I finally own my very own desk, which means I totally have my own personalised working space right now and I am completely loving it.

For the last couple of years, the bed has been my creative space which of course causes obstacles when it comes to things like crafting! So when my wonderful girlfriend spent some of her compensation money on me for a Cricut machine, a desk became a rather Nesacary piece of furniture to own and of course we got one each! YAY.

Desk

So what is actually on my desk?

Having a proper desk to sit up at is a complete game-changer for me! I love having space to be organised and properly creative. So here you go. What I keep on my desk …

Cricut Explore Air 2

There is so much I can say about the Cricut, But I will be posting a review soon on my thoughts so far! let’s just say for now! I LOVE IT.

Desk

My Laptop (MacBook Air)

I mainly work from my laptop whenever possible I am currently running a few projects from the comfort of my laptop right now!

Pen pot

Well Since I own a million pens! I needed an extra place to have some more.

Bendy light

My bendy light is a lifesaver for me when I’m crafting particularly, especially for fiddly things.

Photo frame

Every desk needs to be personalised with photos and things right?

Desk

I’m still personalising my space at the moment. So I would love to hear and see what your guy’s spaces look like! leave me a message below with what you think I should be adding!

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The craft Vine – June’s subscription box review

Both I and my partner have been signed up to The craft vine and have been receiving their subscription boxes for 3 months now and so far I have been very happy with everything that we have been receiving in our post box.

Please note: the following content is not an advertisement or a sponsored post. I have not been gifted or paid to promote this however I wanted to do a review on something I have been enjoying. You can check out the craft vine website here.

The craft vine

As someone who is utterly obsessed with stationery, I was really psyched when I stumbled upon Craft Vine through Facebook. I get excited when it comes to stationary regardless.
I used to be a bit wary of signing up to subscription deals but I’ve seriously caught the bug now. Receiving the box has been like Christmas coming every month!

So… this fabulous subscription box includes a variety of themed stationery. It’s so cute! I would highly recommend this subscription to any stationery addicts like me.

Inside The craft vine June box…

This months theme was Japanese and included lots of pink and florals. It’s safe to say I am very much in love with this box indeed.

The craft vine
I seriously love my box of goodies this month!

I’m so excited that this months box also included a Mildliner I’ve seen these all over the internet and have been wanting to get my hands on these for a while so now I’ve got one. I’m pretty certain I’m gonna be buying some more. They are fabulous.

The craft vine

I love the fact that every box seems to include a variety of washi tape and stickers. This months washi tape is certainly gonna be used up quickly. It’s so pretty.

Are there any subscription boxes that you have a love for? Maybe you are a subscriber to the craft vine as well? What do you love?

If you enjoyed this post, how about reading 35 things that make me happy, here.

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Christmas Food: Perfect Festive Gingerbread

So in yesterdays post ‘10 things I love about Christmas‘ I mentioned that one of my favourite Smells is Gingerbread at Christmas time, So it’s no surprise that my favourite recipe would be Gingerbread. 
So today I wanted to share my recipe for the perfect little Gingerbread Men. 

What you are going to need: 

  • 300 g plain flour 
  • 1 tsp bicarbonate of soda 
  • 2 tsp ground ginger 
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon 
  • 1 tsp teaspoon nutmeg 
  • 125 g unsalted butter 
  • 100 g soft light brown sugar 
  • 3 tablespoons golden syrup (optional)  – I’ve found that if you haven’t got any golden syrup then it hasn’t ruined the recipe! 
gingerbread
Need some Christmas activity ideas? check out my list, here.

What to do:

Step One

First things first, Don’t forget to turn that oven on and Preheat to 180, I’m terrible at forgetting to turn the oven on, make sure that the oven has plenty of time to warm up or your little ginger men will be too soft!  Once that’s has done,  line 2 baking sheets with baking paper.

Step Two

Now to get started with the ingredients, In a large bowl combine the flour, bicarbonate of soda and the spices. Mix those together, so they are evenly spread, but don’t worry too much because your be mixing these again shortly! 

Step Three

Melt the butter, sugar and golden syrup in a pan over low heat, make sure your continuously stirring and stir until the sugar dissolves, Once you’re sure you have a smooth looking mixture then add it to the dry ingredients you prepared earlier! Stir in until it forms a tough-looking dough. 

Step Four

Time for the fun bit, sprinkle some of your plain flour lightly on a clean kitchen surface and place your dough on top. Roll this out flat but with about a 5mm thickness for a nice Biscuit.  Cut out as many gingerbread characters as you like, I would say gingerbread men, but you could have gingerbread snowmen, Rudolph’s, stars, or anything!. Transfer these to the paper that led out on your baking tray. 

Step Five

Place these in your oven for about 12 minutes, or until lightly golden. Keep an eye, and don’t do my trick of forgetting there cooking till black. 

Step Six

Leave to cool on the sheet for a few minutes – if you want to hang them as decorations, now is the time to pierce a hole through the top of each with a skewer – then move to a wire rack.

Step Seven

Once completely cooled down, it is your choice, ice the gingerbread men and decorate with sprinkles, sweets and edible glitter or whatever you fancy.

These go nicely with a nice hot choc!

So If you’ve had a go I’d love to see pictures of your Gingerbread, so leave me a message through my Facebook page. 

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