Failed crafts

December 20th 2009

Despite being seen as a generally ‘crafty person’, there are two things I can’t do well at all: bake, and wrap presents.

Baking, I suspect is because it’s a very precise practice more akin to science than art, and I tend to be a little slapdash in everything I do which doesn’t fare well with baking. I’ll substitute baking powder with bicarb of soda, or leave it in the oven until I think it looks ready, or run out of flour and think ‘oh, 100g less will do, I’ll just put in a bit less of everything else too’… predictably, the results are usually fairly disastrous. Viz my failed entry into the recent Poke studio bake-off:

Gingerbread fail
I had visions for a charming little gingerbread house decorated with iced gems and silver balls, but my dough was too crumbly to even stand up and no amount of squeezy icing or melted chocolate (and icing sugar to hide the damage) would convince it otherwise. In the end I got too angry to continue and forfeited the competition. You can see some of the more successful bake-off entries on my Flickr.

The other sticking point, wrapping presents – I think again because it requires the kind of precision and attention span I don’t possess. I can never get corners tidy, the tape curls up and sticks to itself, ribbons and bows are liberally applied to hide the damage.. the whole thing generally looks like I let the cat wrap it for me.

Handmade wrapping paper
So this year I went for a purposefully ‘rustic’ look with handmade wrapping paper and tags. Even the rubber stamps are handmade (at the Make Lounge class I did last month), and just stamped onto brown parcel paper and manila tags for a rather pleasing lo-fi look.

Handmade wrapping paper

Comments (6)

  • vickeh

    December 20th 2009 at 4:07 am

    your gift wrap looks lovely! I have some newsprint on the way to do some of my own too this year. I'm sure whoever receives yours will love it x

  • smurfpop

    December 20th 2009 at 12:33 pm

    I'm forever trying things out and when they go wrong I end up in a rage, casting it aside in disgust and then having a bit of a sulk -_- Your wrapping paper looks really lovely though – that present looks beautifully wrapped! x

  • Julia

    December 20th 2009 at 7:46 pm

    I'm so glad that I'm not alone in feeling like I'm horrible at wrapping gifts. Yours came out adorably, though! I really like that far more than any store-bought paper I've seen.

  • James

    December 21st 2009 at 12:08 am

    That gingerbread house may have been be too fragile to make it out of the kitchen to the competition, but it certainly looks yummy. If it tasted half as good as it looked, I'd call it a success. Food and cooking is about giving, rather than competitions anyway.

    Your wrapping paper looks very stylish. The only tip I can pass on is that to make neatly wrapped parcels, do not have too much wrapping paper. Trim it well.

  • sPoirot

    January 30th 2010 at 3:31 am

    Katie, What a delight to have stumbled onto your blog! I've been surfing through crafting sights and usually don't spend very much time at most of them but your totally intrigued me. How wonderful and refreshing it was to see that you posted a project in which you were disappointed. I was thinking, Wow, finally a real craftster with guts! Of course I had to spend more time on your page and throughly enjoyed it. Thanks for making me smile. You're a person that I'd like to meet. Let me know if you ever get to Texas ;-) Have a happy day!

  • sPoirot

    January 30th 2010 at 3:31 am

    Why can't I catch my misspellings before I hit the post button?!!!

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