Tuesday, 8 December 2009

Life's Big Canvas 2010 calendar from Zazzle.com

Life's Big Canvas 2010 calendar from Zazzle.com

Card Parties in Yorkshire area

I am now booking card parties for 2010.

Usual times are

Monday evenings
Tuesday mornings
Thursday evenings
Friday afternoons

I will come to your playgroup, church group as well as to your own home. Anyone who hosts a party gets a free bottle of wine as a thank you, as well as some free cards.

No minimum amount of guests required, and no hard sell! I don't give a big speech or anything, just bring my cards to you, and allow you to choose at your own leisure.

My handmade cards are unique, whimsical, and one of a kind, and priced from only 50p.

I can also bring supplies and do demonstrations on card making. I particularly enjoy working with children, and will happily come to children's parties and events.

Simply call 07843 735306 or email chloemcgenn@gmail.com

NB I have a current CRB check from 2 volunteering positions, both with Leeds City Council.

Sunday, 22 November 2009

Another new book

October 2008 - Nove...
By Chloe McGenn

This one is not for the faint hearted. It's collected memoirs from the last year.

use code HOLIDAY2 to get 20% off, and free shipping.

Zazzle - new products!

I joined Zazzle purely so I could design my own shoes. Yes, I'm that shallow. I made 4 pairs yesterday, using cupcakes and chillis I've painted. Please have a look below!

Saturday, 7 November 2009

New recipe book published today!

Easy family favouri...
By Chloe McGenn

This is the Christmas gift I've been working on this year - it's taken 18 months of cooking, photographing and publishing, but it'll be in our friends' stockings this December. If you're looking for a present for someone for Christmas, then feel free to look at the book preview. It's 78 pages of recipes, tried and tested and bettered by myself, with some extra stories and stuff added in.

Friday, 6 November 2009

Me with The Glitter Girls

Originally uploaded by peskychloe

Not my absolute favourite crafters, but this is the only photo we took, and I like the fact she's captured my full 'nose-screwing' laugh.

Wednesday, 28 October 2009

Looking for Twitter followers?

If you are, you could do a lot worse than joining Fast Followers. You earn credits by following others, and pay others with those credits to follow you. I'm selling advertising space on my Lifes Big Canvas twitter feed to help fund myself through art college (1 tweet in 10 will be an advert and some of the money goes to an art fund and to a cancer charity as well, so I'm hoping this doesn't annoy people!) Having more followers would definitely be of benefit, I'm sure.

Click here to see what it's all about

Monday, 31 August 2009

A4 Christmas card

Big cards are going to be in this Christmas... Apparently. Cards are
going to be either massive or tiny. My Christmas cards so far have all
been A6 so I'm trying A4 as well as some A7. I'm well aware it's august.


Yeah it's huge!! That's it next to a DVD

Mofette in progress

Monday, 24 August 2009

Craft clearout, as well as some good value canvases!


I've been busy clearing out my craft stock, and have been listing it all with free postage! I've also added some canvases if you want to take a look and grab a bargain piece of art.

This is all because Tiddles needs all her teeth out :( It's been a month full of expense, as we had a wasp nest, punctured tyre and I'm registering for my college course on Friday! Some months just go like that don't they?

Tuesday, 18 August 2009

Pesky Party!

It's the first Pesky Party tonight. I have a second one booked already for next Wednesday too! Ian said 'What if you sell them all tonight? You won't have time to make more before Wednesday?' - I said if I sold them all I'd be delighted as I have approximately £400 worth of cards :)

I'll let you know how it goes. Everyone who hears about it thinks it's a good idea, although I have more good ideas coming. I met the knitted food lady (Liz) at Crown Point, and she told me something a lady she knows does at christmas, so I think I may steal her idea.

Monday, 17 August 2009

and also...

New kokeshi canvases. I love making these

Kokeshi with butterfly

Kokeshi with flower

Been away for a couple of days...

it's the first Pesky Party tomorrow, so I've been busy making cards. Here are my favourites.

sizzix 013

This is a Jolly Nation 3d decoupage cat, with a matching gift tag. I love the little bowl

sizzix 009

This is a pocket card - I've popped a tag in it, but you can take the tag out, and use it for money or a gift token or something flat-ish - it sticks out from the card by a few mm, so it could even be jewellery

sizzix 005

and my absolute favourite. This one has brass brads on the front with a gold tie to keep it closed. Then when opened, the x-men 3d picture pops out on paper I've folded into springs!!

sizzix 006

Friday, 7 August 2009

Kokeshi Canvas

Kokeshi Canvas
Originally uploaded by peskychloe
Thank you Bel for the huge goodie parcel! It inspired me to get on and
finish this as the little pearl buttons you sent were perfect for her
top. Will be in the mail on Monday!


(copied from personal blog)

Sunday, 2 August 2009

Competition winner!!

Is Zoe A! aka Lobster, Claws, whatever you know her as

She wins whichever painting she likes, or a commission for postage only.

Let me know what you'd like :)

(Winner was picked by Ian, sorry I don't have video proof, but you can trust me)

Monday, 27 July 2009

Big PIF sale on Etsy

Lovely Bel (indirectly) reminded me about PIFs on Etsy (ie 'Pay It Forwards') where you sell your stuff at 20p only, with cheap or free postage. I have inactive listings, so I made them all into greeting card PIFS!

A random card picked for 20p, and postage is the same no matter how many you buy.

Fill your boots!

Sunday, 26 July 2009

Card makers?

Do any of you do card parties at friend's houses? I'm thinking of doing this, but just wondered if anyone else does it, and if so, how you go about it? Eg tax, national insurance etc.

So far I've made posters and invites to send to friends to give out to their guests. And that's as far as I've got. I'm not business minded at all...

Doohlong the Weinerarmer

I'm not sure either of those are spelt right, but I finally sold my lovely painting on Etsy - it's going to be a birthday present too, so I'm going to wrap it and stick in a gift card.

Goodbye old friend!

Wednesday, 22 July 2009

In progress - mum

First painting in oils since I gave up on them at A level. Infuriating!!

Thursday, 16 July 2009

Strange Things Afoot at the Circle P

I had my hair cut last night, and the usual thing happened - Vic was after some cards, so I part-paid for my haircut in cards.

My friends are more business minded about my work than I am, and we discussed how I probably wasn't going to do Partylite as I don't feel I can be a good seller of something I haven't made. Katie mentioned Phoenix Cards, which is a similar party night thing, andVic suggested I did card parties with my own cards instead, and it was like another lightbulb moment. Why haven't I done card parties yet??

So both Katie and Vic have booked a card party in the next couple of months. I'm going to give them a free gift as a thank you, and offer another party nearer Christmas. Whenever people see my cards they seem to buy 10, so if I see a couple of their friends I can hopefully clear a bit of stock.

Kaie also said that she'll show people the personalised paintings I did for her children, and I might be able to get commissions on one of those - if I do, I'll give Katie a percentage.

So if these two parties go well, it could be a possible outlet for my cards - going to people's houses, showing them the cards, selling them for a tiny profit, and perhaps getting some sort of business going. I'll need to see a small business advisor, but I'll wait and see how at least one goes.

Monday, 13 July 2009

Remember the cupcake cookies and chocolate turtles?

Karma is alive and well in Leeds - writing about how wonderful sweeties are and then wondering if they would make it through the post might sound like begging, but I really didn't expect to get two lovely parcels of treats.

I feel I'm doing the chocolate turtle lady a disservice as I didn't get any photos - this is because I ate them all before I even thought about it. They were too delicious. Luckily I remembered this, and took photos of the cupcake cookies before I ate more than one.

Adorable Cupcake Cookies by TabbyCat13

food 072

food 075

They're just as beautiful in real life (even if I'm not, sheesh look at my eye bags...) - soft and buttery shortbread, not too sweet icing, and they lasted all of, oh two minutes?

Chewy Vanilla Caramel Pretzel Twisted Turtles by BlissCandies

Not my photo of the turtles obviously, but they did stay intact through the post. American chocolate isn't quite as sweet as ours, so on its own I'm not a huge fan - but stick something salty in it and it's perfect. Why don't they make chocolate pretzels in England? The combination of the caramel and the pretzel with the chocolate is really like nothing else you can get in the UK, and has caused me to think about experimenting with my usual peanut butter recipe.

Thursday, 9 July 2009

Wednesday, 8 July 2009

Rise Above Bakery

I got a delivery from Emma of Rise Above Bakery the other day, from my friend Sam. Emma bakes delicious cupcakes, and they're vegan! Whilst I'm not vegan myself, our carer is, and I can never give him anything I've cooked - even when I made a thai vegetable curry and thought I could let him have some, I remembered I'd added fish sauce!

Anyway, these cupcakes are beautiful, not only to look at, but the sponge is so moist, and the creamy inside is addictive. The way they came wrapped in tinfoil, it felt a little bit exciting and naughty (like an illegal drug) and I'll definitely be getting more in the future.

cupcakes 004

cupcakes 016

Tuesday, 7 July 2009

Saturday, 4 July 2009

Smug Sprout

Has a new home! Darren from Big Paw Gifts sold him today at The Stalls craft fair at the town hall in Leeds. We went there on a whim (long story) and it was great seeing all the fantastic artists in Leeds. Darren even had an extra table with a lot of my paintings on it!

Friday, 3 July 2009


I wanted to apologise for the amount of advertising I've added to my site. Unfortunately earning 50p at a craft fair here and there, and selling a couple of cards every week to Claudia, doesn't really put food on the table.

I've only added things I believe are truly useful - for example, my brother is a regular subscriber to eMusic, and I used their free trial, and found it great for picking up obscure things.

I'll be monitoring what gets put on the site closely, and removing anything I consider to be out of order. Please let me know if you see anything which concerns you.

Win a Painting! 5 entries available!

Yes, it's another competition!! This time entry is completely free.

This time, all you have to do is become a fan on my Facebook page. The competition ends on July 31st.

Click here to join - http://www.facebook.com/pages/Lifes-Big-Canvas-Chloe-McGenn/54354552143

If you're already a fan, then firstly THANK YOU - secondly, you can still enter by the following means

1. write a blogpost about this competition and leave a message for me linking me to the blog post - if I haven't already written about you, this also means I will probably do a blog post to help promote your blog or shop

2. recommend me to a friend, and leave me their name here

You can also get extra entries by the following

1. following me on twitter - I follow everyone back who adds me on my business account


2. making me a contact on flickr and/or making one of my photos a fave - this is another way that I may blog about you, as I often feature my favourite photos on flickr


So that's a possible 5 entries per person :)

Yes, it's shameless self-promotion, but I'll repay the favour, and you could win a painting out of it, so hopefully everyone's happy. Also, every entrant to the raffle received freebies in the post, so I might be able to do this again as well!

Terms -

The painting won is one already painted, or a mixed media canvas already made - postage is free. If you do not like any of the art already available, then I will paint/make an 8" square canvas for you, but you will have to pay postage.

Winner will be picked at random from all facebook fans not currently joined, with entries given to current fans who blog about Life's Big Canvas, or who recommend us to a friend (please leave a comment here with either a link to your blog post, or your friend's name)

Wednesday, 24 June 2009

New stuff for craft fair

Sold more paintings than expected so been busy over last couple of days!

Saturday, 20 June 2009

Featured seller

I just had to wax lyrical about servasgschaeft. I can't recall where exactly she popped up on my flickr from, but she's not only adorable, she makes the most AMAZING things. Here are my favourites from Flickr.

This awesome cake is a tiny brooch/necklace! It's available to buy on etsy. Look at the teeny tiny kiwi slices! I have no idea how you fimo modellers do this.

This is another little fimo cake, but look at the whipped cream! And the doll plate and fork. Oh and the banana!! I'm going to die from the adorable.

These are cupcakes. And they're vegan. I wish she lived in England!

Huge cakes made to look like lego. I am speechless.

This is her, wearing the nerd glasses she made from perler (assume it's like hama beads?) I am in love with her today. Seriously.

On her flickr photostream you can also find a pair of cupcakes which look like boobs, and a cupcake with a vagina piped on the top. Please please look through all her stuff.

Advertising Space available

I currently have 5 FREE advertising slots on my blog. If you're not already a member of Project Wonderful and you have a site like this, I'd highly recommend it. There are lots of ways to show your ads for free on other sites, and you can offer free advertising spaces on your own site.

Thursday, 18 June 2009

My favourite 5 cards I've made


This is my favourite cat shape ever, and it works well in patterned paper too.


Stickers from Paperchase, and word stickers brought back from America by Claudia. Just seemed to work together.



Cupcakes were one of the first things I painted, and the first thing I made a paper collage out of too. You can't beat the simple shapes.


I bought these little coat hangers and thought they'd be perfect for card making. Cutting out tiny clothes is fiddly, so I haven't ended up making many of them!

Wednesday, 17 June 2009


Edibles on Etsy

I only realised today that Etsy has an edibles section! I've been picking through what's on offer, and here are my favourite edible items I've found so far. Feel free to recommend some more!

Featured seller - Chocolatecreators

Russian seller Chocolate Creators are fairly new to Etsy. I can't understand why they have only 1 sale, because their items are beautiful, original, and very reasonably priced.

Adorable Cupcake Cookies by TabbyCat13

Just as the name suggests, they are adorable, and you get a dozen for less than $2 each. I'm not sure they'd ship to the UK, but I had to feature them as they're so beautifully made.

Cupcakes in Jars by cupcakesinjars

Again, not sure about shipping to the UK, but what a fantastic idea! Surely they'd be easy to ship overseas? And just look at all the flavours, and the packaging!

Tootsie Roll wreath by auntiesideas

I keep meaning to make one of these, and fail miserably. They make many different flavoured candies into wreaths, but I like the colour scheme of this one, and the name of the sweets of course. We don't have them in the UK, so I'm imagining liquorice :)

Chewy Vanilla Caramel Pretzel Twisted Turtles by BlissCandies

I love chocolate coated pretzels, and they just don't sell them in the UK. I have to import them when my craving gets too much for me. These sound so delicious, I'm considering moving to the US, or failing that getting them shipped to a friend to pass on to me!

Chocolate and Gold Wire Necklace by wmahr

This necklace is REAL chocolate! It's expensive for one wear, but what a great attention seeking piece! They can use real beads for you if you like, but I thought this would be a great finale for this article.

If this has made you hungry, and you fancy something longer lasting, my 'coffee and bun' painting is available on Etsy or on eBay.

Coffee and a bun

Cupcakes in a Row

Cupcakes in a Row
Originally uploaded by peskychloe

I think I might have overdone the patterns on this. It's perhaps over the top. I had got two others cut out to do, but I don't want to waste the canvases if this is rubbish.

Monday, 15 June 2009

Friday, 12 June 2009

Etsy Yart Sale

I love this idea! Until June 14th on Etsy, if you search for 'yart' you get a whole host of special offers!


Every seller involved in the Yart Sale offers special offers like free shipping, freebies or buy one get one free etc - I've made a sale already, and my shop has had lots more views. Some people have got into the spirit of the Yart sale, while I feel some people are just using the tag/title to get more views, and offering little in value (usually by hiking up their shipping). I'll only be featuring those who are offering considerable savings on regular prices, or who offer free shipping on things which are expensive to post.

Click here to search on Etsy, with the results sorted from low price to high

I've been looking at what is on offer this morning, and here are my five favourite things, as well as one of mine.

Obviously first up is my vintage shoe - it's free shipping in the UK, and reduced shipping overseas. I painted this a while ago, and I really like it, I can't understand why it hasn't been snapped up yet!

Loving you by LUIZAVIZOLI

Ok, so this isn't cheap, but it's beautiful. I love the swirls in this lady's work, they look like buttons! I nearly didn't feature this, as she doesn't ship outside the US, but I couldn't resist the colours.

Handmade red plaid owl friend by JennyTheArtist

This little owl friend is 50% off, at a very reasonable $2, with decent priced shipping. He's really cute, so I hope he finds a new home.

Roll the Dice soap by sunbasilgarden

It's not often I get excited about handmade soap. I have tons of lush soap we haven't used, because I love liquid soap. However, these are amazing, so perfectly made, and they're vegan, AND they smell of liquorice. At a very reasonable $2 with international shipping, they get my vote.

Amigurumi Banana by davenevanxaviour

Ah,knitted food. The reason I found Etsy in the first place. Can't really say anything more, except they're adorable!

Upcycled Bottle Caps Candy Notebook by AprilAdriance

I'd never heard the term upcycling before Etsy, but I really love the idea of taking something which would otherwise be thrown away/recycled and using it for a new purpose. There are lots of upcycled journals on Etsy, but this is the cheapest in the Yart sale, so congrats!