Wendy- Craft page Bag and bottles

Crafty Wendy

Create and Craft Ambassador, Rivertriber and ‘Crafty Beggar’ Wendy Turner Webster finds a good use for the ‘empties’

and gives a plain tote bag a right royal make over.

A good strong tote bag is a very useful thing… but why settle for just useful when a bit of bling can be added?! I had a hessian tote bag with a logo on (we’ve probably all got one somewhere!) – Just perfect for a bit of upcycling. This is also a great crafting idea for those amongst us who don’t sew as the whole design is put together with fabric glue (I used Funky Tonic Glue from Tonic Studios which seems to stick anything to anything!).

My FabScraps material is new but of course it doesn’t have to be… you can make use of an old shirt or indeed any other garment which is otherwise destined for the charity shop.

Simply cut out, and stick on! Ribbon or strips of gems make great borders for your design - I used strips of ‘Sparkle Ribbons’ from C&C, again all stuck into place with fabric glue. For the crown motif I left the precision cutting to my Brother Scan N Cut machine – an ingenious gadget which is preloaded with countless different shapes and images. Otherwise get surfing the web for free downloadable templates and invest in a sharp pair of scissors.

All finished? Time to take your tote bag shopping!

How many glass bottles do you dump in the recycling bin every week, when in fact they can be given a whole new lease of life long after the contents has been enjoyed?!

I found myself with several (!) empty bottles post the festive period – perfect bases as it turned out for my pack of Create and Craft Glitter Rub on Transfers. I had an idea the transfers would work well on glass but I hadn’t expected them to look quite so fab, almost like the designs have been etched into the glass itself. The transfers come on acetate sheets and adhere to the glass with ease… simply rub on with the lollipop stick provided. The icing on the cake for this project is the string of LED lights inside the bottle, giving your finished work of art a really magical sparkle. After the success of the first bottle I’ve made loads and given them away as presents – easy to make gifts with a real wow factor!

Create and Craft Ambassador, Rivertriber and ‘Crafty Beggar’ Wendy Turner Webster puts on her wellies and heads out to the Thames Estuary… all in the name of art!


Never has a journey from Twickenham to Tilbury been the cause of quite so much excitement. Check out a lady called Nicola White, a Mud-larker and Artist at www.TideLineArt.com. I discovered her work via Instagram (social media is good for some things!) and she very kindly offered to show me the place in the Thames Estuary where she discovers most of her ‘treasures’. I just adore fossil hunting and beachcombing. So I leapt at the chance to rummage around in the mud, unearthing pieces of the past from a long forgotten Victorian rubbish dump. My previous experience of ‘eyes down’ at the water’s edge, produced one of my favourite crafting projects – a seahorse I made from the bits of random sea glass, pottery and shells I found on the beach at Watergate Bay in Cornwall. It took me all week to find the materials needed, but out on the Thames Estuary Nicola lead the way as we literally crunched over the broken pieces of worn glass and smashed china.

‘One man’s rubbish is another man’s treasure’. And, in the context of mud-larking, never has a phrase been more true. Nicola came onto our TV show with examples of the fabulous artwork she makes from her beach finds. I added some decoration to my first treasures, glued them onto a board and framed them, and my collection of broken cup handles decorated a plain mirror. Inspired by my original sea horse design I have now collected enough broken pottery and glass from the banks of the Thames to make a similar work of art, but this time about four feet tall. In a few editions time I will be able to show you the finished piece!


©RiverTribe Magazine 2017