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New year things

This is going to be quite a year. A year of many lasts and also, many firsts. For one, I’ve got about seven more months of being a minor, and yes, I intend to make the most of my last few months of not being an adult. (It even feels weird to type that word). Also, it’s my last year of high school, which is, of course, bittersweet to say the least. I’m preparing myself for a pretty manic year, but also reminding myself that it’s about 10 months of hard work, and then nearly 3-4 months of rest time. There are lots of big decisions to make this year, but I’m learning to just take each day as it comes, because dwelling on things for too long will most likely just put me in a big panic, and that’s the last thing I need.

So, this year, I want to do lots of meditating, praying and journaling just to keep control over my thoughts and emotions, and I’ll be popping on here to write, because writing is what I love and its important to make time to do things you love, no matter how crazy things feel.

I’ve decided not to set too many crazy goals and resolutions because they often just turn into yet another avenue for me to place unnecessary pressure on myself, and goodness knows that is not a good look. I’m going to try instead to set one or two ‘focuses’ every month just to have something to be mindful of, and see how that goes.

I honestly hope you have the most wonderful year, and that you learn lots about yourself. There will be ups and downs, and you will get through it.

Happy new year, friends.

Nabeela x

DIY (Five Minute) Greeting Cards

As much as I love making stuff, I often find myself pressed for time when it comes to doing so. Its safe to say that I’ve made my fair share of birthday cards whilst rushing around in the last five minutes before leaving home for said birthday event. I’m sure I’m not the only one who finds themselves in this little predicament so I thought I would share some of my favourite five-minute cards to make for those emergency (or not-so-emergency) times.

You will need:

  • Cardboard (brown or white)
  • Paper (preferably white)
  • Scrapbook paper / any patterned paper scraps
  • Stamps, stickers and washi
  • Pens (just black is good too)
  • Glue / double-sided tape
  • Extra bits (dried flowers/stickers/etc.)

01. / Girly 

Use two papers that have the same colours in them. Stick them onto the card and stamp/write the appropriate greeting in the spaces. I added a sprig of dried flowers too with washi tape.

 

02. / Ombre

I’ve made this card so many times. I usually use paint chips but any paper with colour steps will work. Simply cut strips of the paper in the same size and stick it on. I used pop-up sticky dots to add some interest, but glue or tape would work just as well.

03. / Washi

For this card, pick a few washi tapes in similar colours. Stick them along one side of the card, and add writing or stamps with the appropriate greeting.

 

I hope you find these helpful. Happy making!

Nabeela x

Creatively Documenting Travels

“I haven’t been everywhere, but it’s on my list…”

For as long as I can remember, I’ve always kept journals. Whether they’ve been to organize my life, unscramble my mind or document my memories, it’s just a part of who I am. I’ve always kept a written record of my travels, and over time, this process has evolved. I truly treasure my travel journals. There are so many tiny details that are easily forgotten if not documented.

I’m sharing my system of travel documentation with you. Firstly, I use two places to store my memories. I have a journal that I usually carry with me on travels and fill in daily (more on that later). Then, I also have a scrapbook album with photos that I print out after the trip. This album doesn’t travel with me and is usually completed (way) after I get home.

Travel Journal 

This little book stays in my backpack when I travel. What I usually do is write in it in pencil and collect all my memorabilia in a pouch in the back. When I get home, I re-write things in pen, add things in, and use my stamps, washi tapes and stickers to make it all pretty. I also stick in all my memorabilia and arrange everything nicely. My last few trips have been super jam-packed, so I haven’t had time to journal every day. What I’ve been doing is writing quick notes on my phone every night before bed and then writing them into my journal when I have some time to do so, or on the plane home. I’ve really been enjoying this system.

Scrapbook

I haven’t been very good with doing this, mainly because my previous scrapbook was a huge 12×12 inch book that took up a load of space and wasn’t very fun to work in. It required too much stuff to fill the pages. So, I recycled the left over paper and rings and made a smaller, cuter, more fun album. I’ve finally gotten around to scrapbooking my Europe photos and will move onto my Mauritius photos after that. I’m a very visual person, so I really enjoy haveing physical photographs to look through. Also, found things (shells/coins/rocks/etc.) are my favourite kind of souvenir. They are my treasures.

I hope this has given you some insight into my documenting process and that you’ve got some ideas for your next trip.

Nabeela x

DIY Paint-Chip Greeting Card

It’s been a while since I’ve done some crafty content over here on the blog, but as the name suggests, I love making stuff and I  have missed sharing my DIYs over here.

I often say that making cards was my first craft-love. As a child, I adored making cards for people and still do. Naturally, over time, my style has changed and I’ve honed my skills a bit since then (or so I’d like to think).

I recently made a really quick and simple card and thought I’d share it with you.

Ever walked into the hardware store and walked out with an armful of colourful paint chips? I know I have, much to the chagrin of the store assistants. Those colourful little chips have so much potential!

On a recent trip to the hardware store, I was running around, desperate to grab what I needed and leave. But something (maybe the fact that its a giant rainbow wall) stopped me in my tracks and made me go up to the paint chip wall, grab two and take them with me.

I decided to use one to make a simple gradient effect card. Its just in time for Fathers’ Day too, so why not give it a go.

You will need: 

  • Paint chip card
  • White cardboard
  • Scissors
  • Stamps/pens
  • Double-sided tape/glue

Method:

  1. First, fold the cardboard to an appropriate size for your card.
  2. Then, cut the different shades from the coloured paint chip into equal squares. I used 9.
  3. Place them in a grid from lightest to darkest (you could do any order though).
  4. Once you’ve planned out your pattern, use glue or double-sided tape to stick them down.
  5. Lastly, add a message above or below the coloured squares. I used my favourite trusty alphabet stamps but you can use a pen, paintbrush or anything else.

That’s it! It’s pretty simple and I love the gradient look. If you give this a go, send me a pic! I’d love to see what you create.

Happy crafting!

Nabeela x

DIY Monochrome Wrapping Paper

I decided to do something a little different for my school books this year – making my wrapping paper so I can have prints I love. Since its the festive season too, and wrapping paper is expensive, here are a few fun ways with brown paper that are cost-effective and classy.

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You will need:

  • Eraser
  • Craft knife
  • Paint (I chose black acrylic)
  • Paint brush
  • Brown paper
  • Leaf
  • Newspaper
  • Tape

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Lay down some newspaper before you start – brown paper is quite thin and the prints you make may bleed through onto the surface under your paper.

Splatter

Tape your sheet of brown paper down. Mix the paint with a little bit of water and load your brush. Flick the brush and the paint should leave splatter prints on the paper. Leave to dry.

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Triangles

Carve a shape out of an eraser. A potato works fine too. Paint one side and press it onto the paper to make a print. Leave to dry.

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Leaves

Choose a leaf that has a definitive vein pattern. Paint the back of it, and gently press it onto the sheet of paper. Repeat it in a pattern you like. Leave to dry.

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Its really quick and simple. I love the monochrome, but if colour is your vibe, use different paints.

Hope you’ll try it out!

Nabeela x

Huge thanks to Imán Cassiem from Aesthete’s Perception for shooting for me! Check out her newly launched blog and Instagram account. 

On Creating Weekly

Hello

If you’ve been following me on Instagram, you’ll know that I have been doing a weekly project where I have been creating one watercolour piece a week for 2017. It’s week 40 this week, and so I thought I’d share a bit about my project with you.

After completing my 366 days of quotes project last year, I knew I wanted to do something this year, but just not as intensive as a daily project. I thought about skills I wanted to hone, and decided that a watercolour project would be perfect. Watercolours are easy to use, they don’t smell bad, clean up is quick and painless and the paper and paint is relatively cheap (well, as cheap as art supplies get. Emphasis on the relative part). And so I set out to paint 52 paintings by the end of the year.

There are many perks of doing a weekly project. It’s a wonderful way to force yourself to carve time out each week to create, and my weekly paint and paper sessions are highly therapeutic and rewarding. It can suck slightly when you feel as if you run out of ideas and feel as if you don’t have much time. The best advice I can give you is to push on, and not be too hard on yourself. After all, it is supposed to be enjoyable and not feel like some kind of creative torture.

So if you feel as if you could use some practice in a new skill, or you just want to create some intentional time to create, try a weekly or daily project. You’ll be surprised at how much you’ll improve and how innovative it’ll make you!

Here are some of my favourite pieces from my project so far.

You can see all of my paintings on Instagram, under the tag #52weeksofwatercolour.
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Nabeela x

DIY Lunar Garland

Hello

I could feel that I was getting bored of my workspace a little while ago, so I decided to make a garland to add some visual interest to my space again. I love the graphic look of the lunar cycle and so the good ol’ moon was the inspiration for this DIY.

You will need:

  • About 1-1,5 metres of string
  • White cardboard
  • Black paint
  • Brushes
  • Anything round the trace around
  • Little wooden pegs (or alternatively, tape)

 

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First, draw out 8 circles on your piece of card, tracing around a round object to ensure uniformity. 
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Next, cut them out and sketch the phases of the moon in with pencil.
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Paint the appropriate areas black. 

 

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Once dry, peg the moons onto the length of string. 

 

(If you want it to be in the correct lunar order, it is: new moon, waxing crescent, first quarter, waxing gibbous, full moon, waning gibbous, third quarter, waning crescent)

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Hang it up and admire your creation!

I love having mine in my workspace. It makes it interesting and fun.

Happy New Year, too!

Nabeela x

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