Friday, 6 March 2020

Paper Flower Making

To welcome the spring, we've been making paper flowers at our Revive arts for health workshops.  They're very easy to make but very effective. We have kept some for ourselves to to give to others and some have been left in our local community coffee shop with a 'Take me, i'm yours'  label attached.  We happened to have had lots of colourful papers donated to us but you could easily paint over newspaper and use this to make the flowers like these ones we made:

We used  a few different tutorials to help us with our paper flower but this was our most favoured:

We found these DIY Paper Flowers, by Trendyss,  really simple but effective too.

And these Paper Hyacinth Flowers, by One Little Project, rather cute.

Making paper flowers may not necessarily cost you much in materials.  We love this Paper Rose Flower Tutorial, by Smile Mercantile, made from old book pages.

Friday, 1 November 2019

Suffolk Puff Poppy Brooch :: Downloadable Tutorial

We make so many beautiful things within our community groups with many of our members and supporters contributing ideas, materials and expertise. We are happy for you to make items for personal use but we would prefer that you do not use our resources or items made from our resources for profit making purposes :: Thank you!

This tutorial shows you how to make a suffolk puff style poppy brooch.  From the free template you can make a red poppy for rememberance or a white poppy for peace.

You will need the following:

  • Pattern for the poppy Suffolk_Puff_Poppy_Instructions.pdf
  • Sew on brooch pin or safety pin
  • Red or white fabric and green felt
  • Button
  • Needle and thread
  • Scissors
  • Pins
  • Glue (optional)

Cut out the round, main poppy flower and leaf pattern from the 'Suffolk Puff Poppy Instruction' pdf link above:

Pin out then cut the poppy top and bottom using the red or white fabric, and the leaf using the green felt:

Thread the needle with black thread.  Tie a knot at the end of the thread.  Use a running stitch, as illustrated in the picture, around the outer edge of the fabric circle:

When you have completed the full circle of stitched, start to pull your threads so that the fabric turns inwards as illustrated:

Keep pulling until it is tightly bunched in the middle.  Knot by making an additional stitch threading the needle through the loop made by the extra stitch:

Using the same thread, stitch on a button over the bunched up middle section.  Next, push the needle through the button hole so that the needle and thread are at the back:

Now stitch the green leaf to the back.  Traditionally the leaf should be stitched in the 11 o'clock position.  This is in the 1 o'clock on the back.

Finally, stitch on the brooch pin. If you would like, you can glue a piece of felt over the stitches to neaten the back:

Congratulations, you have completed your traditional poppy.  The poppy should be worn on left hand side with the leaf pointing to your heart:

If you are making these for the Poppy Appeal, please consider making a donation to the RoyalBritish Legion(for red poppies) and Peace Pledge Union (for white poppies) in support of remembrance and peace.  To give is one of the Five Ways to Wellbeing.

Monday, 24 April 2017

NCS Social Action

Little Bird SOS are again really pleased to have been chosen by 15 young people undertaking the National Citizenship Service (NCS) in Leicester as their social action project.  NCS provides the opportunity for young people to build skills for work and life by taking on new challenges and making new friends.  There are three phases to their NCS experience including adventure, an outdoor residential experience, followed by skills phase then the final phase, called 'Make a Difference' where the groups go out into the local community to support a good cause and make their mark.
They will be planning lots of fundraising events this week to support the work we do, as well as raising awareness of our organisation and the impact this has on the lives of those we support.
Below are a few words from Shauna who, in her own words, explains their reason for choosing us for their 'Make a Difference' social action phase and their excellent awareness raising campaign they have launched as part of their work.

"We have chosen Little Bird SOS beause all other charitable organisations are very well known.  So many people have mental ill health and not many people know how to get help to get away from it.  There are different ways to get away.  Some choose art, music and exercise etc.  With Little Bird they help people with the love of art and crafts.  Different ages come and go and they do art, crafting, making things to get away with whatever illness they have.
People with mental health difficulties  tend to feel trapped in a dark place called their head.  No one knows what's happening inside someone elses head.  With power and love Little Bird give. They help different age group do things with art, making different things like pillows and roses made out of egg boxes, pins and bracelets to sell.  
This week through NCS (National Citizen Service) we are helping to raise money and awareness for Little Bird SOS and will be selling cakes, and doing a sponsored walk to help raise money.
It costs £123 to run 1 Revive  session and we are helping to raise funds to help keep these session going.  They have 2 sessions a week on Thursday from 12pm - 2pm and Friday 10.30am - 12.30pm.  It's only £5 a session and it includes tea/coffee and biscuits as well as the craft activity.  It's a relaxing and positive atmosphere and helps to free the mind"

They will be running a social media awareness raising campaign via Instagram, Twitter, Facebook and Snapchat using the hastag #flyfree

Tuesday, 28 February 2017

We need to drink more wine!

Even though it’s a beautiful day I really struggled to get out of bed this morning, I’m just feeling so tired and my bed was so cosy.......  As a result I was late, thankfully I didn’t do the usual self flagellation and sorted myself out and turned up, bringing my breakfast with me.  I’m trying so hard to talk positively to myself, it’s a complete challenge.

Again, Lisa came up with a little corker to make things out of wine corks.  The basic idea of slicing the corks meant that you could let your imagination go wild and create to your heart’s content.  


A teapot coaster in progress

Little tree hangings

Fantastic Mr Fox

Thankfully Lindsey and Lisa have taken some photos, because it’s difficult to express the emotion of what we’ve produced with words, because it’s the journey of creating that we get so much healing from, rather than the finished product.

Tuesday, 14 February 2017

Hearts and Flowers Made with Wire

"The most beautiful things in the world cannot be seen, or even touched, they must be felt with the heart"
Helen Keller 

We made these, last week, with discarded wine corks and sculptured wire dipped into a mixture of paint and glue and some wrapped in wool:
Beinding the wire into shape

Wrapping wool around wire
Wool wrapped wire sculpture

embellished with beads and dipped into a pva glue and paint mix

Paint dipped and embellished with glitter
a heart of gold, paint and glitter mix
This frame, handmade by Claire, gives the sculptures a simple but effective presentation

frame covered in book pages


Thursday, 2 February 2017

Project Legacies

Have you ever had one of those moments when something happens and you feel it was meant to be? Earlier this week, I was in a meeting and was asked if I had ever reviewed the projects I have worked on over the past few years? I thought it would be a good idea to go back and review these lagacies. and started to think about how to go about this.

That very same day I bumped into Jo and Jenny, who I worked with on the Knitting Communities Togther Project, in poundland and they told me all about a wonderful initiative they had worked on last year, making knitted poppies and selling them to raise money for the Royal British Legion Poppy Appeal. In total they raised £497.92 in donations from their knitted poppies - something that kind of blew my mind.

This wreath is so loved that it will be kept inside and only bought out, for the remembrance room, once a year!

I was absolutely thrilled to hear that the Knitting Communties Together project was very much alive, still connecting adults with learning disabilities with the local community. It's so amazing that all those little stitches, my grandma and mum taught me, have been passed on to others and that they are doing so much good in my local community.

I felt, somehow this chance encounter was telling me to keep going and keep flying the flag for arts for health and wellbeing. Something is definately telling me that it is worth all the hard work. I will keep on keeping on - Lisa
Knitting Communities Together - evaluation report, in case you want to find out more:…/…/EVALUATION_REPORT_FINAL.pdf

Frustration and Elation

I came to Little Bird SOS with a bit of a cloudy head and my thoughts just longing to be back in bed, but knowing how much I enjoy this place, I dragged myself along.

So, t-bag folding, I found it to be quite therapeutic, with the precise folds and systematic gluing that was required but others found it frustrating bringing back memories of schooldays and less than patient school teachers!

I think a massive congratulations should be given to all of us because everyone created something beautiful and all went away calm, with Lisa's help.

For all of you continuing t-bagging at home, I hope you have loads of fun and for those of you who didn't find it your cuppa tea, you can cross that off the list and look forward to another week when we will be trying some new xxxx

A massive thank you to Anna who showed Lisa this technique that could be passed on to others!