AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH! I am so excited to finally share this with you!
Back in September, I discovered that I had been selected to go on Kirstie's Handmade Christmas this year. I had made it one of my new year's resolutions to be brave enough to try and get on the show, so when I saw that they were taking applications- I tried super hard to not let those imposter syndrome feelings get to me and just went for it. To me being on Kirstie's Handmade Christmas is the ultimate crafting accolade- So many people I admire in the crafting community have been on the show, for me its always been the ultimate dream!
I applied for the Advent Calendar competition, as I felt like I already had a great idea for that competition in my paper gem advent calendar that I made last year. So sent off photos and drawings of it with my application.
It all seems like the craziest surreal dream now, but by some miracle, I got accepted into the advent calendar competition (new years resolution complete!). From that point it was a whirlwind of setting up for Christmas at home in September ready for filming at my house, I think my neighbours must have thought I was mad! Then getting ready for the competition itself.
We weren't allowed to make anything beforehand, only in the 8 hours given to us on the day. But I still ran around like a mad thing making sure I had enough gold card, that my Cricut was ready ( cue a mad trip to hobbycraft the day before to find a scoring tool) and that I had a new glue gun that didn't look absolutely gross like all of mine do!
I also had to consider what I was going to wear for such a momentous occasion! the brief was to dress as you would on Christmas day, but I also knew it had to be as sparkly as possible. So I settled on this incredible pink jumper from Asos, with arms covered in iridescent sequins! ( Without realising I actually managed to dress to match the set! Oops! )
I travelled to Devon to the filming location where we were put up in a hotel for two nights, It felt super fancy to have two nights away being a crafting queen- which was exactly how we were treated from start to finish, like absolute royalty! The crew went out of their way to make sure we were comfortable and happy, I can't thank all of them enough! They were all absolute legends!
I'm lucky enough to have done some work in TV before in my previous life as an actress/dancer so didn't feel nervous until I was getting ready in the morning. But once on set in the stunning location of Christmas HQ I was made to feel so at home.
You'd think 8 hours is a long time to sit and craft, so I was feeling pretty laid back about getting my advent calendar done on time. However, you forget that with all the stuff that goes with TV, having lots of people in and out of the room and the excitement whenever Kirstie came around, time goes so fast- I totally understand why Bake off looks so stressful! Time just disappears! Add that to the fact that I love watching people craft so was so distracted by everyone else's beautiful advent calendars, what tools they had and what techniques they were using! Which meant I only just finished in time!
Working with Kirstie ( who is so lovely and isn't given enough credit in my opinion for how much of a Boss she is!) and watching how she works with the cameras and crew was an absolute dream, and made me realise how much I want her job!!!! ;)
One of the best parts of the day was meeting my fellow contestants, Harriet, Coral and Alice. Who were all super talented badass crafting babes. I don't get to hang out with many people like me so to spend the day geeking out about crafting with these beauties was the icing on an already awesome cake. Especially the fact that Coral was also using a Cricut, having someone to talk to all day about our love for our Cricut machines was the best thing ever! In the evening we de-briefed with a G&T with Laura and Erin who were part of the wrapping competition who just added to our already awesome crafting girl group.
Here are links so that you can go and find out more about each of them and the awesomeness they create!
The judge for our competition was the wonderful author of Paper Parties Erin Hung, who I felt incredibly honoured to have judged my work as her work is absolutely stunning!
I utterly failed at taking a photo of my finished advent calendar, so only have this one!
Feeling utterly overwhelmed to have won! WHATTTT!!!!! My trophy is definitely one of my most prized possessions now!