Monday, 15 June 2015

2nd Annual UKSN Retreat - 2015

I hope you read my report of UKSN's first residential retreat -
well this is my blog about UKSN's 2nd Annual Retreat.

This retreat was a bit more DIY than the residential one but equally good fun!
It was held on June 6th-7th at the Chesterton Village Hall in Oxfordshire.

I found my own accommodation at the local Premier Inn but everything else was in the company of
Mickey and Elaine (organisers)
Jo (photographer), Linda, Ann, Hazel, Pippa, Jane, Dolly, Ina, Sheila, Nicola, Betty, Kate and Anna.

Day One consisted of Four workshops:

We were warmed up with Workshop #1 led by Elaine.

In this we all made a small tissue box (to hold a 'travel' packet) and a baby favour.
These involved scoring and folding, cutting and decorating and using a die-cut.

I have already made another tissue box!!
We also decorated our place cards...

Workshop #2 was led by Mickey - called 'Why buy it, when you can make it yourself'.

The brief was 'prepare to get messy - Mickey will show you how to make a texture paste that you can't tell from the real stuff
 and then some interesting things to create with it using paint and stencils'.
Thanks must go to PaperArtsy
 who donated some Fresco Finish Chalk Acrylic Paints for this workshop!

I really enjoyed making my tag... but I will write a separate post about this...

...and stencils from hot glue gun glue, sprayed with Distress Ink...

Next - Lunch was a Tesco Meal deal!

Kate ran Workshop #3 - using dies and embossing tools, and colouring with alcohol inks, we were shown how to upcycle old takeaway tins, tomato puree tubes and beer cans to make fabulous decorations.

Look at my super candle ring!

Dinner was a delicious Chinese Takeaway!

Workshop #4 was tremendous fun! Sheila repeated last year's fast and furious version of card consequences. Despite the speed, and passing each card through half a dozen crafters, the cards came out really well and will be donated to charity to raise funds.
Here are some:

Sheila's second activity was another fun challenge. We were given a handful of items with which to 'make something' - for prizes!
I was NOT a prize winner - I was given yellow card, gold embossed card, teddy bear paper and three Christmas embellishments. I made a trio of ATCs...

I didn't have much left - but I did make use of a few gems that were lying about!

Then back to the Hotel to fill up some of my UKSN ATC books - and go to sleep!

Day Two consisted of three workshops:

Workshop #5 was led by Ina - who provided packs to make very pretty exploding boxes.

Elaine again ran a workshop for #6.
This was to make a souvenir of the UKSN Craft Retreat 2015 - a keyring using the technique we used to decorate the mirrors in the April Residential retreat.
 Love this technique!

In our final Workshop #7 Linda and Hazel showed us how to make these fantastic baskets out of two pieces of A4 and a piece of 12 by 12.

As well as the workshops we had
  • Buy and Sell from 'Pre-Loved' and 'New' Sale boxes
  • Off load your free stuff 
  • Die Cut and Embossed Pages Exchange
  • Secret Summer Santa Sack
  • Raffle
  • Guess the Card Maker Competition

What a great weekend!

Lots of Happy Crafting!

If you would like to find out more about UKSN please visit here or email


  1. Looks like everyone had a wonderful time Sue (photos are great), I wish I could have been there too. Still there's always next year to look forward to and I did enjoy my holiday.

    Sue xx

  2. Lovely blog sue. I had a great time and it was ovely to meet you. The glamour models you had posing for the photos were brilliant. :-)


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