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Decorate the halls with Christmas crafts


Her desire to participate in Strictly Come Dancing was not hidden, but little did Sarah Davis know how overwhelming and emotional it would become.

Nor did she imagine the support from women across the country who admired her for ‘it’ ‘worked’ and not being afraid to rock her wobbly parts alongside these slender and slender professional dancers.

Watching a 37-year-old working mom of two boys (Oliver, seven, and Charlie, five) shake her things up, I buy her an army of fans in awe of five in the morning. People left messages of support on social media and women of all ages wrote messages of encouragement.

I never lost my mom. In those first few weeks I had a lot of corsets and then Spanx, the businesswoman and Dragon (of Dragons’ Den) told me from her office in Darlington, County Durham. Not that things got off to a good start when Sarah made the mistake of adopting her usual business approach.

Sarah Davis (pictured), who runs the Crafter Companion from her office in Darlington, County Durham, has filled her home with DIY ornaments.

She reveals: “I thought if I worked really hard, I would have gotten better. But I woke up rudely the first week. You are at the bottom of the leaderboard. I did a good job at cha cha cha – but didn’t allow myself to lose my inhibitions. I knew I’d be the first to get out if I didn’t allow myself to be more vulnerable. I went on a big journey of self-discovery in those first few weeks.

In the fourth week, Sarah topped the leaderboard with her passionate tango. This show has changed me so much. How do I see myself and how others see me. It has changed me physically, too. No, I haven’t lost any weight, but I’m toned and my stamina levels are great.

While her stern run ended in week eight, her friendship with dance partner Aljaz Skorjanec remains going strong.

And Simon, 42, Sarah’s husband of 14, needn’t feel any jealousy, because he’s become a great buddy with jazz, too.

She dedicated to her husband (whom she started dating when she was still in school) the ‘couple’s choice’ dance, as a thank you for letting her delicately shine and thrive in business by sacrificing his career as a management accountant.

Today, Sarah helps run Crafter’s Companion, her business empire which is now worth around £37m, meaning they live and work together.

Sarah’s business was founded on the back of her genius invention The Enveloper, a clever tool that makes envelopes out of any piece of paper or card. But wouldn’t she and her husband go crazy for each other? Well, they insisted that their offices are located on opposite sides of their headquarters in Darlington. He has set some ground rules.

“The deal was I wouldn’t micromanage it,” Sarah says. The whole point for him was to free up my time so I could do creative things. I’d be a control freak with everyone else, but if I did that to him, he’d quit. So, I had to take that step back.

Sarah (pictured) insists that the biggest misconception about the craft is that any kind of artistic flare is required

Sarah (pictured) insists that the biggest misconception about the craft is that any kind of artistic flare is required

Of course, as the Maker Queen, her home will be full of DIY decorations, like the ones she made for Inspiration readers. She is adamant that the biggest misunderstanding about the craft is that any kind of artistic flair is required.

I can’t draw or draw. Most women have some form of craft hobbies. If you have a bit of creative calligraphy, you will turn your hand into all sorts of things – baking, knitting, sewing, embroidery. Once you get started, the feel-good factor will make you do more.

No wonder the lockdown industry has boomed, as people have been desperate to find new ways to relax. Not that Sarah has a lot of time to relax: A new series of Dragons’ Den begins in January and she’s just finished her autobiography. But will you continue to dance? She is not sure.

I was taught by one of the best dancers. I can find a mentor, but it would be like driving a Ferrari and switching to a Volkswagen Polo.

3D Snowflakes

the required materials

  • 8 paper bags
  • scissors
  • glue gun
  • plastic snowflake
  • Needle and thread

method

1. Lay the paper bags on top of each other and cut a design in them.

2. Using a glue gun, run a line of adhesive through the base of each bag and another along the center so that it forms a T-shape.

3. Glue the bags on top of each other.

4. Fan the bags and tape the first and last bags together until you create a complete circle.

5. Use the needle and thread to sew a shiny snowflake through the center.

Festive tree napkin

the required materials

  • Green square napkins (fabric preferred)
  • cinnamon stick

method

1. Fold the napkin in half so that it forms a rectangle. Fold it in the middle again to make a square, making sure the corners are aligned and there are no creases.

2. Turn it towards you to form a diamond with the open corner in front of you.

3. Fold the four layers up, one at a time.

4. Slide your hand under the napkin, place it between your hands and turn it over.

5. Fold both outside corners to the other side. You must have one on top of the other. Flip the napkin over again.

6. Fold the layers again. After the first layer, place the remaining corners under the pocket created by the previous layer.

7. Use a cinnamon stick for the tree trunk.

fabric ornaments

the required materials

  • cloth and ribbon
  • scissors
  • polystyrene balls
  • foliage for decoration

method

1. Cut the fabric into a square, large enough to cover the ball, and leave a little bit of the fabric for the top.

2. Wrap the material around the ball and collect it on top.

3. Tie the tape around where the material will gather, leaving just enough to make a loop.

4. Pin the foliage and tie it in place with a bow, using more tape.

vanilla reindeer

the required materials

  • Brown flannel or face cloth
  • soap bar
  • rubber band
  • brown pipe cleaners
  • Christmas bells
  • Ribbon and erythrocytes
  • Googly eyes
  • double tape

method

1. Open the piece of cloth with a corner in front of you so that it is in the shape of a diamond.

2. Put the soap in the middle.

3. Pick up the corner in front of you and the opposite corner and pin them together at the top, then roll them down toward the soapy.

4. Take each end and pin it to the middle. Wrap an elastic band around it to secure.

5. Fold the ears down. To make horns, bend a pipe cleaner in half, cut others, and roll small sections of it to the ends of the first.

6. Tie the bell to the ribbon, then tie it over the wrapped rubber band. Stick on the pom pom and googly eyes.



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