I’ve been meaning to post about these kits by Kirsty Allsopp for a while now (since before Christmas last year to be exact!) so figured as my blogging mojo was back in full swing, I might as well crack on with it!
I bought these kits from Hobbycraft in a 25% Off sale, and to be honest, had it not been for the fact that a) I was on the lookout for kits to make gifts for relatives anyway, and b) they were reduced in price, I may not have bought as many as I did, perhaps any at all! As far as craft kits go, they’re quite expensive when at full price, and after opening them up, a couple seemed like good value for money, whereas a couple didn’t so much. Sure, you get enough materials to make whatever it states (which in a couple of cases, it was hard to tell without getting a member of staff to break a box open and find out!), and the elements of the kit seem to be of quality, but what did vex me a little was the fact that Kirsty was nowhere to be seen, not one picture of her actually doing the craft kit in question. Now call me naive, but it would’ve been far more inspirational if the queen of home & craft had hand-picked the items in the kit, or was making her wares too, rather than the feeling that a kit had been cobbled together and her name stamped on it. But alas, the packaging sucked me in and I ended up with 4 of them! Oops!
The kits I chose where:
So, now to break each one down for you, or my opinion of each at least!
This kit was the most expensive but also my favourite of the bunch as it lasts the longest, and essentially can create projects over and over again so long as you have anything wooden to scold into.
The heat tool came with two comprehensive nib tip packets, one specifically for writing and one with different shapes for differing patterned effects. There was a little stand to keep the hot tool away from the surface you’re working on and a healthy supply of wooden elements to get creative with.
I set up the kit and had a great time learning how to hold it and what angles made the best effects. Even Ajay got involved and made me a really sweet keyring on his first try! As he was once a tattooist, his skill at holding a tool and scribing into a material came more naturally than my burnt holes and misshapen text, but it was fun none the less and the smell it gave off was similar to birthday cake candles being blown out. I would however strongly recommend a well ventilated room when using the pyrography tool as it can get a bit overpowering after a long period of use.
Here you can see my first attempt at playing around with the tool and a fine nib. It really is a lovely bit of kit and one we have since used a few times for different projects.
Lavender Bath Bombe Kit
This kit only made a few bath bombes which was disappointing, but once you have the instructions, it’s easy to get hold of the components to make more. So if anything, the moulds are handy to keep hold of. It was quite fun making the mixture, pressing it into the moulds and waiting over night for the final reveal! They came out really well, fizzed in the tub just like a Lush bath bomb would and went down a treat with our relatives who enjoyed relaxing baths with them. So money well spent!
Candle Making Kit
Everyone loves a candle! I know, there’s loads of kits on the market and perhaps plenty that are cheaper too, but all credit where it’s due, the kit provided enough materials to create either a few smaller candles or a couple of big pillar candles with the included mould. This was my first time making candles, so it was a learning process and the finished product didn’t burn quite as well as I wanted, but the containers I poured the wax into at least looked pretty! Ha!
A little heads up, you might want to use an old saucepan and wooden spoon for this make, as you won’t want to use either for cooking with once you’ve used them with candle wax. **In fact, check all of the kit’s instructions before making as you may need the odd extra tool that isn’t included in the box.**
I ended up buying more candle wax pellets and wick online after I used up the kit and will definitely use the mould to try making some more, hopefully this time they’ll work as good as they look!
Natural Soap Making Kit
I actually really loved this kit! Sure, you can only make it once but the end product was amazing and when you consider how much it would cost to buy at least 6 hand-made soaps from a shop, then it really is value for money. The soaps smell lovely when they’re finished too! I followed the easy to understand instructions and tentatively left the soap to set overnight, and was over the moon when I tipped it out of the mould and cut it into bars. With the lavender that was left after stirring some into the mix, I’d lined the mould with a thick layer of it, so when it came out, it had a lavender topping! Devine!
Here’s Darwin, helping out as usual….
All in all, I can’t completely slate the Kirstie’s kits as they were a great way to explore different types of makes. The materials were of a good quality and I had great fun making all the products! The only thing which might put off the budget conscious is the price, but when I consider how much our family loved the hand made presents we gave them on Christmas day, it was all worth it!