Thursday, April 29, 2010

my creative space :: cloudy at first but with a silver lining

The latest block from The Beehive had me in all sorts. Katrina had asked for a massive 16 inch block based on Rita's design using Amy Butler's "Love" fabrics and some nice solid white.

The cloudy day part went like this:

I cut the squares too big not trusting my ability to get a perfect quarter inch seam.
I then needed to trim down 16 half-square triangles.
I then realised I hadn't read the instructions properly and I needed another 16 half-square triangles.
I then realised I had run out of fabric.

After a trip to the LQS for an emergency fat quarter of 'Love' the square worked out in the end with surprisingly accurate pointy bits meeting where they were supposed to. 

Katrina's Blocks

So, what to do with the rest of the fat quarter? Enter the impending 5th birthday of a fellow purple-loving friend, an awesome FREE tutorial and we have this



And then because I ripped the sticker off the front of the sketch book in a weird way I needed to cover it with this little patch


Clearly needing a bit more practice in the 'ol backstitch department but otherwise a gift I am going to be pretty happy to give. And a silver lining ;)

For more creative spaces you know where to go ... but if you don't click here to zoom over to Kirsty's joint.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

my creative space :: chick(s) with sticks or my conversion to "the dark side"

Around the time I got back into sewing (about this time last year as a matter of fact), my friend Antonia taught herself to knit. With a wee bit of help from my Mum (who is one of those freaky fast knitters whose hands are a blur), she was well on her way. Add to that the help of a few you tube videos and a healthy addiction to yarn-inspired blogs and she was soon teaching my Mum a thing or two.

She then, was my go to person when I decided my fear of the sticks must end. As my birthday approached I put in an order for some fancy needles and a suggestion of where to start.


Well, not only did she deliver some needles, she added some gorgeous yarn, downloaded a pattern, AND started me off by casting it on (insert sheepish grin).*

Enter this weeks yucky colds and coughs and I had the perfect excuse to take to the couch on the weekend with my tissues, my tea and my knitting.

Now not that I want to count my chickens or anything but I went from this


To this in less than a week! 


No five years in the making for this little number. 

Hmmm I'm starting to feel a little sick again. Best go sit down and do a few rows.

Catch up on all the creative goodness around the blogosphere at Kirsty's digs

*Thinking I may need some help to cast off I hoped to bring my knitting with me when I come down to Melbourne. Being a bit of a rules girl, wanting to travel light, and imagining my own horror should my knitting be confiscated at the security check, I thought I'd give the airline a call to ask if metal knitting needles were allowed on board. The following was an excerpt of the conversation I had with the call centre person;

Me: I see I can take knitting needles on board the flight but can I take metal knitting needles?
Call Centre Person (CCP): Needles? No you can't take anything pointy on board.
Me: Well it says on the website I can actually take knitting needles on board but I just wondered if I can take METAL ones?
CCP: What are they?
Me: Knitting needles.
CCP: What are they used for?
Me: Umm, knitting.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

and the winner is ...

*cough cough*, *sneeze*

Oh sorry I'll just get someone to grab a tissue for me


hold on a minute ...


The tissues have been replaced with little white pieces of paper


And whose name might that be?


Why it's Little Ted Canvas! Congratulations! You are the winner of all this loot, PLUS I shall be digging around in the stash for some fabric in greys and/or dusty blues.

Thanks to everyone who took the time to enter my blog'o'versary giveaway and for all the lovely thoughts on my birthday. It made my day/s!

Monday, April 19, 2010

on the doorstep

We're all bunkered down here with colds that seem to involve copious amounts of the green stuff (sorry if you're eating), as well as a very unattractive hacking cough.

So for some reason while I was in the kitchen whipping up a batch of healing chicken soup (lest I end up with risotto again), I also thought I'd make some scones. As you do.

Surprisingly they worked and so in an attempt to get out of the house, if only for two minutes we bundled some up to do a scone drop for our neighbour.

scone drop

And guess what I found on my own front door on my way out?

A pin cushion!

pin cushion!

Yay! Courtesy of the lovely Fran from Lovely Little Sweetpeas. Fran is the creator of the stupendous On-The-Go-Art Satchel which I am currently making for a special someone. But clearly she is also a very talented pin cushion maker too! Look at that ribbon goodness around the edge! And of course the fabric is gorgeous.

Knowing my favourite colour is purple Fran also included these beautiful little crochet flowers.

crochet flowers


And one more thing. I can't believe Fran parted with this but oh I'm so glad she did

critter card

A critter card from Tania! Love it.

Fran, you've made my otherwise dreary day that much brighter. Thank you!

And thank you Kate for organising such a great swap.

p.s Have you entered my giveaway yet? It'll close at 9am tomorrow morning so get in quick!

Friday, April 16, 2010

a blog-o-versary, a birthday and a giveaway

Right, first things first.

A while back this here blog'o'mine turned one. Hard to believe considering I've never managed to keep a diary for more than a few days. I guess the difference between a diary and a blog is YOU. You sitting there reading this stuff I prattle on about and (still can't believe this part), taking the time to write me a comment. I truly had no idea when I wrote my first post, from my kitchen making egg and lettuce sandwiches, that one year on I would have made true friends not to mention all the amazing things I have learned from reading everyone else's blogs.

So, in return I offer you a long overdue and hearty THANK YOU and the chance to grab a pile of goodies I  have been accumulating for the long overdue, better late than never blog-o-versary giveaway!

birthday/bloggy giveaway

For a better explanation of what it all is there are notes about everything here. In addition I want to include fabric but had no idea what to choose. So, if you want a chance to win this lot* enter a comment below and tell me what your favourite colour is (or what colour fabric you like because sometimes, it differs doesn't it?), and I'll include some fabric in that colour.

Oh and the birthday bit? Well today is my 36th birthday. So far it has been spent wiping two runny noses, changing more than my fair share of dirty nappies, and splitting up more fights than I care to think of. BUT this afternoon there will be cupcakes! Sadly not these gorgeous offerings but hopefully they'll come close ;)

Good luck everybody and thanks again x

* if you live outside of Australia I will include a lighter version of the teacup pincushion ;)

Edited to Add: Forgot to say I will draw a winner in some random manner next Tuesday 20 April. 

Thursday, April 15, 2010

my creative space :: table

A few weeks ago I mentioned I had lost my creative space when the front room we had referred to as "the art room" was reverted back to a bedroom. Bedtimes had become increasingly difficult and finally we realised the small people may need a (hopefully temporary), separation. 

And so the sewing space is now on the dining room table (grumble), in the middle of the lounge room (grumble, grumble). Places need to be found for fabric* to make way for books (grumble to the power of three).

fabric sorted

And so it was in this grumbling state of mind that I happened upon this photo on flickr ...

Image courtesy of Knitsteel

... and was reminded that I once said to my closest friend, while pregnant with my first baby (the one that is now taking over my fabric shelves), that when I thought about my future I visualised a large  dining room table covered with tonnes of "stuff" and surrounded by tonnes of kids. 


And suddenly I realised that, with a few exceptions (i.e. the "tonnes" of kids. And I reserve the right to revise what "tonnes" means to me), I had what I always wanted. 

A "knock-about-don't-have-to-be-too-worried-what-gets-on-it-salvaged-from-the-skip-next-door" table with an ever changing range of projects going on (as I type play dough snails, snakes and button-adorned cupcakes are being made).


So maybe I won't grumble too much about losing my space when I am gaining so much more. 

For more creative spaces hop on over to Kirsty's place

* On the topic of fabric I am finally going to put up my better-late-than-never bloggy birthday giveaway TOMORROW!  I promise!

Friday, April 9, 2010

ordinary day

I saw this on one of my favourite blogs, Uncommon Grace, and given that it's school holidays and we might be spending a bit more time with our little people, I thought I might share it here as well.

Get the tissues ready ...

Thursday, April 8, 2010

my creative space :: is sick


Three weeks of a sore throat, some antibiotics thrown in there without any result and finally I have given in.

And so this is my creative space : my bed where I have a lovely view of the latest stack'o'books. Some read and loved so much they can never be put away on the shelf, but most still waiting patiently for their turn. 

See you all on the flipside.

And for creative spaces without the misery, go visit Kirsty ... man I could do with a pair of her slippers right about now ...

p.s  Any and all tried and tested flu-ish remedies welcomed. As well as ways to describe "soup" so that the Mr doesn't come home with risotto.

Monday, April 5, 2010

looooong weekend

Soooo many photos of the weekend that was it's hard to choose just one. So I haven't. Buckle up.

An Easter egg hunt that happened so early, it needed to be conducted by flashlight


Yummy hot cross buns slathered in jam with fingers then usually run through the hair for a bit of extra stickiness

easter breakfast

A long enough break in the annual Easter down pour for a picnic with my 86 year-old Nanna from Brisbane (her Dad helped build that there little bridge in the background).


Wishing I could heed the advice on this sign ...

useful signs

... but glad that somebody did (anything for a photograph)


Some quality time with Poppy ...


... and with Aunty


Time to build never ending tracks with Daddy


And even some time in there for sewing a cushion for my mother-in-law despite having lost my sewing room*.

MIL cushion

Just lots of time really.

What did you find time for?

* bedtimes were doing this Mummy's head in ... enough that I was willing to sacrifice my space - and that should speak volumes!

Thursday, April 1, 2010

my creative space :: pin cushion madness

Some time ago I referred to sewing a pin cushion as "ego sewing". Having badly mucked up a pair of pants for the little fella I consoled myself by making a very simple, very cute little pin cushion. And it worked a treat. Not only did I wind up with a much needed pin cushion, I felt confident to tackle the next project ... probably fixing the little fella's mucked up pants.

So having had a break from the machine for the last few weeks I was itching to get stitching. Enter Kate's excellent Pin Cushion Swap and we have ourselves the perfect excuse for quick, fun, very satisfying stitchery! You only have to look here, here and here (just to name a few), to see how the pin cushion bug really has bitten.

My only problem has been knowing when to stop



Then I found some tea cups I'd been meaning to use for crafty purposes (the rims were a bit too thick for tea sipping purposes. I'm fussy like that).




So then as you can see, slightly obsessed.

Now the question is - which one do I give to my swap partner?

For more creative spaces (and no doubt a few more discussions of pin cushions) pop round to Kirsty's place. And speaking of pin cushions (and popping), did you see her creation? Crazy talented I tell you!

p.s My slightly late bloggy birthday giveaway is still in the works and will no doubt now include a pin cushion ... or three. 


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