Sunday, November 29, 2009

Bits and baubles

Last Sunday I got together with some of the Craft Room girls for our last meet up of the year.  The temperature reached well over 40C and what did I take to work on?  A crochet scarf........hmmmmm.  As a result I did not get as much done as I envisioned I would - it was just too darn HOT. 

The very lovely Ingrid (and her oh so lovely dolly baby Kitty) stopped by for a while and she brought with her a box full of vintage patterns.  I managed to score these five. 

I'm not sure they will ever become garments in my wardrobe but I do love just looking at their beautiful vintage goodness.

We did a gift swap again and I was lucky enough to pick Marina's (Wink Designs) swap item.  I just love the Matryoshka print tree ornaments - I couldn't wait for my Christmas tree to go up (not before December in my house, it's a thing I have) so I've hung them from the door knobs of my entertainment unit for the time being.  Every time I see them they make me smile :)

My swap item went to the very sweet Fiona whose sewing machine raised it's objections to being put through it's paces on such a sweltering day by  letting out a loud crackle and catching fire (it was just a bit of smoke really but that doesn't sound nearly as exciting)!

I have to be honest and say I had forgotten to prepare an item for the swap before I went away so I spent Saturday night in front of the tele making crochet and beaded christmas baubles.  This was just one of the many ideas I constantly have floating around in my head.  So many ideas and yet so few actually come to fruition.  I really am very creatively frustrated.  There just never seems to be enough time to get to the things I want to be doing (as opposed to the things I should be doing). 

I also included a 'Versatile Shopper' tote bag in my swap package, which I had made back here.  After a great response from some lovely reader's I was inspired to make more!  And two more I did before I was incredibly 'over it'.  Hence I learnt two valuable lessons 1 - I have a great aversion to making the same thing more then once, as I mentioned in my last post, and 2 - I will never make things to sell as I once dreamed of doing. 

Every time I go shopping I use my Versatile Shopper, I keep it in my handbag permanently. 

Every time I buy something from a shop which charges for plastic bags (as is become more common these days, and rightly so too) I think of the Versatile Shopper and wish I had it in me to make more as I am so proud and pleased with the few I did make - but alas it is not to be........  I have been wanting to post about the death of my little idea for a while now but kept holding on to the hope that I might be inspired to continue on, but if truth be told I know I wont.  So there you have it!  Enough rambling on about this.  Ahhhh, what a relief to have that off my chest :)

Anyway, back to my Craft Room post.  I did manage to finish the crochet scarf I was working on earlier this week but no pictures to show you yet, it's just been too hot to even think of wrapping a scarf around my neck. 

I want to say a big thank you to Corrie for starting up and organising the Craft Room throughout this year.  It has been such a pleasure to meet and chat with all the very lovely, talented and inspiring crafty women I have met because of it.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Library bags for some little sweetpeas

I've been somewhat absent of late.  We've been very busy just living life.  We also had a week away driving down to Melbourne via the Snowy Mountains and returning to Sydney via (a VERY hot) Echuca and Narrandera.  It was a great week away - all family oriented, well almost.  I did manage to pop into one very quaint and lovely fabric shop in Echuca where I picked up a christmas themed moda charm squares pack.

Although I haven't posted anything lately I have been busily sewing and crocheting. While we were away I managed to get a fair bit done on a little cardi I started crocheting at the Inner West Craft Room get together earlier this month.  I've been steadily adding to the growing number of granny squares for my BFG (big floral granny squares) project.  I've been playing around with lace trim and making crochet christmas baubles.  I'll try and post some photo's of these various projects in the not to distant future.  Before we left for our little get away I finished off seven library bags.

Now I am not keen on making anything repeatedly, so to churn out SeVeN library bags took a little effort. But it is all for a good cause - they will be going to seven very lovely little people who have been sharing Thursday mornings with me on a regular basis for the last two and a half years now.  Yes, our playgroup is going to be somewhat depleted come next year with some of our children (including my very own Miss A) graduating to either big school or pre-school.

I have to say though as I finished off each bag I had a very nice sense of satisfaction.  I definately learnt some new things including the fabulous technique of applique using fusible webbing and production line sewing..............

I wanted to make the bags bright and fun for the kids with a little personalised detail so I appliqued each child's first initial on the front of their bag.  The outside of the bags are made using cotton drill while the lining and applique letters are 100% cotton.  Miss A was most helpful in choosing the fabrics (actually she was quite a bully!).  I decided to make a long strap so that it can grow with the child.  The ones my girls are using now I have just knotted the straps to make them the right length and can move the knot as they grow.

I took the kids down to the local park this morning for a photo shoot.  I had alot of fun with this, although the wind did make it a little difficult to get a good shot of all the bags hanging from the play equipment!

We are going to have a "Graduation Ceremony" at playgroup this Thursday, presenting each child with a certificate and their library bags which should be very sweet.  Hopefully these bags will get alot of good use over the many years at school to come.

edited to add:
retromummy is having a fat quarter give away at the moment - but don't enter, I want to win!

Friday, November 6, 2009

Supporting hand made never felt so good

I went to the Mathilda's Market held in Sydney last Sunday and I've only just managed to take photo's of the beautiful goodies I came away with.  The weather has been so gloomy here of late I have been putting off taking photo's but today decided I could wait no longer.

This is how my visit progressed......

First up these gorgeous hair clips from Tutti Fruiti.  I got to the markets rather late and found the very lovely Belinda had been having a rather successful market day.  Luckily she still had afew items to choose from.

I just couldn't go past these lovely duck egg blue stud earrings for myself - never mind the children!

Next up The Raisin Did It with this fabulous print of the frivolous, frolicking, nightime jamboree

and this fantastic floral bird just really caught my eye.  The images have been printed on white linen place mats but I have been toying with the idea of either framing them or using them in some other crafty project - perhaps they can become the apron on a couple of apron skirts for christmas.........hmmm the cogs are now turning.

Then I found Sophie and Mel with her sweet little babe manning the Barefoot Babies stall, stocked with beautiful handmade garments for the littlies in our life.  I snapped up this hip little singlet as a christmas gift for one of my nephew's.  Don't you just love that dinosaur!

Next up I visited loz and dinny crafting extraordinaire Gemma.  I was first attracted to her stall by a lovely library bag hanging at the front.  As I was standing there I noticed a vinyl snap purse which looked sooo familiar.  It was only then that I realised whose stall I was looking at!  I love Gemma's blog and was very happy to meet her here in Sydney after she came all the way up from Tassie for the market.

I was oohhhing and aahhing over the above very sweet and old fashiony type hat and decided I just could not go home without it when - Gemma GIFTED it to me!!!- she could have knocked me over with a feather.  I was very touched and after thanking her profously, a little lost for words.  This wonderful, wonderful blogging community - what more can I say...........

Finally I reached the Snailblazer/Lottielulu stall.  I had seen Cass' Explorer Satchel's on her blog and was happy to see she still had this little number on her table.  I promptly purchased it 'for my girl's' - as if! - it has already become a WIP bag (somewhere to keep one of the yarny projects I have on the go). 

It was at this time my (at the end of his tether) husband and two restless children caught up with me and suggested I get a wriggle on in no uncertain terms.  So I did not get the chance to spend any more time perusing Cass and Ingrids other items on offer.

c'est la vie - there will always be next time.....................