Friday, April 30, 2010

just a minute … in april

Listening… to my son’s fabulous use of simile. He uses the poetic device regularly. “This flower is like a helicopter” he exclaims as he rotates a flower stem between his fingers or “the sun is like a candle” explaining just why it was such a “lovely day”. Also listening to Ms. M talking more and more every day. As she has been quite ill for most of the month she is really starting to master the phrase “I want my mama”.

Watching… Footy Classified. I began following footy as a means to communicate to work colleagues that I would otherwise having nothing in common with. Over time I’ve enjoyed watching a  game or two, usually when my team is involved but most of all I have developed a love of tele shows that are about footy more than the game itself. Footy Classified is my absolute favourite. Caro, Gary, Grant and the bald guy  - priceless discussions. Love it even though I don’t really know who they’re talking about!!! It has become one of my all time favourite shows.

Sewing… a pin cushion as part of my first ever swap for this wonderful person and a  lined yoga bag. Also got started sewing more flannelette pyjamas for my little ones.

sewing together

As usual my sewing ambitions far outweighed what I actually achieved – not to worry – I’m reviewing my approach.

Crocheting…  STOP THE PRESS! hand

On the off chance that you missed my most exciting news this month I finished my first ever ever ever crocheted blanket. Made of granny squares I now refer to it as my 10² granny blanket or my rainbow blanket. I am so thrilled… I know I’ve said it already, a couple of times, but it really has made my month and looks to be in strong contention to be one of my top creations for 2010.

Photographing… I’m managing to keep up with my 365/a photo a day blog –more than a thousand words - I’ve missed three days so far which really isn’t too awful. I’ve been photographing fairly random things this month – as the weather gets colder and I’m spending more and more time indoors and consequently find my inspiration somewhat limited. Nonetheless it is a good challenge to find inspiration close at hand.

mr 3 the photographerThere is a new budding photographer in our family and he is getting rather good at it too – if I do say so my totally biased Mama self!  Check out one of my favourites over here.

Playing…   riding a bike

Ms. M is loving riding (or at least being pushed) around on her trike. She is also loving packing away her blocks and cashing-up with her fisher price cash register. Pretending to be a puppy dog is another popular past time – watching her crawl around saying ‘woof woof’ is SO adorable.

We’ve also been playing some games developed by our very own Mr.3. Such games include the very popular Aquarium Attendant Game – where one person pretends to work at the aquarium and the other pretends to be the tourist.

Football is another popular game with both children. Mr. 3 is particularly enamoured with the sport. Mr. 3’s development in terms of catching the ball is rapid and his passion for running up and down the length of the garden is exhausting to watch.

As ever we all love to dance. Earlier this evening we were busting our moves to Justine Clarke’s tunes. We have a lot of fun.

Thursday, April 29, 2010

my creative space :: the snowball effect

Despite living in a part of the world that rarely sees snow (last reports of some snow falling was in 1956 but the fall was in the Perth Hills which would have been well and truly out of town back then) there seems to be a bit of a snowball effect happening in my creative space. A sick and grumpy family hasn’t helped matters much but it would be all too convenient to lay all blame on them. The truth, if there is such a thing, is that the things that I want to achieve greatly outweighs the number of available hours in the day. My creative space really needs to take stock and prioritise projects.

One project that will be given high priority is crocheting a blanket for my son. Since finishing my 10² granny blanket the crochet has taken a bit of back seat. I notice its absence – especially since I can now crochet a granny square on automatic pilot, the hands making the rhythmic motions whilst my mind adopts a meditative state.

This week some new yarn arrived…yummy yarn (at the beginning) wool from the millrich colours 200 crochet blocks book

… and so today I am going to take some time to plan a blanket using this wonderful book that I bought for myself as a birthday treat.

Do you have a favourite crochet block? Perhaps you don’t crochet but you have seen one that you like very much?

Best you be on your way to check out all the creativity that abounds on Thursdays at Kirsty’s place while I try to reduce the never-ending list of projects in my mind to my top four projects on paper. Sometime back in the day I determined that a list of things to do should never have more than four items. Do you have a numerical limit for projects on the go? What boundaries, if any, have you set yourself when it comes to the limitless creative opportunities?

Go on now - I’ll meet you there.

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

ha ha ha

Look what arrived in the post for me today…in the light of the sun packageIsn’t that just one of the most delightful packages you’ve ever seen?

… and look what was wrapped up inside…hahaha

I love it.

I was lucky enough to win a giveaway hosted by Sara @ in the light of the sun. Isn’t it fabulous?

I’m feeling very very lucky. Where should I hang it? Mmmmmm … I’m thinking somewhere near my sewing machine, or maybe on the wall that is first seen as you walk through the front door, or maybe I should take it with me to work to remind me to see the funnier side of life. Ooooo… such a tough decision – tough because I love it so much I want to make sure I find the perfect spot for it.

Thank you so much Sara. What a gorgeous photo to giveaway. I am so honoured to have received it… and now there is another tricky decision to be made – the photo arrived a little crooked after its long journey across the continent. I think it looks cool and so I’m not convinced that I should straighten it. Your thoughts?

map 212: K2

k2 map 212

Dear  ....,

Most tourists experience times when they’re on adventures sick and feeling sorry for themselves. This can be said of my three companions on the weekend as we set out on our adventure to K2 map 212. The journey was undertaken to get the sorrowful bunch out of the house and what better than a country drive into the Swan Valley to lift the spirits.

K2 Map 192

Sometimes K2 just isn’t the summit you expected. At our destination was a for sale sign, a barbed wire fence, a view to a paddock with two sheep and beyond a vineyard. Even so the children had the most fabulous time picking up rocks from the road side and hurling them at the sign…chucking rocks ha ha - chucking rocks is fun 

… and just hanging around…hanging around

Now I’m not the kind of girl who travels all the way to the Swan Valley without having a little wine taste – so en route home we detoured past Windy Creek Winery where I partook in a taste of their cabernet merlot and their two shiraz. I walked away with a bottle of 2007 Old Vines Shiraz… but it is still unopened. With a sick crew to care for on the home front there just hasn’t been time to relax and enjoy my souvenir.

Despite my grumpy and miserable companions the journey was something to enjoy. Few things are nicer than being warmed up by the sun’s rays in the passenger seat of a car checking out the sights – especially in the picturesque Swan Valley.

How about you? Been on any good drives or adventures lately?

Take care,

♥ Sally

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

on its way

seminole towel

seminole towel

seminole towel

seminole towel

I started making this at last month’s sewing guild meet. I finished it this month and now it is in the post and heading to my father for his birthday.

Sunday, April 25, 2010

the box, the bullet and the button

The box in which this treasure lies…the box 

… the bullet and the button.the bullet and the button 

Found as I absent-mindedly kicked the dirt with my brown lace-up blundstones at Anzak Koyu (Anzac Cove) March 1997.

Saturday, April 24, 2010

april sewing challenge :: something lined

12monthsewingchallenge

April’s sewing challenge is to sew something lined. For the first time this year I didn’t leave the sewing challenge until the last moment. All part of my endeavours to be more actinic – but I’ll write more about that in a future post. My challenge offering is this yoga bag:

yoga bag

For the lining I refashioned this sari that I picked up for a bargain price at a market in Sri Lanka many many moons ago:

the lining

Don’t freak out - I didn’t  take scissors to a beautiful silk sari… I’m pretty sure there is a lot of polyester in this fabric. I’ve never been a big fan of the browny-gold colour in the middle so I used that for the lining seeing that it wasn’t really going to be see that much down the barrel of a yoga bag.

inside the bag

The rich red and gold border around the top is really lush. I love it. Even so I think I might have another go at making a yoga bag – a bit more to my own specifications so that a pocket is included for keys and the like.

To check out more projects with a bit of lining head on over to Carolyn’s.

Friday, April 23, 2010

w.a.

Did you know that w.a. doesn’t actually stand for Western Australia? Nope. It stands for wait awhile.

No extended trading hours here in the west – we’re waiting to see how it works out in the eastern states. You wouldn’t wanna rush into these things now would you? Same could be said for daylight savings. Despite a three year trial we’re not convinced and are standing back to see what the long term effects are on those of you who live on the right hand side of the country.

We also wait awhile for our mail. Parcels take forever to arrive here.

wait awhile

I’ve been hanging out at the letter box for days now. Waiting. Waiting. Waiting. Cursing the fact that I live in the world’s most remote city.  But today it arrived! Finally. I was so desperately hoping that it would arrive today, otherwise I was going to have to wait out the long weekend. It did. *sigh of relief*

*squeal of excitement*

Look at the gorgeous wrapping paper and card…all wrapped up

The package arrived all the way from Bec in Tasmania. So it had to travel over straits of water and one huge desert to get to my little letter box.

And here it is. My new favourite pin cushions. That’s right. Not one but two!!!

beautiful pin cushionsgranny pin cushionMy family are totally loving it too. Their faces are filled with optimism that perhaps now that I am in possession of a wrist pin cushion I might stop sticking pins into couches, cushions, carpets, ironing board… and whatever else happens to be handy when I need to offload a pin. much needed wrist pin cushionbeautiful buttonAren’t they both gorgeous? Not just regular gorgeous either. I mean super dooper gorgeous. So me. I love crochet, especially in the round (people who crochet in rows are just show-offs! …okay so Bec has showed off a bit with that fancy wrist strap – I’m so glad she did) and grey is one of my all time favourite colours. Love. Love. Love my new pin cushions.

Thanks so much Bec – it is so perfect. And a big thanks and shout out to Kate for hosting this mammoth swap.

***still squealing + little claps of glee***

Thursday, April 22, 2010

a pin cushion for a friend

a pin cushion for a friend

Cindy has received and likes the pin cushion I made especially for her. Phew! I’ve gotta say I was feeling relaxed about making the pin cushion after Cindy left a comment on this post:

Cindy's comment … but it didn’t stop me from making it twice!

my creative space :: motherhood feat. florence nightingale

Ms. M not feeling too good

Okay so the real Florence Nightingale isn’t really here – that would be a tad scary since she’ll have been dead for a hundred years this coming August but I am doing my best to channel her A grade nursing skills. Ms. M is sick, and so my creative space this week is filled with shitty nappies, loads and loads of washing and one very tired and clingy little girl. She feels miserable.

I initially thought that I’d sit this week out but then it occurred to me that being a mother at any time requires loads of creativity and even more so when a child is ill. So today my creative space is preoccupied with creative ways to encourage a sick child to eat and drink, to entertain her when everything makes her want to cry and to somehow get through the mountains of washing that are building up.

But for now… for these brief moments while she is finally sleeping after a horrific night, I’m going to travel the wonderful world of blogland and see what all you creative peeps have been up to.

Why don't you join me? I’ll meet you over at Kirsty’s.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

jeans to jeans

Inspired by watching the BBC series Blood Sweat and T-Shirts (2008) and Ms. M’s desperate need for some day care clothes (garments that I’m not fussed if they come home super-stained* or if they don’t make it home at all) I took some more tiny steps into the world of refashioning.

Formerly jeans (only got a shot of one pair as the others were already in pieces when it occurred to me to take a ‘before’ photo)…

jeans

… I refashioned them into…

blue jeans collageblack stiped jeans collage

… well, um, …. more jeans.

Not a particularly fancy or creative refashion is it?

I’m really rather fond of the black striped jeans with the orange and pink floral ruffle. Too good for day care methinks. I was playing around with the tension on the overlocker and then couldn’t get it back to how it should be. Losing patience with the machine I decided to over lock the edges of the ruffles anyway – and the incorrect tension has created rather a cool effect and helped the ruffles ruffle!

Feeling the pressure to be a bit more creative with my refashioning endeavours and again out of desperate need – this time for a bath mat – I then used the remnants from one of the jeans to make this:
bath mat pics

a roughly rectangular bath mat!

Okay – so it’s not particularly glam, but it will do the job for the time being …and at least it is a bit more outside the square. Especially when you consider that there isn’t a right angle or straight line to found as part of said bath mat.

* as opposed to regular domestic stained

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

robot love

robot shirtrobot shirt

Master E. was fortunate enough to receive this most gorgeous robot shirt from the very generous Cindy.

Without a lie it is the best garment that he has ever owned. The quality of the materials and stitching are out of this world. Breathtakingly beautiful.

the master in his robot shirt

We’re so lucky and so very thankful.

Sunday, April 18, 2010

handsome in pink

IMG_2596

Here is my boy ready for bed in his brand spanking new pyjamas. I really do mean brand-spanking-new. Pyjamas hot off the sewing machine, the occasional thread still dangling and button-less so that bedtime wasn’t too ridiculously late. He sure does love them. Pink is his favourite colour (well for this week anyway!) And my concerns that the ghastly shade of pink that he chose would keep him awake were completely unfounded. The threat of taking them off him ensured that he ventured into dreamland in record time. A very happy ending to a lovely day.

Friday, April 16, 2010

flowers make me smile

flowers make me smile

Winning things makes me smile too!!! Lisa from Sunny Street Designs recently hosted a giveaway and I was one of the lucky winners. Isn’t this just the sweetest pattern?

My stitching has taken a back seat as I hook away but I’m hoping to get back into the embroidery groove. Now is a good time as I’m between crochet projects waiting for more yarn to be delivered.  Embroidery’s stem stitch is my greatest weakness which thankfully this pattern doesn’t include. So it looks like a great project for finding my stitching rhythm… and perhaps my Frente! album from way back.

Is anybody else hearing Accidentally Kelly Street when they look at this pattern???

Thursday, April 15, 2010

my creative space :: flannelette fancy

Not too long ago I sewed these pyjamas for my children using flannelette.E's checked PJsM's duck PJs It was the first time that I had sewed with flannelette and I must tell you that it was wonderful. No need to pin – the pieces of material stayed stuck to each other as I whipped them through the sewing machine. A dream to work with. Lots of fun indeed.

The process got me thinking though just how little I know about all the different types of material that are available. I am naturally drawn to cotton and linen. Within just these two categories there is such diversity and scope. Walking the aisles of fabric shops I’m regularly confronted with materials that I know little to nothing about. So now that I have been sewing for almost twelve months I’ve come to the decision that I should learn more about fabric… starting with flannelette. Now that the nights are colder these pyjama sets need some long-sleeve tops and so my adventures learning about fabric begin with flannelette. Knowing that I would be investigating the wonders of flannelette I took my boy fabric shopping to choose some flannelette for another pair of PJs. This is what he chose:

pink flannelette Ghastly isn’t it?

Thank goodness he isn’t expecting the entire family to be wearing matching PJs using this fabric, but I suspect his younger sister is going to luck out and end up with a pair made from any left over.

His decision was rather a hot topic amongst staff and other shoppers at the small textile store where the pink flannelette fabric was purchased. One other shopper, with her son in tow, just couldn’t get over the fact that he had chosen pink. Meanwhile the shop assistant felt compelled to take my son to the remnants table to show him a piece of cotton with fire trucks and police cars all over it – which he dutifully declared that he liked very much, leaving her feeling very much relieved and me feeling very much compelled to purchase.

So watch this space for my write up about all things flannelette… well, flanny PJs anyways – and now head on over to Kirsty’s place where creativity abounds.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

blanket facts

whip stitch

joining up

A couple of 10² granny blanket facts…

dimensions: 150cm x 150cm

weight: 1.9kg

sewn together using whip stitch

now well and truly adopted by this gorgeous guy

I did warn you all that I might get carried away and post lots and lots of pictures of my new beloved baby.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

a sneak peek

a pin cushion for a friend

My pin cushion offering is all wrapped and ready to be sent in the post tomorrow… on its way to a very special person. I do so much hope that the recipient likes it.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

10² = buzz

After all the excitement of yesterday I’m feeling a little flat today. The last stitch of my one hundred granny square blanket was made at 2328hrs on the one hundredth day of the 2010… what a buzz! I felt very satisfied with my achievement and was bursting with happiness. Now today it is all finished. Done. I’m feeling a bit lost without my blanket project. Time to start planning the next one I suppose.

…but before I do let me revel in the glory of my achievement for a little bit longer.

My blanket started here with this drawing…

granny blanket0001 … and with this basket of yarn…P1195424

…the first squares were started…starting...

…and soon enough there were more…  squares multiplied 

…there was crochet waiting for class at the gym…crochet at the gym 

…and at the hairdresser’s…crochet at the hairdresser

…at my desk at work…crochet at work

…and in the car.crochet in the car  

And now it is finished. finished blanket on the bedfinished blanket on the bedI’m in love with it. I can’t stop smiling when ever it comes into my view. I stop and look at it, wrap myself in it, stroke my hand across it. My mind wonders. I wonder what adventures this blanket will take with me. Who will fall asleep under it? What cushion houses will it be a roof for? What tears will be shed wrapped in it? What will be it’s first stain – tea or vegemite? Will it out survive me? Will it be as much loved then?

I am now left with this.left over yarn