Thursday, July 29, 2010

This is my week

I really am terrible at remembering to take photos. I generally carry my camera around in my handbag all the time, but I just forget to use it. I am not one of those people who takes a million photos of their kids, but sometimes I wish I was.

So, I don’t have anything to show for my little road trip to Napier, except a few things from spotlight, including a bias tape maker, pinking shears, a book of things to make with circle looms and some crochet hooks. Besides going to spotlight, nothing much else blog-worthy happened, but it’s worth mentioning that the Taradale McDonalds has an awesome indoor playground for kids, and pretty good coffee too.

As far as projects go, I have started a few things, including repurposing a t-shirt into a ukulele case.

tshirt It was a project that I really didn’t want to do, but I was begged. With my very basic sewing experience and technical knowledge I thought the process would be near impossible. As it turns out, it wasn’t too hard, and it is almost complete, just needs some hand sewing to finish it, but it is far from perfect. The photos were taken with the idea that I might be able to do a tutorial, but then we went off on a tangent and changed our original design ideas and forgot to keep taking photos.

I have also started making a t-shirt dress for little princess, but she was not co-operating when I wanted to try it on her tonight, so I gave up.

I’m still working on the crochet blanket for little princess, but I am stuck on what to do with little man’s blanket, because I can’t get any more of the same wool, so I think I will need to unravel the whole thing and start again but try to make it go further somehow, maybe add another colour or use a bigger hook??

Today we tagged along to Grindz Cafe, which is a pretty awesome cafe in Tauranga. I’ve been there a few times before, but they have made some improvements since I was last there, or I just didn’t notice before. They have a playroom full of toys for the kids, heaps of different areas to sit, great food, and the whole place is full of vintage goodies. We sat in the back room, which was pretty private and quiet, away from the noise of the very busy cafe. I remembered I had my camera, so took a few photos of the vintage goodies that surrounded our table. Unfortunately the lighting wasn’t good for photography, so the photos aren’t great.

P7290042 A collection of vintage tins, shoes and things.

P7290045A bookcase full of vintage books and a vintage radio.

P7290043Another vintage radio, and check out that cute snow white tin on top, I want it!

P7290044This one is really hard to see because of the light from the window behind, but it was a collection of vintage cases, typewriters and sewing machines. I loved the way they were grouped together, it just looked so right.

In case you can’t tell from the above, I am suffering from a slight case of thrift withdrawal. I haven’t been to a thrift store in weeks (ok, probably only 2 weeks, but it feels like forever), and to make matters worse I won’t get to visit funky junk this week either. I just have to keep telling myself I don’t need more stuff, I need to use what I have first, bla bla bla.   

This week should have been my first week of having full days to myself, but little princess is sick, so am I, so she has been home and we have just been trying to rest and get better before next week when I am supposed to be working. Only two days, but I can’t say I am really looking forward to it, except that it gets very quiet sometimes so if I run out of work to do I can sit and crochet. Getting paid to crochet is pretty awesome, right?? Well, hopefully I can get away with it without getting too many strange looks or comments from the staff and customers.

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Pretty Packages

This week has been a super special snail mail week. On Wednesday I received a package from Leonie, which contained the giveaway I won on her blog a few weeks ago. Then this morning I received my vintage baby swap goodies from Kelly.

Leonie’s package contained an awesome pouch, which fits my camera perfectly, great timing because I have lost (or little hands have stolen) my camera case. Everyone else thinks it’s awesome too, because it is also the perfect size for an iPhone/iPod touch, and both my mum and hubby want one. Unfortunately I didn’t get any photos of it before it went missing (suspiciously), but you can go here to see it along with the other goodies – the delicious Aussie Mentos (why do they get the best flavours?? Apple and Pineapple = YUM!!), and the red & white polka dot note hanger (which I haven’t had the chance to hang yet but I have the perfect spot right over my desk.

Kelly’s package contained a gorgeous little handmade dolls quilt and pillow set made from vintage sheets

P7240042P7240043Which got put straight to use as soon as little princess got home, to put her baby to sleep.

Also included was some little handmade bunting, also made from vintage sheets

P7240047Which looks so cute hanging above little man’s cot, the colours are perfect because, although I hadn’t even realised, blue and green are kinda the colours of his bed area (which is just one little wall in our room, sadly).

And these will be added to Yuna’s toy bag for our road trip tomorrow

P7240044    More vintage sheet goodness, in beanbag form, but actually they are ricebags, so can be heated in the microwave and used for keeping little fingers and toes warm :)

Also included was a pile of vintage books, including a pattern book for children’s classics illustrations in counted cross stitch, which is not something I’ve ever tried, but now that I have the book I will have to.  And all this was wrapped in a piece of vintage sheet as well, perfect.

So a big thanks goes out to these wonderful bloggers, for their very thoughtful and beautifully handmade goodies!!!

We are off on a little road trip down to Napier tomorrow, to visit some family, a spotlight, and maybe a cute little coffee shop or two. Little man’s first road trip, but he has been on a three hour flight, so I don’t think this will be too difficult because at least we can stop and get out if need be.

Catch you in a couple of days, don’t do anything crazy or too exciting while I’m gone!

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

How you doin?

Some important info about me:

I love books

Therefore I LOVE going to the library

I don’t drive

Therefore I only get to go to the library when Mum is here, because she is the only person happy to browse through all the books with me.

Mum is here



Funny story (well, kinda funny), I actually went to the library to get out “Meet me at Mike’s” which I have been wanting to get out for months, and every time I check it says it is checked in on the online library catalogue – this should have been a good clue that something was up, because it’s an awesome book which should never be checked in, it should be constantly on hold – so I thought instead of putting it on hold I would just wait until I could get to the library to get it. So, another clue that something was up was that it says it is in the non-fiction DVD section, but it’s a book. I looked in the book section where it would make sense to put it, not there, so I asked something like “I am looking for a book that says it’s a DVD on the catalogue, where would I find it?”, and the search begins. Two very helpful library assistants went on a search around the library to find the book, and the result…."Ummm, sorry, the computer thinks it’s a DVD but it’s not, so it’s just, ummm, gone????” says helpful assistant confusedly. mmmmkay, so this library has some kind of black hole??? Anyway, they took my name and phone number, promised to put on a full-on search party for the book and get back to me. How many librarians does it take to find a crafty book? I wish I could be a fly on the wall to see the search, I think my overactive imagination is making it seem far more interesting than it actually would be, or is it?

In other news, I have been making things, like 3 more fishing sets and a few other things which were for my vintage baby swap partner, Kelly. So I have no photos to show. If you are reading this Kelly, your package is on it’s way :) But creativity is currently semi-put-on-hold because we are busy getting little man settled into daycare, shopping, doing things that I normally don’t get to do without a car, and reading awesome library books. Somewhere in there I am trying to fit in listing some stuff on Felt, but that’s gonna take a while I think. August is looking to be a VERY busy month, bring on September!  By then I will have more money, lots more time, and a birthday to be in denial about. There’s a couple of oober-cool crafty books coming out soon that I would love, like Pip’s 2nd book “Sew La Tea Do”, and “Handmade Living” which is full of crafty projects from Aussie designers, including some from great bloggers like Steph.

I’m just saying.

Related people who read my blog may be interested to know.

Hint hint.

By the way, for readers of my blog who want to get updates when I post a new blog entry, I now have an email subscribe box on the sidebar.

True Blood is about to start, so I gotta go!!

Giveaway Goodness

DSC02894 Moose & Bird is having a lovely giveaway to celebrate six months of blogging, go here to enter.

SDC12256 Small Magazine is giving away one of Jennie’s gorgeous handmade dolls, go here to enter (I don’t get any extra entries for this, I just thought I’d mention it ;-p).

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Unsuccessful Thrifting & Crafting

I want to start with something positive, because the rest of this post is going to be a bit blah. I am absolutely loving this sunny weather, it makes me happy even on the most unhappy days. Will I jinx it if I say it could be an early spring?? Oh how I love spring.

Anyway, I have tried crafting lately, but I am suffering from very uncomfortable back /neck / shoulder pain. I have no idea how or why this started, but it is not getting better, in fact it seems to be getting worse. My body’s natural reaction to pain is nausea, so as well as being in pain, I am nauseated, dizzy and feeling quite queasy today, YUCK!!

But I have a mission, I chose to join the vintage baby swap at the last minute, without a clue what I would send, but with the naive idea that vintage baby stuff would be easy to find. Well, it seems all the thrift stores within a 10 minute walk/bus ride from my house have been cleared of all vintage toys, and all I can find is bins full of soft toys. Vintage children's books have been easy to find, and I have bought home a few, some that I am reluctant to part with, but I’ve made peace with it because I know that they are going to a lovely kiwi mummy blogger.

Of course I have not come home empty handed from my thrift store searches. I just haven’t come home with anything I had actually been looking for. One of my finds I am super happy with, and I can’t wait to find a special spot in my house and a special something to display inside it.

P7150028I have been seeing these on other blogs with lovely things displayed in them like cupcakes, birds nests, fruit, little bitty plants…that gives me an idea to use the little bitty blue & white plant pot I found a while ago.


I also came home with a pile of pillowcases to be used for crafty things, except for one which will be used for it’s intended purpose for little princess.

P7150026And a pile of vintage linens, doilies, lace, fabric etc.

P7150027  A book for me, which is meant for kids, but it has some really basic patterns for crochet and knitting, and I am thinking I should try knitting again. A tea cosy (that's the olive green knitted thing you can kinda see on the left), because even though I don’t actually have a teapot yet, I desperately need a tea cosy. A doll for little princess. A little cross stitch kit that was inside one of the books and I didn’t even realise it until I got home. some round wooden things, I don’t know what they are meant to be, but I am going to stick stuff to them.

And even on the worst of days, when I am feeling blah and tired and grumpy….

P7150022 P7150023I have this little guy to cheer me up with his smiles and giggles. Little man is supposed to be starting daycare next week, it makes me a bit sad, I will miss him. I am still completely undecided if he should even be going to daycare yet, as of yesterday he is 9 months old, but we are noticing some delays in development now. He can not sit up unsupported or crawl, and he has no teeth and is not at all interested in eating any kind of food other than fruit/vege puree. He can, however, laugh enthusiastically at pretty much anything I do, smile hugely whenever he sees me (including if I just turn away from him then turn back again), pivot around on his tummy when I’m not looking so that I find him in a completely different place to where I left him, and he is almost just about sleeping through the night *touch wood*. The daycare dilema is – the staff there are excellent and will know exactly what to do to meet his needs, he needs to start getting social interaction early and he needs to learn to be ok away from me, but on the other hand, I can give him quality one on one time, I have gotten him into a really good routine which will get completely messed up when he starts daycare, and he doesn’t really need to go to daycare yet. I guess it’s worth a try, to see how it goes, and if I decide that it’s not working for him we can put it off until next year. I can’t believe in three months my little man will be ONE. Wow this year is really flying by.

And I think this post has gone on long enough. I’ve just had a couple of parcels from overseas delivered to my door, so I am excited to open them up and see what’s inside.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

P{l}ay it Forward

play it forward

Late last night, when I should have been sleeping but instead was blog surfing, I came across Nadine’s blog. While browsing through I saw this post and couldn’t believe my luck that there was still one place left. So here I am continuing the pay it forward swap, and here’s how it works:

~I will make a handmade gift for the first 3 interested people who comment on this post.

~I have 365 days to do it in…

~What it will be and when it will arrive is a total surprise!

The catch is that you must participate as well:

~you must have a blog.

~after you leave your comment here, write up a pay it forward post on your blog to keep the fun going! Just cut and paste this one if you like, which I did!

Sounds fun doesn’t it? What are you waiting for :)

***All three places have now been taken :)***

Monday, July 12, 2010

Thrifty Finds

A lot of this weekend was spent costume planning and shopping. We have an event coming up in a month which has a theme, A night at the Oscars, so we have to either go as a movie character or dress for the red carpet. Well, I don’t own anything remotely  suitable for wearing on the red carpet, and I’ve always been a fan of playing dress-ups, so we had to come up with movie characters we could pull off.We decided on some characters, went through what we already have around the house, then decided a thrift store search was in order to find the rest of what we needed. Of course I can’t visit thrift stores without coming home with things other than what we went for in the first place, so here are some of the things I came home with.

P7120029 A fantastic black and white crochet blanket. I can’t believe that someone would just get rid of this, it obviously has hours and hours of work put in to it, not to mention a lot of wool! And I paid $6.99 for it, scandalous.

P7120027More vintage buttons, all very big. A bag of 36 for $1.49. Little princess called them treasures, which is a very accurate description if you ask me.

P7120024  I think this little ironing board is so nifty, it has a hook for hanging in a wardrobe, and little fold out legs so you can put it on the table or something. I also now have a brand new iron, the first iron I have ever owned. Obviously, ironing is not on my usual housework schedule, nor will it be, ever. This is purely for my new sewing addiction, because some things are just easier to sew when you have an iron.


Yummy vintage red leather suitcase, random bag of wool, random bag of doilies, a doily-like collar (I think), wreath, and a sheet to use as backing for my quilt.

P7120022Some goodies for little princess. She got some more books but wouldn’t let me take a photo because she was “busy”. I got a few vintage books too, but I think some of them will be sent to Kelly as part of the vintage baby swap.

As well as all this we did find a few items to add to our costumes, and we are still missing a few things. Where on earth will I find an old fashioned straight razor? And I still need to find a corset, and a wig for hubby…..

Want to know who we are going as?

tyuk  Sweeney Todd and Mrs Lovett

Head over to Sophies to see more delicious Flea Market Finds. Also linking up to Thrifty Treasures over at Southern Hospitality.

Friday, July 9, 2010

Funky Junk Friday

I feel like I need to buy Funky Junk a present to say thanks for all the wonderful Junque you keep providing to brighten my dreary winter days. What do you buy a building that holds Junque?? It could do with better lighting, maybe I should buy it some 300 watt light bulbs. But that’s not a very good thank you gift.

Maybe a nice poem….

Funky Junk you are my savoir

You rescue me from boredom

Save me from my over-spending ways

provide me with more fabric

and vintage goodness

than I can ever hope to use

your dark, dusty interior

will never deter me

for I know now of the treasures

hidden within.

What do you think? That was a spur of the moment creation, inspired by these great finds…

P7090020Two bags of fabric, some of them BIG pieces, like that brown one is about 6 metres, and the pink is about 3 metres.

P7090021One FANTASTIC pattern book and a magazine complete with patterns.

P7090022P7090023These are some of the projects out of that pattern book, I just have to make a tea cosy and these cute crochet balls.   

P7090028 Maybe I can use some of this wool to make them. I have no idea if this stuff is actually wool or acrylic, but the label on the pink ones say to handwash only, so that means its wool, right? and the brown feels like wool, but doesn’t have a label.

P7090024Some vintage (and maybe not so vintage) linen goodies, like 2 vintage pillow cases, a huge rectangle polka dot table cloth, a table runner, some kind of padded table mat, and some doilies.

P7090026 And these very nice handmade silky floral scarves.

Plus the 113 squares of fabric I have cut out to make my puff pillow quilt. Yes it’s going to take much longer and be a lot more work, but I have decided that a puff pillow quilt will make me so much happier than just an ordinary quilt. Now I just need to find backing fabric and cut 113 squares (or actually 113 is an odd number so that won’t work, I’ll have to do some maths to work that one out) out of that, then I can start sewing.

Thursday, July 8, 2010

My Creative Space


This is the beginning of my very first quilt. These fabrics were all found in Funky Junk tonight. I was inspired by them and went on a square cutting frenzy. I don't know how many squares I have cut, this doesn't show all of them, so it is more than enough for a queen size quilt I think. This was going to be my puff pillow quilt, but I am thinking that possibly it might just be an ordinary simple block quilt. Maybe, or maybe I'll change my mind while I toss and turn thinking about it all night. I have a few more great funky junk finds that I will try to photograph tomorrow.

I feel like I just want to get my sewing machine out and sew all night, to finish this thing which is exciting now, but will be less exciting in the morning, and even less exciting by the time I actually get a chance to do some sewing. Hopefully if I keep the squares somewhere I can see them it will keep me inspired.

Puff pillow quilt....ordinary quilt....puff pillow quilt...ordinary will I decide.

To see more creative spaces head over to Kootoyoo.
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Tuesday, July 6, 2010

I am a winner

I actually won something, and it's a great something too. I won the giveaway I blogged about over at Kiwi at Heart.

And while I'm on the subject, here is another great giveaway I would love to win.

The winner gets their choice of necklace!! Go over to Kute Kiwi to enter.

Sunday, July 4, 2010

Funky Junk Finds

So after a very long period of not being able to get into funky junk I finally got in on Thursday, and I totally made up for all the times I missed out. Just in case you haven’t read previous posts about funky junk, this is a place where people can take their stuff that they don’t want anymore, like they would normally take it to a thrift store or dump it. Then you can become a member for a small annual fee, or if you belong to a group that has a membership like I do, it is free. Yes, everything I bring home from funky junk was free of charge. So lets see what I found this time shall we.

P7040023A few little items to add to my shelf display. These two cute little birds were at the bottom of a box of wrapping paper and random bits of cardboard and packaging, one of them has a broken tail, but if I turn it just right it’s not noticeable and they fit perfectly with my theme. The little elephant in an egg also had a mummy elephant but she was a bit too damaged, so now the little egg has been adopted by the birdies. I have started a new collection, so far I have 2 wooden thread spools, one of them I found in funky junk, the other one I already had, so I’ll have to hurry up and use more thread so I’ll have more to add to them.

P7040020More vintage pattern books, and a couple of crafty books. I just can’t believe what some people consider junk, that antique style book is in perfect condition, and while possibly being very 90’s, which is not exactly the in thing right now, does antique style ever really go out of style?

P7040024 A silver (??) hairbrush. Pretty things are nice to have. I don’t know what I’ll do with it, but I had to have it.

P7040027A set of seat cushion covers, which I will one day make into floor cushions probably. The top one is filled with fabric and random bits and pieces.  One of the things I have found a lot of at funky junk is rejected thrift shop stuff, like doilies, tablecloths, placemats etc that are slightly damaged.

P7040028Like these little itty bitty doilies that I can see being made into brooches (it’s hard to tell from the photo how small they are, so they are about 5cm/2 inches in diameter). I’d like to try dying them too, because I have seen great results online from people dying doilies bright colours.

I’ve already started cutting out more fish for fishing sets that have been requested. And today we went hardware store shopping for “rods”.

On a totally unrelated subject (well slightly related because it’s all in the name of craft) my M.I.L gets a fantastic magazine sent to her each month from South Africa called Idees. The whole thing is in Afrikaans, and I can only kinda read it, but not being one to follow directions anyway I love looking through it to get ideas, so I can see why it has that name. She was showing me the latest issue tonight, and it shows how to make the most gorgeous quilt I’ve ever seen, and I think I must make one. Right now. well, not right now, but as soon as possible. This is the only picture I could find on the website, see the puff pillow quilt draped across the bottom of this bed?

11229e82-2 Love. Love. Love. Want. it. now.

So in the not too distant future I will be starting myself a funky junk fabric finds puff pillow quilt. yum.

I just have to decide on the colours. or should I say negotiate the colours. because I intend to have this on our bed, the bed we share, therefore it has to be agreed upon apparently. bummer. (because I vaguely had visions of a vintage sheet puff pillow quilt but that will never get spouse approval, never in a million years).

Saturday, July 3, 2010

Thrifty Finds…

Another trip to my local thrift store this week was unavoidable, because I had mail to post, and the post box just happens to be about 5 meters past the thrift store. Who can walk past a thrift store without going in? Certainly not me. And I most definitely can not go into a thrift store and not buy anything. nope. it’s impossible.

P7010020 It was really hard to get a decent photo of these plates, but in reality they are gorgeous. They have a texture/pattern on them that is very hard to photograph. They will not be eaten off, but will be great for display.

P7010025 The rest of my finds: A glass apothecary jar probably destined to be a button display or maybe a little moss terrarium like this. A smurfs mug ( just about squealed when I saw it, and I think the lady at the counter was a bit miffed that it was prices so low at $1.00 because she made a point of telling me how valuable those things are now). A tiny little blue & white china plant pot. A few vintage pattern/craft books. An embroidery hoop. A bag of random bits of wool, for making granny squares or other little crochet goodies. A few doilies. And a couple of fairly big bits of fabric.

P7010026 I also got this great knitted cardigan for little princess, but the buttons on it are hideous. The are slightly tarnished gold tinted metal buttons, yuck! I don’t often see a button I don’t like but these ones have to go. I haven’t decided what I will replace them with yet, I’ll have to go through my stash and see what I can find, or more button shopping may be in order :)

I also have some great funky junk finds, but I haven’t had a chance to take photos yet, because the last couple of days have been all about getting the house clean and tidy and on it’s best behaviour for viewing this weekend by a very promising potential buyer (keep all fingers and toes crossed for us please). I’ve been dying to get onto my sewing machine to get a few things done, but I had to pack it away so my dining table resembles a functional dining table. It’s funny how happy a clean house makes me feel, but I can never keep it clean for long because housework is not even close to the top of my priorities list.

Linking to Sophie’s Flea Market Finds.