Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Christmas star crafting.....

 Hello everyone!
I thought I'd show you what I have been making this week, something a bit Christmassy, as December is nearly here!  It is a cute little knitted star, I am loving making these, the little diamonds are quite addictive and I love all the colour combo possibilities!

I was taking a bit of a look around blogland and came across the pattern for these stars 
here at the lovely blog  Dutch Blue,  (now called The Dutch Sisters) of course I had to give it a try!  I have kind of given it a Little Woollie touch, but it is pretty much the same pattern.

And then I noticed that Vanessa at Do You Mind If I Knit  was making the same little diamonds, I'll be interested to see what she does with them, her work is always gorgeous!

I've really enjoyed dusting off the knitting needles for this one, so I thought I'd share my little side track into knitting....... here are some of the little diamonds straight of the needles, lots of lovely colours!  I am using 8ply pure wool for these in a variety of brands, it is a great pattern for using up little straggly bits of wool left over from other things.

.....I like the striped effect, so have made many stripey combinations.

........after a bit of blocking they hold their shape better....... are some of the colour combos I had fun playing around with (and have yet to finish)....

 .....a Christmassy colourway..........

.......and here is the one I have sewn up so far, I didn't do matching colours for back and front, I like the mix of colours and stripes, I think they all go together .......

.............I decided to crochet my star together instead of sewing right around it, here it is all pinned up ready to be crocheted.......

............and here is the finished star! I am really pleased with how this worked out, and have lots more planned, they are fun, fun, fun!!

I popped 2 nice vintage buttons in the middle, one on each side, so I can hang these babies and let them twirl a bit, this way there is not really a back and a front.

 Haven't got around to hanging it yet, but might do a bit of a bigger ta dah when I have finished a few more and can get a bit more of a massed effect, I envision a lovely dangley display of colourful stars, maybe in a window..........I have a heap of lovely 4ply wool that might be just the thing for some smaller ones too.....hmmmmm.

I have a few other Christmas decoration ideas to try out, so will show you how they turn out when I get around to them!

Back to the clickety clack of my needles, I think my crochet hook is getting jealous..haha

Have  a great day!

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Advent Swap......

So, it's nearly December and look what  arrived here the other day!
My advent swap parcel full of lovely packages, looking very festive and cheery, and with a whole heap of candy canes too!!  The lovely Vickie from Vickies Crafting was my partner for this swap, and I think she has sent a gorgeous parcel of Christmassy happiness!  Thank you so much!  

I have to say the bloggy community is a pretty great one. When I started blogging, I never dreamed it would be such an inspiring, generous, sharing, and rewarding community of people with similar interests, experiences etc, spread all around the world but joined by the blogging experience. Just amazing!

Thank you once again Vickie!  I will do a few showings through December of things as they get revealed I think!

Christmas crafting post coming soon! (just got to finish it first!)

Monday, November 28, 2011

Raspberry jam = yum!

How was your weekend?

From now till Christmas our weekends are looking pretty full, lots of catch ups and parties to attend, and all the end of year school things too, plus a birthday, so we will be busy, busy, busy!!

Saturday it just poured with rain, so I tried to do some housework and tidy the place up as we were having my in laws over for dinner.  Nice pleasant evening, I cooked calamari again, and it was yum!

 Yesterday the rain stopped, so I could pick the raspberries that were ready, I picked 1.7 kg! 
Max was impressed!  It has been a great crop so far this season, all up I have picked 3.9 kg, and there are plenty more to come. 

I decided to make some jam from 1kg of these ones and max and Andre ate the rest, they are loving being able to gorge on raspberries.

 .........very simple recipe, equal sugar to fruit and 2 tbsp lemon juice............
.....low heat till sugar dissolves, then bring to a boil for 15 - 20 minutes,.........
.....pour into sterilised jars while hot and seal!

 ........this is what I ended up with, 5 jars of homemade raspberry jam, 
and I have to say it is pretty damn delicious!!
So I'm feeling quite the little home maker at the moment, loving my little self sufficient morning!

hope you had some fun on your weekend!

PS. Also did quite a bit of crafting, looking forward to showing you what's going on on this front very soon!


Thursday, November 24, 2011

My Creative and white......

My creative space today is all about sewing in the loose ends on my red and white bunting and blocking the pieces and crocheting them all together.
This is my contribution to a Kris Kringle swap organised by The Haby Goddess, and it really needs to be finished today for the deadline!  It is a mystery type swap, so I don't know yet who I have to send it to, it is fun making things for strangers, I just hope they like it!

I have also been making a bit of progress on my random stripey Christmas stocking, and with my swap things out of the way I should be able to get this finished this week.  I'm thinking I will put a plain back on it maybe felt or some type of blanket material, I think one side of ultra busyness will be enough.

So, I am starting to make head way on my Christmas crafting,  I just had a call from Gary at work, he has just checked our household budget for the next month and it is not looking great, so I am hoping handmade presents are going to be all the rage this year!!  I am sure Max will love a crocheted Nintendo DS, haha....

If you have some time, have a look over here at the far more creative spaces of lots of others.
Have a great day!

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Brown paper packages....


I have finally gotten organised and finished getting my Advent Swap parcels together.
I was mulling over how to wrap them ( I know, I think about all the big issues here...haha), and decided to go with the brown paper and string look. I stamped my date cards to add a bit of colour.  I think they look nice and rustic, I hope Vicki my swap partner likes them!  They are currently winging their way to the Northern Territory, and should be there early next week. 
So, one thing to cross off my to do list! Yay.

I have nearly finished my thing for the other Christmas swap I signed up for,  but will show you that tomorrow when I take photos.

Just thought you might like to see the gorgeous colours of the self sown Shirley poppies in our garden at the moment......

so beautiful!  They really glow in the late afternoon sun......

Anyway, hope your week is going well, see you later!

Friday, November 18, 2011

Crafty overload....


How are you all going today?

I'm feeling a tad frustrated!
I have been spending a bit of time on Pinterest, and there are so many gorgeous inspiring things to look at, and all these ideas charging through my head, things I just have to make, and then I look at my work space and it is in this state!  There is a big morning gone tidying this room up so I can start creating. Doh!

It seems that everything cluttering up the rest of the house was chucked in here during the Big Party Cleanup of 2011. ( I'll admit, most of the clutter has something to do with my latest crafty tangents, and I do tend to spread my making through out the house)

My poor sewing machine is kind of buried in the middle of all this stuff, and I need her to be in a nice spacious place ready to hum along, whipping up some cuteness.  

I have posted these photos to make myself clean up, tomorrow morning is supposed to be stormy, so no gardening jobs to distract me!  Just you wait for the 'after' photos!

This clean up could take awhile, so to make sure I don't forget all the lovely things I want to make here is a list to remind myself 

*felted balls, then colourfully embroidered and made into Xmas decorations (must buy wool rovings)

*embroidery on calico/cotton/felt then cut out and stuffed and hung on a tree

*cute little wallet sewn from scraps of fabric (saw this in the Mollie Makes with the peas on front cover)

*in same vein, cute patchworky journal cover

* hybrid fabric and crochet pillow slips ( stripes of fabric and stripes of crochet in between, I think it will look better than it sounds!)

*soft toys from my thrifted blankets, elephant first

*cute little felt mice from pattern I bought the other day (must show you guys, soooo cute!)

* mini crochet squares for cushion cover

*crochet polka dot blanket (big project - probably 2012 I think)

*knitted coin purse

*crocheted lacy trims from Japanese book

*patchwork pillow slips for our bed, with cute crochet edges

*some paper mache creations

*knitted beekeeper blanket...............

Thats all I can think of off the top of my head, I also have all my unfinished stuff to work on too, so definitely need to get my crafty mojo going!! 

Do you have lots of ideas going around your head too?
There aren't enough hours in the day!

Have a great day!

Thursday, November 17, 2011

My creative space.....stocking on the go


My creative space today is about my Christmassy crochet that I want to try and finish soon.  
This is the thing I have been working on recently ( well there are lots of other things on the go too, but I can't show you those as they are secret swappy stuff!)

 It is my version of a granny chic stocking, a bit over the top, but I am liking how it is coming along. 
I am onto the leg bit now, which should be quite quick, I am going to have some wider bands of colour here so I can embroider/sew some extra stuff on, just in case there isn't enough going on in it already! haha....

.......popped a few bobble rows in for good measure......

It is a bit slow going, as I am trying to write the pattern down as I go, and I have no idea how I am going to do the reverse side, I don't know how to crochet from the opposite direction.

Maybe one side will be fancy and one side will be plain, so you can change it depending on your mood!
Something to think about anyway.

I am joining in over here today, pop over and see what everyone else has been up to.

Have a great day!

PS. Thanks for the birthday wishes ladies, you are all so lovely!

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Yum Yum......

Hi there!
What have you been up to today?

It was my birthday today, although it feels like Saturday was my birthday with the party and all that.
I have had a lovely day with visits from my aunt and sister and nephew, and a great lunch with my mum and dad.  I haven't really seen my husband much yet as I have been doing the basketball run this evening and he and Jesse play tennis tonight, but I'm sure we will catch up later this evening and watch an episode of 'The Living Dead', this new series he's found that we are getting a bit hooked on. 

I have been very spoilt, and received lovely presents and cards from everyone, there was a bit of a build up to the big 40, and I feel very lucky in the life I lead.
Lucky with the people in it, lucky with the things I do, lucky in the place I live, lucky in the good health we have.  
I hope the next 40 years are just as good!

Oh and to top it off, I picked our first 110gr of raspberries today! Yay! Delicious! They didn't last long, but there are plenty more where these came from!  They looked so good I had to take a photo!  

......I am starting to freak out a little with the fast approaching end of year busy time....... 
I  committed to a few Christmassy swaps and need to make some things for them, and deadlines are coming up quick!
And the calendar is filling up with social events and parties from now to Christmas, and there are lots of things I want to make for presents, and I wanted to fit in a Christmas giveaway too!! Eek...
Taking a deep breath, writing a list and checking it twice.
Have to prioritise, and just start on something, or finish off something properly!

I'll try and show you the progress on some of these makes, the ones not for swaps anyway.

Well, better go and get cracking on that Christmas list, the hook and yarn are calling!

Sunday, November 13, 2011

the one where we throw a party.....

Hello there!
 I have been absent from my blog and the computer in general this past week, and it feels like ages since I last posted, it has been a busy time at our place!

I am turning 40 this week, so we thought we would have a party (you know, any excuse... :) ). 
This did entail a major house clean/declutter/garden makeover, etc, which turned into a huge task!
(Our house is usually quite untidy and messy and I tend to only get it in tip top condition for special occasions) 
 Luckily my fab parents and husband gave me lots of help to get things looking celebratory, and my family and friends came over last night and we had a great night!
Lots of chatting and catching up, eating and drinking, playing pool and some good music, and general funtimes!

............We hung some of these paper ball thingys..... think they will be up till after Christmas and continue with the party atmosphere.....

.........I made some big paper flowers for a colourful party garland..........

........we cracked out the special cups........ and filled them with some yummy drinks.....

.......colourful bendy straws to suck up a margarita or two...........

......received some lovely flowers....

.....and picked these guys from the garden......
(David Austin rose 'Jude the Obscure' - divine!!)

As part of the 'make the house presentable' operation, my dad put my painted papered box on the wall for me and I got a few of my crochet jars into it......

.....and  found my ceramic bottles looked right at home on top.....

The garden is looking a treat too, but I don't have any pictures to show you, maybe a garden post coming soon.

I have a great family and lovely friends and they all made me feel very spoilt and lucky and loved, so it was an excellent way to say goodbye to my 30's and look forward to the next decade of living.
(Although not officially till this week)

Oh, and I got my hair cut again during the week and have gone shocking blonde, so much so that every time I catch my reflection, I get a little surprised shock, I look quite different! 

I haven't had much crafting time recently, and I've missed it!!  I have managed to start a little idea for something Christmassy.  Now that the big do is history, I can get back to other fun things and hopefully have a few finished things to share soon!

Anyway, hope you all have had a great week too, and I am going to try and catch up on the recent bloggy happenings over the next few days.... see you later!

Friday, November 4, 2011

Softie wants new home....


Thought I'd show you my little softie doll that I crocheted for the Softies For Mirabel appeal. 
(I am really getting stuck into finishing things at the moment!)
She's all dressed up ready for a new home!

And this is the thing I was working on last post, the partay dress!
I am very happy with how this turned out, it was the most fun part to make too.
I made the dress and the doll up as I went, and I think it looks ok.

..........bit of a freaky, starey face, she looks a bit ditzy I think, my embroidery skills could use some improvement.

 .......just hanging around.....

........and with the other toys in the 'hood, just chillin' out....
Hope someone out there will love her.

I have a weekend of gardening and housework ahead of me so it was nice to get a finished project out of the way. 

What have you got planned for the weekend?

Talk soon!

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

something new......

Just a quick peek at something I'm working on at the mo........
should be finished soon!