Wednesday, September 2, 2015

Project Wise Owl - complete!

It's really finished! 

Annnd two posts in one day! Trust me, I'm more surprised (and to be honest, a little impressed!) than anyone :)
Now to stitch his little friend and find a place to hang them on the picture wall.
What a lovely, crafty start to Spring!

Tuesday, September 1, 2015

The view from here

Having a sick and snotty tot is no fun for anyone.
But it's not too hard to see the silver linings here - sleepy snuggles and vintage stitching!

This owl is from a set of two 1970's needle points I purchased on Etsy a while back.
The cover is very faded and doesn't do the colours justice so I was rather delighted when I finally opened the kit and saw all the lovely coloured threads (for a true representation you'll have to wait for the finished pic!)

This guy is called 'Wise Owl' - he's quite a stern looking fellow, don't you think? Or is that just the look of wisdom? ;)

While Baby sleeps, I'll keep stitching - and it looks like I might finish it soon too!

With a little optimism, silver linings are everywhere x

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

There's nothing quite like a posy...

To cheer the heart, lift the spirit...
and break the ice after such a long and unexpected hiatus...

I'm back in blog-land and will try my hardest not to be away for so long again!
Whilst I have been offline, the blog views have reached into the tens and tens of thousands - thanks largely to the crochet tiara and chevron blanket patterns - and I thank you all for visiting! It really means so much x

I'm off to enjoy this late winter sunshine while it lasts...

Happy Wednesday all x

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Here, there and everywhere...

That's how I feel at the moment.
So much on the go with a new business, a new product launch, a craft circle to run and three Littles who are growing up before my very eyes.
And a tragedy in our neighbourhood which has thrown every other thought and plan out of the window and made everyone in our community, I'm sure, reevaluate their priorities in life.
The 2 year old nephew of my oldest, bestest friend, Hunny, was tragically killed by a falling tree as he slept in his cot, during a storm a couple of weeks ago. It is by far the most incomprehensible and gut wrenching thing to happen to a family and I fear there is nothing that I, nor the rest of our community can do to help. In saying that, the community have been so wonderful, so giving of their time and goods to try to help the family get through this, but really I wonder if there is anything anyone could ever do to help ease the pain of losing a child. 
I cannot bear to think on it too much as my heart is breaking, along with everyone else's. 
This family have been my family since I can remember.
Hunny and I have been besties since kinder and our eldest daughters went to our kinder together too.  And although we have all gone our own ways to some degree, I feel my childhood, and therefore my very own foundations, are firmly rooted in their family home. 
I have seen the house grow and change (as is often the case when a home is owned by a builder), watched as a third generation made it their own, and there is barely a childhood memory of mine that doesn't involve this family home.
I am but a piece of furniture in their house - even now that I'm an adult and have children of my own, they have always welcomed me and allowed me to just loiter. Just listen to the goings on of the day. Just make a cuppa and have a chat. Just be.  
I am sorry for such a solemn post but I needed to vent a little, in the public privacy of my blog.
I do plan to post some WIP's shortly and share some exciting updates about our Five but for now I shall leave you with these words: 
Hold your children close. Let them know how much you love them.  And remind yourself everyday how lucky you are to have them in your life.
Much love x

Sunday, February 8, 2015

Purpley Mits! - A Pattern Test

One of the (many) cool things about Ravelry is that you get to know lots of designers and sometimes you can be lucky enough to test a pattern before it gets published.  I was one of these lucky girls a couple of weeks ago and got to test a new pattern for a fellow Aus crocheter!  As the pattern hasn't been released yet, I won't reveal her name or the pattern details, but I can show you some pics!

The really dense stitch work will keep hands extra warm this winter
 It was so much fun to read through a new pattern and share my thoughts and - as geeky as this sounds - report back any errors and typos etc.  I've always been an editor at heart!  I got to work on some techniques I'd never used before and had to pay close attention to everything I did which was brain-draining but a good lesson in perseverance!

I tried to use only the pink and purple parts of the yarn but you can see some of the green just made it into the top right mit.
As the pattern called for a variegated yarn and a solid yarn, I had to use the only variegated in my stash which wasn't already allocated to another project, and it was California 8 ply - not my first choice in yarn but it did the job.  

One thing I have noted is that the cuffs are really tight due to the type of stitch used (slip stitches).  I tried to counter this by using a bigger hook than called for but Berry can still just get her little hands in (it is meant to be a small lady size).  When I make another pair, I will go up another hook size for the cuff and stick to the correct size hook for the body.

You can check out the project page on Ravlery here and when the official pattern is published it will be linked for you to purchase.

Happy Monday friends! x

Thursday, January 1, 2015

The First Project 2015: A Blanket for Bear

A new year is the perfect time to dust the cobwebs off the stash and start making something new! 
One of my New Year's Ideas (a lot less stressful than full blown resolutions!) is to crochet a blanket for Bear. It's been on my mind for so long but the commitent of a blanket is pretty huge and I just haven't been in the right headspace. I'm happy with the decision to start it now and have promised myself that it won't become an expectation or an effort, it will simply be enjoyable making something for my first born to snuggle in when the weather turns.  And as the depth of winter is so far away, there is no rush to have it completed, so I can meditate along to the rhythmic back and forth of a big, stripey blanket and simply enjoy the process.

I came across the pattern called Littlefolds Boys Blanket on Ravelry and thought it was just the ticket!  Simple yet lots of options for colour, and quite vintage-looking.
So I broke out the stash and got to it.  The pattern calls for a 5.5mm hook and a foundation of 142ch but I grabbed a 6mm and chained 112. 
Just to be different ;)
The pattern is simple and repetitious and I'm enjoying how quickly it's working up.  
I've chosen typical boyish colours of blues and red and thrown in some olive greens, all on a foundation of soft grey for every other row.  I think these colours will keep it looking vintage-y and also appeal to Bear's taste for grown-up, masculine style.

It will be interesting to see how long this blanket takes as I plan to make it a full single bed size - I'll be sure to keep you up to date with its progress!
Oh and a big Happy New Year to all! x

Thursday, December 4, 2014

Kid's Chores for Christmas Cash

On my way home from one of those dastardly Big Centres yesterday, I had a Grand Idea and I thought it was good enough to share with you lovely friends!

Yesterday I made my last dash down the mountain to pick a up a layby and a few bits and pieces... when it struck me - our kids don't have any gifts to give to each other!
To our family, Christmas is all about being together with those we love and care about. It's about the spirit of giving - to each other and those less fortunate.  It's a time to be merry and thankful and generous and eat lots of delicious food!
So what a fabulous time for the children to stop the fighting and bickering and name-calling and so on, and think about how well they really know one another.  How much they really do love one another. Because they do.  They just have a funny way of showing it sometimes!
So back to my Grand Idea.
I have written up a list of chores for the kids and each chore will earn them a set amount of money.  I think I'm being pretty generous with the amounts - it is Christmas after all!
From now until a few days before Christmas, the kids can do their chores and earn as much money as possible.
There are three conditions for the money they earn.
One: The money must be spent on your siblings and other loved ones. 
Two: The money must be spent locally.
Three:  Any remaining money is to be donated to a local charity.

I ran this idea by the Big Kids last night and they thought it was GREAT!  
I love it. 
I'm so happy that they are excited about the idea and hope it really works to help nurture the spirit of giving within them.  It may even teach them a little about economics!

Here is our list of Kid's Chores for Christmas Cash:

Feed the dogs 50c
Empty the dishwasher $1
Tidy bedroom PROPERLY $5
Clean junk out of the car PROPERLY $5
Fold AND put away washing (10 pieces) $1
Empty compost 50c
Water plants 50c

There is plenty of room for more chores... I just have to think of them... suggestions welcome!

So they have the potential to earn a good amount of money over the next couple of weeks, enough to buy some decent items ie. not just plastic junk.  I'll be really interested to see what they choose for each other and for Baby and will definitely let you know.
If you like the idea and give it a go, I'd love to hear what chores you come up with and how it goes for your family!

Much love and a very Merry Christmas to you and yours (just in case I don't make it back before then!) x