Saturday, April 25, 2009

Ta Da! Finished!

Finally it is finished! This is our new Summer quilt made from the beautiful City Girl range. Very simple but I like it. Now I just have to declutter the rest of the bedroom and make some European cushions with the leftover fabric. Ironic that I finish our Summer quilt just as the weather cools!
Adelaide Hills Spinners and Weavers are having their Open Day at Littlehampton Memorial Hall on May 1st. This is always a great display of handspun and handmade garments and it is worth going just for the free mulled wine! Unfortunately we will be in Melbourne catching up with two of my bestest buddies for a child free weekend (yes, I know, life is so tough!) but I have been stockpiling some little knitted hats for the Guild table. This is the world's easiest beanie pattern and perfect for mindless knitting in front of the telly. Also great for using up odd bits of wool. I love to spin and knit in winter!
Cast on 80 stitches.
Knit 10 rows garter stitch.
Knit 20 rows stocking stitch.
Knit 8 Knit 2 tog, knit 8 knit 2 tog to end.
Purl 7 Purl 2 tog, purl 7 purl 2 tog to end.
Knit 6 Knit 2 tog, knit 6, knit 2 tog to end.
Continue like this until you get down to Knit 2 tog, Knit 2 tog, Knit 2 tog. Then thread wool back through remaining stitches.
You can alter and experiment with this basic pattern to use favourite stitches, make wider or narrower brims etc. I have been playing with adding tassels and felt shapes and crocheted flowers. Lots of fun!
How wonderful is it to have the rain? I have not been sleeping well lately (very frustrating) but the last two nights ... drifting off to the sound of the rain on the roof has been bliss! Somehow it always seems fitting for it to rain on Anzac Day too. Did anyone catch Better Homes and Gardens last night? Fast Ed had a luscious looking Anzac cake - thinking that might have to be an option this week!
Before the wet weather hit the kids and I were enjoying the lovely Autumn days. Our front verandah has become the favourite spot for lunch (we have an unfortunate lack of lawn and shade) Note the tea set with the teeny tiny cups and Hannah's revolting but treasured granny square blanket (she wanted one like the ones for Wraps with Love) And yes, they are hot chip sandwiches (my favourite!)
Wherever you are and whatever you are doing today, ENJOY!
Keep smiling,

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Thrifty finds

I love blog surfing sites like "Little Jenny Wren" and "Little Cotton Rabbits" and "Eleanor and Ruby" and seeing all of the gorgeous homey things they uncover when looking for bargains. I am lucky enough to have a wonderful op shop in our little town - Nairne Market is a treasure trove of lucky finds and I have to share three of my recent purchases.

Look at this beautiful needlepoint that someone finished only to never use it? I'm thinking this will be a cushion for my crafty room (as the girls are complaining that the new table is a bit high for the old chairs!)

Then there was this bit of Autumn loveliness for the princely sum of $2.00. There are a few faint spots on it but I can live with that! I am imagining this on a table with a vase full of glorious autumn leaves and rose hips? Come to think of it I don't think I should have left the $2 cream jug behind at the op shop as it would have been perfect for the leaves - arggghh!

This sweet little Easter bunny cost me 50cents and he was our only easter decoration this year as we didn't get around to dyeing eggs or making an easter tree and I couldn't find my big raggy bunny who normally guards the easter baskets.

Funny how you can get such pleasure out of spending a few dollars on a few simple things? I look at Nairne Market as being a little like a trip to the movies - it is money well spent on something you don't actually need but something that gives you pleasure. I've always had a thing for old and handmade things, and I feel good about rescuing someone else's handiwork.

It is a beautiful Autumn day here in the hills. I'm thinking we might go for a walk to the park later and just soak up the last few days of the school holidays.
Have a great day,
keep smiling,


Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Happy Easter

We had such a lovely Easter - a quiet one to enjoy friends and family. Snapped these photos of the cherubs as we were on our way to a barbecue yesterday. Hoping everyone enjoys first week of school holidays.

keep smiling,


p.s. didn't get nearly as much crafting done as I would like but did manage some binding so now have only 1/5 of our bed quilt to go LOL

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

What a long time it has been since I last blogged! We have been SOOOO busy. We have just come back from Kangaroo Island and also had Mum and Dad down from Queensland for a bit over a week. Wonderful family times! These photos have nothing to do with Kangaroo Island but might show you a bit of what we have been up to before that.
First is a bunny I made for the Kindy raffle - this is loosely based on "Miss Milly" in Rosalie Quinlan's beautiful book "Gift". I have since made two others for the cherubs for Easter. The nicest thing about this project is that they were made from flannel squares I bought cheap in Melbourne about ten years ago (I think the bundle cost me $2) They were even stuffed with leftover quilt waddding offcuts so essentially cost nothing to make! It was also quite a nostalgic project for me because when I was a tiny girl my Nanny made me a corduroy bunny (with overalls) and I always wanted to make a similar one for my kids.
Second is a shot of my mischievious toddler. The Mum in me was not amused to find that he had dragged a kitchen chair over to the sink to empty a full bottle of handwash into the sink and proceed to "wash" dishes that were already clean but the Early Childhood Teacher delighted in the sensory nature of it all (and he was having SO much fun!) Dan's clothes were just soaked and there was water all over the floors and benches. He even washed the toaster for us (thank God it wasn't turned on!)
Hannah recently went to her first ever sports day at the local primary school. She was so anxious about it and a bit reluctant to go but had a WONDERFUL time.
This beautiful bunch of flowers really made my day. Thanks Althea.
You have to love Autumn in the Hills for roses. Will try to post a few photos of my own garden over the next few days. We have also enjoyed the Autumn goodness of a loaded plum tree in our backyard (we made plum jam!) and the kids have delighted in finding acorns on Autumn walks - now Hannah is quoting poets: "live yon life like an oak..." One day we will have a big enough backyard to plant an oak and then I will really feel like I have gardened for the children of the future.
Last but not least (and no photo yet but it will come once I've cleared the 300 or so photos I took on KI off the camera!) on the day before my birthday I got the most wonderful little surprise package in the mail with a matroyshka angel and a big packet of my favourite turkish delights. It was from the delightful Catherine of "Made by Maisie". We met through a Melly and Me fabric scrap swap and Catherine has been a wonderful inspiration and crafty buddy since! On her blog you can see a picture of the little Miss Polly doll she made for Hannah (which keeps migrating to my front room because I love her so much!) I received a copy of the Softies book for my birthday and the pattern for Miss Polly is in there so maybe I'll have to try it! Anyway Catherine, you really made my day so THANK YOU. The new little angel is watching over my scrapping supplies and she just looks so cute! I also received some other super special news that day but it is not my secret to share just yet so I'll have to keep you posted on that one at a later date!
All in all March has been a busy month full of fun, family and surprises.
This weekend I am hoping to finish off my bushfire charity quilt (machine quilting) and sew down the binding on our bed quilt. Hopefully next week I'll have lots to show for my efforts!
Until then,
Hope Easter Bunny finds you,
Happy Crafting,