Friday, January 29, 2010

The Messenger Bag

Yes, I am still posting on Gifts I have made for Christmas...
That's how long it has taken me to get my act together.
I wanted to make my Sweet Sister something really special, something from my heart, something that was thoughtful and would show her how much I love her.
I found such a gift over at Blue Bird Baby's blog (which is possibly the most inspirational day to day blog around). It was the perfect gift, and perfectly suited to her.

I lined the inside of the Messenger bag with a creamy material with a fine flower print to balance the heavy khaki on the outside.
It was a bit of a gamble as my sis wouldn't usually be into flower prints. She loved it though, and it was a good balance so all was good in the end.
Some detail I added to her bag. Antique cotton lace. Her name embroidered on a scrap of fabric and stitched to the body of her bag.

(This is a pretty poor shot - something to do with the light-I think, but you get the idea)
A close-up of the Queen Anne's lace on the flap of the bag. I found the pattern here.

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Moving in a different direction…

This post is a little more serious than what I would usually post about, but it is something that has such a profound impact on our lives, that I feel compelled to ad my voice to the growing number of people who are trying to live a simpler life…

In a world engulfed by shops in every direction, selling everything you can imagine and a lot of objects you probably could never imagine, a lot of people are starting to feel the pressures of living a consumer based life. A life filled with earning and spending in a cycle that leaves us breathless and frantically trying to balance our finances at the end of the month (or the money as it is). It leaves you with the question of wants vs. needs. How much of what we spend on a daily base are truly because we need it and because it is essential to our existence as opposed to things we feel a need to have, purely based on what we are bombarded with in glossy magazines, catalogues, TV ad’s etc, etc, etc… you get the picture.

The point I want to get to is this:

I stumbled upon an article written by “ Megan” from Simplekids. (It is a wonderful website filled with articles on "uncomplicated parenting in a complicated world".)
The article focuses on resisting consumerism and gives some pointers on how to defend your life from being swallowed up by consumerism.
It really is a fantastic read and it's worth spending a few minutes on. You can find it here.

I am making it my goal to live with more substance and less stuff this year....

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Dotty Dress

I love this material.
I made this dress using a polka dot material and pairing it with a wide dark brown ribbon. The colour combination worked really well (here are some previous ones).

It was a gift for a friend at work's little girl for their beach holiday. Megan is fair skinned and these colours worked so well on her.
I finished the hem with white ricrac, and it finished this simple dress off beautifully.

Friday, January 15, 2010

Our holiday through a lens....

I have been meaning to tell you all about our Christmas break (which already seem so far away), but instead I will just let the pictures speak for themselves...

There was a dress-up for a Christmas party...

There was drumming during said Christmas party (on her cousin's brand new set of drums)
(Has she got the rock-chic pose down, or what?)

Playing with her best friend in her princess get-up!

Long days at home filled with crafty projects....

homemade play dough and cookie shapes

and off to our spot at the dam...where we all got in on the action

her cousin taught her to fish

her daddy showed her how to paddle (the right way)..

early morning walks, while the air was still cool... picking flowers

other bits we collected on our morning walks.

Jessie practising what her daddy taught her

...and a late afternoon sail to finish the holidays off on a high note...

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

A softy that goes by the name of .... Sally Rabbit

It was the day before Christmas, and all the gifts were happily wrapped sitting under the tree... but there was something missing... or at least, I felt like there was something missing...
I wanted to make my Jellibell something for Christmas, yes, make... I had already made her a new pillowcase dress and matching purse (which I will share in the weeks to come), but I wanted to try something new.
I had printed out this fantastic free pattern from mmmcrafts ages ago (I fell in love with Molly monkey). It had been sitting next to my  sewing machine for a good while, patiently waiting for me to get it together. Now, being a beginner sewer I did not even read through it, because I expected it to be way above my level of expertise.
But, with a burning desire to make my girl something to cherish and hold onto, I pulled out the Molly Monkey pattern. As it was, I did not have enough felt to make Molly's adorable little face, and so had to improvise a little.
I decided she just wouldn't be the same without her felt face, so I decided to make her bunny ears and lo and behold.... a little Rabbit was born.
I loved every single bit of making her (and it was surprisingly quick and easy).
When I look at her, there are bits of so many people I love in her. Her socks are bits of material my darling sister gave me. The material for her flannel body comes from my granny, and her flower print body was left over from a special gift made for my sister (which will also be shared soon). Even her skirt comes from material given to me by my great mom-in-law.
She truly represents a love of sewing from so many different woman in my family!

For all the centiment, I am, of course, not the only one who loves her. My girl loved her from the minute she saw her, and she has been honoured with a space on her bed... that's when she is not being dragged around the house by her arm...
I wouldn't want it any other way!

P.S. - If you where wondering about her name, it was hubby's contribution to the making of this beautiful softy for our beautiful girl!

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Things we made for Christmas .... ginger biscuits

I would like to share some of the crafty things I got up to over the holiday season. Although I know everything to do with Christmas will by now be done and dusted, I still think these are worth sharing. Especially since a lot of crafty blogs, inspired my own craft ideas!

As our holidays started, we decided to bake some ginger biscuits as small gifts for friends and family:

My little helper assisted with pressing out the cookie shapes and icing them afterwards, and we had such a good time doing it!
I folded these Origami Cups out of scrapbook paper from instructions I found here. The cookies were packed in tissue paper, inserted into the Origami Cups and tied up with a pretty ribbon. We bought some festive tags with tinkling bells on them (also miss Jessica's find) and attached them to the Origami Cups with a festive greeting on the back.
They where extremely well received and I was so proud to give them out. I will definately do these easy gift ideas again next christmas!

Twenty Ten!

A very Happy New Year to all of you ....
From all of us!!

May the year ahead exceed your expectations!

My new header is in honour of the journey that lays ahead of us as this New Year dawns. My hopes are for a year of peace, joy, love and happiness... something I have been craving more and more as my little girl becomes ever more aware of the world around her..  I am hoping to do all I can to show her a world that is beautiful amidst all the malice, where there is joy despite all the sorrow. A world where peace and love can sometimes be found in unexpected places....