Thursday, December 31, 2009

Christmas confessions of an crafting mum

A Smidge of a Handmade Christmas
I'll get this off my chest before the New Year starts in oooh, about 9 hours and 27 minutes.
I don't "do" the handmade Christmas.
It just doesn't occur to me really as I am too busy sewing and crafting as my whim or "to do" list dictates. I do cook Christmas things with the kids (at least once...well, only once...that's my patience gone at this time of year) and I have made with love and teeth gritting each of them their own personalised Christmas stocking which, with the help of some old fashioned values and some superglue, I hope that the kids will cherish for many years to come.
Yes, you'd think hanging around sewing blogs and the Crafty Mamas forum that some of those legendary gals would rub their motivation off on me and I'd be making fabric memory cards and funky chenille clothing (and crocheted orange and peach pink toilet roll holders for the less favoured rellies) with aplomb.
Nup. Sorry. I think that the kids can have a bit of commercially made and/or other people's made stuff at this time of year and give them a break from my productivity.
(Yes, read that as "give me a break from my productivity")
So this is my offering. My daughter got a crocheted Eeyore as part of her Christmas score. Cuter than a crocheted toilet roll holder (once I realised that the ear was an ear and so funnily enough didn't look much like a tail when sewn onto the butt end- blame too much eggnog for that one)
Pattern by Siempre Josefina
Adored by daughter
And mummy has decided that amigurumi is not really her thing...
(This is small enough for my short sighted eyes!)
OND 2009
OND 2009
OND 2009
OND 2009
OND 2009
Received with love...
OND 2009
...Aaaw, OK, maybe I should make a few more things next year...

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Christmas Quote of the Week

From Hamilton Wright Mabie:

"Blessed is the season which engages the whole world in a conspiracy of love"

Here's hoping that every individual, every country and the whole world can love more, fight less and work towards the greater good in 2010.

(Yes I am a cynic day to day but I do have occasional spurts of idealism and general mushiness)

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Farbenmix Quiala

A story of redemption...or perseverance...or just good old fashioned luck!

This was one of those projects that just wasn't fun. I picked my fabrics happily enough then started having grief. Not enough fabric to make the longer length. Cut a binding for the neckline but the fabric wasn't right so cut a different one then promptly lost it. Traced and cut out the sleeves thinking how short they were and how I didn't like sleeves that short then grumped when it came to sewing the sleeves because they were too short and I didn't like them. Had to unpick the neckline as the binding piece was too long. I just wasn't enjoying the project and thought that I'd never end up finishing it or, if I did, it would be added to my nightie drawer.

So it got shoved to the back of the sewing table for a week while I studiously ignored it.

Yesterday I picked it up as part of cleaning up my sewing area and in a half hour re-did the neckline, roll hemmed the sleeves to keep as much length as possible and what the heck, roll hemmed the body while I was at it.

Little Boozle 2009

Little Boozle 2009

The result was a short dress that is fine around the house (where I do not have to expose people with delicate constitutions to the cellulite and varicose veins of my thighs) and great as an overdress if I step through the front door. The panels are slimming and, after all that, I actually like it!

Little Boozle 2009

(Composition courtesy of my 6 year old son)

Fabric is a retro knit from my stash and chocolate and blue marle Stella from Crafty Mamas shop.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

I just love...

Little Boozle 2009
In what seems to be a very long time ago, I was a working professional person who used to dress nicely, go and talk to adult people 10 hours a day, earn money and get satisfaction from doing my job diligently, responsibly and thoroughly.
Seven years later, I consider my day a success if the Wiggles bandaids haven't been pulled out of the cupboard for bleeding injuries, if there is no wee on the toilet floor at the end of the day and if 2 out of 3 children at least smell their dinner before shoving the plate away.
(And if I can get the laundry hamper completely empty for 5 minutes, the day has been an absolute pearler!)
Maybe my expectations have changed. But nowadays I get huge satisfaction from spontaneously whipping up a pair of leggings for my child in that 20 minutes before the lunch duty rolls around. It brings a smile to my face and to my daughter's and I don't lie awake at night worrying about what my "client" is going to say! Granted- I might lie awake at night hearing listening to my client's midnight tantrums but then I don't have to go off to work in the morning dressed nicely, ready to talk brightly and politely to adults for 10 hours (and if the cream cheese doesn't go quite to the edges of the bread, there is no threat of a lawsuit by the end of the lunch hour)

Friday, December 11, 2009

Cool Christmas idea #83

Displaying your Christmas cards

Sewing 2009
If you are anything like me, each December rocks around to find Christmas cards crowded into small spaces on the bench tops, falling everywhere, or even worse, the attempt to be Martha Stewart and run decorative lines around your windows so that your cards can be displayed in a stylish and neat manner. That is, until the kids play Tarzan on the tinsel strings and the lovely but cheap Christmas decorated pegs fall off with the cards and you get sick of putting the blasted things back on the line ten times a day.
This year I got one packet of Blutak, ignored hubby's ruminations about consequent grease patches or paint removal (I don't see you helping with the decorations, sunshine!) and am creating a Christmas tree of cards on our lounge room wall. Of course, this relies on you being mildly popular (or in our case, our school child being mildly popular) as a couple of Christmas cards stuck to the wall would just look plain dumb.
So far, so good. I can always pretend that we are popular and stick up some blank ones so that we look good! Shhhhhhhh!
PS Don't ask me what the first 82 cool decorating ideas are. Go and google them or something.

Crafty Mamas swap

A great little crafting community!
November swap over at Crafty Mamas was a bag swap. Today I got a lovely parcel from Mandy who finds the time to create and craft along with being a mother to eight!
Sewing 2009
What is particularly fabulous is that the bag was designed by another Crafty Mama, Tracy. She is mum to six, imminently seven, and has been nesting furiously of late. This equates to her producing many patterns free to use- check out her blog!
So 2 very industrious women have contributed to my parcel today.
And top it all off- a box of chocolates. Thank you so much Mandy.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

A Tea Party of Hats

Creating collective nouns as a matter of principal.

I am somewhat saddened by the lack of fun or adventurous collective nouns when it comes to garments. Groups of animals have all the fun (just ask the intrusion of cockroaches or the rhumba of rattlesnakes or the stubbornness of rhinoceroses should you ever wander across any of them and strike up a conversation)

I am even more saddened by the complete lack of existance of collective nouns for most garment types. I thought that there would be one for hats, surely. At least something even if something boring like "a clan of hats" or "a beige of hats" but Mr Google can't seem to offer me anything except ones that have been made up by people like me who have nothing better to do.

So this week I have been busy sewing up a tea party of hats (yes, a definate nod to you, Mr Lewis Carroll). This is the lazy version of the Make It Perfect Lazy Day Hat. Which means that I couldn't be pfaffed topstitched except around the brim. I don't enjoy making hats but they are quicker and easier after you run a few up.

Two for my daughter...

Little Boozle 2009
Little Boozle 2009
Little Boozle 2009
Little Boozle 2009

One for a custom order...

Little Boozle 2009
Little Boozle 2009
And one for little ol' me...
Little Boozle 2009

Little Boozle 2009

Monday, December 7, 2009

Quote of the Week

Out of the mouth of babes...
OND 2009
After standing in line for near to an hour to visit Santa, sit on his knee, chat and have a photograph...
Santa: "Ho, ho, ho. Hello! I've been waiting all day for you. Where have you been?"
6 year old son: "Standing in line"
No snappy comeback from the big guy in the red suit for that one!

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Another present from blogworld!

Last but by no means least!

I was very blessed to win a few things from blog competitions through Blogtoberfest. I didn't actually participate in the blogging side of things but wholeheartedly threw myself into the competing side!

I just received my last little goodie parcel, courtesy of Angelique over at No Life without Wife.
I won her super sweet little red and white bunny softie but a few other goodies apparently stoleawayed (is that even a word?) in my parcel all the way from Noumea. Naughty chocolate! Naughty fabric! Naughty bookmark!

Little Boozle 2009

Little Boozle 2009
Thank you Angelique. I loved my parcel. Just scrummy.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

A Tizzy of Hair Clips

Makes for happy hair!
I am making up collective nouns again and think that this captures the cute and feminine side of hair clips much more than a Mullet of Hair Clips would...
Sewing 2009
Sewing 2009
Thanks so much to Helen over at Stitcharooney for these gorgeous rainbow clips. That has let me cross a few names off the Christmas shopping list. No one said that a handmade Christmas had to be made by yours truly, now did they?