Sunday, 28 February 2010


It will come as no surprise, I am sure, for me to tell you that I adore things that have been handmade. Time, effort, creativity and love go into individually crafted work. I get so much pleasure from surrounding myself with handmade homewares and I really enjoy wearing unique pieces of clothing and I've been doing a little shopping over at Etsy and I thought I'd show you what I've bought, along with some of the things I've been making.

I purchased some lovely earrings from Renee at cocoapod botanical jewellery :

They are bright yet delicate. I'm so happy with them!

I had a ring custom made by Teri Lee Jewelry too:

I was thrilled when it arrived (and relieved that it fitted.)
I love the symbolism of the lotus:
the idea that, just as the lotus plant can produce exquisite flowers when growing in the dirtiest water, I can transform the most negative of thoughts and feelings into wisdom and beauty.
The ring's a gentle reminder for me to be positive.

And, as for the things that I've been making things myself,
I've been wearing a bezel set ring that I constructed last year at Fremantle Arts Centre:

I used sterling silver and a beach pebble from Tweed Heads that my wonderful tutor, Claire Townsend, supplied. (One of the little boys I work with thinks that the stone might be magic ~ inspired by the Deltora Quest books he's been reading~ which tickles my imagination too.)

I also made a set of wine glass charms for my dad's birthday
so that we don't get our wine glasses mixed up at big family dinners anymore.
Here are some of them:

If you'd like to make some there's a good tutorial here.

I've been working on my sunburst granny blanket too:

and I've started to make a cardigan from a pattern in September 2009's edition of Yarn Magazine:

I don't know if I like the way it's working up, the pattern uses a really soft, squishy bamboo and I'm crocheting with cotton, but I'm going to perservere with it for a little while longer...and, if it doesn't work out, I'm going to use the yarn for another Chevron Lace Cardigan.

I'd love to know what you're making!


Sunday, 7 February 2010

Making the Most of It.

I'm working full time again.
After six months of leave
filled with art lessons,
time with family and friends,
and general fabulousness
I'm back to dead lines, routines and responsibility.
Truthfully, I could happily take another six months off right now
...but really it's not so bad. I'm refreshed and it's lovely to be working with small children again. I've missed the sweetness of little kids!
I have some lovely memories too.
Looking at this drawing has brought back some of the feelings of peace and well being I experienced when I was out in the bush:

I drew this from a photograph I took when I went walking in my beautiful childhood home, the Darling Ranges. It reminds me of all the drawing classes I took too and how I love being in a studio. (Studios always make me feel close to my darling grandad, who was an artist.) I'm planning on hanging it outside my bedroom so that I can see it from my front door and from my bed.

I love looking at the photographs I took in Vietnam as well.

These were taken at a magical place called Halong Bay,
where I stayed overnight on the water in a luxurious little boat,
drank good French wine and kayaked through the rocky outcrops at dusk.
Heavenly recollections!

I'm also enjoying being relatively free of clutter. I doggedly sorted out all my resources at work and at home when I was on leave. My spare room has gone from this:

to this:

Just looking at those neat stacks of labelled boxes makes me feel happy
and when I've put up some more bookshelves up there will be even less in there.

I've consoled myself, too, by buying myself some treats from Etsy.
I haven't photographed them all yet but I can show you this gorgeous pillowslip which I purchased from Beata at rosehip, after I read about her work on Lindamade:

It arrived, all prettily packaged, from Canada:

I think,
fits into my bedroom beautifully:

Beata, by the way, has a free pattern for some truly beautiful crochet flower pillows on her blog.

of course,
when all my work is done for the day, I've been crocheting.
I've started to make a blanket using Priscilla Hewitt's Sunburst Granny Square.

I'm planning on edging it in an oatmeal colour or white, like Fantasy Landscape's. It's going to be a great portable project and a good way to use up left over balls of wool.

I have to get back to paperwork now and then iron clothes for work.
Ho hum
...but I'm so glad I've managed to squeeze a bit of blogging in!

I'd love to know what's bringing joy into your world, too.