Tuesday, March 30, 2010
Monday, March 29, 2010
I always used to think that I was fairly environmentally conscious. I always put my recyclable waste in the correct bin, I used washable nappies, I turned the tap off when I brushed my teeth and I have been vegetarian since I was 14 years old...so there! I was green and proud.
However, I did not see the oxymoron that is a person who uses washable nappies, but turned her nose up at second hand clothing. That I would save water, but not really worry about everyone being on a different electronic device all at different ends of the house.
I was green. If you compare me to most people...but was I doing my best? My absolute best? No, I was not...am I doing my absolute best now??? Well, I am doing much better, but there is always room for improvement. There have been so many changes in my families life in recent months.
It started when I met a beautiful family who live at the foot of the Dandenongs in Victoria, Australia. I saw that they live simply, but infinitely more beautifully than my hugely expensive and uninteresting house! Their home was filled with love and surrounded by trees. They were doing their best to live neutrally and they just looked so happy. I knew from then on that I could and would do much better.
It has taken a few months, but we are definitely getting there.
We are moving... 8th of May we will move to our lovely California Bungalow on the bayside in a lovely quiet suburb with smaller schools, a quieter lifestyle and a much smaller mortgage.
We changed our car. Our old car ran at approximately 10litres per 100km and that was the book information, so chances are it was less efficient than that. We are now the proud owners of Penelope the Prius and we are competitive with each other as to who can get the best efficiency reading from the on board computer. I am winning with a current best of 2.9litres per 100km... Mark's best is 3.9 HA HA!!! That was over 12km too :)
I have banished all chemicals from my house. All I have left is half a bottle of Ajax and after that is gone I am freeeeee! We use eucalyptus, Tea Tree oil, bicarb and vinegar to clean as well as some Eco brands that I have found.
I took the handmade pledge, which means that I either make, or buy handmade gifts...I am in love with Etsy. I buy my bathroom products from an awesome guy at the local craft market, his family own a lavender farm and the products are lovely. He also does washing up liquid which smells yum.
Lastly, I have taken the Wardrobe refashion pledge. I opted for 6 months, although I was tempted to go for life, straight off the bat. It means that I will make or refashion clothing for myself for the period of the pledge. Not only have I not bought anything for myself, I have made all of my children's clothing since then too. Yay for me.
I am not self righteous. This is not what this is all about. I am just trying to be a better human. Hopefully it's working.
Sunday, March 28, 2010
I was meant to be looking for stencils for the kids, but I saw this one, and as I'm a veggie and have been for almost 16 years I couldn't pass this one up. I did, use the stencil again for an Easter project for a little pre-Easter/celebrate the end of term/start of Easter holiday party that a friend and I did...more about that later...
So, it was as simple as printing the image onto the dull side of the freezer paper and cutting out with a craft knife, ironing onto the fabric and painting then ironing on the back to set the paint, once it has dried...actually, it sounds like a lot when you write it down, but it really isn't.
So much fun!!! I have many more planned too
Wednesday, March 24, 2010
My niece's 1st grade class drew pictures of themselves and sent it to friends. It is the duty of these friends to take the "Flat" version of the artist and take pictures of where it went and mail it back. So I scanned it in and sent it to some friends to print out and... here's where Flat Stella has been. If you want to join the effort of taking Stella on tour of the world, let me know and I'll send you a copy!" Ok, so I didn't really take her anyway. But I bet no-one else chopped her up and made her into a dress eh!
Monday, March 15, 2010
I am so excited, I finally have my Etsy store up and running. So far I have listed for sale a Christening dress, but hopefully soon I'll have lots more stuff on there.
I have so many ideas for things to make and sell. I love the whole handmade thing...obviously! I took the handmade pledge after Christmas this year. Although we had become more conscious of the whole 'plastic crap made in China/Taiwan' thing. Most of the stuff I bought for the kids at Christmas were handmade. I do craft markets so it was so fun shopping around while DH watched my stall. Adam got handmade tee shirts, lead light light catcher, handmade leather wallet, Disney Cars canvas for his wall.
Since then we have had three girls birthday parties which have been super easy to make presents for. I made a little summer dress for one little girl and custom made dresses for the other two, who are friends of the family too, so I wanted it to be special.
My sister gave birth to a beautiful baby girl and I made her a dress and knitted her a little cardi. I don't knit for everyone as it's so time consuming, but I always have something on the go.
One of Adam's best friends has a birthday coming up in a few weeks. She will be 6. She is the most Princess-y little girl I know. I have a great idea what I will be making for her, and her younger sister, who turns four a few weeks later. I can't wait to make it and show you all.
Anyway, I have rambled on enough for now. I would love to know what you have made as gifts for people.
Happy Tuesday :)
Saturday, March 13, 2010
You need something sharp to poke into each end of the egg. I used a large needle. Make sure the hole in the bottom is slightly larger than the top. Then blow the insides of the egg out... The mixture in the bowl looks pretty yuck...but it whisked up pretty well for pancake batter. I think this batter will be just for me though ;)
I had a moment of inspiration as I imagined the image appliqued onto a tee shirt. I had just the fabric in my stash to do it too... Adam told me that I wasn't allowed to cut up the picture - as if!!!
Wednesday, March 10, 2010
This is how small she was when she last wore it...Awww iddy biddy! Look how sweet they are xoxo
Actually I would like me as a friend! I often used to wonder if I would like myself if I met me. I think if I met me 10 years ago, I wouldn't like me very much but I reckon I might like me now...I might think I'm annoying though.
What did DH put in my tea this morning???
Sorry you had to get through that blatant ramble but here we go...
The fun part...fabric choice, I bought a few pieces, I liked the spoons (can you see them at the back on the left), but I decided to go with the chooks (chickens) and the butcher type fabric.
Please be assured that no chickens were harmed in the making of this apron. I have been vegetarian for 16 years and would not harm a chicken for the sake of an apron...
Ok, this might seem a little backwards to have the pocket first, but I liked this fabric best, so this was the order I did it! I decided I wanted a big front pocket, you can make it whatever size you like, or shape, it really doesn't matter. I pressed all the edges in about 1cm, I pressed the top of the pocket over again and stitched this down (I only stitched the top of the pocket at this stage).
I cut three strips of the blue stripey fabric into lengths of about a metre each by about 3 inches, but again, this is up to you.
I folded and pressed strips in half length-ways and sewed, with right sides facing, sewing one end of each one shut. I then turned them the right way around using a spaghetti strap turner (you can use a knitting needle if you like). Then press
I was so pleased with this little tip that I thought I'd share it with you. I wish I could remember where I saw it.
You know when you change needles on your machine, say inbetween jersey and cotton and the needle you remove is not dull, so you intend to put it back....I used to put them in my pin cushion, but I would never remember which was which.
Now I do this....
Can you see??? The needle I just replaced is back in the packet, but with the flat bit facing up so I can tell which one it is.
I know...hardly ground breaking, but if you didn't already do this I bet you will now and hopefully you'll think of me. A little narcissistic yes! But hey ho! I like it
NB. I just did a spell check and was sure it would throw 'narcissistic' up as incorrect, but it didn't. I don't think I've ever written that word before and I'm so pleased with myself...sad I know. But it's the little things :)
They are super easy to make, and you can make them to match a dress or skirt that you've previously whipped up. Because they're cuter than your average bib they can be worn to catch the drool of a bub with teething trouble :(
First I cut out the shape of the bib (which can be any shape that you like), as long as it will go around your babys neck. I do a velcro fastening because Sophie hates being messed around with and it's the quickest way on...The basic shape I do it a rectangle with the corners rounded, a whole for the head and a cut from one side to the neck to get over the head - that makes sense to me...I hope it does to you too!
Cut out one in terry cloth/towelling and the other in the cutest fabric you can find :)
The above photo is shown with the fabric right sides facing and the placement of the velcro. I like to place the scratchy side of the velcro on the pretty side, then it doesn't scratch the baby's delicate skin when you put it on.
Above I have placed two sets of two pins, this is start and finish points, so that when you sew around, you don't sew it totally closed. If you have a tag you can pop it in the side now.
Once you have sewn around it with right sides together, turn through the gap left in the bottom (the bit between the pins).
Top stitch all the way around, making sure that you close the whole up and voila!!!