Tuesday, November 16, 2010

my dream fixer-upper home

[Image Source]
I have decided the search for rental properties anywhere remotely near where we would like to live, at a price we could remotely afford, to be too downheartening, so today I bring you a piece of pure whimsy. I don't dream that big, honestly. I could show you some beautiful homes, the sort of thing you might contemplate buying if you won an awful lot of money. But this funny green house above is truly the house of our dreams. We love this style, with the exposed timber battons, it's in our favourite suburb, and amazingly it has a lot of space inside, and some really cute original features. It has a lock up garage (well, potentially with a bit of fixing-up). And it is just crying out for some TLC and sensitive renovations. The next best thing would be if someone open-minded about d-i-y tenants bought it and rented it to us for the next ten or so years.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

boxes, boxes, must find boxes

I'm sure everyone in the known universe must know by now I'm moving soon. We don't know the "to" bit yet. We just know the "from" bit, and the deadline is drawing nearer. Frankly I'd rather hide until the whole damn thing is over.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

in the mail recently

I just love getting packages in the mail - it's like Christmas every time! So I thought I'd share just a few of the lovely things I have recently received.

Divine sparkly lemon quartz briolettes! I picked these up from Realisation Gems on Etsy.

Gorgeous fabrics from Saffron Craig! I actually WON these, amazing because I rarely win things, so it was awfully exciting! Now I get to sit and ponder what I should make with them! Any suggestions?

And this absolutely lovely print from Lemon Tree Lane, as a 'thank you' for helping to celebrate the Calico&Co blog's first birthday! I've added 'more frames' to my shopping list, can't wait to see this one framed. Thank you Amanda!

Monday, September 6, 2010

Giveaway time!

You'll have to be quick, but today there is a great giveaway of a $30 voucher for my Etsy shop! Just visit Calico & Co, a gorgeous blog full of lots of inspiration, created by the lovely Amanda Fuller. I'm helping celebrate their first birthday!
 So whether it's something for yourself, or great timing to choose a present for your mother, sister, cousin or friend, scoot over there right now and enter!
image source

Friday, September 3, 2010

one stylin' babe

A friend of mine has just had a baby girl, very exciting! On my way to the shops to do some girly (but not too girly) clothes shopping, I remembered seeing this blog post by Sophie of That Vintage, so I grabbed a mixed bag of coordinates to have a bit of fun with! I unwittingly drew the exact same birdy shape as Sophie, something I only realised putting this post together. As you can see from some of the close-ups, my sewing leaves a little room for improvement, but I had so much fun doing something new. I discovered that interfacing that is sticky both sides, wow - excellent stuff. And how hard it is to zig-zag around bendy lines. But definitely a crafty endeavour I would try again!








mmm coffee...

I don't know why I try to fight it. Is it really that bad? Surely just one latte a day won't hurt.


Wednesday, September 1, 2010

spring it on!

It's Wednesday! And the first day of Spring, down here in the southern hemisphere anyway. Browsing my favourites for something lovely to share today, these three caught my eye. The soft reddish pink and sky blue colour combination are classic, and perfect for spring. I can see this print being added to my collection, it would be a lovely addition to some of our own beach pool and sea urchin photos. The blue wire magazine rack is just adorable, and would get all my magazines off the dining room table, for a while at least! And as the weather warms up, time for bangles again! Enjoy!

Surf Lounge (4 x 4 print) by pugly pixel

Blue Magazine Rack from Fishbone Deco


Turquoise cuff by the shag bag

Saturday, August 21, 2010

south coast

While I am really not well at all and in recovery mode (ie. sofa hibernating) I will quickly share a few shots from our south coast getaway. Not all my work I'm afraid, Dave took them all except for the one I took of him by the fireside. Didn't he get some lovely photos? My first experience of watching pasta being made - so delicious with freshly made pesto. And can I hear a big "awwww!" for the cute fluffy joey?

oyster picker. i think?

king parrot
homemade pasta, drying
by the fireside

Thursday, August 5, 2010

three of a kind - tea towels

One of the things I love about tea towels is the feeling that they are like a sampler, a snapshot of the designers work, or even a functional piece of art. It's lovely to think such a simple object can bring a smile, and even the pleasurable satisfaction of using something beautiful and thoughtfully made. I found these three tea towels browsing MadeIt today, and was inspired to start a regular series of MadeIt finds called "three of a kind". Have you found something gorgeous on MadeIt today?

Linen 'T' Towel (charcoal on white)
by spinspin
Moroccan Star Kitchen Towel - Teal
by Brilliant Trees Collective
Filigree Tea Towel - Chalk on Unbleached Linen
by Flower Press

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

wishlist wednesday - stamp me happy

Although a passionate jewellery devotee, just about any craft has the ability to turn my head. This sweet collection of handmade stamps - all sourced from Etsy - was inspired by my toddler, we are always looking for new fun things to do together and one of his favourite crafty activities is stamping. While browsing I realised that stamps could be really useful for your crafty biz too! For example the "handle with care" or the yarn and knitting needles. Any of these stamps would be great for making your own gift tags or decorating your packages before popping them in the post. Get stamp happy!

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

the yellow party!

Soon it will be time to celebrate the little man turning three years old! The theme this year is yellow - chosen by the birthday boy himself. Everything must be yellow! I browsed Etsy to find a selection of items to inspire me with my party planning and gift shopping. Enjoy!

1. Giggleberry bunting
2. Sweet Estelle cupcake liners
3. Billy Mac t-shirt
4. Paper By Forget Me Not goodie bags
5. Pocket Carnival art print
6. John W Golden art print
7. Paper By Forget Me Not bee notelets

Sunday, July 11, 2010

how sweet it is!

This is what we made today. The little guy helped with the mixing, spooning the mix onto the tray, and the eating. They taste as good as they look! I can highly recommend the recipe (yes, I followed the recipe and yes, it worked!) that I found over on Taste here. Buttery choc chip deliciousness, they beat store bought cookies hands down. Now I'm tempted to add other things next time round, like some rolled oats? Mmmm, choc chip oatmeal cookies! Or maybe I should just follow a recipe!

What are you up to this Sunday afternoon?

Friday, July 2, 2010

sweet sets

Sometimes I just want a simple little earring, just a cute little drop, preferably in sterling silver so it won't irritate my ears. After a recent custom order of exactly the same sort of thing I got to thinking perhaps I'm not the only one! I also love matching sets - so I had the idea of listing sweet little sets of earrings, I think they are fun, I hope you think so too! The first set is available now in my Etsy shop.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Recipe schmecipe

Well I just can't help myself, I hate following a pattern, working on someone else's design, or concentrating on a recipe beyond the general ingredients. Although I must admit that following a recipe or a pattern can give you the most excellent results! I must have the concentration span of a small highly excitable dog or something. So back to the kitchen, with strawberries and a list of ingredients for a 'basic cake'. Back to the computer to find a basic cake recipe with only one egg... then back to the kitchen with a new list... rifle through the pantry to discover flaked almonds - awesome! And we get this.

Looking good! I quatered the strawberries and covered the top of the cake mix, sprinkled the flakes almonds and some of that yummy sugar meant for putting in your coffee. A little while later and out popped this, smelling like warm strawberry jam!
Needless to say the first half was eaten before it even cooled down. I highly recommend this approach.
Now just in case you feel the urge to bake this sweetie yourself I did make a note of the ingredients. Imagine this with blueberries! YUM!

1/4 cup of butter (or butter-like substance)
1/2 cup of sugar - I don't think it matters what kind
1 tsp of vanilla essence
1 egg
1.5 cups of self raising flour
1/2 cup of milk - I ended up adding more at the end when I thought the mix wasn't fluid enough

I put all the ingredients in a bowl and used the electric beater til it was smooth, added the extra milk to get a nice dropping consistency, then into the pan lined with baking paper. Add your choice of toppings! Then bake, and sorry for the vague-ness here, but I think about 180 degrees, until it is done.

Do you like to wing it in the kitchen?

Saturday, June 26, 2010

my creative space

This was my creative space last night - finishing up the ninth pair of earrings out of ten for a special custom order. I'm sadly abusing my cutting mat, but it saves the dining room table!

Friday, June 11, 2010

this handmade life

He has been a busy bee. David has just finished making the surf waterhousing for a Canon 7d in this photo I took of him (using my 'hipstamatic' of course). It has been an intense process, and it is such a relief that it has now gone to it's new owner. Life is, well, kind of crazy, but so rewarding too. Now on to the next one...

Thursday, June 3, 2010

this is me thinking out loud

Now this post is a work in progress. I have had these helpful tips for starting out on Etsy rattling around in my head for a while now, and recently shared them with a couple of people new to selling on Etsy. I called them my Eight Etsy P's, for fairly obvious reasons! To get the ball rolling I thought I'd post them as is for now, and work on polishing them up as I find the time.

Things to consider before starting up a shop on Etsy:
  1. Product, haha, of course, but really just 21 items fills a page, and one page is a good starting point. Then you want to aim at adding or relisting an item per day, to start with.
  2. Photos - take the time to get these right. Use all five slots if you can, no less than four. Develop a system so shooting new product is relatively easy. Crop your pics to a ratio of 155x125, especially for your first pic. Try to have two or three pics that you can swap around as your 'first pic'. Show the scale of the item. If you can't fill all five slots (and I need to do this myself...) use one slot to show off your packaging.
  3. Packaging! Including business cards, how will you say 'thank you' (ie, write it at bottom of packing slip, buy some plain gift tags in bulk and write it on there, etc etc), will you offer 'gift wrap' as all inclusive? What will it be? Don't rely on customers letting you know if it's a gift or not, some will, some won't. Just decide what you will do and go with it.
  4. Postage. have this nailed so you know what to be charging when you do your first listing.
  5. Profile - fill out the profile page of your shop - something i'm bad at, but people like to know there is a person behind the shop.
  6. Policies - Check out what other big busy shops say here, there are a lot of things to consider.
  7. Payment - how will people be able to pay you? decide and then stick to your guns. Make it clear in your policies and/or listings what their options are. This way if someone buys your item then wants to send you a jar of pennies you can refer them to your Policies page where you state what their payment options are. If they don't want to pay that way, that's fine, you can cancel the sale if needs be.
  8. Promotion - how are you going to promote yourself once you start listing things? there's lots of great ideas out there, but double check them to make sure they are legit! I'm not great at promotion at all, but if I ever get the time there have been so many good threads in the forums to go back and read!
Now I'm not saying I've got these 8 points nailed, when I started I had a list of only 4 P's, the first four. There will always be room for improvement. But I thought they were useful points for consideration as a guide to what you may need to get started on Etsy, or other online selling venues. I'm also missing some important points too I think - SEO (search engine optimization) being one of them! Anyway I hope this develops into a useful set of tips for anyone new to Etsy or considering starting an Etsy shop!

Sunday, May 23, 2010


I was admiring some of my semi-precious beads recently and was inspired to do something simple, with silver accents, to feature the lovely colours and finishes. I have also been thinking a great deal about bracelet fastenings, there never seems to be one easy and popular solution to the difficulty of putting on your own bracelet. This lovely bundle of stretchy bracelets were the result of my meanderings. There's something quite lovely about holding a handful of gorgeous stones!

Thursday, April 29, 2010

my first giveaway!

Well this is a bit exciting, I'm having my first giveaway! It is being hosted on the Team Bacon! blog, "Six Degrees of Etsy Bacon". Team Bacon! is one of the newest teams on Etsy, a quirky crafty creative and talented mob united by their love of Bacon! There are all sorts of interesting features on the blog, so after entering to win a pair of my Atlantis earrings, have a poke around - apart from some awesome recipes and great market sellers tips, there's an interview with Rob White from the Etsy Admin team!

Monday, April 5, 2010

funny bunny

Because sometimes we all need somebunny to love!

I was bitten by the sewing bug this morning, and some green polar fleece had been crying out to be turned into a frog or martian or something. But the kidlet said bunny, so bunny he be. Please welcome the newest member of our family - Funny Bunny!

I drew him up and got to work straight away, he has felt arms and legs, felt face and tail, polar fleece body and backs of ears, and a lovely stripey fabric I've not used yet but had for ever for the front of his ears. I had some blue and green cotton yarn scraps, that were perfect for sewing on his eyes and nose. And the machine was already threaded with a pistachio green thread, which inspired all the exposed zig zag seams, a last minute addition to the design. I'm pretty happy with the little fellow - now to put him to the test of some real loving by the kidlet, I hope he doesn't lose his stuffing!

Saturday, April 3, 2010

Happy Easter!

I love receiving packages from Helena of Little Mo and Friends! I wanted to share this little bit of bunny goodness with you and wish everyone a Happy Easter! (And don't forget to go check out Helena's little shop on Etsy!)

And this is what I bought - a beautiful postcard to brighten someone's day!

Friday, March 26, 2010

weird light

Check out what the light was doing yesterday afternoon when I was taking shots of some new earrings. It was getting late in the afternoon and the sun was creeping over the piece of timber I use for my background, and it was giving foggy effects to the shots. Really weird! But kind of pretty I thought?


Saturday, March 13, 2010

a taste of things to come

This little pouch idea has been rattling around in my head for months! This afternoon, when that listless late afternoon feeling started to take hold, I sat down and wrote a list of things I wanted to get done. And voila, it finally got done. This won't be the final colour way, because this test run was knocked up out of scraps. That is still to be finalised. What do you think?

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

wishlist wednesday - i love a rainy day!

I love a grey and rainswept day! It was all blustery blues and drops here and there. The beach is beautiful on days like today, with the sand like the seats in an enormous theatre and the sea and sky the play. My wishlist wednesday picks are all about celebrating the relief that a cool change brings!


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