Tuesday, June 29, 2010

learning to craft with small child afoot

Wait a minute, isn't there something wrong with this picture? Why, yes...that would be because my much loved vintage cotton fabric that i have been saving for just the right project, has a stinking great hole in the middle of it. Hmm. Jed asked for the scissors and when asked what for, he replied that he was going to cut some paper. I turned around to this. I had just taken it out of my stash to use it. Sigh. I was gutted. It took me a few minutes to string a coherent sentence together, while jed said, 'oh, i am so sorry mama'. A high class problem really.
Once recovered i realised that i can't remember anything else destructive he has done like that...pretty good stats for a soon-to-be three year old!

A new stash addition.

Two mama projects on the cutting table. Stay tuned.

I just finished hemming a Wendy blouse i made out of this vintage fabric. A poor substitute for the doomed aforesaid jed-holed vintage piece but so so soft and springlike floaty. A little bit of spring vibes in the middle of winter.

We whipped these up this morning. Jed has announced that he will only wear super soft and comfortable trousers and it looks like he's sticking to it. These are a big hit. There will be more, both for Jed and to sell. Next generation i am thinking , trees, birds and more carbon friendly modes of transport.

Sunday, June 27, 2010

this moment

Inspired by Soulemama. This moment: - A Friday ritual. A single photo - no words - capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

stick nest for chick

It began with a book we bought on a boy's recommendation at the local car boot sale. The Lilly Pilly Tree. About two young children who take sticks and rope up a tree to make a nest. Then Mick Inkpen's Kipper compendium had a stick nest in it. We got to talking and being pretty excited about our new glue gun, collected sticks over our weeks adventures. We dried them by the fire and seized the moment one rainy afternoon.
Stick nest was born. Little chick came out of her farmyard to take possession of her cosy new home. She fits perfectly.

We went for a special walk up our road to find things that would be good to line the nest with. Jed chose feathery pampas grass (yes, i know its a pest here in NZ!) and flower petals. Lucky little chick. Later that night i found him in bed, fast asleep, with little chick snugged in close and his little hand on his stick nest.

This is Jed setting off on the collecting journey to find suitable lining for the nest. For some reason he has always loved my bike helmet...and deemed it necessary to wear on this walk, with his mama-made collecting bag. Worn not just anyhow....

...it has to be worn LIKE THIS.
So funny, these smaller people...what goes through those heads?! I LOVE it. And confess, i will be sad the day he wears that bike helmet as it should be.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

crafting for zena and max

My friends Kim and John have a new delightful creature, whom they have named Zena Violet, into their whanau. Jed and i can't wait to meet her. In the meantime i posted down a wee welcome package. A kimono top made specially for her. I actually used a pattern. Yup! From Heather Ross' Weekend Sewing book. The very same one i borrowed from the library and then couldnt give it up and had to buy. Highly unusual behaviour i can tell you. (It is a very good book).

And this is the bundle of Zena yumminess modelling. Jed picked out the hat himself.

We popped in a pair of corduroy pants with vintage trim for big brother Max. Thinking they'd be good handme downs to young Zena one day too. They do actually fit him lengthwise, i just had to use this picture for that smile.
You are an amazing mama Kim.
Look forward to hanging with y'all one day.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

snapshots of a wintry day

A handful of vintage button deliciousness from Lets Go Retro. My treat. Dreaming up which project these will adorn.

The vastness of beach to ourselves and the wind. I think we are down here as much during the winter as in summer. Bundled up, eyes afire and laughing into the wind.

The best crop of chickweed (Stellaria Media) possibly ever. We're both munching out on this winter tonic green daily. So yum. And the bonus? My body just sings YES.

Ahem, a little balance to the green? We used mostly wholemeal flour, does that help?! Fiddly, rolling out the dough again and again but Jed loves using those cookie cutters. So do i.
I have a backlog of posts brewing in my mind and photos languishing in my blog pix folder. I am hoping life conspires to provide the peace to bring them to you. She says after waking up for the day at 4.30am courtesy of a certain small one. Last night i tried, i spent an hour trying to post for you and ended up losing it to a glitch in Blogger. Tonight just one photo failed to manifest. Things are looking up!

Saturday, June 12, 2010

make it, wear it

I have been a bit twitchy lately. Wanting to get out and about, make it to a regular 5 Rhythym's dance session, yoga and just plain hang with friends and deepen some sweet friendships that have been simmering along on those fragments of conversation you get with small children present. And yes, i am quite possibly a bit run-down. A bit off balance and needing to factor in some mama-time into the family mix. While i gather myself anew and structure in some mama-time (and get the small one back to settling himself to sleep) i am sewing a bit for myself. As a way to nurture myself and as therapy. Because that is what i do. In lieu of those long walks alone.
This one is in vintage navy blue linen. I have been wanting to try Built by Wendy's Simplicity 3835 pattern. It is true. Easy to use and versatile, it's a keeper. I did View C but with View B's sleeves. My plan is to embroider this in these long winter nights.
Whipped up in no time. I modelled it on a favourite skirt that is falling apart from so much wear. Excuse the creases, i had to take it off to photograph it. Very good for changing body shapes this one.

And great for layering.

An experiment in progress. A prototype dress pattern. I am really not sure about it. We will see.
Even though this is a time of cutting back on projects i would like to be doing, (most wonderfully and notably Deb over at Works In Progress's vintage sheet quilting bee) i was inspired by Sew Mama Sew's 'Make it, Wear it' challenge to sew some for myself. I am carving time out when i would possibly be better off going to sleep but i'm not. And i am glad. Quiet creative time at my craft table on rainy winter days, helped by my trusty assistant Jed. Nice. Very very nice.

Monday, June 7, 2010


Jed has a little part of his library where he keeps his 'instructions' and magazines. 'Instructions' are books he/we have made with Jed's writing and drawings in them that 'tell stories of learning how to put out fires and other things people need to know'. A favourite 'magazine' for both of us is the catalogue of the small family run company, Nova Natural Toys and Crafts. Magical pictures and beautiful Steiner-esque creations to buy. Just browsing the catalogue is good for the soul.
I am not the only one inspired to blog about it i see. I just ran a search and came up with a handful others besotted and raving. Nova is US based. I don't know of another similar here in NZ. Email me if you do.

If buying new, it is a good feeling to support good people.

Either that, or handmade of course!

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

rainy day shenanigans

At the second hand store awhile back we found a set of Dorling Kindersley 'Lets Explore Science' books by David Evans and Claudette Williams. They cover everything from weather, to water exploration, music and sound, light...all sorts of ideas about exploring our world. Full of experiments you can easily do at home with pictures of kids wearing unfortunate eighties clothes but pretty cool nonetheless. Jed loves them. It's kind of what we do anyway just in the course of the day but sometimes, on an uninspired, chronically tired or rainy day it's nice to have a book to make suggestions...

Do you know what happens when you mix baking powder with vinegar?
I love those intrepid adventure scarred and smeared two year old hands.

Okay, so it rains alot around here. Temperate rainforest y'know. I was overseas for sixteen years, i had forgotten how soggy this time of year can be. Bring on the experiments, cooking, crafting, reading and smooching i say.