Tuesday, 29 November 2011


One Saturday morning a few weeks ago my husband and I decided to go for a paddle in our inflatable kayak. It was really beautiful when we launched and started paddling, the water was very flat and the sky a pretty blue with wisps of clouds floating around the horizon and the temperature was already in the early 20s making it perfect conditions to be out on the water!

All pumped up and ready to go!

Outlook from the shore.

Beautiful... except for the powerlines dotted along the shoreline.

Mangroves hugging the shore - a very high tide.

Ahh the serenity... 

We did see a couple of dolphins playing about but naturally disappeared and got camera-shy when we were taking photos. Usually we see many pelicans and swans but they must have been having a sleep in that morning. All in all though a beautiful and lovely way to begin a weekend, hopefully we'll have a chance to do it again soon.

Monday, 31 October 2011

Bowerbird Bazaar

On Saturday afternoon, my husband and I drove into Adelaide city centre to check out the 'Bowerbird Bazaar', Adelaide's design market. Held at the 'Queen's Theatre', a restored sandstone heritage building in the heart of Adelaide city. The place was packed with so many stalls selling everything from clothing and fabrics to jewellery and fresh flowers, the classic old building really served as a great backdrop to the handmade nature of nearly all the creations on show.

It was very busy; the queue to get into the Theatre flowed out onto the narrow street, extending nearly all the way back to the main road. We waited in the queue, shuffling along for about 20 minutes before we we're lucky enough to get inside. Unfortunately it was so packed with people it was hard to walk around and have a good look at some of the stalls at times, let alone have the space to take photos, still it certainly showed just how many people were interested and excited to get a chance to browse through all the stalls.

There were so many beautiful things on display, it made choosing what to buy and take home so much harder. However I did make a couple of purchases, one being at Thea & Sami's stall. She hadso many beautiful printed fabrics I didn't know where to start! I bought this 'Cottage Garden' print tea towel and I ended going through her entire basket of scrap packs, deciding on a pack that included these gems ('Pets & Bones', 'Mushrooms', Spoon &Whisk' and 'Bird'). My mind is already full of ideas of what to make with these, so stay tuned for the results in a later post.

The other purchase I made - well it's technically going to be my Christmas present :) - was from the wonderful crew at Mattt. They make the most awesome, practical bags and I have been eyeing them off for quite some time, dreaming of when one will actually be mine. Seeing them for real, and checking out the great craftsmanship and styling only increased my desire to be the proud owner of one. I could have taken one of the many that they had for sale however I decided to order one to be made, allowing me to select the fabric panel, and the colour of the straps and zips. Now I will have to wait a couple of weeks before receiving my order, but I think its well worth it to have exactly the colors and design I liked, with a panel from Ink & Spindle.

After an enjoyable couple of hours going round and round checking out the different stalls, we finished off with a freshly squeezed fruit juice from the stall Juice Junkies and left for home. My head awirl with lots of great craft ideas and thoughts based on some of the fantastic creative items I had seen, it really is a great experience to be able to see so much of so many different people work all in the one setting.

Friday, 28 October 2011


Meet Monte the monkey! 

Made especially for my dad's birthday, as he has always wanted a monkey of his very own, a somewhat impractical dream. I designed him based on my experience with a few previous Amigurumi; his body and arms are fairly standard, but his curly tail took a bit of fiddling and I especially like the way it turned out. I really wanted to give this monkey a cheeky personality (to match his future owner) so I gave him a contrasting white face and hands for dimension and a wicked little grin.

To go with Monte I also whipped up this matching card showing him swinging around and having fun. The card is constructed in my usual style; I like to draw a couple of rough sketches first to get approximate shape and proportion, then using a scalpel free-cut the shapes out. For this particular card I used both scraps of green patterned fabric and a nice embossed cardstock that gives Monte's body a bit of extra texture and pop. The next step is to build the subject up with a few layers to give depth and draw any extra features, backgrounds etc. Finally some birthday wishes on the inside and it's done.

Wednesday, 28 September 2011

Ma-ma Sue

On Monday night I lost someone dear to my heart, my beloved grandmother Sue. She was an extremely talented lady and inspired me to be the crafty individual I am today. I'm at a loss to think of the hundreds of things she used to make and do that we'll never see again. While she did pass on some tricks and secrets, there are many things such as most of her trademark recipes, which have gone with her. Now they will forever be memories of the awesome things she used to make, create and bake.

I'll miss the freshly baked goodies; always sitting on the table waiting for us to arrive when we visited. Everything from her trademark Rock Cakes (a recipe that was never recorded anywhere, not even in her beloved little black notebook where many of her other fabulous recipes were written), to lamingtons, kiss biscuits, Raspberry creams and jelly cakes and that morning tea staple; fruit cake.

Sue was gifted with a needle, crochet hook and knitting needles too. I have fond memories of visiting her and my pa-pa (who unfortunately passed on a few years back) and it wasn't an uncommon sight to see either a ball of wool with crochet hook or knitting needles attached; something marvellous being created, sitting in the living room or in her sewing room.

One such project that she had on the go for a few years was the crochet blanket (mentioned in the previous post) she made for me using our favourite shades of purple, pink and blue. This beautiful, intricately detailed creation was one of the main catalysts for me to pick up a crochet hook and start to learn the craft.

Sue, I truly admire your courage and determination to continue on with life with whatever it threw at you. You were an amazingly strong women who never gave up and was always willing to give selflessly to all those you held close. Love you always.

Friday, 23 September 2011

Shades of Yellow

I love colour! Spring brings out many many many shades of colours. In my small garden I haven't got many plants; we live in a small townhouse that had only scrubby weeds out the back when we moved in, yuk! So I have collected pots with a variety of different plants over the years to bring in some life. Most of them are succulents as it gets really dry and hot here in summer, so you need fairly hardy plants. At this time of year the succulents put on a shower with bright splashes of yellow, pinks, greens and pale purples, all reaching out for the sun, this little gem for example.

Yellow inspired me to create this cute crochet duck (loosely based on a design from Kyuuto! Amigurumi by Tomoko Takamori) . He was a bit fiddly making certain parts, mainly the wings as they are rather small, but he was a joy to make. I particularly love his little webbed feet, and the pose-able beak that allows him to show how he is feeling. 

I enjoy seeing the end result of all my crochet creations as I only learnt to crochet a few months ago and have been addicted ever since. It was a skill my lovely grandma perfected over her lifetime, making many beautiful things, including a blanket she made for me over a decade ago which I love and takes pride of place here in my little office/studio. But that's a post for another day.

Wednesday, 21 September 2011

Birds of Spring

Like so many things, nature is very inspiring to me and it never fails from season to season; but spring is my favourite time of year. Fresh new growth sprouts from winter rains, flowers are blooming and new life begins. All the little birds tweeting busily in the trees fussing about their nests with precious babies being protected within. I love it! It inspires me so much that I have many projects on the go, one of them is painting little birds like these!