Friday, June 28, 2013

Three Bags Full...

Donated Craft SUpplies

I am so spoiled by my WONDERFUL friends!

Just the other day, the fabulous Leah brought me over not three but FOUR giant garbage bags of crafting supplies. She's having a huge de-clutter at her place... so it's a win-win situation. Leah clears out her clutter, and I have new toys to play with.

Three bags are full of fabric. Mostly upholstery samples. There's so much rich texture in there, that my mind can hardly keep up with all the ideas flowing in... I'm dreaming of owls and unicorns, magic carpets and scrappy cushions. And did you ever play with those bean bag frogs when you were a kid? I'm dreaming of them too... Frogs with crazy eyes!

Then there's a giant bag of ribbon and braids. And when I say a giant bag, I'm not kidding. We're talking about those great big garbage bags!! Probably more than I will ever use in a lifetime. There's lace.. and silk.. and organza... and a whole bunch of other ribbons that I don't even know how to describe. 

I'm desperate to rip into it all and sort and play to my hearts content, but for now I'm being very reserved. Life is keeping me very busy, and I know that I need uninterrupted time for this one...

But one day soon I'll empty out those bags and create a Mountain of Possibility.

Maybe next week? The kids are on holidays, and this is one of those fun things we can do together. I just know that they'll have a million suggestions for what we can make - and that's ALWAYS a good thing. I love the perspective they bring to these activities. Nothing is impossible when you see it through their eyes!

Donated Craft SUpplies

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Boring But Necessary


We all have them...

The BORING but necessary tasks.

Often they don't take long to do, but if you're anything like me - you procrastinate for as long as possible...


A job that has been lingering on my to-do list for far too long is HAND BAG REPAIRS.

And I don't know why. This is my every day hand bag. Obviously I USE IT EVERY DAY. So, it stands to reason that if there is a problem with it - then I should fix it quickly...

And yet I didn't.


There are three zippered pockets in this bag, and the lining in every single one of them was torn. Which of course meant that any item which went into the pocket would invariably end up stuck in the "Black Hole" which lies between the bag and its lining. Especially annoying when it's your car keys... or a ringing mobile phone!


The repairs were remarkably simple. It was just a matter of tucking in the frayed edges and pinning the lining back together... then working a whip stitch to create a new seam.


Twenty minutes later, and I was restocking my bag with all the necessary goodies (including a ziplock bag of teabag strings to knot together whenever I get a spare minute)


So tell me... what boring but necessary job is at the top of your to-do list?

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Flower Headband

Flower Headband

Remember the gorgeous Crochet Jacket which Loren sent for Little Miss Charlie?

Flower Headband

Well... you might also recall that Loren included the leftover yarn, so that I could make a matching headband for the outfit...

Flower Headband

And here it is! 

Flower Headband

A simple headband, embellished with a giant flower and little pearl beads at the centre...

Flower Headband

Of course Charlie keeps trying to tear it off her head - just like a typical toddler - but I manged to get a few cutie-pie photos taken!

Flower Headband

And one day I might even mange a photo of her wearing the jacket AND the headband at the same time...

Monday, June 24, 2013

Shabby Hat

Shabby Hat

 Look what we found stashed away at the back of the cupboard...

Shabby Hat

This shabby hat once belonged to Little Miss Katie - but now it's the perfect size for her Little Sister!

Shabby Hat

It's the perfect hat for those "cold, but not freezing" days...

And you can find the FREE PATTERN here.

Shabby Hat

Monday, June 17, 2013

Kiddie Mitts

Challenge Mitts

Little Miss Katie was nagging me for a lacy pair of mitts...

So I worked up the Challenge Mitts in a kids size - and they turned out perfectly!

The adult size pattern is available as a free download from here.

And here are the alterations I made:
  1. This yarn is a very fine 8ply - or maybe even a 5 ply!
  2. Made a starting chain of 30, and worked 6 shells in each round
  3. 6 rounds of shells before the thumb opening round
  4. 3 rounds of shells after the thumb opening
LOVE - LOVE - LOVE the results... and I can see many more kiddie mitts in my future.

(Especially seeing how quick they are to make)

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Finished Teddy!

Teddy Bear

I know that I'm biased - but how gorgeous is this little guy???

By the time I finish working on one of my toys, I have grown so attached to them... After all, I've watched them develop and come to life. I've worked every stitch of their existence. I've tweaked and turned and moulded them just right. Surely it would be strange NOT to feel some kind of attachment to them?

As you know by now, I usually I work from my own patterns... but I can't claim any credit for this one. I've raved about Jean Greenhowe many times before on this blog, but just in case you missed those earlier posts - you should know that I LOVE HER! Here is her website. I cannot recommend her patterns highly enough.

For those of you have been messaging me for more details about this project, the pattern is from this booklet here. It is not available online, nor is it free. But it is EXCELLENT! I have made every single project in the booklet - over and over again. It is my dream that one day my patterns will be as popular and as renowned as Jean's.

As for the yarn, this one was not one of my recycled gems. I've used Rainbow by Patons which is available locally at Lincraft stores. It's an 8 ply acrylic, soft and not at all splitty to knit with. This colourway is called "Rainforest" and as always, it was fun to watch the colours change with the variegated yarn.

Actually, it's inspiring me to try my hand at dyeing my own yarns...

Properly this time. Not just with the food dyes.

Not that there's anything wrong with that method. I've had lots of fun with it. I just want to step it up a level...

Now if only there were enough hours in the day for me to try my hand at EVERYTHING that takes my fancy.

Teddy Bear

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

As plain as the nose on your face...


I thought I was so clever...

Teddy was finished and no sign of the baby yet...

Something looked a little odd about the bear.

But I convinced myself that it was just the eyes...

All the other bears I have made from this pattern have had embroidered eyes - so these safety eyes make him look really different!

And then one of the kids announced:

Mummy. Why doesn't he have a nose???


THAT'S why he looks odd!

Monday, June 10, 2013

Baby Gift Time


My next door neighbour is pregnant.

Really - Really - Really Pregnant!

Overwhelmingly Pregnant...

Like "due last week" kind of pregnant!


So I've gone back to my traditional baby gift teddy...

I've made so many of these guys over the years - at least 30 or more!

My book is almost in tatters from overuse.

I should probably know the pattern off by heart by now - but I don't.

Here's all my pieces - seamed and ready to stuff...

I wonder if I will finish before the baby arrives???


Wednesday, June 5, 2013

How About Some Sheet Music?


Before I had even finished the Stamp Stool, I was already plotting and planning how to cover the next one. I knew that I didn't have enough stamps to do all the stools, and the idea to have each one looking different was really starting to appeal to me.

And then the kids could fuss about which stool they wanted! Oh well.

Anyway, I remembered that I've always wanted to use sheet music for some kind of decoupage. I just soaked it in a dilution of Parisienne Essence to make it look aged, then got to gluing.


Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Old Stamps and a Broken Chair


I've been wondering what to do with these stamps for YEARS now. I knew that I wanted to decoupage something with them, but never had the perfect project in mind...

I even blogged about some of my ideas here, and that was back in 2009!


Then we started to have this problem with broken chairs...

You see, the chairs are always tipping backwards and crashing down onto our hard tile floors. I don't really know why. Well - I probably do - it's got something to do with kids clambering over them all the time! And now all of a sudden, they've started to break. Yep - the spindles on the back of the chairs have been breaking into pieces. We tried gluing them a few times, but it didn't really work. In the end, I just went nuts and took the back right off them!

That was when we discovered that those broken chairs made INCREDIBLY COMFORTABLE stools.

Seriously. They're more comfortable as stools than they ever were as chairs. So everyone would fuss over who got to sit on the "special stool"... and there's noting I hate more than the sound of kids  fussing...

So when the next one broke - we just took that back right off again.

And the next one after that, too!


They were comfortable, but they looked ugly. I filled in the holes and toyed with the idea of painting them - but then I remembered my stamp collection...

And I knew exactly what I wanted to do!

Monday, June 3, 2013

Birthday Sale - Half Price Patterns

Birthday Sale

June is a super special month in the Goldfish House!

All three of us girls celebrate a birthday...

Little Miss Charlie will be turning 2.

Little Miss Katie will be turning 9.

And I am turning 21... plus 21!

So I thought I would share the celebrations around - with a Pattern Sale.

For the month of June - all of the patterns listed in the sidebar on the right of this blog, will be available for only AU$2.25 instead of AU$4.50... Yep. That's half price!

No limits. No minimum orders. What are you waiting for?