Nov 30, 2012

number peg game

My mum used to be a classroom teacher and has an absolute wealth of resources that she now shares with my kiddies. This brilliant little game she made herself and would make a cute Christmas gift for children learning their numbers up to those learning simple mathematics.  All you need are some leaf shapes, mum just drew these and laminated them, and some pegs with bug buttons stuck to them (available at craft shops). The child just pegs the appropriate number of bugs to the leaf with the corresponding number.  You could always vary it to say lily pads and frogs or planets and aliens or rockets and astronauts. Whatever your child is in to. Using pegs is excellent for strengthening their fingers which is essential for holding a pencil. You can also write simple sums on the leaf and have them peg on the answers.

There you have it, a simple and educational toy you can make yourself.

Nov 29, 2012

first crochet doily

Well since I've been well and truly bitten by the crochet bug the thought has been in the back of my mind to try a doily.  We don't use many doilies here however and they always look very complicated.  Also it generally requires the use of a very small hook and thin cotton, neither of which I was confident in using just yet. I came across this pattern the other day though and figured my twine would be ideal to try it with using a 2.5 mm hook.

And after just a few rounds I was hooked so to speak. I stayed up late trying to finish it in one go. In the end I went to bed just before the end but finished it off first thing the next morning. I really love the orange twine for this too - gives it a really modern look. I gave this one to my mum but I can see myself making more for here and maybe some as place mats or coasters. I did a half size one in black but am not quite as in love with it.

Nov 27, 2012

another Christmas blanket

Anyone would think by looking at the gifts I'm making that it is cold here at the moment. In fact that is far from the truth.  I've started my next blanket.  This will probably be the last one for Christmas.  Then I'll start on the baby ones.

On another matter if you'd like to see the daily nonsense that I post on instagram and don't have access to it you can now access via the web by using the link to the left. Be prepared for a lot of photos of cups of coffee!

Nov 21, 2012

recycled magazine Christmas tree

I absolutely love Christmas.  As I'm sure I've mentioned before. The traditions and the decorations. Excuses to make heaps of stuff and eat heaps of stuff.  I like trying out new crafty ideas for Christmas.  I think because you can get away with slightly more kitsch at this time of year too.

Cue the recycled magazine Christmas tree.  My Dad has heaps of promotional magazines for his work. As with most businesses which have this kind of thing there is heaps of surplus.  So I decided to try and re purpose some of the old ones. Just fold the page down to the centre and then either fold the cover back on itself or attach two together at the covers. They make a quirky decoration or you could hang them up too with some fishing line.

Nov 16, 2012

am I a twine-hard?

So they call Twilight fans Twi-hards.  Does that make me a Twine-hard do you think? My ideas for using twine keep flowing thick and fast.  And my collection grew a little this week too.

Todays idea is to make friendship bracelets.  I had a little practice last night. I think I need more practice but the twine is the perfect thickness.  For a great tutorial head here.

You can also use the bracelets for other things.  Tie them around jars or use them as napkin rings.

So are you a twine-hard?

Nov 15, 2012

handmade Christmas cards

Little Guy and I had a lovely morning today making Christmas cards.  I had gathered supplies for a few weeks: blank cards, stickers and washi tape. Unfortunately we forgot the washi tape but we might add some later or to the envelopes. He was such a good boy and didn't rush at it or try to put all the stickers on the first card.  I can't wait to write them up and let him sign his name and go through the whole posting ritual with him.

Nov 13, 2012

1001 uses for twine

The other day a friend jokingly (I think) said I should write a book about ways to use twine. Well I am kinda loving using my twine collection.  And I may or may not have bought another dozen spools the other day too!  (Checkout Whimsy Farm Twine if you dare!)

So far I have wrapped a vase in twine

Wrapped a little jar (for a birthday and Christmas decoration)

Crocheted many little star/snowflakes for a garland for Christmas

Packaged a present

Crocheted a present

And I have plans to give a couple as presents.  Who knows where this twine-foolery will end?  Maybe I should start that book..... :)

Nov 12, 2012

gingerbread babies

Two of our dear friends are expecting their first baby soon and are also both celebrating their 30th birthday this month.  Last week I was lucky enough to attend the baby shower and this week we all went along to the birthday party.  I've previously mentioned how much these friends like my gingerbread (you can see the recipe here) so as a gift for their birthdays I made a big batch exclusively for them.  I took great pains to make sure there were even numbers of boys and girls as they don't know what sex their bub is going to be.

I purchased this cute gingerbread fabric at Spotlight the other week knowing that it would come in handy for Christmas.  And of course my twine had to make an appearance.  I also got to bust out some cute labels that I picked up at Typo the other day.  I'm planning on making a lot of food gifts this Christmas so the twine and labels will be getting repeated runs.

Nov 11, 2012

Remembrance Day

Today is Remembrance Day, or as it was known when I was a child, Armistice Day.  I think it's also known as Veteran's Day in the USA.  Today is also my birthday.  I've always felt that 11/11 is a special day and when you meet others with this birthday they always seem to know what you mean.  Last year an old friend had her little girl on 11/11/11.  My birthday isn't quite that special.

So as I sip some lovely Champagne and eat ham and salad with my family for lunch today and cuddle my two adorable bubbas (oh and my hubby I suppose) I will think of all the Diggers past and present who serve our country to protect our way of life.

Thank you.

(Image from here)

Nov 5, 2012

two crochet Christmas blankets finished

(Mum and Dad look away now!)

The other night I did the last row on the second of my Christmas gift blankets. One for my mum and one for dad. I hope they like them cause I did let them choose he colours!

I'm also knee deep in planning a double birthday party. We always make sure we do something special for the little Guy's birthday to distinguish it from Christmas.  This year with Amelie celebrating her 1st birthday I was faced with the prospect of organising 2 parties in the space of 2 weeks with Christmas in the middle.  So I cunningly sold the idea of a joint party to the little Guy. So now I'm organising an Iron Man/ Ladybug party complete with two sets of decorations and two cakes
It is a lot of fun though. I can see how some parents do go completely overboard. I'll share some of my ideas in the coming weeks for decorations and food.

Nov 4, 2012

twine on my hands

(Title stolen from my friend Shona)

Since I do now have a healthy twine collection I have been thinking of tons of ways to use it. My collection of little snowflake/ stars is growing and this morning I grabbed the super glue for another project.  I purchased this little milk bottle yesterday and thought it would look cute with twine wound around. In betwen chasing the kids around this morning and nearly gluing myself to the bottle, the twine and myself,  I managed to get it finished.

I gave it to my Mother in Law today to put a little sunshine in her day.  Im going to make a couple more for Christmas table decorations.

Nov 1, 2012

crochet with twine

So as promised on the back of my washi tape confession I now have to show you my newly acquired twine. I purchased my twine from a lovely little Aussie company called Whimsy Farm Twine.

I wanted the twine (because everyone else has it) to not only use in wrapping and decorating but also to try crocheting with it. I'm pleased to report that it has been a raging sucess.  Im using Attic 24's snowflake pattern and a 2.5mm hook with awesome results.  I just need to get some spray starch to stiffen up the finished product. You can find Whimsy Farm Twine here.
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