Monkey 4 Monty

“Mine!…er…if that’s ok?”

.

is-he-for-me

.

So there I was kicked back making a monkey for a friend from a jumper she gave me when I noted that Monty had taken a real shine to the toy. He sat by my side until I was done making it whilst giving me his best ‘puppy dog eyes’.

.

for-me

.

The knit jumper I was using this time was a lot looser knit than the previous material I used. The monkey shape was not working as well for what I wished to give my friend.

.

I-think-he-is-for-me

.

So the ‘puppy dog eyes’ won out and Monty had himself a new toy. Once I decided this I didn’t worry about attention to detail as much as I wasn’t sure how long the toy would survive.

.

finished-monkey

.

Is-he-mine-yet

.

MINE

.

As a thank you I got kisses ‘with tongue!‘ as did the new monkey…

.

frenched

.

I-love-my-new-toy

.

My-monkey-toy

.

But alas the love affair was short lived and thus I found the monkey abandoned a little later on…

.

all-over_a-fast-burn-love-affair

.

all-over_a-fast-burn-love-affair2

.
Is this the end? We will have to wait and see if ‘monkey’ comes back into favour tomorrow…
.

Follow on Bloglovin

.

Pink Doggie

“New life to an old ceramic figurine”

.

Pink doggie before and after

.
A friend of mine recently gave me some old clothes to add to my stash of materials for use in crafty projects. Along with the clothes was this little guy. She was planning to give him to charity. I thought the ceramic dog was rather cute and just needed a little modernizing to give him a new lease on life.
.
Before

before 1

.

before 3

.

before 2

.
I had several different styles and colours in mind but ultimately planned to use materials I already owned. So in a slightly unusual approach I decided to try nail polish. The process of painting the figurine with nail polish was fun and easy to do. Two coats of polish were used to ensure even coverage.
.
Brightly painted using nail polish
.

painting with nail polish

.

pink doggie 2

.
In order to ensure the nail polish finish lasts I then vanished the little guy with a gloss finish.
.
Finished vanished look

pink doggie 1

.

pink doggie 2

.

pink doggie 3

.
He now lives with a growing collection of toys…
.

pink doggie and friends

.
What do you think? I’m currently trying to think of other old ceramic figurines I might have stashed and forgotten. I suspect there will be more friends to add in the near future.
.

Follow on Bloglovin

.

Super Sweet Blogging Award

I have been nominated for the Super Sweet Blogging Award!

.
Susan Delphine Delaney of http://ladyflowersbysusan.wordpress.com/ nominated me. Thank you so much Susan!!! I’m really touched. I’m glad you are enjoying the “beauty and craft inspiration I bring to the world”.
.

super-sweet-blogging-award21w6451

.
To accept the award I have to do five things:
  1. Thank Susan for nominating me
  2. Answer 5 Super Sweet questions
  3. Include the Super Sweet logo in this post. You see it above
  4. Nominate a baker’s dozen of bloggers for this award
  5. Notify my nominees on their blogs
.
Here are the Super Sweet questions:
  1. Cookies or Cake??? tricky one…depends on my mood. Cookies if it is a small snack with tea or coffee. Cake if I feel inclined to skip a meal and just indulge in dessert (I highly recommend going out and just having dessert)
  2. Chocolate or Vanilla? Another tricky one…probably vanilla (the fresh vanilla bean kind – yum)
  3. Favorite Sweet Treat? Recently I’m really loving Lindt white chocolate balls
  4. When Do You Crave Sweets?  All the time! How could I possible pick only one time of day??
  5. Sweet Nickname? Moppy (because my hair looked like a mop when I was little)
.
Now for my nominees:
  1. Lady Flowers by Susan http://ladyflowersbysusan.wordpress.com/
  2. Ski Daddy http://skidaddy.wordpress.com/
  3. Crochet Concupiscence http://www.crochetconcupiscence.com/
  4. Adison Madison http://adisoninmadison.wordpress.com/
  5. Pangaweka http://pangaweka.com/
  6. Crafty Minx http://craftyminx1980.wordpress.com/
  7. Wiley Schmidt http://wileyschmidt.com/
  8. Pig Love http://piglove.wordpress.com/
  9. What the ducks http://whattheducks.com/
  10. Alison Gwen http://alisongwen.wordpress.com/
  11. Raxa Collective http://raxacollective.wordpress.com/
  12. I feel crafty http://ifeelcrafty.wordpress.com/
  13. Bird Cage Design http://birdcagedesign.wordpress.com/
.

Follow on Bloglovin

.

An evening of craftiness

“handmade presents”

.
I usually consider my main craftiness to lie in the realm of sewing and textiles. This weekend though I had a friend’s birthday to attend and the jewelry making bug got me. I got to making while inspiration was high and here is what I made:
.
evening of craftiness_earrings
.
evening of craftiness_bracelet
.
Hardly any tools or space are required making this a great portable project. Although (based on the amount of small beads that were lost in the shag pile carpet I was sitting on whilst making these) I would advise a bowl or tray to work over.
.
.

Tools & supplies used

.

evening of craftiness_tools

.
  • round nosed pliers
  • wire cutters
  • stretch cord for bracelet (thickness and colour will depend on the project you are working on – the thicker the cord the stronger the bracelet but the larger the hole in the beads needs to be)
  • earring findings (style to suit you. would work equally well for non-pieced earring clasps)
  • selection of beads – variety of colours and sizes
  • aluminum crimps (check out your local fishing supplies store – I find crimps great as they seem to hold more securely than many other methods I’ve tried for elasticated bracelets and it’s quick and easy)
  • head pin and eye pin findings – I used a selection for the earring design
.
It turns out my friend had indicated to her family she would appreciate jewelry for her birthday. Seems I was on the right wavelength when I got that buzz of inspiration and was glad the earrings and bracelet were well received.
.

Follow on Bloglovin

.

Fun Recycled T-shirt Pillow

“more ideas for those old tshirts lying in the back of your cupboard”

.

old-tshirt-pillow-side-one

.
Construction
.
I’ve had some much loved old tshirts in my collection of sewing materials for some time now. They shrunk a little too much to be worn but the design is still in really good shape.
.
In the past I would often feel compelled to give such items, with life left in them, to charity so someone else could enjoy the item. However I also enjoy re-purposing and recycling items so I saw the chance to create a fun pillow from these old tshirts that would give them a new lease on life.
.

old-tshirts

.
Mark out the pillow shape to encompass the existing design. To quickly mark out the other side use the first one cut to mark the other half.
.

cutting-out-tshirt-pillow

.

old-tshirt-pieces-cut-out-for-pillow

.
Place the pieces together design side inward and sew around the edges. Leave a small opening to fill the cushion. Once filled zigzag the ide with a hole closed. As a design feature I chose to zigzag stitch two sides as a finishing touch. I also chose not to leave an opening for cleaning as I felt the whole pillow can be washed including the innards.
.
An alternative to the method I used here would be to add a zipper and or buttons to allow a store bought pillow to be added. I had a large European sized pillow I was no longer using that I have been progressively pulling the stuffing out of and reusing.
.
If you favourite tshirt is so well loved it has holes in it consider adding another layer using  a plain tshirt and allow the holes to be a design feature.
.
.
Completed
.
Here is my completed tshirt pillow – front and back. What do you think?
.

old-tshirt-pillow-other-side

.

old-tshirt-pillow-side-one

.

Follow on Bloglovin

.

Conquering Zippers

“about finishing projects and (mostly) conquering zippers”

.

skirt front

.
Over the years I have found numerous work-arounds or ways of avoiding zippers. If I had no other option I often resorted to hand sewing as I tend to find I can work more slowly and accurately this way.
.
Often when working on a sewing project I get such a buzz to see the end result that when using a sewing machine I tend to race through the project with a view to getting to the end result. When it comes to zippers my technique is just hasn’t been there and the results have always been frustrating. Not matching up to the image I have in my head.
.
So I figured it was about time I address this and spent some time learning how to finally conquer zippers even if it means sewing zipper after zipper and unpicking the failures until I get there. As a start point I thought I’d turn to the many talented sewers sharing techniques online to see if perhaps I had been missing some crucial knack.
.
One post I discovered in my search stood out and I’m excited to try this particular technique. Melissa’s guest post on Keeping it simple titled ‘zippers unzipped‘ outlines a technique that struck a cord in it’s simplicity and in that it addresses a major issue I always encounter of ensuring the zipper is even fitted and sewn.
.
I have a skirt that has been sitting there waiting to be finished. Awaiting only a zipper installation to finish. This struck me as the best time to test out this technique and hopefully finish my skirt. I’ve also been wanting to wear the resulting skirt and determinedly avoiding purchasing one instead.
.
The time has come to finally conquer zippers head on and enjoy the satisfaction that comes from achieving a goal or two. So an afternoon later and the skirt is done and zippers mostly conquered (a little more practice required for the perfect finish). Here are some photos of the completed skirt:
.

skirt front

.

skirt front detail

.

skirt back

.

skirt back detail

 
.

Follow on Bloglovin

.

A growing group of toys

“and a happy inner child”

.

hand crafted toys_recent additions

.
Every time over the last week I’ve sat down to write a blog post I seem to have been waylaid creating more toys. My boyfriend seems to have a permanent bemused expression whenever I say “I’ve just finished another one!”. And as I sit back to finally write some blog posts for this week I note that it’s getting a little crowded on the couch arm wrest.
.

toys_the growing collection

.

Follow on Bloglovin

.

Jumper monkey

“jumpers vs. socks”

.
My latest crafty creation is a monkey toy made out of an old jumper.
.

jumper monkey1

.
I was rather taken with the sock monkey design from craft passion but didn’t have any socks that would suit so I went rummaging around my craft supplies and decided on an old jumper:
.

jumper monkey step 1

.
Following the general design in craft passion’s post I created my monkey toy. I felt he was a little plain and after an inspiring chat with my neighbour decided some clothing was required. So taking yet another old tshirt (I seem to have a lot of those laying about) I crafted a small tshirt for the monkey.
.

jumper monkey tshirt sizing

.

jumper monkey tshirt top

.

jumper monkey and mini tshirt cut out

.
Here is the finished monkey toy:
.

jumper monkey2

.

Follow on Bloglovin

.