Last month was mum’s birthday so I thought it was about time to make her bag. This was one we had decided on together over a year ago which I had never found the time [or perhaps inclination to follow a pattern] to construct.
It’s from bend-the-rules sewing by Amy Karol [aka Angry Chicken], which I borrowed from Katie. It was easy to follow her instructions and turned out just perfectly! I only made a couple of changes: I used stiff sew-in interfacing to give it a bit of shape [because who knows what cotton flannel is or where to get it here - anyone?] and I stitched my own embroidery design on the front instead of the one Amy has in the book.
As soon as this mini knitting bit came of the needles I had to have it in a beanie RIGHT NOW! A few minutes sneaked in during our days and lots of evenings on the couch in view of the telly [I’m getting better at not looking while knitting, especially if there’s something good on] and TA-DAH!
Photography by Alannah (age 6)
There were numerous pull-it-nearly-all-out episodes – I actually had it finished a couple of weeks ago but decided it needed to be another inch or so longer, resulting in a good bit of unravelling [a by-product of not using a pattern and just winging it]. Nevertheless, it turned out just as I imagined it and I love it! It’s the first thing I’ve ever knitted for myself that I think I’ll actually wear and love – what a fantastic sense of satisfaction it gives you to achieve that!
How about you? What have you made for yourself that you love? I’d love to hear from you x
Yesterday was a pretty average Monday. The standard* rush-about-the-house-getting-ready-for-school-playgroup-work, playing [or not, whichever you prefer] at kinder playgroup, a couple of errands, fruit and veg shopping, then home in time for lunching and putting to bed of little man.
Mum was coming round, as she sometimes does on a Monday, especially if we haven’t seen her on the weekend [which we hadn’t]. We had just completed fresh underside covering of the small one as we saw oma arrive in the driveway. Subsequent dancing on bedroom window sill ensued while mama performed sheet wrangling in a particularly swift fashion and afterwards arranged chubby legs in sleepy-sack. In wanders oma for kisses and cuddles and then...
“OH SHIP!” [let’s just pretend it was that] I say in astonishment. It’s MANDY! My sister! From the other side of the country! A great deal of blubbering on shoulders results as well as soothing of small startled by great commotion.
Still recovering from that astounding surprise! SOOOOO good to have you here darling x
THE easiest and quickest recipe ever! It only takes 5 minutes to prepare
1½ cups self raising flour – we use wholemeal 1 cup grated cheddar cheese 2 tbsp poppy seeds (optional) ½ tsp paprika (optional) 400ml cream
Preheat oven to 220°c. Mix together dry ingredients, add enough cream and mix to form a very soft dough [you might not need all of it] place spoonfuls of mixture on trays and bake for 10 minutes or till lightly browned. Eat hot from the oven – YUM! [makes 24]
Some of my mini knitty bits have been turned into brooches and a simple blanket offcut from Waverley Woollen Mills transformed into a cosy scarf prettied up with some cute circles. The red brooch and scarf have been gifted to a darling friend on her birthday. Now to get onto some more for selling!?!
I’ve become somewhat enthusiastic when it comes to knitting [as well as crochet] but not in any big I’m-going-to-knit-myself-a-cardi kind of way. Right now I need instant gratification when it comes to crafting so I’ve been knitting mini pieces to turn into more brooches. It’s lots of fun to just make it up as you go along and see what works – the heart shape took a slight bit of thinkering – and you can just pull it undone if it doesn’t and it’s only taken you a few minutes. Also a very handy kind of craft for doing with a sooky toddler on your lap – he gets cuddles with mama and I get to do creating! Winners all round!
Have a look at some other creative spaces at kootoyoo.
Yesterday was one of THOSE days! You know the ones, when things happen.
Getting up at 7:15 instead of 7 on the dot; rushing about the house clothing children, assembling breakfasts, filling lunchboxes, searching for school books, packing bags, showering, chasing kittens, layering family members against the frozen outdoors, using a loud, impatient voice* at children, scooping in mouthfuls of muesli between all of the above; having the small attached semi-permanently to leg while helping middle kid express her creativity at playgroup; strapping in and unloading of children countless times while running errands; providing a continuous supply of mobile nourishment to ravenous kid; arriving home after 1 in the afternoon to the impenetrable fog; frantic relocation from carseat to cot of exhausted, irritable kid; opening the back of the car only to see my box of beautiful hilbarn vegies tumble onto the gravel and roll down the hill.
Then the sun came out [albeit for only an hour and ¼], my darling came home early and brought me a bunch of gorgeous flowers – just because.
I finally taught myself how to crochet! I’ve tried to on various occasions – Mum showed me how to quite a few times but I could not figure it out. I was flicking through Meet Me at Mikes [the book] the other day and came to the granny squares and thought why not? The stitch instructions, though they are quite simple and well illustrated, still didn’t quite make sense to me, so I found a How to Crochet section in this other really daggy old craft book I have and CLICK – I could crochet! A bit of a made up chain stitchy flower and a few mini granny squares later I felt confident enough to invent my own pattern and it worked! I stitched on a few buttons and added some embroidery [supposed to look like a birdie btw] and turned it into a brooch for a darling friend’s birthday pressie.
I can’t believe how simple it is! Why didn’t someone tell me this before! I love that you can just pick it up whenever and do a bit here and there and even make it up as you go along and it’s SO EASY to undo your mistakes and start again! I LOVE CROCHET!
This is my first creative space. See some other creative spaces or join in over at kootoyoo
1. A foot rub from my beloved 2. Snuggling in bed with my darlings 3. Getting to do something creative during my day 4. Chubby baby feet that need a nibble 5. A line full of fresh washing drying in the wind and sun 6. Walking along the beach on a windy winter’s day 7. When my curls decide to be good and behave themselves 8. The smell of freshly baked bread straight out of the wood oven 9. Building cubbies up the paddock with my kidlets 10. Dusk with the silhouettes of winter trees against the sky
It was so hard to keep it to just ten little things when there are so many more things that bring me joy.
Thanks Mandy for this little project – it’s been a wonderful way to really think about and be thankful for all the blessings our awesome God brings into our lives xx
These two cute balls of fluff came to live with us on the first day of the school holidays. Oh boy, kitties are full of mischief. I’d forgotten how many wees one has to mop up when acquiring a new kitten, let alone two! A bit like having 5 kids instead of 3 – but they are forgiven everything cos the are just SO cute! Even Ed loves them and he’s allergic to cats...
A warm, woollen, stitchy blanket for my darling Immy. It’s been cosy in front of the telly for the past few nights with this blanket warming my legs as I stitch. Now she can snuggle under her new blankie in that chilly upstairs bedchamber.
I just love that we grew oh ok, picked our own apples for these pies. And the blueberries we picked from a local producer in the summer.
Here's my recipe:
Apple and Blueberry Pie (makes 2) - because you might as well go all out while you're at it!
3 cups plain flour
1 cup white sugar
250g soft butter
1 big egg or 2 little ones
about 1 dozen apples - mixture of sweet and tart
4 big handfuls of blueberries
2 sheets ready-made shortcrust pastry
Plonk all the crust ingredients into a bowl and get your hands in! Squish and squeeze till the mixture comes together into a ball. Divide the dough between 2 pie/tart/cake tins and press onto base and sides of tin. Set aside.
Slice up enough apples fill tins - maybe a dozen? [depends on the size of your apples] I usually use a few different varieties - sweet and tart ones. I don't even bother peeling them - more fibre, interesting texture and usually I just can't be bothered peeling a stack of apples - though in saying that I should just get out the twirly apple peeler - I think I'll do that next time.
Divide half the apples between the 2 tins, scatter over a good handful of blueberries, repeat with the remaining apples and blueberries.
Cut shortcrust pastry into strips, and lay over the filling in a lattice pattern - you can do tricky pastry weaving for the top if you want to be fancy.
Bake 180oc for 30-40 minutes or till pastry is golden brown and apples are soft.
Mmmm... delicious! It would be even better with a good dollop of whipped cream - though not so good for the thighs...
lots of lovely handmade pressies and cards from my darlings
alannah and imogen both wanted to "do stitching" for mother's day crafting - the results: a bag and embroidered rabbit picture from alannah and a pink and purple stitches embroidery from imogen [who at 3 can already thread her own needle!]
my hubby, my three gorgeous babes, my Saviour, my family, my home, my garden, my friends, creativity, beauty, flowers, sunshine, chooks, autumn leaves, reading, wind, birdies, sewing, clouds, berries, trees, cups of tea, singing, movies, apples, cooking, kitties, pretty things
I'd love to hear from you and I'm mostly good at replying [especially if you've got email enabled on your blogger profile].
I am super excited to receive comments - I read them over and over!
You can email me too: littleredclog(at)gmail(dot)com
I’m happy for you to use what you see on my blog as inspiration, or to link to any of my posts (I’d love to know if you do!), but please don’t use my images, designs or words without permission. Just ask me – I’m really quite nice!
Copying my original designs to resell would be not nice - but if you are inspired to make something as a one-off gift that's pretty ok.