...all things handmade with love by a mum with a
passion for making beautiful and spunkee stuff...

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Merry Christmas!

Thank you to all for taking time to read my blog and for your support over the last 6 months. I’ve had so much fun with spunkee stuff.

Wishing you all a wonderful christmas with your families and a fantastic new year!

(I’ve been loving this little tree so much I think I’ll make another one for myself to be enjoyed next Christmas. This tree went into a hamper at Khye’s childcare which was then donated to the Salvation Army.)

Monday, December 22, 2008


I have been making batches of shortbread lately for Khye’s christmas breakup parties. It is Mum’s recipe and I though I would share it with you.

They are a little bit crunchy, a little bit crumbly, a little bit “melt in the mouth” and a whole lot yummy. We struggle to stop at one biscuit!

So here is the recipe:

250g butter
1/3 cup icing sugar
1/3 cup cornflour
¼ cup sugar
½ teaspoon vanilla essence
2 1/3 cups plain flour

Melt butter over low heat.
Sift icing sugar and cornflour in bowl and add sugar.
Add butter and vanilla and beat until thick and creamy.
Add sifted flour and mix well.
Press mixture into a lamington tin and smooth with the back of a spoon. Cut and prick each biscuit with a fork.
For christmas we like to roll the mixture onto a board, cut out star shaped biscuits and place them on a tray.
Bake in a moderate oven for 30 minutes.
Cut again while warm and cool in the tin or on the tray.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Evening Light

Last night as the sun was setting, the clouds reflected gorgeous colours and shone a wonderful glow upon our world that made everything look beautiful and special. I turned off the flash on my camera so as not to destroy the softness of the evening. But I cannot control the exposure time (it is just a small point & shoot digital camera) and I could not hold the camera steady. So here are the best of the blurry images I captured from our backyard.

It doesn’t really capture it but the sky through the middle of this photo was a deep dark blue.

Even the calico on the roof of our deck looked beautiful with its purple glow against the yellow fairy lights.

And then once the light had gone grey I took photos of the christmas lights using the long exposure time to my advantage. By deliberately moving the camera while the image is being exposed you can come up with some fantastic photos.

This is the christmas tree.

And the coloured fairy lights in the garden.

Try it yourself!

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Happy Birthday Ella!

It's Ella's 2nd birthday today. For her I made a little toddler bag from a great piece of vintage fabric, lined it with green fabric and sewed little pockets on both sides of the bag. Inside the bag I hid a book and some flags with Ella's name on them and a tiny green teddy inside the little pocket.

We wrapped it up with paper that Khye painted (but I forgot to take a photo to show you). We had lots of fun at your party Ella and we hope you enjoy the rest of your birthday!

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Here is the green sheep

Khye has been sick the last couple of days so I have been off work to care for him. Which also means a lot of sleeping (him not me) and a bit more time for me to blog!

The other week a friend asked if I could make a green sheep softie based on the main character of Mem Fox’s book “Where is the Green Sheep?”.

“Here’s our green sheep, fast asleep.”

The green sheep is going in my friend’s daughter’s Christmas stocking – I hope she enjoys it!

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

The Christmas Market

The market on Sunday was fantastic in every way. It was a nice sunny day, lots of stalls, stacks of people and heaps of sales. So thank you to everyone for your support over the last 6 months and for making spunkee stuff so successful. I have decided to continue having a stall at the Gisborne Olde Time Market and you’ll find me in my usual spot in front of the hall on the first Sunday of every month starting January 4th 2009.

Here’s a photo I was meant to post last week but didn’t have time.
Just some of the softies that went to the market on Sunday. Most have now found loving new homes!

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

One turtle, two turtles, three turtles

A customer asked me at the last market if I made turtles. I said I hadn’t but I’d give it a go and this is the result.

one turtle
I thought about the idea for a few days, did some drawings then started choosing woolly fabrics. Like my sleevee teddies (so called because they are made from the sleeves of jumpers), I didn’t use a paper pattern (except for the head shape) and just began cutting and sewing. I had to unpick and restitch a couple of times, but this organic style of working is what gives each of my softies their own unique character. Then I made a couple more turtles...

two turtles

three turtles
one, two, three turtles
For the eyes I stitched pieces of wool felt into place then needle felted them. It is the first time I have done any needle felting and it worked really well. I borrowed mum’s needles which are specially designed for felting (they have barbs to grab the wool fibres and matt them together). Then I stabbed the eyes many, many times – yeah sounds brutal - with the needle until the fibres had matted together.

Here are a couple of cute mini teddies mum has made from wool fleece using the needle felting technique.
The turtles will be available at the next market on Sunday December 7th. And to the lady who asked for the turtles in the first place, thank you for asking ‘cos you inspired me to actually design and make them! If you would like one of the turtles before the market please contact me.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

A Great Find

Look what I found at the Op Shop today.

Isn’t he gorgeous! He’s been patched together with wool plaid squares and stuffed with crumbled foam. He needs a bit of TLC.
He has a few holes and some seams are coming apart, but he’s worth all the $3.75 I paid for him. And the best thing of all – Khye loves him!

The twilight market went well on Saturday evening despite it being less than half the size of normal. The December market should be big though ‘cos it is the last market before christmas and the last market for the year. So mark Sunday December 7th in your diaries!

I had promised Sean on Saturday there would be no sewing for the next week. Yeah well that lasted only a few hours till 2:30 Sunday arvo. I couldn’t help myself – I get so motivated and inspired after a market. And it was either housework or sewing. Not a hard decision really.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Another market already

I haven't even reported on the last market and the next one is nearly here already! I have been so flat out cutting, sewing, stuffing and stitching the last couple of weeks that I have not had time to blog.

The November market a couple of weeks ago went really well again. I was a little on edge all day thinking it was going to rain, but it didn't rain until after the market had finished. This coming Saturday I will be back in Gisborne for the twilight market.

My poor old husqvarna sewing machine is back home but not fixed. But I did buy another new machine - well it is old - 38 years old.

I got it for $20 from a garage sale on the weekend and the woman who sold it to me received it from her husband when they got married 38 years ago! It also has been well looked after and is great to sew with. But it is a really, really heavy machine and is a pain to lift up onto the table when I want to use it.
New things I have made lately are:
this little forest of trees including a couple of christmassy ones,and these strings of birds with buttons and bells,
plus more elephants, teddies and soft woolly balls.

Don't forget the market this Saturday evening from 4-8pm at Gisborne. Tell all your friends! See you there!

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

We need the rain but...

lets hope it doesn't rain on Sunday. I've just seen the weather forecast and it says showers at times and 23 degrees. Lets pray that it rains over night and that Sunday is a beautiful sunny day for the market.

Saturday, October 25, 2008

We’re back…

And it’s nice to be home but it would be nice to still be on holiday too. It was a beautiful, sunny 28 degree day when we left Maroochydore and as we were coming into land at Melbourne the pilot announced it was only 15 degrees!!!

We had a fantastic holiday. We stayed at Glen Eden Beach Resort in Peregian Beach, a cute little beach town about 10 minutes south of Noosa. Khye wasn’t too happy about the beach – I don’t think he liked the waves and he kept a very close eye on them to make sure dad wasn’t swept away!

We encouraged him towards the water,

and tried to distract him with the shells on the sand,

but he wouldn’t have a bar of it and walked away waving bye-bye!

We did lots of driving (usually while Khye was having an afternoon sleep in the back) and lots of walking. We went to the Eumundi Markets and the Peregian Beach Market where there were lots of art and craft stalls and I got loads of inspiration. We stopped off at lots of playgrounds for Khye and he had a great time! We also did the touristy things and went to the Big Pineapple,

and Australia Zoo where Khye loved the crocodiles, elephants and the tigers. He was so excited to see this one come rushing up to him at the window!

There was lots of wildlife at the resort including a snake that decided being inside our apartment was pretty nice and these brush turkeys that Khye enjoyed chasing!

Anyway the holiday just feels like a dream now. We had lots of fun and there was no sewing! (I’m getting stuck into it now though – only a week till the next market.)

Monday, October 13, 2008

Market Update

We had a a beautiful day for the October Market – not too hot not too cold, but we did get sunburnt. I need to get some shade for my stall for the summer months. I had Sean with me which was very helpful ‘cos it was very busy. The elephants proved to be popular again this month and the octopuses attracted a lot of attention.

The octopuses are made from wool or wool blend and are soft and squishy! The underside of the octopus is made from cotton or polycotton fabric remnants. The face is stitched securely onto the octopus making them suitable for children and the skinny legs make it easy for little hands to hold and carry.

We’re off on our first family holiday soon! We’re off to Noosa and maybe we'll see some real live octopuses. We are really looking forward to a break away from everything and looking forward to spending lots of time together. And I promised Sean there would be no sewing!

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Sewing Machine Update …

Well my sewing machine can’t be repaired. The man thought it was a component in the electronic panel but it still didn’t work after he replaced it. The whole panel itself needs replacing. Husqvarna don’t make them anymore and even if they did it wouldn’t be worth fixing the machine. Second hand panels are rare apparently and even if you did find one there’s no guarantee that its going to work or for how long. My poor old machine.

But I have bought a new machine! Well it’s an old second hand Singer. It has been well looked after and it sews very well.

Yesterday I sewed up a pile of elephants outside in the sunshine.

It was a beautiful spring day. The buds have well and truly burst on the grape vines.

Khye and I also took Kiera the dog for a walk to the park and we threw the ball for her to chase. Khye had great fun watching her, laughing and clapping!

Don’t forget the Gisborne Market this Sunday 5th October. It is the first market of the summer season and will run from 9am – 3pm. See you there!

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