Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Last of the Summer Swims

This summer we have embraced our local baths.  They are the only solution to hot summer afternoons and that moment when you swear you  are about to melt.

I love the colours and lines of the place as well as the relative quiet of an outdoor pool.  I feel I could just hug whoever it was that decided that all WWII memorials should be a living part of the community, rather than a stone relic. They obviously knew about our summers.

Miss H shows the way to the kids end of the pool.

Goggles, princess towel, rash top and ready to go.

The faded seat edges have me wanting to paint everything to match, yellow, blue and green, if only to keep summer going a little longer.

This week we snuck to the pool, during school time.  We shared the place with three retirees diligently swimming laps.  Half an hour after schools out and it is a different matter entirely - kids every where, the occasional parent and the best afternoon in the sun you could wish for.

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Little Pockets

There has been a little more sewing going on around here. Consider it an effort to get a few more summer dresses into the wardrobes before the weather turns.  My tutorial for the pockets on this little dress are featured at Sew Mama Sew today.

I know winter must be getting closer as I have just traced out the patterns for this year's leggings for the girls.  So far I've lined up grey stripes, teal and blue.  Time to get cutting.

Monday, February 18, 2013

Zipped Pocket and Other Diversions

I started to stitch, thinking that I would only be a few minutes, an hour at the most.  This was supposed to be a little project.  Then I got a little side tracked with the embellishments.  The pocket needed a little quilting to hold the layers together.  Picking out some of the floral details with glowing pearle cotton seamed like a good idea.

I put a movie on to keep me company, Amelia to be precise.  Two hours later, the details were picked and I was soaring above the clouds, disappearing off the radar, somewhere in the pacific.  It left me feeling quite melancholic. I keep telling myself, the movie wasn't the best but somehow it was all strangely compelling.

A day later and the pocket is finished and lined. I have a habit of getting side tracked with the embellishments.  Sometimes plain is good, but often I see just a little detail that could be changed to make it amazing.  What was going to be a small task has expanded to fill the space I give it.  At the end I don't think I would change a thing, but keep thinking I could have done so much more.  I could have sewn two, if only I had left the embroidery and movie alone. I think my head is still in the clouds a little too.

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Wooden Handles, Vintage Utensils

I love mystery objects. Especially the ones that look really useful, but still keep you guessing.  I picked up the little yellow mystery object a week ago.  I love the worn, optimistic yellow handle.

I certainly have soft spot for wooden handled utensils as you can see from this quick raid of the kitchen drawer.  I love the aged patina the layers of paint get over time and the distinguishing details like twin tone or stripes.  I can't work out if you are supposed to have everything matchy matchy or have mismatched handles so you can always find the one you want.

And in case you were wondering what the little yellow and green items were for, they really are a lot friendlier than they look.   Meet my new peach pitter and apple corer.  Now there is nothing standing in the way of an old fashioned pantry full of glowing jars of golden queen peaches.

*Linking in with Op Shop Show Off
** I'm hugely tempted to use a cheesy post title like - Everybody Must Get Stoned, It's the Pits or just downright gruesome - DIY Pet Neutering Kit.

Sunday, February 10, 2013

Dresses and Diplomacy

I have two little girls who insist on being treated exactly the same, despite being very different and two years apart.

Should I slip up, I am reminded over and over again.  When I started the cherry blossom dress for one, the other wanted her dress too.  There was some very diplomatic sewing involved.  One dress sat finished bar the hook and eye on the back while the other was finished.  Then both dresses could be finished at the same time.  One dress had yo-yos on the pocket so of course the other needed them too.  As far as the girls were concerned, the best part was getting to choose the buttons from button tin.

It becomes another matter when forces outside of the family point out the differences. It took a while for H to get used to E being at school, but last week saw the ultimate injustice in my 3 year old's eyes.  E lost her first tooth.  The 3 year old was frantically pressing teeth to find a loose one and asking why the tooth fairy didn't visit her too.

I think it might be time to stop the synchronised sewing in an attempt to celebrate the differences together.

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Park Slope - 3 Years and Two Quilts Later

A mere 3 years after buying the fabric, this quilt is finished.  To be fair, the top has been sitting and waiting for me since December 2009.

It's been a while since I finished a quilt. This one drifted to the top of the pile recently.  I had a pair of sheets, one of which was chosen to back this quilt, the other was given away

This quilt is the first I made from park slope fabric.  You can see the second using the leftovers, hanging to the left on the line.  It makes an interesting study in the impact different settings, sashing and boarders can have on the same fabrics.


Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Beyond the Op Shop

This week, I managed to thrift, without entering the shops.

First, looking for a tripod, I ventured into a camera shop to find they were having a garage sale too.  Instead of tripod, I left with a set of drawers and vintage china.  To make it even better, the rest of the handles were tucked into the drawers.

Then on a lunch break, I spied the office next door moving out. After some curious questioning, I was the new owner of a random oak drawer with a brilliant handle, 5 metal rubbish bins and vintage Christmas decorations to get me through the year.  The kids are taking great delight in swapping around the bins/drums/seats and running their hands through the decorations.  I have to admit to gazing at the decorations on the odd occasion too.

Friday, February 1, 2013

Butterfly Rescue

Make way for the butterfly rescue team.

We have two patches of swan plants, planted just for the caterpillars. Last year they ate through one patch. this year we have been ferrying them from the more popular plants to the ones that are still intact.  Despite our best efforts, they still manage to make short work of all we plant.

These guys can eat and eat.  Some escape to shadier places. This one must have been full, as we now have a chrysalis on the rose bush.
Some are carefully lifted. Very carefully, because they do tickle. 

 Then it is off to their new homes on the intact plants.