Monday, 25 June 2012

Yet another oddity! And granny squares

Just working on some unique granny squares for an exchange I'm a part of! :o) It's The Aussie Granny Sqaure Exchange if you're interested in joining in! We're only a new group and can't branch out world wide just yet but maybe someday we will and have squares going all around the world! We all get given an adddress address (it's so cold my fingers can't type properly!) to send off a knitted or crocheted square or two; after a while all of us will end up with a heap on completely unique granny squares from (hopefully) all around the country! How nifty is that!

Also, thismorning, I thought I'd start actually eating breakfast (normally food before about 11am makes me sick) and cut up a banana and poured some strawberry yogurt on top. I took one bite and couldn't stomach it! BUT when I shoved it in a blender with some milk I was perfectly ok with it.. go figure right! Me and my weird taste buds.

Do you have any food oddities? Can you eat something one way but not another?

Thursday, 21 June 2012

Grouchy catch up - craptastic craft stuff and general crankiness

Having a royally sh** day and seriously couldn't care less if the world imploded and all that was left was an army of nuclear-enhanced cockroaches. I have cramps that could kill people, my usually cynical outlook is now plain vindictive and it seems everyone is out to test how far my temper stretches. There is not nearly enough chocolate in the house and I feel like the Good Year blimp right now, bloated, full of hot air and a huge eyesore!

I could go on complaining in more detail but the specific people who are currently annoying (I very much wanted to use a more colourful word but I didn't think you'd appreciate that) me off might get narky... or at least more so than their usual kind loving and considerate (BARF) natures.

Anyway, here are some photos of things I've been doing recently. I feel like I haven't blogged about anything crafty in a while. I am barely bringing myself to formulate sentences but hey, you get that on the big jobs.. DAMNIT i'm mad. Ah who cares...sorry, on with the catch up stuff.

I made a tiny crochet top hat..

I drew a chibi Jade from Homestuck - if you don't know what that is, I'm not explaining because it's all insane..just enjoy the pretty picture

I drew some portraits

I made a pair of baby booties

I took a Hipstamatic of my dog

I finished a baby blanket I was working on

and I took a silly photo of myself on my webcam.

That's about it! Now I'm going to go make myself French Toast DRENCHED in sugar because I am hungry and already feel like a fatty so I don't care. So what if all my blog posts aren't all happy cheerful grammatically correct stories of wonderment and joy! That's just life sweet cheeks!

Hope your day is less... infuriating...

Monday, 18 June 2012

Vintage Baby!

Yep! Today I decided I wanted to my housework in Victory Rolls! Why not right!? My first time doing victory rolls and pin up makeup! Unfortunately I had no one to take my photos for me so they're all tacky selfies haha

Ignore the icky blonde in my fringe, I had a fight with a hair dye and as you can see, I lost. I've got to leave it a few days before I can dye it back though so til then I'm a bit orange. I've always loved the vintage look, I don't know why I have never tried this hairstyle before! It was actually pretty easy, given enough hairspray and bobby pins that is! It's sparked an insane desire to start searching through op shops to find vintage clothing and try out a new vintage 'do everyday! SQUEEEEEE!! Now to work up the courage to wear my 'do OUTSIDE the house...hmm... that might take some mental convincing. Oh well, I guess if I'm going to be anxious around other people and strangers and be paranoid that they're looking at me I might as well give 'em something to look at right? Ok yeah, you're all strangers and are looking at me, I guess I should say 'in person' hehe

Friday, 15 June 2012

Quick Craft Tip! Write with your glue gun!

YES I know it's WAAAAY to early to be making Christmas cards but when you have 45 people to make gifts for, you need 6 months trust me!

Anyway, on to my quick craft tip! If there is one thing I HATE with the passion of a thousand burning suns, it's cutting out tiny little letters and shapes for cards. Seriously I hate it! It's ok if you buy the sticker letter kind, or have an alphabet stamp or punch but alas, have those things, I do not. Try this instead! Write with your glue gun!

If you have a steady hand then give this a go! Write what you'd like, then shake some glitter over it, let it try and tip off the excess.. ta da! Gorgeous glitter lettering! Take it one letter at a time so you're glue doesn't dry on you before you get the glitter on :o) To make my cards, I've been using a pre-bought pack of gold cards, twine, black glitter cardboard and of course my glue gun with glitter...I'm really loving the look of these cards! Very simplistic and elegant I think! I then simply too a bit of parchment paper and with a felt tip pen wrote my 'Merry Christmas' and added it to the card! Nothing too fancy.

I've caught the 'bunting craze' recently, have you noticed how popular it seems to be getting in the crafting world recently? It makes for a nice and simple Christmas card design!

I tried using my glue gun and glitter to create some basic shapes too, it makes for a lovely hanging lights motif :o)

It's also a fab technique for making super glittery embarrassing love notes for your husband :p

Wednesday, 13 June 2012

Want to know how awkward I am in day to day life?

Hey there quirky beans! :o)
I was in town thismorning BY MYSELF I know don't die of shock (I haven't been into town on my own in months...I usually go with hubby so I don't get scared, yes I'm being serious) I bought a coffee whilst waiting for the Post Office to open and whilst I was at the cafe, kinda awkwardly sitting there with people bustling around me attempting to sip my coffee without missing my mouth and pouring it on my shirt (It happens, trust me) and me being paranoid about the fat rolls showing through my jumper whilst I was sitting so I was fidgeting and pulling my shirt down and trying to flatten my stomach as I sat. Welcome to my world! I am truly THAT awkward in public! I was even aware of my facial expression, I felt like I should have bought a book with me so I wasn't just sitting there looking...well AWKWARD!

But anyway, so the coffee was fab as's the same cafe we buy our ground beans for our coffee machine from, I could have had a coffee at home but it's not the same as when someone else makes it for you. (I would have taken a photo but I was afraid I'd look stupid) so you'll just have to imagine what an amazing coffee looks like. Then I hopped along to the Post Office down the road. Which wasn't open yet. And then I realised I'd left my umbrella at the coffee shop *slaps self in forhead* DAH! It would have to wait, I'll get it later. Finally getting into the Post Office I stood in line for a few minutes before I realised I was holding my drawing in my hands and was going to post it as is. Another superb DAH! moment, so I left the line and found a post bag, jotted down the address, popped in the drawing and resumed my place at the end of the line. What fun times I have when I'm alone! HA!
The letter is now safely posted, and should HOPEFULLY arrive at it's destination in one piece.
So then I trotted back off the coffee shop to collect my umbrella, and they gave me a free blueberry muffin :o) Apparantly they'd been overcooked in the oven that morning and couldn't be sold, I think they took pity on my and gave me one...maybe it was because all the other customers were so thin and I wasn't, so they figured I'd accept one....either way it would bloody delicious! Free food is a WIN in my books! It was still warm and absolutely chokers with yummy blueberries! Again, I'd share a photo but I ate it :o)

Umbrella in hand, I went to try the library again hoping to borrow The Great Gatsby, the next book I want to read in my quest to complete the 100 Best Novels of All Time BUT turns out the library doesn't open til 10am. I checked my phone, it was only 9am. Poo I thought to myself, I can't have another coffee to fill in an hour!  So I started off home. Suprisingly the breeze wasn't too nippy thismorning, I was lucky to be out in an Armidale morning where I DIDN'T get frostbite from 5 minute wind exposure. I was passing an op shop when I thought to myself, 'when was the last time I had a peruse?' the answer is over a year ago!! Having no spare money at your disposal does that.. but hey I had $10 so why not! It didn't open til this stage it was only 9.10am. DRAT, oh well, I'll wait. Another eager early morning op-shopper arrived and we had a nice chat out front whilst waiting :o)

Let me just say, I ADORE op-shops! Alas when you only have $10, there's not a lot you can buy...I tried not to look too closely as there were tons of lovely dresses and tops and jumpers and coats and even a gorgeous fedora hat which I so desperately would love to own! I made a beeline for the fabric, zippers and buttons section *drool*..but still only $10. And I also have a fair amount of those things here at home already, I really shouldn't buy more...SHOULDN'T being the operative word there. I resisted. I was just about to leave when I noticed a medium sized long white box in the window marked 'Newcastle Surgical Appliances'. I was pretty convinced that the box did not, in fact, contain surgical appliances but I got closer and opened it... turns out it was somekind of surgical appliance. I think!...I'm not sure, to me it looked like an underbust corset of some kind, but now that I have it home and am inspecting it a little closer, noticing all the steel boning, the heavy duty lace up system it seems to have going, it is a surgical appliance! It's a size medium Surgical Back Support Corset! I did a bit of research and I found this!

Mine is very very similar though there is less to it! I don't think it's circa 1955-65, but it is a very close make and design, perhaps just an available variation. Either way that just makes it even more AWESOME! I like finding oddities, and this is certainly an odd find! And whats more, the buckles and steel boning will make for an amazing Steampunk cosplay! And hey I'll have great posture all day!

It kinda resembles a straight jacket, which I love!

The staining I can bleach out, I'll replace the ties up the sides with black ribbon or chord and I'll dye the whole thing black and rub the bones down with some bronze boot polish. I'm going on the lookout for an old alarm clock that I can frankenstein and make jewellery out of the cogs with. It's been too long since I got to play with a soldering iron! All in all... a GREAT day!

Oh! Also, last night I started a new crochet project, Pineapple Crochet Shawl with the same dark burgundy red I made my top hat with..I have plans for it ;) At first glance the pattern looks confusing, but I'm working through it row by row and it's alot simper than it looks. I promise to share progress photos :o)

Happy Wednesday guys!

P.s I also have had the pleasure of dealing with a nasty virus that affected a certain social networking site... if you find something called 'Amazing Apps' in your computer's ad-ons, I'd disable it if I were you. I can't go into too much more detail but I'd just check that if you have a spare sec.

Monday, 11 June 2012

And now for something completely different...

Sorry about the irrelevent title there, the odd times Monty Python quotes pop into your head right! Anyway...BEHOLD my new amazing mini top hat! It's my it's-raining-and-freezing-outside-can't-be-BEEEEEEPed-doing-anything-else crochet project (yes, Crochet Geek on Youtube again! Seriously that woman is amazing!). It's red and black, just one of my many fav colour combos (definately in the top 3!) and I gotta say it's pretty damn sexy! I have this adorable long brown curly wig you see and it was just kind of screaming for a Victorian/Gothic-y hat so ta da!! Alas though I will not be sharing a photo of myself either in my new hat or wig as I look extremely shlumpy right now and can't be bothered putting the required make-up/anything that isn't pj's on at the moment BUT I promise I will share a photo one day... perhaps when I've finished making the costume and lacework to go with it *wink wink*

Sunday, 10 June 2012

I got featured on Crafting in my Closet!! Yay!!

How awesome is that! I got featured at Crafting in my Closet this week! Well actually, my nappy/diaper wallet tutorial Guest Post did but still :p That made my day, Teresa you are AWESOME! Geeky birds of a feather stick together right?

Unfortunately though I have to admit my Dr Who scarf project is currently in stasis as due to my stupid tooth getting infected at the wrong time we can no longer go to Supanova Pop Culture expo next weekend :( I am completely heartbroken BUT it's ok, that just gives me more time to make a kick-butt costume for next year! As for my scarf, I haven't given up! I am still going to finish it! All 30 feet of it :p It's all good though, it is winter here in Oz so a nice long scarf won't go astray!

GO NOW and check out Teresa's Crafty Weekend Link Up! Find and meet other bloggers who love nothing more than to craft and get a chance to be featured yourself! 


Friday, 8 June 2012

My first attempt at making a quilt

Today I scrambled through my meagre fabric stash to see what I had in there..I had this brilliant idea that I was going to give a baby quilt/play mat a go today (after finally giving up on the housework. The bathroom is clean, I smell like a Exit Mould) I only had two pieces of fabric large enough to make a quilt with, some green spotty fabric and some dark blue cotton which worked out well because it means now I have a unisex quilt to add to my baby box. I also discovered I had no batting either and being too broke to go buy some more (as usual) I fished out a piece of old pink mink that was faded and used two layers of that instead. And then I set to it! And voila! It didn't turn out so bad :o) The only bias binding I had was 1cm wide and at first I tried in vain to wrap it over the outside edge but as you can guess, that failed. So I cheated and folded it in half and topstitched it on instead! That worked!

The spots made it a bucket load easier for me to sew nice even squares too ( I just had to count between them to get straight lines), I'd have been stuffed without them! Perhaps all my blankets in future will be spotty...

Then for extra measure (and with extra fabric) I put two applique birds on the corner....unfortunately though my sewing machine is very old (A Globe Electronic 390 to be exact) and doesn't really have an applique/embroidery function so I just sort of eyeballed it and used a small zig zag stitch over the edge twice. Some may call it dodgy, I think of it as improvisation! I'm pretty impressed with my handiwork, my sewing machine has been a bit neglected recently (blame Mr Crochet Hook) though it definately has room for improvement next time!

Thursday, 7 June 2012

I love the feeling of a completed artwork :o)

Isn't he just the cutest little munckin you've ever seen? I hope my client likes it :o)

If you would like a portrait drawn, I'd be happy to do one for you! Pop by my page and say hello!
'Pretty Things'

Wednesday, 6 June 2012

Chibi Pikachu crochet amigurumi

Look what I did yesterday! He's my own design which I'm proud of, he's a custom order for a friend of mine...I hope she loves him as much as I do! If you'd like one too, they're $15 and available at my 'Pretty Things' Shop :o)
(which you can now find in the tabs above! I'm in the process of creating a website for my new shop, it's VERY incomplete at the moment but yay for small steps and making progress!!)

This means I have also created my FIRST EVER proper crochet amigurumi!! YAY!!!!

Tuesday, 5 June 2012

Winter Instagram

3 degrees outside, raining, windy, I went for a walk to the park! I took my camera and made up a photodump college. It was freezing but I really needed to get out of the house for a while.

*all photos property of Tash Parker.

Monday, 4 June 2012

Quirky Bean 'Meet the Blogger' Spotlight! Cj of 'Giveaway oh Giveaway'

This week we meet Cj, the woman behind the blog at Giveaway, Oh Giveaway! Cj is all about bringing you the best shopping tips and tricks, product reviews and of course GIVEAWAYS!

Describe yourself in 5 words Frugal, Fun, Friendly, Happy, and Busy

Why did you begin blogging? 2 months ago on February 24, 2012

What is your all-time absolute favourite food? Hot wings!

If had $1000 to spend on anything in the world, what would you spend it on? I would buy a video camera with part of it then the rest I split and give to a family trying to raise money to adopt a Downs syndrome girl from China and the rest to a co-worker of mine whose son is sick with leukemia.

What was the last book you read? Hunger Games Series

If you could trade places with any other person for a week, famous or not famous, living or dead, real or fictional. with whom would it be? My grandma in the 1950's she said it was such a fun time to live!

If your life could have a theme song, what would it be and why? I gotta a Feeling-Black Eyed Peas (sp) I have a lot of good, good nights (and days!)

*I haven't included the official video for this song as parts of it aren't family friendly :o)

Friday, 1 June 2012

I've found my resolve...and this time it's here to stay!

After a lot of very kind and thoughtful support these past few days (THANKYOU ladies! you know who you are) I am BRINGING BACK MY SHOP BABY! And this time it's here to stay. Last night and thismorning I have been working on re-setting up my little crafty corner on Facebook and getting all my creations photographed and uploaded. I still have a very long way to go before I can officially open, I want to make sure that everything is done right this time. I realised that so much has happened since 'the beginning' (as I'll call it for now) and it's time to sit back, think it over, accept it and share the tale with others. I will not name names, I will not go into too much detail but I will explain my feelings, my reactions, and my resolve and why I did what I did.

Source: via Tash on Pinterest

Let me share my story with you, it's personal, I feel it's important but this time I know I can handle it nomatter what life throws at me.

One year ago, I don't remember the exact month, I first found out that you could have a 'Page' on Facebook. I had no idea they existed before then, I didn't even really know what it was or what it did so I did some research (and by research I mean clicked 'Create a Page' and fiddled with it until I worked it out). Having your own 'shop' in a high traffic area such as Facebook? Was it really that simple? Well, setting it up is easy, you can upload pretty much anything and try (yes try) to sell it if you wanted. Running it however, finding a place within the millions of other pages who do the same thing, establishing yourself, is not at all easy. Being unique is harder than it seems, something you think is original and your own turns out not to be. Which is all well and good normally, being unique is a good thing, just not so much if you're trying to make a bit of money from your hobby (online). I realise that is a very cynical outlook, but that's how I feel about it. But what can you expect? I said myself that setting up you're own page was easy....everyone can do it!

Not only that but you find yourself to join all these 'like ladders' and 'share' pages to try and gain more 'likes' and essentially have a further reach once your friends get sick of you hounding them with links and requests... but what does it really get you? To participate you have to like everybody elses page too which leaves you with a newfeed PACKED with all these feeds from pages you'd never seek out and like on your own. How do you feel when you think about your page being one that all the other people wouldn't seek out on their own? Not a nice feeling really, so that becomes a bit redundant. I suppose it's perfectly ok if that doesn't bother you, but it bothered me.

If you look back through my blog to my first posts and back through to here you will notice the watermarks on my photos change. That's because, in this past year I've had 3 pages. Yup, 3. First, 'A Touch of Vintage Inspiration' then 'Sew Sweet Handmade' then 'The Pretty Little Dragonfly' and a group I set up thinking that would work better than a page 'Sweet Little Shmoogle Beans'. One after the other... you know why? I ran away. I gave in, I let my resolve crumble and I let the figurative enemy win. Because everytime I felt inadequate and like I had no talent or was made to feel that way but other people (and believe me that happened too!) I gave up. I've never really been a very strong person, I tend to feel more than I in I let me emotions and thoughts take over my practical side of actually doing something about it. I guess that's why I never confronted anyone about it; what was the point when all my past experiences on the mattered with the other person feeling smug and like they were king of the world and me feeling like s*** for opening my mouth in the first place! I lost my enjoyment, all I could feel was anxiety, nerves and spite and that was not a place I wanted to be the time though I felt like I didn't have a choice. Yesterday a light bulb pinged on in my head...out of the blue, and for no reason at all.

" Strength is not measured by your ability to not feel pain, it's measured by your ability to accept that pain is part of life, and learn how to avoid it next time."

I realised that I was allowed to feel hurt, it's perfectly ok to feel insulted, or scared, or upset or broken...that's all part of being human! I didn't have to stay positive all the time, I don't have to hide the way I felt, or the way I'm feeling now from anyone. Why should I? I'm not that kind of a person. Sometimes I wish I could hide my anger better than I do, I wish I had the ability of expressing myself without fear of consequence but that's not the way I am.
Source: via Tash on Pinterest

What I SHOULD do though, and I didn't realise this until recently, is that I shouldn't ALLOW those feelings to take over my soul and make me into something ugly. It's ok to feel them, but don't let them consume you. In essence, changing pages, running away, starting over again and again is a pattern I was forming, and not just in terms of craft shops, but in my life too. When something get's too much, or I feel I can't cope I take the flight response. I always have! Obviously writing about it isn't going to suddenly change my life, but I can become more aware of it and take action to change the why I resolve things.
Has all this come about from opening a little craft shop?? Yes! It certainly has! It's funny the things that make you jump back and say 'wow!'...what's that old saying? Something you've lost in always in the last place you look... something I hadn't realised I'd lost was in the last place I thought to find answers.

I am starting again and I'm doing it with resolve, that nomatter what happens, nomatter what people say or do, nomatter how hard it may get at times, I will NOT give up. But I need to make some promises to myself first.

People are always going to have an opinion of you nomatter who are or what you do. I am just going to have to learn and get past my paranoia that YES there may be people out there to 'get me', people may not like me or what I do, or who I am, what kind of person would I be if I expected everyone to like me all the time?? But it's ok, that's their choice and I don't have to make it part of my life.

All this time I tell myself I'm not that good... well it's not true. I DO have talent! I can design and write my own crochet patterns, I have an imagination, I can draw, I can write, and I am so much more than I thought! I can do it :o)

No more spite, no more competition, no more hiding and no more negativity. I am starting over with all the right intentions this time :o) I love my craft, my drawing, taking photos; it's all such a big part of my life that I would be crazy to give it all up!