Saturday, May 28, 2011


This week I got a book out from the University library. Not that special you say? But it really really is. I haven't been able to do that since September last year. Our university library, the hub of Canterbury University life, suffered major damage in the September earthquake. Although the outcome wasn't quite so severe in February, it still wasn't good. This week the first two floors (of thirteen) reopened, giving access to study space and the short term loan sections. 

So although this book may look pretty boring, for me it represents something bigger. We're recovering. Slowly but surely we're getting back on our feet.

Guess you can figure out what I'm up to at the moment. . . my life is pretty dominated by class work right now. It's not fun sometimes. . . but on the whole I love things like “Combat and Mobilization on the Western Front” just as much as I love craft. So that's ok.

I picked up the yarn this week for my next crochet project. I think I've caught the bug! Don't you just love the colour?

That's all for now,


I may be linking up to these link parties! 

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Spun Sugar Scarf

I finished my first crochet project! It's a simple scarf

The pattern is by the Sugar Scarf by SmoothFox, you can find it here for free on Ravelry. I'm going to call it my Spun Sugar Scarf, because I feel like just plain 'sugar' doesn't quite do it justice. I didn't follow the pattern exactly, mainly because I didn't quite have enough yarn or the right sized hook. 


It's crocheted using Moda Vera Bamboo Cotton, which is a 70% Bamboo 30% Cotton blend. It has such a nice feel to it! I'm soo pleased with how it turned out (mostly because I managed to do it at all!) 


Here's a photo of me wearing it, just so you can see how it kinda looks on someone. 


I think I'll be using this pattern again. It was really easy and even though it might not seem like it to you, because I posted my tester hexagon weeks ago, in terms of actual crafty time it worked up extremely quickly. They'd make great gifts!

Have a great day folks! I may be linking up to these link parties

That's all for now,


Oh, did anyone else have great fun going through the Sew Mama Sew giveaways, I know I did!

Monday, May 23, 2011

Just in Case You Didn't Know . . .

Just in case you as my lovely followers didn't realise, it's Giveaway Day(s) over at Sew Mama Sew. I haven't put in a giveaway this time around but I'm loving entering all of them. There's literally hundreds!! 


So get yourself over there and put yourself in to win some great goodies

That's all for now,


Saturday, May 21, 2011

Clearing out the Projects

Over the last few days I've hit 20 followers! Yay! Thank you all. I'm not one who worries about the numbers but it's always nice to know someone is reading this thing. Some of you may have noticed a bit of a revamp going on at the moment, please stick with me as things change slightly!

As part of that revamp I took a look at my 'Projects On My Mind List' that you can see on the sidebar. It's just a list of what I'm working on and what I'm thinking about getting around to at some point, so when I have the “oh I really want to make one of those sometime” thought I don't forget. Lately it's been getting a bit bogged down though, so I thought I'd give it a clean out!

  1. Crochet Scarf (WIP). This actually is a current work in progress, so it can stay.
  2. V&A Vase Mini Cushion Cross Stitch (WIP). Believe it or not, I'm also currently working on this one, so it can stay as well.
  3. Secret Projects (WIP). I'm not actually working on anything secret at the moment. . . but I haven't shown you what I was working on. Mainly because the person it's a secret for hasn't got it yet, even though it was meant to be a Christmas present. It's off the list for now and I'll try and show off what I made soon.
  4. Herb Growing (WIP). Well I'm still growing herbs, but I think I'll call this one a success! 


    Here's my sage and oregano, still going strong. Unfortunately I never managed to get the rosemary to take off. In a twist of fate just yesterday I inherited a mint plant. 

    We hosted my flatmates 21st last night and made a variety of 'proper' cocktails (ie: not out of a packet mix). One of them had mint in it and our local supermarket stocks fresh herbs as live plants rather than cuttings. At the end of the night we had one left over! I think it will need repotting pretty soon though. Oh. . . please ignore our unmown lawn, we've been having problems with the lawnmower lately! 

  5. Finished piece block roll. Still on the agenda
  6. Knitting Needle Case. Done!! See it here
  7. Fabric belt. Still on the agenda
  8. Do some cross stitch finishing. Ditto
  9. Learn to Crochet and more knit techniques. I think I can now amend this one to learn more crochet and knit techniques :)

Hopefully my projects list will soon be moving to its own tab with a few additions. Stay tuned . . .

That's all for now,


Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Vintage Needle Case

So it turns out I can still sew! I haven't pulled out the sewing machine in ages, mainly because we haven't had a table (we do now). 

My knitting needles have been loose in my big crafting bin for a while now and as the number of them increases the more annoying it was getting. You might have noticed a knitting needle case crop up on my "projects on my mind" list ----->

The fabric is from some of the vintage pillow cases I thrifted recently, the zip I picked up from my local sewing supplies shop for $2.70. Total cost about $3.10, can't argue with that! I used a pattern from Cath Kidston's "Sew", but it's pretty much just rectangles (plus a few extras) and took me less than two hours start to finish. 

Here you can see the lovely lining. I was massively happy with how it turned out, especially with how easily I got back into using the sewing machine after not touching it in a few months. I think teaching myself to crochet has made my "right, I can do this" confidence grow quite a bit.

If I was going to do it again I think I'd make it just a bit shorter. It's long enough to take even my longest of needles with almost 10cm to spare. But I'm happy. I love the fabric, I love how much it cost to make, I love how I'm re-using, I love how perfectly the zip is sewn in and that I did it myself. And I love that I won't have to take everything out of my massive craft bin anymore to find a pair of needles!

That's all for now,


Linking up to: 

and Our Creative Spaces 

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Stitchy Progress

Here's how I'm going on my current WIP, the Victoria and Albert Collection Vase Mini Cushion

I am loving this one, even though I keep mucking up the pattern and having to unpick hideous amounts. I think my brain is trying to tell me I'm too tired for cross stitch at the moment, but I won't listen. I swear it's the most I've ever had to unpick on one piece before by far. Good thing the kit had plenty of extra cotton. But the photo truly doesn't show just how stunning it's turning out when I get it right!! 

Today I've been relaxing. . . reading, grocery shopping, baking and enjoying the sunshine before going back to essays tomorrow. This is by far the hardest semester of university I've had. Crafting (and my friends, my man and my God) are keeping me sane! Getting a bit of sun into the system is one of the best ways to make it all better, especially when your flatmate comes home with a pocket full of feijoas. That's a little-known-outside-of-NZ but very yummy fruit.

I started the evening with home baked oatcakes, cheese and episodes of QI . . . a good day!

That's all for now,


Sunday, May 8, 2011

Beary Cute!

I've finished two sweet little knitted bears to head to Uganda at the end of the month. 

Aren't they sweet? I don't think I'm going to have time to outfit them properly, so they've each been giving a quick chain stitch crochet scarf. I think my shaping is a bit better than my last attempt, their faces aren't as flat and they have necks, especially the one on the left. I still dont like the proportion of the arms to the legs, so I think next time I use this pattern I'll either make the legs longer or arms shorter!

They may be joined by another one or two, we'll see how we go with time constraints. Like my last knitted bear, the pattern comes from this brilliant little book.

Now for a sneak peak at my crochet. I'm improving slowly, enough that I feel I can attempt a simple project rather than just small squares of nothingness. This is my test with scrap yarn, I was making sure I could do the basics of the pattern before I made a proper start!

Looks like I'm ready to go!

Linking up to A Round Tuit

That's all for now,


Just some thrifting

Lately I've been doing some thrifting. Or as we call it here, op-shopping. As I'm on a tight student budget, it's a great way to pick up new stash without breaking the bank. That being said, I was very disappointed with one store that had a giant bin of sewing supplies marked at prices more expensive then new! Anyways, I picked up . . .

These 3 vintage pillow cases for 80 cents each. I love the floral prints and already have plans for what's going to happen to some of them. I love how it's effectively a fat quaterish worth of fabric that I pay less than a dollar for. 

And a few pieces of clothing. . . not to take apart, for me to wear :)

This fitted faded denim jacket. By the looks of it it's designer label, very good quality at the very least. Cost me $3!

And this cozy wool jumper. It's one or two or three sizes to big for me, but paired with jeans and boots still looks cute. It's warm as anything as well, so I'm counting it as a win. Cost $4. 

After thrifting myself and the two friend I was with ducked into the mall. . . one of them was looking for a cocktail dress and hadn't found anything she liked in the op-shops. We went into a fannncccyyy store that I hardly ever go into. They have lovely clothes, just not lovely prices. I was flicking through a rack when I saw the most gorgeous dress!! I held it up to my friend but she passed it over. She had about 4 things to try on so I thought oh well, I'll try it on just for fun. It was beautiful, I didn't want to take it off. Looked at the price tag. . . it had been marked down to $15 from close to $100!! How could I walk out of the place without it? What a lovely end to the day.
(I would show you a photo but I couldn't get a decent one). 

Stay tuned for some teddy bear photos tomorrow.

That's all for now,


Friday, May 6, 2011

A New Stitch

I'm learning to crochet at the moment. . . I'm getting there, but there have been some moments this week where I've just gone arrrrrrrrgggggggg after having to unravel for about the 6 million-ish time (maybe not literally). So I've fallen back to cross stitch, the craft that is still really my one true love hehe. Sometimes I think you need to just do something that you know you can do and do well! 

I admit it wasn't helping much last night when I had to unpick a heap of progress because I'd spaced it one square to far to the left. But I find I can tolerate stitchy mistakes better than crochet mistakes. . . benefit of experience.

The pattern/kit was just the first one I pulled out of my stash. I got given it about 2 years ago, it's from the V&A collection by DMC.

That's all for now, hope everyone's enjoying their Friday :)


Monday, May 2, 2011

If this means I'm a granny then so be it. . .

I can crochet!! That's right, I can do it! I should have been sewing bits of teddy bear together but the hooks were there and the yarn was there and I couldn't resist giving it a go. I worked off the fantastic videos at Meet Me at Mikes and came up with . . .

I was actually shocked by how easy I found it in comparison to knitting, the rhythm of it just works somehow. So I worked up these three granny squares and a chain stitch headband (which I was going to show you but couldn't get a decent photo of) relatively quickly. My first granny square I had to do the first round three times before I got it into a vaguely recognisable shape, but apart from that it was all systems go. 

The only thing is. .  I don't know what I'm going to do with these granny squares hehe. A worthy waste of scrap yarn anyway I think. I want to try something harder but I haven't learnt single or double crochet yet, just chain and treble which the granny squares use. But I might give a rose a go later. 

Just goes to show you never know what you can achieve until you try :)

Linking up to A Round Tuit

That's all for now,