Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Bunting galore

I spent a morning at kindy last week to make some bunting with Joshua and his friends. My plan was to make bunting from some plastic bags so that they can hang it outside without it getting too wet. I suppose the plastic will perish after a few months from being exposed to the sun, but it'll look good until it does. 

I made a second string this morning, and here it is brightening up our play hut in the garden.  This hut, by the way, was built by my clever husband using old kauri wallboards from when they renovated his workplace (an old villa). If you're not from NZ, this wood is now pretty priceless and I can't believe we've used it as shingles and kindling!  

Back to the bunting, I used heavier-style plastic carry bags and got the kids to cut it into squares and rectangles.  This was not easy for them, since the kindy scissors are a bit blunt for the job.  I used bias binding and sewed it all together using the zig zag stitch on my sewing machine. I love the random colours and sizes, although I kept a pretty tight reign on just how random things should be.  Organised randomness is the key, people :)

But that's not all the bunting-making that's been going on. I've also been making mini-bunting strips for our tree, using little pieces of fabric, all from the scrap basket.  The left-over triangles were used for Christmas cards, which will be on my table on Thursday night. I'll be at the Gladstone Primary School Christmas market (8 Seaview Terrace, Mt Albert) between 5 and 9. Hope to see you there!

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Living architecture

Image from The Daily Mail
I saw something on TV the other night that was so beautiful and inspiring, I just had to share it here.  The clever locals who live in the Meghalaya province in India have been building living bridges for what looks like hundreds of years. They train the roots of the strangler fig into functional bridges and ladders which can be used after about 10 years and can last up to 500 years. It's a very wet region and I imagine very poor too, so this is the perfect sustainable solution: a bridge that will stay put in floods and won't decay.  Apart from the obvious environmental and economical benefits, these must also be some of the most beautiful structures around.  You really should watch the video; it's from the very worthwhile show 'Human Planet' that's on Prime at the moment.  

Monday, November 14, 2011


Every year around this time I start worrying about how much I have to do and how little time I have for everything. I made a start today with my felt kits, which are very popular round about now.  Here's a little look at my assembly line on the kitchen table today: so many bits and pieces to get ready before I can put them into the boxes!

Next year I will have more time, as Joshua starts school next May.  While I'm looking forward to being able to work more, I'm also conscious of how precious his last few months at home are. I'm taking things a bit slower this Christmas, and that means doing fewer markets and maybe not stocking my shops as well as I would like to.   

I'm doing Kraftbomb as always: the last Sunday of this month, plus the Sunday before Christmas. Also the Auckland Art and Craft Fair on the 10th of Dec and the Gladstone Primary School Market in Mt Albert on the 1st of Dec. I also have limited stock, including my felt Bird and Heart Kits, in my Etsy and Felt shops. If you would like to see what I have in stock here at home, please just email me and I can create a custom listing for you.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Back in the real world

I really do take my time, don't I? It's Wednesday already and I've only now found the time to report back on our most amazing time in Wellington.  Craig and I had 3 nights there and managed to see and do so many things without rushing around once. Bliss.  

Craft 2.0 was a great success for everyone; the market was constantly busy without being too crowded, and thanks to my wonderful assistant it was possible to do the rounds a couple of times and actually chat with other sellers. I left with a couple of treasures: another beautiful bird by Sarah Wigley and a crochet pot stand by Rachelle from Ahipara GirlSarah's bird already has a friend, as you can see in the photo.  I got the black one last year and it is one of my favourite objects in our house.  I was so pleased to see she had the birds there again, plus a perfect range of small hand-decorated bowls.The colours on Rachelle's pot holder caught my eye, but what really sold it to me was the little detail on the back.  So simple and unexpected. Apart from these two ladies, I was also glad to catch up with Shelley from Sweet William, and meet Joke from Hikkepik.  

On Sunday morning we went back to the Chaffers Dock Building for the food market where we had really great coffee, danishes, bratwurst rolls and fresh strawberries for breakfast.  Mmm. We happened across a small civic ceremony where the mayor of Wellington was giving an awkwardly-translated speech to thank the sister-city Beijing for their generous gift of 100 bicycles to the city.  We delivered some of my fabric (which will be transformed into really cute baby shoes) to Made.it.  We visited the Wellington Art Gallery and Te Papa for the jointly-hosted Oceania exhibition; well worth the time and $10.  We walked in the sun and talked about what a great city it is to visit, and perhaps next time we'll bring the boys...

Thanks again Wellington for putting on the weather, culture and magic for us! xx