A little piece of beauty each day - 74 Lime Lane

Since I seem to be singing the praises of blogs I have found lately, I would like to bring your attention to another spectacular blog. 74 Lime Lane.  This lovely lady is an Australian (she states regional Australia - NSW somewhere from what I can work out).  I love the way she came up with the name for her blog:
Why 74 Lime Lane? ’74 is the year I was born, lime is a favourite colour and lane because of the alliteration and the idea of an “address”. Hence, 74 Lime Lane. My Hubby got me the sign in the first picture (Logo) made for my birthday not long after I started blogging.

74 Lime Lane is a cornucopia of beauty and sensuality for the visual senses.  I visit this blog daily at the moment for a special dose of gorgeousness in what can sometimes be a dreary day. 

Kellie has a fantastic vision when it comes to photography, and if she designed her blog and shops herself then she is also a talented designer (if she didnt, she sure knows how to pick a good design!).

Do yourself a favour and sign up for her newsletter the lime time digest. She sends out a free calender page every month and other morsels of deliciousness. Its a good read. I look forward to this little piece of email every month.

I have actually purchased one of her calenders too because they are just so gorgeous! I have a set of her mini cards and they are just so darling. I originally got them to use as postcards to send away, but Im going to have to buy another set because I need to keep them for myself. She has an etsy store and a made it store and she regularly updates the things she sells - mainly photos, cards, post cards, printables. All things of luscious beauty.

And if youre into free stuff (who isnt right?!), her blog is full of it. Free downloads, Freebie Fridays, Regular giveaways (she has one on at the moment for her Blog Birthday), and she does regular profiles on other blogs and artists and creators and crafters. And they are all just gorgeous too - I love reading profiles like that. Thats why Im posting about people like that. For those few of you who stop by here.

So what are you waiting for? Go look see...

Oohmoon - what a fabulous Idea

I love this site. Ive only recently found it and its just such a great idea. How cute is the name? Ooh Moon.

Its a seriously cool blog where she has an illustration that is downloadable for free every day for a single day (after that day you pay for it). Based on childrens illustrations but I love them too. I think they are just funky! And this week shes doing Owls! Whoohoo! Or should I say Whoot! 

Im going to print these ones out and put them on my walls with my other owls. No Im not obsessed.....exactly. What makes you say that....

Tea Dresses & Naughty Shorts

Recently I have fallen in love with the vintage style of 50s style "Tea" dresses. Yes me and the rest of the world I know. Problem is, Im not small and svelte.  Im a larger variety lady. A true hourglass. Translate, big boobs, smallish waist, big bum & thighs.  Which is fine for me to wear Tea dresses. If I could only find them in my size. Under $400.

I was desperately hoping that Rebecca Williams from Naughty Shorts would have my size - she goes up to a size 16. Thats one of her dresses in the picture above. And her dresses are just so lovely that I really have to have one. Alas, her larger sizes are not available yet. She has assured me she is working on larger patterns and will soon be able to custom sew a dress for me. YAY.

If you love tea dresses go check out her dresses and other items made of vintage fabric. She has made her pattern herself and she sews them all by hand. You choose the fabric, she makes your dress. And she is so reasonably priced - under $100!  She was recently profiled in Frankie so Im guessing shes going to be majorly busy for a while so get in quick if you want a dress this season.

lutterloh mini pattern
For me - Ive resorted to deciding to sew my own.  An ambitious aim because my sewing skills are still fairly basic. And the patterns I have decided to use? Vintage Lutterloh patterns.  Ever heard of Lutterloh? Its basically this system where you use a special miniature pattern and a special tape measure and draw up your own patterns to your own size. You take your measurements in specific places, and then translate that to a number which you use with the special tape measure and then using the mini pattern, you draw up a big pattern specifically fit to you.  Sounds cool huh? I found it at a craft show last year but you can buy online. Comment if you want to know where and I will point you in the right direction.

The only down side to the Lutterloh is that while the pattern is pretty cool, Im not so wonderful at not having instructions. It does come with a basic instruction booklet for how to sew most things. I just need to marry that up with the pieces that I have right? Well, I will see how I go.  I have chosen a dress or two from a vintage lutterloh pattern book I found from ebay. This book was written for the system in the early 50s (yes this pattern system has been around that long) and it has some seriously cool patterns in it. True vintage.  I jsut hope it translates to my size cause aparently ladies waists were a lot smaller back then. What, did they not have fat people back then? Im thinking thats a little bit of propoganda myself. But I will try. I have some old cotton sheets Im going to use for the muslin so I will keep you updated!

Vintage Lutterloh pattern

Why has it taken me so long to find this blog/site?

Indie Fixx.  I love it. Lots. 

I found it through another blog that was advertising their free online magazine - Joie. Which by the way, I loved so much that I paid for it (you have the option to pay $2 for it if you want to contribute - so I did - Ive paid a lot more than that for magazines that I didnt even like in the end. And I happily pay $10 odd for Pepermint or Frankie so $2 is nothing). I cant remember which blog it was (darn it) cause it was a random blog that didnt really hold my interest too much. But it led me to Joie which led me to Indie Fixx. Bless.

Seriously, this site is chock full of creative and arty goodness. Im in love and plan to spend quite a lot of time rambling around in its archives.  I suggest you go do the same!

Go Penguine Go!

This just made me laugh so I had to share. I suggest you turn the sound off - its naff.

A Rainbow Staircase!

Check this out - its a rainbow staircase in a super modern house in London.  I read about this house first on the blog Jeannie Jeannie.  I love the Jeannie Jeannie blog because it has the most gorgeous modern design posts. 

I love to dream that I can afford some of the items and houses she finds. And the art pieces she  shows are inspirational. Its design at its very modern best in my opinion. Not to mention the paper products - you all know Im addicted to stationary of all types.  I would highly recommend having a look at this blog.

But Back to the House. How seriously Cool is the staircase and the slide back down?! Though I agree with Jeannie I think - cushions are a must. 

And personally Im not sure I could deal with the kitchen floor when Im in need of my coffee first thing in the morning.  Looks like a fun house to visit though.


Ive spent the last couple of days suffering with a massive headache. I think its the storms 'cause Ive had a massage and taken LOTS of tablets but it all just tones it all down not removes it. 

Unluckily my boss got a headache yesterday too so while Im really sorry for her pain, I was glad 'cause it meant I could stay in bed an extra day. So Im feeling much better than I was.

Though I am considering going out and yelling at my really 'considerate' neighbour who has decided to mow his lawn at 6.30am. WTF?! Seriously!

I hope y'all are good and all my flood affected friends are OK.

QLD - Perfect One Day, Under Water The Next

No Im not meaning to be a Smart-Arse.  Im sitting in the middle of it all. Just a quick note to all my friends and family - Hell, Thomas and I are OK. We are cut off - water all around our little estate turning us into an island. But we are not going to actually flood ourselves. 

We will lose power when it peaks because our substation is just down the road and in the place that is about to go totally under water. So anyone that is worried - we are fine. We might just be out of communication till it all goes down. 

We will be rationing the phones once power goes off cause we cant charge them so if one doesnt work, try the other.

I hope all out there are well and safe and for those of you who are not, my prayers are with you.

Its Sunday Im in Love....

Yeah I know. The real quote is "Friday" but I didnt find this site to love on Friday. I found it tonight - Sunday!

You HAVE to check out this gorgeous site -Upon a Fold and blog. I mean seriously how gorgeous are all those paper goods. Now if you know me at all you know I have a real weakness for stationary of all kinds. Yes even the mundane. I can spend an hour just wandering around in Officeworks and we all know that is not the most gorgeous place. I spend way too much money in Kikki-K and Typo. And now I have found another Australian paper goods site to spend my non existant money on (there goes New Years resolution number 5 - save more spend less). This site has so much that I want. Now. Oh man, I really do work to feed my shopping habit dont I?

I was particularly blown away by these paper rings. Now I would suggest that rather than wearing them they are art pieces. But how very clever and beautiful are they?

Im in Love with this site. Ive already ordered something (of course).

Another thing I want to do this year is get back into the long lost art of snail mail letter writing. I find it really satisfying recieving little bits and pieces of joy in them mail. Do you remember the thrill as a child to recieve a letter from someone unexpectedly?

So I am sending them out because I need to share that love.  Ive joined a postcard swapping site called postcrossing and regularly send off postcards to strangers. And recieve them.  Its such fun.  Im going to gather all the physical addresses of all my friends - even the ones that I havent spoken to in a long time, and reconnect with them via mail. Some will say WTF? and others will get the same sort of joy that I get from recieving some love in the mail.

So if youre out there and want a piece of mail love - just leave me a comment with an address or even safer - email me directly at leisa@moonshinedesign.com.au and I will send you something! I promise.

One last paper related thing - you really need to grab a copy of this free download of a Calender. It is SO COOL!

Ok. Ive had enough rain now thanks.

 Its still pouring up here in Queensland (Australia). So much so that my front lawn has turned into a fish pond. Literally. The first photo is my front path from the front door towards the road (ie getting in and out of the house). It has been routinely filling up with water when it pours because the water volume is just too much for the drainage in our front lawn. So we have to wade back and forth.

But thats not the worst. Its been a pond now more or less for 3 weeks. So of course the Cane Toads are LOVING IT. And so, my new pond is now full of Huge tadpoles. I kid you not. There are so many I can just reach in and capture them in my hand. And when the rain comes again the water raises over the pathway, and yes the Tadpoles go with it. Thus the second photo - thats the tadpoles hanging around outside my front door. Looks like gold fish or something doesnt it. Somewhat amusing when you have to walk through them.

Im not quite sure what to do about it yet. I cant let them live unfortunately (I hate to kill ANYTHING. Even spiders - I only get at them if they jump on me). Cane Toads are an absolute menace and they have no natural preditors here in QLD. They kill all the native frogs and lizards and if youre not careful your dog (they get poisoned by them if they try to chase them and get one in their mouth). So I will have to work out a way to kill them without killing my front lawn and without killing the rest of the environment.

I really hope all my green tree frogs are in the back yard.  I know none of these are my Green Tree frogs cause the tadpole is much larger than a baby tree frog - we see them regularly here. They are so cute. Around the size of my thumb nail (not that I pick them up of course). These tadpoles are already about the size of a 20c piece. Gotta be Toads. Sigh.

Pantone Colour of the Year - Honeysuckle

OK so this year Pantone has decided that their colour of the year is Honeysuckle.  Are you like me and thought a honeysuckle was a yellow colour? Nope, its pink. Methinks this colour of the year is not overtly original. But I guess in reality no colour is in the fashion industry so why not go with Pink again. At least it is popular right?!

Pink and I have a love/hate relationship. Sometimes I love it, sometimes I hate it. Fortunately for my skin, it always loves me. And in Pantone's favour, at least this is a strong pink and not some pastel baby pink (bleh - no offence to anyone intended).

I wonder how they come up with the colour of the year. I kind of understand how they end up a trend in clothing as far as style goes - one of the designers does something, puts it on a cat walk, the fashionistas go gaga over it (no pun intended), and then all the chain stores pick it up and run with it mass production style.  So it starts in the brain of someone going - lets try this.

But how do they pick a colour trend? Other than in a similar way to the above - that designer so and so has used it in their collection.

Maybe its based on ink levels. "Hey Mr Pantone, its Dougs Dyes here. We have a serious overstock of pink right now. Think you can shift it for us?"

Chuckle Chuckle.Yes I AM overtired.

Happy New Year! Welcome 2011

HAPPY NEW YEAR!!! Welcome to 2011!
I will hopefully start to blog again this year and keep you up to date with all the things I find and do.  Hopefully it will be interesting for you. As part of that I will be reorganising this blog profile - sorting out the gazillion blog links I have into something more manageable (there are SO many fabulous blogs to read out there).

I will also be writing more and updating my other blog - Prismatoria. So if you are interested in an amateur fantasy story land, then please hop on over there and see whats happening.

I hope that you all have had a great holiday season and I will 'speak' with you all during the year!

Do you Zentangle?

Upon my wanderings around the web I have come across Zentangle. From what they say on their web site its a form of meditative drawing. Created by Maria Thomas and Rick Roberts they have this to say:

"One day, Maria told Rick what she experienced as she drew background patterns on a manuscript she was creating. She described her feelings of timelessness, freedom and well-being and complete focus on what she was doing with no thought or worry about anything else.  "You're describing meditation," Rick said.
Rick and Maria wondered if they could create a simple system so others might enjoy a similar experience. And so began the journey towards discovering this simple and elegant system called Zentangle."

All I know is that its fun to do, and you cant do it wrong. There is no wrong. You just kinda draw and whatever you do is fine. Its like when you're drawing you can just focus on the lines and your brain doesn't have to worry about anything else. Its quite relaxing.  Ive done a couple myself but Im without a camera at the moment so Ive included one of the ones from the Zentangle web site so you can see what I mean. Flickr has a huge pool of them.

I found this squidoo about Zentangles that explain in simple terms how to zentangle. For someone like me that is enough to work out what Im doing. But if you want to use their specific patterns and ideas and learn how, you can either buy a DIY pack or they also have seminars and stuff. They even accredit their teachers. I find that a little bizarre - that its so very structured when in actual fact its such a simple process. But hey, I guess some people need to be taught an official way. Maybe there is more to it than I know?

Me personally, Im just finding it fun. And I can see some zentangled shrinky dinks coming my way in the future...

More Owls

OK so Im obsessed.  But you just have to see these guys.  First up is this amazing little guy who changes dramatically when he thinks hes in trouble.  Im not sure what the japanese show is saying so I muted the sound. But it doesnt actually need the sound.  Try looking around 1 minute and then again for a different transformation at around 1min 40.

And of course then we have THIS owl. I really wish I had one like this living near me. SO darling! And dont you just love his eye makeup?

OK Im off to bed. Hope you like those guys.

Of interest to Brisbane-ites, and anyone who really loves fashion and magazines...

OK so that was a really long title from me. And this is going to be a very short blog entry.

Whilst wandering through the fabulous website of Lauren Carney - a super talented artist from Brisbane whom I found at the Finders Keepers market on Saturday - she alerted me to a new fashion/style/indie magazine called Charlie.  Its an online magazine so its easy to download and read, and best of all, its free.

OMG Im in love. Its an online magazine published here in Brisbane Australia and I love love love it.  So I wanted to let ya'll know so that you can love it too!  Go check it out.

Thank you Ms Carney! Much appreciated!

Im not dead just floating.....

Contrary to the popular belief amongst my friends and family, I am not actually dead dear reader. I am exceedingly busy doing...stuff and things, things and stuff. Very little of it actually worth writing about. Just basic iving type things.

Last week I made myself a new handbag using an Amy Butler pattern. It went well but I have no photos as yet so I will post again about it another time. I will say I enjoyed the process and her pattern was very easy to follow. So if you  are eyeing a pattern off, go for it I say. Im planning to make an iphone cover next by using an Amy Butler laptop/ipod cover pattern.

I  dont get a lot of time to do crafty stuff at the moment. With 2 teengers and a 6 month old in the house there are always too many things to do. (Just cause the teenagers are the parents doesnt seem to stop them being typical teenagers in a lot of ways). Seriously, those ladies out there who have families and businesses AND craft, I totally take my hat off to you! I just dont know how you do it. Im having enough trouble keeping on top of the housework when the baby is not mine!

Enough from me for the moment. I have ghost in my keyboard who is making typing very annoyingg, so Im leaving before I smash somehing. (Its missing some letters, adding othersn randomly and I have to pound the space baar to make it work).



Helping Helen around the house today I have managed to be stung by a bee about a half hour ago on my leg just below the knee.


Good thing Im not allergic!  Did I mention it hurts.....


If you know me a little you will know that I LOVE Owls. I think they are the most beautiful creatures and I have a number of pictures and toys of owls around.  

Well, on Thursday night on the way home we happened to see a live Owl. He startled me by flying in front of the car as we were driving into our estate. There was no way I was going to hit him because I was only going about 10k coming up to a roundabout. He flew from the side of the road, across my nose and up into the Big tree in the middle of the roudabout and then sat there looking at me indignantly. I was entranced. He was SO beautiful. He looked like the one in the photo above so Im guessing from that, that he is a Powerful Owl.

In another Owl related sighting, there is a gorgeous post from Mod Kid about her brush with an Owl, complete with photos of the darling creature. You need to go have a look. A different kind of owl but still just as beautiful. Amazing that we have both had owl sightings on the total oposite sides of the world. I hope to see mine again sometime soon.

I would love to own an owl as a pet but I could never bear to subject one to captivity. Same with an Eagle. I kinda wish we could have owls as companions like in Harry Potter. Ones that had their own minds and freedom to come and go etc. Id love that. And on an upside, maybe my mail wouldnt go astray so often then too.

Hope youre enjoying your Easter Break.

Its been a hard days night....

Wow. Youd think that once I was no longer 'employed' Id have plenty of time.  Ive been so damn busy that I feel like Ive been on a treadmill constantly.  And of course, no time to blog or even barely read blogs.

I did manage to go to the Craft Expo last week with my cousin which was fun. Managed to get a fat quarter of my Lila Tueller fabric Ive been waiting and waiting for. Seems like noone is getting it in over here. Dissapointing. And they didnt have more than fat quarters so I couldnt buy a couple of metres like I wanted to. Seems like Im going to have order it in from overseas. Thank goodness for Etsy sellers.  In the mean time Im going to frame the pieces I have and put them on my wall. My 'office' is kinda part of the lunge at the moment so I have to be careful what I do but those should look nice on the wall. If not, they will go into my sewing room.  Yeah, I know, bizarre. An office in a corner and a whole room for a sewing room. I guess 'cause in theory the sewing room gets more messy....anyway.

The other thing that I picked up was a fantastic pattern making system called Lutterloh - The Golden Rule.  Its essentially a tape measure and set of patterns that allow you to create patterns that are totally fitted to your size.  Its the most bizarre looking way of doing things until you see how its done. Then its so very logical and so fantastic that youll just want to sew this way too!  Im going to spend some time sewing from it so I will blog about it going forwards. Im very excited.

Oh and other great news is my cousin is having a baby girl in a couple of weeks.  So I will finally have a little girl to sew for instead of the plethora of boys.  I love all the boys but boys clothing is not as fun is it?  

Little M here at home is growing up fast. Hes only 3.5 months old but hes already cutting teeth, trying to stand up, and man he has the loudest demanding voice of any baby Ive heard in a while. A real little personality. We find the demanding amusing at the moment. Remains to be seen how amused we are when he is 2....I think hes gonna give us hell.  Ah but he is such a little darling. All your worries fall away when you look at him and he smiles at you.  Yep Im totally wrapped around his finger arent I?

The only other thing I seem to be doing is becoming very domesticated. OMG how does anyone have a child, keep up with the housework, cook, clean, AND manage to have any sort of life of their own? I feel like all Im doing is cleaning. Ive barely managed to spend any time on the new business Im trying to set up. And I really need to get onto that!

But for today my cousin Kyrya is coming up to spend the day and we are going to play. Maybe even a little crafting.  I will worry about the business after Easter.

Happy Easter everyone!

A new take on virtual shopping - what fun!

Have a look at this video. I think shopping like this would be much fun for just about anything other than clothes. I still feel the need to get up close and personal with my clothes - not being a perfect size small you see....

Pantone Colour of the Year - Turquoise

Aparently Pantone's colour of the year is Turquoise.  Now this excites me in one way - because I love Turquoise. But it annoys me in another. Because Ive been looking for Turquoise things for the last year or so.  

I seem to do this regularly. I must be smack bang in the middle of their 'typical demographic' because for years now I go looking for colours, shade, patterns or icons (like owls, and mushrooms), that arent around and then turn up 'in fashion' either the next year or the year after when Ive moved on to something else. Its so damn frustrating. 

Ask Helen - I used to like doing the Christmas decorations in specific colour themes, but Ive given up because the colours I want dont actually become available until the following year or the year after. True story. And I havent worked out how to make my own tinsel and baubles etc.  Though saying that I think last year I can across a whole lot of make your own articles and blogs on just that subject - but I found them too late for me to have the time to do them. 

Anyway it looks like I should be able to cover myself in my turquoise this year if the predictions are correct. Yay. One day Im going to work out exactly how this Pantone thing works....and I think Im gonna start making my own stuff and using the colours I want when I want them, and let the rest of the world just catch up to me (heh).

Here comes the sun do do do do

We finally have some sun again after weeks of rain.  Everything is soggy still but its lovely to see blue skies and sun again.  Ive no idea how long it will last and of course its now Autumn so it will all go away soon anyway. But right now, Im enjoying the gentle warmth, the beauty in my garden, and the friends that all the water has brought out (see friend below).

Waters rising and crochet dreams

This morning we woke to find that the river was coming up to meet us.  You can see from the photo on my last post that there is a fair bit of land between the back fence and the edge of the water. What you cant really tell is that there is also about a 4-5 foot drop.  Well, the picture to the left is what we were greeted with this morning. Rain and a rising swell of water.  I think it will take a while for the water to raise up to us, but Im sure other people on the Gold Coast will be flooding at the moment.  We are keeping an eye on it.

In my world of crafting however its the perfect weather for sitting around learning new things. And of course crochet is one of my new things to learn. Ive decided that I really love the idea of a granny square a day as per Pip from "Meet Me at Mikes". She has fantastic beginner videos that are really helping.  I also worked out that I have the total wrong thread for crochet. I should have read the very first lesson post properly. So tomorrow I will go in search of the correct threat/yarn.

A wonderful colour comination I love is something that I saw on the Grand Revival Blog - Purple, Turquoise, Lime and Blue. Yum. I dont want to post any more of her photos here in case she gets upset with me so if you would like to see what she has made of the yarn the post is here. So beautiful. I will show you my own yarns when I get them.

Until then, I hope you are all safe and if you are in the Brisbane/Gold Coast area at the moment, I hope you are enjoying the rain.

Oh What A Night

I have been spending a few days down on the Gold Coast with my family and the photo above is the view I have every morning. No noise other than cicadas, birds, the occasional boat meandering past and yes, even the occasional fish jumping (I kid you not).  Gorgeous.  The photo is taken off the balcony of the bedroom Im in, and is literally just a shot from my phone, so imagine how much better it looks in real life!

Last night my cousin and I hooked up the Wii and had a ball.  We played until around 1.30am and laughed so much we were literally crying half the time. Im hoarse from shouting and laughing. And before you wonder, no we arent children. Shes 27 and Im 37! We were playing tennis, boxing (ouch, feeling that one) and Mini-golf which was an absolute scream.

This morning we are continuing the stupidity by having conversations from downstairs to upstairs via sms.  Why? Cause its just so stupid.  Sometimes, any little thing will just make you laugh and quite frankly, I like to roll around and enjoy those times as much as possible. So sue me. (heh).

Im off now to have a shower cause we are going out for breakfast and a movie. Something chick flicky like Valentines day or something.  And then probably back for an afternoon snooze. Im sure 4 hours sleep is going to catch up at some point.

I think Im bored with the orange

My Blogger theme I mean (photo left).  I actually do like it, I think Im just frustrated that it only has 2 columns. Im putting too much in my sidebar and I'm having trouble finding stuff let alone any of you guys. So Im on the lookout for a funky 3 column blogger template.

Why dont I make my own? Im lazy. Frankly. I need to totally redo my website and get that running too (www.moonshinedesign.com.au) and I think somewhere in the back of my head I want the two to match. So until I find the time...and motivation... to rebuild that site, I will continue to use a random blogger template that takes my fancy.  Hope you dont mind. I get bored easily...

So what do you think of this new look? Kinda cute huh?

恭 喜 发 财- gong xi fa cai (Chinese Happy New Year)

Hell, Thomas and I just spent the weekend with friends celebrating the Chinese New Year. New Years Eve was on Saturday night and is traditionally a 'reunion' time for friends and family - you gather together and eat special food and enjoy everyone's company.  We had a lovely night and the house was decorated in beautiful red and gold lanterns, wall hangings, cracker drops and coins.  Before we went up there I read up about Chinese New Year and so I made the door hanging in the picture left.  The characters are for "Fu" meaning Good luck.  On New Years you hang the Fu symbol on the door upside down meaning "Luck has arrived". I loved the idea so I rushed out to a local store that I had seen had a shipment of Chinese Silk Jaquards, and sewed up a simple square with the Fu symbol appliqued on.  Was the first time I have appliqued anything so Im quite proud of it.  Our friends loved it. They didnt have a door hanging so it fit in perfectly. 

I also made some Red Envelopes for the children - another New Years tradition (also in the picture).  The red envelopes are given to children, unmarried relatives, friends, employees (as a bonus) etc and hold money. The money doesnt have to be huge amounts but it must be in an even number (ie multiples of 2) and must not have the number 4 in it - so no $4, $14 etc. This is because the number four in chinese sounds like the same sound as 'death' when they say it. So its very bad luck.

For me personally, I feel like this New Year is actually my real New Year.  For some reason, our Australian New Year - while it was fun cause we spent it with friends, didnt actually feel like the start of a new beginning like it normally does. Im not sure why.  This Chinese New Year has felt like a new beginning to me. Possibly because of my changing job situation and stuff. I am looking forward to having a spectacular year and it feels like its really beginning now. My mood is high and happy, Im as relaxed as Ive been in years, everything is going right and well. Its just a great feeling of happy optimism and freedom.  Im enjoying it.

So Gung hay fat choy to you (thats how you pronounce it and it means 'may you become prosperous'.)

Oh and if you would like a tutorial on how to do the door hanging just let me know. I took pictures just in case!

Im Inspired

I recently started to teach myself to knit and crochet. Cant say Im doing overly well at it but thats probably because the only time I try to do it is in bed when Im watching a movie or have a headache and cant read. My concentration is not the best. 

But looking at the lovely blanket in the following blog post from Attic24 has me inspired. I want a lovely 'old fashioned' blanket like that to snuggle under when Im on the couch reading and snoozing. I love it. I dont remember my grandmother ever doing anything like that but it reminds me of her so maybe its something that is buried deep in my subconscious memories of her. I do remember her rag rugs. Am thinking of making some of them too since I have found they arent that hard to make. I will see.  I do have a little time on my hands at the moment of course...heh heh.

Photo with thanks from Attic24. Go read her blog, its gorgeous.

A new Beginning...on life changes and opportunities

This week has been busy, challenging, and yet also fabulous.  I was supposed to start work again on Tuesday after having been on leave (aint long service leave a wonderful thing?!).  I got myself ready, actually totally psyched to be going back. Ready and roaring to go and get back into it.Turns out, they actually just needed me to come in to be told I was being made redundant/retrenched. Oh. Well. There you go.

After the initial shock I have realised what a fabulous opportunity this is.  Im happy about this change. I was ready for a change in role, and potentially a change in company. This way they are helping me to make the decision so that I dont procrastinate over it. Excellent! I will be sad to leave all my friends at work of course, but the really close ones are part of my social circle anyway, so I will still see them regularly.

Ive been kinda sitting here trying to work out what to do. I am still on payroll for another 5 weeks while they see if there actually is an internal role that comes up for me - but I doubt this will happen. While my skills are quite extensive, with so much movement in the company at the moment Im thinking they are downsizing again, and that isnt condusive to other roles 'coming up'. So do I look for another job? Do I spend 5 weeks crafting and not worry about it? Could I potentially go back to school the way I dream - could we afford that? My brain churns on and on.

I think what is stalling me at the moment is this - I basically have the option to do ANYTHING. How many times in your life do you get that opportunity? A brand new start. The sun rising on a new era of my life. Its scary and empowering at the same time! And rather than stress about it, Im trying to just breathe it in and live with the moment of freedom. Most of us truly never get to feel utter freedom for any length of time, so just for now, Im going to enjoy that feeling.

My outlook is positive. I had a feeling this year was going to be a fantastic one, and its already started with a bang. Wonderful. I hope all of you are feeling the same positive vibe because its delicious.

MIA....Ive been BUSY

Ive been real busy this week. And that has meant, no blogging. Sorry. Its possibly going to become the standard for me for a while. Im going back to work you see. I wont have so much time here at home.  Its a good thing because it means that I am well, physically and mentally. I will of course miss the time away from work...but all holidays must come to an end (it wasnt  exactly a holiday but you know what I mean).

With the focus back to work thing I have realised that most of my work clothes dont fit. No I havent put on weight, in fact Ive lost a little. I was talking to Hell trying to work out why my clothes dont fit then...and aparently I was so depressed and shattered that I just didnt really care about how I looked, so I wore everything a bit tight and just put up with it. Eeeek.

Having pulled my sewing machine back out I can of course rectify this. Im sewing myself some new clothes. Im also exercising more so I can fit back into what I have, but the new clothes are what I will talk about.

First off I made a basic A-line Skirt (Simplicity 9825) - Picture above. OMG, this is a simple pattern and should have taken me a couple of hours moving slow, but it took me 2 DAYS!  I pretty much stuffed up everything that could be stuffed up. I stuffed up the waistband so many times I lost count. The unpick was my friend I tell you. Its a gtood thing that the fabric was a forgiving fabric and doesnt show the multiple sewing. Then I stuffed up the zip. 3 times.  I finally got it all together and it still needs to be hemmed but that is the easy part. It finally actually looks OK.  I will take a photo soon and post it another time.

At least with all the things I did wrong, I now know this pattern inside out. I will be able to whip it up really fast now in another colour or in a different length. Im thinking the applique version next - but doing it reverse applique. Just not sure what fabric.  Either that or getting something nice like a Nicey Jane or a Lila Tueller and cutting out the patterns to applique.  I will work it out.

Anyway, Im back to work Tuesday so think of me and send me strength. I will be very nervous. Im almost beside myself at the moment - winding up in stress. Im sure I will be fine once I get in there and settle back into normality. Its the anticipation that is the worst. Lots of meditation tomorrow and of course sewing....

Beautiful Beads and Jewellery - Creative Arty Facts!

I have a friend who lives not far from me who creates the most beautiful handmade glass jewellery - Liz DeLuca from Creative Arty Facts. Liz started bead making a similar time to me but she has totally far surpassed anything I can do. She brought her already phenominal artillary of experience with ceramic art (Nationally renowned!), painting and a vivid eye to colour blending and positioning, and she has translated it into beautiful, wearable glass art. I proudly own and wear a couple of her pieces and always get comments when I do wear them. The bracelet and earrings I have from her collections are as prized to me as my diamonds - seriously!

I consider myself very lucky to know Liz because not only is she an artist of the highest degree, but she is also a wonderful, giving and caring person. She has mentored me in my glass art, provided inspiration for my jewellery, and on a personal level has provided warm and supportive friendship during my hard times. She is truly an angel on earth!

Liz will be showing her beads and jewellery as part of the "Women of Substance" exhibition for the Red Hill Gallery. The show will be happening from Feb 12th 2010 and I cant wait to go! It promises to be a fantastic collection of women artists who are the cream of the Australian art scene. Glass, Painting, Sculpting and more. What fun!

Liz has a blog and a website, along with an etsy site. She also holds classes at Mad Monnies here in Brisbane and sells her beads through Mad Monnie as well.

If you love beautiful glass jewellery and beads go check out her work and her blog. You wont be dissapointed.

Creative Arty Facts