Wednesday, 31 August 2011

free houses

No, you didn't misread the title.  I did in fact say "free" followed closely by the word "houses". No, I'm not rich and no, I'm not doing some freakin' fantastically huge blog giveaway.  Sorry, if you were under the pretence that you were in fact going to win a home. I don't even own a home. No siree. So I definitely can't be giving one away.

Instead, I thought you'd enjoy some mini house projects. Little ones. Sweet ones. Cute ones. Paper ones. Fabric ones.

There's something about a sweet miniature that is really appealing to me.  Maybe it's the fact that it's a bite-sized craft or that it's easy to clean up and store.  Not really sure, but I have been really into mini-anything lately.

Here are some really lovely mini houses which you can download, print and make at home.  A home for your home. You could even make a little town.  The kid would have awesome fun driving his cars around a mini town.
fabric covered cardboard houses via Pinterest
sweet Christmas paper houses via Pinterest
vintage style glitter house via Martha Stewart
little felt light-up houses via Poopscape
You could make some with some kids - maybe your own, or maybe with your nieces or nephews, or next-door neighbours kids.  Or hell, you could just make some on your own. I am!

If you know anyone who's giving away any homes you'll be sure to send 'em my way, won't you.

P.S. did I just mention Christmas in August? Oh dear. Shoot me now.

Wednesday, 24 August 2011

my creative space: oh deer

The past week has been rather interesting, so I'm not sure how I actually found the time to do anything remotely creative.

I picked up two wooden chairs at the Camberwell Rotary Market a couple of months back with a view of recovering them. And they have sat all red and tartanny for that whole time until the other day; once I finally worked out which fabric to slather them in.

I love the quirky look which the deer fabric gives them. It's kinda cute, kinda naff and kinda fun all rolled into one.  Now I just have to get onto the other one.

So many more creative spaces over here today.

Tuesday, 23 August 2011

snap to it

This month I've been enjoying following those awfully creative ladies over at the Creative Collective.  Their focus for the month of August has been 'Life and Lens' or in other words photography.

They've covered Pinterest, online editing toolshow to mat your photos, cinemagraphs, bokeh, picnik amongst other photographic topics.  A must-see for anyone who enjoys taking photos especially if you're a beginner or just want to pick up a few tips or learn some new tricks.

Having personally been an avid user and spruiker of Picnik myself, I have only just recently upgraded my membership to a premium account.  Why would you pay for it if you can use it for free you ask? Well for a number of reasons...

Firstly an online editing interface this awesome and easily accessible warrants some form of thanks and I think that the $24 annual fee is completely justifiable. Especially since I've been using the free version for almost 2 years now.

Secondly it allows you to upload more than 5 photos at a time with a premium (or paid) membership. Bliss!

Thirdly you can do loads more with a full membership and it's certainly worth spending the money to have access to some of the things you can do without photoshop (that one's gonna cost you a pretty mint).

There's an awesome tutorial which Cinti shared with her readers over on My Poppet which just tipped me over the edge and sent me tugging at my credit card to dislodge it from my purse in order to upgrade my Picnik account.  Actually Cinti has a few great tutorials which I think you'd enjoy, so you should totally go and check them out.

Oh and while you're in a checking out kinda mood, you should make your way over to the Creative Collective for some inspiration too.

Go on, snap to it then.

Monday, 22 August 2011

sharing: love, money and time

Donate and you could win this
Words can't even begin to express the despair I'm feeling which I'm sure you're feeling too, knowing that there are hundreds of thousands families in East Africa who are losing their loved ones to starvation on a daily basis. It is incomprehensible that this can even occur. How does it get that bad and why does it get so bad before the world realises the seriousness of the situation? I can't even imagine going through something as disastrous as this. It certainly puts things into perspective.

If you're reading this post in your reader or via an email subscription, then you may not have seen the UNICEF button at the top right hand corner of my blog page.  I have recently made a donation.  It's not much.  Only $20, but I feel that it's better than just saying "$20 won't change anything" and not donating for that reason.  Every little bit helps however little it may be.

If you're like me and you're in a position where you can spare a little money maybe you would like to donate to UNICEF's East Africa Emergency Appeal or one of the other charities who are currently helping this cause.  If you have a blog, you too can add the UNICEF badge to your blog page to help spread the word.  Although I'm not sure if there's anyone left who hasn't heard about the devastating and desperate situation in East Africa.

Really makes you appreciate what you have.

Also, check out Madeleine's post over on Made By Mosey.  She has made a delectable quilt which she's giving away to help raise funds for the same cause.  It's made out of vintage Australian tea towels.

Depending on what position you're in, you too can help in some way. So share the...
LOVE: tell everyone you can and help spread the word
MONEY: donate to UNICEF or another charity
TIME: make something to auction off and donate the funds

Remember, every little bit helps.

a comedy of errors

To say it's been an eventful week would be a gross understatement. As I try to recall the events which I know will make me giggle one day, I struggle not to rub my eyelids with the palms of my hands as it's all been a little exhausting.

Disastrous birthday dinner
A choking episode involving an octopus
Strangely coloured mucous
Searching for the "right" part at multiple Bunnings stores right before closing time
One chest infection
Exploding kitchen plumbing
Eye-shooting tomato sauce packets
Many soggy towels, tea towels and one swollen roll of paper towels
Feuding stuffed toys
Lots of tissues and coughing

Not exactly in that order, but it paints a nice little picture of the saga of the last six days.  I feel like I've been running around like some over-booked lunatic from one debacle to another with barely a breath in between.  

And I can't even say that I've done anything fun or memorable. Actually that's a lie. The kid shooting himself in the eye with tomato sauce, squealing like a little piggy in acidic pain, then choking on a piece of calamari in a restaurant where we were celebrating my beloved's birthday, after the one we really wanted to eat at we found out was closed - was definitely memorable.  But not the right kind of memorable.  Shame.

If there's one thing I've come to realise this past week it's that if you can't see the humour in a time of crisis, then you've really got nothing else left to keep you from pulling the pin, falling in a fit of hysterical rambling on the soaking wet floor and potentially causing some concern for your loved ones.  

That and looking at that precious little mug which pulls the cheekiest darn faces and makes you laugh when you think you're about to lose your sh*t.  He really is priceless that monkey of mine.

Wednesday, 17 August 2011

5 things I do when I'm angry

via Pinterest
Everyone has their own coping mechanisms.  I am no exception.  So when I'm angry or pissed off there's one of five sure-fire things I turn to in order to get me through it.  Call it anger management if you will. Whatever you wanna call it, it works for me.

  1. Cleaning - strange, but true.  This one works like a charm. I get to take out my anger on the vacuum, cupboard doors or by slamming things down as though I'm really important.
  2. Crafting - this just works like some kind of miracle cure. It's very calming to sit, stitch and not have a chance to think about anything that might be upsetting me.
  3. Silence - stewing in my own confines means that I don't take it out on my loved ones.
  4. Long walks - similar to the way that number 3 works, if there's distance between me and others, then I have no chance to take it out on anyone.  Plus fresh air works wonders to calm the nerves.
  5. Swearing, cussing or profanity - this is certainly the most vocal of the 5, but when all else fails, sometimes a good F-bomb does the trick. Well, obviously not just one, but used consecutively in a sentence to replace adjectives, verbs and nouns e.g. "I'm so effing pissed off that he effing said that. Who the eff does he think he is the stupid eff".
And breathe. Phew.
So, what makes you feel better when you're angry?

Monday, 15 August 2011

walls up close

Following this post, I received a few comments suggesting some of you would like to see more of the detail on the decoupage wall.  I'm not one to disappoint, so here are a few close-ups of some of the newspaper clippings which make up the decoupage wall.

Thanks for your interest guys.  You truly are a caring and supportive bunch of lovely folks.

Thursday, 11 August 2011

my creative space: walls ahoy

I've been talking a bit about the shop lately. Sorry. But it kinda has been a bit of a priority for me for the past few weeks.

There's been demolishing, sanding, bogging, painting, floor laying, sourcing, buying, procrastinating, making and lately... decoupaging!

I've used mod podge to decoupage one wall with some newspapers and magazines from the 50's.  I opted for this over wallpapering or painting a feature colour.  Why?  Because I can.  And because I want to. That's it really. 

As much as I love wallpaper - and I DO love wallpaper - watching the teams on The Block do the wallpaper challenge gave me minor heart palpitations.  There's no way I'm attempting wallpapering in the next 2 months. No way. Decoupage was my alternative to creating an interesting feature on one small wall.

Lots more creative spaces over here

Wednesday, 10 August 2011

dreaming of...

The shop is slowly coming together however I'm finding that I'm constantly hitting stumbling blocks.  It's not that I don't have the ideas. It's that I have too many of them. And they're not all going to work in harmony.

So I've been sourcing some inspiration to help me get my head and ideas straight.  There's nothing like beautiful interiors photography to get a clear picture of what you're aiming for.

Here are some books that look mighty lovely and full of pretty pics.  Now the hard part is deciding which books to get.  It seems to be the case that I'm a touch indecisive.  

Creative Walls? Yes please!
Modern AND vintage! What more could you want?
I love Holly Becker's style, so the books' gotta be ace
Maybe THIS is what I really need?
looking forward to this book out Sept 6
So if anyone out there wants to gift any of these books to me, I wouldn't say no.  I would say yes, yes, YES!

Now back to the mood board for me.

Thursday, 4 August 2011

my creative space: planning

This week I'm continuing on my mission to sort out my surrounds a little better.  I've turned my attention to my handbag which if you're a mum you would know that these little babies (the handbag, not the kids) can get overloaded with all sorts of "handy-to-haves".

Mobile (or cell), purse, notebook, pens, pencils, hand sanitiser, mints, gloss, bills, comb, mirror, keys, receipts... and the list goes on.  Whenever I reach in to find what I'm looking for I can never seem to find it.  Doesn't matter what it is, it seems to disappear into a black hole.  Kinda like one of those magic bags with multiple compartments, but nowhere near as cool or functional.
So I've been crafting up a sketch for a handbag organiser which can house all those odds and ends in one handy handbag sized tote.  It will be a compact A5 size with two fasteners which attach to the front "cover"of the organiser.  Inside there will be a zippered document holder on one side and a built-in pencil case, vinyl receipt pouch and a notebook holder on the other side.  Everything I need to keep my bag more civilised.  Now to pick some cute fabrics.

Make sure you visit more creative spaces over here.

Tuesday, 2 August 2011

blogging fun

On Saturday, I attended the 2011 Nuffnang Blogopolis Conference along with 299 other bloggers who converged on Melbourne like a flock of seagulls to a dropped chip.  What is Nuffnang and what the heck is Blogopolis you ask?  Well, I'm going to let you check out the links for yourself! There have been some awesome posts covering the event, which you can check out here but there's one post in particular which you MUST check out if you're a blogger or are thinking about starting your own blog. 

Personally, I'm not going to bore the socks off you by rehashing a wrap-up of the event (as I'm also sure most of you don't care about the 9 pages worth of notes I took), but what I am going to do is give you three short lists of blogs to check out... who I met, inspirational speakers and who I hung out with in the breaks.

Lovely Bloggers who I met
Emma of Love Thy Kitchen
Laney of Crash Test Mummy
Melissa of One Crafty Mumma
Katrina of The Organised Housewife
Tamar of Tarisota
Corrie of Retro Mummy

Speakers who happen to be bloggers
Darren of ProBlogger
Nicole of Planning with Kids
Nikki of Styling You
Candice of Super Kawaii Mama
Dani of Danimezza

Bloggers who I hung out with in the breaks
Kat of Katrina Higham
Kate of F is for Fabric
Jen of Jennifer Kate

Some of these you may know, others you may have never heard of. Check out their blogs, I'm sure you'll find more than one that will tickle your fancy.  I know I've just added a whole bunch to my blog reader.  Thanks Nuffnang!

Monday, 1 August 2011

a little piece of wisdom

Hello lovelies.  It's been a busy weekend and I have heaps of things to share following the Blogopolis conference which I attended along with 300 other bloggers on Saturday.  But in the meantime, I wanted to share this little pearl with you.
Funny how when you read something it makes so much sense, however it usually takes a little prompt to do the obvious.

I've printed it out and I'm going to stick it up in my house to remind me that without the actual process of execution, my dream will never become a reality.  If you need inspiration too, then you must read this story (which is where I got the quote from).

Happy Monday.


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