Wednesday, December 31, 2008

2008 review

2008 review
Originally uploaded by CurlyPops

I started this little crafty blog on January 15th 2008, and never realized just how much fun it could be, and just how many people I would end up meeting online and in real life. I have lots and lots of new bestie blog friends which is fantastic!

Who would have thunk (is that even a word) it, that when I started up, I would end up at this point on blog post number 523 for the year.

I’ve decided to list the crafty highlights of my year:

There have been meme’s:

This is
On My Desk
Just a Minute
Love Friday
What I’m Wearing Wednesday
Eye Spy
Sunday Stash

There have been lots of softies:

Hearts for Mirabel
Softies for Mirabel
The Toy Society

There have been CD Swaps and Art Swaps and Pay it Forwards

I joined in for crafty adventures with other creative souls:

Brown Owls
Thornbury Craft Bonanza
Purse Making Class

Hoppo Bumpo Stencil Along

There have been lots of crafty things to make:

Birthday Pressies
Bibs and Blankies
Christmas Pressies

There’s always plenty of food to share

There were lots of lovely and generous packages in the mail

My op-shopping addictions and expeditions became much more severe and frequent and I found a new op-shopping partner-in-crime!

I opened The CurlyPops Shop and actually made some sales – thanks so much to everyone who supported me in this.

I failed in my attempts to crochet, but I did actually learn how to knit.

I bought waaaaaay tooooooo much fabric

I learned how to use my overlocker

There was the super fabulous month of Blogtoberfest… what a hoot, and 71 posts that month

There was some reading amongst the crafting (even if most of it was craft books)

Phew….. I think I need a holiday!

Happy New Year

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Re-purposing christmas gifts

My sister received this cool Big Pineapple tea-towel for christmas from her step-mother-in-law.
I was supposed to make her an apron months and months ago, so I suggested that we turn the tea-towel into an apron so that she can use it.

It's actually the perfect size for an apron.... I just added some spotty fabric (thanks Cathy) at the sides to make it a bit wider, shaped the top, and then trimmed it all with bias tape before adding some straps. It fits her perfectly!

Monday, December 29, 2008

What the?

I ordered myself a new mobile phone the week before christmas.....

It was supposed to be delivered christmas eve (I had to stay home between 9 AM and 5 PM to wait for it). It didn't arrive....grrrrr

Today, a courier driver delivered this huuuuuge cardboard box.

With this little mobile phone....

At least 80% of the space in the box was empty..... very very strange indeed!

Just a December

It's nearing the end of the month.... and the end of the year.
2008 has certainly been a chaotic adventure, and the consequences will be felt for a long time to come. There have been good times and bad times, and one spectacularly huge bump along the way. As Friedrich Nietzsche said ' That which does not kill us makes us stronger'..... and so day to day life goes on.

The Glass Castle by Jeannette Walls. This is an amazing story of growing up and surviving in a disfunctional family. I'm nearly finished - just need a little more time on the couch.
The next book on the list is the follow up to Friday Night Knitting Club by Kate Jacobs - Knit Two. My sister bought it last week and is going to pass it on to me once she's finished reading it.

I really enjoyed the Project Runway finale last week, and the Top Chef finale this week. There was also a great show on the Lifestyle Channel this week - Brendans Green Gift - which was a one hour program about a show garden built by volunteers for a sustainable living expo. This is well worth watching if you have Foxtel, even more so because it has Brendan Moar!

Lots and lots and lots of chocolate..... need I say more

Lots of handmade gifts for christmas.
I'm deliberating about what I should start next. I want to make a couch quilt for myself, a skirt for myself (that fits this time), some kids hats, and some shop stock so that I can attempt a market next year.

Join in Just a Minute by visiting Jen over at August Street.

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Eye Spy the Festive Aftermath

Cindy suggested this weeks theme as a very fitting Christmas finale.

I didn't get many photos of the aftermath.... but I could of taken photos of my recycling bin which is jam packed full, after I brought home all of the packaging that wouldn't fit in my sisters recycling bin yesterday..... but that wouldn't be as interesting!

Poor old Elmo is looking decidedly depressed in the bottom of the photo... it seems that his chair has been tipped upside down and he doesn't know how to tip it back over. Poor Elmo.

Saturday, December 27, 2008

Revealed - part 2

It's my big sisters birthday today so I can finally reveal the handmade pressies....
I made this before christmas and I've had it in hiding until today.

After completing the purse making class, I ordered some more supplies from Nikki so that I could make some more at home. My iron definitely isn't as good as the one that we used in the class, so I really need to invest in a decent one, as it really does give a better finish on a project like this one.

.... and this is another pressie that my nephew and I worked together on. Inspired by the tin can pencil cups that we made at Brown Owls, we decided to make her a pen holder using a wooden craft pen holder as the base. We painted the inside and then made a fabric cover with some ribbons stitched on. We then covered the base in glue, wrapped the fabric cover around it, and added the buttons to personalise it with her first initial.

Happy Birthday Mrs T!

Friday, December 26, 2008

The Christmas Wrap

Christmas is over for another year.....

We enjoyed the Christmas Eve ritual of sprinkling of reindeer dust on the front lawn....

Writing the last minute letters to Santa.... (they forgot until it was time to go to bed)

and waiting for the sun to set so Santa could deliver all the pressies....

Then Christmas day, it was time to give out all of the pressies....

....and rip them open as fast as possible!

I received some Spotlight vouchers (which I'll save until I can afford a dressmakers dummy), a book, a handbag hook, and a USB photo keyring.... and that's a wrap!

Thursday, December 25, 2008


All the handmade gifts have finally been distributed...... so now I can reveal this one...

It's a curtain ring bag for my mum, using some vintage sheridan fabric for the outer floral panel, and a vintage pillowcase for the lining. I really like the purple and green together.

Back tomorrow for the Christmas Wrap - hope everybody had a lovely day!

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Merry Christmas - part 2

The most amazing thing happened yesterday....

I was sitting in the study typing up my christmas post yesterday, when I spied the postie dropping off my mail in the letterbox out the front.

After I'd finished, I wandered out to the letterbox, expecting to find bills and junk mail.... but instead there was an unexpected package. Inside the package, I found a lovely homemade christmas cake and a beautiful card.

I am utterly amazed and grateful that someone would send me such a lovely gift... so thankyou so much Michelle for being my christmas fairy.... you are completey amazing!

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Merry Christmas

I'd like to wish everybody out there in blogland a very happy and joyful christmas.
It's been a wonderful year, and I've been lucky enough to meet to lots of other wonderful crafty and inspiring bloggers.

Thanks to everyone who visited my blog over the year and left me a comment. It's all the motivation I need to keep up the craftiness each day. A huge thanks to all of the generous crafters who sent me giveaways and gifts during the year also. It seems that I'm always waiting for the postie these days!

I hope you like the lovely photo of me dressed as an Elf last christmas with my nephew Nico when he was about 5 weeks old (note: it was very early christmas morning when this was taken)!
Back soon! xxxx

Monday, December 22, 2008

Sunday Stash.... on Monday morning

I actually remembered Sunday stash this week.... except that I'm a day late - whoops!
I just wanted to show these two lovely fabrics that I picked up from Amitie on my last visit. I used them both yesterday to make a gift.... and that's all I can say for now because it's a secret.

You can find more Sunday Stasher's over at Tamara's blog.

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Eye Spy....a bit of blingy bling bling

This weeks blingy Eye Spy is bought to us all by lovely Liesl .
The blingiest thing in the house has to be these jingle bells which have been hanging from the linen cupboard door since last christmas (I kid you not)!

They have a lovely jingly sound every time someone opens the cupboard, or runs down the hallway knocking them on the way past.

Eye Spy Sunday....proudly bought to you by BugandPop

Saturday, December 20, 2008

It's a dropping frenzy

The Christmas Toy Society frenzy has begun in earnest.......

My helper elves came to the park to assist with the drop. They wanted to tie it right up the top, but we settled on half way up. We even stayed and played in the park for another hour or so (and I got a little bit sunburnt). A boy on a bmx bike had a bit of a look at the softie, but I think it was just a bit too pink for him!

You can check out the Flickr Group here where the drops are being uploaded as they happen, or the Toy Society blog here where drops are also being uploaded. A huge thankyou to a very special person for her fantastic organisational work in organising the whole shebang!

In other important news, there are a couple of fantastic pre-christmas giveaways happening:

Kristie from MissieKrissie is giving away a beautiful handmade necklace and bracelet with your own personal inscription, and Leigh from Love Leigh Things is giving away a Denise Schmidt Quilt It Kit. Head on over and enter!

Ready to drop

My softie is ready to start her secret Toy Society Christmas mission....

Keep an eagle eye out on the Toy Society blog to find out the rest of the story.

Friday, December 19, 2008

The last minute christmas list

Photo - Master X's glitter hands after sprinkling reindeer dust Christmas Eve 2007

I need to get a couple more things finished for Christmas and if I don't write myself a list, I'm sure to forget!

Last year I made Reindeer Dust for all the kiddies. I saw it on a few different blogs last year, but I didn't save the links so I apologise in advance for not linking.

It's really simple - I just mixed bird seed and glitter and put it in little ziplock bags. I then put them inside handmade fabric drawstring bags and attached the little instruction card which reads:

**** Magic Reindeer Dust ****
On Christmas Eve,
Sprinkle all over your lawn,
The glitter will shine in the moonlight,
And lead santa to your door before dawn.

I still have leftover bird seed from last year.... I just need to find it.

The other extremely important thing that I need to make, is a softie for this weekends huge worldwide synchronised Toy Society drop. It's all very exciting! I just need to hunt through the stash to find the perfect fabric.... wish me luck.

Love Fridays....

You may remember last weeks Love Friday post featuring a little gift bag of Lindt balls.... well now I have HALF A KILO of Lindt balls! Maybe I will fit into that skirt by the end of the year.

The home of Love Fridays....

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Houston - we have a problem

I spent about 4 hours yesterday afternoon making my first ever skirt from a pattern. But that was not the only exciting thing, it was even more exciting because I was making something just for me.

After sewing the pleats back to front, I unpicked them and re-sewed them the right way.
Can you see the problem?

I managed to find an op-shopped zip in the stash that fitted perfectly. The sewing might not be very pretty, but it's functional.
Can you see the problem?

The finished skirt in all its glory with bias binding edge (because I thought that it would be prettier than a plain hem).
Can you see the problem?

I tried the skirt on at the end....
Hmmmm, now that really is a problem?

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Ok enough already.....

I promise that this is the very last time you'll see any photos of shorts for the rest of the year.
I'm not good at sweat shop sewing... I get really bored making the same thing over and over and over and over...... so this is the end of it.
Two more little pairs of size 1 shorts for Nico.

Size 8 for Master B.

and Size 10 for Master X.

I've never tried to make big boys shorts before so I really hope they fit.

After all of those shorts, it's time for something girly again. Stacey suggested that the op-shop fabric would look really nice as a skirt, so I've dragged out the skirt pattern that I bought months ago from Clegs to give it a whirl.

I'm hopeless at following instructions but I did actually try to read them properly before I started this time (even though it's really boring). So far I've cut out the pieces that I need, and I've managed to iron and sew the four pleats back to front...... needless to say, that I'm now taking a frustration break before I go back and unpick and try again!

I'm a little nervous because the skirt has a side zipper, and I've only attempted to sew in a zipper three times in my life, and never into an item of clothing..... so it could all go terribly terribly wrong.

In other news, I decided not to send christmas cards this year, because it would have been just too weird to send them just from me...... but today I received a joint christmas card in the mail. Clearly, there are some people who are still a little behind the times. I really thought the gossip would have spread like wildfire.. but it seems I'm mistaken.

What I'm wearing Wednesday

Just another casual day today - singlet and long sleeved top because it's still weirdly chilly for summer, and a pair of old and slightly too big jeans, teamed with my lovely CurlyPops necklace....

Join in over at Fii's place.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

More shorts

I found this corduroy remnant while searching through the fabric stash yesterday. There was just enough to make a pair of size 2 shorts for Moo Moo.

I went in search of fabric to make some shorts for my older nephews yesterday, but there wasn't much to choose from at Spotlight. Most of the prints were to babyish for 8 and 10 year olds. I ended up picking up some plain cotton drill and some camouflage cotton drill. I'm hoping to finish those off tomorrow and that will be the end of the shorts making spree!

Thrifted Tuesday

I finally unloaded last weeks op-shop finds from the back of my car.......

I headed straight for the fabric and linen section at my local Vinnies only to find an older lady had just pilfered all of the good fabric right before I arrived......

But lucky for me.... she didn't spot this roll of fabric that was hiding in the corner. I don't know how much there is as I haven't unrolled it yet, but it's pink, it has flowers, and it was only $10. Now that has to be a bargain!

I also found a lovely vintage floral sheet set which is now in the washing machine....

....and a huge bag of bias binding and twill tape for $4. Oh Vinnies, how I love thee.

Monday, December 15, 2008

500th Post Winner

Sorry for the delay... it seems that the random number generator doesn't want to work tonight.
I've resorted to using 54 little pieces of screwed up paper in a lovely vintage pyrex bowl.

....and the winner is comment number 35 - Annie!

Congratulations Annie, I'll send you an email right away. Thanks so much to everyone who entered, I hope I can keep up the blogging for at least another 500 posts!

Santa's Little Helpers


I just couldn't resist putting these on the blog because they're just so cute (even if I'm a little biased). They're 6 months old how time flies.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Eye Spy......a burst of colour

Eye Spy the corner of my loungeroom - chair throw rug, curtains and tiebacks made by me - hanging elephants from The Oxfam Shop.

There are lots of bursts of colour in my house but I tend not to really notice as I see them each and every day. I'm assuming that the new owners will come and paint over all my lovely colour choices....oh well.

Thankyou Flossy-P for this weeks theme, I had a good wander around to find my favourite burst of colour. To join in, head on over to visit Cindy..... and don't forget to enter my giveaway, and there's another fab giveaway here at Art by Anya.

Saturday, December 13, 2008

...and the sewing resumes + 500th post

As soon as the real estate valuer left the building, I whipped the sewing machine back out to take pride of place on the dining table in the kitchen, and the cutting mat is now back in place on the kitchen bench..... so my life is once again back in equilibrium.

I'm off to a friends house for dinner tonight and I'll be giving handmade christmas gifts to the kiddies, so I whipped up some drawstrings bags to pack them in, rather than using wrapping paper. I just need to make some little gift tags and they'll be all finished.

On a completely unrelated subject, would you believe that this is my 500th post? I clearly have waaaaaay toooooooo much spare time on my hands. So to celebrate this momentous occassion, I'm going to have a quick pre-christmas giveaway. I'll make up a crafty prize pack with some fabric, zips, buttons etc. All you have to do to enter is leave me a comment by Monday night - 8PM Melbourne time.

Enter away!

Friday, December 12, 2008

Love Fridays

Today I Love Friday because I get to eat Lindt chocolates!

I went along to my first christmas function of the year yesterday.

I met up for lunch with all of the lovely ladies that I use to work with. I would have shown you the delicious chocolate pudding and ice cream that I had for dessert, but I forgot to take my camera!

Leigh made a sweet little chocolate bag for all of us, and there was also a fortune cookie inside. My fortune was:

Those that hate to hate, don't necessarily love to love

It was so nice to catch up with everyone..... that's the bit I miss about work.

The list is getting shorter

Another one has been ticked off the handmade christmas list. This appliqued tee and matching shorts set is for Moo Moo. I think he'll like the puppy dogs.

The sewing / craft supplies have been packed up for the day. The house buyers bank is sending a valuer around to do a house valuation today, so I've had to turn the kitchen back into a space where one could cook a meal, or even eat a meal on the table, if they so chose, rather than being the headquarters of the CurlyPops handmade christmas sweatshop.

I've even left yesterdays op shop purchases in the boot of my car just so I don't add any more crap to the house (until after he's finished valuing anyway)!

I'll be back to my mission tomorrow.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Merry Christmas to me

I decided to treat myself to a little early christmas present this week.

Above photo from Kristie

I saw these on Kristie's Missie Krissie blog and fell in love with them, so I custom ordered one for myself.

Isn't it gorgeous! It's sterling silver, and I chose pink beads. Who says you can't wear your name around your neck?

Kristie doesn't have an online shop just yet but you can email her - jemkris (at) westnet (dot) com (dot) au to find out more.