Thursday 30 April 2015

Z is for...


This one really fascinates me. My dad used to sit on the phone for work with a pad in front of him doodling. He always said it helped him to concentrate. I've noticed this since with myself that I can't just listen or watch something, I always have to be doing something. I don't know where I read it but last week I read on another blog where it's a sign of a crafter that you can recognise all TV characters by voice but never know what they look like. This happens to me A LOT!

Now I've got off topic so lets start talking Zentangles.

What is a Zentangle?

It is a fancy doodle. Basically structured doodling. There is some amazing stuff. It's designed to be a meditation exercise. It's amazing the beautiful things you can do. You can also use zentangles to inspire art.

Some Examples

Here is the first one that I had a go with. It's called W2 for waft and weft I think. It's so much fun to do.

Then I couldn't resist having a go with strings and separating out patterns on the same page. I never take baby steps.

It was so much fun I sat curled up drawing for ages this morning. It is the perfect weather for it. So miserable and wet.

Where to find out more?

Here is the original site with information about zentangles.

I found this amazing site with all sorts of information. It's what I've been using to find out more. Here

Happy Stitching,

I MADE IT!!!! I did the whole A-Z Challenge!!!!! I hope you enjoyed it and I surprised myself through this month because I actually finished.

Wednesday 29 April 2015

Y is for...

Yarn Bombing

This is such a beautiful way to show off crochet/knitting/yarn to the world.

So what is Yarn Bombing?

It's a form of street art that employs colourful displays of knitted and crocheted works. They can be fancy or simple.

Some Examples

I found this here. Isn't it awesome.

Also Attic 24 did some yarn bombing for Yarndale

Aren't they so pretty :D

How to find out more?

This website is all about yarn bombing.

Happy Stitching,

See you tomorrow for the last day!!!!

WIP Wednesday

woohoo! I'm almost finished the A-Z challenge and there was only one day where I managed to stuff up my planning. BUT I posted the next day twice sooo... it counts in my mind. There is only today and tomorrow left and I have them all planned out.

But enough of the challenge I have to show you some progress. AND I have made progress. It's not much but I am actually sitting down in the evenings and turning my computer off and crafting.

So have fun I'm going to get myself organised and write some more.

Happy Stitching,

Tuesday 28 April 2015

X is for...


So I'm sure you were wondering when this one would turn up. It was too good an opportunity to have something for X so I had to turn around cross stitch.

This is a wonderful craft... you may notice it is my main craft, the one I always come back to. I love how soothing it is to just sit there and create cross after cross. It is so much fun just to sit there and make a picture appear.

So what is cross stitch?
This shouldn't be a hard question but finding the words is hard. I know the

Cross stitch is a wonderful way to create pictures using thread. It's like making little pixel pictures. I love the repeating patterns. It's a form of embroidery that is a stitch formed by crossing two stitches.

Some Examples

So I have to pull out examples. This is really hard to pick examples to show you.

This is my little halloween design.

This is my Baroque by ink circles. I've changed the colours to suit my awesome fabric.

Here is Afternoon Tea by HAED. I need to get it out again and keep working on it. Seeing it here reminds me how much I love this design. I will get back to stitching frequently again.

This is one of Joan Elliott's Christmas designs. I love this one. I have a collection of these in the works. It will happen.

How to find out more?

Now I'm in the process of writing a series of beginner cross stitch posts they will be coming out over on andsewwecraft over the next couple of months. I will keep you updated with that. I am also in the process of trying to write some more finishing tutorials I will get there but I have other priorities.

If you want to find out more about where to get any design I've shown you please ask me. I love giving you help.

 This is only part of my collection of cross stitch books. This is just my Joan Elliott books. I have more of her patterns hiding elsewhere.

You can also buy your cross stitch as kits. These three I bought in New Zealand when I was there. I love them.

Happy Stitching,

Monday 27 April 2015

W is for ...


Now this is something I have tried I did one project when I was younger ( a requirement of Grade 8 Technology) but my Dad and my Uncle both do it to varying degrees.

My dad has really got into making boxes. He has done numerous Jewellery boxes for all the girls in the family. Each one is gorgeous but he's been getting better and better.

So what is Woodworking?

The act of using wood to create. This can be simple or complicated. It can be practical or just pretty or BOTH!

Some Examples

The box on the left my Uncle made which has some lovely little drawers. The one on the right my dad made as a mini hope chest. I will eventually get a proper one... maybe....

This box my dad made for a family friend. It was amazing. He sanded that wood down so it was super smooth. The design is just stunning. He is super proud of it.

This one I made. For my grade 8 tech project. The kids play with it sometimes when they are at my parents.

It's nothing as fancy as what dad does but I'm proud of it.

Where to find out more?

There are often classes in your local area. I know my father got into it because he wanted to get something and couldn't find it so he learnt how to make it. He collected magazines and taught himself.

Honestly I don't know where to find out more and right now I'm going to put my computer away and cross stitch.

Happy Stitching,

Saturday 25 April 2015

V is for...


Now this is a special one. I racked my brain for a V word to do with crafts and couldn't come up with anything then I realised that the V fell on ANZAC day. I figured it was made to be. I've set this to schedule while I will be at dawn service, remembering those before. 

So what is ANZAC day?

It is the day that we in Australia remember those who have been lost in the wars and conflicts that we as a nation have been a part of. It marks the first major conflict of the Australian and New Zealand Army Corp (ANZACs) during the first world war. 

The 25th of April 1915 the Anzacs set out to capture the peninsula at Gallipoli but they had been given the wrong information and they landed in the middle of the enemy. There were numerous losses that dawn when they beached on the shore and in those 8 months that followed they lost over 8,000 men.

Since then it has become a day to remember all those who have been lost in conflicts. 

There are many stories of bravery I could share with you right now like Simpson and His Donkey. But since this is a crafty blog I want to share a couple of lovely tutorials.. 

Anzac biscuits used to be a staple during the war. Since during the war they didn't have access to many eggs they had to make do with what they had. So they made these recipes and used golden syrup to bind the biscuits together. Here is a collection of a number of recipes. 

Also the poppies are the symbol of remembrance because they grow in Flanders Fields where most of the bodies now lie. You can find a beautiful pattern to make your own here


"They shall grow not old, as we that are left grow old; 
Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn. 
At the going down of the sun and in the morning 
We will remember them."

Lest We Forget 


Friday 24 April 2015

U is for...

Unfinished Objects

Ohk not exactly a craft but I was out of ideas for U. We all have a tonne of Unfinished Objects or UFOs in our stash. They are all things that we at one time or another wanted to work on but either you forgot about it or you fell out of love with it.

So what is a UFO?

It's an object that is unfinished but that you haven't been currently working on. Sometimes you can have more than one project on the go at a time and that is fine. They are all Works In Progress (WIP). UFOs are those projects that are forgotten, or haven't been stitched on for too long to remember.

Some Examples

So I was reminded of this when I was going through my craft stuff at my parents house. I found a kit I'd started ages ago and hadn't worked on for at least 3 years, longer I think. I didn't like the white on white but I had no choice as it was the best colour to start in the middle.

Sorry about the bad photo it's getting late and the white is hard to capture properly. Actually the white is almost impossible.

I know I have other projects. If I dug through my yarn drawer I would find all sorts of half formed ideas and thoughts. I like to try out thoughts but very rarely follow through and finish what I start working on. ... It's actually a reason I started blogging to start holding myself accountable to someone other than me.

How to find out more?

Well you can go searching through your own craft drawers and find your UFOs. If you have them decide if they are something you can reasonably finish or if they are something that just needs to be relegated to either someone else or to a bin. I know I have passed cross stitch projects onto others. Too many bad memories associated with it to continue so I passed it onto my friend who wanted to do it.

Happy Stitching,
and I hope you find the UFOs you've got hidden and find something special.

Join me tomorrow for a special V is for...

T is for...

Tunisian Crochet 

Ohk I'm finally running behind... it just got too complicated to post yesterday. I just needed the time to stop.
This is one of those crafts that I will learn how to do. I never really understood it much so I went and bought myself a hook and started to give it a go. This turned into lots of fun. I also started doing research into what you can make with it and I learnt just how versatile it can be.

So what is Tunisian Crochet?

Also called Afghan crochet it uses an elongated crochet hook like a knitting needle with a stopper on the end. It's started like you would crochet but then the stitches are picked up and almost knitted. You never turn your work with tunisian crochet. It makes quite a heavy fabric that often is used to make blankets and the like.

Some Examples

I tried out a tutorial with a bit of acrylic yarn I had sitting at home... I think I needed to work on my starting tension. Or something to stop it rolling so much.
This blanket is using tunisian entrelac! I think I may  have to buy the pattern. You can get it here

There is so much you can do with tunisian crochet you will have to explore it. I was amazed by all that is out there. 

How to find out more

I found this lovely tutorial about how to do the basic stitches here.

You can search for more patterns on ravelry. They have some great stuff. Also check out pinterest but be wary on there.... Quite often while searching on there I found that I'd find something pretty and end up on dead links.

Happy STitching,
P.S. Join me later today for U :D

Wednesday 22 April 2015

S is for ...


So this is one of those crafts that I turned around a couple of years ago and said NO I will NEVER do it. Then I've turned around and found myself suddenly wanting to record my photos in another way. I want to be able to look through my albums and see what we've been up to and enjoy it. 

So what is scrapbooking?

Scrapbooking is a term for recording your memories. It has become quite an art form. You have what I call traditional layouts which are one or two pictures on a 12"x12" page. Though it can be more complicated than that. 

What has been coming out more and more is project life or pocket scrapbooking which is putting photos in pockets with simple journal cards. This is what I find myself doing more and more. 

Some Examples
Here are some of the cards you can get a hold of for project life. I downloaded these from the digital project life page and printed them off myself. I tend to do more digitally and then print it out.

I can see myself having a lot of fun with this.

Here is one of the layouts I did last month. I need to print of some new photos and show you what else I can come up with.

How to find out more?

 Now for a lot of the image editing and header layout I use on my blog I actually use a scrapbooking program called My Memories

If you want to find out more about project life go here. 

Happy Stitching,

Tuesday 21 April 2015

R is for ...

Ribbon Embroidery

This is another of those crafts that I've sat there and admired from afar but I haven't got into it much because. It's such a beautiful craft but like free form embroidery is very much something that I'm not overly interested in.

So what is Ribbon Embroidery?
It's using a ribbons to embroider a pattern onto fabric. It's commonly used to show flowers as they lend themselves to the medium.

But it is so much  more than just sewing the ribbon in as the amount you pull it can make a big difference.

Some Examples

 These two examples are from this website... It has some easy to follow instructions as well.

This came from a lovely lady over here and her work is lovely too.

How to find out more?

I found some basic instructions at the better homes and gardens website.

And of course there are some ribbon embroidery magazines around. So pretty.

Happy Stitching,

P.S. join me tomorrow for S is for...

Monday 20 April 2015

Q is for ...


Now this is talking not about piecing together the pattern but about the pattern you use the sandwich the fabric to the backing. You make a patchwork top and then you need to sew it together with some wadding and a backing and that is where quilting comes into play. 

So what is quilting?

It is the process of sewing two or more layers of fabric together to make a thicker fabric. This can be as simple as sewing parts together in straight lines or doing complicated patterns. 

There is a whole beauty in free motion quilting added to your finished patchwork that can really make or break your quilt. 

Some examples
This quilt has been quilted using the stitch in the ditch technique. Meaning the quilting is hidden down the lines of the patchwork. It's good when you have a busy patchwork. 

This is one of the cool designs you can do when you get better.... so better than I am :D 
You can find out how to do this design and see more designs from THIS WEBSITE

How to find out more

I found this class at craftsy ... I may have to check it out for myself at some point. 

I also found this awesome gallery full of free motion quilting patterns... It could be lots of fun. 

These are just some of the books and magazines you can find... It is so much fun checking out my book collection.

Happy STitching, 

P.S. Join me tomorrow for R is for ...

Saturday 18 April 2015

P is for ...


Now I will put a disclaimer here I am separating patchwork and quilting because technically they are two separate crafts and it gives me two days to write about.

Quite often patchwork is talked about like it is Quilting and visa versa so I'm going to clear up any confusion that you may have.

What is Patchwork?

Patchwork is the use of small pieces of fabric pieced together to make a larger design. This can be as simple as a 9 patch quilt to an elaborately pieced design.

Some Examples

 If you've been around me much you should recognise this work it's the patchwork for my journal cover. It's a form of patchwork called crazy quilting. I love working with it because there aren't particular rules.

This quilt is the one for my friend's baby. I love how it's coming together.

I made this quilt about 6 years ago. I used a couple of Jelly Rolls and combined them together to make this one. Sorry it's a bit wrinkly I'm using it on my bed at the moment. 

These little pillows are made by Lana. Can you recognise some of the fabrics from my previous quilt?

Where to find out more?

Quilting /patchwork is extremely popular at the moment and there are plenty of patterns and resources around the net. I know I first learnt from my local fabric store.

You can also find a TONNE of magazines around with patterns to help as well.

Happy Stitching,

Join me on Monday for Q is for ...

Friday 17 April 2015

O is for ...


I apologise that my posts seem to keep getting shorter. Things are getting busier at home and it's only three days until they go back to school. I gave them a task today to do some Origami for me. Though it's nothing fancy.

Now I will say this is one of the crafts I hate teaching to others... Which is so funny but I can never quite get the words out right but the pictures are so clear to me and I don't understand how others can't read them. I've always been good at interpreting pictures and it frustrates me when the kids can't read it.... or pick the hardest pattern and expect me to help them... if you can't do it don't expect me to! Sorry mini rant there...

So what is Origami?

It is the Japanese art of paper folding. Ori means to fold and Kami means paper. You can make so much with just a little bit of paper.

Some Examples

She actually hasn't made anything much, but she's looking at least.

 This is a paper eater made by the little boy... he needs to add a face though.

But he added a face to the dog. Which looks so cute. Those are little whiskers there.

How to find out more?

Well the kids are using one of my origami books... the only one I can currently find... I know I had another one somewhere but ....

I am realising as I'm going through all my stuff that I have a LOT of craft books for various crafts,

Happy Stitching,

P.S. Join me tomorrow for P is for...

Tutorial - washi tape paper clips

Sooo this week I wrote over at And Sew We Craft an awesome tutorial on how to make your own Washi tape paper clips. I have become  big big fan of all the cool things you can do with Washi Tape it's such a versatile little tape.

So go check out my tutorial  on

Hope you enjoy it and if you make some I would love the see the cool colours you come up with.

Happy Stitching,

Thursday 16 April 2015

N is for ...


This is one of the funny ones. It's something that I have admired from afar and haven't quite tried yet. It's just something that hasn't caught me yet. It may still but at the moment I'm not really interested.

So what is needlepoint?

It's another form of counted thread embroidery (cross stitch being the best of course :D ) that is stitched on a stiff open weave canvas. If you work on a fine fabric it is awesome called petit point. It is often done using just a simple tent stitch though it can be more complicated than that.

Some examples

Now I will start with a disclaimer that none of these examples are mine. Actually I'm not going to show you many mainly from this one designer that I found and love to watch.

This Easter Egg design is sooo cute.

How to find out more?

Check out this blog. The Two Handed Stitcher for more lovely designs.

I don't have time for more today I'm sorry it's been that sort of day.

Happy STitching,

Wednesday 15 April 2015

WIP Wednesday

Soooo... I have been working on a new old cross stitch. I was searching through my craft stuff at my parents house and found an old dimensions kit that I had started ages ago! It's called Beacon at Daybreak by Dimensions it's part of their gold collection petites. I'm just working on the fabric provided which is an 18ct aida. It's so cute.

It was just white when I picked it up again... I think that's why I didn't get very far. White on white gets very boring. Though it is more of a cream fabric than pure white. I'm loving adding in the orange now :D It's an interesting piece because it's a mix of full and half crosses to make the picture not just full crosses. Which makes some colours really quick to stitch. 

You can see in the picture above the grey is all half crosses which looks interesting. It adds a nice texture.

I FINALLY FINALLY .... ohk I was only waiting two weeks but it seemed like ages ... got my order from Hoffee and Nuffin.

It came in a cute envelope with stamps all over it... it made me want more stamps!

The stamps came in a cute little linen bag and that's where I'm keeping them. I'm so in love with that boxer and the button is just gorgeous

She hand carves her stamps but the detail is amazing! They are so beautiful to use and I have an urge to buy so many cute little yarn balls and crochet hooks.... She has a mini crochet hook and knitting needles!!!! I will be good...

I had some fun with my new stamps and made a series of bookmarks. I need some more sayings though. Do you have some more bookish/dog sayings??

I even covered the back of one of the bookmarks using my button stamp. I will have to do them all.

Happy Stitching,

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