Saturday, April 30, 2011

Saturday stuff.

Its late afternoon on a Saturday.

Miss Pepper is playing with some dodgy coloured play dough.

Miss Jazzy is making some sort of pet rock frog.

Miss Indi is doing a bit of softie pattern testing for a world famous soft toy designer and maker.

Lucky Indi. You should have seen my face at the post office the day I picked up the enormous package addressed to Indi and knew it was stuffed full of fabric, pattern and stuffing. Jealous much!

It does make me happy to watch her at it and see how confident she is with the tracing and cutting and sewing and snipping and turning. I can't help but hope she loves this crafty business as much as I do.

Me? I'm putting the finishing touches on my first ever Milo. A prezzie for a patcher's new baby.

I love this pattern. I think all the new babies born this year are going to be getting their very own.

Ravelled here.

And I'm starting a ruby red ribbed cardi.

I'm going to a fancy girls' dinner tonight. yay!!!!
I'd better go and make these girlies their dinner so I can get outta here on time.

What are you guys up to?

Bye bye. xx

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Talamh-at long last.

Ugh, no wonder my kids have had enough of posing for me and my blog. Standing in front of the camera really doesn't feel all that comfortable for me either.

I did consider a couple of photos of my Talamh cardi on a hanger, but then you wouldn't get the shapeliness or the placement of the waffle lace.

So after lunch today I was brave and I stood up near the shed and told my Farmer Boy what sort of photos to take and what bits to focus on. I stood there and twirled and whirled and he snapped away. All the while the other farmer boys were pretending not to watch and I was hoping like anything that he got some good ones and we could hurry it all up and go back to what we were doing before that.

Just in case you are wondering, Talamh means land, earth and ground in Old Irish. I have absolutely no idea how it is pronounced.

My Talamh was finished a couple of months ago but after I stretched out the lacy bits while blocking, it grew about three sizes and was unwearable. So it sat in a grumpy, bad tempered heap in my sewing room until two days ago when I decided to give it one more go. This time I soaked it and laid it out on a towel without any stretching at all. As you can see, it does fit a bit better now but it still does slip off my shoulders. I'm thinking a couple of buttons and something underneath might help fix that situation further.

Ok, so there it is. Talamh Raveled and blogged and we can all go about our business.

How do you feel about standing in front of the camera?
Are all of us bloggers better at being behind it than in front?
I'm starting a few Friday photography classes tomorrow so chances are no one will ever be allowed to touch my camera again once I really know how to use it.

I hope you are having a sunshiny afternoon where ever you are.
We're having tofu wraps for dinner. You?

See ya. xx

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Farmergirl knit.

Most times when I finish a new hand knit or something I've sewn, I walk around the house with it, planning how best to capture it in a photo. Mostly I dream about living in one of those houses with white big walls and clean, clear airy, spaces and not so much clutter. You know the houses I'm talking about. One of those houses would have so many perfect backdrops for a photo shoot.

But let's face it. I am not one of those domestic goddesses, I live with three little messy, stuff loving people and we live on a farm.

Added to the not perfect house for a backdrop issue, is the fact that my kids are a bit over the posing thing. I generally have to bribe them and chase them around if I don't want a hanger shot.

So this morning I decided I couldn't be precious. If I wanted a couple of shots of Miss Pepper wearing her new Chinatown test knit, then I'd have to let her wear it following her Dad around doing the farm chores.

I had to risk chook poo, wood shavings, mud, dust and dirty water.

This morning I must have been feeling brave, or desperate.

And I think I got some pretty good shots.

Not gorgeous, white walled, focus on the garment shots, but definitely farmer girl wearing her new Mama made jumper in real life.

Chinatown jumper details here.

See ya. xx

Sunday, April 24, 2011

The Lighthouse Keeper's Dress.

Hello lovely people!

I hope you're having/about to have the most wonderful sunny Sunday day.

We got up early this morning and hit the Daylesford Sunday market before the crowds. We bought lots of old china crockery for the caravan and Jazzy and Pepper added to the beanie kid population of this house.

Then we took a drive and delivered eggs to our two newest customers, Inner Biscuit in Kyneton and Colliban Food Store in Trentham. We had to have a coffee in each place of course.

Back home for a bbq lunch with Bren's entire family. They are here with some friends for the weekend. Lots and lots of girls (10!), lots of noise, lots of gluten free discussions, sleep overs, cubby houses and lots of fun. An Easter egg hunt, too much sugar and now a bit of quiet time.

And in the middle of that I sewed a new dress. The Lighthouse Keeper's Dress. Its in my shop.

Its been a wonderful day. Its been slow and relaxed and its felt like a holiday at home. Even Farmer Bren has been happy to hang around and leave the farm chores for the late afternoon. I'm glad we've got another couple of days before we go back to the school routine.

So how are you?
What have you been up to today?
Are you on a sugar high?
I hope your Sunday has been a funday.


Saturday, April 23, 2011

The 2 Pennys.

So that day that I've been dreading, finally dawned this morning.

That day that I've been fearing and hoping would not come for a while yet, is right here and there's no denying it.

My kids do not want to model my home made clothes any longer. Gosh, who knows if they'll ever want to wear them again.

To get these two farmer girlies to try on my fresh off the sewing machine dresses for size and then stand still outside for a few minutes, took almost more convincing and grovelling than I could muster on a Saturday morning.

To be honest, I was a bit proud of myself for conquering my fear of knits and then creating something a bit girly out of a boring bit of charcoal fabric. I thought they'd be as excited as I was. But they weren't. Not remotely.

The greeny striped dress is Penny and the charcoal dress is Penny jazzed up a bit with a ruffle sewn down the front. I've altered the shape a bit to suit my girls too which is so easy to do with knits.

In the end there was a jelly snake bribe, a mad dash and scramble on some rocks, a few scratches and some tears and then quicker than quick we were back inside, the dresses were strewn, jeans and t'shirts were popped back on and they were happy again.

Looks like from now on it'll be lots of photos of dresses on hangers around Foxs Lane.

Looks like there'll be lots of sewing dresses with knits too. I'm a bit hooked.

I hope your weekend is fantabulous. xx

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Stuff I now know.

Over the last 24 hours I have learnt that my sewing with knit fabrics phobia was completely unfounded. I haven't had a chance to hem this little dress yet, but so far it has been easy peasy mageasy.

I have also learnt that it is a good thing that I am a fabric hoarder because as soon as the knit fabric sewing urge struck, I was prepared with a whole stack of thrifted knits.

I have learnt that even though I say out loud to anyone who will listen that I am not going to buy ANY yarn when I enter a shop, usually I will still buy yarn.

I have learnt how to add text to my photos in picnik, but I have yet to learn how to get my photos out of picnik and onto my desktop.

Apologies to everyone who clicked on my post this morning only to discover that it wasn't there. Apparently, when you publish a flickr photo on your blog it means it will publish a post for you then and there.

Thank you so much to everyone who emailed me to let me know. And yes, although I can somehow work this blog, I am still technologically and computerally illiterate.

I have learnt that fresh apple muffins for breakfast makes an everyday day feel like a party.

I have learnt that sometimes the simplest inventions are the most ingenious.

That little yellow thing pulls the elastic through the hem line of a garment rather than a stupid safety pin. That clever yellow thing wont catch, or open, or bend or tear your fabric. Brilliant!

I have learnt that sometimes when you ask the op shop fairies for something specific, they deliver. A stack of fancy little cards for 40cents. Hooray!

I have learnt that I must ALWAYS measure and pin.

I have learnt that you are meant to change the needle on your sewing machine and over locker after every eight hours of sewing...hmmmm I guess about three months is a bit too long.

And I have learnt that no matter how well prepared for something you are, sometimes it takes you by surprise and feels a little sad.

What have you learnt lately?

Bye bye. xx

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

I'm loving...

I didn't press publish on the last post I wrote for this blog. It was a long whingy post about how I felt like I was drowning in my own chaos. About how sick I was of feeling late, messy, lost, like I was going to explode, full, overwhelmed and out of control.

I didn't press publish on that post because I wrote it in the middle of that chaos and I couldn't think straight any more and I couldn't trust how I was feeling or if any of my words even made sense.

And then on top of all that I had to hurry up and pack us all up for a visit to Melbourne.

So I left it and we went to Melbourne for 24 hours and now we are back and I feel a bit different. Like having a break from here made me realise how much I love it. The fact that Indi and Jazzy are at friends' houses and there is a bit of quiet and calm doesn't hurt either.

On our return, after unpacking the car, these were the first 10 things that reminded me of how much I love it here.

I do love sewing with vintage florals. This is The Little Blue Flower Dress. A dress I made last weekend. Sewing little dresses with vintage table clothes and sheets makes me happy and calms me down and gives me peace. Its in my shop.

I love living on an organic fruit and veg farm and having the freshest of the Autumn harvest to play with in the kitchen and for the girls to help them selves to.

I love getting new yarn in the mail from a Ravelry destash. This lot will become some sort of scoodie for Miss Jazzy to wear to school.

I love that farmer Boy of mine. Love, love, love, love.

I love having a toasty warm house too.

I love the look of the weekend's garage sale fabric stash drying and airing out on the line. Oh the possibilities.

I love my gang. Its a shame this is the only photo of us country mice all scrubbed up last night for dinner.

I don't love that this dress is still in my house. The birthday girl's party was last Sunday but I got so lost on the way there and drove for miles and miles and miles and then had to turn back when I realised I was completely and totally lost and the red petrol light had been on for ages, I had no mobile reception and I hadn't seen a car or a house for ages. Everyone in the car was crying by that stage.

I do love how Miss Pepper designed the dress for the present though. She chose all the fabrics, sat on my knee while I sewed most of it and then wrapped it up and told me her friend was going to love it. That part's cool.

And I love that I am going to conquer my fears and sew dresses from stretchy knits with these patterns. I love Miss Jazzy's little sketchy characters I keep discovering around the place and I LOVE dreaming, designing and planning our caravan adventure. Farmer Bren has a count down to the big departure on his ipad. Eeeeeeeep can't wait.

What are a couple of things making you smile right now?

See ya. x

Saturday, April 16, 2011


Yesterday I felt so miserable and crappy that my bones ached. Too much bad news. The weight of the world and all that.

Today I feel sooooo different. I feel optimistic and sunny and good.

The sun is out, the girls are happily playing with a friend (a boy), and I'm about to pack a picnic for a fortieth birthday party.

And as well as the usual health and family and friends type of grateful stuff, on this Saturday I am also grateful for other people's trash. Trash that enables me to recycle rather than buy new, trash that inspires me and keeps my Everything but The Thread little business going and trash that is often so much more my style than the same thing in the modern version.

I am grateful magateful for market treasures like this jar of antique lace destined to grace the hems of pretty dresses and skirts and tops.

I am grateful for garage sale loot. Towels for the caravan, tea towels, table clothes and pillow cases for clothes making, pot holders for the wall and wool for some future fun project.

And I am grateful for generous and kind and gorgeous bloggers who send me their treasures out of the goodness of their hearts. I know you didn't do it for an official thank you Cherie but you are just too gorgeous! Thank you!

I hope you have the most wonderful weekend and have so much to be grateful for yourself.

Big love. X

Thursday, April 14, 2011


So I'd love it if you could turn to the closest person over the age of about six and ask them if they collect stamps...if the answer is YES, then stamp on their foot and tell them 'there's one for your collection'. If they say NO, then stamp on their foot and tell them 'there's one to start your collection'.

Can you tell we're on school holidays?!

Can you tell I'm over the moon excited about my new Foxs Lane stamps?!

Chantal made them. Isn't she the cleverest. Aren't they amazing. How cool that she made me a summer and a winter dress. And they look like the dresses I make, down to the ruffles and florals and the granny pockets. I am now prepared for all seasons. Love!

I think I'd better put aside some time to sew some stock for my shop, so I can package up my orders and decorate them with my new stamps. Eeeeeeeeep I can hardly wait.

Chantal has an Etsy store here and you can contact her at if you want her to make her your own custom made stamp like I did. And you totally should, they are so ace.
And yesterday, being the school holidays and all, I took my three girlies to the movies and to buy some essentials in town. When we got out of the car I realised that we all had the same shoes on. Is that ok? As the official style police of this family I have decided that it is. Especially as they are all same, same but different. But I draw the line at that. NO matching hoodies, or t'shirts or anything else for that matter.

Do you do that, dress your kids the same as you? Do you all have the same look? Farmer Bren does have his own pair of Converse too, just in case you were wondering.

I think my family have a look. We like layers. Dresses and skirts and tops and tunics and cardis over jeans. Most of the time Jazzy and Pepper and I dress like that, although they are all colourful and I am not. Indi does too but with her own type of skater girl edge. I guess we all fit together.

So a very happy Thursday to you my online friends. Thank you so much for your comments on my last post. I found them so interesting to read and think about.

Bye for now. X

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

In my my head...

Indi has gone camping and horse riding with her auntie and her cousin, Farmer Bren has gone to Melbourne to pick up 600 day old chicks, Pepper and Jazzy are eating their lunch of rocket, lemon, feta and tomato on toast and I am peeling, chopping, stirring, heating, measuring, ladling, sealing and labeling.

Starting from top left:the red onions are from Tony Italian up the road and will be used in all my cooking over the next week, the tomatoes are also from Tony Italian and will be eaten in salads and on toast until they run out, the rocket and mixed salad leaves are from our kitchen garden and are for lunch today, the kiwi fruit are from vines at my parents' block of land across the lane, the quinces are being bubbled into quince jelly (only a few batches to go now), the last of our plums for this season will be eaten before this post is published, our strawberries will be eaten or made into a syrup this afternoon, the pears are ours and are being picked by the crate load right now, the apples are being eaten, baked in a pie, and preserved, the carrots are being eaten (I hate cooked carrots), the eggs are for lunch for the farmer boys and their kids, and the lemons from Sandy's are being added to all the preserves.

The grapes are being eaten and made into jelly.

And the honey is yummy and slowly being spun out of the frames.

You should smell my should see my pile of dishes...

I always say that Autumn depresses me with its chilly, short days but I do love this aspect of it.

And while all this is going on I am thinking about blogging. Why I blog, what I like in other people's blogs, bloggy communities and bloggy records of our lives. I'm also thinking about blog popularity contests, about big companies trying to cash in on our community and about advertising in the blog world.

So much to think about, so much to say.

I will start with the fact that I admire truth and reality and authenticity in blogs. I am not interested in popularity contests, its hard enough dealing with those vicariously through a pre-teen. And my blog is about me and my gang, and the stuff I make and the stuff I like, and the stuff that you make and I like. That's it.

What are you thinking?


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