Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Working (a little), Playing (a little) ... & Colleens Garden

Hello dear friends & readers
Lately there has been a little bit of working & a little bit more playing going on here at my odd little Threadbear corner

We had the scariest storm come through last week & afterwards I found this delicate little nest had fallen from a tree
It almost looked to be woven with lichen & moss.

In the midst of the storm the cats & I tucked ourselves away & stayed by the fire
Note to self .... it is much easier Julie if you paint the boots BEFORE you attach the legs to the bodies !!!!
There were dolls boots to be painted ... each coat dries quickly by the fire,  & of course . . .

. . .  I had supervision to make sure I stayed on task  !!!

A customer requested some hostess gifts to take on her overseas trip - she loved the kiwiana fabrics featuring kiwi's, native birds & the Pohutakawa flowers

So I made her some handtowels, spice mats & covered notebooks using these gorgeous fabrics

A couple of years ago I made a name bunting for my friend Sandy's lovely daughter Abby. 
 Last month Abby requested a further 2 name buntings for her flatmates - Laura who loves purples ...

. . . and Ashleigh who adores lime greens . . . 

I really enjoyed making these for Abby - they are presently flying down to the lower part of the South Island

Playing . . .
My friend Gail ordered this rustic cabinet for her Gift Shop - however when it arrived one pane of glass was completely shattered & the other cracked right through - she was in a dilema as it was going to cost her to freight it back again ... so she offered to sell it to me at under cost price ...(which I jumped at as I just adored it!!)

It is hard to see but I have removed the shattered glass on the right hand door & the left hand door has a crack in the very top left hand corner 
I removed all the glass, went hunting in The Mr's farm shed & found some old chicken wire, complete with chook droppings, hay, dead mouse skeleton etc ... all for good effect !!!
I cut out 2 squares, scrubbed them well, then staple gunned them inside the door frames 

I just love my new (old) rustic cabinet in the corner of my dining area

The Mr's comment was "so when are you going to strip all that old paint off & oil the bare wood ???!!!"    
Hmmm . . .

This checked lampshade needed some trim to finish it off but I could only buy a stark white bobble trim ...
 so I dunked it in warm (not hot) parisian essence & managed to get a nice light caramel colour - 
(I did a "test run" using 2 bobbles first in a tea cup ... before dunking the whole lot)

Keep this in mind if you are ever wanting to change a white trim. 

 I find this works for most whites & you can control the depth of the shade you want by how much parisian essence you add ... from brown to just a slight off white ... the first 2 bobbles I tried grabbed at the mixture & went very brown so I just rinsed them under the cold tap.

Colleen's Garden:
I belong to a group in my rural area called Good Neighbours.  Although they meet once a month, this month was the first meeting I had managed to attend all year.
I especially wanted to go as it was held at Colleens home, not far from me.
I first posted about Colleen's garden here last year
I just adore visiting her garden with my camera - come join me on a little tour if you wish ...

Colleen & her husband David planted over 3,000 daffodil bulbs last year but they were still coming into full bloom when I visited last week

Some friendly ducks also wandered along to greet us
One of the definate highlights is Colleens swan, Elizabeth, who came to say Hello . . .

I love how you round a corner in the path & the little rustic Cottage appears in view across the pond . . . 
My son Kayne built the Cottage about 8 years ago as a gift from Colleen to her husband

Thanks so much for joining me today folks - I hope you enjoyed your little virtual tour of Colleens beautiful property

I hope you find some creative time in the coming week
Jinxy has been being rather umm ... "creative" in the lounge this morning . . .

Just helping Mum do some new displays . . . 

Thanks so much for your visits & the lovely comments you always leave me
with much love & friendship,
Julie x0x0


  1. Lovely pictures and photos to wake up to...
    Though when seeing the rustic cabinet, thought you
    were going to get some rabbits..HeHe! :).

    And, the two lovely felines, taking it in their stride to
    supervise things going on around them....Bless!
    Bet Jinxy loves those teddies! But! most of all the sun light..
    Nothing like a little sun light for a pussy~cat to pose in! x

  2. Squeal.............love the new cupboard! That Mr of yours just doesn't 'get it' does he? Colleens garden is a treat, love the wee cottage.... so like yours.
    Great gifts for overseas visitors, the Kiwiana fabric are really nice, the note book is a nice touch.
    Nice you have the wee 'helper' with your displays!

  3. Beautiful photo's of the garden! I love what you did with the hutch - very clever and looks perfect. And those boots drying with your poor dolls all tipsy turvey by the fire just made us giggle! Bottoms up - how undignified. Ha!

  4. Now that is very undignified of you to take photos of your upside down dollies!!! Great crafting Julie, your new kitchen cabinet looks great and your kiwiana gifts very lovely. I remember Colleen's garden from your previous post - it is still as beautiful as before. Hehe love the last photo - just gorgeousl!

  5. Oh Julie your friends garden is divine! Thanks for the tour, I totally enjoyed it and wasn't one bit tired after the walk! What a score with the cabinet, looks perfect, just like those kittens, they are just perfect. Perfectly adorable. I have a wee ladder for you, no legs just one of those leaning types that you can paint and wax, which means I need, really I do, need to come and visit again. Do you think you could cope with a follow up visit?

  6. I am not surprised that your supervisors are exhausted... you're a crafty whirlwind! Trying to see what that Thrift picture says...xx

    1. Hi E.E. The picture says " I thrift, therefore I am" & it is a Dottie Angel print from her Society6 shop (when they were on special)!!! as they are from time to time. I framed it myself with teadyed lace around it but am still not quite sure if I am 100% happy with it :-) But thats often the case with me !!

  7. Good Morning Julie. You are such a busy bee and I love your helpers, too cute!
    I love your new hutch, I am having one made out of pallets, the guy who is making it just doesn't 'get' why anyone would want one made out of them.
    I love Colleens garden, and the cabin your son made is gorgeous! I hope you get a chance to come down this way for the Rhodo Festival.
    Enjoy the rest of your week

  8. Where to start, great post as usual! Love the cabinet, great score! I know where that would look fabulous????? Bunting looks great, the girls will love them! Those cats look gorgeous on the couch! I love the lamp, the trim makes it!

  9. Lucky you to score that gorgeous cupboard. I love it! Colleen's garden...oh my what a treat! I can understand why you wanted to visit. I often used to have dolls legs poking up out of jars and jugs while their shoes dried xx

  10. Hello Julie,

    Gosh those kittens get cuter each week. Love the new lampshade, the dyed bobbles do look great. Colleen's garden is just stunning, love the name of the gardening group too. Great idea with the chicken wire to replace the glass.

    Happy days.

  11. I would have grabbed the gorgeous chippy cabinet too Julie! My man is mystified by that look too - they just don't get it!!!
    I've got Parisian Essence but I prefer the colour I get from tea dyeing - that's just me!
    Colleens garden is lovely - those daffodils will be a sight to behold in a couple of weeks.
    The swan is a beautiful addition to the lake and I love her Monet bridge too! Does she open her garden to the public?
    Your kitty is a darling and full of michief I see.
    You've had an action packed week Julie.
    Hope you relax a bit over the weekend.

  12. Hello dear friend, sorry to be so tardy...again!! How lovely to see Elizabeth....I do recall her very well from your visit to Colleen's garden last year. Aren't daffodils just glorious. Imagine planting thousands at a time/season! it might be a little like picking asparagus...you could end up with a very stiff back!
    I love the effect of the chicken wire in your new cabinet....glad to see that you've kept it for your own home. Thanks for telling us about the saying on the Dottie Angel piece....love it! Gosh your storm sounds a bit scary for all concerned. So funny those two rascals & the poses that they strike all over your furniture.
    I really like the red gingham lamp shade..your Parisian tea bobbles look just perfect on the bottom. Thank goodness for the dip, white would just not do at all!
    What a beautiful little birds nest! So adorable. It reminds me of the bellbird that arrived right in front of me & Nina when we were out in the garden on Monday...it didn't make a single sound but there it was looking as if it too was made of softest moss.
    Have a lovely weekend my friend.
    Much love Catherine x0x0x

  13. Such a lovely post, lots of lovely makes. I love your new cupboard with the chicken wire, I can just imagine it at your place. Colleen's garden looks a beautiful place to visit, lovely photos too. Little Jinxy is such a cutie, it looks like he is having fun getting into mischief! xx

  14. I love your pics, they are always excellent. I had to laugh at the dolls bodies hanging around....kinda reminds
    me of my place! The rustic cabinet is awesome, I love that look.
    Cheers, Anita.

  15. Those kitties have certainly made themselves at home haven't they lol! Lovely bunting, I keep saying I'm going to make some. That cabinet is so cool, Joe would have said the exact same thing! I loooove Colleens garden, just stunning.

  16. Love these little glimpses into your Threadbear Cottage life,Julie. I also love that word 'kiwiana' and now I am the proud owner of some of that lovely fabric which drapes my Friendship Angel that you sent me so beautifully. Not sure what parisian essence is. Would cold tea/coffee work? xxx


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