Friday, December 22, 2017

Merry Christmas EveryOne !!

Greetings dearest friends & readers,

I would like to take this opportunity to wish each & every one of you the most wonderful festive season ... however you may choose to celebrate it.
I appreciate Every One that stops by to read my ramblings & the wonderful friendships I have made through my blog ... allbeit cyber ones. 
I have met some truly lovely like minded people & it has made me believe there is so much good out there ... & if the internet connects us to that, then surely that can't be a bad thing! 

 Wednesday was a baking day in my household
I like to make my old favourite recipes each year, cellophane up little parcels, & give to friends & family members.
The recipes I use are at the bottom of this old post here

Once I put the final stitch in my very last Order last weekend, I set to work & made a stocking for Sid, my youngest grandson, who is having his very first Christmas.
I had some lovely vintage looking childrens christmas fabric which I wanted to use & found some fur for across the top - I like to make the stocking quite tactile for the littlies

 In amongst my Jar of charms & oddments, I was lucky enough to find the silver letters "S i d" to stitch across the top braid
You can just see it in the photo below, along with other christmas charms.

Though it is not really showing up, the gold fabric I used for his name has little silver stars dotted over it.
Sid's stocking is now filled with his Christmas gifts & sitting under the tree ... only 3 more sleeps !!

Each month when I do my big grocery shop, I always buy an extra bag of cat biscuits & drop into our local Animal Care Shop on my way home.
I try really hard to just drop the biscuits off & not look at any stock as the Shop is also an Op Shop !
This week my willpower failed me as I spotted at the door, a box of silver oddments - all $4 each.
This little silver bucket dish above came home with me ... a rag, some Silvo & some elbow grease 
... & it came out sparkling

Filled up with some dried rose buds, I LoVe it !!

My daughter in law Nicole is one Very Talented person.
Everything she creates is made to perfection with such detail.
She decided she would like some artwork for Sid's room so she set about stitching the lyrics from a song she loved
The Song is Agostina by Pucifer
Each individual felt letter handstitched on to calico, & then framed

As you can see .... Sid was rather delighted with his new artwork !!

Well friends it is hot & humid here today ... 
Miss Pippi has found solace in a cardboard box of paper bags that arrived in todays post ...

 & Blackie is outside on the cool of the deck ... leg downwards today Willie !

This will be my last post for the year so I hope you have a safe & joyous Christmas & New Year

Be kind to yourselves & to each other,
with much love & friendship to you All,
Julie & the furry ones x0x0x0

Saturday, December 16, 2017

Christine's Christmas Orders (x 2)

Weekend Greetings dearest friends & readers,

I have finished the last of my Christmas Orders (phew!!) & just have some grandson sewing left to complete.
This Pincushion Angel flew all the way to Northland to a customer  -  "Christine 1".

 She had seen one I had made for her cousin & requested exactly the same please.
The pattern is called Pincushion Angel by Kerryanne English of Shabby Art boutique 
 Christine requested linen & a "very neutral palette"

When my lovely local friend "Christine 2" saw the photos of the Christmas bears I made in this post she asked if there was any chance I could make her a boy Santa bear?

As luck would have it, I had one body left .... Christine wanted it as near as possible to the previous one so thankfully, I had enough of the dark red fleece left over

My favourite part of making these little guys .... making & filling the Santa sacks !!! 😊💛

I enjoy fossicking through my crafty bits & bobs to find an assortment of stocking fillers

I have made so many Christmas decorations for Chris now that I always feel confident she will love what I come up with.

Her 2nd request was for some miniature Santa hats in particular colourways (white/black trim .... cream/fawn trim) to adorn a collection of miniature teddies AND .  .  .  .
an assortment of candy canes & Santa sacks to tuck into the hands of a bear collection that she uses in her christmas decorating

Chris has tried using other "themes" in her christmas decor but always seems to come back to the country style.

It is interesting that I took the above photo because when Chris came to collect her order there was One white Hat Missing !!!  To this date, it has NoT been found & I sewed up another one yesterday ..... but I think it fair to add that a certain ginger 4-legged being was looking decidedly guilty !!!!!
And I imagine when Christmas is Over ... I just might find it tucked away somewhere !!!

I spent a pleasant evening painting calico candy canes at my dining table - I like to mask the stripes first as I seem to make a right mess of them if I don't !!

I think these turned out so sweet, I am hoping to make more of them next Christmas to sell as tree decorations.

Maureen asked me if I could make her a pair of oven mitts in Kiwiana fabrics, preferably blues & greens please.
I knew I had some pukeko fabric left & luckily had just enough to make her a set - I used heat resistent wadding on the insides.
Maureen was delighted when she collected them ...... but I think it would be fair to say - with the hours they took me to make - I never wish to make another set again !!!

There has been a bit of Christmas decorating going on here at Threadbear

The Mr & I put the tree up last weekend & I decorated it
This year - instead of putting the fairy up on top of the tree .... we decided to leave her underneath !!!!

Each Christmas I buy myself one new special decoration - just something small & inexpensive to add to my collection.
This sweet little tin Angel came home with me from The Hummingbird last week when I went there for coffee with 
a dear friend who was staying. 
She sits on my egg box in the kitchen, watches over me & makes me smile !!

Lastly dear friends, I just wanted to share these 2 photos of my delightful grandsons ......
I LoVe 💝 this one of Alec decorating the Christmas tree & think it would look perfect on a card . . . .

 Last week I looked after beautiful Sid while his parents attended a funeral .... he loves to sit in my kitchen enjoying a gingernut biscuit .... I call him the gingernut kid !!

Thanks So very much for staying with me through this lengthy post.
I hope the lead up to Christmas is going well for you all.
Remember to be kind to yourselves & to each other,
With much love & friendship,
Julie & the furry ones x0x0x0

Friday, December 1, 2017

A Catch-Up Post

Friday Greetings dear friends & readers,
The Mr asks me every morning what are my plans for the day .... this morning was no different.
"I hope to finish up a couple of orders & then I am going to do a blog post before the month ends" I said
"Well I hate to burst your bubble" he replied "but today IS the 1st of December"
No!!  Surely Not!! Where on earth did November disappear to ?? 
The past almost-three-weeks have gone in the blink of an eye !!
Mum came up for her sister's funeral along with my brother & his wife - Mum stayed on a few extra days to catch up with grandsons & great grandsons .  .  .  .
Mum with her great-grandson Alec
Mum with her great grandson Sid

.  .  .  .  & then I took her home again & stayed on for a few days.

 Although we were only 10 days out from the official first week of summer - there was snow on Mt Taranaki & I was glad I tossed in a pair of sweatpants to take with me.

My sister-in-law bought a chair squab up with her & asked me to cover it in anything blue please
Miss Pippi very kindly assisted me by falling asleep on it to give it a good press & save me the bother of having to iron the fabric !!

There have been several Orders crossed off on my list but still more are appearing .... 
My sister in law has 2 young friends having babies & asked me for a pink & a blue wool blanket softie to gift to them
 I embroider their faces so there is nothing chewable on them & they are fully machine washable

 These felt mice in stockings were for an order to be sent to the U.K. before the overseas post closed at the end of November.
I took them to Mums & managed to finish them - they are 100% handstitched, & I am now working on another 6 for the Cottage.

 My friend Pru was cleaning out a cupboard & found this piece of raw silk that she had done some silk ribbon embroidery on many years ago ... she asked if I could make it into something to gift to her daughters in law

 I was able to stitch up a decent size lavender bag for each girl & fill it with my homegrown lavender.

Last December Carol inquired whether I could make her a Santa the same as her niece had bought from me.
 The pattern is called Prim Olde Santa & is a design by Kerry Daly of Primitive Country Treasures
 Unfortunately, as it was mid December, I simply ran out of time but I remembered about her request & rang recently to inquire if she would still like one?
He is a beautiful Santa & one of my all-time favourites - I just love every single thing about him & even though he is alot of work, next year I hope to actually make one for myself !!

 I was pleased to be able to give it to Carol early so she could enjoy him for the whole of the festive season.

When my neighbour Leah gifted me all the junk treasures left over from her Garage Sale a plastic bag of candles was in amongst it all.
I wanted to do something with the candles as they were still in new condition.

 I found some old music pages in my sleepout & wrapped this around them, then added some cotton lace to each set.

 I tucked a vintage image into each candle bundle, then tied them up securely with some cream tulle, lace & pearl trim

I had a customer yesterday say to me "these are just gorgeous .... what do you do with them ??!!  
So I told her .................... you sit them there & they look pretty & you enjoy them! 😉 
Or you can burn them ...... or you could gift them !!

Lastly dear friends, I have recently joined Instagram.
A couple of  local makers & myself are having a little giveaway which will be drawn this Sunday evening
The prize consists of a Christmas top, a NZ print & my felt mice - all handmade by local artists.

This is entirely free to enter so just pop along to the link *here* if you would like a chance to go in the draw.

Thanks So Much for staying with me through this lengthy catch up post.
I wish you all a great weekend ahead & hope it is filled with special moments,
With much love & friendship to you all,
Julie & the furry ones x0x0x0

Monday, November 13, 2017

Teddy Bears & Craft Fairs .............................

Monday Greetings dear friends & readers

Exactly a week ago I tidied up my sewing room & covered up my machine ... I decided I wasn't going to make any more stock for my Christmas Craft stall
Right after making that decision I noticed an old box way up high on the top shelf 
An inspection inside the box revealed two vintage bears - given to me by my friend Gail a Very Long time ago as she no longer wanted them .... they had been part of a collection of handmade vintage bears she used to stock in her Gift Shop many years ago

I studied this one for awhile & decided I might be able to do something christmassy with "him" perhaps??
To begin I made him some pants, then a coat & matching Santa hat using some deep red coloured fleece I already had in stock

The wadding style fabric I used to trim his coat & pants was white but a quick dunk in parisian essence soon turned it the nice vintagey cream shade I was hoping for

Next I made him a bag using a panel of lovely Santa fabric I had in my stash - I sewed the bag to his hands
It was at this point that I realised he was probably going to be a "hanging Santa bear" to get the full effect of his Santa sack which I planned to fill with goodies

I gathered some goodies to put in the bag

If you were ever to pop in to visit me unexpectedly,  this is what you might find on my dining table ... I decided the wooden golly needed some hair & the merry christmas sign needed to be attached to a black stick !
Painting the golly hair with PVA glue so it sits upright !!!

I like my Santa Sacks to be stuffed really full

I was thrilled with how "he" turned out .... but thought he looked lonely, so I decided to make the other vintage bear (pictured below) into a "Mrs Santa's helper" !!

I sewed her a dress using the same deep red fleece & tea dyed more wadding for her trims

I have NO idea what Miss Pippi was doing here but I think its safe to say, she was Not checking my sewing !!!

I found part of a broken felt christmas swag which just seemed to sit perfectly in her hands .  .  .  .
Isn't it a GOOD thing I keep all these old junk broken bits & bobs for use "one day" !!??
.  .  .  . & then a sweet Boyds Bear brooch at her neck - I gave her a bow in the same fabric as "his" pants

Don't they make a great couple ???
(& they were my very first sale at the craft fair on Saturday)

The Christmas Craft Fair was a great success in that the rain stayed away & the crowds came out to shop.
Unfortunately the wind was so strong I witnessed a couple of gazebos get blown over!
It made it impossible to do any nice displays & instead I just plonked my work down & hoped for the best!!
A great deal of the day was spent retrieving things that blew to the ground!!
I have borrowed the photo below from the i-site website ... you can click *here* for more photos from the day

My stall is the blue gazebo right by the arrow

My neighbour was the same as last years fair - my friend Julie from Bo and Co

Yesterday was spent sorting & tidying & repacking the Cottage
To be honest, today I feel more shattered than I did yesterday!!
I have family arriving to stay for a funeral in the Bay of Plenty later in the week & a house that currently resembles a bomb site!!!

And these two below .  .  .  . are no help whatsoever !!

Resting up after a busy weekend of .  .  .  .  .   resting up !!! 😻

Thanks So Very Much for your visits today dear friends,
I hope the coming week is filled with good things & great moments,
with much love & friendship,
Julie & the furry ones x0x0x0