Saturday, November 28, 2020

A Special Santa Sack ............... & My 5 Minutes of Fame (!!)

Greetings dear friends & readers & Happy Saturday to you all !

 My friend & longtime customer Desiree requested me to make a Santa Sack to match the stocking I made for her beautiful daughter last December (see photo below).  You can read about the making of the stocking  in this post * here *

Thankfully I still had quite a bit of fabric left over from making the Stocking.

Though it is not showing in the photo I added 2 large ties in cream vintage crochet lace to the top of the sack.

I like to make my Santa Sacks the same size as a pillowcase - I find this allows plenty of room for packages without being too huge.

I found some cream crochet doilies in my stash to repeat the doiley theme - & I tied some charms to these to match.

I also sewed a length of vintage crochet lace to the top & attached some charms to this.

(The yellowish mark showing in the photo of the back is just the light)

The back is quilted calico & the Santa Sack is fully lined.  Although Desiree has not collected it yet, she has seen photos of it & has kindly given me her permission to feature it on my blog.

The little framer's shop in my local town - Te Awamutu Frames -always has a stand of frame oddments at their shop entrance. They make these up from offcuts of the larger frames & they are only $5 each.  I purchased 4 of them last month - the glass for them is optional but is no extra cost.

I added a bird decal to the right hand one & painted this with my chalk paint - the other one I just scuffed with fine sandpaper

I painted two of them as I had made these little handstitched hexies from some Tilda fabrics & vintage linen offcuts & the frames were just the perfect size to fit them in - these have been gifted to a couple of special friends 💕 (I have no idea why that all just came out in really large print but I am leaving it  - please excuse)

Last Saturday while it poured with rain I stood at my kitchen bench & worked on a candle order. The request was for French Pear & Pumpkin Spice fragrances & the kitchen did indeed smell beautiful.

Thank You all for your kind & encouraging comments regarding my new Oilcloth tablecloth in my last post - I love it so much.

When I put it on the table I did my usual "rave" to The Mr & to the Universe & anyone else who is listening - how those flipping cats are NOT to get on it!!!!  Well dear friends .... you can see how successful I was with that one !!!!!! 😐

Some of you may remember the red cupboard I upcycled in this Post * Here *

It seems my blog post caught the eye of the editor of the Resene online newsletter & she contacted me through Instagram to ask if she might feature it in their latest newsletter

You can read the article about it here in the latest Resene Online Newsletter  (scroll down about half way)

I proudly forwarded it to The Mr's email for him to read telling him it was my "five minutes of fame"   😉  He very delicately pointed out that it was probably more like 30 seconds of fame !!!   

You can sign yourselves up to receive the online newsletter * Here * if you wish - it is free to receive & has some really good tips & advise I find.

Thank You as always dear friends - for your visits here today

                                  Wishing you all a most wonderful weekend,
                                      With much love & friendship to you all,
                                           Julie & the furry ones x0x0x   

Friday, November 20, 2020

Fireplace Colours, Duck Planters & Craft Fairs

Greetings dear friends & readers & Happy Friday to you all. 

I hope the week has treated you kindly ?

I finally decided on a fireplace colour after much deliberation & changing-of-my-mind  . . . . the colour I have painted it is called Dulux Ngataringa Bay  .  .  .  .  I went with a matt finish paint & tried to pick out one of the paler colours in the wallpaper background.

For the summer months I am able to place my potted plants along the hearth but will shift them once fires begin again.  The vintage fire screen was a $5 purchase from Hospice last winter.

I must confess I am still undecided whether I 💓💓 it or not but I have put my paints & brushes away for now as I am tired of it all. I think I would really like to paint the wooden fire surround but it is native Rimu & I think The Mr would have an apoplectic seizure if I painted it so I have decided not to push my luck as I have gotten away with painting quite a bit of native timber around here lately 😉

The colour is Madame de Pompadour by Vintro Chalk Paints

I removed the half dead maidenhair fern from my duck planter, gave it a scrub, then painted it with a pale pink chalk paint ... I repotted my poor root-bound Peace Lilly & it fits nicely in the duck planter & I am hopeful it will flower again.

For over a year now my lovely green & cream china has been packed away in a banana box - so it was lovely to get it all out, wash it & display again on my antique dresser.

This gorgeous tin sign was gifted to me for my 60th birthday by my lovely friends Sally & Jane ... finally I found a space to hang it up above my dining table.

I was most excited last Tuesday when a new length of oilcloth arrived that I had ordered online from 

This is a matt finish linen blend oilcloth & is fully wipeable

The Owner - Sarah - very kindly sent me free samples of 5 different oilcloths that I saw on her website & liked. This was so helpful & I soon chose the bees as my hope with this dining room was to lighten what is sometimes, a rather dark room.
Sid & I picked a fresh vase of roses from the garden to sit on my new tablecloth 💗

For a long time I have wanted to put together a Spring Tablescape but spring will be finished here in another couple of weeks so perhaps I will aim for this next spring.  In the meantime I finished off a lovely stitchery I had been working on from Jenny of elefantz design's stitchery club that I belonged to.  The pattern is called Nana's Jug of Posies ... but I added the words to the bottom as I had in mind my spring display.

My original intention had been to frame it or make a small cushion but I came across an old embroidery hoop so thought it would fit nicely in this.

I found a length of pink velvet ribbon just the perfect length & tied it to this old chicken mesh frame that was in my sleepout.
I'm delighted with my stitchery & hope to continue working away on some spring-related items.

We still have things to finish in the kitchen & dining area - we are getting our wooden benches sanded & re-polished, a new light fixture & I would like to make some new cushions for my dining area couch ... but Christmas Orders & all it's busy-ness may have to take priority for now.  I shall keep you updated as I progress dear readers.

Last Saturday was the annual Christmas Craft Fair in my small local town.  I have had a stall at this for many years but this is the 2nd year where I have gone along as just a customer.  The sun was shining & the crowds were out.  I especially wanted to buy a dress from my friend Julie of Bo and Co to gift to Juno for Christmas.

I was delighted to choose this gorgeous pink dress with bunnies on it ... I also bought some handmade soaps as I like to gift these with my knitted cotton dishcloths ... I bought some relish (to gift) & some pottery Christmas ornaments to tie onto gifts.

Here is a photo of my friend Julie's stall that I borrowed from the local Craft Fair Facebook Page

I also bought these 3 little perennials for my garden & No Willie ... the ginger cat did not come free with the plants !!! 
(Buy 3 ... get a free cat !!!) 😉

Do you remember back in this post when I made the suitcase planter for my lovely friend Jane's 50th birthday ... well she sent me this photo last night of how it is thriving.    I was rather tempted to reply & say "I'll have it back now thanks" 😉  It looks stunning & I love the colour combination of the petunias 💕

Thank You all So Very Much for your visits here today dear friends,

I hope you have a wonderful weekend - the sun is shining here 💛

Be kind to yourselves & to each other,

With much love & friendship,

Julie & the furry ones x0x0x0

Wednesday, November 11, 2020

Chaos & Disruption .................................... & Birdfeeders (!!)

Mid Week Greetings dear friends & readers,

The house has been in rather a state of chaos & disruption this past week as I have been doing some re-decorating.

I picked my very first vases of roses & sweetpeas at the weekend before the winds & rain came & bashed them all 💗

Just over a week ago I had a moment of madness when I decided to empty out my dining room & give it a paint.  Truth be told I really wanted to do this in November of last year but back then I was running back & forth helping Mum who had broken her hip.  As soon as we finished with fires for the year I emptied out the room & gave the walls a good wash down with sugar soap. They were very discoloured.

Once I began painting the walls I had my unwanted helper constant companion Pippi who kept a watchful eye on the paint as it dried 😉

I took this pic while The Mr was painting the ceiling to show you how discoloured it was - even though I had washed it prior.

As our kitchen & dining room are all one L-shaped room - this meant I had to paint the kitchen too.

Whilst doing the kitchen walls one of my ladder rungs broke off !!  Now friends I know I need to lose a few kilo's but seriously ....................... 😕

The leg is still black & blue as the bruising has come out over several days.  I went to Mitre 10 & invested in a nice new strong stepladder!

Last Saturday I decided to wallpaper the wall above my fireplace using up the left over paper from my Lounge feature wall - I had 2 rolls left.  This came together quite well but now I have the dilema of what color to paint the bricks around my fire, which currently looks just like this in the picture above - while I decide with my various testpots.  I would like to go lighter for a change from the dark red.

The Mr came home from Moto X a couple of weeks ago with a repair job for me.  This bear had been won by an 8 year old girl & then her new puppy had gotten hold of it. Though I forgot to take a before pic it had no eyes, one ear off, a torn cheek & the mouth stitching missing as well as a ripped jacket & was filthy.

I was able to wash the bear & clothes before attempting to repair it. I am pleased I still have some eyes & thread from my teddy bear making days. The young girl cried with joy when The Mr returned it to her.

I found myself in Cambridge last week so I popped into a lovely vintage pop-up store called Linen and Stone - I have been there once before & they sell rather unusual bits & bobs.

 I could not resist this enamel ware jug on the top left (cos I need more enamel ware like I need a hole in the head !!!) as well as the delightful Shaving linen cloth.  The silver plated stand on the right was only $4 at the SPCA shop just a few doors along - I am hoping to chalk paint it.

I get a little giddy with excitement when folk give me their rubbish treasures ... my friend Gail gave me a box of old paperwork to burn for her & this rusty cobwebby chandelier was sitting on the top of the box !!  I removed all the wiring from it & then wire brushed it to remove the surface rust - I spray painted it liberally with a rust killer/primer.  I had a plan for this chandelier 😉

Remember my Op Shop finds from last month on my trip to Mum's ... well this set of 3 china cups were just $10 for the set ... I thought they would be perfect for my "chandelier plan"

I painted the chandelier with 2 coats of chalk paint (Country Green) which I felt went nicely with the soft florals in the teacups/saucers.

I glued each teacup to its saucer using a good porcelain glue that I use on my teacup birdfeeders & I know it withstands the weather.
The Mr drilled tiny holes in each light socket & then I wired the teacup handles in using 18 gauge galvanised wire.

I have hung it in my deck area in a spot that is a bit sheltered from any strong winds.

I filled it with wild bird seed ... I know it will take the birds a good couple of weeks to come to it but once they do it will be very popular I am sure.

I just feel so happy with it & also delighted that I have rescued something from landfill & given it a second life 💚

Yesterday afternoon the weather here was dreadful so it was an inside afternoon for Sid & I. I made him a train & he filled the passenger carriage with his dinosaurs & Yes ... I did get to push him around the lounge in his train making tooting noises 😐 Oh Lucky Me !!!

Thanks So Very Much for your visits today dear friends,

I hope to have some finished dining room pics to share in my next post.

Take care dear friends & be kind to yourselves & to each other,

With much love & friendship to you all,

Love Julie & the furry ones x0x0x0