Saturday, 29 January 2011

Australia Day, Back to School, painting on the beach....

Niamh hasn’t been at school since November and Monday is her first day at her new school ….so I thought I would make her something to celebrate going back to school, starting a new school in Australia and Australia day all in one… ta-da….here it is an Aussie flag pencil case! Niamh chose the pink zip (I probably would have gone for blue….but I’m not the one who’s going to be using it!) She was far more excited about it than I thought she’d be….whilst I was sewing, she was sharpening as many pencils as she could, ready to go inside!

We had a whole day at home and inside today (even though it was a really lovely day). So when it got to late afternoon, and after Ezra had been on the naughty chair 3 times in one hour, we thought it best to go out. Of course, we went to the beach. Just before we left, Niamh had the great idea of taking our painting things with us. She’d already planned what she wanted to paint – One Mile Beach. So off we went.

It was a lovely evening, and it was really quiet on the beach (we were arriving just as everyone else was leaving). Niamh and I got stuck in with the painting. Ezra hijacked my canvas, and managed to mix a perfect “sand” colour (I think it was by accident, but even with a few years of paint mixing experience, I had trouble mixing the same colour again!) At first I was a bit irritated that he was painting his “sand” colour all over the sky and sea, but he’d had a tough day today, so I let him get on with it. I carried on painting (on the same canvas too) and actually his brush strokes were adding a kind of unpredictable energy. His sandy strokes were the sea-bed to the painting. Like the unpredictable waves I was trying to paint, this little person is determined to be who he is going to be, and I don’t think any of us can even guess who that will turn out to be. The foundations laid, Ezra was satisfied that his painting was done and went to use a bigger canvas – the sandy beach (which he painted on with a big stick). I carried on painting until it was finished. It’s a painting of the sand, sea and sky, but it’s also a painting about Ezra and Me.

All the while, Niamh was beautifully painting her interpretation of the same scene. The waves are in straighter lines, the sky is bluer than mine, there is a sun and even clouds. Hers is a much calmer scene…. and we all left the beach feeling much calmer too.

Thursday, 20 January 2011

Complimentary bag....

I hope this blog doesn’t sound too self indulgent! My lovely Niamh said yesterday “ I really like the bags you make, they are really cute!” I’d made her one once out of some really cute Japanese fabric from Nuno Plus, so I thought it was that one. When I asked her a bit more, she described one the same style as this (I’d made it for a gift). I was quite surprised, but took the compliment…..and made another just for her! So here is her compliment made concrete. I am planning on filling it with as many concrete (handmade) compliments for her as I can…..

Monday, 10 January 2011

Distractions, distractions.....

This blog is supposed (and will be!) about my latest craft adventures....but...umm....there are kangaroos just down the road! We went to visit Oakvale farm yesterday and had the funniest encounters with kangaroos (some of them were pretty big)... not this one though. This one was friendly and maintained a comfortable distance (and still allowed Chris to sip his coffee in a sort of I-feed-kangaroos-everyday casual way.) Despite the distractions (and the usual interruptions provided by a 2 and 6 year old) I did manage to make two kanzashi flower brooches. They are a little bit wobbly and have a handmade charm about them (but that's good isn't it...!) I used this website for the instructions I must warn you though, they are addictive and you might find they become a distraction of their own.....!

Sunday, 2 January 2011

New year, new beginnings.

We've arrived! We're in Australia! Nearly didn't make it (we were on flight QF32 - which was a lot less frightening whilst on the flight than seeing the pictures in the paper afterwards). Long forgotten now in our household - we've been distracted with exotic creatures (not just the Aussies, the wildlife too!) We seem to have done a lot in the last 7 or so weeks - so much that I couldn't begin to write it all here. All I know is that I haven't had much time to write a blog and we are all very tired.......As far as crafting goes, I was so pleased to find some wonderful creative groups - everything from painting, to beading, to quilting, to poetry. Inspired by this lot....and having been lent a sewing machine by the lovely St Francis craft group, I made Niamh a dress. I followed these brilliant instructions
Oh, and happy new year to you all! I hope it's a year of inspiration......

More creative fun