Monday, July 19, 2010

To Market, To Market..........

Sunday morning and the fog was closing in when I stepped outside at 6.45am.......... Will I go to the market or not, was the question?
The car had been packed the previous night in readiness.
Well, it wasn't raining, so that was a good start so off I went. The good thing is we live just a few minutes drive out of town, so it's not a huge trip.
As I descended down the hill into town the fog disappeared and it was sunny, this often happens and I was very happy to see Mr. Sun.
Above is one end of my stall .I finally finished the Tulip tea cosy Saturday night, hand stitching the edging as I watched Midsomer Murder. It's not Saturday night without Midsomer!!
The quote on the back is from Claude Monet and reads "I perhaps owe having become a painter to flowers"

Two fellows looking a bit grumpy about being up so early and having to sit on a table while passers by gawped at them wondering exactly what they were........not happy !

Another Hottie Hugger finished, this one made out of a multi coloured woollen jumper. Love those gorgeous jewel colours, they certainly brightened up the morning.

Behind them are a few wrist warmers/fingerless gloves I made using the sleeves from the jumpers I had felted. They were a popular item and I sold 3 pairs. Not surprising really, although the day was quite sunny, when it disappeared behind clouds and the breeze sprung up it was quite bitey and you needed to have gloves handy.

No. 1 came in a little later on and provided some live entertainment, adds to the atmosphere of the market. Quite amusing to see a group of littlies dancing away in front of him.

The 'pipe' with the yellow end is one of his didgeridoos. It's a very clever piece of equipment which has 2 parts to it. One inside the other and as you change key for a new song, you just slide the pipe in or out and you have the 'didge' in the right key. He uses this mainly for practice and busking saves alot of setting up and carting extra equipment around with him.

I bet you never knew that didgeridoos come in different keys? I certainly didn't.
When he is playing a gig with the full set up, he has beautifully varnished timber 'didges' which are quite stunning in their simplicity.

A bit of playing around today with offcuts from the jumpers. Bright clashing colours, curlicue hearts and wonky lines.
I may turn them into brooches or just keep playing.
Just a quick market report, I had an enjoyable morning and although sales are down a little bit in the Winter months it's always encouraging to get feedback from people whether they buy something or not.
My enjoyment in what I do is not about the money side of it but the creative processes behind it
and when you find someone who 'gets' or appreciates what you do, it makes my heart skip.

A lesson learnt during the week. Have confidence in yourself, if one person doesn't like your 'art' there are ten people you haven't yet met who do........................believe in yourself.

I hope you had a creative, fun filled weekend wherever you are.
I am about to set up my easel and dust off the paints.............stay tuned!
Thanks for dropping by, have a fantastic week, till next time,

Claire X

Thursday, July 15, 2010

I Heart Bluebirds and Robins

The latest in my little obsession with polka dots and zips. Nice, vintage yellow polka dot fabric and a Bluebird on the front. It took me a while to think of a design and I am happy with the finished product.

Here are the finished three.
I will see if anyone else loves them as much as I do, when I put them on my market stall Sunday morning.
Fingers crossed the rain holds off till the afternoon.
They would make cute little coin purses, make up bags or just something to keep all your bits and bobs together.
Or hey, you could just look at them and feel happy, all those jolly polka dots, can't help but make you smile.

I was seeing more dots and spots as I drove past a local dairy farm this afternoon. Love the colour combinations.

Ooh, my favourite sort of weather. Had to take a snap out of the car window. Shame I had to leave the warmth of the heater and head off to work.

Just love all those droplets running down the window.

For any of you enduring a heatwave, I hope you find this nice and cooling.

We had a wonderful storm Tuesday night, wind howling around the house and rain lashing at the windows. I was warm and snug inside, enjoying every minute of it.

Four inches of rain up in the hills had the creeks running a 'banker' Wednesday morning.
This is the creek at the bottom of our property, good blackberry picking in summer.
Don't you just love the reflections?

Hard to believe last Saturday I was out gardening in a T- shirt the weather was that mild.

I let the girls out for a bit of a scratch about and Mrs Brown was intent on gobbling every grub, worm and creepy crawly that I unearthed.
Talk about right had man ahem chook!

The Williams sisters ( Serena pictured above or is it Venus?!!) have settled in nicely. I even spied one in the nesting box during the week.
Despite the Wintery weather some of the girls have started laying again which is just lovely and the egg cartons are filling up. So nice to have farm fresh, free range eggs.

A little gift the boys bought me in typical 'blokey' style yesterday.

Despite the fact it wasn't wrapped and still had the sale price tag on it and No. 1 had bought it with money he had borrowed from me in the first place - the thought was still there and doesn't the tiered egg rack look fab. Just need a matching one for cupcakes!!
The egg cosy I perched on the top for the photo is one I made based on a Giselle? Graham design.

Hope you have all had a good week and all the best for a great weekend.

I shall be finishing off some sewing and thinking up new ideas for more bags no doubt. I have a tea cosy comission for a lovely friend and wouldn't you know it polka dots are involved.

Thanks for stopping by, please take a moment to leave a note and say 'hi'. I love reading all your comments. If I am a regular visitor to your blog and haven't commented recently, it's not that I haven't visited. I'm having trouble with my password on blog comments which prevents me from leaving a comment at the moment.
Hopefully it will be rectified as soon as I figure out how!!

Till next time, take care,
Claire X

Thursday, July 8, 2010

The 4 B's Not The 3 R's!


A little bit of inspiration landed on the house paddock fence this morning much to my delight.

Yes, you guessed it a Robin (Flame Robin) paid a visit, a rather long overdue visit considering we are into the second month of Winter.

My calender has been looking a little bare........ everytime I see a Robin in Winter I put a red dot on the calender for that day. Why?..... Why not!

So,to celebrate this most handsome little visitor I decided to zip up or should I say whip up a lovely, little polka dot bag.

These little bags happen to be my latest project. After studying a variety of tutorials on the net about lined, zip bags, these are my first two. Still needing a bit of tweaking, but getting better at it each time.

Don't you just love polka dots, they remind me of Noddy and his little polka dot scarf.

They are lined with a plain drill fabric, which coincidentally was meant to be the outer fabric but by happy accident we have polka dots on the outside. They are such cheery colours and I think I would even use the "J" word....Jolly!

Oooh, what have we here?

An unexpected purchase from an auction last weekend. There was an amazing collection of antiques and collectibles and when I saw that someone was going to purchase this little beauty for the meagre sum of $10.00 I suddenly found my hand waving wildly in the air and it was mine for $20.00.
I can see it gracing my market stall with all it's vintage charm, maybe with a few crocheted goodies on display.
If you click on the photo to enlarge you will be able to see a very special purchase hanging from the door handle, made by thetalented Karen at
Little did I know when I purchased the dolls carriage that it was filled up with rubbish which I immediately threw into a bin.Buried underneath all that rubbish were these 3 beauties......


Isn't it nice when you find little surprises like these gems tucked away somewhere?

I think the pale green one is made from Bakelite, so is ridgey didge vintage. Not sure about the dark green one but the white buckle is Mother of Pearl.

What am I going to do with them? Just admire them until I find a use for them.


A little op shop find recently has been keeping me entertained and feeding my love for the English countryside.

September Moon was written by John Moore an English author who wrote over 30 novels.

I always look for older style hard cover books. The picture on it's cover had me holding my breath as I read some of the reviews:- ..."

"A full blooded story of the great green world of the countryside and its fascinating people...." John Bull.

"....captures fully the atmosphere, the sensuous ripeness, which this writer always imports into his work..... " Richard Church, Truth

"John Moore is as quiet, authoritative and aesthetically satisfying as Constable or Crome when he is describing the countryside....." Oxford Mail

The story is about hop picking season in a corner of Herefordshire in September. There are colourful characters from the Midlands, Wales and gipsies as well add a touch of romance and I am hooked. So for the princely sum of $1.00 I tucked this little beauty under my arm and have been rationing myself to 3 or 4 pages a night just to eek it out and I am enjoying every sentence. In fact some of the phrases used would be seen as quite un PC these days, so I get a bit of a giggle out of them.

My other little find at the same op shop , was a brand new skirt (sorry no pic) by SATCH, who I believe are Melbourne based. It still had it's swing tag on it and was being sold in shops for $199.00 but I paid $7.00, yes you read correctly. It is a charcoal grey fleck with 3 pleats front and back, made from 85% wool fabric imported from Italy, so not a horrible puce colour and style that will date quickly.

Just between you and me I saw the very same skirts being sold in my local oppy, still with their swing tags on BUT they were being sold for $59.99!!

Now is that the bargain of the year or not?

Hope you have found a bargain or two recently or a little surprise tucked away somewhere.I hope your week has been enjoyable, have a great weekend.

Until next time,

Claire X

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Through the Lens

A beautiful foggy morning had me reaching for the camera, pulling on my boots (among other things!) and jumping in the car to take some snaps before the fog lifted.

The above tree is just down the road from home and No 1 pointed out the lovely shape of the bare branched tree recently, so I had to snap it, in all it's Wintery glory.

Click on the photo to enlarge, shame about the power line through the top corner. I didn't notice it as I was snapping away.

A milk thistle weed at the end of it's life, but creating wonderful shape and texture.
Everywhere you look there is something to inspire whether it be decaying weeds or the most beautiful blooms, just depends which pair of eyes you view it through!!

Outside the house paddock, the sun rising above the fog. This young cow stood there posing for a photo or maybe wondering what the heck I was doing wandering round with a camera so early in the morning.....

I had gone out to feed the girls and grabbed the camera on the way, I love foggy mornings.

No 1 came back from the States and announced that he was going to get his hair cut.....Glad I was sitting down when he told me!!
Good timing mate with price of power going up, we'll save heaps, won't take as long to dry in Winter!

I wasted no time booking the appointment.

Impression of guess who?....

Can you see the difference? He had quite a bit cut off , could've made a wig out of it .Who knows later on in life he might find a use for it!! perhaps.......

There has been a little bit of sewing taking place here in the Sweet Birdy Love household. I am trying my hand at making lined zip bags/purses, just small ones. My first attempt has been reasonably successful but I need to tweak a few things before I show you the results. Loads of great tutorials on the net, of course.

Thanks for dropping by and paying me a visit. I hope you are enjoying your week and the weather in your corner of the globe and all is going well.
Be inspired by your surroundings ,
till next time,
Claire X