Tuesday, November 20, 2012

And Sew It Goes.........

I recently splashed out and bought myself a rotary cutter, a cutting mat and one of those plastic, ruler, measurer thingy's that clever patchworky people use......
Well there was a sale on and so I figured it was a good time to buy them.
Certainly makes cutting fabric heaps easier and when you have lots of triangles to cut for a bunting order it's the way to go.
But there's only so much cutting and measuring I can take before I need a break.
So this morning I grabbed my camera and headed outside for 20 mins or so.....

The root stock of the Blue Moon rose has taken over and I don't mind it. I thought I had bought a lovely red rose to ramble along the chook run fence. I was quite disappointed when it bloomed and it was Blue Moon.....wrong label.
 I have never seen a decent specimen yet. Blue Moon seems to have a rather straggly habit and is prone to black spot, so I will let the root stock flower and prune it off at the end of the season.

Friend or foe?

H.M. Mrs Brown is ready for action.....bugs don't stand a chance with her around......

Out in the tree belt the Bottle brush is flowering it's head off.
It's absolutely stunning, so I grabbed a basket and trusty secateurs, put my boots on and headed over there.

The blooms are stunning, so soft.....
I also picked some 'Silver Dollar' gum leaves to add to the vase.

So it may not be the prettiest flower arrangement and no doubt it breaks a lot of floristry rules....but I don't care......
They look  amazing, I was never one for native plants, but over the years my tastes have changed and I can now see the beauty in their shape and form.

Love the shadows on the wall and table.......

This sculpture has been 'planted' to celebrate the 150th anniversary of the nearby Wooragee primary school.
As I drove past on Sunday morning I made a mental note to stop on my return trip and take a pic.
Isn't it wonderful?
 I love Sunflowers, reminds me I must get some seeds in.
 Of course I'm late doing so....what's new?

You can see the seeds in the middle....whoever made it did a great job.

Hubby and son came up to the market on Saturday for a visit on one of their rare weekends home.
I left them in charge as I went off for a wander and catch up with other stall holders.

No. 1 said if anyone asked who made my stock, he would tell them I sent the designs to China where they were made by the 1000's.

Funny boy....gotta love his sense of humour.

The market was another success, it seemed particularly busy this month which is great.
 The weather was perfect, wonderful live music and lots of sales.

I had made two 'Audrey's' similar to the one I put in the recent art show. It was a last minute decision to take them and test the waters.....would anyone be interested?
Well, the answer was a resounding 'yes'....
The lovely Nat and her friend Roslyn were up from Melbourne for the weekend and Nat snapped up both of them.
I think I was a bit shocked actually and excited, so I asked if I could take a pic. 
Hope you don't mind me posting it Nat?

Roslyn was wearing a wonderful cardy which had been felted and  refashioned and so we got chatting about it.
Love moments like these.......
It was great to meet both of you.
Thank you for purchasing some Sweet Birdy Love makes.


After a market weekend, Mondays are spent outside in the garden.
I got busy and whipper snipped the weeds and edges into submission. No doubt the sighting of a brown snake in the back orchard Sunday afternoon prompted me to get busy and tidy up.
It hasn't been seen since, so I hope it was passing through and not hanging around the chook house, hoping to find some mice!!
I also pruned and tidied up the spring growth and  got my dose of Vitamin D.
It was a lovely day and today is the same, blue sky and sunshine and a light breeze. Sounds like it's going to warm up towards the end of the week though.

Well, I better get back to those triangles......somehow I think this will be the last lot of bunting I make.
The list of orders has grown and I need to get cracking......

Hope you are all enjoying your week and thanks for coming over for a visit, it's always great to hear from you.

Take care,

Claire ♥♥ 

Friday, November 16, 2012

Sewing and Growing

Is it Friday all ready?
Half way through November and Spring continues to delight us.
It's the most beautiful day here, lovely and sunny with a light breeze and between the warmth of the sun and the cooling breeze it's the perfect temperature outside.
 If only it would stay that way......

I had a frustrating start to yesterday.
I had planned to plug my Janome in and sew the last makes for the market on Saturday. It was all sorted in my head.
 I was going to be very productive .....then the power went off about 8.15am and didn't come on for a little while.
 We often get what we call 'brownouts' where it goes off and comes back on within the minute...not this time it would seem.

So, I thought I can deal with this I will finish stuffing and stitching my softies and if it's still out, well I could tidy the sewing room......all sorted.
Just before 9am it comes back on, great, let's do a complete about turn and go with the original plan.....make another tea cosy.
I had ideas and started drawing and cutting and placing and no it wasn't working. 
Let's try idea no. 2, half an hour in, no, that's not working for me either.
 Let's go back to another idea and see if that grabs me.....
Two and a half hours later and the morning  was just about over before I could get into it, grrr!!

What a lot of faffing about.....
Do sudden changes to plans throw you off course, or do you roll with them and keep on going?

So finally another tea cosy for the market and something different......Pansies.

I love their sweet little 'faces' and the colour they add growing in amongst the Silverbeet....

The Sweet pea cosy is finished, if I can't have them in my garden this year I will just sew up a few......unfortunately this variety have no scent!!

I forgot to share  a little bit of exciting news after last months market.
The Alpine Shire put out some new advertising material for the area including, Bright, Myrtleford Mt. Beauty and Harrietville.
One little booklet "Retail, Dining & Experiences" has a pic of my work.
 The photo must've been taken over  a year ago, looking at what I was selling.....I was chuffed....

Of course there has been coffee and a catchup with friends this week and 20 mins before I was due in town I 'needed' to whip up a Bumble Bee to go with a posy of flowers for a friend.

Why does this desperate need to make something in particular always arise when time is limited ?

Do I work best under pressure? hmmm!

Come on let's go outside and enjoy the sunshine...
Garden fresh peas, have been picked, shelled and cooked to have with dinner. 
Sometimes they make it into the saucepan and sometimes they don't. 
Depends who picks them.....

Another 'newbie' flower to my garden are Larkspurs, they have just started flowering.
The garden bed is raised about 8 inches even so this plant towers above me......

The berries in the back orchard and coming along nicely, 
lots of flowers = lots of berries.
Not all that far away from ripening, yum

Then I looked a little closer and discovered our 'friends' from last season were back!!
At least they are easy to see against the darker berries.
So once again we will deal with these bugs by removing them by hand and feeding them to H.M. Mrs Brown, our only tame hen.
You just need to call "chook, chook" and she comes running, knowing that you will have some tasty morsel for her. 

The Nectarine tree has a lovely crop of fruit and I hope we get to eat it all this year.
Brown Rot ruined most of it last season due  to a damp Summer....

So one of this mornings jobs, was to finish off stitching these
softies...Owlets and Sleepytime Bunnies......

Now I am done and everything is packed ready for tomorrow's market. I have tidied, vaccumed, hung out the washing and it's all happening today....

Here's the changing view from the great room window.
Green turning to gold and eventually brown paddocks.....
I love hearing the tractors rumble down the road on the way to slash and bale the grass.

No. 1 received a hammock as  birthday present this year and we hung it in the orchard. I think I might just be spending a bit of time in it this evening after work.

 I hope you've all had a great week and it was productive and not frustrating.....
Thanks for coming over and have a great weekend.

 Take care,

Claire x

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

If You Can't Grow It....Just Sew It....

For the past three years or so, Sweet peas have self seeded in our open compost/prunings pile. They have put on a wonderful display, at times looking better than what was in my garden!!
This year not one came up and being away in September I decided it was  a little too late to plant seedlings when I returned home.
 A couple of stragglers have come up in the garden and are sporting a flower or two, but I was disappointed I didn't have any to cut and bring inside.
I love their perfume......

Trying to decide what to put on a tea cosy this morning, I thought if I can't grow it then I will just sew it....and I did

I would be more than happy if these lovely colours came up in my garden.

On the reverse will be words from Mr. Keats......

"Here are sweet peas, on tip toe for a flight
With wings of gentle flush o'er delicate white
And taper fingers catching at all things 
To bind them all about with delicate rings"

Last week, we finally got the rain I had been waiting for. 
The garden was in need to a good drink.
46mls fell at out place giving everything a good drenching including the garage floor!!
The combination of grey cloudy skies and green, green paddocks....I love days like this.
This week the grass is drying off quickly with warmer temps and the tractors are out slashing the paddocks for silage.
Giant green marshmallows are springing up everywhere.
It's interesting watching the landscape turn into a patchwork of green, gold and brown......

Planted sometime last Summer this David Austin rose....William Morris is putting on a wonderful display.
 Obviously, very happy in it's new home......

Hard to tell from the photo but the centre is apricot tinged with pink.......
It's just beautiful but rather prickly.....

Gladiolus Cardinalis is flowering like there is no tomorrow.
Just googled this to check I had the name correct and the info says 'it's quite challenging to grow as a garden plant since it is found in waterfalls!!....'hmmm
Well I'm very pleased it's happy in my garden as it was a bulb my mum bought many years ago and it's a nice reminder of her.

Another reminder is this concrete wash trough, mum grew herbs in. .
It now resides with me and I also grew herbs in it until a couple of months ago, when it filled up with water and failed to drain.
The roots had blocked up the drain.......
Drastic measures were required and unfortunately the concrete cracked. We have propped it up with bricks and it's holding fast, but will be used for annuals now.
I  planted it with Marigolds and Snapdragons, which should put on a vibrant display throughout Summer.
Could be the perfect spot for Sweet peas next season.....

What do you think ?....

The Poppies are still going strong, attracting the bees .

This fellow was keen for some pollen even though the flower hadn't fully opened....talk about impatient, hehe.......

A first for this garden are Foxgloves. 
The first spire ever, a little on the small side, but I hope it will be happy and reward me with more blooms next season.

Walking around the garden with Rich this morning, I was happy to show him this bloom.
It reminded him of Beatrix Potter stories.....
I like to pass on some gardening knowledge to him and share the beauty........ 

The Ixias I purchased at last months market are in flower.
One bloom is this lovely raspberry pink and the other is a lemon with a raspberry centre.....
I love them and it's so nice to have more variety in the garden this season.......

The Jacobean Lily is sporting some blooms.
Quite a striking colour and certainly an interesting shaped bloom

Sweet little Dianthus Doris.
 You may have been around
for many years, but you are another 'newbie' in my garden.

I have a sweet posy on my bedside table and the perfume is 
quite strong as I sit here and type this post.....

I think I may have to move the vase!!

This week has been about sewing for the market in Bright on Saturday......

Three weeks between each one seems to fly by.

I felt some owlets were needed.
I like to have something new each market as I get locals coming along each month to see what I've been making.....

Who loves you?'

A few more to fill and stitch up and I will just about have enough for a sitting of parliament!!

Did you know the collective noun for mice is a mischief?
A mischief of mice, love it.
They can also be referred to as a horde, but mischief is much more entertaining don't you think?


Thankyou girls for all your lovely, encouraging comments on my last post....
I am so pleased all my artworks found new homes.
After the rush and excitement of the art exhibition, things have quietened down and the pace is a little slower here.

Cricket has started on TV and I find myself taking a little more interest in it as hubby and son discuss the days play.

In between sewing, I have been out in the garden.
 The vegie garden is keeping us supplied with greens....
silverbeet, kale and spinach and  the broad beans are now ready to pick and if every flower turns into a bean we will be inundated with them.
Any recipes you have for them, would be greatly appreciated......

Ok, I better go and pick some broad beans before I head off to work.
Thanks for dropping by to visit and if you are new to Sweet Birdy Love, I'm glad you found your way over here.

Take care and have a great week,

Claire X

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Following The Thread

Two local events on the social calendar have me eagerly counting down the days.......
The first is the Folk Festival at the end of March when music lovers converge on our quiet, little village for a weekend of wonderful entertainment and fun. 
Along with international music acts we have a variety of home grown performers and it's NOT all folk music.

The second event is the annual art show....
 Fresh and Unframed which took place on Saturday.
You can enter up to 4 pieces, all are unframed and the price limit is $150.00.
 It makes art affordable and accessible.
The popularity  has been growing and people now know that if you want to snap something up then you need to be there when the doors open on Saturday morning..

I love it, because it gives people an opportunity to get their work out there and it's often surprising to find out what locals 'do'........

It's also a great time of year weather wise, the trees are all in leaf, the days are warming and daylight savings 'lengthens' the evenings which are delightful.

After a week of labouring over my work, which was meant to include a painting or two!!.......I finally delivered it last Wednesday after finishing them off that morning!!

They all turned out pretty much the way I had imagined them, but it was with some trepidation that I took them in and up till Wednesday morning I was still contemplating unpicking some stitching, but in the end I just had to leave it ....

 I recently discovered the poem  'Cloths of Heaven' by Yeats and it literally took my breath away.....
I can't explain the power of these words.........

Click on the pics to enlarge

 I knew there would be frayed edges and shimmery, silvery threads....

There had to be scraps of fabric, torn and tattered, stitched together......

I envy people who have the ability to put together words that can move people.......

 I may be a late bloomer when it comes to poetry Mr. Yeats, but I am none the less in awe .......

'He is richest who is content with the least,
 for content is the wealth of nature'......


More frayed edges and wonky lines......

 'Age is Just a Number'

Inspired by the work of Julie Degruchy East and her wonderful loose, free style, I wanted to step outside the boundaries and try something a little different......

"Youth is the gift of nature,
 but age is a work of art'

Stanislaw Lec

I held my breath as I stitched the face, you can lose it very easily.
Far from perfect, I was happy to just finish it and not have to throw it into the scrap bag!! 

On display, sorry about the light......
can you see those little red dots.

All sold....result.

The local court house (no longer in use as such) where the exhibition is held.
It was a beautiful setting for the official opening Saturday evening.

A peek at some of the works on display....
Watercolour, acrylics, mixed media, ceramics, textiles,
pastels, collage, 

There are also 2 ante rooms full of art works.

Sunday morning a few stallholders set up under the trees.
This was the first time a market had been held in conjunction with the exhibition.
 A nice little add on.....

There were plenty of visitors  and no doubt more red dots were placed on artworks.......

Check out that gorgeous crocheted rug......
it belongs to Megan from Indigo Midge.

All in all a wonderful weekend, lots happening and the weather has been perfect.

As I sit here typing on Tuesday evening, rain is falling gently.
The garden needs a good drink and after spending a few hours weeding and pruning today in higher temps, it is very much welcome.

More time will be spent in the garden this week and then it's back into the sewing in readiness for my next market.....

Thankfully, the pressure won't be quite so intense.
I always leave things to the last minute, I did the same thing when I was at school. 
Preferring to work on things I wanted to rather than the things I had to......

Are you one of those sort of people, or are you organised and manage to finish things with plenty of time to spare?

Thanks for coming over to visit it's always nice to hear from you  I hope you have a productive week whatever you are working on......