Monday, August 19


 I have had this digital floral print fabric for some time now. I fell in love with the colours and just couldn't quite decide what to do with it. Initially I thought a full blazer, maybe with some skinny pants but nothing was quite right. It is very busy but so springlike and I needed the outfit to be the same. I had 2.5 meters of 150 wide. When I made the black and green skirt 2 weeks ago I knew that was the right thing. The skirt takes up a fair bit of fabric and I have had this pattern for some time and thought while it may not go together, it would be a good piece. (and I would have enough fabric)
 Well only just enough fabric! This has the capped sleeve of version D and the collar (sans frill) of version A. It is closed with a skirt hook rather than trying to find the right button.
 This is the skirt - finished also today. It was mostly done last weekend, before I felt sick and it was simply a matter of finishing it off. I love the colours in this.
Also today the twin needling of the hems on this outfit. Again this is knit from spotlight. I made the top and straight skirt from this new look pattern. I think it needs a pink wrap cardi or something bright to make it pop. Still - either way I'm sure it will be appreciated.
I was happy to finish off another 2 projects. Saved from the UFO basket!

Sunday, August 18


High School. It is a topic that has filled my brain and my conversations over the last few days. I don't know what started it, but now its all I can think of. Xandy is in grade 4 and as he tells me there are still 2.5 years until it starts, but at the moment it is all I can see.

I had always assumed my kids (this is back when they were imaginary) would go to private school. Which one was never a concern as it really didn't matter (for my imaginary kids) just that I would be up for some major fundage in the far distant future.

Fast forward a little way to when I have kid - one that is, and at this point I can see I would move heaven and earth to give him the best of everything. If we need to move to be closer to a school that suits his needs then so be it. Step forward a couple more years when I am "blessed" with two more boys and the vision starts to get a little blurry. There are now three boys to think about with different needs and two of those will be doing whatever at the same time. I was thinking about logistics.

Then BAM! Here I am today, and my reality is not looking so pretty. Logistics is the least of my problems. I started looking at school fees. (disregard the fact that no ones name is down anywhere - I always figure if you have the cash they will find you a spot). School fees for the top tier private schools are coming in at around $30K. Thats per year. Per Kid. Now.

I (now its imaginary me) would not start paying for another 2.5 years, so I would need to anticipate increases in fees and charges. Then a couple of years into it, I have to times that by 3! I can't imagine finding $90K per year just for kids education. That is $264 per day every day of the year. Or 410.27 per hour - every single hour. I would be looking at an investment in education for three kids of over half a million dollars! In nine years a decent private school would cost me over $540K. They  give me longer to pay off my mortgage.

I think I need to change my thinking. While I went through private school and I really value education, I cannot see that there is over half a million dollars better education at a private school. If we did it, there would be NOTHING else. Probably not even food, let alone the clothes and trips needed to keep up with the Jones'. With that money I could pay for some kick ass tutors and some fabulous trips where the boys would learn much more. The other problem then is my local high school.

Sadly while it is very close, it is not very good. It has a bad reputation for bad behaviour and is seen as the school of last resort. Most people (myself included) would rather drive past it than force my kids to go there. It should service a really large population given the lack of high schools in the area, but it is small and i don't like it. My alternatives are schools either direction, both of which are zoned because of their high numbers. Both have good reputations in terms of academic achievement and offer a wide range of subjects and opportunities. One has too many boys, due to the nearby government girls school, and they take girls as a priority outside of zone. Sadly, don't have any of those. The other school is looking good, but I am worried as its my only option.

I did look at 2nd tier private schools. Their fees are about $20k per year. Yes less, but still a lot. I figure if you are paying for the education, you want bang for your buck and this really doesn't offer it. Then there are the Catholic schools. These are much more reasonable at $5 - $7K per year. Much more doable. On the down side, many of them are single sex, and with a house full of boys, I really would prefer the boys mix with girls somewhere along the line. The other, and bigger problem, is that we are not Catholic.

It really does seem like my eggs are all in one basket. I will be one of those parents who starts nagging at the school to let their kid in. The other option is moving a few streets away so that we are in zone and hope it doesn't change in the next couple of years. Its sad when a new house is cheaper than an education.

Saturday, August 17

And even more hairspray

I didn't get out to our school 80s bingo night last weekend as I was sick. There was no way I was missining this weeks opportunity to wear the waterwash taffeta gown made by my schoolmate IN the 80's.
Here tis.

 And the back
 This was last seen in public circa 1989 at our year ten formal- at the National Art Gallery. We were in the room with the stained glass ceiling. My "date" at the time was in the courtyard climbing on the Henry Moore sculptures! No wonder we weren't allowed back there. My dress then, was more classic (of the time) black velvet bodice with 3/4 sleeve and sweetheart neckline with a green shot black skirt.
This however is my date for the soccer trivia night. 
Yes - that is an original parachute tracksuit from our archives. The tshirt is the one we made for Xandy. Its not exactly a cropped shirt on him - but you don't need to see all of it!

I 80's up my look with some lace fingerless gloves and matching headband. The massive clip on earrings were found in an old makeup case along with the blue eyeshadow!

Friday, August 16

More Hairspray

This morning its wacky hair day, dress in sports gear and Hotdog day. (and donation to Edge foundation and 50c for a chocolate frog. Thats a lot for one mum to remember

let alone the fact that she had been volunteered to help cook the 439 hotdogs! Sheesh.

Thursday, August 15

Mad Scientist

The boys have been desperate to do some science experiments. They are right into potions and lotions (mainly making all of my lotions into not very useful potions!) So I bought some kits which have all the paraphernalia for experiments and they love them. 

We took this further later when we did a classic bicarb and vinegar explosion.

Tshirt gift - bit of a how to

A friend had a significant birthday and this was just a little something to comemerate the occasion. 
A simple tshirt from beaded fabric. This fabric has been featured before and already paid for itself. Scrap if you may.
 With a fold on the left, I laid out one of my tshirts and cut a basic shape around it - making a capped sleeve where the original had a set in sleeve. I made it a bit loser to allow for the lightness of the fabric.
 Here is the front piece, to which I put the back piece right side down.
 Then I simply sewed up the four seams and folded back the edges for hems. The only 'fancy' thing was the twin needle which makes it look less homemade.
Off to be wrapped and gifted.

Wednesday, August 14


Two creative girlfriends have started a catering business together and they have just landed their first big orders. Exciting times for them and I wanted to give them a little token gift to mark the celebration. 
After much deliberation - teatowels seemed the most appropriate.

I happily found some plain white teatowels at Coles of all places. I really wanted linen - but with time pressure - this was perfect.

Image designed and cut using the silhouette on freezer paper. 
 Freezer paper ironed onto tea towel and used as a stencil to add the orange paint. 
 Peel the freezer paper off and ta-da! Perfect image. 
 Wrapped with a card all ready for a stealth-like delivery.

Sunday, August 11

Just wait 6.5 years...

And it will be done. And the job was worth the wait. The big squirrel finally got around to sticking the tiles on the spashback. We have had the tiles all that time - he's just not had the inclination.

On top of that I managed to get the same work done in the kitchen - wow - two for the price of one.

Friday, August 9

School Disco - 80s theme

I love  bit of dress ups. Can't help getting on board with a theme - and thankfully my kids are all totally on board with it too!

 They are always happy to pose too!

 With a half hour overlap, the big kids headed off to their turn at the disco.

Think we added a bit to that ozone hole with all the hairspray tonight!

Thursday, August 8

Pink jacket

On a roll at the moment and figuring I was on a good thing this is the second type of this jacket. It is the same as the mustard and I bought the fabric with this in mind. This one is fully lined which makes it a bit more versatile. I love the texture. Great with jeans and a tshirt, or with a skirt of dress. Happy to have it finished. I have cut out the outfit for my friend. The only fabric untouched from the weekend is the mock crochet. Not too bad!

Tuesday, August 6

Attack the stash 2 - Skirt

Firstly apologies for the photo - standing on the edge of the bath to show you the hem but this one was easy and will easily be a summer favourite. Infact I think I could also add dark tights and boots and wear it now. This is the burda pattern as planned, made in size 12 with the hem of the biggest size.

Attack the Stash 1 Knit dress

 Thus us the knit that I bought on Saturday and already it is the dress I had planned. I bougt 2 meters which totalled $12. I even had enough left over to make a top!
This is just made up from the scraps - a loose fit with tight sleeve bands. Partnered with a double knit skirt with a zip up the back.

Sunday, August 4

Season Final

 Twas the last match of the season. My boy was captain for the day. His speech to his team was - "go out and get dirty" - which they did!
 It has been a really lovely introduction to football - with wonderful coaches, managers and support crew. There is a real community around the footy club . The only problem I have is holding the little boys back from playing next year!

Saturday, August 3

Fabric shopping

A visit to a fabric store (or two) always gets me out of my funk. Spending a bit of money lightens the load. I take my own bags now so I don't have to hide the evidence and normally just plonk the new stuff in the pile and pretend like its always been there.

Total spend $100. These are the fabrics and their plans....
 This is coral pink heavy weight coating. The beige and pink is for lining and I got enough for a blouse of some sort. I want to make this jacket from Burda which is simple and easy to throw on over things with no fastenings. Both from Darn Cheap and cost around $50.
Mum and MrP had a date at spotlight for some wool for a Granny quilt so at 40% off, I did some fabric shopping. 
 The dark one on the left is a knit which will be a top and a skirt for a christmas gift.
The beige and fluro floral is for me (of course) and I imagine a waisted dress like this one below. V neck option, elbow length sleeve and an a-line skirt. The cream black and green floral is a stretch drill and I imagine a skirt- probably in the burda skirt below.
 This is the other fabric I bought. It is a basic drill with not much going for it as a fabric other than the print which for me is much easier than crocheting!

Friday, August 2


Somethings just get you thinking. At the moment there are winds of change stirring. They seem to be good winds, stirring for everyone but me. I feel like I am standing at the epicentre of the hurricane and everything or everyone is starting to do good things and changing and I am the only one standing still.

I don't know if it is the impending Oh! birthday or not but I feel either stuck in a rut or maybe on the cusp of change. There have been lots of house movements, renovations, babies, new jobs, careers or creations. These are the books Bic has self published funded through pozzible. And I have done nuthin.
Whats more is that I feel like wallowing in the nuthin-ness for a while.

There are things that I could do, ideas I have that fleet through my mind. To bring anything to fruition takes a lot of effort that I am lacking at the moment.

So if you are one of those whizzing around my epicentre - good on you. No really - hats off to you for making that change and getting some things done. I'll be here, cheering you on.
Yep - from right here.


Thursday, August 1

Shopping - for work

Today my boss took me on out outing to the Life in Style gift fair. This in one of 3 major gift fairs on this weekend. This particular day was at the old exhibition buildings and the exhibitors were smaller traders - a lot who are making the move from market seller to wholesaler. Most of the 'artists' were at the stand.

It was a massive day. I wasn't even spending my money, but I pretend like I am. There is so much to see and so much competition. It was fairly cut and dry what would and wouldn't suit her shop - but then you also had to negotiate exclusivity in the street and sometimes that is impossible. Then once all that is sorted - the art of what will sell. Colours, prints, quantities, mark up, display. So much more thought goes into it that you ever imagine.

Still a great day.