Welcome, and thanks for visiting.

Yes, this is where we live - as close to paradise as one can get!

I blog about all the good things in my life - family (1 husband, 2 grown children and a beautiful grandson, Harper, born on 8 Nov. 2010), making miniature gardens, cardmaking, stamping and other papercrafts, sewing, beading, jewellery and other crafts, our beloved cats (currently 4), pet pigs and sheep, the birds and wild things around us, our garden and what we grow, and how lucky we are to live on our 14 acre little itsy bitsy farm in beautiful New Zealand.
If you are a miniature or fairy garden enthusiast, like I am, please visit my Facebook page, Away With The Fairies, for ideas and inspiration.

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

More new little gardens

Here are a few new little log cottages (less than 6" tall), with two of them used in potted gardens for the Christmas markets I'm doing over the coming weeks.

Saturday, November 15, 2014

Hat's off to you!

I feel that the fairies need to protect themselves from the sun when they're outdoors in the garden, so here's a new straw hat I created just for them! You will see how easy it is to make.
Supplies: ModgePodge (or similar product), brush, burlap, dolly peg (or you could use something else, e.g. thimble?), twine, tiny flower, scissors.
How to: Cut a piece of burlap slightly larger than the top of your dolly peg, drape it over the top of the peg, hold tight, and use a piece of twine to wrap around the draped burlap as shown. Tie a knot in the twine. (You may need someone to help you with that bit.) Then paint the burlap thoroughly with ModgePodge. Allow to dry for awhile, but not totally, and then ease out the creases around the side to make a flat(ish) rim for the hat. Slide the burlap hat off the peg and allow it to dry overnight (or speed up the process with a hair dryer, like I did, being such an impatient person!). When dry trim the rim of the hat to size, and shorten the ends of the loose twine. Glue a little flower onto it, and tadaaaa . . .!
P.S. I'm sure you could use fabric in place of the burlap too. I will have to try that idea!

Saturday, October 25, 2014

New things . . .

You may have seen the little nativity sets I made a few weeks ago (scroll back to see if you haven't yet).  I decided they needed a "stable", so this is what I made with one of those small sized milk cartons, kindly spray painted by the Assistant Elf.  I turned out really well.  Love the recycling options with this hobby of mine!

Today I also finished this little broken pot garden that I've been planning to make for a long time.

Friday, October 17, 2014

More recycling

I'm having a lot of fun recycling some old clothes (as I pack away boxes into storage, as we're selling our house and I'm trying to tidy and declutter my wardrobe - between sewing projects!  LOL)
This was a lovely stretch knit cardi, probably 16+ years old, that I've held onto because I love the colour (the orange is not quite as bright and eye-popping in real life - must be the camera playing tricks), but haven't worn it in many years. So . . . it is now a "new" old cardi-turned-tunic, with the front opening sewn closed, the old boring orange buttons removed and replaced, a skirt extension added to make it into a tunic, and a felt brooch made because it needed "a little something else", and with the coloured buttons down the front it wasn't suitable for wearing a necklace with it.  I didn't even cut the bottom hem of the cardi off - just added the polka dot fabric on the under-side.  It looks really good with black or white leggings or pants.
Back to my wardrobe decluttering now, sadly (until I find something else to recycle!)


Sunday, October 12, 2014

Scrap sewing/up-cycling/remodelling

I've seen (and pinned) so many tutorials on upcycling your old clothes and T-shirt refashions on Pinterest, so decided I'd try it.  This is an old, too short knit top that I cut off and added scraps of knit fabric, old T-shirts cut up and a cardigan I hadn't worn for years.  The back is in 3 other different scrap fabrics in similar tones, plus a bit of green!  The hole in the skirt was actually in the fabric when I bought it (only noticed when I got home) so put it to good use as well!  I wished I'd made the skirt more flared but ran out of suitable fabric.  

Thursday, October 9, 2014

Please enter your pin

I have had a lot of people asking for the template for this pincushion I made way back, so here it is.  It is free - just copy the graphics (resize if necessary) and print onto fabric (I used these instructions for printing on fabric), cut fabric into a rectangular shape, sew and stuff with batting or leftover wool or whatever you have in your stash of "bits".  It's a great gift for anyone who sews or quilts. Start making them for Christmas now!

  Here's the finished product!

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

It's getting closer to Christmas

I'm making these miniature nativity scenes to sell with my fairy goodies at the markets I do weekly.  I've had to do a few trial runs with making the sheep from various supplies I have in my stash, and these chenille pompoms and pipe cleaners turned into the best sheep option!  (Some of the others were quite amusing! LOL)  The faces are drawn on card.  The manger is an acorn cap.

Thursday, October 2, 2014

Hiking with the gnomes

We've had some beautiful spring days here recently, so I took the gnomes out for a walk in the forest yesterday!  We all had a great time!  LOL

Monday, September 29, 2014

Another great (easy) pattern

This is a Vogue pattern V1261 (Alice & Olivia) which I've had for many years, and it gets dragged out every Autumn for tunic tops, sweatshirts and dresses. I always have trouble finding nice patterned stretch fabric for Winter though, so tend to go for the plain heavy knits which can always be dressed up with a scarf or necklace.  I like how the striped sleeves worked with the pattern on this one and will do it again in a short-sleeved version for summer.  (My necklaces too.)

I 'ballooned' the lower half of this one when I cut it out and it looks great.  (Pics not good, sorry.)  This is a charcoal color, not navy!  
This is so comfortable and looks good with jeans or boots and black leggings.

This can be dressed up or dressed down and looks good with lots of silver jewelry.

A bit of sewing for myself (for a change!)

I've been doing some sewing again, this time for myself!  Call me selfish, but Spring is springing all around us here so it's time to starting thinking Summer clothes.
These tops/tunics are all from the same pattern, Burda 8220, which is SO easy and adaptable.  (I made the necklaces too - another one of my crafty passions).

I love this reversible soft gingham, although getting the checks to line up for sewing was a bit of a challenge!  I made a scarf from the left overs (which I'm wearing in my new profile photo).
This is a linen fabric with a built-in crease (saves ironing!).
The pattern was not meant for stretch fabric but it worked out well (although the pic doesn't look so good).  I cut the lower half in a 'balloon' style and it works really well as a tunic with a longsleeved Tshirt or turtle neck sweater underneath.  (I have a T in a mustard color which looks great with it.)
This is also a linen.  It will be great with white linen pants or leggings.

This is definitely a versatile and very useful pattern.