Friday, May 29, 2009

Woven Posters

I am so excited about the trial run lampshade I had to weave from strips of old advertising banners for a decor project I am working on. I love the colours and the texture! We are hoping to mount these on giant barrel lampshades, giving a colourful industrial appearance!I'll keep you updated!

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Mantis How - To's

Look who popped into our office this week!I am so glad Christy caught him on camera, before we gently escorted him outside on a cushion. He didn't want to leave the cushion - so we left it outside for a while too!
I am fascintaed by How to's so thought I would indulge my passion in a Mantis way:
How to Fold a Paper Mantis here, here and here: How to Draw a Mantis here:
How to Make Mantis Jewellery from a 1941 patent here: I like the way they are all facing left!
Can you tell it's the end of the month and I am actually supposed to be doing my husband's accounts?!

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Handmade Card!

Parusha, I just want to tell you - It worked! I was so intrigued when the post arrived on Monday! An envelope with a British stamp!? 'It's not my birthday' I thought. Then I remembered! Parusha Lewis of Lewidoo Fancies offered to send a handmade card to me and this was it! What a delight!I love the gorgeous hand drawing on the front and the lovely label on the back. What made it even more special for me, was that although Parusha lives in London now, she was born in Durban and lived here for the first few years of her life!Thanks Parusha. I hope to return the favour!

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Pillow Cover Recipe:

You will need:
1 beautiful vintage cotton knit cardigan
1 red and white stripe print
4 teabags
1 feather inner
17 buttonsMethod:
1. Cut a piece from the back and the front of the cardigan out to the size of the feather inner. Stitch together.
2. Make up a cushion cover from the red stripe print.
3. Dye the print cover in some tea, so that it more closely matches the cream sweater.
4. Stitch the buttons on in a pleasing way.
5. Assemble the outfit!
6. Snuggle up and enjoy the fact that some of those odd buttons you've been hanging on to for years finally have a use!

Monday, May 25, 2009

Where the Green Grass Grows

Footwear [I would call them slip slops*] by Hyock Kwon. Fake green grass always gave me a lump in my throat - much like fake flowers. But we are using it in a big and unexpected way in a project which I am involved with. So I have softened towards it and am enjoying the humour of it now!
I do plan to show you the project involving the grass when it is complete.
*By the way - what do you call this type of shoe?

Friday, May 22, 2009

Purple Challenge!

I used to love purple! I haven't quite come full circle again yet, but it certainly is an attention grabbing colour!
This vintage Abba LP cover is lovely and lilac:More purple at home:
  1. A project I am working on ...
  2. Aerial view of bromeliad flower in my garden
  3. Monday SPCA charity shop find!
  4. Australian violet patch
  5. Collar Cushion cover
  6. Indigenous Potato bush flower. They look gorgeous on the bush, but unfortunately don't last in the vase!
The end of a fun colour week!

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Every Day is a Red Day

I love Red. It's exciting and comforting all at the same time! Yesterday I took a look at the redness I live with...
  1. Red Hot Pokers were blooming when we moved into our house 15 years ago. Our garden has changed so much in that time, but the same red hot pokers are still there!
  2. Red and white stripe fabric bought from the shop I told you about yesterday. Sadly I found out yesterday that the shop has closed.
  3. A red rose embroidered by my mom before she got married! It is part of a cushion cover in my home.
  4. Morning wake up!
  5. Wooden man with red fez and red umbrella
  6. Reflections of our garden on the boot of my red car [I told you I LIKED red!]
  7. Rose from a recent Vintage Rose Book buy.
  8. The red bricks of my home.
  9. An early Azalea. They usually bloom in spring, but a couple of eager souls are blooming in autumn!

Wednesday, May 20, 2009


Today, being yellow day on this colour week adventure, I thought I would show you some quirky yellowness! I live near the Frame Textile factory shop and I love seeing what I can find there. [Remember this?] A while ago I came across this pale yellow fabric, which has been printed for the Ghana Electricity Company! I enjoyed the retro feel along with the African images lightly printed on in gray!I believe it is made into shirts for company officials[?].
Anairam - was the recipient of one of these cushions and the friends of ours who used to live in Ghana also received one from me! I still have some more fabric left. It might make interesting lining for a bag?
The Frame Textile Group is suffering badly in the global textile recession. Read here about plans to save this company

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Green Tuesday Treat

Friends of ours, who have lived in New Zealand for the past 20years popped in to visit the other day! Not only was it great to see them, but I was so touched when they 'recognised' lots of my home because they read my blog! Wow and Yay! Steve and Joan - you rock!They brought a ceramic memento from NZ - depicting an indigenous Nikau Palm. It came in a cute lidded box which I am sure must have been woven from the palm leaves!
See how well it fits in with some of my other green goodies, especially for this Green Tuesday!

Monday, May 18, 2009

Blue Monday

Curious Girl, Lisa, is coordinating a colour week starting today! I've decided to join in, which means that all my blog posts this week will have a colour theme!
Today is Blue Monday:We recently went along with our daughter on a photo shoot to nearby Inchanga, a little town about 15 minutes further inland from where we live. I was struck by the vintage benches on the platform of the old train station.A fun steam train trip is operated to this station by Umgeni Steam Railway.
More touches of blue - the station guard's overalls...and this blue security company sign [along with the burglar bars] in stark contrast to the beautiful red bricks and Dutch lace curtain from a bygone era!Still to come: Green Tuesday, Yellow Wednesday, Red Thursday and Purple Friday
via Dance of a Painted Lady

Friday, May 15, 2009

Picturesque Proteas

I have become passionate about Proteas... [a few years back I didn't think they were so cool, but I've come full circle now]
I asked a few of the blooms from my Mother's Day bunch to pose for the camera! By the looks of things they really enjoyed themselves!

Thursday, May 14, 2009

How to Turn a Cardigan into a Cushion Cover

My friend Debbie passed a beautiful vintage woolen cardigan on to me! Winter is on it's way here in the Southern Hemisphere, so I wanted to make it into a pair of warm and welcoming cushion covers for my living room!
I decided to dye the knit first. I placed the jersey in a pot of boiling red dye on my stove top. This, plus the machine wash afterwards had the effect of felting the knit and firming it up.
Once this was done, I found some moth holes, so I had to cut sections out around these. This meant that I had to patchwork the good sections together again. I did this with a loose herringbone stitch on top and over-stitching on the back.I drew an apple and pear shape onto a piece of interlining, which I ironed onto the back of the knit. This gave me the guidelines for stitching the buttons on.
I backed the cushion covers with a black and white stripe and have filled them with feather inners!Time to snuggle up!

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Tables and Pillows

Thanks to Apartment Therapy for featuring the book table I made a while ago! I thought I would take this opportunity to show you what it looks like now - It's become a bedside table. The folded page rounds are interspersed with LPs!
The pillows on the bed were made with sheeting and a vintage lace tray cloth, which I cut in half and inserted!Nothing stays the same for long here!

Monday, May 11, 2009

Cinnamon Sticks

The Cinnamon [Cassia]sticks on my mantelpiece came from the stack I told you about before. This weekend I decided to take some of those sticks and do what I had said I would. I boiled them on the stove. The water became a beautiful rich cinnamon colour and the house smelt absolutely amazing! I thought it would impress the family when they arrived home, but they were disappointed that the cinnamon buns they imagined were baking in the oven, were not there after all!

All Tied Up

I've done a few things with vintage ties in the past, and I have a whole stash that I am hoping to do things with in the future - but I had never thought of Tie-pography. Ed Nacional did and I like it! Do you remember the tie dress I made and the tie skirt?

Friday, May 08, 2009

More Apples in the House!

We've had a lot of fruit around the place lately! I found these delightful vintage apple dishes. I love the retro pattern!
And my designing daughter just got an Apple too! I am looking forward to lots of Creativity being generated from that delicious piece of fruit!

Thursday, May 07, 2009

Apples and Pears!

I am very delighted with this pair of cushion covers which I have just finished and made at home on my sofa!As with most of the things in my home, they did not start out as cushion covers! They were not even this gorgeous orangy red! I'll tell you more about their history next week - and how to make pillow covers from an old jersey!

Wednesday, May 06, 2009

Champion of the Mundane! [yes] and Orator of the Ordinary [absolutely]

I am mad about ordinary things! - Candles, pegs, pencils, seeds, leaves, wooden beads, books, sticks, vintage vases, magazines, throws, etc! My home is filled with them and I enjoy presenting them in a new and fresh way!I am inspired by these works of photographer Paul Massey, who brings out the 'Stunning' in 'Plain-Janes'
I was 'paging' through Wallpaper online, and read about the work of photographer and artist William Eggleston. He was referred to as the
Champion of the Mundane and Orator of the Ordinary
That's a cool phrase and one I hope to remember and strive to achieve in my own life and work!!

Tuesday, May 05, 2009

Back to Nature - Altered Books

I have posted lots in my blog about various forms of book art. Paula Paulsrud has done something I haven't seen before...These sculpted book stones are strangely moving! I wonder how she did it? via Hownowdesign
I love how Jaqueline Rush Lee is returning books to their roots [or is it their trunks?]