Monday, August 31, 2009

Banana Blooms

Spring is starting to make an appearance here. The garden is still a bit threadbare and dusty, but there are blooms all over the place. This weekend we found a banana flower - at the end of a ripening bunch of bananas at the top of our garden. It is quite a dramatic flower with it's strong bright burgundy and yellow petals!I am intrigued to see that we could EAT the flower. If I am feeling brave a might try this salad!?

Friday, August 28, 2009

Spring is Almost Here...

[in the Southern Hemisphere] ... and in anticipation I have been making daisies! I have used leftover gift wrap and paper from books and adverts!Have a happy weekend!

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Cross Stitches All Over

Earlier this week I noticed the new Spring shop window set at Woolworths. I was so happy to see it included a gorgeous cross-stitch pattern!
This reminded me of my own latest vintage find - a Coats Cross Stitch Book from the 60's with this red and white cross stitch cushion cover. It always interests me to see how the present builds on and revives the past, in a different way!

I just love how Hiroshi Kawano and Sara Berner have done this in such an exciting way by adding cross stitch to their Viola Pendant lamps. The lamps are handmade from embroidered leather, using vinyl thread and velcro!
via designboom

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Taarrrraaahhhh! Those Lampshades!

Finally, I get to show you the lampshades I wove for our large church entrance hall foyer! We have been updating the look of the reception area - It was my job to weave 8 lampshade covers from posters we have used at our church over the past years!
You may recognise the red strips as coming from Alpha Course posters and if you look carefully, you can make out the outline of Aaron Mcilroy! He recently spent a touching and hilarious Sunday evening with us at our church!I started with a rectangle of poster 2m wide and 1m long. I left a border on the top and the bottom of the poster and then measured, marked and cut strips lengthwise.The crosswise strips were cut from other posters. I divided them out evenly between the lampshades, to try and get a fairly even colour mix. These were woven through and then secured on the back with strips of packaging tape. This lot was sent to the lampshade manufacturers who did the manufacturing and the installation! The rest of the entrance area has been jazzed up with brightly recovered ottomans and the reception desk has had a huge makeover from an orangy wood laminate to this:
If you look carefully you will see that we painted some of the large walls green and then painted strips of sealer over to give a textured look.
Previous mentions of this project here and here

Monday, August 24, 2009

Just Around The Corner

We were invited to a birthday picnic at the Springside Nature Reserve yesterday - a 7 minute drive from my home. It is years since I have been there, and it was so good to rediscover the gentle natural place of beauty that it is! It's full of walks, bridges, fauna and flora and some signs telling you what you can and cannot do and naming some of the trees.It was good to go and we'll be back soon!

Friday, August 21, 2009

Cafe Bloom

I want to share this delightful restaurant with you. Cafe Bloom is in the Midlands of KZN. The place is brimming with good decor ideas! The focal point of this modern iron barn is the gorgeous red wood door! I love the mismatched furniture and the old fridge, permanently open and used to store preserves for sale. The lunch we had there was delicious - and the decor was just up my quirky street!The walls and shelves are full of gorgeous goodies to buy, collectibles and handwritten bits of wisdom!

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

1 Hour Daisy Chain

My youngest daughter had a birthday on Monday! On Sunday night I decided to make a daisy chain to decorate her gift. All the wool came from my bag of scrap wool. I crocheted 16 little motifs and then joined them together with a cord of chain stitch - 10 chains between each flower. I knew she would appreciate this quirky presentation and hope she'll enjoy the garland for a little while to come!Just in case you get the urge to do the same, this is how I made the motifs:
1st round - 6ch, join with ss
2nd round - 1ch, 17dc into ring, join with ss
3rd round - 5 ch, skip 2dc, then 1dc into 3rd dc. *4 ch, 1dc into 3rd dc*. Rep from *to* til end of round. Join with ss and then pull the thread through.
Go on! Get that crochet hook out! You can do it!

Monday, August 17, 2009


I love what Elizabeth Morisette does with stuff!Zips, blister packaging, bottle tops and more!
Visit her flickr here and her blog here to find out more about this interesting artist!

Friday, August 14, 2009

LP Cuffs

I am not going to fold this LP cover up into a box! That's because it's rather nice just the way it is and I shared my my maiden name - Chevalier- with Maurice! It's also a good way to show the LP rolls I have been making- to slide over tall glasses to be used as a vase! I enjoy the movement created by rolling the round record and the fine texture of the grooves too!

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Holmes Brothers

The Holmes Brothers' are local Durban designers and brothers! I admire their style and humour and always stop by their shop when I am in the area! This weekend I bought myself a pair of Lace Trim Pants [Trousers] on their amazing sale. Much to our delight, the piece was packagaed in a delightful fabric bag - featuring one of their own prints! It reminded me again of how important packaging is! Read about them here and see this great article on them here!

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Jersey Patch Blanket

The Jersey [Jumper or Sweater] blanket is finished at last!The blanket is made from many vintage jerseys which I collected over a few months. I went for neutral colours as I wanted a light coloured blanket.If you would like to make one yourself, here are some pointers:
Flatten the jersey by cutting it open along the sleeve seams and along one side seam. Cut as many large squares from the jersey as you can. I included button-up detail and some seam lines in some of the squares. When you can't fit any more large squares out, cut smaller squares a quarter of the size of your larger square, but with seam allowances added. This means that you can sew 4 smaller squares together to form one large square.
I joined all the squares with my overlocker. This finished off all the raw edges of the cut knit and made the seams quite textured and not as smooth as if it was hand sewn.I made 8 strips the width of the blanket and then joined the 8 strips together.
I rolled and blanket stitched the entire hem of the blanket. Some of the knits were very thick and didn't roll too well, so I went round again and slipped stitched these to keep them securely in place.
The weights , pattern and yarn of the squares differ quite a bit. I just love the rich texture and quirky character of the final product. It is so warm and comforting! I did catch myself having a nap under it once, as I was blanket stitching the edge. It's a great way to use up jerseys that are worn in patches or slightly moth eaten! I've started collecting for a really colourful sequel!

Thursday, August 06, 2009

Ladies Who Lunch...

Spiga d'Oro is one of those Durban establishments that you just have to go to! I guess every town has one of them! You haven't really been to Durbs, unless you've been to Spigas! My daughters and I just did that and we enjoyed the pasta and the buzz!Flowers on the tables, petals on the floor, people inside and out! I just want to let you know, that visiting blogs and posting on my blog is going to be lighter than usual. I am not going anywhere, but I am now the proud owner of a gorgeous website and I am spending time learning to navigate my way around, load pictures and products, etc!

Wednesday, August 05, 2009

Working in the Sun

Yesterday morning was an admin morning - but I did get a few minutes in the gorgeous warm winter sun at my work bench. I love the shadow of the security gate on my vintage stool!I am blanket stitching the edge of my knit patchwork blanket made from recycled jerseys. Hand work has a therapeutic effect on me. I was tickled to look down and notice that a lizzard had slipped under the door and was enjoying the sun shine with me too! Makes me think of that proverb:
a lizard can be caught with the hand, yet it is found in kings' palaces.
As soon as the blanket is finished, I'll show it to you!

Tuesday, August 04, 2009

Upholstery Knit

I regularly visit Di Overton of Designer's Block - she comes up with some beautiful and inspirational stuff. I just had to share one of her latest finds - These chairs upholstered in hand knit!
They are beautifully and meticulously knitted by knitwear designer Melanie Porter, who 'undertakes the entire process herself and everything, from the restoration and upholstering to the individual, crocheted buttons, is done by hand. The result of this incredibly labour-intensive process is a stunning and unique work of art, destined to be a future family heirloom.'Have a look at Jesse's magnificent work too!

Monday, August 03, 2009

Sari Ropes

I have been making some Sari Ropes for my soon coming new shop I love working with Sari fabric and enjoy the way the ropes change colour from the border, through to the main colour and back to the border again.I find it very therapeutic threading and knotting the glass balls in the fabric rope and enjoy the way the glass glints through the diaphanous material.
How good to Freshly Find this gorgeous vintage fabric that is very pertinent to the culture of Durban!

Saturday, August 01, 2009

Reflective Saturday

I missed posting yesterday, so decided to have a thoughtful post today!

What saves a man is to take a step.

Then another step.

It may be hard for an egg to turn into a bird:
it would be a jolly sight harder for it to learn to fly while remaining an egg.

We are like eggs at present.
And you cannot go on indefinitely being just an ordinary, decent egg.
We must be hatched or go bad.

You don't have a soul.
You are a Soul.
You have a body.

Quotes from CS Lewis
Prompted by Kendalee