About Me

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With the help of my friends, I co-ordinate "The Craft Group" which is a place for women to gather and do craft! We share a whole range of things, from craft to the small things that matter to us right up to understanding the whole meaning of life! I learn so much from everyone, I thought a blog would be the perfect way to record the memories! The "Plus..." is all about extra bits 'n pieces that I have found and would love to show you. Welcome to our Craft Group. Please feel free to say hi, leave a comment or become a follower! Enjoy!

Wednesday, 31 August 2011

Baby Doll Knits by Lorraine

Once there was a little girl called Lila.
She had a cute little muffin doll from Germany.
She also had a very clever grandma, Lorraine.
Grandma Lorraine had some teeny knitting needles, fine pink yarn and a lovely vintage doll clothes knitting pattern.

 Grandma Lorraine then made a little bonnet for Lila's dolly.

Then she made a pretty matching pink dress.

And a cardigan for the cooler days.

She made some booties so dolly doesn't get cold feet.

With the 'left over' yarn, she made a snuggly blanket.

Little Lila is very happy with the pretty things that Grandma made her.
But now...

cousin Ruby would probably like a set for her dolly too!
And so Grandma Lorraine lived happily ever after making special things for her daughters and grandchildren.

Tuesday, 30 August 2011

Peg Apron design by Joan

This is a very stylish peg bag by Joan. I love it.
Blue and white/cream would have to be my favourite combo.

Every peg bag needs a gorgeous model.
So here we have a stylish peg apron by Joan, modelled by a stylish but shy model, Anita (thus the cut off head - she insisted!)

Joan's tip for Peg Apron use: Put your phone in the pocket before heading out to the line. It will save you many mad dashes back inside to try and catch that call!

Monday, 29 August 2011

Card's for older ladies by Pat

Don't you think this is just the perfect card for a lady who is celebrating her 90th birthday?

The card is by Pat and I'm sure it will be well received!

This card is also by Pat but she is giving this one to 'spring chicken'. 
The recipient of this card is only turning 80!

Lovely and thoughtful cards Pat!

Saturday, 27 August 2011

Genetic Portraits by Ulric Collette

I found this photographic project on the 'net. Fascinating.
Quoting from  My Modern Met...

"How much do you and members of your family really look alike? Quebec, Canada-based graphic designer and photographer Ulric Collette has created a shockingly cool project where he's exploring the genetic similarities between different members of the same family. By splitting their faces in half and then melding them together, he creates interesting new people that are sometimes quite normal looking and other times far from it. He calls this series Genetic Portraits."

Here is a sample: The left side of the face is the mother and the right side is the daughter.

Click here or here to see more blended family portraits. Some are very interesting. 
I guess I find this fascinating because I am always intrigued by the way God designed us and the process of reproduction. So much genetic information being held in 2 small cells which combine and grow into another human being is truly a miracle.
And every human so beautiful in their own unique, God given way. 
Psalm 139:13-14 says of God: 

"For you created my inmost being;
   you knit me together in my mother’s womb.
I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
   your works are wonderful,
   I know that full well."

Friday, 26 August 2011

Stand out cards by Elly

There is no stopping Elly! She creates card after card and is a constant source of inspiration to the other card makers at "The Craft Group".

 Here is a birthday card that stands on it's own. the message is written on the back.

This is a great card and the possibilities are endless. Especially if you love scrapbooking and decorating little panels with messages, photos or clever colour combos.
If you are interested in any of Elly's cards and want the pattern, just ask me in the 'comments' below and I'll see if we can get a pattern for you, or at least tell you where to find it.

Hey, it's friday again. Have a great weekend!

Thursday, 25 August 2011

Father's Day Card

Father's day is only a few weeks away (4th September).
I found this cute card on Martha Stewarts site.

You can click here to see her instructions. Unfortunately the comments she received say she missed a few points in the making of the card.

If you'd rather see  someone showing step by step instructions, look at "Clair's Creations".

Don't forget to plan something nice for Father's day. What traditions does your family have?

Wednesday, 24 August 2011

Rita's Cards

Rita made these 2 lovely cards.
They are easy to post when they are lying flat.

And they are easy to display when they are propped up like this...

Rita gave us the card on the right so we can all write on it to wish Wendy all the best.
Wendy is having an operation today and she was not looking forward to it. 
(Who would?)
Not that you will be reading this today Wendy, but all the best and we will be praying for you for quick healing!
Thanks for the card Rita!

Tuesday, 23 August 2011

More crochet by Nadia

Anyone reading this from the northern hemesphere, yes, we 'down under' and are nearly at the end of our winter. So it is knitting and crochet season. Here are some more morsels from Nadia.

A cute poncho and hat Nadia made for Anita's little girl, Summer.
Nadia the Crochet Guru
Peruvian hat by Nadia
The coming of the warmer weather doesn't stop Nadia from crocheting. She will just change to using cotton and will make lovely airy tops!

Monday, 22 August 2011

I feel like eating a banana.

With bananas at $13 a kilo since the cyclones, we have been holding off. Last week I bought 2 bananas and divided them up between the 6 of us. Each one cost about $2.70. Wow, we had a third of a banana each. But, I have seen them for $10 per kilo, so things are looking up. Then I can go back to my normal routine of buying bananas, then those that don't get eaten are put in the freezer where they go black on the outside and gooey on the inside and are perfect for making banana muffins.

Saturday, 20 August 2011

The Sky Scarf

I so wish I thought of this idea myself, it is brilliant and the sort of thing I would start (but would I finish?)
Lea from  Leafcutter Designs prepared balls of wool which matched the different colours of the sky. She had 6 different shades as you can see in the photo below. Each day she would look outside to see what colour the sky was that day.  She would then do just two row of knitting each day, matching the colour of the sky with the ball of wool she chose.

Each day has 2 rows of garter stitch completed.

 Here is the pattern if you want to do this yourself! 

Check out her video here where she explains things more fully and shows how she manages all her balls of wool. Instead of one ball of wool, she has done 2 smaller balls so she can do a mix, for example on a blue sky day with some white clouds, she knits the blue and white yarns together that day.

I love this. She calls it 'conceptual knitting'. At the end of the year, it is a 5 foot long scarf!
Fun idea.

Friday, 19 August 2011

Birthday wishes in a "Box Card" by Elly - for Rita

When is a card more than a card?

When the card is in a box and the box is a part of the card!

Elly made this one for Rita's birthday last monday (Happy Birthday Rita!)

Inside the pretty box is a folded card, tied together with a ribbon. It opens up and is full of pretty pictures, sayings and greetings. The ribbon is tied again to keep it in the open position.

Elly saw a picture of this card and even though she didn't have a pattern, was determined to figure it out. And figure it out she did! Then of course, what do you think happened next? She found a tutorial of how to make the card after she had already figured it out.

Very special Elly! If you would like a peek at where a lot of Elly's inspirations come from, check out the Hobby Journaal website. It is in dutch but you can see the pictures in English ;)

Thursday, 18 August 2011

Crocheted girls cap by Nadia

This is another cute crocheted creation by Nadia.
A pretty pink cap is perfect for any little girl.
There was only one little problem...

We didn't have a little girl at hand to model the hat, so Nadia's little boy, Nathanael did the job beautifully for us.

Don't show him this picture on his 21st!
(Isn't that the cutest little profile?)

Wednesday, 17 August 2011

Star Cards

How brilliant are these cards?
They are so simple yet clever. 

 The star opens up to reveal the message inside.

Here are 2 cards by Anne

These are by Ruth

I will add the exact dimensions here soon so you can see how to make them.

Tuesday, 16 August 2011

How to make a no-sew quilt by Jayne

Here is a great way to make a cosy throw/rug/quilt without lifting a needle!

I am putting the exact dimensions here soon, so if you are interested, watch this space.
Basically you cut 2 large rectangles of fleecy stretch fabric.
You cut a fringe all the way around through both thicknesses. 
You then tie them together.
By tying them tight you can make the throw a bit concave, like this one which Jayne's 6 year old son, James can cocoon himself snuggly inside. If you tie each piece looser (but still securely with a double knot) it lies flatter.

This is a great craft to do with a group of women. Our Church ran it as a part of the MOPS (Mothers of Preschoolers) program. One person did all the buying and cut out the rectangles beforehand then everyone sat at big tables cutting and tying fringes and going home with a quilt!

Monday, 15 August 2011

Winners are Magazine readers

For my Free Giveaway, I intended to give away one magazine. I had so much fun with the choosing of the winner (which involves a dog and is here in case you missed it) that I gave away 4 mags to the winner Marion, 3 to Jenni, 2 to Elly and 1 to Bronwyn. Then we had a "Pull the name tag out of the box" at The Craft Group last thursday and Ina won a bundle of magazines too.

I want to say a huge THANK YOU to everyone who has said such lovely things about my blog or has become a follower or left some comments.
 I really enjoy my blogging hobby. Knowing that it has maybe brought a smile to your face or given you some inspiration is so nice to know!
Have a great week. No Monday-itis allowed!

Saturday, 13 August 2011

WOW Stop-motion animation.

As you already know...
Cartoons are made up of 1000's of different drawings, each one slightly different than the previous one. Animations like "Wallace and Gromit" and "Pingu" are the same, except that photos are used instead of drawings. They make up a scene, take a photo, change the scene slightly, take another photo and repeat this 100's or 1000's of times to make something which, when played in quick succession, looks like a moving picture. This is called Stop Motion Animation.Very creative, effective and time consuming! Watch this one. It is the largest in scale of its kind. When you watch it, just remember that the fisherman in the boat is a real person. It's bigger than you think. After clicking on it, click again to see it slightly bigger. Then at the end, click on "WATCH THE MAKING OF HERE". Very interesting.

What does this have to do with Craft? Well isn't it the same thing we do all the time? 1000's of stitches come together to make a beautiful cross stitch, tapestry, knitted rug, crocheted top or quilt. A myriad of brush strokes makes a spectacular painting. 100's of cuts, folds and glueing go together to create a beautiful card to encourage someone or a scrapbooked page to keep special memories.

It makes me think one step further. Our lives are a quick succession of seconds and minutes. What will it look like at the end? It is so great as a Christian, to know that there is a great and loving Director who is in control. He has put me in the picture deliberately. I am not an accident. He will guide the production, forgive the errors and love me until the great eternal ending of bliss with Him in heaven! We might not see the big picture when we look at individual screen shots but God sees the big picture and we have to trust Him to see us through to the end of a life filled with meaning, purpose and beauty.

Have a great weekend!

Friday, 12 August 2011

Knitted & Crocheted Rug by Shirley

Shirley, (famous for her Red Cross Teddies), made this lovely rug. She said she made one before and sewed strips of knitting together to form the rug. This time she tried a different method.

Instead of sewing the strips together, she joined them using crochet in a neutral toned yarn which ties it all together beautifully. It adds a nice point of interest with the slightly raised  strips running parallel between the blocks.

Put your hand up if you have in your "unfinished craft stash" a bag of knitted squares that never really became anything! I admit I have. I see some lovely wool, then find it therapeutic to sit and knit squares but then never get around to sewing them together! This is a great method for me to try. The squares are  knitted continuously in long strips instead of being knitted as separate squares. Then holding 2 strips wrong sides together, you crochet along the long sides, putting your hook through both layers and thus joining them together as you go.  Nice work Shirley.

Thursday, 11 August 2011

Our Cuttlebug from Marion

We are very excited to have our very own "Cuttlebug" at The Craft Group!!!
Did we beg, borrow, steal or buy it?
No, Marion won it for us!

She was at the shop "Alice in Paperland" in Rydalmere, Sydney and saw they were running a competition for someone to win a Cuttlebug. Marion had to write down why she wanted to win it. Well, she has a Cuttlebug machine and dies of her own which she brings along every week to share with other ladies at The Craft Group. She explained that we are a non profit, community group. She also told them that because of health problems, it is really hard for her to bring the equipment each week. It isn't all that light when you have a good collection of dies! Well, we are very thankful... and Marion's back is very thankful that she won it :)

We will slowly start up a collection of dies and embossing folders ourselves and hopefully all the ladies have a play with it and enjoy creating some beautiful scrapbook pages and cards.

This following video clip is a short, straight to the point guide by an Aussie (yay) on how to cut and emboss using the "Cuttlebug". Too easy!

This following clip shows how you can emboss other things such as transparencies  or ribbon.

I hope you all enjoy sharing the Cuttle Big at The Craft Group ladies! A BIG thanks again to Marion for winning it for us and for "Alice in Paperland" for running the competition!

Alice in Paperland have started up a blog too. You can find it by clicking here.

Wednesday, 10 August 2011

Explosion boxes by Pat & Ruth

 Here is a box made by Pat.
But is it any old box?

No! Open it up and inside it explodes into the fun of a hidden gift or message surrounded by little flying butterflies.

Here are 2 pretty little boxes made by Ruth.

The same surprise awaits anyone who opens them!
An explosion of prettiness!

Want to see more pretty explosions? 
Very sweet.

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