Monday, 30 July 2012

Things I Love

image rainbow house by PJ Taylor Photo

I don't think I could live in this house (just think of all the work re-painting it every few years to keep the exterior looking good!), but it would certainly make me smile to see it on my walks or travels.  Would you live in a rainbow house?
(Source: PJ Taylor Photo)

Thursday, 26 July 2012

My Creative Space

image pride and prejudice pendants brooch bracelet charm jane austen romeo and juliet shakespeare two cheeky monkeys

I'm back from a week of fun in the sun (sort of, it was unseasonably cold during our trip, but still better than freezing Melbourne) and thought I would give you a sneak peek of some new creations I'm working on for Two Cheeky Monkeys.  I started making these while we were on holiday and have grand plans to combine my P&P style of creations with my vintage Glam It Up range.  So keep watching this space to see the end product!

Tuesday, 24 July 2012

Birthday Girl

As I adjust back to being in cold and dreary Melbourne after seven and a half days of relatively warm weather up north, I am also struggling to adjust to the fact that the huuuuggge baby in the top photo (yes, that is kilograms, not pounds!) has turned into the beautiful five year old in the photo below.  Though the last five years have brought a lot of changes to her young life, she still hasn't lost her ability to consume large quantities of food or her love of being cuddled and carried (both traits she has shown since day 1).  Love you my sweet little one!

Friday, 20 July 2012

Kiwi Crate - A Little Box of Fun

image kiwi crate colour box colors crate

The cheeky monkeys and I were recently blessed to win a sample Kiwi Crate from the Craft Foxes site and I cannot believe how much fun they have had with it so far.  We received a Colors Crate, which arrived just before the start of the school holidays, and you should have seen the monkeys' eyes widen as I pulled out each item from that little cardboard box.  The box we received was only the size of a shoe box, but it was packed with enough supplies for up to three children to try out several colour-themed projects.  And there were leaflets with ideas for other projects to try out too.  Have you, or the little people you know, played around with a Kiwi Crate yet?  I think my girls are in love and would probably badger me to get them the gardening and dinosaur crates if they knew they existed!  But I haven't told them yet, because as much fun as these little boxes of activities are, I'm just not the type to sign up for a monthly subscription scheme (which is how Kiwi Crate is run), preferring instead to pick and choose the items I want when I want.  Perhaps my arm could be twisted, though...

Wednesday, 18 July 2012

Labelling Your Handmade Creations

image bulgari ring tiffany bracelet and french general by kaari meng necklace

Inspired by the likes of French General, Bulgari and Tiffany & Co, I have been thinking about the issue of labelling or tagging my handmade creations for some time.  Now I know that I really shouldn't be comparing my little businesses to the esteemed likes of the aforementioned jewellery and design giants, but most handmade artists and crafters are keen to label their work so that recipients of their products know who made it and who to return to should they wish to purchase more.  More insidiously, handmade labels or tags have also been a way for buyers to determine whether they are buying an item made by their favourite crafter or a copy/rip off by another "artist".
I already add labels to some of my creations, most notably my fabric cuffs and buntings, both of which bear stamped or sewn in labels with my store name.  But how to label items such as earrings, rings and cupcake stands?  And is there an affordable way of adding little charms to bracelets and necklaces bearing my store name or initials?  Even if I could easily and affordably label every single creation I make, is it a necessary or worthwhile endeavour?
For those of you who buy handmade, do you think about whether the items you buy bear labels or tags?  Or is this only really an issue for handmade clothing and fabric products?  And if you are a handmade artist or crafter, do you label your creations?  Or is this really not an issue for anyone else?

Monday, 16 July 2012

Things I Love...

I am not much of a knitter, and I can barely crochet more than a chain, but there is something so delightful about handspun yarn that I sometimes find myself wanting to purchase a skein or two in my favourite colours!  Perhaps the attraction is the earthiness of a product that has been dyed and spun by hand as it would have been in days of old, or perhaps it is the fact that handspun yarn has such a unique and beautiful look compared to the generic balls by the dozen you find in craft stores.  Here are some beauties I found from Australian sellers on Etsy - enjoy!

Friday, 13 July 2012

I'm Dreaming of a...Holiday!

image hamilton island sea ocean

After struggling with various illnesses in the family for what feels like forever (but in actual fact has been about three weeks), I am finally taking a little break with my family for some R&R and to get some sunshine.  I am looking forward to my little holiday away from my stores and the blog, although I will be keeping the virtual doors open while I take my break.  I have discounted everything in Two Cheeky Monkeys and Domum Vindemia to make up for the fact that purchases will not be shipped until the 23rd of July.  And don't worry, I have some blog posts scheduled so that you will still have something fun to read while I am putting my feet up.    :)

Wednesday, 11 July 2012

My Creative Space

image washi tape Japanese deco tape chiyogami paper

Yes, I am still recovering from the horrible sinus infection I caught, so there hasn't been much creating going on of late.  But, my lovely sister and her husband brought back a gorgeous package of Japanese deco tapes and washi and mulberry papers from Japan as my belated birthday present.  So guess what I have been looking at every day???

Tuesday, 10 July 2012

A Little Two Cheeky Monkeys Survey

I have been having a lot of fun creating my Glam It Up range of vintage glass jewellery and have been slowly expanding the types of pieces I create.  To give me a better idea of what other people like (I know, it's shocking that red and purple aren't everyone's favourite colours!), I would love it if you could fill out the following short survey for me.  I want to know what is your favourite colour(s), and whether you prefer the glass jewel stones or the pearlescent matte stones which I use in my range (see below for images).  Feel free to expand your answers in the blog comments.  Thanks for your help!

image glam it up rings pearlescent pink emerald green statement jewellery

Monday, 9 July 2012

Things I Love...Headbands

image knitted bow headband ribbed

With the entire house of Two Cheeky Monkeys succumbing to a nasty viral infection (which then progressed to secondary bacterial infections for hubby and myself), I haven't had much time to think about our planned holiday next week.  Which also means that I haven't thought about which craft projects I should bring along to keep me entertained while the cheeky monkeys frolic on the beach.  As you all know by now, I have a thing for wearing and making headbands, so I am seriously contemplating this set of cute headband tutorials from the knit picks site.  I am really not very good at knitting, so I think I'll be starting out with the easiest headband first.  What do you think?

image knitted icord headband wrapped

Monday, 2 July 2012

School Holiday Shenanigans

Now I wouldn't normally submit you all to the horrors of my awful toes, but with me still sniffling away care of the germs monkey #2 so kindly shared with me, I haven't had the energy to do anything overly exciting.  I did have enough energy the other night to start the holiday period with some silliness in the form of toenail painting.  It's a treat I reserve for school holidays and the cheeky monkeys are getting more and more adventurous (or demanding!) in the designs they want.  So here's one of my big toes, bearing a rather wonky smiley face.  I would show you the monkeys' toes, but they don't hold still long enough for me to photograph them!