Friday, 28 February 2014

It's the small things...

I don't know what it is about security doors (actually, doors in general), but the last two homes Mr Cheeky Monkeys and I have owned have both had issues with faulty doors.  A security door in our first home broke within a week of us moving in and our current home has had problems with both the front and back doors (including my most recent escapade juggling a massive glass door on my own to stop it crashing and breaking when it slipped out of its sliding channel - eep).

So you can imagine how excited I am that we finally had a brand new security door installed at our front door!  I know, it doesn't seem like a big deal, but this is HUGE for us because we have been battling with a shonky security door since we moved in (it broke the day we moved in - gah) and it has taken us almost two years to organise this new door what with the various issues cropping up over the last few years.  Now that I've got a functional security front door, I'm going to open my wooden door to let in the beautiful breeze every chance I can get!

Wednesday, 26 February 2014

Diamonds are a girl's best friend...

image two cheeky monkeys vintage glam it up crystelle cocktail ring diamond clear brass jewellery jewelry estate style statement

Okay, so that's not really a HUGE rock for your hand, but sometimes a girl's got to take what she can afford, right?  I've been making these vintage glass stone rings for a few years now and I think the Crystelle ring above has got to be one of my all time favourites.  There's nothing like adding some new colour options to perk up an old range of creations!

image pumpkin ring brass orange two cheeky monkeys estate style cocktail statement vintage glass stone glam it up hollywood

Besides adding rings in new colours to my Glam It Up range, I'm also re-visiting favourite colours which were very popular.  I have to admit that I find it hard to decide what colours to create these rings in because I have to turn off my bias for or against certain colours!  I love purples, reds and blues for my rings - what are your colours of choice?

Monday, 24 February 2014

Tutorial Roundup - Friendship Bracelets

image friendship bracelet braid plait diamonds rhinestones bling

Having grown up in the 1980s (er, yes, that is how old I am!), I have fond memories of the knotted friendship bracelets that my friends and I made for each other.  Some of my friends were amazingly adept at creating the most intricate designs, whereas I was hopelessely limited to the most basic striped version and despaired of even successfully attempting the (also basic) chevron pattern.  Now that I'm a little older, friendship bracelets are back in vogue, and I have finally mastered the knot-tying technique so essential to making them.  For those of you who want to try making some yourselves, here are a selection of great tutorials.

image diy tutorial knotted friendship bracelet chevron bling rhinestone stripe pattern
Find a selection of patterns including asymmetrical chevron and blinged out versions.

image tutorial diy knotted friendship bracelet pattern heart arrow valentine valentine's day theme
The Purl Bee has two cute Valentine-themed patterns.

image diy tutorial knotted friendship bracelet pattern patterns charts and have a host of friendship bracelet charts to suit all experience levels.

Wednesday, 19 February 2014

Goldilocks, Nursery Rhymes and Fairy Tales

image golden book bunting fairytale nursery rhyme goldilocks and the three bears domum vindemia

When I was a very small girl, my favourite bedtime story was Goldilocks and the Three Bears.  I loved it so much that I insisted my dad had to read it to me EVERY night before I went to bed.  My poor dad got so bored of that story that he would change parts of it to see if I noticed (which I did, of course)!  Even though I rarely read Goldilocks nowadays (the Cheeky Monkeys can read for themselves), I still have a love of my childhood fairy tales and nursery rhymes.

image the owl and the pussycat bunting golden book edward lear domum vindemia

This love of traditional rhymes and tales (and memories of my large collection of Golden Books) was a major reason for starting my Golden Book line of buntings.  While Disney-themed buntings, such as Bambi, have been much sought after by customers, I am also making more traditional tales (like The Owl and The Pussycat) for those who love the old classics.  So tell me, which classic stories do you prefer: the traditional stories, or the Disney-ised versions of old tales?

Monday, 17 February 2014

Things I Love - Scherenschnitte (AKA Papercutting)

I have long been fascinated by the art of scherenschnitte, or papercutting as it is better known.  It never ceases to amaze me that artists using a simple blade can achieve such intricate and beautiful results.  Having tried it myself (you can see one attempt here), I can attest to just how difficult it is to keep one's hand steady while slicing delicate designs in paper!  There are a host of amazing papercut artworks one can find on the web, and today I'm highlighting just a few I have found on Etsy.  Enjoy!

image papercut scherenschnitte sarah trumbauer flowers quote

image papercut scherenschnitte rural pearl butterflies sun

image scherenschnitte papercut heirloom paper cuts sea creature

image papercut scherenschnitte whispering paper bird birds

Friday, 14 February 2014

Zipper Flowers Revisited

Do you remember all the way back to March last year when I last blogged about zipper flowers?  I made up a stack of zipper flower hair ties/ponytail holders for the fundraising craft stall that the Two Cheeky Monkeys' school runs at the annual school fete.  Well, I was told that these hair accessories were A HIT (most of them sold to the parents running the craft stall before the general public even got a look in!), so this year I am making some more.

image zipper flowers upcycled recycled

Like last year, I will be going for a range of colours and styles to suit all tastes, though I think my favourites are the two-toned ones with the button centres.  If you're in Melbourne, you can come along to the school fete in March to purchase some zipper flower hair accessories!  If you're not in Melbourne and would like some of these flowers for your hair, you can make your own with this very simple tutorial.  And if cutting up zippers is not your thing, I can take custom orders for ponytail holders, headbands or brooches - the possibilities are almost endless!

Wednesday, 12 February 2014

Launching the Two Cheeky Monkeys 2014 Autumn/Winter Range With a Special Offer

image vintage cufflinks two cheeky monkeys glass cabochon pearl ivory latte beige

Some of you may remember that back in December, I gave you a sneak peek of my upcoming Autumn/Winter range for 2014.  Well, all items for the range have been completed and today I am officially launching both the Asymmetry and the Vintage Cufflinks ranges!!!

image meloi bracelet asymmetrical asymmetry cabochon flower silver chrysoprase blue agate two cheeky monkeys jewellery

To celebrate the much-anticipated launch of my new ranges, I am offering 20% off all purchases which include an item from either of the new ranges.  That's right, 20% off your ENTIRE purchase (excluding shipping) if you purchase anything from the Asymmetry or Vintage Cufflinks ranges!  The launch discount is available in both my Etsy and Madeit stores when you use the coupon code LAUNCH.  The discount code is ONLY VALID for the next 24 hours, so get in quick before your favourite item heads to another new home.

Friday, 7 February 2014

Which One's My Cup?

I don't know if your family is as chaotic as the Two Cheeky Monkeys family, but one area of chaos which often causes angst is the confusion over whose cup or mug is whose.  Like most people, many of our drinking glasses and mugs came in matching or identical sets (even some of our plastic kiddie cups did too).  So if more than one person decided to grab say, the Ashdene seashell mugs, this can lead to heated discussions about which mug belongs to whom.

image crochet doilies coasters drinks crocheted moda vera beetle yarn pink turquoise

Mr Cheeky Monkeys really liked the idea of named coasters on the kitchen windowsill for each family member to place their drinking glasses, but I didn't want my windowsill clogged up with cups (or people reaching for their cups), I prefer the Little Cheeky Monkeys to leave their cups on the dining table to remind them to drink regularly (and for easy access) and, to be honest, the whole named/personalised coaster thing seemed a bit dorky to me.  Of course, I finally found a solution to the problem by crafting!

image crochet doilies coasters drinks crocheted moda vera beetle yarn navy blue purple mauve

A quick trip to Spotlight yielded some lovely cotton/acrylic yarn (Moda Vera Beetle) which I turned into fun, crocheted drinks coasters.  Each member of the Two Cheeky Monkeys family was assigned a different colour and I used different patterns for each coaster.  My patterns came from various sources, including Simply Crochet and Mollie Makes magazines, but you should easily be able to find coaster or doily patterns on Ravelry or a crochet blog.  So what do you think, do you like my drinking glass solution?  Would you rather use crocheted coasters or the traditional cork-backed squares found in most homewares and department stores?

Wednesday, 5 February 2014

Key To My Heart

image key to my heart patchwork vintage embroidery blue paisley white skeleton key domum vindemia ornament pin cushion

I have been sewing up a storm for Domum Vindemia in the last few weeks and today I am unveiling my latest creations - "key to my heart" ornaments.  Each heart-shaped ornament has been put together with a mix of beautiful vintage and contemporary fabrics and embellishments to create a shabby chic decoration for your home.  Attached to the fabric hearts with baker's twine is one of my most favourite items, a vintage skeleton key!

image key to my heart patchwork vintage maroon green peach doilies flower cabochons apricot skeleton key domum vindemia ornament pin cushion

These sweet hearts can be hung either by the key or the twine on its own with the key dangling with the heart.  For those of you lucky enough to own vintage furniture with skeleton key locks, these hearts would make a cute adornment to your furniture!  And the fabric hearts aren't just limited to being used as ornaments - sewists could use them as beautiful pincushions too.  You can find these fun heart ornaments in both my Etsy and Madeit stores and keep your eye out for more colour combinations coming soon.  At the moment they come unscented, but I would like your input into whether you would like dried lavender or rose petals (or any other potpourri) added to these ornaments.

image key to my heart patchwork vintage embroidery pink white skeleton key domum vindemia ornament pincushion