Friday, 30 September 2011

Friday Finds - Chandeliers

Last week I shared about my love for sushi and sushi-themed items (see here), so I thought that this week I would share my love for something a little more classy, he he - chandeliers!  I love chandeliers and would dearly love to have a big fancy one (or two) in my home but that kind of thing doesn't particularly fit in with the style of our 1980s home.  That being said, it hasn't stopped me from plotting to fill my home with chandelier-themed artwork or creations, although I am yet to make a chandelier dictionary print for myself despite the number I have made for my customers, LOL.  Here are just a few examples of handmade items which can help to introduce a chandelier theme to your home.   :)

1920s Petite Dewdrop Chandelier

Chandelier Fine Art Print

Chandelier Pillow Cover

Chandelier Print T-shirt

Chandelier Canvas

Wednesday, 28 September 2011

Lovely, Lovely Snail Mail

Reel Colour Print Set

Over the last few weeks I have been the recipient of some amazing snail mail and today I am finally going to show off what I received.  The first package came from the very sweet Kellie of 74 Lime Lane.  She was the coordinator of the snail mail swap I joined a few months back and she very kindly sent me a package of her gorgeous photography creations when she was told that one of my swaps hadn't reached me and that I had been unable to contact the other swapper.  Talk about above and beyond the call of duty!

Brownie Beauty Print

The second package I received in the mail was a giveaway prize I won from my friend Jess' Epheriell Designs blog.  Jess had the privilege of reviewing and hosting a Hardie Grant giveaway of the book Design*Sponge at Home, by Grace Bonney.  I have loved Design*Sponge ever since I discovered their site back in early 2009, so you can imagine how thrilled I was to be announced as the winner of the giveaway!  My girls and I have had a lot of fun looking through the book and I am getting some ideas for ways I can decorate my home...though this may just be a pipe dream.   ;)

Design*Sponge at Home

Monday, 26 September 2011

My Big Girl!

I can't believe that my oldest baby is six!  I can still remember struggling to finish my PhD thesis while I was pregnant with her and then while she was a demanding newborn who wouldn't breast feed properly.  Those were crazy days indeed!  But now here she is, able to do most things for herself (except, apparently, tie her shoelaces), reading, writing and waiting impatiently for the day she grows taller than me (I estimate it will take her 2-3 years to catch up to me - eep) and is allowed to own and drive a car.  Here is a montage of pictures from her rainbow-themed birthday party (and other areas of her life), she really loved all the colour in the food and decorations.  Happy birthday, my cheeky monkey #1!!!

Wednesday, 21 September 2011

Sushi Creations

I love to eat sushi, I love it a lot, and I think my kids would happily eat it every day if I let them.  I've never been a big fan of eating rice (I know that's weird given that I am Chinese), but there's just something so appealing about eating rice which has been wrapped around delicious fillings and then further wrapped in seaweed sheets.  But I don't just like to eat sushi, I also have a bit of a thing for sushi-themed items (such as the humorous sushi t-shirt my sister owns, but that's another story).  So how could I resist putting together a collection of handmade sushi creations, none of which, I might add, are edible?  Do you like to eat sushi?  If so, what's your favourite?

Felt play food sushi

Sushi Valentine's card

Ikura sushi earrings

Sushi soaps

Sushi onesie tutorial

Wednesday, 7 September 2011

My Creative Space - Necklaces

Hooray, my creative space isn't filled with little fabric bags this week!  Okay, so I'm still slowly making the party favour bags, but since I've got most of them done, I managed to find a little time to make some jewellery as well.  And even more exciting than not having fabric bags on my craft table is the fact that some of the jewellery I made this week was for ME!!!  Yes, I actually made something for myself - amazing, ha ha ha.

As most of you know by now, I am mad, crazy in love with buttons, especially vintage ones.  I have several jars and drawer trays full of buttons and I was recently blessed to win a shabby chic button giveaway from the lovely Sally of Jambo Chameleon, which has further added to my stash.  Anyway, I was enjoying some handmade blog reading when I stumbled on some photos of funky button bib necklaces and thought, "I really want to try making one for myself!"  I have to say that this necklace was harder to put together than I thought it would be, but that could be due to the fact that I am somewhat uncoordinated and struggled to get the wire looped through the most secure spots and not scratch the buttons or stab myself.  It's not the perfect button bib I envisaged, but I'm fairly happy with my efforts.  What do you think?

The second creation sitting in my work space this week is this luxurious and elegant Pride & Prejudice necklace.  I have had so much fun making the P&P brooches and rings that I decided to expand my range of creations into necklaces and hopefully bracelets and earrings too.  As is my wont, I went for an asymmetrical necklace style and teamed the vintage text cameo with beautiful glass pearls.  The snippet of text in the cameo mentions both Mr Darcy and Elizabeth Bennet and I thought this necklace would be a charming addition to the bridal outfit of a P&P-obsessed bride!  So that's my creative space for this week.  What's sitting in your creative work space?

Monday, 5 September 2011

All New to Domum Vindemia - Teacup Candles and More

Perhaps you're not as sadly addicted to the online market, Madeit, as I am, but I found myself rather out of sorts last week when hurricane Irene caused problems with Madeit's web servers, meaning that I was unable to shop or list items for sale for almost two and a half days.  Oh the horror!  Not to worry, though, I spent those days working on new designs for Two Cheeky Monkeys and Domum Vindemia, and today I want to show off some of the new additions to the latter.

One new range of creations I've been eager to introduce to Domum Vindemia is my teacup candle range.  I have been making these for years now but was unsure about the demand for these items.  But with two days offline to work on creations and hunt for new supplies, I decided to give it a go and see how things pan out.  I personally find teacup candles to be irresistable, especially as you get a gorgeous teacup to re-use after the candle has fully burned down!

For the time being I am only making vanilla-scented candles using regular candle wax, but if the teacup candles prove to be a popular addition to Domum Vindemia, then I will seriously consider using soy wax and adding a range of other scents as well.  And as for the "more" part in the post title, head over to Domum Vindemia on Madeit and you will see that I have listed a multitude of new cupcake and dessert stands as well as several new doily scarves and buntings.

Sunday, 4 September 2011

Pride and Prejudice Giveaway Winner

I am so sorry that I forgot to post about the winner of my most recent giveaway!  The lucky winner has already been contacted and it was Lizzi of Lizzi's blog who said:

I love this brooch. Mr. Darcy *swoons*"
Congratulations Lizzi!  For everyone else who missed out, never fear.  There are still plenty of Pride and Prejudice creations, as well as last season's stock selling at 40% OFF, available in my Etsy and Madeit stores.  Thanks to everyone for joining in the P&P fun!

Friday, 2 September 2011

Things My Dad Said - A Father's Day Tribute

Once again I want to say a big thank you to everyone for your prayers, kind words and gifts over the last few months.  Even though things improve a little bit every day, I still really miss my dad and feel an ache in my heart every time I have to help mum deal with each new bit of paperwork or red tape and I won't even go into what it feels like when I hear dad's voice on mum's answering machine.

Dad with cheeky monkey #1 at my sister's wedding, four years ago

The fast approaching celebration of Father's day (which in Australia is celebrated on the first Sunday of September) has brought fresh reminders of my grief.  So I decided to act on a nebulous thought I've had for some time to record some of the more embarrassing, cringe-worthy or bizarre things my dad uttered during the thirty-four years that I knew him.  I'm sure most, if not all, of you will be able to relate to the embarrassment a child can feel at their dad's comments.

Dad with cheeky monkey #2 when she was born four years ago

To my beloved husband and all the other fathers out there who love to dish out the "dad comments" to their kids, I wish you a happy Father's day for Sunday.  And to those of you who, like me, will be mourning a little this Sunday, I send my love and pray that your heart would continue to heal too.

Dad with me, the baby he referred to as a "wizened monkey"!

Things my dad said...
1. Okay, this one is possibly the most embarrassing of them all.  I hit puberty relatively early and by the time I was ten it was fairly obvious that I needed to start wearing a bra.  I was adamantly against such action so, in a desperate attempt to make me see some sense, my dad said to me, "You know those African women we see on the documentaries with saggy, hanging breasts?  Well, that's what you get when you don't wear a bra!"

2. My dad was the unfortunate parent who got the job of teaching me how to drive.  Teaching a directionally- and spatially-challenged teen to drive was obviously frustrating, especially when I was learning such difficult techniques as 3 point turns, gear changes and parallel parking, because it was at these moments that my dad would stress, "FEEL the car, FEEL how it moves."  I couldn't get him to understand that all I felt at those times was a fear that I would crash the car and frustration at his apparent lack of helpfulness...

3. As long as I can remember, dad has had a running joke about how the Jews are descended from the Chinese (due to the various cultural similarities displayed by these two races).  It was very embarrassing when he mentioned his theories in front of people who weren't in on the joke and we were treated to confused and "is he mentally unstable?" looks.

4. Dad didn't just limit his embarrassing comments to the spoken word, he put them down in writing too!  He was forever writing letters to the editors of newspapers or magazines as well as writing notes to our school teachers addressing various issues.  One such note he wrote to my PE (physical education) teacher when I was sixteen read, "Please excuse Deborah from swimming lessons today as she is indisposed."  My teacher just shook her head and said, "Your dad and the notes he writes! I get these for your sister too!!!"
Cringe...I guess it was better than having him write, "Please excuse Deborah from swimming today as she is experiencing monthly womanly troubles and the last thing she feels like doing while undergoing such hormonal fluctuations is splash around in a pool and feel like she's drowning for an hour."  Although that note would have been more accurate!

5. At my 21st birthday party, during his speech, my dad told everyone that my Chinese name (which I use as my middle name) meant "summer leaves floating on a peaceful pond" and everyone laughed, thinking he was soooo witty and hilarious.  Not!  What he didn't explain was that my Chinese name is supposed to mean "summer peace/peacefulness", but my maternal grandmother had insisted that it be written in the feminine form which actually changed the meaning to something along the lines of "summer duckweed", ack.  Actually, I just wish he hadn't mentioned it at all.  Middle names are not something we willingly talk about in public, right?!

So that's just a summary of some of the highly embarrassing things my dad said when I was growing up.  Thanks for sticking with me on this rather lengthy, and self-indulgent, post and feel free to share the crazy and embarrassing things your dad has said to you!