spring sprung


jacarandas in the evening light.


spiral shaped vine.


i love her fascination.


a big chat under the playground.


big spin.


big bubble bath.


sweet sleep.


big chalkboard!


Baby Bum

here i must tribute Rae and Anna (we're on a first name basis now, at least in my one-sided dialogue with these talented ladies). Rae for her inspired development of pants that fit over cloth nappied bums, and Anna because i adapted her quick change trouser pattern in a sort of 'RaeAnna' hybrid pant of my own for little Ruben's little bum. well, big cloth nappy butt as the case may be. I'm planning on pumping out a few more pairs of these puppies before the week is out. maybe some big butt baby shorts too for the queensland summer.

oh wow these photos are looking a bit patch-work heavy. the bib, play mat and patterned cuffs on the pant legs are all a bit too much for me, when seen all in one place like this. and this was not a planned photo shoot, it just so happened that all 3 elements were together by happy accident.

note to self, take it easy on the patchwork. it is a slippery slope my dear. kinda like having too many cats.



little jumper with simple lacework for bea. finally got around to fixing up the neck, which became hugely massive after blocking.

i used white baby merino and dyed it with kool-aid after it was knit up.

the neck ended up so massive after dying/blocking that it fit me, and i am nowhere near the size of a 4 year old. lessons in swatching needed perhaps?

my new wallet. it has its problems, but i was happy overall with how it turned out. it is a little floppy (needed stiffer interfacing i suppose).


homemade ketchup recipe


last week we ran out of ketchup. i've known for ages that making ketchup is super easy, but i didn't realize just how easy until i did it the other day.

so here is the thing. what things are 'pointless' to make by yourself? i mean, why make such standard items as crackers and toothpaste? well, because you can. and it is one less thing you are buying from a conglomerate grocery chain and food corporation. plus with items that come packaged in fancy squeeze bottles such as ketchup, you are cutting back on packaging. i saved a couple of ketchup squeeze bottles to store our homemade stuff in. consider also that raw materials are more economical to transport, so instead of buying a value added product that has had the raw materials transported to a factory, produced, and then transported elsewhere to sell, you are making something directly from raw materials, thereby cutting out the middle man.

anyway, the point is that ketchup is super easy to make. if you have ever made pasta sauce then why not make ketchup?

it's all about the ratio of sour and sweet.

i used 2 parts tomato, 1 part vinegar and 1/2 part sugar.
(for example, 2 cups of tomato, 1 cup vinegar and 1/2 cup sugar)

this will vary depending on your tomatoes.

as extras, i added some salt and some powdered mustard, then let it cook down on low heat for about 45 minutes before whizzing it with a hand blender. then let it cook down a bit more until it reached a viscosity similar to bottled ketchup. i took a last taste test and added a bit extra vinegar and sugar then cooked it a bit longer

let it cool and then pour into washed and sterilized recycled ketchup squeeze bottles.

some things just don't taste the same without it.


pinch me

i've been seriously distracted from most aspects of life right now due to an impending trip to tokyo! i am super excited. it was a last minute sort of deal, brett is going to a conference with work and we found a cheap flight for me and the kiddos. i am busily trying to begin to fathom tokyo before we go in two weeks.

small image below sort of describes my excitement. FABRIC TOWN!!! 80 fabric stores all located within a 7 block radius for my convenience. i am sort of freaked out. it is going to be insanity and it is going to be insanely hard to contain myself in this neighbourhood. luckily none of them take credit cards apparently i will have to set a cash budget and stick to it.



4 dresses and a circle skirt

i've made headway into making clothing for myself that fits and that i actually wear. i feel like a real sewist, because i have actually fitted these clothes to my body, adjusted darts, added darts, stay-stitched armholes, taken in bits and all that fitting clothes involves. these four dresses are the products of about hmm, 4 months of sewing. the two darker dresses were made a couple months ago and the two lighter ones just last week.


i love love loved sewing with anna maria horner's cotton voile (pale green with little stags jumping about the cottages). i am highly recommending voile to myself next time i am anywhere near it. and her little folks range really did it for me. in fact, i have just barely halted myself from swathing my wardrobe in things made out of the little folks/good folks stuff.


i also had fun taking photos of the dresses today. our place is really dark and i generally struggle to get a clear, bright shot of anything at all. therefore i decided tinkering with them on photoshop the only way to make it all look half decent. next time we are finding a new place to live i want it to be bright bright bright.

well. anyway, i am excited about spring sewing at the moment. light dresses are the perfect thing in queensland's summer so there will be a few more where those came from i think. i've had some other successes lately as well, namely making dana's circle skirt and i've had a wee dabble into swimwear which has gone way better than i ever imagined it would.

also i must add that i have a little pet. it is making me very excited about bread. my pet is wild yeast and i am building its strength for making some sourdough. i am hoping by the weekend i will have made my maiden loaf. anyway, that is just a little tidbit of extra fun around here.


the geometry of pasta

The Geometry of Pasta from Pan Marketing on Vimeo.

the perfect shape+the perfect sauce=the geometry of pasta.

i am coveting this book.