Book covers

22 08 2013

More book covers – picked based on visual appeal, not content unless otherwise stated. Please don’t hold me responsible for a terrible reading experience 🙂

Book covers 13

* Octopus Alone by Divya Srinivasan

* Reclaiming Style by Maria Speake – Especially relevant in post-quake Christchurch.

* The Penguin Macquarie dictionary of Australian politics by Richard Tardif

* Urban Farms by Sarah Rich – Some great ideas for those aiming for self sufficiency in the city.

* The Palace of Curiosities by Rosie Garland

* The Time Team Dig Book by Tim Taylor – R.I.P Mick Aston, the world is a far less interesting place without you.

* Wolves in the Land of Salmon by David Moskowitz

* The Art of Epic by Tara Bennett

* Our Songbirds by Matt Sewell

* Flower by Andrew Zuckerman

* A perfectly kept house is the sign of a misspent life by Mary Randolph Carter – I like this book, it makes me feel better about the state of my house.

* Illustrated Country Year by Celia Lewis


Booky books

11 10 2012

Left to right, top to bottom:

* Maude: the Not-so-noticeable Shrimpton by Lauren Child

* How to be Danish by Patrick Kingsley

* The Fox’s Tale: The First Christmas by Nick Butterworth

* The Paris Wife by Paula McLain

* The Woodland House by Ben Law

If you are thinking of building your own house or pursuing a self sufficient lifestyle then Ben’s journey is an utterly inspiring one. Beautiful photographs and useful tips for all.

* One Big Rain: Poems for Rainy Days compiled by Rita Gray

* Do your ears hang low? sung by the Topp Twins

* The Rapture of the Nerds by Cory Doctorow and Charles Stross

I have recently finished reading this book and, though mind watering, it is brilliantly written. If you enjoy reading William Gibson, Neal Stephenson or Bruce Sterling then will enjoy this novel too.

* Knit your own Zombie by Fiona Goble

Cute patterns for toy zombies that snap apart and reassemble in multiple ways. A kookie Christmas present perhaps?

Colour me wonderful…

4 02 2011

I not really a fan of green as a colour… but some of these little finds are starting to make me reconsider that opinion. Possibly it’s because I like green as a concept, or it’s because it makes some of my favorite colours pop.

* Swarovski couch by Squint

* Double Dip quilt by Thimble Blossoms

* Tyranid Harridan by Forge World

* Forgotten Garden quilt by Jane Sassarman

* Village Terrarium by Botany Factory

* Rainy Days Monday by Moda Fabrics @ Fat Quarter Shop

* Extra Life Sheets by Aerie

* Poang chair cover by J Caroline Creative

* Brain Freeze yarn by Needle Food

* Kitty Castle by Sari via Modern cat DIY Projects

* Zala, hand dyed wool by Anjellah

* Bloom @ Fabric Online

* Heels from Irregular Choice

* Striped quilt from somewhere I have forgotten (sorry)

* Eggloo Terrariums by Botany Factory

* Pistachio Macaroon from J’aime les Macaroons

* Cherry Drop earrings by Cheekpinchy

How not to… Recycle old bras

14 01 2011

1) Rat hammock

I have made a rat hammock out of a bra years ago but unfortunately have no photos to show you. I got a largish sized purple satin bra, removed the underwires & the back straps leaving the shoulder straps attached. Then I sewed the cups together, attached the loose ends of the shoulder straps to the edge of the cups and hung it in the rat cage by the shoulder straps using clothes pegs. My rats loved it and would curl up and rock themselves to sleep 🙂

2) Double barrel sling-shot

Tie back straps to chair legs or conveniently placed trees, load with oranges, pull back, aim and release.

3) Handbags

Get a pretty lacy bra, remove the back straps & underwires. Sew cups together adding a zip if you wish. Use the shoulder straps as a handle or make a new one with a length of ribbon. Add lace, beads, sequins etc to make it sparkle.

4) Earmuffs/hands free cellphone device

There are a few ways that are more elegant to achieve this, but this girl seems to have opted for the quickest method: take bra off, put bra back on over your head fastening it under your chin. Insert cellphone.

5) Gas mask/face mask

Find a bra large enough that one cup will cover your chin and nose. Remove back straps, second cup, underwire and shoulder straps. Reattach shoulder straps to either side to create loops that fir over your ears or around the back of your neck, depending on your preference.

6) Flower pot

Find a coat hanger which is strong enough to hold the weight of a flowerpot. Hang bra on coat hanger as if you were going to put in your wardrobe, permanently attach with a hot-glue gun. Sew across the bottom edge attaching the backstrap to the cups. You may like to add some extra material across the back so it can hold more potting mix. Fill with a good quality potting mix and add plants.

7) Gerbil parachute

8 ) Orange carrier

9) Fake clam shell for an aquarium

10) Knee pads

11) Wearable art

Take your old bra and give it a new lease on life by making it into a piece of art. The Montana World of Wearable Art has a whole section dedicated to “Bizarre Bras”.

12) Baby bonnet

13) Lavender deodorizer for wardrobes

Same process as for handbags except that after stuffing it with dried lavender, stitch across the top to seal it. Hang in the wardrobe between your clothes.

14 ) Mardi Grais headgear

Let your imagination run wild: feathers, beads, sequins – whatever you want

15) Fence decoration

As per shoe fences: Attach bra to wire fence, wait for others to add theirs.

16) Steam-punk wrist band/cuff

Using all those backstraps you have been chopping off your previous projects, attach the clasps at their smallest setting. Wrap around your wrist to figure out wear to trim it. Sew the raw ends together and decorate with extra bits and pieces like beads and an old broach.

17) Use to censor nude statues

Dress statue as if they were a person. Walk away quickly before anyone sees you.

18) Wall art/sculpture

No explanation needed, just create.

19) Water filter

20) Tea strainer

21) Cat helmet

Ok, not really modified in any way, just too cute to leave out 🙂

No-Dig Gardening

27 09 2010

Here we have the first “How not to do it” post. I say that because I usually get enthusiastic about something then lose patience / energy / motivation about half way through. This is especially true when it comes to vacuuming or weeding. So, with that in mind, I went in search of a way to grow vegies with less weeding. What I found was the No-Dig garden, which sounds like just what I was looking for. Here’s how to make your own:

First step is to create a raised garden bed. You do not need to dig over your lawn (yay!) simply mark out the space with bricks, buy a kit-set garden, or do what I did – collect recycled weather boards, stakes and timber off-cuts from the villa renovation down the road, invite a friend with carpentry skills over, give friend a beer and point in the direction of collected materials then step out of the way.

On the left is his garden, on the right is mine – spot the difference…

So the left hand one is going to be my lettuce and salad bed. The right is going to be a “3 Sisters” garden and potato stacks. I will cover the 3 Sisters in a later blog but in the meantime you can find further reading here.

Now that you have your garden space sorted you can move onto the next bit – filling it up. You will need a few items first that you can buy from a garden shop or collect from friends. You will need:

* Newspaper

* Good compost

* Lucerne hay

* Pea Straw

* Fertilizer – commercial mix or manure

The basic idea is that you layer up these items in such a way as to discourage weeds while providing an optimum growing environment for your vegetables.

Step 1 – Newspaper. Spread out sheets of newspaper evenly over the dirt/lawn at the bottom of your garden space to a depth of approx 2 cm. If you are creating your garden directly onto your lawn it is a good idea to mow it quite short first. Water well to soften the paper.

Step 2 – Lucerne Hay. You can get lucerne hay at any horse feed store and most larger pet shops. It will be cheaper at the feed store. Shake out segments of hay and spread evenly over the newspaper to an approximate depth of 10cm.

Step 3 – Fertilizer. I used pony poo that had been well aged – at least 4 months. You can use sheep, cow or chicken poo or a commercial product. Just use less over the commercial type. Again, spread evenly to a depth of approx 15-20cm.

Step 4 – Straw. Pea straw is probably the easiest to come by, but I had lucerne straw so that’s what I used. Spread to a depth of 10cm approx.

Step 5 – Fertilizer. As for step 3. I also added a light sprinkling of soluble general purpose fertilizer on top.

Step 6 – Compost. I had left my compost for too long so it resembles topsoil more than mulch. Either way it doesn’t matter, just make sure it is free of weeds and other objects. I found a Mr PotatoHead in my compost. Haven’t decided if I will return it to the neighbor kids yet 🙂

Step 7 – Water. With your hose set to mist, water well to make sure all the layers are damp. It is a good idea to let your garden settle for at least a couple of days before planting your seedlings or the fertilizer may burn the roots. Don’t sow seeds straight into the garden as it is designed to prevent this therefore keeping down your weeds.

Green goodness

21 06 2010

Mmmm, green.

Another photo by the same photographer – I really wish I knew who. Again, loving the colours and the textures. Look at the details in his eye – simply beautiful 🙂

Colour me wonderful

31 05 2010

This has been around for a while but it is still worth mentioning. Etsy has a colour picker page through which you can search listings based on colour. This is a simple yet effective bit of Flash Animation that stands the test of time and years after its initial release is still more impressive than most flash content.

For me, it is a useful tool for matching ideas and colours to my orange lounge 🙂 I am thinking green couch cushions…