Thursday, February 24, 2011

It's hard to write about this.

As it was. Christchurch city view from Crowne Plaza 2006

I have been so distracted these past few days glued to the the tv and internet news and checking Facebook and my email to see what is happening in Christchurch and trying to find out how all my peeps are.

I was suppose to be there, but decided about a month ago that being 8mths pregnant the thought of airports and strange beds was not something I wanted to deal with right now. So Sam went with just Big M to his sisters wedding last week. They were due home on Tuesday evening.

They were not in a good place when the quake happened, but are fine and moving round from place to place while they wait to be able to fly home again. I say "home" but Christchurch is our other home. It's where we moved from 2 & half years ago, and my husband was born there and lived there all his life. It is where we met, married and had our first child.

I missed the September 4th earthquake by a few days.
About a week before it happened whilst I was there, I had taken myself into the city centre for lunch at my favourite noodle place. I sat there slurping my soup looking out the window at all the buildings surrounding me and thought "what a beautiful city this is, I am so lucky to have such a nice city to come back to anytime".
 You see I like Melbourne, but I think about Canterbury (region Christchurch is in) most days. It really is a beautiful place and I miss it.

And now the lovely old buildings that had survived last time are gone. But its the people that I am just so sad about.

The people of Christchurch.

They have had half a year of continuing after shocks. They have been dealing with their kids too scared to sleep  because of the 'shaky shaky'. They have been waiting to see if their houses were ready to be rebuilt. Waiting for insurance. But half a year had passed and they were beginning to relax, thinking from what the experts said, that if a sizable aftershock hadn't happened by now, then it was unlikely it would.

But what do they do now? How long will aftershocks continue? Each one since Tuesday has been rattling peoples nerves. Will there be another big one? So many people have lost homes and jobs, and so devastatingly, loved ones.

What does that city do now?

Its been a long 3 days for me and I'm not even there. Cantabrians now have weeks, months and years ahead of making sense of where to from here?

Please consider donating  cash via

Also, blogger Leonie of Kiwi at Heart has set up a Softies for Children of Christchurch appeal. You can find out more HERE.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Making Baby Shoes?

A couple of weeks ago I was approached by someone who wanted a small wholesale order of baby shoes from me. I already know how much time these take for me make and how much materials cost, but I worked it all out again just to be sure and offered her my best price. I also added in some other things for her to consider if she were to buy my shoes and included that I would need to start soon and would have it all done within less than a month because I am expecting our 3rd bub at the end of the school term.
Even though I had short but friendly emails with her prior, after I sent her a larger email with costs etc, I have not heard back from her at all.


I'm O.K with her choosing not to use my shoes in her store. It is her choice. She was probably hoping for something cheaper, and probably not aware that the design being lined and seamless uses more materials and details on them make them a bit more on the fiddly side compared to some other shoes I have made.
I just think it's very bad form to not send a short reply and say she is no longer interested.

It's a tricky one for people making things by hand. You don't tend to make much money on hand crafting things. I think most people simply do it for the enjoyment, compulsion  and with things like sewing, in many cases it's the practicality of being able to work on something at home whilst you have little ones around or evenings you aren't doing much else.
When you put in the time you spend on sourcing materials, developing ideas, electricity (yes - sewing machines, lighting, irons etc all cost money to use), photography, write ups (if your selling online), packing and setting up (if you sell at markets), commissions (fees for selling online, having a market stall or a stores cut) and lots of other little bits and pieces your not left with much of a profit. (Sometimes I look at what people sell some things for and can't figure out how they can be even covering their costs).
But you get a  kick when someone else likes something you have made and is willing to buy it. Something you have created is valued. And someone else enjoys having something thats not mass produced (which is part of what I enjoy about making things).

Anyway, I had a friend who makes and sells to stores tell me that she thought my quote was low and the time it would take was not worth it at this stage of pregnancy. S also said the same thing to me the previous day (but I'm not always sure I should listen to him ;) ). But  I'm pleased they both said those things to me because within a day after sending the quote I realized I could do the job and it would have been nice to make up some lovely shoes (I had even eyed up some beautiful Kaffe Fassett fabric that I was looking forward to ordering) but it is best for me not to take something like that on right now. I am nesty nesty nesty and need to take these next weeks to organize my house and get some R&R.

Monday, February 14, 2011

Chalk Outline Portraits

Can you guess which one is me?

Yes, the oddly shaped pink one.

Despite the width, this is the most roundy ball shaped bump I have had.

Friday, February 11, 2011

Trying to minimize Corporate 80's.

This house is not really our style, but we had to get something and it fitted practically for what we knew we needed for the next few years.

We really wanted to put a Skylight in the entrance way but there are so many other things we need to be spending money on at the moment so I went for a new paint job instead. It's the same colour as the surrounding walls ( that you can't see in the photos).

 A bit of a mission. It took 2 coats of base and 3 of top coat. And being in the later stage of pregnancy and everything taking me much longer than usual, I spent all week doing this! Usually I would do a paint job this size in a day, maybe 2.

I don't think the centre photo shows it as effective as it looks, and it's a dark rainy day so I had to use the flash to get a photo and have the light on! It's a cheap fix up job but it is an improvement.
Definitely not the same overwhelming feeling of being in an Amway dealers house or on the Love Boat as it had been.

Satisfies my bucolic - hippy tendencies anyway:)

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

What's new Pussycat? Made It Eye ♥'s.

Ooooh I love love love this skirt! I dont have a spare bit of cash right now to buy it - but wish I did. What fantastic fabric! 1970's screenprinted  cotton. I wonder where she found it?

                 What's new Pussycat? A-Line Wrap Skirt - by DoraRuby on madeit

                              I also LOVE this one by the same seller DoraRuby .

La La Hi Prism: Plasticine Inspiration

Nabbed this video of Grizzly Bear off La La Hi Prism blog after seeing it today. I feel my attitude towards the stuff (plasticine) is improved after seeing this done with it. Do those white big foot wookie men creature things remind anyone else of  Old Gregg (only sweeter)?

I really like the dripping monster skulls towards the end. 

Saturday, February 5, 2011

It's hard and it's rubbish.

I have begun to get attached to my new (Brother NS50) machine. I have not had a lot of time to use it, but enough to get familiar with how its runs and what it can do. I'm liking it.

Sadly when I rang the little local repair shop (sewing machine hospital) asking if he would like my Janome for parts or anything really he might find it useful for he said no, he only uses new parts. He had no suggestions of what I can do with it other than put it out in the wheely bin to go off to that magical place where things disappear when we don't want them anymore...ohh, except we all know they don't really disappear and it bothers me to think of 1. my beloveds gift all those years ago ending at a place like that  and 2. I just hate waste. I hate things being unusable and non degradable. I have enough guilt thinking about all the stuff I use that ends up in landfill already.

Maybe its the pregnancy hormones but the thought of a precious gift sitting in a pile of shit for hundreds... ?thousands? of years makes me sad.