Friday, 30 January 2015

flea friday: a towel and a top

Let's squeeze in a thrifty post before January finally comes to an end - January always goes on forever, doesn't it?

It's all rainy and grey again, and shivering cold... But hey, look at this bright old towel I found down at our local Red Cross store. I don't normally buy hygiene products second hand but got to love this 60s or 70s beach towel! Can't wait to set it down on the sand and sit around on it by the sea in the summer (which is four long months away still...boohoo).

The second patterned find is almost as cheery in black because it has cute little smiling cars on it. And it's made in terry towelling fabric too, just like the beach towel. It's by Tutta, and it's my second such find for baby - do you recall the chicken romper?

I'm adding these finds into the line-up inspired by this month's Make, Thrift & Tell theme: Pattern.

I'm also sharing my finds via my favourite thrifty link-ups:
Thrifter Share
Vintage Bliss Tuesdays

Wednesday, 28 January 2015

this little dinosaur...

This little dino has been an unfinished project for over a year. (He is also the newest member of a line of small felt animal characters that I started making years ago, just for fun, but I'll tell you about that more another time.)

This month's blog theme of 'Pattern' was the perfect motivation for me to pick up this little guy and finally draft the completing pattern piece for his feet.

Because I make up the structure of these creatures in felt as I sew, it doesn't always work out right straight away. With Mr Dino, I ran into a bit of a puzzle near the finishing line about the foot bit. He got put away in the sewing cupboard for further consideration, and then forgotten.

Now remembered, I figured out his feet and stitched him finished too, with bigger arms and blue eyes. He is finally able to join a small felt moose (the other creatures were gifted to a friend's kids) to wait for this little boy sleeping here in his bouncer to grow a bit more and play with them when he's older.

This is my 'make' project inspired by this month's Make, Thrift & Tell theme - Pattern.

Tuesday, 27 January 2015

our baby-shaped universe

Our universe has been totally reshaped by this little guy in the last 4 and a half months. It's a huge change, having a tiny tyrant living with us. I say tyrant jokingly of course but it's also very true - he is the boss, and he makes us work around the clock.

He himself is changing all the time as he is growing and developing. There is a new thing he does pretty much every second or third day, and he looks slightly different every week... I swear sometimes he visibly grows a centimeter overnight. The best thing is that amidst of all these fast changes we are greeted by the same sweet smile each morning, without which I cannot imagine our lives now.

It's a joy to see him thrive and discover the world he landed in bit by bit, a new thing each day. He is very vocal about his wants and needs. He sings and chats a lot too, in his own little baby way of course.

He seems to like my songs and my singing as well, which somehow miraculously flow out of me in key - who knew I even had a singing voice? Old nursery rhymes and songs I used to hear as a kid emerge out of the recesses of my memory. It surprises me every time how fluently I recall lyrics and melodies I never thought I knew.

He is transfixed by music, and things that make a noise - the crinkly plastic in fabric books, clicking fingers, the instruments daddy has around the home, his pull-down musical toys. We tried the ripping of paper trick on him, he laughed a bit at it but not as much as this little girl.

He started playing on his tummy only recently so now he has a new angle on his collection of rattles. By the way, the crinkly fabric star in the second picture is made by the clever Steph of Mini Matriarchin.

Monday, 19 January 2015

snow white

A fresh, thick blanket of white, crunchy snow and temperatures around the -10C mark is my favourite type of winter weather. When not enjoying it from the warmth of our indoors, I like wrapping up warm in my favourite winter woollens and go breathe the crisp air outside. The way snow makes the otherwise bleak, dingy landscape brighter and muffles the city noise is something I think everybody misses when it all melts away.

A week ago or so we've had heaps of it, and I went for a couple of longish walks pushing the pram around, mainly on efficiently cleared and gritted pavements but then sometimes through unspoilt patches of thick snow. Call me mad but it was a lot of fun. The little man in the pram slept soundly, bundled in his many layers, which was also nice. A few days later, seeing a snowman in the slowly melting park made me look forward to next year when our little pram-dweller will be able to enjoy a snowy winter more.

Friday, 9 January 2015

flea friday: dishy patterns

Not so long ago I found an enamel bowl with a loooovely sprayed-on pattern (remember?) to join my much plainer vintage-enamel-on-a-shoestring collection. There's a new, similar addition to report!

A smaller enamel bowl, with delicious colours in my opinion, and a funny pattern - a band of lace in minty green topped by autumn leaves in orangy tomato reds. It's such an odd combo yet somehow quite charming in a quirky way.

It's made by Bumper Harvest, just like the other one.

Nice vintage Pyrex in decent condition and with a new-to-me pattern is always a highlight of any thrifty outing - I'm sure I've already said that before somewhere around here. The vintage Pyrex gods were gracious again and I bagged this perfect one. My go-to site on Pyrex lists this as a mystery pattern from '74.

These patterned finds are inspired by January's theme in my Make, Thrift & Tell challenge. (There're others who have been inspired too, come and see by clicking the link!)

I'm sharing my finds via

Friday, 2 January 2015

Pattern in January | Make, Thrift & Tell

So here we are - the first installment of this new link-up here on Idle Needle.

Join in with anything that is or relates to PATTERN and made or thrifted by you. In my mind's eye I see a colourful snake of links building below as the usually grey and dull first month of the year progresses. I'm really curious to see what the theme will inspire. I'll be back too with my contributions a bit later.

Let's get thrifting, crafting and also, tell your friends to come and party!

Thursday, 1 January 2015

Make, Thrift & Tell - the challenge for 2015

First and foremost: Happy Happy New Year! Hope all of you have had a great time during the holidays!

I'd like to start this year on here not with resolutions, lists or promises, but with launching a monthly challenge that kind of replaces all of those.

The idea is to have a guiding theme for the thrifty, crafty, blog-writey soul who has only a little free time each month (like me who's parenting a young baby). The title says it all: make something or thrift something and write about it, relating to the themes set for each month. Of course it's fine to make AND thrift something if you've got the time.

'Making' can be any making with hands, in-progress or complete, as long as it's made by you. Thrifting is just that; think flea markets, charity shops, one's junk is someone else's treasure and the thrill of secondhand finds. Write as shortly or lengthily about your crafted or thrifted articles as you wish.

The themes are meant to be random enough to set a good challenge, and flexible enough to give a wide berth for associations. They are not following the seasonal celebrations on purpose but there's no reason why they couldn't be tied in with the month's marked festivities if desired. It's my first stab at setting this kind of challenge. I hope it will be a good one - sparking thought, inspiration and  interesting posts each month. We'll see!

The link-up will be posted once a month on the 1st and will run until the end of the month so you can link up as inspiration and luck strikes. January's linkie will start tomorrow as an exception.

In addition to the main link-up, a separate post with highlights from the previous month may be compiled, entries allowing. For this highlights post I may borrow the entrants' images which will be back-linked and notified to the persons and blogs concerned. Please note that by taking part in the link-up you automatically give me permission to do that.

Whew, so that's the big idea! I'm slightly nervous about whether the linkie will work or not to inspire, but all that will be revealed further down the line. For now, I hope that it sounds good to you!

See you tomorrow with the first month's theme - Pattern!

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