Sunday, March 30, 2008

shop update

4 brooches and 2 monsters are now in the shop:

shop update

just a quick note for those of you waiting, the shop update will happen tonight at around 8 o'clock. The sun is shining here (for a change) so i'm off out to make the most of it while it lasts!

Saturday, March 29, 2008

home alone

Not the film with McCauley Culkin, but me, I am home alone with only my snoozing cats for company. Mr Monda is soaking up the sun (and plenty of beer at a guess) in Malaga on a stag do with his friends (not his stag do incidentally!). He called me to tell me that it's 27 degrees out there and really sunny. Doesn't really compare with our 10 degree rainy day does it. Still at least I don't have to feel guilty about spending time on the computer and sewing machine.
I can never really be bothered to cook for myself if I'm on my own though - so I end up eating easy food for one (like scrambled eggs). I love cooking but it doesn't really seem worth it for just one person.

I'm going to do a shop update tomorrow - with brooches and a new monster or two (depends how much I get done today).
This is one of my latest brooches - made using a pink felted jumper - I tried a closeup pic so you can see just how lovely this felted jumper is:
I also received the wool knitted felt which I ordered from Torbay Textiles:
It varies in thickness and feltyness and is quite nice. The only thing I would say this felt is that it is not sold in very big pieces which is a shame (9x15cm).
This is not so much of a problem though because I'm kind of hooked on felting old woolen jumpers now - I get excited when the washing machine has finished and i can check out what the jumper has become! Sad I know.

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

busy busy busy

I'm busy working on a few things at the moment.

This brightly coloured fabric collage/embroidery:I have a bird fixation at the moment.

More brooches - I've now used part of one of my fulled (fancy word for felting knitted wool) jumpers on the latest brooch I've made (sorry no pics yet, not enough natural light). This might be my new favourite material to work with, so soft, thick, easy to stitch, and it looks really good too.

Also been working on my secret project/idea which I will reveal next week.

Monday, March 24, 2008

a spring clean

I decided today that I needed to spring clean my wardrobe. 3 big bags (Yes 3!) are ready to be taken to the charity shop. The best thing about doing this job is that I found 5 old wool jumpers which I have washed on a very hot wash and have felted them up. They are destined to become monsters, or brooches or whatever pops into my head next I guess.

I finished up another brooch yesterday:I've got a couple more on the go and when they're done I'll pop them all into my shop (probably some time later this week).

This is how my Jamie Oliver pudding turned out. It was a resounding success here in the Monda household:I varied my recipe slightly. I bought taste the difference custard from Sainsbury's. This really is the best type to use as it has cream in it. I added a bit of vanilla extract.
Then cut open 4 hot cross buns and spread with marmalade (we had a homemade orange and cardamom which was perfect for the job).
Put buns in oven proof dish (marmalade side up) and then covered the whole thing with custard. I left this to stand for about 2 hours (which I think was they key as it soaked right into the hot cross buns). Finally in a 180 degree oven for 25-30 mins.

It was truly tasty, the custard thickens up (almost like an egg custard tart) and infuses with all the spices from the hot cross buns. The best things is - we still have half left over for tonight :o)

Sunday, March 23, 2008

not a hot cross bunny in sight

I took part in Lucy Lockets bunny swap recently. My bunny was posted off on Monday this week and it has arrived with its recipient Sara, so I'm safe to post a pic of it now. Sadly I didn't have great light when I took the pic - hopefully Sara can take a good pic and send it on to me.

So here she is, front and back. She is made from an old felted wool blanket and some floral cotton/linen mix fabric:
and yesterday, the only postal day over this weekend, I got my swap bunny from Sara, what a cutie:I'm really loving spots and dots at the moment and sara also sent me a little fabric stash (all dotty) too, and a brooch, and some chocolate bunnies, and a little piece of handmade soap - which looked like fudge, but I'm glad i didn't eat it - it was soap wasn't it Sara?

Today, I'm going to do lots of cooking. I'm also going to try Jamie Olivers hot cross bun pudding, which is basically like a lazy bread and butter pudding recipe.
Cut hot cross buns and fill with marmalade. Put in an oven dish and pour on custard. Slam it in the oven for a while. Yum!

Friday, March 21, 2008

a very Good Friday indeed

Apart from being easter friday or 'good friday' as we all know it, it think it's an especially good friday because:

a) I'm not at work. I have so far done nothing of note - I've slept in, I've read a book in my pyjamas, got showered and dressed at lunch time, pootled about watching a bit of television and cutting up a pair of red spotty cotton pyjama bottoms which I bought from matalan for £2.50 - you get a lot of fabric for just £2.50! and
b) earlier on this week I was the lucky winner of these top notch stacking bunnies:They were made by the fabulous Moogsmum and I won them in her 155th post give away! I think I won them because I wanted them sooo much - that random number generator moogsmum used to select the winner just felt my vibes.

Moogsmum also kindly sent me more lovely goodies too, a great cotton shopping bag which rolls up (so basically you can stuff it into another bigger bag - I like this idea, especially as the world has now cottoned on - no pun intended, to the fact the we must stop using all these plastic bags), some more buttons to add to my stash - and a lavender bag which made the whole package smell lovely.
So all in all, a pretty 'Good Friday' I think.

Thanks to everyone for your suggestions on where to get the thick felt I'm looking for. I have a couple of sources to try so I'll do a bit of internet shopping and report back to you on the quality of this when it all arrives.

Thursday, March 20, 2008

thick wool felt, where art thou?

I have been looking for a UK supplier of thick wool felt - 3mm thick felt is what I'm after.
Google has usually been my friend in such times of need, but it has failed me on this occasion.
Has anyone bought thick wool felt from a UK supplier? Failing this, does anyone know of a good supplier outside of the UK where I can get thick wool felt?

You might be wondering why I need such a thing - well this is one of the reasons:I bought a small supply of thick felt from ebay a little while back and I've just about run out of it now.
I have also tried layering thinner felt but I prefer this design when I use thicker felt - this green brooch has 3 layers of thinner felt:Any suggestions as to where to buy would be very gratefully received.

I know I sometimes bemoan my day job because it restricts my time for making, but it does obviously have it's perks too. Today was definitely one of those days, as it is the day when I receive my annual bonus, and very nice it was too! I haven't spent it yet, but I do have my eyes on a few things that I would love to buy - one of them being a new bernina sewing machine. Mr Monda has asked me if I think I really need a 4th sewing machine - well, like bags and shoes, you can never have enough sewing machines right? What a silly question.

I'm now beginning a 4 day break from work and I have absolutely no plans to do anything except of course devoting a bit of time to making.

Also I just wanted to say a 'hello' and 'welcome' to the people who have recently found my blog or who have de-lurked and left me lovely comments. Lovely comments (and even a few constructive ones) are always welcome.

Monday, March 17, 2008


It's time for a spring clean. Pop over to my esty shop - I'm having a monster sale!

You can find monsters for £3.99 ($8) and £4.99 ($10)
And all easter cards are half price, so now you get 2 cards for just £1.49 ($3)

Edit - click on the sale banner - it goes straight to my shop - how fancy is that!

Sunday, March 16, 2008

I got ecojot!

Look at these lovely specimens:I've finally managed to get my hands on some of Carolyn Gavin's lovely ecojot notebooks which I have been coveting for quite some time. Until just a few weeks ago these were not available in the UK, but now you can get them from the marvelous paperchase - I got these from the big store on Tottenham Court Road in London (nearest tube is Goodge Street).

Close up - here are both designs I picked, although there were more designs to be hadOne of these is a sketch book, and the other a note pad, and they're both made with 100% recycled paper. If you have 5 mins you should check out her website - it's lovely and has nice soothing music on it too - perfect for a Sunday afternoon.

Anyway, I can't hang around chatting here - I have a bunny in progress that must be finished today.

Thursday, March 13, 2008

a herd, some awards and a rant.

hmm, so I didn't manage to keep to my schedule and do all the things I had planned in my last post. I sometimes forget the need for a bit of R&R. Having a full time job and being creative in your own time is a bit tiring at times - being able to switch off is difficult too - especially when you workspace is your dining table in the corner of your living room. I keep seeing pics of peoples work spaces and work rooms and I have space envy!

Question - What is the collective term for a group of rabbits?
Mr Monda suggested it's a 'squad'. I like 'herd', it has a certain ring to it doesn't it? 'ooh, look at that herd of rabbits' no?
Well here is my herd - and they'll be hopping into my etsy shop later:
Also this week I was twice awarded a 'you make my day' award. Firstly from the lovely ladies at Buttonberry, and then from Kitty. It's so nice to think that I actually make someone's day.
I might now unmake a few peoples day however because I am officially copping out of passing it on to 20 people for 2 reasons really - I'm not really a fan of these chain letter type things, and the rebel in me makes me want to break the chain, so I know I'm in for 100 years of bad luck and blah blah blah but I'm totally OK with that. Secondly, I think writing someone a personal comment is as nice if not better than an award, so if I have commented on your blog I have not done it on a whim, I've done it because I appreciate what you do - you inspire me, give me some non fattening eye candy to look at, your write beautifully or you make me laugh.
On this note - it's a good time for me to say thanks to all those people who drop by and leave me a comment or helpful suggestion. This is what makes my day.

Sorry for sounding like a grumpy bum. I know I'll probably never receive an award again - unless it's a 'you're an ungrateful grumpy bum' award, then of course I'll well and truly deserve it :o)

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

just popping by quickly to say...

more Bunnies are on the way! (that rhymes doesn't it)
I've got a lot to do tonight - Trying to finish up bunnies, putting some bits into the shop, and starting some brooches too. I'll be happy if I just manage 2 out of the 3.

Sunday, March 09, 2008

Choir boy!

so finally the bunny is finished - and because of where the lace ended up, Mr monda seems to think he looks like a Choir boy! (topical for a Sunday I suppose)He doesn't have a tail, instead a stitched monda loves... label where his tail should be He's made from a old wool blanket which has been totally felted by machine washing which makes him a sturdy little thing. He'll be popping into my shop soon (maybe tomorrow) along with a monster, and maybe a brooch or two (depending on how productive I am tonight).

I've not had a very crafty weekend as my little bro (not so little really - he's 25!) and his girlfriend were visiting . Today we all went up to Silverstone race track (home of British F1 racing) because my Bro was running in a half marathon in preparation for the London marathon in April. It's an admirable thing, but also totally mental in my book, who would want to run 13 miles? let alone 26! I showed my support by just shouting a lot each time he ran by.

I've been giving the project I mentioned in my last post a lot of thought and a bit of preliminary work. It's definitely in the pipeline, but there are a few things I need to do before you can hear more about it - I've decided that 1st April (or thereabouts, not sure what day this is though) would be a good kick off date. It's only a couple of weeks away and I'll try not to mention it again too much between now and then.

Friday, March 07, 2008

the poor BIP

I think I have more pictures of WIPs on my blog than anything else. Ah, the perils of a day job.
I feel sorry for this poor BIPHe's been in the making for a whole week now, and although he's a little bit further on than he was, he's still not finished. I've had a week of busy evenings.
I was working till late today so I'll pick him up again in a minute and hopefully I'll finish him tonight.
The little bit of lace around his neck may not stay around his neck - I want to use it somewhere on him, I'm just not sure where yet. Any last minute suggestions are welcome.

I've also had a new project idea which I love. It needs a bit more thought and maybe a fancy button on my blog so watch this space for more news on this.

Wednesday, March 05, 2008

if you miss a day...

I usually have a daily blog read which takes place when I get home from work, but yesterday I missed it because I went straight from work into London to see the Hoosiers, who were incidentally brilliant live - a real fun band to go and watch, and the lead singer has a fantastic voice too. The downside of this was a very late night, ringing ears when I did get into bed (because I was right next to the speakers) and of course no opportunity to read my daily crafty blogs. Don't get me wrong, I can easily survive without this but it's catching up that is the hard part. I just spent almost 2 hours reading everything I had missed from yesterday, and then also todays updates too. Phew.

Something I came across today on daily candy was a website called Basically, you draw a picture of a creature/person/alien/animal etc and send it to them and they will make it into a soft toy for you. It's not the first time I've seen something like this though, I found lolabee on etsy a while back and she also does the same thing, and all equally as cute (if not a bit cheaper).
Maybe I should give this a go. Mr Monda is pretty good at drawing and has been on a drawing kick of late, here are a couple of his drawings which I think I could make into softies of some description:
Self portraitghetto blaster and trainer

Anyway, maybe this will have to go on the to do list, I have a BIP waiting for me so I'm off now to carry on with it.

Monday, March 03, 2008


What a lovely day at work I had today. Whilst in the office I did some mundane but essential admin, but perfect for a Monday, and this afternoon we were treated to afternoon tea at Cliveden House. We had proper tea cups and saucers, finger sandwiches and out of this world cakes (Katy, I did manage to squirrel away 2 eccles cakes for Mr Monda, he was very pleased about this). After tea we went for a tour, we were shown some of the hotel bedrooms - you can stay there for about £600 per night (to put this into perspective, that's more than I paid for my holiday - 6 days in Scandanavia!).
It's got a lot of history and I guess this is really what you pay for, so for a taster of Olde England it's great, and it does have some really lovely gardens you can walk around in the summer too. I wish every Monday at work was like this.
Sadly I didn't take my camera, but I've borrowed a couple of pics from google images:
Mr Monda bought me the latest issue of craft magazine, which I'm pleased to see has monsters on the front cover:
I feel like I haven't made any monsters in a while - I've been busy with other things, like this BIP - Bunny in progress:This main body of this bunny is a cream felt blanket which I washed in the machine with some brown and red felt. It's picked up some of the brown and red fibres and felted them in - initially i wasn't very happy about this but now I actually quite like it.

The BIP will have to wait a couple of days more days now though - I'm off into London tomorrow night to see the Hoosiers in concert. Check out their website, its really cool, and you can listen to some of their music whilst you do it.

Sunday, March 02, 2008

I'm rubbish at knitting!

Yesterday I went over to see my sister and her family for the day. I took some wool, and my new knitting book and my sister showed me how to knit following a pattern, which is something I've never done before. Well to say I was pretty rubbish at it was an understatement - I was supposed to increase rows by 2 but increased by 4! I have no idea how and although my sister tried to explain this to me I was pretty impatient with the whole thing (like a stroppy kid). I won't give up on it just yet because I'd really like to knit one of the icons from the book I was given, but I think I need a bit more guidance.

My sis also gave me a hand knitted scarf that was a late birthday present, and another brooch:As you can see, she can knit, very well indeed. I have an afternoon tea meeting with work tomorrow at this place, so I'll wear my new scarf for the occasion, they won't just let any old riff raff into these places - I can't even wear jeans as I normally do to work.

I need to go off and show the vacuum cleaner to the house - and then I will do a bit of sewing - more bunny practice needed.