Don’t drop the F bomb!

crochet fbomb

Hey y’all! Hows your week going?

It’s crazy here.

This little crochet project was inspired by Jodie Carlton of RicRacs enamel pin. (I still haven’t bought myself one, I should get onto that!) I’ve been wanting to make one for a while now, so when our copy of “Throw Throw Burrito” came in the mail I was super enthused to make more things I can throw around the house! ( that sentence is such a random train of thought, but that’s legit how this came into existence!)

It’s just one loan “f bomb” at the moment, but I plan on there being a whole basket of them on the kitchen table (maybe two baskets, one for the coffee table too?!) I’m sure we can come up with some kind of game to go with them!

crochet fbomb
Don’t drop the F bomb! (my hands are never a normal colour!)

The pattern is pretty simple to figure out, some day I will try and write it up properly, but for now, here’s an explanation on how I made it.

I started by crocheting a black ball shape. I stopped two increased before finishing a whole ball and changed to grey yarn. I stuffed it about here. I crochet up three rows, before decreasing again to close the top. The fuse was several chains and then single crochet along to give it some body, with a couple of sparkly threads knotted to the top. The “F” was made by crocheting onto the side of the ball.

And to finish off, I’ll leave you with some things I’ve recently tie-dyed.

scale tie-dye
Scale tie-dye pattern. My favorite dye yet!
hearts tie-dye
Hearts tie-dye

oh, and I picked up a couple of boxes of old kimono scraps. Some of it will be silk, and anything white I will try and dye!

kimono scraps
Kimono scraps

Have a tops week!

<3 Cate

Tie Dye Practice

I wanted to get better at dyeing, so I figured the more I practice, the better I will become. Good in theory right!

I really wanted to do a good heart, so I tied several pieces with hearts in them. Some worked, some didn’t, but I think I understand the concept of tyeing a heart now. I also fell in love with the fish scales pattern, and my first attempt at that was pretty good! It has also been a lot of fun to play around with different colour ways.

tie dye patterns
All the different patterns I have been playing around with

I found two brand new, still in packaging, white, bath towels whilst we were cleaning out the garage over the weekend. So they immediately went in my “to dye” pile. I decided on a simple swirl. They took a LOT of dye. I guess absorbency is in their inherent nature.

bath towel

I dyed a long sleeve shirt as well. Testing out some ideas, I will be making some “team” shirts for races later this year. This one might become a gym shirt for the winter.

dye shirt
Dyed shirt

I even managed to dye some alpaca fleece I got for free.

alpaca fleece
Alpaca fleece still drying in the sun

My ultimate tie-dye goal is to dye pieces that I can then work back into with stitching or turn into whole cloth quilts. I have a couple of bigger pieces of fabric waiting, and after a lot of experimenting, I have a few ideas!

Have a creative week!

<3 Cate

Fly Awayyyyy


At my day job, I work with school children, and there is an obsession with birds at the moment. This has spurred on a range of bird related drawing, craft and play.

One afternoon, I noticed some paper and pipe cleaner bird wings costume trickling out of the craft area. It reminded me of this project I had cut out a few years ago and not worked out how to finish it. It was a wings costume.

So I pulled all the pieces out and had another look. I had cut two quarter circle pieces and several rows of “feathers” out of poplin.

bird wings costume base
Firstly, cut two quarter circle pieces. these will be the “base” of the wings. I finished the edges by zig zagging over them.

I think were I had got stuck previously was how to finish the raw edges. Maybe I had planned to back the wings. But with fresh eyes, I decided a simple zig-zag stitch over the raw edges would suffice. The feathers edges I left raw, I hope any fraying that occurs to them through use will add to their feathery look.

feather fabric
feather pieces. I made a simple pattern by folding up a piece of paper, then cutting the shape I wanted the wings to be. I then used this pattern to cut lengths of fabric.

I only added three rows of feathers to each wing. I think its enough of a suggestion of feathers to make them look like wings. I applied the feathers to the curved edge. To achieve the curve, I have put in tiny little pleats along the straight edge of the feathers. I stitched these down with a straight stitch and then a zig-zag stich.

Two wings

I added pieces of elastic at the wrists and in the middle. I over lapped each wing at the centre by approximately one inch, then securing as I attached elastic here as arm loops.

I overlapped the wings at the centre by approximately one inch. I then took a piece of elastic, long enough to form two loops to go around the shoulders. I found the middle of the elastic and pinned it to the centre of the overlapped wings, I then pinned each end of the elastic either side of the middle. I secured all of this by stitching over the edges and through the middle of the elastic.
wrist loops
wrist loops. I simple stitched loops of elastic to the top edge for the children to slip over their wrists.

It took maybe an hour to gather all the pieces and put it all together. Add a little bit extra time for cutting all the pieces out. But this was a quick and easy project, and I’m hoping the children love them. I am concerned that one might not be enough though and anticipate having to make another pair so they can be shared around easier.

finished wings
finished wings
bird wings cosutme
ta da! finished bird wings costume

This coming Saturday (8 June 2019) is World Wide Knit in Public Day. I am yet to lay solid plans for this day, but be assured, whatever I end up doing I’ll have some knitting or crochet with me!

Happy Wednesday! Have a creative week!
<3 Cate


A friend asked me to make some tutus for an upcoming event. The event is to be held the first official weekend of the snow season (alas, winter has come early, and there is already enough snow for some areas to open this weekend!)

So with 42m of tulle and some elastic I set about making a set of ten tutus.

tulle and elastic
LOTS of tulle and elastic

I cut strips 6inches wide of the tulle. I cut the elastic 4inches shorter than the waist measurements I was given, and then sewed the ends together.

cutting layers of tulle
Cutting layers of tulle

Then I simple knotted the tulle to the elastic.

knotting tulle
Knotting the tulle onto the elastic. I put them over the chair backs to help hold them in shape whilst I worked

That stuff is hard on the hands! It is quite abrasive!

To make them a little more winterish I added snow flakes. So I was planning on just buying bags of snowflake sequins. Do you think I could find snowflake sequins? Nope. None at all! So I ended up getting a snowflake punch and some shiny stuff and making my own!

making snowflakes
Making snowflakes

We road tripped to Jindabyne to deliver them. I’d never been before, and now I understand why a couple of my friends have moved there in the last few years. It is spectacularly pretty!

Road tripping! with a backseat full of tutus!!

I made some hair clips as well, finishing them in the car on the drive to deliver them. (In my defense, dropping them last weekend meant they were finished at least two weeks ahead of schedule!)

hair clips
Car crafting hair clips

I hope my handiwork is all good and they are enjoyed by many.

tutu sans snowflakes
The snowflakes add a needed element of sparkle!
hair clips
Hair clips!

Stay warm and creative!

<3 Cate

A Few Things…

Happy Wednesday!

A friend asked me to do some tutus and shirts for an upcoming event, so this week I have been madly knotting tulle and stressing over screen printing!

Guy and myself have decided that the collective term for “tutus” is “a cloud of tutus” this is quite fitting, wouldn’t you agree?

“a cloud of tutus”

As we speak, I have my whole living room set up as a print studio. I got out the fold up table so I could have everything spread out at once. For some one who doesn’t have a lot of experience screen printing, I went pretty bold, deciding on a two colour print! Only time will tell if I can pull this off!

My living room is a printing studio!

The weekend just gone saw the Old Bus Depot Markets hold their annual “wool expo”. This is a weekend I try not to miss! Its a good time to stock up on supplies, and find new people and shops to buy from.

Some wool to dye! From Glenora
Two new bobbins for my spinning wheel. From Glenora
I tried, but I could not resist! A pair of 30mm knitting needles! And I don’t even knit! From Yarn Hub
A lovely plait of purple to spin up! From the Coloured Wool and Fibre Company
I’m loving this mustard colour lately! And this plait is full of sparkle too! From Raxor Yarns

Guy and myself have also signed up for the Anytime Fitness Tread as One challenge.  We will be running for an hour at our local gym to support R U OK? on the 31st of May. It’s themed “Hollywood” so I suspect my next move is coming up with some kind of costume for it!

Mental health issues sure have hit pretty close to the heart in the last few years, and it’s important for people to know they can reach out. If you would like to donate you can follow this link 🙂

I have a busy day ahead of me! I must get these prints done and the tutus finished!

Have a creative week

<3 Cate

Dye, dye, dye all the things!

More dyeing from me this week!

A pile of white jeans, shoes and plastic bottles. All ready for more dyeing!

I found a large stash of white jeans at a factory seconds store and stockpiled. This week I started experimenting with dyeing them. So far I’ve dyed two pairs.

Front. This pair I did a simple circle tie kinda at knee level
front. I kinda consatina folded these and then striped the dye. Pretty happy how they turned out!

I also dyed a set of serviettes for my sisters birthday. Everyone loved these! I think they might be on my Christmas make list. Or at the least, I will use serviettes to practice on so I can have some pretty ones on my dining table!

A set of serviettes for my sisters birthday!

Now I’m off to make tutus and t-shirts! I’ll be sure to share that adventure with you in a few weeks!

Have a creative week!
<3 Cate

Happy Easter

I hope you all enjoyed a safe and happy Easter!

Happy Easter!

I spent mine with my family, painting mum and dads dining room.

We spent three days prepping and painting it.

Day 1 – Wash, wash, wash the walls. And fixing up holes.
Day 2 – We painted the ceiling with two coats of paint!
Day 3 – we painted the walls. We left the architrave for mum to finish.

We managed to fit some down time in amongst all the painting! My mum, my sister and myself had a small dyeing session. My mum dyed two shirts for herself, whilst me and Jodie dyed a pair of converse each.

Jodie dyeing her shoes
Me painting my shoes
Mum dyeing a shirt
results drying on the line
our shoes

Jodie had this amazing pair with iridescent toe and heel. I thought the pink and purple combination went well with the sparkles!

I still have another pair of shoes to dye, but I’m still trying to decide what colours they should be! I think some colour swatching is in call.

Lets not forget about the epic food that always happens when family gets together! Mum had most of the dinners sorted before we even arrived! Tuna mornay, lasagna and roast pork! Whilst Guy had us sorted for breakfasts!

It’s a bit of a tradition to light our mud oven at Easter and to have wood fired pizza for a lunch! We then cooked a pork roast and potatoes in it!

pizza cooking in our mud oven
Dad cooking pizzas. This is always a collaborative effort. Mum made dough, Guy assembled the pizzas and Dad gets the oven ready and cooks the pizza.

Another tradition is drinking baileys out of Easter eggs!

Baileys in Easter eggs – it has become a tradition!

Now for a short week of work for the last of school holidays, and back to a normal routine next week!

Have a creative week!
<3 Cate

Happy Birthday to Me!

It was my birthday last Friday! And I have been in celebration mode all week!

The day started early, getting up to have breakfast with Guy before heading off to do the morning shift! I donned my sparkly converse and pleather jacket and off I rode on my bike!

Riding to work in style!

I had a “chicken burger friday” date with Guy for lunch. The cafe at his work used to do an amazing fried chicken burger with pineapple relish. Alas, I got there, only to realise they had taken it off the menu and replaced it with a sub-par grilled chicken burger! Still, was pretty awesome to be able to have lunch with Guy, that doesn’t happen often!

I only had a small amount of time between the morning shift, chicken burger Friday date and the afternoon shift, but I made the most of it! I filled it with something that never fails to make my heart hum! Sewing hexagons!! I’ve been collecting fabrics with a lot of texture – they have come in the forms of skirts, dresses, jackets, pants and shirts so far.

Making hexagons on my birthday!

I had an amazing pair of velvet pants, but I hated the cream colour, so whilst I had the dyes out last week, I threw some dye on them as well. I love them and they are going to look fantastic in this new hexagon quilt!

a pair of deconstructed velvet pants await the dye treatment!
the velvet pants marinating in their dyes (The finished fabric is the hexagons in the above photo)

Guy got me a copy of the new Lego Movie 2 PS4 game. But of course we couldn’t play it without first seeing the movie! So we went to the mall for dinner and a movie!

And then the celebrations spilled over into the rest of the weekend. We stayed in the city Saturday night. Setting up the PS4 to play the Lego game. We had an amazing four course dinner at Courgette, which was epic, to say the least! Then Sunday morning we finished off the celebrations with pancakes at the Pancake Parlor!

Heading off for Birthday dinner!

We also managed to hit up the Green Sheds free clothes bins for some denim jeans to add to the up-cycling pile!

Yeah, I’m pretty spoilt!

And now school is on holidays, so I’m working longer days at my “day job” which hasn’t left me much room to be super creative. I’ve been trying to get a pair of up-cycled denim overalls finished, but it just hasn’t happened yet!

The beginnings of my up-cycled denim overalls
The pants part of my overalls. I have made the bib and back, I just need to attach them to the pants.

We are also digging up the garden and getting ready for winter crops. We harvested one of our sweet potato plants! It came up in one big tangle!

Sweet potato tangle!

Easter is also on our doorstep. I’ll be heading home to help Mum and Dad paint their dining room. My sister has suggested we try and squeeze some dyeing in there as well!

Hopefully I’ll have something finished to share with you next week! (hopefully its the overalls haha !)

Until then – Have a very happy and safe Easter!
<3 Cate

Dye Experiments

We got a spare bed for Guys study a couple of weeks ago. Its basically a single bed with two single mattress, the base pulls out so the mattress can be placed side by side to form a king sized bed. We were brainstorming the best ways to cover it for ever day use as a day bed. The room is painted lime green with white trim, the curtains are black/grey/teal/lime green. I suggested an ice dye could be a fun addition, and so the experimenting began!

I ordered a box of dye, found some fabric, and got my dye experimenting on!

Ice dyeing on a lovely sunny autumn day

First up I tried ice dye. I tied my fabric in various ways, laid them on cake coolers in the bottom of a box, layered it with ice, then sprinkled dye over the top. I put the lid on the box and left in in the sun. And waited. The waiting is the worst with tie dye! You want to know if it turned out now! But know the longer you leave it the better it will be!

Ice dye results

The idea behind having cake coolers in the bottom of the box was that the ice would melt and drain away from the fabric. But I miss calculated the volume of liquid the ice would turn into, and the fabric was left sitting in the muck anyways. It wasn’t a complete fail, I was pretty happy with the results for my first go at ice dyeing, although I do have a lot more experimenting to do before I commit to a large enough piece of fabric to cover a single bed!

This is the room and bed we are looking at making a cover for. Currently the bed has a teal sheet coveing it, but we want to make a cover out of some more robust material. I’ve found this lovely cotton/linen blend that is almost like a soft canvas.

Whilst I think about the ice dyeing process and how to get better results next time, I’ve been doing some other dyeing as well.

Guy sold a pair of shoes I dyed as practice before dyeing our converse. He had so many inquiries about them, but they were the wrong size for most people. It made us realize that there are plenty of people out there who would love their very own pair of hand dyed shoes! So I grabbed another couple of pairs of canvas shoes from Kmart and tried out different colour combinations. I think I have this shoe dyeing thing down pat!

these shoes are still drying after pulling them out of the washing machine this morning. The dark blue rinsed out more than I was expecting.

And then I was bitten by the dyeing bug and couldn’t stop. I have a stash of white bed sheets, which, after our recent clean outs, found there way into “Cate’s up-cycle pile” yay! I ripped one into some smaller pieces and have started working my way through “Orizomegami” a book written by Kristin Lawson, published by Artwear Publications. It has been a good way to get started and I’m slowly seeing where or how I could change bits to make them look different.

A rainbow spiral

I’m looking forward to stitching back into some of these pieces. I envision my hand dyes being used in quilting. The sheet I used obviously has some polyester content, it came out more muted than I would expect 100% cotton to dye and you can clearly see the warp has not taken any dye.

I have so many projects on the go at the moment. The lounge room is covered in bits of cut up denim as I work to up-cycle some jeans into a pair of overalls. And I need to make a birthday present for my niece!

I’m loving dyeing so much, my set up has expanded to take up most of the laundry cupboard, there are things drying in front of the dining areas windows and on the backs of chairs!

So for my next trick, I’m going to dye a pair of pants I want to up-cycle! I’m sure I’ll share the results in the coming weeks 🙂

Have a creative week, and I’ll be back next week with some more obscure art projects I’m working on 😀

<3 Cate

Turning Mens Shirts into Paint Smocks…

After Guy cleaned out his cupboard, I was left with a bunch of his work shirts that didn’t fit anymore. Work is in need of paint smocks for the children, so it made sense to grab them to use as paint smocks.

In the past I just rolled the sleeves up, put them on the children backwards and buttoned up the top button. But I thought they might be a little more child friendly with a few alterations.

I started with an average men’s shirt. These were all size XL

I cut off the collar

cut off the collar

I cut off the cuffs above the button detail.

Cut off the sleeves above the button detail

I removed all the buttons and put them aside. They might come in useful another day.

The shirt looks a bit like this. The sleeves are off and so is the collar. I removed the buttons because I might be able to use them in another project someday.

I bound the sleeves and collar with fold over elastic, pulling it slightly as I went.

I bound the sleeves with fold over elastic. Pulling it slightly as I went

At the neck area I left a very small gap where the fronts meet and continued around with the elastic.

For the collar, I started in a few inches from the edge
I used the elastic to join the two edges together. I left a gap between the edges. When sewing the elastic in the gap, make sure you are still pulling it, this will make sure the stitching doesn’t break when it is stretched in use.

And wala! A paint smock from a shirt!

The back of the shirt becomes the front of the paint smock
The front of the shirt becomes the back of the paint smock

Hopefully they do the job!

Have a creative week!
<3 Cate