Be my guest room

This is the end, beautiful friend. Today marks the official last day of my holidays. My job only allows me to take leave at the end of the year so I’ve had 5 glorious weeks at home. Last year I travelled to South East Asia and spent 4 weeks in Thailand, Cambodia and my favourite place in the world, Vietnam. It was an amazing trip but wasn’t much of a ‘holiday’ when it comes to relaxation so this year I decided I would stay home and just enjoy this cosy little corner of the world Dave and I have created for ourselves. I’ve loved not only having time off but also having time to get to know our house. We moved in together in August 2011 and since then I haven’t had more than a couple of days in a row to enjoy it (besides the couch-bound week I was off sick which was not in any way enjoyable except for Dave’s cooking).

I have had a few ‘pyjama days’ in these 5 weeks but mostly I have been decorating the house and finally turning the spare room into a working space for crafting and tinkering. I’ve been to craft shops, op shops, Ikea and beyond and have made some good progress. Dave said that every day he has come home from work something has been added, moved or changed and most days I am waiting at the door to take him on a tour of  ‘what Maddy did around the house today’.

My favourite room in the house is the guest room. I’ve been going for a bed & breakfast cottage feel with this room as I like to think that when people come to stay they might feel like they’ve really had a night away (breakfast may or may not be included depending on how organised the host is). When I was growing up my parents ran bed & breakfast cottages which must be why I like this idea so much.

It’s also a great room because it is almost always neat and tidy, it’s filled with sunlight and it’s girly. I love that even though I live with a bloke I still have a place to put some of my favourite girly things, somewhere that isn’t also a place for sport shoes and cricket bats.

The brightly coloured wall hanging and cushions I picked up on last year’s travels are all handmade by locals. The quilts are handmade by my Mum and Grandma, the first I got when I was just 4 years old. The painting is of me when I was 18 and an apprentice chef and is done by my Mum. The old wooden chest used to be my toy box and the little kangaroo back chair is one I used when I was little.

I’m sure I’ll change things around when I see a great piece of furniture or art but for now, on a modest budget, I think it’s a pretty neat little guest room. Now I just need some guests…

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A punch in the heart

I am a bit obsessed.

I’ve been making a few cards lately, mostly with fabric birds and I really like making and giving them. I think they’re nice to receive too. My Dad has kept every card I’ve ever made him. I know it’s true because he tells me every time I give him a non handmade card. I used to make them a lot when I was a kid. Then I totally became too cool to make cards. Like, OMG, hello? Unfortunately for me that was a fleeting thing. It turns out I’m not cool after all and so I am free to craft some cutesy cards and able make Dad happy again. Honestly it did take him a few years to get over it and stop asking why the cards were no longer homemade.

Dave and I are celebrating our 1 year since-we-first-met anniversary on the 25th (yay for us) and so I wanted to make him a special card to celebrate. Especially seeing as I gave him some monstrosity for Christmas complete with a diamante and the phrase To the one I love. He searched for 3 days to find me a Christmas card with a laser cut deer that pops up when you open it. He knows I am also a bit obsessed with deers at the moment. The faux taxidermy deer head I put above the fireplace might have given it away.  So after his card which I absolutely loved and my monstrosity that probably made him question why he had spent almost a year with someone who has such appalling taste, I feel I owe him at least a homemade effort.

Back to my obsession. It is with my new heart-shaped hole punch. I can’t stop punching things and I am going to use the hearts to decorate cards. I punched some red paper, a vintage book and the back page of a very pretty calendar I got from Typo. I got a few calendars actually. I got some for Christmas presents and then just after Christmas I went back and they were $1! So I got 4 because I figured I could use the pretty pictures for something. And because when something is reduced by 75% or more it is almost impossible for me not to buy it. This is why I have a convection oven sitting in my cupboard that I’ve never used and a pair of one size-too-big knee-high boots that are waiting to break my ankle next winter.

I do think the calendars were a good investment though because the hearts came out very well. And I had a go at a sample card with some vintage book pages and red paper and I am dying to get stuck into more. Then Dave might forgive me.

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Cute as a button

I had such a nice crafternoon today. It is the second last Friday of my beloved holidays and I was in the Zone (The Zone being the semi-finished front spare room slash my craft room – thanks Dave!). I wanted to make something for Baby Rose seeing as I am seriously behind on the bird mobile I started in September last year. For shame. The thing is I don’t really know why I haven’t finished it. And that is absurd because every time I see Rose, the little peach, there is nothing I wouldn’t do for her. I mean she’s just so amazing. Doesn’t say much but amazing nonetheless.

Her nursery is lovely, not over done, but just enough pink for a sweet baby girl to dream her baby dreams in and I thought this button monogram would go nicely.

I saw it on spearmintbaby via craftgawker and loved it! I found the wooden frame at my local Savers and spray painted it white, kind of like I’ve done to almost every other thing I’ve bought home from Savers. The spearmintbaby tutorial uses a double-sided tape as the adhesive but I used my glue gun instead and found it to be a suitable method. I liked being able to tuck a button in here and there with glue and the tape wouldn’t have allowed that as some of the layered buttons didn’t touch the card underneath. I tried to buy some multicoloured brads in a mixed packet but couldn’t find any at the craft shop so I got white glittery ones and painted some pink using nail polish. Tinkerbell helped me choose the buttons.

I also wanted to add a few special touches to it so it isn’t just made with a packet of mixed buttons from a shop. It has some old buttons that came from my Great Grandnan’s sewing box that I was given as a girl, a pearl that was one of a pair of earrings I wore to my debutante ball and a little gold guardian angel charm my Mum gave me when I was about 18.

I am pretty happy with the result. The one on spearmintbaby is really something but I hope Rose likes hers just as much.

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