Sunday, 27 December 2009

Do you have this pattern? Butterick 4875 Vintage

I'm crazily thinking I can fit in making a new dress for New Years Eve this year. Yep. Four days away. So I get practical and decide to use a pattern I already have. Found a lovely vintage one in the stash. Um and ah about it but be practical. Use something you already have. Butterick 4875.

Open the packet up and DANG! Only the second sheet of instructions are there and of course I'm making the first view, View A!! All the instructions I have instruct you to refer to the instructions for View A. Which I don't have. Dang.

If you have this pattern, regardless of the size, would you be so kind as to contact me? In the next day or so? I would be more than happy to pay you handsomely or send you something handmade for a scanned copy of page 1 and 2 of the instructions!!


CAL Block #88

Merry Xmas to all! The Silly Gilly family spent a very leisurely day in the park having lunch with the close relatives, eating too much food and drinking nice champagne. Noice. I sincerely hope you spent xmas day the way you would have liked to and were with family or friends.

I've been a busy little beaver on the Crochet Along project. Here's my next finished block - Number 88, Edwardian Fancy. Not my usual colours - I was trying out a new colour scheme that I felt at the time would look nice together. I'm happy with it but not over the moon. I've been using my stash of lovely cotton/acrylic yarn that I'm in love with!! Who would have thought acrylic would win me over?? Or crochet for that matter??! The next few blocks I've made are more my style. Off now to block them and make them nice and square!


Thursday, 24 December 2009

Where did the week go?

I've been busy immersed in life and loss and love this last week. Managed to fit craft in amongst the lot too.

Skirt made with Bali fabric finished, albeit not ironed, but loved completely by the poppet.


Dress made for poppet's baby, who is enjoying a renewed sense of life this week as poppet has reached the age of playing mummy with her baby. Until now baby has been an on again, off again toy but now she is a permanent fixture by poppet's side. I used a pattern from a book titled Dolls Clothes and was able to finish it in an hour. The fabric is a lovely 40's repro from Spotlight teamed with thrifted ric-rac and bias trim. There are now requests for nappies, nighties, handbags.... baby is going to be better dressed than me!

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Spritz biscuits made for spur of the moment Sunday afternoon nibbling. I loved just a few too many.... I made them using my vintage Sawa 2000 cookie press and it's amazing how quickly you can press out a tray full of festive fancies!


In love with my first ever finished crochet project. I started on this project whilst over in Sydney recuperating from my first egg pick up as part of my egg donor process. I'm really super happy with the result and would highly recommend the pattern as an achievable pattern for a beginner crocheter. Although next time I'll match the thread used for stitching the frame to the lining fabric!

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Loss of a one in four chance this week as my egg recipient discovered this month is not their month. Dang. My question this week, at a time when the focus is on giving, receiving and consumerism.... is why couldn't one opportunity for a gal like me who wanted to give a gift to a lovely couple like them work? I just wanted to give a gift and have it be successful. Hopefully I have given them a gift of hope. Hope that there is a backup plan, called Gillian, and that if they want to go again, I'm their gal. Hope that there are people out there who are willing to do something completely for the only reason that it would change another person's world. Maybe next time....

Wednesday, 16 December 2009

What's new at Silly Gilly?

New flower hair clips and bow hair clips now in store!! Great last minute xmas present! Great stocking fillers! Great things to keep those locks out of the way of gorgeous smiles!!

Xmas silliness moment #1

Vintage Polaroid of myself on Xmas morning circa approx 1979.

Looking suspiciously like my daughter!! BTW it's a nurses costume I've got on... And check out those brown legs!!


Monday, 14 December 2009

Late night Etsy buying....

I found a couple of vintage picture frames at a garage sale months ago. They have been lying around the house, waiting for the right picture to display. Yet nothing has seemed right for them and the frames are now starting to be more clutter than useful items!

So off to Etsy I went this evening and found this print.... I can't wait for it to arrive... all the way from Istanbul! So exotic!! This print will look gorgeous in one of the cream vintage crackled picture frames. Just perfect for my little poppet's room.

A little bunny rabbit snuggles up with mama
- artwork by Verity Heysen-Kizek

Saturday, 12 December 2009

I've joined the Crochet-A-Long!

Amy has been sharing some beautiful crochet blocks from the book 200 Crochet Blocks by Jan Eaton. She has inspired me with her bright colours and that the book is achievable for a beginner. So I've started hooking and have now completed my first block! It's Anemone block #129 which is an easy skill level block. All this activity at 10.30pm at night.... a good time to try a new skill! I found it quite simple and enjoyable. Definitely a great block with which to start. I don't usually work with orange but I wanted to veer away from my usual choices (pinks, blues, yellows) and thought these worked well together. Here's Amy's version. It's so interesting to see how differently each block appears using different weight and coloured yarn.


And at 12.15am this morning I got adventurous and tried the Patriotic Stars block #65. It's a medium skill level block and I think I miscounted in the pink rounds as I have waaaay too many stitches going on. Time to pull this one apart and start again, methinks!


Friday, 11 December 2009

Rainbow Love

I love rainbow coloured things. Not necessarily rainbow shaped things but things made in rainbow coloured hues. Or groups of the same things in differing shades of the rainbow.

So when I found these balls of yarn for $1.50 a pop at the store the other day, I brought an armful home to create a little coin purse for myself. The perfect portable project for my whirlwind trip to Sydney this week whilst I donated some of my eggs to my gorgeous friends.

Here's the before and after progress shots. The pattern is called 'Change Purse' and it's from Crochet Today - March/April '08. A very kind gal at Brown Owls allowed me to copy the pattern from her magazine. Now to source myself a purse handle and a nice fabric with which to line the purse.


The yarn is 49% cotton and 51% acrylic and is so easy for a beginner like me to use that I went back to that very store and bought another two balls of each colour!! I can easily set aside my usual dislike for acrylic yarn when the colours are this vibrant and especially when the balls are now marked down to $1 each!!!!!!

I'm now off to see if I'm bold enough to join in with Amy on her Let's Make 7 crochet block endeavour.....

Sunday, 6 December 2009

Skirts Ahoy!

A couple of months ago I spied what I think to be one of my most loveliest op shops finds of the year. A beautiful 1950's or 1960's little girl's dress in near perfect condition. No fading, no rips or marks. A beautiful crisp cotton dress hand made by some loving mother or grandmother over 50 years ago. I thought it might be too big but trying it on this weekend, we found that this gorgeous dress fits perfectly. It's going to be the special Xmas day dress and to give it that authentic 1950's look, we've popped the poppet's mummy-made tutu underneath for that full skirted appeal. I think the dress looks much better foofed out like that and the little girls skirts were made to wear with a petticoat in those days.

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Now that my markets are finished for the year, I'm on a mission to make the poppet some skirts and dresses as she's growing faster than a beanstalk! I picked up some coordinating apple and worm fabrics from Spotlight and whipped up this number Friday night with the help of this tutorial. Such an easy pattern and completed in 2 hours. Never mind the poppet's sullen look... she was cracking up laughing two seconds later! I also whipped up another skirt in lovely fabric from Bali and once it's ironed, I'll snap some photos.
Saturday morning found me finishing the Xmas gift shopping and I spied these little beauties going out at clearance for $1.50 each!! They are destined for a little crochet coin purse in rainbow stripes. I'm taking them with me to Sydney next week so hopefully I will have some progress to show when I'm back.
It's been so lovely to set aside the Silly Gilly sewing this weekend and work on some projects for us. Even though I love sewing for Silly Gilly, there's a different feel you get when sewing and crafting for yourself isn't there!?

Friday, 4 December 2009

Happy Sunshine


Just whipped up a pair of these gorgeous bloomers for a custom order. How cute are these baby twin girls going to look in their bloomers!! More bloomers on the way to the store soon...

Wednesday, 2 December 2009

Post Market Recovery Session!

After two pre-Xmas markets and the spending spree starting on my website, the Silly Gilly stocks are low!! I'm madly cutting, sewing, designing to re-stock the Silly Gilly shop so that y'all have plenty of choice for Xmas gift buying.

Of course all this restocking requires trips to fabric shops. These little fifties-inspired beauties which happened to be on sale came home with me. Fabric by 'Antique Treasures' - pattern #9847 on the left and #9858 on the right. These are destined for little girls' hats for the store methinks.


And then one gets way-laid by being dragged by a daughter all the way across the store to the yarn aisle..... and lookee here what just popped into my basket!


Of course, yarn that could just happen to be used in my newly acquired crochet addiction. Which is being fueled by this new book... Crochet Bouquet. I've attempted a couple of designs already but they are a tad scary looking due to me rushing like a banshee into attempting designs way out of my league. Reminds me of someone else! So I won't be showing you those examples. Will wait until I have something presentable to display!


And amidst all this sewing and creative frenzy, I'm at the pointy end (pardon the pun) of the process of being an egg donor for my gorgeous friends in Sydney. I'm busy jabbing myself with two needles a day and am feeling quite fine, touch wood!! No major side effects. A little trip to Sydney next week and I'll be clucking like a chicken, ready to roost!!

I'm also thinking of taking an extra night there in Sydney after the egg donation procedure and booking into a very swanky hotel in the city to take some quiet time for myself. Any recommendations on lovely swanky hotels in Sydney city? Hotels with day spas please as I wouldn't mind a nice pamper session. Just think of how many crochet flowers I could crank out surrounded by all that peace and quiet!!

Back soon with a big update of the store. Lots of new hair clips are now in store... head on over and take a look! Here's a quick preview...

Tuesday, 24 November 2009

Busy Bee

Does the end of the year always seem to get busy all of a sudden for you? It does for me. I've spent the last week feeling like the momentum is gaining quite a trot already and it's not even December yet!

I had the decadence of a poppet free day today thanks to my fantastic mother in law (Hi Robyn!) so I used it to sew in peace and quiet. Lots of new sun hats to make up for all the hats I sold last weekend. New library bags too. But I am only putting some of the new items on the website as I need to keep some stock for the markets!

I also dropped the dog off at the puppy parlour for her 6-weekly grooming session. Here she is pre-fluffing, then post-fluffing. A great improvement I say! And the hilarious thing is she has taken to riding in the poppet's car seat both with and without the poppet. Our dog is very safety conscious!

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In the middle of all my preparations for my remaining two markets for the year, I've also been on the hunt for a new bedroom suite/furniture. I had an idea of my bedroom being all stylish in a black and white colour scheme. That asked for an either black or white bed head. After much hunting, not a decent one to be found in Adelaide. So I compromised. I can do the stylish black and white scheme with a wooden bed, can't I???? Hmmm, it didn't sit quite as well with me but I reasoned that Adelaide had such a shortage of decent beds that I might have to side step just slightly from my original vision.

The requirements for our bed are a) to have a tall, majorly tall bedhead (I'm 5' 11" so for some reason I think my bed head needs to be tall too!), b) can't be upholstered as I have a bald husband who could do some serious sweaty head damage to the noice fabric and c) not be modern but not country bumpkin style either. Clear as mud?!

Anyhoo, the saga is not over. The husband and I have decided that we will put some decent money into this suite and buy something that will last a long time. But you think we can find it??? We want to spend money and we can't find what we want!!!! How crazy is that!?

But in my travels I did come across this gem of a chair, upholstered in a fabric very similar to this one I was drooling over. The fabric is by Warwick Fabrics and is called Chivas in the Onyx colour range. Slightly flocked and very swish! Now to decide whether to cover my chaise lounge in this or give up on the black and white scheme. But I love it so!..........


Saturday, 21 November 2009

Market preparations and a new love

Last weekend's market at the Prospect Rd Food, Fashion & Wine Affair was a successful day, albeit a hot one. Sitting at one's market stall in 40 degree heat isn't ideal but I got to meet some lovely people and had a few sales to sweeten the day!

This week ahead is now to be spent preparing for this coming Friday and Saturday 27th and 28th November as I have market stalls at two different markets. See the sidebar over there on the right for further details.

More ribbon purchased for Dancing Rainbow Ribbons. This makes me super happy - an excuse to buy ribbon in rainbow colours is good any day or night.


Speaking of rainbows, I was recently invited to participate in a Rainbow Swap organised by the far away but oh-so-witty Trashalou. I've posted off my parcel and am keen to hear that it has arrived at it's destination. It was so much fun creating the handemade item for the swap but I can't reveal anything until I know my swap partner has opened her parcel.

My highly multi-talented Thursday craft teacher Felicity has generously offered to share her love of crochet with me after I stumbled upon, and fell in love with, the insanely delicious crochet blog Attic 24. If you love crochet or rainbow colours or bright, happy photography, head there immediately!! It's a gorgeous blog written in a lovely friendly style. Just my thang! And I must say it had to take something super special to convince me to crochet as I have always, up to now, been a 'I'm NEVER going to be interested in crochet. NEVER.' kind of gal... Hmm, never say never!!

The flowers below are my first attempts at crochet and I'm rather pleased with the results!! I used a pattern from Attic 24 and found it to be very achievable for a beginner. And of course I had to rush out to the shops and buy cotton yarn to feed this new addiction!

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So this weekend I will be desperately trying to ignore this newly acquired skill and amazingly addictive interest in crocheting flowers. Someone take this cotton and hook away from me please so I can get my market stock ready?

Wednesday, 18 November 2009


A couple of shots from tonight's photo shoot, taken whilst the sun was setting a beautiful pinky-orange...



Tuesday, 17 November 2009

Things For Which I Am Grateful

It's been a whirlwind couple of weeks. Returning from a Bali holiday with weird lumpy arm-pit virus. Cramming madly trying to prepare for a market that I've had a whole year in which to prepare. Starting the medication process for becoming an egg donor for a gorgeous couple of friends.

Lots of opportunities to choose either the glass half full or the glass half empty view on life. So do I collapse in a giggling heap or a hysterical frenzied one? I've just read a fantastic post which sums up life as a work at home mum hilariously! Check it out!

To get back to that glass half full kind of perspective I thought I would do as Belly Beyond, the author of that great post, has done.... A Things I Am Grateful For post.

  • 34 degrees today before another two days of 41 degree forecasts
  • How Bamboo/Soya doesn't fray during my beginners crochet attempts like Bamboo/Cotton does
  • Our gorgeous emerald green front lawn thanks to subsurface irrigation
  • The jacaranda trees in full bloom either side of our yard
  • That my daughter will munch on celery as if it is the yummiest thing in the universe!
Anything you are grateful for today?

Friday, 13 November 2009

Ooh La La Part 2!

Here's a copy of the article written about being a crafty mama working from home!
Click on the photo to read.

Monday, 9 November 2009

Ooh La La!

Check out these three crafty chicks on the front cover of our local glossy magazine. We've had a fantastic write up in the magazine outlining how it is possible to be a successful work at home mum running a crafty business.

Left to right: Carolyn Cattrall of Belly Bottom, Kate Du Bois of Red Ted and myself.

Note to self...... deflate hair for next photo shoot so my hair doesn't have a postcode of it's own...


Sunday, 8 November 2009

Happy Tangle

A view of my desk yesterday during Dancing Rainbow Ribbon production time!


This week sees Adelaide with temperatures above 35 degree all week. Noice. Not the optimum working conditions in the studio. I'm looking for a split system air-conditioning system to be installed in my studio as soon as possible. Hopefully I can find an installer in a week where I'm sure lots of other Adelaideans will be seeking those services too!

Friday, 6 November 2009

Here a Clip, There a Clip!

I'm in full production mode. Well as much in full production mode as one can be when one is a full time mother to a 'I'm a fairy... I'm a robot... let's play hide and seek' almost four year old.

I go to a felting class each Thursday which has the blessed bonus of a creche for the poppet and a gorgeous teacher who doesn't care if I do my felting craft or cut my toenails! Of course, I left the personal grooming for home and this week I used my time to get my growing collection of hair clippies ready for market.


All colours of the rainbow and using two of my favourite things in the studio. Buttons and scraps!
More bags have been cut out for sewing tonight and tomorrow I'm thinking summer hats...

Monday, 2 November 2009

Back from Bali.... again!

The Silly Gilly family returned today from their second trip to Bali . We had a lovely time over the ten days and I can highly recommend Bali as a wonderful family holiday destination. The Balinese people are so kind, friendly and appreciative of your visit.

Some happy snaps from the holiday...


The beach at Legian was crystal clear and so peaceful.


We were honoured to meet Api (prounounced appy), the most beautiful animal I've ever had the privilege to meet. Api is a 3 year old orangutan... same age as my daughter. I desperately wanted to take her home with me! She was amazingly affectionate and so very much like a human child. Amazing.

And, no, my daughter and I hadn't been dragged through a bush backwards. Our hair looks like that as it was 40 degrees all week and we were sweaty spaghetti heads!!

I'm now feeling very refreshed and ready to tackle some big crafty and non-crafty projects that have been simmering on the back burners whilst my mojo and I didn't want to play together.

* Three markets in November for which I have to get my skates on and churn out Silly Gilly stock;
* Start on the medication side of being an egg donor for my lovely friends in NSW;
* Getting my studio all kitted out, including air conditioning, in preparation for more work hours coming available when my kidlet starts kindy!! and
* Designing more secret squirrel projects for BIG secret plans coming soon........

This week will be kept busy with the catch up one has after being away for a week and a half. I have a Mt Everest of of washing of my very own. And the paperwork never takes a break either! But the crafty mojo is most certainly back. Yeah Baby!!

Tuesday, 13 October 2009

Blogmeet update!

You may recall I mentioned that Kellie of Don't Look Now Fame is coming to grace the doorsteps of little ol' Adelaide this very weekend. Saturday and Sunday Kellie will be holding a weekend long workshop on how to make one of her own designs. Hopefully I will manage to master Kellie's amazing technique and have a great time doing so.

I've heard from Kellie herself that it will be head down and derriere up, serious kind of work so I'm mentally preparing myself for some concentration time. Not so much like my primary school days of being known as the girl who talks too much and disrupts others......

The Saturday night in between the two days of fun and frivolity a dinner will be held at Enzo's which is next door to Hettie's Patch, the shop where the workshop is being held. If you would like to join us for dinner then feel free as this would be best instead of having a separate blogmeet dinner/catchup.

Wednesday, 7 October 2009

What's Hot + What's Not

What's Hot


What's Not
My Crafty Mojo
My housework Mojo
My confidence Mojo
My lack of ability to imbibe healthy food in the last four weeks

Sorry for the lack of posts. Have found myself fallen into a Alice In Wonderland kind of bog at the moment for the last four weeks and am lacking all manner of ways to find the rabbit hole outta here.

What's hot & Not thanks to Claire and Jodie.

Tuesday, 22 September 2009

Hunt for the button

I have been tearing my hair out for the last two weeks trying to source bulk amounts of self cover buttons. By bulk, I mean 100+. I just can't find them anywhere and Birch are out of stock of them at the moment.

A desperate crafty girl here is asking.... do you know where I can source these scarce little gems? Surely some craft or sewing shop has a bag of these lying around....

I'm after any self cover buttons sized 18mm or larger. Sob.... a girl can't have a new addiction and not be able to feed it!

Thanks to all you very resourceful crafty gals. I have found a very economical source of self cover buttons and I truly appreciate your help with this. My addiction has been fed.


Adelaide Blogmeet with Kellie of Don't look now!

The super talented Kellie of Don't Look Now! fame is coming to Adelaide on the 17th and 18th of October to teach a class on her amazing raw edge applique technique.

I thought a nice Adelaidean welcome in the style of Ric-Rac might be in order. So I am in the process of organising a blogmeet for either the night of Friday 16th or the night of Saturday 17th of October.

Would you be interested in coming along, having a laugh, sharing some food, meeting other bloggy pals with similar interests? Perhaps you've read another person's blog and you'd love to meet them in person. I'm thinking somewhere casual for a dinner, perhaps a pub or cafe. If you have a great suggestion for a venue, I'd love to hear it!

If you are keen to catch up, please leave a comment below with your preference for either Friday or Saturday night. I'm waiting for Kellie to get back from her Sydney jaunt to find out her preference too!

photo courtesy of Don't Look Now!

Sunday, 20 September 2009

No, I haven't been to visit the queen...

Where have I been?

Being a busy housewife, dealing with biting children, losing my favourite glasses (having them stolen whilst in an op-shop but that's another story), being crafty, enjoying the sunshine.

Things that fill my every day with busy-ness and happiness. Photos of some of my busy-ness follow including a knitting needle roll that now houses my rarely used needles...

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The other thing that has been keeping my brain busy and up at 3am of late has been the brain poppingly exciting decision to find someone to share my eggs with. What's that you say? My chooks are too prolific and I have had it up to the eyeballs with omelettes?

No, I've decided that now that my husband and I have completed our family (at the grand total of one child) that I would love to help another woman who is yet to be enveloped in the bliss that is motherhood share in the experience. I'm donating my eggs to a woman who needs them to become pregnant and birth her own child. Why, you ask? That's really hard to put into words but the easiest way to describe it is that it makes me all warm and fuzzy. And it's ace fun.
And no, you don't get paid here in Australia to donate eggs... so I'm not selling my body parts to fund my fabric addiction!

So now that I've clicked with my intended parents, the 'oh my gosh is it really going to happen?' stage is over and hopefully it all goes ahead swimmingly... pardon the pun.

Back to sensible crafty topics now that I have some spare room amongst the neurons.... I've been expanding my newly acquired love of covering buttons through to girly hair clippies. Boyo, boy, are these addictive too!!?? Soon to be (hopefully tonight) loaded up to the Silly Gilly shop.


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Saturday, 5 September 2009

Sunny Saturday

How about this for a spring fancy kind of skirt? Made with inspiration from Lara and a tutorial by Moda Bake Shop, this skirt has been one of the most quick, easy and satisfying projects I've done in a while. I've used a pack of charm squares called Snippets by American Jane for Moda and teamed it with a lovely clear blue polka dot from Spotlight. Like Lara, I'm so happy there's very little pink in this skirt. I love pink myself but my poppet looks so lovely in blues and yellows, it's a challenge to get her to wear more of it.



And if you had a smell-o-rama computer screen, you would be able to smell the divine wafts of garlic, rosemary and lamb roast that is slow cooking right now in the oven. I'm following a Jamie Oliver recipe for Incredible Roasted Shoulder of Lamb. To accompany it, some roast veggies and for afters.... banana caramel pie. I thought it looked so good, cooling on the bench in the afternoon light, that I had to share. It will be slathered with cream later... yum.