Sunday, August 26, 2012

Green living...

I've been enjoying the paths I have taken lately. Part time gardening. Part time crafting. Heart-ful parenting and relaxing back into some kind of routines after travelling(while of course planning and dreaming of the next adventures!).
I love my latest work place-I spend a chunk of my time in a very full organic permaculture garden...apart from the herb spiral, fruit trees and usual garden this ordinary house block home garden has 6 compost bins, 3 worm farms, visiting possums, honeyeaters, silver eyes, blue tongues and dozens of frog ponds teeming with tadpoles. It's a wonderful oasis for life.

At home what I've been making lately is one heck of a mess while finding and matching all my fabric pieces. There is reason for this-making upcycled fabric bags and skirts. The process, the discovering of how an vintage piece of barkcloth might match a discarded Japanese fabric calendar wallhanging-pulling apart and putting together, reminds me of gardening and it's endless cycling of nutrients-nothing goes away, rather is incorporated and dispersed in different ways.
happy crafting,

Monday, August 6, 2012

Crochet in the garden&botanical bookmarks

Weren't we lucky with the gorgeous weather for the 'whats cooking' Redcliffe botanical garden festival? 

I loved setting up the space in the quiet of the early morning light....

After pulling the couches and yarn bombing and blanket draping the whole area looked a lot like my own lounge room-but MUCH bigger and outdoors!

Lovely people came, young and old to play with yarn, explore crochet and try their hand at printing with plant colours...

It has to be one of my happiest days! Thanks to all who visited, loaned crochet blankets and helped make flowers and played with natural paints. Warm thanks especially to those generous souls Helen and Rebecca who helped both before and after the event! 
And below here are the natural paints and a flower pattern for you to continue at home :o)

The materials for the natural paints-
(All were boiled until squishy, mashed a bit with a potato masher to get the 'juice' out and strained, use the liquid for the paint. The the mush can go into the compost or worm farm)
gum leaves. 

The first three are ideal for toddlers as obviously it won't matter if they taste them! 

We used mint leaves, banksia leaves and pigeon pea pods and fingers to print with. 

This is the flower pattern I created for the Sunday mail article

Kates' five petal flower 

You will be able to make 2-3 flowers from a 50 gram ball of yarn.
The crochet pattern terminology for this flower pattern is American 
(UK treble=US Double crochet,  UK Half treble=US half double crochet)

Use a size 4 hook and 8 ply yarn.

Begin by making 5 chain.
Join with slip stitch to first chain to form ring.
Chain 2, 9 double crochet into ring(Total 10 double crochet in ring) Join to 2nd chain with slip stitch.
*Chain 3, skip double crochet, slip stitch into top of next double crochet. Repeat from * 4 times to create 5 loops.
Working into first loop make 1 single crochet, 1 half double crochet, 3x Double crochet, 1 half double crochet, 1 single crochet.
Repeat this 4 times. Slip stitch into the first single crochet, fasten off and weave in ends.

Happy creating!

Cheers Kate