Friday, 29 April 2011

What's New Instore - Ribbons, Pearls and Bows

margarita necklace swarovski crystal pearl cream teal ribbon bridal wedding jewellery jewelry 

Today I am showing off a "new" range of necklaces which I have been working on over the past week.  Actually, this is not techinically a new range of necklaces since the basic design style has been available in both my Etsy and Madeit stores for over a year now.  But it wasn't until I was recently commissioned to make three Margarita necklaces for a bridal party (see above) that I was prompted to expand my colour range and also to play with the design a little.

margarita baroque necklace cream glass pearls burgundy ribbon weddings bridal feminine bow 

One of the design variations I am adding to my store is a Margarita necklace with a ribbon bow added to one side of the chain of beads, giving the necklace a feminine and asymmetrical look.

turquoise margarita necklace glass pearls dutch blue ribbon

And unlike the original Margarita necklaces, which featured 10mm Swarovski crystal pearls, the new range of necklaces contain either smaller glass pearls, shell-shaped baroque glass pearls or semi-precious stones (such as chrysoprase and onyx).

chrysoprase margarita necklace semiprecious stone lilac ribbon

For those of you who love the design style but are looking for a less "girly" look, I will still be creating the original style of necklace which does not have the ribbon bow.  And should you have a specific colour combination in mind, I am more than happy to take custom orders!

onyx margarita necklace black eggplant purple rayon ribbon feminine chunky

Wednesday, 27 April 2011

Domum Vindemia Launch!!!


I am thrilled to announce today that I am finally launching my homewares store, Domum Vindemia!!!  As you will find when you head over to my store, I am opening with a small range of vintage doily buntings and upcycled cake stands.  For the time being, I will only be selling my Domum Vindemia creations on Madeit, but I do have plans to open a store on Etsy once I have more items created.


To celebrate the long-awaited launch of my new venture, I am offering all of my blog readers, Facebook fans and Twitter followers 10% off your first purchase.  Just use the code "LAUNCH10" when you make your purchase and I will refund you the difference via Paypal.  For those of you who would prefer to pay in USD, I am happy to send you a new Paypal invoice in USD until my Etsy store is opened.

Monday, 25 April 2011

Fun New Creations

I have spent the last two and half weeks of school holidays entertaining the two cheeky monkeys, including trying out several new crafting techniques and ideas.  Mind you, not all of our projects were successfully attempted (it's better that you not see my highly dubious attempts at rolled fabric flowers and singed petal flowers).  But, we did manage to knock up some fun (and for me, rather girly) accessories this holidays!


One project which turned out quite well were ruffled ribbon bracelets.  I got the idea from Craft Snob, which is full of great floral and fabric tutorials and ideas.  The girls had a lot of fun shopping for the ribbon (of course, Miss 3's ribbon just had to be pink) and these bracelets were very quick to create.  I have to say, though, that I have been tackling so many sewing projects involving ruffles of late, that I am getting a little bit tired of ruffles!


One thing I haven't gotten over is my love of fabric yoyos (or Suffolk puffs)!  The girls love the yoyo clips I made for them (see here) so much that I thought I would make a few for myself.  Of course my clips are a little "classier" than the ones I made for the girls since I am more "mature" than they are, he he he.  To achieve my classy look, I added ribbon, lace and stylish vintage buttons to my yoyos.  I also attached my yoyos to bobby pins rather than the snap clips which I normally use for kiddie hair accessories.


I'm thinking that these yoyo clips would make good hair accessories for flower girls or even bridesmaids (especially the lace-covered ones), so I might add a few of these to my stores when I've found some more suitably fancy buttons.  What do you think?

Friday, 22 April 2011

Friday Finds - Easter

“For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.  For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him."   John 3:16-17


I don't know about you, but I really love the "Easter season"!  And not because Easter often means loads of chocolate, hot cross buns and an extended public holiday period in Australia (although these are all great things).  I love Easter because, as a Christian, it is a time of year when I especially remember and celebrate an essential part of my faith.  I know the thought of Jesus dying in our place (and taking the punishment we deserve) because we are not good enough is not an attractive one to many, but it is one that gives me hope, peace and comfort.  Whatever your beliefs, though, I wish you all a blessed Easter with your friends and loved ones and hope you enjoy these beautiful Easter-themed handmade creations.




Monday, 18 April 2011

Domum Vindemia: A New Venture and Store

cupcake stand rosalie vintage saucer cut glass mini vase upcycled creations
Victoria Cupcake Stand

Yes, you read right, I am adding to the craziness and busy-ness here at the home of Two Cheeky Monkeys by trying out a new venture - a new store!!!  This new line of creations, which you will be able to find on both Etsy and Madeit, will be sold under the label Domum Vindemia, which means "vintage home" in Latin.

vintage doily and napkin bunting louisa homewares
Louisa Vintage Doily and Napkin Bunting

I was originally planning to launch my new store earlier this year but circumstances led me to postpone it until now.  Actually, not quite now, since a recent kitchen mishap (long story) has led me to yet again delay the launch.  However, I am hoping to open the virtual doors of Domum Vindemia after the upcoming Easter break!  In the mean time, I hope you're enjoying the sneak peeks of what you'll be able to find instore.

vintage saucer cut glass mini vase cupcake stand primula homewares
Primula Cupcake Stand

So what will you find in this new online venture of mine, I hear you ask?  Well, my love of upcycling vintage crockery and linen has led me to decide to sell my upcycled creations.  I will be stocking Domum Vindemia with cupcake stands, cake stands and doily and napkin buntings - the majority of which have been created using vintage parts.  I might also add my vintage dictionary page prints one day if I can ever work out how to combine the shipping of art prints with kitchenware!

cupcake stand cake platter brown margaret rose candlestick vintage
Margaret Cupcake Stand

Friday, 15 April 2011

Feature Friday - Inspired Wish

For the feature Friday post this week, we welcome Jeanie of Inspired Wish, a fellow Aussie and Madeit seller.  Her store boasts a range of colourful and funky creations to catch your eye - are you ready to find out more?!





Tell us a bit about yourself.
Hi, I'm Jeanie and I live in Geelong with my husband and our two turtles Aristotle and Gertrude. I relocated from Queensland almost three years ago.  Although it gets a bit cold here, I love the life style change. I'm a full time Receptionist.  I'm the only Admin person supporting 20 Engineers and Surveyors.  My day job keeps me busy and a little stressed.  My hobby is the stuff I do outside work that helps me unwind, and fulfils my creative and accessorising desires.

Describe yourself in five words.
Easy-going, positive, purposeful, perfectionist, chocoholic.


When and how did you first start crafting/creating?
I've always been crafty but didn't think of myself as a creative artist until recently.  My passion for jewellery making was sparked early 2010.  I'd been feeling dowdy and dull and wasn't sure how to turn that around.  I thought a new hair style might help so I set out on a mission by googling face shapes and hair styles.  I stumbled across a blog for an Image Consultant.  I found the answers I was looking for!  I met with Imogen Lamport who helped me discover my personality style and colours.

What do you create and what are your favourite materials with which to work?
I create modern jewellery with the aim of inspiring women to feel fabulous.  I love to work with resin and sterling silver.  I also adore colourful beads.  I'm planning to work more with gemstones soon.  Colour plays a large part in my pieces.  I love achieving an original look by colouring metal (copper/brass) with patina.  I have some ideas for a few sterling silver pieces.  I'm sure somehow they'll end up with a hint of colour, I can't help myself.

 
When and how did you start selling online?
When someone first suggested that I should sell my work online I thought that was outrageous.  After several prompts it didn't seem so ridiculous and I looked into it.  I decided to go with an Australian site to be amongst fellow Aussie creators and set up shop on Madeit.  I launched Inspired Wish on 3rd July 2010.
If someone had told me in just 10 months I'd be working with a graphic designer, developing a jewellery line, taking custom orders, and wishing this was my full time job, I'd have laughed out loud.  I've never been busier or happier.  There's a lot of work that goes in hand with creating and selling your jewellery online, but its also deeply satisfying.

Describe your store in five words.
Contemporary, fun, colourful, modern, fabulous. 


Who or what are the influences behind your creations?
I'm influenced by a lot of things. I'm influenced by a need to create pieces that compliment my wardrobe.  I'm often inspired after visiting a gallery or garden nursery that has interesting sculptures.  A huge metal contraption or water feature can spark an idea for a pendant or earrings. A lot of my pieces are created because I had an urge to learn a new technique.

Where can we find you online?

Wednesday, 13 April 2011

School Holidays Tutorial Roundup

It's school holiday time - yes!  No, I'm not crazy.  I know that having to entertain two small children non-stop can be a bit stressful, but I am happily envisioning two weeks of lie ins (sleep ins would be better but with a 3 year old and a 5 year old, you take what you get!) and excited about not having to stress about making lunches every morning and finding clean (and dry) uniforms for the kids to wear.
However, in order to stay sane during the coming two weeks, I have been madly organising play dates and other activities for the two cheeky monkeys.  I am also, of course, planning some crafty fun for the girls and myself so today's post is a roundup of craft tutorials which we are hoping to try out.  If your kids are young, like mine are, you will probably have to do most (if not all) of the steps in each project, but the end product should still keep the kiddies entertained.  Enjoy!

Cuuuuute felt mushroom tutorial by Oh the Cuteness!

Felt pot sticker tutorial by Craftiness is Not Optional

Tuesday, 12 April 2011

Fabric Cuff Winner


A big thank you to everyone who entered my fabric cuff giveaway!  I cherish my readers' comments, especially the responses to my creations.   :)
Anyway, you probably want to know who Random.org picked as the winner.  That would be commenter #18 who is Stephanie of Over It!  Congratulations to Steph and my condolences to the other entrants.


For those of you who didn't win, never fear.  You can still be the proud owner of a Two Cheeky Monkeys fabric cuff AND I'm offering 10% OFF all cuffs for the next week!  Simply use the code "FABRICCUFF" when you purchase a cuff and I will send you a revised invoice ASAP.

Monday, 11 April 2011

Hordes of Headbands

Okay, so maybe I'm exaggerating a little when I say "hordes", but in between creating pieces for my Etsy and Madeit stores, I have been putting together an assortment of headbands to add as "present toppers" for the gifts we bring to the various birthday parties to which my girls are invited.  (Now that the school year is in full swing, the birthday invitations are coming in left, right and centre!)

This headband was made simply by pulling apart a fabric flower, re-layering it and then adding a cute pearl button.  Oh, and of course, lots of hot glue to attach the flower to the headband!

As I have a low tolerance of repetitive creating, every headband is different.  However, I am planning on making more headbands with the ruffle adornment which was made following Twirling Betty's easy-to-follow ruffle tutorial which I ADORED as soon as I read it!  I mean, it wouldn't be a normal headband-making session if the cheeky monkeys and I don't get some for ourselves, would it?  Especially as we just can't resist headbands in this household AND they are great for bad hair days!

 
The last headband pictured is still a work in progress (obviously).  I got all excited about making kanzashi fabric flowers only to find that putting the final flower together was harder than it looked given my dubious fabric choice.  Oops!

 I had fun matching different colours of felt to the gorgeous floral fabric I used for this headband.  Snipping all the notches in the felt was a major pain, however.


Friday, 8 April 2011

Feature Friday - Jewels by Trish

My featured artist for this week is the talented Trish of Jewels by Trish.  Trish and I are both members of the Christian Artists Street Team on Etsy and I just adore the way she uses beads in her creations!  Before I give too much away, let's find out a bit more about the creator behind this US-based label.

 

Tell us a bit about yourself.
My name is Tricia, but my friends call me Trish.  I am a 1st grade teacher and love handcrafting jewelry!  I have two kids...a 13 year old girl and a 5 year old boy.

Describe yourself in five words.
Loving, compassionate, shy, independent, fun.

When and how did you first start crafting/creating?
I have been crafting in some form since I was a little girl.  I found beads a few years ago through a good friend.  My husband bought me an expensive necklace and when I discovered I could make it myself for much, much less; I was hooked!   Creating with beads offers me stress relief too!  I just love it!!

 

What do you create and what are your favourite materials with which to work?
I create jewelry and so far love every material I touch!  I love pearls, gemstones, sterling silver, wire wrapping, suede, leather, chain, memory wire...

When and how did you start selling online?
 I started selling online over a year ago.  I found Etsy through a jewelry forum on about.com.

Describe your store in 5 words.
Eclectic, elegant, funky, classic, affordable.


Who or what are the influences behind your creations?
My creations are influenced by the beads themselves for the most part.  I usually start with a focal piece and then rifle through my collections until something "pops" into place.  The beads just "speak to me."

Where can we find you online?

Special Offer: Trish is generously offering 15% OFF to all Two Cheeky Monkeys readers!  To take up this fantastic offer, simply use the coupon code "blog15" at checkout when you make your purchase.

Wednesday, 6 April 2011

Sewing Adventures - A Kisslock Purse

Those of you who are regular readers of my blog may remember my post back in January when I wrote about several sewing projects I was hoping to tackle over the summer (see here if you can't remember).  One of those projects was a kisslock frame purse, which I did eventually finish sewing, but I have only just gotten round to securely gluing the metal frame to the fabric part of the purse.


You might also remember that I was a little worried about tackling this sewing project because there were several rather complicated steps, including drawing up my own pattern for the purse.  Well, it turned out to be a little easier than I thought it would be and I only really struggled with gluing on the metal frame and sewing the part of the purse where the frame hinge sits.  Somewhat bizarrely, I also struggled a little with ironing my wadding onto the outer fabric.  I still have no idea why, maybe I had accidentally put my iron onto the wrong setting...


Anyway, as you can see, I finally got this little purse finished and am loving the somewhat lopsided results!  The front of the purse features an embroidered section salvaged from a vintage napkin and the back (which isn't pictured) has a strip of vintage lace at the top under the metal frame.  I lined the inside of the purse with a cute red and white floral fabric salvaged from an old Sheridan pillowcase.  In fact, the only non-upcycled part of this purse is the kisslock frame - everything else was salvaged from my local op shop!
This little purse has come in quite handy for my short walks to and from school with Cheeky Monkey #1 when all I need to carry with me are the house keys, my mobile phone and some tissues (mothers need to be prepared!).  I have one more kisslock frame waiting to be turned into a cute little purse, perhaps I should make a more "fancy" purse for the rare occasions when I get to go out on a date with Mr Cheeky Monkey...   ;)

Monday, 4 April 2011

My One Year Blog-aversary!!!

Wow, 2011 has been such a busy year so far!!!  So busy, in fact, that in the midst of adjusting to having one child in school and another at kindergarten and coming to terms with my dad's cancer diagnosis and treatment, I completely forgot about my one year blog-aversary.  I know, it's not a particularly important milestone given everything else that's been going on in my life, but I still thought that it would be fun to celebrate in some small way.


As you know, I've been working on fabric cuff creations for some time now and I thought I would belatedly celebrate my blog-aversary by giving away a sweet little fabric cuff!  The Amy cuff is a new design I've been working on in my attempts to combine ribbon ruffles, jewellery findings and cabochons.  Some vital statistics about "Amy": 18cm/7.25 in long and 4cm/1.75 in wide, the buttons and lace used are both vintage.


So how do you get a chance to win the cute Amy cuff?  Simply leave me a comment telling me where you would wear this cuff if you were the winner!  Would you save the cuff for special occasions or wear it every chance you can get?  Don't forget to leave me a way to contact you in the even that you are the winner.

You can get extra entries by following my blog, becoming a Facebook or Twitter follower or hearting my Etsy store.  Just leave me a separate comment for each entry, your FB/Twitter/Etsy username and a way to contact you.     :)
This giveaway is open worldwide and will end at 4pm (Melbourne time) on Friday, 8 April 2011.  The giveaway winner will be chosen using Random.org.

This giveaway is now being extended till Monday, 11th April 2011!

Friday, 1 April 2011

Feature Friday - 2Kute

Yes, my feature Friday posts are back!!!  This is my first post for the year and I will be scheduling more feature Friday posts throughout 2011.  My first featured artisan for the year is Rose of 2kute, a fellow CAST member and the creator of some very cute crocheted items!  So let's find out a little about some of her creative journey so far...


Tell us a bit about yourself.
My name is Rose and Etsy is my job.  I no longer have a 'dayjob' due to health problems.  I found myself home, sick and bored. TV was my friend and companion (along with Bambam, my yorkie), my favorite channel was HGTV and I started to watch craft shows.  That is when I decided to go back to crochet.

Describe yourself in five words.
Funny, peace maker, stubborn, perfectionist, optimist.


When and how did you first start crafting/creating?
I started to crochet in my early teens but then life happened, school, marriage, children, career... hen back in 2003 I became ill and had to quit my job.  That is when I picked crochet back up again and really delved into it, learning more stitches and techniques

What do you create and what are your favourite materials with which to work?
I crochet pretty much everything and anything, however, my passion is hats.  I love making hats.  I love the natural fibers - cotton and wool are two of my favorite.


 When and how did you start selling online?
I signed for Etsy in January 2008, but I was so afraid to list my items.  So it really took me about five to six months to build up the courage to take pictures of what I had made and list them.


Describe your store in five words.
Cool, colorful, warm, cozy, eclectic.


Who or what are the influences behind your creations?
Everything.  I can get inspired by the colors in a magazine, or a commercial on TV, nature, flowers.  I love flowers.

Where can we find you online?
Etsy: http://www.etsy.com/shop/2kute
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/2kutekreations
Twitter: http://twitter.com/2kutekreations
My other shop: http://www.etsy.com/shop/2kutekards
Blog: http://2kute.blogspot.com/

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