Thursday, 25 May 2017

Gorgeous Anisoptera

About this time last year I posted about a new range of draonfly-themed creations I was adding to Domum Vindemia.  They have been amazingly popular, with only one set of stitch markers left in stock!

image dragonfly anispotera wine glass charms barware wineglass domum vindemia handmade australia

So popular, in fact, that I recently created a bespoke set of dragonfly (aka Anisoptera) wine glass charms for a customer who plans to also have the back of each charm engraved with initials.  I had a lot of fun creating these, and am thinking of creating one more set with the last remaining images.  What do you think - yes or no?

Tuesday, 23 May 2017

I'm officially an adult!

My beloved dad used to joke that you're not truly an adult until you reach 40!  I don't know how old he was when he came up with this hypothesis, but I'm sure that he would have gleefully welcomed me to "adulthood" if he were still here today.

vintage birthday cake sale

To celebrate reaching my BIG 4-0, I'm having a ONE DAY ONLY sale: 40% off* all purchases over USD$50 in either Two Cheeky Monkeys or Domum Vindemia.  Simply use the coupon code 40PERCENT at checkout and spoil yourself while I celebrate my birthday!

image birthday gifts

And here are some of my lovely, lovely presents from fantastic family members - I have been so spoiled!!!

* Discount does not include custom orders, layby/layaway or postage and handling.

Thursday, 18 May 2017

Bespoke To Kill a Mockingbird

Some of you may remember back to two years ago when I first launched the current literature charm bracelet range, and how excited I was to show off the new range.  I am so pleased to look back over that time and see how popular this range has been in both its gold-plated and silver-plated colourways.

image to kill a mockingbird bracelet atticus finch jem scout dill boo radley two cheeky monkeys jewellery jewelry handmade etsy silver

Today I am showing off a bespoke version of the To Kill a Mockingbird bracelet, commissioned by a customer who was interested in including Dill's name in the bracelet.  I really like this version of the bracelet and am seriously considering adding it to Two Cheeky Monkeys as an alternative to the existing design available for purchase.  What do you think?  Do you love the addition of Dill?

Tuesday, 16 May 2017

In my creative space

This past week I have been happily creating for the two cheeky monkeys and myself, with several floral projects adorning my creative space.  The first is something I've been planning to make for a while now, but kept putting off to work on customer orders and ideas for my stores.

image vase button flowers upcycled two cheeky monkeys blog salt and pepper shaker handmade

This delightful vintage salt and pepper shaker was purchased from an op shop (thrift store) many years ago with the intent to turn it (and its pair) into miniature vases.  So now, they're finally being used as I had intended them to be and are the proud holders of sweet bouquets of button flowers created from my stash of vintage and contemporary buttons.

image flower ornament door handle dangle ruffle rosette heart sheet music glitter collage mixed media

I've also been working on little collage-inspired adornments for the cheeky monkeys to decorate their rooms.  We all love using old sheet music in our creations, and my monkeys loooove glitter and all things cute, so I went with a slightly frou-frou design.  What do you think of my "just for fun" creations?  What do you create for yourself when you're relaxing?

Thursday, 11 May 2017

Still on the bunting train

I'm still on a roll with storybook buntings for Domum Vindemia this week (in between consoling poor Mr Cheeky Monkeys who developed shingles), with multiple new buntings gracing my creative space.  On a side note, all this sewing has gotten me seriously considering the purchase of a new and better sewing machine to handle the various projects I tackle!

image paddington bear bunting banner garland domum vindemia handmade upcycled etsy

I'm still merely re-stocking bunting designs which have been sold out or  are extremely low on stock, so if you've been waiting for your favourite designs to make it back in-store, now's the time to head to Domum Vindemia and feast your bookish heart out on our new additions.  Although I've only been working on our usual designs, I have been slowly adding different bunting tape colours to the store.

image dumbo bunting banner garland domum vindemia etsy handmade upcycled elephant circus

I'm really loving the return to cream-coloured bunting tape as well as the addition of red bunting tape, and am seriously considering adding several new colours, such as mint green and navy blue.  What do you think?  Which colours do you love for bunting tapes?

Tuesday, 9 May 2017

Princess-inspired hair jewellery

In case you haven't noticed by now, I am a huge fan of long hair and fun and gorgeous hair accessories. And growing up watching Chinese wuxia films, I quickly fell in love with the amazing hair jewels and accessories worn by the female characters (especially the princesses!) in those films.

image hair sticks two cheeky monkeys jewellery jewelry beaded pearls swarovski crystal jane eyre atticus finch to kill a mockingbird handmade

So, of course, I've added many of my own interpretations of Chinese hair sticks to Two Cheeky Monkeys over the years, including the ones you see above.  In fact, the purple Swarovski pearl version you see in the top right of the image will very soon be the newest addition to the range.  And, I'm working on other new designs to add to the store.
Let me ask you - which design is your favourite?  Are you a fan of the pearls and flowers, the more "simple" beaded versions, or are you a literature fan?

Thursday, 4 May 2017

Last Minute Mother's Day Gifts and a 40% Off Sale

If you've wandering around completely flummoxed about how it is already THE START OF MAY, then you're not alone!  May is traditionally an INSANE month for the Cheeky Monkeys family, and this year is especially so as we have been dealing with illness, have two milestone birthdays in the family as well as one of the cheeky monkeys heading off on school camp and, of course, Mother's Day.

image mother's day ideas two cheeky monkeys domum vindemia handmade

So, if you're as stressed as I am about how it is already May, then chances are you're still stressing about Mother's day presents for your mum or other significant women in your life.  But never fear, Domum Vindemia and Two Cheeky Monkeys both have plenty of ready to ship items in-store, ready to spoil your mum!!!  Simply head to our stores, select EXPRESS POST shipping, and your mum can know just how much she means to you this Mother's Day (and hopefully every day too).

image floral bouquet two cheeky monkeys and domum vindemia birthday and mother's day celebrations 40% off sale

AND, if you're a member of our mailing list, you should have already received our latest newsletter with your special 40% OFF discount coupon inside, which you are most welcome to use for your Mother's Day shopping!  Not signed up for our mailing list?  Never fear, sign up HERE today and you will receive our monthly newsletter with your special 40% off code too.

Tuesday, 2 May 2017

Magic Custard Cake Recipe Roundup

As you probably all know by now, I am a HUGE fan of magic custard cakes.  Firstly, because they're so easy to make but are such a marvel when you see the layers of cake "magically" appear upon baking.  Secondly, because they taste AMAZING.  And thirdly, because the recipe for magic custard cakes is just so versatile.  So today, I have put together a roundup of 6 different flavoured magic custard cakes for you to try - enjoy!*

image magic custard cake recipe diy tutorial chocolate vanilla pandan matcha lemon coffee baking

1. Chocolate - who can resist chocolate???
2. Lemon - for those who prefer their desserts not too sweet
3. Pandan - an Asian-inspired version
4. Vanilla - the base recipe from which all other flavours can be made
5. Coffee - this one's a little naughty with a touch of Kahlua
6. Matcha - another Asian-inspired take on magic custard cake

Which one will you try first?
* For those on a gluten free diet, I have successfully made magic custard cakes with gluten free flour.  It doesn't taste the same to me, but is always happily eaten by my coeliac friends.

Thursday, 27 April 2017

Peter Pan and Neverland

It has definitely been a very storybook bunting fortnight as I attempt to restock sold out buntings in between continuing to deal with my strained gluteal muscles.  (They are getting better, painfully slowly, but at least there is gradual improvement.)

image peter pan bunting wendy captain hook handmade domum vindemia etsy upcycling upcycled banner garland

This week has been all about the boy who never grows up, Peter Pan.  The Cheeky Monkeys absolutely love the Peter Pan story (and sometimes would like to never grow up too), and I'm so honoured that everyone else loves Peter Pan and my Neverland buntings so much too.

image peter pan bunting wendy captain hook handmade domum vindemia etsy upcycling upcycled banner garland

As always, I am offering longer and shorter versions of the Peter Pan bunting in-store, as well as different colourways for the bunting tape/ties.  Which version do you prefer, the longer and pennant style, or the shorter and u-shaped style?

Tuesday, 25 April 2017

Curioser and curioser, with a sale thrown in too

image alice in wonderland lewis carroll alice's adventures in wonderland needle keeper minder sewing craft supplies aide bookish domum vindemia

A while back I unveiled my range of literary needle minders created especially to help literature-loving sewists to keep track of their sewing needles in the midst of a project.  And while I've had fun seeing which characters customers would choose for their needle keeper, I've had to take a long, hard look at my range of creations as I try to streamline Domum Vindemia's look.

image jane eyre miss charlotte bronte needle keeper minder sewing craft supplies aide bookish domum vindemia




I've decided to bring and end to this range of crafting supplies/aides and am having a quick fire sale on remaining needle minders, including the "Miss Eyre" version seen above.  So if you've been eyeing these literary sewing aides, act quickly to get your favourite before they're sold for good.

Thursday, 20 April 2017

Storybook Buntings

image dumbo bunting the elephant disney children domum vindemia upcycled handmade nursery baby

Now that the peaceful Easter holidays seems like a distant memory, I have been working on re-stocking Domum Vindemia with popular buntings which had sold out.  So today, I'm showing off two of my newest offerings, storybook buntings for a little one's room or play area.

image winnie the pooh bunting christopher robin aa milne handmade upcycled domum vindemia children nursery baby

Dumbo seems to be a special favourite with many customers, and Winnie the Pooh is a classic character who will also never go out of fashion.  I don't think I've created Dumbo or Winnie the Pooh buntings in these colourways before, so I'm really hoping that you all love them as much as I do!  What do you think?  Do you love more "unisex" and brightly-coloured bunting tapes, or are you more a fan of neutral and lighter colours?

Tuesday, 18 April 2017

Bookish Necklaces

The school holidays are finally over, and although we had a less than restful time with our multitude of appointments and helping Grandma Cheeky Monkeys who had knee surgery, it was nice to celebrate Easter and have some time off together as a family.

image mary poppins locket necklace quote literature practically perfect in every way just as i suspected bookish handmade jewellery jewelry two cheeky monkeys

I've been using what spare time I can muster up to work on new necklace designs for Two Cheeky Monkeys.  And the two newest additions feature favourite quotes and exciting new designs.  The first newbie features the fantastically popular Mary Poppins quote, "Practically perfect in every way...".  This quote has been so popular in the silver locket necklaces that I decided to add an antiqued brass version for those who prefer a metallic brown finish in their jewellery.

image wuthering heights locket necklace jewellery jewelry emily bronte quote whatever our souls are made of his and mine are the same handmade two cheeky monkeys

Our other newbie features a quote which has been very popular inset into Domum Vindemia's metal bookmarks.  This quote comes from Emily Bronte's Wuthering Heights: "Whatever our souls are made of, his and mine are the same."  I'd love to know which one you prefer, so please comment below with your faves!

Thursday, 13 April 2017

Easter Blessings

A quick post today to wish you all a blessed and safe Easter whether you're travelling or simply staying at home and relaxing.  Happy Easter!

Tuesday, 11 April 2017

A Special Spot Bunting

image spot the dog bunting eric hill children puppy animals birthday party first domum vindemia handmade upcycled

This past week I have been working on a special bunting order for a little boy's first birthday party, and it's been so much fun having Spot the dog illustrations floating around my work space!
I haven't been regularly stocking Spot buntings in Domum Vindemia, but the one's I've made have been so popular that I'm now planning to add them as a regular fixture to the book bunting range.  Which Spot stories would you like to see in the bunting range?

Thursday, 6 April 2017

Easter Cooking Roundup

You should all know by now how much I love celebrating Easter because of it's significant meaning to me and Christians around the world.  And although I don't often cook Easter-themed or traditional foods at this time of year, I still love to indulge in these treats when I can.
So today I've put together a roundup of some Easter-themed and traditional meals I hope to cook this Easter.  Comment below to share some of your favourite Easter recipes!

image easter recipes herb crusted lamb baked salmon roasted easter egg marshmallow slice recipe hot cross buns gluten free hot cross scones easter pie

Tuesday, 4 April 2017

Bespoke Swarovski Necklace

In this first week of the Victorian school holidays, I'm quickly sharing a recent bespoke order which I had a lot of fun designing and creating.  My brief was to create a necklace featuring wire-wrapped Swarovski crystals as a gift for a special lady who was the godmother of the customer's baby.

image wire-wrapped pendant necklace swarovski crystal clear aurora borealis ruby siam red briolette teardrop drop handmade two cheeky monkeys silver

I went with a simple, but elegant, design featuring a briolette-shaped crystal in the birthstone colour of the godchild.  I also added an aurora borealis-coated clear Swarovski crystal drop to the necklace to contrast with the ruby briolette.  It's been a while since I've done any serious wire wrapping, so I had to get my brain back into that mode of creating, but I love the pretty result and hope the recipient does too!  Let me know what you think of this design and whether I should add it to the store!

Thursday, 30 March 2017

No bake honeycomb slice

I made this simple slice last week for the cake stall at the Cheeky Monkeys' school fete and thought I'd share the recipe because of the great response it received!  Let me warn you, this is definitely not a treat to make if you're going "sugar free" or following a strict diet.  So now that you're warned, here's what you need to know.


Ingredients
- 250g choc-coated honeycomb (e.g. Violet Crumble or Crunchie)
- 250g plain sweet biscuits such as Marie or milk arrowroot
- 1 cup of sweetened condensed milk (approx. 305 g)
- 125g unsalted butter
- 250g dark chocolate

Method
1. Crush the biscuits and honeycomb in your food processor.  It doesn't matter if it's not super fine, in fact I like to have small pieces of honeycomb visible in the slice.  You just don't want large chunks of honeycomb or biscuits as that can affect the slice consistency.
2. Melt the butter and condensed milk together in a saucepan on low heat.
3. Mix the melted butter and condensed milk with the crushed dry ingredients.  The mixture will look wet at this stage, but shouldn't be runny, just thick and gloopy.
4. Line a slice pan (approx. 28x18 cm) with foil.  Pour your mixture into your pan and spread evenly all the way to the edges.
5. Melt the chocolate in a double boiler or a bowl in your microwave.  Spread the melted chocolate evenly over the top of the biscuit mixture in the tray.
6. Refrigerate until solid, at least 2-3 hours.  Remove from the fridge about half an hour before slicing, then cut into bite-sized squares.
7. Enjoy your slice now, or store it in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 5 days.  You could even freeze your slice if you want to make it in advance for a function!

Variations
- If for some strange reason you're not a fan of honeycomb, you can easily substitute Maltesers or Clinkers into this recipe.
- Use milk chocolate for the topping if you don't have any dark chocolate on hand; I prefer the dark chocolate for balancing out the super sweetness of the condensed milk and honeycomb.

Tuesday, 28 March 2017

A rainbow of mandalas

I was recently contacted by a customer who loved Domum Vindemia's mandala-themed wine glass charms, but wanted something a little different from what was in-store.  She decided on a rainbow-coloured collection of mandala charms and I had a blast working on this large set of charms.

image mandala rainbow wine glass charms barware homewares domum vindemia handmade illustration

My favourite thing about this bespoke set is that each charm is beautiful but also so different from its mates that guests can easily differentiate between wine glasses.  There are only two mandala wine charm sets left in-store, and I'm thinking that I might have to seriously think about adding some more.  What do you think?

Thursday, 23 March 2017

Glamming it up in the Emerald City

image emerald green vintage glass earrings jewellery jewelry two cheeky monkeys handmade teardrop pear

You'd be excused for thinking you'd wandered into Wizard of Oz's Emerald City today for yes, there's certainly a lot of emerald green to be found!  And yes, I know I'm a week out for St Patrick's Day, but I just couldn't get these green pretties made in time for a St Patrick's Day post.

image emerald green vintage glass ring cocktail estate style jewellery jewelry two cheeky monkeys handmade octagon swirled

Although all of Two Cheeky Monkeys' "glam it up" range has been quite popular, by far the most popular pieces have been the emerald-hued ones.  Therefore, I'm adding two new styles of emerald earrings to the range, as well as a funky emerald and white swirled cocktail ring.

image emerald green vintage glass earrings jewellery jewelry two cheeky monkeys handmade teardrop pear carved star

Each of these pretties is vintage Czech or West German glass made in the 1940s and 1950s, so they are beautifully made and limited edition too, due to their vintage age.  Which is your favourite piece?

Tuesday, 21 March 2017

Mr Darcy's Back!

Good news Mr Darcy fans!  The last Pride and Prejudice watch necklace was so popular that I decided to create just ONE more.  While the last one featured the names of Eliza Bennet and Mr Darcy, this one has a sweet oval-shaped charm which says "Mr Darcy".

image mr darcy watch necklace jane austen pride and prejudice charm handmade two cheeky monkeys gold time piece

But at the moment this is the ONLY ONE I'm making, so if you love it, head to the store ASAP to make it yours.  If you love this style of watch necklace but are interested in other literary characters, please leave me a comment below and I'll get back to you to discuss a bespoke commission. :)

image mr darcy watch necklace jane austen pride and prejudice charm handmade two cheeky monkeys gold time piece

Thursday, 16 March 2017

Musical Bags

image purse hook bag hanger accessories music musician musical sheet handmade domum vindemia rhinestones

If you're like me and LOVE to go out to cafes with friends or take occasional family treats eating out, but DISLIKE the constant "where do I put my purse/handbag" struggle then you're going to love this latest addition to Domum Vindemia.  The purse hanger range has been in-store for about six months now, and I've been working on how to expand this popular range.

image purse hook bag hanger accessories music musician musical sheet handmade domum vindemia rhinestones etsy

After a chat with my super talented musician cousin (I think she's the only one of all my musically trained cousins who actually took their training and made a career out of it), I realised that I still haven't added a music-themed purse hanger to the range.  This has been now rectified and there is a treble clef/bass clef bag hook available, with the option to commission a musial note bag hook too.  Which of your friends would find this bag hook a perfect solution to the bag on floor problem?

Tuesday, 14 March 2017

Ciabatta

I know that I post A LOT about food and you probably all think that I'm some greedy piglet with food addiction issues (well, you're not totally wrong but I'm working on improving myself).  But, the Cheeky Monkeys family are actually fans of eating well and eating fresh food, so I do find that I'm often on the search for homemade recipes of commercially available foods.

ciabatta rolls bread homemade baked baking

One such favourite food of the little Cheeky Monkeys is ciabatta.  It's pretty hard to resist the crunchy, chewy and airy texture of this Italian bread which tastes great as a sandwich or used to mop of soups and casseroles.  However, the commercially available ciabatta is not particularly nutritious because it is made solely from refined or white flour.

ciabatta bread rolls homemade baking

So today I am sharing this FANTASTIC recipe for ciabatta which I found over at the kitchn site.  I altered it by substituting half the white flour for wholewheat/wholemeal flour and to be honest, this is the most successful bread I've ever baked by hand (Mr Cheeky Monkeys' comment was "They look like real bread rolls!").  My Cheeky Monkeys absolutely loved the rolls I created and I think you'll love this recipe too, enjoy!

Thursday, 9 March 2017

My dear, I don't give a damn

image wine glass charms charm set gone with the wind literature bookish handmade domum vindemia entertaining homewares barware barwares

"My dear, I don't give a damn" or "Frankly my dear, I don't give a damn" - one quote comes from Margaret Mitchell's novel and the other comes from the film version of said southern novel.  But whichever version of the quote you're a fan of, you're going to love entertaining with our new Gone With the Wind wine glass charms!  Which character would you choose for your wine glass?

image wine glass charms charm set gone with the wind literature bookish handmade domum vindemia entertaining homewares barware barwares

Tuesday, 7 March 2017

Pulled Pork Recipe Roundup

We're big fans of pulled pork on the Two Cheeky Monkeys household and I've been trying different recipes to find the ULTIMATE pulled pork recipe.  I'm not sure that I've found THE ONE yet, but here are four I've been playing around with in the kitchen.  Enjoy!

image pulled pork recipe slow cooker baked oven

1. Slow cooker Texas pulled pork (our current favourite)
2. Slow cooker pulled pork (sort of Mexican-inspired)
3. Semi-dry slow cooker pulled pork (we found doubling the spice amounts made this recipe better)

Thursday, 2 March 2017

Compact Mirror Giveaway!

Hello beautiful readers, today's post is all about thanking my wonderful readers and newsletter subscribers for your loyalty and support!  It's been a while since I've hosted a giveaway on the blog, so I thought this month I'd offer something fun.

image literary compact mirror literature quote giveaway domum vindemia two cheeky monkeys

You probably all know by now that I've been happily creating compact mirrors with bold, cheeky or beloved literary quotes adorning them for Domum Vindemia.  At the moment there are six quotes to choose from, and I'm offering ONE LUCKY PERSON the chance to win YOUR CHOICE of compact mirror from our available range.

What do you have to do to enter our giveaway?  Follow the instructions in the Rafflecopter form below - PLEASE NOTE that the first two entries are MANDATORY.

This giveaway is open to worldwide entrants 18 years of age and over.  Giveaway ends 17 March 2017 and the winner will be chosen randomly.  The winner has 48 hours to respond to my email before they forfeit their prize and a new winner is chosen.

Tuesday, 28 February 2017

Wherefore art thou, Romeo?

Last month I mentioned that I love seeing which characters customers choose for their crochet/knitting stitch marker sets, especially if they don't choose the expected main characters of the story.  And this month I had the pleasure of creating a Romeo and Juliet set of stitch markers where the character names chosen were very much a surprise.

image stitch marker set progress keeper crochet knitting handmade domum vindemia romeo and juliet shakespeare earrings capulet tybalt verona mantua

The customer opted to omit the names of Shakespeare's star-crossed lovers, instead choosing the names of lesser (but still important) characters as well as the names "Verona" and "Mantua", the two cities in which the story is set.  What do you think of these choices?  Would you do the same, or would you have done what most do and choose "Romeo" and "Juliet"?

Thursday, 23 February 2017

Lemon Dessert Roundup

We were recently the happy recipients of a MASSIVE bag of homegrown lemons from our next door neighbours (their dad's tree is VERY fruitful and produces enough crop to keep multiple families supplied for months on end).  So today I am sharing a roundup of my favourite lemon-flavoured desserts, because that's the best way to use lemons, right!  (Other than our favourite roast chicken recipe which I will share with you another day.)

image lemon dessert lemon drizzle yoghurt cake magic custard cake delicious meringue chocolate cake recipe

1. This lemon drizzle yoghurt cake is moist, easy to make and oh so lemony!
2. Combining two of my favourite desserts in one: lemon meringue chocolate cake!!!
3. Change up your go to magic custard cake recipe with the addition of lemons.
4. Perfect in winter served with a little cream or ice cream, lemon delicious is one of my go to winter desserts.

Tuesday, 21 February 2017

More English Literature

Thank you everyone for your well wishes this past week!  I am pretty much back to normal now, and raring to go with several plans I had temporarily put on hold.  Today I am showing off a few new creations which feature classic English literature from the late Victorian and Edwardian eras.

wine glass charms sherlock holmes moriarty john watson mycroft lestrade arthur conan doyle domum vindemia handmade barware

The first is a set of wine glass charms featuring some of my favourite characters from Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's Sherlock Holmes stories.  Like many, I loved Doyle's quirky detective before he became even more popular thanks to Robert Downey Jr's and Benedict Cumberbatch's film and TV portrayals of one of the most famous detectives in literature.

image wine glass charms set the wind in the willows kenneth grahame handmade Domum vindemia ratty otter mole badger mr toad weasel chief

The second is a set of charms featuring the sweet, funny and naughty animals from Kenneth Grahame's The Wind in the Willows.  I recently took the Cheeky Monkeys to see The Australian Shakespeare Company's production of Grahame's most famous work, and it inspired me to include its characters in Domum Vindemia's more popular designs (you can currently find Mole, Toad, Rat and friends in our magnet sets and wine charm sets).  Which set is your favourite?

Thursday, 16 February 2017

Hey, Boo

A quick post today, as I am recovering from a small surgical procedure I had done on Valentine's day (oh so romantic to have Mr Cheeky Monkeys driving me to hospital at the crack of dawn and then picking me up all groggy and out of it from anaesthesia).  To distract myself from the yuckiness of recovery, even if it is just from a minor day procedure, I'm sharing a fun To Kill a Mockingbird creation I was working on last week.

image hey boo radley watch necklace pendant two cheeky monkeys jewellery jewelry handmade etsy to kill a mockingbird harper lee

"Hey, Boo" is one of the cutest lines in the whole novel, and I finally found the opportunity to add this sweet quote to Two Cheeky Monkeys.  For those of you who have been following this blog since its start, you'll know that my watch necklace creations have evolved over the years, starting as merely vintage-inspired creations and gradually changing to become literature-themed pieces which still embody the vintage look.  So, what do you think of my latest addition to the range?

Tuesday, 14 February 2017

Romantic Bookmarks

I bet you never thought you would see the words "romantic" and "bookmark" together in a sentence, but here you go, I've gone and titled my blog post with those words!  I'm wishing everyone out there a happy Valentine's day, be you single, married, taken or otherwise, by showing off the two newest additions to the bookmark range at Domum Vindemia.

bookmark love story quote domum vindemia every love story is beautiful but ours if my favourite favorite

I thought today would be a great day to unveil the new additions given the quotes they carry - both love or romance-related (okay, the Gone With the Wind quote might be pushing it, ha ha ha).  The first is a sweet quote stating, "Every love story is beautiful, but ours is my favourite."  This one comes in both US and UK (and rest of the world?) spelling versions of "favourite/favorite".

bookmark love story quote domum vindemia gone with the wind handmade you should be kiised and often and by someone who knows how margaret mitchell

The second is Rhett's exasperated quote from Gone With the Wind, "You should be kissed and often, and by someone who knows how."  I wonder if this quote was George Lucas' inspiration for Han Solo's "You could use a good kiss!" in The Empire Strikes Back?  Which of the new quotes is your favourite?

Thursday, 9 February 2017

Chinese New Year Celebrations

So I completely forgot to take photos of the AMAZING spread my family and our friends put together for Chinese new year the other weekend, but today I'm sharing a quick pic of potsticker dumplings (jiaozi) I made from scratch with the Cheeky Monkeys.  I figure that Chinese new year is traditionally celebrated for two weeks, so I'm not too late with the Chinese food photos!

jiaozi potsticker dumplings cabbage and pork two cheeky monkeys

These are amongst the Cheeky Monkeys' favourite Chinese dumplings and not too hard to make.  So if you want to try making some for yourself (including the dumpling skins), a good place to start is Poh Ling Yeow's (who remembers Poh from season 1 of Masterchef?) easy recipe here.  The only alteration I make to the recipe is to throw in a little chopped coriander to the dumpling filling, because we all love coriander and there's usually some in my fridge waiting to be used up.  Oh, and I ALWAYS make a larger quantity than the recipe states - one can never have too many dumplings!

Tuesday, 7 February 2017

Valentine's Day Inspiration

While I freely admit that I don't generally celebrate Valentine's day and am not a fan of it's commercialisation, the romantic in me loves fun and thoughtful ways of showing loved ones that you care.  So I've put together a vintage-inspired Valentine's Day gift guide with items for everyone, from the love of your life to family members to your bestie.  Are you planning to celebrate this Valentine's Day?

valentine's day gift guide

1. Perfect for that friend or your sister who's too scared to commit to a real tattoo, floral temporary tattoos are a bit of fun and reflect the traditional bouquets given on Valentine's day.
2. Who wouldn't prefer an everlasting bouquet to one that fades and dies after a week? 
3. Spoil a little girl with a fun vintage Valentine skirt!
4. A literary way to declare yourself as that special someone's secret (or not so secret) admirer.
5. Show your hipster friend how much he means to you.
6. Perfect for newlyweds or someone who has moved cities, this vintage map heart artwork celebrates the city your recipient calls home.

Thursday, 2 February 2017

9 Ways to Upcycle Paint Card Samples

So the summer school holidays are well and truly over here in Australia, but I wanted to share some fun tutorials I found for creating with paint card samples (or paint chip samples as you North Americans like to call them).  For those of you asking why one would need to upcycle paint cards, then you need to know that it is almost impossible to enter a hardware chain store (such as Bunnings Warehouse) without the Cheeky Monkeys grabbing a handful of pretty-coloured paint card samples.

image nine ways to upcycle paint card chip samples tutorial diy upcycling roundup 9

I got sick of their growing piles of paint cards, so I suggested that they put those cards to good use instead.  Here are nine of their favourite tutorials for upcycling those paint cards.

1. These orbs make for fun decorations on a desk.
2. Paint card mosaics make great artworks as well as greeting cards and scrapbooking embellishments.
3. The Cheeky Monkeys' favourite way of upcycling their paint cards - bookmarks!
4. Adorn baby's nursery with a cheap but pretty paint card mobile.
5. Make adorable little boxes out of paint cards.
6. Fun gift packaging makes any present even better!
7. If you're lucky enough to own a spiral binder, turn your paint card samples into notepads.
8. My personal favourite, multicoloured artwork made from paint card shapes.
9. You don't have to leave the paint cards as is, use them as a base for embellishing and collaging in these handmade notebooks.

Wednesday, 1 February 2017

Massive 3 day sale!

sale retro lady two cheeky monkeys domum vindemia

Hello all!  Today I have a quick, mid-week post to advertise my very first massive sale event for both Two Cheeky Monkeys and Domum Vindemia.  I'm offering 30-40% off ALL items in-store (yes, that includes SALE items in-store!) for three days only starting today, February 1st.
For those of you already receiving our monthly news updates, you should receive an email today with the special coupon codes.  If you're not on our mailing list and NEEED the discount codes, you can sign up for our updates HERE and receive this month's update with all relevant sale codes.

Tuesday, 31 January 2017

A very Pride and Prejudice stitch marker set

image jane austen pride and prejudice handmade stitch markers crochet knitting craft tools supplies two cheeky monkeys domum vindemia

I recently had the pleasure of creating a special set of Pride and Prejudice stitch markers for a customer who needed a set of six, rather than our usual four, stitch markers.  And I got to thinking that the most fun part about creating stitch markers is seeing which characters a customer will choose.
Will they go for the story's protagonists and lovable minor characters?  Or will they opt to include the fictional "bad boys" and miscreants too?  Which characters would you choose, and why?
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