biting off…?

…more than I can chew? Eee by gum I hope not. I’ll be setting up at the Community Carnival this afternoon, which starts tomorrow and runs over 4 days. Incredible Rob has taken time off from work to help me. Don’t know how I’d manage without him. I’m still waiting for the printing people to let me know that my signage is ready (hurry UP dammit) and this morning I finished another hat order for the preschool. Almost on my way to Stellenbosch just now to deliver them, I remembered to pause and take some pics…

by 6

by 1

by 3

by 4

by 2

I cam away with orders for the fleece beanies and aprons for the staff. That makes Gemsy and me very happy. But for now – it’s Carnival time!


I met Abigail last week. She’s 4 and lives in Sedgefield, where Rob and I were holidaying. She and her dad joined us for a braai one evening and, while the guys were tending the meat and making sure the beers were the right temperature of cold, Abi and I took a short drive into the village.

She found a pack of fruity chewing gum in the cubby hole, with four left inside. Can I have one, please? she asked. Sure, I said, have two if you like. So she had three, then closed the little envelope. Then she immediately opened it again and said Oh there’s only one left now. I think I’ll have to give it to me.

She came to visit me at the market on Saturday morning, and I said she could pick whichever hat she liked best. Seems she’s a Hello Kitty girl.


the head wrap thing

I have it on excellent authority that head wraps are THE BOMB right now. The height of fashion. The in look for the in crowd. The Moët & Chandon of crocheted headwear.  The cold season hasn’t arrived here yet, but come June…..hoo boy you’re not going to want to leave home without one. So says trend spotter at Yarnchick40, and who am I to disagree?

You’ll see from her blog that she came up with a really really nice one, so I followed her pattern and made one for Grommit.

wrap 4 wrap 1 wrap 2 wrap 3

I used a 6.5mm hook and 2 strands of DK special something-or-other. Took me about 1.5 hours, accompanied by a bit of Banshee. No hardship there.

Thanks for the heads up, Lisa. Where would I be without you?

cheap thrills

I popped into my local charity shop last week, Help the Rural Child (read more here), and came away with a tunic top, a silk animal print blouse and a pair of almost-new black bootlegs, for less than R100. (I think that’s about 8 US dollars? !!!!)

It’s always nice to add a couple of useful things to one’s wardrobe, but I wondered why I was more pleased with my finds than when I get something at Woollies or the Big Blue. I can afford to buy brand new clothes, after all. But then I realised – a large part of the pleasure is that you don’t know if you’ll find something or not at a charity shop. There’s no guarantee you’ll find anything at all, and at the same time there’s the chance that you’ll find ten things that scream your name in your size.

charity top i

I’ve worn the red and blue tunic about four times already, so I’m definitely getting my money’s worth. That’s my idea of a cheap thrill.

did you say BORING?

After a long break between starting and finishing, my chair is finally as done as it’s ever going to be :-)

chair 1

This was Rob’s chair when he was a little boy; when his parents moved three years ago, it came my way. I had the cushions reupholstered in a neutral beige linen (what was I thinking???), and Alex said it was more boring than a seat on a plane. BUT NOT ANY MORE ….

chair 2

It didn’t seem right to bomb the front and not the reverse of the back cushion, but the back got a much hastier treatment. Loyal followers of my blog may notice that six of the blocks on the front originated from Rachel’s CAL that I signed up for about three years ago (here). I have another 8 or 10 squares somewhere, but clearly they aren’t going to magically reproduce themselves and turn into a blanket any time soon. Seemed a pity to waste them….

Other crochet bits are abandoned projects, failed experiments and some recycled bunting. I couldn’t face starting the seat from scratch, so the seat “bomb” is actually a small blanket that Doreen gave to me a while back.

* NB. Inspiration for yarnbombing furniture comes from Daniella Joe’s blog. You should go see her stuff !!!

I can’t imagine what Mom and Pop would make of this, but that little boy whose chair it once was says he likes it as much as I do.

growing up

I’m starting to feel very grown up. Not me Jill but me Jam Tarts:

  • The big order for the preschool went off well and full payment has been received (they were also going to put in an order for winter hats so I’m still hoping on that one)
  • I’ve been accepted for the Durbanville Plaasfees (thanks for all your finger-crossings)
  • I’ve been invited to trade at the annual Community Carnival in February (now in it’s 63rd year and with 80,000 feet expected over 4 days)
  • I have customers who can’t get to my markets trying to organise coffee dates with me so that I can show them new hats
  • I have engaged a lovely lady called Berenice who will be knitting hats for me (like Eunice who still crochets for me), and…………………….
  • I am now the proud owner of a tagging gun. How retail is that!?

tag gun    tag

There are going to be a lot of late nights and early mornings spent sewing, but I have to say I’m really happy about all this. I won’t be competing with Kangol any time soon, but I never wanted to be big anyway, I just want to be busy and generate income and not have to work in a corporate environment until honourable retirement age.

And speaking of markets, Rob and I are off to Sedgefield for a few days soon (it’s near Knysna on the Garden Route, for those of you who aren’t local). One of the main attractions for us always taking our holidays there are the two really amazing markets on the Saturday morning called Wild Oats (the food part) and the Scarab (arts and crafts). We usually spend all our money there, in one extravagant frenzy. So Rob says, Why don’t you see if you can trade at Scarab when we’re there? I say, Oh sure like they’re waiting for an out-of-towner to just pitch up and grab a spot? Rob says, No harm in trying. I say, No man, it’s supposed to be a holiday, remember? Rob says, Just try. So I do. And they say, Lovely products, love to have you. See you on the 14th. So there we are then, in for a penny in for a pound….