Friday, March 27, 2015

The Office of Tyre Tube Rubber Recycling *

I was listening to neuroscientist Daniel Levitin on the radio the other day - he's just released a book called "the Organised Mind" - and one thing he touched on was how we are wired to put things into categories - no matter how weird and wonderful those categories are. Our minds are by their nature bureaucratic.

I'm in  recovery mode after the frenzy of crafting for the school fete environment stall almost left me limp with RSI,  but I also wanted to share some of the good and not so good things we made and was wondering where to start.  Categories seem as good a place to start as any.

So today, as CEO of the Craft Commission, head of the Department of Environment Stall, I'm letting you into the Office of Tyre Tube Rubber Recycling.

The truth about tyre tubes or
Rules and Regulations of Rubber:

1. You can get them for free from CERES or ask your local bike shop.

2. They need lots of cleaning. Lots and lots of cleaning and wiping.

3. They can be sewn on the sewing machine with the help of some silicon wiped on the rubber and the needle.

4. Do not attempt to knit the tubes. Really. Just don't bother.

The assistant director of the Office of Tyre Tube Rubber Recycling, lovely Chris Black, had the mindbogglingly genius idea of doing macramé with the tubes. It was such a perfect collision of material and form - and worked a treat. We simply used cable ties for the macramé "knots". Unfortunately we didn't get a good photo of them and they sold so quickly it was as if we had dreamt them.

I had a few craftastrophes with the tubes. I extended the idea of the macramé to a bag.......which looked good but the cut off cable ties are sharp and scrape your hand whenever you get anything from the bag. Sigh.
So I might remake this bag and tie knots of rubber instead. Because it looks good!

My other craftastrophe was the knitting episode. Really. The less said, the better. Shhh!

Here are some things that did work with the rubber - necklaces using the curve of the tyre and the printed text on the tube.

Tassels and

loop earring.


Next year I want to make wallets and more bags.

The Department of the Environment Stall have a pinterest board (which kind of gets us back to the bureaurocracy of the brain, doesn't it? All those boards? Named and categorised?) for our recycling ideas if you are interested!

*title of this post inspired by a book I just finished called "A Wrong Turn at the Office of Unmade Lists" by Jane Rawson. Excellent book!

Thursday, March 12, 2015

Button Up!

Okay I know, I know -  I should be making not blogging! But just are some button necklaces I'm busy making for the Merri Creek Primary Fete (March 21st!)

They look like a rainbow of lollies. So today's outfit to match my craft is a rainbow too -  yellow linen shirt dress with embroidered yoke and POCKETS, pink tights, orange sock, trim covered wedges, flowers and pom poms.

Look I'm so busy I'm blurry - the handmade pom-pom earrings will also be available at the fete!

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Double Denim Days

Have you noticed? It's back. Double denim, denim patchwork, combined faded and dark denim  - a denim dream. Let's face it. It can be awful. But somehow also rather wonderful!

Here's my little take on it in the form of recycled denim coil pots for the school fete.

(Just in case you didn't know, I'm making things for the up coming school fete  for the Environment Stall. We are recycling everything and anything we can get our hands on. It's been experimental, at times frustrating, often fun and even therapeutic - you know,  all things that crafting can be.)

There is something about the gentle faded blues, the cotton string and the coiling form that I'm finding really pleasing. 

And I'm even wearing the perfect 70's maxi frock to compliment my denim work...
 - fake patchwork with FAKE DENIM PATCHES!!! Ah...the Seventies. Does it get  much better than that?

For more double denim inspiration, I'm including here some vintage denim delights!
If it's good enough for Johnny Cash....

Dolly Parton....
and Debbie Harry....
Then it's good enough for me.

Friday, February 27, 2015

I'm a Basket Case!

I'm recycling anything I can get my hands on for the school fete environment stall. My fabric stash is now pleasantly depleted! Much of it was scraps, old curtains, small pieces, tablecloths, sheets - stuff I didn't want to sew but couldn't throw away.

Basically, I find this basic sort of crocheting very easy and well...basic. Which is sometimes good for my buzzing brain. Because really. Basically, I am a basket case.

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

What in Tarnation 2

It's a pom-pom crown.........

......or a necklace!!

All from recycled t-shirts. Making these for the environment stall at the school fete. Next up tarn pom pom hair ties! Yay for TARN.

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

What in Tarnation?

What in tarnation? No I haven't turned into Sylvester Cat nor Bugs Bunny. But I do feel like I'm in a tarnation of a mess. Up to my ears in tarn*

It's all steam ahead for the school fete environment stall and right now I'm making anything and everything from donated old t-shirts.
To start with - tarn pom-pom necklaces. A little bit nautical........

..............but nice!
*tarn is yarn made from t-shirts.

Monday, February 23, 2015

Everybody loves String!

Who remembers the episode of "The Goodies" about string? Remember the song? All together now,

" String ,string, string, string,
everybody loves string!
String, string, string, string,
everybody loves string!
Pull up your pants,  pull on your vest, everyone agrees, string is best!
String, string, string, string,
everybody loves string!"
I've been singing it in my head for days now. The hand dancing is optional. I vaguely remember that string was evil in that episode and taking over the world?

String took over my world for a few days while I made a string bag. Because string bags are handy! Expandable! Collapsible! Sustainable!

However, this crochet version was LABOUR INTENSIVE to make. So I don't think there will be matching string pants to pull up or string vests to pull on any time soon! Phew!