Sunday, 23 April 2017

storing fabric

Sometimes all it takes to get creative is to have a need.

For instance, a need to store fabric. Or a need to get piles of fabric off the floor, hence a need for a place to store it.

The whole idea of storing fabric is to be able to find the bits you need quickly. The fabric has to be visible, not hidden in boxes and, ideally, sorted by colour.



I needed shelves. I needed narrow shelves. Or a bookcase. 

I didn't have either. But I had a box.

I had this box, which I'd used as a dog bed when we first moved to the farm, for Barney and Mischa. It was a solid timber box I found somewhere which I cleaned up and gave a lick of paint. The post on how I did this is here.






I made my own dog bed cushions for it and put it in the entrance which is where Mischa and Barney slept as they'd always been outside dogs and I was introducing them to living inside.



After we lost Mischa it didn't seem right that Barney slept by himself. He moved into the living room with the poodles and the box was put into the store room. Which is where I found it again while looking for something to make my fabric storage shelves from.



It was a very simple re-do. All I did was put small bits of timber on the sides as ledges to sit the shelves on. The shelves were cut from leftover bits of plywood. Easy peasy.

I sat it on the little side table in the office and now I have all my fabrics in one place.... or most of my fabrics... or some of my fabrics... Ok! You got me. I have a large basket full of small offcuts cause I can't waste anything, a wire basket with real and faux leather bits and a large plastic container with fabrics for doll costumes.

But I do have all my colourful cotton fabrics for things like my anti-bunnies sorted!

z

Tuesday, 18 April 2017

string holders and evicting bats

Phew. The day is over. A good day, but SO tiring. I got a ton done which is great. I failed at a couple of things too, but hey, you can't win 'em all.

So, what did I do today that was so exhausing? Well, I started with the plan of putting up the new grooming sign. I worked on that for about 30 minutes before giving up. It was just not working. Good thing too really, cause in the end I decided I needed to rethink the position. More on that soon.

I did 3 loads of washing and the usual chores of feeding and caring for all the animals, and I did a little garden work. Then I decided it was time to clean out the carport. 

Background: We used to keep our chicken feed in the carport and that encouraged mice and rats to live in there. Which encouraged the dogs to dig at the walls and generally cause trouble. About a month ago I started the car and a mouse jumped out of the engine bay. I've been parking out in the yard since. 

So, I decided the carport needed a makeover, more to make it safe than to make it look nice. Trust me, its a pretty basic farm carport... Not much I could have done to make it look pretty.

Anyway, I ripped off the sagging plywood which had been put over the barn wood and in the process evicted two rats and one tiny bat.

Yep, a tiny bat! Not a typo! I was so excited when I saw it. At first I thought I'd uncovered a hairless baby rat but then saw its cute little face and wings. I wanted to keep it! I wasn't quick enough to catch it, it escaped under the wall and out near the dam. I was worried the geese would eat it - I mean, it was full daylight... what do bats do if they're out in the day? I looked for it but couldn't find it so I hope it was ok. The geese weren't around so I know it wasn't lunch at least.

I threw out a ton of rubbish and rat infested nests and then I nailed a thick particle board to the bottom section of the wall - Its not about keeping rats out as much as its about keeping any small animals (ducklings, chickens, natives) out of our yard. The finished carport is so much neater and I like the exposed slatted wood back wall. And bonus - there is nowhere for rats to nest any more!

After the carport was cleaned up, I opened up a small area I've had penned off to keep the dogs from digging. Hopefully now the rats have been banished the dogs won't need to dig for them and destroy my plants. And I'll be able to pull weeds. Yeah. I live to pull weeds.

ha.

Anyway, that's not what I wanted to share with you today. I wanted to share my new rustic string holder. 


I was inspired by this lovely makeover of a thrift shop find by Carlene at Organised Clutter. When I saw it I thought what a great idea, I have to make one of those!


Yeah. Ok. Mine looks nothing like that. 

I had spindles. I had a ton of string. I didn't have a fancy wall sconce. I also didn't really have a wall spot to put it. So I just grabbed a piece of timber from my offcut pile and put them together. It'll do for now.




Its not pretty, but it works. Its not for the office, its for the workshop so it doesn't need to be pretty. The workshop leans more towards a more rustic-farmhouse-hoarder design style.

Thanks for the inspiration Carlene, and sorry I killed your idea. 

z

Sunday, 16 April 2017

DIY wire hanging hooks


An observant reader noticed these cute hooks Wayne made for me. He made them to go on driftwood sticks and I'd use them when I went to markets, for hanging my windchimes.

They really are quite sweet, and they're easy to make. I know cause I've made them myself. Only I make them with thinner wire than Wayne does.


All you'll need is:

1. Wire thick enough to hold the weight of what you plan to hang. And as thick as you feel comfortable working with - ie you have to be able to bend it and cut it. If you're anything like me (a weakling) you'll want to stick to a not too hard wire...

2. Needle nose pliers and wire cutters. In case you don't know what they are, here is a visual aid:


And here are the instructions. 







So, if you followed that, and if I didn't do a bad job with the instructions, you should have something like this at the end of it.



Have fun! :)

z

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Wednesday, 12 April 2017

my newest junky planter


I've had this gorgeous funnel shaped THING for a long time. Its some kind of filter, I presume it came from a water tank. I have no idea what it is... like so many of the things I collect, I just liked the shape.

I've had it for years. I've had various plans for it over the years. I was going to make a light fixture out of it at one stage. But its never happened. Its hung around in the yard most of the time, doing nothing useful.

Yesterday I decided it was time to do something with it. 

I've had many hanging planters over the years, mostly ones I made myself out of chains bought from the hardware store and steamers or colanders. I took one of the chains from a steamer with succulents in it and put them onto this rusty piece of gorgeousness of mysterious origins.


Who cares what it was in a previous life? What purpose it served. Now its a proud planter, holding a mix of succulents on the corner of our porch. In summer there'll be tiny hot pink flowers forming a halo around it.


Below it sit my old mop bucket - one of my favourite planters of all time, the steamer which lost its chain - sacrificed for the greater good, and my camelia, in a new spot.

See, I've had this camelia for a year and it wasn't doing great. Not where I had it... so, I've moved it. Its a heavy pot... moving it was pretty much impossible on my own... till I made a rolling base for it!

I used some pallet wood, made a frame and added castors. Now I can move it anytime I get the urge - to where it'll get more sun, where the frost won't get it or just a couple of inches to the left.


Meanwhile some months ago I posted about my change of heart regarding geraniums after seeing a photo of pelargonium apple blossom. Well... I was lucky enough to get a cutting of it from a really nice lady. And look at it now!


My formerly black thumb might be getting a tinge of green!

Before I go I'd like to show off my newest toy:


Isn't that little tricycle the cutest thing you've ever seen? Imagine plants in the little wagon... 

Watch this space.

z