Saturday, March 27, 2010

Dedication to a crafty Mum

Decoupage table with handpainted details by B.Mills, photographs by Mainichi

Etsy were recently calling for submissions for Mother/Son or Daughter crafty teams. This got me thinking about the creative collaborations over the years with both my Mum and my Grandmother. That's one of my Mum's recent decoupage projects above.

My Grandma taught me to sew on an old Singer treadle sewing machine. I used to make clothes for my dolls. That was after I graduated from the Holly Hobbie sewing machine (which I told my Mum and Dad was the best Christmas present EVER).

Our school holidays used to be filled with projects like placemats cross stitched with scrap wool on hessian, colourful wool wrapped tins and bottles, plaster casting and painting.....

As I got older I remember particular projects we made together.... such as the Macrame Owl; together we picked out special glazed pottery eyes and a beak from the craft shop, and found a piece of driftwood for him to hang onto.

Then there was a little mouse house, made from a pattern we bought at the sewing shop, complete with little felt mice and fabric furniture....

And a fifties inspired dress with a big skirt, made from metres and metres of irresistible fabric we bought together.  I remember it distinctly, it had a creme coloured background and tiny dancing clowns all over it.

Another favourite was making tiny birds from coloured cotton wool balls, felt and googly eyes, or sequins! And collecting all the plastic lids from containers to join together with string to make robots and other critters....

And the huge toy clown I made at highschool for my Home Economics subject; it was taken from one of those Women's Weekly sewing project books.  He was about 2/3 my size, and he had the most gorgeous mop of red hair made from Mum's leftover Macrame cord.

And as I got older there were loads of stretch fabric clothing projects, made when I got sent off to the local Knitwit store for school holiday sewing workshops. Damn, I had a great wardrobe of clothing in the mid 80's. Tube skirts and dresses and oversized year we even tackled making our own swimsuit (colloquially known as togs or bathers, depending which state you grew up in).

Really there were so many crafty pursuits in my childhood, I'm not surprised I've ended up where I am, making jewellery and working in design.....these are some of the other things I fondly remember:
String Art
Latch Hook
Lite Brite pictures
Knitting Nancy
Loom weaving
Lego houses

It's so much fun to continue this crafting tradition now with the wee one. So here's thanks to my Mum (and Dad, and Grandparents) for inspiring me then, and continuing to inspire me now.


  1. Oh De - that was such a great post! Man, we had similar childhoods.... latchhook, macrame owl, holly hobbie sewing machine, dolls clothes, string art, fifties skirts....SNAP SNAP SNAP.
    You then took it one step further than me with the strech sewing (still can't do that one). That 80's wardrobe sounds pretty about a pic???

  2. Hmmmm, not sure about a photo Fi, could be a bit scary! I shall have to dig through some dust to find one....stay tuned!


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