Saturday, November 23, 2013

in stitches: kensington pants by terra's treasures tested

I received a copy of the Kensington pants PDF pattern for free to test.

I love a quick, easy sew. My laziness is only matched by my love of quirky, individual design features. Terra's Treasures has just released the Kensington Pants PDF pattern, and I got to take the pattern for a spin, making the shorts version for my small girl. With a sweet yoke waistband, contrast piping and gathered patch pockets, these duds are truly my cup of tea.
Printing, piecing and cutting the pattern were a breeze. The colour-coded sizes were very easy to follow, and the pieces matched up with beautiful precision. I loved the layout of the instructions too, easy to read and follow, with lots of pictures. I used up some peachy-pink chambray from my stash (op shopped) with some vintage sheet floral for contrast. I sewed up the shorts in a size 2, shortening the length a tad and adding a contrast cuff to the bottom. I also made a sweet little top to match, using the free Perennial Dress pattern from Sewpony (this one is super cute too!).

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

simply living: a less toxic life

I received a copy of Less Toxic Living to read prior to its publication.

Our fourth seachange anniversary is coming up early next year. I can't believe we have been here for almost four years, and yet I can. Our little man was a baby in a sling when we arrived at these sandy shores. We have changed such a lot in that time, not just our growing family and moving homes.

Living close to the sea has had a profound effect on how we see the world, and how we live in it. You can't see the rainwater wash directly into the ocean every day, and not be offended by the visible rubbish, and question the toxic things that can't be seen in the water.

And so, in those four years, we have gradually made mindful changes. Really just small things, one at a time. In a completely imperfect, trial-and-error kind of way. There has been some really simple changes, and some new things to learn, in an effort to live more simply. Remembering bags for the grocery shop. Packing school lunches in reusable containers, minus the pre-packaged snacks. Making my own laundry detergent. Growing some food. Keeping chooks. Composting.

None of these are new things, revolutionary things. But that's my point today. We can minimise toxicity in our lives in very simple, everyday ways. I recently read Less Toxic Living by Kirsten McCulloch (with a whole bunch of fantastic co-writers). You may know Kirsten from her ace blog Sustainable Suburbia. It was such a pleasure to read, full of great mini-guides for living a less toxic life. Information about toxic chemicals in common plastics, cosmetics, cleaning products, candles and toys. And information about what you can use instead. My favourite part? No panic-mongering. Just useful, sensible ways to reduce toxins. You can tap into a section that grabs your attention or interest, work on that in your life, and see what impact it has. Easy! I became quite interested in the idea of using plants inside to filter toxins in the air, so guess what my next little project is?

I would absolutely recommend Less Toxic Living as a springboard into living a greener life. If you are already a bit conscious of reducing toxins, this would be a great resource for family or friends new to these ideas.

You can download Less Toxic Living for free as an eBook. If you download before December 3rd, you can get some special bonus treats: some handy printable guides for your fridge and wallet, a free chapter and recipe from Alexx Stuart's Real Treats and a discount voucher from Queen B candles. Lovely! Just pop in the code HAPPINESS to get your free goodies. If you would like to purchase a paperback copy of the book, you can do so here. I hope you enjoy it as much as I have!

Monday, November 11, 2013

I've found myself saying, just lately

Wow! How did that pumpkin get there?

Yes, darling, grown-ups have stomachs, too.

Guys! You have got to remember to put away your textas!

Does anyone know where I put the keys?

Does anyone know where I put my glasses?

Does anyone know where I put- is anyone listening at all?

Thanks little mate, I think this dress is the most beautifullest, too.

I'm in here. In the bathroom sweetie. Just in here. Yep going to the toilet. Poo. Oh, hey, you got the door open, that's cool. No thanks, I don't want any sultanas.

I'm not missing bread at all! (eye twitch) Or pasta! (twitch, twitch)

Where are your pants?

I'm not sure which minion is my favourite, kiddo. Maybe Kevin?

Just lay down and close your eyes! It's time to rest and relax! Right now!

I think a diamond gem would have more power than an emerald in a battle.

I want to marry you again.

(breathe  it all in, these fleeting moments disappear like the grains of sand forming the seashore)


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