:: the return of the cross stitch ::

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So, my sister – one of the three – and her hubby got married last October.

They had a great day and they looked amazing! Because I was in Ethiopia at that time, I didn’t manage to find a personal gift, nor make one… shame on me!  So here I am, almost half a year later, trying my utmost best to cross stich a personal gift.  She likes blue, we both do. And I found an unlimited cross stitch source in Pinterest, and the best part is that most floral borders I found are for free.. hurray!

Now the finishing part. Still waiting for inspiration to finish the borders..

I just remembered cross stitching in primary school, lots of fun, long time ago. Have you tried cross stitch?

:: sweet Mulu ::

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Ever since I was in Ethiopia, someone who became a dear friend to me, asked me to make her a doll after she saw some of my creations. The doll definitely had to have a purple dress! I promised her to make her one, took out the sewing machine, then failed and quit. But you know, promises should be kept, so here I am roughly half a year later. And I made her a doll with purple clothes, and guess what? It eventually took me less than a day!

As always the thinking bit took the most time. I really wanted to make her look like the Ethiopian dollies that I doodled on practically every piece of paper that passed my hands. Girls with really swirly hear. But then, could one produce such hairdo with only yarn.. Hmm, big dilemma. So I tried wool felt in stead of yarn, and put some stuffing between two layers of felt, after which I swirled along with my (borrowed) sewing machine. Poor Mulu’s face was done twice before it satisfied me, and now I’m quit pleased with the result. But then again, which mother doesn’t find her darling child attractive?

Sorry for the poor photo quality by the way. Iphone. Will change it later.

:: all things pretty ::

There are so, so many things simple things in life that are mend to make happy..
Ethiopians have a particular taste for beauty. Although beauty is in the eye of the beholder, I’m sure most of us would agree that they can be real artisans. I mean, take for example basketry, the most creative designs come forth from simple farmers that use (coloured) grass. Nowadays people are occasionally using materials like plastic strips from bags or cotton thread. For me grass baskets are favourite. Look at these.. and all handmade!
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:: happy holidays ::

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Holidays are here!
Since childhood I’ve come to love the folded paper stars, better known as Danish stars. You know what I mean; those three dimensional red and white coloured ones. Growing up in rural Tanzania in the eighties, there was little (or actually no) decoration material to be bought anywhere. So we beautified our holidays with homemade accessories like those paper stars. Little did I know that I would try to make them myself some twenty-five years later, in rural Ethiopia, and that I would succeed!
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Although the (somewhat rough, newspaper alike) paper of a magazine might not have been the most easy option, for me it surely had the prettiest result. First I searched the magazine for suitable pages, then I cut the pages in strips (all strips have to be even) and after some practicing, stars started to appear! My personal goal in the end was to make them as small as possible.. Like to make your own stars? The tutorial that I used was this one.
Oh that magazine. It must be the most read, used and recycled magazine from my shelf.

Happy holidays!

:: harvest time ::

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Past weeks I’ve seen the fresh green hills turn into yellow. The Teff has been growing and growing, and now finally it’s being harvested. Although all seasons have their own charm, I think this period of time will be my favourite one. Whilst people are working hard, everything is buzzing, everyone singing and the sun is shining! So in between work hours I grabbed my camera and took some pictures, some of which I later printed in the local shop to send to my relatives and friends. Because, you know, in rural Ethiopia there are no such things as postcard shops. Lucky me that I brought some washi tape from the Netherlands, so I could turn the photo’s into cards! Washi tape, such a great invention of a small thing..

:: wobbly ::

After having blogged for about four years, I didn’t do any creative blogging anymore for over a year.
And I missed it. So much.
So here is my first post, on a brand new blog again. No expectations, just wandering.
And that makes me feel a bit wobbly, but also really excited!