Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Bellyful Raffle - Little Old Nags

The hobby horses from Little Old Nags just capture that part of you that remembers being a child, the pretend play and the absolute joy of being a kid. They are so eye catching it makes you want to get one even if you don't have children! Sarah has kindly donated your choice of hobby horse for our Bellyful raffle! Lets go behind the stables.... 

Q: Tell us all about you, where you are based and your favourite things:
A: I'm Sarah, busy stay at home Mama to two sensationally gorgeous little rugrats (almost 3yo and 8mo) who fill my day with more beautiful things than I could ever have dreamed of and dedicated wifey to the amazing Mark. I am also an Occupational Therapist, from a pre-parenthood lifetime. I'm a part-time artist, a part-time crafty nut, and a country hearted girl. 

Q: How did Little Old Nags get started then?
A:Little Old Nags beginning was simple but pretty accidental and just 6 months ago. My 2 year old was riding around the house on a stick pretending to be a cowboy. I thought heck why not get out the sewing machine and make him an old fashioned hobby horse. A few friends commented, so I made some more. My husband told me to advertise them to see what would happen.... 60 orders in 6 weeks later and an unintentional business was born :). It has been a fantastic ride so far. I love that such love and joy is still out there for a fabulous traditional toy.

Q: The best part about what you do?
A: I love that I am able to channel my uncontrollable urge to 'make stuff', in a small way bring enjoyment to a child's life, and best of all - stay a SAHM

Q:Tell us your experiences at being a mum
A:It's indescribable. I often find it impossible to find words to explain the joy, the pain, the memories, the challenges, the laughter, the tears, but most overwhelming - the love. My children have enriched and completed me. For as long as I can remember all I ever wanted to be was a Mama. My children are two very different souls who bring very different things to our family and adore each other already. I worry about being able to give them both everything they need to grow but most of all I try to remember to relax and enjoy each day, not to sweat the small stuff, and to make traditions and memories.

Q: And lastly your ultimate superpower?
A: Oooooo that's a hard one. Maybe to make time stand still once in a while. Just to take a deep breath and inhale in all the little things that in our busy lives too often pass us by.

Bellyful Raffle - Ginger Pye

Today we talk to the two masterminds behind Ginger Pye Reusable Sandwich Wraps 

Q: Tell us all about you, where you are based & your favourite things!

A:  We are big sister Nicola Pye (creative genius/slave labour/photographer) and little sister Julia Hollis-Pye (the entire marketing, administration and accounts departments as well as our webmaster).  We grew up in Adelaide and Auckland (mostly), and now live in lovely Dunedin.  Nicola has two big kids (8 and 13) and Julia has two little kids (1 and 4), and we started Ginger Pye because being stay-at-home-mums meant we weren't quite busy enough (just joking!!).  We've set ourselves the tiny goal of wrapping the entire world in Ginger Pye reusable sandwich wraps - still have a little way to go though :-)  Favourite things probably involve anything lazy - sleeping, watching good movies, coffee or a glass of wine with friends...


Q: How did Ginger Pye come about?
A: Nicola had made a few sandwich wraps for her family and friends who seemed to really like them, but not being particularly business inclined, she didn't take it further.  Julia was a bit more foresightful and saw that there was a definite market out there for sandwich wraps, so took our first order from her daughter's kindy, and we went from there...

Q: Your favourite parts about what you do?
A:Our favourite parts are probably getting great feedback from happy customers, and buying stacks of beautiful new fabrics.  We also love the freedom to set our own hours, and work around our home lives, with no bosses except for our bossy selves!

Q: Your experiences as a mum?
A:Working from home is great as a mum, as it means that you can fit things in around your children's needs.  Nicola is home educating her kids, and Julia has a baby that just doesn't like to sleep, so we squeeze things in as we can - it's busy, but somehow it all works!

Q: If you had one superpower what would it be and why?
A: How about being able to exist without sleep - it would be fantastic to have an extra few hours in the day sometimes, without wasting it on sleep :-)

Monday, March 28, 2011

Bellyful Raffle - Country Cousins

Sometimes you just know quality when you see, feel & touch a handmade item!

Country Cousins have kindly donated a set of these pot holders made from the beautiful Anthology fabric for our Bellyful raffle.

When I opened up the envelope with these inside my friend gasped and said wow those match your kitchen perfectly and they are so lovely! I wish they could stay in there!

So lets find out a little more about the lady who's standards are so high and products such quality!

Q: Tell us all about you, where you are based and your favourite things!
A: I am a very proud Nana of four wonderful grandchildren (oh and I am proud of their parents as well).  I live on a lifestyle block at Katikati in the Bay of Plenty with my husband, a dog and some sheep.  Until recently I was a legal executive in a local law office, but have taken time out to "play" and be creative, which is my passion.

Q: How did Country Cousins come about?
A: I have sewn all my life, and I come from a family of creative people, my 94 year old grandmother still does a little sewing and does wonderful crochet.  I have four generations of my family involved in my business, from my grandmother making crocheted jug covers, to my mum and daughter who specialise in creating different products that we sell.  

My business began a few years ago when I owned a fabric shop and I would make children's clothes as samples for the shop in the wonderful fabrics. Mothers who couldn't sew would buy the samples and order more, so Country Cousins was born. I would also make small gifts from the remnants of fabric left over from a bolt.  I have also made dance costumes and uniforms for many different dance schools over the past fifteen or so years, which is really beautiful

Q: What is the best part about what you do:
A: I love the whole process of my business, from designing, buying and playing with fabrics and colours, the actual sewing and then the wonderful satisfaction of selling or giving the finished product to to the lucky recipient. I love markets because you get to meet the person who is buying your treasures.

Q: Your experiences as a mum & grandmother!
A: My experience as a mum is a little different from most of you as my four children are all grown up now, and I have my grandies.  My advice to you all is to treasure all those moments because time goes so quickly and before you know it your children are all grown up.  But then being a grandmother is the most special time in my life, I think when you are a parent there are so many expectations on you, but grandchildren give soooo much pleasure.

Q: And lastly if you had one superpower what would it be and why?
A: If I had one superpower it would be to make sure that every child in the world had enough food to eat, had every educational opportunity available, but most of all parents who love them and not mistreat them at all times.

Thanks Carol! And thank you for everyone who has purchased a Bellyful raffle ticket! I cannot wait to do the draw on Thursday! 
If you have not purchased your ticket, you have until Wednesday midnight.

Quick & simple FQ project

Do you have loads of FQ's lying around and you are just eager to create something special with them?

Well here it is, this took me (novice sewer) just a couple of hours this afternoon to make, and I would guess less than an hour to make a 2nd one.

I used the gorgeous Amy Butler Love fabric bundle and I still have enough to make 1 more plus a bit extra. So even if you only have 1 FQ you will be able to make this.

The best part is the pattern is free!


Friday, March 25, 2011

Sweet Nothings Zoe Pearn

This is the lovely lady who brought us All Star, All Star 2, Quite Contrary, Summer Song and now Sweet Nothings.

Looking around her website it just oozes with yumminess, that makes me want to get out my card making supplies and get going. You can only imagine the thrill of opening up a package of her new fabric!

Zoe is Australian and lives in Brisbane with her husband, little boy Joshua and new daughter Lola. Designing is her dream job, escape, her passion and like so many of the mum's we have interviewed this week she feels so lucky to be able to do what she loves for a living! She has had some tough times though loosing their home in the floods...

I have put an excerpt  taken from the John Paul College website who are helping rebuild their home for them below this post.




Purchase any of these by clicking on the fabric!

Meet the Pearns...
Zoe and Martin lost their home and most of their possessions in the floods on Wednesday 12 January 2011.  The water came to a foot below the ceilings.  After days of inundation, isolation and grief, the Pearn family returned to their ruined home at Bellbowrie, in one of the hardest hit streets in Brisbane.  
In the days following the flood, a large rubbish tip grew in Lions Park at the end of their street, where army trucks dumped load after load of sodden furniture and household goods.  In the weeks to follow, their home was stripped bare, removing the mud-soaked plasterboard and brand new kitchen, installed just weeks earlier.  
The Pearn family loved their home.  It was modest, but it was all that they could afford at the time.  They love the area and planned to be there for as long as the kids were at home.  Zoe started her own business after she lost her job, and for the first two years she worked almost 18 hours a day to afford to put food on the table while combating interest rate rises.  They had done what they could afford to do to the house - painting the exterior and interior of the house just one week before the arrival of their daughter, and installing a brand new kitchen and fridge.
“Unfortunately we have had to see our home, all of our hard work and our dreams be washed away with the floods.  Regardless of what has happened, it is still our home.  It may literally only be four walls and a roof at the moment, but we still plan to make our life there, nothing has changed in that respect.” - Zoe Pearn 
The Pearn family do not have flood cover as part of their insurance policy, and are now in a position where they cannot afford to rebuild their home.  They currently share a bed with their two children in Zoe’s father’s home and look forward to the day they can bring Josh and Lola back home. 
“Our little boy keeps asking to go home, and all we can tell him is that the house has been broken by all the water. He had just started to enjoy going to his Kindy and he misses his little friends. Both of us want nothing more than to be able to give our kids their home and some normality back.”
The past month has been an emotional rollercoaster for Zoe and Martin and it is hard to put what they have experienced into words.  Zoe blogged the horrors of being inundated, their evacuation, and the amazing community response to the disaster after such tragedy and heartbreak
Read more on Zoe's blog http://zoepearndesigns.com/hello/


Thursday, March 24, 2011

Bellyful Raffle - Smylee Photography

When your name is Smylee, you received your first camera at 9 and you have a passion for photography you can understand why Smylee is so good at what she does! Smylee Photography have generously donated a photography session worth $125 to the Bellyful Raffle. This includes a 1 hour photo session for up to 5 people and includes 5 edited photo's on a CD. So lets find out about the lady behind that lens!

Q:Tell us all about you, where you come from and your favourite things!
A: I am Smylee, and yes that is my real name.I have very creative parents. I am from a small town called Thoothukudy down in South India, but now I call New Zealand my home. I enjoy travelling, adventure sports, yoga, photography and nature

Q: How did your business idea start?
A: Photography is a passion to me. Given my first camera when I was 9, I spent every vacation since then taking a million photos of people, nature and more, which helped building my creative side. Later I studied photography as a part of my University curriculum, this helped me understand the technical side of it too.
I specialize in baby/children photography. As a Mother to a gorgeous two year old girl, I have come to realize that children grow up in a blink of an eye. and that it is very important to capture the present. And hence the formation of 
Smylee Photography!

Q: The best part about what you do
A: Choose a job you love, and you will never have to work a day in your life.- Confucius" .
 I enjoy and love every bit of being a photographer. Capturing those special moments and knowing that it will be treasured forever is such a delight!

Q: Your experiences as a mum:
A:After quite a disappointed day, I lay down in the bed wearily. And my little girl crawls onto me and touches my face with her palm and starts to smilingly babble. This is one of those moments I describe as the Delights of Motherhood. As demanding as it gets, being a mother makes you look at things in a complete new perspective. The enormous and endless love, care and patience, that I didn't really knew existed within me. And so well, I have come to realize that all the late-nights, tantrums and crying are so much worth putting up with!

Q: If you had one superpower what would it be?
A:I am so tempted to choose mind-reading but I am pretty certain that it might yield regretful consequences. So I will settle for the ability to time-travel. Why because, it would be interesting to see the past and know the future.

Check out Smylees website here:
and follow her on Facebook

Purchase your $2 raffle ticket here and support a great cause!

This prize is for Auckland only, so we will do an Auckland name draw first so that if anyone is drawn who is not from Auckland they will go back into the draw for the other prizes. 

Bellyful Raffle - Baby Bird

Baby Bird has kindly donated an owltastic owl (see the green owl below) to the Bellyful raffle, let's find out a bit more about Bronwyn beside from her never ending task of naming all her Sock Monkeys with "M" names:

Q:Tell us all about you, where you come from and your favourite things!
A: I'm Bronwyn, born and bred in the soon to be new and improved CHCH!
My favourite things are playing, sleeping, sharing, and coming up with new & exciting creations...as well as mai chai tea and dark chocolate :)

Q:How did Baby Bird start?
A: I starting off making natural cleaners not long after our son was born as I wanted his exposure to chemicals to be minimal. I shared my concoctions with friends and family who then encouraged me to start selling them. I discovered that there were other things I was making for my own needs that could be shared, at a more affordable price, and I enjoyed making them. So Baby Bird hatched! Green Cleaners, Mei Tai Baby Carriers, Handmade Soft Toys, Bags, Sleep Sacks...and so much more. The more I make to make my own life easier the more is added to my nest of products :)

Q: The best part about what you do?
A: My favourite part about what I do is seeing someones face light up as the say "this is just what I've been looking for!". People love handmade things, and it's great to be able to provide them an item that's handmade with love

Q: Your experiences as a Mum
A: My experience as a mum so far has been very fun, with a few challenges thrown in. Our son is 18 months old and is a gorgeous wee handful, but I wouldn't change a thing. 

Q: If you had one superpower what would it be and why?
A: If I had one superpower it would be the ability to time travel. I'd love to visit a simpler time with no traffic, cars, pollution, crowds and most of all...earthquakes!

Thanks Bronwyn, we look forward to seeing your next new creations! If you would like to purchase any Baby Bird products, check out their Facebook page :

And remember to purchase your Bellyful Raffle Ticket for just $2, tell your friends and let's support this awesome organisation!

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Amy Butler ♥ Giveaway

Celebrating ♥ today as my 9 year wedding anniversary, I am giving away a FQ set of this stunning Amy Butler Love set. 

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Bellyful Raffle

For the next few days I will be doing a bit of a blog post about our sponsors of our Bellyful raffle. Bellyful is an amazing organisation that offers a home made meals to families with a new baby or those in need. If you are a parent you will know how hard it is to get a healthy tasty meal on the table when you have a new baby in the house especially if you don't have family support around you. 

Have a read on their website for more information. 
And follow them on Facebook

Sew Pretty along with some amazing sponsors are offering over 8 awesome prizes for our Bellfyful Fundraiser Raffle. Tickets are just $2 and you can purchase them through our website, each ticket counts as an entry.