Tuesday, March 6, 2012

First Full sculpt for 2012..

*NOW SOLD* Thank you

I finally got back into the swing of things! After a big break over Christmas and New Years', I was more than ready to sculpt.
I won't lie, the last few months of 2011 had me questioning where I was going with all this. It didn't seem to flow like it used to and I felt totally burnt out by it all, even though I only produce a few sculpts a year. I had hit a brick wall.
I'm glad to say that the break was just what I needed to review everything and get the inspiration flowing again.

So with that inspiration, I present to you my latest sculpt, 'Samuel'.

I will not be listing him on Ebay, instead I will list him here for sale.
Please scroll down for details and photos of this little guy;

Samuel is bigger than my usual full sculpts, at just over 4 inches long.
He is fully hand-sculpted from polymer clay, and is subtly blushed and mottled with Genesis Heat Set paints.
I have sewn a romper and hat for him, which can be removed (very gently!)
Samuel has sparse, baked in blonde mohair.
He is anatomically correct.

As you can see, no detail has been overlooked in his creation. He has the tiniest details from his miniature ears to his tiny toenails.
(click on photos to view them larger)

*SOLD* Thank you

Thanks for looking!

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Happy New Year 2012!

How was your Christmas and New Years'?
If it was anything like ours, it involved lots of food. Did Christmas really happen? I still feel like I need to be buying presents or something.

Like every year, it has gone like a blur and it feels like we are already planning out the whole year. I am just hoping that this year is a little gentler on the social side, so I can focus on sculpting projects and other creative things that I never get to do for myself. I wanna be a bit selfish this year, that's not so bad, is it?

I don't normally sculpt this time of year, but I had a special request for a memorial sculpt, and after trying to break out of my stupid perfectionism streak, I finally completed it, with less sanity than what I started with.
I felt a bit sad while sculpting it, as it was the eve of my daughter's birthday and you can't help but reflect to your moment of giving birth. I hear so many heart-breaking stories, so I am always grateful that we got to bring our babies home from the hospital.
Sending a big hug to all you grieving mothers. You are amazing for living with the pain day in, day out. Time never brings a reprieve from the grief.
To quote Keanu Reeves after the loss of his baby;  'Grief changes shape, but it never ends'.

With the sculpting side of things, I have a problem, and that is I don't know when good enough is exactly that. I will go around in circles with my sculpting. I really need to snap out of it.
That is my New Years' 'evolution' (thanks, John Edward!) to know when something is good enough, and be able to stop there. Really, why do we torture ourselves the way we do? Where did we learn to put such conditions on ourselves? One thing I know is that pushing yourself constantly can lead to serious burnout which I think I am experiencing now. Right now, I could easily sleep 3 times a day.
Balance.... is also my new mantra.

Keep checking back, as I plan to overhaul the gallery now my laptop is up and running again and I have retrieved the photos of my sculpts. I also will post about a little dolly project I am doing with my girls...and it has nothing to do with the sculpted variety.

As usual, Blogger has a mind of it's own today so I can't post any pics...but as is my stubborn nature, I'll keep trying.

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Lazy Sundays and Messing With the Cat

Just a lazy Sunday here today. I'm grabbing onto them with both hands, as life is about to get a little bit crazy.
My Sunday mornings normally start with dropping Miss S off to ballet rehearsal (she is in the production of Nutcracker) or hubby does, then I come home, go for a brisk walk, make some eggs for brekkie, and laze around reading the Sunday mail and sipping a latte. That to me is ultimate bliss, knowing you have a carefree day ahead with the family...

The other day I saw a pic of a cat with it's head sticking out of a box, and a cartoon outline of a body. For some reason it was the funniest thing ever, maybe because we have two nutty cats of our own and love their antics.  We thought it would be great to up the ante and recreate it.
So hubby decided he would make his own version with miss Bambi, and they set about drawing a batman for our own Batman, who is a seal point siamese. Meet Kato, the most anti-social, nutty, bad tempered, ill-mannered cat that ever existed (but one who we love to bits )

The result was this; We were in STITCHES.

Happy Sunday!

Monday, December 5, 2011

Happy Monday.. well kind of

How are we feeling this Monday? Is it just me, or is Mondays at this time of year harder to get through? Count your lucky stars if you live in the States, it's still your Sunday night there ;)

My day started with a grocery shop after dropping the kids off. I'm not complaining here, shopping kid-free is a huge luxury for me.

Being this close to Christmas, I am winding down on the sculpting side of things, though the creating is still there, just in other areas. Today I will be starting a memorial sculpt for a special angel baby, and I am hoping to sew up some things as extra gifts as well. I'll share pics and tutorials once they are done, but for now, I can't risk those people peeking here ;)

On the baking side, I think I baked more in this past week than I have in the last six months. My cupboard is full of baking goodies and I have found so many recipes on pinterest.com that I still want to tackle. Seriously, go check that site out if you haven't yet, it is ADDICTIVE, I tell you.

I'll leave you with some pics of the girls getting into the baking mood last night. We made White Chocolate Ginger cookies, and they are to die for. Especially while still warm from the oven. You can find the recipe here.

 I love kids in the kitchen....

I hope you all have a great start to the week.

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Quick and Easy Icecream in a Bag

Happy first of December! It's official, it really feels like Christmas now. I hit the shops this morning, and the Christmas songs were in full swing; last week I felt nothing with them, today I actually felt festive. I have to say though, I feel a bit like Cindy Lou from the Grinch.... there's gotta be more to Christmas. One thing I really don't like is the craziness at this time of year. People lose the plot.
I was in queue last week, and the lady in front of me had a baby bottle that wasn't scanning. The shop assistant needed to call someone out, and I heard the lady behind me mutter a mouthful of expletives. I turned to see a very classily dressed woman. I guess it gets to the best of us :)

Anyway, on a cheerier note, I found the most awesome activity that you can do with the kids these holidays, or even just for yourself if you need a quick icecream fix. It's icecream in a bag and it it so quick and easy. I can guarantee that you'll be sitting down to eat it within 20 minutes of pulling out your ingredients.

So if the festive season is making you sour, (I'm looking at YOU, classy, expletive-spewing lady ;)  put some of this sweet goodness in your gob!
It is the best tasting icecream, and while normally shop icecream makes me feel ill, this was really easy on my tum. If you're like me and are not into dairy, you can apparently do the same thing with coconut cream. (recipe originally found here)

Here's what you need;

1 cup thick or light cream
1 tspn vanilla essence
2 tbspn sugar (we used fine, organic raw)
1/2 cup coarse salt, or rock salt
1 sandwich ziplock bag
1 large ziplock bag

Optional; Food colouring, flavours.

Method: In the sandwich bag, mix the cream, vanilla essence and sugar.
Add a few drops of colouring and/or flavour if you wish.
Miss S used strawberry chocolate flavouring. Seal well.

In the large bag, fill with ice half way and add the salt on top. Place the sandwich bag inside the ice bag. Seal very well and shake, shake shake!!

You may need to double bag the large bag. We found the ice made a couple of holes. You can wrap it in a tea towel if it's easier too.
Shake like crazy for 5-8 minutes.
The results is a delicious, creamy icecream! You can eat it straight from the bag, or freeze if you wish.

For hubby and I, I added a teaspoon of good quality instant coffee (go for an expresso roast) with the vanilla essence, and I tell you, it was like the best gelati from your favourite gelateria. Add a short black on the side, and you have the best treat.


Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Hand Stamped jewellery

When I create, I do it good and proper. Would you just look at all this mess? I'd be stressed out by it, but I can't help but be in awe of the gorgeous Czech glass beads that arrived today.

I have started making metal hand-stamped jewellery, and I am fit to burst with all the ideas I have. At the moment I am making a 'mummy' bracelet on behalf of my brother for his wife.

On a sadder note, I also made this necklace today. This necklace was made for a girl I went to school with, and have known since I was 7. Unfortunately, her 14 month old daughter lost her battle with life from the devastating meningococcal disease just last month, and I cannot begin to tell you how shocked and devastated I am for her and her family. To have your baby admitted to hospital thinking they are just unwell, to going home without her less than a week later is something I cannot even concieve of. 

Just hug those babies of yours a little tighter tonight. 

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Cake Balls

Cake balls and cake pops are huge right now. OK, you're probably about to say they have been for a long while, but down here in Australia we are always late catching that train. So let me repeat that...
Cake balls are huge right now :)

I love to whip up a batch when we are invited out to someone's house. They are huge hit with kids as well as adults. Mostly, when having a social dinner, us Italians have a knack of over indulging, so when it comes to dessert, (and there is normally plenty on offer) we are fit to burst.
This is where I love cake balls. I can't fit in a big slice of cake after a huge dinner, but a cake pop, or two is perfect....especially when wanting to sample everything else. They are even great to have as a little indulgent treat with an afternoon cuppa :)

I thought I would share with you how I make cake balls.
Gather your goodies, and get ready to roll....

1 packet cake mix of your choice, cooked and cooled completely. (I used Gluten free for these, so the Coeliacs in our family can enjoy them too)
1 x 225g block of Philladelphia Cream Cheese, softened
1/2 cup pure icing sugar
1 tablespoon butter
1 +1/2 packs of White Melts (375g packs) (Candy melts work better if you can get them, otherwise melt a teaspoon of vegetable oil with the melts for smoother consistancy)

Make sure your cake mix has cooled entirely. WIth your hands, crumble the cake into fine pieces, rubbing it between your palms for a finer result.
In a seperate bowl, mix philly cheese, icing sugar and softened butter. You can use your electric beater for a couple of minutes if you want.
Now, add the cream cheese mix slowly to the cake crumbs. DO NOT add the whole lot at once! I find cake mix sizes vary, so you may end up with mush if you pour in the whole lot. It should feel like cookie dough.
Mix in very well with your hands.

Roll into firm balls, place on a cookie sheet on a tray and place in the freezer for 20 minutes, or in the fridge until firm if you have more time. DO not freeze them through, or your coating will crack.

Using a double boiler method, stir your candy melts until totally melted, add the oil and stir through thoroughly.
Drop your first ball in. Some people choose to use a kebab stick to hold the balls, I find juggling the ball between two spoons once or twice works for me.
If using a stick, tap it gently on the edge of the bowl to remove excess melt.
Drop onto a fresh cookie sheet and decorate how you wish.

If you're wanting to make cake pops, dip the end of the stick into the melt before placing it into your ball. Only push it half way up.  Decorate and stand them up on a styrofoam block to set.

Remember to work quickly and make sure the entire ball is fully covered.
They sure don't look pretty the first time, (or in this case, the 10th time) but they taste too fab for anyone to care ;)

To see the queen of Cake Balls and Cake Pops (and for a virtual sugar rush) visit http://www.bakerella.com/

Clara for Christmas

This little one is my latest, and possibly last, for Ebay this year.
She is 7" long and has sparse strawberry blonde hair. Unfortunately she is also a 'booboo' baby. Parts of her toes and hand are darker in colour compared to her head, and she has some marks in the clay on her left thigh.
She's on ebay.com right now, with no reserve for this one.

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Colliii Awards

Another year, another Colliii Awards competition.
For those of you who don't know about the Colliii awards, it's an annual competition that artists from all over the world enter. There are so many categories like reborns, reborn kits, fantasy dolls, one of a kind mini babies, one of a kind newborns ect.
Last year was my first year of entering, and I was very surprised to have won the category for Best Mini Baby. I had a lot going on at that time of the year, including my beloved grandfather's passing. I had totally forgotten about it, so it was even more exciting to find out I had won.
I wasn't too sure about entering this year. Everything has been up in the air for our little family over this past year, including selling our house, so my heart wasn't in it. But I decided to enter the very last minute, and I am happy to say I won the category for Best Mini Baby once again this year.

This is the little one that nabbed me my prize :) If you follow my auctions, you will know that it is 'Willow', my last baby doll I had Ebay.

As usual, there was so much talent this year!  Congrats to all the nominees and winners.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Sappy Birth Videos

Birth videos just don't get me...I know plenty who get emotional with them, and that's all good. But since the birth of my first child, which was horrific and left me with post natal depression, any form of cluckiness went out the window, and fast.
Don't get me wrong, I was the cluckiest person out there! My daughter had a box full of shoes even before we discussed having a baby ;)

There are so many birth videos out there, and they are so inpiring for sculpting...but I have to confess, this birth video had me teary! So I take my hat off to them, it does take a lot for me to get emotional over birth vids these days and they hit the mark...

Enjoy! (it's gorgeous!)

Friday, October 21, 2011

Closet Organization

An organized girl is a happy girl. I am the most frustrated person if things are not organized. Don't think I've always been this way. It took 32 years of frustration for me to get the hint and do something about it. But once organization takes hold, look out. It's contagious and spreads to other areas of your life, and you totally can end up OCD :)

The closet thing needed to work for me. I don't do tracksuits when dropping off the kids to school. I wish I could, but I look like a total slob. There are some mums that look like they stepped from an Adidas catelogue shoot...I'm not one of them. So I need my clothes to be organised otherwise it can take up to 30 minutes to decide what to wear in the morning. And as I'm not a morning person, and refuse to get up even 15 minutes earlier, this doesn't work for me.

I came across an awesome closet special in Cosmo magazine showcasing closets, and one thing that struck me was a woman's closet/robe that was colour coordinated. For years I've hung jackets together, then cardis, long sleeve tops, then short sleeve tops...you get the hint. But after trying the colour coded method I find it takes 5 MINUTES to find what to wear. Yay for that! And not to mention how special it looks when you slide open your robe ;)
Another thing? I find I buy lighter, more colourful clothes too. Once you arrange your closet this way, you'll find just how much black you have, and how little colours/patterned clothes you don't have.
For a clean, neat look get all the SAME hangers. Wire hangers need to go, they totally kill your clothes and clump your clothes together. Wooden or velvet coated work well, and they are not as expensive as you think.

Now I just need to work out some jewellery organization. At the moment it all hangs from a trouser hanger in my robe.

Here's some great closets I found..


Um, no Mariah...just... no. There is such a thing as too much Gold. (Please apply this theory to the rest of your life, Miss M) Though having said that, I do want that chandelier

In theory, this looks great but would never work for me. I have the attention span of a goldfish. A TV in the closet? Make that 45 minutes instead of 20 to find an outfit. And that island bench? I can guarantee it would be covered in scrapbooking mess within the week. (source)

An island cupboard to display your perfumes and jewellery?  *love!*. Cubicles to display your bags? *love* even more.. (source)

Would you just look at all this French Provincial goodness? And that frock...I want it! ( that mannequin though, THAT can be sent off to St Vinnies.)
 When I was seven I saw a horror movie with my older cousins about a man that collected mannequins. One night they all came to life and, well....I'm sure you can figure out the rest. This fear is coming from someone who sculpts realistic babies that freaks people out. Aha.

In conclusion, we ALL know which closet reins supreme over all others... Can we all say, "HeLLO Loverrrrr"....

It's Carrie's Closet from Sex and the City the movie, of course. I'm glad there are no big mirrors anywhere. Can you imagine how that light would make you look?

Here's the youtube link if you want to see the clip from the movie when Mr Big presents it to Carrie.

While googling this closet, I came across an article about a woman who paid $175,000 to have Carrie's closet replicated. There was the comment, 'people with too much money'..ect
Seriously, would you not? If you have the cash, wouldn't you? I know I would.... in a New York minute. (AND I'd splash some extra cash by hiring Mr Big to present it to me)

Well I'm off to console my robe that has suddenly paled and is feeling a bit ill...
For everything else, there's IKEA.


You may be a bit confused if you just came in here and found all my posts are gone. I really disliked my blog, it was such a mess and I think that's why I didn't want to update as much. There's nothing like a fresh start, which is why I wanted to clear the place out, go for a more streamlined look and basically just start again.
I hope the new interface makes navigating much easier for you. Rather than having to scour posts to look for sculpts, or other information, you can now click on the links in the top bar.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Sculpts, New Journeys, and Life

I was too scared to see when I last posted. Mothers' Day. Serious?! How can life be so consuming? They say to stop and smell the roses but it's near impossible when time is snatched away from you before you can do anything about it.
Enough of that...I didn't come here to whinge about something you know already.
Let me share what's been happening.

We tried to sell our house twice this year. Lovely bungalow that we'd renovated from scratch. 9 years, and two kids later, we outgrew it quickly and we had to either extend or move. We felt it was time for a new beginning elsewhere.
So after a really testing few months, we sold, had to find a rental within a couple of weeks and we are in the process of securing our dream home. Stressful but part of the journey. :P

Not much sculpting has been happening. I need a perfect space and the right frame of mind to sculpt, otherwise it doesn't happen. I seriously need to get over that, or there won't be many sculpts coming.
I did produce this little guy though:

It's Mr Otis. He came out with the most juiciest lips :P

Other stuff that's been happening. Little Miss 'S' turned 7 this week. It's been a huge year for her. She was in the SA Youth Ballet's production of Wizard of Oz in May/June. She had something like 15 performances in one week (school tours) as well as performing at theatres in the city and local country town. The rehearsals were crazy but she loved it once she settled in.

Now she's the little mouse in Nutcracker, and will be performing December 23 and 24 at the Festival Theatre in the city. (we luckily got out of school tours this year :)
Pics to come....the laptop got dropped, and all her photos were on it (back-up, Mina!!)

Miss Bambi secretly joined choir, and sang at the big Catholic schools festival at the Festival theatre too. It was such a hoot for her, and I am so proud of her as she is going through a stage where she is not sure what she wants to do. It's hard going on 11. She is turning into a big of a moody tween, but nothing that is out of control. I'm lucky she still comes in for hugs often.

Hubby is plodding along. He was in this years' Masters Boxing competitions. He lost by 2 points only, but he did SO well (and how sexy does he look in all his gear? ;)

And me? Well this year has been a total awakening for me, in so many ways. It has not been easy, as I struggle when life gets busy and complicated. Must remember to BREATHE.
But I feel like I am a new me, and I have reassessed what life is all about. I guess that's what 2011 is about, and 2012 I feel will be huge in that respect, for many people. Bring it on, I say.

I'll leave you with some snapshots of everyday life from my hipstamatic Iphone app (best app EVER. The only reason I wanted an Iphone!)

Our babies that grow too quick...baby teeth, gone

Husbands' in the kitchen...what's not to love? :)

Sushi for dinner...yum

Hubby's boxing match  (he's in red)

Moshlings...the Moshy Monsters craze in our house

Juicy lip colours for spring 
Rainy spring days, *love*

PS3 time during school holidays

Climbing kitties

                                                     Drives around our beautiful city

                            Enjoy the rest of your week xx