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Angels from the Christmas collection. Upcycled from men’s neckties.

As no-one was forthcoming with another Pinteresting idea, I decided to make a board of the items available via my etsy shop this Christmas.

If you have been following along, you will know it has been a very slow year for harrysdesk. Although all the girls are now in school, I have missed my studio greatly. Unfortunately, I haven’t designed a decoration for Christmas this year, but still have some of the past years designs available.

I have a few more items to upload over the coming weeks, so pop back, if you like, and see whats new. I hope to add more owls, hair-ties and t-shirts…… so watch this space.

Now it’s your turn!

What should my next Pinteresting idea be?

You can choose by commenting below.

It can be as quirky or conservative as you like!

 

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Image by Ben Adams via Style me Pretty. The girls.

 

Last year I played a small roll in a very beautifully personal and stylishly fun wedding. I made a maid of honour dress for the lovely Cathy and this week it was included in a DIY wedding feature.

The inspirational blog, Style Me Pretty, gives lots of photos of beautiful wedding and events from all over the world. Taire had a vision in her mind and managed on a small budget to bring together a gorgeous look. After speaking to some of the guests afterwards, as expected of this talented girl, felt as good as it looked.

Clicking on the top image will take you through to a more complete set of images and a beautiful piece written by Taire about their day. Above all she wanted her wedding to be God honouring, a great day for everyone (young and old) and a joyful.

My contribution was very small, but I was so excited to be included in such a beautiful day.

Image by Ben Adams. Cathy’s dress and purse.

The gorgeous birthday girl with the jelly cake that did work. Photos by the lovely Charles Francis.

Our excitable 6 year old enjoyed a crazy mad science party a few weeks ago now.

When she suggested the idea I was a little out of my depth….. not having enjoyed science that much through school…. so I did what I do best and searched the internet for party ideas. Tim also had the great insight to ask some family friends of ours to help with the activities. They are a family full of crazy, fun, sciency folk and they did a marvellous job of entertaining and exciting the masses.

Because I was so thankful to all the people out there in cyber space posting their great ideas for me to use ….I thought  would put all the links together in one post for you to use and steal and enjoy.

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 The invite was made using the excellent Smilebox. So easy , and so free!

Playing with IT…. the slimy stuff.

Norfolk Kids have a great recipe for custard powder gooey slimy stuff!

The super geeks preparing the rocket for launching.

The water rocket was a great hit with the Dad’s and the kids.

The Aquapod bottle launcher could quickly become a family favourite. The launcher is safe and with just a bike pump and water sends the rocket about 100m in the air.

….. a little palaeontology anyone?

Wack with a hammer to reveal a dinosaur inside. A hit!

…similar ideas at Kids Activities Suite 101.

Marbled fingernail painting….

…a little something like this.

6 year old in her scrubs playing with ‘squishy circuits’.

‘Squishy Circuits’ are the brainchild of AnnMarie Thomas. See her TED talk here. These are super cool!!

Yes, it’s an old faithful….pass the parcel. The treats inside included ‘Smarties’ and ‘Nerds’ and crystal stickers.

No link here. I adapted this game all by myself.

Even when we really had no idea what we were doing we looked the part in our lab coats. These came courtesy of the high school our friend works at. They had authentic chemical stains.

Making ice-cream to eat with our birthday ‘cake’….which was actually jelly. BIrthday girls looks a bit sceptical about this one.

We jiggled and wiggled to science music making our ice cream. You can find the recipe here.

….ooops just realised that you all have seen this outfit before on a different birthday girl. Yes the girls do borrow each others clothes.

And speaking of food…..

An exploding (not really) jelly cake.

Made this one up too after the disaster of the ‘molecule cake’ 

Inside the test tubes was a jelly snake, and it’s hard to see but the jelly was layered lime aqua and pink.

A very cool and easy way to layer jelly. The link is down but you can see from the images here how to do it. All you need is a muffin tray.

It doesn’t show fully in the photo but these drinks were colour layered….it’s all to do with sugar content.

I found this cool idea at the sisters cafe. It also works in a larger jug.

A little difficult to see….. ‘Build a molecule’ tray of round food and toothpicks. Also little specimen cups full of jelly.

The ‘build a molecule’ idea came from Come together Kids. This blog has lots more ideas re:science party.

Balloons and flower balls as party favours. If you look closely you can see the water has H20 labels.

I have talked and made these tissue paper balls before. The instructions can be found at Martha Stewart (I couldn’t do a party without her) and the idea for re-labelling the bottles of water from Kara’s party ideas. As you could imagine ….there are lots more ideas for different parties to be found here.

Last of all 13 year old and I made bunting of real chemical elements (with a few made up ones).

Were you aware the R is the element Random and Da is the element Daring?

…… not to leave out science fiction …… see chemical element Et……

The idea for the bunting came from Apartment Therapy.

6 year old in excellent company…… mad scientist together.

I used the image of Einstein from the invitations…… then photographer 6 year old doing the same face. After a short fiddle with the colours in photo shop….. we had our bunting.

How do you start putting together ideas for a themed party?

What are the best ones you have ever hosted or been too and why?

Easter hat inspiration.

April 1, 2012

  

Image from Chanel Couture spring show 2009.

As I said last year….Easter hat parades have nothing to do with Jesus.…. So stop beating yourselves up about the bunnies and the eggs.  Easter hats are all about spring, fashion and celebration.

“Easter was once known as the “Sunday of Joy.” After the Civil War, mothers and daughters who had donned the dark colors of mourning for such a long time began wearing colorful flowered hats and elaborate corsages as part of the Easter celebration. Their hats were adorned with blooming and fresh flowers. If the flowers were not blooming they would make them from paper, ribbon, feathers or sea shells.” quote from dgreetings  

Unfortunately, it’s autumn here and there aren’t any rabbits (or bilbys) or chickens roaming the streets of the inner city… anywhere for that matter.There aren’t any new flowers in bloom and things are much more in the dying phase than the regenerating one.  So  I have decided to just go with the whole feel of it and enjoy the spectacle.

I recently calculated that I have made or co-made more than 15 Easter hats so far…Yes that’s a lot of visits to $2 shops! Our school also has a rule that you are not allowed to put any chocolate eggs on your hat! You can see some easy hats you are welcome to copy here and here.

Beautiful soft flowers and feathers by Loboheme via chic bridal hairstyles.

I was a little  low on inspiration this year and we had only a small window of opportunity in which they could be completed….this week being pretty full.

So I thought where better to get my inspirations than from the catwalks of Europe. After all, who does fashion, spectacle, spring and extravagance more indulgently than them.

I was keen to focus on the flower….. which would have to be fake, so as to keep the cost down, and allow us to make them earlier in the week.

I started having a look around and this is what I found.

Fabric flowers. Image from Martha Stewart.

So fabulous !

Fortunately, there are lots and lots of how to videos and web sites out there on how to make all sorts of flowers.

I have listed them below in case you are in need of some inspiration….

Martha’s paper and fabric flower tutorials.

How to make Crepe paper flowers.

Thai paper flowers 

Tissue Paper Flowers.

Roses from Coffee Filter Papers.

Giant Tissue Paper Flowers 

Origami Flowers 

Image from tiskin.com. Ascot style millinery from the Paris Catwalks.

I wanted to keep it inexpensive, so decided on paper.

After sitting through some of the videos with my 8year old and a little sharing of ideas we put together something pretty special…… Which of course you will have to wait until thursday to see.

Happy Easter hat making…..

Day 1: Big smile in her skirt into dress....oh and a sneaky owl!

Day 2: A Mary Poppins impersonation before leaving home. Another skirt made into a dress.... yes and am "Over it" Brooch to finish it off.

Day 3: Orientation done! I think a song is in order. Men's shirt into a skirt and top.

Leading up to orientating 5 year olds to school, she began getting very excited about upcycling skirts into dresses.

We had made one in the past, and she really enjoyed wearing it….bit small now…

On a recent trip to the Op Shop, 5 year old bought me the two ladies skirts and suggested we make dresses for her ‘try out days’. She called them this because  she was under the impression that she would try it…ask the teachers a few questions (Like what is 2+2… because if they didn’t know, then she thought they wouldn’t make very good teachers)…..

Anyway we thought we would turn it into a fun activity together. She would pick some pieces from the Op Shop and I would make her some things to wear. While I sewed she sat on the floor and floated around watching and learning what Mummy does.

These are what we ended up with!

The first one is simply made by attaching ribbons to the top of the skirt and tying them together at the shoulder.

With dress two, I made fixed straps with ribbon and attached the ties. I also added a little ribbon on the skirt yoke to draw the ribbon print into the overall dress.

The skirt and top is a little complex to explain in a sentence, but I hope to share a tutorial of how to do it soon. It’s a great (cheap) way to introduce children to sewing…..

Another Penhall!

July 20, 2011

Silvery grey Penhall..... with floral lining.

I’ve just posted this new one on etsy

It’s the second promised bag made using the colours inspired by you. You can see the green and blue version here.

I’m loving it, and was glad of the opportunity to put a silver grey bag together….as I have been wanting to use this colour combo for a while.

So thanks…..

The repositional rosette....

....and the back.

...the oval base with pleats...

The bag is also completely reversible. The other side is lined with a liberty-esque floral in blue green and grey tones with a touch of pink….so it’s a bit girlie.

...a peek at the inside....

The first Penhall for sale on etsy..... $140

Close-up.

Even closer. Rosette brooch detail.

The back.... or front (you can choose)

The base.....a pleated oval.

....a peek inside.....navy velvet.

But wait...there's more.... it's totally reversible!

Even switch the rosette to the navy side.

....and of course....it's a harrysdesk.

Lots of you will have an extra 10% discount on this price…and some even 20%….. due to the special anniversary bag give-away.

Thanks again to those who entered.

If you would like to sling this on your shoulder (or someone that you know) let me know and I will give you your special code word, so you can access your discount.

For a more detailed description and measurements ….. go here.

The winning bag

June 13, 2011

The anniversary bag.

The drawing

The first of the anniversay bags is done…. and delivered.

Although the 5 years old says it looks like an upside down pair of undies, I have resisted the urge to name them knickers, undies or y-fronts…. or to enter into any conversation with her about who these ‘undies’ would fit…. even though she would love to.

The Penhall bag in small and medium. I added a button clasp which pulls the sides in a little.

No. The new bag will be called the ‘Penhall’.

Customarily I name new bags by the surname of the first person to own that style. Because …. as I mentioned earlier, Heidi already has a bag named after her….the “Broadbent’ (her married name) so this time I have used her maiden name.

So …introducing the “Penhall” with absolutely no reference to undies!….I think it’s best.

Now I better get cracking on the etsy ones…..

Steph's 'Ultimate Custom Purse'

This one was lots of fun to make!

Yesterday I posted about something harrysdesk that was featured on 30 projects in 30 days.

This was it.

If you missed it you can check out the original post with more photos here and on Steph’s blog.

 

 

 

Midnight tonight is it.

The last entries for the giveaway bag have to be in by midnight tonight.

Don’t miss out.

Green is leading the way as the base colour of choice…although red is doing it’s best to catch up.  Grey and silver tones are making a surprise showing up there in the top colours…as is yellow.

Your entry could change all this…

Random winner to be chose tomorrow….also a cute new product to show you.

Click through here to see how and why you would want to enter.