Tag Archives: heart

have a heart (or 7700)

Today I was going to do one of those 10-random-post things that Rachell of The Little Room got me thinking about. But I’ve changed my mind. Instead I’m going to spread some crochet love from Sandra at Cherry Heart:

boho hearts

and some sewing love from Rebeka at artsy-craftsy babe:

heart cushion

Both of these girls are SO inspiring. Just looking at what they’ve made makes my heart explode with desire! and my brain goes, Make it too, make it too! 

Happy Valentine’s Day for tomorrow, everyone.  And remember to love yourself – because the more you do, the more you can love others. (That’s what I think, anyway).

Back soon x

good better Vinni’s

mmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm… new cotton!

I knew it was being delivered this morning by courier so I was practically hanging on the gate looking down the road to catch first glimpse of the truck. For our Jam Tarts goodies, we’re pretty much only using cotton now and consider ourselves extremely fortunate to have a company in Cape Town that hand dyes and balls such beautiful quality cotton. Vinni’s Colours includes three different ranges – Nikkim, Bambi and Serina, and it’s SO HARD to have to choose from the range of colours and not just order every single one.



I felt I couldn’t very well write about our new stock without actually making something from it – herewith a dinky little heart that I found thanks to Lyn over at Craftaceous Period. Designed by Luba Davies and available on Ravelry, this is sweet and simple and took about 2 minutes to make.  That’s my kind of heart.


Just FYI, Vinni’s Colours is a wholesaler but if you want to get your hands on some of her wonderful yarn, why not order online through Maryanne over at Woolhogs (another fabulous  and proudly-South African business venture)?

To be continued…

* and in case anyone is wondering, No, neither Vinni nor Maryanne has asked me or paid me to promote their businesses! 

who knew?

When we started Jam Tarts, who knew how busy we’d be with the “unseen” side of things? – editing photos, website stuff, admin, facebook stuff, marketing, sourcing materials, scouring the internet, packing and unpacking boxes, liaising with each other and market organisers and suppliers, coming up with hot new ideas all the time…!!! Not complaining, just saying. I’m still getting the balance right so that I don’t spend more time doing “other” stuff than actually crocheting and sewing. Some days I am reminded of when I was on maternity leave – I’d get so caught up with domestic/baby things, it would be 3.00pm before I’d manage to shower and change out of my pyjamas.

So – all I have time to show you today is this:


It means I love my life, and everyone who is in it.

And now I’m going to update our website.  Maybe you’ll have a look at it later?

To be continued…

A bit of PMT

No, it’s not what you might think.  Thank goodness.

In my case, it means Papier Maché Therapy.

I just got the urge yesterday afternoon to mess around with paper and glue and water.  It had absolutely nothing to do with the editing deadline looming over me, or the washing-up that needed doing, or the weeds growing like triffids in the garden.

I love that you can make something out of almost nothing, and that it can be as durable as ceramics or wood by the time you finish.  I made these hearts a while ago, with many layers of different paper and then many coats of varnish, and they are as hard as rocks – but still as light as anything.

Many years ago I took a course at UCT’s summer school.  While everyone else was registering for Post Modern Theories of Victorian Literature or The Discourse of Feminism in South African Poetry, I did Paper Maché 101 with Jill Joubert, who ran St Cyprian’s Art Department and subsequently headed up the Frank Joubert School of Art and Design.  She was an incredible teacher, and of course we had masses of fun making the biggest mess you can imagine in one of the tutorial rooms on Middle Campus.

My project for that week was a large mirror framed with paper mush and embellished with shells. I know it was rather basic and certainly not very well executed, but it got me going.  (It got thrown out with my last move, which is no doubt just as well.)

Yesterday I decided to make another heart and a bowl, and once I’d done that I had the idea to stick buttons all over two previously-made paper hearts.  They might end up in the bin – but, hey, at least it took my mind off the weeds.

To be continued…

a wonderful saturday after all

Our Constantia Open Day was — exhausting, wonderful, and best of all worthwhile! Even the sun came out for us. Megan’s original illustrations were the biggest hit of the day, and she sold thousands of cards and notebooks. Jane and Mary provided home-baked choc chip cookies and red velvet cupcakes, which were so good they have been commissioned to provide the treats for a Womens’ Day lunch late this week. An interesting offshoot!

Some pics in slideshot format for speed:

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

I would highly recommend holding regular Open Days for small, growing businesses like ours because they are an excellent medium for showcasing concepts and getting feedback (with minimal cash outlay). What might seem like a genius item when you first produce it at home late one night might not actually appeal to Real People at all – and things that you don’t think will sell can surprise you. It’s damn hard to know what people want!

Jam Tarts is grateful to Jane and Craig Butters for the use of their house and garden. Thanks, guys. (Same time next month?) (and Craig, thanks for ordering a knitted warmer for a certain part of your body, I’ll get onto it right away and will be sure to make it XXL).

To be continued…

Gold medallists: Cameron, Chad and Lisa

It’s hard to believe we’re in August already. Time sure whizzes along – just like our phenomenal South African gold medallists, Cameron van der Burgh and Chad le Clos. (The only Chad who has a permanent place in my heart is, of course, Nickelback’s Chad Kroeger, but today we celebrate the swimmers, ok?)

I can post again because last night I put the finishing touches to the first draft of the Jam Tarts website. It will be up later today. It’s a work in progress but, for now, it at least means we have an internet presence. (Who knew that kind of thing was such flipping time-consuming work?)

And, in other news, yesterday I collected an unanticipated parcel from the post office. I managed to control myself and not rip it open in front of the post office teller like a rabid 4-year old.

Turns out to be a gift from my Virtual Friend Lisa G—– way over in Iowa in the US of A, who deserves a gold medal herself for wonderfulness. She made me very happy, and I will treasure those crochet hooks and bookmark forever. As you see, the bookmark was immediately put to use: I am reading Imraan Coovadia’s third novel, Green-Eyed Thieves (having read his other three in no particular order). For those of you interested in South African literature, the psychology of twins and white-collar crime, and the traction between individual consciousness and external reality, this is for you. He is also very very funny. Coovadia deserves his own gold medal. But not as much as Lisa :-)

As usual, I’ve gone off the track. I’m going to end off with something Lisa herself said, about blogging and crafting and, ultimately, about life itself: “It really IS all about the crafting and the fun and the joy of giving and the making new friends with similar interests.” You’re right, and thank you again.

To be continued…

Blanket day

I have nothing crafty to show for my weekend and feel rather bleak about it.
On the other hand, I got some other things done.
1. Found a great big fat red paper heart at the charity shop.

2. Started and finished Tim Parks’ latest novel. Utterly compelling.
3. Picked up two sad little lampshades at a moving-on sale, soon to get a new lease on life.

4. Ate McDonald’s next to the sea in Fish Hoek.
5. Went to a 21st party on Saturday night. Shew, those kids!
6. Put in a truckload of hours working on my website. Still not done, though. Sigh.
7. Had a super intensive blanket day yesterday.

And now – NEW WEEK AHEAD. Time to get cracking on it.

To be continued…