I actually remember my mother's birthday when asked but when it actually is - I don't remember it. I realised it on saturday when she was talking about making a cake and the birthday was on sunday when we were also going for a visit. I was going to spend few days with my kids in my home village so the visit didn't have anything to do with the birthday and I simply had forgotten. That needed some quick thinking.
She likes orchids and I remembered seeing pattern for making own paper orchids in Pinterest. Upcycled paper was perfect for this, I have saved some magazines that have big pictures and nice, glossy pages. Then I needed a branch and a pot for the flower. I had saved yogurt cup and that seemed to fit, just had to figure out a way to make it heavy enough to stand with the flower. So I went "shopping" outside, found branch out of pine and took some sand from the kids' sand box. The problem was that all of these were quite wet so I took them inside, lit up the fire on fire place and put my treasures there to dry. Try and imagine the reaction of my kids when I was doing the exact thing I have forbidden them to do! No bringing sand and branches inside, right?
After making the flowers, I attached them to the branch with hot glue.
The whole thing turned out pretty nice if I may say so. And my mother liked it too. :)
For the other present I used the tutorial by Jill: http://jembellish.blogspot.com.au/2016/10/upright-zip-it-up-pencil-case-tutorial.html
After making it I can only admire the work she has done for making the tutorial. Definitely not the easiest thing to sew, must not have been easy to figure it out in the first place! Thank you very much, I will be making more of these in the future! Already my kids said that they too absolutely need these, so...
I used quite thin fabrics so it was doable to sew, no broken needles for this one. For the lining I used usual cotton fabric but added one extra layer from similar fabric inside to make it sturdier. The pencil case something to make it stand and the tutorial mentions using some plastic, plastic sheet for example, I used coffee bag. I have saved couple just in case I would need them and now I did. For the hardener it is important that it is rather light, soft and bends. Coffee bag filled all the requirements and worked just fine. The outer fabric is from a skirt from recycling center.
My little old home village with a population under 2000 has own recycling center! People can bring there their clothes, toys, dishes, shoes, books and everything is free. I found bag full of clothes (will be shown later with more detail) and new leather shoes - all for free! The recycling center has been in great use and why wouldn't it? People are recycling more and more and why not to take your old things there when it is easy instead of throwing it away?
I made a suggestion about having recycling center here in my current home village. I got written reply with all the actions that were taken based on my suggestion and I'm glad they had taken it seriously. Someone had actually visited the mentioned recycling center but the decision was that there is no need for it. I may disagree and I tried to press the point in my suggestion but didn't work this time. To tell the truth, I didn't expect anything more this fast but I hope that someone will remember the idea. Who knows, maybe someday we have a place like that too?