The Red Balloon Homecraft Gazette
Volume 17—June 2005
The weather has become decidedly chilly, and in response I'm entering a real cocooning phase. I don't know about you, but as far as I'm concerned winter is just the best time to tackle all those forgotten crafting projects, and start a few new ones.
What's on in early July
Field & Study Centre Craft Market
3 July, 9am-3pm, Louise Ave, Parkmore, just off William Nicol
B&B Rooftop Market
Every Sunday & public holiday, 9am-5pm, Upper Level, Mall of Rosebank
Hillfox Market
Every Saturday, Sunday & public holiday, Hillfox Value Centre, Hendrik Potgieter Dr, Weltevreden Park
Countryside Craft Market
Every Saturday, Sunday & public holiday, 9am-5pm, Gardenworld, Beyers Naude Dr, Muldersdrift
Essenwood Craft Market
Every Saturday, 9am-4pm, Essenwood Park, Cnr Essenwood and St Thomas Rd, Berea, Durban
Country Craft Market
Closed for winter
Franschhoek Craft Market
9 July, 8.30am-2pm, Main Rd, between NG Kerk & Town Hall
Durbanville Craft Market
2 July, 8.30am-2pm, Rust en Vrede, Wellington Rd, Durbanville
Kirstenbosch Craft Market
Closed for winter
Rondebosch Craft Market
9 July, 9am-3pm, cnr Campground & Sandown Rd
Camphill Village Market
3 July, 11am-4pm, Klein Dassenberg Rd, near Atlantis
Hout Bay Craft Market
Every Sunday, 10am-5pm, Hout Bay Village Green, Main Rd
Waterfront Craft Market
Daily, 9.30am-6pm, The Blue Shed, V&A Waterfront

Craft focus: A few things that caught my eye at Hobby-X

I, along with a great contingent of other craft enthusiasts, braved the cold and mean Cape winter - bucketing rain and all, to head off to the Cape Town International Convention Centre for this year's edition of Hobby-X. Of course it was entirely worth the effort, and, thanks to all the fabulous specials, I blew my budget (huh? budget? what's that?). Here, in no particular order, are a couple of things that grabbed my attention:

The Zip'eMate: This is a dinky little machine that makes die-cutting and embossing so ridiculously easy that your 3-year-old could do it. Quite a hefty investment at around R1700, but if you're a serious scrapbooker or cardmaker then you already know that things like these aren't cheap. I was just blown away by the simplicity and speed of it all. You can take a look at the Zip'eMate here, and it's available for purchase from Accucut SA.

Dare to Decor's extensive range of decor stamps: These proved irresistible and I came home with a flower and a dragonfly. I haven't used them yet - first have to rescue my crafting roller from the garage... I bought two of the smaller stamps, so I plan to use them on cards. The kits with roller and tray would make great gifts, especially for young girls who're getting to that difficult age. Visit their web site for more info.

SewSimple: Ever since I first saw this product from the Bostik stable, I've been meaning to get some. This time around I was in a mood for buying. This product looks absolutely awesome in the demo, and I love the idea of sewing without having to get my sewing machine out (yip, you guessed it - also in the garage). I did try using the SewSimple to fix a pair of jeans, which didn't work, but to be fair, I was expecting it to do the impossible there I think (let's just say I've outgrown the jeans...). It seems to have amazing sticking power and I'm looking forward to putting it to the test in a fairer situation. Find out more on the Bostik web site.

Scrapping & kie: This lovely new scrapbooking magazine hails from Pretoria, and seems to contain a lot of input from the scrapbooking community itself. Each issue contains free scrapping paper, and the magazine has a really pleasant look and feel. Look out for it in your favourite scrapbooking store.

PMC / Silver Clay: Silver Clay is taking South Africa by storm. It's an amazing substance that looks like a dull brownish-grey clay until it's been fired - and then, hey presto, it not only looks like, but in fact IS, silver! While it's in its clayish state, it can be crafted into beautiful jewellery and ornamental shapes. Elize Gerber of Elize Crafts will commence classes in PMC/Silver Clay on 9 July. Get more information here.

Variety: The range of crafts represented at this year's Hobby-X far surpassed that at previous shows I've attended. To me, this means that crafting is becoming more accessible to more people, as choices expand, and creativity is on the increase. I look forward to seeing what next year's show brings us.

I promised last month to tell you about a concept which will allow us all to give something back to the community around us, but, what with a car accident, spider bite, and new kitten in the house, this month has been a whole lot busier than expected, so you'll have to forgive me - we're not quite ready yet. Watch out for it in next month's Gazette.

...and all things nice
There are just a few days left in which to enter this month's competition; do so and stand a chance of winning a copy of Sugar and Spice, written by Margie van Tonder. Sugar and Spice is filled with heavenly recipes for both sweet and savoury treats, and it will arrive in our winner's postbox just in time for a bit of indulgent winter baking. See more about the book here.

To stand a chance of winning this book, just click here to answer one easy question and provide us with your name and contact details. The winner will be contacted via email by the 6th of July.

Please note: To those of you who requested it, from next month we will be accepting email entries as well: it has been brought to my attention that a number of our readers have only email, and not Internet access, and have thus been excluded from the competitions up till now. We have some great prizes lined up for the next few months, so keep reading.
Competition Picture
Tips for crafters
  • Cape Town's Winter Bear Affair takes place on 2 July at St Thomas Church, Campground Road, Rondebosch, from 9am to 2pm. Entry is free, and donations will go to the Tygerberg Trauma Unit. A competition will be held, with entries being judged by visitors to the show. So if you've always fancied yourself to have good taste when it comes to all things beary, then best you stop off at the show and cast your vote. For more information, contact Di on (021) 558 3436 or email her at Get all the details here.
  • Shamwari Crafts has a trendy new product in their range - see the Beaded Flower Brooch here. They sell for R25 each.
  • Workshops at the V&A Waterfront:
    Creative Clay for Kids: 1 - 3 July
    Glass Decoupage: 1 - 3 July
    Art Clay Silver: 9 & 10 July
    Booking is essential: (021) 408 7842.
  • If you have any signage needs whatsoever, contact Gerard Muller of Sunshigns at 083 495 7479 or (021) 558 6972. You can reach him via email at
  • Liven up your winter dinner table with some quick and easy decoupaged candles. Find serviettes in rich jewel-colours to give a sense of warmth, and use gold acrylic paint to embellish the design. If you're stuck for inspiration, get hold of Decoupage with Serviettes by Deborah Morbin and Tracey Boomer.
  • Get some great free craft ideas using recycled material here. The author, Frieda, is a craft producer from Pilgrim's Rest, who shares her creative ideas gladly with others by means of her blog. (Just in case you've never heard the term before, 'blog' is short for 'web-log', and is essentially an online journal - a great way to share thoughts and ideas on an ongoing basis.)

That's all for this edition. Now, who do you know that may enjoy receiving a newsletter jam-packed with crafting tips and info each month? Why not give them the opportunity to become a part of our growing community by hitting the Forward button?

Take care of yourselves and your families. Till next time...


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Requests from readers

  • Naomi is looking for a crafter that does woodwork. She is in the Cape Town area.
  • Anne is still trying to track down a knitting pattern for Snoopy. I'm sure someone somewhere must have one - please won't you all rummage through your old boxes of patterns and see if you can find something?

  • If you think you can help or know of someone who can, then please send an email to and we will put you in touch.

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