Wednesday, October 3, 2012

My friend Kootoyoo. x

I feel like I've told the story I am about to tell you a hundred times. To friends, in interviews and whenever else I am asked the question 'What made you start a blog?' But you know what? I don't think I have ever written it here. So here goes:

Waaaaaaaay back in the beginning of 2009 I was a farm blogger. I had a blog called Daylesford Organics which documented and told the stories of our days on the farm. The who we were, the what we were growing and the theory behind the why we were running this organic family farm.

I loved writing that blog.

But once I discovered the world of blogs, the blogs I found myself reading and obsessing over were the craft blogs. There was this big, wide, crafty world out there. People were photographing and writing about what they were sewing and crocheting and painting and making and parenting. Who knew?

At that time I was still a farm blogger and a bit too shy to get involved in the crafty blog goings on. But I remember clearly one day discovering this crafty community project and knowing that I had found my peeps and that I couldn't stay away any longer.

That project was the Quilt project. Do you remember it? Fifty bloggers signed up and each was sent a plain piece of over locked calico on which they were to stitch something, anything, in their own style, in red. The squares would then be sent back and made into a great big, gorgeous quilt. The whole blog world seemed to be buzzing with these squares and this project. The excitement was infectious.

Coordinating this whole awesome community project was a blogger called Kootoyoo.

My one blogging regret is not being a crafty blogger early enough in the piece to be part of the quilt project.

But very soon after that Foxs Lane was born. June 2009 to be precise.

And while I was incredibly excited at having my own space to document the stuff I was making, I still had no idea how to get into that community.

Until I found My Creative Space, coordinated and hosted by that very same Kirsty of Kootoyoo.

Every Thursday Kirsty would put a post up on her blog detailing what creative amazingness she was up to that week. Then at the bottom of her post she'd set up a thing where all the other bloggers could link up and share their week's creative spaces.

Every week I looked forward to Thursday. To posting my space and getting lots of feedback on what I was doing, to getting a glimpse into the creative worlds of so many other inspiring craftspeople and most importantly, to join that community.

My creative space was my in.

And the reason I am telling this story today, in case you haven't guessed, is my awesome new banner. Three and a bit years later I am lucky enough to call Kirsty a real life friend and she made it for me. How unbelievably rad is that!

Kirsty's blog is here; I'm certain you know and love her already. Kirsty still runs My Creative Space on Thursdays and has the most incredible way of seeing the world and its creative opportunities. All the pics on this post are obviously Kisty's too.

Thanks Kirst, you are the absolute acest. xx

So how about you?
Were you a part of the red quilt project?
Were/are you a My Creative Space devotee?
When and why did you start your blog?
And is there a particular blogger who has influenced your blogging journey?

Bye! x


  1. Thank YOU lovely Kate ... always so generous in giving me the nod.

    How much better off we all are for having you along for the ride.

    Lots of love your way. xxx

  2. Love your new banner, it is truly fabulous.

  3. I met Kirst BEFORE she had a blog, believe it or not! And I was lucky enough to be part of the quilt project too, in fact I found my quilt square recently and have been pondering what to do with it. We are all lucky to have Kirsty as part of our community, she is so generous & inspiring and an ace mate too.

  4. I just missed out on the quilt project too!
    Loving your new blog banner Kate - especially those coffee beans!X

  5. I saw your post image in my sidebar and I thought 'oh my, Kate's gone all Kootoyoo' and... here she is. She is one of the top-shelf, top-notch, top-of-the-tops gals about town. A creative, caring, giving and oooozing with artsy goodness person.

    Bit like yourself, actually. x

  6. Oh what a lovely blog post! Kirsty is amazing. She's one of the first bloggers that I met in real life when I joined Brown Owls.
    I was lucky enough to be part of the quilt project, and only a couple of weeks ago as I was rifling through my junk in one of the cupboards in the garage and I found my square. I dragged it out and I'm going to hang it on the wall.

  7. Good morning Kate, great story! I totally adore your new banner! Kirsty's creations in your blog are amazing too, I especially love the last one. I started my blog to share my food thoughts and photos and now I share a little bit of everything.

  8. oh sucha nice story... I love your banner..... Looks so special

  9. Your banner is so beautiful Kirsty is so talented. Kootoyoo is one of the first blogs I started viewing way back when I first discovered this blogging thing. It was much much later that I started blogging, inspired by Kirsty among many others.

  10. Yes, I was part of the red quilt project ... not too long after I started blogging. Kirsty was one of the first blogs I came across and loved ~ she's such an ideas woman!!

  11. Kirsty has such a distinctive style, I knew it was her amazingness as soon as I opened this up today! I have been blogging since the second half of 2010, I still feel a bit of a was to share my attempts at creativity with my sister in New Zealand..and I didn't like Facebook..hehe. I really thought it would just be her and me shooting little messages across the one else. I'm still shy about meeting anybody else in get the best of me here, I think, as I don't have to worry about how I look to anyone.

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  13. Kirsty's Kootoyoo - My Creative Space was one of the first blogs I discovered and it was fabulous in that it led me to so many lovely blogs to read - including Fox's Lane.. one of my very favourites x (hmm, I couldn't handle staring at my typo so deleted the last post.. didn't realise it would leave a footprint. I'm still getting the hang of this bloggy world :)

  14. I did take part in the quilt project, it was such an amazing thing to be a part of.

    Kirst is the best thing that one flew over has given me, love her.

    Your new banner is beaut xx

  15. Wow your banner looks ace Kate! Loving the new look. I started doing a blog after I won a giveaway on Moggie and Me and thought I had something to share with others. I also used to read knitdad but I dont think he blogs anymore, but he blogged about knitting retreats and projects and I found it inspiring. I then started to discover crafty blogs and made some friends, a few in real life too which is just amazing. I hope that bloggers never stop blogging as I really enjoy reading their ideas, inspiration and stories.

  16. Love your new banner.
    Kirsty is very talented.
    I began blogging hoping to connect with other like minded souls as I have always been a bit of a homebody crafting gardener.
    The first two blogs that influenced by blogging journey would have to be Down-to-Earth and Ivy Nest. After finding those two I began finding many, many more.

  17. I do remember stumbling across the Quilt project too late to join, but being utterly inspired. I'd been blogging not quite year...I think that creative space was when i stumbled over your blog too - and so many others. What a revelation that was; the discovery of like minded souls! And funny how (now that I think on it) so many of you seemed to come from Oz and NZ. I liked you lot right away :)

    The banner is wonderful!

    PS. Thanks for reminding me that I have "known" so many amazing people for years now! What a gift!

  18. Kate that banner....AMAZING!!
    I actually stumbled upon you not long into my blogging journey and through the comments here found a whole new world of bloggers.

  19. The Banner is ACE Kate ! I love everything about it, color coordination .. the FOX with that mischievous smile, beans, crochet,egg, house, alphabets, knitting needles... everything! I started following you late.. almost a year back, so it was good to know your crafty blogland birth story! Great post! Cheers!!

  20. That banner is SOOO cool! I love it! Great story too. :)

  21. What a lovely blog you have! I was involved in the Quilt project too, still not sure what to do with my square...Since I closed my online shop (Polka Dot Rabbit) to work full time on our not for profit Green Renters I didn't really have time to blog anymore and then i did something and all the pics on my blog got deleted. Maybe it's time to start a fresh one?...

  22. Kate, seeing as several of the commenters still have their squares, wouldn't it be great for all these individual squares to be sewn together. Just a thought.
    PS I too love your new banner - though of course nowhere near as much as I love you.

  23. I love your new banner! And, i am so glad you told your story, because it's new to me.

  24. When i started my blog i had no clue there was such a community woven in around crafty blogdom. I started GrowMama because i am a writer and as a sleep challenged new mama those years ago, i wanted an incentive to write. And a way to keep in touch/share our story with my people who are scattered all over the world. It is grown into being about solidarity, living lighter on the earth, community and lifestyle as well as the mama journey and craftiness. I can't imagine not doing it now!
    (and i am off to discover kirsty's blog!)x

  25. Yep that Koo, she is pretty awesome!
    Yep was and still am a creative space devotee xo

  26. Love your banner Kate it's fabulous! Love Kirsty's work very much.
    I didn't know about the red quilt project. I did occasionally participate in My Creative Space but life often got in the way of the creative me.
    I began blogging while looking after my elderly & sick parents to keep the family up dated.
    Discovering it was possible to re-use, recycle & up-cycle stuff into beautiful objects saw the birth of this blog.
    I got to know you Kate plus other talented girls when I stumbled upon the Pin Cushion Swap you curated. Like a mother hen I so wanted to be included in projects in Victoria, compared to so little happening in NSW, but again life got in the way!
    You Dear Kate influenced my blogging journey with your honest peek into your life. I'd been determined to blog anonymously. I'd been fearful by media reports about possible risks associated with blogging your personal life. The openness through blogs linked to Foxs Lane gave me the courage to proceed. There's a special place in my heart for you Kate also for a number of the blogging girls who one day I'd love to meet up with.
    BTW I'm a Great GrandMaMa again to Milla Poppy ... life is bliss :)

  27. Oh dear, oh dear... my crafty blog following just exploded! Thank you for introducing me to the red quilt project... and so many amazing crafty blogs in turn!
    Thanks for mixing it up with stocking dams with trout, planting peas and chook chasing! It's nice to see your mix of gardening, cooking, farming and crating, and realise it's totally normal to try and do it all :)

  28. Thursdays keep me true to blogging my craft. It makes me have something to share and to keep going with a project (or start 10 more)
    I started blogging in 2006. Amelia was almost one. I had been blogging for my family to stay up to date with the little miss. I found Crafty Mama's forum and Essential Baby and wanted to share what I had been making for her but did not want to open up the (sometimes) 10 posts a day to the world. So 'Kylie's Crafts' was created.
    I was not part of the Red Quilt project. From memory I had just had Baden and knitting with a newborn with reflux on my chest had taken hold.
    Love the new banner.

  29. Fabulous new banner! I noticed it straight away - awesome work. The symbolism plus having everything in the same colour is so eye-catching. I loved how much your post made me think about my own blog - so much that I actually have posted an entire response there. Here's just a little bit though....

    It's like a living breathing scrapbook that I keep for those I love.

    Thanks for inspiring me once more!

  30. the banner is awesome. love it. what a clever artistic lady. some fantastic arty mind work going on there which is so visually pleasing.

  31. Love your new banner, Kate! I also have kirsty and my creative space to thank for finding a blog community of many wonderful people (like you!). My own creative space has suffered lately, but I plan to return there soon xo

  32. I took part in The Quilt Project and I love my rhino. I am still trying out how best display him and his bird, Deidre, here up on my Hilltop.

  33. I got into blogging the exact same way ~ through my creative space! Have a lot to thank Kirst for:)

  34. I LOVE your new banner! ...and some of the reds in the title are just like the winterberry colour. LOVE red xoxo

  35. i love Kirst & you.
    It gives me joy to see you two together here in your banner.

  36. Dude. It is perfect.

    And your blog has inspired me so much and given me the permission to change up what I post a little bit. Because I love what you do, so hopefully my readers will love what I do.

    Uhhhhhh love everywhere

  37. Love the new banner - love MCS. I add to it when I can, but fairly sporadically at the moment. One day I hope to reign in the day job to part-time which I'm hoping would make more time for creative-ness which I'm hoping would mean I could participate a little more often!

  38. I really remember that quilt project but I didn't have the confidence to join in as I thought everyone's would be so much better. But I was a very regular MCS joiner inner and I think that's how I found you!
    The quilt project though actually got me doing embroidery and it was not long after that that Kirsty awarded me the winner of the red category on the Feeling stitchy blog completion which was very exciting.

  39. And... I hadn't finished yet blogger! I like that MCS kind of kept me accountable Ian way, like I wanted to have something new for show and tell every week. As my bearded Pigeon has become so busy I feel I have less time for both blog reading and creative making for fun but I howl to find the time in the next 12 months

  40. I think your start up story is AMAZEBALLS! and thank you for introducing me to MCS, wow wow wow! Love your banner too...into collections at the mo, I started blogging this AUG and i wrote a post on it called 'embracing our quirkiness' but I dare not wish that you would stop by my blog but now that I said it out loud, I really hope that you do...x P.S. I look forward to following you.

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  45. awww I did the red quilt project too, an embroidery of two ladies with an umbrella. Great fun meeting all the participants!


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Kate XX

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