Saturday, August 20, 2011

Sugar and spice and everything nice

Hi all,

These gorgeous cushions can be custom made to suit for any occasion. Birthday, new baby, housewarming gift etc.

All cushion covers are hand made. The applique is secured by either hand blanket stitched or by machine. 

Hope your week is treating you and yours well..

Sof xx

Saturday, August 6, 2011

What a hoot!

Hi all,

Just a quick post today. Ive been asked by a couple of people to make owl softies and after some thought at a lot of experimentation I've come up with my first prototype. Introducing 'Owlie greenie lovely good' (as named by Miss G).

Im not convinced by its proportions. What do you think? Im thinking I should add little legs to close up the tummy area but as the owl is intended for small people, I didn't want to add too many attachments (little people love to stick things in their mouths).

Ive got a few other ideas but alas, time is not my friend so the ideas stay in my head until a spare moment allows me to set them free!

Hope you're all having a wonderful day.

Sof xx

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Whats a few months between friends

Hello lovely blogger readers. Yet again months have passed without a blog post. Time just goes by so fast at the moment.

Not alot going on in my part of the world. I had a few weeks of absolutely no creativity whatsoever and then a burst of enthusiasm (and necessity) drove me back to the sewing room to create again.

The kinder kids birthday season has started again and this year I've chosen to make the birthday kids messenger bags. I really enjoy making these and, with all things, the more I make, the better they get. My latest messenger bag was fashioned from an old pair of the birthday boy's own jeans which is mum had given to me to upcycle.

Sorry for the slightly fuzzy picture. The light was fairly poor.

I used the back pockets of the jeans rather than create new pockets and they turned out really well. It did take me a little longer to cut the fabric but it was really satisfying to create something new from something which would have been otherwise thrown away.

I have spent a little time making a jacket for Miss G. I spent a decent amount of time trying to buy a winter coat but could not find a decent one. IAll I could find were flimsy, barely lined numbers which were poorly made and came in the most awful colours or trims.

The exterior fabric used for this jacket was free, picked up from freecyclers and the fabric lining I found at my local op shop, costing me the princely sum of $1 for about 3 metres. The buttons I pinched from my mums button collection. I liked the effect of the 6 different buttons.

I decided to make a size 6 thinking i'd be able to stretch the jacket out for a few winters. However, I found that the sleeves were a little too tight and, unfortunately, Miss G cant wear a jumper underneath it. So its destined to be a dress jacket.

Finally, Ive made a couple of margaret bags for my mum in law and a friend who recently celebrated her birthday.

Michael Miller owl fabric.
Shoulder version made for my mum in law.

Im currently working on an owl softie and some more cute kids clothes. No doubt there will be a few more messenger bags in the works. 

Hope all is well in your part of the world.

Sof xx

Thursday, May 26, 2011

My creative space #2 2011

Hi all,

How are you all??! Life has been pretty busy around here. The colder months have set in and with it has bought my passion for sewing. I missed my machine.

Here are a couple of offerings.

First, a boy's messenger bag for a special little buddy who turned 2. I really wanted to make him something but struggled to find a project until I came across a picture of a boy with a messenger bag. From there it was just a matter of finding the right tute for the right one.

Caribinas hold the strap to the bag with eyelets inserted in the bag's sides to give it strength. 

I need to thank his mum for taking these fantastic pics.

I used an old pair of my jeans for the exterior fabric and the inside fabric (and binding) was specifically bought for the birthday boy. To be honest, I couldn't resist it and I knew his mum would really like it too!

If you'd like to make one of your own, the tutorial can be found here. The tute doesn't come with instructions for the fabric lining but is pretty easy to come up with that bit on your own. Also, if you're using fabric that isn't stiff, Id suggest using a thick fusible webbing to help the bag keep its shape.

I'll definitely be making this one again. The kinder birthday season is starting so you can expect to see a variety of messenger bags this year. Even the husband was impressed by this project and has requested an adult sized version.

Next, I made this set for a little girl who I will hopefully be seeing soon. The pattern for the top is the same one as used here and the pants are a simple elasticised waist number.

Ive had flower fabric for about 2 years, always admiring it but never really having the right project for it. Im glad its finally found its form and is on its way to a new home. Im hoping that the pants aren't too 'boyish'. I think there is way too much pink for girls. Let them wear blue I say!

Hope you are all well.

For more creative spaces, click over here

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Do not compute...

Hi all,

Yet another long gap between entries and it will be a quick one as there has been lots of kid work and not very much sewing work.

Firstly, I wanted to show you these two robots, made for two very special little boys. They are made from a pair of my old jeans.

Ive got a fair few jeans past repair so I'd say a few more of these little guys will be made in the not to distant future.

Take care,

Monday, April 11, 2011

Easter is on its way...

Hi all,

Its been a hectic month or so. Weddings and birthdays and sewing but not alot of posting.

Im currently working on a quilt that Im quite enjoying piecing together. Its a very simple chinese coin quilt and its going very easily, albeit slowly. Its a gift for the recently married couple
Groom punching the air.. he knows how lucky he is :)

..who I was lucky enough to be a part of the bridal party (a bride slave as she put it :) for.
Some of 'the girls'. Im the one with the glasses.

The day passed without a hitch, the bride was absolutely stunning and we had a blast as the limo we travelled in had a karaoke machine AND champagne. Dangerous combo!

Completed items are, again, few and far between. Ive made another pinnie for a little girl who turned 1
denim one side
pastel blue floral on the reverse.

... and have been trialling bunny designs. Here is what I've come up with:
bunny #1 has very strange legs...
bunny #2 is Miss G's most fave softie at the moment.

Last but not least is a quick pic of what the girls got up to today after I gave them a box of scraps to play with...

my girls LOVE mess!

Hope you're all well.


Wednesday, March 16, 2011

A spot of modelling and the essential little blue dress

Im grabbing 2 minutes between my shower and the kids having to get dressed to quickly post the pics of the little blue denim dress I made a few days ago for a birthday present. Miss G has a few little girlfriends and this birthday girl is one of her BFF's. I thought it appropriate to try something new with the machine and came up with a little improvisation on a simple a-line dress.

I added the frill at the bottom and a, well i guess you'd call it a kind of frilly bib at the top. Ofcourse both kids loved the smily flower buttons and Miss G took alittle convincing to take the dress off.

Hope you're having a great week.

Monday, March 7, 2011

Birthdays and new things

Hi all
Im hoping you're all well in your part of the world.

In this week's edition of not much happening I've got a new baby.... yep my hubby, mum and dad chipped in and provided me with some money as a substitute to a birthday present to go out and buy a new machine. I think they'd had enough of me swearing at my old machine and teaching the kids all sorts of colourful new words.

She's a Bernina Bernadette. I have a feeling she's the type of machine that is marketed to a 20 something that wants to sew and has alittle bit more money to buy a step up from a basic machine... but I love her. The kids are pretty impressed that it beeps and lights up too.
Photo by Miss G... she's getting better at the photography.

My first project was a small cushion using some lovely materials sent by Lisa a few weeks ago. Im not sure if its going into one of the girls rooms.. its currently sitting in the dining room waiting for a new home.

One of the many embroidery stitches available on the machine.

Otherwise, Ive been cross stitching a wedding present that now has no hope of being finished in time and planning a few more dresses for my girls.

Wishing you a lovely week :)

Monday, February 28, 2011

Mission (mostly) accomplished...

So I set off from finishing my last blog post with a spring in my step toward the sewing room, intent on getting things done.
First cab off the ranks was the denim hat. I finished the binding on the brim.. check. Next up, attaching brim to crown. After much fiddling, sewing, unpicking, sewing, unpicking (you get the vibe) it was finally attached. Alittle grosgrain ribbon to finish the inside, some hand sewing and voila! finished. Or so I thought. On checking the fit on Miss G, I noticed that i hadnt attached the brim to the crown straight. This wouldnt have been a problem if not for the fact that I'd topstitched everything in a bright blue. Lets just say its pretty obvious. So back to the 'to do' pile it goes.

Next, the red spotty hat. Should be a cinch I think. No such luck. I've decided that the way the pattern finishes the hat doesn't really satisfy my standard of 'finished'. Back to the 'to do' pile.

Next, costumes for the girls. Cutting went off without a hitch. Sat at the machine to put it together and my machine starts to skip stitches. At this point Im just alittle over it all. Call in "mrs fixit" AKA my mum. We change needles, adjust tensions, change cottons, rethread the machine, all to no avail. Mum takes the materials home and completes two gorgeous fairy costumes in 3 days. No mean feat but she did it, and here they are:
The only credit I can take on these is buying the fabrics. At this point, my sewing mojo is threatening to leave me again.

Ok, final project of the week. A present for the birthday girl. I have been meaning to make a hair clip stand / frame for my girls for some time. It went together really easily. Of course my girls are going to have to wait for one of their own.

I had enough time to make some hair clips for the birthday girl as well.

Her mum tells me that it was well received and well timed. The birthday girl had received a number of hair clips as presents.

Yes I am alittle disheartened by my fails of the week but I guess every mistake is a lesson learnt. This week I aim to:
Finish the two hats;
Make some dresses for the girls;
Investigate some new sewing machine options;
Not be so hard on myself!

Last but not least, a very big THANK YOU to Lisa for sending me a large bag of beautiful scrap fabrics. I have been inspired by the array of fabrics and its sent my mind ticking over with ideas. Thanks so much Lisa!

Monday, February 21, 2011

Monthly update!

Despite all good intentions I find myself blogging again a month after my last blog entry. My creativity and willingness to step into the 'sewing room' (aka the dining room) was sapped for a while. Melbourne weather is non existent. Its been replaced by balmy, sultry days and humid nights which is sapping all my energy. Or sapped... a return to Melbourne's cool days and cold nights has once again rejuvenated my body and my energy has (somewhat) returned due to a good nights sleep.

So here are some projects that have been completed, are to be completed or have yet to be started. My aim is for the end of the week. Im hoping the cooler weather continues.

First up, I came across this cool tute for a mail organiser on a blog called Noodleheads and set about spending a little money at the local mega craft place. On returning home with all the supplies I needed, I found my staple gun wasnt working (actually it will never work again... the handle just dropped off). This was a major grrrr moment as I'd been planning to make an organiser for a friend celebrating her birthday today. What to do.... and then I spotted this equally cool tute for a clutch bag. As the tute says, more time is spent selecting fabric and cutting it. Assembly is pretty easy. Here is the finished clutch.

I dont think the gathering is so obvious on my clutch. Might just be the colours or pattern of the fabric. I'll definately be making a few of these for the present stash. They are pretty easy and cute.

Here is the mail organiser, minus everything except the backing fabric (which is only just hanging on with adhesive spray). Back to mega craft place this week to buy another staple gun.

Also on the cards this week is putting the finishing touches to this sun hat.
Im going to have to get Miss A to model this hat. Its so cute on.

And finishing attaching the crown to the brim for this sun hat as well as some binding.

When all that is done (with some luck and help from my super mum), this fabric and tulle will make a water fairy and tinkerbell costume for my girls who are going to a birthday this sunday. Ive got my fingers, arms and legs crossed hoping that they will turn out.

And to top things off, a present for the birthday girl who's birthday we'll be celebrating on Sunday!

Lastly, I recently took advantage of a sale on Vogue and McCalls patterns online. In Australia, buying paper patterns is ridiculously expensive. Ofcourse, shipping was a factor for these but all up, i spent less per pattern than I would have if I'd bought them from a retail outlet here. I deliberately decided to buy lots of dress patterns. I dont often wear dresses because I can never find anything that 1. I like and 2. fit me nicely. So, inspired by bloggers like Lisa, Im taking the plunge into adult dress making. Wish me luck!

Thursday, January 20, 2011

My creative space #1 2011

Hope everything in your part of the world is good. Its been pretty crazy weather here in Melbourne (and, quite frankly, everywhere along the eastern seaboard of Australia). Floods in all states along the east and days of horrible humidity followed by cool weather. Today is one of the few days of the summer I remember as a kid (think blue skies, 30+ degrees and bugs!). Im glad its finally arriving.

Koo's creative space entries have started again and I will endeavour to post at least once a week to coincide with it. It will (hopefully) ensure that I do take some time out for creativity during the week.

Here are a few more things finished up this week.

These are covered photo albums made for some of my friends daughters for Christmas. I am ashamed to say that I just finished these (almost the end of January) but I rarely get to see my girl friends and their kids. Well they were made on time for delivery. I hope they are well received.

Another birthday girl who's siblings had each received a letter cushion last year for their birthdays finally received her own. I found the letter alittle tricky and it took me some time to work out how to turn it. I ended up having to stuff via the space in the middle of the A..... made sewing it up very frustrating but it turned out nicer than i'd anticipated.

On the kiddies front, we've been doing alot of indoor crafts as the weather (as mentioned above) has been quite wet. Here is one crafting session that went well and they were interested in for more than 5 minutes! Sure its messy but letting them experiment with the paper and glue was fun to watch. Miss G decided that rather than stick flat bits of paper to the window, it would be nicer if they were made into 'flowers'. I'd never have thought of that!

One of the above mentioned flowers can be seen in Miss G's hair (its the blue thing).

The girls being able to work together side by side was an added bonus of this activity.

Finished window.... and very sticky fingers!

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Another year begins

Well a Merry christmas and happy new year to you all. Its been a pretty hectic December and im not sure where the month went. It was definately a sprint to the Christmas / new year break and I'm still wondering when it happened and where it all went. Ive had my hubby home for two weeks and its been fantastic. Even though I dont get a holiday from my job, having an extra pair of hands around certainly has made it easier.

On the creative front, I didnt get as much as I wanted done (yes this is a familiar story). Despite knowing exactly what i wanted to make and for whom, best intentions arent the only thing you need with Christmas barrelling toward you. I did manage a few things though:

some very simple handmade christmas cards made with paper I picked up in Japan years ago.

A couple of travel document pouches for my mum in law (pictured) and uncle in law (for some reason I didnt photograph) who are both avid travellers (and who happened to be me and hubby's kris kringles). Included in the pouches were some vouchers. In retrospect, I should have added a little description as Uncle Charles was alittle confused by it :) On a side note, these were the first zips ive ever done, and they were not hard at all!! (you were right Tab).
If you'd like to make one, the tute can be found Here

Some gift voucher pockets (only one photographed... im not sure why i'd forgotten to photograph all of them) which could be used for carrying around anything (think lippy, perfume etc). I used the tute found here for the gift card below and then thought that it was a waste of fabric (and my time) if you couldnt use it again so I created the pocket version (above).

I also managed to make these notebook with colouring pencils for a friend's two little girls (well she has three but the third is alittle small for colouring). I monogramed them and made each notebook with the girl's favourite colour.

I also made dresses for my girls for christmas day and i'll include a pic in the next post. I need my hubby's computer for photos and he's busy killing bad guys :)

Lastly, here are some pics of my little girls on christmas morning. Santa had hidden a present each in their room. The remaining presents were left under the tree. The girls got a kick out of leaving some choccie biscuits and a carrot for santa and the reindeer only to find crumbs in the morning. So cute!

The morning started very early with Miss G finding her present from santa hidden under her bed. And what did he bring her?... her very own sewing machine (which I have only just worked out how to thread.. the bobbin was really difficult to work out!).

Miss G had jumped into Miss A's bed with the present santa had left. I dont think these smiles stopped all day!

Later in the day at Grandma's house, woody and buzz dress-up clothes were the biggest hit. Here is a pic of woody and buzz having a cuddle.

Hoping 2011 is the best ever year for you and your family.