Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Christmas Lists

With Christmas less than 4 weeks away I really must get onto the Christmas shopping. I try to write things down in my diary over the year when I have ideas and/or when someone in my family mentions something they like. But each year I still tend to leave a lot of the gift buying to the last minute. My plan and goal this year though is to make some handmade gifts. There are lots of wonderful ideas and projects on One Pretty Thing which is a great place to start along with printable tags and cards for Christmas.
Finally, I just had to share this cute suitcase set. Aren't they the cutest??!!! They are from Urban Baby and I am already picturing them on the chest of drawers in Michaela's room.

Monday, November 22, 2010

All go!

Up until about 6 weeks ago I had had a relatively quiet year and now I'm busy, busy, busy! I participated in the Made on the Left Christmas Market last weekend which was a good day. The market wasn't as well attended as I had hoped but I still sold a few softies, met some lovely people and enjoyed my day there. I have one more market before Christmas, the Handmade Children's Market on Saturday 4th December as well as a few custom orders to complete for Christmas. These are keeping me busy but having participated in two markets now, I have a better understanding of what and how much to make for the upcoming market.
Last week I did some casual work supervising university examinations which was enjoyable. And there have been family birthdays and gatherings in recent days.
I managed to post my two softies to Meet me at Mikes for their Softies for Mirabel project and am hoping that these two guys make a child smile!

My most recent softie creation is a little hula girl. This one pictured was won by one of Little Cloud Factory 'likers' on Facebook.

And finally, I have one more project that I am working on at the moment which I will hopefully share with you soon.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Market Day

My stall awaiting visitors

Well, I survived! I had my first market stall yesterday at the Handmade Children's Market in Booragoon. The venue was really great, there were lots of wonderful stalls and overall it was a good first experience. I was bag of nerves for the 24 hours leading up to it and I didn't sleep much the night before, but I was worried about nothing and was fully prepared with stock, change, bags and some snacks! In the four hours I only sold 4 softies and took one order which is really disappointing. I received lots of positive comments and feedback and hopefully this will translate into orders and sales down the track. I have the Made on the Left Market next Saturday and consequently do not have to be too mad with the sewing this week in preparation. 
Here are a couple more pics of my stall.....

Some babushkas, two red riding hood dolls and spaceboy (notice i borrowed Michaela's new chair!)

New design- boy-bushkas on the top row

Michaela and me

Thursday, November 4, 2010


I don't know how so many mums do it! Work, family, house, blog, facebook, sleep, friends, the list goes on. I've had a pretty full on couple of weeks and the coming few are much of the same. It has been so wonderful getting involved with the Handmade Markets, and they haven't even happened yet!! There has been lots of emails, Facebook 'likes' and all round interest in both the markets and little cloud factory- really quite humbling to receive so many lovely messages. So, I've been juggling the sewing and market prep with everything else and well, understandably some things are not quite at their usual standard, ie cleanliness of the house and dinners that consist of only 3 ingredients!
I had also been planning on writing a post about my little girl's 2nd Birthday. We had a wonderful Saturday with her and our families and friends. I will share some pics from her Wonderland Tea Party shortly.
So, only two more sleeps until my first market- ahhh!!! I'm feeling ok- have made lots (40!) softies and am really happy with how my table is coming together (will share pics later.) Tomorrow will be printing and attaching tags and packing my car in preparation for an early start on Saturday. I know that I will be quite anxious on the morning before the market kicks off but I have lots of supportive friends and family coming along so that will help.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Keeping up

Lots of cutting, sewing & stuffing, my parents returning from their long overseas trip, a play date and trying to maintain some sort of order to my house sums up my last few days. It's wonderful to see my parents and hear about their wonderful travels, and they were, of course, just slightly overjoyed to see Michaela (and how much she has changed in their time away).
I thought on the weekend that I was on track to fulfill my list of softies in preparation for the first market, THEN I read in my The Handmade Marketplace by Kari Chapin that you should make enough to fill your table twice over!!!!!! Ahhhhh!! That has thrown a spanner in the works or more so in my stress levels so I am feeling a little behind and overwhelmed. There is a pretty fair chance that I will be more sporadic with my blog posts and I'm going to have a lot of missed reading to make up for. But the most important thing is that I am really looking forward to my first market, creating a beautiful stall, meeting some new people and just having a good time doing something new.

Friday, October 15, 2010

Production Line

I've been working at a pretty frantic rate these last few days tring to cut, sew and bring my little softies into being. Being my first market and not really knowing what to expect (crowd, interest, other softie selllers), it's quite tricky knowing how much to make. I am aiming for half a dozen of each of my babushkas, space boys, seahorses, riding hood dolls as well as a few Christmas cuddlies and if I get time, I will make some felt butterfly hairclips and maybe a couple of pirates......ahhhh.....it's a big list but with another market the following week, I'd rather have too much than not enough. But then again, I have no idea how everything will be accepted and I may sell everything !!!!!

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Market Bound

Well, actually it's MarketS Bound. I applied to be part of the Made on the Left Xmas Market the other day and found out today that I have been accepted- woo hoo!!! And in some bizarre/am I truly out of my mind moment  I also appplied and have been accepted to be a stall holder at the Handmade Children's Market. I only say 'out of my mind' because the markets are a week apart!!!! Anyway, the list is written and the fabric cutting has started so that I can get ready in time for both without any last minute stress.......having said that I have already had a dream where I realise that it's 11.30 and the market started at 10.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Li'l Spaceman

I finished my Li'l Spaceman the other night and am pretty happy with him. I am,however, going to tweak him a little (slightly shorter arms, bigger feet and slim down the right side of his tummy- I had given him a rounded tummy which  doesn't look even now that he is closed shut.) I'm happy to have a boy softie now, so I'm off to find some space fabric.

Friday, October 8, 2010

Owl trend

I have fully embraced the owl trend in recent months- softies, ornaments, kid's clothing, jewellery...the list goes on! And so I quickly put this DIY on my ever growing list of cute things to make. You can make one too by visiting minieco.  (I blogged about minieco in this previous post)

And if you can't get enough of owl-ish crafts, head to Skip to my Lou to create a 3D Paper Owl, and to mmmcrafts to print this owl notecard.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Crafty days

I've just finished three red riding hood inspired dolls.

I'm working on a boy softie- a lil astronaut- here's a sneak peak...

And I MUST MUST buy some of this cute vintage doll fabric!!

And finally, I have decided to apply for the Made on the Left November Market.....wish me luck!!

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

3 years

Jon and I celebrated our third wedding aniversary yesterday. We spent a lazy day with Michaela and are planning a night out in a couple of weekends time- child free!! I was spoilt with the a cute wooden tree, alphabet stamp set and a gorgeous card

Monday, October 4, 2010

Fave New Shop

Just stumbled across this Australian company via Creature Comforts. They make and sell a range of jewellery and homewares, and currently have a 25% off sale. You can visit Polli here.
I have my eye on this garland for my family room ....

Saturday, October 2, 2010


We have had a lovely start to the school holidays- great weather, time outside (playing & tackling the over grown winter garden) and some relaxing time around the house. We took Michaela to Tropical Twist the other day and she loved it.
I am so happy to have my little cloud factory logo finished after much discussion and drafts. I liaised with this etsy seller to create it and will be having my business cards and tags printed in the coming weeks.
And of course, life wouldn't be complete without a little online shopping and adding to my ever growing list of  cute things for Michaela.

From Babys Got Style- they also sell another cute set with hot air balloons

From P for Printables- $15 for 3 darling prints, they also have a gorgeous range of party invites to print yourself

I have also got a Facebook page for little cloud factory now where I will place items for sale. You can 'like' my page here.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Christmas Cuddlies all ready

Yay- I have finished my Christmas Cuddlies and the trio are  the best of friends! I'm so happy with each of them. They range from 22 cm tall (Gingerbread man) to 30cm tall (Reindeer) and are 30cm wide.
A quick visit to The Teddy Tree to pick up some more poly fill yesterday and I found some super cute gingerbread people fabric. Off to make some more and add their photos to my new Facebook page!

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Softies, softies and more softies

It's been a busy couple of days spent sewing with Red Riding Hood officially finished. I'm pretty chuffed with her and her movable arms- I used to axle method to attach her arms with buttons so that they move forwards and backwards. A sightly tricky way of sewing but I'm very happy with the way she has turned out. Her cape is also reversible. What do you think? I'm going to order some red riding hood fabric and make her some friends.

In addition to Miss Red Riding Hood, I've been working on a trio of Christmas Cuddlies. Gingerbread Man & Reindeer are done and Santa will be joining them in the next day or so.

I've also just submitted my name to participate in the Softies for Mirabel which is organised by Pip at Meet me at Mikes. The Mirabel Foundation assists children who have been orphaned or abandoned due to parental illicit drug use and are now in the care of extended family (kinship care). If you make something and would like to donate, just click on the link above to Pip's blog.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Chair Choices

With the school holidays just around the corner and Jon therefore being around the house more, I am going to get started on Michaela's new bedroom. Whether it is ready for her birthday is another story but I'm aiming to have it almost ready for the end of October.
I'm having the debate of toddler bed v single bed at the moment. I'd prefer to buy just the one single bed which will have a long life and allow us to attach siderails. Unfortunately I'm yet to find one I like, and after finding Michaela sleeping head first down the bottom of her cot this morning, I'd like one that is also close-ish to the floor.......
Michaela loves her books and a little reading corner will be a definite space in her room. These two chairs are gorgeous, I just have to decide on which one.
Retro chair $49.95 plus postage

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Taking shape

I've been working the last two days on a new doll. She's taking shape and looking pretty. I've decided to make her a separate little cape which will tie around her neck.

I'm full of softie ideas at the moment and have a couple of Christmas characters in mind which I will need to start asap if they are to be ready for this Christmas!!
After a month of working with a graphic designer I'm almost ready to share my logo and get all my business cards and tags printed- woo hoo!!!

Monday, September 20, 2010

Puppy love

I just finished the puppy that I mentioned in my previous post. He's pretty cute and already receiving plenty of cuddles.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

What's on my craft table?

On my craft table today I have:
A McCall's pattern which I have just cut out to make the little terrier.
Two new Sharpies (hot pink and teal blue- I'm a self confessed stationery addict.)
The finished invitation for Michaela's 2nd Birthday Wonderland Tea Party.
A practice doll I made about 6 months ago which I didn't like.......it is helping me to create (hopefully) a much better doll pattern. My inspiration for this new doll is red riding hood. I'm just a little stuck in creating the cloak so I'll be playing around with some calico before it takes shape.

And here is what my craft table/area looks like now. It's reasonably clean and everything is where I can find it, it's just not that bright or inspiring :-( I'm thinking a couple of embroidery hoops and fabric, maybe a little bunting and some framed pics should do the trick.....stay tuned!
All my fabric is hanging in the wardrobe (but I definitely won't be sharing that photo!)

Vintage alphabet blocks

I've mentioned before that I really like vintage design alphabet accessories and so was instantly drawn to these block sets. Price wise the one from Deals Direct definitely wins for me. 

$64.55 plus postage from Anthropologie

$14.95 plus $10 postage from DealsDirect

Friday, September 10, 2010

A Wedding Gift

The very generous and talented Alicia Murphy of Akimbo, an invitation, announcement and greeting card design company in South Australia, is sharing a set of free wedding stationery on her blog. These are just lovely and would be perfect for many outdoor weddings here in Australia. Alicia's blog is also a great read for DIY and decorating ideas.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Spring time

It's been a lovely start to September. My parents headed off for a 7 week trip around Europe (super jealous!), my grandparents took off up north to Carnarvon for a month and well, we stayed put! Spring weather demanded an outing for Fathers' Day so we spent the morning at Heathcote. Lots of swings, slides and some hot chocolate with my two fav people was the perfect way to spend Sunday.

Fathers' Day @ Heathcote
I've also managed to get some sewing done- two babushkas with tie front scarves were made along with another seahorse, this one with two extra side fins.

sorry about the cloudy photo :(

I've just started reading The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo after seeing the movie a couple of months ago and after finally(!) finishing the Harry Potter series. I'm listening to The xx and far too much of The Wiggles, and am looking forward to the start of Junior Masterchef and The Block!

Falling for Miss Jones

Have you met Miss Jones not only has an uber cool name but produce the loveliest home accessories and trinkets. I've been eyeing off the bone china button dishes for a while now and after seeing an article about Jennifer Jones in this month's Home Beautiful, decided to see what was new on her website. I am now totally in love with the egg tray and the birdhouses, of course!

Monday, August 30, 2010

Monday musings

I have developed a fascination and love for little bird houses of late. It's yet another cute accessory that I would like to put in Michaela's big girl room, if there is any room left! They just keep popping up around the place so I must be destined to buy/make one. These ones have taken my fancy.
DIY Mobile via Ohdeedoh
Via Ohdeedoh

Layla's bedroom from The Happy Home via Ohdeedoh
Simple and beautifully tied in with the stenciled birds

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Sharing some favourites

Catching up on blog posts from my favourite bloggers means that my list of projects to do just keeps growing!! Oh well......there are so many lovely, creative ideas out there that I'd like to try my hand at. Here's a few posts that have caught my eye recently.....
I can't wait until Michaela is old enough to do some crafty activities. These are printable sewing cards from mini-eco

I only discovered Prudent Baby blog a couple of months ago but it is definitely one of my favourites. I love this wee cape, not 100% sure whether Michaela would wear it and where but it's certainly very cute. I'm toying with the idea of creating a doll wearing one.  What do you think?

One of my staple gifts for friends' children and baby showers is a book. Michaela has always enjoyed 'reading' (and chewing books!) and she really loves the Trace Moroney picture books. Trace's books contain gorgeous pictures and stories with lovely messages. Along with the book I often include a label inside the front cover. Ohdeedoh has just done a recent round-up of printable book plates and here is an extra one I've used a few times lately.
Courtesy Li'l Magoolie

Creature Comforts offer a creative selection of printables and via their blog I found another Susy Jack printable. Susy also offers a number of birthday, thank you etc cards on her blog here.

And finally, even though this tutorial was posted early last year, I love this simple little monster softie from RevoluzZza........he looks likes a good project for this weekend.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

A little busy.....

I've been a little busy of late and have missed putting some blog entries together despite lots of things going on and many cool things to share.
The reason for my disappearance from blog world is mainly due to me picking up a few days of relief teaching- great for the bank balance and to speak and teach some Italian again.
Inbetween these days of teaching I've managed to find a few hours to:

* Make some softies for friends as well as revisiting my cuddly owl and making her a little prettier.
Mumma and bubba penguin set
New & improved owl with folded fabric flower using this tutorial

Mumma and bubba babushka set

* Take advantage of the glorious winter weather with a trip to Fremantle on the weekend. We visited New Edition Bookshop where I picked up some pretty wrappping paper.....I know that doesn't sound very interesting but one sheet is full of little babushkas ( I have a thing for all things babushka) as well as this lovely paper called 'dandelion clocks'. The plan is to find a frame in which to hang in my entry.

Via printpattern
* Buy tickets for one of my fav bands of all time, Low. We saw them perform a couple of years ago and they were fantastic! They are touring in October and I can't wait to see them live again!!!!
* Madeit.com.au have opened a craft supplies online shop called craftumi so I'm going to get on there soon to stock up on felt.
* I bought this super cute tote bag today........I just couldn't resist!
I'm looking forward to catching up some of my fav blogs in the coming days, trying out at least one of the sewing projects on Prudent Baby (toooooo many lovely things on this blog to choose from!) and getting some softies in my etsy store.....it's been a long time coming but I just want them to be perfect. Oooo and last bit of news, I am so excited to have an etsy based graphic designer working on a logo and business package for me. In about two weeks I'll be able to share the little cloud factory logo with you!!!!