Friday, February 15, 2013

Mushroom Central

There appears to be a small fascination with all things fungi in my craft room at the moment.

I purchased Gnomeville by Michael Miller recently from Modes 4 U, a great online store for gorgeous prints and unique Japanese fabrics. Again I chose to use the brownie goose Nelle pattern and using the 4-5T size, made this little number for Michaela. It is a little shorter than I would have liked (despite adding an extra inch and a half to the pattern suggestion) but as a tunic style dress, it fits well everywhere and will look especially sweet with leggings in the cooler months. I also love that you don't have to make bias tape on the bias for this dress, bonus!


My mind is obviously working over time at the moment with ideas. The other night I woke with the idea of making a cupcake shaped needle book. The idea came out of nowhere and kept me awake thinking about a design, materials and practicalities. Yesterday, by coincidence, I found this pattern and tutorial and as you can see, I couldn't resist making myself one.

I'm not sure whether I will have the time to design and make a few cupcake needle books in time for the next Upmarket, but maybe in time for Mothers' Day. Can't believe I'm thinking about May already!


Wednesday, February 13, 2013

A Valentine's Handmade Gift

My husband asked me yesterday whether we were going to do something to celebrate Valentine's Day. "When is Valentine's Day?" was my response. I have never really considered the 14th Feb to be an important occasion mainly because my birthday (9th Feb) closely follows Christmas and is already an expensive and present-filled few weeks. Nevertheless I made a little something to give my husband tomorrow and if you have a spare twenty minutes, have a book reading hubby and a few craft items lying around, you can follow this tutorial and make your own too.

A love-ly bookmark

  • A piece of linen measuring 2" x 6"
  • A piece of wool felt measuring 2" x 6"
  • Crochet heart (I purchased mine from C Percy Designs)
  • Stamp kit
  • Needle and thread (sewing machine optional)
  1. Cut your felt and linen to the measurements indicated. The felt is to provide some stability to your bookmark. I use a rotary cutter for ease and a neat line.
  2. Using your stamp kit, stamp a word/phrase/love message on your piece of linen. In a previous life I was an Italian teacher hence the 'ti amo'. To ensure that your letters stamp cleanly on to your linen, wipe the ink off from the edge of the stamp pad so that it doesn't transfer to the fabric and put an ugly square around the letter. I used a cotton tip to clean away the ink.
  3. Pin your felt and linen together. Take it to your sewing machine and stitch (or hand stitch) together. I sewed two straight lines around the edges.
  4. Nearly finished. Hand stitched your crocheted heart to the top of your bookmark.
These cute crocheted hearts make a sweet embellishment to many things. Glue them to alligator hair clips, create a mini bunting for a cake or cupcake or attach them to a gift tag or card. I'm thinking of digging out a pair of old dangly earrings and replacing the beads with a pair of these hearts to wear tomorrow as well.

I hope you have a lovely Valentine's Day .

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Creative Tuesday

I'm very lucky today to have a whole child-free day in which to sew. While I haven't stopped since about 7:30 this morning, I don't have any finished softies in front of me. With market preparation it is all about the assembly line so these seven half finished hedgehogs should in theory be seven finished hedgehogs by late tomorrow. I'm taking my time to make sure my sewing is perfect and to prevent the need to do any unpicking. Unpicking stitches in faux fur is definitely a form of torture.


And here's my little collection of soon to be completed pears. Assembly lines everywhere!


Monday, February 4, 2013

Weekend Projects

The Perth Upmarket is only four weeks away and with a couple of committed to projects, I wanted to finish these this weekend to allow me to focus solely on market prep.

The first project completed was my contribution to the Handmade Cooperative's Pillowcases for Oncology. I used Heather Bailey Lindy Leaf for the main fabric and a bright pink trim for the ruffle. My focus was to create a colourful pillowcase suitable for a girl of any age. This pillowcase, along with many others, will be passed on to the charity, Pillowcases for Oncology, at the end of the month.

This weekend's second project is part of a Facebook showcase with a Circus theme. I used the Retro Mama pattern, changed the embroidered eyes and added a pom pom trim hat. I love the fabric too, perfect for this showcase theme.

Friday, February 1, 2013

Another Dress

I have a few softies on the go at the moment but I'm really enjoying this dress making stuff too. This piece of fabric (unfortunately I don't remember the designer and I cut off selvedge) has been in my stash for about two years. I originally intended to make a dress for Michaela with it but now that she's so tall, Harper is the lucky one to wear it. The pattern is the brownie goose Nelle pattern mentioned in a previous post and it's a size 2. (Harper is almost 19 months) It is a little gapey under her arms but this means it should last her the rest of the year and that's always good. The pattern and instructions were great, easy to follow and such a gorgeous design. You can add a trim to the sleeves, under the bodice or along the hem, or some decorative buttons. It is such a good feeling when you finally decide to cut into a piece of fabric you've been holding to for ages, and you absolutely love the final result.
Amazingly my darling girl stood still for a few seconds (with her beloved Paloma Penguin) to model her new dress.