Sunday, March 18, 2012

A Sunday project

I wanted to make myself a little bag to take to my quilting classes that would be strong enough to stand up open on its own so it was easy to grab what I needed.  Also just as easy to put things back when I'm finished.  Its really easy to get your things mixed up with others when everyone is using the same work space.
I saw this bag batting at the shop and I was keen to have a play with it.  Its very stiff but still flexible enough to spring back into shape if its been squashed.  There must be an easy way to work with this stuff but I have no idea how!  I don't really have much experience making bags and this batting was so bulky and stiff to get under the machine. It did exactly what I wanted it to do but what a mission!  Here I was thinking it would be done in an hour but it took a little longer.......and its pretty dodgy lol but it will serve the purpose.

I put some pockets in the side and and an elastic strap to hold my scissors and pens.  I will test drive it tomorrow and see how she goes :)
Fabric and buttons available on my website

Monday, March 12, 2012

My little fellas quilt is finished!

As you probably already know, I struggled to finish this quilt as it never gelled with me.  I know now the problem was I never spent enough time planning the pattern.  I have learnt my lesson (one of the many I have to learn about quilting) and now understand the need for a design board.   I will put this on my hubby's list of things to do for me, I'm sure he wont mind another 'little' job to do ;)
The end result is much better than I expected! I am pleasantly surprised how well it works for a little boy.  Quilts for boys are so much harder than girls but with two little monkey men to cater for, I'm sure i will master them as time goes on.

So tell me what you think.  The back stitching was a gamble but I think it works well.
This quilt is made with my When Im Big like Daddy design.

Until next time....

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

The latest addition to our family

This week saw the arrival of our first three chooks.

As much as I would love to have a sprawling chook run full of chickens living the life only a caged hen could dream of, I need to be realistic and start small.  I have never owned chooks before so I have no idea what I'm doing and to say I'm a little concerned about their well being would be putting it lightly.  Needless to say I'm so excited!! I keep going and sitting outside with my coffee and just watching them, envisioning this part of the backyard alive with self sufficiency. This is the first time we have had enough space to have cooks and big vege patches and its the best feeling know what it will one day be.
So my girls are just babies, 9 weeks old so I have a few months to wait before they start laying but its a good opportunity to get them use to the kids.  The boys love them!, we got them home and about 10 minutes later Nathan yells out "Mum!, one of the chickens just laid an egg!"  I had to laugh and have to keep telling him its going to be a while before we see our first egg.  I think he will lay an egg himself when it happens.
Then we had the fun task of naming them.  If Ryan had his way they would be called Murray, Jeff and Sam.  Nathan couldn't have cared less, he just wants to collect the eggs.  So between friends and family the suggestions we a little like this; Schnitzel, Parmigiana, roast, kebab, Kiev.  As you can see we have a poor sense of humour.  And they kept coming; Crumbed, Grilled, Fired and the list goes on.  We have settled Omlette, scrambled (the spotty one) and poached :) 
At least they will know what their job is!
This is their little hutch they will stay in until they are a bit bigger.  When they are older they will get to roam around a fenced off area through the day.  One day will will build a big run and have lots of chooks but this is perfect for now.

Until next time.

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Sun Kissed Hat

I don't get much of a chance to make things out of my girl designs being that I have two boys so it was nice to sew this great new Make it Perfect pattern with my Berry Munch and Floral Magic fabrics.  This is the new Sun Kissed Hat pattern and it is such a simple pattern to make and super quick!  I always try to use the least amount of fabric possible when cutting patterns as I hate to waste fabric and I managed to make this hat out of two quarter metre pieces.  The pattern states you will need 45cm of your main and lining fabrics which you will need if you make the hat larger than a medium.  I made this hat to medium and it just squeezed on a quarter metre so its really cost effective to make for the little people in your life.

Fold your quarter metre in half and cut your band and brim piece.
Open your left over piece of fabric and lay it flat.  Cut out the crown piece.  The crown piece will fit in between the band and brim piece but you only need to cut one crown piece of each fabric so cutting it folded will give you two.

This is the finished product and I think it looks super cute!  It may also have something to do with my little model as to why the hat looks so good.....


Pattern and fabrics are available on my website. Just click on the links above.

Until next time :)

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Sometimes less is best....

Wow has it really been a month since my last post!! Gosh I need to get my butt in gear and get back into it.  I have no excuses now school is back and we have settled in.  My only excuse is.....well I don't have one.
Amanda from apppleberry Kids posted a pic of  some fabric baskets made in my Owls and Ladders design.  They are so appealing and it made me just want to pick up my owls and sew!  I thought I would show how little fabric you need of your main print to make fabulous products.  I whipped up some cushions (I have a cushion fetish), one is a large cushion using both Owls and Ladders and Hoot, the other is using just a strip of Owls and Ladders with a basic calico. 

They both look great but the small cushion has used the tinest piece of main print and you still get a gorgeous end result.  I have used a high quality quilting thread on both the cushions, the large one I have hand quilted to add a bit of original detail and the small one I have machine stitched.  You can create a totally different look with the same thread just using a different technique.

So when you're out indulging in fabric shopping,  don't forget to pick up some good basics for your stash.  Also shop around for some quality threads and trims that you can add to just about anything.  A good home stash of basic supplies can make any spontaneous craft project and every little bit of scrap fabric transformed into something special.

OH!! Is that Saffron Craig's Owl quilt kit in the March edition of Better Homes and Gardens magazine siting next to those inviting cushions? Yes it is!

The large cushion consists of 30 x 6.5 x 4.5in rectangles (I measure in inches when cutting fabrics for piecing). 15 rectangles of each fabric.  You will need a 35cm cut of each fabric to make the cushion top but you will have some fabric left over. I have used calico for the back and filled with toy fill then hand stitched closed. 
The finished cushion is 76x60cm.
With smaller cushion, I used a 35cm insert and the strip of Owls and Ladders fabric is 3 x 14in.  The rest is constructed with calico.  Once again I have hand stitched closed so these covers are not removable.  If you want to be able to wash them then you will need to make the covers removable by adding an opening in the back and closing it with either a zipper or buttons.  Keep in mind you will need to allow a few extra inches in your backing fabric if this is what you want to do. 


Until next time......

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

I survived!

May I just say moving ten days before Christmas is not advisable! I can’t disclose the amount of comfort food and alcohol needed to survive but we did manage to pull it off without major dramas apart from the removalist damaging a fair bit of our stuff.  I am still recovering and like alot of you, finding it really hard to switch back into work mode but I will get there.....eventually.  I wasn’t sad to leave 2011 behind, although so many good things happened it was a really hard year and I have welcomed 2012 with open arms. 
So what’s in store for 2012 you ask?.....Where do I start!!!

Well I will start with buying a house to renovate.  Being a mum of my two monkeys and running my own business, I figured I had so much time on my hands!  For hubby and I this is house number five and Reno number three. I know crazy! and what makes it even worse is we haven’t done a Reno since we have had the kids, only built.  Now I can hear you all laughing at me! That’s ok go ahead, I’m laughing at myself too.  It will be worth it in the end; we just have to make it out the other side on one piece.  I have scored a much bigger work space in this house and it will be one of the first modifications we do (insert happy dance) to give me even more space.  There is an element of renovating that makes it so much more exciting than building and I cant wait to start but I'm not looking forward to living in while we do it :(

Here are some pics of my new work studio, pretty crappy photos taken late at night and I have only just finished unpacking but you get the idea.  If only you could see the end result pictured in my head.  May I add, I have drawn alot of inspiration from pinterest so now I can justify my pinterest time to hubby as research. Perfect!

I cant wait to get rid of the mint green carpet, apple green walls and adorable curtains!

Then we have my fabulous new range that arrived in December.  I have been so busy, I have barely had a chance to have a good stitch with it yet but I can’t wait to get stuck into it.  There will be lots of new kits available in the coming months along with new pre-cut bundles, projects and some great promos in the works too!  I am also looking at doing a few markets stretching from Brisbane to Newcastle so I can finally get a chance to get out there and meet lots of people I feel I know so well online but have never met.  I’m getting excited just writing about it!

HELLO 2012!!! What a cracker of a year you are going to be J

Until next time...

Monday, November 21, 2011

It's all happening!!

That's right!! we have sold the house :) and we have bought another one! So my life is a little crazy right now which is why I have not been getting enough facebook and pinterest to keep my satisfied, let alone sewing time! We only have just under four weeks until we settle so  I'm going to keep this short and sweet as I have so much to do but I wanted to share with you what I have found while embarking on the mammoth task I have of sorting out my house.
I opened 'the box' know the one we all have that we keep of little things we cant seem to part with and over the years of sorting through it, it gets smaller and smaller.  Well 'the box' for me is pretty small now I have sorted through it for the first time in eight years.  I'm not a hoarder and I cant bare to have things sitting around I don't have a use for.  This can sometimes bite me in the butt, but its not very often I regret decluttering....and considering how many times I have moved over the past six years, its happens often lol.  So anyway, this is the box that has been sitting in the mother in laws shed and I thought it was about time to go through it.  The first thing I did after sneezing a million times from the dust was smile, not just a regular smile, one of those smiles you get when you get taken back in time from possessions you have kept through your life because they have bought you so much joy.

I have letters from friends and family.  Some are so funny to read and I will cherish them forever. I even have a postcard sent to me from someone who was very important to me when I was growing up and she has since died of cancer.  I didn't even know I still had it and it bought tears to my eyes.  What makes me sad is I cant remember the last time I wrote a letter..... What makes me even sader is our kids wont have these keepsakes to treasure unless we encourage them to put pen to paper.

My now husband use to send me roses ALL the time and for no other reason but to make me smile.  Some times he would sneak up to my car and put one in my wiper blades to surprise me when I finished work.  It was quite an effort as he had a big service truck and had to come in the back way and park up the street so I wouldn't see him. You forget these things until something like this brings it all back like it was yesterday.  I have kept just about every card I got with my flowers....back in the day.  I can assure it doesn't happen now!

Once upon a time The Trading Post was printed on paper for private sellers only! My husband, like very other male in Queensland rarely missed a copy.  For some reason I tore this off the front page and have kept it.  To this day its as relevant as it was back then, just for different reasons.
My Beatrix Potter books.  These speak for themselves.

This was one of my favourite golden books when I was a little girl and it has inspired me once again...but this time its fabric inspiration!!

For now I have packed it all away in preparation for our move and I'm sure I wont open it for another eight years but I was meant to open this box and look through it.  It has reminded me to contact some dear friends I have not spoken to for a long time and also made me realise how important it is for me to keep things like this for my boys as they age.  I have been sorting and throwing books and toys if there broken and things they don't play with anymore.  If this golden book was in my stack, I probably would have put it in the lifeline pile.  As a mother of two young boys with way too much stuff, to me this looks like rubbish.  But as an adult that's childhood was a lifetime ago, its priceless.

Until next time...