Sunday, July 31, 2011

You sew, girl

Finally a chance to sew...and in my new craft room too! The wet and windy weather this weekend gave me the perfect excuse to stay indoors and get stuck into some long awaited projects. It's been ages since I've sewn anything and I didn't realise how much I had missed it! 

Weeks ago I received a lovely package of vintage fabric from Zwizzle, and I have been itching to use it ever since. I finally started cutting and sewing these pretty floral pieces today, and they will become the 'pockets' on some fold-up shopping bags.

I also stitched together the front pieces for a pair of patchwork cushion covers. The various patterned pieces in gorgeous greens are all off-cuts left over from other projects. I'm going to do the back of each cover in plain green, with an envelope opening.

And I finished off a little bunch of felt flower hair elastics.

The new room was great to work in. The kids were close by, building towers with their blocks, doing a bit of craft...and then pulling out the entire contents from a bag of wadding and using it as snow!

Aside from the actual sewing and craft I also managed to organise my blogging and Etsy photos, list a couple more crochet hats, and have a bit of a play with my brand new overlocker...AND my husband and I even spent an afternoon out at the movies.

All in all, quite a productive weekend...hope yours was too!

Thursday, July 28, 2011

A family affair

I've mentioned before how talented my mum is when it comes to crochet. A few months ago she began making lots of gorgeous hats and beanies for my children. My kids love their hats made by Nana, and my daughter in particular wears one almost everywhere she goes. We've had lots of other mums commenting on them and asking where we bought them from, so my mum has now joined me on Etsy and is listing some of her crochet goodies for sale in my shop.

I got the kids involved in a photo shoot of her items a few days ago. They were surprisingly cooperative and had a lot of fun with it . We were outdoors, in the backyard, and although it was cold there was at least a bit of sun about. Afterwards the kids even decided to do a bit of gardening!

Most of the hats and girls bags that mum is making at the moment are from patterns by Britta Graham. You can find the patterns for sale at Britta's Etsy shop:

But if you don't crochet...or you just want to receive a lovely package of handmade goodness in the mail (who doesn't?)...then have a look at for the finished items. Most of the crochet items can be custom made, so if you see something you would like in a different size or colour, just ask!

As for me, I am still plodding along with my Granny Squares, and working on my technique, tension etc as I go...and loving it! Hope you are loving whatever it is you are working on too :)

Sunday, July 24, 2011

At my desk

I have been working on some felt flowers and a birthday card for my sons friend, who is turning six.

I found a piece of fabric with a cool rocket ship motif for the boys card. I used a die to make the circular window, embossed the piece of card with a star pattern, and finished it off with a bit of hand stitching around the edge of the circle.

The 'Mollie Makes inspired' felt flowers are still a work in progress. I have been trialing some designs as a couple of friends, who love my hair elastics for their little girls, have asked me to make some more 'grown up' designs that they can wear too. I'm happy with the results so far, and have some ideas for fabric flowers too. I'm glad to have had a chance to work on some new ideas. I always have a thousand of them swimming about in my head and it's very satisfying to get some of them out and into something tangible. And quite often the finished design will be nothing like that original idea I had in my head. But it doesn't matter! Without that first spark of inspiration there wouldn't be anything.Working on new ideas is inspiring and fun! What new ideas have you been working on?

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

A breath of fresh air

Yesterday called for some time outdoors and some fresh air and sunshine. We've all had quite awful coughs and colds for a couple of weeks, and have been stuck indoors most of the time, with little energy to do very much at all. And to top it off my son also had a nasty accident with a swing and had to have three stitches in his forehead.

I love these days in winter, when the air is crisp and cool, and the sun is shining. They are motivating and invigorating, especially after several days of grey skies, rain...and coughs and colds.

The kids were happy to just explore along the edge of the lake for a while. I was happy to sit in the sun and crochet (even when my son told me it was a bit weird to crochet at the park)

There was a bit of climbing too, with me hovering underneath a lot as they got higher in the hope that there would be no more incidents involving stitches!

A morning was just enough for us, and we spent the afternoon resting indoors again. But it was a great morning out, and just what we all needed.

Saturday, July 16, 2011

I Heart Applique

A little crafty project I really enjoy is applique. Nothing too tricky or complicated. Just a simple shape, on a tee, cushion, tote...or anything really. And I love to blanket stitch. I find it quite relaxing and satisfying, and most of the time I like to finish off the applique with a blanket stitch around the edge. But not always, because it isn't essential, and it can take a little while to do.

This heart was cut from a little piece of vintage cotton fabric, and the finished tee is a gift for a friend's baby girl.

On another note, last night I set up a flickr account and had a go at uploading a few photos. I found it really easy to use, and I loved the editing program picnik. However when I tried to find the images from blogger and insert them into a post, I couldn't find a way to make it work. Does anyone do this? Is it possible?

Monday, July 11, 2011

A New (Unexpected) Creative Space

We have been renovating our bathroom and kitchen for about 10 weeks now, yet neither of these rooms are completely finished. The bathroom still has a few awkward tiles to be laid, and the kitchen cabinetry needs to  be lowered slightly to accommodate the new bench top (which should be ready in a few days) and some old grout still needs to be removed from the walls.

With a fairly free weekend ahead of us, we had the perfect opportunity to complete these small fiddly jobs...BUT...there was another room, one that wasn't exactly on the plan, that was just begging us to pay it a bit of attention....and so instead of finishing off, and maybe having a bit of time to relax, we chose to turn the house upside down once again, with a complete makeover of the spare room/study.

This makeover meant books, furniture, boxes and mess all over the house AGAIN...including all of my craft and sewing, which was packed up and moved into a new (much bigger) creative space.

So of course this had me distracted all day yesterday as I carefully found new homes for my fabric, yarn, sewing books and all of my other precious crafty things. There was a lot of arranging, filling and organising, with new wall shelves, a nice big white desk and some spacious drawers. Everything has its it just needs that personal touch (some comfy patchwork cushions, a string of vintage fabric get the picture) But you can't rush setting up a creative space can you? It needs to feel just right.

So, while there has been a lot of time spent surrounded in fabric and crafty bits and pieces, there hasn't been a lot of actual 'making' going on (apart from a little crochet - the simplicity and portability of which has kept me sane through all of this). And I am missing the making. While I am very grateful for my new spacious space, and all of the other lovely new things going on in my home, I am really longing for it to be finished, and to feel back in the swing of things.

Now that the weekend is over (and the study/craft room is done) those remaining fiddly jobs are being tackled...and fingers crossed for a new bench top this week!