Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Happy birthday to me

I'm 32 today which I'm quite ok with. Chris is a year older than me so I'm always going to be younger than him which makes getting older very painless.

We had a lovely breakfast at the beach followed by a swim. Then I went out for 'cino, massage and a touch of retail therapy (new bathers!). This afternoon saw us in the pool and we're having Thai for tea. Oh what a lovely day.

In the presents department: New pjs (always a hit with this mummy), a subscription to "delicious" magazine http://www.deliciousmagazine.com.au/ and some $ which has already been spent (on new bathers!).

And here I am yesterday being kissed by a seal.


I could really get used to this holiday thing.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

The things we do for love

There really are no cute boy clothes around. Really. I've looked high and low and I've got money set aside that is burning a hole in my pocket. I don't go in for pirates or army camouflage or even trucks or diggers so that rules out 90% of what's in the shops. I don't think I'm alone in my plight, either. Lots of my friends with sons have the same complaint.
Sigh. What's a mummy to do? Well, thankfully this mummy can sew! The fabric is from Spotlight (they do have some nice stuff you just have to hunt really hard). I did the cutting out while watching Oprah and slaved at my sewing machine for 30 minutes this afternoon to make these shorts for the little boy in my life. Oh the things we do for love.

P.S My model is at Nanna's today.

Aaaah that feels better

I have a nice tidy sewing room now.
I will keep it tidy.
I will keep it tidy.
I will keep it tidy.
I seem to forget this mantra when my frenzies of creativity start. My sewing time is so precious I don't waste a second of it by tidying up as I go. I really should though. It's much nicer when I can see the floor.
Perhaps I can start calling it a "studio" now.

Little girl pyjamas

Pink + Cupcakes = Some very happy little girls on Christmas morning



These are the pyjamas I have been sewing for a lady I met at the last Norwood Markets. Six pairs of very simple but very cute pyjamas for her little nieces.
I was hoping to package them in matching drawstring bags but unfortunately time is not on my side.
Now that they're finished I'm going to spend the rest of the day tidying my sewing room and perhaps doing a little bit of sewing for myself (perhaps not in that order). Some holiday clothes.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Thankyou secret santa!

For the 2 Amy Butler books http://amybutlerdesign.com/ you gave me for early Christmas with Chris' family. Can you read lists? Because that's exactly what was on there.
I had a good look through them when we got home last night. I can't decide what to make first. Actually, yes I can. I will be making some pants for lounging in. Cause I do that alot. And I need some pants to do it in. I might even make them out of an old sheet a la SouleMama http://www.soulemama.com/soulemama/2007/11/favorite-things/comments/page/2/. I would also like to try a quilt and some of the softies were very cute. The book is a feast for the eyes. Such wonderful photography and delectable fabrics.
Chris' mum openened her apron and put it on with excitement you can't fake so I'm pretty sure she loved it. She did asked me later if I had any leftover fabric because she'd like the apron to have a "bib" (top part). She is a very practical person so yes I will make her a "bib" but that wasn't really the look I was going for. I have never enjoyed giving a present so much. That's what Christmas is all about. Oh, and watching your 3 year old open her Thomas the trains. It's all she wanted (well it's all she wanted a month ago when we first started talking about Christmas. Then it changed to a puzzle).
Yes, she dressed herself. Yes, she had to wear her summer party dress even though it was unseasonably cold. Yes, she had to wear her RED (which you can't see) tracksuit pants underneath her pink party dress. No, she wasn't not going to listen to my gentle persuasion to wear something more suitable.

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Finally! A hat that doesn't suck


Well, this is my fourth attempt at sewing a hat and I've finally managed to make one that isn't too big or too small and actually resembles something you would wear on your head. This one is for my four year old nephew, Jack. He's into cars so I hope he likes it (and I hope it fits!)
Hats are fun to make and quick too which suits my need for instant gratification. And since they don't use up much fabric, they can be made from bits and pieces leftover from other projects. I also like playing around with the colours for the reverse side (a pale green on this one).
Hopefully I'll eventually be able to sew one that fits my head. Yes, the four failed attempts were going to be hats for me darn it. I'm stuck wearing my Big W bucket hat until I find time to have another go.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Oh how I love sewing Wednesday

My sewing machine is working overtime this week. I am madly sewing all our Christmas presents (remember that handmade pledge I took?) as well as trying to finish seven pairs of pyjamas.
Here is what I made this morning:

I uncovered the teapot fabric in the remnants box at Spotlight and decided instantly it would make a great apron for Chris' mum. I used Bari's simple apron tutorial http://barij.typepad.com/my_weblog/files/apron20tutorial20part20i..pdf. I love how it came together and the fact that it looks so neat and professional. I stuffed up the ruffle because I was so keen to get started I didn't read the instructions properly. I didn't add the pocket because I didn't want to hide the teapots.
I will be making more of these. Right now. One for Ruthie (instead of the tote I had planned) and one for myself and of course some mini ones for the little people in my life.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

New skirt for mummy

I used to complain that I never have anything to wear. Now I always have something to wear but Chris complains because I spend all my time sewing.














Here is a skirt I made for myself on Saturday before going out for dinner for my sister's birthday to my favourite restuarant (yummy as always) http://tandoorioven.com.au/.

The skirt is based on Simplicity pattern 7229 but I took out the A-lines and added a ruffle at the bottom. I've made this pattern so many times now that I reckon it really does take one hour.

What we're doing tomorrow

Can you spot the kids in these photos?














Yes, those are empty cupboards you can see in the background.



















I get 30 minutes of mummy time while Abby is quietly playing/turning her room upside down so I'm happy to help tidy up the resulting mess.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

The skirt that started it all

Just a few short months ago I was happily going about my days tending the veggie patch, preparing delicious meals and homemade snacks for my family and spending time with my friends.
Then one day I looked at the couch and decided it needed some new cushions. The old ones were as old as the couch itself and I bought the couch before I met Chris so that made them at least 7 years old. They were drab and dull and I was looking to spruce up our lounge room a little. I do this thing where every few months I'll wake up on a Sunday morning and say "this is all wrong" and proceed to rearrange all the furniture or paint a wall. Of course I'm working within some quite strict budgetary constraints when I do all this remodeling so buying new cushions wasn't really an option. Instead, I dusted off my sewing machine (which had barely seen the light of day since I made that batch of cushions 7+ years ago) and whipped up some funky new cushions while Chris was snoozing on the couch. What a transformation! And what fun! I was on a roll. Bibs, a quilt, the 'one hour skirt' (actually make that 4 x 1 hour skirts)http://www.simplicity.com/dv1_v4.cfm?design=7229, pants and pyjamas. Then I hit a road block. My sewing machine is lucky it didn't get sold on Ebay after my attempt at making a "no sewing experience required" dress for Abby (Burda pattern 3026).
Driven by the need for some mummy time as much as my desire to improve my sewing, I enrolled myself in some lessons at the Sewing School http://thesewingschool.com.au/. The lovely Liz shared her knowledge with us and I had fun chatting with my fellow begginer sewers and whipping up new garments. Yes, garments. Fancy clothes with zips and ruffles and gathers and buttonholes. I just could not stop sewing!
Around this time my friend Britta mentioned that she was going to be selling her wares at the Norwood markets and asked if I would be interested in joining her. Initially I said no. I was having too much fun sewing for myself and my family. And besides, what would I sell? Enter the twirly skirt.
I made one for Abby. Then another and another. It was easy, fast and fun. I could make lots of these! I could sell these at the markets! I could be the next Collette Dinnigan!
So here I am 100 twirly skirts later. The veggie patch is a bit weedy and my family are having to fend for themselves and we've been having more takeout than ever and the house is a pig sty and my friends are feeling neglected but oh boy I'm having fun making these twirly skirts! Oh...and I'm not Collette Dinnigan....yet. Oh and I haven't conquered that dress yet either.

Saturday, November 29, 2008

To market to market

Well, how much fun did I have at the Norwood Markets today? The huge pageant crowd loved my twirly skirts, clips and pyjamas (I took orders for SEVEN (yes 7!) sets). No takers for the bibs, bloomers or Abby skirts so I'm kinda glad I didn't stay up all night last night making more bloomers. I was just beaming after receiving such a positive response to all my creations. I also (and this was the best bit) had a chat to some wonderfully clever crafty people. It was wonderful to be surrounded by people who just love what they do. http://quirkyworld1.blogspot.com/ and http://www.flickr.com/photos/deliciouscupcakes is where I spent all of today's profits.

Friday, November 28, 2008

Buy Handmade

Well, I took the handmade pledge http://www.buyhandmade.org/ but I'm having a hard time convincing Chris that handmade presents would be valued by the members of our extended family. I plan to make something for each person we are gifting to but we are also getting a gift with actual dollar value. Something that you buy from an actual shop.
I will continue to work on him between now and next Christmas and hopefully he too will learn that handmade things have infinitely more value than the stuff in the Christmas catalogues which somehow find their way into our house even though we have a "No Junk Mail" sticker on our letterbox. They're sneaky those big retailers.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Pom Pom fun

Abby and I made some pom poms together the other day. I stumbled upon a pom pom loom at Spotlight. I didn't even know such a thing existed! I have always used the traditional method of cardboard circles and always struggled to fit the ball of wall through the tiny hole. It was $3 for three different sized pom pom looms. They are quick and easy to make and 3 year old do-able. I will put her to work making pom poms for the beanies I so love to knit.
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