Thursday, January 27, 2011

my creative space ... little dresses

This may be the last of the holiday sewing, but it was probably the most enjoyable. I made two little dresses for my nieces ...

I used two wonderful patterns from Wink Designs - the Criss Cross Reversible Dress and the Petal Power Sun Dress. The Criss Cross Reversible Dress was a pleasure to make - very satisfying and great instructions meant no mistakes on my part - yahoo! Fabric for this dress came from the stash, but was orginally bought from Patchwork on Central Park.

The only thing I changed on the pattern was including a pocket instead of appliqueing some flowers on one side of the dress. (I did a post on my tags the other day, if you're interested in finding out how to get your own tags).

The Sun Dress was also made from fabric from the stash, originally from Patchwork on Central Park. No changes to this dress, except that I put press studs on the back instead of buttons. Super easy to make.

For more creative spaces, visit Kootoyoo! Have a great Thursday!

Wednesday, January 26, 2011


... and the winner is, random number 51 ... Katherine from eriven!

A heartfelt thanks to those of you who donated to this very worthy cause. Together, we raised $99,089 - amazing! Best wishes to all of those dealing with the devastation of the floods, where-ever you may be.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

huge fabric giveaway UPDATE

Oooooh only about 16 hours left to enter my huge fabric giveaway and support the QLD flood appeal. What an awesome response so far (thanks everyone), but I know we can crack 100 - that would be an amazing $500!! Get donating, and go to this post to enter!

Entries close on Australia Day (tomorrow) at 12pm AEDT. I will be drawing and posting the winner tomorrow afternoon, and letting everyone know with a blog post sometime tomorrow evening (when I'm rolling about full of snags and pav!).

Have a bonza Australia Day tomorrow!

Monday, January 24, 2011

getting your own tag love ...

Just about every time I post a picture of one of my tags, I get emails asking where I got them from. I'm really pleased people like them - thanks for letting me know.

Here's how I found mine: I googled "woven cotton tags", checked out the websites in Australia that did custom cotton woven tags/labels and then contacted each of them for samples. Once the samples arrived, I selected the one that suited me the most and went on to enquire about custom labels - sizes, what artwork they need, what colours they could do. Rather than actually tell you who I chose in the end, I think it's worthwhile running through that process yourself as we all have different needs, and there might be better/different manufacturers around since I did mine last year. This is the process I use to source lots of different supplies and services for my business, and I think it's a worthwhile investment of time - you never know what you might find out there!


tag love

I love using my tags when I'm sewing. I've been making some little dresses for little people. Here's a sneak peak of the progress ...

More pics soon. Have a great Monday!

P.S. I was interviewed over here last week - thanks Rachael!
P.P.S There is still time (extended until Wednesday) to donate and enter my fabric giveaway for flood relief here.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

huge fabric giveaway UPDATE

Good morning! I am so grateful to all of you who have entered my fabric giveaway to help support the QLD Premiers Flood Appeal - we've raised almost $300 here so far, contributing to more than $45,000 that has been raised through all of the crafty giveaways/raffles/auctions organised by Toni through her blog Make it Perfect (where you'll also find the Master List of all things available to win).

The good news is that the closing date for giveaways/raffles, including this one has been extended to 12pm AEDST 26 January (Australia Day). So there is still a few days to donate and enter to win nine fat quarters of my fabric - go to this blog post for all the details and to enter.

What would you do with all that fabric?

Friday, January 21, 2011


Here are my large bars of soap which we unmoulded yesterday afternoon...

The photo of them yesterday was taken just after I had poured the liquid in. The colour has changed quite a bit in the 24hours since then, and they look like they are going to be lovely soaps - nice and creamy from the all the oils - coconut, sunflower and olive. Now the long wait until I can slice them into usable bars and wrap them! Check back in six weeks for the results!

Thursday, January 20, 2011

my creative space ... soap

Hooray for creative spaces ... especially during holidays when anything is possible. I'm making soap ...

My first two batches are currently setting in their moulds (which are actually drawer organisers). I made a lavender, geranium and orange scented bar (the top one), and an orange (essence and zest) and cinnamon bar. They smell divine. I get to take them out of their moulds later today, then they have to cure for 6 weeks before I can chop them up and use them.

I used this information/process to make my soap after seeing it on TV a while ago - it was very easy and very satisfying.

Lots more cleverness can be found at Kootoyoo, the happy home of creative spaces every Thursday!

Don't forget you can still enter my QLD Flood Appeal Giveaway to win a fat quarter of each of my fabrics - 9 in total - go here to enter.

P.S. Yes - palm oil free soap!

Sunday, January 16, 2011


Spotted while trimming the wisteria on the pergola this morning ... beautiful ...

Mumma bird was watching me closely and then came back to protect her eggs. It's nice to have visitors like this staying with us during the holidays!

P.S. If you haven't already, please enter my giveaway of NINE FAT QUARTERS of Yardage Design fabric for the QLD Flood Relief Appeal - go here to enter.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

huge fabric giveaway* - let's support the Queensland Flood Relief Appeal

Like all of you, I have been watching and hearing about the devastating floods going on in Queensland. I am so pleased to be able to join with many other crafty bloggers and help raise funds. Toni from Make It Perfect is doing a wonderful job of coordinating lots of clever people offering sales, auctions, raffles and giveaways. There will be a big list of all of these on Toni's blog this weekend.

I've taken Jodie's lead and I'm having a giveaway, but with some strings attached (hence, the * in the title - see below for how this will work). I'm giving away one fat quarter of each of my fabric designs and colourways - that's NINE FAT QUARTERS! Each fat quarter measures approximately 50cm x 70cm, so that's over 3 square metres of fabric!

*Here's how it will work (please read this carefully):
~ this giveaway is open to everyone, including those who live overseas
~ postage is included to anywhere in the world
~ to enter, you must donate $5 to the Premier's Flood Relief Appeal (international donations are possible)
~ enter as many times as you like but each entry/donation must have a separate receipt number (eg. donate $5 ten times if you want to donate $50, then comment ten times with each receipt number) - this is to keep the entries equitable.
~ once you have donated, return to this blog post and leave a comment with your receipt number (just comments with receipt numbers please, no general comments)
~ this is an honour based system. Please don't use the same receipt number for heaps of different giveaways. The idea is to raise as much money for people severely affected by flooding as we can.
~ a winner will be randomly drawn on the 24th January at 9am AEDT at midday AEDT 26th January.

I really hope you can participate by donating just $5 - you'll not only get a chance to win a stack of fabric, but you will be helping people truly in need. Even if fabric is not your thing, please check out the Make It Perfect blog this weekend for many other handmade items.

Thanks in advance, and best wishes to our friends in Queensland.

Friday, January 7, 2011

the cream, the bone, the white, the off-white, the ivory or the beige?

Nothing to do with Richie Benaud's jacket (or the cricket - best not to mention the cricket in the house!), but everything to do with my hallway. I actually bought gorgeous red paint and was all ready to go when I had an attack of the "beige". It probably came from too many people saying things like ... a dark colour will make the space look smaller/darker/"interesting"(and we all know this word can be code for: revolting!). Decisions, decisions ...


Wednesday, January 5, 2011

skirts ... tick!

I am totally taking advantage of having some time to just make things for myself. On the weekend, I sewed up two skirts that have been on my "to do" pile of sewing for about 4 months. Both are made using using my favourite skirt pattern, Simplicity 2906 - only 2 pattern pieces, twill tape facing around the waist, split on the side seam and a zip. The other bonus is that depending on the width of the fabric, it usually takes less than a metre of material. I have made a few of these in the past, so now I can cut one out and sew it in just over an hour (if I have no interruptions - unheard of around here!). The first one is made from "Birdsong" by Echino (bought from Patchwork on Central Park) ...

The second one is made from "Trumpet Flowers" by Amy Butler (bought from Clegs) ...

I made about 3 of these skirts last summer and wear them to death, so it's been nice to have a couple of new ones. I'd be keen to know if you have a favourite skirt pattern - it's nice to have a fallback pattern, but nice to try new ones too. Flicking through pattern books in Spotlight with a 4 year old is one of my least favourite things to do!

Hope you're enjoying your break too, and getting some good sewing therapy (if that's your thing)!

Monday, January 3, 2011

scarf ... tick!

Even though I started this scarf in winter, I have been slowly knitting away and finally finished it last night. It took five balls of wool - 4 ply Waikiwi (55% New Zealand Merino, 20% Nylon, 15% Alpaca, 10% Possum) - using 3 1/4 mm needles to knit hundreds of rows. Each row was about 85 stitches - give or take one or two! The result is a a lovely wide scarf in rust colours that is so very warm ...

The nice thing about long, wide scarves is the ability to also use them as a wrap, which I often do ...

Love the colours in this wool ... very autumnal.

Lessons learnt along the way - choose a bigger ply wool so you can use bigger knitting needles and get it done quicker! Actually, I really enjoyed this little project, I may progress to something more advanced next winter. I'd really like to make this little vest, here.

I hope you've been enjoying some time out with family, friends and a bit of crafting. I'll be back tomorrow or the next day with some sewing I've been doing.