Thursday, December 23, 2010

Flower Sugar

You know you want it. Retromummy Corrie is having a terrific giveaway of Flower Sugar fat quarters. Just imagine having these at home.
I know I wouldn't want to cut into them but I am in serious need of new cushions, summer totes, clutches and all things pretty.

So head on over there now and get your entry in before New Years!

Merry Christmas to all!!!

Friday, December 17, 2010

A Messenger Bag

This is my first ever Messenger Bag and I am thrilled with it.
I was up last night after they were all in bed trying to pick out the best fabric in my stash for this project but I only picked out this lovely corduroy this morning.

I used the fabulous tutorial from Fishsticks and Fries.
The only moderation I made was to make it a bit smaller as it's for a young niece.
However, it's still quite big. But I am quite happy that it fits an A4 folder so they can even use it to lug around school books etc.

Here it is next to the A4 folder. The dimensions for the bag was a 39.5cm square.
I didn't even realise I had cut out a perfect square when making this up. I could not find the pattern for the flap though so I cut the width the same as the bag and length to 3/4 of the bag front. I used 1cm seam allowance for the sides and 1/4" for top stitching.

I was considering using some webbing for the straps and when I couldn't find it I just ended up biting the bullet and making it using my own dimensions so it would be 4cm wide.
I had some times when I didn't think I'd make it... all my measuring devices seemed to be hiding when I needed them and my walking foot, well, walked off somewhere but I did end up using it and don't regret the 10mins I spent looking for it.

So, what are you still doing here? Go and make one. You will LOVE it.

You could do it standing on your head ; )

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Buying - Yes - Crafting - No

I admit it. I love pink and it's variations.
I was never into pink as a girl but now I love it.
I had to get these from Spotlight.
99c for the top two and $5 for a 20m roll of the ric rac. Awesome.
I bought the light blue dotty panel to make Little Miss Four her own apron and gloves.
She loves to help me cook. I couldn't leave the store without the butterfly fq to cover a pillow for her bed. The scissors ended up being 50c! She can use them for crafting.
She starts Preschool next year. Phew.
I trawled the net for tutorials on how to make a cot sheet and I'll be making one for her.

In my garden : I was rather curious about this certain plant and I pulled it out and to my joy it was a carrot! So I am growing carrots too! It's way too small right now and I am hoping by some miracle that they grow to a decent size. We've already picked two more cucumbers and I see another on the way. This is the best planting season I've had.... ever!
I love my mum but she didn't teach me much about home economics.
I wish she'd taught me that if you fold your laundry as you take it off the line it saves you an incredible amount of time later when you need to pack and sort it! Most of it is wrinkle free when you take it off the line anyway.
Why I only figured it out this past week I do not know but at least now I know and now YOU KNOW. So do it. You will thank your lucky stars!

So HA! Here's to a great Christmas.

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Too little time

If you're stuck for some stocking stuffers or gifts for Xmas I think
this Pink Diary is terrific. I spotted the National Breast Cancer Foundation Pink Diary (what a mouthful) at Target the other day and bought it for myself.

It's a Week to Opening on A5 so it's perfect for me to check out my schedule for the week.
Especially now that I am back to working part-time.
I've already pencilled in some apppointments and scheduled ultrasound.

The great thing about going back to work is working near a fabric store so I can pop down at lunch and pick up a few goodies. I love this soft cotton dobby. I'm not sure if it will turn into a dress or top yet but it was too good to pass up at $5 a metre. I also picked up interfacing for $2.40/mtr and some rope to make these irresistable on the go baby change sacks.

This week's been quite hectic and full of emotion.
I must admit that at times being a full-time mother is quite isolating, frustrating and darn impossible on some days. Luckily I've forced myself to whip up some desserts to wash away those hardships. I pulled the recipe for this yummy chocolate self saucing pudding from the Junior Masterchef website. It's missing the hazelnuts but everyone loved it. Even hubby really liked it.

I am thinking about Charlie/Reversible bags for the impossible to buy for nieces.
Whether or not I get around to making any is another question.
I don't know how mums of 3 do it and I take my hat off to them. It's hard work finding your own personal time or maybe I am just not looking hard enough? lol.

Have a crafty weekend,
Kim XO

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Little Pouches - Gift idea

I'm pretty sure I am getting better at making zippered pouches.
This lovely number took two days to do, only because I had other things to look after.
It's made of a pretty Flower Sugar fabric I bought from Sarah and Quilt Fabric Delights a while ago. I never got around to using it and I'm glad I decided to cut into it.

I'm loving how the zipper ends have come out too. I figured you do have to sew right through them to make them look neat. I think the grey zipper works fabulously with the white, pink and blue.

Inserting the zip is pretty easy too. Just make sure you keep the raw edges in line with the zipper edge and keep your seam allowance consistent and you'll be right.
I made this pouch using my own pattern. I did screw up one part where I didn't box the corners correctly so I had to snip off some more of the edge and re-sew.
Luckily I made it quite big so it came out a decent size.

Little Miss 4 has already stashed it up with some cool things.
I'm thinking you could make some pencil pouches for little ones or perhaps even an emergency first-aid kit for an on-the-go mumma. I can't wait to make more.

I am really in love with these pouches that Jo has made over at Jelly Baby Blog.
She has done a wonderful job on the Mumma bags. What a fabulous Xmas gift idea.

I hope you're up to Xmas crafting.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

It's beginning to look alot like...

I put up the Christmas tree yesterday. There was a big mess of toys strewn all over the floor but I've culled most of the toys (or hidden them out of view).
Gee, we've accumulated alot of toys in the past few years. It's time for me to let go.
We're bound to get more this Christmas anyway.

What I would like in my stocking this year is some yummy fabric.
Lucky that there are lovely bloggers who are willing to give some of them away.
One of my favourite blogs is by Corrie of Retromummy. She is giving away a fat quarter set of Rosalie Quinlan's Broderie. How cool would that be?

I would be making some much needed cushions and try making some camera cases and purses.
The one I made below was from this tutorial by Sew-Mad Mama. I made it a bit too wide but it's fine and it will do. I now have a great appreciation for crafters who sew these small objects. I find I don't do a great job.

Babies are a cryin'
I gotta get going.

Ciao for now.

Monday, November 15, 2010

Have you seen my cucumber?

I've been admiring the greenery of our vegie 'bath'.
In actual fact it's an old iron bath that hubby filled with dirt and I've been pottering about trying to see if I can't grow something .... anything... without killing it.
I wasn't successful last year but I am trying harder this time around. I've even detected what the weeds look like and pick them out daily.

While the kids were at day care I planted whatever seeds I had on hand.
You can see tomato trees above. I am thinking about re-potting them individually so I can stake them. They are looking pretty healthy but whether or not they fruit is the big question.

That's a cucumber plant in the corner. I had picked up a pot from Franklins (of all places) as I was curious. I split it and they were looking good until one of them decided to stop growing.

But lookey here! My pride and joy. See that cucumber?! It sprouted and grew and grew!
Hubby hasn't seen it since it was a wee one but he's going to be mighty impressed! Or jealous : )

This is the plant tht won't be killed by me. My ever loyal Gerbera pot.
Each year it sits out in the full sun with grass and weeds and I hardly give it a drink, yet every spring it grows plentiful happy fuschia gerberas for me. What a best friend, lol.

These are my snow pea sprouts from above. They are lovely and high and cling onto watever is growing around them. I can't wait to see if they grow something edible too.

So my news, dear friends, is that I am also sprouting something inside me.
I am about 10weeks pregnant with our fourth, yes, 4th baby.
To be honest I wasn't planning on another so soon but it was destined and I am going smooth sailing so far. A bit of nausea but mostly some tiredness. I am happy at least to have our last child baking and then concentrate on raising the best children that I can.

I log off now and thinking about making some little purses for my nieces for Christmas.
I hope you're doing some crafting too.

Cheers, Kim

Friday, November 12, 2010

Fixing : Canon IXUS 70 mode

My apologies for the blurry pics but my phone camera doesn't do macro very well, even though these were taken with the macro setting.
The other day before we went to the farm my little, let's say "destroyer" of a son, took out the camera and managed to break the slider which switches the modes of the camera from shoot, video and playback. It worked but was permanently on review/playback and I couldn't take any pictures.

Today I decided to open it up and see if I could fix it. Who needs a man, really?
After scouring the internets for a while there wasn't any information that was helpful so I stumbled through this myself. It was easy and I didn't electrocute myself.
I thought I'd post this to help others with this dilemma.

Upside down pic of the camera with staple hanging out of the piece you need to 'switch'

It's actually very simple. Using a small screwdriver take out the side screws and the bottom. I was not successful in using a bigger screwdriver to loosen the bottom hence why I was not able to open the back case properly. Caveat: You should use something small otherwise you'll mush up the cross on the screws and may not be able to turn the screw at all.

Anyway, once open you should be able to see the silver rectangular piece on the board (opposite to where the slider is on the case) You can use something tiny, I used a single staple, to push the black slider inside the rectangular piece to the top. It's hard to see but look closely. If you slide it up to the top it puts your camera in picture/shoot mode. That's it! Voila, test it by turning the power on and see if the lens pops up. You've just kinda fixed the mode.

The only other issue is that you can't change modes once you close it up again but you can set the shortcut button to go to video mode so that helps a little. It only leaves you with no playback so you'll just have to keep taking pictures.

Hope this helps!

Friday, November 5, 2010

Little Pleasures

Today I woke up and felt like scones. 3 cups of flour later here are the left overs.
Some of them rose like the leaning tower of Pisa. I didn't place them close enough together.
But they tasted good and were not as flat as I use to make them.
I figured that if I just patted them down with my hand (instead of using a rolling pin as if I were making pizza dough) then I'd end up with luscious fluffy scones. Turns out I was right.
I used the recipe from Taste. Very good recipe.

Yesterday I couldn't walk past this cute little handbag. Black is boring so I opted for this Slate colour. Strandbags had 25% the Cabrelli brand and this was a much needed little thing. I had one given to me but it frustrated me to find my mobile.
Hopefully this one won't swallow up everything in it. For $22 bucks, it's a good investment, yes?

Then I finished up some invisible hems for my sis in law's friend at work.
I must say I am getting better at this and it hardly shows on the outside.
It's a little tricky getting the 'catch' right but if you move your needle into the position instead of the slider on the foot it's much easier.

There's some other news on our front as well but I might wait a little longer to reveal.
I wonder if you can guess...

Anyway, we're enjoying our new car though. It's a nice big Kluger and the kids don't want to leave when they are watching their movie on the dvd player.

Hope you're having some little pleasures too.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

The Skirt

This is a skirt. That was a pair of jeans.
I originally cut it up to make a skirt for my 4yr old but decided it might be too thick for her twirly tastes.
So I sewed up the seams and whacked on a stretchy spandex material on top.
It's now a maternity skirt.

Don't mind my belly.
This is how it looks from the front (duh)
I love how the stripes conceal my pot belly.

This is how it looks with a top.
My sister is pregnant so I will be making up some more of these for her this summer.
So if you don't have plans for some old jeans then this is a good idea.
It's a terrific money saver.
Here's the tutorial for a maternity skirt.

Another "1"

I can't believe it. She's 1.
It's been a whirlwind of a week/month.
I had no time to make a cake, esp. one that would be big enough to feed a crowd.
So we opted for store bought and we gathered in celebration of this wonderful milestone.

She can't say mummy just yet but she has only just mastered crawling and can pull herself up on the couch. She certainly knows her name and cries as soon as she sees me.
Having only two teeth doesn't stop her from eating everything in sight.

I'm enjoying a Sunday at home after church. We normally have it at the in-laws but they are
going on a bus trip to Mary McKillop's church. Very exciting stuff.
If you haven't heard, Australia will get their very first saint today at the Vatican.
It's really special. The thought of even dragging my kids out to the city makes me cringe and shrivel into a ball. We will watch the event from the comfort of home.

I've been banned from buying fabric, notions or anything on-line.
You see we've just purchased a new car. It's not new new but it's new for us and BIG
and lovely. More pics of this to come when I drive the baby home next week.
But in a week where I was a bit depressed and our dollar was bouncing high I bought an Oliver + S Jumprope dress pattern. Apparently, it's going out of print so I had to have it in the large size for my girls. My spirits will be lifted when it arrives just like the car but still, you know, material things don't equate to true happiness.

It's like having a good bar of chocolate. Which, yeah is a good idea right now.
I'll be doing some sewing today. I promise.

Friday, October 1, 2010

A Spot of Sewing

It really annoys me when the girl wakes me up early in the morning because "the sun is up, mummy!"

So I decided once and for all that I should spend some time making these easy peasy curtains for their room. I got the spotty curtain material when Spotlight had their 50% off sale.

If you wanted to go all out there are some cute lattice ones in this post by Caitlin Wilson.

I wish our dollar was much stronger as I would have ordered them up in a second.

Still I am very happy with these curtains and hubby put the rods up for me.

They have cute little train ends. Also, sourced from the Spotlight sale at $10!
Sorry about the bad lighting, it's hard to take a shot of it while the sun is shining in right behind the window.

She still wakes up early but I make her stay in bed with me until my eyelids pry themselves open.

Since I have also been watching what I eat I opted out of the choc cake and made this Best Banana Cake from Kirsty at Kootoyoo. It seriously rocks. My kids love it which is a mega bonus.

Now I am just waiting for my circulars to arrive so I can get a start on a Cassia pattern for my almost 1 year old. Where did the time go?

Until then I am waiting for my sew-jo to come back because nothing is appealing to me right now.
I am just going to leave the clutch giveaway open until someone/anyone puts up their hand for one. First in first serve,

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Giveaway: Dolce or Birdie Clutch.

I've been sewing this week and it feels really good.
First up I finally made some pillowcases for our new pillows.

They were made in Marilyn Grey Dolce by Tanya Whelan.
I really love the colour and I am glad I didn't add a cuff to them.
They are simple and great just the way they are. I just added a white linen to the underside and put in a small cuff to close up the side opening.

Then I made my first purse/pouch/clutch thingy using the Noodlehead tutorial.
It's got a gathered front and you just sew on a band on top. I did learn a few things and as easy as they were meant to be they still took me a day to finish up the way I liked.
These are going to be perfect for stashing some tissues in my handbag and my phone which I can never find when it rings.

The first I made using a Windham fabric called Full Bloom. The one above is Dolce as well. They both have a charcoal linen main fabric.

I broke two needles in the process, yes two!
One of them hit the metal piece of the zipper and the second was caught when it went under and bent from god knows what. So I tried to be a lot more careful in the whole experience.

What is happening with my camera? The zipper is a dusty pink. Mmmmmm.
It was hard to figure out how to make those nice zipper ends appear nice after I sewed up both sides. The first time I missed the bit in the instructions where it says to sew up to the zipper ends and NOT THROUGH them. Huh, how does that work? They are not perfect and that is what still annoys me. It was also hard to keep everything straight when sewing pieces together so I had to use my rotary cutter to keep my fabrics lined up. They are a bit wonky still.

Never to leave something alone I decided to be a bit more creative and added a lacy touch to the second pouch I made. I think it looks more dainty. I love the little bird on the front. The band was a 9cm wide strip that was folded in on the edges instead of one bigger piece sewn together and with the seam hidden in the centre. I just despise ironing. The insides have a nice grey floral lining and the raw edges are hidden! Yay for that and fat quarters.
In celebration of getting a bit of my sew-jo back I would like to make one of these for a lovely reader. Just don't worry if it comes out a bit wonky, it's a designers touch ; )
You just need to let me know which fabric you would like on the band in your comment.
The Dolce or the Birdie? You can choose to have the lace or without the lace if you want the birdie.

That being said, I think I will be off tomorrow to get some more needles and zippers.

Clutchy giveaway will close Friday 24th Sept so I can start sewing.
All entries from anywhere are open.
This giveaway will be featured on Giveaway Scout, an on-line giveaway search engine!
Au revoir!

Thursday, September 9, 2010

My Creative Space

I held my breath and ... I cut into it!
Dolce by Tanya Whelan has long been a favourite of mine so when I got this Marilyn Grey I knew it was for something very cool.
We bought new pillows so I decided that this fabric would look great as pillow cases.
I was thinking of getting a matching panel for the cases but then when it came in I didn't like the way it looked if I were to make a cuff for it.
I can't wait to get them finished and have only cut out the pieces.

In other news I made these yummy Mars Bar Slices for a party.
They were a huge hit (even if I used dark chocolate for the topping, hence the milk chocolate lattices I piped on top).

I also made my favourite and very easy Beef Stir-fry with Hokkien noodle.
I recieved lovely comments about this too.
I think people believe that Asian people are born with stir-fry skills but seriously you can learn it very easily. The method is to brown your meat first in hot oil in batches.
Then remove and fry your vegies in a little stock and steam them on the wok for a minute or two. Then add your meat back in the wok and add your soy sauce, oyster sauce and salt and pepper. That's it! Enjoy your healthy stir-fry.

That's about as creative I got this week. More spaces at Kirst's.

If you're busy like me please take time to SLOW DOWN.
I watched an Oprah program today where this lady had one change in her busy schedule and she left her two year old in the car by accident, where she passed away due to heat stroke, and they found her 8 hrs later. It was a heart-breaking story and she was so brave to share it with everyone.

Please, please, please take your time to be WITH your children and be mindful of them.
If I can reach out to one person this post would have been really worth it.

God Bless.

Monday, September 6, 2010

Turning Pages

This little darling turned 4 recently.
She embraced the world 4 years ago a day before the Father's Day weekend.
I remember just wanting her out so I could rest but I never got any!
Right now just watching her flourish into a little being feels pretty good and this mothering business is settling in my bones.
I love that the cardigan matches her dress and it fits her now since being so-called blocked.
She tells everyone that "Mummy knitted this and she dyed it"
My heart glows each time I hear the words coming out of her mouth.
Speaking of parenting I won a book pack from The Bub Hub by simply writing up a review.
I'm so incredibly thrilled! I hope there might be some really good reading coming my way.

This Father's Day weekend was a pretty emotional one.
We all went to the cemetary and shed tears for a little angel with her parents.
We all went to the airport and I cried when saying farewell to parents-in-law.
I think after becoming a mother I am so much more of an emotional torrent ready to burst my tear ducts as soon as anything remotely sad comes my way.
With that being said I enjoyed and bathed in the love and bonding of family this weekend.
It's so good for the soul. So nourishing. It's so easy to be distracted into putting our efforts into other insignificant chores. I decided to drag the littlies out to be with family and it was worth it.
Moments too good to be missed.
I hope you all had a good weekend too.