Thursday, January 19, 2012

Card class number two

 My second card for my class is based on the perfectly flat cards lesson.  As usual I didn't have the supplies they used so a bit of improvisation was in order.  


The lesson showed a type of paint spritzer to make the solid colour area but I just used a stamp pad and dabbed it all over, which possibly isn't very good for the stamp pad.  The lettering is from a letter set I have, and when I made the mistake and used the wrong letter there was much swearing.  It was the very last thing I was doing so there was no way I was going to start again.   

The stamp is one I hand carved myself, which is easier than I thought, and something I think I will do more of.


 A piece of washi tape (my new favourite thing) and I was done!

Sunday, January 15, 2012

First card for class

I've been taking an online cardmaking course, clean and simple cards.  

This is my attempt at the first card, I don't have the punch they used, so I had to cut out the hearts by hand and I don't have any sentiment stamps, but I quite like it anyway!



Saturday, January 7, 2012

Calendar tea towels

I love the idea of Spoonflower, even though I have zero graphic design ability.  Their weekly design contests are great and it amazes me how many entries the get, people only have a week to complete their design. 

In November they had their annual tea towel calendar contest, and there were some amazing entries.  I decided that they would make good Christmas gifts, so ordered a bunch.  Spoonflower recommended that they were ordered on the linen-cotton canvas, which I did, and pretty reasonably priced seeing as you only need a fat quarter.  
These are the ones I ordered, plus one more that was speedily hemmed and gifted on the day it arrived.  I got two of the grey one and two of the boxy one.  Hemming was fiddly but easy really.  

This circle tea towel design is the one that won the contest, and has been gifted to my little sister.

I also ordered a swatch book of spoonflower substrates, and now I want to order all kind of fabrics on the cotton silk substrate - beautiful!

Pretty Filofax dividers

After struggling for a while with trying to maintain my schedule and tasks on a combo of my phone, iPad, and work computer, I'm giving a paper based system a go.  I've had diaries in the past but have always ended up with bits of paper going everywhere, so I've decided to try a Filofax.  Well, to be fair, I don't actually have a true Filofax yet, I've got a debden-Collins (which I think is mostly found in Australia and New Zealand) in the equivalent of pocket size.  If it works for me then I'll shell out and get a Filofax, probably a personal chameleon I think.  I need to know if it's a good option for me before I spend all that money, they are not cheap, although if it's a good system for you then it seems like it would pay for itself compared to buying a new diary each year.  

Side rant - the prices in NZ compared to the states or the UK.  We're used to things costing more here than overseas, but an organiser that costs $69 on the filofax USA site costs $169NZ on the Filofax NZ site, which is the equivalent of $132 US!  Nearly twice as much!  Why so much more?!  Anyway, rant over, I'll find somewhere else to buy it.  

I'm a very visual person, and I like my everyday items to look pretty, so the plain dividers weren't really doing it for me, so I made some new ones, which I like a lot better.  

These are yet to be hole punched, as we don't have a hole punch at home so it'll have to wait until I'm at work.  I used the address tabs as a template but I think next time I would use larger/longer tabs.

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Sewing goals for 2012

1. Use what I have.  I have fabric, I have patterns, I have tools, I need to not buy more stuff.  

2. Fit clothes better.  I get so excited about the "sewing things together" bit that I woosh past the fitting part.  I need to work on spending more time on fitting to get garments I'm happier with.

3. Pants.  I have a pants pattern, Vogue 1051, which gets rave reviews and is exactly the kind of pants I like to wear.  I have fabric, and I need to get over my fear of the fitting issues on this one.  


That's all!  There will inevitably be some quilts, but my focus is really on the clothes sewing and I'm looking to make improvements in that area

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Salme kimono top

I love using patterns from independent designers, it feels so much more personal.  So when I found Salme patterns on etsy, I grabbed a couple.  
This pattern is the kimono top, and I gave it a go with a wearable muslin.  I had a mystery fabric from the remnants bin at my local fabric store ($5 - bargain!) that I think is probably a cotton silk blend.  I have a gorgeous vintage silk in a delicate green with a lovely large-ish floral pattern on it, that I didnt want to experiment with but that I think would be good for this pattern.  

the pattern comes as a PDF, and it was only 12 pages to tape together so I was good to go pretty quickly.  With five pieces (front, back, back facing, front facing and sleeve cuff) it cut out quickly, and I was away laughing. 

I found the instructions on the pattern pretty good, although if you were a true beginner there were some bits that might trip you up, mostly about finishing.  I completely made a hash of the neckline and it never quite sat the same (totally user error, not the patterns fault at all) but apart from that it went together easily.  As a rule I don't love facings, so depending on fabric choice I would consider doing bias binding at the neck, but the facings are well drafted.  

All up it probably took me two hours, although that included the neck error so next time it would go together faster.  Here's the photo of my finished top, totally wearable for a muslin I think!
Bigups to Salme patterns I think they've done a great job, and I'd encourage people to check out the patterns