Thursday, December 22, 2011

A few more skirts + Pencil Roll

Wow, where has this past couple of months gone? I've been busy making things, but just haven't had the time to blog about it. So here's what's been keeping me busy (some of it anyway!):

::Pencil Roll::

First, I made one of my nephews a pencil roll. He loves colouring in, but didn't think he'd be overly excited about it - it was more a practical present that I knew my Sister would like. But he loved it!

The Fabric was leftover from my Travel Wallet that I made earlier in the year, it's from the All Stars range from Riley Blake.


Also, I've been making some more skirts, ready for summer:

1. Simple Jersey Knit Skirt

This is just another of my favourite easy skirt patterns, using some funky jersey knit that I picked up on sale earlier in the year.

2. Cabriolet Wrap-Over Skirt

This was a free pattern from, and I thought it would be a nice and quick project. I was wrong! It's a quite easy skirt to make (though the instructions weren't the best), but so time consuming. Then, when I'd finished it, I tried it on and it didn't look right at all. It initially had very long ties on it and they made the skirt look a bit bulky, so I decided to chop them off and added velcro to fasten, and it actually works very well. I think the thing that motivated me the most to make this skirt work, is that I used Anna Maria Horner Voile Fabric - from the Little Folks range - and it is gorgeous!

3. Jersey Knit Circle Skirt

I've been wanting to try a Circle skirt for a while now, so I thought I'd give it a go with some other jersey fabric I got on sale earlier in the year (from The Fabric Store in Brunswick, Melbourne). I used icandy handmade's tutorial which worked really well. You may notice I added a ruffle at the bottom of the skirt - that was actually accidental (but I really like it, so a good accident!). My husband had been helping me with working out the radius, circumference, etc - all those things that confuse me a little - but I forgot to check he had the right length, and it was only when it was all cut out that I realised it was too short. So hubby had the idea of the ruffle, and I like it.

See you all in the New Year!

Thursday, November 3, 2011

I'm on Etsy!

I'm a bit excited, because I now have an Etsy shop and some cute skirts for sale on it!

It's been something I've been considering for a little while, and I've got lots more ideas for the future that I'm currently sorting out. Hopefully you'll see some of them at the beginning of the year, if not before.

Thanks to the two cute little princesses who helped to model my skirts, and to their Mum's for letting their little girls get dressed up for the camera. And a massive thanks to my husband Ash for the wonderful photos, and of course my wonderful shop logo!

I'll add a link to my Etsy shop on my Blog page, but you can check it out here: Spot of Colour

Friday, October 7, 2011

My New Cutting Bench & Sister's Market

My Cutting Bench

For a little while now, I've been wanting a cutting bench instead of having to lean over the dining room table. I'd taken some measurements a while ago and jotted down what would work, but I just couldn't find anything that would work. Well, yesterday Ash made me one! I'm very happy with it, and if fits nicely in my sewing room (with my storage drawers sitting underneath it). Can't wait to try it out.

Sister's Market

While the rest of Melbourne was avidly watching the AFL Grand Final last Saturday, I decided it'd be much more fun to check out the Sister's Market at Brunswick Town Hall. It was the first time I'd been, and I loved it! Here's a few of my favourite stalls from the day:

Missmouse  - The *cutest* kids knitted bamboo hats!

Elise Hurst  - Elise is an Author and Illustrator. I bought the lovely book My boots in season  and Ash loved her Illustrations and we will definitely be ordering some of her prints in the future.

Cottage Nerd  - I bought the Babushka Doll Skirt and adore it. It fits perfectly, and is so comfortable - and looks great!

Friday, September 30, 2011

Obi-Inspired Hot & Cold Pack

A little while ago, I purchased the book One Metre Wonders by Rebecca Yaker and Patricia Hoskins.

I was flicking through it again the other day, and came across the "Obi-Inspired Hot & Cold Pack", and decided to give it a go. I'd been having a bit of an achey back (due to cutting out lots of fabric on a low table!) so it sounded perfect.

The instructions were really easy to follow, and it was such an easy project. I really enjoyed making it! You can use either wheat or rice in the Pack, so I used rice (always plenty of rice in our house) and it worked well.

The hot & cold pack is stored in a pocket which can be then tied around the waist, or to any other part of the body, that needs a bit of relief. It can be put in the freezer for a cold pack, or in the microwave for a couple of minutes for a heat pack.

The thing I love so much about this book, is knowing that all you need is one metre of fabric. In fact, with this project, it could be used with large scraps coordinated together.

The fabric I used was just from my local Spotlight store.

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Wardrobe Refashion

It's been a bit quiet on the blog lately, but I promise I have been busy sewing!

When we got back from overseas, I found myself sorting through some of my clothes that I haven't worn for a little while. I came across a few items that I decided to re-fashion rather than pass along to a secondhand shop.

My favourite so far is this one:

I bought this dress while on holidays a couple of years ago on the Central Coast of NSW, and loved it. I'd planned on teaming it with a pair of jeans (too short for my liking to wear as a dress), but it just didn't work. I could never bring myself to part with it, but didn't know what to do with it. So ...

I turned it into a skirt! All I did was to chop the top part (bust and above) off and add a waist band made out of stretch jersey fabric. I didn't even have to hem it, as I didn't even touch the bottom of the dress!

Easy, and cheap!

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Spot of Colour Labels + My Hooded Tunic Top Design

Can you tell it's been busy in our house lately? I can't believe I actually finished all of my sewing projects before we head overseas tomorrow!

The first thing I am really excited about is that, a few weeks ago, Ash designed some clothing labels for me so that I can get cracking on making things and selling them on Etsy. I'd heard really good things about World Sale Label on Etsy, so I decided to order some labels through them. I bought the standard type (see the pic below) and also some folded over labels that can be sewn into a side seam. They arrived in the mail last Friday, just as I was finishing off some items for a friend of mine, so I just had to sew in a label. And I can't believe how great it looks, it really finishes it all off I reckon.

The second thing I'm a bit excited about - proud even - is the hooded tunic top that I've made. A few weeks ago, I made the rash decision that I would design and make a top for myself - probably not the smartest idea, when I had a list of projects to finish and an overseas trip just weeks away.

So I sketched out what I would like in a top, found a tank top in my wardrobe that fitted me well, and started drawing a design out on tracing paper from that. I'm not sure what my Mother in Law thought when I turned up that night to sewing class with my design and a couple of pictures off the internet as inspiration, but she helped me along those few weeks and now I have an awesome top to take overseas with me!

Here it is:

I actually didn't have quite enough black fabric for the hood, so I used some leftover red and used that for the tie as well. I'm so glad I did, I think it really makes it.

(P.S. Sorry about the pasty white skin - I'll try and remedy that in the next 6 weeks! Also, don't look at the messy bookshelf - I've run out of room!)

See you in a couple of months everyone :)

Another one for the guys ...

It was a great day for my husband when I discovered that our local Spotlight store had acquired good quality camouflage material. I bought a couple of metres for him, and I'm sure he's been waiting for his opportunity to get something made out of it.

That day came on Saturday. We were preparing for our overseas trip and I expressed my concern about Ash having to put his expensive tripod through with all of the other checked luggage, in case someone pinched it off the conveyor belt. So, Ash had the idea of making a bag for it - he still had webbing from his Backpack Cover that he made last year - and I agreed to make it for him.

I think he must have been to eager to wait for me to start making it, so the next thing I know he's cut out the material and he's all keen to sew it up, which he did! And he did a great job too! We'll have to see if it stands the test of time - and travel.

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Girl Skirts

I've been wanting to try out these cute skirts for a little while, I've seen them on quite a few blogs lately professing them to be the easiest skirt to make. So I was happy when I got a chance to make these for some friends.

The blog tutorial I ended up following was this one: Simple Skirt Tutorial by Dana Made It. As you can see, there's not much to it - plus the pattern is just one big rectangle! I decided to line both of the ones I made, which meant I could also hide most of the seams. If I get to make some more, I'd like to play around with doing a two-tiered one, and also using bias tape. There's just so many options with a skirt like this!

So, here's the two that I whipped up:

The purple one is actually made from leftover fabric from another skirt I made for my Mum's birthday last year (Simple Skirts) that I ordered from, and the green one was part of the "All Star" Riley Blake half yard set that I ordered a couple of months ago.

Friday, May 27, 2011

Travel Wallet

As the countdown to our holiday continues, I've been busy sewing and trying to finish off projects before we leave.

This week, I made us a personalised travel wallet which I drew up a design for. I was going to buy one - there's so many cute ones on Etsy - but, as a result of having dual citizenship, I have two passports, so I wanted to have space to store all three (Ash's as well) and have them easily accessible.

As well as the passport pockets, I included a side pocket for tickets/e-tickets etc, a couple of velcro fastening pockets (yes, I went with the easier - and cheaper - velcro option as opposed to my original zip plan) for foreign currency. We're visiting 4 seperate countries so I'm expecting we'll accumulate some leftover change along the way. And, two pen slots - the most annoying thing I find on a plane is filling out the customs form, only to realise you don't have a pen in your backpack and trying to borrow one off someone else on the plane.

So here it is:

By the way, the fabric I used was "All Star" by Riley Blake. I got 6 half-yard lots of the different styles in this collection, and they are all super cute. Made it hard picking which ones to use!

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Travel Accessories

My husband and I are going overseas in 5 weeks and 6 days (not that I'm counting!), so I thought some personalised travel accessories might be in order.

I made a laundry bag for us each. As always, Ash requested camo material (our local Spotlight now stocks the proper stuff, so he's pretty excited about that).

And toothpaste and toothbrush holders as well. Check out the cool fabric I got from Spotlight. Very fitting for travelling huh!

Lots more projects on the way, stay posted :)

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Little Girl Dress

A little while ago, I had a good friend visit and I showed off some of my sewing projects that I was in the middle of to her. One of my projects is to make some of these gorgeous dresses, among other things, to sell on Etsy in a few months' time. Well, I hadn't even starting sewing yet - I'd cut out the fabric only - and I'd made my first sale. Hooray! It was a great boost to my confidence, because I wasn't sure if I was being too optimistic.

Here it is.

It's made of corduroy, and the facings and pocket of cotton (Riley Blake's Rainy Days and Mondays line). Perfect for winter!

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Finders Keepers Market

So, who else went to Finders Keepers on the weekend?!

I did and, wow, it was amazing! It was so, so exciting. So many stalls with gorgeous, arty, super cute things to buy. I just soaked it all in and immensely enjoyed myself, and then kicked back with some lunch while listening to the Bon Scotts perform live. Ash - ever supportive of my addiction to markets and handmade things - came with me too, and really enjoyed it too. And was pleased when I pointed out that there were actually a fair amount of other guys with their girls too.

To top it off, my sister gave birth to a baby boy just the previous night! Wooo! So, what better place to look for the cutest baby outfit ever. And, yep, I sure found it. About 6 months ago we were at the Magnolia Square market and came across Oishi-M who make baby/children's clothes, but different to anything else I'd seen. I loved them, and so was delighted when I saw they had a stall at Finders Keepers on Saturday.

This is what we bought for Master LJ:
I looove hoodies!

Front of the Jeans. They have a stretchy and expanding waistband, modelled on the maternity band concept, and the cuffs roll down. So it means that these will last for ages.

Back. Some extra nappy room.

And they come in this! (I'm sure my brother in law thought he was getting pizza .. he he)

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Obey your parents

This post isn't really related to sewing, but it is craft based so I thought I'd share it with you all.

I've been teaching Sunday School to 3-5 year olds for the last couple of months and last week we all learnt what the word "Obey" meant. So, seeing as this week is my last one, I wanted to do something a little special for them to take home so I had this idea ...

Cool right? I got the idea from the gift that Ash gave me (see here), so I explained to Ash how I'd like it to look and this is what he created! The idea is, that the kids are going to colour in the letters of "Obey" and then I will laminate it and they can take it home.

I think this is one thing that their parents may take pleasure in displaying at home ... !

(Anyone is welcome to use this, just leave me a comment and let me know how it was enjoyed)

Friday, March 11, 2011

One Year

Ash and I celebrated our One Year Anniversary on the weekend (6th March)!

We'd decided earlier on that we'd keep our Anniversary simple, yet special, and make each other a gift each year. So this is what we both received:

I made this for Ash, it's a toothbrush and toothpaste holder. Remember the Camo Backpack Cover post from last year? Well, I used some of the material from the Camo Poncho to line the inside so that it's water resistant. The idea came from when we went away a few months ago and were complaining that we could never find a holder to fit both our toothbrush and toothpaste in, so I thought I'd try making one.

This is what Ash made me! Isn't it great? I'd saved a poster similar to this to our computer a few weeks ago to show him, and I was going to order one for myself. But, stupidly, I couldn't find where I'd spotted it. Ash didn't know any of this, so I was completely excited when he gave it to me.

I'm so glad we decided on handmade gifts, they just add something extra personal. I love it.

Friday, February 18, 2011

Owl Purse

Do you like my cute little owl purse? I do.

I've been meaning to make this for a little while now, as my wallet has been literally bulging and I decided I would store all of my "Shop Cards" (you know, the ones that offer you discounts or just a sense of belonging) in a little purse. Of course, in true Librarian style, they are in alphabetical order so I can locate the one I want quickly!

I made this purse last night during my sewing lesson - it took an hour and a half from start to finish, which I was fairly impressed at seeing as this is only my second attempt at sewing with a zip! And the best thing is, it hardly used any fabric at all and could easily be a project to use up some scrap material (because I can never bring myself to throw any of it away ... )

Saturday, February 12, 2011

My Crafty Day Out

Today was a good day.

Ash and I drove into Fitzroy, to the wonder that is Brunswick Street. My main reason for wanting to go there, was to check out the Blackbird Market in the Worker's Club, which was very good. A little small, but lots of kinda cool vintage clothing (which I wouldn't normally be interested in, but some were quite funky).

Next, we walked past Meet me at Mike's which I'd heard lots about from my work colleagues, and had checked out some of their books, so that was an unexpected surprise also.

But (saving the best for last ... ) the big excitement had been when Ash had seen a shop called The Fabric Store. Initially, it looked so trendy outside that I was convinced it was actually a clothes shop and not really a seller of just fabric. But, yes, I was wrong. Oh man ... It was incredible! The range this place has is just beyond words (especially for someone who hardly ventures out of just the local Spotlight store), and it had 50% off pretty much everything!! So I of course made some purchases, and hopefully they will be used for future projects that I can show off on here.

Then we walked back to the car and there was a parking fine on it. Oops. We decided that next time we may just take the train instead :)

Friday, January 28, 2011

Setting up my Sewing Area

At the end of last year, I decided I would need my very own sewing area, as opposed to everything sprawled out onto our dining room table (usually resulting in a frantic relocation whenever we had visitors around). This was easier said than done, seeing as we live in a Unit with smaller than usual rooms. The final decision was that we would merge it with our music room, so we now have a Music/Sewing room (which should prove interesting when we have friends over for a music jam!)

I spent a lot of time measuring and planning so that I could prove to Ash it could actually work - by looking at the original setup of the room, you never would have believed it.

We picked up a desk off ebay for $10 (it's actually a really good and sturdy one!) and Ash has already drawn up plans to make me a cutting table which will go in the corner between the desk and the piano (the unit with the tub drawers will sit underneath it, that's where most of my sewing supplies are kept).

I need to fit all of this stuff, plus my fabrics, into these few shelves ...

I decided to make a few things to make my Sewing Area a little bit personalised (and to save some $$$). So I found some scraps of material and made myself a very simple pin cushion, and also a pen holder for all my bits and pieces (made from a tin can).