Monday, 9 November 2009

Busy, busy, busy!

BBM is always a hectic time, not least when it's start coincides with my being on holiday and a huge pile of marking on my return. I've been busy sewing, crafting and dyeing all week. Yesterday had a little mermaid themes (which isn't yey finished ;)) I made a lovely bustle skirt and a bookmark, which sold immediately.

I have yards of freshly dyed organic bamboo velour around the house, waiting for new projects.

Thursday, 5 November 2009

Black pixie hood

I sold this beautiful hoody on folksy today:

It is matte black cotton velvet, with a pixie hood and cute fairy machine embroidery - and was snapped up straight away!

Leather and embossed metal wristlets

Been making some more wristlets, but this time embossed metal and leather, as well as velvet.

The bottom one is mine, the rest are for my folksy store, along with some others. I think my sewing machine will need a service now!

Tuesday, 3 November 2009

Just got back from hols (will update on pics from that later) and landed in BBM. What's BBM you may well ask. Well on Cloth Nappy Addicts we are having Buy British Month, a celebration of wahms.
So I have spent the last 2 days making embossed and sewn metal wristlets and I listed my first Folksy items today. Here's an example of a brass and cotton damask one:

I also listed some other fabric wristlets and resin candy jewellery left over from festivals:

So, very busy and I still have loads of other resin jewellery to list and a huge pile of sewing to do.

Thursday, 22 October 2009

Rose tinted

Thought I'd post up some pics of the gorgeous reversible swing dress and PUL nappy covers I made the other day. The photos were taken before poppers were added to the wraps. I think this is one of the prettiest sets I've made.

She'll be wearing pink pyjamas.....

Today I made two pairs of ladies hooded pyjamas from two of the fabrics I dyed the other day (apologies for blurry pics again, my camera doesn't like evenings). The waists are yoga bands this time:

Wednesday, 21 October 2009

Hoodies and PJS

I spent a very busy day making up some garments from 3 of the fabrics I dyed on Monday (and also another piece I dyed previously). Excuse the poor pics, it was getting dark when I photographed them.

Firstly, there are hoodies for my 2 boys:

Then there are 2 pairs of pjs for them:

I've been sewing these all day! They wanted different hood styles so I had to improvise and I nearly didn't have enough length of fabric for my eldest's pants. But they've all turned out well and I have scrap fabric to play with.
Tonight I'll be cutting up the other 2 large pieces to make ladies' pjs to sew tomorrow. Then I can take a week's break from sewing! Hooray!

Tuesday, 20 October 2009

Kitschy Coo has candy too! ooh and it rhymes!

Happy Daze has blog candy!

A rainbow of colour (mostly on my hands ;) )

Yesterday I did a bulk load of dyeing on organic bamboo velour, one of the most beautiful fabrics around. It's a mix of bamboo (prepared using the viscose process) and organic cotton and is very soft and cuddle yet not bulky. It is a velour knit so nice and stretchy, making it ideal for casual wear or anywhere you'd use a jersey knit. I used procion mx to dye, using the low water immersion technique (the green and blue middle ones were bucket dyed first to give an overall colour).

These first two are custom dyed to make into two pairs of pyjamas for a customer (will show you the end result in the next few days):

These are to make into hoodies for a customer's little boy and for my eldest son:

And the last two fabrics will be turned into pjs for both my boys, they chose the colours, their tastes are very different!

Lots of sewing to do!

Taking the pressure off

On friday I was feeling snowed under with customer orders and needed time out for myself. But what to make instead? The boys have a list of things they want me to make but it's all too similar to my customer list. Time for something different. So I made the top of a double patchwork quilt:

I'm rather pleased with it, it took about 5-6 hours to sew and I used precut 'jelly roll' fabric strips from Fabric Freedom in William Morris colourway. I don't usually do patchwork, I made 3 poorly sewn quilts in my twenties one of which never got finished so this is a novelty. Need to buy some backing fabric.....

Friday, 16 October 2009

Linda's got candy ;)

Thanks Linda

Thursday, 8 October 2009

Apron swap

At I've been hosting an apron swap as part of a drive to get more people sewing. I asked for a craft apron with lots of pockets and have just received this beauty:

The carroty fabric underneath is my skirt, not more of the apron!
Isn't it lovely? Thank you to my swappee - I know who you are!

More hoodies.....

These are a couple more of the hoodies I've been making:

Looking at the pics now, it is interesting to see the effect of having an appropriate mannequin to demonstrate clothes on. This mannequin is age 4 size. The chocolate dress is age 2 and consequently fits snugly, stretchy at the chest and shortening the drape. The candy pink dress is age 6 so hangs loosely, appearing elongated.
i wonder if I have space for a bigger child mannequin.......

Wednesday, 7 October 2009

Nurture a songbird

I had to alter a CD as part of a swap on UKStampers. Here is my entry and customary poor pic:

I cut an oval, representing an egg, from the CD using my Bigshot and then coloured it using Ranger alcohol inks in stream and meadow. It was stamped in StazOn with a Klimt image of mother and child from Cherry Pie Art stamps. The Tim Holtz grungeboard bird shape was inked in the same colours and the repeated image stamped, edges of both were then inked in blue. A piece of hand dyed bamboo velour was added at the bottom to add texture and depth and lastly a tiny gem became the bird's eye.
I'm not sure if this should be a brooch or magnet so I've left the fastenings off the back.

Pretty in Pink

Here is a sample of a hoody dress adapted from the Olivia pattern. I've made it in a gorgeous deep candy pink needlecord and accented it with berry quilting cotton.

I've been making several of these in the last week, they are always popular with customers, though I have to admit it is not my favourite pattern to work with, hence my need to adapt it. The finished product is lovely though.

Friday, 25 September 2009

Face pads and bracelets

I try to make something every day, it keeps my creative processes going. This week I have been doing some dyeing of organic bamboo velour using the low water immersion technique and procion mx dyes. The resulting fabric was used to make facial cleansing pads for a wholesale customer:

Pretty aren't they?

I've also been meaning to make some leather and sheet metal bracelets for a while, and once again an article from Belle Armoire gave me a good kick to go and do it. Here's the result (apologies for poor pic):

Firstly I bonded my brass sheet with craft foam and then ran it through my sizzix to cut a rectangular shape. This was then put through again inside a cuttlebug embossing folder. The resultant image was then randomly inked with Ranger alcohol inks. Leather was cut to create the bracelet, 2 holes punched in the brass and the brass sewn to the leather. Bird images were then stamped in StazOn on the brown one (not on the green, the suede on this is much darker than shown in the photo and I might add some beads to it). Ribbons were attached and threaded through further holes as fastenings. The brown bracelet is for the monthly art raffle swap, the green is for me (and I'm wearing it at this moment).
I loved the end effect but find the ribbon fiddly to tie. I will probably try making them with resin poppers to fasten next time.

Monday, 21 September 2009

My fabric CJ returns home

I took part in a fabric circle journal on UKScrappers and it has now returned home. The quality and artistry is stunning! I provided the base pages, made from random vintage fabrics and calico and gave the participants free rein to do as they please. Here is the result:

Descriptions in a clockwise direction:
1)I love the sign in page, like a collage of different styles.
2)First is mine, beading on a camouflaged bird.
Quinnan's has a pretty, intricate little fairy charm which is so sweet.
Wisher's is pretty and has my favourite - lace.
Rainbowjoy's - oh my! The embroidery and the jewel-like colours!
3)Love Sarah's very cute bird which can be hidden in the pocket. I will be using this idea in my next piece of work.
Efemera's has a gorgeous flower, lovely choice of colours and great stitching.
Flo's alien is one of my favourites - so cool and very original.
Irboo's piece is so pretty and textural.
4)Lou's is striking and her stitching is so neat!
Magpie did a very beautiful rose with fabulous stitching. A lovely piece I could frame.
new2this' piece has lovely beading and stitching work.
MandyNio included amazing beads and embellishments, a very beautiful piece in my favourite colours. And I've photographed it upside down!
Thank you all so much, they are all stunning and will make a fabulous wall hanging.

Friday, 18 September 2009

Romance tea dress

For a while I've wanting to make a dress using upholstery fabric that has been distressed. I've had this fabric for years and have previously used some to make a beautiful 50s dance dress which I showcase on my mannequin at festivals. But I wanted to make a dress with a lighter, more distressed feel. A recent article in Altered Couture spurred me on to do this project.
The Romance tea dress was made using uphlostery fabric and lined using an identical dress in vintage cotton sateen curtain lining. These 2 were sewn together with external, frayed seams. I then randomly tore strips up both layers of skirts, of different widths and lengths. These strips the were then frayed by hand and with a wire brush. Loose threads were left to hand down. A fabric rose was made and sewn to the neckline. The back opening had eyelets applied and was laced with red chiffon ribbon which looks very effective against the paler fabric (I did this after photographing it, will take another pic at some point). I'm very please with the result, very pretty and romantic, but I feel she might acquire more decoration.

Grungepaper and recycled cans

Grungepaper flowers are all the rage on blogs at the mo and UKStampers has hosted a swap of a single flower. This was my first go at using grungepaper and, to be honest, I didn't like the effect of distress inks on it - I don't think it's going to be my favourite medium. I altered the colour with distress inks in spiced marmalade and vintage photograph, stamped a medallion and made the rose using the instructions on the Studio 490 blog. I then highlighted with some orange stickles. Not really very adventurous, and I think it has the touch of a maiden aunt about it!
The other swap I'm involved in is a recycled packaging one. For this, I adhered some foam to a piece of can, cut a bird shape with my sizzix dies and then embossed it with a birds and swirls folder. I inked it with StazOn then adhered a brooch pin to the back. I hope my swappee likes it.

Fabric CJ pages

For the past year I have been taking part in a fabric CJ and I've seen some phenomenal work. I've just opened my returned complete CJ and it is really beautiful - I'll post up some pics next week.
I thought I'd share the last 2 entries I made to other peoples' CJs.
The first is made by applying patterned tissue paper to muslin to creat a fabric paper - this is sewn on to a co-ordinating upholstery background. I then appliqued a tree made from hand dyed organic bamboo velour, cut with a sizzix. The edges are left rough for a distressed effect.
For the second, I was inspired by a trip to Greenbelt. where my youngest son fell in love with the bubble store. I hand dyed organic bamboo velour in shades of pink and purple, then cut them into a variety of circles and appliqued to the navy base with freeform spirals of variegated yarn. Further stitching surrounds the bubbles and beads were applied randomly to accent the design. It's called Bubble Candy.
I greatly enjoyed being involved in the CJ, I learnt so much from all the artwork I saw during its progress.

Thursday, 2 April 2009

Bird matchbox

Well, yesterday I finally got a chance to finish an altered matchbox for a swap. The theme was bird or birds.
I used Distress ink to coat the matchbox, stamped in StazOn all over and again in Opalite on the sides (which in places had a weird white reaction with the other inks!) and added Diamond Glaze to coat the top. Inside was also stamped and coloured all over and I added a nest stamp to the inner. Below this I created a little nest of yarns (very fiddly getting this to stick to itself not me). Lastly some milky beads were attached in the nest and some sticks at the sides. I'm rather pleased with the result.