Wednesday, 18 November 2015

One Thimble E-zine {Issue Nine} Blog Tour - Vincent the Victor

hello again and welcome back for my second instalment in the Pattern Revolution blog tour celebrating the release of Issue 9 of One Thimble...

This time I got to sew up one of the two appliqué patterns by Ric-Rac & Retro and, finally, something for my boy! Vincent the Victor lives up to his name in our house, Master D is thrilled with the addition to his wardrobe and eagerly watched as I sewed it for him.

The appliqué itself is a fabulous way to use up scraps. Further to this, it is done onto a scrap backing, which is then cut out and sewn onto whatever you wish. I think that is particularly fabulous for sewing onto clothing items as it reduces the amount of potential itch inducing exposed stitches {yes, I'm aware of iron on backings, but I find they tend to fall off after only a few washes}. Besides, it helps get placement absolutely perfect on any project! The instructions on how to make it happen and which equipment you will need are extensive.

I had made attempts at free motion appliqué previously, but I am much happier with the results after reading Sarah's tips on stitch speed for making it neat... I think I still need more practice though!! I am also a big fan of the encouragement to make the design your own, there is even a list of suggestions as to how you can make that happen.

Because I needed something to sew my new appliqué onto, I broke out the Tree Climber Pattern from The Pattern Studio by 1 Puddle Lane... just because I purchased it ages ago and have been meaning to use it. I so loved taking these photos of Master D, he was all "do you want me to stand here?" and "do you want my hands here, like this?", it really rammed home that I need to take the time to make special things for him more often. This little appliqué really is a great way to make sewing 'boy' things more interesting for us creatives.

So I hope you enjoy appliquéing all the things!... I look forward to seeing photos of your widely varying creations in the One Thimble Sewing Enthusiasts and PDF Pattern Sales & Promotion groups on Facebook.

If haven't been following the blog tour already and are keen to take a look at reviews of either the whole e-zine or individual patterns, please take a look at the following blogs on the outlined dates!

13 November: Lady & The Gents / lulu & celeste
15 November: create3.5 / Call Ajaire / Rebel & Malice
17 November: handcrafted by RED
19 November: Bee Quilted Blog

Happy sewing! and until next time...

Thursday, 12 November 2015

One Thimble E-zine {Issue Nine} Blog Tour - Ringmaster Set

hi guys... so the next issue of One Thimble is releasing Friday and the latest Pattern Revolution release blog tour stops here... judging from what I have seen of Issue Nine so far, it is back with all of the electronic gloriousness we've come to know and love to celebrate turning TWO.... so lets take a look...

So the new Ringmaster top and pants, by Tie Dye Diva, landed in my inbox and my little side-kick and I hopped to it! We are so delighted with the finished product.... 

I made the pants up first, so we'll go with that... it is nearly summer here {which is horridly hot and humid in these parts!} which lead me to selected this lovely lightweight chambray. Given Miss F's current toddler-ish shape combined with being a baby giant, picking the right size is a little awkward... the sizing chart is extremely comprehensive and, taking all factors into account, I elected to make her a straight size five {I am currently convinced her legs are sprouting in order to catch up with the rest of her!}...  as you can see, they are a little long. Not to worry, they will just fit a little longer!

They have this delightful little ruffle around the hem and up the front panel of the leg. It is actually wider in the pattern, but Miss F has a habit of chucking ruffled things back at me at the moment, so I did narrow it slightly... voila, she likes them, so win-win! They were very easy to construct, the most time consuming part being the ruffle... be aware when sewing the waistband on that they are flat fronted and you need two elastic threading holes {do-bo here overlooked that part}.

My favourite part of this outfit is definitely the top. It is made up of six panels, has a single button at the back of the neckline and is finished with bias, so is single layer fabric {making it nice and cool for summer}. I really like that it has little bias bound elastic strips at the side of the waist to help given it shape. The pattern actually gives instructions for a little ruffle at the front neckline, but given the afore mentioned ruffle issue, I chose to omit that from our version. 

While I like button plackets, I do not like this method of creating one. The instructions are absolutely fabulous, but try as I might I can't get it to sit as well as I can with other methods - I hope you have more luck {or skill}. That said, I was delighted with the cool tips for hemming a curved hemline... it is so simple it has left me scratching my head as to where my brain has been all these years. 

So I hope you enjoy sewing up your Ringmasters... I look forward to seeing images of your creations in the One Thimble Sewing Enthusiasts and PDF Pattern Sales & Promotion groups on Facebook.

If you are keen to take a look at reviews of either the whole e-zine or individual patterns, please take a look at the following blogs on the outlined dates!

13 November: Lady & The Gents / lulu & celeste
15 November: create3.5 / Call Ajaire / Rebel & Malice
17 November: handcrafted by RED
19 November: Bee Quilted Blog

Happy sewing! and until next time...

Wednesday, 20 May 2015

One Thimble E-Zine {Issue Seven} Blog Tour

So you guys, I'm sure you've heard of One Thimble and all of it's electronic goodness?.... Issue Seven is out already and this wonderful blog tour to celebrate it's release stops here... so lets get to it...

I was very excited to be able to sew up Jen's own pattern contribution, the Alyss Dress, because it epitomises everything I love in a pattern quirky and fun!

The thing I really love about all Ainslee Fox Boutique Patterns is being able to just cut into my good fabric and know, really know, that it will fit correctly. Because Miss F takes quirky and opinionated to a whole different level, I try to let her select the fabric when I am sewing for her. Needless to say, when she picked out an expensive Japanese print, I just went with it. 

The dress is rated as either an intermediate or an advance intermediate sew, dependant on which zipper option is chosen. The wonderful border print Miss F chose was begging not to be cut more than necessary and I'm always up for a challenge, so tackled the side zipper version. 

The buttons at the front of the bodice are functional in this version, but don't allow enough of an opening alone, hence the zipper. The piping I added is not part of the pattern and certainly added to the difficulty of neatly inserting the zipper, but I'm really glad I made the effort as I think it ties all the elements of the fabric in this dress together. 

I adore how every version I have seen of the Alyss has a different twist just by the sewer's choice of fabric combinations... many have used the same fabric print in the skirt and waistband, which really accentuates the shape of the waistband and skirt design. 

Next time, I think I'll have a go at the back zipper version and try leaving off the sleeves and Peter Pan collar... I have a feeling that waist shape with really, really shine... I seriously hope you love sewing your Alyss as much as I enjoyed sewing this one for my bebe!

Keen to read a little more about what you'll find in One Thimble Issue Seven? Check out the other posts by the ladies involved in the tour.... 

20 May: Mabey She Made It / Blue Wren Handmade

Enjoy the challenge!

Saturday, 28 February 2015

The Princess and the Pea...

There are many things I love about handmade and owning a handmade business, but the friendships with fellow handmaidens and the virtual fun we have when we 'gather' for a showcase are amongst my favourite. So, when Michele from my georgie boy messaged me late last year and told me of her plans to host at showcase with a "Princess and the Pea" theme, I was in like Flynn!!

I immediately had a desire to create a Rainbow Twirl Dress, designed by the lovely Kristie from Boo! Designs.... with a twist, since I seem to have an impediment with leaving anything alone ;) The extra long straps are only sewn in at the back, then loop through button holes at the front so the straps can be tied however you like to create a different look.

So how does it fit the theme? Well, in my head {and I guess that's the fun of interpreting showcase themes}, the layers represent the many mattresses the Princess had to sleep on in the story to prove that she was a real princess and the very twirly nature of the dress itself makes the wearer feel like a princess {even though she's truly a tom-boy who loves to play in the dirt and wouldn't have a hope of feeling that blinking pea!!}.

It didn't actually occur to me until about two weeks ago, since it's still BLAZING hot here is Queensland, that winter will be upon us before long and I thought "uh oh!"... that was quickly followed by "meh, layering is so right now!" - thankfully Miss F was amenable to wearing her cardi and {farmer} boots for the modelling session to show you guys just how fabulously it works!  

While I'm on that note... this dress will fit for YEARS... Miss F, for example, is a size 2-3 in height, but is size 4 around her chest {oh the perils of being little when you are going to be tall, tall, TALL}, but there is still heaps of room for her around the chest {thanks shirring} and as she grows taller, this fit will migrate from maxi to knee length.

Okay... so I'd now like to extend an invitation to head on over to my georgie boy... 

THE PRINCESS AND THE PEA begins... Sunday 1st March 2015
9.30pm Vic / NSW / Tas
9pm SA
8.30pm Qld
8pm NT
6.30pm WA

... where you will be able to purchase the following creations from the other incredibly talented ladies!

If Instragram is more your style, hashtag #princessandthepea will get you loads of pictures and information too :)

... by Sarah from Piccolo Studio and Penny from Trellis Design

... by Michele from my georgie boy ...

... by Michele from my georgie boy ...

... by Michele from my georgie boy ...

... by Clare from Ruby & the Wolf ...

... by Chrystal from Joe Joe & the Teddy Bear ...

... by Eve from ...

... by Katie from Vintagebubbles ...

... by Cassandra Hargrave {Artist} ...

... by Claire from Rosie Red ...

... by Karynne from Chook Shed Designs ...

... by Sarah from Ric Rac & Retro ...

... by Elaine from 76 Tilly Lane ...

Enjoy your shopping, beautiful people!

Sunday, 22 February 2015

'Cabin Fever' Crafting....

With Cyclone Marcia hitting the coast of Queensland on Friday morning, lots of the state, Brisbane included, has been hit by some very wild weather. Fortunately for us, and most unlike the poor people in Rockhampton, Yeppoon and surrounding areas, we have personally been fortunate enough to not suffer any damage and only be kept housebound by the torrential downpour. 
As that "ONLY IN QUEENSLAND" advertisement indicates, this is not the first time we Queensland residents have faced wild weather... needless to say, I was well aware that house bound pre-school children, with little to no understanding of wider events, quickly become quite difficult to handle!

Enter crafting... fortunately my kids love it :)

It seemed like the perfect opportunity to break out a little hand sewing kit that Santa gave the kids at Christmas.... Miss F is a very determined individual, so it was no great push to encourage her to have a go. 

I soon discovered that one is never too young to learn to thread a needle... more than once she achieved it with no assistance other than verbal direction. 


As the felt shape had pre-punched holes, she was able to guide the large plastic needle and cord through quite well. Some sections got stitched once, twice and then a third time, but Froggie quickly took shape, became stuffed and had his mouth stitched on. 

Once the stitching was done, we moved onto a little gluing of googly eyes and felt accents.... we ended up finding one of Froggie's nostrils had gone missing, but I think this is a pretty fabulous achievement for a 2 ¾ year old with minimal assistance!

I do believe Santa found these kits at Spotlight, but next time we will create our own and you could too! All you need is a bit of imagination {or google images and a printer}, a bit of felt, a large needle, some fine cord, some stuffing, a pack of googly eyes and some glue... the kids enjoy it, it helps them forget the world outside, begins them on a journey toward learning a useful skill and hones their fine motor skills all in one go!

Stay safe, everyone, and enjoy your next dose of "cabin fever" ;)

Monday, 16 February 2015

One Thimble E-Zine {Issue Six} Blog Tour

Hello! It has been a little while since I have done this... so welcome {back}!

Okay, so the girls at Pattern Revloution asked me to take a look at one of the patterns from the latest edition of One Thimble Sewing E-zine ... which I'm hoping you've heard of? If not, seriously, check it out - there are 10 patterns, plus multiple articles about sewing, photography, running your own business and more! For only AU$25, that is extraordinary value {especially when you consider the current exchange rate!!!} and it totally fulfils all instant gratification requirements with immediate delivery directly into your very own inbox... you can get your very own copy HERE!

Anyway... I was allocated the Apple + Fig GATSBY Flatcap. Quite fortunate really, as I was also lucky enough to sew the pattern up during the testing process. This gorgeous cap is inspired by the 1920s Jazz Age and is really all-things-old-are-new-again....

Jenna {the mother extraordinaire behind Apple + Fig} produces wonderful patterns... *cough* I might own most of them *cough*... they are always beautifully presented, the accompanying photographs are clear and easy to follow and any slightly more difficult aspects thoroughly explained. This one is no exception, even in the compacted One Thimble version.

The only issue I noted during testing was the length of the internal sweatband, but thanks to Jenna's dedication to perfection, that was quickly ironed out. In the final version, I noticed Jenna added a note that it may be necessary to 'ease' the cap edge a little when attaching the afore mentioned sweatband, which is a handy hint for anyone who has experienced stretching of the fabric during sewing {or is dog tired from sewing in the middle of the night, like yours truly!}.

One of the things I really love about this cap, is the little elastic casing at the back that allows for growth and several years wear. Even more awesome is the size range, which is from XXS to XXXL {effectively 6 months to supersize-brain adult}.... *meaning I may already have an order placed by my dearly beloved, which may or may not get done in the next six months*

If you're keen to read more about the other patterns available in One Thimble, please take a look at the other blogs the Pattern Revolution girls have arranged... the links and dates are listed below :)