Monday, July 14, 2008

Slow Crafter

Today was a day off for me, and it was deserved indeed as I have been working very hard over the last few months.
Time has flown by, and I now find myself preparing in my head for spring already. Where has winter gone? I do vaguely remember some very cold days, driving my car to and from work in the snow, but the weather of this last week has been so beautiful, it's hard not to think about spring things... Like lighter clothes to be made, walks around the hills, a holiday maybe, and growing some veggies...

That last one has been in the back of my head quite a bit lately. With the cost of living going up so much, and with the impression of having been on a cabbage-carrot-onion-pumpkin-potato diet, we both got up on Sunday with loads of energy for gardening (a very rare thing for us).
Of course it's too early, so we just started to make A space to where will be our veggie garden. So far, it looks like a very promising black patch at the far end of our garden!

And since winter is not really finished, I had to make up this little dress. Actually, as you can see the wool and craft cotton used were chosen in Autumn, and it took me over two months to complete it! Oh dear! Quite a nightmare actually. The arms were somehow to tight (like if it was made for an 8 year old tight?? stupid pattern!) so they had to be undone, and a bit added so I could fit my apparently very fat arms through...grrr...
This is a build by wendy pattern . I had already done the short sleeve dress without any problems, but these 3/4 sleeves are to watch for.

And a close up on the pocket. I really love that fabric.

And today I found this...

I have been wanting one of these for ages. The picture is not too good because it was already getting dark when I took this snapshot. It's one of these very old sewing box that open in accordeon and can also be wheeled around. It's so cute and also very practical. It is missing a couple of screws and being very ambitious I am also thinking of sanding it down. But go and tell that to the old chair I'm sitting on: I sanded ONE of its leg 3 years ago...

I guess I could say I'm a slow crafter - with maybe a sprinkle of procrastination ;)

Sunday, June 15, 2008

winter work

Yay, finally I manage to put some time aside to post!
Since we have moved into our new house, I have had plenty of distractions.
Starting with some work on the house, and, a bit more interesting, this little one....

How cute is she?? She is about 4 months old now and into everything, as kittens are.
My sewing room has never been that tidy. I'm so scared she's going to sneak through the door and play with pins!
Every now and then, no matter how carefull I may be, I find tiny scraps of fabric in strange places... I guess it reminds me to keep sewing though ;)

Wool is my obsession right now. Not just any wool, but felted wool, blanket wool...
A few weekends ago I made this little bag. It has turned out quite cute, I love the mix of wool and linen. That piece of linen was an old tablecloth that I got from a second hand shop. It has some stains but still heaps to use. On the side it said 100% linen, screen printed in Belgium. I love every bit of it.

And another scarf. I am liking playing with felted wool, and embellishing it. This one I've kept really simple and made a brooch with yoyo to close it. I've got another one in mind which will be embroidered.

So I'm busy, but still seem to find a bit of time for crafting, and very gratefull for it.

Saturday, April 12, 2008

House! (continued...)

Well that's it, we're all moved in to our new house and loving it!
It's been a pretty full month, we had a holiday that had been planned about 6 months ago, so we were away for a week just before moving!! Crazy I say! So I have been doing quite a bit of sleep walking at work in the last few weeks and just starting to feel normal again.

Not much crafting has been done lately, though I saved some pictures from before our move...
This little bag was for a friends birthday.

The material is a recycled sheet that I got at some thrift store not long ago and really love. The pattern is quite crazy for a sheet, very retro, the colours are not too agressive though so I thought a bit of crazy but toned down by some blues and greys wasn't a bad mix!

And this next one comes with a story. Back in February, I sent a parcel to my mum, full of goodies.
Before I sent it I took some pictures of this scarf I made for her. The parcel was supposed to take 10 days to get to France and took 6 weeks!! I was so sad and sorry, thinking that all my work had been lost, but no, one day, I got an email saying it finally arrived!!

It is made of felt wool. I was quite happy with the embroideries as I haven't done much of this at all. I really enjoyed doing it and I'm looking forward to doing more embroidery in the future.

My sewing room is not sorted yet. I have scored a nice room, with a view on the water, but I'm still organising it. Since there is only one power plug in a very strange place near the door, I need to do some thinking on how I'm going to plug in my machine. I'm off to do this now...

Friday, February 29, 2008


First day of March already! I can't believe how quickly February went for us.

We just paid a deposit on our house yesterday, yay, it's official!
So I think I'm happy, though it hasn't sunk in yet. I think I'm one of these people who will stop stressing once I'm sitting in my couch in my new house.
Well, another month to go!

I haven't done too much crafting lately as on top of the house business, work has been very busy and I have been doing pretty long hours.
But while I needed something brainless to do I came up with this:

It's a scarf that I am knitting with circular needles. The idea is to use remnant fabric, ribbons etc, as well as diferent wools to mix the textures. I had some scrap fabric that I made into skinny long strips and knitted in.
Not sure how it is going to turn up, but really enjoying the simple garter stich and changing color randomly.

I think my next project might be a top. My clothes are starting to look all old and boring to me, but I am not really in a spending mode since we just emptied our bank accounts into the house! Ha! It's a good excuse to make myself something... Hopefully I will post on that soon.

Friday, February 15, 2008

Rain and Inspiration

We have been house hunting lately, and have had two very busy and quite stressfull weeks, as we just put an offer on a house (first one!). We have another week before we know for sure if we are getting it or not.
All this being busy and preoccupied doesn't leave much space in my poor little brain for crafting! I find that I would love to make something, because it would take my mind of things, but I am mentally too tired and have given up a few projects half way through in the last few days. Oh well, I think it's like that, it won't last.
Saturday was a very quiet, lovely day. The rain didn't stop pouring, the streets were under water, and the wind was blowing so hard that the roof seemed ready to fly off. So a good day for a trip to the library to have a nice hot coffee and flick through magazines.
I was very lucky to find some really good books too, so I spent the rest of the afternoon dreamily paging through them. Mmmm, I've got loads of ideas in my head to put into practice once I'm back to a normal pace!
First I found Stiches, which I really recommend, just to flick through. It's amazing to see what some designers are up to, what techniques they have come up with....
Melissa from Tiny Happy wrote a post the other day, where she mentionned Lotta Jandsotter, so I was very surprised and happy to find Lotta's book and to take it home with me for a good look.

I love everything about that book, the simplicity of the designs, the fabrics she uses...

And last a cute little fellow that I would soooo like to make. Just for myself (yes I can be a bit of a kid sometimes... )

He is from this book:

Happy reading...

Thursday, January 31, 2008

Seven things about me...

I've been tagged by Twenty Cent Mixture!
I feel a bit shy about it actually.
I am scratching my head for things to say... here goes...

1. I am a compulsive fabric buyer. I have piles of fabric on the floor in my sewing room because the big cupboard is very full.
And the sewing room used to be our spare bedroom. I just snatched it to be mine, and in the process also took possession of the very lovely wooden cupboard we had bought and sanded together, and put all my stuff in it... (it was going to be a junk and linen cupboard... I have a very understanding husband!)

2. I come from France. I have been in New Zealand for 7 years now and love it. I still miss bread and cheese and cheap wine though. Every time I go back I put on a few kilos ;)

3. One of the first things I sew myself was this unwantingly very sexy dress thingy for my barbie doll, made out of an old pair of pink semi opaque (or more like semi transparent, ahem!) stockings.

4. My great grandma was a tailor for a living. She also made the clothes for the whole family and knitted and crochetted heaps. It gave me a taste for creating and sewing. She clothed all my dolls, and also made me a lovely pink jumper when I was 8 that I loved and loved and wore until I couldn't get my head through the neck opening.

5. I love chocolate. Had to mention chocolate.

6. My sewing machine cost me $30.00 at the dump. The bobine door hold with tape, it is fast, reliable somehow, makes a train noise when I push it to the max, the whole table trembles....
I have to sometimes remind myself that my great grandma had a Singer with a manual foot pedal thingy, and that my machine compared to that is luxury!

7. I love cats. I want one, but the neighborhood here is swarming with stray cats, and I'm scared our poor kitten would get bullied! I am waiting until we are somewhere bigger as well, we are looking for a new place. Maybe soon....

I'm now passing on this meme to some other bloggers, and here are the rules for tagging:

1. Link to the person that tagged you and post the rules on your blog.
2. Share 7 random and/or weird things about yourself.
3. Tag 7 random people at the end of your post and include links to their blogs.
4. Let each person know that they have been tagged by leaving a comment on their blog.

I would like to tag the following blogs:

Craft Yourself

Tiny Happy

Jane's Apron

Sew Sydney

Cupboard Love

Fat Orange Cat

Love Stiches

I think all these blogs are great, some of them I've only just discovered recently. I'm always amazed at how much blogging goodness there is out there!
If you have been tagged before and don't wish to participate, that's ok.

And now for the latest things I've been working on.
I don't know anything about embroidery. And I'm quite useless at following instructions. So I have just been trying some things.

I used a postcard of a tiki and made this little fellow. Only I don't think he is detailed enough, but I wanted it small enough to make into a patch or a brooch, and well, I think I need to keep trying...

Then the other day I was reading a book about pohutukawas, and thought of making these:

I've actually made the pohutakawa one into a brooch, and the one on the right is awaiting the same treatment.

And one last picture of another tote bag. I'm hoping to make a few of these to post on Etsy very soon as well as other goodies, but I work so slowly it could take a few months!

Also thanks for people who have stopped by and left me a comment or dropped me an email, it is nice to have some feedback, and makes me really happy :)

Sunday, January 20, 2008


Thursday I flew off to Auckland, with much anticipation.
Every year on the same week end, as tradition wants, I have my Thursday and Friday off...
Thursday is shopping day. By myself most of the time. He flies to join me on Thursday night, and I have a whole day to roam free around Auckland.
Friday, is the Big Day Out.
So Thursday, I arrived in Auckland early morning, and dropped off my bags and jumped in a bus to get to town straight away. My first stop was for coffee, of course, then I just wandered about, did some shopping, and of course had more coffee, and sushi, and cake. Have to look after myself!!
There are some really good second hand shops in Auckland, and I found some nice clothes at a bargain price.
But the highlight of the day was this shop, Salvage. I had been reading about it, and really wanted to visit it.
It was smaller than I thought (well in my dreams it was a huge place with piles of fabric and buttons you could dive into... in my dreams, as I say!) but really great!
I had great fun looking at all the amazing fabrics they have in there, and got some very sweet glass buttons, and some lace as well....
I felt really shy, I was scared to touch anything, some of the fabrics in there are truly to die for!

Not far from that shop was also an hospice shop where I found some more bits and bobs, doilies, bits of felt, some bits of fabric...

I had a really good time, wandering by myself.
I find I relax best when I'm alone, and I really feel like that mini break not only was resting but also got me thinking about new things I want to create. Sometimes I think that I do lose touch with my "creative side" when I am caught into work and routine. That day really was the best thing. And I had great weather.... Mmmm, wouldn't mind another day off!

Monday, January 14, 2008

Market Day!

Well I wish it was market day today! Only I was in the office all day instead.
But it feels like market day everytime I look at this little tote I finished last night.

I got the fabric at supershed, which is this big warehouse that sells all sorts of second hand junk. I think they mainly collect stuff that people bring to the refuse station, so there is a lot of real junk. But I have found some real cool fabrics there sometimes, and buttons, and embroidery threads, and old patterns... Ah the joys of thrifting!

To go back to the fabric, it's actually an old cotton sheet. I love the colours, and these flowers, I couldn't resist buying it!

Needless to say I got it next for to nothing, as well as this other piece of gorgeous fabric, soon to become a bag as well I think:

I love the little girl with the hat, it remind me of one of my childhood book.

Monday, January 7, 2008

New start

Well I find it so hard coming here and posting on my blog, yet I think about it all the time!
I'll keep it short and sweet for that first post of the year and just put up a few pics of what I have been up to in my craft world lately...

Some ongoing work...

A funny bunny from Aranzi Aronzo's Cute Book...

Shopping for buttons....

I am hoping to start posting regularly. Like, once a week maybe? We'll see...