Delightful December

Being inspired.
Green grass.
Pitter-patter on the tent.
Tea with bugs in it.
Eggs on toast.
Hot showers.
Napping after hot showers.
Soft cat fur.

Happy New Year!


A Successful Christmas Party Black Tie Outfit

My holidays have officially started! A wonderful time of year. I’ll be relaxing with Sweeheart, family and friends over the next few days and having an all-round lovely time. Today I have time for one last pre-Christmas post (and possibly the last post for 2011!)

In the spirit of Christmas parties, I have to show you what happened for the Black Tie Christmas Party I mentioned earlier! Well, the night was lovely with great food and people. All the boys were wearing their bow ties and looked delightful, but I know you really want to know how my out fit turned out…

Ooh aren’t they tantalising fabrics. Black and cream satin, and burgundy sequins. Just how did they all go together?

I already had the dress, and the wrap my Nana made me for my Year 11 dance (yes, Year 11 dance, go figure.)

On Beverley’s advice, I decided to make the Kwik Sew 3381 skirt. So glad I did! The cream satin I had bought turned out to be a bit stiffer than I’d like, so the skirt had a decidedly cone look when I put it on, but it wasn’t bad. Sew and learn. However, it did come out to big! To work around this for the evening I added a lovely button to the waist to bring it in a bit, so I’ll have to go back to this skirt and work that out  sometime.

I’m very happy with this project! I was so simple and quick to make, I finished it in 4 hours. I will probably be quicker next time now I know what I’m doing!

After all that, I’m sure you’re dying to see the complete ensemble… well, genius and last-minute-getting-ready-er person that I am, there are no photos. But there will be!! I want to do another shoot with Sweetheart soon and this outfit will be one we shoot. Until then, I have put together this wonderful drawing using the fabric photos to show you:

I did also wear eyes to the event. I felt so glamorous!

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays to all, have a happy and safe holiday!


Happy Christmas Time Sparkly Starry Skirt!

Christmas is almost upon us and it’s the season of parties: This year I have surprised myself by making two skirts for Christmas! Next year I hope to make a dress… but anyway!

Yay! I’m sure there are some other crafty department store shoppers out there who are currently thinking “Hey, I’m using that as our Christmas tablecloth this year…” Well now you can eat from your happy Christmas table knowing that someone was wearing a rather uncomfortable skirt made from your tablecloth fabric.

I made this as a wearable muslin for another skirt – so glad I did! The pattern is Kwik Sew 3852 which I bought a few weeks ago. I’m pretty happy with how this turned out, two things to note though: This fabric is waaay to scratchy to wear comfortably in Australian summer, and I really should finish all the waist fastenings before running around in it for a day. Several times I had to stop it falling down after getting out of a chair because the hook and eyes had come undone… so the slip I decided to wear underneath helped with my two problems… Will I wear it again? Isn’t it fun learning how to sew!

Now here’s a rather abstract Christmas Horror pic as proof I wore the skirt:

It’s like I’m the Christmas Swamp Fairy… or something… 😀

Happy Christmas!!

The Star Anise Blanket changed its Crochet Heart

About two weeks ago I was a little nervous about a change of design direction in my Star Anise Blanket – was swapping out some of the hexagons in the centre of my half-blanket going to be more trouble than it was worth? Answer: NO!! 😀

The blues are bright, all it’s done is change main feature of the blanket. I’m liking it!

I’ve now got more than 30 hexagons to start working the next two rounds, and I did an official count of how many hexagons I need to make to complete just the plan I made up – It’s over 100… so let’s not think about that number much.

Special thanks to didistarfish for the confidence kick! ♥

You may answer only to me.

You may answer only to me.

£35 –

Pencil skirt
£65 –

Clutch handbag
£60 –

Kenneth Jay Lane white pearl necklace
€140 –

J.Crew pearl earrings
$50 –

Completed Project: Orsome Ottomans

It starts out simple enough. You think, oh before I start sewing this skirt I’ll just draft up this really easy pattern for ottomans I saw online. Then you start thinking about the skirt some more and then think, you know, it would be really easy to whip up one or two of those cute ottomans right now, who cares if the skirt is already cut. Then BAM! before you know it it’s midnight and you have two of these beauties:

Aren’t they divine! I’m so happy with them, and I know Sweetheart likes them too: instead of his usual ‘cool, baby’ he smiled and looked at them for a while. Then he tried sitting both at once and promptly fell off. 🙂 *love*

Like most things I make these have a back story too. The fabric is from an old doona cover that was given to me about 3 years ago. I cut it up soon after with the intention of making several large floor cushions, but I never finished making them all because I didn’t really like them that much. After that, the cut up pieces of fabric went from fabric stash to throw-out pile and back again more times than I care to count.

Then on Saturday, I found we faced a dilemma. We’d bought some new furniture, and the Sunshine Seat was just too big for our space. Plus, we also have a seating shortage when guests visti and two ugly corners in the living area: cables and powerpoints made me want to claw my eyes out. So I had an idea for ottomans… and found this great tutorial over on Living with Punks!

I worked out my own dimensions and skipped the handle, and found some neat gold bead piping in my stash that I thought I’d use in a dress but decided it would be better used in these. Then sew sew sew and when they’re done, half the beans from the Sunshine Seat go on the floor and a small amount make it into the new ottomans. I just love them. Here’s a close up of the fabric and piping combo:

I now have enough pieces of cut-up doona cover left to make two more in smaller sizes, and I’m considering some complementary ones in leather look vinyl… oh to  creative, ’tis a joy and a curse!


Three-quarter Completed Sewing Project: Sunshine Seat!

A while ago, I sewed together some Triangle Bean Bags from Grosgrain Fabulous free translated pattern and called them Sunshine Seats. Well, I managed to get one filled!

In my excitement I wanted to fill them as soon as I could, but I hadn’t worked out how many beans I would need… turned out to be 8 bags for one, and that overstuffed it. 8 bags of 100L of bean bag beans for one bean bag is a little expensive, so it took some time. But once we did get 8 bags and filled one, it was huge! That would have been fine, if we had not gotten a new piece of furniture that same weekend that replaced its function. Doh!

I don’t think the second one will be filled just yet, as we don’t have the space for even this one now! Design aesthetic says no. What to do what to do. I can’t wait though, to have them properly set up for two and tea – I’m thinking they’d look great in some kind of modern minimalist warehouse with polished cement floors… 😀

Stay inspired!

Another Star Anise Blanket Progress Update

“The time has come,” my imaginary walrus friend said, “to really give some thought about the direction of this here blanket.”

There it is. I’m really happy with my stitches, I’m pretty good at this crochet thang. Making and joining the hexagons is so easy and relaxing. However, I’m not loving how the design is going… which I don’t like because I’m putting a lot of time into this project!

This can only mean one thing… Blanket Planning. Doh! Not what you want to do when you set out to do an improvised creative project, but it is part of this blanket’s evolution so I guess it’s welcome! I’ve been collecting beautiful alpaca yarns that match my colour scheme, and because the hexagons a so lovely it’s important they sit together in the right pattern…

To the Nerd Machine…

I could draw this with pencils and paper, in fact I would prefer to because I find drawing relaxing too, but that will take up precious crochet time so we’ll do it speedily with these new fang-dangled technologies…

That and I like taking pictures.

After a fair bit of changing all sorts of colours, this is what we’ve got:

Wow! To be honest, I don’t like that image at all. I think it’s far too harsh, but I must remember that’s not the real thing! But when I think of the yarns and the pattern it will create, I think it will work. Keeping in mind too, that I haven’t planned the whole thing – I still don’t know if I want the finished blanket to be square, rectangular or hexagonal, though I’m leaning to hexagonal.

If you look closely you might notice a difference between the plan and the section of the blanket I’ve already put together… I’ve taken 6 hexagons out of the centre and moved them further out… I think I’ve really gone mad – I am terrified I’ll end up un-joining and re-joining the whole thing! Must – shake – such – thoughts – !

One last thing about this Blanket’s evolution… I think it’s heading for a name change. Star Anise just doesn’t seem to fit any more and all I can think about when joining the hexagons are camping trips from when I was a kid… the Australian bush and stars in clear night skies… 🙂 Such happy memories 🙂

Stay chilled!*

* Easy to do in Canberra at the moment, Summer doesn’t seem to have hit yet!

Proof I can still sew!

It’s been a few months since I’ve sewn anything, and I’ve posted so much about crochet lately it’s almost a distant memory that I am learning to sew as well!! Well, a few events are fast approaching and I need to get my sewing-wiggle on.

Today I present to you PROOF that I have started sewing my next project!

Well yes it’s very abstract proof but proof nonetheless. These are the cuttings of some green and silver star fabric I got on sale from the sewing department store nearby, it’s going be a skirt for Christmas outfit this year!

Now the pieces are all cut and ready to be sewn up. It’s worth mentioning that this is the first fabric I’ve ever cut with a rotary cutter and – oh my gosh I am never going back to scissors to cut out my pieces ever again!! 😀

It’s important to be silly. Now back to my regular scheduled crochet fix.