Saturday, 29 August 2009

Lilydale and Vintage finds

Ma and I moseyed along to Lilydale this weekend to check out some fabric she had her eye on in Textile Offcuts. It was my first time to Textile Offcuts - and come to think of it probably my first time to Lilydale ever. I guess it's a good enough reason as any to see a bit more of Victoria.

Ma was in quilter's heaven in the shop - she found a whole array of black, yellow and white cotton fabrics and also got into a deep conversation with a lovely random lady about the best place to get fabric bargains. I eavesdropped while rummaging and came away with a couple of lengths of cotton that I am hoping to make little girl dresses out of using designs from some of the Japanese craft books I recently purchased.

I was also after some plain black material for a skirt and came away a bit disappointed - but that was all to change when we went up the road and round the corner to R & L Knight, which I suspect isn't actually the name of the shop. It has a giant 'Fabric' sign above the shopfront but then again, that could be regarded as a descriptor of some sort. Anyhoo, I managed to get 5 metres of black lining for the sumly price of $5 and also some great fabric for the actual skirt at a bargain price.

I was a happy camper and thought I was done with shopping for the day. Lunch was next on the cards and then we were going to head home - but there was a change of plan when I saw a charity shop next to the lunch venue. 15 minutes later I walked out with a bunch of old sewing patterns and bits and bobs that made me very happy.

Some of the patterns I picked up - a few are a bit dated but I think I could have fun with them.

Inspired by this, I decided to also stop by the local and newly renovated Salvos store on the way home and found more vintage patterns. It was like all my Christmases had come at once! (Is that a bit sad? I don't know, but I *was* very happy at that point in time)

I am sure some of the patterns are going to be missing bits or won't quite fit but I figure that the whole lot was cheaper than one brand new pattern so I can't lose :)

I am so so happy with these gorgeous vintage patterns for little girls - there were some for boys too which I didn't buy since no nephews are in the works at this stage.

So for less than $10, I managed to get my grubby little hands on 14 vintage patterns, several zips and a metre of patterned flannel. HURRAH!

Monday, 17 August 2009

New purchases

Wooooooo! I am so pleased with my purchases! I had a game plan for my weekend in Sydney and even though I only managed to complete half of it, it was the half that mattered! I made it to Kinokuniya and spent a good 45 minutes browsing the Japanese craft book section.

Other than the fact that there were a multitude of books there that caught my eye, I was especially pleased that I could look through the patterns inside the books. A couple of the books I'd been eyeing online turned out to be WAY too complicated for me to follow, with super small diagrams and a whole heaps of Japanese text (which I do not read/speak, just fyi).

I ended up coming away with the following 3 books - Girly Style Wardrobe, Stylish Dress Book (the pre-cursor to Stylish Dress Book 2 - I wouldn't have guessed, I know) and Girl's Everyday Dress.

All I need to do now is get some tracing paper to copy out the patterns and see if I can make head or tail of the diagrams!

Due to time constraints I didn't make it to Menya (sorry Frannie!) but there was a cafe called Ichi-ban Boshi just outside of Kinokuniya that looked like it had some decent Japanese fare so we decided to do lunch there and then. The food was given 2 thumbs up by all!

Princess S enjoying her edemame - she ate the whole lot!

My super yummy salmon don set

All in all a great day spent before jetting off to the airport - couldn't have asked for much more than my share of good food, exciting purchases, gorgeous weather (a sunny 28 degrees in the middle of winter!) and great company!

Friday, 14 August 2009

Game plan for Sydney

I'm visiting for the weekend and I really really REALLY want to go and check out the Japanese craft book section of Kinokuniya.

Click the pic below for a better look at the offerings *drool*

Hope I make it!

Thursday, 13 August 2009

The dress!

I just wanted to show off a pic of one of the dresses I made for Princess S, modelled by her very own self.

She sure has the layering thing down pat - you can hardly see that it's actually a sleeveless dress - and I can't fault her choice of Mary Janes to complete the outfit. Admittedly there is a whole lotta pink happening but hey, she's a little girl. Pinkness is inherent.


Sunday, 9 August 2009

Bootie Call!

I am so so pleased with myself - I made some baby booties today *clap clap* ! Ok so I obviously couldn't resist with the title - can you blame me though? :D

I wasn't actually planning on being particularly constructive today but Ma and I decided to go to Spotlight to use up some $10 vouchers that their VIP members club sent us. Not sure why we got them but I wasn't going to complain about free money! (In case there was any confusion, I would like to point out that I LOVE free money. Just saying.)

While munching on my yummy lunch (thanks Ma!) and pondering on what I wanted to buy today, I spotted my copy of Meet Me at Mike's that I have totally neglected in the past few months and thought I'd have a quick flick through. There ended up being no flicking - the 'Teeny-tiny goody-two-shoes' were on the first page I opened and my mind was made up.

After a bit of umming and ahhing I decided on some floral pink and white flannel fabric - perfect for little girl bootie material. I used my $10 for the fabric, some elastic and a donation to Mum's stash. I did contemplating putting some of it towards a pattern for my jacket but seeing as I haven't done enough research, I thought it might end up being a waste.

Yes I was bad and didn't wash my fabric before putting it together - but I was impatient and I guess this was a bit of a trial run. The instructions were fairly straightforward until the end where there was a bit of head-scratching involved but all's well that ends well - check out the finished product!

The remainder of the fabric has been washed and is drying as I type for future projects. I am sure that if this pair is ever washed they'll only be suitable for premmies and teeny tiny newborns - but sometimes things are a lot cuter when they are smaller :)

EDIT - If you want to see some really impressive knitted booties, check out Frannie's super cute knitted baby set (Hai Frannie!)

Chanel Jacket sew-along (or what-have-I-gotten-myself-into)

I've seen quite a few mentions of sew-alongs in various craft/sewing blogs that I read, and have often wondered if:

1) I'd ever be skilled enough to participate in one,
2) How one even joins up to one of these, AND
3) If group participation in something like this would actually result in me being more productive and efficient in producing something

So when I came across the opportunity to join a sew-along, I jumped at the chance! Cindy from Colour By Number, Gail from My Fabrication and Antoinette from started a Go Chanel or Go Home blog dedicated to a Chanel Jacket sew-along, and I am proud to say that I am an official member.

So based on my list above, point 2 has now been addressed! What this means is yet to be seen though as point 1 will really affect my output - I honestly don't know if I have the skills to make a jacket when half the time I give up on my other little projects due to accidental hole punching of materials or just getting frustrated with mistakes and unpicking ugly stiches. So this is where point 3 comes in I guess. I hope that doing this with an online group of people really does inspire me to get going - as far as I have experienced, the online crafting community is highly supportive of one another and that bit of encouragement might really be the thing I need to get this done!

I am hoping that this doesn't turn into another pile of unfinished materials sitting in a corner - and the thought of making a jacket does kind of freak me out - but then I guess if I don't try I'll never know what I can and can't do. I think this will be a great learning experience - plus my fingers are crossed that there are others who are in the same boat who are participating.

Now the first step for me is to do some research and find a jacket pattern simple enough for my beginner skills - wish me luck - and hopefully I will have an update for you very soon :)