New year, new beginnings.

Happy new year crafty followers! Any creative New Year resolutions?

2014 is going to be a less crafty (more crazy) year for me as Mr C and I are expecting our first baby in a few weeks time. You may think I have been working away over the past nine months in my attic/sewing room creating bunting, bibs and other baby-related crafts for our bundle of joy…hmmm that was the intention!

SONY DSC

The bump at 36 weeks.

Four weeks to go and I have made nothing for us…nada! Partly due to finding the time (there is very little me time between two works and constantly having sewing on the go for other people…creating things for other people’s babies mainly!), but probably in most part because, in a way, there seems more pressure to make the perfect things for my own baby; not helped by the fact that I am very indecisive and like lots of different styles!

What I have done is browse Pinterest and become overwhelmed by all the gorgeous baby styles, nurseries, and clothes, frantically pinning everything I loved but showing no correlation in terms of similarity! I think the problem is that I like too many things!

However, lucky for me, the majority of these above mentioned limitations have been removed; I am now on maternity leave (hurrah!) = more time (for now)! And by being donated various baby furniture from our family, some style decisions have been taken out of my hands.

Baby C’s nursery is only a very small room which also helps as it can only fit so much in it. Here is a glimpse into it how it’s kind of looking so far…

nurserymood copy

Top row: Trogen Blue chest of drawers (Ikea), basket storage solutions (via Pinterest), Cinnamon sting lights (Cable and Cotton), Green Baby Lapin lamp (Lapin and Me).

Middle row: Scrapbook Soft rattle toy (Mammas and Papas), Blue Cloud Paper Ceiling light shade (This Modern Life), Black and White Puppy Dog soft toy (Jelly Cat via Amazon), On the Farm knitted stripe baby blanket (Joules via Amazon), Handmade Felt Badger Rug (Sew Heart Felt), ABC Animal Print (Holli Shop, Etsy)

Bottom row: Animal World Map Canvas (Not on the High Street), Faux Fur Throws (image via Pinterest), Byholma Basket chair (Ikea), Grey Star Pram Suit (Marks and Spencer)

Whist most of these items are blue-ish in colour and perhaps more on the boyish side of things, we do not know our baby’s flavour but I’m not a pink person anyway, didn’t want to go with neutral which I, personally, find a bit boring and just for going with the things we like, this is how it’s turned out – I’m sure baby won’t mind!

The felt badger rug (which is totally ace) was one of Pete’s random (but good!) purchases, as was the animal world map canvas…we never intended on having an animal theme but I think it’s definitely leaning this way. But my most favourite thing is the Lapin and Me Green Baby Lapin Lamp – I’ve lusted over this a while, not being able to justify the cost (especially when there are more essential baby items to be bought first like, say, nappies!) but then to my pleasant surprise, my parents bought it me for Christmas…I think it’s safe to say it’s not everyones’ taste but I love its quirky retro-ness and how a lamp can have such personality.

babylamp

So this is where we are at for now. But I have plans – oh yes! Plan for the coming weeks to make a few bits and bobs (let’s see how that pans out!)…

I’ve just received some gorjusss bamboo fleece from Plush Addict which I intend to make some dribble bibs and, if there is enough left, to use as a backing for a pram blanket. You can’t tell from the picture how soft it is (I may have snuggled my face in it on removal from the packaging!) and it is a natural fabric so will be kind to baby’s skin. Plus, Plush Addict pop a little Maoam sweet into the order – if this is not some kind of bribery for repeat custom I don’t know what is (works for me!).

SONY DSC

Through my obsession with Pinterest, I’ve also come across a few DIY tutorials or nursery decor inspiration which I’m planning on giving ago, including…

Mobile via Craftiness is not optional. I love anything that hangs; lights, bunting, garlands etc and one thing we haven’t got for the nursery yet is a mobile. I love this cute mobile tutorial from Craftiness in not Optional.

balloon mobile

Or this super cute simple cloud mobile tutorial I found on We G Three

cloudmobile1

Felt Pom Pom Garland. Talking of garlands, I love these as an alternative to bunting. And so simple, check out the tutorial on Oh Happy Day.

feltgarland

Cushions. Following on the cloud theme, I’ve been drawn to these cute cushions which can’t be too difficult to recreate myself and I think will look fab on my Ikea basket chair…(Or, if all else fails I can just buy these from Petit Home.)

z-cloud-cushion-miel-43x23-cm-655-p

I’m also planning a patchwork quilt (fabric currently en route!) – this is going to be slightly different to those personalised ones I made in the past for friend’s babies but I will post about that once the fabric has arrived and I’m a bit more decided on how it’s going to look.

Anything else and I don’t thing there will be room for baby!

Advertisements

Annabelle’s Quilt.

Remember my post in January about learning new skills? Well, here is the first skill (i.e. free hand machine embroidery) in action for real (as opposed to the cute, but quite simple, little cards!)

This is a quilt I made for my friend Jane who had her baby Annabelle in December.

SONY DSC

I wanted to incorporate something that was personal to Jane and her husband Marcus which is where the birds come in. Jane and Marcus were married in September 2011 and they had a bird and heart theme to their wedding day (complete with heart and bird shaped cookies as favours that Jane – also a crafty one – made herself!). It’s the birds I am most pleased with on this quilt…

SONY DSC

I think it’s pretty safe to say that there is not an ounce on masculinity in this quilt! Jane is a  pretty girly person so I used subtle pastel pink and green floral and spotty fabrics for the colours, and edged the whole thing in super pretty lace binding (which is a very exciting new discovery for me!).

SONY DSC

However, knowing he is an enthusiast, just for Marcus I added the little scooter (sorry it wasn’t bright red Marcus like your actual scooter, but that wouldn’t have matched my colour scheme!)

SONY DSC

The layout of the patchwork is very similar to Ava’s quilt that I made around the same time as this, but with more subtle and fewer colours, and the centre panel is different, being personalised to the new mum and dad and their baby.

SONY DSC

I also, as I mentioned, wanted to try out my skills in free hand machine embroidery! It was a bit risky and, at first, I thought it was looking a bit messy but now I’m so pleased I did, as I think (if I say so myself!) it looks fab! I’m sure I will be featuring free hand a lot more in my work (hopefully seeing some improvements)…it is, after all, the ‘crack cocaine of the sewing world‘ according to Kirstie Allsopp!

SONY DSC

SONY DSC

SONY DSC

SONY DSC

Ava’s Quilt

I was very pleased to be asked to make a baby quilt as a gift for Dominique Bader, the lovely and talented lady who photographed my wedding.

Baby Ava was due in January and, with Samuel – Dominique’s husband – contacting me about the quilt in November, I knew I had enough time to plan and source some lovely fabrics, ready for Samuel to give to Dominique when the little lady arrived in hospital.

I got a bit of an idea about colours and a little list of the couple’s ‘likes’ from Samuel, but apart from that, the only request he made was to have Ava’s name, as well as Samuel and Dominique’s names included.

I’ve always wanted to buy some Heather Ross fabrics as I think they are so beautiful – the design and colours are very subtle and have a fairytale, whimsical feel: the range is appropriately named ‘Far Far Away’. So I used this quilt as a perfect excuse to treat and allow myself to buy some!

farfarawaylogoforblog

On holiday!

On holiday!

With the 1st December, came the arrival of the Christmas orders, craft workshops with my other business ‘Love Me Sew‘ as well as my long-awaited holiday to Berlin. So, with the quilt not needed until January, I decided to leave this on the ‘to do’ list until I came back from holiday…well, that is if you don’t count the sketches of how I wanted it to look, and workings-out of sizes, that I did on the plane home!

SONY DSC

Unfortunately for me, babies don’t like to stick to scheduled times and Ava arrived two week’s earlier than expected! Fortunately for me, however, because Samuel is a very lovely customer (and I think was pretty much swept up with how gorgeous his new little baby girl was) didn’t mind that the quilt wasn’t ready in time.

But, a week later, after pretty much sticking to my sketches and the pictures in my head, the quilt was done and posted!

SONY DSC

SONY DSC

Two of Samuel and Dominique’s ‘likes’ included cycling and dogs (plus the camera for obvious reasons!)…

SONY DSC

SONY DSC

Samuel was happy, Dominique loved it and I think Ava found it pretty comfy too…

ava2

As for me, I think to date, this is one of my favourites and crafty items I am most proud of.

P.S. How gorgeous is Ava! The photo of Ava are taken by Dominique (obviously as they are way better than mine!)

Stocking Fillers

My graphic designer pals would cringe at this Photoshop attempt!

Six weeks to go and it’s full steam ahead in the attic-turned-Santa’s workshop. Donning my red suit and jingly shoes (aka red hoody and fluffy slippers), I’ve been non stop working on orders for Chrimbo.

This means, however, I’m going to have to add a few blog fillers as I can’t actually show you anything as it’s all top secret in case crafty gift receivers (read this how you will, a-la Eat Shoots and Leaves, it could potentially fit either way!) happen to stumble across this post. So instead, while I am still making the odd non-Christmas pressy thought I would post these and a few extra random bits!

I’ve just finished this little banner I’ve made as Christening gift for my client, complete with scraps bag (i.e left over fabric…remember scraps are not scraps in my book!).

I’m creating quite a little collection now of banners and bunting that I have recently made; some as gifts, some for my wedding fairs, and some for the soon-to-launch online wedding boutique: Wedding in a Teacup, that will be selling my items. The latter being a new little exciting project for me but I will tell more when it’s live!

And so continues my upcycling…(and some new things).

So I haven’t posted anything for a while – last week I took a bit of time off from the sewing machine, allowing us to have a rest after the wedding fair. However, with my first weekend free in I-can’t-remember-how-long, I got back on it; only this time making a few little bits and bobs as gifts…

The first of those being a little purse for my friend Rose after she liked one ‘I made earlier’ that I posted previously in ‘Lots of little purses’.

I made this one a little more personal to Rose though as I used, for the lining, a duvet cover that she kindly donated to me a little while back; it was an old-school duvet cover (complete with retro St. Michael’s label!) that she liked the print off but was a bit too ’70s to use for real, and had no other use for.

And so continues my upcycling: from shirt to pants, skirt to purse, now duvet to purse (I feel a theme forming…). Plus there is also still plenty of material left to make more items…coming your way Rose! I also made it as a little thank you as she has done a lot of design work for me of late. Take a look at her fab work at www.rosemountague.co.uk.

My second gift item was another little Patchwork Panda for a little 1 year old lady. I’ve made a few of these now and they seen to go down pretty well with the little ones, personally I think this is my favourite.

The fabric I used for the arms, legs and ears is a super cute print called Teeny Tiny Zoo – I got mine from one of my favourite online shops: Fabric Rehab. The pattern was from Sew Hip magazine which, on receiving through the door, is the highlight of my month (probably should get out more!).

 

I embroidered the birthday girl's name on his foot - he definitely belongs to her now.

Hello!

Still on the ‘to do’ list is more baby items, bunting for an online boutique (woo! All to be revealed soon), more purses and bags, pjs, and more! Will post once done…but for now back to focusing on the wedding fair coming Sunday x

 

New Arrival

There has been a new arrival to my family: my new baby nephew was born on Tuesday 9th August to my sis!

He currently has no name but baby is so gorgeous. Plus this gives me an exciting opportunity to branch out into a whole new area of sewing!

I have already made some curtains for his nursery. Alex, my sister, not knowing what flavour baby she was having decided she might like to go with a jungle theme for her nursery. I found it quite difficult getting fabric, with a heavy enough weight for curtains, that would be nice for either a girl or boy; most of the jungle prints were really loud, and garish enough to stress baby out not sooth to sleep! In the end I decided to get some nice sage green fabric with white spots (Clarke and Clarke fabric)  – which I though was pretty suitable for both a boy or girl.

Going along the same theme, for the bunting I got some nice fabrics: some green polka dots from Leeds market, but also some super cute fabric from Fabric Rehab to make bunting – I love the little lions and giraffes. I am just waiting on another yellow fabric to arrive in the post before I can put the bunting together. In a way it’s kind of good baby turned out to be a boy as I think the colours look more suitable for a little man…

Definitely doesn’t stop there though! There is a world of baby items he may need and I still haven’t done any appliqué elephants or other jungle animals! Think there may be a few more goodies to come…

Can I keep him?