I haven't been able to take an action pic of the reverse side yet, but will update this post when I have!
Saturday, 28 February 2009
I haven't been able to take an action pic of the reverse side yet, but will update this post when I have!
Friday, 27 February 2009
This limited edition April Showers- London by Askey Illustration is a limited edition print of a digital illustration. Printed on beautiful linen effect paper, I love the simplicity with a splash ot bright colour.
This pretty Spring orbit necklace and ring set by Lucy Jackson Designs has silver plated wire interdispersed with multi-coloured glass beads.
This Soft Spring Green dish by Glassprimitif is a unique kiln-formed glass dish of green, lime, and yellow glass fused to create a patchwork of spring colours.
These divine Spring fingerless gloves by Blackberry Crafts have a lovely contrast between oatmeal and sage yarns. Perfect for the transition into warmer weather!
Made from one of my favourite Alexander Henry fabrics, this Library book bag in bird print by Dish Dash bags is a great multi-purpose bag. It's also lined in a beautiful pink and white blossom fabric with an inner pocket.
Nothing says spring like tulips and I love this close-up picture of one from Nifty Knits's handknitted pot of tulips . The three poseable tulips come in a brightly-coloured knitted vase.
I love the simple beauty of this Natural linen tote bag with spring growth by Raspberry. The base fabric is pure natural Irish Linen, the fresh leaves in linen, and a lovely green dotted fabric from Amy Butler's Midwest Modern range.
Thursday, 26 February 2009
Here's a short play that we enacted yesterday:
Mum (skipping through the house): La la la, la la la! Only 19 hours and 39 minutes til I get some peace! I have so much to do!
Cue sinister music.
Jamie: Mummy, I no feel well.
Mum: (putting fingers in ears): I can't hear you. I can't hear you.
Jamie: Mummy, I go to doctor's. I no feel well.
Mom Suck it up kiddo. Don't you appreciate how much mummy needs tomorrow?!
Jamie: Mummy, I so yucky. I go to doctors. I no feel well.
Mum (in panic mode): You look fine. You'll be fine.
Mum takes Jamie's temperature.
Mum: See Jaim, 39 deg isn't so high. If we were in the States, that's only 102.2 deg F.
Mum strips Jamie off, sees red blotches on Jamie's body.
Mum (full denial mode): Look, Jaim! You're so lucky, you have polkadots! Bet you can't wait to show Jane tomorrow!
Jamie falls asleep on couch.
Fade away to shot of Mom crying.
Jamie's little pal at the childminder's was off last week with chicken pox, so it was only a matter of time til my two got it. I was convinced with all his symptoms last night that the time had come. I let him sleep on the couch in the afternoon (for only 30 minutes I might add) and he went to sleep at his usual bedtime. Fast forward to midnight, he's out of bed full of beans, looking remarkably well. The fever has broken. He's awake and in an out of bed from midnight to almost 5AM (with little or no sleep). I lay in his doorway so he couldn't escape, and didn't get much sleep either.
And today, the rash is gone. No chicken pox. Guess I have to go to Lazytown - The Musical on Saturday after all.
Wednesday, 25 February 2009
I half finished the sample garment and have the perfect fabric reversed for the final jacket. I hope that the tute and patterns for 1-2 yr, 2-3 yr and 3-4 yrs will be ready for testers by the weekend!
Tuesday, 24 February 2009
I made a fleeting mention on Sunday about being let out into the real world, where people are full-sized and wear clothing. And who was my chaperone? Friend Sarah. You might have thought that the only people given prefixed names are serial killers, like Bible John. Not so... Jamie also bestows catchy monikers, to less sinister people.
'Friend Sarah' is called thus because whenever she visits, I tell the kids that 'mummy's friend Sarah' is coming. So now she is just 'Friend Sarah'. And what a friend she is! She brought me three eggs from her mum, which was funny to find in my handbag on Monday (it would have been less funny if they had broken). And which will come in handy for the obligatory Shrove Tuesday pancakes tonight.
When I went to pick Jamie up from nursery on Friday, they told me about another nickname he's bestowed. Donna is the nursery worker that gave us our induction talk. They said that he always said a word before saying Donna's name, but they were never sure what he was saying. On Friday, they figured out that he calls her 'Talking Donna'. And why? When we were having our induction session, there were frequent interruptions from Jamie, so I repeatedly said things like, 'Jamie, I'm talking to Donna'. And so 'Talking Donna' was born. Wonder if he uses the same frustrated tone I did?
Monday, 23 February 2009
Following on from my first post on how to adapt a pre-existing patterns, and my second post on sandwiching, here is a tutorial on 'bagging'. Bagging is when you sew the garment from the outside (right sides facing), leaving a small gap in the side seam open for pulling the nearly finished garment through. It's bit of 'blind faith' sewing in that you are working almost entirely from the wrong side of the fabric and when you're sewing the side seams up, the garment is being pushed towards the inside into a pouch (that's why it's called bagging). First time you do it, you'll be not entirely sure that it'll work until you pull the right sides out through the hole. But it's actually much easier than it sounds!
I use bagging when I want to make a reversible garment without sleeves, with buttons at the shoulders.
Reversible A-line dress
- Lay each of your dresses on the floor, right sides together. Pin along the left side seam for one fabric, and along the right side seam on the other (blue line in picture below). Sew each side seam.
- Open each dress up and place one on top of the other, right sides together. Match up all edges and pin along the entire top and bottom edges (blue lines in pic below). Stitch the dresses together at top and bottom edges, leaving both side edges open.
- Clip your corners and thin out your curves with notches (I use pinking shears).
- Using your open side seam, turn the dress right sides out. The green lines below show the edges that are still open. Press flat.
- Lay the front on top of the back, matching up the raw edges of the open side seam. Pin the two inner side seams together at the yellow dot, keeping the two outer edges (the panda fabric) out of the way.
- Starting about four inches from the bottom hem edge, start stitching the side seam together making sure that only the two inner fabrics (the polkadots) are stitched together by pulling the panda fabric down and out of the way. You can see from the picture below that at the hem seam the side seam of the polkadot fabric becomes the side seam of the panda fabric. Personally, I don't pin when I'm doing this, I just pull the other fabric out of the way and match up edges as I go along. I'm that kinda girl :)
- As you continue to sew this side seam onto the panda side, the dress starts disappearing into 'the bag'.
- Continue the side seam all the way down the panda fabric, over the armpit edge and back onto the polkadot fabric. Continue down the polkdot fabric but stop about six inches above your starting point, leaving a six inch gap. Your entire dress is 'in the bag' now!
- Reach through the hole and pull the dress out. Press all your edges again. You can see in the picture below where the one remaining opening is.
- Fold one raw edge of the open hole under and pull over top the other raw edge. Pin and press. Slipstitch the hole closed.
- Do your buttonholes and attach buttons to both sides of the shoulder.
- Find cute model for pictures:
- If you want to applique or add pockets or embellishments (like my little panda on the polkadot side), do it before you start sewing the two sides together. Likewise, the interfacing for the button holes should be done before step three, as they are inaccessible after that.
- If you find that bagging is the technique you like most, it can be used for sleeveless clothes that do have shoulder seams, at step two you would leave the shoulder edges (at yellow lines) open and unstitched:
At the very end (when dress is right sides out), fold under the raw edge of the back shoulders, place the raw edges of the front shoulders inside the opening, and topstitch the two together. Obviously I don't recommend you do it with this particular dress as the shoulder seam would not sit on top of the shoulder, but more at the collarbone :)
Sunday, 22 February 2009
Saturday, 21 February 2009
The highlight of my week was finding out that I was given a 'Blogs we love' badge by the lovely Vonnie. It's so interesting to me to see what blogs other people are reading and it's well worth checking out her other favourites. So I'm passing it on with five of my favourite blogs!
- Indietutes: I first found Vegbee over on Craftster and I can say, hand on heart, that she is probably the reason why I started sewing and stuck at it. The fact that she taught herself to sew and makes such wonderful and interesting clothes gave me the confidence to experiment and persevere. She is so generous with her knowledge, her blog is overflowing with tutorials and helpful sewing advice. Plus her kids are so stinking cute.
- Made by Petchy: Another Craftster cohort. She lives in Norway and her blog is full of inspirational sewing, baking, home decor projects, photography-- all things crafty really!
- The Wind in Your Vagina: Bit of a shocking name for a blog, but there's a good reason! Mummy blogs are ten a penny but Daddy blogs are a rare breed. I happened across this one and I really enjoy reading it, he is very funny, occasionlly a bit off-colour but always interesting.
- Cakewrecks: Probably the most well-known of the blogs on my list, but I'm compelled to include it because it's just so funny. Perfect mix of intellectual snobbery and schadenfreude.
- Red Possum: I happened across Sarah on Etsy, and we occasionally swap convos to see how things are going. She's an Australian expat living in Dublin and makes the most beautiful baby dresses and coats. Her fabric choices and photography are beautiful.
Friday, 20 February 2009
Thursday, 19 February 2009
a. I'm a dork
b. I'm showing off my mad Photoshop skillz
c. I have a mental disorder
d. I want to give you nightmares
e. All of the above
f. None of the above
Okay, the reason I put my face on Debutante Barbie is because after eight months from when Kitschy Coo began at local nursery fair, I finally feel like I've 'arrived'. I've been selling online since August, and between August and Christmas I had less than 30 sales. Since I started selling my patterns, business has picked up exponentially and the extra traffic has meant more clothing sales too. I've had nineteen orders this week (13 patterns, 3 dresses, 2 coats, 1 hoodie), yikes!
While I'm over the moon that I'm finally getting somewhere after months of sleep deprivation and slog, it's also given me some things to think about. Most importantly, how can I cope with this level of business? I definitely need to find a large-scale photocopier for my patterns (at the moment I hand trace them onto butcher's paper for each order). It will cut into my profit margin but I'm spending a lot of time tracing these days and not enough time sewing and developing other patterns.
So that will free up a bit of time, but the biggest consideration is whether I have the ability to sustain this momentum long term. I currently have eight hours a week when both of my kids are out of the house at the same time. To put this into perspective, a three layer jacket probably takes me four to six hours to make. The easy answer is to get them into more childcare, but I'm not sure if the current level of orders is just a blip, will remain static, or will even grow. I'm certainly seeing a lot of 'word of mouth' orders and repeat customers, which warms my cockles no end. Childcare is so expensive that all of my earnings (if not more than my earnings) would just go straight to the nursery. So lots of hard work on my part, less time with the kids, and nothing to show for it.
I'd love to know how all you other 'mum-trepreneurs' are juggling it all!
Wednesday, 18 February 2009
It has a big asymetrical collar, which Steven wasn't liking. But then again he though I'd just messed a normal collar up so his right to an opinion is negated.
It has extra wide sleeves because I like to see the other fabric peeking out.