Thursday, June 30, 2011

Pinterest Love!

Pinterest is my new thing! It is soooooo useful. You know those evenings when you're browsing the net and finding all sorts of gorgeous things you'd like to have a go at making, and you start saving pages in the browser that you know you'll probably never get back to, or sending email reminders to yourself that will get filed and forgotten? Or all the great subscription emails that come through from sewing blogs and websites that you never quite get around to reading properly and before you know it there's 150 of them in your inbox and you just end up deleting them and losing all those great ideas?

Pinterest allows a gal seeking inspiration to pin all those lovely pictures of things to sew onto virtual pinboards that can then be perused at leisure. Each picture you pin has a link to its source page embedded within it, so you can return to the related info whenever you wish. The links to all the great tutorials and patterns that I find and read about late at night are now all in one place for reference and sometimes just to look at 'cos those boards are so pretty to behold!

Pinterest is invite only - if you'd like an invitation let me know, then you can get pinning too!

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Chair pads

We were given this second-hand wicker seat before my daughter was born and it's made the best nursing chair. The chair pads needed freshening up a bit so last night I finally got around to doing something with another of my op shop doona cover finds. I just made simple envelope covers, which I learned to do from Jane Bolsover's Sewing Machine Basics.

As an aside, I cannot get over the kindness of the people we have met in this town. We have been given so much pre-loved baby and home stuff, all so much appreciated by new immigrants who are also new parents! We'll be sure to pay it forward!

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Hot Water Bottle Cover

I got a couple of hours to myself this afternoon so I was able to make peaceful use of my new sewing room (spare room converted - well, just the bed dismantled and my sewing table and boxes moved in - nothing fancy but mine, all mine!). It's the first time I've actively decided that I could make something that I need, instead of buying a new one in a store. I needed a new hot water bottle cover because my (pre-sewing days) hastily bought cheapo Big W one (which I've copied and improved on) is very badly made, ugly and uncomfortable. This one is soft and snugly! I need to work on my hand-stitching, which I don't enjoy, but I did enjoy figuring out how to layer all the pieces (6 in total) so that it all came together correctly. It's not the best picture but I still have a whole quiet house to myself, so I'm in a rush to make the most of the remaining time with a good book and a cup of jasmine green tea!

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Reversible Bucket Hat

I finally made this a couple of days ago but it’s not been sunhat weather here on the Banana Coast until today. I’m very pleased with how the brim turned out  - all that topstitching (and unpicking!) took a while but it looks good, and I like the added stiffness too. I’ll probably make another, but next time I’ll not edge-stitch the top in the same way. It’s possible I misread the instructions to be honest, I think I was meant to edge-stitch the crown seam allowances to the side panels rather than edge-stitch the outer join between the crown and the side panels. Or something. Oops! The pattern instructions are otherwise  great, I think I just got a bit confused but never mind, it’s all a learning process. Miss M was happy to keep it on and it protects her well, which is the main thing! And I love the material, which was a lovely gift from a friend - thanks Marieka!

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Jean Genie

Random Australian Fact: jeans come in only one length here. Long. No short, no regular, just long. Then you either give the store ten bucks on top of the price of the jeans and they send them off to be shortened, or you take them to a tailor. Or, you adjust them yourself. I wouldn't be happy doing that with a 100 dollar pair, but I have an old maternity pair from last winter (back then I couldn't see my ankles anyway and hence wasn't much bothered about roll-ups for a couple of months!), so I decided to practice on them. Short of travelling to Singapore to purchase regular length M&S jeans, adjusting them is my only future option, and why pay someone else?  They still fit ok as they're the very low rise maternity kind with a stretchy bump panel that I can fold over the waistband, so they'll do me for around the house this winter too.

The nice lady in Just Jeans at the Plaza explained to me how to get the length right a few weeks ago, when I was bemoaning the impossibility of finding jeans that fit (it's due to small population size, apparently - they tried selling different lengths but it just wasn't cost effective to stock them all). The trick is to have the jeans just touch the floor at the back of the heel when in stockinged feet, and pin. I used dark blue thread as that's what I had and they look fine, but next time I think I'll try and find a thread that matches the jean thread. Also I'll do a double-turned hem instead of a single hem with zigzag stitch on inside to prevent fraying. In hindsight I should have done some research first but I only had morning nap-time to satisfy my sewing craving, so I just grabbed the jeans as a quick project, and ran!

Sew's already Thursday afternoon and no sunhat! However, hat pattern has been chosen and material selected from stash. Just need some medium-weight sew-on interfacing and I'm good to go tomorrow afternoon - at least that's the plan!

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Time Management (or lack thereof)

I haven’t managed to get any sewing done this past week, which makes me very sad. Well, that’s not entirely true, I did manage to sew a cute button on my nappy wallet. But that’s it! I’ve been struggling to stay on top of things on the home front and feeling quite overwhelmed by the chaos and clutter. I feel like I just don’t have time to do all the things I want to do on top of all the things I need to do; where do all the hours go, woe is me etc etc. No more!!! Time to take back control of my TIME! I’ve tried so many different schedules, routines, lists, regimes, none of them work...but I’ve found a new website that I think might just have the answer. Don’t want to speak too soon though so will hold my cards close to my chest for the time being! Meantime, I’ve hunted down some motivational quotes:

In truth, people can generally make time for what they choose to do; it is not really the time but the will that is lacking ~ Sir John Lubbock

Those who make the worse use of their time are the first to complain of its shortness ~ Jean De La Bruyere

The great dividing line between success and failure can be expressed in five words: “I did not have time.” ~ Franklin Field

You will never “find” time for anything. If you want time, you must make it. ~ Charles Bruxton

No idea who these blokes are and no time to google them (hee) but, they make sense. This week I want to make a new sunhat for my daughter, as she’s fast outgrowing the one I made at Easter and although it’s winter now, her little head still sometimes needs protection from the Australian sun. I am going to make the time!