Monday, January 26, 2015

Seeing spots - Library Bags



Howdy there. I realised that I have everything for school except library bags for the kids. Last year I bought some small Disney un-inspired bags which aren't going to do the job this year. So, I spent the last two days wondering and agonising over library bags/totes. Finally, I settled upon the Purl Bee 20 minute tote, except that as I was cutting, I decided that I wanted to line the totes. So it ended being the 40 minute tote, which was probably more like the 50 minute tote as I wrestled with my overlocker. I already had the 1 inch herringbone webbing in my stash as well (just enough for all three bags). I vaguely recall buying them from ebay.


In fact, as I finished each bag they got progressively a little smaller in size. This is going backwards but I made Michael's bag last. I had this Japanese fabric in my stash from when I made the toddler bag. So I lined his bag with some black Michael Miller dots. I didn't have enough width to make it as wide as the others so I went with the panel width. It's the same picture front and back.



I also had some Matilda's own Printable fabric so I printed out some name labels on the front of each. The specifics: Go to Word, insert a rectangular shape, insert a text box using the font High Tower Text in size 48. Add another such as star or love-heart or whatever takes your fancy and when you're happy print it out. You'll have to play around with the text box so it has no outline. Maybe print it out on paper first to see how it will eventually look like.


These are the girls bags. Jacquie starts Kindy this year! I lined hers with some linen that I bought from Daiso ($3.80) and the fabric is Tanya Whelan, TW23 Dots (Grand Revival).


Mariah's one was the first one I made. It's about the size of the Purl Bee Tote and I used a basic pink spotty cotton print from Spotlight. I actually ironed on some hard stabilising fabric I bought yonks ago as well. It's rather stiff and it almost killed me to get the tension correct on my overlocker. I had loose thread everywhere and I couldn't figure out for the life of me how to adjust it properly. I eventually finished hers at night and finished the other two on Australia Day. word of caution: make sure the sticky bit is facing the fabric or you'll end up with sticky gluey stuff on your ironing board. (How am I going to iron the clothes from now on?)


I just did a standard blanket stitch around the name label. I really like the way they turned out.


It turns out I am quite the slow sewer. I tend to umm and arrgh about specifics so to cut things short I sewed up both the outside and lining fabrics separately, then I placed the lining inside the main fabric and sewed up the tops together with the overlocker. Then I sewed on the handles (yup, I twisted one of them but Jacquie won't notice, shhhh) and then turned the top down 1" and sewed the top line first and then the second line from the inside. I really love the way they all turned out. It beats buying a $3 bag from Kmart anyway, although the kids will need to bring a plastic bag to protect the books from any spills. You may like to line your bags with oilcloth (why didn't I think of that earlier? Doi!) instead.

I hope you enjoyed seeing my bags. I haven't sewn for a while but I did make Mariah some shorts from the Dana's MADE pattern. I'll show you that next. It was fun. It's been pretty hot down under but today was a cool and sprinkly day. We are celebrating Australia Day today and I am thankful to be in a country where we have freedom to be who we are and live with respect with each other and where we are safe. God bless our country.

Thanks for stopping by. School end of this week. Yayyy!



Monday, January 12, 2015

Where I've been

 We stayed here in Salamander Bay last week and it was awesome.
 We spent a few days beaching and soaking up the sun. Perfect weather and waves.
 This was Fingal Beach. We had a bbq and there was a little play area for the kids next to it. Awesomeness I tells ya. We went back on our last day but it was but more wavier.
We ate home made food: my sisters curry,  my quinoa salad and baked drumettes. I'm going to miss being on holiday. Guess I'll have to book now for next year.

Where do you recommend in nsw?

Monday, December 8, 2014

Crafty Gift ideas





I am so badly wanting to make these Charm Bags. As soon as I saw them from Melissa Corry's web blog - Happy Quilting  I said, oh my, I have a few charm squares that could be used to make these for nieces (and myself!). The tutorial is from Moda Bake Shop, which I use to frequent quite often but I've forgotten about it.

But my sister has asked me to make some baby bibs for a friend who just had a baby girl. As luck (providence) would have it, I happened to have a baby bib in the kitchen (for some unknown reason) so I made up a template. I went to sort out some fabric and little miss 5 came up to me with her new drawing and custom made tongue for her picture person. Hubby said" Was that your template?" and we laughed.

I'm loving these bibs though from Amy of Nana Company

Nana Company - Pretty Little Bibs

Let's just say things are going to be pretty busy the next few weeks leading up to Christmas.

Don't forget about my book giveaway below, open to everyone! Don't be shy. I'll extend it to the end of the week.





Friday, November 28, 2014

Gift of Books - Giveaway

Hello everyone. I am absolutely blessed to be sent books by Scholastic to review and isn't it just the best thing ever to be able to give some away! Sharing is, of course, caring. Scholastic have released some really beautiful Christmas books this year. Some are more traditional than others so everyone gets a lovely chance to pick a favourite.

Here are my kids with the books that come with a cd. They really enjoy the music and being able to sing along with the story. I recommend if you can get a hold of one with a cd it is well worth it. They just keep playing the cd and even with the instrumental music they can read it themselves. Jay Laga'aia does a wonderful job singing the story in a way that keeps the kids involved.

I'm going to give away these two books. The one above is "One Night" by Penny Matthews and Illustrated by Stephen Michael King. It tells the story of the birth of baby Jesus through the way of the animals. It's very sweet and very easy for your young schooler to read aloud.

This one called "There was an old bloke who swallowed a present" by P.Crumble and Illustrated by Louis Shea is about a bloke who swallows different types of presents. Good fun for the kids and big and bright pictures. I like these ones to teach the kids to name all the pictures on the pages.

Here is their aunty who is very much into her books so much so that her whole bedroom is like a big library. Michael is reading to her and Elijah is waiting his turn and posing.

So, here's the nitty gritty. Just leave a comment telling me what you are giving to kids this Christmas ( I need good ideas) and it's open to everyone. I'll pick out two winners next Tuesday 2nd Dec. so I can send them out on Wednesday.

Thanks everyone, Hope you have a great week!

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

That time of the year

Elastic Skirts from Make It and Love It!
It's that time of the year. The weather is definately warming up. We have been getting strange weather though. One day hot, the next cold and rainy. Last week it reached a fiery 41 degrees (105.8 F) so we went to the pools most of the day. That was the day I found out my washing machine had a hole in it and leaked all the water out. Not fun. I was about to kill someone that morning.


Thankfully, it turns out a day at the pools works wonders and I ended up getting a new one on Saturday. I really like it. It has a clear lid so the littlest boy can see the laundry slushing around. Yay for that. I even set a delay wash for this morning so I only had to hang out the washing this morning before heading out to work. Double winner! I likes to be a bit more organised. Feels so so good.

Oh, the picture above I stole from Make it and Love it! It's for elastic skirts. The eldest has a school concert and needs a red skirt so I am thinking of making a red circle skirt for her as I couldn't find any cheap red skirts at the shops. Wish me luck! 

Tell me, what are you crafting up this Christmas?


Monday, October 20, 2014

Going quiet for a bit

Today I laid my eldest sister to rest.  She sadly passed away on Wednesday morning after a battle with leukaemia and graft vs host disease. We'll miss her everyday but we entrust her to God. May she rest in peace.

Thursday, October 2, 2014

Spring already? Yes!


Winter is finally over! Yay. We celebrated the eldest turning 8 with a big mud cake. I sent the rest of the cake to work which was very much welcomed. My waistline thanks me very much although I think I had too much cake this Winter. Anyway, moving forward.... I have been busying myself with the smallest bits of sewing. I had to line a flower girl dress for this upcoming family wedding. My youngest daughter is one of the flower girls and the dress requires a lining.


Actually, I had to line all three dresses so it's been a fun project. My challenge was that the dress bodice is very stretchy so there was no way I could put in a zipper. The lovely lady at Spotlight helped me and I bought spandex for the bodice and some Italian lining for the skirt part. The top picture is the finished bodice and skirt. The one jsut above is the skirt only.

My tip for gathering here is to sew two rows and then you get a really nice gather that stays in place. Then it will also reduce the chance of folding the fabric while you sew it (attach) it to the other piece.


This is what my bedroom looks like when all your children come to you in the morning. Two boys in my bed and the girls are in the bunks. They are still in holiday mode. In reality we have one girl and one boy in the bunk and the two older ones sharing a room. This is definately not ideal for us in the long term so we have plans for the future. I just really need to declutter (urghhh, that word again) and organise everything.

Oh how I love Spring. Down here the weather is a bit up and down. One day warm, one day rain. I've been pulling out some summer clothes as we're expecting 30 degrees or more this weekend. I'm so not prepared!


image from Ikea.

Is it bad if I just want to Ikea my whole house? How nice is this outdoor setting? I've been keeping all their magazines and I could spend hours checking out their designs on the web but there are more important things to do right now, like make dinner.

I can't believe there's only a few more weeks until Christmas. Is it like 12 weeks??? Wow. Scholastic have sent me some Christmas books so I would love to host a giveaway in my next post. I'll try to get some pictures up and posted next week!! Yippeeee.

Keep posted!