Sunday, January 31, 2010

My place and yours - shoes

Next to my sewing table

I have far too many shoes and I can't seem to ever put them away. I usually always take them off as I walk into the house, and leave them wherever they lay, or if my feet get hot, I take them off and leave them wherever I happen to be sitting.

So today, I wandered around the house to see what I could find.

Next to my cutting table

Under the coffee table x 2

On the floor in my bedroom

On the floor in my walk in robe

Now this is actually where they should be!

For more shoe-a-holics, visit Punky and Me for a lookie.

Saturday, January 30, 2010

The forgotten stash

I started collecting fabric about ten years ago, at around the same time that I decided that I wanted to learn to sew and make myself a handbag for work. I still have some very early incarnations of my make it up as you go along handbags which are quite funny to look at now. I remember being so proud that I'd made something myself, that I didn't even notice all of the unfinished seams and dodgy stitching.

At that stage, I was really drawn to silky satiny (ok, I know that's not really a word) type fabrics, while not realising that they weren't the easiest things to learn to sew with. At that stage, I'd also never even heard of interfacing!

Over the years, my stash of these fabrics ended up hidden away in a plastic container and were completely forgotten about, until I had an enquiry from Anna to make a Sunnies / Specs Pouch for her mum in a silky fabric.

Like a bolt from the blue, I headed off on a search through the mountain of fabric, to find my forgotten silky satiny gems. I even remember some of the shopping trips that I went on to buy them. I'm pretty sure that the fabric that Anna chose came from a little morning trip with my ex-MIL to Brunswick fabrics on Sydney Rd about 5 years ago. I originally intended to make myself a handbag with it, but just never got around to it.

So now I have Anna to thank, for re-introducing me to the forgotten fabrics that were instrumental in the beginnings of this little crafty adventure...... Oh how I love a happy ending!

Friday, January 29, 2010

Just like the Summer of '96

No, I'm not dyslexic..... it's just that my current internet experience feels very much like the Summer of 1996, back when the internet was all just white pages with black text.

 I can read your blog in my google reader, but I can't see the photos. I can try to visit your blog and leave a comment but everything crashes.....

Check the signal strength top left and the transmit rate bottom centre

I'm sorry to say that Wireless Broadband in suburbia is completely crapola! I've perservered for ten months, but I'm at the stage where I could really start pulling my hair out (beginning with the greys that are creeping through my current dye job).

So I decided that I'd change to Naked ADSL (the one where you connect the phone line, connect to the naked service, and then disconnect the phone line). To find out whether you're eligible for this service, you have to first have the phone connected (which costs money), be given a phone number, and then check it online.

So now I have a phone number, and I've checked it online, and my exchange doesn't support the service...aaaahhhhhh!

So the only choice that I have left is to technologically regress back to a normal broadband connection, while paying a monthly line rental fee for a home phone that I don't want and don't need.

Is it really 2010?

Thursday, January 28, 2010

My creative space

Oh, how I've missed My Creative Space since it's been on holidays.

I'm a bit of a nosey parker, so I love to have a sneaky squizz into what everyone else is up to!

Clockwise from Left:
Gadget Pouch for Tinniegirl - Hand Screenprinted Bicycle fabric by Greenolive
WIP Brooches
Coloured Wire
Hair Bits and Bobs

I headed to my local bead shop yesterday with the sole purpose of picking up some coloured wire, but I was somewhat distracted, and ended up coming home with hair clips and hair combs to play with.

The home of My Creative Space....

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Lost for Words

I think my brain has gone on holidays.

I usually have at least ten ideas for blog posts (and quirky yet meaningful headings) running around in my head at any one time, but the last couple of weeks, there's been some creaking and some grinding of the cogs..... and those little mice have stopped running along on their treadmill .......   and everything seems to have come to a standstill.

This is completely unchartered territory, and I'm not sure how long it will last. I have a feeling that I'm just trying to keep too many things in my head that I should be writing down, or adding to the calendar. There's just way too much clutter going on in the grey matter!

So, while I try to empty out the clutter, please enjoy a photo of the little basket of craft goodies that I'm taking with me for a crafternoon at Tinniegirls house - maybe a nice homemade cappucino will fix it?

Monday, January 25, 2010

Not my forte

Abbe from Copper Patch put the call out last week for a little bit of help in getting a quilt made for one of her friends. I certainly do not have any quilt piecing skills but I volunteered to help out.

Following Abbe's tutorial, I pieced together my block thismorning.... but it didn't quite end up being the correct size. I think that my quarter inch seams may have been a little more than a quarter inch....

I'm hoping that it's still useful in the overall quilt so I've sent it off thismorning. Fingers crossed!

PS - I think there's still time to get involved if you have time to help.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Gadget Size

After working on the Sunnies / Specs pouches during the week, I thought that the same concept would also be ideal for electronic gadgets.

I've been searching through the stash for all of my fat quarters, and found this lovely Pippijoe Orchard print, and one of my old favourites from Hollabee.

These Sunnies / Specs Pouches and Gadget Pouches will be heading off in the mail to Georgie Love tomorrow..... in the meantime, I need to make some more for my market stalls!

Friday, January 22, 2010

Tiptoe through the Tulips....

I've been wanting to make a little girls dress for the longest time, so I jumped at the chance to test Nikki's new Tulip Dress pattern. Of course there are no little girls in my family, so I decided to make it in a size 5 to give to a friends little girl.

Unfortunately, I don't have any cute dress modelling shots (Frances is far too big, and I don't think I could possibly convince Moo Moo to try it on for a photo).

There are lots of variations to choose from in the pattern. I was originally going to make the sleeveless version, but with a gentle nudge from Tinniegirl, I decided that I should challenge myself and make the version with sleeves instead (I've never 'set in' a proper sleeve before now).

The pattern includes instructions for buttonholes, but I was so happy with the way that the dress turned out that I didn't want to risk ruining it right at the end by attempting buttonholes on my machine (it has a conniption every time I try). I chose to use snaps instead. EDIT: The pattern also suggests to use snaps as an alternative!

As always, the detailed instructions are brilliant. I have hardly any experience in using clothing patterns, but I followed everything step by step, from the pattern layout on the fabric, to the little tips along the way. It really made the construction easy (even for me). 

If you get in really quick, there's a chance to win a copy of the pattern once it is released (very very soon) and some fabric from Nikki's stash. You can find all the details right here!

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Moby and Friends

Every now and again, I buy myself a little handmade treat as a reward to myself for all my hard work. There are lots and lots of lovely bits and pieces that are on my 'to buy' list..... especially those things that I have no hope of ever trying to make myself.

After trying crochet on numerous occasions, I've realised that no matter how hard I try, my brain just does not get it, and so I found myself a new use for my crochet hooks - they make great little paint and glue stirrers.

Ever since I gave up on those unrealistic crochet dreams, I've been coveting one of Jess's gorgeous amigurumi bears to add to my collection of handmade goodies. I was going to wait until the next Northside Makers Market on February 6th (Jess is having a stall), but I'll be at the Daylesford Makers Market on the same day, so I asked her to pop Moby in the post instead.

Moby's not the quick bear off the rank or the brightest bulb in the box. He's often seen wandering along metres behind the other bears in his own little dream. He loves sniffing and smelling everything with his big nose, and to play the xylophone. When he feels moved to, he will also partake in a bit of experimental dance. He will eat anything with Potato in it, his favourite and staple food.

How could I resist a little bear with the same food issues as me?

Moby has made his way to his new home in the bookshelf. He's had a chance to meet all of his new friends, and so far, they all seem to be getting along swimmingly. I think he may be missing his xylophone though..... maybe I could make one out of paddle pop sticks and matches?

Wednesday, January 20, 2010


I've been giving my little glasses case a test run over the past couple of days, and I love it so much, that I decided to whip up a whole lot more.

There's a bit of hand basting required with each one to get a nice neat finish, so I sat on the couch lastnight and watched The Real Housewives of New Jersey while happily stitching away....

I'll be taking them to my upcoming markets (list on sidebar). I still need to search the stash for some more blokey type fabrics (I wouldn't want the blokes to miss out).

Next job on the list is to make some shorter versions to suit gadgets.... better get onto it!

Monday, January 18, 2010

My evil alter-ego

A little while ago, I headed over to Tinniegirls house for a crafternoon.....

Tinniegirl had planned to make herself a cover for her new IPhone and needed a little assistance. SuperPops supposedly came to the rescue, helping out with the customised measurements and seam allowances.

Tinniegirl finished off all of the lovely applique and hand stitching..... only to find that it was a little bit squeezy for her poor little IPhone..... but it fitted EvilPop's Sony Ericcson phone quite perfectly.

Co-incidence..... or all part of my evil plan? (Insert spooky music here)

Sunday, January 17, 2010

A blogaversary winner

We have a winner - declared that the 108th comment wins the mystery prize.

Number 108 is Abbe from Copper Patch. Congratulations Abbe!

Your mystery prize will be on it's way in a week or so, once I've attempted to work out what you might like tp receive.
Thanks so much to everyone who played along and left me a congratulatory comment.

The Finki Challenge - Turning Japanese

I've been racking my brain for the past week, thinking about what on earth I could make for this months design challenge over at Finki.

The theme for the month is Turning Japanese, so I decided to use my absolute favourite Japanese Fabric - Kokka Ume Komachi Blossom.

I bought myself some flex frames months ago, and they've been sitting in the stash, just begging to be used. I finally took the time to sit down and take some measurements, and after a little bit of trial and error (and a bit of unpicking and cursing), I worked out how to construct a glasses case. I've lined the case with some fusible wadding for a bit of cushiony protection..... and it matches my glasses perfectly!

Saturday, January 16, 2010

The Bonanza

Thanks for all of the lovely blogaversary comments yesterday. I'll be drawing a winner tomorrow night, so keep your fingers and toes crossed at all times!

On Thursday night, I headed off to the Northern Craft Bonanza to meet up with some wonderful crafty girls.

I took along some brooches that needed hand stitching..... although there was more talking and eating than hand stitching going on.....

The time absolutely flew by (as is always the case when you're having fun). I'll be counting down the days until the next one..... head on over here if you're interested in coming along!

Friday, January 15, 2010

It's a Blogaversary!

The very first CurlyPops Banner

It's been two whole gigantic years since I began my day to day bloggy blabber...... and wow, how things have changed!

The first ever photo on CurlyPops Blog

What began as a bit of fun on the computer has completely changed everything in my life - lots of new friends, new work, new creative dreams, new motivation, new life.

When I first sat down in front of the screen and signed up, and started blogging in secret (yep - I didn't tell anyone at all), I could never have dreamed that it would have such a positive effect on my life.

So to celebrate my 2nd bloggaversary, I'm having a giveaway.

After chatting to Nikki and Cathy lastnight, I'm going to totally pinch Cathy's idea, and custom make something to suit the blogger who wins...... it's a bit like a lucky dip - you just never know what it could be!

Anyhow - you've gotta be in it to win it - so just leave me a comment - simple as that.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

The Bonanza

I'm heading off to the inaugural Northern Craft Bonanza tonight....... I just need to pack my little crafty kit!

I might see you there.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Trial and Error - part 2

Excuse the pants - I only iron when I'm sewing!

Well I promised myself that it would be onward and upward after the first trial.... and so I tried again.

I decided that a top would be more practical than a dress. I had this lovely vintage fabric in the stash that I received from a friends mum. It was from the same lot as the Tahiti fabric.

The fabric is quite sheer, so I interfaced the top rectangular sections, and added a muslin lining to the front drapey section. I had to overlock all of the seams to prevent it from fraying too.

The front and the back are exactly the same, which makes it a little bulky at the back (the back doesn't have any lining), and I widened the shoulder straps to make sure that my bra wouldn't be on show.

This one actually made it out of the house, as I gave it a swelter test run during yesterdays heatwave. I think I quite like it!

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Trial and Error

With the forecast of all of this hot weather, I decided that I needed to make myself a new summer dress to swelter in.

Of course, I don't actually own any dress patterns, and I don't have any learned dressmaking skills, so instead I just used the trial and error method. (BTW - I wouldn't actually recommend this method, but I like to just free form sew).

Step 1 - Draw a picture
Step 2 - Grab the tape measure and take a couple of random measurements
Step 3 - Cut fabric
Step 4 - Sew

It's not too bad for a first trial, although it does look more like a nightie than a dress. It's too tight under the armholes, a bit too short, and too low at the back, and I wouldn't actually wear it outside of my house, but other than its fine...ha!  I figure that this is all part of the learning process when it comes to making clothes.

I took the photo before I hemmed it!

It can only be onward and upward from here......

Monday, January 11, 2010

Back to Business

 Petals for Flower Brooches

My summer holiday has come to an end, and so today, it's back to business for me.

I've had a lovely time during the last three weeks. There's been lots of couch surfing, lots of eating (my favourite jeans no longer zip up), lots of catching up with family and friends, and quite a few road trips thrown in too. I've crafted for fun, and even made something for myself.

My first market date for the year has been booked, so I'll be at the Daylesford Makers Market on February 6th.  Now I just need to stocktake and begin my 'to do' list.

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Tutorial - How to make a Superhero Headband

I had wonderful intentions of having this written before christmas, but better late than never!

Download the pdf

Every kid wants to be a Superhero. Use some fabric scraps and your imagination to create a one of a kind Superhero Headband.

Print and Cut out the template - copy the photo above and print it at full A4 size. The template includes a 1/4 inch seam allowance. The template is half of the headband, as the fabric will be cut on the fold.

Line up the pointy edge on the fold of the fabric and trace around and cut, or just cut around with your rotary cutter (this is a dress up item so there's no need to be completely accurate).

Cut out two pieces using whatever fabric print takes your fancy.

If you are using a light fabric such as a quilting cotton, then use some iron-on interfacing to add some structure.

Place your two pieces of fabric right sides together and sew all the way around using a 1/4 inch seam allowance. Make sure to leave a turning out gap of at least 8 cm along the bottom straight edge.

Clip or notch all the way along your curves, or just use your pinking shears. Clip all of the corners to ensure that they turn out neatly.

Turn out to the correct side - using a knitting needle is handy for the corners.

Using your iron, press all around the seams so that it sits nice and flat. Topstitch all the way around the headband very close to the edge. This topstitching will sew the turning out gap closed.

Iron some fusible web onto a piece of red felt (I use applifix). Cut out a star shape.

Peel the backing paper and place the red felt star into the correct position.

Fuse the star with your iron following the directions for the type of fusible that you are using. Once fused, topstitch all the way around.

Add a strip of velcro approximately 8cm long to one end. Sew into place.

Add the other side of the velcro strip and sew into place, ensuring that the pieces match up together accurately.

Check the velcro closure

Go forth and banish the evil forces forever!

You can find more tutorials on my sidebar, including new ones that have been coverted to pdf downloads.