This is my place to chronicle the simple pleasures of my life.....I knit, crochet and sew etc. I'm a proud Mommy, a wife and above all a soul of living light. Join me on a journey to inspiration amongst craft or life.....

Friday, December 20, 2013

The final tally! 2013

Link above takes you on a photo trip of my knit and crochet projects for the last year :)

and here are the last few knits on the list although I'm sure I will knit a few things more before the end of the year!

Friday, December 13, 2013

More craft at Christmas.......

So what are we up to now 11 or 12 days to Christmas?.......It's flying by so here is my next bunch of crafty things to show you as well as some baking and a critter.

A simple drawstring bag I sewed for my youngest son - I know Santa will be bringing some cars and airplanes so now he has somewhere to store them all :)
These cool socks are a RAOK for one of my friends who hasn't been having it that easy lately - I hope they cheer her up
I think this is an 'Imperial Moth'????? He landed on the wall beside my laundry and was so pretty and big I just had to get a piccy........
And a major tradition in our house is gingerbread - my kiddies cannot get enough so hopefully 226 cookies later we will last til Christmas LOL  Took me the best part of a day to make them all but they do look great when iced and finished.
These two are done with 'super Mario' themed ribbon for my next two sons - they will be storage bags for some bits and pieces they are getting :)
An angel for a friend - this time I crocheted some lace around the dress too
A second mandala for a dear friend :)

These angels are the finished group that my kids gave to their school teachers - always nice to appreciate their hard work teaching.    

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Christmas present - Tablecloth into a car mat

 This year our smallest son is really into toy cars and airplanes/helicopters (I'm sure Santa will be bringing him some of these toys) so I decided to make a mat for him to play on...I've also made a storage bag to go with everything but haven't finished that yet....anyway my goal was to use only what I had without buying anything else.
First I raided my fabric stash and found the perfect base - an old retro tablecloth, it had some flowers but hey I could work with them :)

 Next I sketched a rough design on paper of a race track/roads - when I was happy I freehand sketched it onto the tablecloth.

Then on my sewing machine I simply stitched over all my lines using black thread - a bit fiddly and not perfect but it looked good. I added helicopter pads too.
Next I started embellishing with anything I had in my craft boxes - felt for trees and water etc (all done freehand and sewn on with the machine), I found some sew on appliques so stitched them on too - I parked the race car in a car park hehe, next some buttons came in handy in various shapes....I love the little mushroom houses :)

 and here is a close up of what I achieved and although it's quite rudimentary and not exactly perfect I think he'll love it :)
Total cost - $0 .....Time spent - 1 day.

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Christmas tree fabric panel - making the most of space and storage!

It's Christmas time again and that means the joy of a Christmas tree - the item we store (if you use a plastic one) somewhere in the back of the garage or shed or stuffed into a closet. It's usually a bit of a job and it's dusty and has to be straightened and fussed with and that is all before you even get close to thinking about decorations. So far we have 6.5 kids and it might be a job to us but to them it's a special time of memories, problem is for us is we don't have a lot of space in the lounge room and we don't have any storage space the rest of the year so hubby and I began to think of a way we could do this years tree a little different - first we came across the wall sticker trees......a great concept but eventually they just aren't going to stick and even rolled up it would be a larger item to store and it was trawling ebay that I found the best thing yet - A fabric panel of a Christmas tree. How easy was that and it was even decorated quite beautifully!

 This is the original panel - if you wanted you could even use it as is..........I lined it with a back fabric to make it neat and durable, even washable! The panel cost me $20 but I'm sure you could find one cheaper too.

BUT that wouldn't be very fun for our kids so when I came across a fabric panel of Christmas decorations I was more than pleased - I could sew on velcro/aplix dots to the tree and make up the decorations with dots on their backs as well so the kids could still put decorations on the tree......... I hand sewed them on after I had finished backing and sewing the actual tree panel. At the top of the panel I sewed on a fabric loop so along the top a piece of dowel or a stick could be inserted across making the tree panel sit flat - when it's time to store it away we'll just throw the stick outside and choose another off the ground for next year.

Here is a close up of the decorations - A simple cut out and sew the two sides together affair. I needed 3 more than what the panel had so I also sewed up some felt baubles. You could design and sew all the decorations if you wanted instead of buying a pre-printed panel but I was on a tight time schedule this year......I do plan to add to the tree as the years go by though :)
You could even attach things around the tree - wherever you like really.

The kids had great fun choosing and sticking them on the panel and best of all it is also interactive as they can re-position them if they feel like having a fiddle ;)
Not the best overall pic but doesn't it look great finished and now the presents can stack neatly against the wall too...............................No small pieces for toddlers and babies to chew or choke on and the cats cannot climb all over it sending everything crashing to the floor. (Last year I think our tree fell over no less than 5 times due to children or cats LOL )
Best of all when all is finished it just folds neatly into a small square ready to store in a drawer!!!!!!

Sunday, December 1, 2013

A dolly carry bed....sewing with what I have for Christmas!

I'm quite proud of this project - I remember these from when I was a little girl and they were such fun, not to mention easy to pack away and washable :)
This one is going under our Christmas tree for our 15mth old daughter and considering she has been trying to put a dolly in there as I was making it I think it will be a hit LOL

I originally started by searching the internet for patterns and/or a tutorial but I'm just not the person the fiddle around reading step by step (and some of those tutes were very long) so I decided to wing it.....The first thing I changed for my own sewing sanity was to make the base rectangle not oval, much easier to do measurements and work out handle placements etc.

Next came the sides - I had a 13 inch by 8 inch rectangle so that meant two 38 inch long strips of material (made to the height you wanted the sides), it was easy to pin it around the base and sew folding the corners in as I went. I hid my handles between the two pieces of fabric for the sides and then top stitched them in.
I used pieces of felt to sandwhich in between the side fabrics to give the walls a stiffer shape and then did some light diamond quilting too which also helped with standing the sides up :)
Other patterns used wadding but I was working with what I had rather than buying new things for the project. Another thing that helped the sides was using a very stiff cotton fabric almost like a drill..........

All the fabrics I used were vintage/thrift shop finds as was the lace trim etc.In fact the blanket was a re-purposed vanity table cloth - so cute with it's embroidery.

I pinched the corners together once it was finished and sewed them down to create a more closed in' basket' feel :)
It really is amazing what you can do with a sewing machine, a bit of thinking and some fabric!!!!!
All up I think it cost me less than $6.00 too.