Sunday, August 30, 2009

My machine is finally dressed!

At last - my sewing machine is prettily dressed - and protected from dust!

And it's all thanks to Jenny of elefantz and the challenge she set for us sewers to create a machine cover, with a deadline of 31 August. Talk about cutting it fine, but if I didn't do it now, I don't know when I would have got around to it. Thanks Jenny! :-)

Once I'd finished the cover itself, I thought it looked a bit plain. So I set to work on designing a simple tree applique, adhered it to the cover with vilisofix, and machine-stitched all the way around the edges to hold it in place.

Here is the 'before' photo:

I measured my machine and made the cover based on a pattern I found at Spool. The fabric is a loose-weave canvas that I found in the curtain-material section of my local craft store. It has a nice linen look, but is much cheaper than the other beautiful linens that are on the market (and difficult to find!)

My 'craft space' is rather "busy". Would you like to see it? It hasn't been tidied yet!

View to the left:

And to the right:

The desk itself is a big old office desk that I purchased a few years ago from the Salvos. The original top is dark brown in colour, so I covered it with this bright vinyl tablecloth material that I bought at the craft store. I have to be careful not to match my fabrics directly on the desk - as you might guess - the blue and pinks can really affect your colour choices if your eye wanders on to the desktop! But I like it, it is much more cheerful than brown!

The craft room of my dreams would be simple, functional and peaceful. I love Laurraine's space (from Patchwork Pottery), she has been interviewed recently for an article and you can read all about it here, and see pics of her workspace. Laurraine is such a talented lady!

I think 'the dream studio' will stay in my dreams for a while yet! So what does your working space look like? I'd love to see!

Until next time - happy creating!

Vikki x

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Are we there yet?

The wonderful thing about stitching, sewing and knitting is that you can enjoy these pleasures almost anywhere. I admit, there are some pursuits that would make it a bit difficult - paragliding and swimming being just two that spring to mind! But most sewers I know love to catch up on their needlework when they're travelling as a passenger in a car.

My gorgeous friend Narelle, is no exception! She and her husband have just purchased a camper trailer so that they can take their children on holidays all over Australia. So what could be a more perfect gift than a sewing caddy that attaches to a vehicle window?

Now before I go any further, I have to credit this wonderful, brilliant, ingenious idea to Karen from Sew Many Ways. Have you checked out her blog? You'd be in for a treat if you like practical ideas and tutorials! This is her sewing caddy tutorial. I decided to go for a different look with my travel caddy so didn't follow this particular tutorial... but it was the catalyst for my sparks of creativity. Thank you Karen! :-)

The caddy is made using a clip-on 750ml bottle/cup holder that attaches to the inside of the car window. I cut the top off a 750ml plastic bottle and lined it with neutral tone-on-tone fabric. I then designed a 'wrap' for the cup and holder to form the body of the caddy.

It comprises a needle-case, a thread holder (that you can attach your embroidery cards to) and a scissor fob. The needle-case and thread holder are sewn into the body of the caddy so that there is no chance of them falling on the floor!

The inside of the caddy can be used to hold your stitcheries, scissors, knitting yarn and needles, or whatever else you may wish to take along with you.

Inside the needle-case:

This wonderful fabric was ideal for my purposes! I featured it in my last post and it is called Peace on Earth by Three Sisters for Moda. I also made Narelle and her husband a travel journal from the same fabric, so they can write their accounts on each camping expedition they make!

I found some travel-themed paper clips in my local craft store, and they couldn't have been a better match. You can just see them popping out of the top of the journal.

And do you know what I was thrilled about? Narelle and her husband lived in Singapore for several years... and I managed to incorporate this into a design on the front of their journal. Here is a close-up, I stitched a line between Melbourne and Singapore, and added little buttons as the 'destination' points. How awesome was that?! Thank you Moda, for the perfect fabric!! :-)

So there you have it - another useful creation! Ooh - I think I'm beginning to live up to my blog name! He he he...

When Narelle starts using her caddy I shall ask her to take a pic of it in it's rightful home on her window!

Until next time - Enjoy the stitches as well as the views!

Hugs! Vikki x

Friday, August 14, 2009

New fabrics and doll patterns

I hope you are enjoying your weekend thus far? I have had a very lazy Saturday morning - enjoying fresh coffee and waffles - courtesy of Mr SUDs! What a lucky girl I am!

Actually, we are a pretty exhausted family as the past couple of weeks have seen us packing, cleaning and relocating Grandparent SUDs into their new home. But yesterday my crafty mo-jo made a comeback and I went fabric shopping!

I've had this pattern for a few weeks now and finally purchased fabrics to make it.

What could possibly 'top' a new doll pattern? A Christmas one, that's what!! he he he...

This little beauty was designed by the very talented Annie Smith of Country Keepsakes. I couldn't find a blog for Annie, but if you are interested, Faerie Noelle can be purchased at The Stitching Post.

And talking of dolls, the lovely Deb from The Angel and the Pukeko contacted me a while ago to ask me if I would like her collection of doll patterns, as she no longer used them. So I now have a few more lovelies in my collection - thank you Deb! xx (She is definitely the 'Angel' out of the duo!! LOL)

While purchasing fabrics, I also picked up these fresh tones for my next original design... so stay tuned!

And last up - this handsome couple are just about to be cut and sewn into a creation for a special birthday girl...

Oh look - you can see where I used to live - that little red blob is England! Can you see my old house? he he he...

I wish I knew the name of this fabric range, it is divine. Wouldn't it make a great travel-journal cover? I will be using it for something 'useful' and will share next week once the Birthday Girl has received it!

Update: This fabric range is called Peace on Earth and is by Three Sisters for... Moda. Thank you Jeanette, for advising us! :-)

Right - I am off to sew! What are you up to this weekend?

Warm wishes! Vikki x

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Friendship and inspired designs

Let me introduce you to Kerryanne.

Isn't she gorgeous?

Yes she is - both inside and out!

If her almost-teenage daughter, Aimee, is reading this she will be saying "Oh, go get a room!"

LOL...he he he...

I had the great pleasure of meeting Kerryanne about a year ago, you can read all about it here. Kerryanne is a treasured and valued friend, and (until very recently) was my painting tutor as well. In fact - all of the lovely ladies from Kerryanne's painting class are valued friends and wonderful people - how blessed am I? :-)

Here we all are pictured last night at a restaurant in town. From Left to Right: Andrea, Karen, Marisa, Anne, Kerryanne and me.

The occasion? I wouldn't call it a "farewell party", but more of a "celebration" for Kerryanne, as she is about to fulfill one of her dreams and relocate her family and home for a new life in the beautiful coastal town of Port Macquarie.

Of course, gifts go hand-in-hand with celebrations!

Us "painting girls" all contributed to a leaving gift for Kerryanne... and here she is opening the first part of it...

I designed and made this bag for Kerryanne so that when she heads off for a beach walk in Port, she can carry her sketchpad, pens and brushes with her in a purpose-made tote.

My inspiration came from this picture posted on Kerryanne's blog, last week. It is a vista from Lighthouse Beach in Port Macquarie. Isn't it beautiful? Her favourite colour is blue, which was ideal for the look I wanted to create.

Then when Kerryanne opens her bag to retrieve her sketchbook she will always be reminded that she is living her dream... and that her friends are so proud of her and always wish her well!

The stitchery on the inside of the bag reads: "May the sun always shine on your dreams".

Kerryanne - I am going to miss you like crazy! But I have no doubt that we will see each other again and that our friendship will continue to blossom!

As for your future... I have no doubt that it will be a bright one! You deserve every happiness in the world!

Until next time - let's all remember to live our dreams!!

Hugs! Vikki x


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