Thursday, December 22, 2011

two hours in the morning

That's how much time I have for crafting if I get up at 6 in the morning like today :)

The morning started quite frustrating. I bought a mini ironing board from Ikea y'day to put in our laundry room where I usually press my projects:

And the legs turned out to be uneven!

Can you see that? One end doesn't even touch the surface!

Very disappointing but it doesn't worth a trip to Ikea to exchange it.

Second frustrating thing was my sewing machine. The upper thread kept on breaking I had to rethread it about 20 times! Arrggg!! And the thing is no one really knows exactly how to fix it. All you can do is try changing the tension which I did but it didn't really work. You just play around with your machine for a bit and it gets back to normal. That's how I fix my sewing machine when something goes wrong. I rethread it, take the bobbin out, clean it, turn tension wheels and then after few minutes it works again without me actually changing anything.

And now my progress! Here's my first jelly roll skirt.


..and embroidered! Love our Janome MC!

I actually like this skirt more without the ruffle. The fabrics aren't my favourite. I bought this jelly just because I couldn't wait to start making the skirt and Spotlight didn't have anything better.

Second jelly roll skirt. Blue "a walk in the woods". This is how it looked.

And here it is after shortening:

This fabric is too cute!

Pink-red "a walk in the woods" isn't done yet. "The future owner" of that skirt will visit us after New Year's Eve so I'm working on the Zig Zag skirt first.

Sew side seams together, attach waistband, make bottom hem and the skirt is ready to wear!

Tuesday, December 20, 2011


I finally gave in to the perfectionist in me..

Remember this skirt? Now it's ripped apart..

I followed this tutorial  and used 8 stripes for size 7/8 (I made seams smaller) but I had a chance to try it on a 10 year old and the length was perfectly to the knees which means it will be a bit too long for size 7/8 and I don't like little girls in long skirts very much. I was so upset everytime I walked pass the skirts but I didn't really want to change anything - Christmas is just around the corner and I have so many other things to do but.. aarrghhh! How can I give an imperfect skirt? So the alteration started.. It was a pain.. :)) connecting stitches, serging stitches and top stitches! It took me half an hour to remove the ruffle and one strip. I never use seam reaper thou :)) I prefer the forbidden way - razor :)) It's so much faster! All you need to do is be very careful and use a blunt razor :D

This strip will become a part of this Zig Zag skirt:

90 minutes in the morning 

And a bonus picture of my creative mess:

I need a new bigger cutter ;) 
and the fabrics are becoming a quilt for my nephew :)

That's all for today. Sorry for the bad writing I'm honetsly ready to fall asleep right here right now. I've been waking up at 6am these days to have some crafting time. Good night, friends!

Saturday, December 17, 2011

My ETSY clone

Yes, I found my Etsy clone.(I'm not gonna point thou .. or maybe I should?)
I know It's quite normal for Etsyans to sell similar things especially in my case because I don't make anything original but, come on, at least bother to make some changes when copy others! I was a bit shocked to discover this shop. It has my earring cards, my items' title, my photo compositions and colors and even my items' descriptions (with my poor English. lol)!! Shame on you, girl! Shame! Shame! Shame!

But looking on the bright side.. should I be proud? :))

"a Walk in the Woods" ruffled jelly roll skirts

Oh my.. time flies when you're busy! I didn't realize that I last blogged 5 days ago! I had crazy days! I couldn't even get close to my laptop or have any time to answer messages on my phone! But I have to find a way since this madness will last few more weeks..

Anyway, I manage to squeeze in some sewing into my busy day! Here are two more jelly roll skirts for my cousins made from "A walk in the woods" jelly roll I received last week. I'm hooked on sewing little girls skirts big time! :))

One bigger and one smaller

Practice gives speed! Now i can whip up a skirt like this in 2 hours! woohoo! And that is with an underskirt! It's not included in the original design by Sewplicity but I find it more comfortable to not have seams rubbing against your legs. Oh, and I also top-stitched all strips to keep seams in place.
Sizing was frustrating thou. I didn't have correct measurements so I wasted a lot of time trying to figure out the right size. 

foxies foxies..

Red Riding Hoods ?

i think Jennifer from Sewplicity could be proud of me :)) Or at least she should be proud of herself for teaching a sewing dummy like me to make these gorgeous skirts ;)

P.S.: Sewingbox is currently having a 48-hours X-mas sale of all Moda pre-cuts. All charm packs are 10$ and Jelly rolls and Layer cakes are 30$. The sale started today so you still have 24 more hours to stock up ;))

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Snowball scarf

It has been quite  chilly these days here in Brisbane which is very uncommon for this time of the year. Actually nothing like that happened last few decades but I enjoyed the changes. The weather was perfect for me. I just purchased some yarn from Lincraft (again, went there for some pre-cuts.( For some reason I thought they had Moda, but they didn't.) and came back with more yarn ( I still have a whole drawer of yarn! Is that every crafter's "disease"? stocking up "for later"? :)) ) Anyway, the weather was perfect for some knitting. I have also started a crochet project few weeks ago but it was so hot that my hands sweated and yarn couldn't slide >.< so I dropped it )
And here is Summer's new winter scarf ( :)) )

Snowball from Lincraft. Its soft and fluffy. Perfect fro little ones!

I know, why would I knit a scarf now? Its actually for a cold winter in Hanoi, where we're going to be very soon. This is my first project using "unusual" yarn. It was interesting and quite easy once you get the rule. This baby scarf only took me about 2 hours to make: it's approx. 7cm wide and 50cm long.

I'm thinking of adding a big button to keep the scarf in place. You know how babies are ;)

I liked it so much that I decided to knit a second one for Summer's cousin with the rest of the yarn.

My niece is going to be 4 soon so I made her scarf a bit bigger than Summer's. It's about 12cm wide and 50cm long as well. So one ball of yarn was just perfect for 2 children's scarfs!

Friday, December 9, 2011

Moda! Moda! Moda!

My Moda precuts are finally here! I've been waiting anxiously to start making this Zig Ziag skirt by the Polkadot chair for my little cousins for Xmas! Normally I don't think I would go for this Sherbet Pips collection (because of the colors. I don't really like red and I prefer more colorful packs) but after seeing the skirt it was all I could think about! :))

Sherbet Pips by Aneela Hoey for Moda

But then I couldn't find everything I needed for the skirt in one store and I didn't want to spend too much time searching (it's Xmas veerrryyyy soon!) so I went for something very similar. "A walk in the woods" Aneela Hoey's newest collection!

Made in Japan. I never knew that! 
This collection does actually look like those cute Japanese fabrics.
I was sorting the squares by colors to make 2 Zig Zag skirts.

I'm in love!!!!

For Aneela Hoey's blog, tutorials and shop click here : Aneela Hoey.

Where do you by your Moda? Sometimes I envy American ladies.. they can get Moda for so cheap! It doubles its' price when reaches the Down Under. In the States a Moda charm pack is about 8-9$! Here? Normally 15$. 

My two favourite websites for Moda in Australia are:
1. Fabric Patch: they have the biggest range of Moda. And I love how they have a photo of all fabrics included in a charm pack or jelly roll or anything. So you know what you will get and you won't have to google up the collection to see what's in it (like what I had to do with some other stores!)
2. Want it, Need it, Quilt it: lowest prices!. You can find a charm pack for as low as 8$ ! Tempting? ;) Well, I was definitely tempted :))

And for the times when I'm not in a hurry I buy from the States and wait for about a month. With the shipping costs it's not much cheaper but there's more to choose from.

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Jelly roll skirt

I've completed the jelly roll skirt! It was even easier than the charm pack one. No underskirt, no bottom hem, no waistband!

Oh well.. I had to learn serging though.. :P But I'm very happy I've conquered our serger :)) I've always thought of serging as of something very complicated. Probably because of all those threads running through it but serging is actually easier than sewing :D Oh, and guess what? I discovered that you can make ruffle with a serger! Woohoo! No need to buy a gathering foot anymore!!

I love serging now! It's fun! :)) and no more raw edges and running threads! 

Like the skirt? Follow this tutorial : Ruffled jelly roll skirt by Sewplicity

Things I learned:
1. SERGE!! (woohoo! and adjust my serger!)
2. Make ruffle with serger
3. to follow the steps in the tutorial. lol. that will save you a lot of time, trust me! :))

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Charm squares skirt I - finished!

How do you like my blog's new look? I think it's fun and fresh! I'm happy that I finally took time to design it.
And now the skirt:
Other side:
This skirt doesn't really have front and back. It can be worn any way.

I machine-embroided the underskirt on our Janome and gathered the dress the simplest way by stitching two rows with longest stitch option on my sewing machine and then pulling the thread ends. I hated that part so next time I'll just buy a gathering foot.

This was my first ever skirt and second sewing project! So if you like it don't hesitate and check out the tutorial here: Madras Plaid skirt by the Polkadot chair.

I had a very productive day yesterday thanks to my husband who helped me a lot with Summer. I managed to sew together pieces of two more skirts. One more charm pack skirt:

Pastel this time. Size 3-4 for my niece.

And a jelly roll skirt of the same size:

I'm also knitting a scarf when Summer is awake and I can't go to the sewing machine.
If only I could be this productive everyday :))

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Charm squares skirt

After 10 days of preparing stock for Handmade Highstreet I finally have time to make something else. I thought of crochet, knitting and some of my other unfinished projects (Yes, I always have 3+ projects in progress because I get bored of doing the same thing over and over again pretty easy *sigh*) So I looked though my craft material and decided to sew. Yay! I had few Moda pre-cuts so I popped on the i-net and searched for something interesting and, of course, simple in Moda Bake Shop (love Moda pre-cuts! They make life of a novice sewer and busy mum like me so much easier!) After a while I found the Polkadot chair's tutorial for this adorable charm squares skirt:

Photo belongs to the Polkadot chair

And this is my dress in progress. I used Amelia charm pack. (sorry for the dark photos, I took them late at night)

very bright colors and flower prints

It's almost finished. Add waistband and elastic and it's done! Oh, I'm actually researching on gathering stitching techniques. I don't know how to do that yet.

I also went to Spotlight to get some fabric for the underskirt and as always I came home with more than I planned to buy :))

I don't know what I'm gonna do with this fabric I just couldn't walk pass these colors!
And some pre-cuts (not Moda). I wish we had a Moda store somewhere around.. 

more skirts and quilts (?) to come.. :) X-mas hooray! 

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

I'm in Handmade Highstreet

Some of you might wonder what I've been doing all week. I promised to blog more often but I couldn't deliver. Why? Here's the reason:

My first items to go to a real store! Yay!

I'm soooo excited! Can't wait for the store to finally open! If you live in Brisbane drop by and find some unique handmade goodies! You won't regret!

Check out their page for now: Handmade Highstreet.

Monday, November 28, 2011

Are you nuts?

We went for groceries today and suddenly I had these cravings for some nuts, esp for hazelnut and macadamia.  (We have a macadamia tree in our yard but it's not the season yet) And then I saw these:

Does this feel like Christmas to you? It so does to me! I don't even know why..

I can't remember the last time I had to crack open a nut! I think it was more than 10 years ago! I love it! It's different and much more interesting than just opening a bag and eat ready made ones. Everything that is still in its shell ( be it nuts or seafood or any thing) tastes so much better.
I also bought a bag of ready to eat macadamias but they were a disappointment. I guess our macadamia tree spoiled me :)) Nothing compares to fresh food! 

One more picture taken with Hipstamatic app for iPhone. If you love old day retro photos this is a great app. And it's free ;) I know, my pictures aren't the best advertisement  :P

Perfect loops

Practice makes perfect! That is so true! I can finally make perfect loops! I wasted so many pins mastering this technique! The basic technique in jewelry making! So easy when you know and so hard when you're don't! Just like everything :) I honestly never ever noticed loops or jump rings in the earrings I have. (who does???) I only started seeing them when I started dealing with them :))

So here are my perfect loops

Not perfect enough for you? You should see my first ones! :))

And perfect loops in perfect earrings :D

That's what I made 10' ago. Now all I need is a pair of bronze ear hooks ^.^

Now I'm happy and ready to sleep!

Perfect dreams everyone!

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Decorate your baby's onesie

My husband brought home some new onesies for Summer (He always buy something for her when he's out. Sweet daddy!  <3 ) white, cream and pink! I love babies in white! White makes them look even more like angels!! But  we had so many whites that I decided to color some of them up ;)
Here's the result:

Oooohhh!! So colorful!!! 

All you need is some white onesies or t-shirts, fabric markers and drawing skills of a 5 year old! (well, at least that's what I have :)) 

Markers I used. Crayola for about 12$ from Officeworks. 

And here are the first ones I decorated about 6 months ago (using that same pack of markers)

S for Summer, Butterfly for Girl and I heart Mummy & Daddy :)

It took me 30 minutes with Summer around. I just let her play with the markers. :) 

If you decide to make some cute onesies for your bubby I'd love to see them! 

Have a nice weekend with your family everyone! xoxoxo

Friday, November 18, 2011

Wire wrapped hoop earrings

I saw these type of earrings on the Internet and thought to myself "oh, this looks easy". Well, it's not! Not as easy as I thought but still make-ble ;)
Here's my first one.

It took me 30 minutes, a lot of sweat (ew! its 30 C here and my work station is in our garage!), sore fingers and some frustration :)) But I can still call it a success, right? :))

I think I used the wrong wire :P Next time I'll go for soft.

Beautiful.. :) I like it!
Now the second one..

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Kitty fever

I have to make a goal to blog more. Right now I only blog once a week. I have a lot of things to share but most of the time my thoughts stay in my head and my photos in my camera.. Told you I wasn't born a blogger :))

Anyway, today I finished Hello kitty  birthday present for my Kitty lover friend. I honestly never liked Hello Kitty  I don't know why so many people do :)) Well, I do find her cute, she's definitely cute but I just don't like her character. You can watch some of Hello Kitty cartoons on YouTube to get to know her better :P

Hair pins, ring, earrings, bracelet and a personalized necklace.
Too many kitties? :))

And now packed. Don't you just love this little box? It's from Thailand!

Meow meow..  meow night!

Tuesday, November 8, 2011


Where do people find time to do everything they manage to do?? I wonder..

Anyway, let me share with you what I've managed today.
Little bit of cake:

Russian cake Pancho! It's one of my favourite cakes! I replace Russian smetana with sour cream and it seems perfect. My hubby says this cake tastes like cheesecake but I totally disagree :))
Recipe is from here (in Russian, of course :P) Pancho cake. This is the 3rd Pancho recipe I've tried out. I mopdified it a bit thou. Russian cakes are a bit too sweet for me, so I always put less sugar in and I don't like fruit in cakes.

Little bit of clay:
My polymer clay starter kit has arrived today and this is what I made:

Personalized ear studs! I facebooked them today for my friends and family to order! I think they will make a perfect X-mas gift! So happy!

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Lazy green tea ice-cream

Hello everyone!

I had some busy and stressful days and I kind of lost my balance but I'm sure I will be fine very soon.
The past 2 months have been really busy for me. I was fully occupied with setting up my online shop (well, I still have many ideas and plans running in my head but I try to keep them down) that I haven't been having much time for my daughter. And that CANNOT be good. So that will be changed soon as I'm craving for some crochet and knitting right now :)

And now.. some natural antidepressant - ice-cream!! :P Green tea ice cream is my second favorite (after chocolate. of course!) The first and best green tea ice-cream I ever tasted was from a Japanese restaurant in Moscow, strong flavor, not too sweet and quite bitter. Yeah, I like it bitter, It's green tea - it has to be bitter! That is probably the main reason why I prefer my own green tea ice cream over the store bought ones. Plus, they're not always that easy to find, quite expensive, too sweet and without much green tea flavor.

So all you need is vanilla ice cream and green tea powder. The latter you can buy from an Asian grocery store. Mine is made in Taiwan, bought by my brother-in-law for 12$ (11.49 to be precise :)) ) and it is still half full after six months! That is so much cheaper comparing to store-bought green tea ice-creams ! 13$ for 500ml bucket or 4$ for a tiny scoop?!!

And this is how I do it:

And then I mix:

And then I eat:

It may not look very appetizing but trust me it is soooo yumm!!!

Or you can premake the whole tub to serve it nicely later:

I used a 2 litre Vanilla ice cream tub. Put the ice cream in a mixer, add green tea powder, mix it for a little bit , put it back in the tub and then in the freezer to harden! Nice and quick! The ice cream will shrink in half thou :P And it gets pretty hard but here's the trick: put your ice cream scoop or whatever you use to get ice cream with in hot water before scooping the ice-cream and problem's solved!

Yummy Yum!!!