I have been back at the machine making stuff this week. And it feels good! I am itching to get back to making bags – it has been too long – but for now I have been working on more baby accessories to meet demands in the Shop Handmade.
A couple of weeks ago I starting playing with sewing plastic to make waterproof bibs. Many hours, and frustration later I realised that I needed a different approach.
Crooked bias binding, uneven stitches, lots of swearing, and slipping layers……
And of course the answer was simple – use the laminated cotton that I already have! Doh!
Would have been better if I had looked at the direction of the pattern when I was cutting it out!
So a series of waterproof bibs, with soft bamboo lining so that they are still comfortable for a baby to wear, are now stocked in Shop Handmade. And I have made a few with pockets on the bottom.
I remember thinking that pockets on bibs were weird, until I had my own children and realised how handy they can be for little ones to scoop out the dropped biscuit, grape, spaghetti, etc that they have dropped! (Good thing these are washable!)
I suspect that I didn’t share with you the other product I made for the Shop a few weeks ago – hot water bottle covers and heat packs. (Well, it is almost winter you know!)
This week a customer asked for a set of hand-warmers as a gift for a traveller, so I had fun playing with a design for these. You know me – they couldn’t just be plain!
I have also been working on some more nappy change mats to restock in the Shop. Loving all the bright colours!
I am also a little bit chuffed to be the featured designer on the Handmade Canberra website this week.
Now to get back to the machine!! I hope that you are having a productive week.
My determination to return to blogging more regularly was severely dented when my site was hacked recently. Luckily I had friends to turn to for immediate short term help, and was then able to employ a company to finish the clean up. I hadn’t realised though how it had affected my blogging until I looked at where I was up to in sharing photos of my projects. As a result be prepared for lots of photos!
There have been some turbulent times here in the nest, which hasn’t helped with my focus. The chicks’ father has had some changes in his life that have impacted on our tenuous ability to communicate about the children, so much of my energy has been consumed in trying to wade through that murky mess. The good thing to come of this is that I needed to be creating for therapy, so have made a few things I am quite proud of!
The first step was making up some freezer paper stencilled bags, and some heat packs, to stock in Shop Handmade.
Next was taking the wallet prototype and factoring in all the advice I was provided through my Facebook questions. As a result I have a design that I am quite happy with! These are made with ‘fused leather’, which is real leather bonded onto a rayon backing – it makes it lovely to work with and has a gorgeous soft feel to it. I have been using a bag that I made from it for a few months now and it is showing no signs of wear, so I think these wallets should have a good life in them!
I also managed to make seven superhero capes as an order for a friend who needed them for an office team exercise. The delight with which they were received and donned (I love an excuse to use that word) was beautiful. They even had their CEO put one on and she insisted on wearing it back to her office on another floor! I commented on Facebook that it is amazing what a piece of fabric and some imagination can do to lift your day!
My other creative challenge has been to take part in an Instagram photo-a-day challenge coordinated by the very lovely Jess van Den from Create and Thrive. The title is ‘a month in the life’ and it is designed to showcase our lives, processes and inspirations as creative people. I am really enjoying participating, and finding new creative people to learn from and enjoy. If you are an Instagram user I encourage you to do a search under #ctmonthinthelife and see some of the beautiful images being shared!
For now here are my first 15 out of a possible 16. (Number 6 was ‘action’ so I made a video that appears after the photos!)
1. Work space
2. Hands (deleting lines of malicious code)
3. Work in Progress.
4. Raw Materials. (these arrived that morning, new from the Cotton and Steel collection – loving them!)
5. Sketchbook. (I don’t really have a sketchbook, just piles of paper covered in scribble and numbers!)
9. You (well – me!)
10. Inspiration. (Bright fabric gets me every time!)
11. Assistant. My three chicks help me in everything I do, and are my motivation to succeed.
12. Favourite. This is my favourite place to be – in my sewing room, in the sun, making stuff.
13. Post Office (at my local shops).
15. Rest. The recent trip to Hawaii was definitely taken with the concept of not always working.
16. View – the sunset shot I see every night out my back windows, looking out towards the mountains.
This is me in ‘action’ folding the internal pockets of a wallet I was making.
In other creative adventures I have been making padded iPad covers (check out out the details on the ‘willow print fabric’!)
My final photograph is a bragging mother moment. The artist-in-residence (my 9 year old daughter) had a painting that she did at school selected to be included in an exhibition designed to highlight art in public schools. She had painted a dingo, and her painting is seen behind the speaker opening the exhibition (and immediately above the head of the artist herself!) in the picture below. That was very exciting, but even more exciting is the fact that her school has been approached with a request from someone who wants to buy the painting! I will now negotiate with the potential purchaser and then the artist-in-residence will decide whether she wants to sell or not. If that wasn’t exciting enough, another piece of her art, a drawing of two gang-gangs (native birds that are the emblem for our area) has been chosen to launch an art competition, and will appear in the newspaper next week. To say that she is proud and excited is an understatement!
While this post just skims the surface of what is happening in the nest, I hope that you have enjoyed the pictures! I will be posting again soon as part of a series on ‘why I write’ that I have been nominated for, so stay tuned!