Sunday, 21 June 2009

Warning, Small bragfest follows

So I finally finished making MaddieGal's pouches, posted them off to sunny California (where the weather has to be nicer than it's been here for the last week) and can sit back and brag about it. I'm thinking of putting together one of those brag books, just so I can carry it round in my handbag & whip it out when somebody wants to show me their kids, dogs, cats, grandkids, small stinky aliens they found in the backyard, whatever. I think it's perfectly reasonable to do this! Anyway, I've built a mosaic over at BigHugeLabs & put it in here for you to enjoy:

I missed out on breakfast this morning with my friend Deb and her two lovely children, because I'm still infected with the filthy cold - and of course I've also infected MWH*, who is not quite so wonderful when he's sick, let me tell you. It's a sure sign that he's sick when he gets up & immediately puts the fire on (at 9.30am) - usually it doesn't go on until about 4.00pm & that's only after we've put extra jumpers, socks and scarves on. I blame his Scottish blood...

Anyway, I now have the most exciting task of sorting out the 2 foot (60cm) high pile of papers acquired over the last year, some of which relate to last year's tax, which I am about to take to the accountant in the vain hope of getting some money from the government... hah!

Think of me kindly, gentle reader, as I may never be seen or heard from again...

*My wonderful husband

Friday, 19 June 2009

From little things...*

So, on Tuesday, when I had to go into town to work, even though I'm on holidays, I treated myself to a new perfume... and the purveyors thereof had one of those 'gift with purchase' thingys going on... (note I didn't say "free gift with purchase"...)

Well, the thing for me wasn't so much what was in the box, but more what it was all delivered in - these three pouches, in pink, coral and white plastic, with contrasting stitching - and I thought, Thank You nameless purveyor of cosmetics and perfume, for giving me the perfect sizes for my next sewing venture - I'm thinking of making a series of these using some fabric from a co-ordinating range, probably not Erin McMorris, only because I'm now dreaming in Wildwood, but maybe something a bit more blue and green.  We shall see.

Now, it's nap time.  I've been fighting an incipient cold all week, and still feel bad enough to be in bed at 9.17am... shocking.

Nighty night!

*Copyright Paul Kelly

Thursday, 18 June 2009

Gone, baby, gone

I am so done! All of the pouches for Lovely Carmen in California are finished!  I've put a couple of nice surprises in the parcel for her (which I will post about after the parcel arrives!), and hopefully she'll love them all - I'm sure she will.

This is probably my favorite:

- it's the world largest pencil case - and it's lined with gorgeous pink & green - which sadly I can't remember the source of...

but it's nice to have them all finished (all 15 of them!) and be able to shut up shop for a week - MWH* & I are off together for a week now - cry havoc and let loose the dogs of whoar!

*My wonderful husband

Monday, 15 June 2009

Holiday? What holiday?

So, at 6.28am, the clock radio switched itself on. My side of the bed, no less. Then the light came one. Ditto. Hmmm. Who's having this holiday, anyway? Then his nibs decides to get up at 7.00am, and by then, of course, I'm wide awake, so I reach for my book, hoping in vain for a cup of tea and toast from the 'working one'.. ha! Get it yourself, you're on holidays. It's no wonder I have the lawyer's number on speed dial. But that's only because he's actually a friend of mine. His. Ours.Anyway, I eventually staggered out of bed at 8.40, only, note you, once I had finished the book. It was good, I must say. My WMIL* lent it to me yesterday & I stayed up very late reading (because I'm on holidays, did I mention that?) and couldn't wait to find out what happened! Of course, I never doubted for a minute that she was innocent... ... ... that might be enough about that. Don't want to spoil it for anybody else!

Other things - little trip off to the stainless steel shop for the carabiners with the ring in them that nobody else in the known universe seems to sell, he had 23 hanging in the shop & I took 20. Didn't want to be greedy.

Also bought some stiff interfacing, they must have used it for wimples & veils in the 11th century, it was so stiff - I made a single pouch with it, but no more. It was so stiff I could barely turn the damn thing inside out - it actually made my hands sore, trying to manipulate it for the corners. I peeled it off the other
fabric I so efficiently ironed it onto this morning & have consigned it to the rubbish bin, to be fallen upon by builders looking for material to shore up falling down buildings, or maybe repair the space shuttle. Waaaaay too firm for me! Anyway, I've fallen back on the pellon & interfacing option, which gives a nice firm finish but is still soft - hopefully that will be okay with Miss Carmen, for whom all this effort was!

Other pieces of effort in the same burst:

And then this:

I have to say I love this combination of grey & rusty brown - I've never considered that they went together in real life before,
especially when you see a middle-aged man with a combover wearing a grey suit & brown shoes, but this definitely does not pop up that mental image! I'm really happy with the combo, and the lining just finishes it off nicely:

Very swish, and for sale, of course, here.

That's it for now, more tomorrow. Holidays are fun!

Friday, 12 June 2009

What a difference a day makes...

24 little hours...

I just finished my 3 1/2 month stint at Parramatta, and said goodbye to some really nice people.  I can't believe the difference in my send-off compared to the last thing I worked on - I'm sad to leave them, I've made some great new friends (isn't it nice to be able to make new friends at my extended age!!!) - and I've enjoyed the culture and the atmosphere.  Shame about the travel, but hey, it's done now...

I just got this in the mail:

How cute is he?  Or is it a she?    I'm thinking the lipstick could be used as an indicator of gender in some cultures, but I don't want to pass any judgements here...  Also, another need for names has now arisen - any suggestions?  Small prize for the best suggestion -and of course my fabulous DSSIL* can join in this one! 

Thursday, 11 June 2009

Going, going, gone...

So, my three and a half months in outer mongolia are up tomorrow, and I have holidays to look forward to, a week at home by myself (with a huge list of chores) and then MWH* & I have a week off together... which should be lovely - Monday we've got two doctor's appointments and a visit to the accountant, Tuesday & Wednesday we're going to Melbourne to see this - Fashion in the time of Jane Austen - at the National Gallery of Victoria - I can't wait!

Thursday is my wonderful Mother-in-Law's birthday, and Melbourne presents the ideal opportunity to get her a gift she'll really like - (she loves art) ... and then Friday we're going to spend time up here:

Can't wait.  Pictures to follow, as achievements register themselves on my horizons!

Sunday, 7 June 2009

Sometimes I'm sooooo lucky!

Lucky for me I was able to dredge up just enough of the 'Modern Vine' lining for Carmen's 5 X 3 X 2, which was the sticking point - if I'd just made it in the wrong colour, it wouldn't really have mattered because I could have just made it again - but I didn't think I had enough to line it - quelle horreur - and then I had another look - it was only 1/8" out, and with the fabulous spreadsheet calculator made by MWH*, I was able to fudge it... and here it is!

Anyway, the lovely Carmen was gracious enough to say "yes, thanks, you are an idiot but I'll take it", which is extremely nice of her - there's been lots of to-ing and fro-ing between us to get these pouches sorted out, and she's going to put a spreadsheet of her own together to keep track of it all. So long as we don't go to a normalised relational database, we're going to be okay!

Also I spent some time today making this for my WMIL*:

I made her one in black & white a while back, and now she's brought me orders from three girlfriends. I've had this gorgeous fabric for a while, not quite knowing what to do with it - but when my WMIL said one request was for 'autumn colours', well! what else could this be! Two more tomorrow, one in Erin McMorris's Park Slope, that gorgeous turquoise Leaf Dot, and the equally gorgeous orange swirl, and the Leaf Dot in Orange.

More, later!

Sometimes I'm sooooooooooo stoooooooooooopid

And other times I'm just brilliant, but yesterday wasn't one of those days! After more consulting with MWH* about the size calculator, I made up the second 5 X 3 x 2 Pouch for my lovely customer Carmen, and it was perfect! Size, shape, everything. Then, last night, I posted it up for sale here, only to have a note from Carmen this morning saying I'd made it in entirely the wrong colour. Damn, damn, damn.

So, of course, now I don't have enough of the lining fabric to make it in the right colour, and as is still the case referred to so fleetingly in my last, somewhat tired and emotional, post, I am waiting for the ship to come in, with my supplies!

Lucky for me Carmen is very kind and understanding, and seems to be holding off on sending round the men with baseball bats, but boy! I am so irritated with myself it's the most I can do to be in the same room. I've also made her a small surprise, but I can't show you pictures because I know she reads this!

On a happier note, my WMIL* has procured orders for me to make not one, not two, but three, yes, count them, three, spectacle cases a la the one I made for her - colours designated but fabrics of my choice! Nice!

Did I mention the size calculator? I'm sure I didn't. MWH has put an excel spreadsheet together which will work out the perfect size fabric to cut for a given finished size of box pouch - so if you want a 5 X 3 X 2, put in those numbers, and it will calculate exactly what size to cut. It also allows you to change the size of your seams, so if you're doing 1/8" seams but want to make really sure of something by doing some zigzag over the stitching, for which you might need a bit more room, you can change the seam size to 1/4", and it recalculates.

Anyway, I made another one of these yesterday, as a bit of an escape from box pouches, and it came out nicely. Next thing will be a handle, I think, or a d-ring, or even a lobster claw? Or both? Whoo, lets go really overboard.

Those Erin McMorris 'Wildwood' fabrics are really versatile - they all seem to go together so nicely. She's pretty clever, isn't she? I must go & check if there's a flickr group for this fabric & I'll let you know if I post anything.

*Wonderful Mother-In-Law
*My Wonderful Husband

Tuesday, 2 June 2009

Big big order!

Well, I just posted off my biggest order to date, to the very lovely Carmen in California - and I'm so pooped!  I've been sewing almost non-stop in every spare minute, I even had to give up domestic chores in order to sew, and that is just so sad :-)...

Anyway, I'm really pleased with how it all came out, but sometimes I get a bit frustrated by the tyranny of distance we suffer from down here - it's really slow (10 days-2 weeks) to get supplies from the States, and I can't get some of that stuff here, so I'm at the mercy of the postal services - and it impacts on the service I can provide my customers... 
but they've gone, and I really hope she likes them!

I also made one of these tonight - it's a pyramid pouch, lined - very cute & easy to make - I'm going to post a blog entry on how to do it on the weekend & I'm going to make some for sale here ...

This is a really terrible photo - I'll post a better one after I've made a couple more.  Cute, huh?