Tuesday, 13 October 2015

Fall Orange

A big, bold, burnt orange flower brooch for Anne.

Did you know that flower brooches are coming back in a big way?

The spring 2016 runways were practicaly strewn with them.
(OK, I may be exaggerating slightly there but, seriously, they were in the big-name shows and they were large, extravagant, beautiful and totally eye-catching!!)

Sunday, 11 October 2015

Sewing Made Easy by Mary Lynch and Dorothy Sara

A while back I promised to share posts of vintage sewing books for anyone who might be interested in the books themselves or just curious to get a glimpse of some vintage-style sewing and fashion.

The New Revised Edition Sewing Made Easy by Mary Lynch and Dorothy Sara, published in 1960 is the very first vintage sewing book that I read and I can't praise it enough!

I'm including all the contents of the book in photos so you can peruse all it offers.
The material it covers is extensive and if you're a novice sewer it's perfect for guiding you along dressmaking, step by step.

It takes you through all the steps needed to make a garment from the getting ready to sew stage which includes buying a pattern, choosing fabric, etc, to all the sewing techniques you will need to put together -a whole range of- garments.

There are styling tips and tricks of the late 1950s - early 1960s included and advice on building a wardrobe according to the particular requirements of the time depending on 
 wether you were a housewife, business woman, teacher, receptionist, salesclerk or hostess.

There's a chapter on taking care of your clothes to make them last longer and look their best, a chapter for remodeling clothes, one for sewing for your family and mending and yet another for making alterations to ready-to-wear clothes.

The chapter on sewing for the home includes how to make curtains, tea-towels, closet accessories, laundry bags and a whole number of fascinating projects for the home.

One of my favourite chapters is the Accessories And Gifts You Can Make one. There's a variety of bags, hats (you can see the turban further down in the photos), dickeys, cuffs, belts, a peplum, slippers and some toys!

Overall, I love this book and cannot recommend it highly enough.
It's just full of wonderful things to make and it gives you all the necessary knowledge of how to make them, all very clearly explained. 

It should be a great book for beginners but also for the more experienced sewer as well as any vintage fashion and/or sewing enthusiast, as it offers all sorts of vintage patterns and instructions for making wonderful vintage items. 

If you're a sewer -of any level- and you've read through the book review, what do you think?
Does it look like a book that has merit at your particular level?
Please share your thoughts.

I'll be posting more vintage sewing book reviews regularly on the blog. 
Please come back for a glimpse of vintage sewing goodness ranging from the 1920s to the 1980s.

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Saturday, 3 October 2015

Birthday Flower

A friend of mine had her birthday yesterday and I wanted to make her a gift.
I've made her flower earrings, a flower ring -or two- and a little flower brooch in the past, so I thought it was time for a flower keyring.

It really is an easy gift as even people who don't like wearing flowers on their person welcome a flower to carry around with their keys.

I loved making this one and I adore the polka dot cotton leaves.
 Did you notice that they are 3 different sized polka dot prints?

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Monday, 28 September 2015

The Magic Of Outdoor Plays

 And just as the summer was preparing its exit, autumn was considering arriving and schools were about to open, we had the good fortune of catching an outdoor children's play* based on a book by the acclaimed Penelope Delta, written and directed by the uber-talented Carmen Rougeri.
It was truly a magical night: the actors were superb, the costumes were utterly captivating, the adaptable set ingenious, the story both highly entertaining and educational and to top it off, the weather was perfect.

I can assure you that a great time was had by all. 

*The story was based on a well-known children's book called Paramithi Xoris Onoma (Fairytale Without A Name) which was first published in 1910 but could have easily been written as a commentary on current events.

Get a glimpse of the play in motion here.

Thursday, 17 September 2015

Bronze Sparrow Necklace

 This is a necklace I made for a friend the other day.

I've found myself being drawn more and more to the antique bronze selections in jewelry lately. So much so that I went on etsy and bought a variety of bronze jewelry supplies.

I haven't made any jewelry for what must surely be a couple of years now but it turns out it's just like riding a bike......After a couple of wobbly paces, it's just like you never stopped!

On my search for the findings that would call out to me, one of the first to catch my eye was a little bronze sparrow suspended in flight! 

I loved this little guy so much I bought multiples. I plan to make a long necklace for myself that will feature this little bronze bird pretty heavily.

It's a safe bet to say you'll probably be seeing more of him.....

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Saturday, 12 September 2015

Blue Organza Ring

This electric blue organza flower ring was a present for a friend.

 She chose blue for the petals and I suggested these large gold beads for the centre which she loved.

It's big and bold and makes quite a statement on her dainty fingers.
She's already worn it and says she got lots of compliments on it....

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Monday, 7 September 2015

In The Mail - Fabric Design!

I've wanted this book for a long time: A Field Guide To Fabric Design by Kimberly Kight.
I can't wait to delve into this!

Saturday, 5 September 2015

Thursday, 3 September 2015

Fairytale Bride

The beautiful Tara, one of my lovely August brides, was kind enough to share some of her dreamy wedding pictures with me.

I was thrilled that she chose to wear this set of flowers from my Fairytale Flower shop on her big day as it's one of my personal favourites.

I love eveything about the bride's styling and I love these pictures!!
Thank you for sharing these, Tara!

Sunday, 30 August 2015

Here Fishy, Fishy!

Here's another toilet paper craft to join our cardboard paper menagerie: freshly caught fish! 

Based on these little fellows who are touring the internet, this version is simpler in that it needs less materials and there is less cutting and glueing involved.

I toyed with the idea of a tutorial for you but these little fish are so simple to make I decided that maybe instructions were more fitting. So I'll just explain how these were made -for the absolute beginners out there.

First draw your fish in pencil on the cardboard tube. 
I start with the line that seperates the body from the head. 
Then I draw two large eyes on opposite sides of the tube. 
I continue by drawing the scales on the body. (It's really up to you what kind of shape you want the scales to be and how they will be repeated over the body of the fish.I really don't think you can go wrong here. Even coloured doodles by a younger child would look great  as scales.)

Then it's time to decide on the colours for the fish and where each will go. (You can see a previous fish in red-orange hues here.)
You can paint them or draw them in a number of ways. You could easily use pencils, markers or paint. 
These are coloured in with coloured markers and then outlined with a black marker.

For the tail, all you need is something that is long and flow-ey. I used colour co-ordinated ribbon on these but I've also used newspaper strips and ribbons cut out of a plastic bag on other occassions.
Use what you have that you feel fits your fish and glue the strips under the cardboard tube so that the glued ends are not visible on the outside.

Your fish is now ready to be strung! 
Make two holes on the head of the fish. I estimate the centre between the eyes, poke a hole with a sharp pencil and then poke another hole exactly opposite the first one.
Find some string -or ribbon- and thread it through the holes, tie it up and your fish is strung!
Congratulations! You've done it!

I turned them into a summer mobile and hung them somewhere the breeze can make the tails flutter and float...

For other kids craft made out of tp tubes (ie toilet paper rolls) you can see a menagerie of animals here and some cheeky toy frogs here.

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Friday, 28 August 2015

Swiftly-Approaching-Fall Tote Bag

 One of my big loves is making bags, even though it seems that I hardly make any any more...

I hardly ever seem to have the time that is needed to plan and then execute a bag.....
So I was thrilled to get to finish this one, just in time for the fastly approaching fall!

 It's actually darker than the pictures suggest, making all the different colours blend in much more nicely than they do in the pictures.

And I'm thrilled that it's finished just in time to enter the Super Online -Community- Sewing Match over at Sew,Mama,Sew!

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Annemarie's Haakblog

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