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New fabric

4 May

I couldn’t resist this cotton fabric the other day: it was half price, printed with my fave colours green and red, with charming birds and flowers. 

So I came away with the last 2 metres and a sewing magazine featuring a free Capri Pants pattern.  I’ve been wanting to make Capri Pants for a while now so pounced on that magazine,  but I’m not too sure now…I am afraid of sizing up, getting it wrong and wasting this beautiful fabric!  Not sure whether to make something simpler – maybe that scallop-edged 1940’s inspired skirt from The Pictorial Guide to Modern Home Needlecraft p. 62; but I would shorten it to above-the-knee. 

Capri Pants OR Scallop Skirt: Does anyone have any thoughts on this?

Photos below of the Scallop Skirt – – – Enjoy :p

1940's Scallop Skirt

I’m going to put these photos – and the others of the Scallop Skirt – on my web site in the next few days so you can see them large 🙂

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Here are the large photos of the 1940’s Scallop Skirt page – – –

Soft Toys To Sew

19 Jan

Soft Toys To Sew – – – A Book Review

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This soft toy making book by Sheila McGraw arrived in next to no time, excellent delivery from this particular seller.  And this bumper softback book is a definite pleasure to look through, jam packed full of many toys – photos, step-by-step project instructions with illustrated pictures, and pattern templates that need enlarging on a photocopier. 

Projects include Easy Creatures; Kissy Fishy (big lips!); Party Animal; Caterpillar; Teddy; Monster; P.J.Birdy; Buzzard; Lazy Dog; Super Pig; Firefly; Crocodile.

There is useful advice on pattern layout; cutting; sewing; care – regarding working with all kinds of fabric: plush, stretch velour, stretch fleece and textured nylon.  How to make eyes, noses, and all about fillings.

Children of all ages need the comfort of an enduring and ever present love-object.  Psychologists and educators tell us that children need to nurture as well as to be nurtured.  Encouraging tenderness and affection in a child is now recognized as a prerequisite to bringing up healthy, independent, well-adjusted adults.  In other words, everyone needs to act out their tender side; everyone needs their hugs.  And everyone loves to hug a soft toy. – Sheila McGraw

Yep, “everyone loves to hug a soft toy”, even us adults 🙂

 You can check out other reviews on this book here.

Soft Toy Books

16 Jan

I’ve ordered a couple more soft toy books: Soft Toys to Sew by Sheila McGraw; and a 1953 copy of Decorative Soft Toy Making by Enid Edwards

I spent a couple of hours researching the net with what was on offer and found it rather difficult deciding on a book due to the lack of customer / reader reviews and absence of photos of book covers and / or of examples of projects.  What I found really annoying is that the online stores and  the traditional, physical stores of the same bookstores and supermarkets do not tally!  For example if I find a book online, how can I be sure it will be available for me in their traditional store?  Of course some traditional stores have phone numbers where you can ask if they presently have that particular book, or you could order it for collection – but then who needs that hassle?  You may as well just order from the online store.  Also, the special offers and prices are not the same.  My particular problem is that I have a (paper) gift coupon (Christmas present) and so need to shop at the physical store.

Anyway judging from positive reviews and liking the photos of what I saw I decided upon those 2 aforementioned books.  I can’t wait!  I will definitely let you know what I think of them.

Regarding the Softies book by Therese Laskey I was overjoyed: just take a look at my Maple Tree to know how impressed 😉   Many projects I loved while a few I thought ugly or even distasteful (but this is very subjective, all down to personal choice isn’t it).  And having such a broad range of modern soft toys is indeed a good thing as it promotes experimentation and imagination 🙂 

The Splendid Soft Toy Book is a goody too, with several and varied projects – – – LOVE the giant ladybird!  I found this book in my mum’s craft room 😛

Other books under consideration include: Creative Soft Toys to Sew by Creative House; Easy to Sew Playful Toys by Debra Quartermain; and, Soft Animals A to Z by Carolyn Vasburg Hall.  Either good condition, secondhand, or new (at a competitive price!).

As for the gift coupon I’ll have to make another trip into town 😉

Know of any soft toy books you would recommend?  Would love to hear from you 🙂

Making Soft Toys

30 Dec

Because of living with chronic pain and unable to do much physically, and needing to keep sane(!) I started stitching.

My embroided design of Ladybird Mum and Child, inspired by a 1920's style metal ladybird - - - 2009

I started with fat quarters printed with all kinds of designs and made cushions.  I even made a special cushion, a kind of scrapbooking technique of applique and x stitch; a gift for my cousin.

Scrapbooking kind of cushion for my cousin.

I X stitched (cross stitched) a lot, something I used to do in my mid 20’s (I am a late starter to stitching, never had the confidence until that point!) and started creating my own designs.

One of my X stitch designs, stitched up: Baby Tortoise. (You can find the free pattern on my blog).

I also made / make bags

A knitting bag I made for an online friend in a craft swap.

My Hermann tortoise, Daisy Elizabeth inspired me into making many soft toy tortys!

The First Soft Toy Tortoise I made, 2007

But I didn’t just create tortoises, I made a dog (Chester the Jack Russell is behind that one I think), dolls, assorted sea creatures, zombie and bunnies.

Floral Scotty Dog, 2009

A few of my Soft Toy creations are for sale at The Little Log Cabin, here – – – and soon here.

For those of you interested in having a go yourself at soft toy and doll making I searched the net and came across this free fun tutorial by Octavia.

Make toys like Octavia

More Interesting Links for Soft Toy Making – – –

Materials for making soft toys at Fred Aldous (for UK residents)

More inspiration (and differing styles) from… Louie Louie Bebe ; and, Salley Mavor ; and, Kitty Pink Stars.

Perhaps the most famous antique collectors’ toys, Steiff (UK).

I’m so excited, will be getting this book any day now! 😛

For sale @ The Little Log Cabin

Christmas CupCaking!

3 Dec

A couple of days ago I received from my parents a * very broad hint * 😉 in the guise of CUPCAKE MAGIC, little cakes with attitude, a book by Kate Shirazi.

This book is full of inspirational photos and great for beginner cake bakers and the more experienced alike.

I’m especially interested in making the glitter roses – – – and have a couple of ideas of my own for other Christmas themes. I’ll be adding photos of my own cupcakes here soon…..

Cover a cheap diary

7 Nov

Always being frugal and trying to recycle what I can, I bought a cheap pocket diary for next year (2010) and covered it in some beautiful Japanese flower fabric.

All you need to do is lay the fabric out flat with the opened diary on top and cut round all sides leaving a margin of 1.5 cm. Glue down the edges of one side first, remember to snip little cuts top and bottom so the fabric is able to bend and fold over that page – – – and repeat with the other side.

You are then finished with a customised beautiful looking diary…no one need know it cost under £1 plus fabric scrap! 😉




Nope you're not reading mine...

DC Comics for sale

31 Oct

Christmas is nearing and maybe you have a Superman or Batman fan in your family…my fiance is selling his entire collection (almost 1000 DC comics)
Some are on ebay auctions, some via his blog (click on the link for more info).
Comics are in perfect condition and shipped to most countries from Canada. More comics for sale will be added to his blog, so keep checking back 🙂