Thursday 20 August 2020

Teacher To-Do list on Redbubble

I've been playing around with RedBubble, bringing some of my designs across from Society 6.

Here are some mugs!

The ever popular correction bag.

Tuesday 28 July 2020

Covid19 Fabric Masks

I've been busy making fabric masks for friends and family.

It has been interesting few weeks, pulling the Konstant Kaos materials out of their hiding spaces and using beautiful fabrics that I have been hoarding for many years.

There are lots of mask patterns, but I have gone for the two piece "streamlined" masks with an inner lining and pocked for a filter.

Each time I make a batch I change a little thing, refining the pattern a little bit more or the process.

I tend to make a stack of "insides" and then a stack of outsides and then have one evening where I put them all together.

The process has made me itchy to start making the beautiful bags and fabric pouches that I used to love making. I love working with the fabric and creating a smart looking end product, with of course my branding on it.

Tuesday 14 January 2020

Bushfire Blocks: Quilting for Charity

I received a message from a friend about the bushfire blocks that the Wollongong Modern Quilt Guild are putting together. It seems doable and something that I can do!

Here is what they have posted as inspiration!

"Wollongong MQG are asking for "tree blocks" as they are symbolic of life, nourishment and regrowth. There is no restriction to one type of tree block. Feel free to improvise. The below quilt blocks have been designed and supplied for inspiration, but please feel free to use your own tree-based ideas and colours."

"If you would like to help, please make a tree block of a generous 12.5 inch square using a low volume / white or pale grey background. Once completed please send to:

Wollongong Modern Quilt Guild
PO Box 54
Jamberoo, New South Wales 

We are going to distribute the quilts made to the families who have lost everything.

We would like to ask that blocks be mailed for arrival by the end of February. We thank you in advance for your support."

I did a bit of hunting and found some more ideas for tree blocks that you might want to consider ...

From gathered

I found this one on Pintrest, but couldn't find the original source.

Here is another paper patched block, you could do one design per block for the challenge.

Or if you want to show the love, a hearts and hands tree.

I've also been thinking that this is a very "Curlypops" initiative and it made me reflect on the hottie challenge that I did years ago. It is coming up to the one year anniversary of Cam dying and I still see her everything crafty that I do.

"What would Curlypops do?" she would make as many quilt blocks as humanly possible for this challenge.

Good luck with the challenge.

Monday 30 December 2019

Surviving Christmas

I'm rather glad that Christmas is over. It isn't so much the material build up that bothers me but the social expectations that are rammed down your throat by media and advertising. The visions of kids opening their presents, getting excited by meeting Santa.

Having a boy that has a disability makes the Christmas experience very different for us and not one that I am totally at ease with. For his sister, there are the usual gifts and revelry. But for Nicholas, it is just the same day as yesterday and so long as he has water, cookies and iPad he is happy with the world. It is hard to plan a "special Christmas" when there is no excitement in receiving a present; no curiosity, no engagement.

The upside is that there is no arguing over what to wear or what gifts to get. For Nicholas we got him practical gifts.

A cordless hair clipper.

It doesn't sound like much, but the trips to the hair dressers have gotten painful. He doesn't like the sound of the clippers or the sound of the salon. Screams, pinching and biting are normally part of the experience for us as we try and make the experience as painless as possible using iPads and cookies as a hook to get him to cal down. After reading an article on Finding Coopers Voice, we decided to bring the experience home. If we do it often enough he will get used to it. The first time we used the clippers we still had screaming, pinching and biting (broken skin). But at least it wasn't in front of a salon full of people wanting "me time" by getting their hair done.

Social Stories, I hear you yell out! Nicholas isn't cognitively strong, so social stories don't have the impact that you would hope for. Believe me we have tried many strategies; we know our son and how he reacts to things.

So I am glad that Christmas is over and done with and that we didn't over buy for Nicholas things that he wouldn't play with or destroy.

Sunday 10 November 2019

National Novel Writing Month

I've been busy this month doing NaNoWriMo, National Novel Writing Month.

The write club that I work with at school has ten girls interested in writing stories for NaNoWriMo and they have committed to writing 3,000 by the end of the month. I've been doing entries over at my teacher librarian blog.

I, however, have committed to the 50,000 (of course). Not sure if I will get there but I am going to give it a try. I have a few ideas for my story, so lets see if I can get there.

But that doesn't mean that I am not creative. I've been busy making little quote cards for the students that they can use as inspiration to keep writing and of course button badges.

Tuesday 8 October 2019

Making your own book weight

A friend has this beautiful leather book weight that she uses when she has to power read though a book. In lieu of one, I used my grain filled heat pack to keep the pages open as I was ploughing my way through the Margaret Attwood book, "The Testaments", last week.

But here are some crafty alternatives if you have a spare afternoon.

Simple Book Weight
Martha Stewart has a simple pattern for a book weight to keep her cook books open.

Book Weight Carrot
I love this idea and I can see it being done in lovely patchwork fabrics in orange and green.

Book Bone

This is a pattern for a soft toy bone. But simply replacing some of the filling with weights, would make it into a lovely Book Bone to hold your pages open.

Once you start looking at soft toy patterns there are so many possibilities. Bendable snakes, Sea Horses or little starfish as weighted objects to keep your book pages open. If you are not in a crafty mood you can buy a soft toy and open it and fill it with weights.

Tuesday 6 August 2019

Foxy Four Patch Baby Quilt (Part 4) Quilting and Binding

It took me ages to settle on the quilting method for this baby quilt. I tried some quilting samples using the machine, but wasn't happy with how it looked.

I wanted to go for something more delicate and "handmade" looking.

After unpicking lines of machine stitching and lamenting over my strategy, I found some Sue Spargo Embelishment Perle threads at Honeysuckle Patchwork in Bendigo and a beautiful orange gingham backing fabric.

A sample line of top stitching cemented my thinking and some tailors chalk kept me on track.

Really happy with how the stitching looked. I opted not to go through every square vertically, but I did every horizontal line of stitching. I liked the way that it looked.

Binding was done with orange home spun. I sew a 2.5 inch width strip of fabric (folded over so that it is 1.25 inches in width) sewn to the edge of the quilt and then I hand stitched around the edge of the quilt. I am hopeless at doing binding corners, so I just do one side at a time and try and make it look as neat as possible. I like the heaviness of the jelly roll strip binding.

The quilt has now been washed, pressed and gifted and it awaiting the arrival of it's new human!

Moving onto the next project!

Wednesday 31 July 2019

How to make Harry Potter Wands

It is Harry Potter day on Wednesday 31st July and the daughter and I decided to make some wands for the display in my School Library (Learning Commons).

What you will need:
  • Sandpaper
  • Old Chop sticks or twigs from the garden. Make sure that they are nice and dry.
  • Glue Gun
  • Glue
  • Primer
  • Paint (acrylic)
Step 1:

Make sure that your chop sticks are nice and clean, just run some sandpaper over them to take off any rough edges (or left over food).

Step 2:

Using the glue gun, start to built up the shape of your wand. Once you have applied the glue, dunk it into a tumbler of cold water to set the glue and then move onto the next wand.

Step 3:

One the wands are dry again, prime them with a base colour, we chose black.

Step 4:

Once the prime colour is set, use acrylic to dry brush your colours onto the wands. We used some acrylics that we got from the cheap $2 shop.

Step 5:

If you want, you can coat your wands in clear lacquer to protect the paint.


Wednesday 26 June 2019

Vintage Test pattern

Doesn't this just look like a quilt pattern crying out to be constructed!

There are some other great pictures on this site as well!

If I have a spare hour, I might work out pattern components.

Who would be interested?

Tuesday 25 June 2019

Foxy Four Patch Baby Quilt (Part 3) Border Sash

The next section to the quilt top is to decide how you want to sash or border your quilt.

Different colours or combinations will create different effects. An orange border will make the orange patches jump out in a different way to having a grey border.

You can sash the patchwork in the same colour, but I've opted to give each corner a small 2.5 inch square.

Sewing the sash

Sew the sashes onto the opposite sides of the quilt.

Then prepare a sash to be sewn to the top and bottom of the quilt. Getting the seams to line up might be a little tricky.

When attaching the top sash, I don't fully sew attach it. I use the iron to work out where the seam will be and then I trim and sew the corner square in place.

One the corner square is on the sash, finish attaching the rest of the sash to the quilt.

Voila! A finished four patch baby quilt.

Time to think about how to quilt it!