Monday, 23 May 2011
I love photography, and on the first day of 2011 I began the 365 Project. The challenge is to take a photo every day for an entire year, although with all the sewing I have been doing lately I have become very slack with it. I do still take my DSLR most places with me so as not to be caught out without a camera if a photo opportunity arises, and I have developed a bad habit of just throwing my beloved camera into my handbag with nothing more protecting it than a plastic bag. So last night with some time on my hands I finally got around to another project I have been meaning to do, a little padded bag for my Nikon, small enough to put into my big handbag, but nice enough to use on its own with space for a phone and purse if I am just popping out quickly. I didn't want it to look obviously like a camera bag, or as chunky and boring as one of the conventional black camera bags either.
I made it out of African kitenge with chocolate minky lining. For protective padding I used a layer of thick polar fleece in between the layers. I added a small pocket inside to hold spare SD cards, which is large enough to hold the lens cap while I am shooting. I had been thinking about all sorts of ways to enclose the bag, from using a zip, or a large flap with velcro, but I decided the handiest way was to make a drawstring which when pulled closed would form an ideal strap for carrying. I am thinking now though that I could have made the strap longer with a padded section in the centre for shoulder comfort, as I prefer to wear bags across my body rather than just hanging off my shoulder, but this one I made with the intention of putting inside my large tote bag so it's perfect for that.
Wednesday, 18 May 2011
I have had lots of people asking if I make Pram Snuggles for older babies. I have had a design in mind for a while now but just not enough time to sit down and do it. But today after replying to an email and having to say that no, my Pram Snuggles probably won't fit an 18 month old, I found some motivation, and put aside the housework to find the time to make one up and see if my idea would work.
The main problem I found was the length. For it to fit an older baby or toddler the bottom would have to be quite a bit longer than normal. The problem with that is it would touch the ground when open, and could get caught up in the pram wheels. So what I did was made it longer, but I folded the bottom up and joined the front and back together forming a pocket, kind of like a sleeping bag bottom. The pocket doesn't go all the way up, just enough for it to stop it from touching the ground when it is opened up (you can see what I mean in the photo to the right). I have made it the same length as my foot muff/cosy toes attachment on my stroller which leaves a lot of growing room for my seven month old.
Even with the bottom sewn up it still functions as a blanket, not a sleeping bag. They are easy to use: First, place the pram snuggle into the pram, then pull the harness straps through the holes and secure the Velcro tabs. Then sit baby in pram as normal, making sure their feet are inside the pocket (if their legs are long enough, that is!). The side flaps then fold over in front of baby. Bring the bottom section up, wrap around their lap and tuck in so that they are sitting on the wings of the bottom section, securing it with their weight. Being a blanket, it can easily be loosened if baby gets too warm.
I will be making these to order, in a limited fabric selection. I still need to work out a price for these - I will be able to do this once I decide on which fabrics will be best to use.
Wednesday, 4 May 2011
I have been seeing cute little fabric yoyos everywhere lately, from hairclips and hats to t-shirt embellishments. I have heard that people used to make whole quilts out of them! I learnt to make them about ten years ago, and thought I'd share. They are so easy you don't even know how to sew, and you don't need a sewing machine.
1. You need: a piece of fabric, something round (I used a tea cup which gives a pretty small yoyo), a pen, a pair of scissors, and needle and thread.
2. Trace around your round thing with a pen
3. Cut out your circle
4. Take your threaded needle, and tie a knot in one end. With the fabric the wrong side up, turn the edge over and straight stitch, turning the fabric edge down as you go. Try not to make the stitches too small, and it's ok if they aren't exactly even.
5. When you have stitched all the way around, take the thread and gently pull so that the fabric gathers and the hole closes.
6. Tie both ends of thread together, then flatten out your yoyo.
And you're done! You can do different sized yoyos and stack them (just stitch through the middle to keep them together), or stitch a button to the top to make a little flower like I did with this one.
Monday, 2 May 2011
I have had a lot of new fans on my facebook page lately, so just thought I'd explain a bit about my business. I started making Pram Snuggles after talking to a friend about the trouble of keeping babies wrapped nice and warm while in a pram. I then made up a trial blanket, changed it a bit, tried out some different fabrics, and the Pram Snuggle was born! A Pram Snuggle is a specially shaped, very warm and snuggly pram blanket with universal harness holes that will fit any three or five point harness system in any pram, car seat or bouncer. Having harness holes means baby can be snugly wrapped while safely secured.
Pram Snuggles are simple to use!
1. Undo the velcro tabs and place your Pram Snuggle in a pram, car seat or bouncer
2. Pull the harness straps through the holes, secure velcro tabs
3. Place baby in as normal, wrap side wings around baby, then bring the bottom part up and tuck into sides around your baby and under their bottom.
A Pram Snuggle is just like a blanket, so it will be held in place by tucking it in around and under your bub, but unlike a blanket, it won’t fall out of the pram.
The total length is approx 120cm. It is 60cm from the centre harness (the buckle that comes up between the legs) to the end of the blanket, this part folds up and tucks under bubs bottom so that their weight secures it, so the bottom part (from seat to feet) will be about 35cm when folded up.
Pram Snuggles are hand made so care should be taken with them. They can be cold gentle machine washed.
Sunday, 1 May 2011
Just thought I'd share my latest creation.. this is Twiga, and he is a giraffe made from one of my Tanzanian kangas. I have just listed him on my madeit.com.au store, but I'm not sure if I'll have much interest in it as it's a completely different style to most of the other baby toys out there, but he was fun to make anyway. I also made a little person and an elephant, and also another elephant for my baby. I just love working with these fabrics!