Saturday, 29 September 2012

:: oh how I love Melbourne ::

It's school holidays here in Queensland.  Woooo hoo. 

Family Cat headed to Melbourne for a few days.

We did a heap of great stuff - but in this blogging space, I'm all about the fabric ;-)

Top of my list was Amitie - the super gorgeous fabric shop, and home of all the creations of the super-talented Jen Kingwell.  I'm limited to showing instagram and phone pics, since my camera died a sad death after taking a photo of a meerkat at Werribee Open Range Zoo ... nothing sinister ... it just stopped working and I have to send it to Canon ... apparently.  Phew, lucky I got that meerkat photo ... 

{{it was way better than this photo ... }}
Anyway, back to Amitie:

{{bought the awesome pattern by Jen Kingwell, for the whole alphabet, not just the Live Laugh Love!!}}
Amitie is just such a beautiful shop - seriously gorgeous - and I was so happy to meet Jen as well.  It's all set out in gorgeous colour-blocks, with lots of patterns and notions too.  I meant to go crazy taking pics, but I was a little overwhelmed by the awesomeness.

Jen has designed and made some truly beautiful quilts, including two brand new ones she brought out to show me (almost fainted).  I bought her Green Tea and Sweet Beans pattern, as well as the gorgeous alphabet pattern.  Oh, it was a happy, happy day.

{{I just love that amitie means friendship ... }}
Next was a new discovery, L'uccello.  I saw an ad for it in a Homespun magazine on the plane - I'd never heard of it before.  Good grief, it's an awesome discovery.  Here's just a sneak peek of the goodness to be found amidst its vintage haberdashery shelves:

{{just such a gorgeous shop ... reminded me of Tinsel Trading in NYC}}
There is an online shop coming soon ... 

Next ... could I BE so lucky ... we decided to drive to Ballarat, home of Sovereign Hill, which was the real reason for the drive ... but also ... home to Ballarat Patchwork!! 

{{gah, can you believe the awesomeness!!}}
Ballarat Patchwork is another shop that is just so beautifully set out - all colour-blocked, heaps of fabric-awesomeness, great patterns and gorgeously folded little fat quarters and bits and pieces.   Lots of beautiful quilts too, all made by the gorgeous Emma, who I was lucky enough to meet.  

I just can't believe the sew-ers of Ballarat are so blessed as to have this gem of a shop in their little town.  "Just can't believe", meaning I'm very jealous.  Imagine having Amitie and Ballarat Patchwork as your local quilting shops.  I'd do every class they offered and just never leave ... so perhaps it's really for the best ... 

{{even the door is cute}}
Rounding out the trifecta of fabric-shopping awesomeness was Patchwork on Central Park.  We had been here before, and it is truly gorgeous - they have an amazing range of Liberty and Echino - but I just didn't love it as much as Amitie and Ballarat Patchwork.

This is their gorgeous window. 

So that was Melbourne.  Home of beautiful fabric and vintage haberdashery.

Yes, we did other things, such as shopping at Haigh's for chocolates several times, and also:

{{lots of walking around the beautiful city ... this is Flinders Street station, en route from L'uccello to Napoleon}} 
{{Napoleon exhibition at the National Gallery of Victoria.  Loved it.  Have got pics of my kids posing amongst these letters too ... did NOT love the Chinese man butting in and snapping away taking their photos as well til I started walking towards him ... }}
{{our own private screening of Madagascar III ... seriously, no one else turned up!!  the kids were running up and down the aisles and dancing in front of the screen}}

And now, we are very happy to be home again.  Ted's back from the pet motel - I avoided that little trip thanks to "needing to" immediately collect my machine from its holiday-service at the lovely Patches.

{{sorry about the spider incident, Jenny}}
Let the sewing begin.

happy weekend to you    xoxo cat

Thursday, 20 September 2012

:: from mahusive to teeny tiny ::

After the mahusive zip-pouch sewing effort, it was time to make a couple of tiny zip pouches, for tiny treasures.  

Went with my gut instinct this time, and sewed wrist-straps in:

{{Little Apples girl, Tula Pink birds+bees and ladybirds, and Curly Pops Go Granny II.  And a peek of Out to Sea seaweed for the strap}}
{{all the same fabrics as above, except there's also Anna Maria Horner Lou Lou thi - the x o fabric along the bottom}}
And the backs:
{{Out to Sea seaweed and narwhals, and AMH xo}}
A size comparison ;-D
{{two of these pouches are bigger than the others, tell me now before my song is done}}
And I just couldn't leave the mahusive zip pouches alone ... I waited til after school, so I could double-check I had the go-ahead to add straps, and I was off and racing.  Not the world's best sewing-effort - it was really a bit tricky to wrestle those straps into place after the event ... but they're on, and the pouches will be way more handy as bags, so we're all happy:

{{I made the straps from the awesomeville Tula Pink ladybirds, so they blended in a little.  and because they're awesome}} 
{{and from the backs}}
Last day of a very long 11-week school term for us in Queensland tomorrow.  I almost said "us Queenslanders", but of course, I am not FROM Queensland, so I am not a "Queenslander".  Subtle point, but important for my husband to remember at State of Origin time.  When NSW is winning. Which they haven't been doing for 7 or so years ....  Why am I talking about rugby league .... honestly .... time for wine. 

Vee and I are screen printing tomorrow.  We have super exciting news to share on that front, but not just yet ...

Happy Friday, and happy weekend to you all.    xoxo cat

Tuesday, 18 September 2012

:: the one about the mahusive zip pouches ::

So we had the cute Finn McTrickster zip pouch sitting on the 'photo-taking-sideboard' for a day or so.  Everyone has a photo-taking-sideboard, don't they?  

Over dinner, my kids both said they love the Finn pouch and wanted one of their own.

So.  They chose a Millie Mischief and a Bela Hoo panel, and gave me their colour specifications. 

Millie Mischief: "red, orange, yellow, blue, you know, bright colours.  And a small piece of that Hello Kitty fabric I saw on your table, but not the actual Hello Kitty cat".

Bela Hoo: "more subdued colours, greens, blues, purples.  And a small piece of Hello Kitty. But not the cat.  And maybe an owl".

And the other proviso - do not cut Millie Mischief and Bela Hoo in half, like you did with Finn.  OK.

So now we have two of the world's biggest zip pouches.  That would have benefitted greatly from a strap of some kind.  But the kids love them and that's all that counts ... 

Here they are:
{{Tula Pink ladybirds, Bliss dots, Hello Kitty sun + bird, a panda, and cutey cute Out to Sea mermaid}}
{{they each chose their zipper and twill tape tab too}}

{{Tula Pink across the top and bottom, Out to Sea purple seaweed and narwhal, Hello Kitty rainbow, Alexander Henry owl, a panda, and the word on the left in purple says "books"}}
{{the Bela Hoo pouch is particularly tall and skinny ... }}
And the backs:
{{I had fun putting the backs together}}
On the back of Millie Mischief - a cute orange Alexander Henry mushroom print, and a few things that 'mean something' to her new owner - a fishbowl cos that's the closest she'll get to owning pet fish (ohhh, we are meannn).  An Out to Sea girl lying down reading, cos she loves to read.  And a Little Apples girl hula-hooping cos she loves to run round and play outside.  And a poodle, who vaguely looks like our dog Ted, who is a cavoodle.   Jeepers.  So much meaning packed into the back of one zip pouch.

On the back of Bela Hoo - Tula Pink lady birds (love love love).  A Suze Ultman Critter Country owl, cos she loves owls.  An Out to Sea girl, cos she wants to have adventures.  A Little Apples girl lying down reading, cos that's how she spends half her life.  And her own Ted-poodle.   Phew. 

{{more Tula Pink on the insides - ladybirds from an earlier range. Super dodgy pic, with yes, plastic cups shoved inside the pouches, but hey, it was night-time, dinner was cooking and I suddenly realised  I hadn't taken pics of the lining}}

It's been a while since I made something for the girls to keep, so I was really happy sewing these together.   I think I'll make them a bag each next - pretty much the same sort of thing as these zip pouches, but without the zip, and with straps.  We'll see how they go.

In other news - it rained for about 4 minutes in Brisbane today - so that was exciting while it lasted.     see you,  xoxo cat

Sunday, 16 September 2012

:: what secrets will you keep ::

Ohh happy weekend to everyone, it's been another beautiful one in Brisbane - but we're getting close to 60 days with NO RAIN!! - so we really would like some please.

Thought we'd sew up a little zip pouch from a Finn McTrickster panel - just to show another way you can be sewing with the panels.

The cute crochet-granny-square fabric is by Curly Pops - she has some really gorgeous fabric and goodies - pop across and click on the 'shop' button, we say!

Cute, isn't it. 

Finn is in the shop now.

Hope you've had a great weekend - we're heading into the last week of school term - yahooooo!!  xoxo cat

Friday, 14 September 2012

:: happy sewing day ::

A very happy sewing day today.

I used Elizabeth's excellent refrigerator magnet pattern to make an 'S' zip pouch, as a thank you pressie for an awesome prac teacher at school.  My daughter has loved having her in class all term.

Here is the front:

{{Madrona Road broken herringbone, a grey spot, and Tula Pink ladybirds}}
And the back - can you tell that my new yardage of Madrona Road has arrived!!:

{{Madrona Road text and donkey}}
I bought a little bit more of my Madrona Road favourites from Fat Quarter Shop - the broken herringbone, text (in white and black) and Homestead (with the sweet donkey, truck and barn, and all the gorgeous flowers). 

And here's the inside - a pale blue spot from Sherbet Pips.

Vee and my friend Tracy came over today - she is new to sewing and has been signing up for courses at our local quilt shop, so she's learned a lot very quickly.  She made a really cute zip pouch today - I didn't think to take a pic of the pouch by itself - we're trying to quickly leap past the "fear of the zipper foot" that I had for way too long. 

So happy it's Friday again - the kids have a piano concert early this evening, then it's champagne and loud talking at a local coffee shop/bar.   Have a great weekend   xoxo cat

Thursday, 13 September 2012

:: is this microphone on? ::

We have been all about screen-printing and sewing for the shop lately.  Shop shop shoppity shop. 

We have new ideas bubbling away, and non-shop-sewing waiting to be done.  But for this little while at least, we are all about the shop.

Here are today's Etsy listings ... check 1, 2 ... get your dancing shoes on :

{{Sunshiney Doris Day cushion}}
{{are you singing along yet?}}

{{how about now??}}
We are having fun printing the panels, and then choosing some of our very favourite fabrics to sew into cushions. 

We'll be singing and dancing up a storm ourselves tomorrow night, with a bit of a girls' night planned with a few friends.  There will definitely be champagne and loud talking too.  

xoxo cat

Tuesday, 11 September 2012

:: Pipsqueak goes to the Circus ::

Pipsqueak, looking gorgeous and fiesty in red, thought she'd join the circus ...

How sweet is Pipsqueak looking, surrounded by bursts of colour in a mix of beautiful fabrics.  She is  all set for fun on your lounge.  Or couch.  Or sofa.  

Here's the back - an awesome new Prints Charming for Spotlight print.  The twill tape is from Lilla Lotta on Etsy and tells a little story about a Prince and his dog/s.  We thought Pipsqueak could (pretend to) be one of the beautiful little dogs who managed to escape the picky Prince, and made her way to the circus ... it could happen ...

We'll be uploading Pipsqueak to the shop later today.

Vee and I printed more Home-ies today - including another trial run on printed fabrics.   We are thinking up a few ideas to sew them into - more cushions, maybe a few zip pouches.  And more panels for the shop, so you can sew your own Home-ies creations.

The sun is shining again in Brisbane - which is perfect for the Home-ies flapping in the warm sunshiney breeze - but we've been over a month now with not a drop of rain.  I'm off to get sorted for school pick up and an afternoon of jujitsu.  Actually, I'll be sitting chatting, watching the jujitsu in action.  So much more enjoyable, methinks.  Happy Tuesday.     xoxo cat

Saturday, 8 September 2012

:: Jack Attack fabrics ::

So I caved and bought new fabrics for Jack.

But in my defence, one of our local quilting shops had Tula Pink's Birds and the Bees line, which I love.  A lot.  After seeing it in person, I just couldn't leave it behind.  

So my Jack Attack will be a Tula Pink-a-thon, with a cute sewing text print for the 'white'.  The text print is from my stash, so I've saved a bit of money there ... 

And I'm thinking Tula's white-backed ladybirds could be a 'yes' for the sashing.

Happy weekend to everyone.  It's gorgeous in Brisbane today.  Perfect weather for me to be sitting inside contemplating sewing cushions for my niece's wedding pressie.

xoxo cat

Friday, 7 September 2012

:: Jack Attack quilt along - practice block A ::

The lovely Lynne from Lily's Quilts is hosting a Jack Attack quilt-along.  You may have noticed the big button over there on the right ... or maybe not.

Lynne is a completely awesome quilter and blogger.  She makes amazing, gorgeous stuff, and very kindly and generously shares lots of tips and pics on her blog too.  You'll find a link to her blog down in our side-bar on the right. 

I've joined in with the Jack Attack, along with Vee's and my good friend Tracy (who is blogless, but we'll post her pics here, cos we're super nice like that).  

The Jack Attack is a massive trio of Union Jacks, joined together to make a quilt.

I'm still not 100% decided on fabrics, but Lynne just posted the directions to make Block A, so I've leapt in using:
* a really gorgeous purple Tula Pink print from her Birds and the Bees line 
* a favourite pink Anna Maria Horner Good Folks print
* the awesome black on white text print from Violet Craft's beautiful Madrona Road line.

{{the light's a little bright, but you can imagine the awesomeness of a Tula Pink + Violet Craft + Anna Maria Horner union jack, right?!}}
{{close up.  very happy.}}

Pretty sure there will be Tula Pink's light blue ladybirds making an appearance in another Union Jack, but I'm not sure what else yet.

Lynne's instructions were really clear and easy to follow.  I'm not very experienced in using freezer-paper, so had a bit of a shocker when I peeled it off, with loose threads pulling out along the edges of the fabric.  And there's a little bit of wonk along the top - but nothing that a bit of unpicking won't fix.  

That can wait though, as it's Friday night and I have a date with a glass of wine.  The husband's home early and the kids are in the bath, so 6.00 pm news here we come.  Romantic is how we roll.  

happy weekend everyone   xoxo cat

Thursday, 6 September 2012

:: sold!! ::

Vee and I got together to do some printing this week.  

There are some gorgeous new Home-ies panels in the shop, and some awesome Doris Day panels.  We're working on a Doris cushion for the shop too - we'll post about Doris as soon as we have some pics to show you.

We also tried printing a couple of Home-ies onto different fabrics - branching out from our usual Essex linen.  We uploaded our first cushion - a Finn McTrickster - using this fabric, to the shop this afternoon.

While I was typing this post, Vee texted me to say Finn had sold!!   So here's a look at the gorgeous Finn before he heads off to his new home.  We've printed him onto a fabulous linen/cotton blend called Mello.   
{{so many of our favourite fabrics are in this cushion!!}}

{{Staxx bookshelf fabric by the gorgeous Amy from Pennycandy, via Spoonflower}}

{{Melody Miller record - it says 'Cosmic Tones for mental therapy' - awesomeville!!}}

{{Tula Pink meteor shower, Martha Negley feathers, Melody Miller typewriter}}

{{black/natural Echino cars}}
Our gorgeous Millie Mischief kiss hug pom pom cushion sold today too - she's already in the post and headed for her new home.

So it's back to the sewing for us - we'll be back soon to show you our Doris Day panels, and how fabulous they can look on your lounge.  

Happy nearly-Friday to everyone    xoxo cat

Monday, 3 September 2012

:: sharing the home-ies love ::

Vee and I are a little excited today.  We've finished and listed five new Home-ies cushions!!  

We quickly posted a pic of them all before school pick up this afternoon, but thought we'd pop back with individual photos of them all.

Here they are:
{{the oh-so-cool Finn McTrickster}}
{{oh look, it's bea-hoot-iful Bela Hoo!!}}
{{squeak squeak, it's the super sweet Millie Mischief}}
{{the purr-fectly gorgeous Lisey Meow Meow}}
{{and oh, it's the woof-derfully gorgeous Pipsqueak}}
Aren't they just so sweet and gorgeous?! (even if we do say so ourselves ... ).  

We're printing more Home-ies panels tomorrow, and then it's on to some more sewing ideas.

Happy Monday to everyone    xoxo cat and vee

:: Home-ies just listed ... ::

Racing against the clock for school pick up - but look at what we've just listed in the shop!!!

The complete gorgeous Home-ies range, sewn up into cushions!!!

We would love it if you would go and check the out here .     xoxo cat

Sunday, 2 September 2012

:: Happy Fathers' Day ::

Hope all the Australians out there had a very nice Fathers' Day indeed.  Is it Fathers' Day elsewhere, I'm not sure.

We had a great breakfast out, did a few bits and pieces while we were out, then spent the rest of the day at home.  Very peaceful and relaxing.  

The kids put on a circus in the backyard.  They included a fairly reluctant Teddy in the grand finale.  Perhaps his reluctance was due to confusion over whether today was Easter or Fathers' Day ....

Enjoy the week.      xoxo cat

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