Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Lucianne teaches the art of Quilt Making!!

I learn to make a simple quilt.

I love learning new things from people who really know their stuff!

As part of the Golden Hands education program Lucianne and I got together to learn the art of the quilt.  She has made some amazing quilts over the years which will be heirlooms forever.

We started with some fabric which we cut up using a fabric cutting roller and a big ruler.  We used a simple squares pattern with complimentary fabrics.

We arranged the squares on the floor until we liked the "randomness" of the pattern.  Then we sewed them into strips and then sewed the strips together to form a big square.

 Here is a close up of the fabric.  It is so sweet.  Little mice riding bikes with cupcakes in the trailers!

Then we picked a border to frame the quilt.  We chose pink and brown which worked well with the colours in our fabrics.  Lucianne cut the strips and sewed them onto the big square of little squares.

Lucianne has backed the front piece with wadding and a backing sheet and has quilted the quilt and bound the edges.  So much to learn still but it was so much fun.  We will offer the quilt to our kids school for the dinner dance auction!!  I'll keep you posted on how much it fetches!!



off to cut strips.

 Miss G x 

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Golden Hands - Inaugural Meeting 17th Feb 2011

We had so much fun yesterday when five Golden Hands members got together for an excursion with crafty intentions!  

Pia, Bel, Lucianne and I met at Flashback in Northcote  ..... what a treasure trove of vintage and modern vintage fabrics and wall paper!  A great mix of colours, patterns, textures and inspired furnishings (lampshades in luscious fabrics!).  We looked, we touched, we drooled.  We left empty handed but I'm sure we'll be back when we have some projects in mind for the wonderful textiles we saw!!


We then headed across to GJ's Discount Fabrics and perused the three levels of spangly leotard fabrics, sheer organzas, thread, buttons and gorgeous patchwork fabrics.  We met Adriana there after spotting her across the road and yelling out of a second storey window!  Funny.  I bought some cute fabric (owls and stripes) and Lucianne bought some amazing fabric for what will be a stunning quilt!  Very impressed with the array of fabric, how it was organised and the service provided.  We are going there again, for sure!

Lunch was had at Vege 2 Go at 452 Lygon St. YUM!  The kids had a great play and the food was lovely!  

All round what a great day we had!  Thanks Girls!!  We hope to meet again at Lucianne's place for a quilting workshop!  Bring your projects!  More details soon!

happy crafters!
x Miss G

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Public Displays of Crafting

I took my son to his Leaping Lizards class today.  This is an hour of play based activity which helps to improve fine and gross motor skills.  The girls who run it, Sandy & Helen are amazing in how they teach, what they teach and their ability to remember everybody's names!

For me its an opportunity to zone out for an hour.  Today I took my crochet hook and yarn so I could keep going with my Afghan rug squares.  It was a new group today. I didn't know anyone so once James was settled I took out my stuff and started.  It was really awkward to begin with.  Not sure how it would be received and was feeling a bit self conscious about it all.  Anyway, as the moments went by I started really enjoying what I was doing and where I was - I could listen to the hubbub of the room without necessarily feeling out of it and not feeling obliged to join in any of the conversations.  I completed about 3 squares in the time I was there (with the occasional look through the window to check that James was behaving).
Right at the end, a girl came up and said "Not sure if you overheard our conversation, but my daughter wants me to make her a crochet rug and I don't know how to crochet."  We introduced ourselves and I said I would bring in some extra hooks and yarn next week and I would teach her the basics (all I know) in the hour we had at Leaping Lizards.  Rapt.  I discovered that PDC's (public displays of crafting) can be contagious!

So get out of the closet!  If you catch public transport, are waiting for an appointment or taking your small ones to activities get out your latest project and get into it.  Who knows we could have an epidemic on our hands!

x Miss G

Monday, February 7, 2011

169 Granny Squares = Fire & Brimstone

I love crochet.  I didn't know this until about a month ago when I decided I would teach myself how.  I pulled out some books, looked at some tutorials on You Tube and got out hook and yarn.  My little knotted masses of crap started to take shape as the concept of crochet turned to reality.  I've always loved stuff made out of granny squares.  It reminds me of the 70's when I was a kid and I like to be reminded of the 70's (that's a whole different post!).  I thought I would make a rug out of granny squares.

I found some colours I like in my little stash of yarn and started making them. The first few were a bit weird but they started to come together quickly and I found myself relaxing more and more with each one.  This was the desired effect.  Fun, relaxing and productive - why can't all work be like that?

As soon as I had a few done I laid them on the floor to see how many I would need .....  

I love these colours - they do remind me of fire with the soft grey reminiscent of the ash that camp fire leaves behind.   It looked ok but then I realised something was missing.  It needed a colour to bind it all together when I joined the squares to create the finished product.  BLACK! Of course!

So I crocheted a black round on each completed square and things started to come together.  Each square measures 13cm x 13cm and I worked out I would need 169 squares for a 1.3m x 1.3m rug.  Needless to say I have a bit of work to do until I get there but winters a little way off! 

 I now have to work out how to join them and I am sure there is a handy tutorial out there in etherspace explaining the ins and outs of connecting a bunch of isolated grannies into a bright, warm community!

Happy Crocheting! x

Project 2011 - The Year of Living Creatively

I've taken the year off work. A whole year to hang out with the boys and be around for their first year of kinder and Grade 3. The challenge is to keep my mind occupied and improve my basic craft skills while at the same time not spending money. I've been a bit of a bower bird over the last few years - collecting wool, knitting & crochet needles, sewing bits and bobs, fabric, jewellery making doodads - so I reckon I have enough stuff in the house to keep me busy for a while!

I have a few projects on the go - an afghan rug which is going to be very warm - its called Fire and Brimstone. I taught myself to crochet about a month ago and this project has been a fun intro. I am making a few squares every day and I only need another 100 or so before I can join it all together ....

I keep promising myself that I will make pants. Pants for everyone! Green, baggy, comfy pants for those rare yet wonderful pyjama days on school holidays!

I made a hat yesterday which was fiddly but fun. It was a pattern from Pip Lincolne's Book Sew, La, Tea, Do. I had the denim fabric in my stash - I think I bought it from an op shop years ago and the tulip fabric is patchwork fabric from Spotlight. The instructions in the book were very easy to follow and turned out much better than I thought my limited sewing skills would allow. Its all lined and everything.

This is my first blog ever - what fun! I will be coming up with more projects, showing things on the go, things that I've finished, and things that I want to make. I am looking forward to a year of living creatively. Miss G

Project – Built by Wendy dress

Hi all! I thought I would make a little test post so you can see how we could be using this blog.

I made this dress in late 2009, mainly because I was dying to start a project while I was sick at home and going out of my mind with boredom (I like to keep busy).

I found the pattern on the Built by Wendy site (Style#BBY-3835 - Misses top and dress pattern). I like to buy patterns that have more than one style that I can make. Although once you cut the pattern it can be hard to make the other styles because they often require a different cut.  There are lots of really cute (and pretty cheap) patterns on Built by Wendy. I actually bought it even cheaper on ebay!

I got the fabric from Salvos in Victoria St, Richmond. I was suffering from an obsession with checks/plaid and clearly this obsession caused me to overlook the fact that this is clearly school uniform fabric!!

I was not particularly skilled at sewing at that stage, and this was quite a stretch for me. I like trying things that are a bit beyond my skills with cheap fabrics so then I don’t regret it so much afterwards when it turns out really badly! You have to learn somehow, right?

I never use that nasty lining stuff in the collar like they tell you to. It always seems to look good still so I am sticking with that method! The hardest part of this dress was getting the neckline and zip/buttons at the back to work well. I think I ended up going for a size up from what they recommended because I like things to fit loosely. It fits very nicely – sometimes when you do that it ruins the shape, but not this time.

I will definitely make another one of these (in a non-school uniform fabric). I love the style and it’s very comfy. Yay!

In future I will take photos of the process and share them too!