Friday, August 21, 2009

Hill End NSW

On Monday Hubby and i are off to Hill End NSW for 4 days to talk wedding with my daughter!! I am so excited i cannot wait. This is where they will be having their wedding and i hope to take some great scenery pictures to turn into Art Quilts. I am hoping in particular that we would get some lovely sun sets. My plan is then to make line drawings separating the colours and using the overhead projector i bought from Aldi the boys at home will have to play house nicely while we are away, I think they won't even notice we are gone. They are all in their early 20s so that is not a problem! Already i have been giving them specific instructions on looking after the kitties, for example, Playing Feathers with Meg!!!

Monkey Marionette

The head is now finished, onwards to finishing the body, sewing on the hands and feet and the chest piece. I hope to get him done by the end of the day.
Dowels and fishing line. these are the main tools i am going to use to make strings for the puppet.
additional materials needed for this to happen is a hand saw, drill and a nut and bolt.

Monkey Marionette

The original monkey picture did not have eye lids or ears, but i decided that my monkey needed them. Inner ear in light wool and the outer ear in fur fabric. pipe cleaners to be used to enable the ear to curve.
Eye lids. fabric folded in half, sewn around, cut out and snipped on one side only to turn right sides out.
Pinned on the monkey. All to be hand stitched into place. I think that his face is a little less scary now.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Cat of the Day

Tilli asleep in one of the cat climbing equipment posts.
Showing her lovely white belly.

Lounging on the bed.

Monkey Marionette

Side profile of monkeys face. This is how he looks so far. I have still to do some needle sculpting and although on the original picture the monkey has no ears i will be adding some. His neck is not yet sewn onto his body, just pinned for the photo. I will be sewing that on when i have finished his body.
His hands and feet have to be sewn on, the safety pins are where the strings will be when i am ready to do that. I have bought some fishing line and some dowels for that part of the project.
This is a close up of the finished dreads on his head.

Monday, August 17, 2009

See De Sew

See De Sew is having a little giveaway
for not one, not two, not three, not four, BUT FIVE patterns to ONE lucky winner.
Her dolls are just the cutest little rag dolls around.
Please leave a comment on her blog to be entered. Winning name will be drawn on Monday 8-24-09
Winner can choose FIVE printed or e-patterns.
I want to win!!!

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Meg and Tilli

Meg and Tilli settling down on one of the two computer chairs we have in the family room. Tilli always gives Meg a wash before they go to sleep.

Monkey Marionette Update

Front View of Face.
This is an update on the monkey so far. The face is partially stuffed at the moment, i have to add teeth and needle sculpt the lips and add holding stitches to put the mouth in position. He still needs his nose and eyes added. A long way to go before he is done. The body has been sewn, turned right sides out and stuffed, I have to add the bones to the limbs, the wire to the tail, then add the feet and hands.
Side View of Face, but as you can see it is taking shape quite nicely.

Dreads Finished

The dreads are finished, ready to be attached to the monkey's head.

Friday, August 14, 2009


This is how i am making the dreads for the monkey.
I have a bowl of hot soapy water, my roving pulled into strips, bubble wrap and a towel.
First i will lightly wet my palms of my hands and carefully pick up the roving and gently rub my palms of my hands over the roving backwards and forwards. I will do this all along the length of the roving. I will repeat this step rubbing harder each time until the fibers start to mat together.
onto the next step.

Having gotten the fibers now stabilized i am ready for some more vigorous felting to happen. I lay it onto some bubble wrap, bubble side up and lay the semi felted fiber on top. fold over the bubble wrap over the roving and roll the top of the bubble wrap backwards and forwards matting the fibers together. Let me warn you, this takes time! and you get a good work out on your arms in the process, What a bargain!

When it is done to your satisfaction, rinse it under cold water until soap is gone. squeeze out the water,
take it to a towel, fold the towel over the now made dread and press out the excess water. Put aside to dry naturally. This is a close up of the felted roving.

This is a close up of the roving before felting

Monkey Marionette

This is the head. I have pinned, tacked and now have to sew it on the machine. Making sure i have left a gap un sewn for the neck. I will then be turning it out the right way through the neck opening and stuffing it. I will then add some sculpting stitches to hold it all in place, more on that later.
The neck post will then be ladder stitched in place
This looks odd i know! It is however the back and front of body with the now sewn limbs turned right sides out and sandwiched between the two layers. I have the limbs poking out from the top of the body where the neck post will go and also for stuffing the body.
Pinned tacked and then sewn, turned right sides out. I also have put it onto some baking paper because i have found that this fabric is difficult to sew because it it a synthetic fur and is prone to sticking underfoot and does not run smoothly on the machine. The paper helps it to go through better.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Cats Indoor Play Equipment

This is my cats play equipment. They are weighted down with weights because they have a tendency to fall over. They are in the family room that is also the computer/sewing/exercise room and on wet weather days has washing hanging and draping from all surfaces.

Monkey Marionette

This monkey is going to be a marionette. I need the arms and legs not to be floppy or too heavy so i have decided to make a skeleton of the limbs. They are made from coat hanger wires and the elbow/knees will be a brass ring that i had in my bits and pieces of jewelery beads. I need to make 4 of these. Two for the arms and two for the legs. They will be positioned just inside the limbs. I have not yet decided if the limbs will be stuffed or not.
A close up of the elbow joint.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Monkey Marionette

This is the mouth assembly in cardboard. This shows my design process. This is the side view.
Mouth cut out ready to sew together. I will be tacking it all by hand and sewing on the lines then taking it to the machine for final finish.

Monkey Marionette

The monkey will be having an open mouth. This is is a first for me. The pattern pieces for the upper jaw to be connected to the head top piece, the pieces are all connected to each other and lastly the jaw is connected to the lower head front. the head and back will then be sewn around together leaving an opening in the bottom for the neck. This will be a half a covered piece of toilet roll tube covered in fabric which then will also be in the body too. ladder stitched into place.
The limbs will be simple tubes of fabric, lightly stuffed and the feet and hands added on after. The tail will have wire to bend it up and defy gravity.
This monkey is going to be a puppet with strings.
The hands and feet have a back side in dark fabric and a light side too. Just make sure you have a left and a right for each. The hands will have an opening at the wrists for the arms to be sewn to and the feet are going to be sewn all around, then cut out, make a slit on one side of the fabric to turn through and that is where the legs will be ladder stitched onto. After turning out the right way top stitch in the fingers and toes. Lightly stuff the hands and feet. then sew them to the limbs.

Monkey Marionette

Just like my previous projects i got out my designing tools of cardboard, scissors, pen and masking tape i got to work.
Having studied the picture i decided that the monkey was divided roughly into thirds. The head being 1 third the body 1 third and the legs 1 third.

The eyes are made of felt. The whites are on doubled felt, template sewing (sewing on the line). snipped on one side and turned through, remember to snip the edges to make it smooth. Repeat these steps with the blue felt, and they will be ladder stitched together. Finally the whites of the eye, single layer of felt for highlights. Make sure that you make both eyes the same, especially the positioning of the highlights.
The nose is on doubled fabric, template sewing leaving a gap for turning and stuff lightly. Ladder stitch opening closed.
This picture shows the body pieces (dark brown)and the breast piece (beige).
Both back and front of this monkey's body is the same. The chest piece is appliqued on after it is stuffed.
This is wool roving i have had for some time, just waiting for the right project. This will be his dreads. Also shown is a felting needle and piece of foam rubber. More on that later.

Bag Giveaway

Nome's Brag-a-long has a cute giveaway on her blog to celebrate her 50th post. Some very funny reading here, so have a look. If you would like a chance to win this bag then give it a go! The owl is so cute!

Monday, August 10, 2009

Had to Share

What happened to me.
Whilst i have never been one for looking in the mirror at myself in any given time, i have to remember to take a good look from time to time. this is why. I was innocently waiting in the queue at the post office to pay a bill when a customer, 2 people ahead of me was looking at me with daggers in her eyes. She just kept glaring at me and i could not for the sake of me could think of what i have done to offend her that much. did i know her? and how did i cause her so much animosity?
Well, 3 minutes later i found out what i had done. The Lovely lady at the counter told me i had a knitting needle sticking out of my shoulder! I have been walking around all morning like that! The offending size 10mm knitting needle was stuck in my jumper. I have been to Woolworths and the $2 shop and nothing had been said.
This bought me back to twice before in my life when outside of my house of something potentially embarrassing.
Once i went to the market and realised i had a dress on inside out and back to front. (quick change in the loo) and another time when i was with my daughter, in a clothes shop when i saw this lady in the mirror my thought was, this bag lady needs help! Then i saw it was me! I thought i looked ok with all my layers when in fact i looked like a hobo.
Fashionistas out there, I am a large 14- 16 size hippy that needs fashion advice!

Cat of the Day

Tilli is a life saver! Well that is probably an exaggeration, but without her loud meow, i would not have known that she and Meg were shut in the bathroom!

Getting Stuff Together

Underneath the cat Tilli, on the computer/sewing chair is all the things i have gathered together to work on Monkey Business.
I have decided that this is going to be a marionette puppet. It is all drawn out in my head at the moment, so if you like to see what happens, watch this space!.
Originally i was going to start it yesterday, but my darling husband made me a surprise appointment for the dentist, Having taken me there, i had a tooth extracted and spent the rest of the afternoon on the couch napping! It was a good thing too cos i found out i need fillings. so back to the dentist in a couple of weeks time... all for the good i am sure.

Friday, August 7, 2009

Ive Been Tagged

What does this mean? All good i assure you! Just a bit of blogging fun.
It means i have to tell you 10 things about me.
I was tagged by Sweet P Quilting and Creations
She has a lovely blog and is a talented quilt maker. this means i have to tell you 10 things about myself.

1. I love to craft, be it sewing dolls, knitting, crochet, dyeing fabrics and anything else i can think of i will give it a go.
2. I love cats!
3. I want learn to make quilts.
4. I love being in bare feet in summer, not just indoors but all the time.
5. I love to walk cos i don't drive, i cannot even ride a bike.
6. I only wear dresses. I don't own a single pair of trousers or jeans and never have.
7. In the summer i love to go to a park, lay down and watch the clouds go past.
8. I really do hug trees.
9. Family and friends are most important to me.
10. I am passionate about charity, and thankful for what i have everyday.
Now i have to tag 10 people, they can carry this on.

1. Ric-Rac
2. Sew Useful Designs
7.A Crafty Moment
10.Art Quilts Around the World

I found this harder than i thought it would be.

Cotton and Cloud

Kyoko in London England has a beautiful blog called Cotton and Cloud and has posted an interview about myself and my two cats Tilli and Meg as this weeks Furry Friday!
this lady is a fantastic crafter, especially her knitting which i adore and loves cats and other animals. I have spent many an hour reading her blog. I especially love reading her Furry Fridays.

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Wedding Dress

I cannot post a picture here for obvious reasons! (i do not want my future Son In Law to see it by accident) But my daughter is getting married in April next year and is interested in borrowing a dress or buying one, second hand. All Part of being eco friendly. She loves the idea of something old, similar in style to the previous wedding posts. I would like anyone who is interested in wanting to know more to e-mail me or post here and i will get in touch with you about it.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

New Project Inspiration

My Youngest son came home with his hair newly done, (he wears his hair in dreads) with a new product. I just fell in love with the logo. I am going to re create him into a 3D toy using recycled wool coats. Meanwhile i am working on the charity dolls and thinking on how i am going to get him made. Once i have all the "bits" in my head i will start him.
Probably on Monday so watch this space!
I love it when i get excited about a project!

Monday, August 3, 2009

Cake Topper

This cake was made for my sons girlfriends work colleague who is getting married. I decorated the top half using bits and pieces of lace and ribbon i had in my stash. I dyed the thin ribbon and the veil in coffee.
I think they did an excellent job on the skirt.
I am sure it went down very well. I think she looks lovely.

Jenny of Elefantz

Jenny of Elefantz has an amazing give away

If you would like to win this giveaway prize consisting of this pretty vintage reproduction tin...

...a gorgeous silver and gold Christmas fat quarter, my OWN silver and gold block from The Four Trees, and 10 beautiful gold and white antique glass buttons!

All packed neatly ready to arrive at your door.

So how do you win?
Then go to her blog and follow the posts. The draw ends on 11th August.
Do check out her Christmas stitcheries while you are there too. They are delightful.

Saturday, August 1, 2009

The Scream

This is a hand puppet i made for my sons' girlfriend, for her Art room when they were doing expressionism in particular Edvard Munch The Scream. The black body is made of speaker felt, a very thick material used in covering speakers. the rest is made of felt.

She Needs a Name

Side View of Space Hopper Girl. She needs a name can you help?

Back View. I enjoyed the process of making her.
First things first, tomorrow i will be cleaning up (i tend to spread myself out when i am doing a project) then I will be making some charity dolls for the next few days after that, But i won't be putting pictures of them up until December !st when they will be photographed together.