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Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Charity Shop Finds, Vintage Childrens Pictures

Hello,

I found a few "treasures" on my recent chairty shop trips. I haven't got around to actually doing anything with them yet, but I will!
As you may know I love vintage childrens pictures either framed or in books. Here's one of my daughter's favourites:

And here's a recent find. I am still debating with myself if it is cute or if it is a little creepy. I am not sure about it, the toys look very sad. Maybe a fresh coat of paint on the frame will brighten it up. What do you think? Could anything cheer these toys up??


Here's a sweet farm picture. I can imagine a child happily singing along to this one. I like this one because the illustrations are realistic and not changed into silly looking animals with big eyes that look nothing like the real thing.
Next up is a chair just waiting to be upgraded. I carried this through Carlow town back to the car in the rain ,whilst guiding small boy and carrying other shopping. It was too nice to leave behind and I if you don't snatch things up when you see them in charity shops they are always gone an hour later. Believe it or not a man actually hopped out of his car and offered to carry it for me. I nearly fainted in surprise, there is a few gentlemen left in the world. Of course I declined.


Its a much nicer chair than I usually find so its going to require the full works, sanding, painting, new padding, fabric, the works! I reckon its a school summer holidays project for me. The fabric reminds me of my childhood curtains for some reason. Ah kids today, don't know how lucky they are!!!

Right off to get some sewing done before the school run begins.

Take care
Maria

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

All Children love drawing on walls, the blackboard wall

Hello,

The other evening I came accross a decorating book for children's room that I hadn't read in some time. It featured a great many playrooms that had blackboard walls. By this I mean walls painted with special blackboard paint that could be drawn on with chalk. I had intended to do one of these walls when we moved into our house which is nearly three years ago at this stage! I searched everywhere for the paint and the cheapest I could find was thirty euro for a small tin. Then one day I came across a singular spray paint (and boy do I love spray paint) tin for blackboards on sale for euro2.99. Of course I snapped it up and its been waiting patiently ever since.

We have been clearing out the playroom yet again. Or should I say "purging". I've been watching the "Amandas" on tv where these very glamours ladies sort out peoples clutter and mess and redesign their rooms. This inspired me to "purge" the playroom., which was a lot easier than I thought. The pair willing gave up a lot of toys they don't play with, so a lot more room was created. Next step was to add the blackboard wall.

Of course the paint ran out before I could finish so I added on a yellow bit! I ran out and bought some chalk and the pair were delighted.  All children love drawing on walls as I have discovered, what is it about drawing behind curtains?? Small boy drew all over one wall with toothpaste before so at least this time its legit.
Total cost, 4.99euro (paint and four boxes of chalk).
Off to do some sewing!

All the best,
Maria

Saturday, May 19, 2012

Things I have learnt about Sewing/Crafting

Hello,

As I was carefully measuring a piece of fabric yesterday, it occured to me how much I have improved since I began sewing. I even had the measuring tape around my neck , seamstress style !! And also I have learnt a lot of lessons...


Here's some of them:
1) The Sewing Machine is not your enemy, it is not out to get you. Honestly. Its a logical machine.
2) A measuring tape is always a good idea, guesstimations do not work out. (If they do its sheer luck).
3) If you are using a sewing machine and the thread loops underneath the fabric, the machine is incorrectly threaded from the top and vice versa.
4) Not every pattern is accurate, even the professional ones.
5) Some people will always think that handmade goods should be practically free, or at least substantially cheaper than mass produced imports of the same genre.
6) A lot of people are genuinely impressed and love something handmade!
7) Crafting people are normally very friendly, helpful and supportive of each other, there is a genuine community out there!
8) You can never have enough pins.
9) You can never have enough fabric, there's always a new and fabulous one for you to choose.
10) After awhile pin pricks don't hurt as much!!! Except when a child sticks one in your leg (in his defence he thought he was helping).

If you have any to add to the list please do let me know,
All the best and have a great weekend,
Maria

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Vintage Dolls Blanket, an inspiration!

Hello,

A couple of years ago my daughter got this little dolls bed from Ikea, I am going to spray it pink the minute the weather gets a little better. With the wind out there this week, I'd be covered in paint if I even attempted it. As you can see it is loved even in its plain state.

The blanket is a vintage dolls blanket that came from the US in a little cardboard dolls suitcase and some clone dolls (the one on the right!).
I think its from the 1960s/70s and its so beautifully made, completely made with love. I was going to hold onto it but I think it deserved to be loved by a child rather than sit in a box so I let mine have it!
It is inspiring me to make some dolls bed covers, to complement the doll cushions I already make.

I am about to list up lots of things on etsy on both shops, providing my internet does not fail me again. Here is some pics I made for a baby boy's room. I always seem to make ten girly items to each boys item so I am trying to even the score.

I have made some matching cushions and bunting as well.

All the best,
Maria

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

New cushions, fabric pictures and Ducketts Grove Fair

Hello,

I've finished a few new cushions and pictures over the weekend. I also made my first peg bag, a request from family. Here are the new style cushions, they are made from 4 inch strips of fabric sown together a long strip of fabric which is then turned into a cushion. They take a bit of time to make but I think they are worth it!


I visited the country fair at Ducketts Grove Carlow on Sunday which was truly a great family day out. There was food, crafts, face painting, lots of animals and horse and cart rides.
I have to admit I was thinking how I would love a stall of my own!

Ducketts Grove, Carlow.

They have new craft rooms on site now and a tea room so we will definetly be making a return visit soon.

All the best,
Maria

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Doll Necklaces, a return to my first ever handmade item

Hello,

I wrote a post before about the small bead braclets I used to make as a child and then sell in school. I was reminded about this when last spring a flower in my mother's garden bloomed with the remains of one of these braclets on top (must have spent twenty five plus years underground until a flower pushed it up).

I made a few of these necklaces to add to doll's outfits and most recently for my daughter's birthday presents (she designs, I make!). While I was on a roll I decided to make some extra ones to add to my etsy dolls shop.


It was great fun making them, the colour combinations are endless. I ran out of elastic in the end I made so many.
I have to finish my tutorial on rerooting dolls, I did actually finish the dolls some time ago. I have a fresh batch of dolls hair on its way to me which includes thermal hair, a new product where the hair changes colour when you heat it! Am looking forward to making a few unusual dolls with that. Yes I am a big kid at heart....

All the best,
Maria