Wednesday, March 31

Super simple summer skirt

Today I finished this super simple summer skirt for Luna. It is based on the Oliver + S  Lazy days skirt pattern which you can download here for free.  The pattern says to use a ribbon at the hem but I added a border in another fabric. I thought about making a ruffled border but the Fairy Tiptoes birdies would have been hardly visible then. I was especially surprised with how nice this Momo Wonderland fabric looked on a girlie skirt like this! I think I will make an appliqued t-shirt with some of the Momo fabric as well. :) Another great and easy girls skirt tutorial is the Twirly skirt pattern which you can find here.

As you may have noticed the votes for  my 'giveaway or freebie pattern' poll are closed. Thank you all for voting. :) I really enjoyed doing a poll, so I'll have another one soon. The majority chose a freebie pattern so a freebie pattern it will be! I will probably post it in the next 7 days. I have an idea for one but if you think you have a really good idea too leave a comment.

Sunday, March 28

Five more faves: polka dots and panther prints

Survey shows that 2 out of 5 Polka Dot Bunnies prefer to read their Douglas Coupland Books on non-ironed sheets.

Today I had to decide whether to blog about my Sunday Stash or join in the 5 faves over at Meet me at Mikes again. It chose the latter. For me it's nice to blog about non-crafty stuff too.

1. The Polka Dot Bunny Georgia made for me last year. Isn't he sweet? See, I was a Polka Dot Bunny before I became a White Bunny.
2. Polka Dot Bunny is lovingly holding the book (on some clearly not ironed but very clean sheets) I'm currently reading and which I  enjoy very much. I only read three of Coupland's books but I liked them all. I first read 'Girlfriend in a Coma' because it was named after a 
3. song by the Smiths.  Not their best song in my opinion. This one is. :)
4. Yesterday Georgia and I blogged on Wombats and Windmills about our favourite smells. Go check it out.
5. Panther prints on clothing. Thus far I have managed to keep it to only one skirt and a cardigan.

Thursday, March 25

From song to pattern: Fish & Bird

Today I'm giving you a little peek in what I've been up to lately with my drawings. Recently I started to listen a lot to the cd Alice by Tom Waits. Which isn't based on books by Lewis Carroll by the way. The music was written for a play called Alice, the play is about the rather dubious relationship between Lewis Carroll and a girl named Alice. Anyway on that cd there is a heartbreaking song called Fish and Bird about a bird that falls in love with a whale. You must check out the lyrics here on Tom Wait's website, it's pure poetry.

First I made a little sketch and then made several versions based on the initial drawing. My favourite is the one pictured above, on which I used lots of tiny dots. I'm thinking of maybe releasing a version of this as a print. I've also made an embroidery pattern with the same theme (for me, not intended to release) but I've only just started it so there is not much to show yet.

Not totally unrelated (it has to do with the book Through the Looking glass) and quite amusing is an entry in the Wikipedia I stumbled upon about unbirthdays. Unbirthdays are all the days that are not your birthday. So I'm wishing  most of you a very very happy unbirthday today!

Wednesday, March 24

Stitching Bunnies & Birthdays

In the next couple of weeks I'm writing a couple of posts on the Crafty Bird weblog giving some online stitching lessons for embroidery newbies! I'm not claiming to be an expert but I think I know enough to help aspiring embroiders on their way with their first project. :) Please feel free to comment and add information on these posts because I know many of you are super talented embroiders with a wealth of embroidery knowledge to share!
p.s. If you'd like you can vote in my Birthday poll (in the sidebar on the left).If you choose 'other' please explain yourself in the comments to this post! ;)
p.s. p.s.  I'll be back later today or tomorrow with another post, but must now go and prepare dinner!

Sunday, March 21

Sad bunny no more: 5 faves

Thanks all for your sweet and thoughtful comments on my last post. I was just a bit ehm...not amused about it all. But.... as Pumba from the Lion King says 'you've got to put your behind in your past' so to end the day on a happy note I'm playing along in the Meet me at Mikes 5 faves.

1. The cd Alice by Tom Waits. It has been on my Ipod non stop last week. Later this week I'm sharing something I made inspired by this cd.
2. My favourite shop to buy clothes! I bought the cardi there I showed a couple of days ago. Good news is that they also send abroad.
3.Etsy items like this one.
4.The tower of blocks my 4 year old built this afternoon with much patience and dedication:

5 And of course: Pumba, source of infinite wisdom

Oriental Garden and a sad bunny

I just finished this embroidery for the Hoop up! Stitch and send swap. I'm quite content with most of my stitches on this one. The blue, green and brown colour were sent along with the fabric for this swap and I really like how subtle and pretty these colours are in combination with my beloved DMC colour variation 4160 and the white on the rabbit.

But why you may wonder does the title of this post refer to a 'sad bunny'? Well the slightly saddened bunny is me. Yesterday I found a photo of an embroidery on Flickr  in another swap photo pool which was based on one of my patterns. The crafter involved admitted to copying from the photo I posted of my pattern on Flickr and the text beneath her version read that she 'couldn't buy the pattern'. Surely that doesn't make it ok to copy a pattern? I'm not worried about not earning a couple of dollars here but I am worried by the fact that this gives such a wrong signal to other crafters. Or am I alone in thinking this? I'm happy to share some of my patterns and therefore regularly post freebies and actually the embroidery pictured above is inspired on a vintage pattern posted in the Hoop Love group on Flickr. Make use of what is shared, not what is not made public Sorry about the moaning bit here but I felt I needed to say this as for the moment this has seriously put me off creating new things now.

Saturday, March 20


Yesterday me and my friend took the train to Amsterdam for a Spring Shopping trip. I was too busy checking out all the lovely shops to take photos. So this is a last-minute-while-we-were-waiting-for-the-tram-to-take us-back-to-the-station-kind-of-photo. ;)  It was a rainy day but that didn't bother us too much. One of the things I purchased is this cute cardi. The roses are bullion stitches isn't that sweet?

I also bought a cute dress with cherries and birds on. :) At the English Bookstore I picked up this book:

The animated movie Coraline, which I loved, was based on this story by Neil Gaiman and I'm very curious about the rest of the stories too! Has any of you read this book?

If you feel like treating yourself to something wonderful too, then check out the e-book Stitch Village. A lovely collection of 5 patterns (for an I pod case, a doll  and an embroidery pattern for example) by Joan of the adorable Nini makes blog. I received my copy last week and it's great and so well written! And if that isn't enough reason to treat yourself to a copy: a percentage of each sold copy goes to charity! :)
Hope you all have a great weekend!

Thursday, March 18

Trying new stitches (and failing hopelessly on some)...

This week I intended to work on (and finish) the 'My bed is a boat' pattern but I did not. (The pattern will be there soon I promise, just not this week!) Instead I did quite a bit of drawing, inspired by a sad but romantic song. I will show you more of what I have been drawing somewhere in the near future. Be sure to have a hankie near though! ;)

I also have been trying out new stitches. With my A-Z of Embroidery Stitches in my lap I first had a very unsuccessful go at the Chinese knot and then failed miserably at the Colonial knot as well. I moved on to the Bullion knot which was a breeze compared to two knots! Then I tried the Cretan Stitch, which is the leaf shape on the left,  and it wasn't too difficult either. Much to my surprise I found out I that I did my Chain Stitch all wrong, so no more wonky Chain stitches from me from now on. My favourite of this try out session was the Jacobean Couching stitch, the two not so perfect leaf-shapes on the right. I have a soft spot for Jacobean Patterns but had not tried this stitch before.
Which stitch would you like to master? Or which stitch do you find impossible to do? Please tell me I'm not alone in my failure of mastering some of them!

p.s. don't forget the Spring sale in the shop, it ends this Sunday!

Tuesday, March 16

Spring Sale!

Because I'd like to bring a little Spring into your homes I've got a very special Spring Sale!  'Sweet Apple Tree' and 'Vogel' are my two most recent patterns and for this week only (until the 21st of March) you can receive them for only 3.60$ each. Check out the special Spring Sale section in the shop!

Saturday, March 13

Pattern Loot

I received these lovelies in the mail today and yesterday. I had a small shopping spree on Ebay last week bidding on various lots of vintage embroidery patterns. I especially was interested in the Peacock Pattern on the left. It's a huge sheet with all sorts of Peacock Patterns on in pristine condition. The pattern with the kitties was in the same lot and is very cute. I'm also very pleased with the Aunt Martha Jacobean Bird Pattern which was send along with the whimsical ('gay south of the border motifs') Vogart pattern. The Bird Pattern is for crewel embroidery but I think these images work perfectly for 'normal' embroidery too. I also won an other lot which held several patterns but I will share those with you later because they haven't arrived yet.

I really intend to use some of these patterns but as they are uncut and unused I will either scan them and use the scanned image or I will just draw my own pattern inspired by these images! So now I'd love to know: what is your latest pattern purchase and what are you going to do with it?

Wednesday, March 10

My Bed is a Boat the name of my new pattern, and I'm very excited about it. I hope to have it in the shop next week! The idea for the pattern came from the R.L. Stevenson poem My Bed is a Boat. And that is exactly what I used to pretend when I was younger. :)

I made some sketches months ago after I read the poem but when one my fellow Hoop up! Stitch and Send stitchers Marilyn came up with her 'Sweet dreams' theme I just had to make it into an embroidery pattern and embroider it for her. Right now the embroidery is not finished yet but I'd love to hear what you all think of it! (and yes, I know you can't see all the details yet...)

Monday, March 8

Ravioli for your embroidery

I try to be careful with my embroidery needles and not place them thoughtlessly on tables, in the couch (yes, you read that right, I stick my needles in the couch) etc., especially with two kids in the house. But often I am frantically searching for a needle not sure where I've put it or what happened to it. So I made myself an embroidery needle cushion ravioli style. As you can tell from the photo it was very crudely made but it works for me! It's just a small square piece of felt, a scrap of fabric and some poly filling. Now I only need to remember to put my needle into the ravioli cushion during breaks. :) 
p.s. I wish I had pinking shears to make my little cushion look even more like ravioli!

Sunday, March 7

Sunday stash # 27 Mmmmm...

...I bought some of Denyse Schmidts Hope Valley fabrics a while ago. They took two months to arrive so I sort of forgot what I had ordered and now I' m not sure whether I love them or just like them. I'm a big fan of 30's inspired fabric designs so no problem there. But I think I would have liked these fabrics even more if the colours would have been just a tiny bit brighter. Maybe I should order some of the pinks or oranges too?
p.s. the photo of these fabrics isn't great, too much sunlight you know :) (yay, spring!)

Wednesday, March 3


I must admit I have a slight crush on DMC colour variation 4160. I was unable to catch the gorgeousness of this floss in the photo I just made. (Even though spring is in the air and the sun makes all photos look better!) This floss is incredibly subtle in it's colours, ranging from hints of yellow to the palest of pinks.

I'm using quite a lot of it in my second Hoop up! Stitch and Send project with a 'Japanese Garden' theme. A project which I started with confidence, then I lost the plot a bit. But after some un-picking and re-stitching I'm totally happy with how it's looking right now.

In other news: last week I got a question if the 'Alphabet Tree' pattern was also available in a 'boy' version. I actually had made sketches for that last year, so I think I will work these out to a 'real' pattern. I'm even working on a second 'boy' pattern now and I'm very excited about it. Will show more of that new pattern soon!

Hope you are all enjoying the warmer spring or cooler autumn weather now. :)