Thursday, 31 December 2009

Best of 2009 - Top Ten (part TWO)

Hi again!

I'm just pausing from cooking my stuffed mushrooms for tonight's festivities to write you a little note, and reflect on this past year's creations from my darling sewing room.

Thanks for your beautiful comments from yesterday's post! You guys are the best! And so, here's the rest of the best!

Five - Cutie to bootie sheet dress

I got the pattern from an op shop in Wagga (where my brother used to live, he's just relocated to Townsville!) and just knew it'd be the cutest ever! I made this one from a bedsheet (and you probably can remember my hilarious photo shoot) and cut it really short (have to wear shorts underneath in summer ladies!) and I just wore it the other day over the holidays, so it still washes up great.

It's also a variation of this darling charcoal dress for Franca, and this bursting pink one for Kat and these couple of dresses (one of which my darling friend Kizza took as well - the yellow one) so it's a really dreamy style of dress!

Four - 24/7 Challenge - that's right!

I made something every day in July, a nice wintery challenge to get my sewing mad skillz on board, and it really worked! I'd thoroughly recommend it! Have a look at what I made through the month:

And click through the archive of July to see more, but seriously, a challenge like this is totally unreal if you're kinda good/kinda rusty at sewing. Sewing something everyday DOES require a bit of forward planning (hence all those easy skirts!) but is really is so rewarding to see all the work you do over the month. I'll totally do this again, and winter time is the time to do it (as my Frocktober Challenge in October got a little out of hand, and it took an extra month to finish off all those dresses!). DO IT!

Three - The Famous T Shirt Dress

I made SO many dresses in this style, after totally mastering the knitted dream, the OVERLOCKER. I feel so happy to finally 'get' this kinda sewing, and I tell you now, it's totally not as tricky as you think! Now that I overlock, I can't believe I avoided it for so long (my friend told me I'd think this too!) because the extra things you can make are endless, and these tshirt dresses prove it! Yay!

I'm kinda rushing because the mushrooms are done, the lippy is on and I'm looking kinda 70s at the moment, without the big hoop earrings though (don't have them pierced!) so I'll have to post the last few 'Best Of' creations later tonight! (Yes, we're daggy and watching the kids fireworks!)

Talk soon, Veronica Darling

Wednesday, 30 December 2009

Best of 2009 - Top Ten (part one)

Hey darlings, hope you and your families had a lovely Christmas! We just got back from Queensland yesterday with a stopover in Port Mac, so happy to be home. Husbie and I saw Avatar today, so we're a little bit googly from the 3D-ness of it all, but it was really great and I'm happy it wasn't shithouse after all the hype.


I've seen a few 'best of' lists around the webz at the moment, so thought I'd put together my top ten creations of 2009, all made by Veronica Darling of course! I'm just going through my archives now to find you my personal faves of 2009!

Ten - The Man Shirt

Husbie wearing the Man Shirt in brown leaves sheet fabric. I made 2 more of these after this one, and still would like to make some more for him and the boys in the office. As I've got Veronica Darling for girls, Baby Darling, or Veronica Baby for babies, we think Veronica Bastard for the boys, it's gotta be a tough name for them (according to the boys at work) and Veronica Bastard takes it out!

Nine - Tablecloth Wiggle Dress

I made this wiggle dress for a fashion parade about refashioning for the Wardrobe Refashionista Nikki Shell and I'm so proud of the matching up of the floral bits at the front. One thing I've fully learnt this year was that front pieces are often cut on the fold of the fabric, and if one lines up these pieces correctly, then the pattern of the fabric is pretty much going to work out the same. This dress had no darts (vertical) at the front, only some side gathers on the skirt piece and side (horizontal) bust darts, so it luckily turned out great. I really love when you 'get' patterns and 'get' fabric. LOVE IT

Eight - For the Wagga Races

This dress is 'Danielle' from Burda Style, it's a free dowloadable pattern, and I made it for my soon-to-be Sister in Law (she gets sentence case because she's newly engaged to my brother) to wear to the races in Wagga. It was a little big around the middle, and I think she wore a belt anyways. I'm REALLY proud of the neckline, because I posted it to burdastyle and ralarkins left this feel good comment:

"Very nice, indeed! I am impressed that you seem to know how to properly press a garment during construction. No pun intended :) The inside corner at the neck lies smooth and flat with no puckers or odd bumps. Nice job on the clip/grading with the scissors and iron. Wish every garment I see would have that detail. Sigh."

I love feedback so detailed! I did really try hard to make the neckline beautiful, and now I felt like I got an A + for my homework!

Seven - for my BFF

I wanted something ultra feminine in style for this light but kinda manly wood type material, so the princess-ness of this dress was just a perfect balance. There's a lovely close up of the fabric on this post back in May, and my darling BFF bought this one from my etsy store so I'll get to see it around again!

Six - for a Garden Party

And my favourite dress for me!

I wore this to my friends' darling wedding in March, and just loved it! It's the same style as the tablecloth one above but more tailored for me, and it's stretchy cotton that my motherinlaw found for me at the op shop (of course!). It's really tight, but sucks you in at the same time!

Well, I'll post the Top Five tomorrow, so you won't have too many photos to look through, and I'm off for more unpacking and tidying up the place. I have SO many zippers from the op shops of Queensland so I might have to get a few happy snaps of them too!

See you!

Thursday, 24 December 2009

Santa's Bits and Pieces

Bad fairy godmother.

Here's my crocheted Santa for my godson, in bits and pieces.

I really tried to get him finish in time for the post, but alas, he's still in pieces. Poor Santa. I don't think this means anything, as I'm sure my fairy godson's been a very good boy this year (he's only 1!) but perhaps I'm a bad fairy godmother! I just can't stitch him up fast enough. I have to look at him and ponder where the next bit will go, and his face took about an our to do (and that was only to put the eyes on!).

Anyways, I hope your projects are pulling together a little easier than mine and that your holidays are relaxing and full of champagne (like mine!).

The best thing about where we are for holidays, the OP SHOPS. Husbie and I visited 7 yesterday. Yep. SEVEN. I have handfuls of zippers, patterns, fabric galore... all for the stash. And we got heaps of other funny things, I'm sure I'll get photos over the next few days.

We're heading to my Aunty's tonight for tea, and a swim in the pool and... all the dogs are going to get a spa treatment as my Aunty has a hydrospa for her dogs. Luxury on hols for our poochers. LOL!


Tuesday, 22 December 2009

Ho Ho Ho from Doggie Darling

Oh dear.

Have I got cabin fever? (I am in a holiday house with my parents, my brother and his fiancee and THREE dogs - please don't tell anyone!)


Have I gone cuckoo for Christmas.


I followed these gorgeously simple instructions, and shortened it just a bit and only did one row of white fluffy stuff (because I couldn't see the actual crochet stitches things with all that fluff). BUT my darling mother, who reads my blog here a little bit too religiously than I realised, helped me with the pom pom. CUTE but dead tired. All the dogs are! They are all under 2 years old, so they initially played all day on the first day... but now... they just sleep.

As I live in a different area to my parents, I don't see them face to face that often, so I save up heaps of stories that I can tell them (I love an audience AND love to pull elaborate facial expressions). But as I like to show off clothes as well (with amazing tales of adventure, as I'm sure you'll recall from this Accidently Granny Pink story) I put the pink dress on today and started to tell Mum and she was like, 'Oh I know. But didn't it turn out great'. SUGAR!

It's funny that sometimes I forget I tell you these stories! Completely daggy sewing stories of my life, but thank YOU for reading them and being a part of my year! Hee Hee!

Hope you're surviving the festive season, family holidays and everything! I'm about to open a bottle of wine and have a quiet glass before everyone arrives back home! YAY


Friday, 18 December 2009


Not the band darling... this little heart! Check it out:

Yippee! It's very cute, but I knew I was going to run out of red halfway down (I only ever use stash wool, so thought there was *just* enough) so did a few lines of white wool before ending up on the red. I do like the Sydney Swans footy team (if I had to choose a team in the AFL) so perhaps I could go to the game one time and wave this around and cry I HEART YOU SWANNIES.

Or I could just pin it to my sleeve.

(See what I did there? I wrote you a special twee LOL moment)

This might be my last post for a while (not sure about internerd connection where we're headed for HOLZ) so thank you darling for reading my words and checking out my pics and being a darling sounding board with your feedback. For those of you who don't comment, thank you for lurking and being (I bet) so gorgeous as you sit at home or at work or down at the internerd cafe (do I sound 1990s there or what?).

I drank too much Rose and Champs yesterday to finish off sewing any frocks for my holiday (it'll be too humid in QLD to wear anything but bathers though), so I'll take my little crochet friends in their pieces to sew together on my roadtrip. Better off now, to pack my bags for the trip today... Hang on.... something is in the way of packing my suitcase:

Aw, Doggie Darling just wanted to say HELLO too! I think she growled Happy Holidays to you too when I took this picture. Pretty sure she said that!

Talk soon, Veronica Darling

Wednesday, 16 December 2009

Location Two...

Ok, here's location TWO, the loungeroom longways.

Dress: Cheap Store in Sydney shortened by Veronica Darling
Shoes: Melissa (but mine are red)

This location shoot is a bit better and easier for me to focus as the camera is on the kitchen table, and I think further enough back so you can see what the hell is going on. BUT I really liked having a neutral background. Is this one too busy? The dress is totally amazing, it was only $12 I think, and just amazing shape, it's very light cotton, so easy in this hot weather. I LOVE the cap sleeves and have used them in some of my other constructions recently... It's also heaps cooler in the hotter weather, as you don't have material pressed against your underarm. GUSH (can't believe I'm writing about clothes in this way. Aren't you getting a glorious insight into my gushed up/over thinking brain. LOL for you, my friend.)

Thanks a LOT to Joanie, cause she showed me this excellent blogger, The Freelancer's Fashion, who has THE amazing hair! She has HEAPS of tutorials too, so since I'm growing mine out again, expect some more gorgeous styles thanks to The Freelancer!

So today I've been doing a few home things, but am off to do some more things for The Bigger Picture (aka plans for the future) and perhaps drop by the Op Shop(s) on the way home.

I REALLY wanna finish some of my New England Style dresses/frocks (I got some excellent peach and yellow material that would totes suit, and if you're interested I did start this tumblr full of my current inspiration and thoughts - in pictures - so that's where I'm going with the colours) xoxo

See you!

Tuesday, 15 December 2009

Two posts a day: It MUST be holidays

OMG, am I going blog crazy cause it's holidayztime?




For a while, I've wanted to find a spot that I can take pictures of, a la Franca at Oranges and Apples, or Lillipilli at Frocks and Frou Frou and of course Meg who's the best at Mommy Style (and will be trawling through her archives when I am pregs, see what I said there, WHEN I'm pregs - I know I was pondering the other day, but that was a ponder)... I'm fair too vain and self centred for children at the minute... right back to me then.. So!

Find a spot, by this I mean, find a spot in my house that is further enough away on the big camera (which takes the better photos than the smaller camera) but is light enough for minimal amount of photoshopping, but somewhere that I can easily check if the angle is wrong, and blah blah blah, I just kept on going with my thoughts, and so today I tested out the lounge room:

So it's kinda close (I did crop it, maybe I shouldn't crop it?) but I love the wash from iphoto, it's like all the family photos of my mum and dad when they were first married... I love it!

Anyways, I want to remember what I wore and how I wore things and not just wait for WWW 'Whatcha Wearing Wednesday' and it's best if I take my own photo cause my Husbie doesn't get home in time for the good light. AND, I want to remind myself that I look good and healthy, to motivate myself to KEEP good and healthy. We all know that I LOVE champagne (Moet & Chandon on Saturday night just gone - GUSH) but I'm trying to be fit and exercise so that I don't just plump out with all those bubbles I keep drinking!

Hee hee! So it's a pretty drab first outfit, as it's holidays and homekeeping. I'm keeping a good home at the moment.... or do I mean homemaker? ERRRR.

Any self portrait tips please, send them my way so I'm not so much a fool next time! Love, Veronica Darling

The Bigger Picture

Here's my bits and pieces from this morning! I've lazed a bit on my holiday, but today realised there was stuff to do for The Bigger Picture. My Husbie and I have things on the go, for The Bigger Picture, and today it was bank stuff. Forms to sign, witnesses to call on, and now off to the post office (with some fun things too for friends!) and a play in the park with Doggie Darling.

You can totally tell what I'm making for my fairy godson right? It's so funny because I kinda thought these toys would be made all in one go, not stitched separately! Making things is always a surprise!

I also realised today, as I made a quickly Christmas Card for a friend, that I'm not really organised for Christmas. And perhaps I should make up some cards for people. Last year I made some really good ones, but not sure at all what to make this year. I pulled out our big stationary drawer and found all the old books that Doggie Darling chewed up when she was littler (she's a teenager now, just sleeps all the time) so it'd be good to use up some of those novels is a scrapbooky Christmasy kinda way.

I don't know! Better rush to the express post now!

Monday, 14 December 2009

The sweat shop a la Veronica Darling is officially OPEN!

Hee Hee, I have a few odd jobs for people, and as we're heading up north on a Christmas Holiday this Saturday, thought I'd spend today to get them done... I got a headstart yesterday:

A friend of my Husbie's found this paisley purple material (and quite a lot off it!) at the op shop recently, and since her new loungeroom theme is purple I made up two cushion covers to match the store bought purple one.

Someone loves helping. (Not so helpful this morning though, she ripped up a cushion I was going to use for our fold out sofa. Oh puppy fun! Although all the cushin innards will become stuffing for my crochet friends now. So perhaps she was slyly helpful)

And here's where I'm at with my sewing for fun! I've decided that I'm going to make a dress and a skirt in the same material, in a bunch of fabrics and then go to market. I KNOW I keep saying I'll go to market one day, but I've starting feeling that without a challenge of a dress a day or 100 Outfits, I think I need some other motivation. And my wardrobe really can't handle more clothes! It's fully burst open and is all over our bedroom floor at the moment!

What kind of inspiration or motivation do you need to get you creating? I'm thinking of fun washed out summer things (instead of your typical primary bold colours for summer), and have got my tumblr up and running with loads of colours/things/fash to show where I'm heading! I'm going to listen to a LOT of Vampire Weekend to get in the mood! I believe it's kinda a New England vibe, but I'm going to find my Australian-ness in this somehow!

Sunday, 13 December 2009

Little Crochet Friends #2 Octopus with Seven Legs

Hey guys,

I've been enjoying my holidays with a little bit of hanging out on the computer, hanging out with my Husbie and generally being festive with a lot of beer and wine. Our Melbs friend (who reads my blog) was here on Friday and we got really festive at the local teppanyaki joint. LOLz a hoy hoy indeed!

He really liked my new little friend:

Another crochet animal, amigurumi style of course, from this Lion Brand website of wool and patterns (you may have to sign up to see the free patterns, it's free though) but after I stitched the little cutie all up,  found another leg down the back of the couch. Oops! My Melbs friend does think that it adds character to the little octopus, make him more of a septopus perhaps?

Anyways! I've got a mad mad sore leg today, as we went down to a great dog beach today, and big dog was playing with Doggie Darling. They both bolted into me, but it totally killed. Husbie thought I'd snapped my wee little twiggy leg in two, but it was like a major corkage and it's already bruising. Eep!

So I'm a little down in the hurty dumps, but I've done a bit more sewing and crochet as I've sat around resting the leg. We're not planning on anything big for Christmas, for our family will be doing Kris Kringle for the first time this year, but I'd really like to send my little baby friends a present. I should get a few in the mail tomorrow.

Hope you've had a lovely weekend!

Friday, 11 December 2009

Faux Svelteness

Oh darlings, some women share their secrets with me and recently I've heard the word 'spanx' so many times, that I do thoroughly believe that the next time a lady utters it I shall spanx the word right off her lips.

But we do like to be svelte. And I'm making a lot of great svelte dresses that perhaps need a bit of structure at times. I've often looked at my daggy undies and thought they should be tighter but not THAT tight and I detest the g-string and don't want to go nudie underneath. I don't mind a bit of visible panty action on a bottom, but perhaps I need a little tummy tucking at the same time.

So, I've found some things (that may not all be available here in Australia but online nonetheless) that help you in the svelte department...

Here's the original Spanx, the one I like anyways,

Then this is the Flexees slip thing, without straps (I think they're removable) and I really like the shape of this bust line:

And this one is not really a dress or a skirt, kinda a high waisty thing, I think it's a TC Wonderful thing:

And that's kinda my fave at the moment, since I don't really wear strap less, but need more hugging on all my loving bits.

But if you'd like to browse a proper review (rather than just my blah blah blahs) The Chic Fashionista has put together a what's what kinda thing with loads of pictures.

Our internerd has been down again, so I feel a bit out of the loop with things! I've had to put the sewing on hold as a guest from Melbs arrives for a night, but I'm practically on holidays now, so Yippee! It's such a gorgeous day here in Sydney, so hoping the weather remains lush to spend the weekend with Husbie and Doggie Darling! Cute!

Wednesday, 9 December 2009

If only the internet had smellovision* like in the 1960s

Not sure about you, but some days I could just become a hypertext machine! I love clicking on link after link after page after page (do we still call links links and pages pages?) and I tend to go from blog to online mag to fash house to photo gallery in a neverending story of my life and reading habits. Sometimes I like to open endless tabs in my browser and keep them open for days and days, much to my darling computer (and Husbie!)'s despair and worry.

But, I thought I'd start writing about my adventures instead of keeping those tabs open 'just in case' I need to look at them for the 36th day in a row, and I'll be able to document them here and talk a bit about why I like them etc. A review if you will. A storytelling adventure if you please.

 So I happen to fall upon Eco Salon a great collection of great things to read about and look at (nice ideas about holidays there today... ie. what NOT to buy just because it's Christmas)...

And then I found via an etsy conversation with Amy that I'd won a giveway they'd hosted, for DS and Durga Perfume! Shock! I'd quite forgotten that I'd even left a comment, cause I was probably just gushing over the site anyways and randomly dropping this gush in little comment boxes like Easter Eggs.

I chose the 'cedar' kind from their collection II, but there's so many lovely descriptions of the perfumes and their website is really cute to boot!

Yay for giveaways, what a great present just in time for Christmas! I feel so lucky!

Anyways, I've dropped into work today for a little pack up time and sorting out stuff for next year! It's great working 9 to 5. Weird but great!

* too lazy to google to find out if this was actually realised. Perhaps they did it in cinemas? Pump out smells during different scenes?

Tuesday, 8 December 2009

Spot the holidaymaker

My hair is messy, I haven't had a shower, I have had heaps and heaps of cups of tea.

Right! I'm the one on holidays.

It's so funny that the first whiff of a day off I don't know what else to do but revert back to when I was 14 years old wearing pyjamas and lounging about. I guess the difference now is that even though I've been mooching around on the couch these past 2 days, I've crocheted like mad, hung out with the dog and attempted to get our finances in order (we're refinancing at the moment and even though there are BIG things lined up for next year, I'm not fussed! It's going to work out!) and feel generally on top of things. So it's like lounge activity. Lounging about on holidays but working on things.

Anyways, I've seriously just loved this space of hibernation. I've only left the house once in 2 days and that was for a takeaway laksa! It's really hot today, so I've put off going back to work to 'pack up' til tomorrow after the cool change comes through 'cause I didn't want to leave Doggie Darling here in the heat.

But, I wanted to show you my party dress:

Looks like too much partying if you ask me, but still cute in the dress department. It's like a lot of my other tshirt dresses in style, but I added the ruffle sleeves cause it was a party after all. THE best Christmas Party our work has ever had mind you!

I'm contemplating making up more of these and swinging past the local markets on Saturday... you can get a free stall apparently, if you get there early... NOT SURE!

Monday, 7 December 2009

Hooked on a Feeling!

Hi! Big news!

You know how I couldn't crochet last week? And have often said how much of a mindfuck crochet was in the past? A little holiday like today (and some relaxing over the weekend) has produced this!

Thank you for all your help, if you left me a comment, I came across Hooks and Needles, and Alicia's Easy Easy Easy (my words) Amigurumi Tutorial! Yay! Got the hang of chains and stuff, and THE best 'how to' for ring things, that are really easy to help you start the amigurumi. Then I followed the next Tutorial... and then found this easy birdy amigurumi and then realised I had no idea how to finish it all off!

Thank goodness for internet education! Here is the birdy's side and back:


Totally can't believe I made this bird! Psycho! I showed my Husbie and he couldn't look at it he thought it was so cute.

I think it's a mix of actually stopping my mind and concentrating (and watching the videos at least 4 times through) and having the space/time thing to actually learn a new technique. It's only round and single crochet, so nothing too crazy, and I used wool for the face, because I don't have any googley eyes in my stash. You know everything I do is a stashbuster thing!

But what do we think about the face? Sometimes I think she's really cute, but then I think perhaps she's really evil and you can't give something so naughty to a child. Does she look evil to you?

Oh damn! I wanted to watch Neighbours (on holiday mode to the max darlings) but Malcolm and the Middle Repeats are on! ERK! I can't stand the father so have to go find other trash holiday viewing!

Crush Post: Blog Awards AKA Chain Mail Time!

Hey darlings! I've survived my parties, break ups, muck up days, end of school etc etc etc and it was a great time, a sad time, and a happy time. I'm gushed up over my work colleagues and my palsies, and can really see that all good things must come to an end for realsa at the moment.

I've returned refreshed and have found so many lovely comments and gush over here at the Crafty Adventures HQ! Thank you to darling Karen @ Bobbins and Bombshells for this lovely award!

Karen, I loved this photo so had to take this one, thank you so much! Also, how darling is the pin up girl sewing her skirt? It's from Karen's blog, you should totally go and check it out! I love the old pin up girls, my Husbie has several pics saved (he says for his tattoo!) and only collects the platinums because they are like me! Cuteness!

Anyways, I'd like to pass this 'Divine' Award on to a few peeps as well, and darlings, don't worry about passing this on if you don't feel like it! I sometimes feel awards are borderline chain mail, but love that it's all about crushing on fellow bloggers, and you all know I love a bit of gush:

Oranges and Apples (but see you're on a blog award post already, so take it on if you fancy)

The Mrs.

Kat's Creative Adventures!

Megan Nielson's Mummy Style!

Darla at Retro Ways!

Congrats, love your work darlings! Also a fun award Q&A, answer these questions with just one word (bearing in mind I make most of my words up!):

Here are my answers:
1. Where is your phone? Table

2. Your hair? Platinum

3. Your Mother? Dad

4. Your Father? Mum

5. Your favourite food? edamame

6. Your dream last night? trains?

7. Your favourite drink? Champagne

8. Your dream/goal? loveboat

9. What room are you in? Living

10. Your hobby? Sewing

11. Your fear? Memory

12. Where do you want to be in six years? Husbie

13. Where were you last night? Theatre

14. Something that you're not? Worried

15. Muffins? Raspberry

16. Wishlist item? Elastic

17. Where did you grow up? Gippsland

18. Last thing you did? Crochet!

19. What are you wearing? Housedress

20. Your TV? ON

21. Your pets? Dog!

22. Friends? HELLO!

23. Your life? Funny!

24. Your mood? GUSHEDUP

25. Missing someone? Nup

26. Vehicle? Bus

27. Something you're not wearing? makeup

28. Your favourite store? vintage

29. Your Favourite colour? Red

30. When was the last time you laughed? Today

31. The last time you cried? Wednesday

32. Your best friend? BFF

33. One place that I go to over and over? Borsellini

34. Facebook? YEP

35. Favourite place to eat? Toko

I have a bit of sewing and crafting news (if you are wise you perhaps spotted something in my Answers above that may give it away) so just getting together on my FIRST DAY of holidays and playing heaps of online games and watching daytime tv and generally loving the warm weather by my self (and a sleepy Doggie Darling).

So you'll probably hear from me later today!

Wednesday, 2 December 2009

What I'm carrying around for light reading at the moment

My light reading at the moment is 1100 Stitches Patterns and Knitting Crochet Basic Techniques. I picked it up at the Oppie a few weeks back, and really honestly am trying to learn how to crochet.

Everyone online here seems to be a whiz kid at it, but I'm yet to get it. My hands and brain just don't go with the flow. Now, I taught myself (after years of knitting the slow way) recently how to knit the fast way (continental) so am uber proud with myself at learning new things.

BUT I just can't crochet.

How funny are the names for some of these stitches though, my friend (who was shocked that I was carrying this around as light reading claiming 'We are SO different') thinks they'd suit horse names...


Cock's Head

Webbed Arcs

And Small Fans coming in for win by a nose.

Tuesday, 1 December 2009

Yayz the mail came all the way from Scotland

How great is getting parcels in the post?

Franca at Oranges & Apples had a giveaway recently of varying prizes, and I won a runner up one, and she sent me a darling pattern to make!

I love the collar options, and I'm totally into straight skirts since my weekend's floral efforts!

Thank you darling for your parcel!

Today is a really wet dreary and cold day. You'd never have known it was boiling hot and 40 degrees on the weekend. So for the first day of summer it's pretty weird! We had fun at work today because it was the Opposition Party's turn to fuck things up, and they changed over leadership. LOLS a hoy for sure as we all watched tv together and joked. I have only a few days of work left for the year now, and I keep forgetting to get my leave form in, but I know it'll be approved. Next week I'm planning on sewing up a marathon, cause all I feel like doing now is making stuff from my stash. I've also been blog hopping and found a few interesting things like a neverending scarf to try (I'm a quarter of a way through), a cool sewing chick Zoe who wrote this blog piece for this sewing pattern place called Collette, and some of the patterns look pretty good! But darling design blog has THE best header over at Lipstick on Your Teeth. There are just too many good things on the internet!

But go and read Zoe's blog post on Makeshift ... it's really good! I hadn't heard of the Makeshift project yet, and as it's what I aspire to do 100 percent of the time (make and wear ALL my clothes even undies etc) but it sounds really cool, a mix of sustainable and a mix of new and reused. Zoe has a ponder of used fabrics etc, and buying new. I think about this a lot, because I like to make clothes for my friends to buy from me (they won't take freebies anymore, they all insist to pay me) and sometimes they ask for a navy cotton dress, and I only have a few scraps of navy left over from my op shop finds, and I know I can't really guarentee there will be navy cotton at the op shop on my next visit.... I tend to go to the Remnants Warehouse and buy new. But they are remnants of new things. So you can't buy a whole lotta fabric for big runs of a garment.

BUT, I really want to just make things from other things. Fabric from op shops mostly and found things. Then I think too much that I'm making these things new, and then on that consumer level that people have in their brains these things are new and then they get old and tiresome and then my things end up as landfill. Even though I rescued them from landfill in the first place (maybe).

I don't know! I do know that I like reusing as much as possible and I like seeing other blogs doing this too. Yay.

Monday, 30 November 2009

Frock 31: Yay for floral for Frocktober

Hey there,

Just updating you that finally "PHEW", I completed my month of making a dress a day for Frocktober. Darlings, you see here I did make a dress for every day of October. But I didn't really have the time to make it *within* the month of October... so here is the 31st dress!


I'm trying the new blogger post layout thingie too, so please forgive me if I've got crazy with the image size etc, just testing! Beta darlings beta!

This dress was for the wedding on Saturday, it was ace, a beautiful darling wedding. Great friends and great foods and great wine and really ace conversation with everyone. I loved it. Totally my speed of wedding. I felt really happy to be there!

I woke up with an insy winsy hangover, from 2 other parties as you know, but was determined to wear something new! I've made this a few times before (floral green, a refashion, and another awards night dress) and it's always a bit different. As you know Sydney-siders it was quite hot on Saturday, so I knew I wanted it sleeveless. But I let Husbie choose the fabric, and I would never have picked this to work. He loves orange, so I can see why he liked it, but it was totes see through. It was perfect for the weather, but I had to line it. WHICH my darlings, wasn't that hard! Yay!

LUCKILY during my last trip to the op shop, the dreamboat shop assistant gave me all this white light material for lining as a bonus cause I bought so much other fabric. She said 'You should do lining', and I was like 'Oh Ok'... and totally didn't plan on using it. LUCKY! It's really nice light white with stripes, so feels quite nice on and I didn't get too sweaty-betty.

I put an orange button on just for my Husbie too:

It's my new technique instead of using metal closures on the top of zippies. Usually you can just get away with the zip (and most modern things don't use clasps etc) but I wanna use up all those stash buttons (in the 1000s and 1000s darlings) instead of buy more clasps. Reusing stuff is so much better, especially lost buttons.

Recently I have a few requests from friends for frocks, so I think I might start on a gallon of Christmas style fun party dresses. I love this style, so perhaps I'll tweak this and make some variations on it with some other stash fabric as it was maybe 3 hours to finish off... that's good!

Hope you all had a good weekend too, and thank you for your great comments on my fun bright party dresses from last week! Yay!


Sunday, 29 November 2009

Spring Cleaning!

Credit where credit is due... so the awards go to...

For "best notes on how to make a STRETCHY 3 column blog template" (after deleting my old one whilst fiddling around today, but my old one wasn't stretchy anyways) the award goes to ... Compender! Thank you sir!

And for the best notes on removing borders on my images... the winner is ... Blog U! Yay winnahz!

And then I realised my heading still had a border and I hate that shizz, so I googled again... and the winner is Sneaky Momma!

Yippee. Now I can relax for a bit (Husbie's helping me with a new banner right now) cause I wanted to clear my page up a bit. Not sure about you, but I tend to look at my page a LOT, I like using my links and viewing my blog list, and using the front end (as opposed to google reader or whatever) so it was time for a change. I still like 3 columns, so sorry if you don't! As I went stretchy instead of normal, I'll be able to post larger photos here and I think that will work better within the text. Blah Blah Blah! I'm no designer!

How funny is my dog today:

We went down to somewhere in the Sutherland Shire. Yep, and it was FUNNY! It was kinda the only dog beach and it was really fun for the dogs to splash around. Our doggie darling even did doggie paddling quite well (her first time!) xoxo

Frock 30: My purps awards dress complete!

Check out my majorly oversized bow for my awards dress:

This is probably the best shot of the purple fabric, but later in the night (with loads of great drunkie faces) it still looked good, as the purple bits had metallic threads through it that caught the light. Very nice!

When I sat down the skirt was really mini, and the bow sort of draped over it! I was very happy with it, and how cute are my friends? You know my red dress of course, but my friend's ultramarine dress is actually by Marc Jacobs, not me! Hee hee! Great colours though!

So my party season has officially begun after this awards night. We had another farewell fun party on Friday (just wore a fun vintage frock to that one) and then yesterday we went to a wedding and luckily I wasn't that hungover from my 2 nights of parties so I made a gorgeous floral dress that I'll tell you about later today. My husbie took photos at the wedding so I'll go through those later.

We're going to the beach today with Doggie Darling and a friend, and hopefully it's a proper dog beach that I've finally found! I'm looking forward to reading the paper and lying around with loads of suncream on.

Hope your weekend is fun!

Saturday, 28 November 2009

Frock 29: The Awards Dress in Red!

Hey guys!

My friends took all the photos on our awards night, so I haven't got a photo of me yet, but I crawled through some news sites and found my darling red frock that I made for my friend!

She looked SO cute! Those boys are pretty cute too!

So this was the art deco sleeved one I posted about here, And I cut it short, and skillfully hemmed it with a blind stitch on my machine. I did consider using bias tape, like you darlings suggested, but ran outta time. I was still making my gigantic bow as we were leaving the house and I stuck the final safety pins in whilst sitting in the taxi on the way there!


It was so much fun though! So I guess with this other red dress and my purps dress I've made 31 frocks for October finally... will post them soon... it's funny that Frocktober really went for two months for me! It's such a busy time of year to do a dress a day, it worked back in June or July when I did the garment a day cause it was a little bit quieter in my life... but October and November are the busiest months as we plan for the end of year for work, and socially it's crazy because of the warmer weather here.

We're going to a friend's wedding today, and I invested all my energy in making the awards dresses that I haven't planned anything to wear... Oh dear, will have to check the stash today and make a quickie dress. It's a garden wedding, so doesn't have to be too posh, but I'd like to wear something new!


Wednesday, 25 November 2009

Crazy Purps Awards Dress: Part 2


It's almost finished!

Today I added the sleeves, added the skirt lining and adjusted the bust (with some dodgy vertical darts) and fixed all the bodice lining to the actual dress. Oh and did the zippy! I only had a short zipper (second hand stash damn you!) so have accommodated it, and I'll show you that later.

But let's talk SLEEVES!

I wasn't sure of what to do yesterday, but I had a think away from the sewing room today (i.e in the lift at work) and thought how the box-y look was cute and that I could mirror the width of the sleeve cuff to match the waist band etc, so I cut two strips of fabric and lining, cut a rectangle minus one long side and turned it inside out and then attached the open side to the dress bodice as you'd usually attach a sleeve, but folding the ends over underneath.

I think it comes out kinda Japanese! And with this fabric it makes me think I'm going to move my bow...

I still have enough fabric and lining to make the bow and even though I've hemmed it quite short, I think it needs that extra ironic tizz, and I thought I'd make a belt sash, like a kimono style, but with a massive bow! I could attached it around the waist at the front or at the back.

That way it's a huge laugh at the awards night, but then I still have a nice dress to wear at other occasions (and then I don't have to wear an oversized bow to normal places!)... what do you think?

I also really love the neckline and sleeves now, so the thought of attaching a stupid bow and hiding my nice lining handiwork makes be cringe.

The only yuk bit is that I top stitched the waistband to incorporate the lining, and it kinda turned crafty on me... so if I create a belt to wrap around, that would hide the crafty bit. But maybe you don't think the waistband looks that bad? I think I'm very picky of my work!

YAY! Ok, so just googling some handstitching blind hem techniques now so I don't hem it in a geeky crafty way either!

Tuesday, 24 November 2009

Crazy Purps Awards Dress: Part 1

Today has been so busy (AGAIN) so thought I'd pause just when there was still some light outside to show you the Great Purple Dress Adventure I've been having today! I'm going ok for time, I guess, but now I'm leaving the armholes for a while because I'm still unsure about the big extravagant bow I have planned...

So the bodice is going really well, and the fabric is stiff so doesn't move around so much... I think I did well for the lining as the two fabrics aren't puckering, they're sewing together nice and flat and both materials are taking the warmish iron well (no scary burnt iron or melty marks). Phew!

Here's the lining bits for you (I told you that it was stash purple lining, so you can see the faded sun marks in these shots pretty well) (Tip: Don't store you fabric in sunlit rooms. My fabric isn't even getting direct sun!)

Yay, understitching the lining is also THE best thing. I've overlooked it a few times just because of time issues, but since it's Tuesday and the Awards is Thursday, I still have a few hours up my sleeve.

While I was resizing the photos for this post, I attached the skirt and tried it in. It fitted really nicely but I did notice that I may have to restitch the sides of the skirt cause the overlocker didn't really serge the fabrics well enough.

What do you think of the fabric and the colour? Tizzy? That's what I'm going for, but is it tizzy ENOUGH? Like I said yesterday, I'm worried that it's now not ironic enough! Perhaps I should do massive sleeves in the shape of a bow instead of one big bow on one sleeve? Thoughts?


Monday, 23 November 2009

Two weeks left of my day job...

My day job, as I've mentioned before, is funny, fast, early mornings, and full of fun colleagues who are more of the BFF variety than just office pals. I'm very lucky to work with them every day. I talk a LOT and sometimes I laugh so much that my ear starts hurting and then my head pops off from laughing too much! Very lucky gal!

There's 2 more weeks or so left of our 2009, so we're all having a great time, it's like school muck up day every day and there's the real feeling exams are over! Phew! BUT it's pretty sad at the same time. AND I'm making some dresses at the moment for the industry's awards night and it's all very exciting for us gals in the office cause we get to get tizzed up in OUR way... Doggie Darling is helping me go through the patterns today for MY PURPLE DRESS!

I haven't got a good photo of the material yet, but it's purple black and I have these terribly high op shop heels to go with it. I just need to settle on the style:

I'm leaning toward the Vogue Yves Saint Laruent black dress at the moment, it's a fitted bodice, a waist (with belt area) and skirt that I can crop short. And whilst it's got this 'bias attached collar' and sleeves, I'll ditch the sleeves and play around with that crazy collar to get it right. I'm thinking a big fuckoff bow, or something shoulder-ish that seems in fash now. This is all hoping that I have extra material, cause I think I have just over 2 metres, so for a short arse like me that's enough for a dress... but not sure on the 'accessory' collar thing! I chose these two patterns because they need lining, and I've got heaps of op shopped purple lining to use for it, so it should all be cool!

Just a quick question though, how does one usually choose lining? Are their rules on this type of thing? I've chosen this purple shiny stuff because it was in my stash, and I noticed that it keeps changing colours because of the sun, so I better use it soon. That's probably not the ideal reason of choosing a lining fabric. It is shiny and makes a noise... that's kinda like lining too right?

Nonetheless, I'll also make it pretty short and mini in the skirt, because it is the music industry night of nights after all. So a little leg won't hurt anybody.

Talk soon, and hopefully with photos of this crazy fabric. I am worried it may not be ironic enough, but we'll see!

Sunday, 22 November 2009

Better Red Than Dead - Step #2

Oh hai, me again with Red Dress Number 2!

This one is from a gabardine type material (I have no idea what that means mind you... I went to Lincraft on Friday and they only had 2 type of reds suitable for this kind of dress. The red you saw before, and this red. It's a total budget store in Alexandria, so avoid it if you like variety) and I cleverly (yes, I am clever here) made an art deco type sleeve and I just adore it!

I like both of them so much, so I hope my darling friend likes them too!

So now that I've built these two frocks (without zips and hem line mind you) I'll show them to my friend and get her exact fit. AND THEN I'LL START MY FREAKING PURPLE DRESS!

Yep, I haven't been able to tell you yet, but I got this WEIRD purple material at the Remnants Warehouse the other day, and thought 'If I go to that awards night, I'll make my dress from this weird shizz'... and I found out this week I get to go. So I'm aiming to make a normal bodice/dress bit but add a kickarse shoulder accessory thing, like a big bow or big tuffs of material or something weird. More soon!


Better Red Than Dead - Step #1

Or perhaps the bookstore is called Better Read Than Dead... and go there if you like Inner West (of Syds) Street Art! A few people have told me to go buy a terrific book there and I looked the other day and sure enough my knitted street pole was featured! Along with A LOT of other blog peeps. I'll buy it soon and talk about it then...

But! Here is my first darling red dress (for my friend):

The details, of course: Some sort of drill red fabric, lined with the same thing, cap sleeves designed by me. But pretty much it's a vintage early 80s prom dress thing that they want you to make in velour and bad silver trim:

Those sleeves are just very LONG semi circles, I cut 4 (or 2 on folded fabric) and overlocked the curvy side. Then when it came to sewing up the rest of the lining (it was one of those patterns that you sew across front to front and lining to lining at the shoulder seams), I just tucked them in and top stitched:

Top stitching wasn't the BEST aesthetic option, because you can see it on the surface, buy my overheated sweat shop brain couldn't work out how to sew it up inside and I knew I'd hand stitch it forever and a day and it won't be finished in time.

YAY! I haven't put the zip in or adjusted the length yet, cause wanna fit it with the darling girl on Tuesday!

Dongmen Lu Fabric Market

Happy Wednesday! Time to get some fabric inspiration from the Dongmen Lu Fabric Market here in Shanghai! Can't believe how quickly 201...