Tuesday, February 28, 2012

My Panel Bag

I feel like its been ages since I made something for myself and after making Ayden's messenger bag (which he uses every day) I was keen to make another one of Nikki's patterns from my stash. This is the Panel Bag from You Sew Girl by Nicole Mallalieu.

This bag was such a joy to make.  It is graded as beginner, heading to intermediate.  It comes together so well,  and even as an experienced sewist there are tips to learn in these patterns.  I'm even enjoying adding zippered pockets to the bag interiors. Everything came together so quickly and easily and there are some lovely details on the bag too.  The bag is large and roomy and closes with a magnetic clip.  This will be my off to the shops and craft lugging bag. 

The pic isn't great but with the wild weather here,  I wanted to snap that  photo so I can start using the bag tomorrow!  The fabric is a Kokka base cloth in a neutral colour,  with brown light denim for the piping.  The panel fabric I just love and it's from the Outside Oslo designed by Jennifer Jones.  I've lined it with a big pop of colour with a blue/turquoise from the Little Apples range.  I'm also planning a darker version with the single strap variation and without O rings to keep the cost down.  Just love it!

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Cuddle Cats!

Jade from the Eco Experience was so lovely and sent us a Cuddle Cat to review from their Comforting range.  Both Maya and I just love it!  These cuddle cats were designed and handmade by UK illustrator and designer Jane Foster.  The cats feature vintage fabric from the 1970's designed by Graziela German. The retro look and the use of sustainable fabric and inks make a very cute cat.

As you can see they are the perfect size for a cuddle and Maya has been playing with it all day.  The Cuddle Cats (and rabbits!) retail at $30 and includes Australian postage and eco-friendly wrap. 

All toys are sourced with ethical designs which is appealing for us.  There are a lot of fun toys and gifts on the website,  that are perfect if you have kids that love creating too.

I think Maya might like a cuddle rabbit too!

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Screen prints for the stash..

Thanks for all the messages on Ayden moving out for Uni.  The support was just what I needed x  So was this fabric.  Choice Cuts from Aunty Cookie on the top row and some prints from Leslie at Maze and Vale below.  I just love the designs and inspiration from independent designers.  These I couldn't resist and I'll be cutting into some of the red fabric this afternoon.

I also joined Pinterest.  Whhhoooaaa.  I thought it might be a good idea while I am looking for a few ideas for Maya's new room but I'm not sure where to start.  I'm fourwisemonkeys there too.

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Left for Melbourne..

Yesterday we took Ayden off to live in Melbourne, at the Residence at Monash Uni.  The res was a bit confronting to us, such a big change. The room was very basic, and very expensive and everything smelt bad. It's going to be noisy and full of students and it showed its age. His hall houses 202 students. This photo would have been taken from the 12 story residence block that the building looks onto.

I held myself together and thought of all the good things,  how hard Ayden had worked and all the people he will meet and that he had actually made it there.  That he can walk to classes and that he will have a lot of support close by. That Matt and I had met at uni after all.  The uni had organised a lot of fun things for the students to help them settle in and I knew Ayden would be fine.  It's going to take me a bit to get used to though.

Friday, February 10, 2012

Ayden's Messenger Bag

In January we organised a trip to Melbourne to catch up Nikki and Lara,  along with Jodie and Annie.  I dragged Ayden along to help with the Melbourne driving and to add a some time and experience to his driving log book. 

Ayden spotted a sample of the Laptop Bag by Nicole Mallalieu at Nikki's studio and through it would make him a messenger bag.  I have a boy who is interested in both fabric and design so I couldn't say no.   I stressed about every aspect of making this bag - before I made it.  I wanted it to look so perfect and I am very proud of how it all came together.  As always the directions on the pattern were fantastic and I worked through the steps carefully to make the Intermediate level bag.  The bag is strong and sturdy and a good size for Ayden.  The strap is adjustable too.

The bag is made from black canvas that I bought from the upholstery section of spotlight and the front flap the bikes and trams fabric designed by Ink and Spindle.  Inside is lined with a quilting cotton that was interfaced.  I even added a zip pocket inside as Ayden wanted to make sure that his glasses that he wears for lectures would be secure. There are 4 more pockets inside too,  and one on the outside front under the flap.

Ayden leaves home tomorrow and his bag is already packed and ready to go.  He loves it,  and I love how clever Nikki's patterns make you feel :)

Thursday, February 9, 2012


I love this photo of the kids running up to the lighthouse at Port Fairy at dusk.  It's a beautiful walk with lots of wallabies popping out from the undergrowth.

We spent a few days away at Port Fairy and Warrnambool.  The weather was beautiful and we were ready for a break.  We left the day after Uni Offers and we had a lot to think about, celebrate and plan too.

The kites came out a few times too.  I love having our whole family together.


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