Thursday, September 18, 2014

The Great WSBN Sewing Room Tour

As I mentioned in my last post, today I'm going to share my sewing space with you as I'm taking part in the great Wellington Sewing Bloggers Network (WSBN) sewing room tour.

Thanks to the lovely Gemma for organising this tour, I feel like it would have actually been a fairly significant effort to get us all on board to do this thing - she is a star.

So far on the tour there have been all  kinds of sewing rooms - with lots of space and beautiful views! I don't have much space, or a view, but I like where I work in the corner of our living room.

So it's not the biggest or prettiest space - but what it does have a lot of character! Mostly because I love random things.
This is my little sewing machine - its really nothing fancy. I hope to get a better one some time in the future now that I have determined the sewing is a bit more than another phase I am going through.
This collection of stuff always sits next to me when I am sewing, the skull pin cushion was  made by my friend Vany and can be worn on the wrist. The other white guy is a tofu pin cushion and is the only thing I will ever knit in my life - this took a million years to make and filled me with rage. I also have my little tape measure on hand and my quick unpick for obvious reasons.
This collection of "bits" always sits next to my machine, a couple of op shopped bowls with all my thread. The little zipper pouch at the back made with ice cream fabric was my first attempt at putting in a zipper.

The other tin contains all kinds of notions and bits, including a map of Taipei which I have had since we lived in Taipei. For some reason I just can't bring myself to throw the map away so it just keeps living with my notions.
This board did originally start out as an "inspiration board" of some sort. Turns out I'm less interested in having an inspiration board and more interested in having a place to sick pictures and cards from my friends. I do also keep a few buttons here and lately it has become the best place for me to put my zippers as well. 

So  many random treasures......
Unfortunately for some reason this photo turned out a little blurry - annoying. However, moving past the blurry photo, here is my collection of sewing books. It seems that when I start getting into any kind of hobby I start obsessively buying books. 
On top of the book case I have some buttons and my Easter card from Ria - I also have other essentials including a softie strawberry, mummy lego figure and in case you're wondering that cage at the back is a zombie softie bird. I need a zombie bird in a cage for reasons that should be obvious to everyone. 
 So next to the bookcase is some of the fabric I have - that pile on the left is the much feared "mending" pile.
Also these are are all my patterns - new, vintage and indie. I officially have enough patterns and in fact may have some kind of problem.
My other storage space is this poor bookcase that is overloaded to the extreme! So many things. 
Some of the items on top of the bookcase - as you guys know, I am a mature adult who makes sensible adult choices when it comes to decorating my space. It's the little things that make it special. 

As well as a general tour of our sewing spaces/rooms there were a few questions that each person taking part in the blog tour could answer if they wanted to. 

What I'm working on:

I usually have a whole lot of projects on the go at once as I have a really short attention span. 

However, I do have two main projects, the first being this ALMOST complete dress. I just need to shorten it a bit and hem it and then its good to go. 
The other project I'm currently working on is the McKenzie Cardigan that I'm making in one of the Dreamstress' classes. I don't have much to show yet - but its going to be awesome and make all of my cardi dreams come true.

Next project in line:

I do have a lot of things in the pipeline - but I am hoping to make up this Pussy Bow Dress next - the fabric has both anchors and hearts!

Show off your stash:

So compared to a lot of the WSBN my stash is actually pretty small - but still to show it ALL off is a bit too much. I'm just going to show you a few pieces I'm hoping to sew up soon.

I have about three metres of this fantastic fabric - I bought it at the Auckland  Vintage Textiles Fair and its amazing. It's some kind of knit from the early 1970s. At this stage I have no idea what I will make with it, but I do know one thing, whatever I  made will be awesome.

This is my second fabric - its a cotton covered in lollies (or sweeties or candy depending where you are from). Fun fact about me - I have never smoked, I don't drink and I could easily pass up deep fried food for the rest of my life and wouldn't care too much. However, I love sugar and lollies are my number one weakness! I bought this delicious fabric from Made on Marion.

Finally this super cute fruit fabric, its a cotton that I bought from Arthur Toye before it shut down. I have three metres of this and I'm currently wondering if I should use it to make a frock with for my mum's 60th birthday party next month.

Favourite thing I've made:

So are you guys still with me? This post has become ridiculously LONG!!

For my favourite thing - I have actually chosen THREE things! First up is my ONLY costume so far.
Remember that time Ria and I went to Armageddon as Princess Bubblegum and Fiona? That was a good time.

Next up is my Easter Dress - this dress is super simple and it cost me pretty much nothing to make as I used fabric I got from a WSBN swap.

However, every time I  wear it I get a bunch of compliments, and I was one even told it was so "on trend". I am  basically never, ever on trend - I think this dress is just so great it doesn't need any trends!
Finally is my Vix Dress which is named after a very inspirational lady. It's also cost me next to nothing as it was made from an old maxi skirt and its already visited three countries (NZ, Malaysia and  Indonesia). It's super easy to wear and I feel happy whenever I put it on.
Well that's my sewing room tour done - if you made it to the very end, nice work! If you want to see the other sewists in our group, then check out Leimomi's post and you can work your way back to Gemma's original post.

As for who's next? It's the amazing Joy - I can tell you from  personal experience Joy's space is incredible and is NOT just a corner in an inner city apartment! Hope you guys enjoyed this wee tour of my space and one final sewing chair includes a (handmade) domo cushion.  Just thought you'd like to know.

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Hello Kitty Dress

I feel like I'm so behind in my blog posting and reading right now that I should perhaps declare some kind of blog amnesty and start over in three months when I have more time. I could spend my Christmas break equally in the sunshine and catching up on all the blog posts I have missed? Although if I wait that long I may NEVER EVER catch up!

Anyway that's enough worrying about my lack of blogging and blog reading - I guess long story short is I have a lot of stuff happening right now and eventually at some point I will catch up.

I did decided it was time to have and outfit post and share a recent something that I made.

I bought this fabric last year when I was staying with Alicia and she took me to the craft mecca of Jo-Anns. It was a pretty exciting day for me, but as you can see, I was pretty cool about it.
I've already made up dresses in the day of the dead and purple kitty fabric - so all that was left to do was to make something from the Hello Kitty fabric and I FINALLY did it!
The pattern is a simple shift dress pattern, because the pattern pretty much speaks for itself and when I say speaks for itself I mean it screams "I'M A DRESS COVERED IN HELLO KITTY - LOOK AT ME!!!"
I feel like my hair has reached new levels of awesome in these photos - Ria had styled my hair the day before and when I brushed it out it was automatically awesome. Why doesn't it look like this every day??
Also look! I'm not hanging out in an inner city apartment building car park! Also I look quite perplexed in this photo. Maybe its all that space and grass and lack of hobos?

A couple of weekends ago, I hung out with a couple of crafting pals to eat tacos and do some sewing and such. These photos are at Joy's house in Island Bay, its so nice out there I could ALMOST be convinced to leave my inner city bunker.

I also had a few very serious grown up photos taken with my friend Jo - these are our "Holy Crap this dress is covered in Hello Kitty" faces.
I'm not sure what's happening here - Joy said "butts together" so that's what we did. I have to admit its kind of adorable.
I hope you guys are all having a great week so far - I will be back with at least one more post this week. It's going to be all about my crafting/sewing area, I'm not sure if that's going to be exciting or not? But I do have a lot of fabric for an apartment dweller!

Saturday, September 13, 2014

Days Seven & Eight: Yogyakarta and visiting Borobudur Temple

When Rich and I were planning our holiday this year, we knew we wanted to visit South East Asia - but WHERE? Vietnam, Cambodia, Laos? There were lots of amazing things to visit in ALL these countries, but nothing really sparked our imagination.

That was until a friend posted a "top ten placed to visit in 2014" list on facebook - she tagged Rich and I in the post as Christchurch was number two on the list (this friend is in the USA - so she always thinks of us when anything NZ related pops up). We read through the other places on the list, and one of the places that caught our attention was Yogyakarta, Indonesia - I will admit it, I hadn't really thought of visiting Indonesia on our trip. I guess a lot of Kiwis go to Indonesia to party it up in Bali which isn't my scene. However when we read about Yogyakarta it sounds amazing - temples, palaces, so much history! That was it, we were sold! Yogyakarta was added to our list of places to visit in 2014.

I didn't take many photos on our first day in Yogyakarta because - my camera ran out of batteries. However, I did snap a few pictures before it died, I loved this little guy. There was a bunch of fun street art in the city.

On our second day we got up early for a visit to Borobudur - this is one of the two main reasons we chose to visit Yogyakarta.

Borobudur is an 9th Century Buddhist Temple - that alone completely blows my mind.

As you can see,  it was an EXTREMELY hot day - sensible people wore hats and had parasols. But not me "who needs shade when you hair is BLACK?" - I should have TOTALLY had a hat or parasol!

I've visited quite a few different Asian countries and visited a lot of Buddhist Temples, but Borobudur was unlike anything I've ever seen. The most obvious thing being - you can't go INSIDE Borobudur! It's a large stone structure and you can walk along the different levels, but there is no inside.

Each layer of the temple included a lot of different reliefs that told different stories. Climbing up the levels wasn't difficult at all - but the heat was kind of brutal for folks like us that are from a very mild climate. The higher you climbed, the more amazing the views became.

When  we finally reached the top of the temple it was amazing, there really are no words.  It was one of those moments that reminded me why I save my pennies to travel.

On our way back to the hotel, our driver took us to visit a second temple (the name of this temple escapes me right now). It wasn't as big or impressive as Borobudur - but it was still impressive!

 Also Rich had the chance  to swing on a tree - tree swinging isn't for me, so I was the group photographer!

So how were our first couple of days in Indonesia? Completely, mind blowing and amazing and there are so many more Yogyakarta adventures to come!