28 July 2016

Exciting Announcement: Magic Little Monsters


I am so excited to share this post with you as it's something I have been working on for a little while now and I have finally got to a point where I feel I can legitimately spill the beans.

As you know I've become a become a bit obsessed with clothes sewing, especially for Master Fox so I have been working on a self designed pair of baby/toddler trousers... Yes, you got it, Fox trousers!


These adorable little joggers are made from cotton sweat shirt fabric so are really comfy and warm. They are a lovely relaxed fit to make sure the nappy fits in there and there is a good ease of movement. Finally they are finished off with an elasticated waist so they are easy to get on an off that wriggly toddler (especially at bottom changing time!).


My favourite thing about these trousers though is that the fox face is on the back. This might seem weird when you look at these on a hanger but when those little ones start to crawl and roll around that little bottom in the air makes these the cutest item of clothing ever. Look at little Master Fox demonstrating this perfectly :)


The even more exciting news is that I have launched a new Etsy shop: Magic Little Monsters where you can get your very own pair of Foxy baby pants. The plan is that these will be made to order, but I will from time to time put listings up there for ready made items and hope to be able to launch exiting new designs in the future. I hope you go and check it out, and recommend it to all your friends!

https://www.etsy.com/uk/shop/Magiclittlemonsters

I really hope you love these trousers as much as I do, I can't wait to get started on drafting up my next design. Please feel free to leave me a lovely comment, and if you have any inspiring ideas from seeing this and want to leave a comment to make suggestions of what I can look to designing please do so.

xxx



22 July 2016

Hand built ceramic rose Jug



Those of you who follow me on Instagram will know that I have been attending some drop in ceramic classes lately (I say lately, I've been going since Xmas so its been a good 6 months!). The classes are run by David Sampson at the Art rooms in Long Eaton and you can find a link to the workshops here. What I really love about these classes is that they are drop in so you aren't tied to a class every week, this is perfect for people with unpredictable little monkeys like me!


This was a little pot that I started between other projects one evening when I had a bit of time at the end of a session and was just playing around. I think its turned out really nicely.

This is the first piece of work that I've been able to bring home since I started but this is because of  the time it takes for the work to dry out, the number of firings each piece of work has to have and obviously the availability of the kiln. As most of my other pieces need a final glaze fire they have been taking a little longer as they need extra firings.


This jug shaped pot was built using the coil method of hand building. I then added some cute little rolled roses onto the side and did a bit of sgraffito for the stems. The main pot has been coloured with oxides, the leaves have been painted on with a coloured slip (I think) and the roses have been done in a red glaze. 

 

To say this little pot was a bit of a by product I think its really cute. Sadly when it was fired it got a little crack in the bottom which means its kind of failing in its main function as a jug so I think it will just have to be some kinds of pen holder/trinket keeper instead. It is still lovely to look at though. I did make this pot with my mum in mind around mothers day (she sort of collects jugs) so I will definitely be gifting it to her this week, I hope that she likes it and can find a suitable use for it.


Davids workshops are hand building only (no throwing) and I have been really enjoying them. Its really nice to just play around with different techniques just to 'see what happens' and its nice to be able to learn some things along the way (even if they are through making mistakes). Ceramics is one of those things I have always wanted to have more of a go at as an adult but due to finds and availability hadn't managed to get round to it. I was very lucky in that Mr Fox organised paying for a few sessions for me as an anniversary present last year and spoke to David to get me to go on the class. I'm really glad he did, and its lovely to have a few hours on a Monday when I can just forget everything else and get lost in the clay.

So if your local and have been thinking about giving ceramics a go you could come and give the sessions a go, the first one is free and I have put the flyer below:

http://www.davidwilliamsampson.com/Workshops.html

15 July 2016

Why do I make stuff?


Why do I make stuff? Because its fun!

But really that's not just it, the enjoyment of the act of making is a big part of it but I think its more than that. There are two main reasons why I like to make stuff...


The first of these is that I think as human beings most of us strive to learn new skills; whether that be in the workplace, at a sport, or in the home there is a desire to develop ones self. Making handmade is a great way to teach yourself something new. There are so many things out there that you can try at home, or in a class to satisfy this need. For me it tends to be sewing but I have recently taken up some ceramic classes and often try my hands at something new. The great thing as well is that even when you have learnt a skill there are always ways to improve, develop and evolve these talents.


The second I think is inherently linked to the first, and that is the massive sense of achievement and self satisfaction you get from the finished something handmade. This isn't always the case, sometimes we can be too critical of our own, work but generally speaking I personally get a great sense of joy from the knowledge that I made that myself. My favourite thing has always been finishing the face on a cuddly toy, it just brings the whole thing to life and genuinely makes me happy.


So I suppose the main reason I make stuff is self gratification, and do you know what I don't think there is anything bad in that. As long as it makes you happy and is not to the detriment of anyone else have at it!


I was inspired to write this post by watching the final of the GBSB. I just love watching it, but thats because sewing is my main hobby of interest. Having said that at the end of every series I get a sense that if these people can do it then so can I. That life is too short to not do what you enjoy and that you should always seek out your aspirations.


I suppose the next question is why do I blog about it? Honestly its because I want you to like it too! Its not just that though, I get a great deal of my inspiration from the internet, from other bloggers and pinterest mainly. I just sort of hope that by making an online diary of the things I have made that hopefully one day I will inspire someone else as much as I have been inspired myself. 


So that's why I make stuff. I would love to hear why you make stuff, are your reasons much the same, or do you have completely different reasons for your handmade hobby? Please do share x.

8 July 2016

Pink Cherry Print Crepe Bettine


Its been an eventful month; Great Britain voted to leave the EU (the less said about that the better) and we have had the final of the GBSB (well done to Charlotte). So with all that going on, and a little bit of work behind the scenes on an exiting project has meant I haven't had chance to show off much this month but I am going to remedy that with this dress made from the most gorgeous fabric I think I have ever laid eyes on. Honestly, I tried to take the pictures for this blog 3 times and just none of them do it the justice it deserves.


So the fabric: Its some beautiful polyester crepe which I purchased from the Sew Over It online shop. Sadly I believe it has completely sold out, with no obvious sign of there being any more (sorry). However I don't feel too bad showing it off because I stalked instagram for 3 months trying to get hold of it and my patience finally paid off. Because this fabric was so hard to come by and so pretty I wanted to make sure I made something good with it. I didn't want to make a blouse as I just don't wear them and I really liked the idea of a dress. It was suggested by Lisa on her Vlog that she might use the Bettine pattern which is what made me buy it. It is a nice floaty drapey dress which works brilliants with the crepe fabric.


Just like the last one I cut a straight size 3 and it fits just about fine. I could do with doing some fit adjustments on this dress; not doing a bust adjustment means the neckline falls back on my shoulders, the arms are a big tight and the skirt maybe needs to be a tad wider in the hips. The fabric is a little sheer so I am wearing the dress with a full pink slip from M&S. This does make the dress sit a little differently as it slides up to my natural waist instead of clinging to my hip which has made this version sit a little differently to the green viscose version I last blogged about. I will see if I can be bothered to tackle these adjustment this next time I make it (probably not!).


I hope you think this is a fitting use of the fabric, thankfully I have enough left to make something else; I'm thinking some kind of floaty cami top would suit it very well. I just need to find a suitable pattern.

Have you sewn up your favourite fabric or is it still sitting in a drawer waiting for the perfect project? I know we are all guilty of hiding away our most coverted buys in fear of not doing it justice but go on, take the plunge!