Special birthday post

I'm just going to take a short break from crafty and sewing talk today to tell you a little more about myself (read: it's my blog and i'll self indulge if I want to... :). Today is my 30th birthday and I'm pretty excited! I'm happy to have survived the perils of my 20s, and have to say those formative adult years have taught me a lot. Sometimes through beatings with a heavy stick, other times through subtle or startling revelations, but either way, a mostly fun and surprising voyage.

Anyway, the purpose of this post was to tell you about a wonderful present from my dear friends and share some photos with you from my birthday party over the weekend.

For some time, I have been complaining to anyone who'll listen about my sewing machine set up at home. For the last couple of years I have been using one of those school exam hall desks (that I may have 'borrowed' from my previous teaching job....). These desks have collapsible legs and are therefore not particularly sturdy for a sewing machine. One time my cat Claude jumped on the table and it collapsed sending my sewing machine crashing to the floor! It survived but the cat got a bit of a fright.... (He didn't do that again!)

Anyway, on Saturday afternoon as I was getting ready for my party, my good friends Wendy and Aaron dropped by to give me a birthday present that 12 of my friends had pooled together to buy- an awesome sewing station!

 It is such a great size, you can fold it all out when you're using it and put it away when you're finished. There are lots of shelves and compartments to put bits and pieces which will help me to be more organised.
My friends are so lovely and I feel lucky to have such wonderful and thoughtful people in my life. :) I can't wait to use it!

To celebrate my birthday, I went out to a nice bar in a suburb of Sydney called Glebe. The room we booked had a little fireplace and was decked out with comfy chairs and a glam chaise. Here's a picture of me pretending to be regal on the chaise. :)

For my outfit I needed something suitable for winter but also something a little special since it was my 30th. I decided on this dress by the Australian made and owned brand, Pilgrim. I like that it has a vintage quality to it in the neckline and drape. It was lovely to wear. For my shoes I chose a glam pair of patent leather heels with a vintage style buckle. They come from the brand 'easy steps' who make comfy shoes heralded by Australian nanas everywhere. :) I love them and figure now I'm 30 I can get away with old lady shoes! hee hee.

To complete the vintage style outfit I dug up an old jeweled necklace and bought a sweet butterfly applique headband. My hair was curled but in the humidity with the fireplace, the curls fell out almost straight away as evident in this pic.

I had a lovely time celebrating with my friends that night, it was heaps of fun.
Here are a few of my favourites pictures taken by my clever husband: (and yes, my friends are a little mad..... in the best way possible of course :)

So another birthday is over. It has been fun reflecting on things and I can honestly say i'm excitedly looking forward to the next 10 years, especially if I have these people and my wonderful husband to laugh with the whole way through.

Ok, back to craftiness now, I hope this little glimpse hasn't been too boring!


crafty tutorials wish list

I've been pretty busy lately so (sadly) I haven't had much time to do crafting and sewing. I still have many project 'wants' on my to do list so I thought I'd share some that jumped out at me this week:

Crochet heart tutorial

Little Birdie Secrets shares a cute tutorial for crochet hearts that I can't wait to try. They have even included a video clip which I think will help a lot! I like how the crochet heart is used to make this beautiful card. Love!

Embroidery hoop art with puffies

Fantastic Toys Embroidery Hoop art

Over on the Fantastic Toys blog Timothy did a little review of a product called 'puffies' which are cute little puffed fabric stickers used mostly in scrapbooking. Tim decided to use them with some embroidery hoops to make gorgeous little artworks! I love this idea and would like to try it if I can get my hands on some of these puffies! I love the little Parisian ones below. So cute!

Fantastic toys Parisian embroidery hoop art

Timothy also shares a tutorial and pattern for making sweet little puffy cupcakes. They would make great little gifts or party decorations I think. Check out the Fantastic Toys Etsy store for more kawaii things to make you smile!

Fantastic Toys- cucpake tutorial

Vintage inspired skirt tutorial

Noodlehead- Vintage inspired skirt

Anna from Noodlehead shares a cute vintage inspired skirt tutorial on the Craferthours blog as part of skirt week 2011. The tutorial has good pictures and instructions and no zippers! :)

Kimono baby shoes

Nifty Thrifty Things- Kimono baby shoes

Vanessa from Nifty Thrifty Things shared a post with some pictures of these adorable kimono baby shoes she made. I love the fabric and style so much! She got the pattern and tutorial from Homespun Threads who have a wonderful collection of tutorials and patterns along with other sewing inspiration. Crafty people are so generous!

Now, to find a spare 20 hours to make all of these....


Inspiration- Mad Men fashion

We just had a lovely long weekend in Australia to celebrate the Queen's birthday. Since it was dismal and rainy all weekend I spent most of it sitting on the couch with the cats watching back to back episodes of season 3 of Mad Men.

It's a great show for fashion eye candy with lots of cinematic qualities and a slow burn kind of plot. It's perfect for knitting and tea drinking while you 'ooh' and 'ahh' at the fashion, hairstyles and sets and tisk at constant smoking and the scandal of the many MANY affairs and romantic dealings. Love it!!!

I really love the fashion of the early 60s as it still has lots of the style and glamour of the 50s. The outfits used on the show are so thoughtfully put together with accessories, hair and make up. They do a good job of making you feel like you're really seeing a snapshot of the time. I think it's amazing!

Here are some pics of dresses/outfits I liked, although they're really just a taste!

Joan, gorgeous pink dress
Betty, stunning floral dress + awesome sunglasses!
Betty, classic dress with polka dot sash

Mad Men's glam ladies

Teal dress in Mad Men style
Joan barbie, I want one!

One day if I ever get over my fear of patterns and conquer sewing clothes, I'd love to try a dress in the 50s style. The shape is so flattering and classic and the possibilities are endless. Until then I'll happily continue lusting after Mad Men fashions!


new addiction- Pinterest

Sigh.... just when I thought I was fresh out of ways to waste time on the internet I discover Pinterest. This is a wonderful site where you have your own virutal pinboard to curate and showcase the things you love and are inspired by. I could easily spend a day looking at it so I have to be quite disciplined! (slowly back away from the pretty pictures...... )

This site appeals to me because I am quite a visual/kinaesthetic type person. I can work most things out through looking/waching and playing. It's probably why I like crafts and sewing so much, but have trouble tackling patterns ("Can't you just show me how to do it?!?!?!?") There is an endless supply of beautiful images from fashion, food and homewares, craft and sewing projects, beautiful stationary, cute animals and photography of stunning places and spaces. Sensory overload!!

Here are some things I found appealing on Pinterest this week with links to their original source.

Lorajean's magazine, lace and doilies table setting

This is Glamerous

from Faktory Girl

from Fairytales are true

tiny white daisies on tumblr

From Anthonyyy

If you want to have your own Pinterest account, you need to request an invitation first, then you can follow other people's boards and pins and re-pin things you like. You can also use the pinterest tool on your favourites bar to pin anything to your boards that you discover during your internet wanderings. Yay!
If you have a Pinterest account you can follow my pins using the link on the sidebar. I'd love to follow you too!

Happy time wasting!


Baby shower decorations- the main event!

For the last month, my crafting life has revolved around one exciting event- my friend Mandy's baby shower. I had a lot of fun searching for baby shower decoration ideas. I was truly inspired by all these amazing and generous women who wanted to make a baby shower really special for their friends.

Using some inspiration found here and here I decided on some decoration ideas for the shower, all fitting into a blue and yellow theme for her new baby boy. If you'd like to know how I made some of the items, I wrote some posts about the process of making a baby bouqueta fabric flower corsage and a tutorial for making fabric baby bunting.  

On the day, I was in charge of making the place look festive while two of Mandy's other lovely friends and her mum made food and cakes. They did such a great job and I literally spent all afternoon eating! Mandy really enjoyed her day and loved all her little surprises. It was so nice being able to spoil our friend. :)

On the day I failed to bring a camera with me (fairly typical). Luckily Mandy's husband Daniel is a great photographer and he took some snaps of the detail for me. Thanks so much Daniel!

Baby bouquet

Baby bunting

Washing line
Wishing tree
 Cards from free pretty things for you
yummy cupcakes Dominique made
fabric flower cuff for the mum-to-be to wear

Thank you bags of chocolates (card from free pretty things for you)

It was so much fun making all the bits and pieces and decorating the room and tables. It would be such a fun full time job! (sigh, if only......)

Here are some other pics from the day:

yummy food

lovely family friends

bambino's aunty Lisa makes a wish
Welcome Bambino sign from confetti prints

Mandy and her fairy helpers!
Wishing Mandy, Daniel and Bambino lots of happiness and many hugs and smiles as they start their new life together as a family.


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