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My Poppet : your weekly dose of crafty inspiration

My Poppet : your weekly dose of crafty inspiration: November 2011

My Poppet : your weekly dose of crafty inspiration

Wednesday, 30 November 2011

Sponsor Profile - Little Shop of...

If you live in Melbourne and haven't been to Little Shop Of...what are you waiting for? It's a treasure trove of local handmade goodness by amazing Victorian craftisans.
Bec, manages to fill every little nook and cranny of the tiny space with all manner of desirable objects (including some of mine, yay!), and I challenge you to walk out of there empty handed. Most items are under $50 which makes it a great place to find the perfect gift on a budget. But don't be to sad if you can't make it into the store, the online store is just as pretty as the shop with convenient shipping right to your very door!

Pop over and Like their facebook page

8 Woorayl St Carnegie
Melbourne, Australia, 3163
Opposite Carnegie train station

Now with new extended Christmas trading hours
starting from Mon 12th Dec all the way to Christmas Eve

Monday 11- 5.30pm
Tuesday 11- 5.30pm
Wednesday 11- 6pm
Thursday 10 - 6pm
Friday 11 - 5.30pm
Saturday 10 - 4.30

Shop Local
Shop Indie
Shop Australian


Tuesday, 29 November 2011

Christmas Stocking Fillers for Under $10

The shop is full of little gift ideas under $10 each that would make great stocking fillers this Christmas. There are little knitted animals from Peru, lots of lovely paper goods from Japan and even some bits and pieces I've made myself here in Melbourne town.

Oh and if facebook is your thing, pop over and Like the My Poppet page, I'll be having random 'Happy Hours' with free shipping on offer in the weeks leading up to Christmas.

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Monday, 28 November 2011

How To: Vintage Storybook Gift Soap

This pretty storybook soap is an easy and inexpensive gift idea or party favour. You can use this wrapping technique to make any small gift look extra special.

You will need:
-A lovely bar of soap, the handmade kind would be even better.
-A scanned and printed image out of a vintage story book. I've just used normal office paper to print on, some pretty gift wrap would work well too.
-Double sided tape
-2 x metal eyelets
-eyelet tool (usually comes in pack of eyelets) or eyelet pliers
How to:
-gather your supplies
-trim your paper to size so the edges overlap when wrapped around the soap, affix with a piece of double sided tape.
-with the ends (about 2 inches on each side), flatten them out and fold over twice as pictured.
-With your eyelet tool, insert eyelets as per instructions on packet. Try to keep them centered.

All done!
Now you have a pretty and unique gift that you'll want to keep for yourself.

You may also like to make a Vintage Storybook Coin Purse

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Friday, 25 November 2011

Emma Stylin' - Retro Rainbow

I made Emma this skirt yesterday from some of the remnants left over from the latest batch of Retro cushions (yes some new designs coming soon). There was no rhyme or reason to the fabric combination, but I think that's what makes it so special. Emma seems to like it.
Just like most of my sewing projects, this one started with some scraps and remnants. I have a sewing hierarchy: scraps, remnants, small pieces, then as a last resort, yardage. Waste not want not, is my motto when it comes to fabric.
Did you notice Emma's 'bandaid'? She had an 'injury' and hurt her arm. Because real bandaids are reserved for blood only (yes I'm a hard ass like that), we improvised and I whipped up a sewing room special. I feel a faux first aid tutorial coming on...

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Thursday, 24 November 2011

Doll Quilt No.3 & 4

Since I started teaching my freestyle quilting classes I've become a little addicted to making mini/doll quilts. I can't bare to throw even the tiniest fabric scraps away, so I love the idea of making something pretty out of them all. Here are number 3 and 4.
The bright purple one has some of my all time fave fabrics in it.
Don't have a dolly? These also make great place mats or table centerpieces.

Want to buy them? Yes? Head over to the shop and start your Christmas shopping now.

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Wednesday, 23 November 2011

Two weeks in pictures...

I've felt a little absent from the blog of late, I was getting a little overwhelmed and needed a break. I know I have been blogging, but I haven't felt like really talking. Sometimes its hard to keep sharing when your real life is sapping all the energy you have, and the truth is, a little time to 'just be' is good for all involved. Emma went/has been going through a super challenging defiant stage a the moment, which had me pulling out my hair. But I think I can see a glimpse of light at the end of the dark tunnel, which is giving me hope that she may not need to be sent to boarding school after all, phew! We have actually been having lots of fun in the last few days...
So here is a recap of what you may have missed:
-giant strawberry season, from the shop, not my garden
-new viking softies for Little Sparrow
-Emma and her love of markers, a tiger apparently
-New shoes from here
-Oh dear, broken nail!
-Quilting classes at Little Sparrow
-just having fun
-cute vintage spec frames from the op-shop
-Yay! new nails
-Street art outside Modern Times
-Architect's model of our upcoming build. Yes there will be demolition here soon, no walls, no kitchen...I'm in for a world of pain.

So add all that to shop orders and other boring stuff, and you can see why I needed to crawl under a virtual digital rock.

x Cinti

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Tuesday, 22 November 2011

How To: Needle felt Heart Garland

This is a very easy and pretty project for those new to needle felting. Make as many hearts as you like to decorate with love this festive season.
For a beginners guide to needle felting you should check out my previous post: Needle Felting Basics

You will need:
Wool roving (assorted colors)
felting needle and pad
Heart shaped cookie cutter (metal or plastic)
embroidery thread in a complementary colour
Tapestry (long) needle
How to:
1. Gather your supplies, we will be using the cookie cutter as a mould for our felt shape.
2. Stuff the mould with some wool, to avoid the risk of needle breaking make sure the thicker lip of the cutter is up most.
3&4. Start needling the wool to flatten and compact, add more wool if required. To avoid felting the shape into pad, lift it out of the mould and turn over regularly as you needle. Remember to keep your needle at a 90 degree angle to the pad so there is no risk of breaking the needle against the metal cutter.
5&6. Once you are happy with the thickness you can remove the mould and do some surface needling to tidy up the fuzzy stray wool fibers.
7. Repeat in assorted colours until you have as many hearts as you like. I've made seven.
8. Arrange your coloured hearts. Don't they look pretty? Take a long strand of embroidery thread and thread your needle. Make a big knot in the end
9. Thread on your hearts.
10. Space your hearts out on the thread and make a loop for hanging at the top. All done!

This garland looks lovely hanging from a door knob, or make a long one and string around your Christmas tree. You could even try using different shaped cutters for a fun assortment of different themed garlands, stars, spots, or even little gingerbread men maybe?

I'm sure you will enjoy this project. Please feel free to leave any question in the comments.

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Monday, 21 November 2011

Learn to make a Christmas Stocking class...

This 2hr class will be a heap of fun. We will be designing and making a colourful Christmas stocking using assorted vintage fabric scraps and trims. Learn some handy techniques like patchwork piecing, machine applique and trim application in the process and take home your unique creation.

Only basic sewing machine skills are required.

You can take home your pattern too and make lots of stockings for gifts.

This class will run for 2 hrs at Little Sparrow in Balaclava (Melbourne) Thursday 1st Dec 2011 between 1pm and 3pm

Fabric, assorted trims, stocking pattern, sewing machines and white cotton thread will be provided. You will need to supply your own scissors and any special fabric you may like to use.

There is a maximum limit of 6 students for this class, the class will run with even one student.

Book your place HERE

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Friday, 18 November 2011

Custom order ♥

I just wanted to share some custom orders I recently finished for a lovely customer. Six very lucky kids are getting some awesome Christmas presents...
It's been a while since I made some skirts and shorts, and I'd forgotten how much I enjoy it. My favourite part is diving into my stash and mixing and matching the fabrics and trims. I tried a couple of the skirts on Emma to check for sizing and she loved them. I think I'll make her a couple this weekend, the weather is certainly getting warmer.

If you want me to make something for you, you can order the skirts here and the shorts here.


Wednesday, 16 November 2011

Vintage Book Lovin' - The Grey Kitten

Our lovely neighbor in Argentina lent Emma a pile of old books to read whilst we were there, amongst them all was this little treasure about a grey kitten. I can't even tell you if the story was any good as I was immediately memorized by the collaged illustrations. The pictures are all created with images of textiles and objects, and in the days before digital collaging with photoshop, I'm assuming it was all literally cut and paste.
I'm hoping it will inspire you to get out some old magazines and fabrics scraps and make a collaged picture of your own, I'm sure the kids will love it.
If I can get Emma to sit still long enough, we may give it a go too.

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Tuesday, 15 November 2011

A fine vintage...

Just like wine lovers cellar their premium bottles for a special occasion, I have a special stash of fabric that I'm saving for just the right projects.
So when Amy from Modern Times Pop-Up Shop asked me to make some cushions for the event, I knew that it was time to open the vault. The Pop-up doesn't open till the 9th of December so I thought I'd offer some of my favorite ones in my shop so you, my very favorite people could have first pick. These are very limited edition as some of the fabric pieces were just small samples. Once Modern Times opens, they wont be available online any longer.

So far I've had a great response to the designs. Is this the kind of thing you'd like to see in the shop permanently?

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Monday, 14 November 2011

An Experiment in Screen Printing...

When I saw that my friend Leslie of Maze & Vale (formally Onegirl) was doing a handprinted fabric swap, I couldn't resist joining in. I have been wanting to experiment with the whole screen printing thing for quite a while now and this was the perfect opportunity to give it a try. My last hands on experience with screen printing was in high school, so I'm hardly an expert. This is not a tutorial but just a little guide as to how I went about it all and what I could improve on.

Equipment & Materials: I was lucky enough to pick up some printing ink from my local art shop very cheaply as they were clearing out this range. The only colour choice was silver, so silver it was! Fabric I have plenty of, and my very lovely friend Pilgrim lent me her screen and squeegee.

Design: Rather than burning onto the screen with emulsion (which I have no idea how to do), I thought making a stencil with vinyl adhesive (Contact) would be a good alternative. Little silver clouds seemed appropriate so I had drew the design and cut it out with a craft scalpel, then stuck it to the underside of the frame.
Looking back I should have drawn the clouds horizontal to the frame which would have made repeat prints a lot easier with less negative space. The next part was all a bit clumsy as I was on my own. Trying to deal with ink, hold a frame down, squeegee and then relocate the fabric was not impossible but would have been a whole lot simpler with another set of hands. I think most screen printers use a hinged frame so things don't shift around. Probably used way too much ink and ended up with silver hands!All in all, I think I did ok. I found the quality of my prints erratic and consistency was a problem. I only had a couple of perfect prints and the rest had patchy areas (see bottom left, below), I'm sure this was down to my technique, or lack thereof.
I also suspect towards the end some of the ink may have started to dry in the screen silk because I wasn't working quickly enough? Would love to hear from anyone that can give me some pointers. So hung out the fabric to dry, then ironed to heat set.
My fat quarters are all cut up and ready to ship around the world to my swap partners, I'm excited to see what they'll send me.
I'm not sure if this whole screen printing thing is for me though, it was quite enjoyable but the clean up was a real pain. I really need an assistant to do all the dirty work.

Have you tried screen printing before?

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Friday, 11 November 2011

Sponsor Profile - Diddi

Today I'd like to introduce you yo Lizzie of diddi who produces a colourful range of wall art and wall stickers right here in Melbourne's bayside suburb of Elwood.How was the whole concept of Diddi born?
I studied graphic design at Monash University, and have worked in Melbourne design studios since graduating in 2003.
In 2006, illness required me to take a year long break from work. During that time of recovery (and extreme boredom) I was introduced to quilting. The fabric colours and patterns, and graphic nature of the process really appealed.
Finally the birth of my niece two years ago, and a baby boom amongst friends and acquaintances, led to the creation of diddi. My aim was to create a series of user-friendly simple designs that would make a big statement in a room with minimum effort.
And the name diddi?
It's what my niece first called me (Lizzie in baby-speak).

diddi’s range includes personalised framed prints and wall decals for kids. Everything including the frames are made to order locally in Melbourne and can be personalised with the child's initial for a really personal gift.
The fabric wall decals are great as they can be applied, removed and repositioned, without damaging paintwork. Ideal for renters or those that like to change their mind frequently.

You can view the full range of designs available on diddi's website, they ship all over Australia and even have gift vouchers available for those little ones that may not even be born yet.

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Wednesday, 9 November 2011

Nice Nails!

I get a lot of comments on my nails, probably because they are always colourful and look reasonably well kept. Turns out, it's my 'thing'.
For some it may be all about their hair or lippy, I like to have nice nails.
It was never started as a conscious thing, I blame my sister for starting me on the nail vanity journey. You see, she made me get mine done for her wedding (I was in the bridal party), and then I was hooked.

Oh, and did I mention they are faux? Yes gels to be exact. My real nails are so thin and brittle, I could literately peel layers off them, ick! So you can understand why I was enamored almost immediately.

But how do you find the time to maintain them, I hear you ask. Well yes, I do have to get them refilled about every 3 weeks (an hour sans toddler, bliss!). It's my 'me' time. I don't wear make-up or hair product, so I figure I can lash out on the nails every once in a while. My favorite thing is choosing a new colour every time, although I have been quite partial to blue of late. I've just started a Pinterest Board for nail inspiration, it's pretty.

It's amazing how well manicured nails can give you that extra bit of confidence when you just don't feel that great. One can't always guarantee a good hair day, or even managing to pull a good looking outfit together when you are rushing out the door, but my nails I can control, it's worth the investment for me.

Do you have a beauty or fashion 'thing'?

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Tuesday, 8 November 2011

Doll Quilt No.2 and other shop news...

I never got around to sharing the first doll quilt I made for the shop a couple of weeks ago. Well it's a bit late now, it's already sold. So today, whilst Emma was off with mum checking out the Myer Christmas windows, I made another little Doll quilt.
I was really meant to be tidying up my sewing room, but that always seems to be when inspiration strikes. So as I was picking up these scraps from the floor, I just couldn't help but sew them together, and a little bit of quilting and binding later, a mini doll quilt is born.

If this is the kind of thing you would like to learn to make, on a small scale or large, there is still a few spots left for my quilt making classes. They start this Thursday - more details over here.

If sewing isn't your thing but you have a dolly that is in dire need of a quilt. You can buy this one here. It would also make a lovely place mat.

Also in other shop news. Mum's handmade bias binding is back in stock with lots of new designs available. I particularly like the stripey ones for quilt binding.
Get your fix here.

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Monday, 7 November 2011

How To: Add Knee Patches to Jeans

If your kids are constantly wearing the knees out of their pants or jeans, you are going to love this easy to follow tutorial. This patching technique is useful for all trousers, big or small, but especially small.

You will need:
The Jeans or pants you need to patch
Fabric for the patches - I used a piece of denim from an old pair of Mr Man's jean
Sewing machine
Seam ripper/un-picker
Thread, Scissors, Pins
1. Iron the jeans (these don't have holes but they are very thin in the knees).
2. Cut out two matching patches, they can be any shape you like.
3. Lay them over the knees to check size and position.
4. (optional) You may like to machine stitch a criss cross pattern on the patches to add interest.5. Now this the secret trick to make everything a whole lot easier, even on the smallest of garments. You need to unpick the side seam of the leg. On jeans choose the seam that isn't double stitched. Unpick as far as you can without unpicking cuff. This means you can open the leg out flat to comfortably use the sewing machine.6. Pin patches into place.
7 & 8. Now with a thread that matches the colour of the patch use a wide zig zag stitch (satin stitch) to sew the patch onto the leg.
9. Turn jeans inside out and resew the seam that you previously unpicked. Zig Zag or serge raw edge if desired.
10. All done! Check out how groovy these old jeans look.

Don't limit yourself to making patches solely out of denim, why not try patches in prints or fun shapes like a heart or star?

Thank you to Heidi, a fabulous facebook Liker who requested this tutorial on the My Poppet fan page:

'Cintia, I have a request. My little boys jeans ALWAYS end up with holes in the knees.....I'd love to patch them up but know they wouldn't end up looking the way I wanted them too. Seeing as you are a jeanious (ha!) I was hoping maybe you could do a tutorial on it?!
I'd love you forever....'

I'm glad I could help Heidi out.

If you have any tutorial requests, feel free to leave a comment here or over on the facebook page and I'll see what I can do :)

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Saturday, 5 November 2011

Paper Balloon Inspiration...

I couldn't resist sharing these amazing images taken by Ebony of Hello Sandwich, of the paper balloon installation at the mt Expo in Tokyo. Is your mind blown?
You can see more photos over here on the Hello Sandwich blog.
And if you want to recreate this installation (on a smaller scale) you can get your Japanese paper balloons here...

All images used with permission from Hello Sandwich

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Friday, 4 November 2011

Sponsor Profile - Green Nous by Scruffy Dog

We often hear a lot about how big companies are doing their bit to be more earth friendly, "carbon offset this, greener strategy that..." But sometimes I think the big boys should learn a little bit from the little guys like Scruffy Dog, who have used their common sense and started Green Nous.

GreenNous is an initiative founded by the people at Scruffy Dog shoes, with the aim of doing a little bit for the environment by recycling material that would otherwise likely be discarded. They encourage others to think about how the apparently useless stuff they come across on a daily basis might be reused or put to some good use and then turn those thoughts into action. It's all about green nous: commonsense recycling.

GreenNous in action:
Local "Reverse Garbage" is their office supplier where they get: arch files, filing cabinet, work benches and some very comfy office chairs. Local shops and post office give them their discarded cardboard boxes which they reuse for shipping Scruffy Dog shoes to retailers.
An old bicycle found by the roadside has become their vehicle for the daily small parcel run to the post office. Pedal Power Yay!

Not only do these common sense initiatives save the environment, it saves them money too.
I really like the idea of teaming up with other local businesses to help them reduce their waste output. Re-using materials uses up no energy compared to the whole recycling process, there by saving other businesses money on recycling and waste disposal services as well.

Good one Scruffy Dog.

Go and check out the great kids shoes Scruffy Dog make over on their website. There is no online shop, but Leila will be happy to organize your order, just email them.

Breaking News: Scruffy Dog is now on facebook, pop over and LIKE their page and tell them My Poppet sent you :)


Thursday, 3 November 2011

Crafty Christmas fun...

I know November has only just begun, but if you intend on hand making some gifts or decor for your home this Christmas, now is the time to start.
So to make your life a little easier I'll be putting together a few crafty kits in the coming weeks.
Today whilst Emma was napping I had a brainwave - Vintage Christmas Stocking Kits. The stockings I made last year sold really well but unfortunately I really haven't got time to sit at the sewing machine for several hours any more, so this kit has all the materials and instructions for you to make your own.
You can choose from a selection or fabrics or let me surprise you if you are feeling adventurous.

I'll also be writing some fun tutorials for projects that would make great Christmas gifts, so stay tuned.
If you have any special tutorial or Craft Kit requests, just leave a comment with your suggestion and I'll give it a shot.

Do you plan on making any Christmas gifts this year?

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Wednesday, 2 November 2011

Instagram Sew Along...

I have a new social media obsession, it's a humble little iPhone app called Instagram. You may have heard of it? It took me a little while to warm up to the idea of sharing my photos, but I have found the little Instagram community to be friendly and supportive.
Of late, my favourite thing has been to share the various stages of my sewing projects, just like a virtual sew along. I like the idea of documenting parts of the process for myself, and because I am a social person, I love that people leave comments for me along the way. It's like blogging but super immediate. Here are the photos I've shared...above, a quilt for a very special pop up shop (more about that soon).
Below, the dress I made a few weeks ago, it was the first sew along I shared......and of course Eva's Christening gown.
So if you are on Instagram and would like to follow my image stream, you can find me under @mypoppetshop (same as my twitter handle). It's not always sewing, sometimes it's photos of my feet or new manicure, lol.

Brainwave! Ok from now on I will tag all sew along photos with #sewalong, go ahead and join in too. The search function on Instagram will bring up everyone's photos tagged with #sewalong, this is going to be fun!

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Tuesday, 1 November 2011

Eva's Christening Gown

This weekend I made a christening gown for my adorable niece, baby Eva. My sister didn't want anything too over the top so she picked an embroidered vintage sheet to use for the fabric.
I've never made anything this complicated or important before, but after making the dress for myself a few weeks ago, I was feeling confident that my attempt wouldn't end in disaster.
I just used a basic dress pattern with a few modifications. The original pattern was a romper dress so I left out the romper pants, lengthened the skirt and fully lined the bodice and skirt. The zip was a little tricky but its in and looks ok from the outside (don't look inside!).
My sister also picked a scalloped edged bonnet from a vintage pattern I had but it was way too small so I enlarged it. The bonnet is unfinished and still needs to have to ribbon ties added.
Eva is coming around today for the fitting, fingers crossed it fits. I think it came out really beautiful, I can't wait to see how adorable she looks in it.
Will share photos of the Christening soon...

Breaking news: The dress fits perfectly, I'm so relieved.

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