Sunday, March 17, 2013

Handprinted: A fabric swap III

I signed up for Handprinted :  A fabric swap III a few weeks ago.  I have done a little bit of handprinting before (though with precut, bought stamps) and wanted to play around with this more.

So firstly:  here's what I made the first time around when I stamped (note Issy was stamping so the quality is variable!):


This is the end of a scarf which Issy and jointly made for her Kindergarten teacher at the end of last year.  She did the stamping (with guidance...) and I did the sewing.  The end is white linen, the blue main body of the scarf is blue linen and the binding is blue and white silk - an offcut that I found in a local fabric shop in Brisbane the last time I was there from work (I can't remember the name...).


A close up of Issy's excellent stamp work...using a peacock stamp I bought at Ecohaven, a local Hobart shop.


While the kiddie stamping gives this something of the handmade vibe, I think it's a pretty stylish and refined effort all up - I loved it (and secretly wanted to keep it!).



It was a nice gift for someone who was (is!) an excellent teacher.

And here are some shots of the handprinting this time around in action:



The kids busied themselves "helping"



Issy did some grass and clouds and sunshine...


while Marcus needed to wash his hands a LOT as he used them as paintbrushes...


Meanwhile I got down and dirty with some test stamping (no shots of the final deal here so I don't spoil it..)


I used various paints and tried out different things to stamp with.  Generally I had lots of fun (as did the small people) and I ended up with two of the four fat quarters I need for the swap done and dusted.

I want to buy some other colours of paint to finish off the swap printing, so hopefully some finished pictures during the week so I can mail them to my swap buddies!  Two of them have already posted their work and they look great - so creative and speedy...I have a lot to live up to!


Monday, March 11, 2013

Pattern Testing for Elegance & Elephants - Ruffle Top

I was VERY excited to be picked again to pattern test - this time for someone's first pattern (fair bit of responsibility in that!).  Heidi over at Elegance & Elephants is releasing this pattern tomorrow, though she has a giveaway posted (closes at the end of tomorrow) if you want to win a copy of this pattern.

The pattern is called the Ruffle Top, but it's really a top, tunic or dress; depending on your chosen option.  The back is actually shown here but I just love this picture trio:

Picture from E&E Site:  Here

And I was asked to test the Swing Dress version.  This is the lovely result:



The dress is a lovely, dressy maxi type dress, with a full skirt (perfectly swishy and swirly).  The bodice has a keyhole closure and button at the back, with a kind of frilled cap sleeve and a ribbon tie.



The above shot shows the fullness of the skirt, which is one reason it is pieced onto the bodice (as opposed to the top and tunic styles which are a single front bodice piece).  It falls so nicely in a thinner fabric like a voile or lawn.


I made my version out of a navy/indigo voile with white dandelions on it - amazingly this lovely fabric was from Spotlight.   I had to get a little creative with the cutting as I didn't have the requirements in length, but luckily it was a wider bolt so I was able to squeeze it in.


I used a silvery grey ribbon for the sash, as white made it look a bit too dressy.  The button (not pictured) is a similar colour.

All up this pattern is amazing as a first pattern, though Heidi obviously has a lot of sewing and tutorial experience so she is no novice.  The design is lovely and with enough features and options to make this interesting enough to make more than once, in different versions and fabrics.  I would like to make the tunic version in something about the opposite of this - with a funky modern fabric and perhaps a twill or grosgrain sash-belt.  The pattern goes from 18m to size 8, which is a nice range - as the mother of a tall girl I was very frustrated by all the cute patterns which ended at a size 5.  I am looking forward to seeing more patterns from E&E in the near future!

I originally wasn't sure I wanted to make madam another dress, but this one is so gorgeous and shows off this great fabric so well I am now very happy I did.

And most importantly, she loves it :)