Thursday, 31 January 2013

Simple Retro-Inspired Sailing Quilt


I'm sure you have all seen the news this week. We have just had a horrendous weekend of weather here in Queensland. Not sure I've seen so much constant rain fall for a long time - if ever!

But while I was house-bound it was the perfect excuse to just sit inside and sew. I found this gorgeous retro boats print fabric on sale at spotlight. The fabric was just so cute I didn't really want to cut it up.

Thom needed another quilt for his bed anyway so it was perfect to make up a simple alternating 4-patch quilt top for him. 

This took me all of one day to do. I already had the aqua and white in my cupboard so it also helped cut down my stash a little. 

The sail boat blocks are 10" square. To make the 4-patch i cut 5 1/4" strips of the aqua and white, sewing them together and then cut up 5 1/4 strips to quickly piece a 4-patch block. 

These blocks when sewn together make a 10" block so there shouldn't be any trimming down to do.

Then simply sew all the blocks together and now it's ready to quilt!

This quilt reminds me of the ferry races in Sydney Harbour on Australia Day.  

So I decided to name this quilt 'The Ferry Race'.

Only problem is going to get getting it off Thom's bed now - he loves it so much he won't let me have it back to quilt!

I also managed to have time to make up another little Ruby doll for a friend to give as a gift for a special little girl - she has cute little piggy tails which I just love!

Happy quilting!

Caity xx

Monday, 28 January 2013

James's Bedroom is in a Westpac Ad!

I’m very excited to be able to let you know this week that a photo of my son James’s bedroom has been used for a new Westpac Bank advertisement. Look closely at the little photo in the last section of the “W” and you’ll see it.

These ads are on billboards in areas of Sydney, Brisbane and Melbourne. I was very lucky to have my photo included – what a treat!

I have shown the ad to James and he is far more excited about the car in the ad, rather than his room. He is only just two, though!!

I’ll be back next week with my usual project post.

Happy banking! (ha ha!)


Thursday, 24 January 2013

Make Fabric Style Labels for the Home

Craft/Home Decorating:

Do you love things to be organised in your home?
I do, but I’m also the first to admit that I’m far from perfect – I just love the idea of a ‘perfect’ home!

Anyway it’s summer time here in Queensland and it's hot - too hot to quilt and almost too hot to do anything - but I have been doing a little cleaning and organising around the home.

First on my list, my cupboards – all my cupboards!

Sigh – Apart from making them tidy – I was thinking about how I could make them a little more practical as well as pretty and came up with an idea to make fabric labels for all my cupboards.

This is a really sweet way to personalise AND organise your home at the same time – and you can make then to suit any theme you like – I have chosen a gorgeous blue chevron print and some lovely liberty florals.

You can do this at home on your computer and it really is so simple:

Things you will need:
·      Computer with word program or similar
·      Colour printer
·      Clear contact
·      Scissors
·      Thumb tacs or double sized sticky tape

Step 1:
Find an image you can copy and paste it into Word (or similar) on your computer. I used fabric sample images, but if you want to use your own photos, designs or even scanned documents you can.

Step 2.
Size your fabric image to your desired size depending on the label size you want (I find it’s best to fill the entire page– but it’s  totally up to you).

Step 3.
Click on the image and go to the little box that says ‘text wrapping‘ (depending what version of Word you have this might be found in a different place). Next click on ‘through’ – this will allow you to write over the image you have saved.

Step 4.
Create your label names. I made a couple different sets – a set for my wardrobe, a set for the linen cupboard and a set for my kitchen.

Step 5.
Once you are happy with the layout you can print your labels using a colour printer. Next cut out each label to the size you want.

Step 6.
Cut your contact paper about 5mm larger on all sides than your label. You will need two pieces for each label. Peel off the back and place the label face down onto the sticky side of the contact. Place the other sheet of contact over the top and smooth down carefully to make sure there are no pockets of air.

Step 7.
Finally attach your labels to your drawers, cupboard shelves or containers either with double sided tape or a small thumb tack if you don't mind making a mark in the wood. 

Happy creating, and now I just need to organise the rest of the house!

Caity x

Monday, 21 January 2013

Painted Avocado Packaging Design


The idea for this DIY artwork came to me one day after I’d been grocery shopping and purchased some avocadoes. I bought a pair of them, and they came in some lovely charcoal-coloured, moulded cardboard packaging. Unfortunately I didn’t take a photo of it but it was something like this…
I immediately noted down my idea in a quick drawing.

Then I used a piece of good-quality plywood purchased from Bunnings (because I just love plywood at the moment), and roughly drew the design onto it.

I knew the sorts of colours I wanted to use: Grid, Ogen Yellow and Bright Delight (all Dulux), and basically I just started painting!

Once I’d finished with the colours, I knew that there was still something missing from the design. So I got out my permanent marker and drew a few extra design bits on with it!

I’m donating this painting to a local charity organisation to use as part of their upcoming fundraising event. I hope whoever ends up with it likes it on their wall.

Next time you’re grocery shopping, see if you can find a design tucked away somewhere!

Happy painting!


Thursday, 17 January 2013

Make your Own 'Ruby Doll'


I have a good friend's little girl's 1st birthday coming up this week and was wondering what I should make for her. My inspiration came from my old dolls that mum has recently handed over to me - Coco on the left and Betsy on the right. You can see they are very 'loved'... especially Betsy which mum made me for my first birthday.

This was a simple little dolly to make - took me all of one morning to make and is really cute - I have named her Ruby after my grandmother and I hope 'E' loves her as much as I loved my dolls!

Firstly I drew up a pattern of what I wanted the doll to look like.

Next I traced each of the pieces onto some baking paper (noting that I needed to add seam allowance).

Once each of the pieces was cut out I assembled the parts. I used felt for the hair and cheeks, a simple french knot for the eyes and back stitch for the mouth and ribbon for the bow.

If you make a 'Ruby Doll' I'd love to see it or if you have any questions I'm happy to help!

Happy sewing!

Caity x

Monday, 14 January 2013

A Budget Living Room Renovation: Before and After Photos

Home Decorating:

This living/dining room is in the spare cottage on our property – it’s the house where our visitors, friends and family stay when they come to visit us. It is certainly shaping up to be a lovely house... but USED to be an absolute eyesore (as you can see from the 'before' photos!) 

I've featured a couple of rooms from this house on the blog before. After quite a few years of work, I’m finally getting this house finished!

This living room was certainly a budget makeover! I basically cleaned, filled gaps, fixed anything broken, and then painted… and painted… and painted! 

I did all the work myself (this is why it has taken so long, but at least I saved money!) That said, there were a few things that I had to pay to get help with fixing, like the tiling behind the heater. I had so much to do that I just couldn’t get my head around having to learn how to tile as well! I did pay our builder to do that for me - he very kindly even GAVE me the tiles as he had them leftover from another job – what a nice bloke.

For the flooring… I was going to put lino throughout the whole house but it was just TOO expensive, so I ripped up all the old carpet and painted the floors. I used two coats of decking paint (in white), and then used a heavy duty furniture varnish over the top to seal it all. It is wearing very, very well. This meant that I only had to put lino in the rooms where there were no floorboards. The flooring now all looks fresh, clean and lovely!

For the decorating, I again used everything that I already had. There is nothing in either of these rooms that I didn’t already have lurking in my shed and cupboards (I’ve been buying furniture from op-shops and the like for years!) I am also very lucky to have been given lots of leftover furniture from family.

All the artwork on the walls is budget too – they’re all DIY except for the black and green design one above the bookshelf… it was destined for the scrap heap after my sister had a throw out from her course at University; a friend of hers had painted it. That was a lucky find!

In these photos you can also see some wrapping paper art, like in one of Caity’s posts, a framed business card near the kitchen door, my stick wall hanging, my clip art botanical prints, leaf pictures and peg print. Above the fireplace are some lovely wooden placemats that my mother-in-law gave me, which also look great as pictures.

I hope these photos give you some ideas for YOUR next project.

Happy decorating!


Thursday, 10 January 2013

Baby Kisses Quilt is Finished!


Finally I have finished this quilt I posted back in June last year here - originally this was for a bub who arrived in June last year !! Poor bub ended up with another present instead and this has sat in my cupboard for ages begging to be finished!

So over the holidays I got a chance to get a bit of sewing done and did some basic machine quilting across the 'kisses' and then bound it in a  pale blue gingham.

Now I have a quilt in reserve for any friends who might have a little girl. Wonder what else might be sitting in my cupboards waiting to be finished.....

Happy quilting!

Caity x

Monday, 7 January 2013

Big Red Egg Painting on Plywood


This project was quick, cheap and easy! I knew I wasn’t going to have much time this week, and this painting literally took me half an hour to complete, including drying time!

My lovely Christmas tree picture had to come down this week, and I wanted to put something bright and modern and with a touch of Scandinavian in its place.

So I purchased a piece of good quality plywood from Bunnings for about $16 (900 x 600 x 12), drew my egg outline on it in pencil, and then painted it. The colour I used was Dulux Red Alert.

It’s a VERY simple design (no skill required!), but the picture looks so contemporary hanging on my kitchen wall.

This project also has endless possibilities for variations in colour and choice of object. Even a set of three plywood panels with different coloured eggs would look great too.

Happy painting!