Monday, August 31, 2009

Pixie's playing dress up!

I had a request from one of my lovely customers for an extra outfit for her custom doll.So I made this sweet little outfit for winter.Its so much fun making miniature clothes so I am seriously thinking of making little outfits to sell in the shop? Good idea...I hope so :D


Just too cute, This adorable print is by Jewelbirds.

Meet Pixie

Meet Pixie,another little lady crossed of my never ending"things to do" List.

Friday, August 28, 2009

Meet me at mikes!!

Awesome!! meet me at mikes has just created a new forum! Check it out here

Love bird

This darling owl is by skunk boy creatures
Lily is a special edition linen owl.

Lily likes to pretend every day is Valentine's day, by celebrating with chocolate treats, and loving wishes. She has the warmest heart and an affinity for tenderness.

Lily is approx. 6-7 inches tall. She is made from linen, vintage fabric, buttons, wire, and a pink bow.

Thia delicate beauty is by cecelia hayes

A tiny little captive on a swing. This little bird is altered by hand to have pink cheeks and an open mouth. Customize this item by your choice of name or word on a hand cut banner made of sturdy card stock. This item is hand assembled so there will be slight variations from the ornament in the photo, but consistent integrity!

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Needle know how

Choosing the right needle for the right fabric is vital to getting good results.Knowing what type and size of needle is another story.With so many different needles to choose from it can easily become confusing.

Q: How do I know what size needle I need and what do all those numbers mean?
A: When you look at a packet of needles you will notice a set of numbers at the bottom of the packet.
The packet that is pictured above says 90/14.The first number is what is used here in Australia(sizes 60,80,90,100.....) while the second number is the American equivalent(sizes 8,10,12,14......)
This number represents the thickness of the needle.The lower the number the finer the needle eg: 70/10. The higher the number the thicker the needle eg: 100/16.Therefor the finer the fabric the finer the needle will have to be.
So if I was sewing on chiffon I would choose a size 70/10 and if I was sewing on jeans I would choose a size 90/14.
The reason why you need to get the right size is that you either risk breaking your needle if using a needle that is too fine for thick fabric or making larger holes than needed if the needle is too thick for fine fabric causing puckering.Size 80/12 is the most common size used and is mostly used on regular weight woven materials like cotton dress making or patch working material.

Q: Now that I know what size I need how do I know what type of needle I should use?
A: There are many different types of needle for different types of fabric.There are four types that I think you should always have in your stash.

Ballpoint needle:Ballpoint needles are designed for knit fabrics.The tip is smooth and rounded like a ballpoint pen. Because of this rounded tip the needle gently separates and glides through the fabric without breaking through the fibers.This prevents snags and runs.

Stretch needle: A stretch needle is designed for fabric with a two way stretch.Fabrics with a two way stretch like Lycra are commonly used on lingerie and swimsuits. stretch needles help to prevent skipped stitches and are a must when dealing with very stretchy fabrics.

Jeans/denim needle: Jeans/Denim needles are used for thick tightly woven fabrics.These needles have a very sharp tip and a larger eye to easily penetrate the fabric with ease.Other uses for jeans needles include free motion quilting and machine embroidery.The sharp tip will penetrate multiple layers and the large eye will allow the thread to flow freely to help prevent thread breakage.

Universal needle: The universal needle is the most commonly used type of needle and is used for almost 95% of all sewing.The tip is not as round as a ballpoint and not as sharp as a jeans needle meaning it has many uses.If you still fell confused about sizes and types then ask for a universal 80/12 and you can almost guarantee that this will be fine for most of the work you will be doing.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Double Chocolate Chunk Cookies

mmmm I just love the smell of fresh baked cookies straight from the oven and eating them when the chocolate is still warm and gooey is even better.This is the first time I had tried this recipe and it was so simple but ooohh so good.With some cookie recipes they either turn out as hard as rock or I would take a peek in the oven to discover that my lovely little cookies had turned themselves in to not so lovely pancakes. These had the perfect amount of crunch on the outside and a slightly soft center.Im sure I will be make a batch of these every week and because the recipe makes over thirty it gives me an excuse to eat more than one with my cup of tea.

A hot cup of coffee,warm gooey cookies and the latest edition of "shop for Kids" equals one very satisfied mummy.

The Recipe
125 grams (4.5 ounces) of room temperature butter
1/2 cup Brown sugar
1/3 cup Castor sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla essence
1 egg
1 and a half cups of self raising flour
1/3 cup cocoa
3/4 cup of dark chocolate chips

  1. Preheat the oven to 160*c ( 320 degrees Fahrenheit)
  2. Cream butter and sugars until light and fluffy
  3. Mix in the vanilla essence and egg
  4. Stir in the flour and cocoa
  5. Add the chocolate chips
  6. roll teaspoons of mixture and place on a greased tray,flaten slightly with a fork and bake for 10 to 15 minutes

Applique Tutorial

How I learnt to Applique
When I first started to sew I answered an add on a local notice board for someone requiring help with their sewing business.I was quick to take the opportunity and after a casual meeting was handed my first pile of face cloths and towels. All had to be appliqued with names and tricky designs of unicorns and spaceships.I was extremely nervous knowing that the products would be sent interstate to upmarket boutiques.I had never done applique before so I gave myself a crash course on the technique.I think I must of been getting paid only a few dollars an hour but being a new mum it was something to give me a little extra pocket money for coffee with friends plus I learnt heaps about applique do's and don't s.
So as promised I have decided it was about time I got organized and posted my first tutorial.The first tutorial is of coarse on the Applique technique.This has remained one of my most favorite and frequently used techniques so far.
Applique has so many different applications.Use it on clothing,quilts cushions,toys etc.
I want to share all the tips and tricks that I have learned so far through my own experiences so that this too an become one of your favorite stitches.
  • Sewing machine with open toe or clear soled foot attached
  • pencil for drawing design
  • paper backed fusible webbing like 'ezy fix' or 'vlisofix'
  • Tear away stabilizer to prevent puckering.
  • Backing fabric
  • applique fabric
*Fabric choices*

Almost any fabric can be used just as long as it is stabilized and fused correctly.This may be cottons,jeans,knits silks....

*Machine Set up*

stitch: Blanket stitch.Length and with can vary depending on desired look.If you would like a small delicate blanket stitch you can go as small as length 1 and width 1.Or you could go for a large blanket stitch so that it becomes more of a feature in your work,Lets say a length of 5 and a width of 5. Notice how my length and width are always the same? This is because we want to form an even square blanket stitch and not a squashed up rectangle.

Normal tension

Presser foot: Normal foot or if you have one a open toe applique foot or clear sole foot.These two feet are made so that you can easily see where your needle is entering the fabric for easier guidance and accuracy.

Optional:If your machine has a needle down function this can be activated for easy pivoting around corners and curves.If you dont have this feature then simply tap on the foot control to bring the needle down.

Optional: If you own a a machine that allows you to move your stitch position like the new Pfaff's or most Bernina's you may want to use this feature.Simply move the needle position to the furthermost right hand side so that all you have to do is run the edge of your applique piece down the inner right hand side of the foot for greater accuracy and speed.

If you don't class your self as an artist then don't despair.There is plenty of places that you can draw inspiration from.Perfect examples are children's coloring books which often have clear simple pictures in them.Craft magazines, find these at your local library.They usually have a insert with applique designs on them. The key is to start easy.Try not to go for a complicated design with lots of curves and sharp angles.Also keep in mind that your image when drawn and fused to the fabric will be a mirror image.This is especially important when doing names.It may pay to reverse your image on photocopier first.

*Step 1*
Draw or trace your design to the paper side of your paper backed fusible webbing.Cut around your design leaving a 1/2" border.
*Step 2*
Take your design and iron it on (fusible side down) on to the wrong side of your heart fabric.Let the fused design cool completely before carefully cutting it out following the drawn line.

*Step 3*
Next is to take your backing fabric and place the tearaway stabilizer behind it.Stabilizer is very important to ensure a pucker free finish.It also make your job a lot easier.It can be brought cheaply by the meter and it has a paper feel to it.Once you have completed your design it simple tears away leaving you with a perfect finish.

Now take your design and peel away the paper backing.This will reveal the fusible webbing.Iron your design onto your stabilized backing fabric and you are ready to rock 'n ' roll!

*Step 4*

Line up the edge of your fabric so that the vertical part of the stitch is running just along the raw edge of the fabric.The needle will then swing to the left to create the blanket stitch.Take it slowly until you get used to the stitch sequence so that when you approach corners you will no when to stop and pivot. make sure that your needle is lowered into the fabric for easy turning.Once completed tear of the stabilizer.

*Step 5*
This ones easy
Practice,Practice, Practice and most of all have fun

nooshka xx

Monday, August 24, 2009


"Jane" Shes new in the shop, I reckon I will do more of these girls.I like the vintage look about them.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Yay!! The dolls are done

The nature girls

I'm one happy lady

Sunday in the sun

Today was the perfect day to hit the beach.It was so nice not having to layer on the clothes, I always feel relaxed when summer rolls around.I love the sticky air and hearing the crickets at night. I love being able to hang out a load of washing and knowing that it will be dry in a couple of hours.Then again it means that I have to get it in a and fold it sooner too...right?
So we went down to our favorite beach at Burliegh with a picnic and watched people enjoy there Sunday.One group was having a beautiful beach side wedding,another large group of people where dancing away to African drumming music while another group where enjoying dancing to some live salsa music.The atmosphere was buzzing and I'm sure now even late at night they are still all down there.The water was still cold from the winter but Alexie and Sofia jumped right in.Afterwards we headed into town for sorbet and then we enjoyed a peaceful drive back up the mountain with Sofia sound asleep.Ahhhh just perfect

The beach proved to be a popular place.

Friday, August 21, 2009

Another order for Geneva

Recently I just heard back from one of my customers in Geneva with exciting news that all the dolls had sold in her shop.So this week I have been busy creating four new girls.It has taken nearly a week to complete them all.Above is a picture of all the little arms lined up in a row.Below is a picture of my armless girls (better Than being legless)Fingers crossed that this batch will do as well as the first?

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Thought of the day

Cutting your daughters hair is not like sewing.Once you cut it you cant sew it back on.I guess thats why my barbie dolls ended up with crew cuts.

Take a closer look

I remember the first time I drove by this shop.I remember thinking "cool hes painting outside,I'll have to go past and have a look at his work". The next time I drove by I thought "gee hes at it again" the third time I thought " I'm an idiot!"

Click on the picture to have a closer look

Monday, August 17, 2009

Gallery walk

This is our Main street on the mountain called "GALLERY WALK" it's easy to see why as you take a stroll down the street you will see candy shops, coffee shops and craft stores on your left and right and they stretch from one end of the street all the way down to the fig tree roundabout.I love the charm and character of all the stores,the aroma of coffee and the bustle of visitors that come up from the coast for a taste of a life that is a little slower paced. Spring has come early this year and we are all ready experiencing record temperatures so it was lovely to take a stroll down the street and enjoy the blue skies and fresh air.So today Sofia and I went and tasted cheese at the cheese factory and then we treated ourselves to fresh fruit salad sorbet. We dropped into Ingrid's craft shop to get some supplies. Ingrid always insists we stay for a coffee and she always spoils us with cake.Sofia occupy's herself with all of Ingrid's cute crafting supplies while we sit behind the counter and have a good gossip, not a bad way to fill in an afternoon I say.

This little shop is called "legal addictions" they sell organic coffee, organic handmade chocolates and organic skincare all sourced from the mountain.The coffee is made and served outside to make the most of our beautiful surroundings.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Birthday Girl...26 today

Well its been another year full of lots of creations and personal achievements.I must say that I have learnt a lot about myself and what I am capable of.I have made some very special friends and one in particular who brings out the best in me.Today I was spoilt rotten,I have been so busy I cant remember the last time I brought something for myself.Now I remember what its like to feel like a million dollars in a new outfit and new pair of shoes, I also got to enjoy good coffee and cake.It was a perfect day, just a pity it all has to end when I wake up to work tomorrow but I have the whole year in front of me and I can only dream of what tomorrow could bring.
nooshka x

"Remember yesterday,
Dream of tomorrow,
Live for today"

Saturday, August 15, 2009

My Springtime Sparrow

This is one of my new cushions that will be in the shop today. At the moment I'm really enjoying using blues and reds and since I had lots of little pieces of blue and red left over I thought I would use them to make this patchwork pillow with an appliqued sparrow as the center piece. The finer details have been free motioned stitched.

Friday, August 14, 2009

"You have to stay in shape. My grandmother, she started walking five miles a day when she was 60. She's 97 today and we don't know where the hell she is."
~ Ellen DeGeners ~

Room envy

Looking at these pictures makes me want to totally redo and properly theme a pretty little room for my daughter,while hers isn't that bad I couldn't call it a designer room either. I think if I could call it anything I would go with "eclectic" in other words I have a whole lot of different stuff with no particular theme. But in some ways it does work, all her pieces have one common element...yes you guessed it, pink. But its practical and comfortable and whenever anyone comes around the first thing they must see is her bedroom so I think shes pretty pleased with it.

LOVE,LOVE,LOVE those cute candy rugs!

Wow! now thats a handy Husband.Where can I hire one?