Thursday, March 29, 2007

Catching hailstones on your tongue !

On Thursday's I get a small glimpse of what it would be like to work from home.

I've always thought it would be nice, to be at home all day making a living from something I enjoy doing.Today, though, reminded me that I get lonely on my own all day. I end up talking to the television, or myself !I sat in my armchair sewing and sewing and sewing until I heard the hailstones. I went out into the back garden and couldn't resist catching some on my tongue !!

All of a sudden working from home seemed like a good idea again :-) It gives you a chance to catch each opportunity that comes your way. For me though, I enjoy the company and conversations that are part of my day job so I'll just keep thinking about it, and dreaming :-)

At the moment I am trying to concentrate on my catalogue. This means I need to sew a few of each of my designs, photograph them and when I have done that to ALL my designs it is time to design some more :-)

That is why the photos today are a strange mixture of creatures!

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

I've been quiet but I've been busy !

There are two reasons to explain the lack of posts on this blog. One is that I have been busy with life and not done much craft, or the other is that I have been SO busy with craft there is no room to blog !!!
The reason this time is the latter, so busy sewing that the computer didn't get a look in !

The cheeky chappy trying to get his photo taken is My New Monkey....

I have been talking about him for ages and have spent the past few evenings working on him and now he is finished. I love him :-)

His tail is held on with a flower.

Aren't monkeys great ?

Sunday, March 25, 2007

Hello Summer !

I have just completed a marathon eBay session, re-filling the eBay shop. Take a look at my brand new design: funky Easter Eggs !! They go very nicely with the bunnies I showed you yesterdayand these tortoises always make me smile :-)
Also new today are 'Hanging Monkeys'

Now where to hang them........?

Saturday, March 24, 2007

Flattery ?

I have had a busy few days , finishing of a wholesale order and items for the shop.
I have also discovered that the person copying me is still at it. (It's supposed to feel flattering, right?) The thing that makes me sad is that she won a freebie from me in February so I know for sure that she visits this blog and is obviously watching every move I make.
My labels have been copied, my Picassa gallery idea was put on her site the day after I posted about it here (she's a fast mover) my new cat design is copied (it's even the same height and selling price!) and now she has changed her cupcakes and ice creams to look even more like mine! To top it all off she states that she retains the copyright of all her designs - EXCEPT I OWN THE COPYRIGHT !!!!!
But do you know what? She can only copy - I will always be a few steps ahead of her and I will always be proud of MY OWN WORK ... I have been reading some comments on other people's blogs about this subject and I would like to point out that I have no problem at all with people looking at what I do and having a go at making them too. I do, however, have a problem with people breaking the law, stealing my designs and trying to sell these products commercially.

Enjoy the doughnuts, they are fat free :-)

Thursday, March 22, 2007

Monkey day

I made my friend a monkey because she loves monkeys and because we like sending each other things, just because. I know he is now in his new home so I can put him here.
Here he is with his bag of buttons.

This is a photo of him with all his friends: Left to right: Eustace, Edward, Pingoo, Mr Lion, and Mr Monkey. Thank you Nia for the picture of them all :-) I'm glad you like him :-)

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Clever Clogs

A quickie to say I have solved all my photo storage troubles! Picassa is the winner for me :-)
I have changed the readers' gallery to Picassa and will hopefully have a catalogue for you to look at soon...I have decided that Picassa is marvellous...all my blog pictures are in a separate album, without me doing anything and creating a gallery and catalogue will be a piece of cake...I love it when these things are made easy for me...yippee !
I'm off to sew cupcakes for a special order now xxx

Monday, March 19, 2007

A freebie for me !

My friend sent me a gift. She thinks I deserve a freebie every month because I give freebies every month, how nice is that?

What a gorgeous brooch, I just love it :-) If you fancy one for yourself have a look here§ion_id=&page=1

Today we had snow here in sunny Worthing which meant that the shop was very quiet and, I am pleased to say, this is complete opposite to my eBay shop !!

Lots of things have started to fly and I am trying my hardest to keep up with it all!! I have decided to put a catalogue online for all to see, I have already started a wholesale catalogue but I think I need to have a catalogue for everyone, then people don't need to wait for me to make things, they can order what ever they like! It's going to take a lot of planning though because everything is slightly different everytime...hhhhmmmm

I have started to use photo bucket (see the reader's gallery over there on the right ) and think I will put a bit of research into that and hopefully over there on the right will be a link to a catalogue...does anyone know any other programmes that would be good for this?

Any kind of computer help is always welcome !!

Sunday, March 18, 2007

Blue and green must never be seen

Today I decided to re-design the packaging I use to pack up purchases made from my eBay and etsy shops.
I played around in Publisher and (after installing the printer) printed off a few of the ideas.
Unfortunately our last colour ink cartridge seems to have a problem with red so (after nozzle checking and head cleaning) I gave up on browns and pinks (they look grey in the pic above) and decided to try spring time colours. Who said that blue and green don't go together?

Big J thinks it's looking like mass produced stuff (I take it as a compliment) but why can't home produced products have gorgeous packaging too?

I say it can so it stays :-)

HmmmI didn't think this post through very well because...ta dah here are the newbies I have been working on today...

I think I may have spoilt that by putting them in the packaging photo but hey ho, the colours matched!!

This week I also finished off a wholesale order and as always I made more than was needed (I do it on purpose) and here are a few mini bags

I love the colours together, so bright and cheery !

I'm off to give my eBay shop a bit of love, it's been a bit neglected since my week off and I need to fill it up again.....all I need to do now is make a whole heap of goodies to fill it to the brim!!

Thursday, March 15, 2007

what's new pussycat?

It started on Monday with a sketch and today, after a trip to the 'leather-thong-to-hang-him-from' shop he is ready to be seen....

I love him to pieces :-)

So I decided to go bigger.....twice !!

I just love them. I have hand stitched every little bit and I love that even though I sewed each face based on the same sketch, they look so different!

Now all together 'what's new pussycat?' WOAH A WOAH WOAH WOAH (sorry !)

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Look to your right.........

I have just added a list of my favourite blogs to this blog. Have a good look through them, they are great, but please don't blame me if the next few hours disappear in a flash!
It took ages to put the list up so I have stopped for now, but there are more to come soon !!

I have also added a copyright statement over there on the right. I have had lots of lovely emails about yesterdays post and I want to say thank you to everyone for taking the time to make me feel better. I can assure you all that I will not stop blogging or stocking the shop full of new goodies!!

I have a couple of new designs to share, pictures tomorrow :-)

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

well I never (and feel sure I never would!)

Every morning I flick on the computer and breeze through my list of blogs which I regularly read. It tops 100 but not everyone posts everyday so they get read quite quickly. I keep a pen and scrap of paper handy in case I need to go back later when I have more time. i.e. after the days work !
I have been aware, for quite sometime now, that someone is using my blog and shop for their inspiration.. Inspiration giving is fine, who doesn't enjoy the daily craft blog rush of ideas? BUT and this really is quite a big but, inspiration is different from all out copying.
This morning I accidentally clicked the bookmark for the copiers' site. I know it is there and can't delete it because I want to know how much is copied (it's like looking at a wound, you have to look but know when you do your stomach will flip) but today I clicked and there were all these felt card toppers looking extremely like mine.
Except they are ugly. Someone has stolen my ideas and made them badly. Which is more insulting?? I don't know. But I do know I hate it. I especially hate that this person has included a copyright statement on 'their' designs !!!!!!
I am off to work now feeling annoyed. And sad.

Monday, March 12, 2007

freebies for me today

Wowee I am a lucky girl.

A customer came into the shop today (a gentleman's outfitters for those of you who have a bad memory!!) and she has been in before and we chatted about needlework and craft and stuff for a while, then she came back and told me that she was having a clear out and would i be interested as she wants her stash to go to a good home, of course I said yes and so, today, she appeared with a carrier bag and said she hasn't got very far sorting through but that the bag was for me and she'll be back with more........ such a kind lady look what I got....

this is a set of patterns, all complete, from just after the war when everyone had run out of patterns

This pattern cutting book is amazing, it uses the same method of blocks that I was taught and expands further on those methods, it's fantastic! The colourful book has a bit of everything in it including:

making toys :-) (perfect timing!) and a cool birdie lampshade cover

Also today my friend ( ) sent me this handful of goodies: yum yum yum :-)

and this gorgeous gnome card, which I love too.

I say it again, how lucky am I ???

Sunday, March 11, 2007

mistakes happen to make us learn

Finally the camera can talk to the new computer :-)
Which means that I can show you my softie disasters!!
After Christmas I posted about the monkey I made for my niece and I loved him so I made another one. This is him:

Slightly under-stuffed and floppy but look at his neck!! yuck!! tight in some places and folded over in back to the pattern for some alterations. Whilst at the pattern hacking stage I thought I could make a pair of boy and girl dolls, with clothes and toys (in my head they are gorgeous) so I made a girly:

Look at the gorgeous neck, so smooth and lump free :-) BUT look at that, her arm is falling apart!!!!!
Next was the little boy doll:

Cute, but wait, more arm mistakes! This time they are not level, by a very long way!

I am very proud of their bottoms though. I added a gusset piece which I over-sewed to make it really strong, and I love my label there, in fact the bottom is the best bit! It means they can sit un-aided and they feel really nice to cuddle too (the whole doll, not just their bums!)

The final verdict? Make their heads bigger, their arms shorter, use more stuffing and really, really think about the arms !!
I am currently ignoring the softies , they made me feel bad for a few days but now I am happy that there are good things about them and one day soon I will feel ready to tackle them again and it will be worth it because, as I said before, the dolls in my head are so gorgeous!!

You may have noted that I was strangely craft free this week, my day off was spent with my sister and my niece who came to visit. We wandered in the sunshine, played grab-machines on the pier, had a picnic in a park and went on a small train ride (a kid size train, not a short journey!) fitted in a quick visit to my favourite charity shop, Holly drew her Uncle a picture of our day because he was at work and missed it and then they had to go again :-(
My sister made this for me:

It's navy blue felt with a lovely purpley ribbon round it and inside she painted this:

The photos don't really do it justice I'm is totally gorgeous and I love it. How clever is my sister? On Monday she is starting a new job and will have more time each day to make her goodies and I hope she will soon have a shop at etsy so I can point you in her direction because she makes some lovely things! Hooray for living close to work and having lots of crafty time !!!

Whilst I had the camera on the go I took a snap of my pile of things to cut. A nice relaxing Sunday afternoon chopping felt :-)