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Hello, 2015! It’s gonna be a fun fun year!

I hope all of you had a good year-end break and a wonderful start to the new year!

I spent the last couple of days in 2014 nursing my little girl who caught a bug and is now finally on the mend. And while I was cradling her in bed for hours on end, I was planning the family meal plans, listing the endless to-do lists and also having a thought about what I would be sewing next. And the cheesy new year crafting resolutions that I resolved never to do popped in my head to say ‘harrow’.

So here’s the list, made up in my head with ringing ears (from baby’s screams), aching arms and sore boobies (yes, I’m still breastfeeding my 14.5 month old. It IS a good thing).
1) Tame those scraps

The scrappy state of my scrap bags.

The scrappy state of my scrap bags. More Bags not in the picture.

Scraps are fabrics, still. And fabrics cost money, a lot. So I should really work harder at managing my scraps. The scraps seem to be taking over the sewing area, inching to invade the surface that they can cover like in the horror movies. My plan is to 1) make small projects with the scraps 2) offer more scrap packs for sale and 3) work on the scrap user’s system by Bonnie Hunter.

Scrap Pack F (Front)

Scrap Pack that I put together for sale a long long time ago.

2) Make more clothes

Katie - Nov'14

See how my little girl upturned the hem to show off mom’s awesome blind-hemming skills.

I made this frock in Feb’14. Katie only wore it TWICE. She can’t fit into it now, but IĀ  relished the moments I popped this over her head to try it on for fun. I have gathered so much clothes making fabrics (not quilting cottons) and patterns for the kids. I. Must. Get. Down. To. It.

3) More projects for the family

Quilted Pot Holders with Embroidery

Custom order – personalised quilted pot holders

This means more quilts on the beds, more handmade goodness around the house and finally make something pretty for myself. The pot holders are a classic example of something that I wanted to make so badly for the loooongest time for my own kitchen and yet never mustered the energy to take the insul-brite out of its packaging UNTIL someone came asking if I have any pot holders for sale. Oh yes, I do!

4) Take more pictures

I have been sorely deficient in documenting my projects for a while. With a better phone camera, awesome prime lenses, WIFI SD cards and auto-sync/uploads from the devices, there’s really no more excuses for not taking more pictures of stuff that I make before packing them away. And maybe more WIP shots too?

And with that, I present to you: Midnight Crafts on Instagram! Ta-Dah! Come, come… don’t be shy, ok?! And there’s good old Flickr and FaceBook too!
Follow me on instagram http://instagram.com/midnightcraftsnet/
5) Sew more with (more) Friends

2014 has been a fantastic year for sewing with friends. I managed to keep up with most of the monthly meets with my quilting friends and I had the most wonderful time with Mama G, who flew in from France to visit her family, and she made time to come by to sew with me for a couple days. We made the dresses for our kids! Also I helped a friend finished her first sewing project: a quilt for her toddler son. She’s on her way to getting her own machine and I’m sure we will sew more together this year.

It is not always easy to say ‘yes’ to a sewing date as I have the kids to tend to, work to be done and chores to complete. I’m kind of true to the mantra I throw at my son on a daily basis: WORK BEFORE PLAY!

So I guess I should do as I say by ‘putting my head down and focus on finishing my tasks’ and have the rest of the day to ‘sew’. Having the kids over at the grandparents’ helps too!

And with that, I wish you loads of sewing projects, beautiful fabric stash, and plenty of crafty inspiration in 2015. I’m having guests over for a dinner party tonight – to make up for X’mas/New Year celebrations we had to cancel because of the little one. But like my friend said, it’s like a prolonged Christmas. True, that.

I want to be a knight, mummy

And I said: ok! mummy will make you a cape. I started to dream about what fabrics, pattern, etc to use. But due to work & the sewing area still snowed under by fabrics/mess/projects, I did not manage to get that cape made for many weeks.

Last week, my son came home from my mom’s place with aA2070-443
vinyl mat taken from a toy set and asked me to clip it around him, so that it could be his ‘cape’. That kind of broke my heart to see him dragging that piece of material all over the room.

Cue 10-min shopping at Spotlight for satin fabrics and I got down to sewing it today. Drafted a quick pattern and involved Benji quite a bit (for measurements, customisation of insignia, etc). After a couple of hours, we got CAPE!

He grabbed his Lego Castle helmet and Star Wars lightA2070-580 saber (aka Lance or Sword) and stood in front of my full length mirror for some practice moves. I had to sneak a couple of photos while he was in action šŸ˜‰

Good Knight - Perfect your moves

And once again, I’m really glad for my sewing stash – interfacing and BLACK velcro that I bought long ago without a project in mind (perfect for these ‘just in case’ situations).

Good Knight - Black Velcro

Here we are: on the way for dinner and he made a beeline for the garden so that he could admire his reflections in the glass doors and running in the open to get wind under his cape.

Good Knight - Pose it right

At bedtime, he asked me for a super-hero cape, with a lightning bolt on it, please.

SURE!

Ben-I-am

Feeling a little peckish on this cool rainy afternoon. A sunny side up, perhaps?

Felt Food - Eggy!

Nah. What about grilled cheese sandwich instead? Yums!

Felt Food - Grilled Cheese

Bleu cheese? But but but… they don’t have ‘eyes’, right?

Felt Food - Bleu Cheese

I will just have some Singapore Noodles (whatever that is!) with extra chilli please? Oh, make it ‘seafood’ noodles šŸ˜‰ (that green thingy is a fish from a $2 fishing game we bought from Daiso)

Felt Food - Singapore Noodles

Benji wants something posh! Green Eggs!

Felt Food - Green Eggs

Do you like green eggs and ham?

I do so like

green eggs and ham!

Thank you!

Thank you,

Ben-I-am!

Felt Food - Ben-I-am

Green Ham with ‘rind’

Felt Food - Green Ham

Benji’s all-day breakfast special sandwich!

Felt Food - Sandwich

Special ingredients revealed šŸ˜‰

Felt Food - Tea time!

Last week, we bought Benji a set of Ikea kiddy cooking utensils (although he liked the kiddy kitchen set more!) and we have been cooking ‘ice-cream’, lego bricks and whatever that fits the pot. Yesterday, I popped into Daiso and picked up a small frying pan ($2!), and a pack of assorted felt fabrics.

Today, we spent a quiet afternoon indoors ‘cooking’ up a storm – Benji’s nursing a terrible cough. Cut up some easy shapes and the only ‘3-D’ effect was some wadding stuffed into the egg yolks. The ‘noodles’ yarn came from a ripped up old crochet project. Nothing fancy like the felt food that my friend made for her little girl, or even the $15 Ikea felt food toys. But it is fun to make food on boy’s request šŸ˜€ So who says you can’t sew for boys, eh? šŸ˜€

Happy New-ish Year!

Hello, World!

Happy New Year! (Still qualify for the greeting, I think :D)

Sorry I missed posting for the entire month of December. While the blog was left unattended, the sewing station was busy, busy, busy! No new/completed quilts to show for yet, but plenty of purses, pillow cases, baggies and also 1st-day-of-school sewing for Benji.

Benji - The Big Man

My Big Man started Nursery 2 on Tuesday (thanks to the papers for the reminder about the start of school date, if not we would have made that trip on 3 Jan!). This is our 1st drop-off school experience and the boy handled it so well. The teachers are very caring and loving. It helps that Benji’s class is very close to a generous playground with loads of exciting installations!

We waited for him outside his class on the 1st day, stepping in when the teachers were orientating the kids, etc. By the 2nd day, we left Benji in the good hands of the teachers and he gave his kisses and goodbyes like a champ at the door. Hubby & I are mighty proud of him!

A simple drawstring backpack

A simple drawstring backpack


And the night before school, I put together a lined drawstring backpack that he can easily open/close by himself. The exterior fabric is Japanese cotton twill bought from our Tokyo trip and the lining is 100% cotton. For the cords, they were actually cording salvaged from old cushion covers that I deconstructed for drink coasters at home.

The next evening, I made a snack bag for him to hold his drink bottle, cutlery and cloth napkin. No pictures of that for now. But that’s another hit with my boy. šŸ˜€

Hope you had as great a start to this new year as we did. There’s so much to look forward to in this new year.

And I wish you good health, more wealth and definitely new fabrics & projects šŸ˜€


May the Force be with me…

Halloween is becoming a fun excuse for me to dress up Benji for our get-togethers with friends. And who says you
can only have fun dressing up little girls?

Last year, we had a fuss-free outfit and Benji was not totally clued in on what was going on!

This year, it was as clear as daylight what he would enjoy being costumed as… I present: Young Ben Kenobi!

Halloween 2010

I have the Taftc apparel pattern and sewing course to thank for the confidence to work on this project with the Simplicity 3575 pattern. The Dad said that the costume should not have a sash but I included it anyway to keep the layers from getting into the boy’s way.

Halloween 2010

For fabric, I used this lovely brown Essex Linen that I bought a long long time ago. There are a few learnings from this project:

1) Buy the pattern from the store, instead of purchasing the softcopy. I had to print 41 pages on my printer and used about 2 rolls of tapes taping the pages together. Even then, some lines were wonky. TEDIOUS!

2) The sleeves and robe length were way too long even when I used a XS child size which listed the same measurements as Benji’s.

3) The pattern doesn’t provide overlocking instructions or seam finishing recommendations. I will simply overlock every piece of fabric cut-outs in the future.

4) The sleeves were too long for my Son, and I decided to ‘hem’ the sleeves with the Blind Hem Stitch. I found it much easier to hem the narrower ‘tube’ by hand.

5) For the robe hem, I finally got to use my blind hem footer on the Bernina as it is meant to be used! It was so easy and it really works great on the garment.

Looking forward to next year’s dress-up already! šŸ˜€