Thursday, April 26, 2012

Play dough, play clothes and repurpose love....

 A public holiday this week meant we got to enjoy a change in our usual rhythm and an extra day with Mr Pickle. 

 A new batch of playdough was a good project for some therapeutic kneading and pounding and squishing.

 Then of course there was all the many things to make out of warm new playdough. Some dry pasta inspired echidnas, pigs, cats and of course some monster faces.

 With rain falling outside all day it was a good day for some sewing for me too. I finished off a wrap to warm my shoulders at my sisters party this weekend (will reveal that in another post) but then felt the need for another creative outlet for the afternoon. So, fresh from the repurpose success with Big Pickles jeans, I turned my eye to an unused flannelete PJ jacket from Mr Pickles drawer.

I had hoped to get one pair of pyjama pants from the jacket but in a stroke of completely nutty brilliance I realised I could use the sleeves to make a second pair!! Genius!
So Big Pickle got a very respectable cuddly pair of standard issue pants and Little Pickle......well he got two sleeves sewn together with a mismatched (there was a touch of grey in the cloud shadows) stretchy gusset.....hilarious!

All they thought was new, comfy pants, perfect for climbing on your dad,  wrestling and all round play.
Now I know how Maria felt when she saw those little Von Trapps playing happily in the curtain clothes she made them.

 Some close up pictures do reveal the madness of that second pair but they are warm, comfortable and fit over a cloth night nappy and wool soaker bottom - so I'm happy.


Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Winter pocket pants

Is it just me or does this long, lanky lad look about 14!!!!?
He's four! He just keeps growing....and growing.....

New blue cords, so huggable. Reinforced knees and big front pockets inspired by the fabulous pants Ella makes her son over at Little Red Caboose.

Excuse the blurry pictures - my camera just wasn't up to the movement of these two irrepressibly wriggley, jiggley Pickles today.

I started with the Heartbreaker Pants pattern from Sewing For Boys and modified for his slim physique. They may be ok once they're washed but they still seem a little wide in the hips at the moment.

Little Pickle sports a pair of Kickin' Back Sweat pants from the same book. He is not a size 3 and I used the size 3 pattern for these and again he lacks standard toddler bulk. I breed them lean it their dad they eat like horses but remain very streamlined.....half their luck!!

Monday, April 23, 2012

Felt birds for the Pickles

High in the air above their beds fly white doves. This little project has been waiting in the wings for some time.
Weeks ago we collected two long and lovely sticks and I dreamed of birds suspended below them and perhaps perched upon them.
Part of the idea was inspired by this a long time ago and I have also spent quite a bit of time with a beautiful book called Artful Bird and some of the future birds will definitely come from here.

The pattern for these was by the author of that book and they were very well received by the Pickles when they returned from their weekend at grandmas. 
What a great motivator guilt can be.

They even inspired a bit of movie making by Big Pickle.....

Sadly, the plot doesn't really favour the little white bird..... but reveals Big Pickles rather constant and I'm sure 'normal' preoccupation with the perils of the ecosystem and inevitable death of many creatures...!?

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Out cruising in some new repurposed jeans...

This weekend the boys went for a little holiday in the country with their grandparents. So, before they left this mama had to appease some guilty feelings by completing some new pants.

Little Pickle got some new patch pants which were actually ones I started patching when Big Pickle was two but didn't get completed before that fast growing two year old outgrew all size two clothes.

On the way to meeting the grandparents for the handover we stopped for a picnic lunch and a tromp.


When asked to do some modelling Big Pickle happily obliged even taking it upon himself to highlight the fancy faux waistband detail on the pants.
These pants were a very fun project that started from a pair of women's jeans sourced at the local Savers store.

I cut the back panels from the back of the old pants and retained the yoke and pocket detailing.

 The front panels were cut from the front of the pants and then I added the pockets, knee patches and then upon realising Big Pickle has grown again, the cuff.

In an adventurous, somewhat crazy move I also decided to utilise the waistband from the old pants and simply sewed it to the top of the pants. The elastic at the back allows them to pull on and off so I sewed the front opening down.
The dark pattern peeking out of the pocket was a ugly screen printed bit on the leg of the original jeans, Big Pickle now refers to it as his 'secret picture'.

This was a really rewarding project. They took a bit longer than a standard pair of pants but I enjoyed the challenge of nutting it all out and the sense of satisfaction at the end was somehow greater due to knowing I had made something new from something old. A couple of other pairs came home from the same Savers trip so we'll see what they metamorphosise into.

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

How do they do it?

Today I'm off to visit a friend and deliver a little token for her recent birthday. I thought I'd try and take a photo to share here before I passed it on to her but I now realise that all those amazing people with great self portraits of themselves in their latest creation are actually very clever.


It's very hard to do.....

Even tried the never before tried automatic timer function on my camera but wrong light....bad composition.....

Attempts at artistic outdoor suspended in nature shots were also a bit dodgy.....

No matter, hopefully the lovely friend this is destined for will enjoy winter cooking in her sunny apron. The pattern I used was the Teacup Corset apron from Meg McElwee's Sew Liberated book but minus the corset tie at the back (too fiddly for self dressing) and without the ruffles round the bodice (lack of fabric and desire to reduce the frou-frou factor).

Hmmm.....maybe I need some new aprons too!

Monday, April 2, 2012

Happy, happy day.........

 My sister got married a few weeks ago and despite rain falling all day long it was a truly beautiful wedding. She was a picture of resplendent elegance in her two piece ivory ensemble. She and I sourced this ready made but with a stroke of genius perfected the outfit by adding the fluted sleeves.
Designers just don't seem to understand that many women of many ages would really prefer to have the top of their arm covered - with a little imagination and a crafty eye we came up with this slight alteration that truly made the ensemble.

Another key element in her outfit was the exquisite ivory silk flower she wore in her hair. Made by a very talented friend, I really wished that I had had one of these lovely accessories to keep and remember my special day. The gardenias I wore were battered and bruised before the day was through.

I did get to wear a special keepsake flower of my own this time though. I have turned my hand to so many different crafts but how this exceptionally clever lady turned the silk fabrics she showed me into these beauties is beyond me. All I can say is no bride or bridesmaid should be without one!

Possibly the only photo you will ever see of me on here. It was very nice to have a reason to get dolled up and my Leona Edmiston dress was the most comfortable party frock I have ever worn.

As well as being the one who created the sleeves my mum also created the cake. Jelly cakes and butterfly cakes are my sisters favourite and they were a very big crowd pleaser too.

A magnificent day with a magnificent setting.......I really enjoyed the French champagne too!

Sunday, April 1, 2012

Out tromping and a spot of fishing......

Trees, water, stones, sticks.........everything the Pickles love.  Now that Little Pickles legs are that bit longer and stronger we are ready to start doing a bit of bushwalking.

We love this rock path across the water, they're like giant's stepping stones. Usually the water is right up around them...

Lots of stones to throw in and listen to the plop and watch the ripples.....


Lunch with a view.....

Newport Lakes is a nature reserve just ten minutes from our house. A couple of good tracks, the main one around the lake and these fantastic mosaic signs to guide the way.

Perfect for an imaginary fish.....

A spot of tree climbing........

Catching reed fish, big octopuses, amazing eels.......whatever you dream of.......

Shorts and gumboots are going to be our go to ensemble as we ease into Autumn.
These shorts were my first go at Dana's Racer Shorts. I'll have to try and catch them both in their other ones soon so I can post them too.

 Little Pickle is otherwise known as the Happy Wanderer and for him this was the perfect place to just be............

Watching out for wild animals.............

Just stepping out alone and tromping up a big hill......