Posted by: picanini | July 1, 2014

More Birthdays! And here come the holidays…

3 birthdays over 3 post! And we have another one this weekend…

Boys blowing

My baby turned 6 about 10 days ago. We had a little get together (a kinda sorta not really joint party) with some friends – Kylie’s little boy is in the same class and turns 6 the same week also.

old computer

My old laptop turns 6 next week – it looks quite worse for wear compared to the child. Several years ago it had an incident where it was dropped by one of the kids which was the beginning of the end of the hinge. About 12 months ago, the hinge completely broke so I can’t use it unless it is supported against a wall. It also had a sharp object hurt the recharge cord. And then about 9 months ago, the start button broke off. Since then, I’ve been hot-wiring it (you know, like they do with stolen cars in the movies with putting several wires together!) to start. The little wires are getting shorter and shorter and it’s almost impossible to turn on and off. So I finally replaced it this week. It’s a steep learning curve using windows 8 – despite the fact that my Nokia phone uses it also. There is still so much data to get off the old one…arghhhh.

Ruby flannel quilt

Ruby flannel quilt back

And speaking of old – I started this flannel quilt about 15 years ago on a quilting weekend. All of the ladies did one of 2 styles of quilt, and this one was the one I was allocated – probably not what I would have personally chose, but I spent a bit of time on it and it has sentimental memories. However, it’s sat in a box since then waiting to be finished. When we were in Caloundra I found some flannel (a challenge!) that I thought would make a pretty good match for the backing, so I bought it – this was about 5 years ago.


Ruby quilt making  When trying to re-arrange my embarasingly large amount of fabric a little while ago, I pulled it out of the box and thought to myself that I’d have a little more room if I got this out of the box and finished it. It’s funny to think that I  couldn’t even begin to imagine when I was making the top I that my little 8 year old girl would be helping me baste it! So it’s finally finished and being enjoyed over these cold mornings and evenings.


I’m currently furiously working on this project when Gannon isn’t around. It’s a knit vest – “What big eyes you have” by Tikki (Georgie Hallam). Gannon is probaby the one who most appreciates me making him things, but is often the most difficult to make for – it’s hard to get nice fabrics to make suitable things for bigger boys. I know he wants a vest (he’s always admiring Finn’s milo’s) so I think he’ll be pleased. I think I’m up to the quick part now that I’ve sorted the cable neck out. His birthday is this Sunday.

I’m sure there’s more to tell, but I think I’m better to just get this out there. I hope all those with kids at home are having a nice, relaxing holiday!

Posted by: picanini | June 12, 2014

Birthday girls – part 2

It’s been a long time in the making, this post. I originally started writing this post at the end of March… The 2nd birthday girl was me. I had a BIG one in April. One that merited ditching the kids and all other responsabilites and having some fun and pampering!

Grand Hyatt view


Hubby and I went to Melbourne for a few nights, then to Daylesford/Hepburn Springs for another 3 nights.We stayed in and visited places we wouldn’t go with children.

KJ birthday dinner

A rare picture of moi!

We had an amazing time!

Other not so fun things have been happening, With parents getting older, difficult decisions have to be made. I’ve been doing a bit of travelling back and forth to the Sunshine Coast as a result.

I’m really hoping to get back my blogging mojo though…

fantasy pads

The clothpadshop has a fantasy and magic theme this month. As I’m already a lover of all things fairy, there are a number of my pads already in there with that theme. But I’m working on some more this week.

florentine sneak

I’ve also been doing some secret little projects for Gossamer Dreams – they’ll be previewing tomorrow night and for sale 8pm Sunday night (15th).

Hopefully you’ll be hearing alot more from me again soon!

Posted by: picanini | March 12, 2014

Birthday girls…

As per my usual habits of disappearing, there’s been a bit going on behind the scenes.

ARuby birthday dress2

I think I mentioned that Ruby’s birthday was coming up – it was last Friday. The real estate agent decided to throw an inspection in the day before, so I spent the week either scrubbing the house or organising for the birthday and party on Saturday. I was up till Midnight finishing a special dress for her birthday on Thursday night.

ARuby birthday dress back

I think she’s pleased with it.

Arubys birthday dress hem

She’s got a dress up ballet tutu underneath, which really isn’t long enough to give it the pouff it needs. I think that will have to be remedied shortly.

There’s a bunch of pads cut out to get stuck into sewing, as well as some liners for a project…I’ll have to save them for another day as I’m really tired.

 Aparty jelly close

I’ll finish with some rainbow jelly for a bit of fun and brightness. This has become one of those things that started innocently enough, and has become such a favourite that I wouldn’t be forgiven if I didn’t make it.

Posted by: picanini | February 27, 2014

It was the best of times, it was the worst of times…

Perhaps a touch dramatic, but its been a big week! Life’s been a bit hectic, and I’m still running around trying to catch up.

Last Thursday was Richard’s and my wedding anniversary. It’ the 2nd time in the 4 years we’ve been married that he’s been away! Uni pracs in Toowoomba always seem to be held during the same week as our wedding anniversary – c’est la vie, I guess. At least we’ve managed to make the most of him being away both times, by meeting up for a weekend redeverous without children. But it was a bit of a tough week doing it all alone for most of the week – crying kids (missing their daddy) till late made it hard to get those nightly jobs done – and I was doing both our night jobs. A bit of trouble with the car along the way (and an unplanned stop in Nambour for 4 hours for repairs), made for an unexpected twist. I did get there in the end though, and we had a lovely and relaxing time together.

pad composite

I’ve just finished sewing these, hopefully I’ll get them snapped and listed before the weekend.

Butterfly embroidery

I’ve also been busy with some hand-embroidery. The majority of this was done during the holidays and I haven’t actually touched it for weeks! Hand sewing is very therapeutic I find – it’s almost finished. Just the little bit on the left hand bottom wing to be done.

And I’m trying to decide what to make for Ruby’s birthday Friday next week. Of course, a dress is in order. But which pattern and fabric will I use.

Posted by: picanini | February 17, 2014

Hello, hello

I’m a couple of months late, but Happy 2014! Has it been a good year for you so far? Can you believe we’re already over 1/2 into February?!!!!! I’m feeling a little guilty, having disappeared for more than a couple of months. And where have I been?

opera house

Finn insisted we must re-visit the Sydney Opera House

We had a pretty busy summer holiday – we spent almost a month down south including the Christmas and New Year period, mostly in Sydney with my in laws. They have a lovely big house that they plan on selling some time soon now that they have no kids at home, so we decided to make the most of it while it’s there.


We did all sorts of exploring – we walked over the Harbour Bridge (the kids scootered) and over the Cahill expressway down to the Botanic Gardens and through to Mrs Macquaries Chair.

Middle head adventure

We parked at Mosman and walked/scootered to Middle Head.

exploring middle head

The kids really enjoyed exploring the historic abandoned military site.

squeezing out

We all had fun squeezing through the underground tunnels.

Banksia boy

We also visited my old stomping grounds of the South Coast of NSW.

Above pic is of Gannon hamming it up as a Banksia Boy (You remember the Banksia men from Snuggle Pot and Cuddle Pie?).  We don’t seem to have Banksia trees up here – I miss them, as they were all around the property where I grew up. And Warratahs too.



It’s so beautiful in that part of the world! We camped in Jervis Bay for a few nights.

QVB tree

We visited the Queen Victoria Building in the city and admired the huge tree,


as well as visiting DJ’s – of course we saw the window display. Ruby has a thing for nutcrackers after seeing the ballet.

lego elves

We also found some interesting things – this elf in the DJ’s Christmas cave is made from Lego.

vikings (2)

After Christmas we went to the Vikings exhibition at the National Maritime Museum in Darling Harbour.


We wrote our name in Runes – the ancient script of the Vikings.


Kirsten Viking

And played dress ups.


We went right into the submarine, and under the decks of the old sailing ship. Neither are good for the claustraphobic.

Ruby and Kirri

We also took the kids horse-riding…and did LOADS more things.

I also took the kids down to the Sunshine Coast to catch up with my family and old friends, and suddenly, it was time to get serious about getting organised for school – and actually get back into the school groove.

There have also been some dramas in my extended family that have caused head and heartache since the new year – and they’re not over yet. Unfortunately, it’s somewhat dampened my enthusiasm for life in general and sapped the emotional energy right out of me – I just haven’t had it in me to get here. But, after hearing last week that a child in Finn’s class lost their dad over the holidays after a battle with cancer, you realise that you must make the most of what life’s dealt you and quit moping. And so I’ve been fired up to try and find my Joie de vivre again – so here I am!

I’ll be back to the usual crafty stuff in the next post!


Posted by: picanini | December 5, 2013

WIP Wednesday a day late

I’m sure I’m not the only one about to have a nervous breakdown by the end of the school year with all the activities!

tie dye prac

Sorry I didn’t make it here yesterday – I had one heck of a day. It all started with a tie dye workshop with the preppies at my kids school – I helped the lovely Kylie from Little Zen/Earthchild designs. We discovered bizzarely at her son’s birthday party earlier this year that we both had known of each other and our respective work for years.  How many other mothers make cloth pads and nappies and have kids in the same class?! Isn’t that crazy?

The tie dye pics are actually things I did at home the night before. It has been a while since I’ve dyed, and years since I’ve done anything like tie-dyeing so, as you do – I had a go at 11pm the night before to make sure I had it straight. There was actually pink in there as well, but I think the dye must have gone off as it didn’t take.


Yesterday also involved an excursion with Gannon’s year 5 class to Breathe health club. The kids had a ball – and were pretty tired out by the end of it (as was I!!!). We had 30 minute rounds of Tennis, Body Attack/Combat, Boot camp, Aqua Zumba and Spin.

Summer dress #4

And as if we hadn’t had a big enough day (swimming lessons after school!) we then went to the Year 7 graduation and school disco. I was hoping to have this dress finished (the 3rd of the Japanese pattern book dress), but I just ran out of time. Sorry, no pics of us firing up on the dance floor. I actually spent most of my time in the canteen!


And I finished the night wrapping these – if you’ve been around here a while, you’ll know this is our little Christmas tradition. Make a huge number of Gingerbread Christmas trees and stars (there were over 120!), and give them to all the kids class mates.

Posted by: picanini | November 27, 2013

WIP Wednesday

It’s Wednesday again already! So what have I been up to?

AB voile dress long

I’ve almost finished this dress – I just have to cut and knot threads. It’s from the Japanese pattern book – I used the actual pattern from the book, but took some tips with placing the shirring from Gerties Peasant Dress Creative Bug workshop.

AB voile dress

It’s a really nice dress on – probably the best fit  of a woven garment that I’ve made.

bath bombs

Ruby and I have started work on the Christmas gifts. There’ll be plenty more of these things to come.

I ran out of time to get back here and show more last week. DH and I had a weekend away and I got caught up in planning/booking/organising kids. Do good intentions count?

Posted by: picanini | November 20, 2013

WIP Wednesday

It’s late and I’m tired and I forgot to take pics of the things I’ve been working on – our after school schedule has changed in the last few weeks and I’m not home till late today. But I can show you something…

Octo gardenThese will be going up on the site tommorrow – I finished and photographed them just before school pickup this afternoon. The fabric is by the fabulous Tula Pink, who has an amazing way of hiding nature in her beautiful works – though these octopus aren’t so hidden.

Seahorses dark aqua

The seahorse are a little more tricky to find, however. I’ll try to share some actual WIP’s tommorrow!

Posted by: picanini | November 13, 2013

WIP – I’m back

Actually I never went away. Unfortunately, the only thing I had to show you last week was very clean house with pristine floors and lounge suite. We had a house inspection last week, and (after a previous one scheduled 2 weeks before that was cancelled during the designated time due to the agent going home sick!) I decided that a major spring clean was in order – carpets and lounge suite cleaned by myself included.

apple fairies preview

Needless to say, I was extremely pleased to be back on machines and making creative mess again on Friday! I did make myself do some mending that had been aside for months before I was allowed to play. I’m almost finished these Apple fairy pads. They are topped with sherpa – which is a great fabric for heavy/gushy flow as it’s highly textured surface is very “grabby”. Once these are finished, I’m getting stuck into this set.


I’m always trying to think of special things to make for little boys – and this is one of those.  You’re always spoilt for choice when making things for girls, but boys you really have to look hard for fabrics/patterns/ideas that are a little bit special.

Tula ocean

And then some more pads!

I’m listing a few new pads and training pants that I’ve had sitting here to go tonight.

Posted by: picanini | October 30, 2013

WIP Wednesday

pinned pads

The pad shelves are almost bare, so I’ve had to spend some time making some more! First up are some of the Fairies. I hope to have them finished and listed tommorrow.


And here’s my first version of the Collette Sorbetto  top (just got to pull out a few basting stitches) – it’s a free pattern, and I really like it. There are a number of variations of the pattern that others have done – some of which I’m hoping to try.

If you look over in my flickr pics on the sidebar>>>>>>>>>,

you’ll see the pics I’m talking about below. They’re on my phone and I can’t access it at present. >>>>>

In the last couple of weeks, I’ve also done a bit of work on the UFO (unfinished object) pile. There were a pair of summer jammies – these were another free pattern – from a big fabric website.  They’re called “tap pants and cami”. The cami wasn’t the best of fits – I had to do some tucking and I’m still not that enamoured with it so I won’t make the top again. But the pants are extremely comfy – though they do use up quite a lot of fabric.

Pics of what I’m talking about again over there >>>>>>>>>>

on flickr again. Will get them posted on here shortly

And I don’t know if you remember the gorgeous fabric that arrived a few weeks back, but I used some of Amy Butler’s gorgeous pinky/purple paisley rayon Chalis fabric to make this lovely dress. It is from the Creative Bug workshop with Gretchen Hirsch – the peasant dress. It looks much better on!

Ruby and Gertiesmall

I also made a couple of hats for Ruby

KJ hat

and myself (it’s had to get pics of me!). Pattern is the Make it Perfect Sunkissed Sunhat. Lots of summer sewing now that it’s suddenly made it’s way here and we’ve been found wanting somethings.

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