Friday, 30 May 2014

Encoded birthday card

For my dads birthday I made a special card for keen thinkers! 
This is what he got out of the envelope:
A card and a long ribbon with strange lines and points on it. (It's bias tape and I wrote with a black ball pen on it)
So what is to do? You see that there are two slashes in the card. You have to fiddle in one end where there is the little arrow and then wind the ribbon around the card. As I ironed it when preparing for the writing you can still see the marks where it is bending over the edges. My dad is quite clever and I guess he found out immediately!
On the backside you can see a smiley to know you did the wrapping correctly:
And on the front is the message, but encoded in Morse alphabet. Probably it will take my father a while to find out what message it says. 
Do you think I have seen too many spy movies?
I hope my Dad enjoys the game though. I have been so happy doing it. It is hard to craft or sew or handmade something nice for men (especially as my mom is sewing non-stop too). Men have normally less use of deco or little bags or covers ... I am always very happy when I can make a personal and handmade gift for my dad or my husband (my sons are not jet in that age :-)). 


Wednesday, 28 May 2014

Kitchen set

My kids love playing kitchen and cooking. Since very little they are taking my pots and pans and play. They also like to help me cooking and baking. Of course they are having a little play kitchen as well. When end of 2012 I saw my boys wearing paper bags as chef's hats, I know I had to sew something:
I found this tutorial and made a simple white one and a grey one for us. They are in use ever since! Last month I made one in rose for a little girl and she is also very happy with it. As I know of no kid who don't like to play cooking, I thought this might be a good thing to sell too.
Yesterday I made a set of an apron, a chef's hat and an oven glove:
For the glove I needed several attempts to find the right size for a child's hand. It is cotton fabric outside and molleton inside, so not at all to use on hot items!
I adjusted the hat's dimensions a little. For the headband I took a piece of fabric in 20x65cm. This is wide enough for kids from small to at least 8 years old. With the velcro you can adjust it to every head size.
This is fun and easy work. I will make some more in a bit stronger colors.


Sunday, 25 May 2014

First try on watercolor (aquarell)

Last week I got for my birthday the most nicest box of watercolor-crayons. I have been looking forward to getting them for some month already! (it has been me who chose them and organised the buying from a friend who is working in that factory, so no surprise gift :-))
Happy making colors in a box!
I don't have any experiences with watercolor painting (in German Aquarell). So I just tried out. As I understand right, you first have to make a drawing with the crayons and then take a brush with water to let the colors float a little.
This is the first test with an example from a little brochure that has been with the crayons:
.. and then I started on a flower drawing:
I think the artistic value isn't very high on this drawing, but has been fun trying out the colors and seeing how the colors are drifting in the water. Some colors seem to drift better than others. In some parts it is also a bit smeary.
I will study some more explanation videos on the internet and keep on trying, when I have time. 

For the announcement that I made here: I studied real hard on that topic and also found out lots about the french social insurance system. And this is what stopped me for now going on the path of auto-entrepreneur for selling my stuff. It would have too much impact on our family insurance scheme and (funny to talk about that now while still being in our thirties) also our retirement pension. So I will try out otherwise to stay legal with my selling. Let's test first if anyone will buy my products anyway ....


Tuesday, 20 May 2014

Quilted fish

Yesterday I felt like doing some free-motion-quilting (or is it called needle drawing?). Anyway, I cleared up some of the mess in my sewing room (you remember: we had to open up the floor for drying it. It is not moldy any more, but we will wait an other two weeks before closing it again to be sure all humidity is out), got out my machine, cut some fabrics and got started on a small sandwich of 25x25cm.
This is the outcome. I quilted from the blue side, but the fish is also very nice on the red side. I made a simple binding, but added no hanging, as I couldn't decide which side is the front. It has been fun sewing, but I don't know what to do with it. I could imagine it as a picture in a children-room. Maybe I made one or two more and sell them a set. Someone interested?

A bientôt,

Monday, 19 May 2014


Lately I found this very nice book in the bookshelf of a friend.
The book is very nicely designed and there are easy step-by-step explanations to how turn a fingerprint into an animal, a figure or a vehicle. My kids already had a lot of fun with it. They can also work all by them self with that book.
I can just propose this kind of art as a quick project if you don't have time for preparation. You can also find lots of ideas to "fingerprint art" in the web!

A bientôt,
Jane (qui adore sa chat)

Monday, 12 May 2014

Mothers-Day (2013)

Sunday has been mothers day in Germany. This year I send my mom a self made card and some flowers for her garden - so kind of "normal" gift for that day. Last year I made something more advanced and my mom told me to show it here, as she still thinks it is so nice.
I get inspired by this lady, who is making a lot of fabric insects.
I had a wooden box that I painted white from the inside and made it a showcase for a new sort of butterfly that I created. My mom loves butterflies! It's a little hard to translate, but I gave those insect a name and made up a story about how he is living and what eating and so on ...
From the archive of unexplored natures
Twin striped peas flatter
I couldn't bring myself to pin the poor butterfly to the box, like the biologists do, so he is hanging on his front legs, what allows him to get out and sit on to of the case, when it is opened. He is called peasecod flatter, as the cocoon is looking like a ripe pea. 
I remember how much fun it was to create this box! Do you like it too? 

Otherwise here is not much creativity going on, as we found out on Friday, that we still have a moisture problem after the big leak two weeks ago. I had to clear up my sewing stuff and we had to pick up the floor in some parts in that very room. This is stressing me a lot! Hope that in two weeks we are dry again and I can start on some unfinished projects again. 
Talking of unfinished projects: we call them UFOs (UnFinished Objects) in Germany. Now I learned a new one: PIGs (Projects in a Grocery Sack) I think that one is much more funny and giving the right picture. I like to order my projects in different shoe boxes, but they would fit in grocery sacs too.

A bientôt,

Thursday, 8 May 2014

Last Pyjama Post

I know, this topic is getting boring. It will be the last (in this year). The next pyjama pants I will sew all in silence :-)
I have a great problem finding nice pyjamas for my boys, as I don't like them to be dressed in cartoon figures and Disney heroes. On weekends or vacation times the kids like to stay in their nightwear to play ... until we want to leave the house. 
Last week I made them comfortable and warm trousers with a pattern I bought here (click) from a sweater-jersey. For the longer trouser I had not enough fabric, so I had to piece the front.
Otherwise I didn't do much. The boys are having spring vacations and we are in a lazy-relax-mode.
I only invented a doudou (french) / Schnuffeltuch (german) / cuddling cloth ? (english). It's soft from the backside and pretty from the front. You can fix on one end either a dummy or a teething ring or a clip to fix it to the kids jacket. It has a lot of different strings and flaps on the edges, so the baby can twiddle with them. 
What do you think? I think its nice and I would like to sell some of them, but first I need a baby to try it out. I have one in mind and will ask the mom to test it and tell me, if it is safe and practical.

A bientôt,

Saturday, 3 May 2014

Snail mail

To make sure your mail is delivered the best, fastest and secure - you have to open your own mail service! I did so by inventing my first postage stamp stamp.
For the first time I used the bigger rubber blocks I bought in Germany. They are softer than the rubber gums I used for small stamps. It is astonishingly easy to carve also thin lines. 
Size of the stamp is about 4 x 5 cm.

A bientôt,