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This is my latest sewing project. I just completed it yesterday. I bought this fabric on sale whilst I was in Sydney. I really love the small animal prints on the fabrics.

This one is a rather simple top, similar to the last one I did but I added a rounded collar. Overall I am quite satisfied with it but would prefer if it wasn’t so loose.

Time taken: 3 hours (cutting and sewing)
Difficulty Level: 2 out of 5

Cut pieces

Cut pieces

Sewing the edges

Sewing the edges

No fraying!

Rounded collar

Sewing the rounded collars first. Getting the curve right wasn't easy.

Collars are flipped inside out

Sewing the shoulders next.

Stacking the collar backing and collars onto the main body.

Small slits were made to prevent bunching when flipped over.

The ends of the collars (back of blouse).

Folding the sleeve in for stitching.

Bottom of blouse opening at back where the opening.

Extra stitching on the collar to 'anchor' it.

Sewing the buttons on the back.

Dotty animal blouse

Yay! Finished piece...

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This was a quick and dirty inspirational exercise. You see… I love brooches, especially if they are animal-shaped. I suddenly wanted to make a brooch tonight just an hour ago, so I did this.

It started with a few sketches and then translating that into a stuffed brooch. I used felt for the cat’s face. It’s a tad smaller than what I imagined. Definitely needs touching up, especially the legs. Maybe I’ll make another this weekend so I hope it’ll be closer to what I imagined.

Fun nonetheless!

Stuffed cat brooch

Side-by-side: Brooch vs. sketch

Stuffed cat brooch

Closeup view

Stuff cat brooch

Back view

Yes I finally got some time to sew! I’ve got more Amy Butler fabric remnants left and I’ve been wanting to make more stuffies and I settled on this one. It started as a project just to make them as stuffed toys but since my cousin and cousin-in-law both delivered baby girls, one last november and the other last week! I decided to make them into hanging mobiles.

I got the sewing template here from Spool Sewing. I made the template size smaller for my use. I imagine making a much bigger one… maybe soon. (: I also added some lace to the bird’s tail for some detailing. Instead of twigs, I used Vitra Algue and made two hanging mobiles.

I think it’s the experience I acquired when I made the owls so I think I took less time and effort with the birds. I’d say the difficulty level is about 1 to 2 out of 5. They do make lovely gifts and can be sewn on to anything. I’m even toying with the idea of making them into brooches. That’ll mean tweaking the shape abit. If I do, I will post the template up.

Making of stuffed toy bird

Placing the templates onto folded fabric.

Making of stuffed toy bird

Cut fabrics.

Making of stuffed toy bird

Sew one side first.

Making of stuffed toy bird

I choose to sew the head first. I found it easier to match the fabrics properly. Try it, and see what suits you better.

Making of stuffed toy bird

Lastly, sew the other side.

Making of stuffed toy bird

This is all the machine sewing needed.

Making of stuffed toy bird

Flip bird inside out. Tail is left unsewn for the stuffing.

Making of stuffed toy bird

Fold the seams in and use pins to hold until you are ready to hand sew.

Making of stuffed toy bird

Taking a break and having some fun! 😛

Making of stuffed toy bird

Pinned tails...

Making of stuffed toy bird

All 10 of them! I added some lace detailing to their tails.

Making of stuffed toy bird

They remind me of prawns!

Making of stuffed toy bird

Closeup view. They look like they are in a meeting. Hah!

Making of stuffed toy bird

Top two birds are sewn on the Vitra Algue. The rest are attached using ribbons. I also added tiny bells on their necks for sounds.

Making of stuffed toy bird

Closeup view.

Done! I’m pretty happy with the results. Party’s next weekend and I’m really excited about giving them to my cousins. Hope they like it.

I’m looking for creative inspiration on what I can do with my fabric remnants. Since I did the owl the last time, I’ve been itching to explore something else. Typically, stuffed toys are rather colourful. So for me, the more muted black & white ones are starting to stand out. These caught my eyes… hope they inspire you too.

black & white stuffed toys

{1} MIAU (This just reminded me of my cat, Chaco. Now that I’m in Sydney, I miss him more! *Sniff*)
{2} Pony (The button and lace adds a different detail to a stuffed toy)
{3} Doll (Unique!)
{4} Cat (So adorable…)
{5} Reindeer (So japanese-looking!)
{6} Elephant (The combi fabric on the ears makes it so endearing!)

 

I went shopping 2 days ago… yea… fabric shopping. Heaps and heaps of gorgeous fabrics all neatly lined up in front of me. I had to resist myself and even after I made my purchases, my eyes were still progressively scanning for more. ARGH… walk out NOW!

Anyway, I was abit cleverer this time. I zoomed in on the special deals and got these. (;

Trimmings

Trimmings *not on sale though*

Fabrics

Yay!

Details of the B&W piece

So cute... they printed the bunny outside the usable area as well!

Can’t wait to get home and start sewing! I’ll post pictures of my creations once they are completed.

Fabric shopping keeps me smiling… (:

Note: Pardon the crappy lighting on the pictures. Next time I will try to use better camera instead of the camera on my phone.

Sewing History

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Hand sewing goes back 20,000 years. The first sewing needles were made of bones or animal horns and the first thread was made of plant fibers and animal sinew. Later it was found that fibers from plants and animals could be spun together to make thread. It was used to stitch together hides, furs, and bark for clothing and other uses. Sewing has helped form civilization itself.

Sewing machines did not go into mass production till the 1850s. It was Issac Singer who made it possible. With computerization, it led to mass production of sewn objects from fashion to quilting to shoemaking to bookbinding.

And of late, there seems to be some renewed interest or trend in sewing, DIY, handmade. Maybe there are too much commercialization out there, too much mass production, too much duplication, that is pushing consumers now to look for an alternative source, a unique-something to buy. Not that I dislike the mass-produced stuff or choose not to buy any (I’m not that extreme), but I started looking at handmade creations that are so unique and reflective of the artists’ flair and style. And it’s not just aesthetics, it is about meeting that artist, knowing the creative process he/she took to product that piece painstakingly. It’s like buying a piece of artwork.

Sis and I designed bags years ago and mom was the one who would materialize them. It was indeed very fulfilling to have people loving and buying your creations. Late last year, I began developing an interest in getting my hands dirty. There is something mysteriously satisfying when you complete a sewing project. I started browsing the net for more information as well and found that there is indeed some sewing interest out there and some inquiries on sewing classes. You may just be interested in doing this leisurely. Simple sewing projects for yourself or a loved one. For some, it could be a bigger plan to turn this into a small business to start selling your creations online.

Whatever your intent may be… I am trying to put together a list of sewing classes in Singapore so that anyone who got bitten by the sewing bug can have some idea on where to start. I’m in Australia right now and can’t make IDD calls (too expensive!) to enquire about the classes. I should be back in 2 weeks so I hope you check back in 2 weeks’ time!