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My friend commissioned me to restore her lampshade. She loves the Alexander Henry Mocca fabric and wanted to replace her current ceiling grey lampshade. I’m so happy I got a chance to work on this. It’s really fun! What is great is that we were able to restore an existing lampshade instead of simply throwing this one away and buying a new one. I’m glad we managed to reduce ‘stuff’ by recycling. So green… I like.

There was alot of stretching and pulling involved because we were also trying to preserve the plastic sheet around the lampshade. It was a good thing that sis was around to help me. I wouldn’t be able to pull it off alone.

Try it if you have been thinking of replacing that tired-looking lampshade at home!

Time taken: 2hours (waiting time included)

Original lampshade

Original lampshade

Another view

Restoring lampshade in progress

Removing the original fabric and cleaning everything. You won't believe how much dust can gather on a lampshade!

The naked lampshade with its original plastic sheet

The naked lampshade with its original plastic sheet.

Alexander Henry mocca fabric for a lampshade

Cutting and preparing the fabric. Remember to iron out any creases.

After we stuck each side, pegs were used to hold the fabric and lampshade together.

After we stuck each side, pegs were used to hold the fabric and lampshade together. The more pegs, the better!

Closeup view of glue being applied to the frame.

Closeup view of glue being applied to the frame.

All sides glued. A 20 mins wait to make sure the fabric adheres properly to the lampshade.

All sides glued. A 20 mins wait to make sure the fabric adheres properly to the lampshade.

Concealing the ugly ends with a fabric tape.

Concealing the ugly ends with a fabric tape.

Trimming for the finishing touches.

Trimming for the finishing touches.

I chose to layer up for an added detail.

I chose to layer up for an added detail.

lampshade using alexander henry mocca fabric

Finished product! Delivering this sunday...


Cheep cheep little bird

Cheep cheep little bird
You are upset I have heard
Is that because you can’t fly?
Is not hard, you have to try

Don’t just wonder in your nest
Be brave and try your best
Flap your wings fast in the air
The wind will help you to make it fair

Cheep cheep little bird
You are happy I have heard
You can fly and sing so loud
You made yourself really proud

– Marinela Reka

all about birds

{1} Lampshade (What a beautiful lampshade! I think my next fever series will be on lampshades.)
{2} Stuffed birds (Cheep! Cheep! Cheep!)
{3} Brooch (I have to include a brooch, my all-time fav accessory)
{4} Apron (The vintage style apron using a bird fabric is adorable.)
{5} Lunch Bag (I want one, but bigger please!)
{6} Bird Wall Decal (I might just be happier doing the dishes if I can look at this pretty decal.)

I love brooches! I have a collection of handmade felt ones, handmade fabric ones, vintage ones, acrylic ones, all kinds of them. I’ve always wanted to try to make one but wanted to create something that means alot to me. Something I will hold dear.

Chaco, my big black cat, came into my life 6 years ago. He has since taken over the couch, the bed, my pillow, to name a few. He is also an inspiration in my very first brooch project. You can read more about Chaco here.

After I was done with the first one, I posted the picture on FB and quite a number of my friends ask where they could buy one. So I decided to refine the design a little and here’s how it went. I must say that the smaller the stuffed toy, the harder it is to make. So do take note of that when you are sewing your own. I started with machine sewing one, thinking it’ll be alot faster. But the size made the sewing very difficult and in the end, hand-sewing produced the best result.

You can purchase *Chaco* brooch and keychain at Goood Fabrics website.

Stuffed cat brooch

Cutting the template and hand-sewing a bunch of them

Stuffed cat brooch

Flipping them over

Stuffed cat keychain

All stuffed up!

Chaco, the big black cat

I was sewing intently and suddenly found Chaco sitting in the chair next to me.

Felt faces

Preparing the felt pieces for his face.

Illustration on packaging

Illustration on packaging - Chaco's HDB dwelling

All printed and ready for cutting into size

Pin sewn onto back of *Chaco* to be pin onto the packaging.

Final packaging. Yay!

black cat, chaco

Meow... I'm Chaco.

Hello everyone!
My name is Chaco.
I was catnapped by a strange,
tall being who walked on two legs,
some six years ago.
I’ve lost track of the time since.
She put me in a plastic box
and brought me to another cold place.
They cleaned my wound, I think.
And put something hard around my neck.
What was that?!
I can’t even groom myself!
Are they trying to stop me from biting things?
But I don’t bite.
They should see what I can do with my nails instead.
This was how I began my life together with 3 more tall beings
besides the one who took me away.

*UPDATE* Total fund upped from S$510 to S$557.20.

We were exhilarated by the results! It was more than double of what we expected and we want to thank all who have bid generously to contribute to the Japan Disaster 2011 fund.

Here are the auction results. Total fund raised: S$557.20
*ALL (100%) proceeds go to Red Cross Singapore for the Japan Disaster 2011 fund.

Chaco 1 – Eric Chng S$50 + S$39.10
Chaco 2 – Lai You Shen Cedric S$36.90 +S$8.10
Kibou 3 – Jenny Lim S$60.90
Kibou 4 – Eric Chng S$50
Chaco 5 – Pauline Neo S$25
Chaco 6 – Eric Chng S$50
Kibou 7 – Nie Yiqin S$20
Kibou 8 – Jackie Fang S$30
Chaco 9 – Risa Ng S$20
Chaco 10 – Lai You Shen Cedric S$35
Chaco 11 – Shirley See S$30 + S$20 (Shirley topped up another $20)
Kibou 12 – Wan Morday S$22.20
Chaco 13 – Noriko S$10 (Sold at the sewing event)

My cousin has also donated an extra $50 on top of the total above. I’m now waiting to collect all donations from all winners and will go on to make a cheque to Red Cross Singapore (for Japan Disaster 2011 fund) immediately.

Stuffed cat, Chaco 1

Winner: Eric Chng S$50

Stuffed cat, Chaco 2

Winner: Lai You Shen Cedric S$36.90

Stuffed owl, kibou 3

Winner: Jenny Lim S$60.90

Stuffed owl, Kibou 4

Winner: Eric Chng S$50

Stuffed cat, Chaco 5

Winner: Pauline Neo S$25

Stuffed cat, Chaco 6

Winner: Eric Chng S$50

Stuffed owl, Kibou 7

Winner: Nie Yiqin S$20

Stuffed owl, Kibou 8

Winner: Jackie Fang S$30

Stuffed cat, Chaco 9

Winner: Risa Ng S$20

Stuffed cat, chaco 10

Winner: Lai You Shen Cedric S$35

Stuffed Cat, Chaco 11

Winner: Shirley See S$30 + S$20

Stuffed owl, Kibou 12

Winner: Wan Morday S$22.20

Sew for Japan

We ‘Sew for Japan’ today

As Japan begins its journey to rescue and restore its nation, people, homes… and more. The rest of the world is praying and hoping for them. And there are those who has generously donated, unselfishly volunteered and freely caring. I thought I should also play a part albeit small in contributing to render some help.

Popin organized a public crafting event Lasalle Singapore today from 10am – 4pm. So I thought we could sew to raise funds for Japan. I emailed some friends to gather some interest. 3 made it today, including myself, so that makes 4. 🙂 I used Chaco (my cat) as one of the stuffed toy and created Kibou the Owl as the other. Kibou means ‘hope’ in Japan. Owl is a symbol of luck in Japan too, so we thought the owl is very apt. All fabrics and materials used were donated by Goood Fabrics. My friends brought items like beads to accessorize the stuffies too.

We managed to make 12 in all, one of which we already sold at the event. So there are 11 left, all of which are placed on Goood Fabrics Facebook Album. Please bid generously. Tell your friends about it!

  • Each stuff toy starts with a minimum bid of $20.
  • Bidding starts tonight and will end on Wed, 23rd Mar, 11.59pm.
  • Shipping within Singapore is FREE. International shipping charges apply.
  • Stuff toy (softie) is lovingly handmade and ~7cm in height.
  • Winner will be provided with payment details after auction ends.
  • Please go to Goood Fabrics FB Album page to start bidding.

We started sewing around 11am today til 4.30pm. It was an intensive but fun day. We were beat at the end of the day although all we did was just sit down and sew. This is the first sewing get-together for Goood Fabrics. I think we will have another one next month again! I hate to sound abit auntie here but the sew-together was really fun and a great bonding time with my friends and sis. We were chatting, laughing, latte-ing, eating, sewing… all for a good cause. What a great way to spend a Saturday!

Sew for Japan

Setting up at Lasalle

Sewing template for owl and cat

I created these sewing templates specially for ‘Sew For Japan’.

Sis sewing intently... all focused to 'Sew for Japan'

Sis sewing intently… all focused to ‘Sew for Japan’

Jenny getting started…

First stuffie made for Japan Disaster Fund 2011

First stuffie made for Japan Disaster Fund 2011

Peng Hong - All eyes and hands on 'Sewing for Japan'

Peng Hong – All eyes and hands on ‘Sewing for Japan’

Sew… sew… sew little time!

Tired and happy sewing away...

Tired and happy…

Stuffed cat and owl

Stuffed cat and owl… all 11 of them. 1 already sold at the event.

Cushions are quickest and inexpensive way to give your living space an instant lift! It is the ‘secret weapon’ or ‘finishing touch’ that interior decorators use to give that finishing touch to a room. Here are 5 simple tips to decorating with cushions that will give your room instant style and beauty.

blue living room, decorating with cushions

Harmonious matching of living area with good use of cushions to further add on to the entire appearance Image Source

A more luxurious and elegant style would require more throw pillows. This helps add lushness and extreme comfort.
For a more modern, streamlined look, just a few (maybe 3 or 5) will do. Yes do use odd numbers.
A country-styled room would usually have a few pillows on the couch, one perhaps on the arm chair/rocker and a few on the floor.

You may think that any number of cushions should do so long as you fancy. Why should the number be important? Well, using an odd number of the same design or mix up the colours/ designs creates a statement and gives the room an inviting look. A typical number is usually 3 or 5. But more is fine, just remember the golden odd number as a general guide!

Make a measurement from the seating to the top of your couch or sofa. From there you can roughly gauge a good size for your couch. Standard cushion sizes are 16in x 16in. For oversized chair (armchair or rocker), you can consider wider and shorter pillow. If you are thinking of creating a grouping, lay larger pillows in the back and smaller ones in the front. For fabric groupings/matching, you can check out some of them here for some inspiration.

Where to place them? What is a proper way that will look good in photos or when your friends visit? Imagine an invisible line drawn vertically in the middle of your couch, what is on the right should then reflect on the left. For e.g. if you have two pillows on the left, then have another two on the right. Oh and don’t forget one right in the middle because we want to have odd number of pillows.

Image Source

Colours can be used to generate different emotions and associations when decorating a room. When you choose a colour for the cushions, make sure you pull colours that are used in the room as well.

As a general colour guide:
WHITE: Pure, truthful, modern, contemporary, refined, clean
YELLOW: Positive, sunny, warm, happy
ORANGE: Fun, cheerful, warm, exuberant, playful, vibrant
PINK: Feminine, innocent, soft, healthy, calming, secure, sweet
RED: Bold, excited, passionate, strong, vital, sexy, powerful
BLUE: Authoritative, secure, trusting, reliable, mysterious
GREEN: Tranquil, healthy, fresh, nature, cool
BROWN: Utilitarian, earthy, wood, subtly rich, dignified
GREY: Authoritative, practical, corporate, understated
BLACK: Distinctive, bold, classic, sophisticated, strong, elegant, seductive

eilleen kathryn boyd

1) STYLE: Using more cushions to create a lushness feel 2) NUMBER: Using odd numbers 3) SIZE: Grouping the cushions 4) Creating a 'symmetrical' placement 5) Pulling colours from the room Image source

Fun patterns are another attractive way to decorate with cushions. Again, because cushions are small investment, you can let your imagination run wild when it comes to fabric. Colorful and dynamic patterned cushions add designer style. If you opt for a particularly complex pattern, make sure that surrounding fabrics are light colored and not too complex.

These cushions would go very well with a neutral, pastel colour palette, but not as matching with a couch that is black, for example. The above fabrics can be bought at Image source

I hope the above tips give you a great start to decorating with cushions! This is a great opportunity to use interesting fabrics. What I love about decorating with cushions is that they are low investment and can always be replaced easily. Remember to use cushion covers with zippers so it can be washed easily or changed to match your emotions or style. Also, try not to use the same fabric on your cushions if you are already using that fabric somewhere else in the same room. It somehow makes the room look unnatural.

On a ‘custom-make’ note: If you love to decorate your room(s) with cushions but don’t know how to sew the cushion covers yourself. You can find custom-make cushion covers services here.

Have fun!

Yes, I am busy preparing some brooches to be launched.Hopefully all done by this weekend… Here’s a pic in the meantime, of the fun I’m having!

Illustrating the packaging graphics

In between some pretty decent Japanese fusion food, conversations that ranged from fabrics to sewing to the government to grants to taipei traveling tips to concerts to… Ok there were alot more covered.

Three hours and our tummies all filled up later, I must say that I met and made some great new friends last night.

I truly felt engaged at ease and inspired and laughing from the bottom of my heart. Yes it’s one of those rare nights.

My friend, Choi Yin, gave me a notebook made with our fabrics. It’s a lovely handmade notebook using Alexander Henry fabric. I really dig vintage stuff and this fabric design is a tad vintage looking. Love it! The workmanship on the cover is impeccable. I’m really touched. Thanks…

It’s the Year of the Rabbit! And this is for all those born in the year of the rabbit and those who just simply love ’em. They are so adorable, how can you resist them?!

I made a search and found so many stuffed rabbits. Here are some, in their own unique style… Maybe you’ll be inspired to make one yourself? 😉

Stuffed rabbit toys

{1} Round round bunny (one of my fav)
{2} French rabbit (so lady-like…)
{3}  Long-eared rabbit
{4} Checked rabbit (Don’t forget the tail detail)
{5} Long-limbed buns (Quirky!)
{5} Grey rabbit (I don’t know why, but I am really drawn to this one. It’s so full of life, like it’s really looking at me.)

Thanks for dropping by... I will share my sewing journey with you. I do hope you leave me some comments or feedback or just say hi! (: