Monday, June 30, 2014

Happy Mail!!!

Hi everyone!

I promised I would make another post with all the loot that I'd receive in the swaps I joined and the past few days have been loaded with Happy Mail!

First I'm going to show you the inspirational mosaics that I made for my partners and after that the goodies that I received.

Let's start with the Secret Tote Bag Swap, that I'm hosting myself. In round 4 we were sewing to the theme 'Summertime' and this is the mosaic that I made as inspiration for my partner.

My tastes are actually quite obvious, I think. I love the Noodlehead Super Tote pattern and already have one Super Tote that I received in a previous round of this swap. I love the colours aqua and teal combined with blues and greys and shades of green or yellow and I looooove low volume and text fabrics. I think I also said that I wouldn't mind the bag being in QAYG style. Oh and that I like butterflies and bees.

Last Friday I then received a box from Susan aka sewlikesue with these beautifully wrapped packages.

And inside was a gorgeous Super Tote in exactly the colours I had requested and showed in my mosaic.
Sue also added 2 fatquarters of bug fabric, some flat-headed, butterfly-shaped quilting pins, dark chocolate and yummy tea. I was super-thrilled with this beautiful bag!

Here are a few more pictures, she really hit the nail on the head and I'm most impressed with how sturdy the bag is. She wrote she used some Pellon as stabilizer. And else I thought was really intriguing, is that she used some of the actual fabrics displayed in my mosaic. So Awesome!

Zipper and lining match the outter fabrics and there's a load of pockets. I always need many, many pockets for all the things I carry around with me. On the outside there's another big pocket as well. :)

Here's another look at all the extras that came along with the bag. Quilting pins, chocolate, beautiful fabric and herbal and fruit tea!

Last, but not least, here's a picture of the bag with my coin purse, that I bought when receiving the bag from the previous swap, and I'm so glad that the colours still match, yay! 

Next up is my mosaic for the Dumpling Pouch Swap hosted by Mari-Ann aka Rockislander. Once again, it's quite specific.

It's quite obvious that I love bees and was looking for a pouch in a colour range of aqua, light blue and yellow combined with lov volume and text fabrics. And since the swap was for a bug-theme, I really, really wanted to receive something with a bee.

The funny thing is, that not many participants actually used the same colour ranges that I did, but I was still keeping my fingers crossed a lot when Mari-Ann herself posted a couple pictures on Flickr of a little pouch in the very same colours. I kept my eye on the swap and more and more pouches turned up at their new homes, yet not the one Mari-Ann had made. Until today when I received a thick, padded envelope from Mari-Ann, coming all the way from Bermuda! Woohoo! 

When I opened the package, the little pouch fell out and after the initial squeal followed a happy dance! ;)
I'm absolutely in love with this little pouch and the ÜBER-adorable needlebook that she made to go along with it. 

There are a ton of tiny details there, that Mari-Ann herself has beautifully captured in a few mosaics on Flickr, see here, here and here. :) I didn't want to steal her pics, so just follow the links! ;)

The pouch itself is lined with text fabric, embroidered with a little bee and has a small bee charm dangling from the zipper. 

Along she sent many, many goodies such as fabric covered buttons, pins, sticky notes, EPP hexagons, Burt's Bees handbalm, jelly slugs (which for some reason are not in any of my pictures, although I've not eaten them yet lol!) and LOADS of bug themed fabric scraps! I'm in bug heaven! See below how many there are ;) 

How can you not be happy with all of that? My fingers are tickling to make something small with a few of these. Maybe a few notebook covers. The ants are just the cutest! 

But that's not all yet. Today I also received another swap package from the lovely Erin aka madbury13 for the Fabric Scrap Swap, that I'm also hosting. No mosaic here, but I requested texts and low volumes, bug prints, sewing themed fabrics and also added that I like small fruit and flower prints and any other cute small prints.

Erin sent an amazing pack of scraps that completely covered the options I had given her and the scraps you can see in the picture below aren't even all of the ones she sent! There are so many that I couldn't fit them all into the picture and they are beyond fabulous! Look at those donuts or the cute strawberries in the bottom row. Love all of them! And she also included a mini lint roll and mini gel pens. 

Today really was an extremely great day for receiving mail, especially since it's a Monday and we hardly ever get mail on Mondays, so I'm extra thrilled.

Also last Saturday I received a letter from customs and this morning it was confirmed by them that the package they have for me is the one from my Simple and Sweet Scrappy Swap partner Karri, that we've been patiently waiting for to get through to me for 8 weeks now. Finally! Woohoo! There's light at the end of the tunnel! 

I'll keep you updated on that one, so there might be another post with more happy mail announcements coming soon ;)

Until then I wish you all a great time!
xx Lia

Friday, June 13, 2014

A few things I recently made

As previously mentioned, I took full use of the 3 weeks of holiday time that I had off work to catch up with my sewing. Not only did I participate in a lot of swaps, but I also made and worked on the following items.

My mum wanted a small pouch in box-shape and she loved this cherry fabric that I had, so I made her one with it.

I also made these zippered patchwork pouches in 2 different sizes. The bigger one went to a friend in the US, who was so kind to help me get a fabric for me, that I'd been looking for, the other was a birthday gift to my colleague, so that she has a secure place to store her mobile phone in. 

I also did a bit of upcycling with one of my mum's T-Shirts as she managed to dribble apple juice over herself. She's an apple lover and has so many tees with brown stains due to that. It actually turned out better than I thought. I used iron-on adhesive paper to attach the fabric patch to the tee and then used an applique stitch to go around again.

Mum likes it and I doubt it's going to be the last of her tees that receives a new look.

Added to that, I've been making loads and loads of shopping bags out of old fabrics. Mainly from old bed covers, or fabrics that I had previously cut to make cushion covers, but then never got around to it and also fabrics that my dear friend Iris has provided. All of these bags will go to Iris, who is running the website Recycling-Helden
This is a project that is close to my heart and that I am currently voluntarily sewing for and where we are creating new bags, rugs, gift wrapping and other items out of waste-products from manufactures, such as leftover cuts from productions of deck chairs, mattresses, tablecloths and so on and so forth.
The website is in German, but I am encouraging all my German speaking readers to have a look at the Recycling-Helden page, as we'll be giving away 100 shopping bags in July. All you will have to do is send a self-addressed and stamped envelope to Iris and you will receive a free shopping bag in return. More details will be on the site, though.  

Here's a look at my sewing place from last weekend, I now have almost 100 bags done, in different sizes and fabrics, just eye-balling and cutting to have no waste. 

I'm so glad I bought a serger last year, though, or else I would've never been able to make these as quickly as I've done with a serger. And I'm also thanking Teresa from Green Bag Lady for that easy shopping bag style she invented. I'm not using the actual pattern, as our sizes vary depending on how wide or how much fabric we have, but the way she's making them is a very fast and easy way to make sturdy bags! Thanks, Teresa!

I'm also including a couple pictures of the gift bags, that I made for the Recycling-Helden last year, I made a good 500 of these small bags, all from waste cuts of wax-tablecloths. Reusable, water-resistant and in all sorts of colours.

Lastly, I have a friend who is a self-published writer and whose birthday is coming up at the end of this month. Sometimes I'm struggling to find something as a gift, but I thought she could use a mug rug for when she's sat writing on her laptop, with a mug of tea or coffee next to her, while she's imagining and creating yet another new novel. And of course it had to have a bit of a book theme.

So I bought a pattern from The Patchsmith and made her a mug rug, inspired by her favourite colours, which are purple and green as far as I know and a few details thrown in, that would make it more personalized.

Since my friend is a follower of this blog, and she's already received her gift, I guess I can now reveal what I used to personalize this mug rug and why.

I used selvages for the book titles, which will be obvious for all quilters and sewists.

The Piece O' Cake was used because she's writing a lot at the moment and has quite the speed in finishing her goals. So it seems a bit like a piece of cake, how fast she's finishing future novels. 
C is for Cat is quite obvious as my friend is a cat lover and has 2 of the furry friends living with her, along with dogs as well, though. 
Out of this World is also easy to explain, as she's living in Sri Lanka which is extremely far away from me and she's also an out of this world person, simply because we've been friends for at least a decade now if not even longer. 
Fluttering Wings & Colourful Things. This one I used because she loves butterflies and birds, and her nickname used to be Butterfly Devi, and also because the flowers and colours used in traditional gowns in her country is what I would definitely put in the colourful things category. And the mug itself has Butterflies on it as well, by the way. :)

So yeah, that's that...Another extremely long and picture loaded post, but I hope you enjoyed this little insight, even if I've not posted that often or regular lately. 

Until next time!
xx Lia

Thursday, June 12, 2014

Swap Mania

Hi everyone!

I realised it's been over a month since my last post already, but I've been in absolute swap and sewing mania lately, lol!

After my last post, I can now reveal what I sent for the Secret Tote Bag Swap, as my partner received her bag a while ago. Our theme in this round is Summertime and my partner asked for a spacey beach bag. Her mosaic showed that she liked linen and applique, as well as a beachy theme annd her favourite colours are red, green, blue and yellow as well as beige.

I made her a big bag with a large front pocket. I used a linen/cotton blend as the main fabric and a shower curtain from Ikea for the lining. This makes the inside water proof and it also can be wiped down. 
The outside pocket as a huge beach scene with a beach hut and palmtree, that I appliqued on with the machine. I also made a cardboard inlay for the bottom of the bag to make it more sturdy and added snaps so that it could be closed.

Above in the last picture you can see the whole swap package, I added beach-themed beads, funky shaped, colourful straws, a seam ripper, some chocolate and a couple skeins of embroidery floss.

In my last post, I showed you fabric basket that I made for the Simple & Sweet Scrappy Swap. Since my partner has received, I can now reveal the full package that I sent to her. She's a Sherlock Fan, so I made her a Sherlock-themed hoop-art for her sewing room, that I cross-stitched, following a pattern that I bought from weelittlestitches on Etsy. Go check them out, they have amazing and super-cute cross-stitch patterns for basically any fandom out there!

Unfortunately my own fabric basket is still whirling its way across the globe to me. My partner actually sent two packages, as she found stuff she had planned to put in the first package, but forgot and then sent along after. Strangely the second one has arrived a while ago, but the first one still hasn't found its way home to me. 
I have had a really bad case of delayed mail all through May though, so am still hoping! When it gets here, I will make an extra post to show it off, as the basket she made is really beautiful, so I'm crossing my fingers that it'll be here soon :)

Next, I previously posted about this mug rug, that I sent for the Mug Rug Revival for the month May. My partner also has received and here is now the full swap package. 

In return I received this super adorable mug rug from the swap mama herself. I had hinted at a bee theme in my inspirational mosaic for my partner, so I was really happy when this little buzzer showed up at my door :)

And as I always do, I decided to put it up as wall-art instead. Now I can appreciate it every day and am hoping to extend that wall with a few more mug rugs soon, lol!

Next up is a swap package that I made for my own Fabric Scrap Swap. I know you can't see much here, but my partner had it in her hands within 4 days of me posting it off, which is enough to mention it here, because that is a new record from the German post to the USA. I mean, imagine my surprise when she said she had it already just 4 days later, when over here customs sometimes need 3 weeks to process it to go through (that's after it already arrived in this country...)!

Last, but definitely not least we have this little zippered pouch, that I made for my partner in the Dumpling Swap. I'm not really sure if she's a follower of my blog or now, so I'm just going to take a risk here now and show the full swap package a few pictures down, but she's a bee lover like me (the theme of the round was bugs) and I tried really hard to match her fabric tastes and colour wishes. I know that she replied on Flickr that she loves this, so I know she will be happy. :)

The bees are embroidered by the way. First time I actually did something like that and I love how they turned out. Actually gave myself a pat to the shoulder for that and it was really hard to send this little one away, I would've loved to keep it, but know that my partner will give it a great and loving home.

Yes, when seeing the picture above, I think I really went all out. The task of the swap was to just fill the pouch, but after I had spent 2 days going to basically every shop here in town for bee-related goodies, I just had to send everything that fit in the package weight wise, with 4 grams to spare lol!

And since I'm so addicted to swapping at the moment, I also just signed up for a new swap at the Quilting Gallery. Mug Rugs with the theme Summertime Memories. That sounds soooo nice and I love mug rugs, as I always use them as mini-wall hangings for decoration of my walls. :)

Summertime Memories Mug Rug Swap

Can't wait!

Oh and since I have more sewing related goodies to show you, I will make an extra post in the next few days ;)

See you then!
xx Lia

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