Thursday, April 30, 2009

Don't know what to do? Go to Whip-up!

I have just stumbled on Whip-up and maybe it is old new for most of you but I guess I must have been hiding under some kind of cyber rock.

This website has so many great patterns and tutorials. The best of it, it is uploaded by the online crafting community and it is all for free!

Things I like from the recent posts are:

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Studio Junction - Courtyard House

Oh boy! This must be the hottest little piece of architecture on the planet at the moment! The whole net community is buzzing with how FANTASTIC this house is. I was sent a link to some photos by Nat a few weeks ago and then Khoa gets sent a link to the architectural practice's website.

Drop whatever you are doing at the moment and head to studio junction's website for some incredible photographs of their courtyard house project. The attention to detail and the thoughtfulness of the spaces are by far the best I have yet to see, even by the masters of architecture I dare say. Just look at the drainer by the sink! I must say I am particularly enamored to the project because it is an adaptive re-use of a warehouse.

Images taken from Studio Junction's website

The sliding partition between the master bedroom and the child's bedroom might just be the right answer for an easy transition for Zach from our family bed to his own room.

Japanese sewing terms

To follow on from my previous post.

I found this really useful blog maintained by Jennifer who lives in Tokyo and reads Japanese: Moving hands


p/s: I'm currently hunting down issues of Cotton Friend.

Monday, April 27, 2009

Extraordinary Mondays - Crafting Japanese

I chanced upon this website and thought I should share it with you in case if you are like me who finds the japanese aesthetics absolutely attractive. The simplicity and its "wabi-sabi" are things I strive towards in my work. This website contains a large resource for the japanese crafter/artist enthusiast.

Keen to know what I am talking about? Go to Crafting Japanese and check it out!

Friday, April 24, 2009

I love making party invites!

There is nothing more that I love doing than to organise a good party. I love the whole creative process! I particularly like to make the party invites. There is just something so delightful in making invites because you are inviting a friend to create memories that would last more than the event itself.

We just recently celebrated Amelia's first birthday. Amelia's party was themed around her nickname which is Mini Mouse. The invites took me AGES. I had to send out "save the date" emails because I was so tardy BUT I must say it is my best invite yet.

The invitation consisted of a package "sent" from a 21 year old Amelia. I even designed a fake postage date stamps for the year 2029 to extend the "back-to-the-future"-ness of the package. In that package was a letter "written" by Amelia to the invitees explaining that something has happened to her time capsule her parents had prepared for her when she was one year old. She invites them to restock her time capsule when they attend her first birthday party. As a token of gratitude, she has given them a softie mini mouse and tells them that they will find out the significance of that mouse at the party. (The softies were meant to be used during the party in a game but I kinda run out of time designing the game so that bit was a disappointment to me.) In the package was also some cards where she asks them to help her fill details and messages from the people at the party.

Neat, huh?

Here are some photos of the invites:

These are the mice I made for the invites.
I must admit, they are not of the best sewing quality.
Many of them were produced post midnight.

Here they are, waiting to be packaged.

The packages in the car en route to guests.

The softie mice are sewn from Terese Levy's free pattern which you can find here. Her blog, Sewing Stars, is always an inspiration if you are stuck in no-softie's-land.

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Felt star - my very first pattern!

Edit: There were some problems with the big image file, so I've made some changes to the way the pattern you can download the pattern.

I've just finished my very first pattern EVER!

Click here and it will bring you to another website. Click to download. Print to A4. (If you can suggest a better way of providing you files for downloading, it would be much appreciated.)

Please share your felt stars with me when if you have made one from the pattern. Better still, try varying the pattern by adding your personal touch and share them here. These stars could be made into bookmarks, brooches and hairclips. Can't wait to see what you come up with.

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Thursday, April 16, 2009

If you buy Oilily...

...please think twice especially if you are thinking of getting this little cute softie from Oilily.

image taken from Rosa Pomar's blog

This is the reason why:
(Scroll down the page for English translation)

Rosa Pomar designs and makes the following dolls in her shop and she has been doing so WAY WAY before Oilily produced theirs.

image taken from Rosa Pomar's shop

Don't you think they look suspiciously similar?

I don't intend to go into a rant but it does boil my blood. I think Helena, also a crafty, put it really well, "its such an outright copy that's what I find outrageous, not just "in the style of" or "influenced by"... just thought she was some little random crafty person and no-one would notice if they totally stole her design." (my emphasis).

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Happy Easter!

Amongst all the commercialised noise of Easter, I must remind myself that it isn't all about chocolate eggs, bunnies and hot cross buns.

Ultimately, it is about grace and hope.

Friday, April 10, 2009

Corel Painter Essentials Review

When I opened my Bamboo that night, I looked at the software that was bundled with it and I must confess that I didn't think much of the programs provided: Adobe Photoshop Elements and Corel Painter Essentials. I already had Photoshop CS2 and "pooh pooh"-ed Corel Painter Essentials (I didn't know much about it).

I decided to try out Corel Painter Essentials today and had to swallow my pride! I am decidedly impressed. The program was easily installed with no fuss (what program is difficult to install these days?). The interface looked similar enough to Photoshop so I decided to plunge straight in. After mucking around a little with the tools, I came up with the painting above. Pretty cool huh?

The program simulates real paint so you can blend and mix to your hearts content on the canvas. It worked so well with my Bamboo that at one point, I was about to move my pen to pick up more paint from the palette (thinking of the pen as a real paint brush)!! The best thing of all is NO PAINT MESS!

I know I have merely scratched the surface of the capability of this program. Having said that, it doesn't replace real paint and real canvas which I can't wait to get my hands on this weekend. I've been carrying an image in my mind for too long. Time for it to materialise.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Wacom Bamboo Fun review

Look what came in the mail for me today? My very own Wacom Bamboo Fun. A white one at that to match my macbook and my iPhone.

Just look at it? Doesn't it look pretty?

I took it for a test run tonight and am absolutely smitten. When I took it out of the box, I was surprised by the lightweight and thinness of the tablet.

It comes complete with a tutorial that runs you quickly through the basics. "Ink", the program that comes with the tablet is simple and impressive in its handwriting recognition. Maybe I'll start using the tablet to replace my keyboard to help improve my handwriting. (My handwriting is shocking!)

Wacom Bamboo Fun medium even comes with Corel Painter Essentials and Adobe Photoshop Elements. The best thing of all is the ease of start up and set up. No complicated installations. Just plug the tablet in via USB connection and you are on your way! In fact, when I plugged the tablet in, the pen and the mouse were both already reactive. Look what I sketched up within a few minutes of taking the tablet out of the box. The "real"ness of the active surface of the tablet adds to your natural pen stroke experience. I really like the control and pressure sensitivity.

Guess who will be spending a lot of time drawing away on the computer?

Saturday, April 4, 2009

Christmas in Easter?

Easter is almost upon us and I just remembered that I never did show you what I was so busy with just before I left for my holidays in December last year.

I made my friends at work tree decorations from two star pieces of felt which I sewn together with random stitching and stuffed the centre. They turned out more successful than I thought they would be.

For my niece and nephew, I made them name plaques but I forgot to take photos of before I gave it to them. Now they are all the way in Bangalore with no record. Bummer!

I was going to make my mom a canvas photo frame of all her grand children but kinda ran out of time so back into the bag of "to-do"s it goes.

A tutorial or pattern will be available FREE to download within the next few weeks for all projects mentioned today!!

Edit: Free pattern can be found right here on this post. Click on the image below and it will bring you to a new webpage. Print image to A4.


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