Thursday, December 18, 2008

the christmas-y one!

Wow, I can't believe how quickly this month has gone! I've been busy managing my day job, Christmas shopping for the family and crafting like a crafty crafter! I'm jumping from one craft fair to another, and this week it is Kraftbomb! This time round there is two whole rooms of craftiness- so lots of people and lots of crafts. I'm going to be selling some fresh new collars (dots and cute little butterflys), a few necklaces, and I will be introducing a range of collar- inspired girl's singlets which are going to be ridiculously cute!

So come along- Kraftbomb runs from 11am - 2pm at the Greylynn Community Centre!

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

the next one: craftwerk!

I've got another craft fair up this week- Craftwerk! So I've been busy sewing more collars to sell... and some are very cute! But I'm not going to stress out over it- I already have some scary looking dark circles under my eyes! The last Craftwerk was goodness and madness, so I am hoping that this is more of the same.

Hope to see you there- this would be a great place to buy some handmade Chrismas prezzies!

Friday, November 28, 2008


Only 1 and a bit days to go until the next Kraftbomb! Until then there is a bit of sewing to do.. I'm looking forward to sunday! Kraftbomb is at the Greylynn Community Centre, Richmond Rd 11am- 2pm!

Sunday, November 16, 2008

all stitch'd up

I do like tattoos, even though I must confess that I don't own any (some combination of my Libran indecisiveness and slight fear of needles)!  So I brought a Stitch'd Ink design at Kraftbomb a few months ago and have finally finished the design.  Somewhere along the lines I forgot that cross stitch is very addictive- I'm sure thats because you don't really have to think much while working on them (that happened once or twice and I ended up forgetting to do a row or two! Oops!).  I did add the word 'Auntie' an old-school tattoo font which was a bit of a challenge- especially the 'A' which has all sorts of odd angles.  I chose to add the word 'Auntie' as I've been an auntie since I was 6 (most of my life) and I thought this would be a great way to make it some kind of badge. I do like the charm and irony of a piece like this.  I will get it framed eventually- most likely in a type of frame that is at odds with the design.  

I've also been working on a little painting- I'll post that when it's done!

Monday, November 10, 2008

changes and sensible advice

I like the nature of this post. Especially the line about 'the girl in the mirror'. It is a nice reminder about personal change expressed beautifully.

I also like Lara from Kirin Notebook's (a long time read for me) craft/design business advice, which for someone who is starting out a little something is all so relevant.

Thats all for now!

Sunday, October 26, 2008

notes from the craft fair

new necklaces

suzy-lee collars

button collars

Today was kraftbomb day, and it went really well.  There was a really positive atmosphere with this craft fair- lots of friendly people, neat crafts and live music which really added to the atmosphere.  I had some new collars to show (they were not very photogenic... I am a terrible photographer, and the ones I really wanted to show you turned out blurry.  Oops.)  I also added some necklaces with a bow shape- an idea to use up left over fabric and to try something new.  I left feeling really positive about the whole craft thing.  Sometimes I think its so nice to be able to participate in something like that.

Another piece of news-news that I've been neglecting to mention is that my collars have recently been listed on Toggle, a website that sells New Zealand craft, which is quite special.  So even if you can't make to the craft fairs they will be online (yay!).

Its a long weekend in New Zealand, which is nice.  It is so relaxing to have an extra day off- I plan to spend it finishing off reading Sense and Sensibilty (Jane Austen of course!) which is surprisingly good.  And I will dip into my Liberty stash and make myself yet another smocky top from my super-easy and useful pattern....  Perhaps I will show you the results in the next post.

Monday, October 20, 2008

the next one!

Wow!  I have been really busy crafting here and there for the next kraftbomb!  This one looks to be exciting with a Halloween theme and much more stalls.  I've been developing some new collars ideas (going nautical!) as well as some necklaces (I love accessorising!) so I'm really looking forward to it.  Its going to be great to see what other vendors have up their sleeves as well!  Catch you there at the Grey Lynn Community Centre (Auckland) 11am-2pm.

Sunday, October 12, 2008


Last week I baked some birthday cupcakes to share with my family.  They were ridiculously cute and didn't last long!  Very much a treat and my new favourite thing to bake!

Sunday, September 28, 2008


Whew!  After that mad mad rush of sewing I can relax... The stall at kraftbomb was a bit of a slow one, but thankfully I sold some collars (which keeps the morale up!) and made a great looking batch of raspberry muffins. It was great to meet some new people and see a few familiar faces about.  Creative-wise, I'm thinking of some new designs and ideas to keep things fresh- like more necklace-y things and an Eton collar style.  And summer colours!

I brought one of City's Stitched Ink cross-stitch kits which will be great to stitch up- I havent made a cross stitch kit for years... I have strong memories of spending a long amount of time stitching a teddy-bear wedding kit when I was about thirteen- my mother is threatening to get it framed....

And last but not least is a picture of some gorgeous wisteria at my sisters...

Monday, September 22, 2008

violet&may at kraftbomb 2!

In a mad mad rush of sewing... I'm off to the Kraftbomb craft fair (or should that be kraft??) on Sunday at the Greylynn Community Centre this Sunday 28th September 1-4pm.  I have some super-cute new violet&may collars which I just can't wait to show you!  Come along for some craftiness!

Thursday, August 21, 2008


I'm moving blog!  to a slightly less confusing (to those who brought collars) sounding violet&may. Its very much nothing at the moment, but I will keep you posted as it develops.


Wednesday, August 6, 2008

ahoy there!

There is a good reason behind those ridiculously cute collars!  CRAFTWERK!  Next thursday at St Kevins Arcade in Auckland.  Me and my collars will see you there.  In the meantime there will be alllllot of sewing... (sorry for the small image.  Blogger didn't want to make it bigger!)


Sunday, August 3, 2008

little collars

These little peter pan collars are ridiculously cute.  A sort of a mix of something that references jewellery and clothing all at the same time.  And did I mention that they were cute? And ric-rac is now the best thing since sliced bread- I can't believe that I haven't used it before in my crafting...

Friday, July 11, 2008


A little impulse came over me today to make-over this blog- well overdue I thought! Nice and clean and very pink!! And spotty. What do you think? I'm trying to decide if it is a little OTT, which is why I'm counteracting the pink with grey.

Anyway I'm getting used to my new job (have been working part time there until my months notice at my current job peters out) and a daily (un-ecofriendly) trip on the motorway- my car has not yet broken down! I think I will learn alot from this one.

Bye for now (just a short short post today)

Friday, June 27, 2008

new places to go

I have a new job. Forget the last post where I was speculating as to whether I would finish making my new dress in time for an interview (I haven't. It is hanging on my wall in all its unfinished glory, awaiting to be lined).

Forget the tedium of preparing for yet another job interview- there is only so many times that you can explain your portfolio, and only so many times that you can explain why you're looking for work, and only so many times that you can explain how you work in a team situation ecetera (I'm a compromise-r, very Libran of me).

However it is far more fun to tell people that you have a new job. A new job where I'm going to have to prove myself all over again. It's good to start something new. I'm all about making changes right now. I'm making that move into working with womenswear which I shouldn't regret. In time, I hope that it can be creative. Wish me luck.
Have a great weekend!

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

a scarf for my sister

Another scarf, knitted a while ago, for my sister. Stripes are good! My photos do not do this scarf justice- it is so much more vibrant in real life.

Monday, June 23, 2008

new scarf

A new scarf is always a good thing. Especially when you made it yourself.

Monday, June 9, 2008

the absent blogger

Well, here I am again. Not surprisingly with not much to show or talk about, so again I'm feeling like the laziest kind of blogger, but sometimes life just gets in the way. Or perhaps I should say that life is what happens when you're trying to do other things! I'm still looking for a new job. Very tedious I tell you, particularly when your industry is in a slow moment jobs-wise- since I started looking a couple of months ago I have only had a grand total of two interviews. Maybe I need to work a little harder at finding work!
I finished my graphics nightclass a while ago, the class was O-K, but not life changing- like it wasn't quite in depth enough for me. I think I've realised that it may not be quite as easy as I would have thought it would have been to take up graphics or do some kind of career change.

Im still crafting, but in a slightly schitzo kind of way- start one project, get partway through it- then start another! So maybe I should finish this dress (hopefully in time for an interview!):

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

upskill me (part two)

A while ago I had posted about doing a Photoshop/Indesign course. Here is some of the results- magenta and chartreuse green. So so very 80's and somewhat foreign looking compared to the graphics on this blog! After using Illustrator for a while, Indesign is ridiculously easy...which I suppose is a good thing!

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

oh, hello there

Hello, I hope this finds you well. I'm being a bit of a slacker and not posting any pictures remotely design or craft related, even though there are a few things I would love to show here...

Things have been more than a little bit busy in my world, especially as I have the rather lovely task of finding a new job... But you know, if I have any downtime my creative output may increase! It would be great to spend sometime on my own ideas... and I have a few interesting ones in the pipeline!

However, over time I have noticed that I have a very good ability to talk and talk about my ideas and then never get them of the ground for some reason or other. So for that very reason alone I won't air them on this blog until I have convinced myself that they will go ahead... I do have some envy of those more motivated people out there, but I know that it takes time, money and effort to get a great plan (or any plan) off the ground...

Anyway it is dark now and I'm going to go home and cook a curry and knit. Cold winter nights huh?? :)

Thursday, May 1, 2008

new things

A few new things for my list on the side.

... daydream lily for lovely + collage + art. Based in Melbourne. Seriously so many creatives are in Melbourne. Is there something in the air?

... fortysixth at grace. Clean, lovely clothes in muted tones, and a sweet way of writing.

... The Sartorialist. Why didn't I check this one out earlier?

Anyway I have more brewing in the craft department especially with jewellery and knitting, so will do a real post at a later point...

Bye for now!

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Monday, April 28, 2008

comments, comments

By all means, I love your comments and feedback. But I do not love spam comments! So I have now got comment moderation, which of course adds an extra step for me, but stops the spam from appearing!

Thanks! Have a great week!

Thursday, April 24, 2008

stitch lines

I have a bit of a thing for drawing stitch lines. I think that it actually comes from patternmaking rather than fashion drawing as I often end up drawing a dashed line curve like an armhole shape on little bits of paper. So there is no wonder when this rather reptilian like figure appeared on a bit of paper, that I had to add more than a few stitch lines to her. I decided that she was a bit on the reptilian side via her dress, which reminded me a little of an art deco fashion illustration of a woman in a very reptilian dress. I also decided to differ my way of drawing for a change and tilt her neck forward a little, kind of like the Applet drawings at Inside a Black Apple. I think that I quite like it, but it has put her body out of kilter a little...

Anyway winter is encroaching here in Auckland, and I am kicking into my winter craft- and that means knitting! I am about halfway through a gorgeous dusky pink basket-weave scarf, which I will show you when its finished. And of course I'm adding a little to the blanket that I started last year- but I have promised myself not to spend all winter knitting obsessively!! I am also nursing an early winter cold (a sore throat and the sniffles), so will be in for an evening of chicken noodle soup and knitting tonight...

Sniffles or not this long weekend I am also planning to chip away at my sewing- I hae two projects on the patternmaking/cutting/generally very much unfinished (or unstarted stage). As I have a huge fabric stash, including some rather lovely Liberty fabrics, I'm getting behind the philosophy of the Use What You Have Flickr group. Using up your stash of fabric (or crafty bits) makes perfect sense to me- I now realise that there is no point in being too precious about your fabric and not using it!
And to make you smile I am looking after two of the cutest babysitting charges- my two little niece's mice! They are ridiculously cute (and very speedy on the mouse- wheel!). I will try and put a picture online of them.

Bye for now!

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

sometimes, I try cute

Sometimes, I'll try to create something cute. But you know what? I don't really think that it works, like its an aesthetic that I don't quite understand. I think that this picture is just too twee and kind of insipid. A friend once described my fashion drawings as 'sophisticated cute'. I think she's right- I work with a more sophisticated style with a touch of cute, but not 100% 'awwwwww' cute. But for those with an innate sense of cute design (I know a handful)- well done! Its harder than it looks!
PS. the way this is post #100 woohoo! It took me a good year or so to get this far (I is not Miss Frequent Blogger). Here's to another 100!

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

the neverending cuff (part two)

I have been wanting to show this to you for a good while. And despite the time that it has taken me to get this far (hence the title 'the neverending cuff'), its not quite finished yet. You see, I'm wanting to drape some silver chain over it and link it through the gaps made by the butterfly wing shapes. Thats if it doesn't look too silly, which I suspect that it could...
This cuff is made from sterling silver which has been cut, soldered, riveted, hammered, textured with a scratch brush and polished to within an inch of its life. Am I proud of it? Certainly. Now I just need a good excuse to wear my extravagant piece of jewellery!

Monday, April 14, 2008

ghost grey

If I was making a range of clothes, I would be sure to call a shade of grey like this 'ghost grey'. Unfortunately, due to my photography skills, the photos do not do this top justice! I have been dipping into my fabric stash as of late, and this is my newest piece. I thought that I would play around with some stitching detail this time, and have wound up creating an art deco meets handcraft bit of stitching on the yoke, which is very endearing...

Thursday, April 10, 2008

a tree and a babydoll dress

This girl appeared on a piece of paper. I like what she is wearing and thee whimsical landsape that she is in.

deco jewels

This is just a little sketch of a little brooch. It is on a bit of an art deco meets butterfly wings trip, and is to be quite three dimensional. I've brought a couple of little lapis lazuli stones (the blue ovals) which have lovely little flecks of gold (or something gold-y) through them. The blue-y green areas are to be enamelled. So there are a few new things which I will learn through making this. All I've done so far is cut out the plate for the back and daydreamed...

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

a mottled green dress

I would like an outfit like this. Including the socks.

Friday, March 14, 2008

coat of arms series (part 3)

I like this one. Today's coat of arms have a wintery feel to them. Not surprising as I am wearing not one but two black on grey prints... both of which feature owls and birds and trees. All the winter deliveries appearing in the shops are definately promoting a mad sewing frenzy- in a black on grey Liberty (of course) which will turn into a dress!
And I have just discovered the scribble tool in Illustrator, which is very, very good indeed- once you get rid of the default colour! Its good to learn something new every day.

Wednesday, March 12, 2008


I have jewels on my mind. This little illustration/print appeared one night after jewellery class. I love the jewel bright colours. And this weekend I'm off to check out some gems for a couple of jewellery designs I plan to work on.

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

a blouse-y top

I've managed to do some sewing at last. At this stage it is a matter of not getting precious over my stash of Liberty fabric. No point in wasting fabric or time waiting for the 'perfect' project. Here I have used Liberty Christelle along the neckline and Liberty Jean B, all available from here. I really like the mix of fabrics, and the vintage buttons look very cute. This is a great style to wear tucked into skirts as it has a nice amount of volume. I'm going to make another one or two of these in different fabrics, and I suspect that I will probably do a bit of altering to the pattern (hey! I am a patternmaker afterall!)

And in case you're wondering, I used McCalls pattern M5538, which is easy to find as it has a Rachel Bilson lookalike on the cover.

Friday, February 29, 2008

a leap year day

It is a leap year day. And I'm going to post simply because this opportunity will only present itself once every four years. A 'Happy Birthday' to those that are born on February 29. This extra day of the year is a good day to think.

I've been doing a little inventory (as you may say) of all my projects and ideas that I am presently working on, or really really want to work on. It is a bit of a long list. A while ago I took the list of projects off the sidebar of this blog as I realised that I wasnt really working on them. This weekend I would looooove to start sewing again, as my high- rotation of favourite clothes are looking a little tired to me. My stash of Liberty is asking to be (very carefully) used up.

So my little long list is as follows...

... A blouse-y top for myself, made from one of my Liberty fabrics. I'm going to hunt for a good pattern.
... To finish the butterfly top for my sister.
... A couple of t-shirt dresses for my nieces.

... To work on my blanket every now and then.
... And to knit a basket weave scarf in a gorgeous wool in time for winter.

... Simply to pick up my paints again after they have been in storage for so long. Especially when I have some ideas to develop.

... To complete the first motif on the embroidery for Miss G.

... And to create a great cushion for myself (coat of arms)

... To finish my 'goodbye' illustration. Eventually.
... And eventually learn how to do textile prints.

... To Finish the Neverending Cuff. By the end of the term. So that I can move on to...
... An extravagant necklace.
... And a brooch for my mother.

Now my question is- where, just where do I find (or make) the time?

Monday, February 25, 2008

geogeousness and cleverness

Oh, there are more than a few inspirational things in my world at the moment. Which ones should I choose? Here are a few...

...Georgeous ginko sketch at Abigail Percy. There is something quite exquisite about the lines in this drawing.

...The recent burst of activity at Sugarloop. Lovely!

...Drawing on transparent paper. Still one of my favourite things from back at uni. There is a great quality about it

...Paper folded marvelously into books and smaller books at littlepaperbird.

...I love blues based songs and The White Stripe's 300 M.P.H Torrential Outpour Blues is number- one- favourite-often-played-song at the moment.

...Ideas to work on (once I set myself up!)

...And a tempting pile of books to read...

Monday, February 18, 2008

upskill me

I'm on a mission to upskill myself. No longer content with just working in fashion, I want more creativity in my workspace. So I've enrolled in a Photoshop/Indesign night class, which won't start for a while, but I'm really excited about it. I'm wanting to work more in a fashion graphics type role, which would make the most of my experience in working with offshore manufacture, with more of the creativity that keeps me going. This is the first step.

Monday, February 11, 2008

moving on. moving in.

After a good two weeks of hanging about, I finally moved into my new flat. Thank goodness! My last flat just didn't work out. But the new one is off to a promising start, and hopefully I will be happy there once I settle in. I did the move (of the heavy stuff anyway) in a record one-and-a-half hours. My room is still chaos and disorder, and I am now taking a liking to reading up on clever storage, as my room doesn't have a wardrobe, so I have a few things to sort out. And my sewing machines are out of their boxes and a small list of projects is floating around in my head. Fantastic.

Friday, February 8, 2008

coat of arms series (part 2)

Oh this is so preppy! But thankfully more interesting than the last version.

Thursday, February 7, 2008

the coat of arms series

I've taking a liking to the coat of arms as of late. I actually did a Google image seach to see if my family had one- we did apparently, but it is not as pretty as I had hoped. I think that you have to be one of those people who appear in the society pages of Tatler magazine to have one of those! So I'm now playing around with motif- maybe I'm well overdue for a move on from my favourite clouds now. This is a first little attempt at a print repeat- so its very, very simple. Not overly sure about the colours, and I think that there could be some more variation in the shapes. What do you think? I'm going to be working with this motifs in a few guises from now on, which is quite exciting!

Friday, February 1, 2008

hello February

Oh hello February, I hope you treat me well. I can't believe that it is February already, and here I am still adding '07' to the end of dates. Oops. I'm trickling into doing some new crafty things (more about that another post) and new other things...

...I'm moving flat again. To a snazzier part of town- walking distance to cafe's and Ponsonby Rd shop. I eventually found that living in a little space was getting me down- no sewing makes Anna go crazy! And I'm looking forward to the challenge of decorating my room- at least I will have a bit more space to unpack.

...February also tells me that it is time that I will have to make more effort into conducting my life to move the way I want it to. Sounds dumb, but I'm sure that Dr. Phil will agree, as I think that I'm moving into some mid- twenties crisis... So from now I want to try and focus on those important things, like friends (I find it really hard to maintain friendships, but am great at making what you would call acquaintances or friends-in-context), family and figuring out what on earth I will do with myself. The art of happiness indeed.

I hope the month of February treats you well too! Have a wonderful weekend!

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

a little bit of craft

Sometimes, a little bit of craft is all you need. I made this cute little pincushion for my sister. I'm really liking this working with text and embroidery thing at the moment. I thought that the green colours would go perfectly with her vintage sewing tin (unfortunately the photo of it turned out frighteningly bad, so you can only see a snippet of it in the first photo).

This little sewing tin has some seriously good finds in it, including 'The Glenda Double Fold Bias Binding' and the remains of an old- fashion rose sewing kit. Very tempting to use I say, but somehow they just belong in that tin- I think that it would almost be a waste of a little time capsule (and lovely vintage typography)...

...don't you think?

Monday, January 21, 2008

make me over

I'm in the midst of a blog make-over. So bear with me over the next week or so as I put my plan to action! Things may be a bit funny as I battle hmtl coding and other things....

Friday, January 18, 2008

the black seeds

No, I'm not writing about the band. But this little sketch appeared in my diary not so long ago. I'm liking the idea of working with a seed shaped motif at the moment.

Monday, January 14, 2008

the distraction dangers

Let me educate you on the dangers of distraction. I think I have a distractive personality, you know, my attention can flitter from thing to thing. So as it happens I started drawing this little ballet girl after being inspired by this post on littlepaperbird. And then I got distracted while looking at my sketch this morning and at the same time cutting fabric swatches with a rotary cutter... and somehow wound up cutting my finger. Oops! At least my drawing looks cute (but typing with a plaster on your finger, not so easy).

Saturday, January 12, 2008

pins and needles (version 2.0)

Do you ever get pins and needles? I do. I have what some people would call a bad habit of sitting on my leg when I'm at the computer, and usually wind up getting pins and needles.

However I do like pins and needles of the sewing kind, and what they can create. I have never owned a pincushion, so when I was on holiday, with my craft lite kit, I decided to make one. I'm really into this mad coral pink colour, and I just can't seem to get enough of using it. I did try to be good and do nice handwritten feminine script, but I don't seem to be that good with it, so freehand text won out in the end. Which I don't mind. The grey marle felt offsets it perfectly- I really want to do some more work with this fabric. If I was more ambititious and didn't sleep much I think that it would make a great background for an applique or embroidery of one of my fashion figures.

I drew this needle a while back and have been trying to figure out a good home for it. Part of me says that it would make a great tattoo as it would have great trompe l'oiel effect. But I think that I may try my hand at putting it into a print repeat. Now that would be a learning curve.

ps. I'm calling this post version 2.0 as blogger gobbled up my newly finished post, threw a tantrum and decided not to post it (grumble). I think I have managed to remember most of what I had to say.

Wednesday, January 9, 2008

little bits

This is what I would a mix and match post. I have finally gotten around to updating my links list, so here are the new extras:

Bye for now!

Friday, January 4, 2008

the art and culture weekend

I have just been on an art and culture weekend to Wellington. Well, it wasn't exactly a weekend because it wasn't the weekend, but it felt like one. 2008, I had decided would be the year of design for me, and this was a great way to start it. I normally don't make much or any effort so see art exhibtions at home in Auckland, so here I certainly made up for lost time. I often forget that an art exhibition offers a decent dose of inspiration.

On Wednesday my mother and I went around the museums and art galleries in central Wellington. The city was so so quiet, as everyone was away on holiday and alot of the shops we shut (very good for my wallet!). In a typical Wellington fashion the day was a bit on the blustery side, but pleasant nonetheless. We began by walking around the waterfront near Te Papa, then checking out the Museum of Wellington City and Sea, which was interesting as neither of us had been there before. After that we ambled around to the City Art Gallery. The highlight of the trip was checking out the Bill Hammond exhibition at the City Gallery. Amazing- I have long admired his anthromorphic, stylized and ever so Egyptian like birds. Seeing them up close was fantastic. It was interesting to see how his work has progressed over time, and also to see the incorporation of print and pattern in a tattoo-like manner into the bird motif. After the art gallery we had short walk to Te Papa, where we had coffee and checked out the national art collection, which was also very inspiring. I often think that the greatest indulgence would to be an artist.

Yesterday was 'the shopping day'. We went around Lambton Quay and had a peek inside Kirkcaldie & Stains, which had some gorgeous art nouveau inpsired pieces of Moorcroft pottery. I nearly fainted at the pricetag, but then some unreasonable part of my brain started to calculate as to how I could accumulate a piece. Wellington also has the Shoe Connection chain of shoe shops, which has some great shoes, if you like to have fancy feet. I tried, but I didn't buy- I have learnt the hard way not to impulse buy shoes when away on holiday as I have often ended up with shoes the wrong size...
We then made our way up to Lower Hutt where we had lunch and admired the exhibtions at TheNewDowse. The main drawcard was the When Philip Met Isabella: Philp Treacey's Hats for Isabella Blow, which was amazing and well worth the detour out of the central city. The cafe at the Dowse is also worth recommending- quick service and good food.

I'm back home now, with only the real weekend left, then it back to work and back to the real world.