Tuesday, July 31, 2007

fun clothes for curvy girls.

♦ new tops in the shop, listed this afternoon!

i am actually really excited about the prospect of being able to offer fun/funky clothes in larger sizes for girls out there that i know get frustrated with the lack of options in the stores that surround them.

i will definitely be working on more things... clothes made from scratch, "used" items that get spruced up...

♥ m.

Friday, July 27, 2007

more fun than a drunken game of cheat!

this is the first batch of tiny cipolla plastic zipper pulls and i am in love. shrink plastic is the new subject of my dreams.

i know i'm like decades behind, this stuff has been around since the seventies or something. but seriously, it rocks!
and if i didn't know about it before, maybe you didn't either.

here's the deal:
get your hands on some sheets of shrink plastic somehow.
sand one side of the sheet with a fine grit, in a criss-cross fashion.
draw your image onto the sanded side - for the zipper pulls i drew one main image, then traced it over and over again to speed it up (i used translucent shrink plastic so i could trace easily).

the piece will shrink to about 1/3 of it's original size (different brands may vary... my pack said 40%, but it was much smaller then that).

colour in image if desired (i used pencil crayon!)
cut out however you like.
bake at 300-325º celsius for a few minutes - i put mine on parchment paper on a baking sheet, and found that worked well.

while they are shrinking they will probably curl up and/or bubble... at first i pulled them out right away and tried to flatten them out, but they looked warped so i put them back in. then i realized that you just need patience (hard, i know, trust me) they will eventually shrink evenly. they may be a bit curled or something, but this is easy to fix with a bit of coaxing while they are still hot (before you pull them out of the oven for example, flatten them all down with a quick press of a dish cloth).

my kitchen was a hot horrible place, but it was worth it.
serious fun to see the adorable results!

these will be used as zipper pulls on cipolla bags and pouches.
but i have plans for future bits like buttons and key chains... yay!

we also used this shrink plastic to make slate a couple tags for his collar (he is constantly losing his).

have fun and good luck if you plan to try it!

♥ m.

Monday, July 23, 2007

bottoms up!

taking a quick break for a coffee refill and a quick post about this...
a frightening stack of bottoms. (though i suppose it's only frightening to me, who knows what must follow).

but while shopping for fabric bits this morning i picked up the book on tape of anna karenina, so bring it on!

actually, it's exciting (the batch not the book, well the book too).
- thinking of all sorts of images to patch onto these guys -
there'll be zombies (yes zombies!) for sure... hmmm.
maybe something inspired by hours of tolstoy
(who knows what that would be!?).

a new batch of cipolla classic tote bags on the way!

back to the machine,
see you after i've sewn the last stitch.

♥ m.

Thursday, July 19, 2007

an apple a day...

stitching around the little seeds may be tedious, but i love this apple applique. especially in a crisp green granny smith.

featured item!

the apple version of the Sunday Market Bag was picked as a daily dittie on the indie shopping website wickedlychic.com

view it here (scroll down to see it since it was featured early in the week).


♥ m.

Monday, July 16, 2007

verdure e caffe

the cucumbers are crawling, the tomatoes are popping up, and the basil has flowered. there isn't a better place to sit and have a coffee.

love for the garden!


Saturday, July 14, 2007

i could do without the ironing!

i've been working on a fresh dozen of sunday market bags. here's a shot of the pile of straps i made for this new batch.

a peek into the process.

1 cut long and thin strips of felt.
2 cut longer and thicker strips of fabric.
3 iron strips of fabric, carefully fold/iron fabric around the felt, pin.
4 repeat 23 more times.

(i don't mind cutting, but sometimes i look at the iron and cringe.)

keep your eye on the shop, i'll be listing the results over the next few days.

♦ m.

Thursday, July 12, 2007

arachnid love

my sprawling spider
messenger bag is featured
in an etsy treasury.
view the entire treasury here

the other spider-themed bag in my shop has sold (cut from that great japanese cotton print I ordered). Don't despair... I have more of it! I'll be sewing with it soon.

plus, you know i will always be making special spidery stuff.


Tuesday, July 10, 2007

front page material

i'm on the front page of etsy this morning with this item... toting crow.
view it here

the entire treasury is beautiful.

♥ m.

Monday, July 9, 2007


the wreckage after thinning out my onions in the garden yesterday.

in the back are leeks, in the front a mix of yellow and red onions. (we'll be having onions with our meals for the next few days.)

too cute!


Friday, July 6, 2007

taking the night off

after sewing pouches (these are just a few) for the past 36 hours... not only are my eyes and fingertips fried, but i need to get out!

off to my mom's house to give the cat his insulin shot, then relax for a night of extreme geek board games and pizza with the boys. yay!


Thursday, July 5, 2007


i can't get enough of this fabric! (infact i have a recurring nightmare about when i run out and can't order any more).

here it is in two new bags - a tote, and a favourite bag (the latter is already listed on the site).


Tuesday, July 3, 2007

houndstooth + swallow = 1950s

the entire time i was in montreal i kept thinking about this unfinished tote sitting on my ironing board. finally reunited last night, here it is... finished and posted on the site today. love it! m.

Monday, July 2, 2007

la belle province ... literally.

vic and i dug into a classic belle province poutine yesterday, and it was everything we'd been dreaming about since we moved away last year.


finally being in montreal again was wonderful and weird. when i drove through ndg to get to saturday's poker party at nancy's, i drove past our last apartment and the bakery i used to visit every week for a delicious challah, i didn't feel as nostalgic as i thought i would. perhaps it's because i haven't been away long enough, or because i'm happy where i am right now... or it could be because i'm a cold fish.

i usually am insensitive about this kinda stuff. i don't tend to miss things much and can easily say goodbye to people, places, and things. i like to think that's a good thing, but sometimes i wish i could recall memories with a sharp feeling or some such other movie-like moment.

as for the rest of the trip... we had a quiet, relaxing time. unfortunately i didn't make it downtown. besides poker, we stayed with vic's family the rest of our time there. although it was nice, i think the ride back was actually the best part. we took the scenic route and made many stops along the 2 ... for coffee and photos. (those pics are coming as soon as i have time to organize them.)

sweet dreams.