Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Juicy Roo Tshirt Model

Introducing exquisite little Siena, the first daughter of my dear Aussie pal Paul and his exceptionally lovely Japanese Canadian wife Janine, who are coming all the way from Vancouver to VISIT ME IN JANUARY and I'm VERY excited.
So I'll get to meet this little treasure, who has finally grown into her Juicy Roo tshirt that I sent when she arrived 12 months ago. How gorgeous is she? So gorgeous!

Monday, September 28, 2009

Vintage Lara Cameron Tote!

OK it might be a stretch to call this fabric Vintage but given its from a while ago, and not available anymore (at least in this colour way) I consider it vintage! It took an important birthday to bring me to be able to take a pair of scissors to this lovely piece of ginko fabric by Ink & Spindle's fabulously talented Lara Cameron. So when my sweet sista-in-law Snizza had a birthday yesterday, I got busy stitching.

In a perfect world I could have made it a smidgeon wider but overall I was happy with it and she loved it so that's the main thing!

A little bit of zipper action:

A spot to hang your keys:

And I'm loving the silver metallic thread these days for top stitching reinforcements! (This thread represents a positive in my ongoing love/hate relationship with Spotlight)

Thursday, September 10, 2009

"Love Your Experiments (as you would an ugly child)"

When I lived in Canada I was fortunate enough to be exposed to the work of graphic design guru Bruce Mau (although referring to him as a graphic design guru still seems somewhat inadequate as he is much much more than that). Anyway his studio came up with "An Incomplete Manifesto for Growth" which has to be the most inspiring set of rules for any creative person. One 'rule' that I am constantly trying to make friends with is #4 on the list - to love your experiments as you would an ugly child! It always makes me chuckle but I must admit that I do find it hard to love creations that I feel are inferior in any way.
Enter stage left sock bunny Exhibit A. I'd been contemplating revisiting a sock bunny project that my friend Cyd and I tacked in Grade 8 sewing class! After further inspiration from the fabulous sock creature creations discovered at Sydney's Stitches and Craft Show by Kristie from Rourke and Henry and Claire from Craft Schmaft, I tried to remember how we made them (it was 1985 after all!), and I whipped up this rather dodgy looking character. As is often the case when I "wing it" ...I cringe a little at the results. This poor bunny needs a prettier face, more stuffing in her limbs, and nicer eyes! But I am loving her anyway as an experiment - and a starting point to improve on. After all, the first wonky I ever did was very odd-looking as well. So here she is, and I am loving her, as I would an ugly child.

I do like her whiskers though:

and her fully lined apron dress!

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Stitches & Craft Wrap Up #2

OK so I am a bit late with this post, but I wanted to make mention of some of the ultra groovy stuff I picked up from the talented crafty chicks at the show!

It was awesome to meet Michelle from Shelbyville, and I just LOVED this collection of stories and her awesome Illustration + graphics about...laundromats! I will never look at a laundromat the same way again. I had to buy two of these coz I have a special friend in Canada who I hope will love it as much as me!

I LOVE this lined pouch by Lily Pad Designs. Having made a few lined pouches in my time, I had a deep appreciation for the flawlessness of this little creation. And that fabric! Divine. I bought this pouch on Day 1...just couldn't resist.

How groovy are these silk screened cards from Surface Art? So lovely! I think I might even frame them...

I've always loved Julie Paterson's work from Cloth...and summer is on the way so I think I will make a skirt with this lovely fabric pack. I chuckled when Julie said she was not a good sewer. She's pretty good if you ask me!

Just loved this print from Kristen Doran. It will SO be a panel in a skirt. Another skirt! I have way too many skirts. But they are so easy and quick to make: I don't reckon you can ever have too many if you make them yourself!

And how could I not come home with a bundle of delight from my lovely neighbours, Ink & Spindle? And instead of cleaning my house this weekend, I finished my Ink & Spindle "Wonky Trio"....that I hope to feature on the front of my wonky pattern that will be available SOON.

If its possible to imagine, I do have a few other show goodies but I think I will post about them when they are being turned into creations! Until next time....happy stitching! xo

Monday, August 24, 2009

Unbelievable the Show is Over...For Now!

All I can say is WOW. Actually I have HEAPS more than just that to say! But it will take a few entries no doubt to say everything I need to. In a nutshell: the Stitches & Craft Show was the most rewarding, inspiring and fabulous experience. I am positively HIGH on all the amazing people I met, all the incredible talent out there on display, and I can't wait for the Melbourne Show! I hope I never lose the level of enthusiasm and passion I have for creativity that I feel RIGHT NOW!
OK I'm sorry for being a self-promo NERD but for everyone who didnt make it to the show, here is a pic of me with some of my goodies:

and here is my gorgeous mother Mazzy who was such a massive help, and so selfless throughout the show (and before!) and I was delighted to share the experience with her:

I wanted to get pics of everyone else in Incubator but of course got side-tracked every time I went to venture out with my instead I will share my finds: (and it will take a while to get them all up here!)
Check out my sock monkey! I did a workshop with the lovely and hilarious Kristie from Rourke and Henry: my sock monkey had the most "junk in his trunk" (i.e. those were Kristie's words coz his butt was kind of big!)

A big highlight for me was meeting the lovely Nanette from Rummage and her gorgeous mother Joan...Nanette was making these exquisite little peg dolls and I originally bought one, then two, then thought of getting a few for gifts....ended up with five and I honestly don't think I can part with ANY of them. This little redhead was perfect for me! She has a daisy on her dress, and I am self-professed daisy CRAZY! I just loved them all.

And look at this one! SOOOOOO SWEET!

It all went so fast and before I knew it I was packing up my ute again to head across the mountains back to Bathurst. In the five days I was gone, the cherry blossoms have started blooming. YAY. Spring is in the air!

I got heaps of other goodies and will write more later. How lucky was I to get neighboured with the Ink and Spindle girls? They were even lovelier than their fabric, and that is off-the-richterscale lovely. More about them and my latest I & S stash later.

A HUGE thank you to everyone who came by and showed their support. xoxxx

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Dig the Dog debut at Stitches & Craft Show

I am so grateful for my brother. He rocks. Not only is he a mega-talented illustrator/designer/multi-media KING, he is a ridiculously excellent bloke. About a year ago we collaborated on a tshirt project: designing tshirts for kids under the name Dig The Dog. It was a fun mix of both of our styles of drawing. After months of R & D we finally found a great supplier of transfers that don't crack or peel after being heat pressed onto the t shirt. Another recent exciting development was finding a good supplier of baby tshirts. They're so cute! Teeny tiny itty bitty little t-shirts!
Check out our nerdy promo shot: it was so hard to remain semi-serious during our self-timed photo shoot!

His drawing style is fabulously PUNK. His style has been a hit with people looking for kids tshirts a bit edgier than your average baby/kids gear. I had some fun creating some designs with some of his drawings (i.e. skull tshirt on far right):

And of course Juicy Roo's tshirts are as warm and fuzzy as it gets:

I'm excited to say that all the t-shirts will be available at the Stitches and Craft Show NEXT WEEK! I am so excited to be part of the Incubator section at the show, with all the other uber-talented designers and creationists! We're up on Level 4 at the exhibition centre at Rosehill Racecourse. I am at stand 176. Be sure to drop by and say hello!!! Whew. That was quite the post.

Monday, August 10, 2009

Isis the Wonder Cat

Here is my favourite furry girl, and if she could speak, she would complain that I have not been playing with her enough because I have been completely obsessed with preparations for the Show next week. I am also doing an experiment as I have just discovered that its possible to blog directly from Flickr. Late year resolution: populate my flickr page! Until next time....

Sunday, August 2, 2009

Display Items for Stitches & Craft Show

Holy production frenzy! I thought about putting a disclaimer on my products saying “no slave labour was used to create these products with the exception of mine and my mother Mazzy’s”!!! Without her help last week I would not be able to say today that ALL 160 kits are complete and ALL 100 wonkies are ready to be packed.

First ever wonky kits! What a nerdie self portrait. I do love my teal wall though.

Here is Mazzy assembling a wonky kit! Thank you Mazzy! You are HIRED!

All of Mazzy's help allowed me to focus on getting the tshirts going, and also play with some packaging ideas:

My handy Dad “Tricky Micky” got a production-frenzy-guernsey too – and after an email exchange of schematics brought down this clothesline inspired apparatus for my display at the Stitches & Craft Show. Brilliant! My craft nightmares are subsiding. I think I was having them largely because I was uncertain how this would work. (Excuse the mess in this photo!)

And while there is something slightly unnerving and seemingly cruel about hanging wonkies from their ears....I think this clothesline display will be great for showing things vertically:

Now I have to finish the drop cloth…but I got the Juicy Roo sign last week and am very happy with it.

Tricky Micky made this grid structure too, which was brilliantly designed to be assembled on site...but the plywood tightened a tad after being after seeing him whacking it into place with a rubber mallet, I decided I did not need the additional stress of trying to tackle that, and have this thing breaking on me come August I think I will throw it in the back of my trusty ute as is, and rest assured it will be a fabulous place to display wonkies.

Now. Where was I? Oh, thats right: greeting cards and tshirts. More about them later!

Monday, July 27, 2009


Every time you do something 160 times it takes a while. I picked this magic number out of the air, that was my target for the number of wonky kits I wanted to have ready for the Stitches & Craft Show which starts officially in 21 days...and I am officially ILL with nervous excitement. My horror dreams have started (ie show starts and the last fifty things on my to-do list have for some reason been completely ignored!) I am SO GRATEFUL my sweet mother Mazzy has come down this week to I have a full time job and there are only so many minutes left in the day once I get home from work. She is also going to help me at the show and I am so proud to have her there, as she was such a huge stitching inspiration to me when I was growing up. In addition to helping with all sorts of show-related tasks, she is CALM and RATIONAL and without her support I reckon I would be a MASSIVE basket case.

The good news is the kits are well underway: my studio desks are covered in bits of paper:

I must admit though, that the kaleidoscope of colour truly soothes my soul...

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Juicy Roo Postcard

With the Sydney Stitches & Craft Show rapidly approaching (did I say rapidly? I meant to say RAPIDLY!) I am crossing things off my to-do list, however not as frequently as I seem to be adding things! But every now and then I have a win: today I received my postcards. I wanted to have a Juicy Roo themed give-away for the Show. Given the majority of my goodies for the Show are fabric based, it only seemed appropriate to have a pic of Juicy Roo stitching madly with her ever-faithful furry feline friend watching on. I was really pleased with the print job, all colours came back exactly as expected, even with pantone guides sometimes there can be a shift depending on paper, varnishes etc. All in all I am stoked! They'll be super fun to give away.

Here is the front:

And here is the back, with some room to scribble a juicy message if need be:

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Lily Caroline pic, as promised

I promised to post a picture of Lily Caroline once she was completed. She is the newest addition to the rapidly growing wonky she is, inspired by my grandmother who taught me how to draw little birds. Isnt she sweet?

Thursday, July 16, 2009


Question: What does a stash of 99 wonkies look like? I'll show you. It looks like this:

Time is ticking away for the Stitches & Craft Show and my goal of 100 wonkies is almost realized, leaving me time now to finish the kits, and then start on the cards, tshirts, aprons and bags (of course I am deluded to think I can achieve the final 2). What fun! Never a dull moment when creation takes over.

Monday, July 13, 2009

Lined Pouch

One of the (many) things on my 'to do' list before the Stitches and Craft Show is post a project on the Living Creatively website. I've been tossing around some ideas for this: a tote bag, a cushion cover, an apron.....but I think I've decided to put together a project sheet on how to make a lined pouch. I love lined pouches! I've made a few as gifts and they are always well received. Here are some pics of the one I made for my friend Gina (alias 'Genius'). The zipper can be a bit fiddly truth be told....but they are worth the effort!

This fabric turned out to be perfect for lining: thanks Catriona!

Monday, July 6, 2009

My Grandmother Taught Me to Draw Birds

Her name was Lily Caroline. Isn't that a beautiful name? She left this world when I was 6. I remember a lot about her though. She taught me how to draw birds and fish. Little birds appear frequently in the indy crafter world and I am no exception. The little bird that reappears in the world of Juicy Roo over and over again is the same bird she taught me to draw...(ok maybe I juicy-roo-afied the tail bit!) I thought I'd use my little bird as an embellishment on the belly of a Wonky....and it only seemed fitting that I would name the wonky after her. Lily Caroline (i.e. the Wonky!) has not been finished yet, but I'll introduce her formally as soon as she is stitched up. She will make her debut at the Stitches and Craft Show in Sydney. Am I crazy for naming Wonkies after people and things that I care about?

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Wonky Infiltration

My home is getting messier daily in preparation for the Sydney Stitches & Craft Show. Every where I look I see piles of fabric waiting to be wonky limbs:

Faces and limbs waiting to be attached to bodies:

Bits of fabric waiting to be limbs:

Bodies with faces waiting for limbs:

But seeing the big pile growing on the couch makes it all worthwhile! Now! Where was I? Oh, thats right, I was stitching.....

Monday, June 22, 2009

Army of Wonkies

I recently committed to participating in the Stitches & Craft Show in Sydney in August. Since making this decision I have been excited, a bit stressed....and BUSY! First task was to get Peta's shop 'Bambinos' stocked up with a stash of Wonkies to keep them going. My sweet mother Mazzy came down for a week to help me stitch! In a very short time she perfected the blanket stitch (for their eyes) and the ladder stitch (to stitch them up)...but she was exhausted by the end of the week! Welcome to my world...the price we pay for the joy of crafting!

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Closet Fashion Designer

OK I admit it. I am a fashion designer at heart. Coming from someone pretty clueless about fashion in my teenage years, I realize I am now confident wearing what makes me smile, with no thoughts of what anyone else might think. For me, the ultimate clothing design is art mixed with fashion. The brighter the better. I have become a bit of a scribble addict and my sketchbooks are turning into a kaleidoscope of colour in the form of skirts and tshirts. Given my stitching time is so limited, I have to be quite in love with a design to actually take it to the next level (i.e. make it). And the fabric has to be succulent! Product plug: prismacolor pencils have to be the most exquisite ever created. So soft, easy to blend, and intense pigments in more colours than I thought possible in the world of pencils.