Sunday, October 24, 2010

Bubble Gum Bubble Dress Tutorial (seriously cute!)

This dress eventuated when i was trying to get house work done last weekend. So I'm folding washing and i pick up a dress of Miss S's about to fold it when i hold it out and think mmmmmmm this would be a really easy dress to sew and adapt into something fun. So house work it completely out the window until i  finish this because i was in the zone! Kids were all having rests/sleeps, so perfect timing.

As Ive said before I'm not an experienced sewer at all but i like to add fun elements to simple designs. Also i like my girl to be wearing outfits that are sometimes unique. I had this cute stretch knit sitting around and the colours reminded me of bubble gum so hence the name Bubble Gum Bubble dress.

This is my first tutorial so bear with me- i stopped taking photos half way through making it as i decided i was to chicken to post it, but i had a change of heart and decided its to cute not to share! The dress is so simple and easy that i thought i would share it for any other mums out there that are novice sewers and want to make something cute for their daughters :) So here goes, please let me know if something is not clear, ive tried to explain as best as i could :)


1 Metre of Knit fabric
50-80 cm's of 1/4" elastic (depending on how bubbly you want it pays to have more than you think you will need)
Sewing machine

Forgive the gory colours of the cutting line- but you get the general idea

So this is where i stopped taking photos but its pretty simple from here. I did find that once I had sewn the ruffles on that the neck line had stretched out a bit and it hung down lower that I would like so to compensate for this I just did a little tuck in the back on the neck and sewed in place (you cant notice it to much and it just lifts the neck line up a bit).

Once your happy with the neckline and ruffles its time to join the dress at the sides. Now comes the bubble part of the Bubble Gum Bubble Dress- sew your hem  1/2" like your finishing the dress off but leave a gap to thread your elastic through. Use what elastic you have that will suit and thread it all the way through the bottom of the dress. Try it on your daughter if possible and pull the elastic until it makes the dress puff out in a cute bubble kind of way. Secure your elastic and close up the gap. 

Magic! One cute little dress ready for your missy moo to prance, dance and play in!

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

I'm in love!

I know its completely crazy to go gaga over fabric, i am recently new to this but when I saw this vintage floral fabric i knew it would be delicious on Miss S.  

I didn't know what i was going to create with it so its just been sitting there taunting me until i found this tutorial i had bookmarked @ Prudent Baby for the Peasant Blouse. i knew it would be perfect! 

The only things that wasn't perfect was adapting the pattern to fit Miss S who is nearly 6. I found adding on about 4" to the pattern seemed to do ok for what I needed. 

I added a tie to the top just under her arms and left out the gathering at the waist! Totally delicious! I love how the colours go so well with Miss S's fair complexion.

I found the tutorial pretty easy to follow considering I am a novice sewer, which wasn't made any easier by the fact that i was trying to measure and pin while she was sleeping ( yip bad mummy), she didn't mind though :)

I am so happy with how this turned out i will definitely be making another but maybe in  a knit material so its not so ridged and maybe making it into a dress for summer, Perfect!!


Saturday, October 9, 2010

Tips for taking better photos of your kids

 One of my absolute passions is photography, it is my hobby and some times my obsession. Luckily I am blessed with three beautiful children with whom to try out new ideas. It was actually having children that awakened this need to capture every precious moment and also I am to cheap to go to a professional photographer :) I have completed a university paper on creative photography and that really set things going in the right direction for me. People are always asking who takes my children's photos and I am proud to say that yes it is me! These are some of the simple rules I live by when taking picture of my kids, hopefully some of them will work for you.

Get Down to their level

My youngest. I lay on the ground with a camera right down almost touching the floor to get this shot

Get down on the floor/grass what ever it may be. With older children sitting/crouching will usually be fine but when it comes to babies lie down! Sure it can be uncomfortable and you might get dirty from the grass/dirt or what ever but who cares? Getting down to a child's level gives more natural perspective! Chase them around, play!  i find my kids never do what i want in front of the camera so its better to follow them around taking  shot after shot and many times i have gotten a cool action shot!

Use natural light where possible

This photo was taken on my bed after a morning cuddle, he looked so cute so I stripped off his clothes and opened all my curtains to let in the morning light

My second eldest, very hard to photograph this boy as he is constantly on the go

This is one rule I absolutely live by no matter what I'm photographing! I quickly learnt that flashes are a big no no! They cause red eye and can make colours look all out of whack, as well as washing the subject out. On most cameras you can turn the flash off some how, on my digital slr i can stop my flash from firing automatically by switching to manual mode, or on my point and shoot there is a flash button that you press so it switches off. Check your manual if your not sure.

So get outside on a sunny day (though over cast days are better as they don't cast harsh shadows), position yourself near windows or move to a lighter room. This will give a more natural look and truer colours to your photos. 

Cut out the background and get up close

This makes your child the sole focus of the photo. Who wants to be distracted by the pile of washing in the corner and the house work that needs doing, or a park full of other peoples children? Sure sometimes you want more background to put things into context, but i find filling up my frame with my child generally always gets a great shot provided i have been able to achieve all of the other tips as well.

Take lots of photos (you can never have to many)

Its the digital age! we are lucky to be able to delete what we don't like or want, so what's the harm in taking picture after picture. When i look through my folders lots of the photos look the same, but at least having lots gives me the chance to choose the perfect shot that i am looking for. I might have taken 20-30 shots but chances are there will be something there I can use!

If all else fails
Post editing in a programme like Photoshop or Picassa (which is free, and there are plenty of others) can be the way to go. You can straighten, crop and sometimes fix dark or bright photos. My favourite (if you could not tell already) are black and white portraits of my children. Black and white photography is very forgiving and can sometimes make the photo by giving it that little bit of something else it was lacking. To me Black and White is very timeless and gives a professional feel.

I will continue to post any other tips i think are relevant as i go along my photography journey 


Tuesday, October 5, 2010

I wish I could knit!

My mum is so clever!

For no want of trying I cannot knit to save myself. So when I got pregnant for the third time and found out we were having a winter baby I knew I had to get my mum on board to knit some woollen goodies for our little bundle.

I love seeing babies in handmade woollen cardi's hats and booties, it is too cute! Even though I haven't succeeded in knitting anything other than a scarf I have been book marking gorgeous baby knit patterns in the hope that I would gain the patience to knit some day so i thought I would share some of my linkys Mary Jane booties more baby bootiesStella Pixie hat ,A Pixie coat, Lace baby cloche

I fell in love when I saw these booties and the pattern looks easy too!

Maybe i will be brave and give them a go!