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Wednesday, 23 July 2014

Teasing :)

Last week I finally got to meet a fellow blogger who lives near Bordeaux, France. We have been corresponding for a long time now. It was great to meet each other as well as our families. She brought us loooads of presents but that will be for another post. Among those presents was a book for m

 I love it! And I had to test the dolls right away. So here is a picture if two dolls in process. I will post again soon with more!

Monday, 14 July 2014

Summer calendar

In a month N. will turn 3. She is such a big girl now, it is amazing how time flies. In September she will be going to the Kindergarten and spend her days there instead of staying home with T. and me. It will be a drastic change, but she seems keen on the idea. Last week I told her about her birthday AND the Kindergarten. I also got her a book:
Since then, every single morning she wants to read that book and she asks if today she is having her birthday and whether tomorrow she is going to the Kindergarten. When I tell her that no, we still have a while to go, she asks if instead she can go to school then - she knows about school because her uncles are still young and going to school ;) .

This was driving me mad, so after talking with my mother about it, I decided to make her a calendar. She would be able to cross every day off the calendar. While browsing the web a little bit, I got onto a blog "Idées à nous" which has a lot of activities to offer for pre-schoolers. The one I picked was the Summer 2014 Calendar. I printed the stuff and got N. to work on it. She was over the moon. She loves drawing, colouring and DIYing ^^

Ever since we finished the calendar, she is less insistent about what is happening when. It is definitely good for my nerves ;)
We have included the different summer birthdays as well as our trip to the grand-parents (symbolized by two planes since I will be flying with the children).

What do you think of it?

Saturday, 12 July 2014


We've got a new addition to our household since last week. I had been toying with the idea of making this (from the blog "We lived happily ever after") for a while. Finally I gave in and started cutting the fabric (from Ikea) during my children's nap. Then most of the sewing was done during the first World Cup match - I don't remember which one it was though - within a few hours we had Nessie! I used almost a whole kilo of batting but it was worth it.
The children love riding and cuddling Nessie.
But N. managed to complain that their new friend is too small for her! It does not prevent her from playing with it, but it is true that it is a little on the small side for a 3yo. Perfect for a 18mo though :)

Thursday, 10 July 2014

Washing felt food

I have now been making felt food for a while, and my children are not mistreating it. Even then it does get dirty and dusty with time and I have been wondering what I could do to get it clean. Vacuum-cleaning is a little difficult and washing with water isn't supposed to work with felt.
Then last month when I was in France, my sister M. told me that she is simply putting everything in the washing-machine on a gentle and cold program. She hasn't noticed any damage on the various felt objects.
So I decided to give it a try with first the ice-creams, the farfalle and the tortellini.

Here's the result:

The green and orange farfalle haven't changed shape at all, on the other hand the yellow ones have dramatically shrunk and the tortellini probably would have to if they had not had filling and a rather "unshrinkable" shape. I just had to pull them a little bit back in shape. 
The ice-cream cones (I forgot to make a picture) have also retained their shape, they only appear to bobble a bit. That is probably due to the presence of velcro bands. I probably also used too strong a spinning program.

My last observation: the felt fabrics that I bought online on is perfectly fine, the one I bought in a shop in town (Karstadt for those who live in Germany) is the one that shrunk. And I must say that I never really liked its quality from the start, I just use it because I have it! So from now on, I will keep on testing the washing-machine cleaning of our various felt objects and I will only buy on my favourite website ;)

Friday, 4 July 2014

Sewing for a wedding - part 7 (N.'s dress)

Until I have a picture of the family at the wedding, this will be my last post on "sewing for a wedding".
I bought some years ago a series of patterns, this Simplicity pattern was among them. I always hoped I'd have a daughter. I also bought about three years ago (before N. was born!) the Liberty fabric. After chatting with my mother about which fabric(s) to use for making N. a dress, we agreed that the Liberty fabric would need to be decorative only. So I got a nice blue cotton for the skirt part.
Cutting and sewing was fairly easy, a few mistakes here and there ( you can see above for instance that the bodice parts aren't well aligned) but on the whole I was pleased with it.
Now, the dress as you see it on the pictures above, is how it was supposed to be: wide at the waist. I didn't like it, N. is quite thin so it made her look "lost" in a big large dress. 
My solution? a belt. 1m40 long and attached at the front (the length of the two middle squares).
In my opinion it looks a LOT better! I could have adjusted the bodice, but then N. would not have been able to wear her dress after her next growth spur ;)
The pattern was suggesting some appliqués on the bottom part of the dress, but I chose to make pockets instead. N. just loved having them for she could put little treasures in there.

So what do you think? Did I work well enough for my sister's wedding ;) ;) ;) - I must say that I was very proud of myself for achieving all this just on time for our holiday. I was even prouder when people complimented us at the wedding.

If you take a peek there: Feufollette , and there, you can see my nieces' dresses. Also hand-made, by my mother! I guess it runs in the family ^^ - My mum also decorated the small basket for the flower girl and she made the cushion for the ring-bearer. I almost forgot to say that she made a dress for one of my other sisters!
Needless to say it kept us VERY busy before the big day, but we loved it and the result was brilliant!

Thursday, 3 July 2014

Sewing for a wedding - part 6 (T.'s clothes)

T. was 17 months old when his aunt got married (almost a month ago already!). He looked gorgeous in his blue clothes.

These are the fabrics which I used:
I got the patterns for the shirt and trousers in this book:
and I made the bow-tie partly looking at tutorials online, partly looking at the one I had made for N.'s dress (from a Simplicity pattern), and also partly making up my own mind on what to do and how. T. was not pleased with the bow-tie when I first made him wear it at home. So it was actually N. who posed for the picture ;) On the wedding day though he did not complain and wore it proudly.
I used Velcro band to close the bow-tie easily. I kind of misplaced it on one side, and I should have made the band longer, but never mind. It was hidden under T.'s collar.

For his trousers I practiced sewing button-holes with the machine. It went well to my surprise.
 The trousers are adjustable at the back, so T. will be able to wear them a couple of years. Knickers trousers are usually worn bellow the knees, so we still have a long way to go ;)
I made a size 2 but decided to shorten the legs a bit. Making those trousers made me realise how short his legs are! Even shortened his trousers were still quite long!! It was fine with the shoes and by the time the wedding day came, he had grown a little bit already. I really liked sewing them, and will do it again as soon as I get the opportunity.
I cannot say much about the shirt, I did not make it myself. I was running out of time and wanted to buy a white shirt, but my mother-in-law took the pattern book and used an old shirt of her husband's to make T.'s.
Size 2 again, but this time with extra centimeters to make it a little bigger, otherwise he would have only worn it once. In the end it was a little too big, but once in the trousers it looked fine.
One small detail which I like very much: the pocket is the reduced version of the original pocket, and it still shows the initials of T.'s Opa :)

Here's my gorgeous boy. He is a little poser and knows when to smile and look sweet to get looooads of "oooohs" and "aaaaaahs" and "aaaaawwwwwws" from people ;)

Wednesday, 2 July 2014

Sewing for a wedding - part 5 (traveling toys)

We went on a three weeks holiday, in the middle of which took place my sister's wedding. We moved from one place to the other and the renting flats/houses did not provide toys (which is logical and normal). I had not wanted to pack loads of toys with us, but I know that N. and T. would need some stuff to keep them entertained. So I made a farmhouse for T. with wooden animals, and a babies pouch for N.
The farmhouse was quite difficult to achieve and I made it in a hurry two days before packing and leaving! There are A LOT of mistakes and mishaps!
It did not prevent the children from playing well with it ;)

Now, for the wedding itself I also made some stuff, not just for my children but also for my two nieces. Actually I made them for the evening dinner and party. I thought they might get a little bored. In the end they did not use the toys then, but two days later they were happy to play with their miniatures.
I had seen similar boxes on Pinterest and Etsy, but generally costing around 16$. Mine aren't as perfect I suppose, but they are made with love and they were cheaper ;)