Upcycled fire fighter dress-up

fire fighter dress upI love making dress ups! This little jacket was perfect for my little fireman.  Inspired by a high-viz cycling vest that was in our donate pile and a ladies jacket from the thrift shop (half price!), it came together quickly.

Let's go out girls pattern bookThe pattern is a modified little girl’s jacket (W) from one of my Japanese pattern books, Let’s Go Out Girls, bought at Kinokuniya in Sydney.

It’s swingy and big, which is great for a fire fighter on the go! Hopefully will last longer than the $2 plastic helmet we got at Kmart!


Spring Sonja dress

sonja dressHooray for spring and free dress patterns! This is the Sonja dress from Salme. I made this a while back and have worn it quite a bit. I love it. It’s easy to dress up or down and it’s comfy. The only niggle I had making it was the invisible zipper – totally worth the investment in an invisible zipper foot!

Fabric: Reprodepot fabric from Spotlight.

Almost sugar-free mini donuts

mini donutsClearing out a cupboard today I uncovered the donut maker I bought for $12 at kmart a couple of years ago to make party food. I think its been used all of twice. Time to use it or lose it!

This adaption of an already popular recipe worked for us to make slightly cakey, yummy donuts. Note: Although I am not very strict about sugar generally, I wanted to try a sugar free recipe simply because I realise that I prefer my little ones when they haven’t been eating it! I say ‘almost’ sugar free because I did dust them lightly with cinnamon sugar for a more authentic donut taste. The extra flour is to offset the extra liquid from adding the rice malt syrup.

Rice malt syrup donuts.  Made about 20 mini donuts.

Recipe adapted from bestrecipes.com.au

  • 1 1/2 cups plain flour plus 2-3 tablespoons extra flour
  • 1/3 cup rice malt syrup
  • 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp nutmeg
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 125g butter
  • 1 egg
  • 2/3 cup milk
  1. Turn on your electric donut maker.
  2. Combine dry ingredients in a bowl.
  3. Add butter, egg, milk and rice malt syrup and beat until smooth.
  4. Ask your toddler to keep their fingers out of the bowl while you scrape the mix into a piping bag to pipe into the machine.
  5. Cook until lightly browned.
  6. Dust with cinnamon sugar or other sugar-free alternative.
  7. EAT!

Daddy day car scarf

daddy scarf drivingLate I know, but here’s my handmade father’s day gift. A (seasonally inappropriate) daddy scarf with a meandering road for mini vehicles! There are 4 mini garages (two at each end) …daddy scarf garageand an overpass bridge in the middle!

daddy scarf overpassAll up the scarf is roughly 180cm long and 12 cm wide, which is large enough to be actually worn in winter. The cars are called Nano Speed which I found at the supermarket in packs of two. We chose the police car/fire engine combo.daddy scarfI absolutely cannot take any credit for the design, but simply followed the inspired directions posted by MizToolLady on Ravelry. I also ran out of yarn half way through, leading to the (ahem) design feature of a very slight colour change. The kids loved it from the first mention or was it perhaps just the tiny cars? Either way, anything which is functional AND can be used to distract the littles is a win for me.

Yarn: Filatura Di Crosa Zara

Upcycled princess dress

reading princessI’m pretty excited that my little one has entered dressing up phase! It’s all tutus, tutus, tutus around here, so it was time to make her a princess dress.

princess dress upcycleThe little white baby dress was outgrown a while back but it was made of a pretty white and silver shot cotton fabric that I thought I could reuse. I had bookmarked this free tutorial before I even had a little girl to sew for and I used it as a guide, although I did do a couple of things a little differently.

I bought $5 worth of blue fabric and traced a bodice pattern that I already had (size 3 so there’s room for my 20 month old to grow). I sewed a ribbon down the front of the bodice to match the dress Cinderella is wearing in our princess book. I unpicked the existing sleeves from the baby dress and sewed them to my new bodice. The rest of the white dress was sewn to the lining along the hem and used for the extra puffy hip pieces.

princess dressThe proportions are a little crazy because she’s a toddler and I want the dress to grow with her, but it is still so cute!

Fabric: Party satin from Lincraft.

Knitted lap blanket

blanket foldedKeeping the promise I made to myself, I have finally finished my lap blanket! Really it was just the binding off and weaving in the ends left to be done, but it was still languishing in a bag for years mocking me. So pleased it is done!

The yarn is Wool of the Andes from Knit Picks. 18 skeins of varying colours lugged back from the states by my wonderfully generous brother. If only they shipped to Australia!   lap blanket

I actually ordered this yarn as soon as I saw the pattern, way back in May 2011 just before my oldest turned 1 and I suddenly had a lot less “free” time. Since then, the pattern has been upgraded and is now a paid pattern on ravelry, available here.

Anyway, I love it. It is like the warmest snuggly granny blanket, with a slightly updated look. I’m sure it will end up being well used. Starting right now as it is just cool enough in the evenings to need a lap blanket, hurrah!

Sewing for our big trip

beachIt has been quiet on this blog lately while we’ve been away on our first family holiday overseas. So much fun! So much planning/purchasing/packing involved when traveling with toddlers! We love Fiji!

I’m ready to start on so many things, but I promised myself I would finish off some of the half-completed projects that are lying around, starting with the knitted blanket I cast on in Jan 2012…. Anyway, here’s a few things I made for this trip, mostly from scraps leftover from other projects.

kindle caseI planned to do a lot of reading while we were away, so my Kindle was one of the first things I packed. I used this tutorial from Whipstitch to make the cover and it is perfect. If I had more time (next time?) I would make something similar for our passports and travel documents.

Fabric: Stripe fabric is Bozoku Cotton Duck #4 from Spotlight.

toy sleeping bagsQuilted sleeping bags for Mama and Papa bear! I thought this might help with sleeping in strange places, ha. I made these the night before we left (when I should have been packing), using this tutorial.

Fabric:  Lemon print is ‘Montreaux drill grocer #6′ from Spotlight; Castles print is a Lizzy House Castle Peeps fat quarter from Big W. Bias tape from Hobbysew.

hatAnd another Oliver + S bucket hat. Here it is straight from the wash, looking more than a little crushed! This one is made from fabrics that were already well traveled. The hippos were among a stash brought back from Tokyo by my lovely friend S and the floral was a gift from a trip my in-laws made to the UK and Ireland.

Fabric: Hippo print is Trefle by Kokka from Nomura Tailor, floral print is Alexander Henry Fulham Road Mulberry Moss in Tawny Plum.