Thursday, September 30, 2010

2 Shopping Bags

Remember my Shopping Bags To Pay The Rent? In late June this year, I made 4 shopping bags and I managed to sell all but 1.
This one has not been sold yet.

One thing I noticed about the women who bought the other 3 shopping bags, they're either petite or very skinny. So this time around, I made larger and deeper shopping bags.
This is made of canvas cotton and lined with twill.
It's HUGE and very strong.
The bottom is boxy.
This is a fun shopping bag. It's big and roomy.
Made entirely of cotton. For both bags, I used magnetic snaps for closure.

Looks like I've been very productive. I've 1 more sewing day left. I wonder if I can spit out any more bags? See ya.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Striped Bag

It's Wednesday already! The hours are just whizzing by this week. I've been toggling between watching all the new TV shows and sewing my bags. Oh, why do all the TV shows have to come out all at once? Did you guys watch The Amazing Race? The England leg was so funny especially when 2 grown men try to sit on a bowl shaped boat and sail across the lake. Me and my son really rolled on the floor laughing.

Okay, it's official. The Koreans have invaded my home. My girl is very into Korean pop music even tho' she doesn't speak any Korean. I've been listening to some of the songs she likes and I must say I'm getting converted. Today I'm playing DJ!

Super Junior is a group my girl likes a lot. It's a BIG group, comprising of very TALL pretty boys who can dance in sync. Okay, maybe 1 is not so pretty(the hefty one).

If you live outside Asia, you've probably never heard of them. Otherwise you would know this song, Bonamana which boasts of a widely covered dance routine. Watch the music video here. This song is very good to dance-exercise to. The song/dance steps can be described as crouching tiger hidden bollywood meet speed ice skating. This song reminds me of Hindi music in the Hindi movies I used to watch on TV.

This next song called Supergirl is by Super Junior M. Watch the music video here. This is a Chinese song but you probably couldn't tell. I couldn't until my girl told me. The music video of course has a dance routine. It's very crouching tiger meet pilates. If you watched the mv and didn't understand the story, here's my interpretation: A pervy civil servant gate crashed a cool party. Deep inside, he really wants to party but he doesn't know how. So he uses his camera to take pictures of the cool people at the party and they are really annoyed with him. When the cool chick he digs rejects him like ewww, he cries like a baby and leaves. He goes and stands in front of a wall and keeps repeating, I wish, I wish, I wish, I wish to look so cool. By some luck, an alien ship was passing just above him and zaps him into cool outfits just to shut him up. He re-enters the party and hey! Everyone loves him and suddenly he's dancing along with everyone including the cool chick. Yay! Don't you love a good ending? Anyway, that's what I saw. I don't know what the director intended. Moral of the video: Don't gate-crash any party when you aren't dressed for it.

Okay, 1 last song. Are you guys still with me? Hello? It's a Korean song called No Other. Watch the mv here. In this mv, you can see the singers more clearly. If you are weeping over the pretty faces and slender bodies, don't worry. It's a natural reaction. Did you catch the shot of the rapper unbuttoning his shirt revealing a well-toned body? Hehe.

Still on the subject of Korean, if you LIVE in Singapore and want to pick up the Korean language, my Korean speaking SIL has opened her Korean Language class. Go here to learn more if you are interested.

Alright. Enough about Korean. Let's talk about moi. Lately me old muscles issues have returned. I may have mentioned before I'm a fan of my own blog. I'm serious. I read my old posts from time to time to amuse myself and to remember where I was in my sewing journey. So I'm gonna write a letter to future Jane. Yes, I ripped this off How I Met Your Mother.

Dear Future Jane,
How are you? Feeling tired? Muscles aching horribly? If yes, please do your freaking exercises!
2010 Jane
p.s. hope you didn't get fat!

Not to alienate my readers further, I shall show you my latest bag. Remember the bag I made for Open Doors Weekend Market? The rabbit bag using the round handles? I've made another one but I changed the shape of the bag a little.
I LOVE this bag. But making it gave be a bit of grief. You see, I figured out the measurements as I went along and that is never productive.
Matches the rug!
For closure, I used a suspension bridge style zipper. I did jot down the measurements so I think I might just make more.
Lastly, I will be selling my bags at MAAD this weekend.

2nd & 3rd October 2010
red dot Traffic
28 Maxwell Road
Singapore 069120
11am to 7pm both days

See you soon.

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Cotton Drill Crossbody Bags

Hello again!

I have another moon story to tell. When I was young, my mother used to warn me not to point at the moon. The reason being my ears would be cut. Being a timid and gullible kid, I believed her and would be extra careful when waving my hands at night. But one night, there was a full moon and I pointed at it as any kid would. It immediately dawned on me that my ears were gonna get cut that very night and so I waited in fear for it to happen. Of course my ears didn't get cut. I waited for weeks and nothing happened. Finally I figured out that what my mother told me was rubbish and I asked her why she told me something that was not true. Know what she said? Her mother told it to her!

How weird that one day there was a full moon and my girl who was in kindy then pointed at the moon (as any kid would) and I found myself telling her not to point at the moon or ... I caught myself just in time and tried to change the subject. But my girl is not easily fooled. She demanded to know what would happen if she pointed at the moon. Finally I told her what my mother once told me, that her ears would get cut, quickly adding that it's not true at all. My girl laughed and said, of course not! Kids are way smarter nowadays.

I want to show you 2 bags I made. Originally I was gonna make them shoulder bags but I thought they looked better as crossbody bags. And just so no one complains, I made the length adjustable. The weather in Singapore has been very rainy and cloudy. Today especially, I couldn't take any pics without using flash and I generally don't take pics with flash as they come out all blinding.
This is a cotton drill recessed zipper crossbody bag with butterfly applique. I used white sashiko thread. I've discovered that I've run out of red sashiko thread. That means I've used up 40 meters of red sashiko thread! Is that possible?
And here's a look at the recessed zipper bit.
This one uses a flap for closure. I used egyptian embroidery cotton thread. I prefer sashiko thread but the ones I ordered from a US shop has yet to arrive. It's been many weeks and I'm afraid I'm gonna have to do some chasing soon.
Here's a closer look. Doesn't the wooden ring look so right?

After I made these 2 bags, I thought I would want to make them shoulder length as well. I believe it would look good too. So if I have the time, I'll make maybe 1 more this design. Have a great weekend and I'll show more of my completed bags next week.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Moon Stories


It's been a few days since my last post and I've been busy, busy, busy. Firstly, I've started my exercises again after getting very lazy for a few months. Two days ago I went for a jog and I'm still aching today! It seems after discovering ice-cream is a cure for migraine, I've been hooked on it. It didn't help that my freezer is constantly stocked with magnums. You know you can't eat so much ice-cream and not expect it to show up somewhere on your tum-tum. So my Giodarno jeans are no longer loose. That's my fattest jeans!

In my last post I mentioned that mid-autumn festival aka Mooncake Festival is on. I'm pretty sure it's over now as I no longer hear wheezing sounds of fireworks. Okay, I confess. I really dislike the Mooncake Festival. It started a long, long time ago. I was maybe 8 or 9 years old. How you celebrate the festival is on the 15th day of the 8th moon, kids walk around the neighbourhood holding lighted lanterns. My mother did not want to give us money to buy lanterns so my older brother who's really resourceful BUILT his own lantern. His was really fantastic. With leftover material, he built one for me and my younger brother. Of course ours were quite crappy. My mother wouldn't let us light the candles in the lantern until the actual day. I was really excited. Okay, here's what happened. My brother lighted the candles in the lantern for all three lanterns. MY lantern burst into flames immediately. I burst into tears. The big boo-hoo-hoo kind. I mean I had waited for days for this moment. Anyway, I stupidly continued holding on to the lantern while it was burning and would have burnt to death surely if my brother had not taken it away from me and stamped out the fire. I remembered holding onto my younger brother's hands sort of a token way of carrying the lantern when we did our parade around the neighbourhood.

That was the last time I carried a lighted lantern. I celebrated future festivals with unlighted lanterns. It really wasn't the same but I was ruined by the fire. When my kids were little and not embarrassed to do the parade, they had battery operated lanterns which were horribly annoying. Imagine kiddie songs played over and over again. Since I'm a Chinese mother, I felt it my duty to promote the festival to my kids and I dutifully accompanied them on their yearly parade. But I was ever so relieved when they grew out of it because what's really awful about this festival is the other kids would let off fireworks and sparklers. I often felt my life was in danger when doing the rounds.

News! I've a new date to sell at red dot design museum. It's from 2nd to 3rd October and that's next week! I've made a few zip pouches but this time, I wanted to use my scrap stash instead of the flower-flower kind.

I have a fat quarter of this very interesting print. I don't know the name of the manufacturer because it is in Japanese characters. I selected portions of the fabric which told a story.

A girl is pleased with a new outfit.
A card game.
My son said the 2 girls are getting married! This is what a 13yr old boy would say.
This is a Robert Kaufman print. The birds are adorable.
This RJR print is from the Trip Around The World MSU Museum Collection.
The sea theme print is by Lecien. My girl is so smittened with it she wants me to make her a pencil case out of it.
I wanted to show you the perfect lining I used for this pouch. Can you see I used a toy hair brush to prop open the pouch?

I hope to make 4 more such zip pouches and I'm currently working on 2 cotton drill shoulder bags. I'll show them once I'm done. See you soon.

Monday, September 20, 2010

Open Doors Weekend Market 18th & 19th September 2010 Post-Mortem

Hey everybody,

So I had my 2nd Open Doors Weekend Market and it didn't turn out too bad. When I first showed up, I was a little shocked to discover I was alloted the very last table near the side exit where there is low traffic flow. Actually, there was 1 more table after mine but it was a no-show so I became the last table. The first thought that popped into my head was something very Singaporean, "Sure die." But if you know me, I never say die. I mentally told myself mine was the FIRST table. I think it worked because psychologically I was very positive. And I made some sales - 6 bags, 4 zip pouches and 8 hair elastics. Not bad, right?

Next, are you dying to know who's the owner of my linen cotton on roses bag? Here she is.
Doesn't the bag look perfect on her? Thanks Serene!

Oh, I must tell you about my sweet, sweet sale! Remember my feather stitch crossbody baby?
If you're a regular reader, you'll know why this is such a sweet sale for me!

I did not sell out my flower-flower zip pouches like the last round. Ouchy. But my dragonflies were a hit.

Something new! Last Friday, I was in one of those "I have these handles and I must make a bag to fit the handles" kind of mood and that's what happened. I swear. The bag started with the handles.
Yep, the return of the rabbit. This is a cotton drill round rabbit bag lined with quilt cotton. The bottom is made of a gusset but I did not take a photo of it. I love using such handles. I'll definitely make a few more bags using these handles but next time, I won't make the bag so rounded. Well, anyhoo, this bag SOLD. I just love it when I make a bag and it sells so soon. Can you see me dancing in the clouds?
Yay, my 2 dear friends came to visit. I hadn't seen them for a very long time. It was nice to catch up. I have another photo of them which I so want to post but I'm pretty sure they'll want to strangle me if I do. In the other unpublished, soon to be destroyed photo, I told them to suck in their tummies and they did. Hilarious. Sorry I can't share. Hey guys, thanks for visiting.

And my friend Sally and SIL dropped by too.  Thanks for the visit guys.

Today I'm going to watch Law and Order all day. See you soon.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Linen Cotton on Roses

I think linen cotton looks good on roses.
Yesterday I made a recessed zipper shoulder bag with this very lovely linen cotton with roses print. What made the print really work for me is the green leaves. I don't think you can see from the pic. The sun was really bright this morning. I just couldn't get a truer image.

I actually had someone in mind when I made this bag but I'm not sure if she'll like it. Somehow when I think of her, I see roses. Anyway, we'll see.......
This is the back. Polka dots, horizontal stripes and checks and roses all in one print is my dream print.
The recessed zipper bit.
I sneaked in colours for the inside pockets! This one's a patch pocket. The lining is beige twill.
And for the zip pocket, I lined it with the same brown flower-flower print.
And this last image is just for sizing.

Lastly, I'll be selling my bags and pouches and hair elastics this weekend. Details below.

Open Doors Weekend Market
Orchard Central (next to 313@Somerset)
Saturday and Sunday, 18th & 19th Sep
11am-8pm daily

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

One Fat Bottomed Drawstring Pouch Too Many

When I make my bags, I have this habit of spending the whole day just cutting fabric. I would spend other days sewing them up. About 2 weeks ago, I cut fabric for fat bottomed drawstring pouches. But as it turned out, I wasn't able to sew them all. I had 3 left.

This week, I have to make a few bags and pouches for my craft market sale at Open Door's Weekend Market on 18th and 19th September which is just a few days away. I thought I would sew up these ready-cut fabric. That's the thing. Two weeks ago, I was all gaga over drawstring pouches. This week, not so much. I did make them. But I had the same feeling as when I ate one more slice of chocolate cake when I shoulda just stopped.
So these are my last two fat bottomed drawstring pouch for a while. Fyi, these two pouches use external casing for the drawstring.
By the time I got to this ready-cut nautical fabric, I already had the too-much-chocolate feeling and I had to amuse myself so I used a casing sewn to the mouth of the bag. It's a tiny casing so it looks kinda dainty at the top.
It looks a little like a lantern to me. Speaking of lanterns, the Mid-Autumn Festival is coming soon. Okay, I don't know the exact date but I know it's soon because mooncakes and lanterns are sold everywhere in Singapore. Singaporeans call it the Mooncake Festival which is more appropriate because we don't have Autumn here. Just hot, humid, rain, flood, hotter, even hotter, so humid and dem hot. The only way we experience cold is in air-conditioned rooms and as experienced by me at Orchard Central, can be brutally cold.
Eeeks! What happened? Yep, me bro broke down again. That's my Brother being um... serviced. The guy in the pic is Dr Brother.
I took a picture of Dr Brother's briefcase. He told me it is 15 years old. I think it's a lot older. Well, last week was really unproductive for me as I was busy dealing with my sewing machines issues!

For my Open Doors Weekend Market, I wanted to include some zip pouches. Since I'm all out of flower-flower zip pouches, I decided I would make some more. I'll be honest. It's not easy to come up with so many different ways of presenting the flower-flower applique. I won't be surprised if I suffer from flower-flower fatigue soon. I only made 5 because I did not want to over-do it.
Big headed flower in black and gold on red cotton drill.
Big headed flower in green-yellow on green-yellow cotton drill.
Lone ranger tulip on baby-blue cotton drill.
Tulips in love on baby-blue cotton drill.
The three musketeers on blue denim.

These three insects zip pouches were done over the weekend.
Red dragonfly on denim. An old favourite.
Blue dragonfly in stem stitch on denim.
Green butterfly on denim.

Handstitching is very sore on the fingers on denim. After sewing the applique for these 3 pouches, my fingers really hated me.

I'm only able to sew for 2 more days this week so I'm thinking maybe 2 to 3 more items would be great. Good nite.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Orchard Central - Above The Ground

Last weekend I had my craft market sale at Orchard Central. It was located on the ground level which is a good thing for me because I have a small height phobia. If it were located on say level 2 and above, I doubt if I have the ability to, um.. stay on that level. Since I have problems going to the 2nd level, you could say it isn't a small phobia as ordinary folks wouldn't have such issues. So alright, I have a big height phobia. But this height problem only occurs in certain structures in Singapore particularly those with a lot of see-thru' glass such as Orchard Central. It's no comfort to me Orchard Central is the tallest vertical mall in Singapore.

When Orchard Central first opened in mid 2010, my family went to visit it. There is a long escalator outside the building and the first thing we did was step on it. As my height phobia is a relatively mild one and only confined to certain structures, I did not hesitate going on the long, long escalator. Of course it turned out to be a mistake. When I finally stepped off the escalator, I was barely able to breathe. I thought I would feel safe on firm ground. Unfortunately, this building is full of glass. When I walked, in my mind, I saw that the floor was slanted and felt like I was off-balanced. The only way I could walk was to hunch and waddle along. My knees really felt like jelly. My husband suggested taking the lift down to the ground floor but I backed out when I saw that it was see-thru'. I slowly made my way down to ground level by creeping along walls and using the shorter escalators. I've never felt so frightened by a building before!

Since then I have not tried to go above ground level here. But I believe some day when I am selling at the ground level and my desire to drink tea is so great, I may have to venture to the 5th level to buy tea. My height issue can be conquered. I just need to be brave and prepared. There is a shopping mall near where I live and the escalators are also rather scary. It took me a few years but now I'm able to go to the mall without freaking out.

You may start to think I do have many problems. Muscle issues, allergies, height phobia, what next? Hmmm, you're lucky. You only read about it. I have to live with myself! Yes, I do wonder why I have so many, many little problems.

But this post isn't about my issues. Let's look at some of the photos my kids took of the higher floors at Orchard Central. Luckily they don't have height issues.
Hello Mr Roboto!
Reminds you of the movie Cars?
 These were on the roof.
Metal art.
Yes, this is a restroom for the disabled. It is on ground level, close to where I sold my bags. Not a single disabled person used it while I was "on duty". My girl found it so funny to pose for a pic in front of the restroom.
Look how high-tech it is. I had to teach many people how to close the door. Very funny. They enter the restroom and waited for the door to close by itself because it looked like a lift. But it won't close until you press the "close" button. One lady entered, waited for the door to close and when it didn't, she LOOKED UP like what you would do in a lift. OMG, I laughed until I cried but not before I taught her how.

Hope you enjoy the tour. Orchard Central has loads of art stuff thru'out the building. I'll get my kids to take more pics next time. See you (on ground level).
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