Sunday, January 29, 2012

To die for zip pouches

Hello friends,

I've been bad. I did not go vegetarian once this week. Yesterday to "punish" myself further, I ate potato chips. I felt guilty thru'out so I believe I'm punished enough. I'm avoiding wearing any of my older(tighter) clothes as I want to defer finding out if I've put on weight. Next week I'm going to be good. I will have at least one vegetarian meal a day instead of making the whole day a vegetarian day. That way I won't feel so deprived. The mind can be so powerfully stubborn.

Next weekend I'll be back at Vivocity to sell my bags. (More details here) A quick glance at my stock tells me I haven't been productive enough. Only one more sewing week left. If you are eagerly awaiting my next ePattern, I'm ashamed to say it's all on paper. Nothing has been transferred to the software yet.

Today I discovered that the bag of 50 pieces of swivel clasps that I bought in December has been used up save for one. I'm amazed I've made so many wristlets in such a short period of time. In December I tried to buy 100 pieces of the swivel clasps but there weren't enough in the shop. Clearly this is a hot item but for some reason, the shop owners just refuse to stock more. Perplexing! So until I make another trip to the shop and I'm hoping they have new stock, I won't be able to make any more wristlets.

Here are a few zip pouches I've completed. The first 3 big ones I don't make often.

Can you tell the tree trunks are felt? What? You couldn't tell they're trees?

This one's aimed at those looking to buy a Valentine's gift.

Back to my favourite theme - flower-flower. And the stems are chain stitches.

I know the handle is a little weird for the butterfly pouch. I wanted to use the baby blue drill remnants. The handle is detachable so it's optional.

I've finally completed all my rabbits zip pouches. I embroidered 3 more. Unfortunately I got so carried away with the embroidery that I forgot to keep an eye on the amount of linen I had. So four of these pouches were in a bit of a fix as I ran out of linen.

For these 3 zip pouches, for the back I pieced remnants together. Good save, I think.

But for this zip pouch, I ran out of options. So I used another linen for the back and tried to "save" it with the fabric tab and handle. Kind of wanted to make it look deliberate and not out of desperation.

After a while, all the rabbit zip pouches start to look the same to me.

I made a "houses" zip pouch too. I think the trees killed it.

Linking to these parties:

Young and crafty
Family Ever After
Petite Hermine
Blue Bird Sews
Ask Anna
So very creative
The gunny sack
Get outta my head please
Ninth street notions
and a few others later on......

Monday, January 23, 2012

Year of the dragon


Welcome to the Year of the Dragon. I wish everyone a Happy Dragon Year. May you have good health, wealth and happiness.

My son drew these dragons for me. I LOVE the first one most. So does he.

It is the custom for my family to visit all our relatives on the first day of Chinese New Year.

This was me today. Yes, I'm holding my stomach in. I managed to squeeze into the monkey tee but I opted for the flannel pants as I don't feel I've lost enough weight. Plus today is not a day to stick to my diet. (and I didn't - meat day all the way!) Can you see the pendant I'm wearing around my neck?

Here's a closer shot. It's an agate stone with a dragon carved on it.

This is Mr Ma. He's from Shanghai and he carved the dragon on the stone in 5 minutes using a tool that looked like a solder iron. How cool is that?

Why all the obsession with dragons apart from it being a dragon year? Ah, you might not know this but I was a dragon baby. Yep, 48 years ago, I was born on this planet.

This is my year.

This morning I woke up feeling very happy and positive because it is the first day of my year. Imagine how shocked I was when I read my mail and saw a nasty comment on my previous post.

I have deleted the comment from the post. But I have screen printed it so you can see for yourself what the commenter wrote.

To be honest, it took me a while to fully understand what the comment meant. Right away I could feel it was meant to be offensive. But I can't say for sure I know why.

Most of you probably don't understand fully what the comment meant. Let me decode the comment for you: "ang moh" started out as a derogatory term for Caucasians. You understand that when this term was coined, it was a very long time ago and it was a different world. Locals do continue to use this term but it has lost its derogatory implications.

This commenter is accusing me of writing my posts in a way to gratify caucasians. And by signing off "by Chinese and proud of it", he/she is implying I'm ashamed of being Chinese.

I don't know who this commenter is but it is obvious this person is from Singapore.

This is my reply to Mr/Miss Anonymous:


1. What a COWARD.
If you hide behind Anonymous, you are nothing but a coward.

2. What a NERVE.
If you don't find my posts funny, that's cool. If you don't find my posts interesting, that's cool. If you don't think my sewing is cute or pretty or worth looking at, that's cool too. If you think I pander to ang moh's fancy, that's your opinion and you are entitled to your opinion. Just don't tell me. Keep it to yourself. My mother always says: If you have nothing nice to say, say nothing.

3. How RUDE.
This is my blog.
If I pander to Klingon's fancy or whatever, that's my own dem bizness. If you want to write your opinion about anything, write in your own blog and see if anyone gives a hoot.

You don't know me. You don't get me. You have not read enough of my posts to know what I am about.
I pander to nobody but myself, you fool.

5. I have a zero tolerance for troll behaviour. This is not that kind of a blog. You have come to the wrong place. Please never read my blog posts again.


My dear regular readers,

I am sorry you had to witness this. But since I started blogging in 2007, I have never ever received a single negative comment. And I thank everyone for that. And I'm also appreciative that majority of you use your name when you comment. The only reason I allow readers to comment anonymously is that readers without ids or readers coming to my posts via facebook are unable to comment and that's an option for them. But they leave their names so that's okay.

Well, what an ugly start to a beautiful day. At first I was enraged. You could say the wrath of a dragon was incurred. I summoned the thunder and lightning and it rained all over Singapore today. Haha. No I don't have such powers. At first I was so pissed.

But it is the first day of my year.

Why let a total stranger, a troll at that ruin your day? So I went visiting and enjoyed myself. It turned out to be not such a bad day after all.

I'm making every day count for me. I hope you have a great year ahead. See ya.

Sunday, January 22, 2012

One year you're in and the next year.... you're out

You know what they say in the zodiac world,

One year you're in and the next year.... you're out.

Today is the last day of the Year of the Rabbit. I thought it would amuse me to embroider the rabbit's last day.

This was the first one I did. I used dark brown embroidery thread and I kept the stitches simple - just double stitches, french knots and running stitches. For balloons, I used the old cork and stamp trick I had employed before.

I had so much fun I made a total of 7 pieces. I found that I much prefer the chestnut brown thread for the rabbit.

I really like these rabbits. I may keep them around for a while. No reason why they can't stick around for another year.

I would have made 8 pieces because 8 is a lucky number (for Chinese) but it was time to go for an important dinner at my MIL's. Yes, today, all over Singapore, many families have a reunion lunch or dinner. This is an important custom. Family members come together to have a meal together. Special food is cooked for this meal. One of this dish is yu sheng which is a salad with raw fish. My MIL substitutes raw fish with abalone.

This is my MIL's version of yu sheng.

You're supposed to toss the salad while asking for wishes to be granted. The messier the salad, the better it is. What a strange custom! And afterwards, you're supposed to eat the salad, even the ones that fell on the table.

See you in the Year of the Dragon.

Linked to these parties:
Young and crafty
Family ever after
Ninth Street Notions
So Very Creative
DIY Home Sweet Home
You are talking too much
Get out of my head please
Three Mango Seeds
The Gunny Sack

Friday, January 20, 2012

Things to do and buy

It's no longer acceptable to mock your own culture. This kid uploaded a video to youtube dissing Chinese New Year and the response from netizens is not pretty. 

Last year I would probably have written a post titled "10 reasons why I hate Chinese New Year". But that's the old me. This year I'm a new me. And this new me is opting to be positive particularly on Chinese things. Say hello to the 2012 Jane.

With that in mind, here are the 10 things to do before Chinese New Year.

1. Get new hair

Yes, it took 3 hours.
Yes, I look the same.
Yes, I no longer look this NEAT. (this pic was taken one day after the hair styling)
Yes, I now have wake-up-hair. Don't know what that is? Ever looked at yourself in the mirror when you wake up? That's wake-up hair.

2. Get new footwear

It's possible I may have bought too many. But the post-Christmas and pre-Chinese New Year sales were too good to miss. The slippers on the left cost $15 each! Every year, I wait patiently for my Ipanema slippers to go on sale. The pair on the right were discounted. Yay!

3. Get new clothes

I have 2 red tees. The monkey tee is at least a year old tho'. When it was bought, the manufacturer highly under-estimated my beefiness. If I can't squeeze into it, I have a backup tee which makes me look rather mannish.
For bottoms, I'm torn between a Topshop high waisted (what was I thinking!) pair of jeans which is still tight around the waist and a Aeropostale low waisted flannel pants (buy 1 get 1 free).

4. Spring clean
As good as done. I'm tired.
Every year I find I'm the only person in my home doing the cleaning even tho' I live with 3 other able-bodied human beings. A word of not open the storeroom. You may never find your way out again.

This year I went a little overboard and decided to fix the embarrassingly torn swivel chair.

I used fabric remnants from my bag to sew a cover. Word of advice: don't look under the chair. I hand sewed the cover together. Not pretty.

5. Buy Mandarin oranges
Sigh. I'm short of 2 oranges.

These 2 Mandarin oranges came home with my son. Unfortunately I need 2 more. I tried buying from the supermarket but the queue was so long that I gave up. There is a shorter queue if you buy a whole crate. But what am I gonna do with an entire crate of Mandarin oranges?

6. Bake cookies
I'm on a diet so it's not happening. Okay, I'm lazy.

7. Buy Chinese New Year goodies
I bought some pumpkin seeds but I already ate them all.

8. Stuff money into red packets

Still on the to-do list.

9. Check out God of Fortune

It is also unacceptable to mock the God of Fortune. Like call his depiction creepy. This version of God of Fortune was on stilts and giving out brochure. Seriously, I'm not going to comment on how tacky that is. All I'm saying is his costume smelled awfully bad.

10. Stop and smell the plastic flowers

The old me would have said: What is it about Chinese New Year that brings out the fake, plastic flowers?

But 2012 Jane says:

Very pretty fake looking flowers with nice lanterns.

2012 Jane: Yay, more pretty fake looking flowers.

2012 Jane: My, my, more pretty fake looking something.

2011 Jane: China called. They want all plastic fake looking flowers and weird flying saucer lanterns returned immediately.

Thursday, January 19, 2012


Do you know why the rabbits are hopping for their lives?

Because a dragon is on their tails!

Enjoy 4 more days of Year of the Rabbit while you can.
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