No-sew stereo makeover

>> Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Quick reminder, now is the time to bring in some branches to force! These are pear branches, I haven't tried those yet so we'll see if they blossom

This little makeover is about as simple as you can get. I'll explain how I did it just in case anyone else has an old stereo that they'd like to change.
 So, I'd like to get a lovely wooden Tivoli system someday when the budget allows. But until then I was getting tired of my stereo's blue speaker screens (that I had managed to spill paint on at some point.)

When I finally decided to update them, I realized it was actually really easy. I wish I had done it sooner. The screens are made up of fabric stretched over a plastic grill and the whole thing pops off. I wish I had noticed that when I was trying to clean off the paint! Anyway it can get dusty back there so it's a good opportunity to tidy that up.
Then just rip off the old fabric. Punch a hole with your scissors in the centre and pull the fabric away around the edges. It's basically just glued down and if you tug the whole piece of fabric will come off.

After that cut a new piece of fabric to fit. Just trace around the screen and leave a little extra to tuck around the back. I used one of my favourite linen prints, grey fish and waves on white. If you use a patterned fabric you can decide exactly where you'd like the pattern to be placed and which way is facing up. Also the patterns could match or be symmetrical to each other.
Then apply double sided tape around the edges of the plastic screen just on the inside.
It doesn't have to be perfect!

Place the screen in the centre of your fabric (wrong side of fabric facing up, front side of screen facing down), pull the edges of the fabric over and press onto the tape. It's like upholstering a chair seat, attach the centres first, then work your way around and gently press the edges of the fabric down on the tape while tugging very gently so that the fabric is snug but not stretched out of shape.

Once the fabric is attached all around you can use an extra tiny bit of tape to tidy up the corners, then trim away excess fabric.
Pop them back onto the speakers and you're done. That's it!


Spring decorating

>> Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Now that the house is sunnier I've been feeling more motivated to do lots of little decorating projects. My decorating budget is still non-existent, so stay posted for lots of easy changes you can do that cost next to nothing. Most of these involved things I had lying around already, so it helps if you already have things like leftover paint from other projects etc.

The first thing I've done is add more shelving in our kitchen. The wall over our table was completely bare. When we moved into our house there was some wood left behind in the garage and I had found three more planks just like the ones I used to make shelves in the studio.

All I did was a quick sand before priming and painting. So they are still a little bumpy but I like that look. These were installed with some inexpensive brackets from IKEA.

Originally I had planned to just put a bunch of stuff  that was cluttering up our countertops on the shelves, but after I'd added a couple of ceramic pieces, I ended up gathering up the ones I had in the studio as well to have my whole collection in one place.
The bottom shelf is the more utilitarian shelf, with the regularly used salt and pepper, butter dish, napkins and coasters. We do use the ceramic planters to store things like garlic cloves but really I just think they look pretty..
Then at the bottom I added hooks for my collection of tea cups. What can I say, I love granny decor whether it's chic or not!


More rabbits

>> Friday, March 26, 2010

Notice Miss Sleepy Head is the one dozing in the background

I guess it might have something to do with Easter... but these little guys are turning up everywhere. Here they are hiding out in Bradley's knitting basket.

So there's a yellow one:
She's perfect for spring, with a cheerful mix of yellow prints and a yellow floral ribbon around her neck.

And there's a blue one:
This one has a retro style zigzag fabric combined with a blue vintage floral carefully salvaged from a 30s apron. I saved every scrap of fabric from that apron! Luckily it was torn or I wouldn't have been able to cut into it in the first place. She has a little crocheted neck warmer.*
*No I didn't crochet it myself, it's really just a scrap of trim.

Here's the back view:
These two have already been doing some crafting together:
But all three are besties. Hmm. I've never written that word before, it looks weird.
None of them have names because they're all leaving me to go to friends...


Miss Fancy Rabbit

>> Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Well I haven't done a cute post in a while. Read ahead if you think you can take it.

This little miss is a young rabbit that I'm trying not to get attached to as she is being taken out this weekend as a thank you gift for one of my local friends.
with the side view you can see her white felted wool tail

As you can see, she's a little bit fancy, with Liberty fabric for her front, and a lace necklace (very fashionable). But just to show she's not a snob, she has sweet gingham ears.
I'm not sure how it happened, but when I was embroidering her face, her eyes ended up closed, I think she's a big sleepy head. I say big, but in fact she's very very small, at 5 inches tall, and most of that is ears. Are you wondering where she is going? Well it's a surprise but I can tell you later on..


Giveaway winner!

>> Monday, March 15, 2010

My IFK Spring promo illustration

Thanks so much for everyone who entered my giveaway! It's always nice to hear from you guys and I do feel guilty that I don't always have time to reply to my comments so I wanted to show that I appreciate all my visitors.

So the winner of the peg doll, bird card set and pincushion giveaway is Amy. Congratulations!


Red Sweethaven bag

>> Wednesday, March 10, 2010

My first Sweethaven bag for the shop is done - I actually finished it a couple of weeks ago but wanted to wait for a new set of labels to arrive.
These ones are really sweet with red, orange and pink flowers on a brown branch.
This bag is made up of a fun mix of fabrics, inspired by a cute vintage style polka dot print of red on white. It's an upholstery weight fabric that I thought had a retro look.
The top flap is appliqued with a pretty vintage white doily.

For more details, you can visit the red Sweethaven bag in my shop!


Needle Book blog - Spring Giveaway

>> Monday, March 01, 2010

Call it wishful thinking, but I've decided to have a little Spring Giveaway. It's actually in honour of my 400th post! I can't believe I've written that many, what on earth have I been nattering on about?

Anyway, just in case you think I don't appreciate my readers, here's the giveaway. It includes a set of my bird sketch notecards, a wee pincushion made with the sweetest Japanese deer print:
 and a one-of-a-kind peg doll:
She has a little feedsack skirt with lace trim, a brown knitted sweater, and a purple wool felt kerchief with tiny pink button.

All this cheerful Spring goodness for free, just leave a comment and I will pick a winner on March 15th. Please include your email address in your comment so I can reach you if you win.

p.s. I haven't put any of these pincushions in the shop as they are too fat to send letter mail, so they cost $6 to ship. Which is silly because they are only $5 to start with. So if you'd like to add one to any Needle Book Shop purchase just send me an email or etsy convo.


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