Thursday, 13 March 2014

Pretty in pink

Almost four years ago* I made another friend a lap quilt.   I used mainly Kaffe Fassett fabrics in her favourite pink tones.  I'm a big fan of bright colours and I was delighted with how this quilt turned out.  So much so, that I have been meaning to make myself one ever since.…

pineapple block quilt from  Paper Piecing with Alex Anderson

My friend had a baby girl in September and, of course, I had to make the new addition to the family some goodies.  I knew that it would be ok - or even expected - to make something pink so I pulled out my Oliver + S patterns and sewed another birthday party dress

size 12-18 months 


This is very much an international dress: the pattern is from the USA, I bought the lawn in London at Liberty, and the buttons came from Buttonmania in Melbourne (during my trip around town with Lightning McStitch and her little assistant in February)

sweet little, colour-matched buttons

crisp pleats!

I also knitted a little top for the new baby - during my Christmas holiday - but didn't get around to putting the three buttons on it until early this week!!

Whereas the dress was an international effort, this is every bit a kiwi knit: the pattern, Hine, is by Kelly Brooker of Pekapeka design studio and the yarn is a beautifully soft 100% alpaca called plush from Doe Arnot of Oamaru Weaving.  I bought this yarn after Taryn of forkandneedle opened my eyes to New Zealand Made back in July 2013 and I discovered Doe's yarn being sold online at Felt.  Luckily, I have a few balls of this left over, and some other yarns I just had to have….

The top has a lace sleeve detail

and it is mostly knitted in the round so I didn't have any seams to finish!  It is knitted from the top down and once the sleeves are completed it is a very quick knit.  Perfect for holidays or knitting on a plane.

I think this is such a sweet top and hopefully I will find a few more girls I can knit it for.

Finally, I finished up the other presents for my friend I made the knitting bag for.  As I mentioned, this friend is very clever.  So clever, in fact, that she is affectionately known as Nancy Fancy Pants.   So, when I ordered the Spoonflower fabric for the children who received the pillowcases, I also asked Shelley Aakjaer of ShelleyMade to design a fabric for Nancy Fancy Pants

This is what she came up with

             Personalised Name Fabric - Pink 16 Small

So I ordered this design in cotton silk and silky faille and sewed Nancy some Fancy Pants

Nancy Fancy Pants's fancy pants

I used the Tried and True everyday knickers pattern from The Makers Journal.  The pattern is intended for light weight woven fabrics and is actually pretty easy to sew.   I spent quite a bit of time looking at the stitching on some of my own knickers and I copied the triple zig-zag stitch used to topstitch the knicker elastic in place.  I think these could just about pass for store bought but, at any rate, they are a zillion times better than the undies our mum made us when we were kids!!  Who would have thought that I would sew homemade knickers after the trauma inflicted on us all those years ago (although, to be fair, I'm not having to wear these ones)?    And, who knows if Nancy Fancy Pants will think these are fancy enough for her….

* I was in the process of sewing the blocks for this quilt when the September 2010 earthquakes struck Christchurch.  There was quite a mess in my sewing room - and elsewhere - but the blocks remained on the table where I had left them!

Really, this is a bigger mess than usual!!


  1. Stunning work. I love the quilt-what a lucky friend- and I'm sure Nancy will be pleased with her fancy pants. The items for your friend's daughter are also beautiful (just not really anything I need!). I think all your makes could probably pass as store-bought.
    Oh, and are you sure those a post-earthquake pictures?

    1. Definitely post-earthquake. I wouldn't leave those books on the floor like that! Nor would I tip that storage unit over because it was a bugger to get upright again.

  2. What gorgeous things - they're so much better than anything bought! The fancy pants are great - I bet they get a good giggle. Your pink dress and knitting make wonderful gifts - they'll be treasured. I love the colour of the wool and the liberty print. The quilt is very clever... did you paper piece it? (prob a silly question if I read the comment under it). Then what can I say about your sewing room??? Mine looks a bit like that on a good day... hence no published photos.
    Thanks for showing us this... and I'm glad that you loved the wool. :-)

    1. Thanks Taryn. It was good of you to tell me off because I would never have found that yarn on my own and it really is gorgeous!
      The quilt is paper pieced which I love because paper piecing is so accurate. And quick!

  3. Wow! Quilting, sewing and knitting all in one post. You clever thing you!