Sunday, March 30, 2014

New In Store - 30th March

A heap of stock has come in over the last two weeks and we will be endeavouring to list it as quickly as possible on the website. This week we have added new Riley Blake, Alexander Henry, Trans-pacific Textiles and Bernatex fabrics.

Top Row
2nd Row
3rd Row
Bottom Row

With the arrival of a few new prints I think that we currently have the entire range of Alexander Henry Skull and Rose fabrics in stock. These are some our favourite fabrics, in fact it is the Skulls and Roses design that first inspired us to start our own fabric store :)

Top Row

Middle Row
Botton Row

New knit fabrics from Birch Organic Fabric as well as a plain black and white jersey.


Whew, that's it for this week but there is still heaps to come next week so stay tuned :)

- Ky

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Photo Tutorial - Rosie the Zombie Doll by Emily Taylor Desings

The Zombie Apocalypse continues at the Brisbane Stitches and Craft Show (20-23 March 2014). Come and visit us at Stand E15 to pick up a Rosie the Zombie Doll Pattern.

Rosie is a 97cm/ 38"tall soft toy designed by Emily Taylor. The pattern doesn't include any diagrams so we thought we'd put together a photo tutorial for everyone who has purchased the pattern to help them if they run into problems. 

*PLEASE NOTE - this is only a photo tutorial, the pattern must be purchased and is not included here. 

Designer Emily Taylor with her Rosie doll from the Riley Blake booth at the Houston Quilt Market last October.
STEP 1: Skirt

With right sides together place the SKIRT FRONT and SKIRT FRONT LINING pieces together, right sides together. Sew along the sides and bottom using a 1/4inch (6mm) seam allowance. Clip corners and turn right side out. 

Repeat for the SKIRT BACK and SKIRT BACK LINING pieces.

Fold and press the pleat on the SKIRT FRONT, each side of the pleat should be folded over approx. 1inch (2.5cm). 

Fold and sew bias tape to cover the raw edge on top of the SKIRT FRONT and SKIRT BACK.

STEP 2: Shirt

Fold and sew bias tape to cover the raw edge on top of the BLOUSE BACK and the long diagonal edge of BLOUSE FRONT A. Fold under the short curved edge of BLOUSE FRONT B and sew in place. I have used one of the decorative stitches on my sewing machine.

STEP 3: Face

Trace or freehand draw all of the face markings onto right side of the BODY FRONT piece. You can use chalk or an erasable fabric pen for this. 
Sew over the lines using either a decorative machine stitch or hand embroider. If you are going to use a sewing machine stitch I would recommend fusing interfacing or stabiliser to the wrong side of the face to give the fabric a bit more structure and help avoid the fabric puckering with the machine stitches.
Fuse the lip fabric to a piece of Vliesofix (you can also use a fabric glue pen), cut out the lip shapes and remove the backing paper from the Vliesofix and fuse the lips in place on the face. Stitch around the raw edge - I used a zigzag stitch to help minimise any fraying.

STEP 4: Hair

Place the FRONT HAIR piece on top of the FRONT BODY piece. I used 505 Basting Spray to hold it in place. Use a decorative machine or hand embroidery stitch to cover the bottom raw edge of the hair. 

Repeat for the BACK HAIR and BACK BODY pieces.

STEP 5: Clothing

Place BODICE FRONT B onto the FRONT BODY piece. Place BODICE FRONT A on top so that the raw edge of BODICE FRONT B is covered. Baste BODICE FRONT A and B into place, stitching 1/4 inch (6mm) in from each side.

Sew along the top diagonal of BODICE FRONT A 1-2mm in from the top edge of the bias binding.

Place BODICE BACK onto the BACK BODY piece and baste in place 1/4inch (6mm) in on each side.

Place SKIRT FRONT onto of the BODY FRONT piece so that the edges line up and the raw edges of the bodice pieces are covered. Baste into place 1/4inch (6mm) in from each side.

Repeat to attach the SKIRT BACK onto the BODY BACK.

STEP 6: Arms

Fold under the bottom edge of the SLEEVE pieces and stitch in place.
Place one SLEEVE on top of an ARM piece, baste in place. Repeat for the other ARM.

Fold the ARM pieces in half with right sides together and sew down the side and around the bottom curve using a 1/2inch (12mm) seam allowance. Trim back the seam allowance, clip (or pink) the curves and trim off the corner seam on an angle. Turn the ARMS right side out.

Stuff each arm firmly but leave the top inch or so free of stuffing. Baste the top opening closed.

STEP 7: Legs

Trace or freehand draw the leg markings onto right side of one of the LEG piece.  Fuse a piece of interfacing/stabiliser to the wrong side of the leg. Machine or hand embroider over the lines. 

Fold the LEG pieces in half with right sides together and sew down the side and around the bottom curve using a 1/2" seam allowance. Trim back the seam allowance, clip (or pink) the curves and trim off the corner seam on an angle.

Turn the LEGS right side out.

Stuff each leg firmly but leave the top inch or so free of stuffing. Baste the top opening closed.

STEP 8: Assembling your Zombie

Pin and baste the arms into position on right side of the FRONT BODY piece. 

Pin and baste the legs into position under the skirt on the right side of the bottom of the FRONT BODY piece.  

Place the BACK BODY on top of the FRONT BODY. The arms should be sandwiched in between the two pieces but fold the legs down so that they sit outside of the body.

Sew around the outside of the Zombie's body starting a the marking 1/2" up from the bottom of the body on one side and finishing at the marking on the other side.

Turn the doll right sides out. If any of the seams don't sit flat trim them back a little or clip/pink them, especially on the curves. 

Stuff your Zombie firmly with Toy stuffing, fold in the bottom 1/2inch (12mm) seam allowance.

Sew the Zombie closed with a ladder stitch.

Finish off Rosie's face by sewing mis-matched buttons onto her face.

- Ky

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Brisbane Stitches and Craft Show 2014

It is almost time for the...

When: Thursday 20 - Sunday 23 March 2014
Time: 10am - 4.30pm daily
Where: Brisbane Exhibition Centre, Cnr Glenelg & Merivale Streets, Southbank

Our showroom will be closed the week of the Show (closed from Sunday 16th March and reopening on Wednesday 26th March).

Starting on Thursday the 20th March the show is a great opportunity to see new fabric, patterns, and attend workshops and classes.

We will have Zombie Doll fabric panels, Patterns and Kits (exclusive to the show), a new Marilyn Monroe Panel, Cute new Kawaii prints as well as a new Pirate Back Pack Pattern and Kits. As always, we will have all of your favourite You Sew Girl bag patterns, hardware and interfacing kits. Laminate fabric is back by popular demand. Fresh cuts off the bolt of the latest Alexander Henry, Riley Blake & Transpacific Textiles fabrics will also be available.

You can find us at Stand E15, right next to Funky Friends Factory. Steph from Cake Patterns will be across the aisle at Stand E16 where she will be hosting hands-on demos for sewing with knit fabrics. Steph will also be running two daily information sessions in workshop room 3.

Knit Fabrics in the 21st Century - 11am daily
Vintage Cuts for Modern Wear - 1.30am daily

Steph's Cake Patterns and Riley Blake Knits will be available from our stand during the show too. Once you start sewing with knits you will be addicted! Also, check out our Classes section below for upcoming Knit workshop sessions with Steph.

We hope to see you there:)
- Ky and Cloud

Friday, March 14, 2014

Fabric Friday - Call of the Sirens

My 7 year old nephew, Mason, is more than a little bit obsessed with pretty girls and mermaids. I made a quilt for my niece, Adanna, when she was 3 years old but somehow, never got around to making one for Mason. Unfortunately, I need to replace Adanna's quilt (long story, won't go there) and I thought I couldn't do that and STILL not make one for her brother.

I wasn't sure if our Alexander Henry Sea Sirens would be a bit too adult for Mason but he LOVES them. His mum thinks they are great because he will probably love them just as much when he is 15 years old. Just for different reasons :P

Mason is quite partial to pink so I teamed up the mermaids with the coral coloured Sea Ponies. Some of the mermaids have pink flowers in their hair so they tie in quite well. The Double-Sided Japanese Dobby will add a bit of texture and gives me options with the colour balance. Got to love two fabrics for the price of one!

I haven't decided how I'm going to piece it all together yet. The quilt will be cot-sized so Mason can use it as a lap quilt on the couch in winter or a play mat or to snuggle with in bed. The mermaids are (obviously) going to be the main feature and they are almost 30cm tall each so I'm leaning towards a big centre panel with borders around to make up the quilt. Top stitching is going to be an adventure - I may try free motion stitching for the first time and outline quilt the seaweed tendrils and the mermaid's flowing hair.


I have to say that I'm quite chuffed at this Fabric Friday combo. I will keep you posted on the progress of the quilt as I make it :)

- Cloud

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Tutorial - Adding Adjustable Straps to a Backpack

Adjustable bag straps are the best! Not all patterns have adjustable straps though (like Horrible Harry's Pirate Backpack Pattern). Here is a quick and easy tutorial on how to make adjustable straps for a kid's backpack. You can also use the same technique for handbags, tote bags etc.

Make the straps as per the pattern instructions. This particular pattern has straps that are 70cm (28") long with a finished sewn width of 2.5cm (1"). To make the adjustable straps you will require some hardware, we have used 4 x 25mm (1") Slide Adjusters.

Step 1: Bottom Ring Strap - Cut off an 8-10cm (3-4") piece from the end of each strap. Fold each piece in half around one side of each slide adjuster to form a loop.

Sew horizontally across the strap as close as possible to the slide adjuster. This keeps the slide in place and stops them from twisting around.

Step 2: Adjustable Strap - Take a long strap and zigzag across one of the short ends to help stop the fabric from fraying. Thread the strap through the slide adjuster (under the outer part, over the inner bar & back out under the outer part).

Tuck approximately 3cm (1.25 in) back towards the main part of the strap to make a loop over the inner bar of the slide adjuster. The shortest length of strap should be on the bottom and the right side of the slide adjuster should be facing up.

Sew a rectangle shape (instead of just straight across) when joining to make the strap sturdier. Repeat for the other long strap piece.

You should now have two short Bottom Ring Straps and two long Adjustable Straps.

Step 3: Attaching the Bottom Ring Straps - Sew the bottom ring straps into the base of your backpack. The right sides of the slide adjusters should face outwards when the straps are pushed upwards.

Step 4: Attaching the Adjustable Straps - Place the bag down on its back and fold the Bottom Ring Strap downwards away from the bag. Place the wrong side of the Adjustable Strap up, so you can see the zig zagged edge. Thread the Adjustable Strap through the Bottom Ring.

Loop the strap back up and thread through the Slide Adjuster (under the outer ring, over the inner bar, under the outer ring).  The zig zagged edge will now be covered. Pull through until the Slide Adjuster is about 10 cm away from the Bottom Ring. 

Sew the top of the adjustable straps to the top of the backpack per the regular pattern instructions.

Pin Me!!

Voila! You now have a finished backpack with shiny new adjustable straps!

- Ky

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Serendipity Studios The Madeline Maxi Dress Pattern Test Drive

In between all of the preparation for the Brisbane Stitches and Craft Fair as well as the day to day running of Voodoo Rabbit I have managed to make myself another dress. I have been wanting a maxi dress for a while now and have these fabrics in my stash for a few year now. I purchased them specially to make a maxi dress out. When we ordered in the Madeline Maxi Dress pattern from Serendipity Studio I knew it was time to finally make my dress.

I have made the full length version of the dress with a ruffled hem band, contrast neckline and waistband. 

Contrast Neckband

The contrast neckband in the pattern has a seam down the centre of it but I thought it would look better without the seam. To make this change simply cut the seam allowance off the centre seam of the Front Contrast Trim pattern piece and cut it on the fold. It is then attached to the dress as per the pattern instructions.


I have added inseam side pockets to the dress as per my pocket tutorial here. If you are going to add pockets make sure you fit the bodice before you attach the skirt otherwise it is a real pain to unpick the skirt and take in the side seams. If you aren't including pockets you can do your final fit after the skirt is attached and the zipper has been inserted. The dress is constructed in such a way that you can just sew down the side seam to take in the dress if it is a bit too loose.

Bottom Ruffle
I wanted a fuller ruffle than the one specified in the pattern so I have cut 3 strips of fabric instead of the 2 specified in the pattern instructions.

Apart from what I have mentioned here I did have to make a few other adjustments to the bodice but I will have to save that blog post for a later date. Gotta go and do a bit more prep for the Stitches and Craft Fair now.
- Ky