Felt decorations

As I said before, I’ll show you some older projects while I don’t have new ones to share. Here are two felt decorations I made for Christmas. They were both intended as gifts, but I ended up keeping the star since I wasn’t so happy with it: the felt is damaged, it seems it wasn’t washable as I had been told… :s

Both have been hand sewn and hand embroidered. I decided to start learning embroidery last year, and I love it! I haven’t done much yet, so I’m really a beginner, but it’s very pleasant. I find hand sewing and embroidery very soothing. Hand sewing being much slower than machine sewing though, I generally use my machine. So I really appreciate hand embroidery (complex machine embroidery is definitely out of my reach at the moment! ^^; ). And what I like is that even very simple embroidery can really change a project from really basic to pretty. You don’t have to be an embroidery master to make lovely things, anyone can do it (yes, even you!).

Those were my first felt stuffies (and actually first stuffies ever, felt or not). I’m more used to using fabric rather than felt. But it’s really nice for that kind of small decorative objects! I’m sure I’ll use it again in the future. Maybe in the near future, since I have some ideas for summer decoration. It’s very easy to use, you just have to be patient and methodical in order to have nice stitches and stuff it correctly. And in the end you get cute little objects! Just an advice: carefully check whether your felt is washable or not. And if it is, wash it before use, as I’ve heard felt can shrink a lot when washed. I always wash fabric before using it.

Spotted: new releases

New books spotted this week at the bookstore…

~~~~~~~~~~~~

Another book from the “One day sewing” series: “Natsu ni kitai fuku” (“Clothes to wear in summer”). The clothes are of the same vein as those of the previous books: simple dresses, blouses, tops and skirts/pants, with one or two accessories. It’s nice, but maybe not essential if you have the previous ones. There are a few new things (or variations around something shown before), but for the most parts the clothes are very similar to what’s been shown in previous books. At least that was my first impression.

~~~~~~~~~~~~

The third volume of their “beginner series”: “Hajimete tsukuru skirt”, which is all about skirts as you can guess. Once again there is a book for grown-ups and a book for children. The latter, called “Hajimete tsukuru kodomo fuku skirt & pants” also has a few pants patterns.

~~~~~~~~~~~~

Another third volume, this time of the “Happy homemade series”. This one is called “One piece pattern kara tunic, blouse mo” (which litteraly means “From one piece patterns, tunic and blouse also”). I think you can guess easily what the book is about. ^^

~~~~~~~~~~~~

“Coton, linen, gauze no onna no ko no natsu fuku”: “Summer clothes for little girls made of coton, linen and gauze”. From what the cover sais it seems 1 meter of fabric is enough to make them. Sizes, after what the covers says: 95~100cm and 100~110cm.

~~~~~~~~~~~~

An accessories book: “Natural komono to accessory (“Natural small things and accessories”). I might have bought it if I hadn’t already got a linen/gauze accessories book in March and/or if I knew how to crochet. A lot of the projects in this book involve crochet. There is a good number of flowers here. Some very nice crochet necklaces. I think it’s also in this book that I saw some separate collars, especially a lovely sailor collar bordered with a crochet trim. I can’t remember what the other projects are, sorry. But this book is a nice one, quite inspiring.

~~~~~~~~~~~~

This book that I couldn’t photograph [picture added on August 17th], which is about formal dresses for little girls. I found some of the dresses very cute, and some a little too “grown-up” for my taste.

And this magazine about children clothes: Cucito, July 2009.

Introduction

I think that a little introduction would be good. After all it’s always nice to know who you’re interacting with, isn’t it? I’m a young woman who currently have the pleasure to live in Japan. As you can guess I love clothes, sewing, and crafting. It’s a real treat to live in Japan when you like sewing, they have such wonderful books and prints!

I’ve always liked pretty clothes, even if my definition of “pretty” wasn’t allways the same as those around me (especially the other pupils at school). I especially love skirts and dresses. Both my mother and grand-mother know how to sew, but sadly none of them ever taught me. I regret that a lot now, when I see so many people that started sewing as child. I’ve done a few small things but really nothing much. I started drawing clothes in the corners of my notebooks in middle school, but strangely enough I didn’t decide too learn sewing before I was in grad school, at past twenty! It probably seemed to be an obscure art one couldn’t learn by itself. But I fell in love with gothic lolita fashion, which is expensive and wasn’t at all easy to find in France at the time. That, plus trying on a very cute skirt only to discover that once again the cut was strange and it didn’t fit me at all decided me: I was going to learn sewing!

My first accessory, a neck corset, made my mom laugh the minute she saw it ; so she taught me how to do a proper hem. My first skirt was done on my grandmother’s sewing machine, with her much useful help. From there I continued mainly by myself. Luckily there are plainty of ressources available: my mother and grandmother who try to answer my questions the best they can with the distance between us, books, the Internet… I’m so thankful for japanese books and their detailed drawings, they taught me so much! And the Internet is a wonderful source of inspiration. I’ve been sewing irregularly the past years, but now I’m back and I think it’s for good. I have tons of ideas and I can’t wait to realize them. I’m still not very quick, but I’m sure this will improve with practice.

Before I get something new to show you (ahem, my pile of projects to complete is too long for my taste), I’ll post about former projects. And in the meantime you can also pay a visit to the other blogs I’ve linked on the left. They’re part of those I’m following (I love Google Reader). I’ll probably add others later, so check back from time to time.

Language

Just a little note to say that I’ll try to write all my posts in both French and English. You probably noticed it before. ^^ I wanted to write in French (it is my mother tongue) because I read some French blogs and want to join the “Japan Couture Addicts” community, which is a french community. I know some French people have a hard time understanding English. But I also read a lot of blogs written in English, and to reach the crafting community as a whole English is the best option. I’m always frustrated when I discover a blog which could be interesting but is written in a language I don’t know. So I’ll be using both! I hope this organization of posts, whith a succession of paragraphs in French and paragraphs in English will be understandable. It’s the best solution I found with this free blog (I didn’t want to create one blog per language)

日本の友達へ:ごめんなさい、今、日本語であまり書きません。一つのブログだけがあるから、3言語で書くことが便利ではない。多分、少しだけ日本語でも書きます。申し訳ございません。

Newcomer

Yet another to start her own crafting blog! “And why ?”, would you ask. After all if you’re here you might be curious to know why I decided to create this place. Well, I’ve been haunting the crafting community for months now. I’m enjoying sewing more and more, and as I do I find myself reading more and more blogs revolving around crafts, sewing, clothing and style. I discovered this huge community made of very nice persons, and I’d like to become part of it. I want to play too! Talk with all of you, show you my projects and share what I like. It’s very fun to be able to share your interests with people who can understand them. So here I am!

Of course you’ll read about sewing here, and clothes (as that’s what I’m currently mainly sewing, but I’d like to try other things too). But I’m sure you’ll hear about other subjects too. Revolving around crafting surely. But maybe also around books music, illustration or many other thing. I’d love to grow many different kind of trees here and give this place a soul. Welcome to my little forest!