the local dump shop

Sadly I don’t have much time for fossicking in op shops at the moment. We just moved into our new place and needed a few things. Budget was super low so we checked out the local dump shop after a … Read More

transforming vintage pillowcases

At the Auckland Vintage Textile fair I was mainly after two things: vintage pillowcases and inspiration. I got a healthy dose of both. Once I got the vintage pillowcases home I realised some weren’t fit to be transformed into my … Read More

Modcloth did the right thing

For my birthday I bought myself a dress. A new one. Okay, it was on sale on the Modcloth website, but still…a new dress! Not handmade and not secondhand. Here it is. I wore it to a morning of work … Read More

boxing corners – a tutorial

Okay, as this riveting first photograph intimates, there is no way to jazz this up. This is pure sewing geekery of the educational variety. For those of you not that way inclined, come back tomorrow for GrowMama business as usual. … Read More

Tutorial – vintage pillowcase to bag

This is the long awaited tutorial detailing how to make your own shopping tote bag from a vintage pillowcase. The blogpost i wrote about the design a few years ago (HERE) has had thousands and thousands of hits and many of … Read More

extra goodness

The latest Extracurricular magazine landed in my mailbox yesterday. Ellie, the editor, was off gallivanting in Europe (and feasting with good friends of mine in my old haunting grounds in the Pyrenees) and so, taking up the editorial helm for Issue … Read More

spring vintage

It’s been awhile since i hit the vintage sheet bonanza at the op shop. Today was a fleeting visit and i came away with some spring floral loveliness. I came home inspired to sew. Market season fast approaching, eek!  I have … Read More

upcycled edge

 This is a recent secondhand acquisition. Worn as soon as it arrived in the post and a perfect fit. I may or may not have slept in it – but that would only have been ’cause i loved it so … Read More

cards to go

 A couple of years ago i picked up a few boxes of cardstock on sale. All different colours with envelopes and ready to be embellished and made into cards. Previously i had insisted on doing the whole card from scratch … Read More

7 days of blogging 5/7 – fundies

I have been wanting to make underwear for the longest time. Uh huh. I know, i know.It’s just that i like to have a go at making well, pretty much everything. And you all know how much i love upcycling, … Read More

sewing for the boy

Night before we left on a big road trip to the snow and beyond…what was i up late doing? Well, packing, but also…sewing. Jed refuses to wear jeans. He likes them, they come out for dress-ups but last about 5 … Read More

vintage sheets strike again…

It is slightly obscene how excited i get about upcycling. I find it so very satisfying to take something that has been labelled rubbish and was destined for a landfill and transform that ‘trash’ into something useful. I just love … Read More

When you live in 80m sq with two other creative people, space management is at a premium. Now, having lived communally and done long stretchs on the road with just me and my backpack, i have a few ideas about … Read More

the bag lady returns

Once upon a time, back when i handstitched bags and purses from old pairs of jeans and rainbow colours of embroidery thread and sold them on the streets of Europe…i earned the name ‘the bag lady’…in the nicest possible way … Read More

seven days of blogging begins

So, every now and then, when i have a backlog of fun stuff, thoughts and peeks into our life to share with you, i declare a ‘seven days of blogging’ bonanza. This is day one. In the middle of my … Read More

back at it

This morning Jed and i went to see newborn Manu. Jed was smitten, typically. And is campaigning hard for a baby, sigh. There just is nothing like meeting a person new to the world is there? I love crafting with … Read More

the great vintage pink giveaway

It’s Giveaway Day time! Big thanks for SewMamaSew for organising Giveaway Day. It is always a joy to be a part of. Welcome to GrowMama to those who have not visited before. Here it is: the great vintage pink giveaway. … Read More

to market to market

As well as i manage trawling charity shops and sewing our own clothes, eating delicious from our garden/local where possible and as rich as i feel our simple life is…we still need money. So! To cobble together an income from … Read More

Vintage pillowcase? No, a shopping bag!

Take a vintage pillowcase. Cut like so. Make the handle by sewing a seam, joining the two sides of the ‘handle’ together. Use your iron to turn over and pin a hem on your raw edges. Sew. Press. It could … Read More

sneaky treat

I found a super soft corduroy skirt in the op shop and although i loved how it fitted around the waist, i didn’t like the cut of the lower skirt. So… I rummaged in my stash for a vintage fabric … Read More

winter aint bad

Beachside wanders in the winter sun.(A break from all that rain…wahoo!) Winter fruit fresh off the trees. A little rocking out. There’s a bit of that around here. (I just love witnessing that move from making music daily with a … Read More

celebrating the kid crafty

We have two magic boxes in our harry potter-like cupboard under the stairs. One is the craft box. The other box has six different kind of paints and various painting tools in it. The newest edition is non-toxic facepaint. Ignoring … Read More

on the up

From the brown paper design and pattern making…. …to the finished product. I am very fond of corduroy and of my various odd bits of vintage barkcloth and thought i would try putting the two together. It’s a work in … Read More

freeing my inner frou frou

While engaging in a late night art therapy session of ‘working through some demons’, i accidently freed my inner frou frou self. It erupted all over a bathmat i was working on.When thoughts keep circling in my head and come … Read More

a find indeed

Dangerous for the stash working at a retro shop i tell you. A beautiful deep forest moss green velvet with embroidered fancifulness. A frame no less. What on earth this may have been designed for i do not know. But … Read More

ambushed by pink

Actually, the title to this post should read….My problem with pink. Because that colour has been problematic for me for years now. I think because of it’s associations with feminine stereotypes etc etc. But! I am a reformed woman. Sort … Read More

upcycling away

Ain’t she gorgeous? This is the lovely Ava, wearing her first birthday present. A tunic top created by her friend GrowMama. I don’t often get to see the clothes i make on the little people they are gifted to and … Read More

sneaky adventures on the crafting table

‘Sneaky’ adventures because there’s been alot going on and i feel like i am sneaking in that creative time. My inner dialogue has been piping up and says i really should be doing X, X or X. You know the … Read More

a crafty respite

I know, i know! I said i’d be posting about our favourite books. And i will. It’s there, all ready to go. For today though, i wanted to give a lighter post, to equalise my rant on parenting. And, i … Read More

what we’re up to

Evening beach runs. Too nice to be in bed. Loving this book: Andrew Crowe’s Which New Zealand insect? We’ll find a new bug and go running for the book. (After marvelling at it awhile). Stick insects, three different kinds of … Read More

my new baby

There she is… TA DAaaaaaa! I sold my brother for a more trusty workhorse and this is she. A Bernina 900 Nova. I worked hard to get this machine. My every ‘spare’ moment was sewing or sleeping the last few … Read More

T-shirt to pants

As promised, here are the yoga style pants i made for Jed from a $1 secondhand Tshirt.Now, you have to take my word that they are made from a Tshirt, because my crazy camera was on the blink that day. … Read More

the birthday house lives on

One cardboard box (on the large side), one knife, some crepe paper, tape, a tiny bit of creative juice, and you are ten minutes away from having yourself a sweet little house. And that, my friends, equals many many hours … Read More

oh excitement (of the sewer’s variety)

I bought this fabric to make part of a Jed birthday present but it seems fitting to use a snippet here.Oh excitement. A new love in my life. My sister had kindly lent me her machine. I embarked on sewing … Read More

a favourite kind of fun

Look what happens when you put the s on the front of prayer, instead of at the end…you get sprayer! It’s one of Jed’s favourite kinds of fun at the moment. Has been off and on for months. Hours of … Read More