Friday, 29 March 2013

Interior Design for Beginners

You see, when Little Miss Madam was on her way, husband and I started to replan our current living situation. The plan is to someday buy/build our own house, with enough room for everyone and maybe even a small sewing/crafting room for me - if the garage is large enough for husband to get along with his woodwork there, that is ;-)

However, we like - no we love! - living in this neighbourhood, and last year nothing was out for sale. So we decided to stay here at least for the first two couple of years and redesign how we use our flat instead of replanning the living situation as a whole.

The major change took place in our bedroom. We completely refurnished this room in order to be able to make 2 smaller rooms out of one and not lose any storage space but increase if possible. I am especially happy about the colours I picked for the walls. I was brave and decided to opt for a strong purple colour and sand for the other walls to balance it out. Little Miss Madam's area is in one of the 'sandy' parts, as I did not want the baby corner to be too dark.

Well, anyway, as we were expecting a baby-surprise, I opted for unisex draperies for the baby basket ( After the surpise turned out to be Little Miss Madam, that eased the possibilities of decorating the baby corner immensely (no, I'm not really into decorating for boys in purple) and I started having the wildest ideas. But until now, they were only really ideas. Last month, however, we noticed that she would not fit into the baby basket for long and started the project Baby Bed, which involved more than just one family member:

My sister-in-law had a baby bed to give away, basically in good condition but in desperate need of new varnish. So I thought, if the job has to be done anyway and we spent all that time renovating our bedroom, go for the whole sweep and varnish the bed to blend in nicely with the rest of our room's concept. My father-in-law offered to sand down the bed for us beforehand, so I did not have that much ado with it before letting the brushes fly. Meanwhile I went to the hardware store and let them mix a varnish colour that almost matches our purple walls and took a tin of white back home as well (our furniture has white doors, we have a white 'room divider', ...). Then my father-in-law phoned and said, he would be very happy to varnish the bed for us, if we brought the varnish to him and said what colours had to go where. So, with father-in-law occupied for the next few days, I browsed the internet for a few butterfly wall stickers, as I imagined them to be quite sweet as the last finishing touch for the bed. Yesterday the big day had come for Little Miss Madam: the baby basket was taken out and the baby bed was put up. Today we decided on a place for the wall stickers. I am really happy with this. Sure, it's not a typical baby bed but it fits in great into the rest of the room and last night Little Miss Madam slept really well.

And what I have also been longing for for quite some time now is a switch light near her bed. We took off for the lamp today and found a basic white glass shade wall lamp. It looked quite boring, to be honest, but all the others were too fancy or in colours that messed up the whole look of the room. And it also did not look really child-friendy (I mean from the design point of view).

This evening I thought I'd just try to make it a bit more interesting and found a sheet of purple tracing paper. I cut out two butterfly shapes and stuck them from the outside onto the shade. At first I wasn't too sure about the result but then husband tried it out and I am positively surprised with how good it looks! This is an idea that I mustn't forget when we do eventually buy our own home!

Sunday, 24 March 2013

The Second after the First

Son #2 also demanded a hat after having seen the one for Son #1, so here it is. Once you get the hang of it, they are done quite quickly ;-)

Thursday, 21 March 2013

Pinny-Dress for Little Miss Madams Christening

Little Miss Madam did not fit into the christening suit that her brothers did wear for their christening (the reason being, she was five months old compared to 2 and 4 months old). I do not really like kids going to their own christening (I'm not talking about guests but the actual chhild in question) in jeans and a T-shirt so I was looking for something a bit more feastive. My husband suggested that I should make her something to wear (this was a first, by the way!).

As I am too big a scaredy-cat to try out something new, I opted for a design that I have sewn before and Madam got her second Pinny Dress ('Schürzenkleidchen'). The dress is made out of flower-pattern cotton and rimmed with satin bias tape.This was worn over a white longsleeved T-shirt and some cream leggings - she was totally adorable!

There's Always A First - Crocheted Har

'Muuuummmmm, SoAndSo's mother can crochet and she made him a really cool hat. You never crocheted something for me before....'
'Son, that's because I can't crochet. I can only knit straightdown. I've made you scarves....'
'Youv'e never made me a hat!'

And for an almost-teenager, not ever having crocheted a hat for him makes him feel as though his mother doesn't care for him. Please someone, help me understand the logic of puberty. It was so simple when I was there before.

Okay, I've always wondered whether or not crocheting is difficult, fiddly and downright complicated. Well, I've found out now and find it as meditating as knitting is.

Here is my very first crochet project. Not a star piece, can definitely be improved, but still am I a tiny bit proud:

Baby Trousers

I have seen a lot of baby trousers presented on the internet in all sorts of colours and designs but the one from Klimperklein is my current favourite! It was way before Little Miss Madam was born that I saw it for the first time and there is something about the simplicity in the style that reallys screams 'Must Have!' for me. Then, sometime back in January (I think it was January) there was a special offer in Klimperklein's Dawanda shop, so I just had to fill the virtual shopping basket then. Thank goodness I gave myself a shopping limit. If I hadn't, I would have most likely bought all of the sewing patterns/instructions she has available. I just love her designs: no fuss but soooo cute!

I was really happy to find out that her instructions are also really great for 'intermediate beginners' like me. They begin with a general overview and brief instructions for people who know what they are doing - great for those that are just itching to start. Following this there are very detailed descriptions about each working step along with photographs to support the descriptive text. Very handy for people like me!

Although the patterns were all printed out immediately after receiving the ebooks, I did not actually dare to cut fabric to size etc. for quite some time after that. But finally (and at last) I gave the pattern 'Babyhose' (Baby Trousers) a go:

They had just come off the line when I took this photo (can you see the marks left there by the clothes pegs?). You can fold the leg cuffs up to half the length with this design, I personally find that much nicer. And the waistline is really great for babies - these trousers do not slip off babies hips! The waistline and leg cuffs are made out of jersey and the actual trousers are fleece - a great pair of winter trousers, just in time for the amazing amounts of snowfall we had here in Germany the last months. They even held her legs warm while I carried her in the wrap when we took Son #2 to school each morning! That's definitely a case of tested and declared brillant!