Thursday, 19 April 2012

Warning: Betsy spam and wafflings contained in this post!

I spent the better part of yesterday scrubbing the old girl out. i have tried to discover her heritage, too - but as of yet, i still don't know who made her.

first jobs - new tyres (whitewall, please) and new foam cushion/mattresses (the existing ones have rat holes, are uncomfortably stuffed with coconut fibre and contain 59 years worth of dust and old flatulence - i am scared of them). it may take time to source fabrics similar to the original coverings (i love the red piping) so we may temporarily cover the new foam initially. my husband also wants to do some (minor, we hope) structural work to her.

then i think we need to find new linoleum for her. i adore the original lino but it is rather stained/dirty and fragile. i am scared that scrubbing to clean her will destroy it. but i also fear we shall never find either new old stock lino, or new retro look lino that we love. being (i imagine) the hardest thing to find,  it needs to be the first purchase. then we can select new fabric for the mattresses, curtains and paint which work together.

 so yes - we also want to re-paint the interior and the exterior. we think the exterior was originally off-white, and the interior green was a pale yellow. we would like to go back to the original colours, and i would also like a few red accents here and there, to tie in with the piping on the cusions.

the couch transforms into a bunk bed, and the table folds down to become a double bed. just the right size for my husband to lie down with neither head nor feet touching walls - lucky!

the laminate on the table and bench is pristine. very excited about that blue marble laminate! *squee*

Betsy has her original ice-box and gas oven - gas oven perfect, ice-box a  bit peely and needs work.

the curtains were the saddest part for me. they were rotting and filthy, and of course disintegrated despite my most gentle hand-washing. it was rather devastating for someone who loves vintage fabrics =( luckily the privacy curtain had been stored in a cupboard so i have a good idea of what the original fabric looked like before it became brown and rotten! i have purchased a seersucker in similar colours/pattern but once painted etc shall choose something more to my taste.

long, waffling post. there is sure to be more to come! haha (=  so excited to welcome Betsy into the family and am looking forward to building happy memories as my kids grow and we take her on fun trips!

Wednesday, 18 April 2012

confession time. here seems like a safe place to confess because traffic is slow. i haven't done any dolly sewing in, what, two weeks? i re-opened my commission list because i keep feeling the urge to sew, i get some fabrics out, think about patterns and feel uninspired. i thought taking commissions on would help me find direction.

instead, i find myself going in all new directions - hoping to start a market stall with hand-sewn items for humans (as opposed to dolls). the process is rather more complicated than i imagined and currently i am working on a bunch of new ideas, to photograph and sumbit with application to a local market that i love. then to work on quantities after sumbissions have been approved.

and the big, exciting news is that we adopted an old caravan! she is a real beauty. we have named her Besty, and she was made circa 1953 and is mostly original. *choir of angels sing "aaaahhhhh" in perfect harmony here*. 

today, what i really want to do is go and play caravan, but instead must tidy up for visitors, finish off max's art smock (erm, yes, master procrastinator here), hem his new school pants, finish covering his books, buy new school shoes and get haircuts. oh and do some collation work for our (now ex) kindergarten. not all of these jobs have to be done today but only five sleeps 'til school starts!

so best i get on with the jobs so i can go and play. some quick pics before i run: apple pincushions,  hooter (actually, not the best name for this little stuffed owl guy), all with market stall in mind:

and this is the rego for Betsty. last registered in 1973! i still can't believe we have her!

so i owe the commission people an apology. next week, after my son starts school (no school on monday, tuesday is the boy's first day of school,  public holiday wednesday - he does half days for the first week, she has whole days like usual) i promise to get back into the blythe sewing.  i still feel passionate about it but feel a bit stale? i want to come up with new patterns but then feel frustrated when i get to a third draft and it still isn't working even close to how i want..........

Thursday, 5 April 2012

to coincide with the fourth issue of Tiny Feet, i have just updated my storenvy shop with three tiny clown suits and four tiny dresses. i was honoured to be asked to contribute to the lastest circus themed issue - my favourite theme of all time! the mag is a feast for the senses - i can almost smell the popcorn.

please check it out - the amazing contribution at the beginning of the mag  by the talented Cookie Dolls...... her dioramas are something to behold.

oh and if you want to check out my storenvy, here 'tis:

Monday, 26 March 2012

well, my big five year old boy had a most awesome time at his pirate party on sunday. we played pass the parcel (or "parcel parcel" as he calls it), tug-o-war - i helped the girls team as they were one man (woman, rather) down, until they boys cried "unfair! there's a mum helping!" and the pinata worked beautifully (14 layers of newpaper held together with the old flour glue was spot on for them to all have three turns at whacking). the dreaded pirate ship cake actually turned out very well by my standards, and i gathered everyone near the end and we sang happy birthday to my boy, hip-hip-hooray-ed and then he turned to me and said "but mum - what do i blow out?". very embarrased to realise i had neglected to place the especially purchased black glitter candles on said cake. quickly fixed my omission and we sang a super-speed round two birthday greeting to him and he happily blew out his five candles.

my lovely siblings came early and went nuts with the decorations, inside and out. the huge jolly roger flag flying from the kid's fortress looked ace (it is still there now) and now we are back to the usual daily grind.

after getting the kids off this morning, i hope to get into my commission list. this afternoon i have to take my son  for what i am hoping will be his final ultrasound following his kidney surgery three and a half years ago. there is no sign that things haven't been going beautifully since our previous scan and  i have every confidence that the follow-up appointment to this scan will be our last.

Thursday, 22 March 2012

whoah! all spots full for now - thank you to all who emailed me =D

i shall re-open once the deck is clear of this first commission batch.
FritzyBitz Commissions Opening Again

as of the 26th of march, i am re-opening the fritzybitz commission list once again. please email me at if you would like to grab a spot or have a general query.

how does the fritzybitz commission list work?
  1. contact me at the above email address and we can discuss fabrics/styles/trims (a limit of three items per customer, please)
  2. i shall give you a price and the approximate timeframe that  you can expect your order to be complete
  3. once your item/s are ready, i shall take pics, post on flickr and send you a link. at this point i am ready to take payment via paypal
  4. once i have your payment i shall post your order and let you know that your order has been sent to you
some finer details - regular postage is $3 worldwide, $2 within  Australia. this is for regular post only, worldwide registered post costs a ridiculous $18 (or $3 within Australia) and although i have experienced very fine things with our worldwide postal system and anticipate that your package will arrive quickly and safely, i cannot be held responsible for lost packages. most of my styles range from $18 - $28 per item, although in some cases for more intricate styles/rare and vintage fabrics, the price can rise beyond this.

i won't be taking more than ten customers at this stage. long lists stress me out completely!

hoping to work with you soon to create something special for your blythe


Monday, 19 March 2012

hmmmm - over two weeks since i last blogged. haven't achieved all i wanted to achieve in this time, either. i have completed the chair covers, finished my daughter's new bedroom curtains and made two pairs of different pirate-themed shorts for my son (so he has options on his birthday party day). yesterday i finished his bunting and it is already hanging up in our dining room (it shall go to his bedroom after the party) and i am so pleased with it.

the boy's art smock still waiting around to be finished, as is my daughter's doona cover. and i have had a bunch of half-sewn dolly outfits hanging around forever, it seems. these projects may have to wait until after the boy's party, though. right now i need to concentrate on:

  • tidying up - the front windows need cleaning again *sigh* and i have some hibiscus that need to come out of pots and be planted
  • finish papier mache-ing the pinata and painting it black with white skull and crossbones
  • making the pirate ship cake (dreading this -  cake decorating...... let's just say i have the best of intentions but my result never seems to equate the effort put in)
this papier mache pinata has me stumped...... i have 11 layers on but am not sure how many need to be done. i don't want it exploding with the first whack, nor do i want it to be indestructible.

Monday, 5 March 2012

it's silly - i've been nervous about posting in my own blog. going to ease myself into it and just focus this first post on my current sewing 'to do' list:

  • make new dining chair covers - one is complete, three cut and zigzagged, ties for three ready. two to cut/zigzag etc still
  • pirate bunting for my son. want this to be ready by his birthday party in just under three weeks
  • make new red and white polkadot curtains for my daughter's bedroom
  • finish her patchwork quilt inspired doona cover
  • finish my son's art smock for school. it would be good but not essential to have this done by thursday.
  • spend some time sewing doll clothes - haven't made much at all over the last month
the new chair covers:

tomorrow will be a day to rip through some of the stuff on the list - eldest at school, youngest has a full day at kindy. would be nice to have two more chair covers complete before bed tonight but have to do some housework and washing and it is almost time to pick up the boy from kindy (although i have enough time to go to the thrift store if i leave now!).

righto - off i go!