Saturday, September 13, 2014

Take great photos on your phone

I'm going to show you in six easy steps, how to take clear, 
interesting shots on your phone! 

Subject: child modelling clothing
Lighting: direct sunlight
Camera: iPhone 5S
Setting: Photo/HDR Off
Orientation: portrait
Filters: none
Phone/Computer Editing: none
Props: handmade paper chain
Rainbow Dress: Threading My Way


If the conditions are right, your phone is the ultimate device to use when taking photos. 
Your phone is usually nearby and more handy than your camera and is probably always charged! Plus, afterwards, the photos are instantly at your fingertips to do as you please with them, without having to upload them onto a computer.


Here are my six tips.

1. Lighting - if the lighting is good then your phone will take clear, bright photos very easily every time, even if there is movement from the subject. Whilst indirect sunlight is very effective for taking beautiful photos, nothing beats direct sunlight, to enhance clarity and colour.

2. Subject - decide what the purpose of your photos is. Make sure the subject is showing the audience what you want them to show. Use props that further enhance the theme or feeling of your photography.

3. Background - the backdrop does not have to be stunning for your photos to look great. Use the space around you to create layers or levels in the background so that your subject is not against a one dimensional or one coloured backdrop. This helps your subject to look like they are part of the real world. Viewer's eyes like to see things placed in the real world as it gives our brains something to compare and contrast the foreground against. Lastly, make sure that there is nothing too distracting in the background that would take the focus away from the subject.

4. Aspect - Experiment with the angle from which you take your photos. This is how you will create interest in your photography. Take you photos side-on from the subject so that you background extends beyond them at an angle, and isn't a flat shape behind them. Try taking photos from a low level, looking upwards. The photos in this post were taken whilst laying on the ground. The subject can appear longer and taller at different angles and the viewer is able to see more of the subject this way, compared to what they will see front on. In this instance, taking my photos from a low level allowed me to capture the ground (lower layer), the subject (middle layer) and the sky (upper layer), all in the one photo at an interesting angle and with detail!

5. Movement  Have your subject move freely and play in the space you have given them. This allows more natural positions to be captured and doesn't make your photography look posed or forced. If the lighting is right (tip 1), then the movement won't cause your photos to be blurred. 

6. Don't wait Don't wait for the right moment to press the camera button! You will need to take lots of shots so you can sift through them later to pick out the perfect ones. Click away as much as you can as the perfect line-up for a photo sometimes only lasts a split second, especially when the subject is moving. 


Do you have any tips or tricks for taking great photos on your phone? 
I'd love for you to share them with us!

Tash
Little Ladybird









Thursday, September 04, 2014

How to brighten up a white wall in your child's room

We have a wall in the kid's playroom that is a bit dull and I wanted something to brighten it up with some pictures. I was going to make four prints with four different messages on them, but I didn't want the wall to look too busy, so I decided to pick one message and incorporate it into the four prints. The prints then read like text in a book, left to right, top to bottom and they say...


Always Chase Your Dreams   

... and I add to my kids ... and it doesn't matter how slow you go as long as you do not stop!

I picked a different coloured background to use in each print and the dark brown wooden frames give them a nice lift off the white wall. The prints have been placed above the dragon and knights castle and our bookshelf turned into dollhouse, which sits next to the reading nook, ready to play with once the kids have finished reading.

The prints brighten up the room nicely and it's a nice little note to anyone who goes into the room to play!


Any small wall in your house can be brightened up very easily. It is probably best to use four prints that can either all be displayed in portrait orientation or in a landscape orientation. Choose images that match the theme of your message and place them in front of a background. I used Photoshop, but there are many programs available now to use for photo/design/image projects. 

I chose to use the same patterned background for consistency but changed the colour of each background to add variation. Then the text was placed on top of the each final print. It's best to first work out the layout of how the prints are going to hang on the wall before you do this, so that the text can be placed in the correct order! It works well if you have an even number of words in the quote or message that can be divided by four. Then all you need to do is to print your final work, frame and hang up on the wall. 

Black and white pictures with brightly coloured text is a another option to use and also using some of your favourite photos of your kids or family would look great as well. I will show you how to do this later on.








Later this month, I will show the wall where my 'Kid's Sayings turned into Prints' ended up! I have framed them to be much brighter and the wall they have been hung up on is really busy!




Tash 



Browse our large online range of gorgeous Baby Comforters!


Friday, August 29, 2014

3 easy non-bake desserts!

I love desserts that involve minimal time spent in the kitchen and that are easy to make with little kids. These three desserts are my all time favourites for both being extremely yummy and also easy to make!

All three recipes can be gluten free if you wish and that's the way I do them!


Chocolate Snowballs
You need 3 ingredients - 1 box of chocolate tiny teddy biscuits (substitute your favourite Gluten Free chocolate biscuits), 1 can of sweet condensed milk, 1 cup of coconut (plus a bit extra for covering).

Crush biscuits in the blender, mix in a bowl with 1 cup of coconut.

Pour in the tin of sweet condensed milk, and mix together. Roll into balls, sprinkle and cover with the extra coconut. Place in the fridge to set for 1 hour or more.

Enjoy as a small bite to eat or serve with fruit as a dessert platter at your next special occasion!




Lemon & Coconut Slice
Slice
1/2 cup sweet condensed milk
125g butter
250g gluten free tea biscuits (finely crushed)
(for non gluten free recipe, use 250g of arrowroot biscuits)
1 teaspoon of grated lemon rind
1 cup coconut


Icing
1 cup icing sugar (I use CSR brand gluten free)
15g butter
2 tablespoons of coconut
3 tablespoons of lemon juice


Mix all ingredients well and press into a thin glass or baking dish
Refrigerate for at least an hour
Ice with lemon icing
Sprinkle with desired amount of coconut
When icing has set, cut into squares




Cinnamon Day Dessert
This one's easy but it makes a great dessert for an afternoon tea and it's so healthy. I add sultanas cause I like having the crunchy texture with the soft creamy yoghurt in my mouth. So basically it's banana, strawberries, blueberries and sultanas in a gluten free, natural pot set yoghurt topped with sprinkled ground cinnamon!



Tash


Browse our large online range of gorgeous Baby Comforters!


Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Beautiful girls fabrics to buy


There is an abundance of fabrics on the market made for girls and I think that's because it's generally accepted that any design, any image and any colour can be worn by girls. It's a bit sad to think that boys are still limited by what is acceptable for them to wear, but, having said that, I, myself, with one daughter and one son, find girl's clothes more exciting than boys. They're just a bit more pretty and colourful! 

Here at Little Ladybird I've created some prints that look stunning and can be used for any girl's items. AND, they don't have too much pink, just a little, as a highlight, here and there! And I'm sharing some easy tutorials from Threading My Way to help you decide just what to make with your girl's fabrics!

The fabrics are digitally printed which entails very little waste of ink, water and electricity and are created using eco-friendly, water based inks on natural and synthetic fiber textiles. 


So far, I have used the Kona Cotton fabric and have been very happy with that, although I am in the process of testing my prints on other fabric types, for both the ease of sewing and also for the quality of the dyes, over time, when washed.


Here are some skirts and cushion covers that have been made with the Spring Trail, Pastel Garden, Under The Apple Tree and Mumma and Bubba fabrics. The bright red Mumma and Bubba fabric is my favourite. A bit of pink always looks beautiful when matched up with bright red! 




And pssst ....... if you want to purchase your own yard or two of these fabrics, you can click here!




Tash

Browse our large online range of gorgeous Baby Comforters!


Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Frankie & Swiss Textile Design Competition

'Frankie and Swiss' is a boutique digital textile printing and design studio based in South Yarra, Victoria, Australia and they are holding a textile design competition. The winner will have their design printed onto 1 metre of fabric and there are also 4 different categories with a prize. 

This competition is an open ended inspirational challenge, which makes it all the more fun and the entries that have been submitted are varied and beautiful due to there being no restrictions.


Here is my design titled 'Fine Feathers & Swiss Cheese' and you can take a look at all of the submissions here on Facebook. You can even cast a vote with a 'like' if you please! Voting ends Friday 22nd August, 2014. That's this Friday!


A colourful and textured swatch with a pastel base, 
designed and created on computer. 

I invite you to put on your finest feathers and join me 
for an afternoon of tea, Swiss cheese and sweets!


Can you imagine this on a fabric to add a splash of colour to your next sewing creation!

It would be so lovely to win, but more so, it has been a week of creative fun, designing and looking at so many beautiful designs and swatches.

x Tash

Browse our large online range of gorgeous Baby Comforters!

Friday, August 08, 2014

Turn a small side yard into a useful play area

As a kid, growing up, we had a very large backyard with lots of space to run around in. My brothers and I had enough space that we were able to claim bits of the yard to do with whatever we pleased. Whether it was a small vege and flower garden, an outdoor science table or a digging patch to turn into a bike jump, we had some outdoor space that was just ours, with no adult interference!



As an adult, where we live now, we don't have much outdoor space. I'm sure it's more than a lot of families have though and I'm determined to make the most of every centimetre. I don't want my kids to miss out on having some outside freedom to tinker about in and to be able to discover and learn through play! Having a small backyard is a challenge, but Ikea makes it easy (they are not paying me to say that, I just love Ikea for ideas).

On one side of our house we have a small walkway which is about 1.5m wide. Here's what we did to turn it into a little area for the kids to play. 



The play kitchen had to come outside. I was sick of the mess it was creating inside! We then added a mirror above and a basketball ring.



Next to it we hung some metal rails, hooks, mini magnetic round storage containers and a wall hanging, all sourced from Ikea. They were very easy to attach to the wall and are perfect for storing nic nacs and for hanging water play and measuring equipment. 



We placed a long seat underneath, also from Ikea, and attached a black board from Bunnings. 



The beautiful Australian handmade bunting I picked up from the Glenbrook Markets from a shop called Bold Australia, who make and print all of their products here in Australia.



Lastly, we made a water wall and a marble run out of pegboard, recycled water bottles and wood. It took a few goes to get the angles correct, but it was fun and a learning experience for the kids in itself!



The kids love it and they can make as much mess as they like. It's hidden around the side of the house which is awesome! And I like it when they call me round to read the messages that they or their daddy have written for me!





x Tash

Browse our large online range of gorgeous Baby Comforters!




Wednesday, August 06, 2014

Cool boys fabrics to buy


There aren't as many fabrics available that boys would like, as there are for girls. But I've put my Little Ladybird design cap on and have created some prints that might interest you for those boys items that you're going to make! I even have some easy tutorials from Threading My Way to help you decide just what to make with your boy's fabrics!

The fabrics are digitally printed which entails very little waste of ink, water and electricity and are created using eco-friendly, water based inks on natural and synthetic fiber textiles. 


So far, I have used the Kona Cotton fabric and have been very happy with that, although I am in the process of testing my prints on other fabric types, for both  the ease of sewing and also for the quality of the dyes, over time, when washed.


Here are some shorts, a cushion cover and a drawstring bag that have been made with the Robot Rock, Broom Broom and Monster Party fabrics and the tutorials on how you can make them can be found here, here and here.



And pssst ....... if you want to purchase your own yard or two of these fabrics, you can click here






x Tash 


Browse our large online range of gorgeous Baby Comforters!