Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Teal Tease

A sprinkle of teal ...... the fine line between blue and green.

4 Ceramic Tile Drink Coasters  [Studio Astratta]
Wooden Bunny Cave Stacker Puzzle [Folkwood]
Hand Knitted Scarf [Tigs Togs]
Vintage Napkins [Domum Vindemia]
Feathers In My Hat [Kale]
Owl Cape Costume [Sparrow & B]
Woodland Personalised cushion [Love a Rhino Designs]
Vintage Wool Jacket [OneString]
Hippo Corduroy Pants [Ted and Toot]

Have a terrifically teal day!

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Friday, April 04, 2014

Easter Ideas, Inspiration & Freebies

6 Craft Ideas to do with your kids this Easter

Painted Easter Egg Rocks by No Time For Flash Cards
Leaf Print Eggs by Spoonful
Paddle Pop Stick Puzzle by Sassy Dealz
Easter Egg Tree by Little Ladybird
Paint Chip Egg Collage by Little Ladybird
Bunny Bums Banner by Pieces of Me

 Lots of Free Printables for all your Easter Celebrations

Easter Cupcake Wraps by Honey Jumble
Easter Egg Hunt Signs by The Diary Of Daves Wife

Shop with some Handmade Love this Easter!

x Tash

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Friday, February 28, 2014

Make a Fabric Baby Book!

I loved making this baby fabric book with the help of Threading My Way. It was a gift for a friend who had a baby girl earlier this year and here's how we did it.

- 1/2 yard or so of batting
- pieces of plain cotton material (I used 6 rectangles 40cm x 20cm in size)
- material pictures to applique

How to Make
1) Cut pieces of material to 40cm x 20cm in size. I cut 6 pieces to make 12 pages in total.
2) Applique the pictures to each page. Make sure there is enough room in the middle for stitching down the center.
3) Decide the order of the pages and which piece is to be the front/back cover.
4) Cut 3 pieces of batting to the same size (maybe a tiny bit smaller) as the rectangle pieces (40cm x 20cm).
5) Place the batting to the wrong side (inside/no pictures) of the front/back cover.
6) Pin together the inside front cover/inside back cover to the front/back cover already against the batting. Make sure that this is done with the picture sides facing each other/together.
7) Sew all the way around the edge, leaving an opening at the bottom edge for turning.

8) Clip corners and turn right side out and stitch opening closed.
9) Repeat steps 5) 6) 7) for the other pages. (sew pages 1/8 to 2/7) (sew pages 3/6 to 4/5).
10) Stack pages together to make the book, then center pages making sure pages are in the correct order of how you want them to be.
11) Pin along the center to secure the stack. Then sew along the center.


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Friday, December 13, 2013

Most viewed posts from 2013. Fun ideas for Christmas!

I haven't written many posts during the last 12 months (oh dear, only 9, I've just counted up) as my energy has been directed elsewhere, but 2013 has been a fun year!

My husband and I have been investigating what needs to be done with SEO for the Little Ladybird website to help improve its Google ranking. We've found that there is quite a science behind it! It's not as straightforward as we thought it would be, but I'm pleased that Little Ladybird has reached page one on a search some products. Facebook doesn't provide a big audience for business pages anymore. Unless a promotion is set up to pay for targeting of your posts towards a specified audience group, not many people have the opportunity to see your posts in their newsfeeds. This, combined with the fact that I think the novelty and the excitement for people to be able to purchase products via Facebook has worn off, has meant that businesses are having to re-think their social media approaches. There is an abundance of business pages online, all selling similar products, and to be honest, I think people are overloaded by the amount of information that pops up in their newsfeed. Hence, social media no longer plays a major role in sales for Little Ladybird, but it is still a good platform from which to share ideas and photos with followers.

The push for more customers wanting to buy locally made and handmade products in Australia has increased. I am amazed at how many clever people there are in Australia who are making gorgeous products, especially for babies and children. My favourite place online to direct people to is Madeit. Even if you don't need to buy anything, it is worth visiting. You will enjoy looking at the eye-catching fabrics, unique ideas and stunning designs that are restocked regulary onto the cyber shelves of shopowner's online stores. I haven't invested as much time into my Madeit store as I would have liked. However, the feedback which I have received from customers who have purchased from my Madeit store, has been excitingly positive. I'm looking forward to continuing to be a part of the Madeit community next year.

Pam from Threading My Way (a much bigger blog than mine and regular posts!) has used some fabrics that I designed to do some sewing for my kids. And I was pretty excited to receive my first sale from my fabric shop. Someone from New York is using my cars fabric to make their grandson some gifts.

Offline, Little Ladybird has continued to grow steadily. Regular attendance at the local markets has started to attract some monthly repeat customers, which I am very grateful for. It pays to get out there in person so people can see your products in the flesh. People love to touch and feel as much as they like to look!

On a personal note, I set out this year to spend more quality time with my kids, especially knowing that my daughter will be starting school next year. So on the days that I wasn't at Big School myself as a teacher, I tried to be aware of making the most of our precious days together. Of course, uninterrupted time playing with my kids did not happen as much as I would have liked, but a conscious effort to slow down each day to enjoy the little things, has made the last year a beautiful time with my kids. The best days were not necessarily the planned ones, the ones where we went places or the ones were we spent money. The best days were the ones where we read books, made a cubby house, had clothesline concerts, imagined the clouds on sunny days into dragons, went on bear hunts and watched Jane Austen movies in our pajamas. 

These types of days and moments are the ones that very quickly slip away as your children grow up. Making sure I don't miss out is hard and it takes discipline, especially since I'm someone who doesn't like to sit still. However, the lists of jobs can wait (most of them) as my children will not wait for anyone (even me) while growing up! 

Reading the blog Zen Habits has helped to make my year a good one. It provides great information on how we can simplify our lives to make room for the more important things. I don't read every post that pops up on my email and I certainly don't do or believe in all the content shared. However, it is good for giving me a 'kick up the bum' every now and then, when I start slipping back into the trap of trying to do it all and find myself focusing on too much and spreading myself too thinly.

Even though I have not been around on my blog much, there were a few posts that attracted many readers and some of the photos were accepted onto Craftgawker.
If you missed them earlier, here were the most popular posts of 2013.

Christmas isn't too far away, and I don't know what it is like in your house, but in ours, it wouldn't be unacceptable if Christmas was celebrated all year round. The kids certainly make this time of year exciting for everyone!

It was the first year my kids have had a photo with Santa as it was the first year they have agreed to one. I'm not up for lining up with crying kids and forcing them to sit on a strange man's lap if they don't want to! However, seeing as this year the kids were down with the idea, we got a photo. I'm not going to post it here (i'm sure you can imagine what it looks like, yep, a beard, lots of red, two kids smiling and the words, Merry Christmas 2013), but I'm happy to say it was a good one and I even framed it.

When asked the standard question from Santa that I think every Santa asks (why would they not, what else is there to talk about?), my daughter said that for Christmas she would like a pink scooter. My son asked for a Spiderman scooter (it will be a green scooter and we will put a Spiderman sticker on it to make it authentic). Later, my son he said what that he really wanted for Christmas was to be 5 as he wants to go to school with his sister next year cause "I will miss her too much"..... He says the most sensitive things sometimes (when he's not shooting us all with spider webs from his wrists).

The best thing about this time of year though, is definitely not the presents. Apart from fun moments spent with family and friends, in our house, my kids love a bit of festive cooking and craft. Here are my favourite Christmas activities I'm sharing with you this year.

Sour Dough Santa Handprints
Here's the recipe

Making Reindeer Food is an easy gift for lots of children

 Download your free printable label here

Rudolph Biscuits using a marsh-mellow, a red smarty and some pretzels
(my photo only as your guide to making them!)

Too easy Mini Gingerbread House using biscuits! 
(again, only my photo as a guide on how to make one)

Personalised Christmas Cards from my eBay store
The too easy option and emailed to you so you can print as many copies as you wish!

Thanks for sticking around and I hope you have a fun Christmas filled with laughter, family and friends. See you next year!


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Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Free Tickets to the Baby & Toddler Show in Sydney

A few months ago, a close friend of mine took over the business Cotton Bottom, an online store that provides information on the cost, environmental and health benefits of using modern cloth nappies.  

Cotton Bottom stocks a large range of modern cloth nappies, nappy accessories, swim nappies, training pants, gifts for babies and children, skincare products and Sinchies Reusable Food Pouches.
Some of the brands they stock are Tots Bots, GroVia, Close, Baby BeeHinds, Ergo, Nature's Child, Bummis, Sweet Pea, Mother-Ease, aden + anais, Sinchies.
I am excited to say that I will be joining my friend, Christine, to help in her Cotton Bottom store at The Baby and Toddler Show in Sydney! The show runs from 11th - 13th October, 2013 at The Sydney Exhibition Centre.

And, better still, I have 8 FREE tickets to The Baby & Toddler Show to give away!
To win one of these tickets, you need to do the 3 following easy things. 
1) Join my blog here, either via GFC or subscribe via email (on the left side bar)
2) Head on over to Cotton Bottom on Facebook and like their page
3) Leave me a comment on this post below containing your email address
The first 8 people to do this will receive a free ticket!!!!
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Saturday, August 24, 2013

Hooray For Handmade! Beautiful Australian Gifts for Babies & Children

This week I am showcasing the wonderful range of beautiful handmade products we have in Australia. I have hand picked, and am featuring, some of my favourite items, handmade by individuals and available to the public via their Made-it stores. Made-it was created and is owed by a talented and friendly person named Bec Davies.

I have specifically chosen a range of unique, gorgeous and affordable items that would be ideal as baby and children's gifts.

For Spring/Summer 2013, I am excited to have teamed up with Threading My Way to make a range of fitted appliqued tee and skirt sets. They are based around the theme 'Summer Playtime' and are made with cute vintage style black silhouettes on fresh white or pale pink backgrounds. The skirts are made from high quality dark blue denim with a matching polka dot trim around the bottom, using Michael Miller cotton fabric. Sizes range from 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5 and are of course available from my Little Ladybird Made-it store!

girls_clothing_littleladybird_skirts_tees_gorgeous clothes_handmade

girls_clothing_littleladybird_skirts_tees_gorgeous clothes_handmade

Also listed in my store, are some personalised storage cases
They have been popular as a newborn baby girl or newborn baby boy gift. Perfect to store cards or keepsakes in!

A must see are the products below that I have selected from some other stores on Made-it. Go and have a gawk at their stores, add them to your favourites and be sure to visit often to see what new goodies they have been busy creating. 

We sure do have a lot of talent in Australia! Hooray for Handmade!!

         Mozzie & MacEclectic bits for the little people (and some for the grown-ups too!)

Raw ToysSweet and simple toys to inspire open ended play in little ones

 Little Leaf ~ Children's clothing, Baby Bollywood Pants

                                                 Little Paper Stand ~ Unique designs using quality card and papers

Bubby Makes Three ~ Little things for little ones

The China Hutch ~ Hand painted porcelain with a difference

Ame and Ela ~ Beautiful handcrafted accessories for you and little ones

Harlow Designs ~ Retro kid's crayon wallet

Dee Dub Designs ~ Beautiful personalised designs, prepared to print to make DIY easy! 

Squiggle and Stitch  ~ Handmade decor and accessories which are fun and vibrant

Ted and Toot ~ Original & Unique Children's Clothing, Accessories and PDF Patterns

Just Picking Daisiescute, quirky children's clothing and accessories

Birdy Num Num Design ~ handmade homewares for tiny people

Pussy's Bowtiquechildren's toys and softies with all the bows & whistles

One Busy Sloth ~ Soccer Postman Satchel Style Backpack

It's My Room ~ Personalise your child's room with custom made decor

Evergreen Baby ~ Spring Time Jade Bunny Comforter

Monkeys Over the Moon ~ Hand drawn and hand stitched designs for your little monkeys

Sunshine Boys ~ Everything for boys, tee shirts, long sleeve shirts, shorts, hats and teddies

Hot Fudge ~ delicious clothes and accessories for children

The Print Press Studio ~ Sometimes vintage, slightly whimsical, always playful!

LIttle Lambs ~ Retro Inspired Collections for Babies and Little People

       Little Boubba ~ Bibs, Blankets, Ruffles, Dresses, Purses, Fabric Diaries & notebooks

One String ~ 80's Cassette Ra-Ra Skirt

Three Kittens'tea party' puff sleeve top

Cheeky Stitches ~ Clear view toy storage bag

Sweet September ~ simple, wearable, sweet and stylish designs

From 10year old Anja, a Junior Made-it Seller!
 The Flower Garden ~ Ruby the Rabbit Softie

Take a look at all the talented and enthusiastic Junior Made-it Sellers here!
 I wish there was something like this around when I was a kid, I would have gone crazy making stuff .... then again maybe it was a good idea it wasn't around, hehe!


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