Seagull felt soft toy

Meet Swoop and Sheila, the first of a flock of seagulls I am making for a mobile.

I couldn’t find any patterns for a soft toy seagull in flight (or any others sea bird for that matter), so I’ve drafted my own. These two are sightly different as I’m trying out variations on the pattern.

I used blanket stitch on the body and wings of Swoop (shown on brown table), and two layers of wool felt for his wings. Sheila’s (lower of the parr, on white table) body was sewn using a running stitch and then turned – which I think looks better. I also prefer her stuffed beak with its fuller curve, but not her wings. I tried doubling the felt only on the front, where a bird’s wings are thickest, but it made the rest of the wing too thin.

They’re a very sweet work in progress.

Costumes and decor for “space dance”

I’ve been back at the sewing machine and busy with paint, creating costumes  and decor for our class dance performance. We used ultra-violet lights for the performance had an ‘outer space’ theme, so the everything was planned to glow like stars, comets and planets. Come check out more on my teaching blog!

Some more Puriri moths


DSC02012Mond frontHena frontLune front 2

Some more creatures from my Puriri moth collection. I got such a lovely response to the last lot, you’ve prompted me to share more!

Thank you for your kind words about these little lovelies. It seems they are well liked. That is encouraging and heartening to me.


“Helmut Makes A Quilt” short film about sewing is out NOW

Crafters, quilters and stitchers in New Zealand, there’s a film playing at the New Zealand Film Festival that you must see. “Helmut Makes A Quilt” is a locally-made short film, about the friendship between two people who sew. Quilter Marion starts a penpal exchange with Helmut, an unlikely crafter who stitches in the prison laundry.

Their friendship grows through the gifts they make and send to each other. That’s where the New Zealand crafting community came into it. Volunteer stitchers, including me, created the dozens of goods that the characters created. It was a wonderful experience to sew for and work on this film (which I will write about later), and I can’t wait to see it on the big screen.

The film is made by the hugely talented Greg Wood, which speaks volumes for it already. And the word that I’ve heard, from reliable sources, is that advance screenings have been really, really good. But heck, it’s about sewing! Quilting! That gives it extra points in my book

“Helmut Makes A Quilt” is scheduled to play before David Gordon Green‘s feature-length film “Prince Avalanche” during the Film Festival. There are three screening sessions in Auckland, which are as follows:

Friday 19th July, 8.45 pm at Rialto
Thursday 25th July, 4.30 pm at Sky City Theatre
Friday 26th July, 7.00 pm at Sky City Theatre
Other screenings around the country are yet to be announced. If you’re in Auckland, come join me at the very first big screen showing of “Helmut Makes A Quilt” this Friday.