Thursday, July 26, 2012

Contest for Facebook Followers!

I am giving away a Tide Pool and your choice of one sea creature!
Choose a fish, starfish, turtle, octopus or seahorse to go with the tide pool!
All you have to do is leave a comment here at the blog telling me which sea creature in my shop you like best.  You can check them out here: SEA CREATURES

Added bonus:  Free shipping on any item you wish to add to your win!
Contest closes on Friday, August 10.
Rules: You must comment here at the blog.  Share my facebook page and let me know here and I will enter you twice. You must be a follower of EvesLittle Earthlings on Facebook.  The winner will be chosen using a random number generator. Value of the prize is aprox.  $75.00
Thanks for being a friend!
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Thursday, June 14, 2012

There are only !!! days until Christmas

Is it JUNE already?
As a toy maker, Christmas is always in the background.  I am either recovering from it or preparing for it!
Check out this website to see how many days are left : HOHOHO  . Those are days until the actual date.  For me, I think of Christmas starting around October 15th (yes, BEFORE Halloween, a holiday I have come to detest, more on that in October).  Mid October is the time of year that I see activity picking up  in my etsy shop 

A recent storm reminded me of a  snowy day.  We had a yard full of ice (hail) for about half an hour and the air got decidedly chilly. 
Thank goodness we have at least 4 good months of sunshine before things get dark and cold again. The weather has been crazy this year.

The chickens were not amused with the recent weather....They hid under the hedge, but looked pretty bedraggled when it was all over. All 6 of them are laying now and we have an abundance of eggs here!

I plan to take time to lounge at a lake this summer. I spent the winter restocking my shop so that I could garden and do things besides sewing while the weather is good. I will  put on my elf hat and really start working in September.  Hope you all have a great vacation planned!

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

New Sea Creatures

I could do a whole posting about how frustrating blogger is, but I will try to focus on the photos!
I made a whole batch of starfish over the weekend.  I tried them earlier in the year, but I couldn't get a pattern to work. Suddenly I had it figured out and made quite a few! Check them out in my shop here
Then I got inspired to sew up some shells.  There's a starfish, a clam with a felt pearl, a tiger cowrie, a mussel and a striped spiral.
These were fun to make.  You can view them in my etsy shop here :
I tried to make a few more this morning, but the inspiration was gone!

This bag for sea creatures is back in the shop after being absent for a while.  Sometimes it is hard to find the right materials when you're trying to use repurposed.  I finally found a thick wool blanket that was just right.  I think it is handwoven.
Here's a close up of the pearl inside the clam.  The clam and the mussel are lined in silk.
That's all for now. It's a mirale I got this posted.  Picasa has done away with their direct upload to blogger and I was a bit lost doing this posting!
Check out my other sea creatures in my shop here: sea animals

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Memories of Growing

When we renovated our kitchen, our growth chart got taken down and put away.  I found it while cleaning out  my studio space this winter.  My two children  painted it themselves over 10 years ago. My plan is to hang it somewhere in my workspace as a reminder of the fun times we had.
Anyone who came to the house was invited to add their height.  The shortest was Nicolas as a baby. His first measure was down in the grass on the chart. 
I had a home daycare for over 10 years and there were lots of kids growing up and wanting to be measured. It was a fun way for the children to see how much they'd grown and a great little activity.
Top of the chart , up by the sun and onto the wall above.....Calvin OUTGREW the growth chart when he was 16. He is now 6'7" tall. 
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Saturday, April 28, 2012


Rob took a picture of my hands today.  Hands can take a beating from sewing.  There are a lot of sharp objects in play, including scissors, knives and needles! 
Sewing machines are high speed and you have to pay attention or else!  My new  sewing machine can be dangerous and I had a number of incidents this week.  One of the circled areas is a callous that I always have from hand sewing. Luckily I haven't had any serious cuts.  Sewing has got to be safer than cooking!  At least there's no danger of getting burned.....unless you use an iron :)
Piknik has a lot of fun features....Here's how I fixed my nails and added bandaids by using their "doodle" feature :)
Amazing what you can do with technology these days! 
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Monday, April 23, 2012

France food highlights

France was just ducky.  We enjoyed many olives.
The wine was fine, even in the humblest roadside cafes
We visited a fancy chocolate making establishment and ate a lot of chocolate
We drank a lot of yummy hot coffee because it is cold in Provence in April.
But nobody tried the canned duck, which was for sale EVERYWHERE !
 I usually take toys along with me wherever I go.  You never know when a toy will be just the gift somebody is looking for.  I never gave this duckie away, but he did get into some photos....seems food was involved most of the time.
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Wednesday, April 18, 2012

How I made it: A Fox

To start making a fox, first you must find the right sweater.  Grey wool sweaters are easy to find.  Foxy coloured ones are among the hardest.  Here I am haggling with a vendor in FRANCE because I spotted an orange sweater.Unfortunately it was a designer label sweater and the vendor would not budge on the price, even though it had a hole in it, which I am showing him in the picture.  At Value Village, they give 50% off for a hole! That is my daughter looking on, she is an au pair in France, we were visiting her.

Back home again, I found a suitable sweater buried in my stash.  Here I have cut out the fox body, head and snout and tail pieces. I cut out 4, but I am only finishing one today.

Next comes the sewing machine, where I sew the legs, nose and ears.

The tail is made by sewing through small squares of fabric, then trimming them into a tail shape.

After that, I cut out the ears. They are cut from wool felt and sewn onto the head by hand. In the background is my well worn rotary mat cutting surface.  It is imbedded with fuzz from countless sweaters.

Next, I stuff the head and sew it shut, then stuff the body. Stuffing is actually one of the most difficult steps, it has to be done carefully or the fox could end up lumpy or with a weak leg. To get into all the hard to reach areas of most of my little creatures, I use a pointed dowel.  I stuff with clean, carded wool fleece that I get from a local supplier.  She actually dropped off 4 bags this morning.

Now comes the reward for the previous steps.  I embroider the facial features onto the head, securing the knots at the back, where they will be hidden.  The eyes have to be straight and spaced properly.  Too far apart and the animal looks like an alien.  Too close together and it starts looking a bit too sneaky.

Here is the finished fox, ready for packaging.  This particular fellow is going all the way to New Zealand. It is a privilege for me to be able to offer my work to friends near and far!
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Friday, April 6, 2012

Changes Afoot

After 15 years of service, it is time to change the flooring in my beloved home studio. Carpeting is comfy, but it collects dust (cutting and sewing reused sweaters is incredibly dusty).  This is a job I have been putting off for a while.

This is how things look this morning. Obviously I won't be doing any sewing for a few days and the computer is getting disconnected later today, so I won't be around online as much either.
I keep supplies for each animal in its own transparent box.  I have about 50 of these boxes, so some which you see piled high in my window well above.

I couldn't believe how much stuff I had crammed in here.  I am going to question the value of every item as it comes back (or gets donated).
Time to get organized (again, sigh, lol).  Daily cleaning and clearing is required, but it is so easy to get caught up in projects and forget about the clutter.
My online shop is still open, but shipping delays are in effect.  Check here for more

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Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Barn Raising

I made a fabric barn for a friend who is a story teller. After sewing together 3 layers of fabric and making channels in the layers, I stuffed them with fabric scraps.

Then I sewed the tops shut and added the roof supports.

I made the roof from 3 layers of thick fabric and quilted it all together in a tile pattern.
 I remembered that my friend's story had a barn with a window,so I had to make a renovation to the back of the barn!
The roof was sewn on by hand.

Doors were sewn by machine and added to the barn by hand.

Final touches included hinges and handles.That is a mouse hole in one of the doors, not bad carpentry!

The doors open and there is room for some critters inside!
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