Tuesday, September 4, 2012

To Market...again!

On Saturday we made a long awaited return to the market scene with our attendance at the Dreamers Markets in Parramatta.  It was a lovely way to ease back into the swing of things as there was minimal travel involved and baby Jemima was a dream, sleeping all day and waking just the once for a feed, plus all the lovely shoppers and stallholders {Life's a Stitch, ApplecartCo, Naks Candles, The Twin Thing and Sweetness the Patisserie - just to name a few}  who all made the day so enjoyable!

A huge thanks to everyone who visited the market and came by to say hello, it's always lovely meeting the shoppers and hearing your feedback on the products. Yes my tablecloths need a good iron...but after Saturday they need to be washed too! I'm currently looking into other markets I may be able to attend in the Sydney area and will keep you posted if I do any in the near future! 

Monday, August 20, 2012


The newest member of our family, who made a timely arrival just over a week ago, weighing in at 3.45kg and 49.5cm long...little Jemima Grace!

Needless to say we are all smitten and she is smothered with kisses from her big brothers, who were adamant they only wanted another brother!  Jemima is doing really well, and I'm adjusting to the sleepless nights again. I can't wait to make her some cute girly things either!!

PS: No, I don't leave her sleeping on her tummy, it was just for some pics!

Friday, August 3, 2012

Making & Baking!

I have a mountain of sewing to finish, in various stages of completion...bibs awaiting binding, softies to cut, crayon wallets to be put together, dummy clips to make, you get the idea!  But all I feel like doing is baking... and eating! And then I'm too tired to accomplish much else.

The melting moments were one of last week's efforts and went down a treat with the boys.  The recipe always works and the results are delicious.  Today I'm determined to finish off a few sewing jobs before attempting any baking...

Tuesday, July 31, 2012


With less than two weeks to go till our bub is due, I'm trying to channel the urge to nest to get lots of stock made... And at the same time refining a couple of designs to make a few improvements!

One of the improvements that I'm pleased to announce is that all bibs will now be made with two snap positions to allow for use by younger babies or those with smaller necks! It's just one of those things that has been on my 'to do' list for ages and has finally been actioned.  Hooray for getting things ticked off the list!!

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

The Dreamers...

It would be safe to say that Sydney and surrounding areas are saturated with markets at the moment, however, every now and then I come across one that gets me a little bit excited and wanting to be a part of the action.  Apart from Handmade Canberra, would be the gorgeous, handmade Bluebird Market at the Blue Mountains, which I'm really hoping to be a part of one day. 

But coming up really soon is a brand new, 100% handmade, Dreamers Market.  The first market will be held on September 1 at the Riverside Theatres Courtyard in Parramatta, can you tell I'm already looking forward to getting back into the market scene!  Hopefully this baby will co-operate and I can man my stall myself on the day!!  In the lead up to the market the organisers have a stack of great giveaways planned so head over to the Facebook page, like it, check the box to say you'll be at the market and you'll automatically go into the running to score some handmade goodies. What have you got to lose, head over and check it out!!

Saturday, July 14, 2012

Coming Soon...

So posts here have been few and far between lately, and I'm getting bigger and slower by the hour - or at least that's what it feels like sometimes!  I'm so grateful to have had the Mister home for the school holidays but he is about to head back to work on Monday, *insert sad face*!!  And we don't have very long to go until a whole new person joins our family! My OB sent us off for a growth scan last week and we were so fortunate to get the following sneak peek of our little baby.

How cute is that little face! And how long do those toes look!!  With just four weeks to go until he/she is due it won't be long before we're in the midst of newborn madness, and we can't wait!

Monday, July 2, 2012

Family Celebrations.

The last few weeks have been a tad hectic around here with our big boy turning FIVE!  The celebrations were spread over a week so it made for a busy (but fun) time for the whole family.  He really wanted a dinosaur themed party(ies) and happened to be looking over my shoulder as I looked at some parties on pinterest so was quite specific about what he wanted!  About the only thing I have sewn over the last few weeks was this Dinosaur Hoodie following a tutorial from here...

He loves it so much and the decision to make it at about 9pm the night before his birthday was totally worth it for the amount of wear it's had already!!  We celebrated his actual birthday with our families and the dinosaur theme was carried by the cake, a simple layered mudcake topped with a toy dinosaur... not the prettiest cake I've ever made but so very delicious.  You can find the recipe here!

The 'party' continued with a midweek birthday celebration at preschool followed the next weekend with a dino dominated party with friends!  The cake was based on a Women's Weekly cake but at the last minute we decided to draw our own template as the one in the book looked a bit like a ferocious wallaby rather than a T-rex.  Mr IndigoElephant was a huge help with cake and cookie decorating, a hidden talent that will be utilised at every party from now on!! And the birthday boy decorated the choc crackle volcanos with coloured chocolate lava...  The whole family will be involved in the food prep for our next party which Mr 3.5 is already planning for himself - thankfully not until the end of the year!!

All these birthday celebrations were closely followed by our 10th wedding anniversary - I can't believe how fast those years have gone - and my mum's birthday, by which stage I'd completely run out of baking energy!  Now I need to focus on getting some stock sewn up to tide me over the early weeks with a newborn, who is due in about six weeks.  Yes things have been crazy, but are about to become more so!!

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Dressing Up!

The boys were invited to a good friend's fairy princess party last week and were very keen to dress up, as long as it wasn't anything fairy princessy!  My suggestion of going as Prince Charming(s) didn't go down too well either, so Superman and Batman were it.  The boys were gifted a Superman and Batman costume awhile ago and have since outgrown those, but still want to dress up as them whenever they can. 

I decided it would be pretty easy, and fairly inexpensive, to make them some capes, instead of buying a whole costume, with the thought of applique-ing a couple of t-shirts with logos to match.  The capes were made using the pattern in Meg McElwee's Growing Up Sew Liberated, I just omitted the hood on both capes and did a reverse scallop pattern on the bottom of Batman's cape.  Those points took some time to turn out, but I got there in the end!  

Of course I left the tees till the last minute and headed to the shops to buy the plain tees the afternoon before the party, but fortunately stumbled across some ready made tees for just a few dollars more than the plain tees!  I relaxed my never-buying-licenced-clothing rule this time and bought them before I could change my mind... The boys had a great time at the party and are loving dressing up whenever possible!

Friday, June 1, 2012

The Pyjama Sweatshop!

Not really but I have churned out four pair of pyjamas for the boys over the last few days and that's about all I've managed to achieve.  Of course when I went to dig out my Slumber Party Jammies pattern, I couldn't find it!  So I had a look through my other patterns and books and decided to try the Goodnight, Sweetheart pattern from  Sewing For Boys...

I really just wanted a basic long pant pattern as they've outgrown the last one I used, so I omitted the faux fly detail but kept the cuffed legs as I love that they can be let down to accomodate future growth spurts.  As it happens, I ran out of navy thread so dashed to the shops for some, taking Mr 3.5 with me, who then spotted some fabric he wanted made into pyjamas too, and I spotted a dinosaur print cotton for Mr 5, who is obessed with dinosaurs right now.  And that's how I ended up making four sets of pants and buying more fabric instead of sticking to the stash busting plan!

The only way to make these two normally very active boys sit still long enough for a photo is to turn the TV on!  An extra special treat before they're dressed for the day!!  Below is the cuff detail I'm loving, which is only sewn up at a couple of points so once they're let down you don't end up with needle holes the whole way around...  Not that I think the boys would notice, but I will appreciate it when I come to letting them down next year - or sometime before then!

And the stash busting is going surprisingly well, apart from the addition of the fabrics for the other pyjamas... so stay tuned for some more pics of the stash being reduced.  I'm also hoping that along the way I can try some of the hundreds of tutorials and ideas I have pinned and so achieve the whole 'two birds, one stone' thing!!

Tuesday, May 29, 2012


I love me some pretty accessories, and as I wear lots of dark colours and non patterned clothes, I love brightening it all up with a great necklace, scarf or hair accessory.  Lately I've been noticing and pinning lots of fabric or yarn wrapped bangles, see how pretty they are!

1. Hand Wrapped Bangles from Cut Out & Keep
2. Pastel Bangles from The Glossy Queen
3. Martha Stewart's Textured String Bracelets
4. Fabric Bangle from Three Sisterz

Then, just the other day, my IRL* crafty {and all round lovely} friend Jess, posted a tutorial on her blog too... go and check it out, she's done great step-by-step pics. I actually had all the bits to make one up as it's been something I've wanted to try for so long and Jess' post gave me the final push I needed to actually do it.  A few things I did differently: my fabric glue dries really fast so I didn't have to peg the ends, and I didn't leave any uncovered sections of bangle - it all comes down to personal preference though.  And that's the really great thing about making your own...you make exactly what you want!

Sadly today's grey miserable day makes for dull pics!

I must say I'm pretty happy with the end result, and can't wait to make some more... I wonder if my fabric glue will hold on some acrylic bangles I no longer wear, or some skinny metal ones?? Might have to experiment once the boys are tucked up for the night!

*In Real Life


In case you hadn't worked it out yet, things I have been slowing down hugely lately.  That's not to say that there aren't a gazillion more things to get done before this baby makes an appearance, but the reality of pregnancy third time around with my pregnancy-hating body has meant something had to give.  I really didn't think it would happen this early but my market involvement has been put on hold until after this bub is out.  Online stores will remain open until early August and if you're near the ACT you can always pop into Shop Handmade to stock up on IndigoElephant goodies!  I'm still sewing, but sadly cannot manage the many hours of making required to fully stock a market stall.

That said there are some great markets coming up that I would've loved to be at!  First up, The Bluebird Market is on this Saturday 2nd June in Leura quickly followed by  Handmade Canberra on Saturday 9th & Sunday 10th June at the National Convention Centre.  If you're looking for something to do those weekends, these two events would be fantastic to visit!

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Cleaning, Clearing and Tidying Up!

Yes that's right, I'm in full nesting mode!  I wish I had this level of motivation more often, but it feels fantastic to be getting rid of things we no longer use, have outgrown or are just broken but shoved in a corner to be dealt with later.  To be honest the one room that I haven't gotten to yet is the sewing/storage/soon-to-be-baby's room, or rather, I've done a couple of partial clear outs but have so much on the 'to sew' list that it's hard to completely deal with everything in there.

So this week, once my back recovers from the effort required to clear out our wardrobes, I'm finally getting around to making some more pyjamas for my boys. 

I've had the Make It Perfect Slumber Party Jammies pattern tucked away for some time now, as well as some fabric that has been pre-washed and ironed but left sitting in the 'personal sewing' pile It's time to begin the stash busting...I'm off to trace out the sizes I need!!

Friday, May 11, 2012

Instant Crafty Gratification!

I woke this morning feeling yuck... snotty, tired, achey and wishing I could just roll over and return to the land of nod.  But Friday is generally our home day so the boys had to be dealt with, washing had to be done with a forecast for a 28 degree day, and I had to pee (again)!  We've had a very quiet day, and despite having a mountain of IndigoElephant stuff to do, I just needed a break - but still wanted to do something a little bit creative.  Enter the Washi Tape Magnets...

These are so super easy, there's a detailed tutorial over at Twirling Betty, but basically you peel off the details on those plumber's/electrician's magnets that keep appearing in one's mailbox, stick on some washi tape, cut it out and trim the ends to look like they've been torn... Or as I did, just use the pinking shears to trim the ends! And you're done.  Then you can stand back and admire them on your fridge, or wherever!  Mine are holding up the pic of that other little collaborative creation in my belly, who as we speak is kicking up a storm in my right ribs and left hip!

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Super Busy!

Do you sometimes have a week or so when you feel like life is spiralling out of control?  And you start resembling one of those little mice on a wheel... Going round and round but not really getting anywhere?  That is sort of how I'm feeling at the moment, with pregnancy induced aches and pains limiting what I can achieve despite the brain running ahead with elaborate 'to do' lists.  Honestly my brain is in serious nesting mode but the body just can't keep up, so much that the Mister said my sewing room is starting to resemble something from Hoarders (again)!

Enjoying the dodgem cars.
The weekend was a celebration of Mr IndigoElephant's birthday and we had a very full weekend with a school fair on Saturday, a celebratory birthday dinner, Auskick for our big boy, church and a birthday lunch in amongst a few essential things that need to be done regularly (man I hate not having a dishwasher!!).  And as an extra special present for the Mister, he had the privilege of putting together flat pack bunk beds for the boys!

Making sure it all fits in the box before wrapping it up!
So yesterday was spent catching up on neglected housework and putting together some stock for Shop Handmade in Canberra.  Now Monday is over, the week is happening and I'm hoping to make some headway on my current 'to do' list Wishing you all a wonderful week, whatever might be keeping you busy!

Monday, April 23, 2012

To Cover...Or Not?

Earlier today on facebook I asked our wonderful likers what their thoughts were on nursing/feeding covers before I went to the trouble of making one for feeding our soon-to-be-here baby... And I must admit that their replies have me more confused than before I asked the question!  While everyone has totally valid reasons for loving or hating them I think it might be something that might be very useful for us once this baby arrives.

See with baby #1 I could sit at leisure in parents rooms while out and about and take my own sweet time with feeding him and cover up as needed with a muslin wrap.  When #2 came along #1 was small enough to leave strapped securely in the pram, supplied with snacks, while I took the time I needed in a parents room to feed #2. But I worry that with #3, the boys, who will be 5 and 3.5, won't play quietly in parents rooms and I'll be that annoying mum whose kids crazy shenanigans are distracting the other babies from feeding properly.  Plus I have vivid (and painful) memories of #2 craning his head to see what #1 was up to during what was supposed to be feeding time, so I figured some kind of barrier might help the little one concentrate.

Nursing Cover from BabyWilde on etsy
I love the style of the one pictured above, with boning in the top so it doesn't sit completely draped over the baby's face and you can still see bub and whatever else is going on while feeding.  I also love that they have an adjustable strap so it sits around your neck and you have both hands free for bub!  There are stacks of tutorials online so I figured I'd give one a go and if it didn't suit us then I could always give it to someone else having a baby... Now if I could just pick a fabric...

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Easter Gifts.

Our boys are blessed to have super lovely preschool teachers and Easter is a chance for the boys to show their teachers a little bit of appreciation in the form of some edible yumminess. However, I'm aware that the teachers are bombarded with a mountain of chocolate at Easter so we kept it relatively simple this year by making these...

I'd seen something similar out in blogland, but didn't pin it because they were made into glass jars, and I wanted something more little-boy-friendly!  So I can't remember exactly where the idea is from, suffice to say it's not my own!

So what we used were some cello bags I had leftover from an old packaging idea (though you could easily use squares of clear cello), with some shredded green paper from the $2 Shop, some decent quality chocolate eggs and a fluffy chick for each bag.  They were sealed shut, a length of ribbon tied around the top and a small gift tag added to identify which gift was for which teacher...or maybe more because the boys were adamant I not mix up the bags they'd each made!! This also proved to be a good counting exercise for Mr 3 who likes to jump from nine to twelve, skipping ten and eleven along the way!  Oh, and the tags were a fortunate find on Pinterest... you can download your own here - just don't send all twenty-six pages to print (unless you want to of course)!!

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Market Wrap Up.

So yesterday was our day at Handmade Canberra, and as always it was lovely to meet and chat with some of the nicest shoppers I've come across at markets.  It's always a pleasure to welcome back the regulars too and to hear feedback on how much they love what they've previously purchased!!  Seriously, Canberrans have a wonderful appreciation for handmade products and are always interested in the inspiration and processes behind the various products.  The day was a bit quieter than we've previously experienced down there, but it turns out that it's a long weekend for the ACT and lots of residents seemed to have headed out of town!  On the upside though, it did allow me a chance to get to know some of the stallholders around us and to catch up with old market buddies.
If you look really closely, you'll see our stand in the middle of the pic!
Mr IndigoElephant even bumped into his cousin's husband (one of the blokiest blokes I know and not one you'd expect to see at Handmade, though he did state that he'd reached his arty crafty quota for the year!) and daughter out for a bit of shopping.  They had a great time catching up, which just happened to be photographed in the picture above!  

The Face Washers were popular too!
It was great catching up with super talented designer and photographer Ros from Grace Designs who has captured some wonderful images from the market, including all the ones in this post.  The rest can be viewed over here, looking through all these makes me wish I had more time to spend shopping at the market, but Mr IndigoElephant is onto me and conveniently disappears for long periods.  No he's not shopping, just exploring Canberra!!  I'm glad I was able to add to my Six In A Row collection before the market started and while the Mister was getting coffee, because that's all the shopping I managed to fit in! 

Tie Tees are always in demand!
We sold stacks of Tie Tees and Bunny Tees, so I have quite a few custom orders to get made up this week of sizes that sold out during the day.  And I need to get more Pram Blankets made, thanks to their popularity on the day and restocking supplies at Shop Handmade... Actually I need to get a lot of things made this week to fill orders that have come in recently! Better get making!

Friday, March 9, 2012


That's right it's time for Handmade Canberra again and so we're off on a quick visit to our nation's capital.  This will be our first market for 2012 and you will only find IndigoElephant there on the Saturday.  Unfortunately my back can't cope with standing for two days + eight-ish weeks of all day sickness at the beginning of this pregnancy has made preparation for a two day event a challenge!  So, if you want to get your fix of our goodies, head over to the National Convention Centre on Saturday 10th March from 10am - 4pm.  You can find us on the right hand side of the far left aisle in the main room, don't forget to come and say hi.  There is plenty of parking on site and loads of gorgeous stalls to shop at.  A full list of particiapting designers can be found here - don't tell Mr IndigoElephant, but I'm already planning my shopping list!

Sunday, February 26, 2012

The Week That Was...

Another week has slipped past, faster than expected (again).  Things have been super busy at IndigoElephant HQ, as always there's the constant juggle between parenting and working, which will only become trickier once #3 arrives!  I'm hoping to be a bit better organised by then, or at least that's the aim!  If you'd like to see what's been keeping me busy, read on:

Buying new fabric, washing it and watching it dry!  Can't wait to cut into some of this lot today.  I'm particularly loving the second from the right (above), it's called Ice Cream from Riley Blake's Fly A Kite range, the colours are just gorgeous!

Also arriving during the week was something for me... Lotta Jansdotter's Standing Stones in yellow.  I'm planning on using it to myself a Make It Perfect Versatile Wrap Skirt to get me through this pregnancy.  It'll look great with boots through Winter and sandals during Summer, as long as I don't hate it by then!

Of course most of the week has been spent working on Face Washer sets and Burp Cloths... pinning, sewing, trimming, turning, ironing, top stitching and packaging in the lead up to Handmade Canberra on March 10.  You'll find us there on the Saturday only, as I can't manage a two day event at the moment.  If you do come along, please stop and say hi, it's always wonderful to meet you guys in person!!

The coming week will probably look much the same, with lots of cutting, pinning and sewing squeezed in amongst the regular Mummy-type things that fill my week.  Hope you all have a fantastic week too!

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Do you do Valentines?

Social media is buzzing with good wishes, gift ideas and crafty activites for Valentines Day.  But we've never celebrated the occasion, even back in our dating days.  Each to their own though, I have lots of friends who do celebrate the day, and I don't want to take anything away from them!

Each year, in the lead up to V Day, Mr IndigoElephant reminds me that he hasn't gotten me anything, to which I reply that I haven't gotten him anything either! Almost as though we need to have the conversation, in case our expectations for the day might have changed from what we've done for the last thirteen-ish years.  If  I was doing something to mark the day, I'd want to make some of these...

The Smitten Kitchen White and Dark Hearted Brownies have been on my "to try" list for ages. Aren't they cute!! I will get around to making them someday... just not today as the sewing machine is calling me.  

I feel incredibly blessed to have a husband who demonstrates his love for his family every single day, in numerous ways.  Particularly over the last eight weeks, while I've been unbelievably nauseous and ill, he has taken on the full load of caring for us, doing all the meal planning & cooking, grocery shopping, cleaning (including when I couldn't make it to the bathroom before a vomit), all things related to the boys from bottom wiping, to entertaining, to baths & bedtime stories - literally everything. He's a treasure, and I'm so grateful he's my Mister!

We Baked.

Sydney weather has been more than a little damp lately, read rain or storms - every. single. day.   Our garden and nearby parks are a soggy mess, the boys are fast developing cabin fever and there is only so much TV we can handle!  So yesterday we baked some of Emma's delicious jam drops. Such an easy recipe and the kids love them!

I don't think these will last too long!  My boys aren't overly into crafty activities, so I'm being tested in my ability to keep them occupied during this long wet spell.  And with more rain forecast over the next few weeks, I'm fast running out of ideas.  Any tips you have will be more than welcome!

Monday, February 13, 2012

Something New.

Two things I'm frequently being asked for are items that are more unisex, and things that are a bit more Australian, to send to friends or rellies overseas.  While I make it a point to stay away from fabrics emblazoned with koalas, kangaroos and boomerangs, because they're just not my style, I was over the moon when I recently came across some fabric printed with May Gibbs' Gumnut Babies.  And they've been made up into some bibs, both Dribble and Feeding size.

What do you think?  Just wrap them up with a copy of one of the books and you're all set for a practical and stylish gift!  Now if I could just hold off keeping one of everything for our baby I might actually get some work done!!

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Some Exciting News!

Things have been extremely quiet at IndigoElephant HQ lately and our online presence has been almost non-existent... but with very good reason!  We're expecting our third little bubba later this year (YAY!) and I have been struggling with morning-noon-night sickness and so very tired.  

Image from here {unable to locate original}
While I'm  not sure what this year will look like for IndigoElephant, I'm fairly certain things will be much slower than usual.  You can still find stock over at Shop Handmade, Canberra and in.cube8r, Mosman, as well as online via Etsy and madeit.  Or follow along on facebook to keep up with market dates and special offers.  If there is something specific that you're after, you can always drop me a line at TheIndigoElephant [at] gmail [dot] com... I'm still loving working on special orders for our lovely customers!

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Resolutions, and all that!

Happy New Year my friends!!  Yes, I know I'm a bit late, but I think it's a sign of being so relaxed that the days are melding into each other... I often have to think about which day of the week it is!!  We enjoyed a lovely week at the beach before Christmas, followed by a day trip to Canberra for Handmade, followed by stacks of Christmas shenanigans.  NYE was spent with great friends and I was even awake, ready to welcome in the new year, for the first time in about five years! 

Now I've never been one for making resolutions at the beginning of each year, but a conversation with the always delightful Brianna from Mrs Peterson Pottery, had me thinking that the way I work has to change this year or I will end up burnt out by June!  The late nights for weeks on end while trying to be the wife and mum I want to be just wasn't all that successful last year.  And frankly, the reason I began IndigoElephant was so I could stay home with my beautiful boys for as long as possible and spend lots of quality time with them, not so easy on less than five hours sleep a night!  So my resolution for 2012 is: to work smarter (thanks Brianna!!) So far it's going really well, seeing as today is my first day "back at work"... but I'll let you know how things stand throughout the year!  How about you, did you make any resolutions?  And how are you going with keeping them?