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Spring is in the air! I apologize if it isn’t where you are, but here in Toronto, we’ve had a nice run of warm weather that has me digging out fabrics I packed away last fall in anticipation of stitching up twirly skirts and more floaty Paige tanks.  Oh, and all the other projects I wanted to make last summer and didn’t have time to get to (like a boxy cropped jacket, perhaps a chambray romper…). I have to confess that since the New Year my sewing machine has not seen a lot of love.  I’m not gonna lie – we’ve been watching a lot of TV (thanks Netflix). But I have been doing little things here and there, like taping up everything around the house with my little crafting partner.  If you skip on over to The Motherboards you can have a peek at these little St. Patrick’s Day-inspired crafts I created.  For me St Paddy’s means Shamrock Shakes, er, I mean springtime, so all the more reason to break out the floaty gauzes and pretty prints and get sewing.

This also means I need to get finishing some projects like the HST toddler-size quilt I’ve been very slowly crafting for little Mr O. I’m obsessed with all things half-square, which was part of the inspiration for this little shamrock-trimmed box.  Let’s hope with some luck it’s really, truly spring soon!

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paper wreath by loulou james

It’s almost Christmas, but I’m always up for a holiday craft, especially if it’s decor for my home.  I’ve been plotting out the perfect wreath to add to my home and finally settled on something minimal with just the right amount of glitter – my paper wreath.

I love creating with paper and this was really easy to make.  Even though paper is quite sturdy and relatively inexpensive it can seem a bit intimidating to work with.  All you need is some super sharp scissors, a ruler and a bone folder; if you’re handy with a penknife, even better! This wreath is so minimal you could leave it up all year…if that’s your thing. To see how I crafted up my latest project, check it out here over on the Motherboards.  See you next year!

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braided cord necklace final

Are you into making jewelry? I’ve never actually tried, although my Pinterest is certainly full of lots of DIY ideas and things I want to make or repurpose into lovely bits of bling.  I finally tried my hand at it and and I have to say, I’m quite pleased with this piece I made.  I was inspired by a piece I fell in love with at Cos in Paris, but didn’t pick up.  Their jewelry is so fabulously minimal, but I couldn’t stomach the cost of basically a plastic tube necklace, plus I had minutes to try on every lovely piece of tailored simplicity in the shop that humming and hawing over baubles didn’t happen.  The next few days I wandered a trade show and saw things that reminded me of that necklace  and it drove me to the point I decided I’d finally try it out.

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Clean-finish a sleeveless top 1 || loulou james creative studio

This is one of those sewing tricks that once I figured it out, became almost a favourite thing to do. It’s like magic the way it all comes together and works every. Time. Like the pros, I think. Plus it’s a good way to hide all the seams and any imperfections hidden inside.  No one needs to know you didn’t perfectly sew a seam, then sew over it, or trim a thread (totally guilty of both). This little tutorial will also help you if you’re stuck on how to finish the shoulders of the Reverie, Kimono, or Stargaze sleep sack.

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