Found my making mojo

Hey everyone! Apologies for yet another hiatus from me! I’ve been concentrating so much on Nine Dots Creative, I’ve got to admit I’ve kinda neglected Linziloop. At the end of 2016 however, I did get back to making, in the way of beanbags! I made one for little loop for her  3rd birthday (I know, where did the time go?!) and I enjoyed getting back to the sewing machine so much that I decided to make a couple more to sell. I’m taking custom orders too, I’ll see how it goes!

I’m also itching to get back into making some clothes for myself. I’ve got so many ideas at the moment, it would be a shame to not make any of them. The fabric stash is alive and well so I’m sure there’s something suitable amongst it all for me to make something to wear.

Anyway, I just though I’d show you some pics of my beanbags and tell you they’re available on Etsy if you would like one. They’re great for kids up to about 11/12 years of age, reversible, washable cover, and can be custom made in any theme you (or your kids!) like.

I really want to pick the Linziloop reigns back up though… I do enjoy the escape from the computer screen when I’m making, and I’ve got a whole studio to myself at the moment (anybody wanna join me!?) so I’ve certainly got the space!

I’d love to hear in the comments what you’ve been up to so far in 2017, and what your plans are for the year! Any new projects you’re starting?!

Hopefully I’ll be back soon with an update on more making 😀

Out of laziness, comes greatness!

Last year, I decided I was going to design my own range of kids clothing patterns. Just a small range to begin with; some harem trousers, hooded dresses, funky dungarees. In order to create the patterns I needed a set of pattern blocks ( known as slopers in US). I could have created the pattern blocks myself from various measurement charts I could find online, but in all honesty, I was feeling lazy. So first, I tried to find some ready made children’s trouser blocks.

I found one set.

They were not cheap.

Nor did they come as a digital download, so I couldn’t use them to create my patterns in Illustrator, I’d have to do them all by hand. I prefer to be able to work on my laptop. Especially so now that I currently don’t have a studio for working in (another casualty of the flooded house).

What I wanted just didn’t exist. I was going to need a full set of childrenswear blocks, in digital format, with the ability to print out at home if I wanted to. I emailed places, I tweeted, I spoke to various people. No luck. There was nothing for it. I was going to just have to spend the time doing it myself.

I started my creations with a flat two-piece trouser block for newborn to age 2. It took a lot of work, but I think it’s been worth it because I now have exactly what I need to do some baby harem trousers.

Baby-Toddler-Trouser-Blocks

And I have decided to put the pattern block up for sale, so that anyone like me, who wants to create some patterns but perhaps would like to skip the blocking stage, can!

This first set of blocks I have created are available on ebay for £9.99 (a lot cheaper than the printed only versions out there). You will be sent a link to download the PDF within 24 hours of purchasing. As long as you have the latest version of Adobe Reader (available for free here), then you will be able to print at home on any A4 printer and piece together. You can even choose which size option to print if you don’t need to print them all, making it easier to trace off from. Those wanting to use programmes such as Illustrator to create digital patterns can do so from the PDF.

I am now working on a two-piece trouser block for ages 3 to 14, which should be available next week. More will follow! Please let me know in the comments if there are any particular blocks you would like to get your hands on.

Happy drafting!

Linziloop Patterns

I’m working on an exciting project at the moment, and even though I’m only in the very initial stages, I wanted to share it with you. You may remember that years ago I did a pattern making and garment construction course at Liverpool Community College. Since then I have made various bits of pieces for both myself and Baby Loop.

In that time, I’ve often drawn my own patterns for something because I simply could not find exactly what I wanted as an already existing pattern. I started wondering if maybe I should offer the patterns I make for use by other people. This of course meant I would need to grade them, so I’m currently looking into software that would help me do that, but in the meantime I’ve got to designing! Here is the first illustrations of my first idea – a kids hooded dress pattern!

Hooded-Dress-Mockup-1

I absolutely LOVE hooded dresses, I might even make an adult version. What do you think?! I also have plans for harem trousers, a waistcoat, some skirts and tunics too. I’m really enjoying doing the designs, and I’m drooling over all the different possible fabric combinations I could use!

Would you be interested in testing out my patterns?! Let me know in the comments and I will add you to my email list when I’m ready to send the pattern out!

Handmade for babies

It’s been a while since I’ve shared some of my favourite handmade finds with you, and with the new addition to the family I thought it only fitting that I should share some of my favourite handmade items for babies.

Organic long sleeve baby top

As we’re not massive lovers of pink (some shades are ok but some shades are just too girly girl) we’re always on the lookout for gender neutral clothing, and I just absolutely love this! I’d wear this myself. I always said kids get the best clothes!

Dino onesie

This is already down as something I am getting Baby Loop for Christmas this year – she will have not long turned 1, hopefully be walking, and look super cute and be snuggly warm for winter in this!

Blue beetle baby grow

I love organic fabrics and I’m sure this bodysuit would feel divine on a babies delicate skin. The beetle illustration is also very cool if you ask me. A bit too cold for baby loop to wear at the moment, but certainly a summer buy!

Nursing teething necklace

At the moment when I’m feeding Baby Loop her hands are grabbing onto anything and everything, shes really exploring! This might help her not grab my skin so much haha!

Ninja harem pants

I think I had these in my Etsy faves before I even got pregnant. I totally love them, I’m a fan of this style of trouser on myself, have a bit of a thing for prints with stags on, and find the colour really aesthetically pleasing to look at. They’ll look so cute on a little wobbling toddler!

Fox coat

Finally! Someone who makes adults versions of their adorable and fun kids clothing! Now I CAN have something fun too! Yay!

Rainbow sorting buckets

We want to avoid buying any plastic toys for Baby Loop, they’re so bad for the environment and break so easily, so we’re keeping an eye out for beautiful, educational but versatile toys like these buckets.

Found something cool or sell something yourself for babies on the handmade marketplace that you’d like to share?! Please do so in the comments!

Do they make a lovely couple?

If you’ve never shopped for mannequin heads you wouldn’t believe how difficult it is to find a decent male one. I’m still not completely convinced that I like the one I have, he’s a slightly funny colour and looks really intense, but he was the best of a bad lot to be honest, the choice is abysmal, especially if you’re on a budget! The female one however, I’m well chuffed with, she’s super, looks amazing. If they were a couple I reckon my male mannequin would be punching above his weight ;p

Mannequin Heads

Anyway, they are both fine for the purpose of helping me with my shop photos to show off my hats etc. on both a male and female face. I haven’t quite managed to take any shots of my products on them yet (man do babies take up a LOT of your time!), but I’m sure I’ll get there eventually. Might have to go out in the garden in the daytime to get the best light, the neighbours might think I’m a bit bonkers. Oh well, I already think they’re bonkers… but that’s another story.

So, it’s 2014 now, what are my plans? Well, pre-baby I had grand plans of having lots of time to make lots of lovely items whilst baby slept. But then baby arrived, and Baby Loop doesn’t sleep as much as I thought she would! Clearly, she does not take after her mum in that department… I can sleep for Engand! Therefore, my plans have no slightly amended to “Lets just see what I can get done when I get a chance”, meaning I hope to be making new items to share with you, and I’m sure I will, the frequency may just not be as often as I would like 🙂 Perhaps quite predictably, I am finding myself wanting to make more baby items, but I still want to make more male items too as I still feel that is a rather under represented area in the handmade world.

I also have grand plans of running my own craft fair. I’m currently hashing out ideas to make it a little different and attract a wider audience than just other crafters (which was one of my main gripes with craft fairs I’ve done in the past). I don’t even want to call it a craft fair actually, I think that puts about 50% of the population off (the blokes!). So if any of my readers are based in the North West UK and are interested in signing up to be notified when my plan is coming into fruition, then please leave a comment.

My website is still under construction, I’m sure I’ll get back around to it eventually – the purchase of the mannequin heads was something that needed to be done for the website anyway, so I can have consistent product photos.

I’ll be back soon with a post containing some of my favourite handmade baby items. Until then, take care, and do leave me a comment and let me know what you have all been up to this year and what grand plans you have!

Baby Blanket

Following the announcement that I’ll be having a baby in November (don’t know if boy or girl yet!) I thought it might be nice to show you some of the things I will be making! First on my list is a crochet baby blanket, something they will hopefully keep and love and cherish. So, me and Mr Loop went to the local yarn shop, picked some yarn in some wonderful colours, and I got to work! This is the selection of colours we chose:

Rico Baby Classic DK

I decided on a granny stripe pattern and got to work that same day. At the time of writing this I have completed 6 rows, and I did some maths today (OooooOOOOOoooooo, gotta love a bit of maths), and worked out that it will take me about 45 hours to complete. 45 hours! I’m sorry I did the maths now haha! It will totally be worth it though 😀 Picture of progress so far:

Linziloop Crochet baby blanket progress

I’ll be doing a row of light green next, in case you were wondering 🙂 I haven’t worked out the colours, I’m just deciding as I go. So far, so good.

Whilst we were at the yarn shop Mr Loop spotted a lovely little knitted cardigan and asked if I could do something like it…. I had to break it to him that it was knitted and I can’t knit, but then I thought, maybe I should try?! Either that, or find a lovely pattern for a lovely crochet baby cardigan… the search is on. Other ideas for making things include a fleecy hat with ears (baby will be born in winter so cosy things seem rather sensible!), a handmade (possibly from paper) mobile for above their cot, and some scratch mittens.

I shall keep you updated with the ever growing blanket and be sure to show you anything else I make. In the meantime please do feel free to comment and link me to some pictures of things you have made for your kids, I would love to see them!

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