Friday, 27 March 2015

Too Much For Turtle & Gwen

    On a true Autumn night the family took a train into the city. We attended the book launch of Too Much For Turtle - a book by Cat Rabbit and Isobel Knowles. We met the creative duo at Captains of Industry. It was all so exciting getting to meet them, but I just wanted to invite them home for a coffee, biscuit and a chat.

    By the way Too Much For Turtle is not the first collaboration between Cat and Isobel. Their first book is Owl Know How, which I've been reading to my girls for a couple of years now. We love that book. But I digress… because tonight is about shy turtles.

    Speaking of shy turtles, Gwen wanted to talk with Cat and Isobel, but when it came time for it she went all shy and couldn't talk or even look at them. I had to be her thought translator. 

    I took the opportunity to photograph the characters and sets used in Too Much For Turtle . It was brilliant getting up close and seeing what went into the production of this book. Check out photos from the family journey and the book launch...



















    Looking forward to buying Too Much For Turtle in a short while.

Thursday, 26 March 2015

Swiss Lime & Grey

Swiss Lime & Grey design
© Melissa Gaggiano

    I have created something a bit different. Available in my Red Bubble store is a new pattern, which I have called Swiss Lime & Grey. It is available in a variety of mediums - wall art, phone & laptop covers, bags, pillows, duvet covers annnnnd leggings.

Wednesday, 25 March 2015

Sew Tired

Melissa Gaggiano photography
Autumn is in for real this week. Feeling a bit tired and a tad under the weather. Doll production has slowed so I can recover. Bit by tiny bit I work on sewing four doll shirts.

Friday, 20 March 2015

Stuffing, Stuffing, Stuffed.

© Melissa Gaggiano
    And for those who appreciate a behind-the-scenes of doll making. Here is a snap of where I am at on my current doll project. I spent half the day stuffing arms, heads and bodies. Not always as easy as it looks. Tomorrow will be all about sewing the body parts together.

Wednesday, 18 March 2015

Is That She-Ra's Crown?


    Here's the start of a new collection of dolls. The fabric pieces have been cut - took about a day to do. What you're seeing here is the doll hair pieces sewn together.

    When turned upside down these pieces remind me of She-Ra's crown. Do you see it too?
Image Source: Mutant Supermodel
    While I'm on the topic of She-Ra, I loved her when I was a little girl. In the eighties I had so many fabulous, cartoon icons to admire - it was a never ending rainbow festival of awesome.


Monday, 16 March 2015

Taking Stock in March

Pip Lincolne is doing a Taking Stock list thing and inviting others to participate. So here is my mental Stock Take for March:

Making : cloth dolls
Cooking : Hot dogs
Drinking : Coffee
Reading: The Ruby Circle [Richelle Mead]
Wanting: A zoom lens and fabric supplies
Looking: At everything
Playing: Taylor Swift - 1989
Deciding: Whether to go for pink hair.
Wishing: To make a beach lifestyle coffee table book.
Enjoying: Chocolate
Waiting: For my new pink running shoes to come in the post.
Liking: Elvis films.
Wondering: If I'll ever surf again.
Loving: My husband, kids, chocolate and Monster High.
Pondering: A dozen creative thoughts per minute.
Considering: Making a pair of fisherman pants.
Buying: Nothing.
Watching: Wonderland.
Hoping: For more clarity and direction.
Marvelling: At how quickly my youngest is learning from my eldest kid.
Cringing: When I think about high school.
Needing: Focus.
Questioning: My focus.
Smelling: You don't want to know.
Wearing: Stretch black pants and old pink "Venice Beach" shirt.
Following: Carla Coulson
Noticing: Brigitte Bardot.
Knowing: How to make a delicious sausage roll.
Thinking: Too much
Admiring: Carla Coulson and Cat Rabbit
Sorting: Useless stuff around the house.
Getting: Inspired!
Bookmarking: Photography blog articles.
Coveting: Pidgin dolls
Disliking: Cleaning the house.
Opening: My new online doll shop.
Giggling: Over dialogue in an Elvis film - "Let me tell you something beautiful." "Cinderella is a junkie." [You had to be there to find it funny, I guess]
Feeling: Hungry for hot chips and a burger.
Snacking: Nope.
Wishing: My eyes didn't feel dry and tired.
Helping: Taught my eldest how to use the sewing machine. She made her own doll.
Hearing: The telly, and cars on the main road.

And Sew

© Melissa Gaggiano
    And so, this morning I finished work on the final draft of a new fashion doll. Just a couple more pattern piece tweaks are required before I go ahead and produce a doll for my store.

    After thought: I'll have to think of a name for this doll.

    Just a reminder that I have a blog competition going, which ends this Thursday. Get in there and have a read.

Sunday, 15 March 2015

She Sews, She Sews

My eldest wished to do some sewing this weekend. After some thought I designed a basic doll pattern for her. I let my girl choose her fabric, I cut the shapes, then came the interesting part…

    I taught a 6 year old to use a sewing machine. I imagine this task to be akin to giving a 16 year old driving lessons. Much like in driving, a sewing machine has a foot pedal rather like an accelerator. Well anyway, it all went rather well and in 2½ hours we had gone from no pattern, to a stuffed, long haired, long legged doll.

    As a finishing touch my eldest drew on the face. I am proud to say there were no tantrums… from either her or me. There was only one weird ghost moment when the sewing machine seemed to be going by itself [my youngest was hiding under the table and pressing the pedal [accelerator]. My eldest did 90% of the sewing herself. Fantastic!

© Melissa Gaggiano

© Melissa Gaggiano

© Melissa Gaggiano

© Melissa Gaggiano

Saturday, 14 March 2015

Plough Day

Progress continues on a new fashion art doll. It takes many steps to create something worthwhile. On days when mistakes are made I tend to take more coffee breaks. When fewer pattern revisions are needed I'm more likely to plough through the day and the designing. Today was a ploughing day for me.

Following are shots of Draft #3 of the current doll design…

© Melissa Gaggiano

© Melissa Gaggiano

Thursday, 12 March 2015

Pretty in Orange & Pink


© Melissa Gaggiano

    One of my favourite colour combinations is orange and pink. That began years ago when I bought an orange and pink short sleeve raglan shirt from Target, during the Charlie's Angels film craze. I loved that shirt so much, and had I known then what I know now, I would have bought a second one.

    Now that you've heard my orange and pink opener let me tell you about what I have done. I have just finished making two doll size orange and pink bags. One bag is on sale in my store. The second bag is intended as a blog giveaway prize.

    To go into the draw to win this sparkly doll bag do one or all of the following:

  1. Blog about this giveaway.
  2. Tweet about this giveaway.
  3. Share details of this giveaway on Facebook.
  4. When you have done any of the above, comment below so that your name will go into the draw. Giveaway will end 19th March 2015, 4PM. Winner will be announced shortly after that.
Good luck!