Commission for Bel.

August 3, 2013

Something a little different. A reclaimed tapestry made into a giant bag for sewing , knitting and stitching things.

Something a little different. A reclaimed tapestry made into a giant bag for sewing , knitting and stitching things.

This commission from a fellow ‘textillite’ was very open-ended . Make a bag for all the sewing and knitting things for friend who loves harrysdesk and pink.

After getting permission I tried something that has been floating about in my mind for a while.

Many of the bags of bits and pieces from the op shop have the pieces from tapestries that have been forgotten about….some not even started.

This vintage style tapestry of Pierrot (Clown) and Horse was in perfect condition. It is most likely from the 80′s (some of you might remember) when pierrot had a bit of a resurgence. I am hoping the receiver has fond memories of the eighties!

I couldn't let it go unstitiched of course..... not completely.

I couldn’t let it go unstitiched of course….. not completely.

....I even stitiched the colour panel. Yes, I know they are not meant to be stitched, but I wanted to draw attention to the parts of the tapestry not normally seen, once framed.

….I even stitiched the pink colour panel. Yes, I know they are not meant to be stitched, but I wanted to draw attention to the parts of the tapestry not normally seen, once framed.

You don't ordinarily see this bit either.....

You don’t ordinarily see this bit either…..

The flipside of the bag is made from reclaimed cream damask and the lining from a soft minty cashmere scarf.

The flipside of the bag is made from reclaimed cream damask and the lining from a soft minty cashmere scarf. This pocket sits between the shell and the lining.

Inside the bag are a number of smaller bags and purses for all the other bits and pieces used for sewing and knitting.

Inside the bag are a number of smaller bags and purses for all the other bits and pieces used for sewing and knitting.

Everything but the strapping of the handle was recliamed!

Reclaimed Pierrot and Horse printed canvas bag.

Reclaimed Pierrot and Horse printed canvas bag.

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Angels from the Christmas collection. Upcycled from men’s neckties.

As no-one was forthcoming with another Pinteresting idea, I decided to make a board of the items available via my etsy shop this Christmas.

If you have been following along, you will know it has been a very slow year for harrysdesk. Although all the girls are now in school, I have missed my studio greatly. Unfortunately, I haven’t designed a decoration for Christmas this year, but still have some of the past years designs available.

I have a few more items to upload over the coming weeks, so pop back, if you like, and see whats new. I hope to add more owls, hair-ties and t-shirts…… so watch this space.

Now it’s your turn!

What should my next Pinteresting idea be?

You can choose by commenting below.

It can be as quirky or conservative as you like!

 

Shop update.

November 28, 2012

First of all I need to say….

Sorry. Sorry. Sorry.

….. to anyone who has looked at my shop online in the past six months.

What a mess!

I have now fixed it up!

SHOP NOW …..and my bags showcase too.

Commission for Winton

June 18, 2012

Winton's Bag.

Winton’s bag.

I haven’t shown you anything I have made in a while.

This neat little tie bag was made using all those ‘novelty’ ties most men who grew up in the 80′s have in their cupboards.

My little friend Winton helped me select the ties to make his ‘go everywhere’ bag. As you can see he chose cyclists, lions, sun and moons, dogs, hot air balloons….. Lots of inspiration for any 8 year old boy.

He told me about his love of photography, so I lined the bag with velvet to protect the lenses and gave it a little extra padding for general protection. Unfortunately the bag was delivered before I realised I only had one good shot!

I’m told he is rarely seen without his bag.

 

Bunting for Bronte.

New room bunting made from a lace tablecloth, reclaimed yellow and blue cotton and ribbon.

Similar idea to this one I made for Sascha at a similar time a couple of years ago.

Wall hanging for Angus.

Angus’ wall hanging made from a man’s shirt, reclaimed cottons (yellow and blue) woven tape and a recycled button.

As Sue wanted them all different I went for the shirt covering the squares rather than ties… which I usually use.

A patchworked name picture for Lachlan.

Lachie’s picture is made from reclaimed men’s ties and woven cotton fabric.

….a new idea not made before.

Still working out how to photograph finished work at the new house.

Quite liking the greeniness of the fence and the corkscrew vines poking through.

Favourites anyone?

 

 

 

Before Christmas, the house move and the best holiday we have had as a family yet, I made my first ever unisex nappy bag. It was quite a fun process, so I thought I would share some of it.

It all began with an email out of the blue from all the way over in WA…. Deb wanted a bag that both her and her husband were happy to carry. She liked the Phoenix Files Bags shape and colour palette (although wanted to see some other ideas for colour), but wanted to make sure it was still ‘male enough’ for her Tim.

Blue/ grey Combo

Black/Avocado combo.

Red/Black/White/Grey Combo.

Tan/Brown Combo.

School Tie combo.

I emailed her a number of tie combinations. They settled on the black and avocado greens combination. To make sure it wasn’t t too feminine we stayed away from florals, paisleys and shiny ties. After we decided on the colour-way Deb cleared out her husbands wardrobe and asked if it were possible to upcycle one of his shirts for the lining.

The shirt was a King Gee style one made for a church men’s weekend away. The shirt had special memories for Tim but wasn’t something he wore. It didn’t yield quite enough fabric for the lining alone….so I added some ikea fabric from my stash.

Here’s what we ended up with.

Finished Nappy Bag with Change Mat.

Bag back....

...change mat.

Deb also wanted lots and lots of pockets.

Pockets for wipes, wallet, diary and notebooks, bottles and creams and of course nappies.

She also requested a special hook for her keys so that she wasn’t constantly searching for her keys at the bottom of the bag.

Inside looked like this.

Lots and lots of pockets. Open and zippered.

Button on key holder.

One of the more obviously telling details of the nappy bag are the side bottle pockets. I enjoyed getting my head around shaping these without compromising the given shape of the tie too much.

The strap is adjustable so as to be able to lengthen it for going over the handles of a pram or stroller and then shorten it again for carrying on the shoulder. I used a reclaimed computer-bag shoulder pad for extra comfort.

Right bottle pocket ...

Left bottle pocket.

Shoulder pad.

After I posted the bag off I received this lovely email from Deb’s husband Tim.

Hi Ally,

This is Tim (Deb’s husband) here.

Just wanted to say a massive thankyou for your superb work with our new ‘man-friendly’ nappy bag! It’s sooooo cool :)

The incorporation of my King Gee shirt is really, really nice as that was the camp uniform for a men’s retreat that I organised while I was working for church (it was a huge hit and really had a tangible impact on the friendships between the guys). So, needless to say, I am stoked at that memory being interwoven with the practicalities of caring for my precious girls!

Tim.

I really enjoyed making this one.

Anyone else need a nappy bag?

Yes, heavy enclosed shoes and protective eye wear needs to be worn at all times!

Ok, so the still life really didn’t give a lot away.

The flowers and bottle of ‘joker’ wine and an apple for the teacher were all waiting for me when I arrived home from my first day of work.

The story is…. I have a part-time sessional lecturing job at the Australian Catholic University.

This session I will be teaching first year students a subject called “Designing with Textiles”. So far, it is really a glorified sewing class, but will move more into the areas of design as the weeks progress.

Every student who wants to be a TAS (technology and applied science) teacher in the high school system has to cover textiles, so I have mostly non- textiles students in my classes (or labs as they are known). Yes, woodwork and metalwork boys as well as the food tech students.

It’s pretty scary as I am not a trained teacher and I haven’t worked for someone else for about 13 years….. and as you can see from the photos from the lab, it’s super dangerous!*

So far it has been really enjoyable and exhausting.

So, because all the readers who commented got part of it right, but no-one picked it, (I know it was quite obscure) I will be sending you all a little harrysdesk love.

Thanks for commenting, or thinking if you didn’t get to commenting.

Dyeing and printing is even more dangerous.... mask and gloves get added to the apparel.

* I don’t think the job is dangerous at all. I think the stay at home mothering was much more hazardous! Let’s hope OH&S doesn’t come and access our homes.

My Still Life

February 23, 2012

Welcome home still life.

Time for a giveaway. Haven’t had one in a while.

Yesterday when I arrived home I was greeted by this still life on my kitchen table…… ok, it didn’t look exactly like this but after a little artistic adjusting….it looked like this. I love a still life.

For a chance to win a harrysdesk surprise prize pack you need to answer this question by commenting below.

Why were these things waiting for me when I got home?

The most accurate answer….or the most creative answer….. will win the pack.

You have a week to come up with your answer. That’s 9:30 pm on the 1st of March 2012.

What’s in the pack?

It’s a surprise!

Facebook Friday: Success

January 20, 2012

Mmmmm..... thanks Reese

Sing Choirs of Angels!

November 23, 2011

Angels... harrysdesk decoration 2011

As in past years I have used my favourite medium , men’s neckties, to make a decoration for the coming Christmas season.

This year was no exception.

I love how often the angelic crowd are mentioned in the biblical Christmas story, and so they have become, for our family one of the big symbols we associate with Christmas.

Every year we give the girls an angel each to hang on the tree, or sit on the mantle piece. It’s a reminder to them that God is much bigger than they can imagine, that there are things in this life they don’t yet understand and that we are all called to be messengers of the good news…… just like the angels were on the first Christmas.

Siver and Sky Blue..... no two the same.

My great friend Cathy McKay has written the poem this year, and I am so thankful to her for that.

Each angel comes with a printed poem for you to hang or use in your advent activities.

All for $12

....made from reclaimed neckties, buttons and ribbon.

Time weary waiting

On the long silent God to speak

Angel voices split cold, black silence

Saturating the void with glory

.

The dust-bound tremble, breaking under glory’s weight.

.

Fear flees with a word

God has left the glory of the highest

Slipping to the cold, dark earth

In the cold, black silence

Speaking, being, bringing peace.

.

Previously I have made stars and trees.

The angels, stars and trees can now be purchased via

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