31 January, 2011

I'm kind of embarrassed to admit this

So I'll just post this photo and those of you who know how it was taken will know my dirty little secret.

Hipstamatic Hazel

For those of you who are thinking "yeah so she's posted a dodgy photo of her daughter looking all emo, and...?" the photo was taken using the Hipstamatic app on my new iPhone. I've been wanting one for such a long time because I like to be with the in-crowd even if I'm not an early-adopter these days. Such a comedown that, I used to be right at the forefront of technology, now I'm in the middle and before long I'll have given up no doubt. I do love Apple stuff though, ever since Dad got that Apple II+ way back in the 80s (which is Hazel's hilarious term for the period usually known as 'when dinosaurs ruled the earth' but also the literal truth, 1981 I think it was).

So has anyone else noticed that one sure-fire way to spot that a blogger has got an iPhone is that Hipstamatic photos start appearing on their blog? There's always some excuse, "my regular camera is lost/broken/not cool enough" but really I can see that they're just a lot more fun to put up than the usual run-of-the-mill shots. I'll try and restrain myself and just remind myself constantly that having an iPhone (and an iPad, iMac, iPod, MacBook Pro and I drive a VW) just makes me a walking stereotype and it's really nothing to be proud of. Do you guys ever feel that way about yourselves, that you're fitting into some marketing guy's demographic, even if you don't mean to? When Stuff White People Like was still going regularly I used to read those posts and see myself in them waaaay too often for comfort.

At least I haven't stuck the white Apple logo sticker on the back of my Golf, that would be really tragic.

30 January, 2011

Behind the scenes

Here at Hazelnuts we like to keep things in perspective. Remember this gorgeous pot I found in Edmonton, painstakingly arranged and attractively photographed for maximum effect? Of course you do, it was memorable!

Rorstrand Picknick casserole 112

Well for me it was more memorable for the fact I was out in the falling snow, with no jacket, hat or gloves, and in my slippers. Because posting photos to my blog means that much to me.

Jackie, pot, snow

Keeping it real photo taken by my dad.

29 January, 2011

Innocent and Lovely

No, definitely not Hazel at the moment :-/  It's a funny time for her at the moment I think, adjusting to being back home, different weather, different house, different food, different people, starting back at school in a week...I just look through the pattern books and imagine her wearing the innocent clothes and being lovely and not a grumpy little girl who calls me a meanie because I won't let her eat chocolate for breakfast. On the other hand she put a couple of to-dos on my list "Kes Mam" and "Hag Mam", did them, and then checked them off. So maybe she's lovely after all.

Here are some of the clothes in Innocent and lovely girls' wear by Mano Akiko, ISBN 457911194X. They're quite different to the other book, much more like the clothes in Tina Givens' book "Sew Tina!", looser, less structured. Naturally this means Hazel will be less inclined to wear them! Sigh.

I'll get the bad bit out of the way first:
Hat and bag

I saw this image on a blog or somewhere and fell in love with the outfit and it's what decided me on this particular book. Well actually, the patterns associated with this image are the bag and the stupid hat. No cute shorts. No cute top. Well actually the top is probably one of the other patterns but the shorts aren't in the book. I'm so annoyed about that. Not that I've been mislead or anything, but I LOVE THOSE SHORTS! Sorry to shout but...you know. Hazel loves them too. I can try and adapt a short pattern that's in the book but that isn't as poofy, or alter the Brookies pattern in Tina's book which is too poofy, but it would be nice to start out with something just right. Let me know if you know of one and I'll be eternally grateful!

This is such a cute top - what do you think my chances are of getting Hazel to wear it? Not high.
Loose tunic

Undies! They look rather amusing but I'd like to try the pattern anyways. And another leggings pattern is always welcome.
Underwear and leggings

I'm going to make this, I don't care if Hazel never wears it.

This skirt was also one of the deciding patterns for buying the book and it's actually in it. Love it but Hazel already has stated she hates it. How does she know which ones to hate to annoy me the most and crush my delicate soul? I might try it anyways.

This coat is gorgeous, the curve of the yoke at the front is perfect.

The pants are sweet, I think I could sneak them past Hazel in a different fabric :)

This is all dreaming at the moment as both my sewing machine and overlocker are in for servicing, but I've got great plans I tell you. Of course, we're planning on having our house painted in the next month and I'll have to do some stripping of window frames beforehand, and I'll be doing a bit of teaching again at the end of next month, but there will be sewing, oh yes there will! It's the best chance I've had for ages, with Hazel back at school on the 7th and teaching doesn't start for another 3 weeks.

Ok, I'm going to try transferring the data from this old laptop to my new desktop with the ethernet cable instead of the 9-pin FireWire cable that I don't have (can I tell you how annoyed I was to find my FireWire cable isn't 9-pin and I couldn't get stuck into my new computer straight away?) If I never blog again you'll know it didn't work. :P

27 January, 2011

I'm back!

Hazel and Gramma

The good times in the snow are all over and we're back to green and luscious Auckland in the middle of a hot summer. It's taking some getting used to! I'd have more photos to show you but they're on a DVD and my laptop's disk reader has finally died after hinting at it for a couple years so I'm now pondering a new computer or fixing this old one! Either option is expensive.

Hazel and I came back with 4 pieces of luggage, most of which were her Christmas presents, but they did contain quite a lot of fabric and lots of books - some of which were craft-related! "Oh how surprising" you say.

My Christmas books 2010

I thought I'd show you a few bits and pieces from them all, especially the Japanese books and the delightful "All You Can Sew For Children" books I and II which date from 1972 and 1973. I stole them from mum and had a great time going through having flashbacks to clothes she'd made for me from them. Some of the photos of clothes are wonderful (in an unintentionally hilarious way sometimes) and I'm hoping to make a few of them up and see how they translate to modern sensibilities.

I bought the Japanese books from Yes Asia and they were meant to take a month to arrive but they actually beat me home (and no I suppose they weren't in my luggage then were they...) in less than 2 weeks! On the left: Innocent and lovely girls' wear by Mano Akiko, ISBN 457911194X, and on the right: Dressy Little Girl -From one piece dress to coat (Onnanoko no oshare fuku) by Araki Yuki, ISBN 4529045269 / 9784529045261.

Japanese Sewing books

These are the Yes Asia translations, I think I've seen them called different names elsewhere, so if you were looking for them I'd go on the ISBN. Dressy Little Girl is probably the most accessible of the two and I discovered I already have an earlier book by the same author.

Index of patterns

The buttons down the back of this are gorgeous.

Oh my goodness I love this navy knit dress but Hazel hates high necks so I'd have to adapt it and the buttons wouldn't be as lovely. She'd like the skirt though.
Skirt and knit dress

The top is from the same pattern as above. The skirt has these cute little kick pleats at the back.
Knit top, skirt and hat

This is such a cute jacket, but I was just thinking it would make a great dressing gown too.
Little girl's coat

I'll take a few photos from the other book tomorrow!

17 January, 2011

Rorstrand Picknick casserole

I found this small casserole in an antique shop a couple weeks ago and immediately fell in love with it. Luckily it was cheap because there is a bit of brown discolouration around the inner lid, but I would have bought it no matter what! It's by a Swedish company called Rorstrand from a line they did in the '50s called Picknick. I like some of the other patterns but not all, so this may remain the only example I have of it, we'll see. Sadly it's not very common in NZ.

11 January, 2011


If people thought that embroidered Duncan was cute I thought I should show you how gorgeous he is in real life. He's a Norfolk Terrier and a total sweetie. And look at the fur he grew just for winter in Edmonton!


He came as cabin luggage from New York, which I still find an amusing concept.


We miss him (and Uncle Mike and Auntie Kate) a lot.

10 January, 2011

The bunnyhug jacket in action

I asked Hazel if she'd let me take a few photos of her in the Bunnyhug jacket and Wiglet* hat and ended up with a long series of rather goofy photos. Here she is "posing"

Bunnyhug jacket

Bunnyhug jacket

And looking fierce, which obviously means something else entirely when you're 5 (as it should too)

Bunnyhug jacket

And the back

Bunnyhug jacket back

The jacket and hat have done great service, are warm and comfortable in addition to looking great, and I'm really pleased with them.

*We read a book called Bee-Wigged about a giant bee called Jerry who finds a wig and pretends to be a boy so people will like him and the wig turns out to be a guinea pig named Wiglet. Hazel figured if the jacket was like being hugged like a bunny then the hat was like having a guinea pig sit on your head, hence the Wiglet hat. Personally I imagine that it would be a less-than-pleasant experience involving claws and perhaps biting and peeing, but I try not to be too adult about things like this!

05 January, 2011

Mike, Kate and Duncan

Mike, Kate and Duncan, originally uploaded by Hazelnutgirl.

My brother Mike asked if I could do an embroidery for him like the one in my header and I finally got it done the night before they headed back to NY - hence the inelegant photo. I would have liked to have spent a bit more time on Duncan's chin but I got his ears perfectly so they kind of balance each other out.


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