Oct 29, 2009

Inspiration: The Mucha museum/Le musée Mucha

To get in my quota of culture while in Prague I decided to visit the Mucha museum. Mucha had a link with Paris where he lived for a few years. The museum combines 2 benefits: good selection (subjective of course!) and is a fairly quick visit. It also has a nice gift shop (about as big as the museum!) so stock up on the cards and other gifts.

Afin de remplir mon "quota culture" lors de ma visite de Prague, j'ai opté pour la visite du musée Mucha. Le musée combine deux grandes qualités à mes yeux: une bonne sélection d'œuvres (avis subjectif!) et la visite est relativement rapide. Attenant au musée, un magasin de cadeaux (presque aussi grand que le musée lui même) pour faire le plain de cartes et autres cadeaux.

Mucha Museum (www.mucha.cz), Kaunický palác, Panská 7, 110 00 Prague 1 

Musée Mucha (www.mucha.cz), Kaunický palác, Panská 7, 110 00 Prague 1 

Oct 28, 2009

Fabric hoarding: the madness continues!

Between visits and meetings I managed of course to do some fabric shopping at a very messy & cool fabric store in Prague. Hey is that my apartment?! Oh no it's the shop...

Here is the lovely wool I got in two colors as I could not make-up my mind...

They also have a a good selection of ribbons and yarns...

Mar Len - (www.marlen.cz)- Karolíny Světlé 12, 110 00 Praha 1, Open until 6PM during weekdays & not open on the week-ends.

Oct 25, 2009

Marionette or puppet?

Reporting from Prague to answer this important question... a "marionette" is a string-puppet.
Puppetry is part of the Czech culture and many shops can be found in Prague selling these fascinating creations or should I say creatures as they almost seem alive.
Amongst the various tourist shops that crowd the center of the old part of Prague, one shop in particular immediately stood out, "Trular Marionety", with an amazing collection of their own creations, and marionettes from other Czech puppet creators.
The shop owner was assembling the puppets below when I came in, sewing on an antique sewing machine the detailed costumes.

Halloween approaching I made friends with a witch.

Here is the remainder of her family. Kings, pirates and chefs, all with a distinct personality.

Finally a family of musician bugs right out of the cartoon for Roger Glover's "Love is All" (the Butterfly Ball):

For more information on the Marionety Truhlar marionette studio and their creations go to http://www.marionety.com/ they have 2 locations in Prague: U luzickeho sem. 5., Mala Strana, Prague 1 or Unglet Tyn 1, Marionety Truhlar, Stare Mesto, Prague 1
PS: they did a good job wrapping the witch & I made it to the airplane & back home with a complete marionette.

Oct 22, 2009

Bunny inspiration - bright-eyed and bushy-tailed

My sisters and I have a long history with bunnies, and we have always had a few of them running around our apartments. To this day Gaston is the only one still with us. He makes me think of Darth Vador with those ears. Yes a mini Darth Vador... if Darth Vador was fluffy, adorable, vegetarian and without a mean bone in him...

My little Kalinka (RIP) left me for a better place at the beginning of this year & I still miss the craziness. This video is one example of the endless entertainment provided by the little fluff ball:

Bunnies are always of course a great theme for some sewing project. The "KalinkaBunny" on my profile comes from a great book of patterns "Fun Dolls" by Aranzi Aronzo:

Books from Aranzi Aranzo provide great ideas for toys for small & bigger kids. They always have great humor in them.

Finally if this wasn't cute enough, you might enjoy the retro-kitsch featured in "Happy Kitty Bunny Pony: A Saccharine Mouthful of Super Cute" (by Popink, Charles S . Anderson Design Company and Michael J. Nelson)

That's all folks!!!


You Know Me - Robbie Williams (Official full-length video)

Robbie Williams | MySpace Vidéo

Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness

A big part of my spare time consists in hoarding fabric. I blame it on my mother for bringing me at an early age "Marché Saint Pierre" the frozen-in-time fabric store right at the bottom of the Montmartre Hill & the Sacré Coeur.
In my memories I could barely see the top of the tables. Going back to these childhood memories on a Saturday is always a soothing experience. Those who know the neighborhood and the store would say that the experience is more like fighting the inebriated crowds on Mardi Gras on Bourbon Street in New Orleans.
When in London I never miss an opportunity to go to the Liberty store to check out their fabric selection. Unfortunately their selection has gotten smaller over the years and a bit shameful for the Liberty mothership, so in the end I only got their just to say "hi" to the beautiful building. My sister just in time gave me the name of her new Liberty "dealer" (let's face it is an addiction...), Shaukat on Old Brompton road. Here is a snap shot of the last harvest:

If you are in Paris you can combine a visit to Montmartre and the Sacré Coeur, and on the way back down from the hill you can check out:
Dreyfus - Marché Saint Pierre, 2 r Charles Nodier, 75018 Paris (a Parisian tradition & a mess!)
Sacrés Coupons, 4bis rue d'Orsel, 75018 Paris (great 3 meter remnants from famous fashion houses, great silks, wools, cottons & linens in the summer)

In London:
Liberty, Great Marlborough Street, London W1B 5AH (worth the visit even if you don't buy anything)
Shaukat & Company, 170-172 Old Brompton Road, London SW5 0BA (a great selection in the store, good prices, and also good online service). The picture below is from their webpage showing one of the "Liberty Walls":

Oct 20, 2009

Dandelion inspiration

The dandelion design is appearing in a lot of places these days. One of my favorite Liberty fabric uses it for its "Fairy Clock" design:

More colors on the Liberty site:

After major shopping a Shaukat http://www.shaukat.co.uk/Liberty.asp (the online service is seamless & the shop is fantastic with a huge variety of fabrics more than a certain store where you would expect more) I finally made a top out of the fabric (Pattern B from the Japanese pattern book "Stylish Dress Book 1"):

It's also a ceiling lamp I may just have to buy at Ikea. Not sure what I would do with it, maybe I will wear it on my head for Halloween & fly away in the Parisian skies...
Meantime it is in my virtual living room on the Ikea website http://www.moi-et-monsalon.com/:

Pattern B from the Japanese pattern book "Stylish Dress Book 1" / Fabric "Liberty" / Lamp "Ikea"

Oct 19, 2009

Happy (belated) birthday Cécile

Don't tell Cécile but the present I made her is from all the left over fabric from various projects. Actually do tell her, she loves projects that do good for the environment & would approve of this.

You can't see but there is a pin in the back so this can be worn as a corsage ("faux ami" for my French speaking friends as this would be a "broche" in French) or attached to a necklace.
Extra bonus it matched perfectly the outfit she was wearing today! What can I say... you have that useless 6th sense in guessing your friends' attire or you don't have it!!!
PS: the background is my new ironing board cover. I love it & can't stop ironing (not really...)

Oct 18, 2009

Violet Jacket for Violette

Fall is here, and Violette being a very demanding customer wanted something stylist & warm to wear to school. Here is my first winter creation for her: a cute jacket from the Japanese book of patterns "Girly Style Wardrobe", pattern D.

Pattern D from the Japanese pattern book "Girly Style Wardrobe" / Fabric "Sacrés Coupons", 4bis rue d'Orsel, 75018 Paris

Oct 2, 2009

First official fall wardrobe item

Here it is: a cute short jacket in a light wool. Easy to make & easy to wear:

Pattern #11 from the Japanese pattern book "Otona No Couture" / Fabric "Sacrés Coupons", 4bis rue d'Orsel, 75018 Paris / Liberty Ribbon "La Droguerie", 9 rue Jour, 75001 Paris