Friday, October 10, 2014

The house that Jack built

Meet Jackson. Everbody calls him Jack. By day Jack is an architect extraordinaire, but by night he is a ‘do-it-yourself’ kinda guy.

Meet Jack’s wife, Jill. Jill is a designer extraordinaire. Jack and Jill are the perfect match.

Meet Jake and Olive. They are Jack and Jill’s kids. They are not your average, run-of-the-mill kinda kids……they are extraordinary, too.

Meet Felicia and Scamp. Felicia is a rather glamorous feline. She purrs her way through the day trying to  hide from the canine pest, Scamp. As for Scamp……Scamp by name and Scamp by nature. He is a mischievous doggity dawg. His favourite pastime is to sniff out Felicia and cause her great vexation.

One day Jack and Jill happened upon a plot of land down Forget-me-not Lane. Now some would think that Jack and Jill would prefer a plot on a hill…….but no, that would be just a li'l too predictable! Although the view on the hill was a glorious sight, they much preferred the little plot where Forget-me-nots flowered in floralicious profusion. Besides, they didn't want to risk falling down the hill with a pail of water and hurting poor ole Jack's head! After all, hospital costs these days are a tad exorbitant!

So Jack put his DIY skills to the test. With every spare moment, he slowly began to build his house. Nail by nail, plank by plank, Jack's house began to rise above the Forget-me-nots until one day the cute li'l house was a sight to behold.

When Jack had built his house, his creative wife, Jill, decorated the interiors, adding a woman's touch. Oh my…..Jill did the most amazing job. She hunted down one-of-a-kind treasures to fill her cute li'l house, she sewed pretty curtains, planted oodles of rose bushes....... and began to put her magic touch to the house that Jack built.

Oh.....Jake and Olive helped as well……..but they much preferred to run off and play with Felicia and Scamp. Oh my goodness that Scamp and Jake get into all manner of scrapes. Olive thought of a lovely name for her family's new home....."Storybook Cottage".

With the last nail hammered in and the last chandelier fitted to the decorative ceilings, Jack, Jill, Jake and Olive moved into their cute as cute house making it a home. After all a house is not home unless there is a family to fill it with love.

Family portrait time! Doesn't Jack look as proud as punch! Yes indeedy, if Jack's chest gets any bigger, he might just topple over!

Deary, deary  me……..Felicia has catapulted herself onto the roof!! Fleeing from that pesky Scamp.....again!

....This cute li'l house is a back pack. I bought this pattern for some of my girls who wanted to make an owl backpack. Normally me and the girls whip up our creations from our imaginations, but in this instance I wanted to introduce the girls to a commercial pattern; initiating them to the process of reading a pattern and teaching concepts associated with a pattern. They even surprised themselves at their stellar job with the backpacks. I wasn't at all surprised at their creations, as they are terribly clever girls. Don't the backpacks look wonderful??

Of course I put my own slant on the house. I wanted all the stitching to be free hand machine stitched, giving my cute li'l house a primitive and childlike appeal.

As I stitched the house backpack, my imagination begun to run away; down that yellow brick road of creativity. I thought I might make a family of dolls for a child to play with and when they have finished playing, gather up the dolls and place them in the li'l house to hang out.

As for the dolls, I wanted to create something simple......(yes simple). Now, I have just discovered the wonderful, enticing and entrapping world of Pinterest!  Oh my goodness, how on earth did I ever exist before happening upon this wonderful phenomena!! "Oh come on", I can read your exasperated thoughts....."for crying out loud, Pinterest  was discovered aeons ago!" Perhaps for y'all, but here in this far rural outpost, it seems the electric voice-transmission device called the telephone was discovered not so long ago!!! Yes indeedy, here in this rather idyllic backwater, it only seems like yesterday that we stopped booting our carrier pigeons out into the cold to convey our written messages to our neighbours!!!

So, with each clickety click after clickety click, I took a sightseeing tour of Pinterest,  to gain some inspiration for my dolls; and inspiration I gained.....bucket loads actually. Oh my goodness, the world is filled with sooooo many clever people with sooooo many  brilliant ideas. It is so easy to disappear into the land of Pinterest  and follow each winding path leading to more glorious sights than before. But does have to return to the land of living and live daily life. 'Tis a pity really as Pinterest is a land of glorious inspiration.

After sketching a few pictures  and gathering some fabrics my stitching began. This doll caught my eye on Pinterest.  I was charmed by it's simplicity. Viv dreamt up this sweet doll and sells other sweet pretties on Etsy.

                                             BROOCH Prim Pin. etsy

So that is how "The House that Jack built" came about. I am going to gather Jack and his li'l family and place them in their pretty li'l house backpack and introduce them to the school community. Yes indeedy, it is that time of the year when The Northern Rivers Festival comes to town and li'l ole me is going to try and flog my wares yet again, just like this time last year. But just between you and me....I secretly want Jack and his li'l family  to live with me forevermore!

So for now Jack and his family are safely ensconced in their cute li'l "Storybook Cottage" backpack, just hanging around in the esteemed company of some other purty bags,  until it is time for the school fair. I really, really lurve the Southern gal bag.....a present from my husband many a moon ago.

So for now, it's toodles from me (and Jack and his family).....have a lovely weekend everyone!!


  1. What a clever and beautiful idea. Any little girl would love to have them.

  2. Super cute and would make such an adorable present

  3. This is really sweet Kim. Pinterest is amazing isn't it? I have to be careful with my time there. Easy to get lost.....
    I imagine your students just love coming to your house. I wonder if its a little like Jack and Jill's?

  4. I absolutely LOVE your little family and you enchanted me with your story of them. Thank you for sharing this! I have read the storybook 'The House that Jack Built' many times as it was a favourite of my son's - thank you for bringing back some nice cozy story reading memories xx.

  5. Oh my goodness Kim...this is outstanding! Your work is totally amazing. I can see why you'd like Jack and his family to stay with you. Make sure you let the girls know that their owl backpacks are so cute. Great job for the teacher and the students!

  6. OH wow you are so talented I love your little family and their house is amazing! have a great weekend. :)

  7. Beautiful bag and work Kim. Love the house that Jack built. Clever girl.

  8. You are very talented! Lovely work!

  9. Oh Kim, another fabulicious story and project. I can't imagine you would ever want to give up that wonderful family. Those students of yours are terrific and so lucky.. I would have loved to have had a teacher like you back in the day.

  10. Mmm.....sewing teachers way back then....mine were atrocious. Needless to say I hated sewing at school. It was always their way or the highway! Thank you for your sweet comments, Beth. I hope that hand of yours is healing with each day. xx

  11. Hello Kim,

    I do hope you are going to add this little story to the bag when you sell it.

    Happy days.

  12. What a fabulous tale to go with your beautiful bag and that lovely family. I love all your free motion stitching details :) Your students' bags are fab too - such talented girls. Good luck at the Fair :)

  13. I love your little family in the fabulous back pack house a lovely story! And your students bags too are lovely too. :)

  14. Thank you for such a sweet escape fro national and world headlines! I saw Jack and Jill designing their home and then living there. The kids with their pets playing outside!

    Thank you from a grateful heart!

  15. The girls did a fabulous job and your touches are just perfect. Storybook Cottage is a lovely place. I wish I was a little girl again and lived close by you so I could join in all the fun :)

    -Soma xx

  16. I LOVE Jack and Jill, their family and backpack house - another of your amazing and creative productions from start to finish (both the sewing and the blogging). A very clever idea which I think I shall have to Pin to Pinterest. I joined Pinterest less than 12 months ago and love using it to bookmark all sorts of amazing ideas - and to become lost in with rabbit holes of inspiration!

  17. Hello Kim, I am dancing my happy dance . . . it is not everyday that I come across a blog as fresh and wonderful as yours. This project is outstanding . . . it delights my heart. I can just see the smile that it would put on a little girl's face. I have two granddaughters and I am always looking for cute ideas . . . but this tops them all. I am your newest follower and I hope, hope, hope that you will visit and follow me back. The detail in the little house is beautiful:)
    Have a marvelous day.
    Connie :)

  18. Clever girls (the backpacks are indeed wonderful!) and clever YOU!! I can't stop looking at all the amazing details. Each time I look at the photos I find something else! You won't be coming home from the fair with this beautiful creation. You'd better take lots and lots of photos of it before you go!! I just adore it.