Sneakpeek // Le Cirque collection!

April 1st, 2015

Oh you guys i am SO SO excited to share this sneakpeek of my newest collection Le Cirque with you today!

It has been so hard keep quiet about this over the last few months, and i’m thrilled that i can finally tell you about it!

This special collection is a group of 4 easy wear casual patterns inspired by the circus and all things whimsical. I have poured my heart and soul into it and i hope you like it as much as me.

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Knitted washcloths

March 23rd, 2015

Anyone who knows me personally knows that i’m a little bit of a nut about recycling and reusing things. I hate waste. I hate throwing useful things away. I would much rather drive ages out of my way to dispose of something in the best possible way, or find some way to reuse it, or someone who will reuse it, than throw it in the trash. I hate trash. HATE>

To me, scrubbing sponges are just trash. Gross trash. I hate sponges, they gross me out, they’re synthetic and they only get used a few times before being thrown in the trash. I also hate fabric scrap waste. I end up with so so many fabric scraps, serger scraps, cut offs – and i also hate throwing them in the bin (sidebar: i’d really really like to get a massive compost bin at some point so i can include all my natural fibre scraps in it, ah the dream!).

So a few years ago i made the decision to take my fabric scraps and try to find a useful way to reuse them. This was one of my projects! I took my serger scraps, joined them to make balls of “yarn” and knitted very basic square washcloths. Over a period of about three years i’ve made many more, and now we have a nice little stock pile of reusable wash cloths for the kitchen. They are imperfect. I like that. Some of them are made of a mix of different fabrics, which actually works quite well for scrubbing. When they get dirty they go in the wash with the tea towels, and the cycle continues. So far i’ve only had one die, and that was because we used it to scrub our airconditioning unit and it literally fell apart. I think thats fair enough hehehe.

I’m really happy with this project. It makes me proud to have found a way to use up these “useless” pieces of fabric, and i’m thrilled that we haven’t bought a sponge in three years.

introducing Sarah!

March 10th, 2015

Remember a few months ago when i advertised for an assistant? Well today i am so excited to introduce you to Sarah! If you’ve emailed Megan Nielsen Patterns in the past month you’ve probably spoken to Sarah already. She’s been doing an awesome job of keeping things running smoothly behind the scenes. I feel really blessed because Sarah is probably the nicest person ever – and actually lives 10 minutes from me, which has made working together a breeze and so.much.fun. (though i must admit i have a tendency to try and turn weekly meetings into Morning Tea instead hehe).

As well as being a wonderful wife and mum and helping me keep my head on straight – Sarah also runs an awesome business Teddies to Treasure turning baby clothes into keepsake teddy bears. I absolutely recommend you find her on Facebook and Instagram.

Anyway, before i ramble on too long – i’ve asked Sarah to share a little bit about herself below. We’ve got a big year ahead and i’m so thrilled to have Sarah as part of the team!

Meg xo

Hi everyone, I’m Sarah, Meg’s new Operations Assistant.  I’m here to do all the boring but important background admin work so Meg can get on with creating gorgeous fashion forward designs for you all to enjoy.  I first came across Megan’s blog when searching for the best place to buy fabric in the local area and have been avidly following her updates ever since.  I was so excited when she said she needed an assistant so jumped at the chance to apply … and here I am!

A bit about me, I’ve been a hobby sewer for years ever since my mum taught me to use a sewing machine when I was about ten and I love all sorts of crafty things that involve fabric, yarn etc.  So, naturally, after leaving Uni I joined the Royal Navy!  After spending 10 years running the logistics for a number of military operations and organising the lives of various senior officers (seriously, Admirals need A LOT of looking after), I decided to leave when I had my son in 2012.  I used my resettlement grant to complete a diploma in Professional Curtain Making and Soft Furnishings at the National Design Academy and was happily making curtains and cushions (in between baby naps and feeds) when the opportunity to emigrate to Australia came up at the beginning of last year.

Since then I’ve been enjoying life in the sunshine and making teddy bears from cherished baby clothes as part of my side business Teddies to Treasure.

Anyway, that’s me.  I’m really looking forward to getting to know you all.  If you get in contact with Megan Nielsen Patterns, chances are you’ll hear back from me and I’ll be updating our Facebook pages too.  So, if there’s anything you think we should be featuring, just drop me a line at hello@megannielsen.com!

Buddy turns 5

March 10th, 2015

My kids birthdays always hit me hard – but i honestly can’t believe Buddy is 5. It’s somehow hard to come to grips with the fact that he is a for real big kid now. I think in my mind he was still like 2 or something. Yikes.

I’ve really missed having him home with me this year – full time school is such a big jump, and not just for the kids! Spending time together during the day reading books, playing legos and hanging out in cafes was precious to me, and i miss it like crazy. But on the plus side, I love seeing him thrive and make friends and watching who he is becoming.

Carrying on with the tradition i started with Bunny on her 5th birthday, we took some photobooth style face snaps (in his favourite tshirt and next to the advent calendar we took down way too late hehehe). I’m really loving this little tradition, it’s just so cool to capture their sillyness each year, and i feel like this set is such a perfect representation of my little Buddy.

Tutorial // how to raise a neckline with lace

March 7th, 2015

Every now and then you will most likely find yourself with a neckline that is a tad too low for your liking. It may be a garment you’ve made or it may be a store bought garment, but the key is to ensure that your alteration looks intentional. This dress is one of my favourite Darling Ranges variations, but these days it’s a little too large for me, and that has resulted in the neckline being too low cut.

It can be a little challenging to add to a garment without it looking obviously like an add on, which is why i often turn to lace. As a decorative notion lace looks appropriate when externally added, whereas other methods can look really “homemade” and contrived very quickly.

Much like the culottes i lengthened using lace (tutorial here) i was careful to choose a lace that complimented the original fabric and look of the garment so that it wouldn’t look out of place. I have to admit, i am really thrilled with the end result and i actually love the altered neckline better than the original. YAY!

Click through for the tutorial!

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you are so awesome

February 25th, 2015

Basically that’s all i wanted to say today :)

Just checking in to tell you all how moved i am by the response to my Maker tees. You gals are awesome, and i am beyond excited! Thank you for  supporting me and this project. Things went so well with the initial release that i’ve already put in another order for more tees. My hope is to continue and possibly add different tees too (maybe totes bags even?)  in the future. If there is something you’d be interested in seeing let us know!

Till then, thank you SO much to everyone who bought a tee or told a friend about this project. Thanks to everyone who sent me an encouraging email, IG, tweet or comment. It’s awesome to see how many people are getting behind this project!

HUGS! xoxo