Dress a girl (or boy) around the world.

Hey guys, hows it going? I came across this wonderful charity this week and would love to get involved. A UK maker Louise Horler who runs Sew Scrumptious is a real champion for the project and you can find all the info you need here. Also take some time to read Dress a Girl Around the World. I would take great pleasure in using my skills and time to make these wonderful clothes. You can find plenty of patterns online which are suitable for the most novice of sewers.

pattern 1

pattern 2 pdf

pattern 3

If you would like to get together and have a sewing session to make some little dresses and live in my area please contact me and we can set up some sessions.


We made a frog and hung out crafting.

I am pleased that my daughter is really overjoyed with having an artist Mum, perhaps the older she gets she may become embarrassed with my questionable hair colour and jumble sale dress sense but for now she seems happy.

Last Sunday morning, she requested to dress like me and make something together. I asked her what she wished to make and she replied ‘a frog’. Here is or adventure as shot by the wonderful Often Hover.



A project a day.

So I am finally moved into my new home, hence why I haven’t posted all week! As of Monday next week I am trying to make something everyday as well as working on over arching projects such as exhibitions.

A slightly lengthy project will be to make a dress, and I am looking at ordering a pattern from Merchant and Mills. I love the Park Lane dress (below), and the simple chic designs. Apparently the patterns are very easy to follow and have beautiful satisfying results.

Im also loving Hey Maker since I saw there beautiful video yesterday thats campaigning for them to secure creative space in there hometown. Im sure a chord that is struck with many makers/artists and creatives alike.

So whats been happening?

Uh oh its time for the weekly round-up and the prediction of things to come…

Lots to look froward to including late night shopping art workshops at Gunwharf.

Creative film night in Southsea.

Next week sees me doing my first Southsea Supper Club dinner party, eek.

I have plans to make some amazing toys too for Flo and Stan.

 I am also currently planning the Aspex October half term workshop for 8-13 year olds which is all about mythical creatures from Japanese folk-lore and then sewing our own hoods and costumes, making videos etc. If that doesn’t sound like a ton of fun then you really need to lighten up!


Prince Hanzoku terrorized by a nine-tailed fox.

Here is a ridiculously long list of Japanese creatures from wikipedia. If we just did your standard ghost, witch, pumpkin how boring would that be?

Some personal favourites…

Umizatou – a blind man from the sea who asks travelers about their worst fears.

Yama-jijii – a humanoid with a head like a large rock, with one eyeball and a constant smile. Often lives in the trees in the mountains.

Kasa-obake – a paper umbrella monster.


So if your aged between 8-13 you can join me for 3 days of fun Tue-Thur in half term, we even have an early drop off time of 9pm for a breakfast/games club. Just call Aspex on 0239 2778080 to book a place! Price of workshop depends on whether you come to breakfast club or not, so ask reception when booking!


Make one, pass it on.

Exciting news today! Following the success of  ‘Ou est la lapin?’ back in the Spring I am launching a campaign called ‘Make one, pass it on’. This time by making, we will be making a difference. Here’s the lowdown…

  • All aprons must be handmade
  • They must be finished before December 1st
  • Every apron regardless of size, colour, workmanship and style will be sold for a flat fee of £10.
  • A special event will be held to sell the aprons and they will also be availible online too.
  • They will make the perfect Christmas gift and will be doing good!

All the money raised will be donated to charity that does an amazing job, Fine Cell Work.

Fine Cell Work is a social enterprise that teaches needlework to prison inmates and sells their products. The prisoners do the work when they are locked in their cells, and the earnings give them hope, skills and independence.

Our mission is to rehabilitate prisoners by giving them the opportunity to earn and save money and the chance to reflect on and rebuild their lives through craft and achievement. Prisoners do Fine Cell Work for an average of 3 years: the benefits can therefore be profound.


”That’s all I did…I sewed and sewed… You can’t show any weakness inside. So it just gets more and more built up and then you get angry. Sewing made me stop and think about how things could have been different, and what I could have done differently. It helped me change the way I was, cos I used to be quite an angry fella when I went inside. I was quite moody and aggressive and people said I was defensive. I never knew I was but when I was sewing I used to go back over my life and thought…perhaps I am. It gave me the space I needed.”

If you would like to make and donate an apron then all you need is to get started and please email oohlalapin@gmail.com so I can register you and let you know how and when aprons will be collected.

I have a handy patch apron tutorial in the sidebar if not there are plenty of hints, tips and patterns online.

You will also have an opportunity to work on aprons at Tea and Cloth the monthly craft meeting in Portsmouth. Aprons are welcomed from all over the world just leave plenty of time for postage!

fine cell work tote

free sewing workshop!

Come down to The Aspex Gallery in Gunwharf tommorow for a free 2 hour sewing workshop upcycling clothes and textiles with Ooh la Lapin!

The event will be running from 5-7pm so drop in or stay for the whole 2hrs its up to you!

We are are running it for free to experiment with workshops and ask YOU what kind of workshops you would like the gallery to offer.

Bring something old and we will turn it into something new!

Fair Isle jumper dog by Ooh la Lapin

Dirty sewing for bad girls

I dont know if I have ever admitted it but I never use patterns or measure anything !

Yes that’s pretty naughty, I do everything by eye, I dont stress about it and Im not afraid to see what happens.

All my bags, quilts, everything is totally improvised. Of course it is a skill which is built from a lot of trial and error but I now feel comfortable to hack into an expensive piece of fabric without a second thought or a bit of tailors chalk.

If you’d like to learn the art ‘Dirty sewing for bad girls’ I will be running a workshop on Saturday 12th February to learn how to sew something and break all the rules at the same time.

You will be designing and making your own bag to take home at the end of the day!

Dirty sewing for Bad Girls.

Date : 12th February 2011

Time: 10.30 – 3.00pm

Cost: £20.00 (book now pay end Jan 2011)

Venue: Friendship Centre/House, Elm Grove, Southsea

all materials included, tea, coffee and cake, please bring your own lunch.

email: oohlalapin@gmail.com to book a place

The course is limited to 10 spaces.

Please try and bring your own scissors but there will be some available on the day if you dont mind sharing.

hello world!

Formerly ‘sewloubee’ I have re launched my sewing business as ‘Ooh la Lapin’ .

Ooh la Lapin is my beautiful handmade sewing business based in Southsea.

The name is born out of my love for bunnies.

I can create custom made quilts, bags, bike baskets, toys, fabric covered books, skirts, dresses, curtains, cushions, the list is endless!

I work with modern fresh printed fabrics as well as vintage and reclaimed fabrics.

I hope you like what you see!

Please contact me at OolaLapin@gmail.com if you wish to order a custom item.

I will soon publish dates when I will be attending craft sales etc so you can see my work and enjoy a cupcake!