Tuesday, May 5, 2015

Press: Cat and Kittens in Homespun

It feels like this is my season of softies. 

I mean, if you were a new reader (welcome!) you might, based on the more recent posts, be led to believe that this is a softie blog. Because it's all I seem to have been producing since the start of the year! And veteran readers who're following ikatbag for the drafting, cardboard or science stuff are probably in despair because those have all but vanished completely since whenever. 

Not intentional! 

Now, it's true that sometimes, I get into specific project moods. Like I might be insane in the wintertime and feel like drafting coats and wool skirts. Or in the summer I might be obsessed with kid crafts. And I do have a year-round bag fetish. But more often than not, the flavor of any particular crafting season is heavily influenced by working opportunities, both commissioned and self-initiated. Given the choice, I'd sit around at home and bake and swim and run and write and read with my kids as creative outlets. But a person has to work sometime, right?

And so it was with deep amusement that I looked back over the past couple of months of archives and realized that everything was coming up softies (and there are more in the works, believe it or not- stay tuned!) My kids love this, of course - they much prefer me making toys to boring Mom-skirts. Because every single toy on this blog - softie and otherwise - was inspired by my kids and made for them. Except one. 

Which brings me to this post. 

Some months ago, the good folks at Homespun, the gorgeous Australia-based sewing magazine, commissioned this work. They put forth their idea for a mother cat with kittens, much like my old Big Pig, and let me run with it.

And what fun I had!

I am so thrilled to be able to share this project with you! You can find it in the May 2015 issue of Homespun. It has color photos and detailed sewing instructions, along with full-size templates:

US friends - can you suggest where we can buy Homespun here? Barnes & Noble, maybe? I'll head out sometime this week to peruse their magazine racks and if I find it, I'll let you know. 

Collaborations and commissioned projects like this are part of what I do as a blogging/etsy/pdf pattern designer sewing person and I love that I get to co-create with people in faraway countries whom I've never met in person and probably never will. This is my second feature in Homespun (the first was here) and the team are among some of the most delightful and gracious people I've ever worked with.

And the magazine itself! Absolutely beautiful, down to the matte-finish paper on which the pages are printed.

Then there are the projects and features - and I'm just going to share my favorite:

I will never be able to look at a granny square the same way. 

Back to the kittens now:

Whenever I make softies, I usually aim to have them pass my kids' Awww Test.

They did.

Kate was somewhat distraught to discover that the final versions would be sent to Australia for their photoshoot. She did get to keep the earlier samples but she would've preferred to have had them all. Along with her 1 million bunnies. 

This is a pattern in fleece (mother cat) and fleece or microfleece (kittens),

and the mother has a zipper in her belly to store her babies.

Although, for thoroughness, I did another sample in fur, with safety eyes.

I like the sleepy fleece version more, though.

I love that the pattern is ready for you in time for the Mother's Day weekend,

so you can squeeze in some sewing time while the meals and chores are being done by other people! 

Happy Mother's Day, friends! 


  1. Adorable as always!! I've seen Homespun magazine at Joann Fabrics too.

  2. AWW.... so fun!! I'd almost forgotten all about that project! Just adorable, they are! And ya gotta love a zippered belly! :)

  3. I love how eclectic your blog is!

  4. Beautiful!
    You could even replace the kittens' mouth by snaps (the part with the hole) and sew the second part on mommy cat's belly - then they could nurse!
    Anima from https://chutzpi.wordpress.com/

  5. I have just bouht it on Zinio

  6. Very cute! Looks like Zinio is the way to go - $2.76 for this issue.

    1. Zinio is digital, though. I just bought an issue and there are no pattern templates to download. Submitted a help request to find it. It is possible to download the templates from the Homespun site itself - perhaps there is an agreement between that and the e-zine vendors (or a code); let's see what the zinio customer service says.

    2. Update: Got it all sorted out. There are links within the e-zine to the Homespun page (or you can go there directly) where you can download the printer-friendly templates. They'll be tiled, not huge-fold-out-insert like the print mag, but they'll work for printers. So yes, $2.76 can't be beat. And no need to get dressed to leave the house and drive out.

    3. Thanks for this! I went right to the Zinio website, signed up and bought this issue! I'm just waiting to get to the Homespun page to download the templates...so glad you posted this comment :) now, to get moved into our new place, get my sewing machine out of storage and start sewing some cats!

  7. Amazon has paper copies, but I didn't see this issue for sale on its own. Maybe ebay?

  8. Magazine gal here: go online, find nearest Barnes and Noble, call and ask for the magazine person. They should be able to look up whether they have it instock. Checking online with them is not as effective, and it's a short phone call. Amazon is not a nice business for magazine companies to deal with; we lose money selling through them.

  9. The US distributor of the print copies of the magazine is Brewer Quilting and Sewing Supplies. Ring them tollfree in the US on 1 800 676 6543 and they should be able to give you the name of your closest stockist. I think you can also buy print copies from their website - www.brewersewing.com

  10. Those are so, so adorable.

    Will the pattern be available outside the magazine at any point?

    1. blog1: I haven't any plans to release it as an independent pattern yet. However, it's going to be hard to beat this price - the digital version for less than US$3 and download the templates at Homespun's site.

  11. Congratulations! Just too cute for words!

  12. Available here https://www.ericas.com/magazines/homespun.htm

  13. I live in Melbourne, Australia. I will have to go out and buy it, it looks so cute. Ta. cassie

  14. Thank you so, so much for these, they are wonderful. A long time ago I had a similar sheep with lambs in the tummy that was a purchased item. To be able to make one of my beloved felines will be amazing!!!


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