All posts by Thewoodworker

Make Do and Modify – The Purple Dress

Make Do and Mend Modify – The Purple Dress


This is the gorgeous dress my mum, the seamstress, made me! I’m so lucky that every time she needs something for the shop window she makes me a new dress, it’s usually a surprise which I only learn about when I mention a wedding I’m going to, but this one we chose together utilising left over satin mum had (hello post consumer waste right there!). It’s made using an original Vogue paper pattern from the 1950’s, Vintage chic right? Ummmm no, well not with my figure and preferences…
Turns out once on it was quite… well… frumpy/matronly. It was an onslaught of purple on the eyes too! So with the help of the three most brutally honest (in a good way) people  in my life (hubby, besty and editor in chief) and many a picture text, we worked out where it was going wrong. Thus began the make do and modify mission, because getting another dress would be a terrible waste! Obviously these principles can be applied to a vintage/op shop or even outdated dress purchase to make it perfect for you giving it a longer life and keeping it out of landfill!

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How to Make a Vintage Knitting Needle Shawl Pin

How to Make;

Vintage Knitting Needle Shawl Pin

How to make a Vintage Knitting Needle Shawl Pin. www.daughterofaseamstress.comYesterday I posted about making Knitting Needle Bracelets and left a little teaser for this post, so here you go. How to make a shawl pin from a vintage double pointed knitting needle.

After the double pointed needles didn’t work out as bracelets I had a play with them and created these Shawl pins. This is great for those incomplete sets of dpns the op shop always have!


How to Make a Vintage Knitting Needle Bracelets

How to Make;

Vintage Knitting Needle Bracelets

How to Make Vintage Knitting Needle Bracelets/Bangles.

I got an assortment of odd vintage plastic knitting needles from the opp shop the other day, in pretty colours with cool tops on them too! I bought them with the intention to bend them into bangles, an idea I had come across in Sarah Kramers cook book where she tells you how to bend plastic tooth brushes into bangles.

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How to Preserve Olives

How to Preserve Olives that will last 2 years

How to Preserve Olives that will last for 2 years.

I often get asked how I preserve olives. Crazy talk for a very Anglo origin girl, but even my immigrant Italian neighbours asked me how I do mine! My method for olives is a hybrid of knowledge from my friend Jo and the book Preserving Food without Freezing or Canning by Chelsea Green.

After I collected enough olives, black and green and in between, I wash the olives and then I spend some time in front of the TV (probably watching some period drama) cutting slits in them. I use a little paring-style knife to cut up to three slits for big olives, but one or two cuts will be enough. When I say slits it’s really just a stab, no length to the cut as such.

Toy Car Mat-Bag Tutorial

Toy Car Mat-Bag Tutorial

How to make a Toy Car-Mat tutorial. www.daughterofaseamstress.comSo after the success of the home made teepee at Christmas I decided my nephew should have another home made gift for his birthday at the end of Jan. I decided to make him a Car Mat-Bag because I know he LOVES matchbox cars, and because my mum gave me some fabric that looked like paddocks to me so it made a great background. It’s a simple draw-string bag and it could be modified for a girls doll bag by making garden beds with cute floral’s, or a farm yard animals bag with paddocks and brown fabric for tracks, up to your imagination! I’m sure there’s much more you could do…

New address, new content, same daughter

Where to start? Where to start? *Just start already!*

Welcome to! The new location for my old blog that has become very inactive while I did the whole first time mum being overwhelmed thing… anywho. I started out at back in January 2013 and now I’m here! I’m pulling posts across from the old site as I’m completely aware they still get traffic and I’ll be keenly adding new content from now on.

The focus of the blog will be my creative journeys, encompassing my lifestyle goals of treading lightly and using principles that are well summarised in Radical Homemakers. Hoping to have time, over income or material belongings. Making do with what we have, mending that which needs it and understanding the true efforts that go into creating our belongings so we better appreciate it.