Boho Banjo

Welcome to my Blog

BOHO BANJO - art to wear

Original and unique womens pdf sewing patterns and textile prints by Pearl Red Moon

To purchase fabric designs email Pearl Red Moon with your order - pearl@upstairs-art.com.au


Visit my online store to purchase patterns and clothing HERE

Saturday, 27 June 2015

please like my new FB page!

Hi everybody, I just created a Facebook page for Boho Banjo art to wear. This little baby has to learn to walk and talk yet, but I invite you to tickle the baby and give it a kiss!

Boho Banjo Facebook page logo

I would really rather be finishing the Ellice pattern at this time than being engaged in the mortal hand to hand combat with the interwebs that setting up these new systems requires....

The Ellice pattern should hopefully be ready to publish in the first week of July and immediately after that I want to set up a bi-monthly newsletter showcasing new pattern releases and creative sewing ideas . One of the main reasons to set up the FB page is so that a subscription link can be promoted through that.

I'll keep you updated with the baby steps of FB Boho Banjo....





Sunday, 14 June 2015

A "pair" of what...?

I've started work on a new pattern - the Ellice Skirt and Trouser (or shall I call them "Pants"?... what is the difference!.., does anyone know and can it be explained? And carrying on in that vein of questioning....why, OH WHY!? is it a "pair" of pants of trousers? This has vexed me forever!)

The A line skirt is a staple of my wardrobe.

Ellice A line skirt

I'll outline the 5 main reasons why I love the A line skirt....

1. It is a flattering shape to any figure and especially to a wide midriff.

2. The most basic type of pattern for an A line skirt can require only 2 pieces - a front and a back - and is therefore a quick and easy sew

3. Ultra comfortable to wear

4. Easy maintenance, you can iron this garment in a minute and either hang it on a clip hanger or fold to store in a drawer and slip it on in seconds.

BIG #5 - the A line skirt is the perfect under garment to complement the "Lagenlook" or "Layered look". You don't want too much fabric bunched around the waist when putting over those outer layers of shirts, dresses or tunics and the A line is the perfect solution....

elasticated waistband of the Ellice skirt

The Ellice skirt is attached to a narrow basque and I used this design feature to add an exciting option by adding a long and draping peplum into that seam.

Ellice skirt with jersey knit peplum (Palimpsest in Mauve form my fabric range) over ponte knit underskirt


Ellice skirt with light under layer and bengaline peplum

Then....I made these fabulous wide leg trousers with a further twist to the pattern


Ellice trousers, worn with Willara top

the waistband of the Ellice trousers
I have a few more design twists to add...but do you think the Ellice pattern is already looking pretty fabulous?! I hope so!

I'd love to hear readers thoughts about the Ellice Skirt and Trousers


Monday, 1 June 2015

What pattern next?

I love pattern making. Every time I go into the studio I'm enthused to make a new pattern. However the reality is it takes weeks/months to develop a new design from prototype garment sample to finished pattern with graded sizes and written and illustrated instructions. The first pattern I published 10 months ago - the "Zelda" Top - took about 3 months from start to finish because I was also learning how to use the programs Adobe Illustrator and Indesign for publishing in digital format. Each pattern since then has taken less and less time as my skills improved.

But I still have at least 30 unpublished patterns in my workroom and have to fend off the desire to make a new one every day....

As I build up a catalogue of pdf patterns I'm not sure if I should plan to offer a variety of styles - dresses, separates, pants, jackets, coats, etc...? I'm aware as a designer I have a strong personal preference for dresses and tunics. I find trousers the least exciting thing to design.

So considering what to choose for the next pattern to publish I'm torn between what I'm drawn to and the theory of keeping a "balanced variety" of designs in the catalogue.....

Here's pictures of a top (Emerald) and a tunic (Scarlet) which are the designs I'd like to start working on...

"Emerald" top  front on the left side falls to a point

Emerald back, nicely draping to each side
Emerald top, showing that looping drape on the right side

Or how about this tunic called "Scarlet" - this example made in one of textile designs



Scarlet, the front

Scarlet, from the side, the back is a block colour

What I think I should do for "balance" in the catalogue is this skirt called "Ellice". There is only this one sample at the moment and this isn't a great picture for showing the fabulous way it drapes...


The "Ellice" skirt

So do people look for a wide variety of styles in designer catalogues?  Do you go to your favourite indie designers wanting a wide variety of styles? Would readers like to encourage me to do any of the designs above for the next publication?

I took these pictures in front of "Stone and Co" which is a marvellous shop just one door away from my shop studio on the New England Highway. It is chock full of glorious vintage homewares and beautifully restored furniture, www.stoneandco.com.au






Friday, 29 May 2015

Free Willara pattern is a hotcake!

<a href="http://www.bloglovin.com/blog/14102981/?claim=azab3mbxs55">Follow my blog with Bloglovin</a>

BTW, that piece of goobledy-gook at the beginning of this post is because I've been alerted I need to "claim" my blog on Bloglovin and that is part of the process.

Oh Boy! theres been such an amazing response to the Willara pdf pattern giveaway in just half a day - get em while they're HOT gals!

Nearly a 100 snatched off the shelf already!

I'll be cocking my ear to the wind and expecting to hear the hum of sewing machines all around the world this weekend.

To give some added incentive to get treadling I'll give the first person to send me a picture of themself wearing a finished Willara top or dress the choice of another free pattern from my other 3 designs.

....and whoever is first to post a review with pictures on their blog will be gifted all 3 patterns!

Who plans to make a Willara this weekend?


Willara top from the free pattern. This fabric is "Palimpsest in Grey" and for sale in the online Boho Banjo Cloth shop


Thursday, 28 May 2015

Willara pattern published

I've had a terrific response from so many readers wanting to get the Willara pattern.

You are all very welcome!

I would love to see what people create so please send me pictures and I'll share them. Also feel welcome to write a  review of your opinion/experience using the pattern and publish on your own blog if you wish - not forgetting to let me know so I can benefit from your feedback and enjoy the pictures too.

The pattern will be a free download for one month - until the end of June 2015, then it'll revert to being for sale in my online shop for US$10.

At the moment all you need to do to get it is click on either of the icons on the top right side of the blog sidebar - just next to where you're reading this. Either link will take you to one of my 2 online shops (Shopify and Kollabora) where you'll see the 3 other patterns I've created - Zelda, Judith Suite and Adeline.

Find the Willara feature page and select the download button and the zipped file could take up to a minute to be downloaded into your computer. When the Adobe file is opened there's a selection to print any of these separately - the cover page, the 13 page making instructions, the 40 tile pdf pattern or the 2xAO page files.

The pdf pattern will print at home on 40 pages that'll then need to be trimmed and taped together. Alternately there is a file for printing the actual size pattern on AO pages (approx 120 x180cm) To do this transfer the files to a memory stick and take to a copy shop for printing. In Australia Officeworks  does this at $4 a page. As there are 2 pages the total cost will be $8. The files can also be emailed to your nearest Officeworks store from their website dedicated to this service and picked up for no extra cost. I wouldn't recommend getting them mailed as the one time I did it cost over $30 as they are rolled in a large mailing tube!

I do hope everyone will enjoy making up the garment and I look forward to getting feedback - please!


Tuesday, 26 May 2015

new pattern Willara



Very close to finishing the Willara pattern for publication, definitely by this weekend..This is the cover page just finished a moment ago. 



Cover page of Willara pattern

It will be a free download for one month then is for sale at $10.

Thursday, 21 May 2015

new pattern release soon

I've been working away on my 4th clothing design which should be ready to publish in about a week.
This garment I call "Willara" and it can be made as a top or long tunic.

This is a very easy pattern, suitable for beginners, and quick to make. If the inset side pockets are left out an experienced sewist would be able to cut and make the dress or top easily in less than an hour. Add another half hour with the pockets which are inset in the side seams.

Heres some samples, some made in my own textile designs.

Willara, long tunic, 3/4 length sleeve, the upper fabric is my "Sashi" design






Willara long tunic, with short sleeve and elastic at the hemline
to give a "bubble look", made in 2 of my textile designs -
"Red Gothic Tiles" and "Lime Spot"

Willara top with 3/4 length sleeve, made in my fabric design "Palimpsest in Grey"
I think the design works best in medium weight knit, but a version I made in light linen worked well too.

Willara has a high, wide boat neck and and falls in an A line with dipping side seams. The pattern gives options for 3/4 length or short sleeves and for inset pockets in the side seams...

...but perhaps the most exciting feature about this pattern is that it will be FREE!!! I'll be making it available as a free download in my Shopify shop and on my page at Kollabora. So if you'd like to get the pattern keep an eye out for my next blog.







Wednesday, 6 May 2015

How my garden grows

Winter is quickly coming upon us in the Southern Hemisphere and we have already started lighting a fire in the lounge room for the evening to keep warm. There is a little spell after the Summer heat and dryness before the true Winter cold sets in when the garden is lovely. The recent heavy rains that flooded many coastal areas of New South Wales last month were very much kinder to the regions further inland. In Murrurundi we had some welcome drenching rain and the garden sprung back to life. It has been a pleasant sunny morning and here's some pictures I took of the garden....it's been really hard to try to cull them down to just a few of the best views!

Rodney and I were married on this brick dias in 2011

Shade cloths keep the worst of the Summer heat off the pond beneath

walk down to the gazebo







Rodney installed this new fibreglass pond a few weeks ago.

My garden studio

Bali style bamboo gazebo


Rodney putting the new pond in

This AngelTrumpet Tree (Brugmansia) was determined to make its first flower truly huge and spectacular . The flower would have been dragging on the ground if it wasn't planted in a pot where it could droop over!

Thursday, 30 April 2015

latest doings

In the last week the 15 new textiles I designed have arrived. I've been excitedly making them up...

"Raspberry Leopard" 150 cm wide stretch knit

"Lime Leopard" 150cm wide stretch knit, plus a piece of spotted contrast at the top

A tunic in the Raspberry Leopard fabric


The Murrurundi Art Show is opening this Friday night at 6.30pm at the RSL Hall so the stalwarts of the Arts Council have been a flurry of activity setting this up. Heres pictures of my entries. I have 2 garments entered in the Fibres/Textiles section and this is the coat.
back of the coat

front of the coat

I also entered the Portrait/Figurative section with this digital image called "Anna May, after the 1920s actress Anna May Wong. I used an out of copyright b/w image of her as the basis of the manipulation. I've used this same image at larger than life size as a fabric print too...in fact... I won the Fibres/Textiles section last year with a garment made printed with this picture with the figure in a longer format.


"Anna May" digital image on archival paper 70x80cm





Monday, 23 March 2015

Rafflecopter Winner!

The Rafflecopter giveaway finished yesterday afternoon so this morning I used their random auto pick feature to chose a winner. And then because that was such fun I chose a second winner who will get the 3 patterns I've published - the Zelda Top, Judith Suite and Adeline Tunic will be sent to you both.

Grand Prize winner, who gets the patterns PLUS their choice of 3 metres of fabric designed by me

is....Heather Brown!! 

Heather if I don't hear from you soon I'll contact you. You'll need to check out my fabric designs at either

Boho Banjo fabric shop

(2014 designs)la Perla Spoonflower fabric shop

and chose the 3 metres you want. It doesn't have to be all one fabric, you can pick up to 3 designs @ 1 metre each, or 2 designs @ 1 and 2 metres.

The patterns will be emailed as zip files and you'll have them within a few minutes.


The second surprise winner to receive the patterns is Elaine Howard.

Yesterday I spent some delightful hours in my sewing studio and started the next 2 pattern projects. #1 will be to publish a free pattern by the end of April.  #2, a new tunic that will also be a textile embellishment project. More updates to come.....