Friday, November 18, 2011

SAVE THE DATE: NDG CRAFT FAIR November 26th and 27th

I'm hosting 2 workshops on Saturday 11-2pm and Sunday 12:30-3:30pm.
Centre communautaire NDG, 3757 av. Prud'Homme, Montreal, Quebec (near Villa Maria metro0
You can make your own accessory and leave with it!

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

SUPPORT Style & Conscience's fashion project called "CITY FOX"

Introducing "CITY FOX"

Support them on Kickstarter help them reach their goal of $5,000 in 31 days.
Upcycling furs into BEAUTIFUL boot cuffs!
I styled the cute host "Miss Flora Law"

Sunday, November 13, 2011

My Student Felicity's Project: The Skirt

We wandered around Little Burgandy (behind the wonderful "FAIT ICI") to snap a few shots of Felicity in her work. She worked some of her "rock" poses as well as a new one called the "Inverted peanut". Check out her "other" passions out with USWM and Filly & the Flops.
All photos by Ian Woo (

Monday, August 15, 2011

My Sewing student, Pamela

My Beginner Sewing Student, Pamela created this wonderful dress (as well as other projects: pj pants and another tunic top). When I arrived at her place to begin the lesson I was greeted by her warm smile (& giggle) and a beautiful array of fabrics,decor and design,not to mention a dreamy house! I am so proud of her progress and impressed with her determination (even when little things happen..the machine unthreading or having to unstitch something she'd already sewn..+ more).
She has a new blog which I have been reading and laughing all the way through. She tells her thoughts and story is in such a way, I understand and relate to.
Peak into a day in the life of Pamela at "Thirtyone thoughts"

Friday, August 5, 2011

NEW "Blue-eyed Coquette" accessories available at General 54 (54 St.Viateur)

I've been selling with General 54 for the past 8 years so it's been a long sweet relationship.
Originally I sold my Fairyesque collection (women's wear designs) there and now in the past couple of years I have transformed my creation (need to create) to Romantically feminine :Hair accessories & Pins. Which you can now find upon a shelf or a glass case in their newly designed space.
Wonder through Mile End and more importantly St. Viateur (54 to be exact) and discover talented local Fashion Designers and hand selected vintage. Discover more through the General 54 Blog

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Testimonial by my Sewing student, Sally Lee

Photo of Sally in her creation by Ian Woo

"You walk into a neighborhood montréalais-mile-end triplex, up the beautiful wooden staircase and patterned floor tiles, into Nicole's cozy apartment where she welcomes you with a big, warm smile. It is here that you begin the magic of transformation and innovation. I went to Nicole for sewing lessons without any prior sewing skills or knowledge. My original intention for taking sewing lessons was to incorporate dressmaking,patterning and measurement into the art project that I was working on at the time. Nicole was very excited about the idea and gave me a good overview of options to choose one that would be best suited for my project. We picked a pattern, altered the size and adjusted it to fit me. Her many years of experience with fabrics and her immeasurable knowledge in clothes making and tailoring is definitely remarkable. Together with her joyful enthusiasm and creativity, I have accomplished making a dress for myself from scratch!!! On top of that, I have a friend who laughs as much as I do!"
-Sally Lee

Monday, July 18, 2011

"Blue-eyed Coquette" accessories available at The Citizen Vintage POP-UP sale

Be sure to "SAVE THE DATE" for the 2nd edition of the Quartier Mode Pop-up sale series!
Curating each sale, more interesting & stylish than the last.
It will take place at the Mile End newly established Citizen Vintage at 5330 Boulevard St.Laurent
July 28th-30th every day from 11-7pm (find designer & vintage wares!).
Don't forget to miss the party to jump start the event on Thursday July 28th (5-7pm)

Friday, July 15, 2011

NEW "Tailor Made" Workshops (at a location near you!)

Couture Lab (Teens): (12 -16yrs+)

Flower hair clips & pins (2 hours): (Project: 3 accessories)
*all materials & supplies included
In this workshop, we will be learning quick tips & tricks on how to whip up your own hair accessory.You will be taught 3 different fabric flower variations with upcycling & new fabrics as well as adding clips & pins to complete the look and make it functional!
If you have a fabric or garment(that can be cut!) that inspires you, bring it to the workshop!

Upcycling Clothes into Accessories (bags) : (2 hours): (Project: 1 bag )
*all materials & supplies included
Do you have clothes that sit in your closet & collect dust? Here's another way to recycle them!
This workshop will teach you to take pre-exsisting garments of any kind & re-create them in accessories using basic stitching techniques,fabrics & trimming.

"Tailor Made by you" (Adult)

The Skirt: (8 hours)- 2 days(:
*all materials & supplies included
In this workshop, you will be using an easy commercial pattern of your choice(patterns included) to create a skirt. We will be teaching you all about understanding patterns,cutting, finishing and sewing techniques(zipper & hem).This is a project based workshop so you will be walking away or wearing your complete skirt at the end!

Mini Tutorial (2 hours):
*all materials & supplies included
In this session, you will have a chance to ask a professional about different tips & techniques for specific finishing details or help to complete an already started project.Here is a list of examples of techniques: zipper (invisble/regular), hems(rolled/invisible), finishing for garment (necklines,armholes,waistbands),hand stitching, ect.
Don't feel frustrated with your projects...find a way to finish it & wear it!

For more details please contact and ask for Nicole!

Friday, July 8, 2011

Upcycling Workshop (Jeans into Accessories) this Saturday July 9th

This SATURDAY JULY 9th: I'll be doing an Upcycling workshop(Jeans into Accessories) for Kids with the City of Montreal (Ville Marie Sector) and Quartier En Mouvement. Come by and Visit me at Pierce street (one street west of Guy), just off of Ste-Catherine street.(Peter McGill Eco-Cartier and Innovation Youth are there.). All the jeans were donated by the S.W.A.P team.

Sunday, June 5, 2011

The S.W.A.P team blog post with me!

01 . 06 . 2011
by Tiffany Elton

A long time fashion designer, artist and now sewing teacher, Nicole has been involved in a number of Upcycling & Recycling workshops for the City of Montreal as well as collaborating with the non-profit organization The S.W.A.P team and is the designer/owner for the clothing line Fairyesque.

Now based on her whimsical flare for fashion, Nicole brings us beautiful hair accessories & brooches for her collection “Blue-eyed Coquette” available at shops around Montreal.
She has a great personal style – this lady can usually be seen riding her bike around Montreal in pretty skirts with just the right amount of crinoline, and beautiful accessories … I had to S.W.A.P. style with her:

1) What are your best ever thrift-ed or swapped find(s)?

Oh, I would say a pair of cowgirl boots from The S.W.A.P Team.

2) Where did you find them and how much did you spend?

I found them at a S.W.A.P Team event. I swapped for them, so I paid nothing!

3) Who is (are) your style inspirations and why?

Donna Summers in the 70’s, Goldfrapp and Anna friel’s costumes in “Pushing daisies”. Wonderful!

4) What finds are you still hunting for?

I am still looking for Turquoise leather belts and bags, intricate feminine top designs (that are not t-shirts). Not easy to find, but I will for sure some day!

To visit the S.W.A.P team site go to

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Atelier 211 : Summer Sale June 4th

For my first sale of the season I will be selling my "Blue-eyed Coquette" accessories at Atelier 211 on June 4th at 5555 de Gaspe #211.
Hosted by another talented designer Lisa of Ramonalisa designs.

SUMMER SALE with Quartier Mode June 11 & 12th

My dear friend Tiffany of Quartier Mode is setting up shop with a "POP-UP boutique" this June 11th and 12th at Preloved 4066 St.Laurent Montreal
Not only will there be loads of designer clothes but I will have some of my diverse & ladyish hair accessories on display. Check out the Quartier Mode blog for more details.

Sunday, March 20, 2011

I ADORE: DIY SEWING TUTORIALS (Bring on the spring projects!)

I have this ever growing list of DIY or sewing tutorials, almost sky high.
As a sewing teacher I have this great desire to share as much as I can with my students..SO
Here is my HOT list of favorite websites for upcoming seamstresses and creative types:

1. Design*Sponge : DIY cut,sew and create
2. P.S. I made this : Sewing & create your own designer pieces. Vivid,stylish and clear pictures and instructions.
3. Copycat Crafts : A "go-to" for DIY designer decor,accessories and clothing.
4. Ruffles and Stuff : this embodies my style! Ladylike, feminine and dreamy.
5. Burda Style : a standard spot for patterns(free also!),tutorials and more!
6. Colette Patterns : vintage patterns and adorable "How-to's"
7. MaryJanes and Galoshes : Fun & spunky DIY for decor and clothing.
8. Threadbanger : video DIY tutorials /edgy styles
9. Madebylex : mixture of DIY ideas

For a more extensive list go visit my FB page:

Keep creative and sewing!

Sunday, February 20, 2011

2nd: My sewing student Jasmine's Testimonial

"My style has never been more defined and unique since meeting Nicole. Altering garments and personalizing them to reflect my taste has been easily attainable with Nicole’s skills. Her extensive knowledge has allowed me to go beyond the basics and explore not only the fundamentals of sewing but fulfill my aspirations. Sewing is a skill that is achievable through Nicole. Not only have I fine-tuned my sewing skills but I have developed a friendship with a kind, patient and talented individual."

-Jasmine Lillie ( she is wearing two of her creations: Leather shorts & de-constructed tee)

* Jasmine always brings laughter,rogue-like qualities and a twinkle in her eye to our lessons.There's almost a new project every session, she knows how to run with an inspiration, usually in the upcycle, re-work and re-fashion kind of way with a dash of bohemian/punk energy.

Monday, January 31, 2011

My hair accessories at OLD SKOOL CRAFT SALE

To start your year and leap into Valentine's Day, pass by the OLD SKOOL CRAFT sale at St.Michel's Church (105 St.Viateur.W. corner of St.Urbain). I will have a table displayed of my Hair accessories & brooches (all hand made of wool,tulle,pearls,lace,silk and vintage buttons.)Curious? Please check out the OLD SKOOL CRAFTS WEBSITE for more info.!

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Mini Tutorials : 1st Project : Vintage Apron

I am constantly adding tips on my FB page (Private Sewing lessons with N.Picard)
but for those of you aspiring seamstresses who are taking a peak at my blog at this moment. I have a treat for you! This tutorial is in honor of my talented sister who can seriously WOW! you with her intense baking & cooking skills. I mean when she makes dinner expect to get the whole chicken(lathered in butter) with all the trimmings.
So for the 1st project of the week before you step into the kitchen and get messy, Try this sweet little Vintage Apron pattern. It requires very little fabric and it's a good way to jump into sewing.
Beginners are welcome!!


Thursday, January 13, 2011



January 13, 2011

Handmade clothing is having its fashion moment
By Tracy Nesdoly
Special to the Star
In a world of knock-off fashion, international runways and Toronto boutiques are embracing anything embroidered, crocheted or knitted

You might not think that chunky sweater Grandma gave you for Christmas is on the cutting edge of fashion, but you'd be wrong.

The handmade, mistakes and all, is having a major moment.

No less an arbiter of style and trend than Phoebe Philo, Céline's creative director, made news with her spring 2011 collection by sending a handwoven coat down the runway - and "embracing the artisanal" is something that's Nicole Phelps called an unintentional rebuff to the knock-off artists who copy Céline's sleek and minimalist look.

The Stella McCartney spring offering, found at 119 Corbo in Yorkville, includes crochet bags and crochet-embellished tanks and even jeans, and British Vogue says "granny sweaters are big news again," pointing to Miu Miu sweaters, See by Chloe and Marc by Marc Jacobs coats as evidence in a fashion spread that included some of the hottest It Girls in their best big and chunky knits.

Crediting them with having an unmatched trend-spotting record, asked the founders of Opening Ceremony, the U.S. chain considered a clearing house for international cool, for their predictions for the next 10 years. Humberto Leon and Carol Lim opined that craftsmanship will be appreciated more and more, and often that means handcrafted: "We see American houses employing the kind of artisanal specialists like the ateliers of France. In the vein of Rodarte's hand-knit sweaters we will increasingly see artisanal qualities in American fashion houses."

Trend-devouring mass retailers including Club Monaco are getting in on the handmade revolution, offering chunky cardigans lovingly knit by human hands.

"Everything in fashion is so fast, and fashion is knocked off so quickly, that something hand done, a piece that you will savour forever, seems very special and worth the money," says Toronto designer Rita Liefhebber, who included hand knits in her fall collection, and followed that up with loose hand-knit vests and tanks and hand-dyed dresses for spring. "The economy is such that when you look at a piece and know you can find something similar at H&M, you go that route. Fast fashion has the flip side – I think people want something that took time, and is perfectly imperfect."

"I think people are attracted to the authenticity of the handmade," says Ewanika. "Maybe it coincides with the recession, where the idea of investment dressing and having fewer pieces means you want the ones you do splurge on to be very special and truly unique."

When Kim Newport-Mimran opened Seventy Seven, the Pink Tartan flagship last month, she included knitting kits in the product mix alongside her own ready-to-wear collection.

"I love the graphic element hand knits offer, and a hand knit is so special and luxe," Newport-Mimran says. "And anyone can do it – my 9-year old has a project on the go and I think I'll frame it!"

And she sees a broader societal trend: "Beautiful handcrafted product is appreciated in a world of mass production. It stands out and says 'I am special.' " For her own collection, she says, "I'm currently looking at different techniques with fabric and construction to give the collection an element of hand made."

For some, seeing a gorgeous handmade sweater or scarf is just the incentive needed to embark on a hobby in earnest. Knitting clubs sprung up a number of years ago when news hit that celebrities sometimes take to the needles to reduce stress and kill time on set, and now sewing clubs seem to be hitting their stride.

"I have seen so many blogs spring up about sewing where they go into minute detail about every step of the way in the projects they've started. These are people who have never grown up with patterns or home sewing, and the idea that you can make something yourself is fascinating to them," says Ewanika. "My industrial-sewing repair place said they have never sold so many domestic or quasi-industrial machines."

It seems there's just something scrumptious about creating your very own piece. Americo Original at 456 Queen St. W. sells gorgeously coloured yarns, most of them from South America, and has created a full range of knitting patterns based on current trends. The knitting classes are routinely sold out.

"My original idea was to open a home accessories store," says Nicole Sibonney, who opened Americo four years ago. "But when I was sourcing product in Argentina and saw the raw materials for the fabrics, I was so inspired I changed direction."

Americo is now mostly a yarn and knitting shop for hobbyists, though there remains a smattering of the original idea in the form of cosy woven blankets and other home accents.

"Knitting allows you to be creative, and it's meditative and therapeutic," says Sibonney, explaining the appeal. "Knitting sort of balances our wants. You can't make anything as fast as you can purchase it. It's good to slow down a little."

Please see the full article here: Hand made clothing having a fashion moment

Thursday, January 6, 2011

A Creative Start : Sewing into your new year

Hello to all you aspiring Seamstresses and Designers!

First off, Happy new year!...Get ready to start your creative year with a little sewing session with yours truly. I have added 2 NEW courses to my list (visit my FB page!) :for those of you that need a refresher course or perhaps something a little different.

1) Mini Tutorials (a quick fix in 2 hours) /

2) Sewing parties ( create a little something with your friends!).

If your curious & need info. just send me an email at tips & inspirations to come!