fabric

Fabric no longer a mystery

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There was a beautiful pile of cotton fabric.  There were shades of red, pink, white, cream, pale blue and bright green.  Some had dots and spots, some geometrics, a few floral (quite a lot of floral), one checked and a couple with birds in bird cages.

I measured and snipped.  I stitched and turned. I pinned and stitched some more.

Reveal day – yesterday – was not a sunny one. Unfortunately the bunting could not be strung across the garden to show it at it’s best.

I hope the friend I am gifting it to loves it as much as I do. Some things made for others you just want to keep for yourself!  It’s saving grace is that the bunting is going to be used at a charity event on 11th May.  A good friend is involved in an Open Garden scheme for a local hospice. I hope it enhances the pretty flowers, shrubs and trees that my friend and others have been nurturing for the last few months and years.

http://www.stchristophers.org.uk/opengarden

 

 

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Such pretty fabric, mystery project ..

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Following on from an earlier post this week I am still creating a gift for a friend. For now, here’s a little snapshot of fabric to tease anyone interested. bunting1

Using up some of my fabric stash has been a delight.  Not only does it make way for more purchases (ssh, don’t tell the bank manager or the hubby!), but it has been so lovely delving in, finding cottons that complement each other and even remembering where some of it was bought and why.  There was at least one project that never materialised, some is remnants and some was bought with no plans (so pretty, I had to have it). It’s a lot like my stash of yarn and wool, plentiful!

Who else will show and tell this week?

Buttons in a tin

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Whose Mum or Granny had a button box or button tin?  I have fond memories from a young age of being allowed to sit and sift through my own Mum’s buttons.  Different sizes, different shapes, some matching pairs or sets, lots of odd ones, lots of old ones, many that stayed in that tin year after year.

This week I was searching for buttons in one of my own button tins – so I thought I’d show some of my favourite ones. The first picture shows leftover fabric buttons made ages ago, dorset buttons from a workshop and two fabulous buttons with cute printed fabric which I bought in France.

buttons1The second photo has horn shaped buttons which used to be on a handknitted cardigan, I Ioved them and I loved the cardigan, unfortunately after two years I shrunk it in a wash(!) and couldn’t wear it again. Then there’s a couple of ceramic buttons from a gorgeous shop in Westerham, Kent http://www.anniesattic.co.uk/shop/ – and more ceramic ones from a friend’s trip to Denmark.  The rainbow ones I found on a stall at the Knitting and Stitching Show at Alexandra Palace about three years ago.

buttons2

Here’s the reason I was searching for buttons.  I needed eleven for this chunky cardigan – finally finished – it had been a WIP for a while! These are wooden and were an internet purchase from China.

pinkcardibuttons

I wonder if anyone else has favourite buttons to show off. I’d love to see!

One door closes and I shall wait for another to open whilst crafting a fair bit.

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Today was the last day in my current job.  It was my choice to leave and several factors led to my resignation five weeks ago.  I know I am lucky, I have the support of my family, though I am not sure they understand my decision totally. I have been told not to be a stranger to the work colleagues I leave behind.  I believe it to be a genuine request.

What had changed? Me. My expectations.  My aspirations. I was flattered to have been offered the job.  I was returning to a company I had worked for before.  I already knew most of the people I would work with.

So what’s next?

I shall take time to reflect.

I shall catch up with those I have neglected over recent months.

I shall craft.

I shall keep my eyes open for opportunities.

Perhaps those little ideas that spin round inside my head may even come to fruition, be it money-making or otherwise!

nepal knit (2)
This WIP shall grow more quickly!
1888/Q Notions Ivory
Buttons, threads and fabric will be fiddled with
My yarn collection which is WAY BIGGER than this will be sorted and change from balls and skeins into other things

Watch my new journey here!

A little sewing, repurposing garments, a little quilting, a little musing

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Been a little productive, craftwise, in the past few days, sorting fabric and playing with repurposing some charity shop bargains.  I have ideas to make new summer tops and a pair of culottes.  Having cut out two commercial paper patterns, realised I am so inbetween sizes and  thought about past disasters  I am jigging those patterns so finished garments will hopefully fit me in the right places.  I am not the body size or shape I wish I was (oops! too much good living and too much time spent sitting!)

So I bought a huge men’s shirt for less than £3.00 – am cutting it up. I llke the fabric but it has a stain on it so bought it for the fabric not the garment itself.  I have also taken apart a gorgeous broderie anglaise dress I had two years ago, it had a huge snag on the front (grrr, the washing machine ‘ate’ it!).  I have chopped into it to make a sample fitted top, making sure the darts are in the correct places, then will use it as a sample as a pattern.

I bought some beautiful linen trousers too.  They were made for someone with the longest legs ever – so I have rehemmed them to fit (I actually have long legs but these were ridiculous!)   Also a blouse, which was too short in the body, I added a trim to the bottom and voila – perfect for me.  In fact I wore this combo to work yesterday – so can’t show it off as it’s now in the laundry pile – will show off pics next time.

So, for a pic today …. I have chosen one of a bag I made for a friend last year.  A little quilting, lots of fun I had one Sunday afternoon.

quiltbag

Thanks for reading my blog post(s).

A week of stitching

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Over the Easter weekend I was poorly, but I did get a little stitching in before the weekend and a lot (a lot!) since then. I’ve been having a sewfest (if there is a word – or if there isn’t one, there should be).  It’s been like an obsession.  Whenever I could I sat and stitched, pieced fabrics together, played with design,  patchworked, quilted, sorted fabrics, etc.  I’ve made mistakes, undone the mistakes, restitched, rejigged old patterns, browsed sewing books and so on and so on.  It’s been total indulgence in my crafting world.

I started with the beginnings of a bright green and orange quilted playmat, the cutest nursery prints, mostly fabrics donated to me by a very good friend.  She heard I was sorting out my stash and thought she would add to it. It was so much fun chopping up fabric and piecing it back together.  The top went well and I was on a roll!  In fact, we sat and quilted together. The backing was not quite as successful… more later.

Next I undid a peg bag I had started two weeks ago – I wasn’t pleased with it, slightly skew on the measurings.

pegbag
Second time lucky – ta dah!

 

Then I was sorting through some more of the fabric from the same friend. I found the beginnings of a baby patchwork quilt – I asked what she might have been making and for whom – she couldn’t remember! There were random sized strips stitched together – the prettiest designs in pinks and yellows.  I turned it into a bag, lining it with dotty pink fabric from my stash (so I did get to use some of my fabric after all).  I tried to follow a pattern in a book – which presumed you knew a lot about making bags – well, that was fun (sarcastically said, there was more than one attempt with the lining and a lot of frustration!)  Still, you learn a lot as you go sometimes, and I learnt a lot this time!.

tote

Then I still had some of the same fabric left.  I pieced it, backed it, quilted it, chopped it, added a zip – and voila – a fabric pouch. I based this on a previous project, which I still use as a make up pouch.  However, my own one had nasty raw seams inside.  This one, has posh french seaming. Having only done french seams once before I was quite proud of myself. Now who wouldn’t be happy to have this for girly bits and bobs such as hair accessories?

fabricpouches
And then that pouch got a brother – in blues and greens – maybe not for hair accessories this time –  for a picnic bag/day out bag to store tissues and wet wipes 

You can see a few things went well.  Back to the first project, that baby quilt.  I attempted the backing, totally off kilter – I was still feeling under the weather.  I should never craft when I am poorly. Whether it’s sewing or knitting, it just does not go well! So, off came No 1 backing.  A trip to a fabric shop later (why is it sometimes your stash does just not have the right fabric for the job?)  and No 2 backing was perfect.  Just to add the quilt padding, stitching the opening and then maybe hand tying, or maybe not – when finished it will be on show here.

As for what’s going on around me the rest of the week? We are currently having a new roof on our house.  There is noise and chaos surrounding me! I am squirrelled away indoors.  Occasionally I step out of the front door, look up for falling debris, before offering the roofers more tea and biscuits.  A happy builder is one full of tea and biscuits I find! So far, so good. Two skips full of 80+year clay tiles, one wasps nest discovered.

Bye for now.  Back to creating.

In need of knitting and sewing therapy – so thankful for this morning

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padded coathangers 2 nov 14What a shattering week it has been.  A week of disappointments and frustrations.  I am over tired, have been over-wrought and thank goodness the week is almost over itself!  (It’s now Saturday afternoon. When do you say your week begins, Sundays or Mondays?  For me it is Mondays.  I digress…)

A frustrating week: buses were late, trains cancelled, colleagues absent, work extreme, teenager a ‘stroppy’ teenager.  The weather turned cold and chilly, the skies were grey all day and to see photos on line of my hubby in the Dubai sunshine enjoying his holiday (oops, business trip!) added to the despair of the week.  Disappointments briefly: work ethic not being appreciated, being a good mother, being a successful wife.  There were a few bright lights, namely a morning spent with friends on Thursday and a satisfying parents evening giving praise to my teenager (no strops that evening from either of us, wahay!).

When I am a lone parent for a few days I revel in the chaos of my life and home.  I rule the roost, I tidy when I want to (usually half an hour before anyone else comes over), I craft more and generally have a ‘break’ from week to week routine.  This week it just has not worked out that way.  The knitting did not take off – I kept running out of time to knit – my time management sucked.  The sewing remained on the dining table space, left neglected and unloved.

So thank goodness for this morning! Look what I made – mine is the navy spotted one.  Four friends met and sewed together.  The lovely Carrie helped us make a padded coathanger (one friend popped in to say hi, sup a coffee and did not stay long, so did not sew).  This has been a project on the back burner for months.  Twice we had arranged to meet and make it but with all of us and our chaotic lives it wasn’t until today that it actually happened.  Friends, sewing needles, fabric, girl heaven.  Therapy in a couple of hours.