Tag Archives: sewing

A cosy hudl

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Just after Christmas my friend came round with her new tablet and I immediately fell in love! That same afternoon I ordered a hudl of my own and it’s just brilliant. My laptop is slowing down and it’s a bit of a pain for daily use, so my tablet is great for things like checking email (and playing on facebook and wasting hours on pinterest!)

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I have a protective shell, but this doesn’t protect the screen. Even the screen protectors (which do a great job against scratches) don’t offer much protection against big things knocking against it. This is a bit of a pain for the times when I want to throw it in my handbag with my keys! So I decided to make a cosy case for it.

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It’s a simple design, very much like my ribbon bag, but with the addition of extra padding to keep it nice and safe and secure.

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Of course, I needed to decorate it with pretty buttons!

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And I added a big button and a loop of ribbon to keep it closed.

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Even though I sewed it by hand (I still haven’t moved my sewing machine to my new house!) it only took a couple of evenings to complete.

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I’m really pleased with how it turned out and it’s doing a great job of protecting my hudl 🙂

Pretty and practical

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One of my favourite parts about Christmas is wrapping presents. I love getting out all my many rolls of wrapping paper, yards and yards of ribbons and pretty bows and steadily creating a pretty pile of presents. Unfortunately, most of the ribbons and bows I have are pretty Christmassy, so I’m unlikely to use them the rest of the year. I need a place to keep them where a) they’ll be out of the way and b) I’ll be able to find them again next year!

Now, I’m going to go off on a tangent, but I promise it’s related (in a round about way) and I’ll get back to the point soon.

I mentioned in my last post that life was pretty busy last year. One of the things causing busyness (and a fair amount of stress) was house buying! Yep, I’m now the proud owner of my first home, a lovely old terraced house. (One day I’ll show you round, but things are a bit of a mess right now, so I’ll tidy up a bit first.) Anyway, one of the most exciting things about my new house is that I have a craft room! And in one corner of my craft room I have a pretty bin holding all my wrapping papers. It’s squeezed in to a gap beside some shelves. The shelves are super useful, but will be pretty full (when I finally unpack everything). So I thought, why not make use of the sides of the shelves. I have some fabulous hooks (command hooks) which I used to hang a lot of my Christmas decorations. I stuck one on the side of my shelves, hung up my carrier bag full of bits and pieces, was pleased everything was tidied away but still in a memorable place – but the bag was very ugly! So I rummaged through fabric, ribbon and buttons and came up with this little beauty!

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The fabric was an off-cut from a curtain which was way too long for the space. I stitched the lacy trim on first, then sewed up the back and bottom of the bag.

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I added buttons (just because they’re pretty and I love buttons!) along the lace, plus one for closing.

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I made three loops along the back edge – one in the middle for looping over the button at the front and one on each side for hanging it up.

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My cat (she’s another fairly new addition to my life), Maisie wanted to get in the photos too!

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And it was this little bag that got me excited about making things again.

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I had to sew it all by hand (I haven’t got my sewing machine here yet) and the gentle stitching rhythm was just very lovely. In fact, I loved it so much I sewed something else just a couple of days ago – but I’ll show you that another time 🙂

Holiday time!

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Hurrah, the holidays are here! I’ve been counting down to this pretty much since the end of the last holiday!

The holiday started with a hen weekend. We stayed in an amazing house in Bude – there were so many doors and stairways I felt sure I would find Narnia at any moment! (Sadly I didn’t find it – think I might have to go back and look again.)  We visited some gnomes…

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They were really quite friendly…

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… and seemed to be having lots of fun!

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We then moved on to Rowan Tree Studio, a place that I’m convinced is just like heaven! From the moment we walked through the doors there were pretty things everywhere!

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The old sewing machines were my favourite – and she had over 30 sewing machines altogether!

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We started with lunch. Some really yummy sandwiches, tea in pretty cups…

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… and delicious cakes.

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We were there to make a quilt for the Bride to Be. We each had a square of fabric to decorate. I think some of us were a little ambitious in what we could do in the time. I ended up bringing mine home because it’s not finished yet!

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We had a lot of fun and everyone came up with great designs.

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Being there made me realise just how much I’d love to do this sort of thing myself. I’d love to have a big space to work in, run classes and workshops and generally spend all my time making things with other people! Maybe one day…

Christmas 2013 – garlands

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A couple of months ago I saw a pattern for this star garland in a magazine (I can’t remember which one – I buy too many!).

Crochet Star Garland

I posted it on facebook for my crochet buddy to see, but another friend saw it and requested that I make a Christmassy version for him. I didn’t really need much persuasion! I used Red Heart Miami yarn in Jeans, Light Blue and Nature. It was lovely yarn to use. The stars worked up quite quickly, especially after the first one. I made a lot of them during my lunch breaks!

The stars were quite curly around the edges, but nothing that a bit of blocking couldn’t sort out.

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And here it is in it’s new home…

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I was pleased with how it turned out and my friend likes it too – hurrah!

This is the mini garland I had over the fireplace this year. I made it a couple of years ago and have had it out at Christmasses ever since.

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It was super easy to make – simply cut out 2 star shapes from chosen fabric (probably best to use pinking shears as the raw edges will be on the outside) and start sewing them together. Sew in the string/ribbon as you go along. When 4 points of the star have been stitched fill will a little stuffing then sew up the remaining point. Repeat with as many stars as you fancy!

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2013

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Happy New Year! Don’t worry, I haven’t completely lost the plot – I know it’s actually 2014, but thought this would be a good time to do a round up of the past year. So here are my last 12 months…

January

Jan 20131

February

Feb 20136

March

Mar 20136

April

Apr 20134

May

May 20137

June

June 2013

July – I think this must have been a particularly busy month as I have no photos saved! I’m guessing some craft must have happened, but no idea what!

August

August 2013

September

Sept 20133

October

Oct 2013

November

Nov 2013

December

Dec 20131

So that was my year. I hope it was a good one for you too, and that 2014 will bring happiness and lots of craft opportunities!

Journal cover

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Two years ago I started a journal. I looked for ages to find a good book. In the end I settled for one with lovely paper (thick and smooth) and an ok cover. I thought at the time of making a cover for it and now I’ve finally done it! And in the process I have made good use of some of my new fabric, ribbon and buttons.

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It’s a simple design – basically a rectangle with the ends folded over for the book cover to slip into.

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A ribbon stitched along the back ties at the side to keep a pen in place.

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I think the pocket on the back took longer than everything else put together! But I’m quite pleased with the stitching, even though it took so long.

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I loved all these buttons and couldn’t choose between them, so decided to stitch all of them down the spine!

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I’m really pleased with how it turned out, and it only took a few hours from start to finish. I can’t believe it took me two years to get started on it!

New Year, New Giveaway

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Happy New Year!

Before I get to the looking forward part, I wanted to do a quick look back. These are some of the things I made/came across/thought were pretty enough to photograph through 2012.

January

Jan 2012

February

 

MFeb 20122March

March 20124

April

April 201210

May

May 20128

June

June 20126

July

July 201210

August

August 20122

September

September 2012

October

October 2012

November

November 2012

December

December 2012

Looking through so many pictures made me realise just how much I’d made last year. Some months were a lot more productive than others, but I’ve enjoyed my creativity very much this year.

I wrote last January about my habit of starting things that I never get round to finishing. I still do that – I have a box of unfinished projects (that I’ve managed to lose somehow!) but I’ve learnt a lot even from the things that I’ve not completed. I’m hoping that 2013 will be the year when I learn to finish the things I start, but even if I can’t manage that I’m sure I’ll continue to learn a lot of other things along the way. I hope you’ll continue to join me on my creative journey!

One last thing before I go. On 12th January it will be my One Year Blogging Birthday! I decided it’s about time for another giveaway, and my Blogging Birthday seemed like a great time to do it. I’ll announce the details of the giveaway at some point over the next couple of days, so watch this space 🙂

Small gifts

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A little while ago I found a stack of calico squares with different Christmassy words stitched onto them. I think I made them a couple of years ago and obviously got distracted before I finished making whatever it was I was planning at the time!

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So I found some Christmassy looking fabric and stitched them together.

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They are stuffed with lavender – not particularly Christmassy, but they smell lovely!

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They are now ready to be wrapped up as gifts for a couple of people at school (I don’t think they read my blog, so I don’t think I’m giving the secret away!)

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I’m back!

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Hello! How are you? Have you enjoyed the summer (or at least survived all the rain)?

You may have wondered where I’ve been the last few weeks. In actual fact I haven’t been anywhere. Apart from my week camping (in the rain) my holiday has been spent at home (in the rain with brief moments of sun). I had so many creative ideas buzzing around in my head and the holidays persented the perfect opportunity to start making them.

But when it came to it, I didn’t really feel like making anything at all. I had so much time on my hands and not an ounce of inspiration. So instead I spent my time with friends, taking trips to the beach and reading.

How cute are these beach huts?!

And even though these were lovely things to do I thought you’d probably get pretty bored reading about it all, so I decided to have a little blogging break. Every now and then I found myself writing a blog in my head (does anyone else do that, or is it just me?!) but on the whole I’ve enjoyed the break.

But I’m also really happy to be back! Although, with the new term just around the corner I don’t know how often I’ll be able to post – we’ll have to see how things go.

Anyway, I’m rambling. Let me quickly show you the very little I’ve made over the last couple of weeks.

A friend wanted a baby blanket, and asked if I had any. I had 3 which were part way through, so she came and picked her favourite.

I managed to finish it fairly quickly (I only had a few rounds left to do) and edged it with Jacquie’s Double V Edging.

The finished blanket measures 29iches/75cm.

The same friend has also commissioned me to make a blanket for her Nan for Christmas. More of that when I’ve made some progress!

I went to a wedding a couple of weeks ago. It was in a beautiful old village church and the hall where they held the reception was liberally festooned with bunting – I was in heaven!

They also had really lovely table decorations, my favourite being sweets in teacups. Such a simple idea, but just lovely.

I loved the favours too – beautifully decorated mini jars of jam. Yum!

The bride and groom asked for gift vouchers rather than presents, as they already had most things they needed. However, I decided that I wanted to give them something a little more personal. So I made them a cushion to celebrate their marriage.

I was really pleased with how it turned out – I hope they like it too!

New scarf

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My belief is that you can never have too many scarves. You never know when you might need one (even in the middle of the summer if you live in Britain) and it’s important to have as many colours and styles as possible. Right?

Or is it just me?

Anyway, at New Wine last week I was merrily browsing round the market place, when a whole host of scarves just jumped out at me. And one in particular caught my eye.

So pretty! And (nearly) the same colour pink as my handbag. The downside – it was just before payday and I couldn’t afford it. I was sure it would be snapped up, but when I went back a few days later it was still there! So of course I bought it before anyone else could get their hands on it.

Now, it cost me more than I would usually pay for a scarf. But it was well worth it. Firstly because it’s been handmade – just look at the tiny stitches quilting 3 layers together. And they’re all so neat! I don’t think I could make all my stitches so similar in size. How many hours must this have taken?!

Secondly it was worth it because it’s recycled. Each scarf was made from an old sari. Presumably one which was too full of holes to be worn any more (I’m guessing this from the small patches in random places) and would otherwise have been thrown away.

Thirdly it was worth it because each scarf tells a story. The women in India who make them have been rescued from human trafficking. From what I understand, Sari Bari was set up to help these women to build a new life for themselves. Each scarf (and all their other products) has a label with the name of the woman who made it.

So not only was I getting a beautiful new scarf, I was helping Uma to build a new life for herself. This is by far the best scarf that I have ever bought!

Find out more about Sari Bari here, or have a look at some of their beautiful products on their UK website here, or their US website here.