Wednesday, 24 December 2014

Happy Holidays!

It's Christmas Eve and I have a couple of finished projects to share before the festivities really start.

Doesn’t seem that long ago that I was hanging up the Advent Calendar and now the last sweet is about to be munched!  This was actually a present I started making for the OH while we were busy with wedding prep.

I don’t get the chance to make things for my OH much.  The only other things I have made him in the last three years are a Christmas Stocking and cover for a Kindle.  That’s it.  He is fine with that and is not spending the days claiming that I am neglecting him – although he would prefer if I made more cakes and less dressmaking/cross stitch!

It was relatively easy to put together, albeit a bit fiddly at times.  

I could not decide how to quilt it for ages and settled on stitching round three sides of the pockets again so as to not interfear with the design.  This worked fine until I realised that I now had 48 knots to bury in the quilt!  Not such a bright idea after all- thats a lot of knots! 

Quilting the top and adding the bias binding round the sides ended up taking a whole Saturday.  Had a good few goes at adding the binding as I was trying to get rid of the green border on the original panel. No idea why it took so long to get right and I ended up just cutting the green border off. 

The OH was really pleased with the result in the end though which is the main thing.

I also just managed to get my Frosted Pumpkin Stitchery Christmas Celebration Sampler finished in time for Christmas.  Love how cute these patterns are and it will be good to get it framed and displayed ready for next Christmas.

That's all the crafting done for Christmas now too which is a relief.  We are spending the day with family tomorrow so a nice relaxing evening with a bottle of bubbly before Santa arrives is in order!  Hope everyone has a wonderful Christmas.


Monday, 22 December 2014

More curtains

Before I start the Christmas crafting posts I just wanted to write a wee post about another pair of curtains that I made.

A couple of months ago I made a pair of bathroom curtains for my Gran which also featured in my very first blog post.  Well once I had made them my other Gran started to hint that she needed a new pair of kitchen curtains!  I should know by now that I can't make for one without the other but somehow I always forget.

I thought it would be a good idea to write down what I did to make the curtains.  Now I am not really qualified to tell other people how to make curtains, and there are lots of tutorials out there, so this is really more of a note for my own future reference!

I started by measuring the curtains she already had up to get my finished measurements and then added 12cm to the length and made sure I had 8cm on the width for the hems.   I started by checking that I had a straight edge for cutting the first curtain then lined up the pattern to ensure that I managed to match the pattern across the two curtains.

I then created a 2cm double fold hem for each of the sides.

I then stitched the sides down using the straight stitch on my machine.  Actually I was very lazy and just used a strait stitch to do all my seams - no blind hemming for me! I know I was cutting corners here but to be honest the stitches vanish into the fabric and I think it looks fine.

I then folded the top down by 2cm and created a 5cm double hem at the bottom. I then struggled for ages as to how to miter the corners properly at the bottom, before settling for a mock mitered corner as per this tutorial!  I think it looks ok.  

The last set of curtains I made both my mum and Gran mentioned that when they have had curtains made for them before there was a small pocket for the extra hemming cord to sit when they are hung.  So I pulled out a small strip of off white fabric from my stash and created this little pocket to include under the heading tape. I did this by eye and didn't take any measurements but its about 3" long and 2" wide.

I then added the header tape.  I cut it to the correct width and ziz zag stitched down the two cut ends to stop it unraveling, making sure I didn't catch the cords, before attaching to the fabric.  This went nice and quick, until I realised that I had sewn a pin in-between the tape and curtain fabric. Can you see the pink pin head? Oops!

Pinning the tape on the second curtain.

The only bit of hand sewing I did was to stitch down the mitered corners.

They then got folded up for a week until I went to visit my Gran.

In pride of place (sorry for rubbish photo - it was getting dark so the light is a bit off!)

See you all soon x

P.S. I love to chat so feel free to leave a comment!

Sunday, 21 December 2014

Time flies

Wow can’t believe how quick the last few months have gone and that it was September when I was last on here. 

Life has certainly been busy in the meantime. We got married…

….went on honeymoon….

…got ready for Christmas….

…. and to be honest just life in general has just been a bit crazy.  I have also managed to break the camera (both the camera and I got soaked by a wave on honeymoon – it didn’t survive!) and laptop (currently in the computer hospital) which has not helped.

I have, however, been managing to do some crafty stuff.  Those of you who follow me on instagram will probably be bored of seeing the updates on the Christmas Celebration Sampler by Frosted Pumpkin Stitchery.  Fab wee pattern and I do love being involved in a stitch along but the border is taking an age and has had to be put on hold while the Christmas sewing takes place.

Stitching Christmas ornaments when I was supposed to be gift sewing (another Frosted Pumpkin Stitchery project – Cozy Gingerbread Snow Globe)

Despite promising not to do many crafty projects for Christmas I seem to have been very busy making gifts!  I have a couple of posts lined up for after Christmas so I won’t share them just now.  However, I have been making loads of lavender bags and tissue holders as gifts – an idea which I have stolen from Mrs King Sews!

I have also made some more bean bag chairs as a favour for a colleague at work (they looked a lot better in real life - and were very comfy).

While I have been doing a lot of crafting, I have not touched the dressmaking in months.  The closest I have got was buying £45 dress for £8 out of Oasis as the seam had come away at the zip.

I know this seems very small but it is not something I would have even considered doing before.  A little bit of interfacing to reinforce the seam where a wee hole had occurred and away I went.

It was a bit fiddly, and the OH was a bit amused that the night before we go on honeymoon I decide to fix a dress, but I think it was worth it (photo doesn't do it justice!).

That’s enough from me for one day I think! 

Will be back soon  x

P.S. I love to chat so feel free to leave a comment!

Saturday, 13 September 2014

The week that was OWOP 2014

Well that is it over, One Week One Pattern (OWOP) is done for 2014. This is the first one of these types of events I have participated in and I am so pleased I managed it.  A big thanks must go to Handmade Jane for organising it as well.

For OWOP I decided to wear the Delphine skirt from Love at First Stitch by Tilly from Tilly and the Buttons.

Day 1 - OWOP did not start off too great as I was unexpectedly in the wrong city to my skirt!  However, as soon as I got back to Glasgow it was off with the jeans and on with my botanical Ikea print Delphine with black top and cardie which I wore to go out for a meal with my OH.

Day 2 - Sunday morning was supposed to be a morning for making a second Delphine.  However it didn't quite work out like that and it was back on with the Botanical Ikea print Delphine with white top and pink cardie to go shopping with my mum.  (Please excuse the headless shot - the OH took it quickly when we were rushing out the door as we were late - and I was also insisting he got the new pink shoes in!)

Now at this point I still only had one skirt and was thinking that OWOP was not going to happen for me this year.  I had managed to start my denim version of Delphine but decided to add in some pockets, which I had never done before so this had slowed down the process. However, as we ended up being out most of the day, by 11pm I still had a bit to go and was very frustrated after seam ripping the waist band off the skirt twice and remaking both waist sections from scratch.  I was ready to give up and not bother, even though by this point I only had the waistband to sew down and to hem it.   However,  after some encouragement from people on Instagram and Twitter I got up early on Monday morning and finished it off.

Looking back I think the problem was I was tired and as there was no pattern I think I had been putting it on upside down!

Day 3 -  I made it and wore the newly completed denim Delphine  to work.  It was a slightly odd top combo but I was running late by this point and just needed to get out the door!

I do love the pockets that I added in to this skirt.  However, the fabric doesn't hold a crease very well as it has a wee bit of a stretch so I think the pockets sit a bit funny and could have done with being top stitched.  No idea how to do that now without sewing them shut so if anyone has any suggestions please let me know!

Day 4 - Denim Delphine with orange top.  I love how versatile this skirt is and I can see myself wearing it lots.

Day 5 - It was off to a work away day in my botanical Delphine with white lottie blouse and blue cardie.  This was my best 'me made' day of the week and one of my favorite outfits which I know you have seen before. When I first made this Delphine I was really not sure of the pattern but it has really grown on me over the week and this week has helped me get over the fact that the pattern is a bit more bold than I am used to.

Day 6 -  Wednesday night was spent making my red Delphine and I finished the hem on Thursday morning before going to work (recurring theme here!).  For this one I decided to add in some belt loops.  I do love the colour of the fabric, again from Ikea, but it creases like crazy.  I am also not sure what I did during construction but it is also the tightest of the three.  Never mind I still really like it and it got a lot of nice comments at work.

Day 7 - For the last day of OWOP I was torn between wearing the denim version again and my red one.  The red one won in the end, figured given all the fuss I had making three this week that I should at least wear it twice!  This time i teamed with with a white top, grey cardie and my hot air balloon scarf - which matched the red perfectly!

And that was my OWOP - featuring the three Delphines! 

Reflecting back, starting OWOP with only one skirt was not the smartest move and I did get my self into a bit of a tizz trying to get the other two complete.  However, the support out there on Instagram and Twitter was amazing - thank you ladies for all the encouragement.  It was nice to feel part of the wider sewing community and I loved seeing all your makes.  It has also added a few more patterns to my ever growing sewing to do list!

From reading other blogs I was slightly worried about my choice of a skirt for OWOP and while I didn't find it difficult wearing a skirt all week I did have a wee bit of trouble finding tops to go with it.  I normally wear dresses to work and jeans at home so a lot of my tops just did not sit right with the Delphine skirt.  I did however, like the change and it has encouraged me to make some more tops so that can only be a positive!

Would I do it again?  Absolutely - roll on OWOP 2015!!

See you all soon x

P.S. I love to chat so feel free to leave a comment!

Thursday, 4 September 2014

That doesn't look like a skirt.....

In my last post I mentioned that I only have one skirt made for OWOP which starts on Saturday and that I was going to get sewing.  Well I have had a week (and a bit) off work on holiday and I have made good progress ..... on knitting a cardie!  Yup I still only have one skirt for OWOP...............Ahhhhhhhhhhh! 

*disclamer: rambling excuses follow*

In my defence we have been out and about quite a bit, visiting relatives and organising things for our wedding and as the knitting was far more portable (and sociable) it won!  However,  I'm trying to figure out how to fit in making another two skirts in the next couple of days, since I am not in tonight and we have things planned for the weekend .......  suggestions welcome!!!!!  Now I can get away on Saturday with my first Delphine skirt but let's face it work (and anyone with a sense of smell) are going to think I'm a bit odd if I wear the same skirt for 7 days in a row!

Now I could just give up, but I don't like doing that. I am hoping that a trip to the fabric store to get some more fabric for Delphine number 3 (yes somehow I only have enough fabric for one in my stash!) will give me inspiration.  Also I could just set the alarm early on Saturday/Sunday and get cracking before we need to go visit people/have visitors

*end of ramble*

Anyway, what I have been knitting instead was the Rocky Coast Cardigan  by Hannah Fettig from the Costal Knits book.  I fell in love with this cardie way back in 2011 when the book was published and promptly purchased it.  Since then it has just sat in my bookcase gathering dust! Figured it was about time that changed.

Now i have not done much knitting in the last couple of years, mostly because I started sewing, but this is knitting together really quick.   I only started it last Wednesday and I am almost finished the back - very speedy progress by my standards!

I will talk a bit more about construction etc when it is complete but thought you may like to see progress so far.

Back soon x

P.S.  I like to chat so feel free to leave a comment!

Wednesday, 27 August 2014

Delphine and Lottie take a trip to the seaside

Its been a busy couple of weeks but in between a trip to the theater, catching up with friends and being bridesmaid at a wedding I managed to make a skirt! I used the Delphine pattern from Love at First Stitch, and some Blavinge fabric from Ikea.

We went to Maidens in Ayrshire today as it was a lovely and sunny and I thought it was perfect opportunity to wear my new skirt and actually take some photos.  Not bad since its has been over a week since I made the skirt!  I was not too sure about the fabric at first but when paired with my Lottie blouse I think it looks quite good.

I thought it fitted really well - and was perfect for paddling!

Even quite far out!

Anyway, back to the skirt! I cut a straight size 6 from the pattern - using my normal method of baking parchment and random objects from the living room to help trace it out! 

The skirt panels went together really quickly and then it was onto the concealed zip.  Now when I purchased my new machine a couple of months ago I decided to also invest in an invisible zipper foot.  This project was ideal to give it a test run.

Here we go.......

It was really easy to use and I was very happy with how the skirt came together.  I was even more pleased when I zipped it up and realised that I had managed to match the waistband seam first go!

I did, however, end up with a bit of a bump at the top of the zip once I had sewn in the waistband lining. I don't think I had trimmed the seam allowance back enough - hopefully I will manage to sort that for my next Delphine skirt.  

I wanted to make this version of Delphine to see if the style suited me before I made some for OWOP. Given that it is only a couple of weeks away I had better get sewing and stop paddling in the sea!

Saturday, 16 August 2014

Fly me to the moon!

I have been making lots of baby bunting for friends and family lately (I am at that age where babies are appearing all over the shop!) and realised that I had not made any for the OH's nephew.  Now I met the OH around the time his nephew was born, and before I had started sewing, so I think that is a valid excuse.  I figured that it was about time I rectified this but that a two and a half year old energetic wee boy would not really want a string of bunting.

Now I had been mulling over what to make for a while and then I came across this fab tutorial  for a beanbag chair by Project Nursery - Perfect!

The hunt for nice boy upholstery fabric took a while but when I stumbled across this amazing space rocket fabric from Frumble Fabrics I knew it would be perfect. It is a Japanese fabric and slightly heavier than ordinary quilting cotton so would be able to withstand a battering! I teamed it with some blue upholstery fabric that I had found in the John Lewis remnants bin.

I didn't make any changes except to cut the fabric 43" wide rather than 45" due to the width of my fabric.  I also used more beanbag stuffing than suggested as well.

How cute is this selvage with the wee rockets?  Not one for keeping my selvages but I think this may be an exception to that rule!

The sewing went quite quickly as the instructions were really easy to follow.  It went so quick that I didn't even think to take photos.  All I have is this, rather blurry, photo of the curve I had cut for the front of the bag.

Now the tutorial says this is a 30 minute make.  Well it took me a bit longer as I managed to sew my zip on the wrong way and with a small stitch and a 22" zip a lot of swearing ensued!!!  Even with this mistake I don't think it took over an hour.  Not bad for a first attempt.

Now I was a bit too impatient to wait until my OH came home to fill it up.  This was my ingenious (!) solution.  That's what you are supposed to use airers for right?!

Going up!

Needless to say quite a few of the beads escaped but overall I was pretty happy with my contraption.   That was until I realised that the beanbag liner I had purchased to keep all the beads inside would not mold to the shape of the bag!  Not wanting to add to the 'snow' all over the kitchen floor,  I just took my scissors and cut a hole in the bottom of the liner!

I zipped it all up and sewed a few stitches just under the zipper to stop my nephew from unzipping the seat and getting the filling all over the house it was done!  Looks good I think.

Perfect for a spot of light reading

Best of all though my nephew loved it :)  Job done!!