Monday, 16 February 2015

Fabric Fiend!

For the last few years I have been wanting to get into sewing. I have managed one or two projects but have never had the confidence to try out something more than backing a cross stitch project. Thanks to some inspiring people at my knitting group I have been wanting to move beyond that. So with a voucher that was given to me by these ladies I got myself a couple of books that will help me (I hope) move beyond inspiring into actually doing. The first book is an accompaniment to last years series of The Great British Sewing Bee. There are one or two things in there that I would like to have a go at. The second book is actually by the runner up of the first series, Tilly Walnes. I have had my eye on this book for a while as I follow her on pinterest and she always pins images of makes from her book. I love all the patterns in it and I can't wait to have a shot. She also has a blog called Tilly and the Buttons. Worth checking out. She is also on twitter, instagram and pinterest. Think it will seem a little too stalkery to link all of those.

In a magazine I picked up recently there was a pattern to show you how to sew your own pants (or panties if you are American). I quite liked the idea and then saw this company advertised in the same magazine. Anncancan is a website where you can buy kits to make your own knickers. Offering different fabrics. Each kit contains three different patterns. It was this that sealed the deal for me as it contains a pattern for the beginner which would be me.

I am also still looking at decorating my flat with my makes (when I get it) and bought these two fabrics for my soon to be bedroom. I plan on making some patchwork pillows. The orange and teal will match the blanket I have almost finished making. All I need is some white on white fabric to set it off. The teal fabric I picked up in hobbycraft. The orange fabric I had to hunt for to find one that I liked. Orange fabric is a difficult one to get it would seem. I got it from Purple Stitches which seemed to have a nice selection.

While on that website I couldn't resist this one. I thought it was cute. I have no idea what I am going to do with it yet but it had to be done. This is how fabric collecting starts isn't it?

I have no idea when I am going to start all of these projects. I have quite a few on the go just now and need to be thinking about finishing one or two of those before I start. That and I need to build up the courage to start cutting into these lovely materials.

Wednesday, 11 February 2015

Shout Out to Knitting Group Ladies

 While there is very little of my own work for me to show off just now. I can show you the work of others. As my talented knitting group broke up just before Christmas for the holidays they presented me with a fabulous graduation gift (my graduation ceremony was the week before). It was completely unexpected and I felt a little bit emotional as a result. Not helped by the week of nightshifts of course (that's my story and I'm sticking to it).

Among the gifts was this beautiful notebook cover that the group had comissioned my talented friend Magdalena to do. Magdalena is the lady behind Stitching A Rainbow, I have shown off her notebooks before. Not only did she find fabric with my beloved camper vans but it's also in my favourite colour.

My favourite part is the stitched label to the back. This is definitely something I will treasure forever. I have yet to put the notebook to use. Stupidly, I feel I should savour it. Even though I know I can replace the notebook when completed.

I also love the inside. This cover is extra special as it contains patterned fabric there too. Love the camper vans against the black background!

There was also a beautiful handmade card. Lyn, another lady from the group did this for me. It's beautifully detailed and another keep sake.

Thank you lovely ladies. I was genuinely touched and I appreciate the time and effort that went into these lovely gifts. Especially the secrecy since some of the planning went on while I was there.

If anyone would like to see the talents of everyone in the group we have our own blog.

Monday, 9 February 2015

A Return of Sorts and The Great British Sewing Bee!

I could regale you with tales of as to why I have been absent. The festive period had me busy with crafting projects galore (as I had planned way back last January). I would by lying though. I managed to finish one pair of socks and those were the stripy horrors for my sister. I call them horrors for at the time of her picking out colours I hated them (liked them once they were finished). No Christmas baking got done. Not Christmas sweets. No socks for anyone (I mentioned that). And none of the other crafting projects I had planned. Who knew that working would be so exhausting. My days off were mostly spent reading, sleeping or catching up with my sister. I will get used to it in time. Maybe once I stop doing all the extra shifts. Saving to move out is hard work. On the positive side I now have a permanent full time job which I actually start this week. Not bad considering most of my class mates are still looking.

I digress. So now that the Christmas period is over I have been working away on a baby shower project which I can't show you yet. I have also been working at a few projects for the future flat. Which I also can't show you. Not because it's a secret but because I have been too lazy to take photo's during the day when the lighting is better.

I have also signed up to a blanket club that my friend has started up. Each month she sends us out enough yarn to create 26 squares, a pattern and a template for the blanket. The scrummy yarn above was from the first month (you guessed it, it's the lovely Lisa of For the Love of Yarn).

Sadly I only managed 25 squares. I must have been too generous with my sewing allowance as my mum managed 26 (she crochets a little bit more loosely than me). As a result it would mean that I wouldn't be able to follow the template. So my plan was to wait until I had all my squares and then decide on what order to sew them in (rather than sew as I go). My mum though gave me her leftover yarn and I managed to do a 26th square so I am now undecided.

As I had a pay cheque coming in for once I also signed up for Lisa's monthly yarn club. You don't have to sing up for it every month but it's nice to know that I can occasionally treat myself. This was January's yarn. I got a matching crochet hook, a yarn marker and a cute little box. Not sure what I am going to do with the yarn. I might look out a pattern for DK socks. Or I might try something else. We'll see.

I have other news but that involves me not being lazy and better lighting. So it will have to wait until later in the week. Thursday there saw the first episode of season 3 The Great British Sewing Bee. It has a very similar format to Bake off (only there is not cake at the end of it). I watched it for the first time last year and loved it. On Thursday I was visiting my sister and thanks to me she is now a fan too. I then watched it again on iPlayer with my mum who is now also a fan. You are welcome GB sewing Bee. It has me itching to get the sewing machine out but I think I should maybe master the basics first. There are a few people shining out already and there was a few at the bottom. Sadly I wasn't surprised when my fellow Scot was the first to go. Mainly I oohed and aahed over the pretty fabrics.