Wednesday, 30 November 2016

An attempt at crochet

I have a large box of wool for someone that doesn't knit or crochet so decided it was time to use some of it so here is my first attempt at the African flower. 
Sorry the colours are off (that centre colour is meant to be blue). I used this video to guide me through it but next time I'm going to attempt it with a friend that crochets as I get lost at the start at the repeats of motifs. I always end up with more stitches!

I've been working on the barn owls cross stitch every now and then. Unfortunately, I don't think it'll be finished in time.

Aside from uni taking up time, I have been distracted by gaming. I had a few attempts at Battlefield 1 but I have been sucked into playing Dead by Daylight. It's so easy to say oh just one more game. I have also started Ori and the blindforest - well what can I say? I was crying like a baby in the first 10 mins. The music is beautiful though.

I'll try and be back soon with another update or at least the exchange I'm hoping to send out soon!

Friday, 11 November 2016

The Retreat Bag 2.0 by Emmaline Bags

Hello there! You may recall my post a couple of weeks ago (I think) about my friend asking for a purse made out of batman fabric. As a fat quarter would have been just on the small side, I got half a meter and gave her the option of having the left over fabric as she's learning to sew or I could make a washbag. So off I went to make a washbag. I decided to use The Retreat Bag 2.0 by Emmaline Bags but left out the frame.
It was quite quick to put together and the fusible fleece really gives it some body. I didn't need to pad it out with items to get it to stand by itself. I'd be tempted to use fusible fleece or that sew in foam for bags to give them structure as well. I'm planning to make at least another two of these in the future but I must get some cross stitch done!
I loved the messages I got once she opened the package, they really made my day!

Sunday, 30 October 2016

The Mini NCW - Batman version

After posting a photo of my Batman purse, a friend asked me to make her a smaller version in the same fabric so here it is...

I used the add on for the regular NCW which tells you how to make a smaller version. I made some changes to the materials. As I've used my purse more, I realised that it's not as sturdy as I'd like it to be so used a very stiff interfacing (almost like cardboard) for the flap and a firm interfacing for the rest including the zip pocket. For now it seems much sturdier than mine. 

My friend wanted a black lining rather than yellow and of course, it works well. I used a different brand for the turn lock as I was really disappointed that mine didn't quite fit together. This is one is much better and think I'll stick with Prym for them.

I will be making a matching washbag once the frames arrive and then I have another two mini NCWs waiting to be put together. Uni has started up again so I'm trying to find a good balance between crafting and working!

Saturday, 1 October 2016

ABC Collection - Sac "ceinture" fleurs roses

I received this kit last Christmas and I decided it was time to put it together. My other half very kindly translated the pattern for me but in true fashion some of it didn't make sense once translated. Did you know that the call a french seam, "couture anglaise"?
So, I had to guess a little but I think it turned out well.
The biggest issue I had with this bag was the belt loops, the folded ends often slipped out of place even with wonder tape holding it in place. 
I'll be back soon with a post about my field trip.

Monday, 12 September 2016

Simple elasticated skirt

Would you believe that I have another sewing finish? I can't and I'm hoping to have a few more by the time uni starts again.

I feel like I should give the story behind this skirt, I apologise in advance if it is long and won't hold it against you if you skipped to the photos. I started off with some red stripey fabric and cut out a gathered skirt from a pattern however it was too large (I'll explain more when I finish that skirt off and write about it) and the amount of gathers gave a puffy effect which to me doesn't work well with my shape.
So, I put that skirt to one side and turned my focus to the other skirt I had cut out from the same pattern and decided to omit one of the panels and cut a chunk off from another. The 2 panels that were left were sewn together and a waistband was created by folding over the upper edge twice which also created a channel for the elastic that I decided to put in.
I was that eager to get a skirt made for myself, I didn't even attempt to pattern match! How terrible am I? 
I think I'll take apart the red stripe skirt and do it the same way but try and make it flow more as I think the stripes would work well with that. I have a few mini NCWs to do as well. Let's not mention the cross stitch I still need to get done...

Monday, 29 August 2016

Simplicity Sewing Challenge - Best Vintage Make

I saw a post on Facebook advertising the Simplicity Sewing Challenge and decided that it would be fun to have a go so sent an email over requesting to join. I decided to sign up for the Best Vintage make which used Simplicity 1365 (Simplicity provided the pattern for free).

As I wasn't making it for me, I let my model choose which view she would like and she chose view B. My model was two different sizes so I used a 16 for the bodice and a 20 for the midriff. The fabric is a red, polycotton gingham and the size of the checks are 24mm which I bought from Fabricland.
The bodice was tight in the end but I'm not sure if that was because of the way I finished it off or if I should have cut the bodice in size 14 but with a full bust adjustment. It did gape at the side of chest a little but that was sorted by pulling the ties further around. 
Because I used two sizes, there was a lot of pull in the fabric when the bodice and midriff were joined together. To counteract this I changed how the pieces joined together around the back. Here you can see how the back was meant to look and what it looked like in the end.

I would happily sew this pattern together again as it was nice and quick to put together (setting aside trying to work around the fit). I think it would look gorgeous in black! There are 3 things I will take away from this project:
1) I need to learn how to do pattern alterations
2) It's much easier to work through issues and check fit when you have a model on hand.
3) Pattern matching is difficult!

Monday, 15 August 2016

Holiday photos and a couple of updates

Morning everyone! I've got a small update for you guys. I haven't had much time to stitch as I have a couple of resits to revise for. Most of my progress on the remembrance fields was done on holiday in Portugal.
Remembrance field 15.08.2016
This was nowhere near being done in time for the person's birthday so I moved on to the next present. I just hadn't realised how much I was taking on with that piece so it will go on the back burner for now.

Now time for a couple of holiday photos!


Blogger is so fickle when it comes to positioning photos! I am considering updating to a different platform and redesigning the blog but that maybe some time as I've got a lot of stuff to do first. 

I started barn owls as another birthday present. This is where I got to 11th August 
Barn owls 11.08.16
and managed to get to here by 14th
Barn owls 14.08.16
I've got a number of sewing projects to do as well *sigh*. A friend has asked me to make her a purse so there's that and I still haven't finished my cousin's bag but I want to unpick a lot of the quilting as I'm unhappy with it. 

I hope to show you more updates soon!

Monday, 1 August 2016

Christmas in Summer Exchange

Sarah and I had our annual exchange and the theme this year was Christmas. Once again this was fun to put together! So much so, that we both wouldn't mind doing it again.

Look at the pretty ribbon that was on the envelope!

Sarah made me a lovely biscornu...

 Here are all of the fabulous contents of the package together,

Thank you again Sarah! I honestly love it all.

Monday, 4 July 2016

The Necessary Clutch Wallet

There was an advantage to being up at 5.30, I managed to finish my batman purse!

You may notice scratches on the clasp that is because the clasp did not fit well together so I used pliers to try and make the hole a bit wider.

I need to make sure the measurements are more accurate as I seemed to be a bit short on some parts.

The pattern was The Necessary Clutch Wallet by Emmaline and the only change I would make to the next one would be to use a heavier stabiliser for the main purse piece and the flap to make it sturdier. Overall, I'm very happy and once again there were tears of joy. I do plan to make the mini version as when we go away, I don't really need a big purse.

I've realised how terrible I am at replying to your lovely comments so I'm trying to rectify that. This Saturday, I'll be picking up HMS Victory from the framers so I'll make sure to get a photo!

Enjoy your week!

Wednesday, 29 June 2016

HMS Victory - finished!

Today, I finally finished the backstitch on HMS Victory so without further ado...

HMS Victory 29.06.2016

I love it! Not all of the backstitch looks great right now but I'm hoping when the framer stretches it that it will go back to how it is supposed to be. That's one of the downsides of long backstitches. It was a pleasure to work on this and my dad has requested one but he'll have to wait a while ;) 

I already know what I'm working on next, a trio of owls however I've got some other bits and pieces to sort out before then. See you all soon!

Tuesday, 14 June 2016

A few sewing finishes

I'm glad to say that I've had my sewing machine out and have managed to cross 3 items off my to do list. 

I made a sort of "mug rug" for my overlocker to sit on as it has sticky feet and pulls the glass out of the coffee table that has become it's temporary home (second photo). I didn't use a pattern for this and it was fairly straight forward. However, for the life of me I couldn't get the bias binding to sit nicely even though I had no problems when applying it to a sleeveless top. I received this fabric panel from Steph.

The next accessory for my overlocker was a nicer dust cover than the plastic sheet that came with it. I got the sewing fabric from a shop in Ely. I put this together using this tutorial which is specifically for this machine. I didn't have fusible fleece on hand so just used interfacing which doesn't seem heavy enough to me so I may add fleece at a later date.

Brother 1034D cover

Overlocker, mat and cover in it's temporary home
As I've begun to use my rotary cutter more, I decided I needed pattern weights instead of trying to manoeuvre around larger items from around the flat such as cups. I must say filling them with rice (without a funnel) and sewing the gaps closed was a tedious job. For these little delights, I used this tutorial
I still have two bags, a top and a skirt to finish sewing but there's also 3 cross stitch items that need to be finished by mid-July. Where do you all find the time to fit in multiple crafts?!

Tuesday, 7 June 2016


Short post from me today. Getting back into the swing of things after exams, don't get the results until next 2 weeks time.

I'm over half-way on HMS Victory and I'm absolutely loving it!

I got a beautiful gaming laptop for my birthday so I've had a good go at Overwatch, Insurgency and Ark. Loving ark at the moment, I'm building a wooden house which requires a lot of wood (80 pieces for each foundation) and we're starting to get a small collection of tamed dinosaurs.

I now have an overlocker which is taking some getting used to but I'll just have to sit and practice...that is when I can work up the courage to rethread it! I am trying to fit more sewing in over the holidays. I'm making a toile of 2 corsets, 1 overbust and the other underbust.

Tried on the toile and not sure about the sizing. Although the grommets are around a £5 a pack I may buy a couple more so that I can lace up the toiles to get a better idea of how it looks without pins holding the front and back in place.

I hope to catch up with you all soon! Have a good week :)

Thursday, 12 May 2016

Nearly halfway!

Hello ^_^

As the title suggests, I'm nearly halfway on HMS Victory and I wish I could spend more time on it but exams start next week.

I have started 3 new projects for the stream, 1 birthday present and 2 SALs. 

Field of Remembrance 
I haven't got much done on the SALs so I'll save those photos for later. However, one of them isn't going very well and has been put in the naughty corner as I've frogged it countless times and I'm only up to the second step of the first part. 

I bought a few sewing items after the excitement of finishing the bag like an A2 cutting mat which is fabulous to use. I also bought these charts as one is discontinued and the other fits lovely on a piece of blue hand dyed fabric that is in my stash.
Last but not least, the weather has been lovely in Durham, Can you believe it?! I can't! Here a couple of photos from the nature reserve behind the estate I live on :)

Thank you ever so much for the lovely comments on my last post and I will get around to replying to them all. Your comments really made my day!

Enjoy the rest of your week :)

Sunday, 1 May 2016

Departure Satchel by StudioCherie

Hello everyone, it's me again.

I am here with a finish :D There were tears of joy when I snipped that final thread. The pattern used was Departure Satchel by StudioCherie. The fabric is from Frumble.


Small laptop pocket

Divided pocket

Secret pocket (well, not so secret now)
This bag was a HUGE learning curve for me, there were times I felt like giving up but I persevered and it was all worth it in the end. I'm going to have a scar from this project. I was cutting notches in one of the seams and decided that my left index knuckle could do with one as well! It's sore but looks like it's healing up nicely. I'm going to go dry my eyes now, so proud that I got this finished.