Tuesday, 27 April 2010

Cath Kidston Bag

Wow! I've managed to crack my phobia of sewing machines! I was so tempted by the free project that came with 'Sew' by Cath Kidston. I've been so used to not being able to sew anything by machine that it sat inside the front cover for about six months. The recent sale at Cath Kidston inspired me to get cracking as I couldn't afford anything and thought it was ridiculous that I had a free bag just waiting to be made up : )

It was a bit puzzling at first as it isn't a basic bag but I soldiered on with a lot of help from the owner of the sewing machine.

I was fine apart from sorting out the bobbin. I would say that's the most complex bit of sewing with a machine - it really isn't difficult just fiddly...but I suppose knitting can be too. Although I still prefer knitting as I can do it any time without causing any noise and be peaceful. I love the end effect of a sturdy fabric bag though so will try and sew more. It has a much neater more professional look than knitting or crochet, but it depends what you are looking for.

I have nearly finished - I just have to sew the buttons on and cut and sew the buttonholes in the strap. This will be another learning curve as I have never sewn buttonholes.

Anyway buy the book - it's great : )

Tuesday, 20 April 2010

A Sequined Mess

I bought a top from a high street chain which shall remain nameless for legal reasons (I'm going to slate the top) about a year ago. The top ticked all the boxes for me but it certainly wasn't cheap. It was very long, relaxed looking, khaki green and full of great looking sequins. It did briefly cross my mind that the sequins might loosen when washed but a quick look at the label reassured me that it could be put in the washing machine on 40 degrees (I normally wash at 30 degrees) and would be OK. I've had more durable looking tops which say handwash only so I was impressed.

Well you can guess what happened next. The washing machine drum was full of silver sequins when the wash ended and I wasn't in the best of moods. Anyway it's taken me so long so try and mend the top...it was the thought of sewing all those fiddly sequins back on and the material is so cheap and thin it isn't sturdy enough for all the weight. The ends of the sequinned rows are not fastened and the sequins just pop off at the bottom. Therefore I have had to pick up the exposed strand at the end of each row and undo about ten sequins, put them back on the needle and fasten off properly.

Of course the good thing about it is that it's stopped me going shopping for new clothes and I have a mended top : )

Monday, 19 April 2010

Cream Cardigan: Part Four

I've finally finished knitting my cream cardigan and it feels great. The sleeves were such a hard slog but I it feels worth while now that I stand back and admire my work. My tension has come a long way and I feel my knitting is getting more even with each project. I'm so glad money is tight otherwise I would not have kept going until the end! However I stand by my desire never to knit with 4 ply ever again and unfortunately never with Rowan Cotton Glace as I have never sneezed so much while knitting.

But I'm 80% there now. I'm having a little rest (I'm sick to death of the sight of it for now) and putting it away for about a week, then I'll get it out again, sew it up, pick up the stitches and rib the two front openings and neckline. But only when I'm in the right mood...:)

Happy knitting : )

Friday, 16 April 2010

Folksy Friday

I went to the Farmers' Market yesterday in Taunton and saw some wonderful cream/white tulips on a plant stall. They were beautiful and I was really tempted but we didn't have anywhere to put them in our garden. Today was a bit more miserable by comparison so I thought I would look at some tulips on folksy to cheer me up:

"Red Tulip Stained Glass" by 'JOYSofGLASS'

"Tulip glass vase, hand painted" by 'Claire's Creations'

"Fresh flower 20 by 28cm archival fine art photograph" by 'PhotoGraphics'

"Red 'silk tulip' purse" by 'Silk Tree Purses'

Friday, 9 April 2010

Folksy Friday

I thought I would make this week's theme cycling as spring is finally here. I found it surprisingly difficult so if you haven't tagged your cycling items with either 'bike' or 'cycling' I would edit your items straight away : ) All my featured sellers are new and/or haven't had their first sale yet so go and look at their shops!

"Large Cross Stitch Bicycle Badge" by 'Magasin'

"Bicycle Necklace" by 'Mockinghorse'

"Cyclists at Tyne Bridge, Newcastle" by 'Images by Heather Athey'

"NIK NOXS-handmade up-cycled black trousers" by 'Dizzypip'

Thursday, 8 April 2010

Glastonbury Abbey

I had a very nice visit to Glastonbury Abbey on Easter Sunday. It was a beautiful day with a stunning blue sky. I walked past everything from a Herb Garden, a Duck Pond and a Nature Garden. At midday we were even met by a Monk in the kitchen (the last remaining room within the ruins) and the history of the abbey was explained in a very entertaining talk.

I picked this book up in one of the many spiritual second hand bookshops. I was in heaven as Taunton only has one second hand bookshop and I just couldn't believe the choice of spiritual books for a couple of pounds each. It's very easy and relaxing to read - definitely bedtime reading for crafters! She talks about how she learnt to knit and sew and explore her own creativity. She feels that through her crafting she has achieved enlightenment and has grown spiritually. I particularly like the chapter I am in at the moment about colour. She says how she enjoys stitching with red thread more than blue and is more productive when making with red materials. This is something I had noticed with cross stitch as it makes you more energised and motivated to stitch. One of my unfinished projects is a girl on a swing - I have stitched her red coat...in fact I couldn't wait to stitch it...but the blue sky put me to sleep a little. She advises wearing a little flash of red such as a belt or scarf but not too much as it has physical effects too such as making your heart beat faster.

All in all a great day and a fantastic bookshop find : )

Friday, 2 April 2010

Folksy Friday

This week I've made up my mind to finally tackle the seemingly gargantuan task of refreshing my ability to read music. To be fair my knowledge wasn't tip top as a teenager but I'm looking forward to teaching myself with a 'How to' book which is taking me through the process reassuringly slowly : )

So to celebrate I thought I would make the theme of the week's 'Folksy Friday'...you guessed it...music! : ) Enjoy...

"Keynote Treble Clef Hooks" by 'Paintedpoet's Wooden Things'

"Treble Clef" by 'Aileen Clarke Crafts'

"Grey 'stereo' gocco printed cushion cover" by 'paper masyeti'

"'Rock & Roll is dead' poster" by Something Wonderful Design

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