Dance like no one is watching.
Blog like no one is reading.

Sunday, 20 July 2014

Colette Peony Squirrel Print Dress

After spending a large chunk of the Christmas holidays fitting a toile for the Colette Peony dress, there was no way I was only going to use the pattern once.  This is my second version since the refitting - finished just in time for a night out with the girls.

This fabric was on sale last year at John Lewis for £5 a metre.  I can remember telling the sales assistant that I was going to make a child's quilt using it!  In my 'woman in her fourties wearing pink squirrels and acorns' defence - my friend was wearing a top the other day that I thought had acorns on it and it looked lovely and then I couldn't get this fabric out of my head.  So I used it.  For me.

I spent a stupid amount of time hand picking the zipper in.  You can see that I didn't really attempt to match the tiny print - save for keeping it on the straight grain of course - but the squirrels seem to have kept their tails!  The dress is fully lined (apart from the sleeves) with white cotton.

I loved wearing this on my night out. 

Tuesday, 15 July 2014

They predict a heatwave just as I've finished an aran!

Almost two years ago I purchased some aran wool from an organic campsite I was staying at.  That is how I know that this Study Hall Vest has taken that long to complete! 

Embarrassingly, on researching this pattern on Ravelry, it came up as an 'Easy' pattern.  I tend to disagree with that.  I could only knit it on my own, in complete silence, chanting things like 'slip the next two stitch onto cable needle, hold at back' out loud over and over as if I were seeking enlightenment.  But then again maybe I'm not that adept at cables!

But I love a cable! 

I am quite pleased with the result but I do feel humongous in it - so I think it will be reserved for a very layered Autumn look.

I've also just finished the two cushions in the background of the picture.

They are teacher gifts for the end of term - hopefully to be used in the reading corner of a classroom.  They are made out of recycled materials - including a few more pillowcases left over from making my duvet skirt.  I think my sewing is slowing down ready for the long summer break! 

Thursday, 12 June 2014

Duvet Skirt.

During the month of Me Made May my friend gave me a pile of old duvet covers.  

I really hope she is not regretting it now as I am wearing one of them!!

I had a fancy for a full skirt, two tiered, with an extra tulle/organza layer on the bottom.  Luckily I found I had just the right organza offcut from making my full petticoat a while back, and it still had its selvedge.  No hem needed on fiddly organza?  Result!

I started out with the plan of following roughly a BurdaStyle pattern I had.  However, on cutting out the upper tier using their largest size it became clear that it would not go anyway near me, so I soon scrapped that idea and went it alone.  This sadly meant finding out that my hips were roughly the same size as a whole pillowcase!  I am sure that information will come in handy on many occasions. 

This is just showing some of the detail of the gathers.  The top tier is the said pillowcase and the bottom tier is just the bottom of the duvet cover (including the original buttonholes which are now on the underside of the hem!)

I am hoping it is twirly enough to give an Audrey Hepburn vibe, so I am linking up with Rhinestones and Telephones Hepburn Hepburn project

Wednesday, 11 June 2014

My daughter is getting in on the act!

This blue t-shirt looked like it had never been worn when I bought it in a charity shop for just one pound.  So naturally the first time I wore it I managed to get curry sauce down the front!

Turns out that my daughter will provide artwork in exchange for a teen magazine.  The curry sauce stain is now hidden by a bit of Manga inspired art!  Happy days.

Friday, 6 June 2014

I think I've used up all the blue floral fabric now

How many photos can one person take of a quilt?  ...We'll find out.....!

This is the quilt that I was making during Me Made May, which I have finished in time for my friend's birthday.  I had a lot of fun making this one.  The inspiration came from a wish to use up the remainder of the blue floral fabric that I had already used to make a top and a skirt.  

I had enough left to make the points on twenty stars - so that dictated the size of this lap quilt.

I decided to just use sashing for the borders.  I did think I had enough scraps leftover from the quilt top to make an additional flying geese border, but as I started to cut the triangles out for that it became apparent that I didn't actually have enough to do the light/dark contrast I wanted, so I left it as it was.

The quilting turned out ok.  I am always aiming to become more accurate and get the speed even to help the tension along - but I realise that this will, and has, improved with practice.  

I took an inordinate amount of photos!  My friend was very pleased with her present - which is lucky because I get so emotional giving a quilt.  There's just something about it....

(Linking up with Lizzie Lenard Free Motion Mavericks)

Sunday, 1 June 2014

Who wants to journey on a gigantic yacht? Oh how I do not!

I am guessing that when most people get a new job they think about what the pay will be, whether the hours will be suitable, that sort of thing.  When I get a new job I think "oooh, what can I make to wear?"!

It's not really my fault in this case though.  I have started working part time in a gorgeous coffee shop overlooking a marina.  It is decorated in light blue and white tones with large round windows looking out at the yachts.  One of my friends commented how she could see me in a vintage nautical look.  I defy anyone with a vintage pattern collection not to dive straight in and pick out some lovely gorgeous things to daydream about... 

Here were just a few I found in my own collection, and I am not a collector of anything maritime, which I know a lot of people are. 

Anyway.  I got back to reality.  I am only working casual hours and the job will come with a logo top.  Also I am going to get a little messy with all that washing up so a full fifties dress isn't very practical.  I did, however, make the apron at the top of this post as I already had all the material for it.  Even Mr HoffiCoffi said it was quite 'bold' - but luckily the shop owner is a friend of a friend so hopefully has been warned about my little eccentricities!

The back view - I may need a little practice tying prettier bows!!!

Friday, 23 May 2014

Baking Whilst Me Made May Making

As you may have realised if you regularly read my ramblings, I like to make presents for my friends.  I think that if you learn how to do something, you may as well share the love!!!  The tricky thing is actually thinking what to make.  A dear friend's birthday was this week and, as I have recently started tending an allotment with her and other friends, I thought it was a good idea to make her an allotment cake!

It's not all about the cake though, this is Me Made May after all.  The above photo shows me in a previously unblogged top I made from one of the Japanese Drape Drape books.  If the fabric looks a little familiar it is because I already have a dress and a top made out of it!  It was originally a very large bedsheet from a charity shop.  A verrrry large bedsheet!

As for the cake, my friend took some lovely photos of it.  I made the vegetables out of fondant that I coloured and moulded - a lot of the ideas for it came from tips on the internet.  I can't remember how I lived in the eighties!!!