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

Tuesday, 28 June 2011

Please could any experienced lacemakers look away now...


Here is my first attempt at making a complete handkerchief edge in bobbin lace.

As you can see I wasn't quite brave enough to complete a full size hanky so it's more of a coaster edge. I was really pleased with conquering going around corners but otherwise the learning curve seems very steep!


I realise that sometimes pairs of bobbins stay together and sometimes they are meant to separate across the pillow depending on the stitch you are making but mine seemed to decide to part company with each other on a whim. It was as if one bobbin said something mean to the other bobbin about having a fat neck and off the heavily wound bobbin went in a huff. I carried on however, as I knew by then I'd made some sort of mistake but wasn't experienced enough to find a way to correct it.

Anyway, I managed to come back around to the beginning of the lace and of course you then have to join it together. This, apparently, is known as 'making sewings' which I thought would be quite easy - I make a lot of sewings in my day to day life! However, trying to get a too big crochet hook through a tiny lacemaking loop was not a success. By then, any logic had gone out the window so the end is just basically a result of me making various bad knots through any hole I could find! The result is a piece of lace so fragile that if I ever need to clean it I will have to take it to the National Trust's textile conservation studio and ask them to do it!

Still, I love lacemaking! Who can resist little bobbins like these...


I just think I will avoid making any more sewings for a while!

Saturday, 25 June 2011


A change is as good as a rest (so they say) so I decided to do a bit of knitting.

These ruby red slippers for my daughter are from a sublime knitting pattern and need just one ball of their double knitting yarn.


My daughter chose the cat buttons as she was itching to sort through a huge tin of buttons my beloved Mr HoffiCoffi bought for me from a local charity shop. Seeing a huge tin packed with buttons in the window of the shop was like winning the lottery for me. Maybe if I do ever manage to win the lottery I could spend it all on buttons!

Wednesday, 22 June 2011


I am going to name this completed quilt top my 'Scrappy Happy Accident' quilt.

Despite being a scrap quilt there was supposed to be more of an ordered design with the calico triangles but I completely miscalculated the number required. I really don't know what I did - it was so spectacularly wrong that I couldn't help but be amused. I had cut too many coloured squares as well. It was a disaster. So I decided to run with it. Is there a technical term for 'making it up as I go along'?!

The result is shown above and you know, I like it. Hence the Scrappy Happy Accident Quilt.


It's made from a pack of fat quarters that I bought at a quilt show in May. I am supremely guilty of buying fabric bundles and then thinking that they are far too pretty for me to use. They then sit complete in their little bundle in my fabric cupboard with me occasionally stroking them but never having the nerve to use the fabrics, so this time I thought I would use them straight away to stop this vicious cycle. I teamed the pack with two other fabrics that just happened to come home with me from the quilt show and I am just waiting for the backing fabric I ordered to arrive before I complete it. Here's hoping I've ordered enough fabric!

Sunday, 19 June 2011


All I seem to be making recently are quick projects - I must be entertaining a short attention span at the moment!

I made the hairband above by playing around with fabric shapes fused onto felt. It generally didn't go too well but I did like this one.

The other items I made were from a lovely old book I managed to buy for a pittance when the local library were clearing out old stock. I'm glad that I am able to use it but also a little bit sad that it wasn't taken out of the library enough to justify them keeping it. I am confused as to why? I mean, who could resist a hairband in the shape of an ice cream?


And little fabric notelets like these?


Maybe I'm just old fashioned!

Friday, 17 June 2011


A cute little present. I doodled then embroidered a very simple design onto some calico and made it into a mat for a scented candle. I think it makes a cheerful combination for a birthday gift and is easy to make in an evening in front of the telly!

Wednesday, 15 June 2011


This may look like a photo of a very meagre supply of strawberries but for us it's the biggest harvest of strawberries since we started growing them.

Don't think I will give it all up for a smallholding just yet!

Sunday, 12 June 2011


The school summer fayre was yesterday and luckily it stayed dry. Which was a miracle considering it has been tipping down all day today.

So I thought I would bundle up all the remaining photos of gift bags that I made into this post - otherwise this train of thought could go on for weeks.

Above are owl stationery bags which I think were my favourite make.

Second favourite were pirate bags with a hand-drawn skull and crossbones stencilled on the front.


And who can resist a pack of love hearts?


Finally, I created little craft packs.


And the good news was that I managed to sell the lot!

Thursday, 9 June 2011


Sewing things for boys can be quite a challenge. You can't go all floral or pastel and they tend not to like their hair adorned so I have spent quite some time pondering. What do I put in a boys' lucky dip? That's when I came up with my sweet idea. Very simply, take a button and make a fabric tube roughly the same width but longer...

Place the button inside the tube and then tie the ends.

Voila, a sweet!
Hope the boys like their 'toxic waste' chews. Umm
m... yummy?!

Sunday, 5 June 2011


I'm going a bit lucky dip crazy!

For this year's school fair I have decided to run a lucky dip stall. I love the idea of the children joining in on the day with a cheap and cheerful stall. Of course, there is always that most powerful of forces - pester power - to ensure a healthy amount of trade!

The problem is how to add value to the items I have purchased in various bargain shops to make a profit for the school. Luckily that is where I come in! I have a few (ahem..) pieces of fabric left over from various projects which will not cost me anything but time to make into little bags and accessories to add to the purchased items. As I have a low boredom threshold be prepared for a variety of posts as I haven't seemed to make more of five of any one type of thing!

My excuse for the bags above was that I wanted to try out a new machine embroidery thread. The fabric is leftover from a bag I made - and the fabric itself was a curtain purchased from a charity shop.

I also made these little purses...


The buttons were either given to me or from charity shops and the blue fabric was, again, leftover from a charity shop curtain that I have used for numerous projects. No curtain is safe from my clutches!

Wednesday, 1 June 2011


I've had a bit of an obsession recently with knitting dishcloths.

I found a bargain bag of cotton mix yarn on my travels i
n a gorgeous variegated pink and cream and knew it would knit up into lovely airy dishcloths if I used a large needle size.

The stitch is garter - plain and simple - and as they are so chunky they knit up so quickly I can make some for all of my friends!


I couldn't resist a tiny bit of packaging and made a cute label.


Hopefully a perfect little hostess gift.