Tuesday, 27 October 2015

blogging from my camera

I checked my camera to see what I'd been up to recently that I hadn't blogged about and was surprised at how much was on there.

First of all is the blue jacket I made a good few weeks ago. It's another Butterick 5616. I love it!

Next were some bindings which I made from Christmas fabrics. I always laugh at myself when I do the measurements in metric for the length but in inches for the width!

I didn't do the stitchery on this - Joanna did. Isn't it fabulous? I used some of that newly made binding to finish the edges. It's now in Joanna's house and there was talk of it going on the wall now. Why wait until December?

Joanna LOVES Russian dollies and, when she saw a downie cover on the Asda website, she wanted one right away. Unfortunately, they only sold them in single bed sizes so I told her to buy 2 and I'd sew them together to make a double for her. This photo shows the join - there's another one at the other side as well.

When the cover is on the bed, you can't really see the joins as they are right where the downie tips over the edge.

I made some cloths out of a couple of towels which had seen better days.

We had a go at candlemaking. I used a couple of mum's old teacups for the candles. I have another couple of cups which I hope to fill with red candles sometime soon.

I made some granola bars.

And some chocolate fudge. Needless to say, there are plenty of granola bars left but no fudge. Wooops!

I dried some oranges in the oven. They took a-g-e-s to dry out (about 5 hours in total) and now they don't smell of oranges at all so what was the point, I ask myself? They do look nice, though, so they'll get hung around the house at Christmas time.

Lastly, this is a bowtie I made yesterday for our next Singers' concert. I sent this photo today to our musical director and she approves whole-heartedly so now I have another 7 to make. They don't take long to make so I hope to get them done in time for Thursday's rehearsal.

Tuesday, 20 October 2015

daisy dress

I finished another dress today for Joanna. I thought I had cut this out in June and was feeling a bit ashamed at how long it took me to make it but, checking back on my blog, it wasn't June at all but August! I don't feel quite so bad now! :oD

Here's the dress.

It's a pattern I've made for her a few times now - McCall's 6696, view B.

Isn't that fabric lovely?

I didn't have quite enough of the daisy buttons so I didn't sew the one on at the top (on the collar stand) as I'm pretty sure Joanna never fastens that one. Aren't they just perfect for this fabric? Yet again, I can hear my Grandad telling me "If you keep a thing for 7 years, you'll find a use for it." How about (at least) 15 years, Grandad? :oD

I'm usually quite pleased with the things I make for Joanna but I'm really, really pleased with this one. It's just gorgeous! :o)

Thursday, 15 October 2015

the circles Christmas tree wallhanging

I finished the circles tree wallhanging today. I'm so pleased with the way it turned out.

This was my first layout of the circles on the white background.

Now, I did like it but I didn't love it so I decided to see how it would look with a triangle of green felt for the tree. I cut the felt with my rotary pinking cutter to make the edges wavy.

So much better. I appliquéd the circles to the felt (by machine). I used thread to match each circle as I didn't want the appliqué stitches to be too eye-catching.

I liked the way it looked on the back of the tree!

I sewed the felt tree in place and appliquéd the star and tree pot on to the white background then pinned it ready for quilting.

I quilted around the tree, pot and star and then sewed another couple of rows down one side of the tree but I didn't like them. I thought it was going to make the whole thing too busy looking so I ripped them out and just left the single row of quilting. I gave the hanging a good press to take out the marks of all those safety pins.

I noticed that the star was a bit squint before I appliquéd it on but decided to leave it like that. I like it!

I made some binding and sewed it on to the front by machine and on to the back by hand.

Lastly, I sewed a couple of rings on at each side at the top of the hanging.

And here it is in all its glory. I love it! I can't wait for December to get here so I can hang it on the wall!

Finished size: 25" high by 24" wide
Felt tree measures 16" across the bottom and the perpendicular height is 16"
Circles: 2 x 5" diameter, 4 x 3" diameter, 5 x 2" diameter, 6 x 1¼" diameter
Star measures approx 3" from one leg across to the other, height from point to "crotch" of star is approx 2¼".
Pot measures 3¾" along the top, 2½" along the bottom with a height of 3¼".
Background & backing fabrics: white curtain lining (Why pay £13.50/m for white quilting cotton when I can go down to the curtain fabric department and pay £3.50/m for white cotton curtain lining which has the same weight and feel of the dearer stuff?)
Wadding: curtain interlining. (I *hate* using polyester wadding - awful stuff!! Curtain lining is polyester too but you can iron it and it doesn't go hard like polyester wadding can.)

Monday, 12 October 2015

the roman blind and the start of a Christmas wallhanging

I have some photos of the finished roman blind - such as they are. This is it on the window - in the daytime! The Ikea numbers fabric shows up really well with the daylight showing through! LOL

This is it pulled up - which is how it will be most of the time.

I couldn't find the wooden acorn that I knew I had somewhere for the ends of the cords so I used a couple of metal bobbins which I had in my "I might make earrings out of these" box. Truth be told, I've had those bobbins for at least 2 years and am no closer to making earrings with them now than I was when I bought them! Using them as an acorn for a blind in a sewing room is a much more sensible use for them.

I started my next project this afternoon. I pinned this wallhanging ages ago:

Source: via Anne on Pinterest

I decided today to make a start to my version of it. Needless to say I've already changed it. According to the instruction sheet, the wallhanging in that pin finishes at 27" wide by 40" high. I don't want mine anything like as big as that so I had to decide how big I did want it and then play around with some circles to see what I came up with.

I like this layout so I need to make a note of what goes where before I forget then I'll begin cutting some Christmas fabrics into circles. Fun times! :o)

Friday, 9 October 2015

the sewing room's reloaded

I finished reloading my sewing room yesterday. The Billy bookcases are all loaded back up again. (No I did NOT throw out any fabric like Douglas suggested. As if I would!! *eyeroll*)

The sewing machine is ready to go but the overlocker is still wearing its plastic jacket.

On the wall to the right in the photo above, there used to be huge noticeboard. I decided to use that on another wall for my rulers - seen in the photo below. That saved me hammering in all those nails into the wall again!

I also swapped the big mirror with the bookcase of fat quarters and zips etc. I'm hoping the mirror will help brighten the room up a bit as ths sewing room is at the dark side of the house. The mirror is also helping to cover most of the really dark grey wall. I am sooooooo glad we decided not to do the whole of the big wall with that colour. Wow, it's dark!

(The dark splodge on the right of the photos is something on my camera lens. It appears in every photo but it's especially obvious in these photos.)

And what was the first project I decided to do in my newly decorated and beautifully floored sewing room? A roman blind for the window. I've made so many roman blinds over the years, I can usually run them up fairly quickly so I'm really hoping to get it finished tomorrow.

I am so happy with my new sewing room - it's been worth all the painful shoulders (me from the painting) and knees (Douglas from the laminate flooring).

Tuesday, 6 October 2015

the floor and the walls

Here's a photo of the laminate floor Douglas fitted in my sewing room. I love it! I'm going to need a rug to go under my sewing chair so I don't damage the floor as I roll back and forward on the chair.

And this photo shows the colours we've done the walls. We chose a mid grey and a light grey but, when we started painting with the light grey it was much darker than we expected it to be - and much darker than the label on the tin. I do like it but we decided that if the "light" grey was as dark as that, then the mid grey could possibly be awfully dark.

So, instead of doing one whole wall with the darker grey, we've only done what is the chimney breast wall - there's no fireplace in that room but that's where it was before the people who owned the house before us took it out.

That wall is going to need another coat and then I'm determined that I'm starting the reload tomorrow. We've decided that the ceiling can be done any time as the furniture won't need moved for that to be painted. I'm looking forward to the reload. Just having things back where they belong will feel great, I'm sure! :o)

Monday, 5 October 2015

the sewing room re-do

There won't be any sewing done in my sewing room in the near future because we've decided to decorate it. Truth be told, I asked Douglas a long time ago about lifting the carpet and from then, we've been batting ideas back and forward about what we could do.

We finally decided to go for laminate flooring and last week we went and bought it. Now, us being us, we couldn't just do the floor. Oh no. We had to paint the walls too. And the ceiling. And put in some new electrical sockets. And probably make curtains or a blind for the window - although I will need to get the sewing room back to a working state to be able to do that!

Here are just some photos of the progress. The carpet is taken up in stages ...

... revealing floorboards which, whilst not bad, definitely needed covered up!

Things were put on any available surface just to clear the floor.

Some things had to be put into other rooms. In our bedroom:

Out in the top hall:

In the wee room:

Tilly was a bit confused as to why "her" chair had been moved around a bit. She couldn't see out of the window any more! She did like sniffing Fred Bear and Dolly who were both put in a bucket of fabric for safety.

Douglas busy pulling up that awful carpet edging strip. I don't know how many times he stabbed himself on that stuff. It's lethal!!

Lastly, my fabric all lying on the table - for now.

We have progressed further than this. The carpet is all up, the laminate flooring is all down and nearly three of the walls have been painted. Hopefully, if it's a brighter day than it was today, I'll get photos of that tomorrow and we might be able to get the rest of the walls done. I told Douglas I needed to get the room back to normal ASAP because I needed to sew for my sanity's sake! He suggested that, before I put it all back in, I should go through it and maybe toss some things out. He obviously knows *nothing* about sewing and the necessity of having things on hand so you can use them ... sometime. :oP