Tuesday, 29 December 2015

Back To Work

I got alot done yesterday. Doing the washing up, the hoovering, cleaning out the rats, and putting at least half of my huge pile of cardboard recycling in the bin. That's all that would fit in the four cardboard boxes that belong to our flats, and I'm really hoping no one else has loads to get rid of. :-/

I even planted up a window box for my living/sewing room! It's full of bulbs that had started to sprout sitting around my house.

As for sewing, I only got a little bit of hand sewing done on the armholes of my spiderweb dress before I got the early signs of a migraine, i.e. patches of my vision grayed out. (I'd actually been feeling okay for most of the day.) The visual effects are actually a good thing, because it means I can take painkillers early. :-)

Thankfully, the Ibuprofen worked and about 2 hours later I was able to go back and finish the armholes and almost get the zip sewn in before bedtime. It'll be finished today!

Sunday, 27 December 2015

The Over Christmas Post

Not much happened over Christmas, sewing wise. My older brother was staying over, I spent a whole load of time at my parents, and I became quite ill, possibly from sleeping on the floor in my cold flat. My head hurts so much today...

Big brother decorated the Christmas cake after he arrived. It's a practice for his wedding cake and it tasted great!

All the sewing I did do went into an inherited project. It's an embroidery of me and my brothers with our grandparents that she started about 15 years ago. She was going to give up on it and sell the embroidery frame, and when I said I'd like to try and finish it she had to rescue the stitch map from the bin. :-P

Tuesday, 22 December 2015

Planning For Tomorrow And Stressing For Today

I got little brother's shirt cut out in the final fabric and all the interfacing stuck on yesterday, ready for sewing together in the morning before I pick up big brother so he can stay over for Christmas. I'm getting so worked up about getting everything finished for the big day but it's not as if they'll be angry if things are a day late. Especially considering what a terrible track record I have of giving gifts. :-/

I did want to show you guys my only UFO (unfinished object) that isn't very recent. It's a sweater with monkey faces on it and I love it. I stopped sewing it because it was my first time sewing with knits and I didn't have a whole lot of the fabric so I cut the side front panels widthways rather than lengthways. The fabric has a 4 way stretch so it isn't a total tragedy but as soon as it didn't behave perfectly in my overlocker all my issues came home to roost and I stuffed it under my desk. Maybe after Christmas I could do with a nice warm top?

I've planned out some more relaxed sewing for January, February and March. It does include some birthday presents but I'm going to give myself longer to work on them. :-)

Monday, 21 December 2015


I spend every Sunday with family and don't usually have a chance to do any actual crafting while I'm there. Yesterday, though, I dug out a knitting project that had been buried in the bottom of a set of shelves for months.

It's a bed cover knitted in sections. I'm on number 3 of 80! I suppose it'll keep me busy for a while. :-)

Sunday, 20 December 2015


I intended to get little brothers shirt done yesterday, but then I figured out how to stop Civ V crashing and it ate at least 10 hours of the day. o-O

I figured I should spend the rest of my time doing something tangentially related to sewing, so I read 'The Cronology of Fashion till I fell asleep

Saturday, 19 December 2015

It Fits!

I spent a hideous amount of time ironing a piece of fabric yesterday morning. I preshrunk a 15 meter length of black fabric with purple honey bees and you just can't dry that much fabric on a drying rack. I tried! I need to dry my clothes!

After that I popped round to my parents to try the second toile for his shirt on my little brother. IT FITS! That means I can make it up in the final fabric and have at least one finished for Christmas. :-)

I got some buttons for them as well. I forgot to take the pattern with me so I just looked up a picture of the Negroni and saw 5 buttons on the front, so I bought 10 incase they both wanted the same buttons. I forgot about the cuffs and the pocket flaps, but I'm leaving off the flaps so only 7 needed.

The ones with white spots looked like they would most go with the pattern of little brothers shirt but we both agreed they looked more like something you'd find on a dress. I'll find a use for them but I do need to buy 4 more of the plain ones.

I got 4 22" zippers for dresses, and there's a 50p charge in the fabric shop if you buy less than £10 worth of stuff on a credit card, which is a great excuse to buy fabric. There was only 90 cm of this left on the bolt but that's enough for a skirt. :-)

Friday, 18 December 2015

A Sewing Frenzy

I wasn't able to pop round to fit the shirt toile on my brother, but I'm probably going to do that today. That's if I don't just sleep through till the weekend. :-p

Remember that hammock I made about a week ago? They chewed right through the loop at the corner. Maybe if I make a buttonhole in the actual fabric of the hammock?

I spent all of yesterday evening sewing my dress for the pattern review challenge. I lay out the fabric about 6pm and by midnight it was all sewn together. The black at the armholes is bias binding that I'm using to bind the raw edges. It looks a bit busy in the photo but not so much in real life.

I still have to hem it and add the zip that I haven't even bought yet, but I'd forgotten how quick it is to make things when you don't have to fiddle with fitting and you can put a good block of time in.

Thursday, 17 December 2015

Back To The Dress

Since I couldn't do any more work on the shirt yesterday I turned back to the Simple Sew Tea Dress. The bodice needed a lot of adjustments so I marked my bust on the original toile and moved the bust dart, then added one and a half inches to the bottom. I cut another bodice toile from the skirt panels to test it out.

I had to add another dart going from the bust to the armhole to get rid of some extra fabric and add an inch or so to the side seam on the back piece but it looks like it fits.

The paper pattern looks a bit massacred but if it works than it works.

The front skirt piece was fine but I added a bit of width to the back skirt to make it match the bodice piece. The next step is to make it up out of my fashion fabric! :-)

Plus, I catalogued a load more fabric. This and the other lot added together fills an 80 litre tub. I've got 9 more tubs so I'll just keep going till I run out of fabric. :-)

Wednesday, 16 December 2015

Altered Toile

Yesterday I finally got around to cutting out and sewing together the second toile for my little brother's shirt. I actually managed to get the sleeve seam right this time! I've left the side seam open so I can pin it on him, just incase I haven't opened up the pattern pieces enough.

I'm going to go over and fit it on him tomorrow. :-)

Tuesday, 15 December 2015

Feeling Better

I spend a whole lot of yesterday running errands. Getting a quote on the car, planting up a pot in the front garden with spring flowering bulbs and something to add some green until then. That's more than 50 litres of soil in there! :-P

After that I finally got my teeth fixed. I have a new bridge at the front and I'm not embarrassed to smile any more. Some time today I'm getting a fridge delivered, so I was even able to pick up some healthier food, knowing it isn't going to go bad in the cupboards or freeze in my current fridge.

It tasted so good!

Monday, 14 December 2015

A Good Sunday For All

I spent most of Sunday at my parents house, reading and playing with the rats. They really enjoyed running around in the room mum uses for hers and I could let them because they can't reach anything that isn't safe or okay to play with. They have a cage for when they visit now, in the bottom of a sectional one that has a group of girls at the top.

I got to see my Grandad for the first time since he went into hospital. He was a bit forgetful, but he's got his new pacemaker in and it was nice to see him again. We all have our fingers crossed he'll get home for Christmas, and Grandma even has a hospital bed and a hoist all set up in the dining room for when he gets out.

As for the reading, I got all the way through 'Why Fashion Matters' by Frances Corner. I'm not sure I'd recommend it, generally. It doesn't have much that isn't talked about better elsewhere, and it's not incredibly inspiring. It felt like one of those books you buy as little gifts like 'For A Sister' or quotes about such and such, like the title comes first and the contents is just filler. Maybe I'm being overly mean?

Sunday, 13 December 2015

More Stash!

I added more stash pictures to my Shopping the stash page today and I'm already getting ideas. Purple shirts? A flowery dress? The new year should be fun! :-)

Saturday, 12 December 2015

A Quick Update

I don't know if you'd say I've had a busy few days, but at least I got out of the house and got some things done.

I walked about an hour to try and get to a bike shop that turned out not to exist. I only needed a bike lock, so I tried at Tesco's just incase and it turns out I should have gone there first. Sigh... That's what I get for wanting to support local businesses. Bedworth doesn't seem to have any that don't sell greasy food.

When I got back to the flat I passed a delivery man leaving the building. I found a 'we missed you' notice and chased him down getting into his van. Dropped my phone and stood on it in the process. The punchline? He'd left the parcel with the neighbour.

So my phone's a little messed up, but it can still take pictures so no real harm done?

I finally got some sewing done today! Not on the shirts, but on a hammock for the rats. One of the girls, I think it was Beatrix, fell from a plastic platform to the bottom of the cage and it got me a little worried. She was fine, but better safe than sorry. I made a hammock with some cheap black polyester folded four times and quilted it with my odds and sods thread. I used bias binding on the edges just to cover all the thread ends and make little tags on the corners to hang it with.

It seemed to go down well. Maybe it'll just get eaten like the shirt I gave them but at least they won't be able to fall all the way down until they chew through at least two of the corners, and I have a whole lot more binding if I need to repair it.

I tried to distract them with food while I was putting it in, but they insisted on 'helping'.

Oh yeah, and I got me some plants! I'm going to try and pretty up the front garden, plant up some pots so when the landlord finally gets around to flattening the lawn I won't loose all my spring flowering bulbs. I'm probably going to plant them early next week if it doesn't rain. Cross your fingers for me?

Thursday, 10 December 2015

Feeling S.A.D

I think I'm having a glum. I haven't sewn in a few days and I've barely been able to get out of bed when I don't have to. Barely been able to when I do.

I've been spending most of the time when I'm not sleeping reading. I'm almost through a library copy of Vintage Fashion right now. Some decades are definitely more interesting than others but it has a lot of pretty pictures.

My little brother once suggested S.A.D for a reason for me always being down over winter. Seasonal Affective Disorder. I didn't even think about it being a seasonal thing. I don't know, maybe I should think about going on holiday next winter?

Wednesday, 9 December 2015

Shirt Adjustment

There isn't a whole lot to report on today. I made the adjustments to my little brothers shirt and I'm going to make another toile just to check I haven't completely ballsed it up. I can fit that next weekend. :-)

Tuesday, 8 December 2015

New Stash Page On The Blog

I had two fillings yesterday and just didn't feel like sewing. I still don't. I want to get the pattern adjustments for the weekend so I can try little brothers on him and see how well it worked. I don't know if I'm going to get a chance for another fitting on big brother.

I'm spending this non-sewing time watching more Mission Catwalk and cataloguing some of my sewing supplies and fabric. I seem to get sucked in by buying things in bulk, imagining all the savings and all the use I'm going to get out of it. When it goes right, like the £1 a meter white cotton, it goes really right, but when it goes wrong it goes really wrong, like the shifty black polyester pinstripe I tried to use to make a toile.

Firstly, a recent acquisition. I'm bashing my head on my sewing desk at the moment because I've just worked out this is over 150 meters of bias binding. It's in colours I use a lot but still... I'll be using some early next year because I'm going to be working on improving my finishes.

Now for thread. I got myself a big tray of different coloured threads when I first got back into sewing and haven't bought any since, which is a good thing, because I really don't need any more!

When I got that tray of thread I didn't take into account all the thread I already had. Some is from college, some is from sewing kits I was given as presents, and some (mostly the metallic ones) I bought for myself.

I stuck them all in a bucket that had halloween sweets in it. Now at least I know where they all are and I can go there first if I'm doing a toile or it doesn't matter if the thread is the right colour, like with sewing for the rats.

Next up, knicker elastic. I've never even made a pair of knickers! They're pretty, but it's ridiculous to just have these things lying around my flat.

And while I was cleaning up I found a little grow your own carrots kit that I got from Mum and Dad last Christmas! It's sitting on my windowsill now. :-D