Friday, 18 April 2014

Itching to stitch....

Well, what a busy fortnight we have had. All good I must say. Plenty of sunshine to be able to take the grandsons to the park and games galore on the not so bright ones. We've played hunt the cotton reels a zillion times. 2 buckets, 6 matching cotton reels in each, green for Alfie and blue for Charlie, hiding them in different rooms. We even resorted to camping in my bedroom  complete with cushion fights one day. It's surprising what you can come up with at a push to entertain little ones!

However much as I have loved having them some parcels arrived this week containing some yummy fabrics and I have been itching to stitch!
I've been good though, one evening catching up with the mountain of ironing and then one evening at my machines.
First I made up my good old tee shirt pattern in a plain brown jersey knit.

 I've got lots of mustard, orange and coral in my spring/summer wardrobe this year so I thought this would be very useful.
Next I decided to try out one of my new patterns. New Look 6176.

I made it in a plain amber double knit from Plush Addict, a snip at only £7.99 a metre. Using jersey I completely abandoned the zip. No need, it slips over my head easily and there's no fear of stretching the back seam!

I absolutely adore it and want to make it up in cotton/linen now to see how it hangs done in a different fabric, Although the pattern doesn't have any princess or waist seams I still decided to do an FBA (full bust adjustment) on this pattern as I am a well made girl  and didn't want the top to pull. However on reflexion I should have used a smaller size as although the general fit is good, the neckline is still too wide and I feel that the shoulders are too. I also landed up taking in the side seams a fair bit from the hip line down.
It is so comfortable, but it could easily be dressed up with a little jacket. Although I think this one makes it look a bit frumpy! I should have tried it with the cropped leather biker jacket to give it a bit of an edge.

I now have the problem of deciding which of these delicious knits I am going to make up next.

Intended for tee shirts for my forthcoming holiday and the mustard spot for a 40s inspired dress for my SIL for Twinwood this year. I confess I bought these from myfabrics which appears to be based in Germany and not the UK as I first thought.
They were all in the sale and are a fine cotton jersey with just 4% spandex. I have washed samples to ensure they don't shrink or run and they all seem pretty good. After a few problems with delayed delivery in the past, this time the fabric arrived amazingly quickly so I was pretty thrilled.
I will let you see the results in a future post.

Well that's me for now, off to my sewing room and the job I hate most about sewing....cutting out!

Hope you have a lovely weekend however you spend it and hope the sun shines a little wherever you are. Our weather has been bright but chilly today , much the same for tomorrow, but Sunday's not looking good. A few wet Easter bunnies me thinks.....

Jenny xx

Tuesday, 15 April 2014

A simple piece of plastic.......

It doesn't happen often but just occasionally I come across something that I wonder how I ever managed without.
A simple piece of plastic has transformed some of the pieces in my wardrobe from 'that never feels quite right' to ' ooh I had forgotten how lovely that is.'
And what is this remarkable gadget, nothing but a simple piece of plastic to sew inside your garments to clip onto bra straps and prevent straps sliding down arms, tops slipping off shoulders and generally making your slightly 'wayward' clothes stay in place.

Genius and reasonably priced. Get them from here

Jenny xx

NB I'm not sponsored to make any recommendations on my blog, I just like to share anything I find particularly helpful.

Thursday, 10 April 2014

Jack of all Trades.....

...but master of none as the old saying goes!!.................

Well look at me two posts in a week, better go steady here lol!

Since I gave up sewing for others I feel I have become a bit of a butterfly crafter, flitting from this to that. Oh sewing will always be my first love, and I have finished off a few WIPs in the dressmaking department in the last few months, but every now and then I feel I want to try something else.

Do you do these craft programs and think I'd like to try that.

Well my heading sums it up really. A bit of a knitter, a dabble at crochet and now a very amateur beader!  The latter I might add has come about because I am too mean to pay twice the cost of a beautiful bracelet bought me for my retirement to have it made smaller.

Well I've already shown my recent attempts at knitting again ......

I'm pleased to report I am now on the final sleeve so it may still fit my grandson when its done.(And of course there's always his little brother if it takes me too long he he! )

The crochet which my mum taught me over 50 years ago has been revived after being bought this English translation of a Japanese book by my lovely daughter...( Er. she bought it I mean, she didn't write it!!)

so I rifled around my studio and found all these odd balls of wool in a mix of bright and more subdued colours and decided this would be a great project to pick up and do a few motifs when I didn't have lots of time.

This is where the 'master of none' bit comes in....There are no real written instructions, just graphs. However the clue is in the title of the throw 'Honeycomb Afghan'. Honeycomb....hexagon....

Spot the mistake.........even my seven year old grandson knew these were pentagons!!!
However I have done too many now to give them up so will run with it and maybe do the 'proper' one sometime in the future. I have to say I do love the book and there are several other projects I would like to try...If I can read the diagrams properly this time.

And finally the beading. This has been relatively successful in that I have repaired several of my necklaces broken by tiny inquisitive fingers, and those just trying to find something to hang onto! I haven't yet plucked up the courage to tackle the bracelet

(excuse the shocking photo the light was very bad. It is a lovely chartreuse colour really)

But I have made a new coral coloured necklace and a pretty bracelet and my crimping skills are improving!....

So there you have it. Things I am loving having a go at even though I know they are not perfect. I think I would like to take some classes one day just to see if I can conquer the techniques, but then again I'm pretty happy with what I have achieved and at the end of the day that's all that really matters!

. Have a good and productive week whatever you are doing. Mine has so far involved Lego engineering, baking, Wii, pushing swings and buying ice cream and pretty much similar next week.Bored I will certainly not be!!

Jenny xx

Wednesday, 9 April 2014

Where are they?.......

Navy or Natural sandals.

Sandals that make my feet feel as though they are floating on air.........

Sandals that look deliciously feminine but edgy.......

Sandals that don't make me look like some ageing hippy......

All images from Google images (sorry unable to trace original sources)

OK, OK... If I want to pay £300 for something that is going to be ruined by sand sea or our unstable weather, I'm sure I could take my pick. But for the life of me I cannot understand how sandals, having perhaps a quarter of the amount of leather in them than normal winter shoes can cost almost twice as much!

I have been trawling the Internet for weeks trying to find a pair that will suit my style, my budget and fit into my holiday wardrobe. I don't want to take a pair for every outfit! I would like some that would mix and match. I do love colour, but just sometimes neutral is better.

In the end I found these.....from Pavers

Not exactly what I was looking for, but they will do the job.(Note to self...better get those nails manicured before the summer!)

Do you have nightmares trying to find something specific for your wardrobe, or is it just me!!

Have a great week
Jenny xx