Monday, 26 September 2011

Monday's Muse: Purple

I guess you would say I have been on a hiatus, not intentionally. For one thing, my computer went on the fritz and took a couple of weeks to fix. I am also in the processing of getting a house which takes up quite a bit of my attention. So one thing led to another and I had to put this to one side, though I still carried on finding time to craft! Hopefully I can now pay attention to this site again!

I thought best to start of on Monday with a nice new mood board for which I chose the colour purple.

1. Purple Cake - Maggie Austin Cake
2. Yarn felt door wreath - ItzFitz
3. Purple Ruffled Bag - Ruta Jasiuniene
4. Dahlia Purple Chair - Horchow
5. Purple Door - Martha Stewart
6. Keep Calm and Bake On - Pinterest
7. Plum Duvet - Anthropologie

I decided to do the mood board because of the purple door. When I saw it I loved it and it makes you think, doors can be made to be made statement piece or the hero of the room (hero, a popular word the Australian TV programme renovators absolutely love to use - it is a great programme if you get a chance to watch!). I love this colour palette, purple can be rich and luxurious or light and refreshing. I just love the 'Keep calm and bake on' sign. I will have to get one for my kitchen when I move.

Monday, 8 August 2011

Monday's Muse: Wood

1. Eath Bowl Pinstripe - Fluid Forms
2. Rustic Wooden The' trinket box - Zebra Home Design
3. Rustic Key Holder - Thrifty Decorating
4. Rustic Wooden Plant Boxes -Melody Maison
5. Accessory Tower - Style At Home
6. Rustic Wood Accent Tables - Fabulous Interior Deco
7. Decorative Wood Pattern - Art Signs Interiors

I had decided to choose wood as my theme this week, and when looking at new posts from the blogs I follow, I noticed that Thifty decorating had made a rustic key holder. I just had to include it. It fits in well with this collection and from reading the post, very simple to make for such a beautiful object. I will have to try and make something similar when I move.

Friday, 5 August 2011

I've never met a cupcake I didn't like!

Another baking success! 

I have been busy in the kitchen baking some tasty cupcakes.

Yes, I can say for certain that they are tasty. When I was icing the cupcakes, the first one may have gone slightly wrong. I didn't do it on purpose. I swear!!

So,what was a girl to do?!  

The cupcake needed to be eaten. I couldn't just leave it and my word, it was good! After that mistake, I got the technique down and iced 15 lovely cupcakes. The recipe for the cup cakes is a simple victoria sponge. I got this recipe out of Peggy Porschen's book as I was going to do one of her designs as well, and then changed my mind at the last minute, going for something completely off the top of my head.  I added some chocolate chips to it as a nice suprise; who would think these pink cupcakes would have some lovely chocolate in them too. Hopefully, these will go down nicely for the person's birthday I baked them for.

Wednesday, 3 August 2011

Wishful Wednesdays: French Bed

Ok I could not help posting a french bed as my Wednesday's Wish this week.

When I used french for the theme of the Monday's muse I was looking at so many goregous beds and it just made me fall in love with them more. It would look lovely and luxurious, and yet so elegant! The trouble is, would I ever get out of it?!

Picture taken from HERE

However at the price they are, no doubt it will remain a wish forever. I will just have to try and emulate the style as much as I can without it bankrupting me.

Monday, 1 August 2011

Monday's Muse: Yellow

This week, I choose a colour to base the theme on: yellow. 

1. Lemon Meringue Pie - The worldwide Gourmet
2. Crushed Wire Sunshine Brooch - Tamara Harrison
3. Paprika Bow Front Chiffon Babydoll Dress - Asos
4. Yellow Storage Paper White
5. Yellow Print Chair - Ericakaydesign
6. Yellow Linen Pillow Cover - Sukanart
7. Yellow Blossom Wall Art - Bed bath and beyond

I could not resist putting up a picture of one of my favourite deserts: lemon meringue pie. It makes me want to get in the kitchen and bake something lemon-y! The wire brooch is beautiful and when reading about it on the Tamara Harrisons website it sounds like a great little item to make.

Sunday, 31 July 2011

If Mary Poppin's comes calling, I have a new bag for her!

Well I have finished off my second bag! I am really pleased with this bag as it is more practical then the last one. Is it much bigger, so I can fit nearly everything in it but the kitchen sink, though it doesn't look bulkly. It could almost be like a modern day Mary Poppins bag!

Making this bag also incoporated two new sewing techniques that I have never done before: a zip and a pocket. I really choose the wrong type of zip for this project, the actually zip is too big so when it came to sewing it on I had difficulty with the presser foot. It wouldn't go over it, so I had to lift it up and slide the zipper along. This lead to a slight movement in the fabric so the stitch went slightly wonky at that point. However, I have learned from this.....choose a small zip for the future! (Though I will need to over come this problem some day so I will have to look in to it)

The pocket isn't the tidiest thing in the world, but then this had the zip attached to it, so it never had a great start to it anyway. The rest of the bag is really good, though I really need to take my time finishing and executing my sewing as this will improve the overall end project.

This bag was made using the pattern found in the book called Carry Me by Yuka Koshizen (My review on the book can be found HERE. It is called the Granny Bag, the bag on the front cover.

Yesterday, I helped out as a first aider at a craft fair at Kedleston Hall. When we were on breaks we could have a wonder around the fair and take a look at the exhibits. There were some really great stalls and some dedicated crafters there, but most of it was out of my price range. However, I did stumble across a stall that had some lovely buttons and well...I just couldn't help myself. I bought quite a few, and spent a bit too much on them as they were buttons, but I didn't indulge in buying anything else there. My button jar is starting to fill up with some great buttons for when I need them.

The main attraction for the craft fair was the chainsaw wood sculptures. There was an arena with many stalls around it, where the chainsaw sculpters were sculpting some huge pieces. During the day, there were two sessions where all the sculpters would go into the arena and have to sculpt something in 30 mintues which would then be auctioned off afterwards. Now, some went for a hefty price ( a few over £200), but they were good for just 30 minutes work. I think though chainsaw sculpting is not something I plan to pick up, I shall leave that to the professionals.

Wednesday, 27 July 2011

Wishful Wednesdays: Chic Mannequin wall decoration

On a Wednesday, I will be posting an item that is one of the top things I most desire and it is an item I would be willing to buy rather than make myself.

This week is a Chic Mannequin wall decoration. When I was browsing google and ebay at dressmaker mannequins I stumbled across this wall decoration and instantly fell in love with it. It would make a room feel so chic and you could even jazz it up a bit with a scarf or two for a belt perhaps. This would look fabulous is any sewing room as a piece of art!

This is certainly something I hope to purchase in the future, but first I need a proper sewing room! So, it shall remain on my wishlist a little longer.

Tuesday, 26 July 2011

Always to hand!

In between making my current project, I have also been making a vendor style apron to use when making projects - so hopefully I will always have a pair of scissors to hand or a pen if I suddenly need one.

I made it with Mad About Pink's vendor scarf tutorial found HERE,

Like Mad About Pink, I used a scarf for the main fabric. However, as I do like to buy many scarfs (I'll admitt, I am a bit of a scarf addict. I'll have to start knitting myself some!), I had a quite a collection to choose from though at the same time I had a dilemma. Which scarf would I actually be willing to cut up? I eventually came to a decision, but the scarf I went with was a thin one, so to give the apron a bit more shape and support I used some interfacing as well. I think I should have used a slightly lighter weight interfacing as my edges are a bit bulky, even after trimming the seems.

Anyway I am pleased with the overall effort and shall put it to good use!

I should really invest in a dressmaker's mannequin. Then I would be able to present and photograph items like this better. Oh well, I will just have to keep an eye out on eBay for when a cheap one comes along and try to snap it up quickly!

Monday, 25 July 2011

Monday's Muse: French

Welcome to Monday's Muse. I have decided to have a theme for Mondays, and it is all about finding objects, images, colours and anything else I can think about, and creating a picture mood board based on a theme/word. I would hope that these mood boards will spill into my work and inspire more creativity; it may give you some inspiration to create something beautiful as well.

This week I choose the word french as my theme. One day, when I have a place of my own I would love to decorate a room in a french style. I think it is a beautiful elegant style which would not date. So here is my mood board.
1.  Le mer clip on board - Dibor
2. French Fleur bed end stool - Crown French Furniture
3. Louis Silver Armchair - Brissi
4. Singer Button Box - Dibor
5. Cusine Metal Shelves - Brissi
6. Lucie French Style Painted Writing Desk - Crown French Furniture
7. Chateau Du Bruges Bottle Carrier - Brissi

The Singer button box is so adorable; I would buy this if I had a sewing room! I love how an elegant french style uses soft pastels and muted colours, but still gives a room warmth and character. In the future my house we have a room full of things like these, of course all handmade or recycled furniture!

Saturday, 23 July 2011

A revamp and a whole lot more

Ok, so it has been awhile since I posted, but then as you can see quite a bit has changed around here. As I was exploring more blogs, I started to think that the look of my blog was a bit....simple, not unique enough, I guess and thought surely I can design a better layout. So, here it is! I feel it has more of an identity to it now and for now, it will be staying like this.

I went to another Sew Much Fun meet up, which was an intro into knitting. It was a good evening because though I have knitted before, I hadn't done any in quite sometime. So remembering how to cast on and off, and actually knitt a row was quite fuzzy. However, I soon picked it up. Now I just need to keep it going so I don't forget again!! Today I picked up some 4mm knitting needles, I only have 8mm needles from when I knitted my scarf and using those on the wool I have makes it quite a loose knit, so now I have some other size needles for when I want a tighter knitt.

So I started a new project in the week, you can see more info on it under my current project section, but I am making another bag. This time from the book Carry Me by Yuka Koshizen (see the library for my review on it).

I am making the bag on the front cover, but it is in a completely different fabric! I managed to get the interfacing, lining fabric and zipper today at Dulem Mill. I was quite shocked that I was able to get it all there, it is quite a good place to have so close for little bits and bobs! So hopefully it will be finished in no time!!

My book also arrived, Martha Stewart's Encyclopedia of Crafts: An A - Z Guide with Detailed Instructions and Endless Inspiration, and it is such a great book - note to self, remember to write a review to put in the library. It has so many different craft techniques and projects to do that it is a case of where do I begin? I have a feeling that I might start with the soap making section as it looks really fun and I could experiment with smells so much.

Sunday, 17 July 2011

Two new books, plus some great bargins = great day shopping!

I went shopping yesterday really with no intention of buying anything craft related, but I stumbled into Waterstones and couldn't help going to have a look at the craft/design/d.i.y section whilst I was there. There was one book that really caught my eye and when browsing through it I knew I wanted to get it, but then I saw the price....£20. Yes, I know this isn't an awful lot for a book, but I hadn't planned on buying anything and so I put it back on the shelf. I then had a thought, you never know The Works may have it.

Unfortunately they didn't, but they were having a big sale on and I found another great book - Complete Jewellery by Mary Helt,  for only £3 when the original price was £17. For such a cheap price and such a great book with loads of projects I just couldn't leave it there. I also picked up a few other bits and bobs, like an A3 cutting mat, an A4 sketch pad, a pack of four 5x7" canvas (which I already have an project in mind) and some small craft pegs, all at bargin prices.

However the book in Waterstone was still playing on my mind, so I came home and got it for half the price in Waterstones from Amazon. I have bought Martha Stewart's Encyclopedia of Crafts: An A - Z Guide with Detailed Instructions and Endless Inspiration. Now I just have to wait for it in the post, lets hope it doesn't take to long!

Tuesday, 12 July 2011

I simply could not stop - I had to finish it.

Title quote from Alton S. Tobey.

Hooray! I have finished making my first ever bag. It is one of Amy Buttlers lovely designs - for the pattern I bought below:


This sewing pattern can make 2 bags, a shoulder bag and slightly smaller version as a handbag.

The fabric I used was a lovely taupe brown with a modern flower tree design to it from Ikea, and as it is a home decor fabric I did not need to using an interfacing except on the pockets inside. Nice and simple :)

I am quite pleased with it seeing as it is my first attempt at making a bag, and as I do love bags what difference does one more bag make...I can never have too many! Still, the finishing seam sewing the interior to exterior could have been neater, it is certainly something I need to improve on for next time. You will notice that I made some additions to orginal design on the bag, my fabric flowers!! One of the flowers is not in the fabric of the bag's exterior, but instead of the lining fabric to add more white colour to the outside and I found some lovely buttons in Fabric Land for the centres. Great excuse to buy some more buttons!!

On another note, I made my pinhole camera! It was really easy and quick to make so I would recomend it to anyone who is interested in trying out pinhole photography, but does not want to spend a fortune on a camera. This is an inexpensive camera that seems to be very sturdy! However, you'll have to wait for my opnion on how well the photographs turn out!

When I finished making the camera I had one of those moments when you discover some left over objects that you think you should have used in the construction but somehow there they are sat in front staring at you. Luckily I worked out that the two left over elastic bands are to just put over the camera to keep the back from falling out of the camera when you have loaded your film. I gave a big sigh of relief when I worked that out, as I wasn't to sure I would be able to take it all apart if it was needed inside the camera!

Saturday, 9 July 2011

Brighton rocks!

I went to Brighton yesterday and with its array of unique shops you can never get bored. We stumbled into one shop where I bought a lovely panoramic pinhole camera for £19.50, one which I will have to assemble, but it looks like it is going to be a study camera. I cannot wait to try this out and get some really interesting photographs. Also found the shop called Ditto farics, which was a really good fabric shop. Even though I didn't buy any  fabric at the time (trying to not spend any more money of fabric untill I have used most of what I have at home), I bought two really pretty buttons. I shall have to find good project to use them in.

Stay tuned for when I have built the camera!

Monday, 4 July 2011

Blog lovin

Big tea cup from Ikea

Went to Ikea yesterday, not with the intention of buying anything, but they had a sale on with some good bargins. I couldn't resist buying this plain white big tea cup and saucer. It was only £1.99, half price and so much could be done with it, it seemed a waste to walk on by and leave it there.


It is just begging to be experimented with, and I think I will make it into a nice candle as well as decorating the outside. I may just go back and by another to make them a pair.

Whilst I was there, I also bought 3 pairs of different size scissors for 70p and they will always come in handy, a glass jar for 91p to store buttons and a nice big massive lamp with bulb included for £2.50. Now I won't have any trouble seeing what I am doing. Just going to have a look turned out to be quite good!

Sunday, 3 July 2011

Upcylced fabric flowers and Tutorial

My first meeting with Sew Much Fun in Nottingham was to make upcycled fabric flowers. The concept was to take a scrap of fabric or an unwated piece of clothing and upcyle it into a lovely flower. It was a great night and I made two flowers.

For those that want to know how I made them, well here is a small tutorial.

1. Take a piece of frabic and cut a piece 22" by 3". You can vary this size depending on how big you want your flower. My blue flower was made with a piece of frabic this size.

Sewing the two short ends together
2.Then fold the fabric in half so that the two short ends meet with the right sides of the fabric together. Then sttich along the 3" edge to sew the two small ends togther.

3. Once sewn together, turn inside out so the right side of the fabric is on the outside and fold in half all the way around, so the long edges meet.

Sewing a running stich

4. As you are sewing pull the thread to bunch up the fabric. This is much easier if you do it as you go along, then if you leave it till the en

5. Once it is bunched together, sew the middle together so it remains bunched up.

6. Choose a button to go with the flower and sew this on to the front of your flower.
Pulling the thread and fabric together

7. Cut a small circle out of felt and either glue this on the back or carefully stitch onto the back, but make sure you stiches do not show on the front.

8. Now it is up to you what you do with the flower. I put a badge clip on mine and can be used as a stand alone brooch or as an accessorie...perhaps for a bag ;) You could also attach a magnet and jazz up you fridge.
After sewing up the middle, sew on a button