All posts tagged “sewing

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The Creative Initiative #5

The theme for this week’s creative initiative was dreams, and it was not easy to come up with ideas!

I suppose the two main paths you could split ‘dreams’ into is firstly, quite literal dreams which you have when you switch off at night, or perhaps taking a more philosophical approach, and analysing what it is you want to do with yourself in the long term.

As I explained with last week’s creative initiative, I’m not so good at expressing myself, especially when it comes to feelings, including hopes and aspirations. That’s not to say I don’t have any, I have plenty – I’d like to own our own narrowboat, and have spent years dreaming up ideas in my head, I’d like to travel around Eastern Europe and have drawn up a route which I intend to do some day, and it would be quite nice to be a multi millionaire. But these are dreams, after all.

I think what I have learnt so far throughout the Creative Initiative is that I’m not much of a dreamer; I look forward to things, certainly, but I am a much more live-in-the-moment kind of person. Hence why I took the other route, and focused on the word dreams in the sense of the often strange, sometimes terrifying but usually quite insightful occurrences which happen when we are asleep.



Sleeping is my favourite thing to do. Hands down. When I was a teenager I could easily sleep for 13 hours or more if left unattended. These days I’ll be lucky if I get 6!

I’m quite a sleepy person, and will happily sleep wherever I can find somewhere comfortable. I am not ashamed of sleeping on the bus, for example. This happy little guy represents my inner sleepiness.

I’m really loving freehand embroidery at the moment. I really don’t have the patience for cross stitch, and I love how quickly things take shape – I sketched this out and stitched it up in about half an hour. Rather than using embroidery floss I used regular sewing thread, and I quite like how delicate it makes his little cloud features look.

If you would like to join in, then the rules are very simple:

• create something in based on this week’s prompt

• post about your artistic endeavour on your blog and link it up to this post

• comment on other bloggers’ posts – the prompts leave a lot of room to use your imagination and we should all support and encourage each other as we explore!

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Stitchin’ and a-Bitchin’

Last night was Lovehoney’s very first Stitch and Bitch!

I arranged the session after mentioning it to a few people at work and getting a pretty enthusiastic response. I’ve always wanted to join a Stitch and Bitch group, so starting one up at work is just all kinds of awesome. Last night a group of about 6 or 7 of us gathered our crafty bits and sat down for a couple of hours of crafting and nattering.

Heart decoration for Christmas tree handmade DIY

Stitch and bitch group at Lovehoney

Box of craft supplies

We didn’t have an agenda as such; myself and another S&B-er had set up a Pinterest board to gather together ideas for the first meeting, and I found myself gravitating towards the cute little DIY decorations for the Christmas tree. I wanted to cater to all abilities too, and with a project like that it’s completely up to you how complex or how simple you make it.

I ended up making my little heart from a kit I had picked up from Wilko. It came with a few pre cut bits of felt, some embroidery floss, stuffing and ribbon, plus easy to follow instructions. I ended up stitching this little guy in about an hour or so, and am pretty pleased with the results! I can’t wait to get stuck in and make more festive felt creations – I’m thinking foxes and mini Christmas trees.

Jars of buttons

Gingerbread man decoration in the making

What was so nice about the evening is everyone’s enthusiasm; everyone pitched in and brought something along, and really got stuck into their projects. It was amazing to see what people came up with. We even had a little gingerbread man in progress! Initially I was going to suggest monthly meetings, but everyone enjoyed themselves so much they now want to do it weekly and I am more than happy to do so – any excuse for cute Christmas crafting.

Watch this space for Stitch and Bitch updates!

Are you part of any craft clubs?

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The Creative Initiative #2


Hey, I know it’s childish, but the theme for this week’s Creative Initiative is ‘what did you do today?’ and this sums up how I feel perfectly. I’m off work sick, and so haven’t actually done anything today, except lie down and feel ill.

While being sofa-ridden I thought I would try my hand at something which I haven’t done since school, so I picked up my hoop for some embroidery. I have to admit I think this could be somewhat of a new obsession; I’m ridiculously impatient, and so enjoyed how quickly this whole thing came together. It only took an episode of Bargain Hunt to complete.

A while back I noticed this awesome piece of embroidery on Etsy, which I think was the subliminal inspiration for this. I’m also a fan of things which mix the innocent and cute with something a bit naughty, much like when you see old ladies swearing or smoking. This could be the first in a series of embroidered swears, who knows.

The Creative Initiative is a fabulous new invention I discovered whilst reading Lyzi’s blog Being Little. The theme changes week by week and you can use any medium for expression you like. The rules are very simple:

• create something in based on this week’s prompt

• post about your artistic endeavour on your blog and link it up to this post

• comment on other bloggers’ posts – the prompts leave a lot of room to use your imagination and we should all support and encourage each other as we explore!

The theme for next week is ‘get outdoors!’
It’s not too late to join in, and if you do create something be sure to post the links in the comments section so I can have a look!

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I made a tiny hat…

Despite it being at least 30 degrees outside, I am already planning ahead for winter. I bought a practical, waterproof coat (more on that soon) and have started knitting things which I can use in the colder months. I think it might be a coping mechanism.

You are crazy.

I’m not, I just can’t bear this heat, and much prefer the reliability of the weather in the autumn and winter months.

At knitting club I was particularly inspired by a book called 30 Minute Knits, which promises 30 minutes of your time in exchange for adorable (and functional) knitted projects. In this was a beautiful ribbed lace hat, perfect for winter.

So, I made a prototype.



The pattern uses giant wool and 12mm needles for a right ol’ chunky affair, but in order to get my head around the pattern I knitted this bad boy on size 7 needles with bog standard 2 ply. I got a couple of things wrong, but once it’s all stitched up you can hardly notice a slipped stitch here or there. I haven’t found a use for this guy yet, I might knit a creature to wear it, but I think that’s a long way off.


I’ve also started cross stitching, hooray! If you read my Summer Wishlist I included an Etsy shop called Wee Little Stitches, who sell cute and contemporary cross stitch patterns, with a healthy dose of pop culture references. I had my eye on another pattern, but chose this one as it seemed a little easier for a first time project.

Can you guess what it is yet?

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Crafty Magazine

Have you read Crafty yet? Why not?!


I discovered it after flicking through the vast sea of magazines in Asda whilst waiting for Tom. I suppose the reason why I picked it up in the first place is because of the cute cover it has every month, featuring items which you can make from the tutorials inside. These tutorials are plentiful and well written, with the most beautiful photography.

Another reason for picking it up and paying the £5 price tag (I never buy magazines, so this is expensive for me) is that it came with a free gift – a little purse clasp. Every month I have received another free item; there are always several tutorials on ways in which to use your free gift inside, in the most clever ways.

This magazine isn’t just for craft tutorials, there are features on members of the crafting community, quirky events happening around the country (The Tweed Run, anyone?) and a directory of useful links for buying materials or finding inspiration from featured blogs. This led me to discover, amongst other things, the awesome Seamless blog, where seamstress Elena Cresci either thrifts or sews her own clothes, resisting the lures of high street fashion chains. It’s well worth a read if you haven’t already.

I only bought one issue and decided to buy a subscription. I decided that it was full of the things which I find the most appealing about the crafting community – bright colours, quirky handmade items, beautiful photos, and easy and clever DIYs which make ordinary items just a bit more special.
It was only £25 for 6 issues, and I got another free gift – a camera!

You can buy Crafty from most large supermarkets, or check out their blog here.

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OMG! I made something!


Now, you might be wondering a few things:

  1. Where is your head?
  2. Why does it look like a tiny child has taken these photos?
  3. Why are your clothes all creased?

Simple really. I have misplaced my tripod, my face is squished in a weird way in most of these pictures, and we don’t own an iron.

Now, back to the important topic at hand – I made a skirt!


OK, so the hems are all wonky and it’s a bit see through and the waist band is too big, but it’s the first item of clothing I’ve sewn since school and I’ve been wearing it around all this week with a stupid grin on my face.


For those who might be wondering, it is a plain old circle skirt, something which you can knock together in an hour or two and is relatively stress-free to make.

I adapted the pattern from this I found on Pinterest ages ago and have been meaning to make for about 6 months.

I say adapted because I had to make the skirt in two pieces, whereas it is usually just one large circle of fabric sewn to a waistband. The reason for this was twofold; firstly, because I had made my pattern a bit too long, and secondly, because the width of the fabric I bought was too narrow.

At the end of the post she comments on how 60″ wide fabric works best, as you can usually get a whole circle out of it.



Nevertheless, it still took me just over an hour and a half to make this, and I’m sure the next one will be even quicker.

Things to remember for next time would be to buy some more expensive/nicer fabric (this is cheap polycotton from FabricLand and cost about £4 for 2.5 metres) so that it isn’t so see-through, and spend a bit of extra time hemming the thing properly!

Oh, and buy an iron.

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