Wednesday, 17 September 2014

Back soon . . .

Just popping across to la belle France for a few days - all part of my BIG (eeek. . . ) Birthday celebrations (merci beaucoup, lovely sis).  

So chat amongst yourselves, keep the home fires burning, and I'll be back soon
 to catch up  : - )

A bientot mes amis,

oh, and ps.  to my lovely fellow bloggy friends and family in bonnie Scotland - please vote wisely tomorrow.

Saturday, 13 September 2014

My OWOP days . . .

One week, one pattern ~

This was a fun sewing challenge hosted by Handmade Jane,
a whole week of wearing one of my favourite patterns.

Now regular readers will not be at all surprised that my current favourite pattern is . . . 
yes, you guessed it . . . The Kate Dress from Sew Me Something. 

So seeing as I have over time already made four Kates, it seemed only natural that I picked this pattern for the OWOP challenge - and of course, it gave me an excuse to make another one too. 
 Five seems like a nice number, don't you think ?

So, without further ado, here's my OWOP week that was . . .


Tunic length, with pockets and plain short sleeves.

Teamed with leggings and my oh-so-comfy Sketchers. I took a sewing workshop in the morning, and taught a "Learn to Crochet" workshop to a delightful bunch of peeps in the afternoon (more about that soon) and it was a beautiful warm sunny day, so the cardi was discarded early on. 


Dress length with pockets, cap sleeves and a placket.

Another lovely sunny day, so out came the legs and the FitFlops,  we had a barbecue and enjoyed this lovely late summer weather we've been having.  
This was my first ever Kate - as you can see in the pic on the left, I got the neckline a bit squiffy so I unpicked and redid it, and it sits way better now. 


Dress length, with straight short sleeves,  lace-edged pockets and a frill.

Hi-ho, hi-ho, it's off to work I go . . .  in my favourite Kate teamed with my favourite cropped cardi.  My favourite pups don't get to come to work with me, but the Jerry-dog seemed to want to be in the pic.

Tunic length, 3/4 sleeves, pockets and a lace zip at the back.

 Had a Pilates class in the morning where, quite frankly, wearing a dress would be entirely inappropriate, so I only changed into my Kate after class when it was time to head off to Book Club.  In case you're wondering,  the basket contains some yummy choc-chip shortbread, and my books of course ; - )
Oh, and I feel the need to add that whilst those are the exact same navy leggings I wore on Saturday, they were indeed laundered in between ; - )


Tunic length, cap sleeves, no pockets with a lace-edged hem.

Teamed with jeggings and a scarf, Wednesday's Kate took me to my French class in the morning and a hair appointment in the afternoon.  


See Saturday above . . .

I spent the day home alone on Thursday - so it had to be a selfie in the mirror -  but I had a fun time making place cards & table settings for my upcoming big birthday party.   Wearing Saturday's Kate again, this time with jeggings and a scarf.  'Twas another warm & sunny day, but a wee bit cool indoors, hence the scarf.
Oh, and when I was all done with the party planning, I did some sewing,  and finished . . . yes again, you guessed it  . . . another Kate. 
(am I really that predictable ?)
Which brings us nicely to Day 7 . . . 


Tunic length, cap sleeves, lace-edged hemline.

Ta-dah . . . my newest Kate - teamed with grey jeggings and a coral pink cardi which picks up the exact same colour in the fabric, and accessorized with my other favourite pup (see Monday above), the Ben-dog, who thinks that if you are in the garden, you must be wanting to play. The perfect ensemble for a morning spent running errands and arranging flowers, and an impromptu afternoon tea with a lovely friend.

So there you have it - my week of wearing The Kate Dress.
It's a lovely pattern that is quick and easy to make, and equally simple to wear in a variety of lengths and styles so I had fun changing it up this week.
All the Kates are made up in various gorgeous collections from Art Gallery Fabrics (I do sooo love all  their pretty fabrics),  except for the green floral one which is a Riley Blake cotton.

And my challenge for the new week ahead ?  I really want to finish Kate Dress no. 6  - a navy needlecord version I started last winter that's been sitting in the WIP pile since then.
Yes, it seems six is actually a nice number too  . . .

Thanks again to Handmade Jane for organizing and hosting this fun challenge, and of course thanks to Jules at Sew Me Something for designing the Kate in the first place !

'til next time,

Monday, 8 September 2014

It's tea time . . .


Blue skies & bright warm sunshine,
lovely friends,
delicious little sandwiches,
an array of yummy scrummy cream scones,  gooey profiteroles
homemade elderflower cordial,
and an impromptu crochet workshop,

in a beautiful garden.

Can you think of a lovelier way to spend a day ?

 Oh, and there were chickens . . .

Linking up today with Chantille Fleur for Tea Party Tuesday.

'til next time,

Thursday, 4 September 2014

A sew day . . .

I think it was Winnie the Pooh that said to Piglet: "It's so much better with two."

I love crafting with friends, and a sewing day with my lovely friend Clever Alice is always good for the soul.  


We chattered,
 we laughed, 
we nibbled on yummy Florentines, 
we puzzled over confusing pattern instructions (hers), 
we giggled over silly mistakes (mine), 
we drank tea,
we set the world to right,
  - oh, and we sewed  : - )

spot the mistake ?   Oops. . .


And what did we make ?

A pair of denim shorts for her,

and another Kate for me. 

 Winnie the Pooh is right, don't you think ?  It really is sew much better with two.

Have a happy Thursday,

'til next time,

ps.  I'm looking forward to joining in with the OWOP (One Week, One Pattern)  Challenge over at Handmade Jane next week, and almost naturally, seeing as this is my 5th one, the Kate Dress is my pattern of choice .  It'll be fun to see lots of different patterns individually & creatively styled for each day.

Sunday, 31 August 2014

Some sewing firsts . . .

Last week we had a Bank Holiday here and in keeping with English tradition, it absolutely tipped it down with rain ALL day.  So what better excuse to stay cosied up indoors (yes, I will admit: we turned the central heating on) and do some sewing ?

I just couldn't resist this lovely knit fabric when it arrived at Sew Me Something.  It's part of the Indelible collection  from Art Gallery and it comes in cotton too.   But I've been wanting to learn to sew with knits for ages, and I thought the design on this fabric would be just perfect for a maxi skirt. 

I didn't have a pattern, but the design was quite simple with an elasticated waistband.  I very rarely  tuck tops in anyway, so the wide elastic works absolutely fine for me.   I basically followed this tutorial here (although it took me a lot longer than 5 minutes !)

So despite this being my first ever time sewing with a knit fabric, my trusty overlocker (serger) did the trick and I'm really happy with how it turned out.

It was also my first time using a twin needle,  so I had to practise that a bit first but it was actually fairly simple & does give the waistband & hem a really nice neat finish and now I can't wait to use it again on my next knitty project.

Oh, and don't you think my new skirt goes just perfectly with the wedges that my 
lovely sis gave me ?

Now I just need summer to stick around for a wee while longer so I can wear them  : - )

Happy Sunday out there . . .
'til next time,

Wednesday, 27 August 2014

What's hookin' ?

The sun has returned and it's a beautiful day here in the Midlands. So after a lovely long walk in the woods with the two most-adorable-pups-in-the-world, I took my morning cuppa, my book and my current hooky project, outdoors.  It's a mild, autumnal temp but on the deck where I'm sheltered from the wind it's just perfect - and so lovely to see the sun again after being battered with rain for the past few days.  I'm really not ready for summer to leave us quite yet . . .

So, do you want to see what I've been crocheting lately ?
Well I'm going to show you anyway  ; - )

Meet Emma, the Bunny -  I think she & I are kindred souls . . .

can you spot the little bumble bee too?

 " Emma is an extremely lovable bunny whose aura is kept in balance by regular dates with her yoga mat.  She's a very house-proud mummy rabbit and her warren is her sanctuary.   Although often reluctant to tie up her ears and get on with the housework, she does a very fine job once she sets her mind to it.  Her creative talents have long slept dormant while other people have become a priority, but it looks as if that might be about to change.  Once there's a vase of fresh flowers and a pot of Earl Grey tea brewing on the side, it's time for Emma to get out her needles and create. " **

. . .  and Seamus the Alpaca . . .

" Seamus fancies himself as an actor. The only major downside of boasting a face that's good enough to pull off any type of hat is that you are continually fighting a battle with the unruly hair that sits beneath it.  Seamus has been the lead in his village's Amateur Dramatic Society for the last 25 years, and that has only accelerated the growth of his larger-than-life character.  No one can deny the power and depth of his singing voice;  every day it can be heard bellowing from the open windows of his thatched cottage in accompaniment to the dawn chorus. "  **

Emma & Seamus - the best of pals already

And on the reading front,  I'm half-way through my Book Club selection for this month:  Beautiful Ruins by Jess Walter, but I do keep getting distracted by a little pile of sewing & crafty mags sitting patiently on my bedside table.

Linking up today with Ginny's weekly Wednesday Yarn Along  - do pop over and have a wee peek.  You may even like to join in ?

'til next time,

**credit: patterns & text from the oh-so-adorable book:  Edward's Menagerie by Kerry Lord.

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