Sunshine Picnic Blanket

IMG_6511This post feels very timely, given that tomorrow the weather forecast is for ANOTHER hot day. Don’t get me wrong, I like a bit of sunshine, and I’m not a fan of really hot weather at the best of times, but when I’m growing another human being, I’m definitely not a fan!

Despite this, when the weather is a little bit cooler, it is nice to sit out in the sun and make the most of the nice weather. We haven’t really taken advantage of our garden since we moved in, but with a little one on the way, this is probably going to change. My latest make is perfect for those moments when we do want to spend some time outside. Continue reading

Monochrome Storage Basket

IMG_6326When I first announced my pregnancy, I had lots of friends commenting on how they couldn’t wait to see all of things I was going to make. 26 weeks in, and I’m slightly ashamed to say that I haven’t made a single thing so far! That’s not to say I haven’t thought about it (I have, a lot) I just haven’t really had the time. So when it was time to decide on my third project for the Sew Crafty Design Team, I knew that this was the perfect opportunity to get the baby crafting underway. Continue reading

Mini Makes: Easy Lanyard Makeover

IMG_5854Lanyards with a security badge seem to be commonplace in most workplaces these days. For years, I’ve been trying to find colourful ones to replace my boring navy blue lanyard. Cath Kidston usually have a few, and I struck gold in Accessorize last year with a bright tropical print. Unfortunately, after time they all tend to go a bit grubby, or in the case of my last one, get dropped down the loo by their clumsy owner, meaning they instantly need to be binned! Continue reading

Happy Felt Cushion

IMG_5793I had such a fantastic response to my first Sew Crafty Design Team project, the bright and vibrant sunshine Cleo dress. For my second project, I decided to take a different path and make something for our home.

Since moving house 18 months ago, we’ve been slowly trying to make it our own. Our last house was lovely, but we moved in back in 2011, and our tastes have definitely changed. At the time, I’d been so keen on creating a ‘home’, the cosy space you see in magazines filled with flowery print cushions and quaint little knick-knacks. Now, I’m back to my love of all things yellow (my favourite colour as a child), bright, and fresh and generally creating a home that feels more ‘us’. Continue reading

Sunshine Cleo Dress

img_0436It’s time to reveal my first project as part of the Sew Crafty Design Team, and it probably won’t surprise you that I picked a Tilly and the Buttons make! Since making my first Cleo dress in November 2016, I’ve received lots of lovely comments about my black denim version, and I’ve been itching to have a go at another one.

Online, I’ve seen so many Cleos made in cord; I knew early on that was going to be my next fabric choice. I’ve normally naturally drawn to my usual colour palette of grey or navy, but when I saw this gorgeous needle cord on the Sew Crafty website, I thought it was time to have a go at making something a bit brighter. Yellow is one of my favourite colours, but aside from my trusty yellow raincoat, it doesn’t feature too heavily in my wardrobe. This may now change! Continue reading

Fabric Storage Tubs DIY

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If you hadn’t already guessed, I love buying fabric. I often find myself going into fabric shops ‘just to look’ and then buying something. I tend to purchase fat quarters, because they are an affordable way of getting that gorgeous fabric you fell in love with. But aside from a quilt, what do you actually use them for?

In this post, I’ll be showing you how to make some practical, yet pretty fabric storage pots using fabric I’ve been lucky enough to have supplied by The Fabric Fox. These pots are simple to make, and are an ideal way to experiment with new colours and fabrics. There are lots of tutorials available for fabric pots, using a variety of techniques. This method is simple, quick, and easy to achieve!

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You will need (for 1 pot):

  • Outer fabric (60cm x 25cm)
  • Lining fabric (60cm x 25cm)
  • Heavy weight interfacing (it doesn’t matter if it’s sew-in or iron-on, but it needs to be heavy enough to support the weight of the fabric)
  • Matching thread
  • Scissors
  • Pins
  • Ruler
  • Iron

Instructions:

  1. Cut two rectangles from your outer fabric, 30cm wide x 25cm tall. Repeat for your lining fabric and interfacing.
  2. If using iron-on interfacing, attach to the back of the outer fabric, if using sew-in interfacing, lay a piece on the wrong side of each rectangle. Place your outer fabric right sides together and pin.
  3. Using a straight stitch, sew along the two short sides and bottom of your outer fabric rectangle.
  4. Place your lining fabric right sides together, and also sew the sides and bottom.
  5. To make the pots stand on their own, we are going to add some corners. Pinch one of the bottom corners of your outer fabric so that it is a triangle (see picture) and press flat.
  6. Measure 4cm along the edge of the triangle and draw a straight line across. Repeat for the other 3 corners (outer and lining fabric).
  7. Using a straight stitch, sew along the line. Trim the excess fabric, approx. 1cm from your stitching.
  8. Turn the outer piece right side out. Insert your outer into your lining (see picture), and pin at the top. Align your side seams first and then pin all the way around. You’ll need to leave an opening of 10cm to allow you to turn the pot the right way out.
  9. Using a straight stitch, sew around the top, avoiding your 10cm opening. Finish your threads.
  10. Turn the whole pot right sides out through your opening.
  11. Tuck the lining back into the pot, ensuring you fold in the opening and pin so that it sits flush with the outer layer. Pin and then sew approximately 5mm from the edge, this will also close the 10cm opening you made earlier.
  12. Finish your threads, and turn over the top so that you can see the lining. Congratulations, you’ve made your own fabric storage pot!

Top tips:

  • Ensure your interfacing is heavy weight, so that it can support the weight of your fabric, this is essential if you are using a thin fabric such as cotton. The interfacing will also make your fabric crease quite easily (as you can see in my pictures!), so be sure to give your pot an iron at the end.
  • When making the corners of your pots, it’s important that the seams align, to give you a nice square corner. To help with this, insert a pin into the top line of stitching, push through, and line up with the bottom line of stitching. Pin and press with an iron. Repeat on the other corner and then for your lining fabric.
  • To help you remember your 10cm opening, try marking it out with pins, so that you know when to stop.
  • These pots are really versatile, you can easily change the size but using different sizes of fabric. The measurements I give above give you quite a long, narrow pot, but you can also make the pots more square, by increasing how far in you draw the line on step 6 (e.g. increase to 6cm).

The fabric used for my pots has kindly been given to me by The Fabric Fox from their new Cotton and Steel ranges. If you are heading to The Handmade Fair next week, do stop by their stall and say hello, and of course stock up on some of their gorgeous fabrics!

Disclosure: The Fabric Fox gave the fabric in this post to me free of charge. The fabric used was chosen by myself, and is representative of what I would usually use.

Sewing for Beginners: Tilly and the Buttons Dominique Skirt

birthday partyBack when the first Sewing Bee was launched, I declared that I would begin making my own clothes and before long, I would have my own handmade wardrobe. It started well; I eagerly ordered an A-line skirt pattern and dedicated an afternoon to making up a sample. I patiently inserted a zip, and followed the instructions to the letter. My finished skirt was rubbish and quickly discarded to the rubbish pile.

My experience with sewing patterns hasn’t always been great. At this point, I should say that I haven’t tried out every range of patterns; this is just my limited experience. I’m not a fan of the ultra-thin pattern paper, which so easily rips. I’m also not keen of the massive instruction sheets, which are too big to sit alongside you, and never seem to be that simple to understand. Continue reading