Tuesday, 31 March 2009

Happy Things

Thanks everyone for all the positive feedback on the brooch tutorial, I have loved seeing your makes and the different fabric and buttons everyone has used. Glad it was helpful!

Today I thought I'd just share some things making me happy today. I emptied out a shelf in my wardrobe for some of my bigger pieces of fabric and my quilt from Zara Home which has been taken off the bed and replaced with the Quilt.
Just for a while anyway, although I don't think my quilt will go with all my bedding so they will be rotated and swapped around.

This gorgeous new fabric is also making me happy, I got it on Saturday, but only got half a meter, I am seriously regretting that now as it is so pretty, but I was trying to be good. I like to have an idea of what I will make before I buy the fabric (I know this is clearly the wrong way as it means I don't buy as much fabric!) But I will save this until I have a project in mind for it. Looks quite Cabbages and Roses style, very pretty and vintage looking. 

Some other bits and bobs making me smile are some presents from my mum who went away with my aunts last week to Prague. I got this very pretty (perfume - I think) bottle with a butterfly and sparkly stones on it. 

A cute Russian Doll which has 5 smaller dolls inside, I love these dolls, I used to have one when I was younger but I lost the smallest one and was totally gutted. Everyone knows the smallest ones are the best ones in the set!

I also got this little keyring, which is the same as another one I have but a different colour and pattern. Looking pretty and co-ordinated with my CK keyfob!

What is making you happy today bloggers? X

Sunday, 29 March 2009

Flower Brooch Tutorial

I have posted this same tutorial on the Shabby Chic Cafe but thought I would also put it up on here for any bloggers who might want to make a flowery brooch. Also, this is my first blogging tutorial so please let me know if anything doesn't make sense, although it is pretty easy peasy!
To make one of these flower brooches you will need a piece of felt, at least 2 different types of fabric (can be more than this if you want to use up lots of scraps) scissors, thread, needle, button/beads, and a brooch back if you want to make it into a brooch. I have not used interfacing on my brooches so they have a raw edge, which I think gives it a bit of a ruffled look, but if you want a smoother look you could use interfacing.

Now cut a circle shape out of your felt the size that you want your brooch to be (this can be done freehand and be as big or small as you want.)

Now you need to cut out lots of little circles of your different fabric choices (I used the bottom of the thread spool as my guide, but again can be as big or small as you want, and as neat or messy as you want) If you are using interfacing it needs to be attatched to the fabric before you cut your circles out.

You should now have a pile of little circles like this ::

Next take a small fabric circle and fold it in half, and stitch it (just one stitch will do) to the edge of your large felt circle ::

Now take your next circle and do the same, overlaying it slightly, and keep going ::

Keep going all the way round your felt circle ::

Then start on your second row (these circles should cover the stitches of your outside row) ::

(I have just used the one length of thread to attach all these and there are no knots at the back but you could do this if you wanted it a bit more secure)

Now finish your second and third (and maybe fourth if yours is bigger ) row ::

Add a button/beads to the center to cover the gap of felt left in the center::

Now sew on your brooch back (stitch any ribbon you may want to hang down from your brooch to the back of the felt first before adding the brooch back) ::

And there you have your brooch. If you didn't have a brooch back you could use a safety pin or just sew it straight onto something.

Please let me know if anyone makes one, I would love to see it

Saturday, 28 March 2009

The Quilt

I promised yesterday I'd show the quilt today but be warned there is a tonne of photos in this post as I am ridiculously proud of the quilt so got a bit snap-happy with it all!

Firstly, the incredibly kind Mitmot sent me this piece of fabric (after I begged her for it) to back my quilt with. It is absolutely gorgeous and came from the magic market man!

So this backing .....

Plus this patchwork piece ....

Plus this bias binding ......

And this huge bag of wadding .....

Became this :: The Quilt

I am so incredibly pleased with how its turned out, sometimes I don't usually like the things that I make, I prefer to make things for others, but this one is a keeper! It took a whole evening to quilt and bind it, but thanks to my trial run with the needlecase the other day I knew how to use the bias binding, and luckily it is surprisingly neat for me. Usually my straight stitches are never straight, I can never just let the machine do its thing, and I end up messing it up.

But with this quilt there really was no room for error as I was using all of my best fabric plus the gorgeous backing fabric that I just could.not.mess.up. It was scary gettting started (actually it was scary the whole way through) but I got the hang of the quilting, and can actually honestly say that I'd like to make another one - though not for a little while!

I am so pleased with how it all works together, I know there is a lot of different prints and patterns going on, and quite a few colours too, blues, reds, pinks, a bit of yellow and green in there too... The print on the back just makes me so happy when I walk past it. Also making me happy are the squares made from a Cath Kidston duster which Mary Poppins sent me last year. You can just see them below...

Its looking a little creased in these photos, and thats because it has already been put to good use, my sister was using it yesterday, but I wont be getting the iron out just yet! And its a bit wonky but its 100% handmade and the things that I make are always wonky!

Looking very creased but you get the idea. It just about covers my bed and I am happy with the size, any bigger and I think my little sewing machine would have died on me! It was already struggling to get through the middle of the quilt as I was quilting it.

Looking OTT with the Rosali bedding! Will change it to white bedding for a little while I think...
And I think I might keep it this side up for a while too, just so I can enjoy that gorgeous fabric! X

Friday, 27 March 2009

Making Making Making

This week has been very productive craft wise, I have felt the urge every day to make something. Some have been successful, some not so successful My sewing is definatley improving, and I am so enjoying playing with fabric. I will start with the less successful 'makes' and lets get them out of the way!

Firstly something that I just made off the top of my head with no tutorial (probably not the best idea) its a makeup bag/purse/washbag type-a-thing. It doesn't have a name or a purpose, but I made it anyway! I have a lot of samples and scraps of fabric in my small stash, and I never know what to do with them so I thought I would stitch them all together and try to make something out of them. I enjoyed using up those silly little bits that would have otherwise just been chucked away. So I sewed them into long thin pink strips and joined them all together, I gave it a candy stripe pink lining which is one of my favourite fabrics at the moment.

It also has a big pink button and ribbon closure, would have been better with a zip really but I didn't have one of those to hand so I went for the button. The mix of fabrics includes some Cath Kidston, Laura Ashley and a bit of Rosali plus some of the scraps left from making my patchwork squares (more on them tomorrow) and some pink on pink polka dots. The stitching isn't perfect so don't go looking too closely!

Front ::

Back ::
Anyway the reason that the purse thing wasn't very successful is because I don't know what to do with it! Any ideas?
Next was Sew Hot Mitmots needlecase on the Shabby Chic Cafe, the reason this was unsucessful is because I made a total mess of the bias binding (my first time!) and it looks really messy - not to mention wonky! But it was my first attempt at quilting too and was meant to give me an idea of how to do it when it comes to my quilt (more on that tomorrow...)
The best thing about it is that little button, the rest is just a mess, so I don't really know what to do with that either!

Moving on to more successful makes, I made my first ever tote bag using a brilliant tutorial from Lace Hearts which, if you were thinking that you wanted to make a bag, this is the tutorial for you! Find it here.

I used the same fabric as my new cushion for this as it is a nice thick cotton, I made sure I got the pretty flower right at the front this time too. I lined the bag with an old blue pillowcase and gave it a bit of blue gingham ribbon for decoration. The ribbon actually came from my parcel from Bloomin' Myrtle.

So bag finished I thought I'd make a little brooch to jazz it up a bit, I have made this type of brooch a few times, for swaps and as gifts, and it is really easy and enjoyable to do, and again fab for using up little scraps. I did a tutorial on how to make them on the Shabby Chic Cafe, but if anyone else would like me to post it on my blog just let me know.

For the brooch I used a scrap of blue Rosali and the other blue is from the pillowcase, again the ribbon came from my Bloomin' Myrtle parcel.

Above is the one I made for the bag, and this below is the pink one I made for the tutorial, this is going off to its new home with a very special lady.

Thats all for today folks, but I have finished my quilt and will reveal it tomorrow. See you then X

Thursday, 26 March 2009

Fab Fabric and A Cushion

I was lucky enough to recieve some fabric the other day from a lovely lady, Donna on the Shabby Chic Cafe. The fabrics are just gorgeous, a very pale subtle lilac and green paisley print, and a bold floral pattern on a blue background.

I think this paisley fabric would be great as a quilt, as it looks like it should be an eiderdown. Eiderdowns always seem to be paisley, I wonder why that is. My mum said she used to have a pink paisley eiderdown when she was younger, but as trends changed and it no longer became fashionable it sadly is no longer around!

This blue fabric on the other hand was just right to cover an old IKEA cushion I had lying around, so I got busy making...

And this is the result, I am really pleased with it, I think I am going to invest in a few more IKEA cushions and make some birthday presents for some family members. Unlike my other handmade cushions I thought I would make this one removable so that it could be washed if needed. So I have used some pretty blue ribbon to join it together.

At the moment I haven't got any other plans for the fabric, but as it is so pretty I am happy to just look at this little snippet on my bed. Plus it goes quite well with my Rosali duvet cover too.

So today I am asking what would you make with this fabric? I'd like some ideas as I often get stuck with what to make, even though I know I want to make something, I am not quite sure what I want to make! X

Wednesday, 25 March 2009

A Parcel From Bloomin' Myrtle

When I bought my gingham material for my Union Jack cushion a while back the lovely Elaine from Blommin' Myrtle asked if I could get some gingham for her as she makes such lovely things and couldn't find the right sort of gingham she needed. So when Elaine said she would send the money in advance that was all I was expecting.

What I wasn't expecting was a lovely parcel...

Elaine had sent me a pair of lovely white pillowcases for me to decorate (CK style), as well as a little bundle of beautiful cards designed by Elaine herself (she is so clever!)

Aren't they just gorgeous? I will certainly have a hard time giving these away easily.

Thankyou so much Elaine for these, although you really shouldn't have. I will get your fabric sorted as soon as possible (and a bit extra too!)

Please do take a little look at Bloomin' Myrtle's Blogshop here.
I have yet another crafty post planned for tomorrow, see you then X