Sunday, 24 November 2013

Christmas Goodies

As I mentioned in my last post, I've been working on some Christmas bits and pieces to take to the next ' Bristol' Saturday craft market.

I've gone for a bit of a Scandinavian feel, making very traditional decorations but with modern red and white printed cotton in stripes / dots.

I've made a reel of miniature tree bunting, some matching tree bows and pom-pom trimmed stocking decorations. I also have some fabric gift bags in the pipeline -perhaps miniature gift bags for hanging on the tree as well!

The stockings fronts are made with strips of contrasting fabric. I've overlocked them and pressed the seams flat so to make the inside nice and neat they're fully lined. I like the juxtaposition of traditional and modern in these -the result is really fun!

They will all be available for sale at the craft market on the 7th December, so if you're local and would like some then pop by for a drop of mulled cider and say hello! If you're not local then the remainder will be available to buy via my folksy store straight after the event.

Saturday, 23 November 2013

Winter Wandering / New Craft Market

 When I woke up this morning and realised how great the weather was I decided to go for a bit of a wander around Clifton. With the blue skies and real chill in the air it's the sort of day that makes me feel glad to be alive.

It's been such a long time since I've been to the suspension bridge. I thought that as I was in the area I would head out and take a look at the view.

I realise that this post has nothing whatsoever to do with sewing / craft, so to tie it in I popped into 'Be.In' on Whiteladies Road to check out the first of their Saturday markets where I had the most amazing chocolate brownie! 

Being the very first event there were only a modest amount of stalls (including some handmade treasures, vintage items, hot mulled cider and a fabulous cake stall) but it's such a great space -I'm sure it'll be fantastic in the coming weeks.

I'm participating in the next one which will be held on the 7th December so if you're local then pop down and say hello! I'll be posting an update regarding the new Christmas stock I've been working on just for this very soon.

For more information head to the Be.In facebook page.

Tuesday, 19 November 2013

Yet More Fabric...

Uh-oh! Somebody's been unleashed in a fabric shop again...

No prizes for guessing what I'm working on!

Monday, 18 November 2013

Folksy Store Update

After a fairly grueling physiotherapy assessment this morning I've been feeling achy and therefore pretty sorry for myself. I decided some quality time with the sofa was in order so cracked out the 'Witch' socks and my quilt made by my very lovely Auntie Brenda (sent all the way from Adelaide, Australia 15 years ago!) and set to work updating my sorely neglected folksy shop.

These socks keep my feet toasty warm -but I do feel like I should be watching out for low flying houses! Anyway back to the subject at hand...

There's a new layout over at 'Folksy' which I think is a real improvement. Also a new set of banners to choose from which is great for the technologically challenged (Moi!). Another new feature which I love is the ability to group your items into collections. Infinitely better for browsing.

Click the icon in the right hand column to have a nose (or HERE). As I mentioned it has been somewhat neglected of late as I have so many other projects to juggle but I have big plans for the new year!

Any (constructive) feedback or product suggestions are appreciated so do feel free to get in touch and let me know what you think!

Now to put the kettle on for a brew. All I need now are chocolate biscuits -I love lazy nights!

Friday, 8 November 2013

Feeling Festive

As it's now November I think it's acceptable to start discussing Christmas. Unfortunately several of the projects that I have in the pipeline are surprises so I won't be able to post any details about those until after they've been received.

One project I am able to discuss is a Christmas throw which I'm making for my mother. I bought some festive printed cotton the other day to make the quilt top and I spotted this fleece blanket which I thought would make a really great back. I love the cut-out edging and it was an absolute steal!

As it's more of a decorative sofa throw than a functional quilt I may simply appliqué the top straight onto the fleece without any wadding -plus as a bonus there won't be any fiddly binding to contend with.

I haven't decided on a design yet. I'd love to use the 'English Paper Piecing' technique but I'm not sure about being able to complete it in the allotted time frame. I think that a star design would be quite appropriate. As usual I'm looking to Pinterest for some inspiration. There are some great examples like these from 'Quilterbell' and 'CrazyMomQuilts'.

An alternative would perhaps be a larger star/rose motif along the lines of this pin via 'krista stitched'.

I think a few of these larger designs coupled together like in the pin below from 'Summerfete' could look quite effective and would perhaps be more visually appealing than the all over star designs above.

I'll post an update once I make a decision and get started!

Friday, 1 November 2013

My Very First ATC

After several trials and lots of tweaking, my first 'Artist's Trading Card' for Ali's swap is all finished and ready to pop in the post on Monday.

The technique is drawn thread embroidery, a new skill I wanted to try out specially for the swap, which involves pulling out either the warp or weft and binding the remaining threads with decorative stitches. In my previous post I tried it out on white linen which gives a much more delicate effect, but I like the texture of burlap -it reminds me of harvest sacks which I thought would work well for the autumn theme alongside some autumnal coloured embroidery floss.

My construction method was a little unorthodox! Originally I was going to back the ATC with fabric using a card insert to hold the shape, but part of what I loved about the drawn thread embroidery was the lace effect it creates and I really thought that backing it with fabric would diminish it. I decided that the embroidered section had to be kept transparent so I backed the burlap with acetate (above).

This meant that in order to have enough usable space on the reverse to write on, I needed to back my ATC with card instead of fabric which I cut with pinking shears for a decorative edge (I hope that's not breaking the rules!).

I also cheated a tiny bit with the binding. I was going to cut some bias tape to bind the edge but I decided to use some printed fabric tape. This was partly due to concerns about stitching through the acetate/card and partly as I wanted as clean a finish as I could manage.

I whipped up a matching postcard with some leftover card and tape so that I can enclose a little note when I post it to it's recipient.

Now that it's finished I can stop worrying and start getting excited about receiving my own little ATC surprise in the post! Can't wait.