Its April and I have continued my pledge of not buying sewing fabric of any type, craft dressmaking or upholstery, that’s such a lot NOT to look at or buy! Yes its been hard, but you don’t achieve great things without a bit of effort. Restraint for me, is always an effort, so I have stayed away from markets shops and most difficult of all, the internet.
By writing about it here it becomes a therapy, commit it to the ether and you cannot erase the promise even to yourself.
Here are a couple of shots of my recent makes, resourced from my drawers and cupboards.
Today has been a bit of a gift for me, I had unexpected time to mess about, as you are supposed to when you have “retired”.
It has snowed, and this wonderful country of mine, though I wouldn’t live anywhere else, cannot cope with snow. The place closes down and people hibernate! I holed up in the kitchen with my powerful Sailrite sewing machine, making dog bone toys from recycled denim leftovers! This is continuing my effort to not buy any fabric this year and I have made a slight dent in the denim pile in the corner of my sewing room.
I am also halfway through making a patchwork denim toiletries bag, I am winging it a bit as I never think shop bought ones are exactly what you want. Will post a picture when finished,during the next snow storm?
I have been very remiss this year. Not much sewing or writing has got done, and on a wet and dreary Monday afternoon I felt very pleased with myself . I actually got something made, not much but at least it is something!
I have also set myself the task and challenge of not buying any more fabric this year (2018) just in case I try and cheat! There is so much already waiting for the scissors, you know the feeling!
My first creation at zero cost, this year, is my little Elephant card! Now this has used up a real huge amount of fabric, but I needed a card for tomorrow. and as they say ” every little helps”.
Now I wonder how many cards it will take to make even a dent in that fabric stash?
These are new into my Etsy shop “Sewn Up Gifts” Wallets The fabric wallets are light and easy to use ideal for walks when a handbag does not quite “go”! I have made one for dog lovers especially, but they both would make nice small gifts for walkers on the go.
I shall open this little post with a pub quiz question, ” what is the collective noun for kittens” ? Answer is a kindle, well I never? Why did Amazon call their e-reader a Kindle, now there’s another question.
Anyway I digress, I have just finished another batch of Kindle cases, made totally from pre-loved denim (it has been pre-washed too in case you are wondering). I have nearly used up my denim stash which is a bit sad as it has been real fun designing the cases never quite knowing if what I imagined became reality.
Each case is different as denim takes on its own character as it is worn, and then I mess about with the bits and pieces of the jeans when I have deconstructed them. See here for more covers if you want more choice. I reckon they would make great gifts for those book worms or Kindle kittens, at Christmas time!
I have had fun recently with a couple of very quirky basmati rice sacks I brought back from Kerala India in January this year. I went from buying silk to sacks, two extremes from an extremely intriguing country.
The silk is still languishing in my stash, but I had to try my hand at the sacking, something different to create with and so tactile. I didn’t realise how messy it was to cut and sew and I looked like a real wild woman when I had finished.
Design on both sides
But I like the result. The design with Ali Baba and his sacks of money in the centre made me smile, and the print is on both sides, too, which pleased me. I am wondering whether to make a more structured bag with another sack, and reduce the size of the design by taking off the address at the bottom. I shall have a ponder. It really satisfied me that something can be re-used so successfully and so lengthen the life of such a utilitarian item.
This is the third set of sleep sacs I have made. I didn’t know they would be such a hit! And they were all for twins, there must be “something in the water” as they say!
Must say they have been on the to do list for a couple of months, so I hope these New Zealand babies have not got too big already.
Now, what is next on the list, oh dear yes that last dining room curtain …….
I have been having great fun sewing these Kindle covers. This one has just gone on Etsy, but over the weekend I made three, two were requests, so it’s lovely that people like and use them, gives me a little kick.
Next on my sewing list is to finish off curtains started a while ago for the dining room. I thought I would do the job properly, but didn’t realise how much hand sewing is involved, still only small windows in this cottage of ours so onward and upward and raise the curtain I say!
Off for coffee now, with a pic of finished curtains with any luck. X
I have been feeling very smug with myself recently, I have managed to get a few gifts sewn and have erased a few jobs from my burgeoning “to do” list. A great feeling isn’t it?
Today the post man arrived with a thank you present from a happy recipient of two baby sleep sacs I had made for gorgeous twin boys. Stupidly I forgot to take a pic of the sleep sacs but I am dying to study my new books, people are so kind. Have attached a link to tempt you!
On the Go Bags Love to Sew
I have also just finished a slightly overdue request. A Kindle Fire slip cover made from my friends favourite denim skirt she no longer wanted to wear. But now she has it recycled and I think it worked well. Well padded and lined it should continue to be a favourite!
Kindle Fire Slip Cover
Up early this morning, my best creative time, and I got the preparation done for a sewing session on Friday. All these pieces are interfaced, well almost all. And the labels are an absolute necessity. I am helping a group of clever ladies piece together a sweet shoulder bag, I have sewn one up already and written about it here. Zip and Clip Bag
Look at all the pieces for just one bag, I really should calculate the time it takes to complete, so I am ready next time a prospective purchaser asks!
I am really looking forward to working with everyone to get this bag finished, we have already been on a Quilting Trail of 3 shops to buy fabrics and notions. I used to go on pub crawls in my youth, but now its quilting shops so much easier on the head!
But my fabrics were all bought in India, hence the lovely bright colours, perfect! And now I have two new books for inspiration, what joy.
I have chewed over this little bag design for ages (excuse the pun) and have decided my first effort, Beagle Bag Version 1 , though it worked well and has been used a lot, was a little over the top for a simple activity.
So number two is pared down but still practical, using the same waterproof outer and ripstop inner. The top simply folds over and fastens with a magnetic snap and it has an outer zip pocket and an inner slip pocket. The strap is long enough to be worn across the body, and could be used as an emergency lead. At the side is a D ring to attach to a belt or whistle.
The way its been raining here lately, think I will make one for myself!