Thrifty Work

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.

charity quilt1IMG_1916IMG_1920 Continue reading

Give The Dog a Bone

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?DSC_0158

I wont forget you!

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?

 

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I am no sailor!

Now I am no sailor, considering I live on a small island and am always going away, there is no chance of me getting on a”boat”.  Real sailors say ” its not a boat but a liner or a ship or a cruiser”.  Whatever it is I am not venturing forth, unless I spend all the while with my head in a bucket!

But my next statement may cause you to think I am insane.  I spent a week in Cyprus, with lots of time on my hands.  Was staring up at this sail style canopy which looked very elegant. And I scanned around our private pool at all the sun beds and chairs etc. Look at all that sewing I thought.  I could do that if only my machine could cope with all that canvas.  Now you know whats coming!  I did some research cos I have been wanting to make bags of various sorts, for a while now. I have no room for an industrial machine, but I found a compromise!

Some of you will have heard of “Sailrite”, not me!  What a revelation!  Spent the rest of the holiday pinning pics on Pinterest and convincing myself I really need this machine.

My brave husband said I should get it ” if I needed it” and so I have!

My Blue Bruiser! Sailrite sewing machine.

My blue bruiser is not delicate, she is able to stitch through denim layers like butter.  So far ( I have only had her 2 days) I have had no chance to start a project, but there are loads in my head.

Anyone else out there own this beautiful beast, would love to see your makes from it!

Happy sewing all

Lindy

Beagle Bag Version 1

 

Those of you who have a very good memory may remember I was attempting to create an indispensable doggie walking bag for my favourite furry friend Louis, above?

With a month long holiday and various other interruptions I was only able to finish it off last week.  I had made the interior before we went away in July, so it wasn’t too bad. But the requirements were quite exact, so it took a lot of head scratching.

I have ended up with something usable and practical, but I am thinking of making the second version with a flap across the top rather than a zip inside.

Would be very grateful for your thoughts!

 

It is made from waterproof jacket fabric with a rip stop lining and waterproof top zip.

Holiday Dilemmas

Hello to all you lovely fellow creative stitchers!  I am after your help, I am going on holiday for a whole month, and yes I know I am really, really lucky!

I need your help because if I don’t have anything to do during those quiet moments(?) I think I will go a bit stir crazy.  We are holidaying with family in Cyprus, and we know the place very well.  So sight seeing will not be top of the list in the height  of the Mediterranean summer .  Also there is only so much swimming and sunbathing/napping you can do!

I am already cramming a braid making wheel in my case, which is very light, and the makings for some hand quilting, Folded Star or Somerset QuiltIng.

Somerset Quilt

I have given you a link to a lovely example shown on Pinterest, don’t think my effort will be anything like that.  I should get out and about a bit and see if the Cypriot ladies enjoy patch work quilting or fabric crafts in general.  I know the ladies up in the Troodos Mountains make the most pretty laces. Lefkara used to be the centre of the hand made laces you see, but  I do not know if the tradition is still ongoing.  When we were in India, the people I chatted with were perplexed with the idea of cutting up perfectly good fabric to sew up again in a pattern to make a quilt.  My explanations when asked what I was buying for, were obviously different!

Any portable sewing ideas would be very welcome!

 

Sewing Machine Central

I have bitten the bullet and decided to have 2 + 1  machines  serviced!  Not one of them has seen the inside of the sewing machine shop since they were bought, and they are all still sewing, or sort of!  I let them go tomorrow and they are promised back in a week, what will I do till then? Use my others I suppose!

 

Singer Hand Machine

Singer Hand Machine

This little and heavy Singer was the machine I first learned  to sew on and it belonged to my mother.  It was made in Glasgow in 1941, and my mother said it went down the underground with her across London during the air raids!  I remember I was always having problems with the tension regulator, but myself and my sister produced many “creations” on it despite it only having  basic straight stitch or lock stitch.

My grand-daughter (8) now wants to try it so hence the Singers’ trip to the service dept.

Second up a bit more sophisticated

Elna Lotus SP

Elna Lotus SP

This machine does in fact belong to a friend of mine, and it in turn  belonged to her mother!   But she likes to take it to workshops as it is relatively smaller and lighter, and does what is required for patchwork and quilting, my friends greatest love.  This Elna has not been serviced either and buzzes along quite satisfactorily!

Last, this Bernina 2000DE overlock or serger.  I saved up for this in the 90’s and am still so happy using it.  It made the world of difference to my dressmaking, the finished garment looking so much neater  and professional looking.

Bernina 2000DE

Bernina 2000DE

I have oversewn so many miles on this and it tackles any fabric shoved at it.  But I think it may be getting noisier, so its off for a bit of TLC.

I don’t know if I am the only sewer who gets attached to their machine?  I guess it’s a bit like car ownership, you remember those happy journeys with your foot on the pedal and a full stash of fabric!

I wonder what is the oldest machine out there which is still sewing without ever having been looked after?

 

Create your own dog walking bag!

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Louis the Beagle after a long and thirsty walk.

Now I don’t own a dog, but I seem to go on a lot of dog walks with my favourite doggy friend, Louis the beagle and his friends.   He belongs to my daughter and her partner. There always seems to be much that needs to be taken along when you go for a short walk, which I find strange.  I always thought all you needed for a dog walk was a dog, a lead and perhaps a ball?

No!  We need treats, of various enticement value, a whistle, dog poo bags, (here in England anyway), hand sanitiser, mobile, toy, water and lastly and most important this, the dog and lead, phew have I forgotten anything?

I had a challenge given me, can I design the perfect dog walking bag for longer walks? My daughter knows I am  into bag making and thought this the ideal starting point for designer bags, I like a challenge!  I am usually found sewing toy animals, clothes, accessories and more recently patchwork quilting.

I thought I should ask here, if anyone has thoughts on this very important matter for dog walkers.  Now is your chance, what size is best, a cross body bag or round the waist? How many pockets, waterproof etc?

I would love any thoughts and I will do my best to design a bag that fits the bill. This is the fabric I am thinking of using.

guthrie & ghani

Take a peek at this great website for something different.

I am off on a short holiday, but there will be no dog walking, and will be dreaming of things to make on return, so don’t be shy  any suggestions will be considered!

 

 

Cuthbert the WI Rabbit is looking for a new home

I have decided that Cuthbert has been with me long enough and deserves to find himself a new home in the big wide world this Spring!  I will post a couple of mug shots here, as he is not shy, and you can find him in my Etsy shop if you want to take pity on him.  I must warn you, however, he does attract attention and he adores it!

If you are interested in his inner self, I posted  how I created Cuthbert last year, you can read all about it here.  Cuthbert Rabbit “How To”

Meet my new Bunny Rabbits

I have been away ( in case anyone wondered!) and have been itching to get back in my little sewing room which I laughingly call the SUGs room.  I wanted more rabbits, but these don’t seem as quick to reproduce as the “real” ones, 4 days work and I have 2 new pals. Pippa the party bunny and Gertie the gardening rabbit!  I hope you like them, they make me smile anyway!