Archive for February, 2009

Curtain pics

Well, those curtains are up and not lookin’ bad even if I do say so myself.  Nat was really pleased with them and so were the children.  As you can probably see from the photos it’s not a Post Office any more – I’m guessing it’s a vet’s surgery at the moment ……

Ooh, I almost forgot!  I finished my pinafore on Wednesday night.  I was really pleased with the finished result (that’s got to be a first!) and I wore it to work on Thursday.  I got some very positive comments and a couple of the girls even suggested I make some for them!  I’ll get Kev to take some pictures and get them posted.

Before I start on a new project I’m going try and finish off a couple of things I’ve already started.  My velvet skirt just needs hemming so that shouldn’t take long, but the velvet corset top – that’s a different matter altogether (do I have a velvet fixation?  I think I probably do..).  It’s been thrown in a bag, half finished, for the best part of a year now.  I’d really like to get it finished as it’s such a pretty design, but it’s just soooo difficult!  I’ll take some pics of that too so that I can show you.

Ah well, too tired to sew tonight.  Think I’ll go and settle with that coffee that Kev has just made me …… 🙂

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Keepin’ busy

It’s our anniversary today.  We’ve been married 18 years.  And I’m spending the evening on my own. 😦  Everybody say “aaw”.

Kevin has to work this evening (he’s a nurse) which is a shame – the having to work bit, not the being a nurse bit – but I’m managing to keep myself entertained.

I made a pair of curtains this evening!  How cool is that?  They’re for a “pretend” post office that one of our teacher’s has had built in her classroom.  She’d picked up some lovely jazzy fabric from Ikea on the weekend and brought it in to school today.  They all know I’m really into my sewing at the moment (I probably bore the pants off them talking about it all the time!) so she knew I’d be keen to try a new challenge.

Actually, they were really easy to make.  I cut the fabric into two and overlocked the cut edges to stop them fraying.  Then all I had to do was turn a narrow hem down the sides and one wide enough at the top to thread the pole through (she didn’t want any header tape so that made it easier).  I didn’t hem the bottoms just in case the fabric wasn’t long enough but because I’d already overlocked them they looked ok.  I’m really pleased with the finished result.  I’ll take some pics of them tomorrow “in situ”.

Talking of pics, Kevin opened a Folksy shop yesterday to try and sell some of his photographs.  Take a little peek at

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Even husbands have clever ideas sometimes …

I’ve lost my full-length mirror.

Well, not “lost” in the true sense of the word.  It didn’t fall out of my pocket whilst I was walking down the street (I think I would probably have noticed).  No,  I mean lost as in “don’t have it any more”.  It was bolted to our “middle room” door and, whilst the door was really ugly, the mirror was really handy to check the progress of my sewing projects.

A couple of weeks ago we changed all the doors in the house – the house is about 120 years old and has needed an awful lot of work (and still does).  Unfortunately the doors weren’t 120 years old, they were more cheap 1970’s ply painted a rather grim green.  So out they went along with my mirror.

Now, until I buy a new mirror, how do I check how my garment looks on?  This is where Kevin has a stroke of genius!  “Why don’t I photograph you wearing the dress and you can examine it on the pc?”.  Fab idea 🙂

He took full length shots from front, back and sides and then close-ups of any areas I had doubts about.  In many ways it was better than a mirror because how many of us can see how something sits on the back of our own neck?

I can see what needs tweaking and refer back to the pic whenever I need to. 

Actually, maybe I won’t buy a mirror after all ……..

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I’m hooked on Folksy!

I read about this website a couple of days ago in the March issue of “Sew Hip”.  What a great site!  It’s very similar to Etsy but its a UK site so no having to convert from $s to £s when trying to work out the prices.  For me it has a nicer feel than Etsy too.

Anyway, I’ve spent a lot of this afternoon browsing Folksy – there are so many talented people out there.  I just love the cloth toys in the “Covetables” shop! 

If you click on “sewing” under the Practices column it shows you literally thousands of different things for sale that people have sewn.  Even if you decide not to buy anything I dare you not to feel inspired!

Also on offer are fabrics, notions, trims etc.  A lovely shop to browse is ‘vInTaGe VioLeT’s BuTtOnS’ .  It pretty much does what it says on the tin – lots and lots of original vintage buttons and trims.   Its well worth a look.

Don’t just take my word for it – click  🙂

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Lovely Fabric!

Well I had a lovely time browsing the fabric shops on City Road in Cardiff on Tuesday and I came away with a couple of bargains to boot!

“Butterfly Fabrics” was my favourite shop this time with lots of lovely summer cotton prints out on the stands – I was spoilt for choice.  My mind was made up though when I spotted some Laura Ashley cotton prints at half price.  I picked up 2m each of the pink and the green at just £3.99 a metre. 




New Look patterns were also on offer at £2.95 each so I bought NewLook 6800.  New Look 6800


I think perhaps I’ll use the green print.  I’ve not decided yet what I’ll use the pink for, although I think Chloe’s got her beady eye on it!

And yes, I was being optimistic about finishing the pinafore by Wednesday.  I’ve stitched the facing on and trimmed and clipped the seam allowance.  Tonight I’ll sew the shoulders together and understitch the facing – maybe I’ll even start fitting the zip.  See how I feel.

Ah well, before I do that I think I’d better make my family some tea….

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It’s Saturday!

It’s Saturday and the first day of the half-term break!  Yay!  I’m hoping to get lots done this week.

I’ve started work on a pinafore dress in a lovely pink/black woollen fabric.  The pattern is McCall’s M5464 (view A). 


I’d love to get it finished by Wednesday so that I can wear it to visit my Dad, but I think that’s probably a bit optimistic!  So far it’s been pretty easy to construct though – apart from one rather scary instruction to “slash” the dart.  I find things like that terrifying as it’s so permanent, one wrong move and your garment is ruined.  Actually, after a bit of encouragement from my lovely sewing teacher Babs, I found that slashing the dart was really not that scary at all.  Armed with my cutting board and rotary cuttter I simply sliced along the slash line – easy peasy!  So that’s another addition to my list of “new things learned”.

We’re off to Cardiff on Tuesday for shopping and a spot of lunch.  I’m really looking forward to browsing the fabric shops on City Road while we’re there.  I’ll tell you all about it later in the week!

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Productive day!

I have finally finished my skirt! 

I’ve found a fab little pattern (McCall’s 3830) which is a simple straight skirt in five different lengths – just perfect for work.

McCall's 3830

I love this pattern.  I’ve made four of these now and with a bit of effort I could probably run one up in an afternoon. 

  My new skirt

I’m especially pleased with this skirt because the fabric was a real bargain! 

I popped into my local fabric shop – Lee Mill on Oxford Street in Swansea –  to kill a bit of time when my hairdresser was running late, and spotted a piece of fabric in the bargain bin – just enough to make this skirt. 

Now I’d fancied this fabric for some time but at £12.99 a meter I couldn’t really justify the cost.  I shouted over to Mad Mike to ask the price and he replied “£3”.  “Great, I’ll have it” .   He grinned at me and said “you were easy”.

Hmm, now I don’t like to feel outbargained.  I went to the counter to pay and found I had a ten pound note and two pound coins.  I put the note in one hand and the coins in the other and showed them to Mike.  He rolled his eyes at me, tutted and took the pound coins.  “You women are all the same” he informed me.


So – a new skirt for work for £3.50 (the zip cost me £1.50).


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