Thursday, 30 December 2010

Sewing buzz

I've had a super sewing day today!

I've mended the blue dress I made here as the ribbon ties had frayed a little.  Then I decided that my knitting needles probably needed a better home than the plastic bag they used to reside in.  So I made a knitting needle roll thingy.

I think it's turned out quite nicely
I made it out of some scrap fabric I had around the place and a strip of bias binding I bought originally for a friends present, but I changed my mind about which binding to use so had this stripey stuff spare.

All the knitting needles that are currently free can now be tidy!
I have quite a lot of the blue poly cotton left, but the white which I used to line it is almost all gone.  Just enough for a couple of squares of patchwork, which is going to be happening some point soon I think.

As by this point I was in the mood for finishing projects I thought I may as well crack on and make the pyjama top to go with the bottoms I made a month or so ago

I admit, it's not the most exciting thing I've ever sewn...
Once I found the left over blue fabric I modelled the design on my favourite t-shirt nightie but I made the skirt a little more flared and I gave it long sleeves from the blue dress pattern

I will never be cold again!
So yes...  Quite a busy sewing day for me really.  Tomorrow I think a new patchwork blanket will be started and of course I need to spend some time deciding on my new years resolutions.  Anyone else have any sewing/craft related resolutions?  I think I'm going to post mine here to encourage me to stick to them!

Wednesday, 29 December 2010

Christmas Week Crafting...

So since being given '18th Century Embroidery Techniques' on Christmas Day my fingers were itching for needle and thread!

Needless to say, not having any of the fabric I was supposed to be using, or the correct needles and thread didn't stop me in the slightest.  I drew patterns inspired by the section on crewel work and set off making a bag inspired by the reticules ladies used to carry.

Modelled by my lovely dressmakers dummy.  She needs a name really...
I am very proud of my embroidery, but I think what makes this bag is the tassels.  I adore them!

As you can see, I've gone for a floral theme.
I drew and sewed the design without aid and I'm really pleased with how it's turned out.  It's really pretty but I should be able to use the bag on a regular basis, so practical as well.

A closer look at the embroidery
I used chain stitch, satin stitch, something called seedling stitch (such sweet names!) and good old back stitch.  Oh, and button hole stitch for the centre flower.  It's stitched on plain old white cotton, which I had some scraps left over from a Christmas present I was making.

You can't see it to clearly but the back has machine embroidery in white
The back was machine stitched as I was a bit worried that hand embroidery wouldn't stand up to the constant friction against my leg this bag is likely to suffer...

Oh and hello to all the lovely new people who have been introduced to this blog!  If you're wondering why I've suddenly gone promotion crazy it's because I'm a little bit keen on my stats page and I'm hoping to get 1000 views of this blog before the new year.  Only 39 to go last time I checked.  Yes I know, I'm mad.  Try not to let it worry you :D

Tuesday, 28 December 2010


I hope you've all had a lovely Christmas!  I have and I've been very spoilt.

I got lots of lovely presents, including books on sewing and embroidery :D

However my three favourites have to be...

How cute is this necklace?!
Yup, a hand driven sewing machine necklace.  It's so adorable!  As you may have guessed, by what is it hanging on my next favourite present is...

A dressmakers dummy
Never again will I need someone to pin my hem!  Also means I can play with draping and pinning fabric.  And means I don't have to model for this blog anymore, so expect to see a lot more of it on here...

Now the last and best present I want to show you...

This is a K28 Singer.
I love my new (well to me...) machine to pieces!  In fact, when I'm done writing this I'm going to have a go at threading it up and stitching on it! 

I'll try and post again in the next day or so, and hopefully show you what I've been making recently!

Sunday, 19 December 2010

Princess Peach and the Sock Monkey

Are the only two things I can show you this week.

First up is Sock monkey.  Who has been named 'Missmas Monkey' by his recipient.

Walking in the snow...
He's quite a lot of fun really.  And he has a friend all lined up to go to someone else!

Ready for a larp adventure!

The only item of clothing I've made this week is a very silly dress!  I got asked if I had any dresses suitable for Princess Peach.  Now whilst my wardrobe of princess dresses is large, it didn't contain a pink satin one, so this was a good opportunity, right?

Please excuse the clothing underneath, it really was chilly today...

It's been a lovely pattern to sew, though I think I need to shape it better on the bodice.  It did however, do the trick quite nicely for Princess Peach, Barony style.

So much snow!
Now, if you'll excuse me, I need to go get back to my Christmas sewing...  See you all soon!

Monday, 13 December 2010

Back on track?

Well...  Maybe!  I've borrowed a card reader off Sam so I can at least move pics from the camera to the computer again.  Now, what have I been up to since I more or less disappeared?  Well it's not been a great time for crafting.  My car's been smashed into (fortunately we do have their details, unfortunately it's still a major hassle I could really have done without) and my great uncle has died.  Added to that I've had the usual social whirl that accompanies this time of year making for a very busy Luthaisea!

I don't know how many of you remember but in September I headed up to London and made these and the other day I got around to making a dress to go with the black and white one.

I really like this lace...
It's a vogue pattern and whilst it doesn't look quite like the picture on the pattern envelope I do quite like it.  That said it was a very boring and stressful sew.  If I go to another Fan Makers occasion convention not withstanding I plan to make a more period feel dress.  They're more fun to make and I think they flatter me more.

The back view...
That said, the fabrics (taffeta and lace)  are lovely and I only melted the smallest amount of lace onto my iron...  Plus the advantage of making your own dress is you can make sure it hides your bra...

Anyway, it looks nice (I think), many people were impressed with my skills (no-one else in the room could say they'd made their gown to match their fan...) and I had a lovely evening and met interesting people.

And finally a photo of us all looking dressed up and pretty!
See how well my dress matches my fan?  I was quite pleased with that.  Also, see where I get my sewing skills from... My mum made her outfit and my sisters dress!

I also made some hair clips to match my dress, but I totally failed to get a picture of my hair do so I'll try and photograph them another day.  Not sure if there'll be any more blog this week, it depends how well I do with my Christmas crafting and whether I have a chance to do something with the metres of embroidered taffeta I picked up the other day...

Thursday, 2 December 2010


So, my best friend Peter is off to a fancy dress party this weekend.  He asked me to make him a costume.  After hearing his request and giggling for ages of the sheer silliness I agreed. 

Only Peter would go as He-Man...

The boots are fake fur sock cover things, made essentially as tube with elasticated tops.  The loincloth is fake fur attached to an old pair of boxers and the belt and wrist cuffs are gold lame and velcro.  The chest strap thing is drill and yet more velcro.

It's all held together by velcro...

It was a fairly quick job, but quite tricky as my image 'brief' as it were, came from googled images.  Still I think it's worked fairly well.  Have fun at the party Peter!

Oh, and in case you are wondering, I didn't take the photos, so I didn't need to upload them onto this computer.  Yay!


I've just switched to a new (well new to me) computer, so there may be a small lack of updates whilst I figure out how to get photos from my camera onto here...

Still, hopefully it won't be too hard... right?

Monday, 29 November 2010

Sentimental Stuff

So, after a week of standing silent I set the sewing machine in motion again yesterday!  I'm off to a steam punk larp in march and whilst  I'm not making all new kit I'm planning on adding considerably to my wardrobe by making all the little detailed things I didn't have time for last time.

First things first, I made this...

Petticoats are an amazing invention!
I'm planning to use this to bulk my skirts out a little.  It's kind of sentimental to me though, as the fabric is the lining fabric spares from when my mum made my wedding dress (yup my wedding dress was lined in blue) and the lace was given to me by my gran.

Pretty delicate fabric and lace, what more could I want?
This is the 4th time I've made this skirt or a variant of, so it was a reasonably easy sew.  the lace was also easier to add than I was expecting, which was a bonus!

I love how the lace looks like fans
In other crafty type news I'm knitting a scarf to a pattern!  Ok, the pattern is one line long, but it's still a pattern!  It's looking quite pretty and more importantly the intended recipient has given her approval.

Friday, 26 November 2010

Christmas is coming...

And what with my in laws coming for a visit, feeling ill and actually needing to do housework and gardening not a lot of crafting has happened here this week.

One thing I did make though...

Yes, I know my kitchen is as untidy as the rest of my house :P
I love making mincemeat!

Saturday, 20 November 2010


So, I've been feeling slightly better since teatime meaning I found the energy to knock up a new hat!  Thing is...  I can't decide if I like it or not...  Opinions please?

Excuse how messy my house is, please...

I got the pattern from the Sewing Book, by Alison Smith, which was lent to me by a lovely friend and is so awesome I had to buy my own copy!

The fleece was an off cut in the remnants basket at Fabric Land

It was a lovely simple sew, taking less than an hour, from start to finish!

Really not sure about the tassels though...

So anyway, please leave me a comment or email me or something and tell me if I should leave the house wearing this...


Sorry for the lack of updates on Thursday, I've not been feeling all that great, so have lost all energy and motivation to sew. :(

Instead I've been knitting...

Sorry for poor photo quality...
These are tiny little hats for premature babies.  And very good knitting practise for me.  They mean I've done lots of casting on and off, relearned 'stocking stitch' (It's going to be the new long division, I can tell...) and also practised knitting two together...

I love this wool...
And yeah, that's about it really.  I'm supposed to have started my evening dress by now, but I really can't find the energy, so I think that will have to wait for next week.  In the meantime I'm spending a lot of time on the sofa, watching TV and knitting a new pair of hand warmers for myself...

Tuesday, 16 November 2010

Pyjama bottoms and other stuff...

Here are my new camping/sleepover pyjama bottoms.  I am sick and tired of never finding pyjamas in a longer length.  Surely I can't be the only person with this problem?  Anyway I made some of my own!  They aren't great but they are warm and comfy.  I have plans for a top to follow so I will be even warmer and snugglier in bed, but that's possibly a project for another day...

I'm feeling too lazy to change clothes and model today, sorry...
These are made out of the same stretchy fabric as the dress I made a short while ago and trimmed with the left over blue ribbon.  The waist is simple elastic and that's about all as can be said about them really.  They are amazingly comfy and huge and the bottom hem skims the floor so all in all I'm happy!

A close up of the hems, which I had to take up twice!

In other news, anyone want to venture a guess as to what costume this is going to be?

Yes I'm disturbed by it as well.  Share my pain! :P
I may have less frequent posts as the run up to Christmas begins, as obviously I can't really post pictures of what I'm making people because it'd give the game away.  However I've got some stuff saved up that I haven't shown you all yet and I'll probably make stuff for me or kit and stuff so there will be some things, but yeah...  Basically advanced apologies if I go a bit quiet!

Monday, 15 November 2010

Deadline achieved, just...

I got the coat finished!  It looks pretty cool (if I do say so myself) and Panda is happy with it.  Sadly I finished it with about 2 minutes to go, so there wasn't time to get detailed shots of all the little flounces.  However this is Panda in full kit :)

Doesn't he look good?

I think it goes nicely with his hat and I'm very pleased with the epaulets.   It's made from navy and red faux wool, with silver trim.  The buttons are the ones that are meant to be fabric covered, but I left them plain as we wanted huge shiny buttons and that was the easiest (and cheapest) way of achieving it.

Tomorrow I should have some pictures of a pair of pj bottoms I made and possibly a hat depending on how I feel today.

Tuesday, 9 November 2010

Running close to deadline...

Very quick post today, as I need to be sewing really!  I'm halfway through making a frock coat, which needs to be completed tomorrow night...

But in the meantime whilst I had free time on Saturday night (the frock coat needing a fitting before I could go any further at that point) I made this -

I love this fabric so much!
The white fabric was given to me in a fabric swap by my lovely friend Abi, and the lining was already cut out from an earlier failed attempt to make this cloak in another fabric.  The trim is loveliness itself and such a bargain at 35p a metre!  I'm not admitting to having bought another 10 metres of it today though, oh no! 

This is me with the hood down :)

Right, back to the sewing machine, hopefully I'll have a fab coat to show off in Thursdays post!

Friday, 5 November 2010


I am now part of a D&D campaign on Thursday evenings.  This is great fun, but I tend to try and have something small to make whilst we role play.  It seems to help me think better.

This is what I made last night.

It's a pin cushion.  I embroidered away as my character bickered, mewed, howled and shot her way across the landscape, then this morning I trimmed it with this cute broderie anglaise, backed it, stuffed it and turned it into a cute little pincushion.

I think it's really cute!  And I have plans for another one (different design) for my Grans birthday.

Wednesday, 3 November 2010

Not Larp Kit!

Despite what Sam says, I've made this dress to wear for work.  I chose the material because it was so pretty I knew I needed something made out of it, and it was originally destined to be a hoodie.  However this way, I can wear it to work and be warm, plus I think it wil be a lovely dress to chill around the house in so I'm quite pleased with it.

Yes I know this is a bad pic of me, but it's a pretty good one of the dress...

It was a free prima pattern, from the magazine I think, and the only modification I've made is adding a ribbon tie to the back to give it a little more shaping.  I'm toying with the idea of adding trim around the neckline, but I'm not sure.

A slightly better picture of me at least :)

It's been a week for magazine ideas, as the other thing I've made came from the Company craft page a few months back.

Isn't it cute?!

I wasn't sure about my fabric/lace choices when I made this but I love it now!  I'm planning a few more in a range of colours, for steampunk props...

Monday, 1 November 2010


I'm back from witw :)  A good time was had, but possibly more excitingly in terms of this blog, I made a lovely new friend, who very kindly taught me to crochet!

I started normally with a chain in wool.  Then as we were doing this in character it got suggested that crochet out of wire would be more useful.  As I had a reel of jewellery wire on me and I'm mad enough to go for a challenge like that...  I may have made a circlet/headband thing.  Oops?

Sorry this isn't the clearest of photos...

For the most part it's just a chain.  The thicker bit is a treble stitch (I think?) but it doesn't really work well in the  wire.  It does however look quite funky in a modern jewellery kind of way!

Then, mostly to see if I could remember what I was taught I made a tiny square up today!

Again, sorry about the photo!

I'm not entirely sure that I've done it right, but I'm still quite proud of my first and second pieces of crochet!

This evening I have a cushion I want to sew, which looks fairly simple so hopefully I'll have something to show you all tomorrow as well!

Wednesday, 27 October 2010


I know, once again I'm failing on the regular updates and I'm sorry!  Last week I made a lot of stuff that for various reasons can't be shown on here and that makes for a very uninteresting post I'm afraid.

However, since Saturday I have been working on a slightly more unusual (for me anyway) project.  I've made a banner!  This is to take to Winter in the Willows Larp at the weekend.

Please excuse the messiness of my house...

 W.I.T.S (whiskers Independent Trading Syndicate)  is the name of our faction and 'Things Done' is our tag/slogan/motto. The red writing is fake silk appliqued on which was a relatively simple job.  The gold writing it thickish cord appliqued on which was a horrible job because despite my best pinning efforts it slid all over the shop!

Caravans are a little beyond my artistic skill...

The picture is a mix of velvet, taffeta, cotton, lining fabric and wadding to give an interesting mix of texture.  Sadly this doesn't show up to well in the picture.

I just think the rabbits are cute!

I'll apologise now, because the likelihood of another post this week is slim to none.  I'll try and do a few extra next week, to make up for it!

Tuesday, 19 October 2010

More hair ties...

Due to not feeling well, deciding that the house really did need cleaning and so on, I haven't done that much sewing over the past few days.  I have made some armour padding, but it's not that interesting, so I probably won't put it on here unless you all tell me you desperately want to see it...

However,  yesterday afternoon I decided to use up some of my many, many scraps by making hair scrunchies.

This matches my spotty apron!
I love scrunchies and I can never seem to find ones big enough to hold all my hair.

Thinking about it, this also matches an apron I own...

I still have loads of elastic left, and as scrunchies only take half an hour from start to hand stitched finished I think I might try and make a few more this week...

This one doesn't match an apron, phew!

I've also been working on my pay it forward gifts, which I can't post yet, and a steam punk bustle skirt, which I will post pictures of, as soon as I am done.

Wednesday, 13 October 2010

Deviant Flower Thingies

Just for Caroline!

Please excuse the poor photography!
So these are pretty much the only things I've knitted to date.  I'm new to knitting (for the third or fourth time in my life) and not really sure of what I'm doing!

This one is lovely and soft!

That said, I like my funky new hairbands, they are a great opportunity for practise and to give me confidence to try more complicated stuff!

This is the first one I made!
This is a little random I know, but I'm in a fairly silly mood!  Possibly a more normal update tomorrow...