Sunday, 26 October 2014

Foundation Paper pieces..

Did you ever draw your own Foundation Paper Pattern?
Well, I did, for a bee last month. And I was very happy with the result. But. Yes, Big BUT.. I used paper and pencil- you know, that old fashioned stuff. Which, with all its merits, you cannot happily print a half dozen off, all identical. Or, you can, using a photocopier..but not long distance, or immediately, and not when you already used it!

So, if someone asks you for the pattern, but you already sewed the thing and sent it off, you really do not have a copy to send...

Ok, so that is not an impossible ask, you can, after all, draw one out on a computer package... such as 'Paint'  and do it that way.

I am sure there is a better thing to try this on- it is just, I have 'Paint' on my computer, so it felt feasible to use it for the purpose.

Again, there is a but. When I did this with paper and pencil, I drew my finished square first, and then put in my tree and worked out what the sequence was from there. With 'Paint' I have no idea how big my starter square is. Yes, there is a rule you can put round it, but what do the measurements on the rule apply to? It surely is not inches.. and does not appear to be centimetres either..

So, you do the whole thing, and print it off and then measure it.

And then, because it has come out 2 1/2" rather than 3", you do it again. You do some pretty basic maths, and try once more. And it comes out 4 1/8 ".
There must be a way to do this, you think. So you take their scale measurements and try once more...

A bit nearer, at 3 1/8 "  and after messing about and printing off yet more versions, you find that applying a 'resize' factor only seems to apply to the image on the screen, and not at all to the printed version, you decide to settle for what you have!

So, I have emailed all three different size versions of it, to the requester, and shall hope she can make head or tail of them!

That little tree over there, on the right...

Anyone else want to have a go at one?

Wednesday, 15 October 2014

Hanging on the wall....

I think I have finished! I have 32 tutus hanging up in my hall!

A tiny picture- do not want to give too much away at this stage... more when I can get a picture of one on it's body!  I hope...

but I reckon I can give you progress shots of armbands without it being too drastic!
 Each length of organza is hand pleated and pinned onto satin, then overlocked in place.... taking out pins as one sews, the overlocker objects to trying to cut them.... Cannot imagine why....

 and then the opposite side of the satin is overlocked- frays like crazy, if you don't!

This is then folded over and pinned, and stitched down.

and chopped into lengths and piled high on the ironing board- for lack of any other sane place to put them....

                                    or, over the back of a chair....

and a piece like this gets chopped in two, and elastic threaded through, and then checked on an arm, before being stitched to make the band..

Am I allowed to add this to the link for le Challenge? It is a mix of fabrics... satin, organza and elastic..making something beautiful... I hope so! we shall see if Lucy and co permit!

Sunday, 5 October 2014


My camera now works intermittently, and as and when it feels like it.. so I have a few pictures to share again!
 Yes, there is a person buried up to the neck in net! scramble gathering it ready for application to tutu bodices.. Beware! When you come to visit me you may well be pressed into service!
 Armband kindly modelled by my son... It requires some modification..

And while I was awaiting verdicts on armband styles, I was able to get on with a much delayed Bee block.
I had already done this one- not photographed, due to temperamental camera action, but I had been able to make it. And then I got stuck.

I wanted to make at least one other block, but ideas were not announcing themselves with traditional gusto!

But today! I was filled with the desire- most unnatural, as I hate FPP- to FPP a tiny Christmas tree!

The block will end up 3" finished.
I planned it, I modified it, I glared and stared at it, and then.......

I decided I better just get on and do the thing!

 Of course, it refused to pose for a picture on its own!. Too bright and glary- cannot see a thing...

Too shaky, still not seeing a lot!

Strange that it was later quite content to be in a group photo! Camera shy blocks- what would you believe!

So after that, I did an applique star to complete a set!

Hope she likes them!

Monday, 22 September 2014

Around the world blog hop

Lovely Jan has tagged me for this little exercise... and it is probably just as well she has, or I might not post anything at all for a week or two...

I do enjoy my sewing, but as I work full time and also love my garden and would prefer a cleaner house than I possess...I do less of it than I would like.

She has posed me a few questions, I will do my best to answer them.

1. What am I working on? 

Those who know me well, know the answer to this one! Tutus.

I have thirty two tutus to produce by mid October. I have a friend who has a dance school, and when needed I help out with costumes. And this time it is tutus. They will be super pretty.
I have not one finished yet, but I have made a solid start.

 Cutting all the pieces out in all three layers is hard work... I have a callous on my knuckle...

 And the bin is overflowing with the offcuts....

But the first six bodices are ready to have shoulder straps and skirts attached.. I have 8 yet to even be started.

I cannot show more just yet... you will have to return in November to see more!

and yes, I have several other projects lurking in one state or another... but these are top priority.

2. How does my work differ from others of its genre?

I am not quite sure what my genre is! I seldom stick to a pattern, I always have to do something different, and take shortcuts... though not always shorter, if you follow that... and I always think I know a better way to achieve a result...

I am not always right about that though...

3. Why do I create/write what I do?

I started this more as a record for me, than for anything else.. and so, I just do it!
And I create for a need, or a wish to experiment, but I do like the end result to be useful.

 Something that just ends up as godwottery,  I am not that keen on... You know the word, godwottery?? Those items you see where your instant gut response is.... '  .....what is that about?' That is it! 

4. How does my writing/creative process work?

That depends. Usually there is a request, or an inspiration, but sometimes it is a slow working out of a niggle. I tend to say, I do 90% of the task in my head in the week or two before I start, and then it all happens in a rush when the brain part has happened.  I am a great believer in sleeping on a problem, and also in a sense of 'the time is right' . When the time is right, the thing will happen!

I also like to put stuff down on paper. Just roughly perhaps, but it gives me something to look back at, when I lose track of where I am! and then, I play. With the most fun play stuff in the world...

And I am happy to look at a thing and say, I can probably do that! Or, no, I could not do that!

And now, I pass the baton on!

So many folk have already been involved in this, that I think you need someone special at this point!

Please go and visit my lovely friend Janine, who does all sorts of wonderful things, not just sewing but woolly stuff as well,  Go on, have a look see!

Saturday, 23 August 2014


I have been away, with DD2, for a week.. It was lovely, but my camera has now died... so there may be radio silence from here after this for a bit... sorry- Enjoy these last pics... and guess where we were!

There may be something in it for a correct guess... or not,

 if too many folk get it right! And if you have privileged info- Sorry- you are NOT included... I did tell someone- Sorry! that feels so unfair- but then as they know....

I shall give you a week to guess!

Edited to say, We were on the lovely island of Rhodes. I shall plan to make a minute something for three of you, and send... but do not hold your breath, I am knee deep in tutus at the moment!

Sunday, 3 August 2014

Beeing good

It is the final month for our Hipbees. This is rather sad, as I have thoroughly enjoyed being part of this little group. We have had a lovely Bee mamma, in Di, and the other ladies I have been playing along with are so friendly and a super bunch to work with. As they say though, all good things come to an end, and it is time to say a sad goodbye. As an introduction to really fun bees, this was fabulous. 
So, thank you, Di,  and all the lovely ladies, I am sure we shall continue to be online friends, and meet in other bees and swaps. 
Our final block has been the Plus block, Amy did all the hard work for us, and created thes blocks, all we had to do, was the sewing of them! Thank you Amy!

The other bee I am taking part in is the Fat Stash Brit bee. This month is Ashleigh's month. She had a panel of 'Cardigan Ladies' This was chopped up and distributed, with some additional fabrics, and we were told to get on and create!

I rather took her at her word and had great fun with this one..... I really hope she likes it... we shall see. Anyway, it is done now, and ready to be sent back to her. I wonder how she will put all her ladies together?

Sunday, 27 July 2014

Kitty kindle cover...

Our Fat Stash bee mamma for the month requested pussy cats...  and I had great fun with them... see cat blocks here...

And I found it inspirational!
I had promised my DD1 a kindle cover since..., well, ever since she got a kindle?

Finally I had the inspiration I needed to make it! The inner details I was quite happy with, and knew exactly what I was planning to do... but the pretty outer cover? Cats it is!


I am really proud of that neat little closure. Very simple, but it seems to work!
I think these kitties will cheer my daughter every time she looks at it! That is not to suggest she won't use the commercial cover she already has, it does useful things like standing the kindle up at an angle so you can be hands free.. But I do hope this one will also be used. 

 There is a useful little spot at the bottom, which I hope will mean she can recharge it without taking the kindle out..  and I thought a flap might help keep the kindle secure in the pocket, less liable to slip out...

Can you tell, DD1 loves purple? I do too, of course, but , yes, she LOVES purple!

And, there is a little zippy pocket hiding under that strip on the left there, so she can store her cable when not needed. 
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