Sunny Dress

I made this pretty dress the day before I made the KISS dress

I felt I should make a post about all the children’s clothes that I’ve been creating for the Maker’s Fair in the lovely village of Haddenham in Cambridgeshire, so here’s The Sunny Dress, which is the older version of the Rosebud Romper

I worked a pretty embroidery stitch on the ruffles this time, which is indeed what the pattern suggests

I did try to do a rolled hem on my overlocker, but this is a more substantial quilting weight fabric and it didn’t want to roll so evenly as the fine lawn fabric used in the Rosebud Romper

My hardest decision was which embroidery stitch to use! I plumped for a small star which wasn’t too slow at stitching, some of the stitches are so complicated and would have taken all day to stitch along the edges of those ruffles!

I love how the little stars worked along the top of the bodice, and when I hit the right place going up to the strap, and a star had been completed, I could turn my work and continue along the next part of the bodice, very satisfying

There are some bloomers to make to go with this little dress and as it looks to me to be a shorter style, I think that I should perhaps make some bloomers to go with it.

This is age four, would you put your four year old little girl in the bloomers?

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Keep It Simple Smock

This pretty little dress is called KISS, short for Keep It Simple Smock

I enjoyed making this up. There were only 4 pattern pieces and two of those were the gorgeous collar

I really love making my own bias binding, I felt that it would look fun in the same fabric as the dress itself

I love how the collar site so prettily and goes over the shoulders so neatly

I didn’t really enjoy sewing those curves but I will make this again as the finished results are beautiful

I love how the binding threads through the backs of the dress, creating gorgeous gathers and making it even more versatile

The designer suggests that the piece can be worn as a dress at first, then as the child grows, it can be worn as a tunic, over leggings, so it’s a really useful garment

You might wonder why I am making all these pretty little clothes…well, I am taking my sewn goods and hand dyed luxury fibres to a Maker’s Fair in July…click the link for more info :)

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Just For The Frill of It

I think that I may be getting a little obsessed with ruffles…. I love the fine rolled hem my clever overlocker produces, it really works so well on finer fabrics such as this beautiful cotton lawn…I have no idea where I purchased this, but it might be Liberty Tana Lawn or it might be Rose and Hubble The other thing I love about creating these ruffles, is using my ruffler foot…it just does the job so well :) It’s been a funny few days, my silly head has been dipping in and out of migraines leaving me feeling totally out of sorts However, in between bouts of not being able to do anything I came across some new designs for children and I felt a bit excited about them The romper that I’m showing you is The Rosebud Romper I love the construction and the fine details…nothing is left to your imagination, the directions are clear and concise…just how I like them! The most tricky part on this clever design was sticking the printer paper sheets together and tracing off the size that I was after I have bought 2 more designs to play with, The Sunny Dress and Bloomers and the Daisy Sundress Thank you Felicity Designs for these beautiful patternsfor children I’m just settling down to watch The Eurovision Song Contest….I wonder how the UK will get on? Enjoy the rest of the weekend, here in the UK we are having a bank holiday weekend, which means that Monday is a holiday too :)

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My youngest daughter’s friend has just had a baby girl so I thought I would make her a little romper suit I used a KwikSew pattern 4094 I love creating ruffles… I use my overlocker to create the gorgeous rolled hem edging and gathered the ruffles using my ruffler foot for y sewing machine…such a brilliant gadget. I was a bit worried that I’d gather the piece too much as it was a circle of fabric. I needn’t have worried, I set my stitch length to maximum, 5 on my machine, and made the ruffles slightly less gathered than I needed. I practiced the amount of gather first :) I could then pull up the threads to make the ruffle fit the circumference of the romper. It’s quite addictive! I had a bit of trouble understanding the directions for the elastic in the back waist But it all turned out beautifully Now I have a need to make more ruffles…!

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Lullaby Layette

I know, I sew a lot! Most days in fact…..and mostly bags, however, recently I bought a pattern called Lullaby Layette by Oliver and S

Actually, I bought it from The Eternal Maker in Chichester last year, when I visited my Youngest daughter at University…I love that shop!

I also bought the gorgeous spotty fabric for the little top

The popper opening was meant to be down the front, but for some reason, I managed to sew it down the back, but really, I think it looks so cute and would be fine either way

The placket starts off as one piece and after sewing down and some clever folding and pressing, you separate the piece into two and create a fold at the bottom, really it’s magic and I love things that work well

The romper and the little top both start out from the same pattern piece …but they look so different!

I chose to use a stretch cotton jersey for the romper, the sewer is advised to use a woven cotton fabric for the binding, it’s a delicious little garment

I really love using my new popper gun, also bought in Chichester, it’s called a Kam Snap Plier, and the colourful poppers are a doddle to fit :)

I used the same fabric for the binding as I used for the little trousers

The pattern for the trousers is ingenious, very easy and fun to put together…I’ve used buttonhole elastic as I find it hard to judge what size a baby tummy might be

There is also a lined jacket in the layette, I might get round to sewing it one day…there’s also a good range of sizes included, 0-24months. Oliver and S patterns are quite expensive but I trust them, they work and are very stylish but classic and uncluttered if that makes sense. Rather than cut the pattern, I always trace off the size I wish to sew, 6-12 months in this case…that way I can get the most out of the pattern and sew all the sizes if necessary. I also like to use freezer paper for tracing, as the pieces are not too big. Then, using a warm iron, I can iron the pattern in place then cut out, the wax on the back sticks lightly to the top layer of fabric and if you’re (lazy) careful you won’t need to use pins

This little pile of clothes is on it’s way to Josie, she is Barry’s youngest granddaughter, and she’s a little darling!

The pink knitting shown at the top of the page is this simple little jacket, the Jiffy Jacket by Mel Clark

This is the second one of these that I have made for Josie, sadly, the first one managed to get felted in the washing machine, but Josie’s Mum loved the jacket and was very sad about it being ruined. I made another, which I have been assured, will be hand washed! I also made the next size so it will fit for longer :)

Life has been crazy busy lately, on Tuesday Howard arrived up our driveway in a taxi. Howard is my Mum’s cousin and he lives in Melbourne. In my head I thought he was arriving in Wisbech at 5.05pm on Wednesday, and I was to pick him up from the bus station. You can imagine my surprise when he turned up a day earlier! I was not ready at all, I still had those last minute jobs to do!! I managed to make our dinner go a bit further and managed to get Howard’s bed made in between chatting..I’d disappear and go on a tidying dervish and then come back into the room as if I’d done nothing haha

We went to Ely on the Wednesday and had a lovely time showing Howard round

Here’s Barry and Howard outside Peacock’s Tearooms, the Wisteria was so beautiful

Here they are a few steps away from Peacocks on the bridge over the Great Ouse river, at The Maltings

Howard left us on the Friday morning and after a bit of packing we made our way down south

Last weekend was my eldest daughter’s 40th birthday…how did that happen? I can clearly remember my 40th as if it was yesterday! Barry and I stayed with my son Edward and his lovely wife Michelle. Luckily the weather didn’t let us down and everyone had a good time. It was so lovely to see my four children and all my grandchildren, Rosi, Laurie’s girlfriend had to work sadly

This is Ali and her friend Sarah and their girl’s, I think they were attempting to build a seesaw but all they were doing was laughing!

Sullivan did a grand job of entertaining his little sister Esme and his cousin Indi

I noticed a gap between my two boys and so I handed my camera to Michelle to take a photo, Edward was doing a Blues Brothers impression and somehow we got photobombed by a crazy woman in the background, I suppose if it’s your birthday you’re allowed to do crazy things xxx I love this photo, despite Edward’s pretend sad face, we did all have a very lovely time!

There wasn’t much left of the Salted Caramel Chocolate Fudge cake that I made for the occasion, I used this recipe >>>>>> Yummy! The candles and sparklers were a nightmare to light as there was a bit of a breeze and they just kept blowing out. You can see more photos here>>> Ali’s 40th

This weekend, Barry and I are off to Barnsley. At long last, only 18 months after I gave him the present, Barry will be driving a Steam Engine! I hope to get some good photos but I’m not allowed to ride on the train as he drives so I’m taking my knitting lol!

Hope you all have a lovely weekend…really,as much as I love all this activity, I also enjoy being quiet…and creating :)

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Barry took me to Blickling Estate on Sunday, the weather was definitely dodgy but we’d checked the weather and it was meant to improve in the afternoon…We didn’t hold out much hope as it was so dull and drizzly when we left home I worked on my knitting as Barry drove, it was so lovely to spend some time together as he’d been working away for 2 weeks.. Well, the bluebell walk was wonderful and for the first time in ages I felt happy with my photos, mostly taken using my telephoto lens on my Nikon 1 V1, I used Barry’s wide angle lens for the photo of the beautiful Hall I think the photo above is my absolute favourite of the day We did laugh when we came across these ‘legs’, thinking that maybe Emilia Fox needed to come and do an investigation for Silent Witness :) It’s really difficult to not bombard you with loads of photos…I took so many! love the sparkly raindrops on this gorgeous Alchemilla Mollis and on these leaves…I think it is a day lilly The lime green new leaves on this little beech tree are gorgeous! You can see more photos from that day in this album Hope you have a lovely weekend, we’re going down south for a couple of days, to see my children and grandchildren and friends to celebrate my daughter’s 40th birthday….the last 10 years have flown by, I must have spent them with someone that makes my life very happy….where are the years going?

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Handspun, Some Applique and a bit of Knitting

I needed to free up some of my bobbins so I set to work plying this deliciousness

100g 180 metres in my Jo colourway, a delicious blend of Polwarth Cashmere and Silk

Then I had caught the spinning bug and I spun this up

Delicious fat, uneven singles of some yummy camel and silk, my Southwold colourway

I’m now spinning some Polwarth to ply with the other bobbin full of singles

This colourway is called Monet’s Pond, it is one half of my luxury fibre club this month, although the fibre blend used for the club was 50% kid mohair 25% mulberry silk and 25% Polwarth, the colours are a bit more vibrant on that base, but this is quite beautiful

I’ll finish that lot of fat singles this evening and then hopefully, I’ll ply them together tomorrow

I finished knitting this cute little cardigan, hope it fits on of my Granddaughters…I love the design, 3/4 sleeves…

The pattern is in a book I bought years ago, by Nashua Handknits…lots of lovely designs to play with

I just need to find the right buttons..

I’ve also sewn some pretty little garments for but i’ll show you those another time

I’m going to do a bit more spinning now…

oh I almost forgot to show you this

it’s a gorgeous design from a fun book of embroidery techniques that I recently discovered

I love how the fabrics are layered and then trimmed away to reveal the pretty flowers and foliage

The book is called Machine Embroidered Quilting and Appliqué

You can see the little quilt that I’m making here…I did have trouble with getting my machine to recognise the files needed, nearly threw it out of the window at one stage, then it dawned on me that the hoops needed rotating in the digitizer software, everything seems to be working now…hope others haven’t been put off by this error on the CD, incidentally, my machine is the Janome 350e and I use JEF files

I’ve also started work on the really pretty Scallop bag in the book too :)

Right, now I’m off to do some spinning..

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La Moda Quilt

I felt the need to blog about this little quilt…it has been all consuming of my spare time for longer than I usually like to be making something! I came across the ‘In The Loop’ method of applique and embroidery whilst browsing Pinterest..that place also uses up too much of my time! After a search on the internet for something interesting to make using this technique, I came across this gorgeous quilt design I had no idea really of what I was doing, but I think I chose a well written pattern for my first attempt I sort of understood the instructions and just went with the flow, using both water soluble and tear away stabiliser A few blocks in, I realised that I should have been backing the blocks with something that would be hidden by the backing fabric, I was already using the backing fabric so I just continued as I had been as it seemed to be working. I joined the blocks differently to the instructions in the pattern, I used a technique I had learnt a couple of years ago for quilting as you go, on my Mum’s quilt and also the one that I made for Maisie (you’ll need to scroll down the page a bit to see her quilt) It was fascinating watching these pretty hats, bags and shoes emerging in the hoop on my embroidery machine…I could have gone off and done something else but I really wanted to watch what was going on I especially love the block of the hat with the gold veil on the top, it’s so clever! This little quilt is more of a show piece, not really my usually style, I don’t usually like to be so confined. I managed to fudge up one of the squares a bit but as it is for me, I didn’t bother redoing it I shall display this on my sewing room wall :) I guess I need to tidy up my sewing room again, I really make such a mess in there when I am busy creating Hope you’re all enjoying the lovely Spring weather this weekend Barry has been photographing the birds in our garden today, wish the pigeons would go away!! I’ve been feeling really weird for a few days, and only today did I decide that I might be having a migraine attack. I took one of my magic tablets and a couple of hours later I felt so much better. Never had one like this before, so glad it’s gone but now I am feeling quite weary Enjoy the rest of the weekend M x

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A Day Tripper bag for Paris

Yesterday I made myself a really crappy dress. I’d saved the fabric for a special pattern and I really thought I’d found it. I cut it out oh so carefully, I sewed each seam with equal care. The fabric was stretchy, 4 way stretch slinky stuff. I didn’t really enjoy sewing it but my lovely overlocker made it easier. Then, when I was almost finished in thought I’d try it on….. My goodness it looked awful. The weight of the big gathered pockets caused the dress to grow sooo long! I thought if I added some of that elastic tape to the side seams it might hold it up better but no, it didn’t. I spent all day sewing this catastrophe and the evening before, I cut it out.. So much time wasted but sometimes sewing goes like that, it’s in the bin in my bedroom right now, I’ll retrieve it and make use of the fabric as best I can… Grrr….

Moving on

I needed to make something that I knew would fit and that the satisfying instructions would soothe my frazzled sewing harmony..

A bag! A Day Tripper Bag, by DogUnderMyDesk… The perfect fabric was in one of my many fabric drawers waiting for me

We’re of to Paris again soon, making use of some free First Class Eurostar tickets after last year’s travel scenario, someone caused an incident on the line in Paris so everything was delayed by hours and hours…eugh…not a good memory, especially having to get into a different carriage to my husband. I remember sobbing in my seat next to some some strange man, he probably though I was bonkers! However, my hero (Barry) came to my rescue as the person sat next to Barry said that he would be happy to change seats with me…phew…! Then of course we arrived at our hotel late and they gave us a box room as it was all that was left…the air conditioning didn’t work, so we opened the window and all the frying fumes from the kitchen below was wafting into our pokey room…I couldn’t even open my suitcase properly as the ceiling sloped, nor could I stand up straight, so many things wrong…needless to say it was sorted out the next day, I’ll not bore you with the details but I was a bit cross to say the least Anyway, this is the fabric, I love how this pattern goes together, the instructions are perfect!

love how the zips fit so beautifully… this is the main part of the bag with the gorgeous big zipped pocket on the front, all interfaced and wadded, it feels lovely already, no puckers on those curves either! The reverse of the bag, see how I fussy cut that pocket to sit in exactly the correct position on the back piece? I love doing that :) Sewing the curves of the front and the back is a bit tricky, but I did as Erin told me in the instructions and it all looks good, no puckers! I carefully cut out an eiffel tower for the side gusset, that pleases me too I love doing the zips, see how neat it looks and that’s before I put it into the bag lining it’s in! my least favourite bit, so awkward sewing the main bag to the lining, I’d probably find it easier if I used my free arm on the sewing machine but my machine is set into a cabinet and it’s a bit of a palaver to move it The photo above can get a bit painful, it’s a bit like giving birth…you have to pull the whole interfaced and padded bag out through the hole left in the lining, it takes time but well worth the effort lol I like to steam the seam and then hold the bag and the lining apart as the bag cools, I repeat that on the other side too, I find it makes it easier to get a crisp edge when you topstitch the seam Here she is all finished!

I love how my iPad fits in the zipped pocket :)

So now…do I still need a new dress for the weekend away?


I have added a few more bags to my shop, including one of these in the ‘larger bags’ section

Just one more thing…I have sent out an email to all of my Luxury Fibre Club members, if you haven’t received yours yet, do get in touch, but it might be in your spam folder

Hope you’re having a lovely weekend


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Two more beauties…

I have been very busy in my newly sorted out sewing room, so much so, or should that be sew?, that I managed to break a little bit off my base plate of the sewing machine yesterday..I thought it was going to need a visit to the sewing machine hospital but after phoning them up, they told me that I just needed to purchase a new base plate…it arrived today…now that is great service. I am fortunate to own a second smaller sewing machine that I use for my sewing group so I wasn’t too panicked about the damage, but I really hated the thought of leaving my precious machine in a shop for a week or so waiting to be mended! I recently made these two gorgeous Bionic Gear Bags, but they hadn’t been totally completed until today… I love them and I love the new little dishes that popper to the front trays of the bags I used my new Kam popper gun to attach the pretty plastic poppers on this second dish, they work really well and are great fun to put in place I am now working on my next 2 bags, well, I have selected the fabrics…its this cute elephant fabric that I have used in this WigWam..i think it will make a super cute BGB! I am using it with some spotty fabric which blends in really well I’m also dabbling with sourdough and last night I produced a really lovely Rolled Oat Boule, I have had several flops in the sourdough department but I think I may have cracked the process…hope it’s just not a one off!

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