My Nominations for the Blogger Recognition Award 

Rather than nominate 15 blogs (I don’t think I even follow 15!) by name I thought it would be nice to name them AND mention why I like reading them. So here goes;

1. Amelia over at Thrift Make Sew is a lovely lady who shares honest stories about her makes and the highs and lows. Her style is more loose-fitting than my own so we make very different things but I always enjoy reading about her projects.  

https://thriftmakesew.wordpress.com/

2. Ana at S is for Sewing makes the most gorgeous children’s clothes for her beautiful daughter. Cordery bloomers, paisley blouses, cute coats – all teamed with hair ribbons and knee high socks. If I had kids this is how I’d want to dress them! 

https://sisforsewing.wordpress.com/

3. Emily at Self Assembly Required! churns out new makes at such an impressive rate! Although the items she makes aren’t what I’d choose to wear, I love the level of detail she puts into her work and her willingness to play with her style. 

http://selfassemblyrequired.co.uk

4. Becca at Red W Sews is the queen of jersey and makes cute tops and dresses for herself and her little girls. She has a way of seeing fabric and knowing what patterns will work – something I haven’t mastered! 

https://redwsews.wordpress.com/

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The Seamstress Tag – My Response

Okay, it feels a bit weird to use the term ‘seamstress’ in some kind of reference to myself as I’m only an amateur sewer but this is the title of the mini ‘about me’ quiz Hollie at Hollie Sews devised.

img_6237Who are you?

I’m Felicity, I’ve newly turned 29 and I live in the Midlands with my partner and adorable house bunnies, Millie and Rodney. I only started dressmaking in January 2016 so it’s been a whirlwind year in terms of learning with many highs and lows along the way!

Favourite/Proudest make?

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I’m proudest of the strawberry blouse I made using a New Look 6732 (option E) pattern because I didn’t cut any corners with it, I used French seams throughout and it’s a piece of accurate sewing. Ironically though, I don’t wear it. The item I wear most and am pretty proud of is the Chelsea blouse from Love Sewing magazine.

Disastrous make?

Have you got all day?! Perhaps oddly, I don’t count my unfinished makes such as the Pink Tank dress or the self-drafted maxi skirt as failures as I’ve taken time away from them so as not to screw them up further and thus eventually get them finished the right way. So my most disastrous make was probably the first skirt I did (nicknamed the ‘Nun Skirt’ due to my poor choice of colour combo) or the second Kate dress because it was going so well and then I gouged a big hole in the neckline so it’s never been worn!

Favourite place for fabric shopping?

I have Generalised Anxiety Disorder so I rarely venture into fabric shops except big ones like John Lewis. Shopping in small businesses stresses me out, especially when the staff try to help by asking what you’re after. I always end up buying something I don’t want so I can leave. So I buy most stuff online. I like The Textile Centre, whom I discovered through eBay, as they have a wide range for amazing prices. I just bought 6 metres of navy fabric with grey flowers on for a dress for a friend’s wedding for only £17!

Most used pattern?

I don’t like to make things twice because I get bored of doing the same thing but I have made two Kate dresses, neither of which have ever made it outside the house! I probably will make another one at some point when I have a nice fabric as I really like the style.

Most dreaded sewing task?

Cutting out! It is soooooo tedious! Seriously, if I could buy patterns ready cut to my size then I would. I like the construction part of sewing, not the prep. I have to do it on my living room floor as it’s the largest space I have so I always have something interesting on TV to watch. And I do it in the evening so there’s no promise of being able to sew that day in an attempt to encourage myself not to rush it!

img_6719Favourite sewing task?img_6897

Ooo, I love putting in darts! Not sure why! And I quite enjoy putting sleeves on. There is also something rather wonderful about the thrill of putting a zip in correctly first time round!

Favourite sewing entertainment?

Usually film scores on repeat or musicals, but I did go through a Woman’s Hour (Radio 4) and The Archers phase! Tea is a must and chocolate doesn’t hurt either.

Printed or PDF patterns?

img_7021Never used a PDF pattern as I think it would make me crazy so I can only speak for printed. Burda Style magazine has beautiful designs but the tracing is a nightmare as it’s all crammed on to a couple of sheets of pattern paper so you find yourself feeling dizzy trying to follow the correct lines! Simple Sew ones are nice as they are, as the name suggests, simple.

What sewing machine do you use?

I inherited my fashion designer sister’s old machine, which had lain dormant for many years, so it’s a Husqvarna Viking 425. It’s ace but difficult to find parts for from more mainstream shops.

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Any other hobbies?

Crochet is something my blog readers know I enjoy, and photography. I also enjoy baking, creative writing, horse-riding, reading, studying and volunteering with children and/or animals. I adore theatre and singing. I love eating out, visiting National Trust places and spending any kind of time with my partner, who is my rock.

We’ll Meet Again, Don’t Know Where, Don’t Know When But I Know We’ll Meet Again Some Sunny Day

Hello! I thought I best write a quick post to explain why I’m so quiet on here at present. It’s likely to be a long-term thing because I’ve officially started studying for a Masters in Public Health degree via distance learning and so the time I used to fill with handicraft projects is now filled with journal reading, essay writing and general academic ponderings. I’m studying the ‘accelerated’ route, which means studying six modules in a year rather than three, and thus completing the course in two years rather than three.

Distance learning is, naturally, different from learning in a classroom and it’s main benefit is the ability to fit in studying to your routine rather than the other way around. However, each ‘lesson’ takes longer to complete than it would in a classroom setting because there’s a lot more requirement for written interaction and critical reading. So what might take an hour of class time seems to take two to three hours of self-directed learning. In classrooms, you can debate a topic by saying ‘I read a paper about this before and it said blah, blah, blah’. However, when you have the Internet in front of you, access to thousands of books and journals online and no limit on the length of the class, you’re expected to find said paper and cite it directly! Very frustrating when you can’t remember where you read something…!

Ideally, I need to average 3-4 hours of study time a day, including weekends. What’s happened so far is I manage 3-4 hours on 3 days during the week, 2 hours the other 2 days and then have to make up time on weekends!

I really want to keep learning and experimenting with various crafts so I have still got a well-stocked sewing-room-cum-study-area but projects will be much slower to complete. Crochet is easier to do in small, short sittings than sewing so you might see an increase in the amount I do of that craft.

I’m still reading blogs by fellow sewists, hookers (the crocheting type, not the ones you’re thinking of, you dirty-minded so-and-so!) and bakers and feeling inspired so I’ll be checking in on other people’s blogs periodically.

Anyway, back to the (electronic) books! Bye for now. 🙂

Inspired by this pretty bowl when I visited Coughton Court (National Trust) earlier; wouldn’t it make a lovely fabric print?

And someone at the house has been crafting away – loving these beautiful paper roses as the centrepiece. Stunning. 😍


And a little momento of our visit – a cast iron bunny! Yeah, it might look like chocolate but I can assure you it would hurt a lot more if it landed on your toe! (Strategically placed where Rodney – the real rabbit – has a tendency to think it’s okay to wee… Hopefully this will deter him!)

Catch Up

Hi all,

I’ve been a bit AWOL the last few weeks as I’ve been busy at work, trying to tie up loose ends before finishing on Friday. I now have a week off before I start my new job so I’ll be squeezing some crafting in amongst all the other things I have to do!

My old colleagues know me well as, for a leaving present, they chipped in for a Hobbycraft gift card. 🙂 There’s a sale on at the moment as well so I’m looking forward to stock piling some bits and pieces! I’d like to try making some candles and I’ll probably get some more Boodles yarn as I enjoyed working with it when I did the pouffe (which still needs finishing!).

My colleague Jen bought me this cute little needle felting kit, which I’ll be having a go at this week:


Apparently it’s very therapeutic as you have to stab the felt and the polystyrene ball! 🙂 Another colleague did a great set of three penguins, which looked adorable.

Love Sewing magazine came in the post yesterday and there’s a pattern for a shirt dress that id like to make. However, I already have goodness knows how many projects in the pipeline so it may be a while!!

Also, how cute are these pom-pom birds?!


I love them! The artist who made them has an Instagram page which shows off even more talent, including this family of swans:


I’m in love!! 😍 Whoever knew pom-poms were more than just beanie hat adornments?!

As well as myself leaving the team at work, a couple of other people are going on maternity leave so I was asked to bake a cake for them. I choose Mary Berry’s Death By Chocolate cake as I’ve made it twice before and it’s always gone down well. It turned out really well and was quickly devoured!

In terms of baking I also made some blueberry muffins, some triple chocolate ones and some naiomino bars. None of them turned out quite right and I didn’t take any photos. I really struggle to make good muffins – they always taste too rubbery – so if anyone has a fail safe recipe they use please let me know!! The naiomino bars were too thin (I’d tried to fill too large a tin) so they didn’t have that richness that they did when I made them as a kid. I will be making some more though so I’ll keep you posted.

Update:

Oops, I tell a lie – I did take some photos of the muffins and even started a blog post about it! Will publish it in a few minutes. 🙂

Journaling 

I just wanted to share with you this cool journal I bought second hand from World of Books (via Amazon) because it’s awesome!

It’s called The Book of Me and it’s filled with questions about your background, the present and your future. I’ve always loved things like this since I was a kid and because this is a thick book with quite a few questions to mull over, it should take me a while to complete. 🙂

   
   

It’s American and clearly aimed at an older market than myself but it’s still far superior to a lot of similar products I’ve seen out there. 

Apologies for the smudges in the photos – my iPhone lens doesn’t seem to want to be clean! 

The paper is thick and copes with a fountain pen without bleeding everywhere. And there are lots of ‘free text’ pages towards the back if you want to elaborate on something. 

I like writing but I can tend to get a bit bogged down in the hopeless stuff when I freely write in a journal so something like this, that asks about the good as well as the bad, is advisable for me.