Fun, Fabs and a pretty Gathered Bag

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Mini Fabs in the garden were the order of the day today….boy has it been hot! Even the dog was drinking out of the paddling pool….sensible boy!

Fun time spent at my sister-in-laws at their biannual Village Fayre…there was a dog show, falconry displays, competition tent….best ginger cake, best rhubarb, best single rose……

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‘Tequila Sunrise’ single rose 1st prize went to my lovely sister-in-law….well done lovely lady!

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Marvellous. The WI tent, band, and even the ‘Green Barrows’ the most hilarious but talented group of men in red overalls, and Biggles goggles and headwear, charging around with green wheelbarrows in formation! Set on the village green…a brilliant afternoon.

It was my sister-in-laws birthday so I decided to make her a present, I much prefer that personal touch. She’s a cloth bag kind of girl so I chose this lovely bag to make from my local great independent fabric, wool and haberdashery shop The Owl & Sewing Cat that stocks great patterns for all sorts of home accessories and bags, clothing, children’s and baby accessories….do take a look. They also stock wool and gorgeous fabrics and supplies as well as running sewing workshops. Anyway, back to my bag. I purchased the pattern from The Owl & Sewing Cat and this is The Gathered Bag and it’s rated as an intermediate level. I chose a lovely Elephant print hot pink fabric for outside of bag and a sage stripe lining, finished with grey ribbon trim and hand made bow.

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Gathered bag lining

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Ribbon trim and hand made bow

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The finished bag!

Really pleased with this. It took me longer than I thought….largely because I started it at a Sewing evening in Lewes. A friend invited me to this monthly event of like minded sewing lovelies….each bringing along a sewing project they were working on, a pinnie, a child’s dress, hankies, cushion, and my friend was making this gorgeous Cath Kidston ‘Stitch’ pattern quilted bag….I’ve yet to see her finished item but it was looking fab! Anyway, a lovely evening, however, I’ve realised it’s easy to get distracted in a big group…so I missed cutting out a pattern piece for starters and I cut it incorrectly and spoiled the fabric….had to later seam two pieces together to get the ‘fold’ I needed back for the missing piece! Yikes! Still, I saved it, but after a discussion with my friend we both agreed that sewing is often a solitary past time, filled with concentration and thought and maybe we need to learn to talk less and focus more if we do the group thing again!!! I had to catch up the next evening as a result of my distractions!! Although we plan to start our own ‘Drop Everything & Sew!’ (think that’s what we’ll call it) evening in our home town!

Do any of you take part in group sewing nights or days?
What have you been up to this hot weekend? Any crafty projects in the making?

Crochet granny triangles :: pompom trimming :: lace :: Beginners sewing guide fab find!

Half term is almost over, which despite being a full on time at home, is a long awaited week away from work, time with the children and a break from old routine….. We’ve spent a lot of time outside, including in the garden, which is such a joy to just sit in the sun…and crochet

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This was me following Lucy’s latest crochet triangle bunting pattern over at
Attic24 and I was having a little tea and crochet time with some odds and ends of yarn.

Even the dog was enjoying the rays…..

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I took an afternoon trip to Brighton with my man and the eldest one, for some lunch and a much wanted browse through the lovely Dïtto Fabric shop in the North Laines. I just adore this shop….they’ve just celebrated their 30th year and I remember being a regular visitor when they first opened, buying little squares of fabric off cuts and ribbon to make lavender bags! My wedding dress was made using some of their fabric and a wonderful dressmaker who had her studio just round the corner…..and came as a recommendation from the shop.

Still have the dress….but not the figure!!!

Anyway, I digress. I popped in there as I needed a few trimmings for some projects that needed finishing off….but it’s so hard not to just buy their little bags made up using a mélange of ribbons, lace, etc….a sort of pick ‘n’ mix! I managed to contain myself and just ended up with these…..

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Isn’t this pom pom trim divine?? All washed down with some beautiful stretch elastic lace….the green is a beautiful chartreuse but unfortunately it doesn’t show up so well in the photo…

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Lovely heh? I’m saving this lace as I’d love to have a go at making a pair of Tap pants (after my success with my Trixie knickers….just need to find a pattern I like.

A visit to a friend had me rehoming a piece of fabric she no longer wanted and was lying enticingly by the recycle bin, and I couldn’t resist!! It’s a small piece only but could be used for all sorts of little things…. I need a sunglasses case so could go on a make for that….
Here it is…….

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See what I mean? Gorgeous colours and prints…..this came from Dïtto fabrics but sadly it’s a discontinued print 😦 still, I could just look at it in all its’ turquoise splendour!! So maybe adding it onto a cushion cover to maximise its’ daily viewing….what would you use it for I wonder?

Finally, I received a brilliant package in the post in the week….it’s a vital resource to get into sewing clothes which are more than just two pieces of fabric stitched together!! Actually I’m being a bit unfair on myself….. I have put in zips, waistbands, button holes, binding and sewn elastic in the Trixie knickers, but not yet tackled sleeves, collars and more complex patterns….and it’s been a while since I’ve made any clothing. I desperately want to get into making as many of my own clothes as possible. I’ve got a couple of items to start and complete but felt I could do with a handy reference book….which is why I bought this……

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I did quite a lot of research into good sewing reference books and this Reader’s Digest got lots of rave reviews. From what I’ve read so far it does seem really very good….detailed but with great easy to understand explanations and it also gives you cross references when looking something up…..such as if you’re looking up making bias strips, it will give you page and reference for clipping or making notches in fabric for arm holes for instance….brilliant! So there’s really no excuse for me to not get going…..just need to make sure I actually take some time to start….and do it!!!

Hope you all have had a great half term, whether you have any ankle biters or not!! Kate x