Sunday, 31 August 2014

Typewriter Torment

When I read Dolly Clackett's last blogpost, I remembered that for about two months I've had a Mortmain  pattern cut out, tacked, and ready to sew, in the same typewriter fabric.  I'd spotted the fabric in my lovely local shop, The Creative Sanctuary, and I had to have it, and seeing Dolly's fab version prompted me to sit at my machine and finish it before the summer's gone.  
I'd not made this pattern up before, but I had already made a toile out of some curtaining fabric and it fit pretty much as I wanted, so I knew I could just cut this out and stitch it as it was.  In the end, I left out the neck and armhole facings and lined the bodice, and I interfaced the midriff band with some woven iron-on interlining.
My only quandary was whether to make the skirt up with standard box pleats as per the pattern, or inverted box pleats.  In the end, having pinned and tacked and unpicked and repinned and tacked, I went with the inverted box pleats and I'm glad I did, - fabric is quite heavy, more of a furnishing fabric and I think the inverted pleats fall better.  
One of my other recent finished makes is my first Miette cardigan.  Having made several little shrug type cardies, I've always been a bit disappointed with the fit - but not so with the Miette.  I love the fit and I will definitely make it again.  I'd like a fuchsia pink one and maybe bright red.  
Actually, if I'm totally honest, the dress isn't quite finished yet, the hem is only tacked up, but I wanted to get my friend to take the photos while the sun was out today, and hemming is a sitting down in the evening job, so it'll be done in the next few hours.
So now the only decision to be made is which 'bundle of laughs' Sunday night drama shall I hem to - The Mill or The Village?

Typewriter Torment - Procol Harum

Monday, 11 August 2014

Bag It Up

Look what I made!
I first saw textile artist and embroiderer Alex Waylett at Textiles in Focus a few years ago.  She was demonstrating a machine embroidery technique, which she then went on to make into beautiful clutch bags.   I knew she did classes and I was keen to go, but they were always a bit far away, or I just couldn't make it. So, when I saw that she was teaching an "Embroidered Clutch Bag" workshop at the Embroiderer's Guild Summer School this year - I immediately booked onto the weekend, and into her class.  

We arrived at Belsey Bridge in Suffolk on Friday evening, and started by selecting fabrics in our chosen colourways from the two tonnes of fabric that Alex brought with her -  we only had to take our machines and threads, everything else was supplied, what a bonus! 

The next day we layered and pinned the fabrics, and then spent most of the day wildly machining to make beautifully coloured and textured fabric for the bags.
On Sunday we cut the fabric to shape, and made up the linings
Then, with a lot of advice, assistance and helpful tips from Alex, we glued the finished fabric bags into a metal frame.
Every single bag was really beautiful and we were so pleased, we set up a display ....
In fact one of the girls said "I've never been on a workshop where everyone was so delighted and proud of what they'd made".

It was a great weekend - such a joy to spend two whole days stitching with a group of lovely ladies - and to end up with something finished and fabulous.
In fact, our only interruptions were to go and have yet another meal - the food was excellent and consequently I've been to the gym this morning and have embarked on the 5:2 diet again. 

So, if you fancy making a yourself a bag - have a look at Alex's website and book onto one of her courses.
I happen to know that she's going to be teaching at Art Van Go sometime soon so keep an eye on their website -  I might see you there. You can never have too many bags.

Bag It Up - Oasis