Category Archives: Personal

Blog posts about sewing, family and life in general.

Sketchbook – Project Green 3: Pleated skirt


With my quest to embrace all things green in full swing, I spotted this pale green outfit for 50p when I was out with the kids the other day. Now the outfit was totally not my style but I thought it had excellent potential! I started off by trimming quite a few inches out from the waist down to the hem of the skirt, then I stitched it back up careful to keep my seam hidden in the pleats, and overlocked it to neaten everything up. My skirt fit round the waist then but was far too long for my liking so I cut it in half , hemming the top half to make a lovely little summer skirt, and keeping the rest to try and make in to a dress – using the jacket in some way to make a bodice! I really love my new skirt, and I think the colour green is finally starting to grow on me! It turns out there are many shades of green that I do like, they just happen to be muted rather than vibrant.

Linking up with Finish it up Friday!


Book Review: Expressive Drawing by Steven Aimone – Automatic Drawing


I recently acquired the book Expressive Drawing by Steven Aimone, I hate to say it but I was totally drawn in by the picture on front cover. Naughty naughty! There’s something about abstract art work that attracts me, I feel I’d love to make paintings like that but when I try they just look like childish scribbles to me!

After my first Assignment for my current OCA course my tutor encouraged me to work bigger. Now I already work on A3 paper a lot of the time so I wondered how on earth I was going to get bigger than that. I tried working on sheets of newspaper, or taping and gluing smaller sheets together, but its so time consuming and really gets in the way of just getting on and working. Eventually I came across this fantastic roll of paper made by a company called Fabriano that’s 1.5m wide by 10m long – fantastic! I just knew it would be perfect for use with this book. The first exercise is called Automatic Drawing and is all about embracing the pleasure of simply making marks on paper. You make a few marks on the paper then stand back and see where you feel like making a few more, then repeat until you feel satisfied with your picture, and boy is this satisfying!

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Book Review: Colour: A Workshop for Artists and Designers – Part 1


Colour: A workshop for artists and designers by David Hornung.

This book is one of the set texts for my current OCA course so I decided to work my way through it to try and gain as much knowledge as I could from it. In places it overlaps with some of my set work, so I’ve followed my course text instead of the book, but these areas are very similar so I’ll include them anyway. Read the rest of this entry

By Hand London Anna Dress – Fixed!!!


I haven’t posted about this dress before, even though it was finished back in April, and also happens to be my third Anna Dress from By Hand London. I saw this beautiful cotton voile in a blog post from The Village Haberdashery and just knew I had to have it! (You should totally check out their selection here, I would buy the lot if I could!!!) I wasn’t even sure what it was going to become, but I’ve always wanted a lovely soft summer dress in this kind of pattern, so I bought 1.5m before the photo was even up on the website – guessing from the description and praying I’d chosen the right one! When it arrived it was just as beautiful as I’d hoped, and it washed and tumble-dried wonderfully.

This dress is fairly simple to make – sewing it together is mostly straight lines. In this case a lot of straight lines as I did french seams through out (the inside just had to look as beautiful as the outside). I chose not to line it as even though the fabric is so light weight its not particularly transparent, and I figured it would be lovely and cool in the hot weather – I just wear a slip under it if necessary. This was the first time I tried making the slash neck, as my first two were both v-neck’s which after taking 2″ out of the back fit perfectly. Unfortunately this neckline just didn’t sit right even after taking the 2″ out of the back. It’s hard to see in the awful photo’s but it was all baggy at the top a bit like a cowl neck – obviously I’m missing the necessary assets to fill it out . I tried to embrace this look thinking maybe it would be ok, but after a couple of wears I just couldn’t take it anymore, it had a whole saggy boob feel to it, unbearable! So it hung there on the side of my wardrobe mocking me, the fabric so pretty, the fit so bad, the unpicking – YUK! *Sad face*

Finally today I bit the bullet, I tried unpicking the front neckline (voile is not fun to unpick) and took 1.5″ out from the centre, curving back up to meet the back piece and reattaching it to the facing, but of course that didn’t work as it would’ve been too easy. After that I was totally fed up, (would I ever rescue this lovely fabric!!!!!!) so I hacked off the neckline at the front below the topstitching with some nice big fabric shears – that felt satisfying! I put it on and pinched out the excess fabric, turning it into 4 1/2″ pleats then sewed it all back together, and amazingly it worked! This is now my favorite dress ever, so pretty and so comfy! And with only 4″ in total taken out from the neckline?! I guess at least I’ll know for next time!

Linking up with Finish it up Friday.

A sock horse named Blue


A few weeks ago whilst messing around with all my crafty stuff I made these.

So when my son came home one day needing a sock horse to help decorate the school gardens for an open day, I realized I had the perfect inspiration (his school colour also happens to be royal blue!). I started off by finding an old sock which I filled with toy stuffing. Now this sock had definitely seen better days, so I decided it needed some work to hide the worst bits! Read the rest of this entry