Tuesday, 17 January 2017


The best thing about sewing is choosing and matching fabrics. That's at least what I think. I get ridiculously excited when I see a lovely pattern or colour combination. Browsing through fat quarters and remnant baskets in craft shops is absolute bliss for me. I hardly ever leave my local craft shop without one ir two pieces of fabric. Usually I don't have a project in mind for them: I just like having a stack of lovely fabric around so I don't need to head out and buy fabric when I want to sew small projects. They're also great for inspiration: very often the fabric comes before the project. As it happened with my first finished project in 2017. I was lucky enough to come across a remnant piece of this adorable stripy fabric:


It was in a gift shop in Germany on the last day of our holidays. And I just had to buy it. Back home I had the idea to make a bag for Aidans building blocks and within three days I had it finished.

It's a very basic bag with very basic felt applications. I didn't want to make it too complicated as I wanted it finished quickly. And it does the job: the kitchen looks tidier and Aidan likes taking the blocks out of the bag and sometimes putting them in as well.

I really have a thing for striped fabric.

Add some little flowers and it can't get any better:

There is such a nice old-fashioned feel about it. I could imagine making this into an 18th century dress. Unfortunately this is only a small leftover bit that I was lucky enough to find in a remnant bag.

But I also like the comparatively modern pin stripes.

I got this material a few years ago with the vague intention of making a skirt but I never really found the right pattern. Now I decided to make it into this skirt:

This pattern has been lying around for a couple of years as well. I never dared to make it as the instructions warned me that you needed good sewing skills. But you never learn if you never dare to make something challenging. Ignoring the advice to make a trial skirt with cheap fabric first I daringly cut into my pinstripe fabric. I had to change the pattern slightly as the fabric wasn't wide enough for the train of the skirt. Probably another thing you shouldn't do without a mock up. We'll see how it will turn out. So far I haven't found it very difficult.

I'm not looking for a historically accurate look so I won't worry too much if it turns out a bit different than intended.

Friday, 6 January 2017

January Joy

There is something harsh and sobering about January as if December was a beautiful dream and on New Year's Day you wake up to everyday life. For me the fist day of the year always has this back to school feeling even though we never were back until after Epiphany on the sixth of January. Christmas is over and so are all the pleasant things that come with it: family and friends reunions, lovely food, candlelight, Christmas carols, lazy evenings by the fireside. The New Year means looking ahed again, planning, getting busy.
We had an absolutely wonderful Christmas this year. My sister got married just a few days before Christmas in our local town and we celebrated in the medieval castle afterwards. It was magical! There's something to be said for small weddings in December! The Newly Weds stayed around for Christmas, so my mum had all her daughters home for the festive season plus three sons in law and two grandsons.
I'm sad, that Christmas is over but I'm also happy to be back home again. The New Year, as young as it is, has already brought a number of good things and I am very thankful. While we missed out on a white Christmas, a sudden frost transformed the the landscape into a winter wonderland just before New Year's Eve. And on our last day in Germany it actually snowed, enough to make the ground white. I'm delighted that Aidan got to know the snow even though he probably won't remember it.

As much as I liked the snow I was a bit worried that it might affect our journey to the airport. But the roads were free of snow and we arrived safely at our house where our cat Branwell had a great welcome for us - after sulking for half an hour.

And the same evening my aunt phoned to tell us that my cousin had given birth to a baby boy!

Enough good things to keep the January blues away!