Yes I know it’s Wednesday and you were expecting to see the words “Midweek WIP’s” but I’m just not feeling it today. Wednesdays should be my productive days, monster no1 at school and monster no2 at nursery, the house to my self, free to get on with my long list of projects. The thing is this morning it’s just not happening. I had set aside today to work on a bag pattern I would like to share with you guys, my first proper PDF pattern, but my brain has other ideas. So far I’ve been food shopping, popped to hobbycraft (just cos), had leftover pancakes (yum) and sat staring at my laptop for over an hour. I’ve even considered doing housework. Seriously what is wrong my my wandering mind? I just can’t seem to focus.
So now instead I’ve popped in to say hi to you, clear my thoughts and hopefully get focused again. Or I could just be using you as a crutch for all my procrastination needs. Well as I’m here I might as well show you my crochet hook roll I made this weekend.
This has to be the girliest thing I have made in a while, it’s not normally my style, but I love it because the monsters gave me the fabric I used as part of my Mother’s Day present last year and I’ve been saving it for a little project I can keep.
The outer fabric is a fairy tale princesses print which I attempted to free motion quilt (very badly) for the first time. I definitely need a lot more practice, you can’t see in the photo but consistency is not a word I can use yet when talking about stitch length!
The monsters also gave me the heart fabric that I used for the pocket and lining. It coordinated perfectly with the colours in the outer fabric.
And to tip it over the edge on the cuteness scale I finished the roll off with a scrap of lace I had left over from a previous project.
Oh can you believe it it’s lunch time. I best get on but thanks for keeping me occupied. I hope your day is more productive than mine!
Sorry for not posting last week but it was half term here so I had no spare time to sew or update you lovely lot on what I had (or hadn’t) been up to.
We had a great week with friends and my sister coming to stay. We visited The Living Rainforest which the kids loved and for just over £30 for a family annual pass it was well worth it. We managed to get out for a nice walk during a brief gap in the rain too so that made the dogs happy. We also took the kids bowling which we all enjoyed. It was monster no2′s first time and he loved it, as we were leaving he asked me when we could go again!
Here he is talking tactics with Daddy.
Although I’ve been busy having half term fun I have also managed to get on with a few projects.
I’ve had this UGLY pair of DKNY 90′s mum jeans hanging around for a while now. For years they haven’t fitted me but I just hung on to them to spur me on to lose weight and get back in to them. I’ve got to be honest I have no idea what I was thinking when I bought them, they are just so unflattering. I’ve finally lost enough weight to be able to wear them but they are hideous!
See they are seriously nasty! The thing is I just can’t bring myself to throw them away. Do you get that feeling about clothes? I can’t remember where or when I bought them, they don’t remind me of a special memory, but for some weird reason I just can’t chuck them out. So instead of them hanging limply, unworn, shunned by my other clothes in the wardrobe I decided to do some major upcycling. Those poor little outcasts got a make over. I grabbed for my scissors and chopped most of the leg off, seam ripped the hell out of the crutch and turned those bad boys into a skirt.
Much better don’t you agree? I even added a little Architextures scrap to finish off the front.
I’ve left the edge raw around the botttom of the skirt but topstitched about 1/4″ away from it in a blue thread to stop it fraying too much. I did want to use a heavier orange thread but my sewing machine had other plans.
I had a few words with my machine I swapped for a lighter weight thread and all went well.
I’m quite pleased with how the back looks but I can’t decide whether to add some embroidery to one of the pockets, maybe some blue circles to match the fabric on the front?
A few nights ago while watching tv I had the urge to make a little something so I grabbed my embroidery threads and got googling. I eventually came across this great tutorial for making Friendship bracelets. How cute is this?!
I’d forgotten how much I love making them, so expect to see a few more soon.
Before I go I forgot to share with you my finished EPP cushion I shared with you a few weeks ago. I ended up backing it with a green Summersville print and adding a dark pink binding to finish off. It now has pride of place on the sofa
On the making front this week has been quiet, the only finish I have to share with you is my Chunky Infinity Scarf I started a few weeks ago. Originally I had intended for it to have a hood but because I went with a ribbed effect the scarf was crazy thick and swallowed up the yarn pretty fast (I ended up using just short of 400g of chunky yarn). The ribbing makes it so snug and warm plus the yarn is super soft, I just don’t want to take it off! I made it long so I have the option of wearing it loosely (like in the photos) or wrapping it round once more when it’s really cold.
It’s been really difficult to get a decent photo of my scarf thanks to the torrential rain we’re having right now but Monster no1 gave me a hand this morning on the school run. I think he did a pretty good job! Monster no2 also wanted to have a go, here is his shot.
Do you think he’s trying to tell me he doesn’t like my hat?
I might not have done much sewing this week but I have been busy. My mum came to stay for a few days so we took a trip to Eternal Maker, I picked up these Kokka beauties. The Rhino print is for a tablet case the hubby has asked me to make and I plan on making a small cross body bag with the cameras.
I’m also in the planning stages of a project I’ll share with you soon. I popped to Dunelm Mill and found some PVC coated cotton which is going to be perfect for it.
Seriously you can’t go wrong with owls.
I know I’m a day late but yesterday just kinda got away from me. I had to do grown up stuff like housework and cooking Yuk! Anyway I’m here now although I haven’t got too much to share this week. We spent the weekend out walking with friends as the weather was finally dry enough so I didn’t get much sewing time.
It was so nice to be outside without getting soaked, letting the monsters explore the local woods, although we were all pretty muddy by the time we got to the pub for a cheeky pint!
The boys both wanted new scarves for the weekend adventures so they each chose some yarn and I got to work with my crochet hook. I opted for a simple stripey cowl. I can honestly say I had no influence on the colour choices.
Monster no1 chose quite mellow colours but brightened it up with the red which I really liked. Then there’s monster no2s scarf, I’ve called this the German Custard Cowl. It really reminds me of Birds custard and the German flag! I think their colour choices really show how different their personalities are.
I managed to finish one other small project this week, the little embroidery for my sewing room. I think it sums me up perfectly
It’s that time of the week again! I’m quite surprised to say I have actually got a few projects to share with you this week as since moving I’ve found it really hard to get back into any kind of sewing routine, but here goes.
My EPP cushion hasn’t really gone much further, I’ve had a bit of a look in my stash but nothing is really jumping out at me for the background so I’ll probably buy something new.
Tonight I’m going to finish this fun little pot holder, I just have to hand stitch the binding and I’m done. I used a few scraps from my stash, the moustaches have to be one of my all time favourite prints and this was the last piece I had that was really useable.
I’ve started a new crochet project too. I’ve had my eye on a nice, chunky infinity scarf with a hood but couldn’t decide on what pattern to follow so I did what any sensible person would do and decided to make it up. I opted for this really soft yarn from my new local wool shop, Pack Lane Wool they have an online shop too.
So far this is all I’ve done, but in my defence it is crazy long and ribbed too so it’s not growing quite as fast as I’d hoped. It should be ready for next winter though!
My last project of the week is a cheeky lil stitchery for my sewing room. Not really sure where I’m going with it yet but I like it so far.
See I promised I was going to pay you more attention, I’m back already!
Sometimes I get to the middle of the week and can’t help thinking “Why is it so long till the weekend?!” or “Half the week is gone already and what have I actually done?”. I need a little mid week motivation so every Wednesday I’m going to share the week’s WIPs with you. Now I’m not going to promise that I’ll have a lot to share but at least if it’s in black and white it will make me realise what I’ve managed to achieve or give me the kick up the bum I need to work through my crafty to do list.
This week I’ve been working on a little EPP project. It started out as a doodle a few nights ago while I was watching tv.
But then I remembered I had some precious Lucie Summers overprints that I’d been saving for something special and a few scraps of solids that just by chance coordinated perfectly, so my little doodle is now destined to be a cushion.
Sunday was sewing club day so off I went with my biscuit tin of EPP goodies (aren’t biscuit tins just the best!) and had a lovely relaxing day stitching away. I’ve got one more piece to join then it will be finished but I just can’t decide what to use for the background and the back of the cushion? Something plain and neutral like a cream or grey? Or do I go for something a bit wilder? All opinions gratefully received.
How’s your crafty week working out? I’d love to here about your WIPs so feel free to share them in the comments
Over the past few months my life has become increasingly hectic and with everything going on juggling family and my JAK & GEEGEE shop has become very difficult. After a lot of consideration I have decided to close my Etsy shop, leaving me more time to spend on my blog which I love writing, time with the monsters and Sean and (more importantly) I’ll have more time to sew just for fun. I’ve got a long list of projects that I’m desperate to have a go at but sewing for the shop has meant my poor list has simply been forgotten. A new year and a new sewing room have made me realise now is the time to start really enjoying sewing again.
So my big plans for 2014 are
- Close my Etsy shop
As of 31/1/14 my JAK & GEEGEE Etsy shop will be closed, my sale will be on until then so make sure if there are any items you want head to my shop before the 31/1/14.
- Teach Monster no1 to sew.
We started a pin wheel cushion in 2013 so we’ll be finishing that.
- Work through my crafty to do list.
I’m not going to share my list now, partly because it’s forever growing, but also I’ll be sharing each project with you as I go so don’t want to ruin the surprise.
- Make my own clothes.
Last August I had a bit of a reality check and realised that I needed to lose some weight and get fit again. I started following a Paleo lifestyle and trying to exercise more, which is probably one of the best things I’ve done in a long time. I’ve managed to lose 2 1/2 stone and dropped 2 dress sizes, I’ve got so much more energy and feel better in myself. Anyway, now that I’m not a blimp and actually a size I want to stay at, I figure it’s time to start making myself some clothes. The added bonus being I’ll need less fabric now that I’m smaller . To be honest I’m a little scared of this plan as I don’t really have a clue about making clothes that actually fit properly but we all have to start somewhere and thankfully my lovely sewing club buddy Rachel Pinheiro as volunteered to help me, Phew!
- Exercise more.
Self explanatory really. The weight I’ve lost has been 90% diet so it’s time to get toning, if you’re a mum reading this you can imagine the amount of work I’ve got to do on my jelly belly lol. I’m just hoping I can crochet while on a bike at the gym, multitasking at its best right?
- Blog at least once a week.
I do love my little blog, even if my mums the only reader (thanks mum xxx), but I have neglected you in 2013 only writing sporadically. Well this year I will write once a week, even if it’s just to say I’ve been lazy and not got anything crafty done. Honesty is the best policy after all.
I think I’ve got plenty to keep me busy, I feel better just writing it all down and am really looking forward to the year ahead. Have you got any big crafty plans for 2014? I’d love to hear about them!
Happy New Year! I hope you all had a fabulous break and Father Christmas bought you everything you wished for.
My Christmas, well actually the whole of December was pretty insane. Monster no2 turned 3, 2 of our closest friends got married, oh and we moved house………..the weekend before Christmas. As I’m starting to write this I now understand why people were acting like I was insane on hearing our plans.
I’ve known my friend Jess since I was at uni, we met at our Saturday job and have been close friends since. A few years ago her and her lovely husband (eek!) Louie moved away for his work so the wedding meant a trip to Liverpool for us. I mean how perfect was that the week before Christmas, a cheeky trip to a beautiful city, maybe squeeze in a bit of shopping and then home in time for a big family Christmas at ours. Well that was my plan when we got our invite earlier in the year but then the beginning of November Sean came home and announced we were being relocated to Hampshire. Lucky girl you may think but here comes the best bit, we would be moving before Christmas. Now imagine me frantically driving backwards and forwards from Kent to Hampshire to find a house, school and nursery. Well I managed it but the only day we could move in was the day AFTER the wedding. So no shopping for me
Thanks to lots of help from my amazing mum, dad, sister and friend Sam I somehow managed to get us moved and to the wedding without any major catastrophes. We had a great time at the wedding, Jess looked amazing and I’m so glad we got to share such a special day with them.
As a wedding present I made a pixelated heart quilt. All the patterned fabric used in the quilt top were “love” themed and for the back I used the last of my Ikea number print.
After the wedding we had a few days to unpack and Christmasify (that’s a real word you know) the new house ready for our 5 guests arriving Christmas Eve and Christmas dinner for 11 of us Christmas Day.
Luckily I’d planned ahead when it came to making Christmas presents for everyone and just about managed to get everything finished before having to pack up all my sewing stuff for the move.
My mum loves anything nautical, the more anchors the better, so I chose a navy nautical print from Sevenberry for her quilted clutch. I also added a little zippered pocket inside which I lined with a bright pink and orange stripe fabric I had in my stash.
I also made a few smaller gifts which I didn’t get a chance to photograph.
The best thing about the move for me was my sewing room. I finally have my own (very small) room, all to myself, just for me to fill with all my sewing goodies. Hopefully now the monsters are back at school and things are settling down I can start putting my room to good use and get sewing, I’ve got lots of crafty plans for 2014.
Sorry I’ve been quiet, I’ve been very busy making lots but unfortunately it’s all Christmas gifts so I can’t tell you about them yet!
I can finally give you an update on Monster no2′s Wreck-It Ralph quilt. It’s the monsters birthday today, he managed to make it to the grand old age of 3! I feel like this past year has just flown by and he has really grown up and become so much more confident in himself, I think that has a lot to do with him starting nursery which he loves.
Monster number 2 is a die hard Wreck-It Ralph fan, we have to watch it everyday, sometimes even twice. In the UK there doesn’t seem to be many Wreck-It toys available so I decided to make him a Wreck-It themed quilt. You can see how I started planning here.
It took me a while to get it finished as I could only sew when he was at nursery or in bed (he stopped napping when he was 1) so it meant a lot of night sewing, but I managed to get it done in time…..just. I wanted to be as organised as possible for this project so I cut all my fabric first and bagged up each colour separately. I’m so glad I took this approach as it made piecing so much quicker. I split the quilt into 5 sections, each character was a block and then the large band of black in the middle. I opted for a black binding so that it didn’t detract from the characters and used a fun bright red star print for the backing. The quilt top was all Kona Solids from Robert Kaufman and the back was a bargain I found on EBay.
I really struggled to decide how best to quilt it, I didn’t want to ruin the pixelated look of the characters but fancied going for straight lines. In the end I went for horizontal lines for the black and then for the characters I followed the features of the faces in coordinating colours. This left the back with fun abstract versions of the characters.
Overall I’m really pleased with how it turned out but the most important opinion belongs to Monster no2.
I think he likes it, he’s currently snuggled up in bed with it.
After having 6 super excited, sugar filled kids running round all afternoon/evening I’m off to crash out on the sofa and watch The Lone Ranger with the hubby.
Oh before I go look at the amazing cake my super amazing friend Sam made for Monster no2, it’s a chocolate Brownie Piñata cake.
When you cut it open sweets fall out of the centre, SO TASTY! Thank you so much Sam you’re a star x