Dance like no one is watching.
Blog like no one is reading.

Thursday, 26 May 2016

Long Post About Lots of Bags!

I was playing around the other day with a bit of freehand machine embroidery, and I created this portrait.  There was something about it that I liked, but I was a bit stuck on what to do with it.  I thought I could turn it into a brooch but thought I might feel a bit too 'arty' wearing it; so I made a bag.

I used some more of the scrap linen fabric that was leftover from underlining my last make and just attached the felt backed embroidery to the front.

It is a teeny tiny bag!  More of a purse really.

The second bag that I made was mainly using three pairs of old jeans.  I appliqued the front of the bag by cutting out random boat and wave shapes and sewing them onto a plain cotton backing.

The bag is lined with fabric from a duvet cover.  I had a bit leftover after using it a few years ago to back a quilt

The back of the bag is where I might have gone a bit crazy.  I just wanted to make use of all those pockets!

Pockets in action!

I was happy with the bag, but I had purposely appliqued the shapes quite a way inside the cut line.  This is because those big waves looked far too calm when completed.  Neat - but calm.  The idea was to put the completed bag in the washing machine with a lot of towels and then tumble dry it with dryer balls to agitate, agitate, agitate.  The denim then frays to reveal the white warp (or is it the weft?) threads in the jeans resulting in a lovely white foam crest of the wave. 

The before and after shots.  I love the neatness of the first but there is just something about the drama of the end result that I love.

Finally (if you are still reading!) I made a bag for a friend.  She handed me a bag of sewing notions that she had retrieved from her grandmother's house as they were clearing her belongings; she gave the notions to me as she knew I would make use of them.  I am always honoured when I receive things like this and I wanted to make something in return.  The bag I made is on the left there in the above montage. 

My friend also gave me a few pieces of clothing she no longer wore, and I used the floral fabric from one of her tops for the front of the bag.  The main body of the bag uses the last remnants of black flannel I had after making a dress and a skirt; and the lining is the last of the remaining fabric I had from the pink jacket of my last refashion.   The purple button used for decorative purposes was from my friend's grandmother's lovely button box, pictured top right. 

Phew that's a lot of bags, a lot of links and a lot of photos.  If you have reached the end of all that I applaud you! :)

Wednesday, 4 May 2016

I was about to take photos when I thought, 'I could make a hat as well'.

Is it too much?  Surely not.

I wanted to make an outfit specifically for wearing on the beach this summer.  I sort of had a fifties playsuit mix and match idea going on in my head and decided to make a start on a simple top and shorts.

Only the shorts are from a vintage pattern.  It's 'Woman Easy-Makes' pattern MP.11, which I have redrafted from my earlier version after watching a trouser fitting class on Craftsy.  They now sit very nicely on my natural waist and have more room pretty much everywhere but the hips, which has proved successful... and comfortable!

The back view.

The top is View A, Butterick B6182, which is a modern Lisette pattern and the hat is View B, Burda 7685.  No brand loyalty here!

The entire outfit is underlined with a cream cotton linen.  Time will tell if it will prove to be too layered.  I chose to underline it as I thought I might wear it over a light coloured swimsuit which I didn't want to show through.

I only had two metres of this yellow stripe linen fabric which I purchased some time ago on a trip to Hereford (Doughty's).  As you can see I used it from the top to bottom to place the top and shorts pattern pieces on the straight grain.  The bits you can see uncovered are all that I had left - which is why it was a bit mad this morning to think I could also make a sunhat to match.

It was a tight squeeze fitting it on the leftover pieces - as you can see in the photo above.  

Isn't it typical that my best pattern matching of the stripes is on the back of the hat.  I have taken a photo for posterity as I will not be able to admire my luck skills when worn. :)

Although, as they say, even a stopped clock is right twice a day and so I decided to use the photo above...

... to show that I have a matching line running down the entire ensemble... as long as I always stand like this!