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Tuesday, 14 April 2015

Merchant & Mills The Top #64

For Christmas a couple of years back my daughter bought me this Merchant & Mills pattern, in the past when I have bought their patterns online they have arrived in a cardboard tube and the pattern pieces are made of card, you can read of my previous M & M patterns here http://finelinenandpurple.blogspot.co.uk/search?q=Merchant+%26+mills

The designs are beautiful and their shop and website sell fantastic fabrics and haberdashery items. 
For Mother's Day my daughter gave me a voucher for Cloth House, a really quaint fabric shop in London, where I bought this spotty Indian fabric to make the top. 

I know I have made a mistake around the neck as my interfacing was too short so I added a bit in and although the neck is wider than it should be, it looks ok and I'm really pleased with the result. 

Next time I will buy some thicker fabric and make a shirt for the winter, hopefully I will get it right then!

 I have found a really helpful blog on www.raystitch.co.uk they have made this same pattern and have written a review on it and now I know I have to figure out the sleeve part of the pattern correctly to get the neck right :)




                    




Wednesday, 1 April 2015

Summer Tops

I bought this beautiful vintage seersucker fabric some time back from a charity shop. There was at least two metres of each colour, the light colour is actually white not pink as it looks in the top photo.
I knew at some point I would find a purpose for it. 

So when I came across this lovely pattern on www.purlbee.com I knew the fabric would be perfect. Of course I would have to run that past a couple of little girls first :)

The pattern is for a dress or top depending on the age of the child, so I made tops for the twins. I haven't seen them wearing them yet but hope to get a photo soon.

I used French seams all around, made the bias binding with one of those little gadgets and hand smocked the top.

The pattern was so simple and clear to understand and the fabric was great to work with. 

                                     

                                     

                                     

                         



Wednesday, 25 March 2015

Red Oak Quilts

I love making these quilts with linen and handquilting them with sashiko thread, apart from the ease of cutting and sewing the actual making up of this design is so quick!

The quilt photo which is taken outside actually shows the true colours better than my last post, the blue is more of a teal than blue.

I decided to leave a bigger gap between the quilting which added to the speed of finishing the quilt

I have also chosen a new name for my quilts as they don't really fit in with my etsy shop which is mainly for children's items. 

I quite like using names from nature and so chose Red Oak Quilts, I love the leaf shape of the Red Oak tree. As I find it so hard to find the right labels I decided to have a rubber stamp made and then stamp my own labels on to fabric with fabric ink and then sealing them with an iron. I'm not sure how long these labels will last but as quilts are not washed too often I am hoping the ink won't fade too much

                 


                 




Thursday, 19 March 2015

another star quilt on the go

I have started another star quilt made from the Irish linen that my son gave me from one of his photo shoots
I love working with this fabric and am using colours that I would never usually choose which I think is always a good thing...to be given something other than what I would usually use makes me think more outside the box.
The cutting out and piecing together of the quilt top takes only a little time, I could put together the whole quilt in a day and then take time to hand quilt the layers. 
I'm really enjoying using the Sashiko thread, it stitches so well through the layers using a long Sashiko needle.

This quilt is smaller than the blue and red quilt that I made for my son (featured a few posts back) and would be ideal for a child or on the sofa




Tuesday, 17 March 2015

Mothers Day UK

Mothers Day is  a time of mixed feelings for me, I miss my mother and MIL so much and am so thankful for all that they were to us and our family. I also miss seeing my daughters but know that they are celebrating their own mothers day with their children, those in SA celebrate the day on the same date as those in USA. On Saturday we took a trip into London to meet up with our sons and DIL and enjoyed a lovely brunch together. 

1976


I was sent this photo for Mothers Day all the way from SA (thank goodness for 'whatsapp')
Joe and Jesse are i the centre, our adopted grandsons, baby Hudson has been with our daughter and SIL for over twelve months now, we are praying that there will be an adoption in the near future. The two girls are living in a children's home at the moment and sped time with our daughters family, they would love to adopt them too at some time.
I received beautiful hand drawn cards from the munchkins below :)

Gilby Skipp

Primrose & Maggie
They look different in this photo but they really arent!

Tuesday, 10 March 2015

Cyprus 2015

Well I hope you are ready for a few holiday snaps!
We have just returned from another trip to Cyprus, we have friends who are Greek Cypriots and have a house near Larnaca, which they kindly let us use, we went last year on our own and this year took some other friends with us
Our first day was my husbands birthday so in the evening we walked up to the old part of the village and ate a lovely meal in a sweet taverna 

We took a lovely walk up to a high point with beautiful views across the bay

The temperatures reach around 40 degrees in the summer which I would find hard to enjoy, this time of year the evenings are chilly but the days are around 18-20 reaching 25 towards the end of our visit perfect for site seeing

We drove up to the capitol city, Nicosia which has a border established between Turkish occupied north and the Cypriot occupied south. That's hubby attempting to climb the UN border! 

These photos are the older part of the city

We drive from Nicosia up into the Troodos mountains leaving behind the 22 degrees and driving up to 2 degrees where the skiers were enjoying the snow

Shots of Larnaca

We managed to find a lovely pottery in the old part of Larnaca

The architecture makes for lovely photos

We drove up to the lace making town or Lefkara

We managed a drive down to Pafos, stopping off to visit some archeological sites on the way



The sea was so inviting but still pretty cold, we did manage a quick swim though!

It was so much fun going with our friends who we have known since 1982 when we were in church together in Devon














Thursday, 26 February 2015

Grandchildren makes

I love making items for my grandchildren and other babies, before Gilby's birthday, my daughter sent me the top left picture of a little leather waistcoat with a pocket on the back for arrows :)
The little boy does look a little like Gilby from the back. 
I couldn't find any leather so chose faux leather fabric which had faux sheepskin on the reverse, I decided to use the sheepskin as the outer side of the waistcoat and the 'leather' side for the pocket on the back. I used some embroidery stitches on my machine to stitch a pattern around the edge of the waistcoat. Finishing the waistcoat off with an old wooden toggle from my button tin :)
The photo I have of Gilby wearing the waistcoat was a little too dark to use


With a new grandson due at the beginning of May I have been busy knitting and sewing for him too

This little jacket is from a pattern book I bought when my children were young and the jacket is a favourite of mine, knitted in one piece and can be worn with the button at the front or back. It's a French pattern  book by Pingouin.