Tuesday, 31 July 2012

We have a winner!

It's time to pick a winner for my Sisterhood of the Travelling Sewing Book giveaway, with a little help from random number generator. Drumroll please.....

Congratulations to daisymarmalade who says:

 "I would love the Mollie Makes magazine if I win, thanks."

One MollieMakes heading your way Daisy...please drop me an email with your address :)

Has anyone been watching the Olympics? I have been enjoying some of the more random sports - beach vollyball in the rain anyone?! And didn't our gymnastics boys do well. Sadly we did not manage to get tickets to watch any of the events (not from lack of trying!!), although we are going to see the Paralympics athletics in a few weeks time. Exciting stuff. I'm getting quite sucked into this whole olympics business...come on Team GB!! However, for the next few days I will be heading off to what will pretty much be an olympics free zone, as I am going to a spa with my mum. Mmmm relaxation! :) See you on the other side!

K xx

Saturday, 28 July 2012

A Sneaky Peak!

Hello Everyone! I hope you are all enjoying this lovely and sunny weekend! I am taking advantage of the beautiful weather and am off to a BBQ. But firstly, after a bit of a stitching drought, I am pleased to report that I have been sewing! But what is it?!

You'll just have to wait and see! Any guesses?! (Not those who know of my sewing plans - that would be cheating!!). I should point out that I have a fuller bust than Diana here...this actually fits me very well, I am most pleased.

Also if you haven't checked out my giveaway yet it's not too late - you have until midnight tonight. Look out for a winner (or maybe even winners) tomorrow! Have a peak to find out which knitting and crafting magazine's I'm passing on as part of The Sisterhood of the Travelling Sewing Book.

K xx

Saturday, 21 July 2012

The Sisterhood of the Traveling Sewing Book + a giveaway

You may have read about "The Sisterhood of the Traveling Sewing Book" over at House of Pinheiro. A few weeks ago, at the Summer Sewist Soiree, Rachel and I were chatting about how we have so many lovely patterns and books sitting on the shelf that we are not currently using, and what a shame this was. The Rachel hit on the idea of the traveling sewing book (see The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants for the name inspiration!). The basic idea is that we share books and magazines that we are not currently using with other bloggers. Share the knowledge! So Rachel has kindly kicked things off by sending me this fantastic book (and a lovely pattern too, so kind!)

The book is packed full of lots of hints and tips, and well as some patterns. There are wonderfully clear diagrams, and I can't wait to have a good read!

So I will be holding onto this book for a while, and soaking up the knowledge! After that, I will pass the book on to another lucky sewist (not sure how this will be determined...probably giveaway style) for them to enjoy and then pass on. In the front of the book we will write our names, so we can see where the book has travelled too!

Rachel suggests that bloggers hold on to the book for no more than one year. So this is a long term project! However, in the short term (i.e. now!) I have two magazines which I would like to pass on to spread the crafty joy.

Lot One

First up, for the knitters out there, is an issue of Debbie Bliss Knitting Magazine from Fall/Winter 2009.

This magazine is full of patterns for lovley snuggly jumpers...great to make a start for winter (or even now for those living in the slightly chilly UK! Here are a few of my favourites:

Just look at that Fair Isle sweater! And how cute are the booties and monkey scarf! There are also some handy hints on how to knit with multiple colours as required for Fair Isle.

Lot 2

Second up is issue 9 of Mollie Makes.

This magazine is full of crafty inspiration and lots of cute projects, including a rainbow quilt and a faux fur collor (by Sarai from Colette Patterns!)

If you think you can give either of these magazines a lovely new home, and most importantly make good use of them, leave me a comment saying which you would like, and I'll get random number generator to pick the lucky winners. Let's say you have a week, so until Saturday 28th July. I am happy to send anywhere, oh and to be in with a chance you need to be a follower of my blog. I will be so pleased to see these magazines being put to use rather than languishing on my bookshelf!

K xx

Saturday, 7 July 2012

Commuter Crafting

It may seem as if not a lot of knitting has been going on in these parts over recent months, but that is not the case! I have been quietly beavering away and am making really great progress with two knitting projects. How is it that I have the time to knit but so little time to sew? Ah. That would be the train. Three months ago I started a new job and went from being able to cycle to work to having a 40-50 minute train journey twice a day. I don't mind the train, but I do get bored if I have nothing to occupy myself (a daily scan of the Metro only takes so long!). I have always enjoyed knitting on the train, but now I have taken it to a whole new level and I am AMAZED at how quickly things knit up when you have a dedicated hour or so a day to work on them.

Project 1: Letitia Jumper designed by Sarah Hatton from Issue 42 of The Knitter. This is a gorgeous lightweight jumper...I guess ideal for spring but I am going with autumn!

I am using a 100% cotton yarn from Patons which is actually a beautiful deep red rather than the fluorescent pink it looks like - I promise! In about 2 months I have completed the back and one sleeve - so about half way through. I love how it is looking so far, with the eyelet stitch detail and also the lacy yoke which hopefully you can see better in the close-up below. I am very excited to finish this jumper!

Project 2: Orlaith the Owl cushion from The Ultimate Knitting Stylebook. I picked this book up from Sainsbury's a few months ago much to the amusement of my boyfriend, who described it as an expensive magazine. However, I am so glad I did. This book is far more than a magazine, a collection of over 70 knit and crochet patterns all in one place. There is so much in here that I want to knit, but those of you who know my lifelong love of owls will not be at all surprised with the first project I chose...

Such a cute owl cushion! I have gone for a slightly muted colour palette compared to the photograph and am basing it on purples and reds - such a great way to use up scraps of yarn!

This has now been relegated from a train project to a home project since the front requires multiple balls of wool and I just know I would get into a tangled mess on the train (I manage to get into a tangled mess at home equally as well, however, at least I am unlikely to need to make a speedy exit from the sofa, and there tend to be less people around for me to tie up in knots with the multiple balls!).

I am very glad that even though my new job means I have less time to sew, it also means I have more time to knit. I never seem to get any funny looks knitting on the train either - people must be used to it by now!!!

Do you knit on the train? Or do any other form of crafting on the go? I would be really interested in your recommendations of portable projects!

K xx 

Monday, 2 July 2012

FO: Renfrew Revelations

Hello everyone, and happy Monday. Today I am going to share with you my first foray into sewing jersey. Actually, that’s a lie...technically this is jersey mark 2, but I had a bit of a disaster with Renfrew #1 so I prefer to pretend it never happened. I started out with some bright purple jersey I bought in Walthamstow for the bargainous price of £2 a metre (at that price, how could I resist!). Remembering the price makes me feel better about the disastrous Renfrew. The stitching was all over the place, the fabric was all caught up, and I almost broke a needle sewing over twill was not good. I have actually worn this top, as PJs, but I’m too ashamed to show it to you! This however, Renfrew #2, is a thing of beauty.

For this I must thank Marie, who has been sewing up a jersey storm recently – check it out if you haven’t already....this is what I’m talking about! After hearing Marie rave about jersey, I knew I had to try it. I was so excited. But when things did not quite go to plan, I was in despair and I told Marie that jersey was not my friend. A few bits of advice later, and jersey and I have a vastly improved relationship. Who knew there was such thing as a jersey needle??! So yes, Renfrew #2 was a much more pleasant experience! It wasn’t just the needle, I think the practice and also taking care to stretch the fabric where required was also helpful. Practice makes perfect, or so they say.

This Renfrew is by no means perfect. But it is getting there. I used a gorgeously thick deep green jersey that I received from the lovely Handmade Jane in the Walthamstow Swap. There wasn’t much of it however, so I had to piece it together in all sorts of places, for example down the centre back seam. There is also a slightly skewed join visible on the front colour. However, I quite like these “details”, as I prefer to call them! The collar in particular, I would love to pin a large bow made out of the same jersey in a kind of 50s/Mad Men style – I can totally see it. Not sure I have enough jersey left for this though sadly.

Second time round, I found this pattern really easy to follow. Tasia’s method of attaching the bands is really neat and tidy. In the absence of an overlocker, I zig-zag stitched along all the seams. This took a LOT of thread, but sorts out all those raw edges just lovely. This pattern is a great one for basics and I am sure that I will be whipping up many more of these in future. This version has a round neck and ¾ length sleeves, but there is a whole heap of sleeve and neck combinations to be made. I am particularly looking forward to trying the cowl neck version – but it’s a bit too warm at the moment (yes really!).

Before I head off, I must mention my lovely Sunday! Melizza over at Pincushion Treats kindly invited a group of up over to her gorgeous flat. We drank cocktails, ate cake (lots of cake) and chatted about sewing, blogging, running and all sorts. It was wonderful to spend the afternoon in the company of such a lovely group of ladies: House of Pinheiro, Dibs, So Zo, Shivani, Miss D, Karen, Camilla and of course Melizza. Read a write up of the afternoon with some yummy cake pictures here over at Did You Make That. Thanks for a fab time everyone J

K xx


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