I live and craft in England (or perhaps “live to craft...”?). I love colour and I love pretty things.
I must have been a magpie or a butterfly in a previous life, such is my attraction to colourful and shiny stuff (aka, pretty, shiny things).
This blog is my attempt to make sense, and keep track, of what I make.
confessions of a fabric obsessive
Tag Archives: Sewing
I saw a tutorial for this book bag on Sew, Mama, Sew:
and it started off a desire to make myself a library book bag complete with pocket for my library card.
Knowing I had some of this fabric:
in two colours, I decided to go for it.
I also saw a tutorial (on Betz White’s blog – I love Betz White) to upcycle cotton totes by using them as a lining for a more interesting bag. Two tutorials means two bags. Jump to my previous post for details of the original tutorials that I followed to make my upcycled bags, and to see the story so far.
Bag number 1
Ta-da, boring bag used as inside of interesting book bag. I love this bag, and the pocket on the outside is so useful. It usually houses my library card and the little receipts that I can print off at my local library with a summary of what books I still owe them. It is currently sitting on the floor next to my computer, full of books that need to go back to the college (where I work, I’m a college tutor/lecturer now) and to the university (where I’m a part-time teacher training student) libraries. So useful, and the pattern on the fabric defines is sue for me, which is always useful when you have memory issues like mine (aka, mind like a sieve!)
Bag number 2
This is as far as I got! The idea of appliqué was a good one, but I’m not an appliqué kinda girl . I may get round to it, I may not. I’m not even sure where it is.
What more is there to add? I have a new bag and it makes me happy.
Interesting bag-related posts from other bloggers (and one of two of my own):
Project Upcycle: An Online Class on Craftsy Taught by Betz White (whileshenaps.typepad.com)
Painted Heart Bag (craftzine.com)
Boxed-Bottom Tote Bag Tutorial (skylarchastain.wordpress.com)
It’s a Bag Marathon (girlwithjavacurls.typepad.com)
Butterfly Tote Bag (mindfuldrawing.com)
I wanna new bag…. (handmadebyclairebear.com)
Upcycle project – skirt into shoulder bag (handmadebyclairebear.com)
The last few weeks (or maybe longer) my life has been full of job applications, job interviews, clearing out the house and tidying up what’s left. I rearranged my back room/study/computer room/boxroom a while ago on a whim, quickly shoving stuff into carrier bags to get them out of the way so I could paint the ceilings and the walls. I couldn’t put off unpacking those bags and putting away the contents properly any longer.
I’ve had to get on with organising myself in case I actually get offered one of the (fab) teaching jobs I’ve applied for, as well as the one-evening-a-week placement I’ve already been offered so that I can do my Certificate in Education (UK qualification that allows/qualifies me to teach adults). I went for a job interview, got offered a placement and a mentor for the course. Not a bad result, but I still need a paying job.
If I manage to pull this off, I would be teaching an evening class one evening a week, attending university a day a week both during term time and working a “normal” job four days a week as well. I say a four days a week because I know my limits and a part-time course, part-time placement on to of a full-time five-day-a-week job would be way too much for me to handle. Not that I’m panicking at all (maybe just a little bit, eeek!)
Not much sewing has been done since I finished this bathmat.
In fact, absolutely no sewing at all has been done. My whole life has been a no sew zone (sniff).
My WIPs are in exactly the same parlous state they were last month and now threatening to take over my living room. I sew in my living room: it has a lot of daylight and no-one moans about all my fabric. My Pile Of Shame (aka my mending) is still as embarrassingly shameful as it was last time I posted a photo of it so I won’t bore you with that one.
I know that I haven’t shown you my upcycled bags (mostly because I haven’t finished the purple one), and there are probably a few other things that have temporarily escaped my mind.
I am still incredibly behind on my Block of the Months (Blocks of the Month?). I wasn’t going to post about the new BOM for July (where did June go?), but I thought I’d look at the new blocks on Craftsy, if only for entertainment value.
Dresden Plate Blocks, oh dear.
I thought that the hand sewing on the paper piecing blocks back in April would be a stumbling block (sorry for the pun). If you’re wondering what a Dresden Plate block is….
…using parallelograms rather than squares or rectangles (I did tell you that my other life is a maths-teacher-for-adults right?).
Oh dear, oh de
ar oh dear.
and it uses the same idea of piecing parallelograms to make a circle.
Now I have two completely different things to panic about, the July BOM and a potential university course (let me explain that I went to university once, I loved my course, the campus and the wonderful staff, but it didn’t go well, broke my heart to quit and I’m still on the tablets, enough said?).
I even tried to avoid going to university by tracking down the same course on a college campus instead, but the college that used to do the course I now need, now doesn’t. Insert rude word here. In the meantime I have to write a university application, revise my own maths skills to make sure I pass that particular assessment, work on my telephone skills so that I can pass the telephone interview/speaking
and listening assessment for the course after I’ve submitted the application (did I mention I have a slight hearing problem on top of my dyslexia?).
And get a job.
Right now, I can only quote the late (and great) Douglas Adams and Dad’s Army, and a certain poster, towel and mug logo
Organisational Queen (and still slightly panicking,) Claire Bear
( I really wanted to have a bear version of Munch’s “The Scream” instead of my ClaireBear logo here, but…)
Other cool quilting stuff
Although I’ve always admired quilt with circles in and Cathederal Windows blocks in particular, I’ve never done them in any quilt before because circles or curves of any type scare the *** out of me.
I’ve got to say the Amy is a fabulous tutorial writer, but then I should have know that because I’m following her Craftsy Block of the Month course (which I’m hopelessly behind on, but we won’t go there).
Viola, one Cathedral Windows Bathmat, started and finished within 24 hours and I slept for some of that!
I had to wash the print fabric because the cotton towelling I was using was upcycled from a spare bath sheet. I ironed it all properly, and used a dinner plate to cut out the circles. I cut too many circles, it turns out I cut 12 towelling circles when I only needed 9 and I still don’t know what to do with the 9 circles I cut from the stripe fabric.
After posting about this project yesterday, I decided to use the batik print that I love so much (please ignore the state of my bathroom tiles, this is a sewing blog not a diy blog after all!):
Note to self: get larger dinner plates, this would be fab with bigger circles! Also, sewing this with towelling as a backing is harder than I thought, that’s probably why it’s a little wonky. It also probably needs ironing, but is that going to happen?
I’m glad that I decided to do this. I love my new bathmat and I don’t care what anyone else thinks (although if you think it’s lovely too, I wouldn’t mind being told).
I love my new bathmat 🙂