Wednesday, 24 July 2013

Blankets for residential home ready!

They're done!!! I asked the staff and students at the school I work at to help make squares to go towards blankets for my nans residential home. The response was fantastic! One year 8 girl donated enough for a whole blanket on her own! 

I thought This one above would be my least favourite due to the random coloured squares. But I made a few more using a combination of the colours and I think it has become my favourite! 

Thank you to all the people that donated time and wool in making these blankets with me! And my mum and mother in law for helping with the gigantic task of sewing them all together! 

I am sure the ladies and gents at the home will really appreciate them!!! 

Sunday, 21 July 2013

Appliqué fun

This technique of appliqué using bondaweb is very easy and popular amount sewers and crafters. 

Follow the instructions for how to use bondaweb, basically requires a bit of ironing and cutting! 

This panel of the corset features a diamond design, made with appliquéd shapes which I later couched around using cording and embroidery threads. Done on the machine with a zigzag stitch, this creates more of a 3d effect and makes the diamond shapes really stand out! Slightly fiddly to do at the corners. 

With this panel I mixed some appliqué shapes with organza hearts and did some crazy stitching on them to add a bit more interest. 

I hope you have liked seeing some of the creativeness I have been getting up to. A few more panels needed in order to finish the Alice in wonderland corset. I just hope I get the time to finish it before I go!!! 

Painted bondaweb!

Here is a little example of the bondaweb painting I did for another panel of my corset. Simply use fabric paints to paint bondaweb then when dry cut into shapes and iron onto your chosen fabric. 

I then did some free machine embroidery around the hearts to make them stand out. 

I like the rustic look the painted bondaweb gives and this has been one of my favourite techniques to do! Very simple and easy but gorgeous! 

Home made ice lollies

It's been quite warm today so William and I decided to make some ice lollies. Made with mango juice and water and very special rocket moulds! 

After some careful thought ....

William decided they were yummy!!!

We may experiment with yogurt and fruits for our next ones! Hope your all enjoying the nice weather!!


The next technique I have to show you is burning. I am going to use it for my Alice in Wonderland themed corset. I guess you could say this is the same as reverse / cut back appliqué. But more fun as you get to use a soldering iron! 

I Started with a piece of calico, then satin, then layers of organza. I put the fabrics in an embroidery hoop and free machine embroidered spade shapes (as in spades suit from a pack of cards). 

Once I had done all the shapes and tied the thread ends on the back, I used a soldering iron to gently burn away layers of the organza in the middle of the spades. I varied the number of layers of fabric I burnt away on each shape. 

This will be used as a front panel of my corset. When using a soldering iron to burn the fabrics make sure the area is well ventilated as some fabrics can have rather smelly, yucky fumes. If you don't have a soldering iron you could just use scissors to cut through the different layers. 

I'm really enjoying the opportunity to get creative again. Coming up, fun with painted bondaweb, 3D shapes using an embroidery machine and screen printing. 

A bit of creativity!

This term at work we have set our sixth formers the challenge of designing and making a corset based on a film or theatre production. We are hoping it will encourage them to think creatively and try out some more decorative techniques. 

We decided to spur them along by making our own as well. One teacher is doing Charlie and the chocolate factory, another is doing the lion king and I am basing mine on Alice In wonderland. 

This week I started trying out some techniques to use. I took a few pictures as I went along.

This technique is called slashing. I first layered different fabrics on top of each other and created some white rabbit clocks by free machine embroidering them. My friend Sophia did point put they looked like bombs. I then made rows of straight stitching across the whole panel. 

I then used an unpicker and tiny scissors to 'slash' the layers of fabric apart from the bottom layer. I used a piece of sand paper to rough up the fraying slashes but you can pop it in a washing machine and this works well. I didn't as I used various silks and satin fabrics. 

So far so good! I am going to sew small white buttons in the middle of each clock. This will be used as one of the front side panels of the corset. 

It's quite a cool technique you could use to make anything more interesting, like bags, cushions or patchwork throws. 

I have done some more techniques and got a few more photos to post so will do this soon. If you want to have a go at slashing all you need is a few layers of any fabric (obviously ones that fray well), a base layer that is quite sturdy (felt or calico works well), thread, sewing machine, small scissors.

Have fun!

Farmers market knitted specials

On Friday I went along to the bideford farmers market. Usually it's a few local people with the usual fresh veg, cheese, etc. This time they had stalls from all round the world! France, Greece, Poland, turkey, Spain, Malaysia, and others were represented. There were take away paella, noodle dishes, crepes, biscuits, chutneys, jams, homemade breads, flavoured olive oils, spices and loads more. 

One stall caught my eye and I couldn't resist sneaking a photo. 

The hats were fab, some made me chuckle....Like the shark one (hubby calls me sharky nose). The cardigans were pretty amazing though. The work that goes into them and the detail of the appliqué was brilliant. Definitely worth a blog. 

They would only probably look cute on very little ones and since William won't need jumpers much soon I didn't get one. Sorry about the rubbish quality of photos but had to take them quickly with my phone before anyone thought I was being weird! 

Hope you are all enjoying the sunny weekend! More posts to come soon! 

Counting down...

Well we have started having the 'last time we will do this' moments now, leading up to our move to Dubai. 

Yesterday we had our department leaving lunch, gorgeous Thai at a restaurant called Morans in westward ho. The dept got us some lovely gifts, very thoughtful. 

We still have 2 days of work left before they break up for the summer holidays. We are yet to receive our flights so are not sure of how long we have left in the country exactly. 

Today I have been making cakes to take in to work tomorrow, with help from Linda at chalkys world. Lemon cupcakes and Gilbert family secret recipe chocolate brownies! One special lot will be going to Williams childminder for being so lovely, enthusiastic, helpful and caring to William. He has had a fantastic year with her so these are part of selection of thank you presents for her. 

The lemon cupcakes were a Mary berry recipe I found through google. Very yummy! And the box is simply from asda!