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Category Archives: Beginnings

Beginning of the blog, this is the mission statement

Drafting my own pattern

i decided that I need to start using up my fabric stash by actually making some clothes. I can’t keep pawing the nice fabric and googling interesting patterns forever, I need to just bite the bullet and, you know, SEW THE DAMN THINGS.

but what do I want to sew? That stumped me. I want to make some dresses and another pencil skirt, but in a different pattern to the last one. And I want some t-shirts that look well-made-not-made-by-accident. I do wear a couple of the tops I made earlier, but I’m not completely happy with the fit or the neck line.

The other problem I have is patterns. I’ve got a few that are ok, but I really wanted some raglan sleeve tops like thatDress-turned-into-a-top I altered . But I don’t have a pattern for that.

i KNOW. I thought. I will MAKE MY OWN PATTERN. must be easy.

i started drafting it last weekend, rolled out the giant roll of drawing paper belonging to the children and traced out the first piece. And was then joined by a toddler who wanted to join in.

 

image

He traced a few lines then demanded that i trap round his hand a few times.

Anyway, I rolled the paper back up and left it for another day. Today!  I have now traced out the back piece and the sleeves.

image

All I have to do now is mark it out properly on squared paper to make the lines straight and transfer it on to fabric.

 

which is another story really. I have LOADS of 1 metre lengths. In my head, that should be plenty for a top. Going by the patterns I have, tops seem to need about 1.5 metres AT LEAST. Another part of drafting my own pattern was a determined/headstrong thought that SURELY I could do a top in s metre. Surely.

i will let you know…

Mission Statement

So here’s the grand plan: make use of the sewing machine and knitting needles.  Create lovely crafty Nice Things.  And then put them on the wall or use them.

I inherited a sewing machine from my Great Aunt about ten years ago.  It’s a Singer machine of indeterminate age and is attached to a giant wooden cupboard.  The sewing machine folds in/out of the cupboard, leaving enough storage space for thread, bobbins, the instructions and two very, very large pairs of incredibly sharp scissors.  It was slightly daunting to be given the machine, I’d only expressed a slight inclination to sew after I had rather cack-handedly made my own 6th year “ball gown”. I hadn’t expected anyone to take me seriously so to be given a this beast of a piece of furniture was very unexpected.  I left it at my parents’ house and ignored it for a few years until just before Christmas when my Mother’s desire to get rid of it and my desire to create collided and the machine now lurks underneath my stairs, like a great brooding monster waiting for fabric to eat.

I kept saying to myself that when I get hold of the machine, I’ll make use of it.  So, here we go!  The plan is to make:

  • an endless number of cushion covers
  • bunting for a baby’s room
  • clothes for baby (and me)
  • more cushion covers

I will update as I go.

And the other part of the blog?  Knitting!  I caught the bug again nearly three years ago when I was inbetween jobs and needed to entertain myself inbetween episodes of Extreme Makeover:Home Edition.  The mania resulted in me committing myself to a patchwork blanket.  All in, it took me 9 months to knit and sew together and it now lives on the back of a chair, all lovely and snuggly and ready to be whipped out at a moment’s notice as I say “what, this? do you like it? I KNITTED IT!”  I knitted squares of moss stitch, cable stitch, purl, and all the other stuff too.  I would like to think it’s a work of art, but it’s more of a labour of love to be honest.  But it was mine, all mine!

detail cable stitch

Since then, I’ve knitted two small blankets – one for my niece and one for my nephew – and two cardigans for my daughter.  The first cardigan didn’t go very smoothly, the instructions were slightly confusing and the arms resemble cardboard tubes… The second cardigan is much more wearable and she will be squeezed into it until the stitches burst.

The plan is to keep knitting, but try slightly easier and quicker patterns.  The plan is to knit:

  • bigger cardigans to keep up with the growing child
  • knit a cushion cover, with cable stitches
  • knit something for me to wear

So that is the plan. I will add photographs as I go.