Tuesday, 25 September 2012

A Little Vintage Inspiration

Its always nice when you go somewhere and get a little bit more than you bargained for. The other Sunday, on a normal day out to Sheringham, we stumbled across a 1940's steam day. Of course the junior members of the family weren't interested in the slightest by a parade of military vehicles and lots of people dressed up from that era. Their main focus was on the beach, playground and ice creams. In that order. So I left Mr B for half an hour to take a quick wander through the town and see what was going on.
It was great to see so many people turn out in their finery for the day and I have to say I've never seen so many dead foxes hung around ladies necks in my life. Glad that is a fashion that hasn't resurfaced.
Everyone had got into the spirit of things and there was a fantasic atmosphere to the place.

I don't know whether that has directly influenced the last weeks makes or not. Not that I've stuck to the 1940's, but I seem to have definitely taken on a retro vibe. Now this thing is out of my life:

Bye Bye Baritone...

My evenings are once again free for making stuff. So stuff I have made.

A rather smart set of decoupage coasters:

A new batch of notebooks in the same theme:

And a lovely bag made with vintage style linen , with a silk lining and an over sized purse frame.

I love being back in the swing of things. Even starting to think about the C word...

Friday, 14 September 2012

First foray into dressmaking

I've had a couple of goes at very simple making of clothes before (to call it dressmaking would be overstating previous attempts drastically!) but its never really interested me. Considering I spend a fair number of evenings plonked behind my sewing machine making one thing or another there has to be a reason. There are several. Firstly I like projects I can finish in an evening, I like the instant gratification. Plus clothes are so cheap these days that to buy a pattern and material often works out considerably more expensive than just going out and buying it. So I've never bothered.
However Project Corset is getting closer and before I launch into that I wanted to give myself a run up as it were. So I had a look at the Simplicity patterns which were half price at the time -might still be- and ordered a dress pattern. I bought a gorgeous dress a few week previous in a similar style, but at the moment I can't afford anymore. Now I can make as many as I like.
There we go! Its not perfect, but I have learnt, we who make see the imperfections most people don't. I'll happily wear it and that's the most important things. So if you can cut round a patterns, use a sewing machine and follow instructions, there's nothing to it! (Well its probably more complex than that, but I'm not looking to become a tailor..)

Just a shame I've made a summer dress just a little too late in the year!

Saturday, 8 September 2012

Back to school

So, its been a busy few weeks. I have been missing my crafting recently as I've been overloaded with work, not to mention entertaining two children during the summer holidays. But having almost beaten an errant baritone saxophone into submission, and Wilbsy off to school for the first time this week, normal service has been resumed.
I have been able to fit in a few little things though. Still loving those little felt top hat fascinators I mentioned in my last post and I'm starting to line them up on my shelf now.
Find the pattern at www.fleecefun.com

Further along the shelf I found this pair swept in by a tornado.
The pattern for this was from the new 'Everything Oz' book. I have quite an extensive list of things I want to make from this one more so than the previous book 'Everything Alice'. Still full of quirky and ingenious makes and bakes, I have been itching to get started on this one.

Now, a while back I make a red polka dot satchel from Lisa Lam's book 'A Bag For All Reasons'.

It is gorgeous and striking, but at a price. The hardware and interfacing made it an expensive bag to make which is fine if I was keeping it for myself, but not so great for sale. Sometimes the cost of the bits mounts up more than we expect, so if you want to sell something and make a bit of profit out of it too, you need to start thinking a bit more ingeniously. I regularly trawl eBay for less expensive parts, but never forget your local craft shop either, eBay isn't always the cheapest place.
So this is my version, a little more purse friendly.
I used different sliders and rectangular O rings for the strap, and replaced the lovely metal catches with leather straps and buckles.

Instead of the double sided fusible interfacing of the original which weighs in at a hefty £5 per 1/2 metre, I used an extra heavy iron on interfacing which has done the job nicely. And the lovely sage green polka dot fabric, well that was eBay and slightly less expensive than the red.
So this version looks just as smart as the expensive one but cost about half as much to make.
Hurrah for thriftyness!