Friday, 18 January 2013

Let it snow.

My girl have already clocked that 'mummy doesn't like the snow'. And it has landed here in (by my standards) a major way. But I'm lucky because I don't have to go anywhere in it so I can enjoy it from the inside. Enough said.

Oh, except that this drop in temperature has made it nigh on impossible for me to go into my workshop with its draught still coming in through the door and tiled floor. Even the cats aren't too keen to spend much time in there and I can't say I blame them. Plus an event I was due to have a stand at was cancelled. Good in a way because I didn't fancy driving, but bad in another, because the glam vintage style niceties I had made are still sitting here.
I'd had this purse frame sitting here for ages in the box marked 'must do something with..' Its quite a large frame at about 11 inches and was missing the bobbles on the clasp. This was a case of being hit by inspiration and was surprisingly simple to make. Just draw up a template for the frame and sew on a few layers of fringe for a 1920's look. The only tip is to stick down the fringing with masking tape so it doesn't get caught up as you're sewing the outer together and gluing it into the frame.

This one is a small clutch bag, the pattern comes from 'Bags- the modern classics' by Sue Kim, which is a nice book with simple to follow patterns. I've made a three or four bags and purses out of this book now and all with good results. But, if anyone has this book and knows what the seam allowances are, please tell me! I've been back and forth through the book and I still can't find the answer!

Finally is this little clam shell purse. You can buy the frame from eBay or U-handbag, then just glue your chosen fabric to the outside and inside. I also glued a bit of trim around the edge of the frame to cover the gap between the metal frame and shell.

So these, for the moment are not going to the ball.

Folksy it is then.


Friday, 4 January 2013

Antique and modern

So Blogger on my laptop won't let me post photos so I'm giving it a shot on the iPod touch. This could be bad so I apologise in advance.

Yesterday the courier arrived on the doorstep with an unfeasibly heavy parcel which I don't think he was that impressed at having to carry. It was my two old Singer sewing machines I'd bagged on eBay.

I hadn't really done any research into them, just seen them, bid on them, got them at a good price. So I was expecting them to be complete rust buckets with seized up mechanisms. I like to think I'm vaguely mechanically minded and I was after a bit of a project anyway so I wasn't that bothered. However- find me a little bit happy that they both work! Complete with all their attachments, bobbins, extra hemming feet, the lot! Lovely wooden cases too, all intact.

So my first job has been to get on the Internet and find out a little about these old ladies. Easy enough with the serial numbers to date them. These aren't vintage machines, they're both antiques, dating from 1889. Now I love my Janome machine but I somehow doubt that 124 years down the line someone will still be able to sew with it, certainly not have the extra bits still in a cardboard box.

It's taken a bit more digging to find out the models and one of them is a Model 12 which was the first production model sewing machine. The other is a VS3 from what I can work out and is beautiful. And more- I've already sewn with it. Just need to get busy with the cleaning products now!


Tuesday, 1 January 2013



And Happy New Year. I hope Christmas was everything you wanted it to be.

That was a pretty hectic run up. No one warned me how many things you have to remember when your child goes to school. Full stop, that is. And it increases tenfold in the approach to Christmas. Then I decided to make ninety five percent of the presents this year. Which would have been fine had I A, left more time and B, not got addicted to Masterchef which filled four nights a week, for weeks on end.

So in light of that, and this being a new year and all, I think my first resolution has to be to get more organised. I have good intentions but they often fall by the wayside, I get easily distracted. I have to say that I don't often make resolutions. When I write a list I always start with a couple of things I can tick off straight away. Gives me a sense of achievement.

So maybe I won't call them resolutions. Maybe they can just be a few things to get done. Lose a bit of weight, eat more healthily, do some exercise, blah, blah..

And the more interesting things.

It remains to be seen whether these eBay bargains, (£16 for both!) are a challenge to much, but it'll be fun trying to renovate them. I'll keep you posted.
I will be picking up on the corset project. All the raw materials are assembled, the toille (mock up) is made, now I just need to crack on.

And finally, to pay a little more attention to my website, Folksy page and this blog. Promise!