Monday, 21 July 2014

McCalls 6015 - a quick distraction!

Rather than packing for holiday, the day before we were to leave (at the crack of dawn) I decided to make Sophie a new frock.

Mum had originally planned to knock this one up herself, but one because of one thing or another, never quite found the time. So whilst procrastinating about how many shorts we all needed I stumbled upon the pattern and fabric she had bought and off I went.

The McCall 6015 is a proper little girl's dress.

I went for the version with capped sleeves.

It was fairly straight forward although I'm not sure if I followed the instructions for hte zip and sleeves to the letter - however I'm pleased with the result!

And luckily the pretty dress managed to distract the waitresses from the havoc she caused at the pizza restaurant!

Monday, 7 July 2014

This Girl Is On Fire

A quick and easy make this one. As you know I'm an avid Pinterest-er and was particularly taken with this - I liked the words and colours - perfect for Sophie.

So I've taken it as inspiration and made my own felt version.

Its part of a mini gallery featuring a gorgeous print from Belle and Boo called Sophia and a great postcard I've picked up along the way.

The pictures look great next to the vintage wooden shelves I found on Ebay and have filled with Sophie's book and toys.

Tuesday, 1 July 2014

Welcome to the World Louis!

Proud Auntie Bekei is welcoming her lovely new nephew to the world with a special new Really Useful Bag and some Building Blocks. As Louis lives abroad this lovely map fabric is the perfect way to show where everyone important lives!

Monday, 23 June 2014

Seb's Woodland Quilt

Our new home has opened new links to the local communities, many through social media. One Facebook group I'm part of has been a unmissable source of information, advice and bargains! It was from this group I got my most recent commission.

Rohini was decorating her son, Seb's bedroom and wanted a patchwork quilt to be part of this. We chatted her woodland theme, I collected some design and fabric ideas.

These mood boards could give her an idea of the colours, patterns and themes I had in mind. We soon came to an agreement and I had my finished design.

This may not look much to you but it holds all the crucial measurements and direction I need. I don't think the finished product is far off my initial sketch!

I hand-quilted the sections together using white, dark and light green perle thread.

I have four rows of larger trees and 3 of smaller ones to create the idea of a vast wood leading off into the distance.

Each tree is made of 8 sections. The leaves are shaped with white triangles. Some of the leaves are made from small scraps I'd been saving for something special - the patchwork element added to the leaf look.

The back I kept to simple blocks of fabric - based around a gorgeous piece of woodland animal fabric. I echoed a landscape view by using strips of green at the bottom and a lovely teal blue and cream spot for the sky.

Its taken longer than I hoped with all the recent family turmoil, but Rohini has been super understanding and even offered kind words of wisdom.

Let's just hope young Sebastian likes it.

Sunday, 15 June 2014

Embroidery Sampler

There are a lot of lovely pictures of embroidery samplers in blogs and magazines - so inspired I came up with my own version.

I used colours to tie into Sophie's room - light blue and a grey/green to match the neutral wall colour and then the gold and pink to echo her accents colours. The fabric I wrapped the wooden frame in is scraps from making her curtains - a couple of dots of glue from a glue gun held it in place.

Monday, 26 May 2014

...she be fierce

We've been in the house a while now and there is still plenty to do - but we're getting there. With limited time and funds the smaller jobs are easier to tick off the list.

I've really like the idea of a phrase or quote on Sophie's wall but didn't like the decals I'd seen - too cutsey or twee for me and my gal. I decided to hand paint it and as soon as I saw this quote I knew it was perfect for her:

'And though she be but little, she is fierce'

The quote is from Shakespeare's 'A Midsummer Night's Dream' (Act 3 scene 2) (she's shouting at me as I type this!)

Although this task has been simple there are several steps here's how I did it.

Once I had my words I needed to find the look and right font. I knew i wanted it to be handwritten but didn't want anything with too many flourishes. It needed to reflect the sentiment. From my pinterest board of fonts I found the perfect free one, BlackJack via Formal Fringe.

I downloaded the font and then typed out my quote in size 72 letters. I then printed this at 100%. I stuck the pages together, making sure that all the pages aligned perfectly and cutting out any bigger gaps where words started on the next page.

I then used masking tape to stick to my wall, checking it was straight and in the perfect place.

Next I used some carbon paper (bought on Amazon for less than £2) and slipped a sheet between the paper and wall. Using a ballpoint pen I traced over the outline of my words, pressing super hard to make sure I left a visible print.

Next was the fun bit - colouring in! I used my gold flat paint first (two coats) and then finished with two coats of gold glitter.

Saturday, 3 May 2014

I do!

So I'm married now!

Yep its only taken two and half years since question was popped (and that was after ten years together!) to finally make it happen. To be honest, what with kids and house moves, its been very low on our to-do list. However, the sad news of Dad's illness gave us the kick we needed. I wanted to make sure Dad was there - to give me away and be part of our memories. And so we arranged the whole thing in less than 4 weeks!

Once we'd got the legal stuff started it didn't take long to find a venue for the party and email, text and Facebook friends and family to invite along. With only a couple of weeks to pull it together we made quick decisions and ignored anything that wasn't necessary!

Obviously the dress was important and luckily I'd been keeping a board on Pinterest with lots of pictures of things I liked. With our minuscule budget, and the timeframe, I decided my only option was to make my own dress! I choose this one as the 'ideal'

I liked the shape. particularly the sleeves. After enlisting the support of some fashion-forward and design savvy friends we met one Saturday to work out how to make my version. 

We quickly decided that a skirt / top version would be easier. I'd brought along my newly acquired Mathilde blouse pattern from Tilly and The Buttons.

The sleeves on Mathilde are identical to the 'ideal' dress! After a quick napkin sketch we worked out the replacing the tucks with gathers (as suggested by Tilly herself!), making the neck more scooped and removing the button back would give a pretty close version.

Next the skirt! After rummaging through the pattern books in John Lewis we decided that Simplicity 2058 would be our best bet. Although the pattern itself didn't appeal - the shape and simplicity did!

I ordered it online straightaway whilst working out how much muslin I would need to make a toile.

It was then onto Berwick Street for the fabric. The wonderful staff at The Silk Society understood what I was looking for, offered some great examples (wrapping me in fabric so I could see!) and finally settled on a good deal!

I took my fabric home and soon set to work adapting patterns and making my practice dress. The skirt was easy it fitted fine on my first attempt. I lengthened the pattern by 9" to make it floor length.

The top was more tricky. It took three attempts at the neckline yoke and back to come up with a version I was happy with. Once done it was onto the real fabric.

I decided to make the skirt lining and lace top separately so they would move nicely. I joined them at the zip and waist. The top was was lined in the bodice with the arms just the lace. I decided to master French seams to ensure a top notch finish and was pleased with how easy these were to do.

And so the final result...

Not too far off the 'ideal' - it would probably look more like it if I looked like the model!

I also used by Pinterest board as inspiration for my DIY table decorations - the coral bow is the same on my dress.

I loved Hydrangeas and used these for my bouquet and button-holes for the boys.

Finally, a sneak peek of our Thank You cards - currently being written. I tweaked one our wedding photos and added a simple message before sending to Vistaprint.

So it turns out you big day can be done quickly, on a budget, and with lots of personal touches!

Thank you to everyone who made it so special.