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Tuesday, 31 January 2017

How I Wear 1966's Simplicity 6535

 
Hello,
 
Today I want to share with you my most worn item of handmade sewing from 2016. After spending time sorting and clearing this January, I found quiet a few photos on me in the same dress. I've cropped the photos to fit the blog and show off the dress, so my face is not in a few of the snaps...
 
The pattern was from my Gran's stash which I was given when she passed away. I felt that I should make it is celebrate all the sewing inspiration she had given me. I have called it my 'Gran dress', it's so easy to wear and you can make it modern with pearls and a swing coat or make it retro with bright tights.
 
So here is ...
I made it first for Sew Brum and loved that it went together without any unpicking and resewing. The fabric is a gorgeous crepe I picked up in My Fabric Place . I was lucky to find a turquoise 22in zipper to match which made my day and I thought this dress is meant to be! Gran is looking down at me!
 
I made this in October 2015 and meet Tilly Button's in it last February ('16) where she had a sample of soon to be released her Martha . The cut and feel is very similar if you want to try and modern pattern with a vintage feel.
 
For me, I love the darts on the front and the dart on the elbow. Here's a few pictures from my files of my 6535...
 











Happy sewing!

Love,

Samantha xo

I've also just revamped the website so do pop over and Follow my blog with Bloglovin

Wednesday, 25 January 2017

Make Your Own Marbled Box DIY

 


A big trend at the moment is marble. I've designed a marbled wooden box tutorial which you can also create with a wooden box from your local craft store, some nail varnish and paint primer in about 30 minutes. I got the inspiration for my box from Oh Joy! Marble Bead Jewellery. I found the link when looking for crafts for my birthday party last Autumn . It does smell so please dip in a well ventilated space. The effect is immediate and so quick to create.

For this post I've partnered with Parcel Hero to support their online auction for Great Ormond Street Hospital. Parcel Hero are looking to raise £1500 for G.O.S.H. this Christmas, so please do give generously to the link below. Thank-you guy's for sending me the box to DIY and then gifting towards the appeal.

For this DIY, you will need-


- A wooden box with a close fasten clasp (for dipping and the lid staying on!)
- Duck tape
- Three matt nail varnishes
- One glitter nail varnish
- One skewer
- One plastic bowl to dip the box in
- Paint primer or matt undercoat
- Fine sandpaper



Take your box and give it a light sand, Then paint it and let it dry before giving it another coat. When the box is dry tape the edges up with masking or duck tape so they are water tight.




Then it's time to get ready for marbling. Take your plastic tub and fill it half full with tap water and place on a protected surface.


Then add your nail polish starting with the lightest one first. Add a few drops of each and then stir with your skewer. You have to be super quick as the varnish dries really quickly.



Hold the box around the taped sides and dip it. The varnish will stick to the primed painted surface and ta-da it's marbled!



I let the box dry before I peeled off the tape and painted the edged with glitter polish.


And leave to dry before closing.

 
And my box is finished. I really love this technique, it reminds me of marble inks at school.



For other bloggers creations check out the #PHWinterWorkshop  tag on social media. You can read more about the Parcel Hero support of G.O.S.H click  here .

Happy Crafting!

Samantha

 

Wednesday, 14 December 2016

A Little Bit Of Weleda Mindfulness At Christmas *

 
 
 
 
 
Today is the 14th December, so ten whole days before Santa (the big man) arrives. I have the most excited five year to put to sleep every night and like most families things are crazy!
 
So, I was delighted when Weleda asked me to sample their new Mindfulness Colouring Book and Bath Set. I was over the moon to be invited me along to their Derbyshire offices to meet Lizzie Hobbs the artist and have a moment out of everyday life to colour in, drink herbal tea and relax.
 
time out at Weleda
 
meeting Lizzie
After feeling totally energised by my morning colouring in, I realised that this would be something we could do at home as a Mummy and Daughter activity before bedtime. Colour in, chat about our day and then have bath time with the pack's body washes. Now Little L is at school, I'm looking for activities to do together that she is not tired out to do.
 
oooh pencils
So for the last month, we have been working through the colouring book then matching bathtime with the body wash relating to the picture. I have to say this pack is a perfect dual present for a little girl and her Mummy. It's time out together to make, create, chat and learn about flowers.
 
 
Here is our Turkish Rose page, we coloured in together and enjoyed a little bit of mindfulness in the run up to Christmas.  I would also take this pack away on holiday, so if you know someone travelling over Christmas and New Year, this is a perfect little £17.95 gift.
 
Mummy time as well...
 
After school colouring in
 
And we are still using the pencils

I want to thank the lovely people at Weleda who gifted me the pack and invited me the launch morning. We have loved the pack so much.
 
The gift pack includes a beautiful designed colouring book by a talented local artist Lizzie Hobbs and four treat sized body washes including my favourite Wild Rose.
 
If you can't wait until Christmas you can always buy your own here .
 
Happy Crafting,
 
Samantha
 
* This is a sponsored post

Friday, 4 November 2016

Apple Spiced Meringue Pie

 
 
 
 

One of things I love to do is create my own recipes. I love lemon meringue pie but with a load of apples in the garden, I tried something new and it works and I'm really happy to share. It was very good and very easy. Every apple is different so if you need to play around with the cornflower/starch in the recipe please do so and it needs be thick so it will set.

Apples and spice are beautiful together and I've put these over a ginger biscuit base. Oh and I've cheated and ginger nuts are shop bought.


Serves 4

You will need-
Half a pack of ginger biscuits
4 oz butter
2 apples stewed in 1 tsp of mixed spice and 1 tsp of cinnamon
2 egg whites
1 cup of sugar for the topping
1/2 cup of sugar for the apples
1 cup of water
1/2 cup of cornflower /starch

 

Method
  1. Smash up the biscuits in a freezer bag with a rolling pin. if it's been a bad day you will feel better after this!
  2. Melt the butter and add to the smashed up biscuits to it and press the contents into a 6" flan dish. Pop in the freezer whilst you prep the filling
  3. For the filling, heat the stewed apple and combine the water and cornflower to make a paste. When the apple juices have reach bubbling temperature / boiled up, then add the cornflower and stir like crazy until it make a thick paste. Spoon over the ginger nut base. Don't worry if you are new to this, if it goes lump, pop it through a sieve. 
  4. Whip the egg white until they form soft peeks, add the sugar and spoon on top of the apple spice mixture. A sprinkle of cinnamon looks good on the top.

Bake for 20 minutes at 180C or similar.


 
 

Enjoy this November with a warm tea,

Happy Crafting,

Samantha x

Thursday, 13 October 2016

Party Dress! Butterick 3493 #vintagepledge

 
 
 

 
Hello,
 
I want to share with you a #vintagepledge shift dress I made for my birthday party two weeks ago. The dress was a last minute make as I picked up the fabric the week before my birthday and thought I should make a new party dress as the fabric was so gorgeous!
                                            
 The fabric was from My Fabric Place who have a great selection of fabrics online and in their Nottingham shop. I popped in as the shop is now opposite the new tram stop and within ten minutes I walked out with a bag of fabric for £6. My dress which is made of a double layer of crepe with a gold knitted top layer actually cost me £3. I cannot honestly believe it that in 2016 I can make a dress for £3! True vintage prices!
 
The pattern is a very faithful Butterick 3493 which is sadly out of print buy available on Etsy and Ebay. Both the shift (no bust darts and no zip) plus the strappy dress (with bust darts and zip) have been sewn time and time again by me since the 90s!
 
 
I cut the dress out first with a layer of pink crepe but it needed two to make it less sheer and more floatly. I stitched up both layers of crepe first and then the knitted layer as a separate garment and securing at the back seam and shoulders. Once I'd made it, I shared this photo over on Instagram .
 
Here are a few photos of my party dress with a 60s/90s vibe.
 
                                   
 
shoulder detail with the three layers attached together
 
nearly matching the gold circles at the seams
 
I love the way it whooshes with the three fine layers
 
 
I finished the dress just above the knee with the crepe as one hem (hand hemmed) and the knitted hem as a machined hem to get a tidy non-frayed finished.
 
You can explore more #vintagepledge sews over on Pinterest

Happy Crafting,

Samantha x

Monday, 19 September 2016

Embracing New - Life Update





Hello,

Well after a Summer of crazy and happy times, last week my little one started school. It's been five years to the week since I went on maternity leave and five years of being there for my little girl. No regrets, it's been the best time and looking back I won't have changed it for anything. I can't have those days back so we've embraced the moments. Then suddenly she's off onto new adventures.


 
Over the last week, I have been starting to sort through and work on some much needed home projects whilst we adapt to our new routine. It's taken my mind of the change. My unloved looking house is slowly becoming a loved tidy family home but it's empty of childhood laughter in the days. I think taking on this next challenge in Motherhood, the transition to school is huge, but needs to be embraced. Therefore, each day I'm taking on a little mini challenge to move forward with our home; paint a door, clean out a cupboard, new pictures of the wall....



I've also got so used to working unsocial hours, it will take some time for me to get used to being sat at my desk at 1.38pm on a Monday. But this time will give us more family time back and I now have more time in the day to spend on creativity; my (unloved) blog and Crafternoon Tea workshops which I love hosting. I'm currently downloading a Summer's worth of pictures of projects and Crafternoon Teas ready to share.



I recently read this blog post from Emily Quinton which echoes my thoughts about change. I have a list of projects so long and lots of exciting crafts to share both here and at my workshops. I hope that this is a new exciting chapter in our lives and although it's going to take a while to adjust; the work and life balance we will get right for us all.

Love,

Samantha x





 

Tuesday, 30 August 2016

Simplicity Sewing Challenge - Reviewing Toddler Dress 1206

 
 
 
 
 
Hello,

Today has been a very sunny, beautiful August day. The perfect day for my little lady to wear her new Simplicity dress I stitched up for her in this strawberry printed fabric. Now four, she loves that 'Mummy made me a dress', and has been my creative director through the project. In this post I'm talking about how myself and Little L (my daughter) made this oh so pretty dress.


Back in July I was sent this pattern to make as part of the Simplicity Blogging Challenge. I entered under Children's Wear as I loved the little girl's dress on the right and had a stash of cotton fabrics awaiting the perfect pattern. I've been sewing Simplicity patterns since I was a teenager (about 20 years) and love the easy to follow patterns and they go together like a dream.

Sewing for a slim four year old isn't easy, so I thought that the swing dress would be easier to fit and sit well on the yoke and on her shoulders.



We decided on view A, the sleeveless version so we could put a t-shirt under it on cooler days and decided to cut the skirt frill half the size so the dress wasn't too long.  I wanted to make it smaller under the arms than the pattern but she liked it's swing coolness which was great for today. I made the bow but Little L didn't want to add it to the design. We may make it into a hair slide for the dresses next outing!



I also added poppers down the back and created a false placket out of bias instead of a back zip fastening. The zip isn't too comfortable again her spine in a car seat. I try to avoid zips on the back of dresses for her.

                               
The dress fitted really well on her shoulders with the yoke. It was really straight forward to stitch and no unpicking! I was worried about pulling the threads on the print if I had to. I hand finished the dress with a slip stitched hem. I love the finish you get from a good hem.


The instructions for the yoke were really clear, I've added a photo below. I liked the idea of biasing around the arm hole instead of faffing with a facing. It gave a really clean finish.


We loved the neckline as it's really delicate with a neat arm seam finish.


Here are a few snaps of Little L having fun in her new dress...







Thank-you to Simplicity, I really love the pattern and we will be making it again.

Happy Crafting,

Samantha x

The pattern for this project was gifted but all views are my own.

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