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Monday, 25 July 2016


After a super hot July week, I'm popping by to share my tutorial on how to sew a wooden handled bag. Perfect for lazy days out this Summer.

The tutorial featured on Made By Mrs M's blog last week. You can read more here . Thank-you Kate for inviting me to share my love of vintage inspired accessories!


I love all the beautiful fabric's Kate has created using mid-century as a design source and including iconic modern London buildings. As an ex-Londoner, I love her prints, they remind me of the fabulous architecture London as to offer.

I designed this bag to be sewn up in any of Kate's lovely retro fabrics. The pattern is one you can self draft yourself using the step by step photo's on Kate's blog

Read more about how Kate and her passion for creating fabric.

I've said to Kate, once I get my mid-century house, I'm going to fill it with her prints! Kate - hold me to that! Thanks again.

Have a great week,

Samantha xoxo
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Friday, 8 July 2016

..because beautiful, unique venues do exist. 

We created our perfect Wedding day

Today, I'm writing about our Wedding day and how I visited our Wedding venue, Masa At The Old Chapel, Derby to revisit one of the happiest days of our lives. I want to show that you can be a DIY bride and your Wedding venue will be happy to help as little or as much as you want.  

When we walked through the doors of The Old Chapel back in 2009, we felt that we had found the place to hold our Wedding reception. That was it, after six months of looking. It was unique and different from the other Weddings venues we'd seen and this one let you do it your way. 

It was a total breath of fresh air for a bride-to-be with visions of a creative DIY Wedding. I was amazed when we saw the packages that we could just book the venue to host the Wedding breakfast, we could style it ourselves and create what we wanted.

Masa At The Old Chapel is very light and airy, with space for up to 80 guests in the old gallery on the first floor with a reception area/dance floor and bar area downstairs. The venue is licensed for ceremonies too but we wanted to host our party here and bused in our guests on 1960s buses to add to the old fashioned feel.

We went for a colour scheme of duck egg blue, gold and cream and used pretty voiles to wrap around the posts in the reception/dance floor area. Our amazing photographer took this fish bowl lense photo just before our guest arrived!

We filled the windows with vintage glass jars and bottles filled with fresh flowers and the venue were happy to let us in the morning to style as we wanted. I had about six friends helping me put decorations on the tables, wind fabric around posts and fill the windows with prettiness.

Fast forward six years and here I am again and this time it's for their Wedding Fair. The lovely team showed me that again you can do as little or as much as you want for your celebration. Here is my tour and the inspiration I took away from the day (and the memories!) Maybe we can throw a big party here for our tenth anniversary?

The beautiful pillars wrapped in silk fabrics

Pretty little details by Dylandco

Hydrangea Blooms at the front door from River Bank Floristry

Cream roses giving a rustic feel on the front ceremony table

And ivy draped over the linens.

I loved this huge bouquet bloom. I used mine to double up as centre pieces and bouquets.

The large windows are just waiting to be dressed!

The view from the top table.

The guests dinner view.

Cute lit up letters from Spirit High.

Cosy styling from Dylandco again.

My tips for DIY Brides -
Do expect to be at the venue on the morning of your big day
Ask your friends to help on the day
Get some high quality hand cream, you will be using your hands a lot
Don't go to too many Wedding fairs, know your own mind and style
Set up a Pinterest board and show to all your suppliers
Be prepared to have boxes of props to sort out after your honeymoon!

Thank-you to Masa At The Old Chapel for having back to babble on about how much I loved our Wedding day!

I'll be back to sample the Taste Of Masa Night in the near future.



All views my own. Our Wedding photos courtesy of
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Monday, 27 June 2016

Adding More Vintage Charm to Your Embroidery Hoops


So earlier on in the Spring I hosted a blogger meet with the Krafty Kat and the girls Sew Essential. In the afternoon we made embroidery hoop art using templates, linen fabrics and stitched with gorgeous fabrics from the Sew Essential shop.

That was a few months ago and I've been hooked on the hoops every since. This post is how I add more than just embroidery into my embroidery hoops and some basics tips to get you's addictive and perfect to pop in your bag for crafting on the go!

For this project, I started with a wooden embroidery hoop with a gold fastening and square piece of plain linen fabric about 5 to 7.5cm (2-3in) larger than my hoop. 

Firstly, put your hoop on your fabric and work out where you want your template. Prym do some fab plastic templates which you can trace around with a fabric pencil or felt tip. I always move my hoop around my fabric when stitching to a natural position where I can hold it. When you put your fabric in the hoop pull your fabric in your hoop tight as poss, a little bit like a drum so you don't end up with baggy stitching on your final piece.

I started with a basic back stitch using just two threads of embroidery thread. I love to use a gold eye needle for all my work as it means that you get less fluff on your fabric off the embroidery threads. I cut a piece of thread about the length of a small ruler and divide the six strands down to just two.

Once you have stitched around the edge start 'colouring in' the middle again using two strands of embroidery thread and using a long and short stitch on a 45 degree angel.  This may take a few hours, but it's perfect if you are on a train on whilst a baby is sleeping or if you just want to out your feet up on a rainy day!

I have to admit about half way through my stitching, I like to have a break and think of how I can add more to my final piece. It's a nice break. I've started to layout out everything, like EVERYTHING! I want to use and then start to pull out the fabrics or trims that would look great.

I then narrow down what I want and start to cut the fabrics and the trims up to add to my embroidery.

When I've stitched up my letter, I can then start to stitch on my fabrics and bows. This is the fun part, I recommend the more is less option and layer up the trims little by little.


I started with the sheer fabrics as a base to build on and then added the pearls and beads.

Throughout the project I used a variety of small and large hoops for my work and swapped between the tow. It just made it quicker to stitch. I love the colours and textures you can create.

The project took about 4 hours to complete and all the materials (except the vintage fabrics are available from Sew Essential's shop.

Happy Stitching!


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Friday, 24 June 2016


Just popping by to share some of my photos from our little break for a impromptu family Wedding in Rye. Rye is nearly four hours away from Derbyshire, so last week we took another holiday (our second in a month) to celebrate my brother's Wedding.

Rye was scattered with quirky little houses, cobbled streets and cafes. Here's a few snaps for my trip and a few of my brother's beautiful Wedding location. Yes, I make my own outfit and craft some lovely things. More to follow..

Bye for now,

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Thursday, 9 June 2016

Taking time out to re-charge Cornish style and a visit to the lovely Poppy Treffry's store.


I'm so excited to be writing again after a little break by the sea and a chance to soak up seaside life. Living literally in the middle of the UK makes you want for the sand, sea and time with the family winding down by the coast.

Today is a travel blogger style post but hey...I've added a little crafty bit here too! Here are a few pictures I took with my Olympen Pen E after learning a lot from Emily Quinton on the Makelight course.

Pastel houses, VW campers, boats and Cornish Palms ....

One of the highlights of my trip was a visit to the Poppy Treffry store in St.Ives.

I love her pretty Cornish life inspired fabric prints, quirky cards and her orange lip balm is just gorgeous (oh it has a Singer sewing machine on the lid, so what's not to like?). I love that Poppy and her team of sewers hand make all the items in the store on vintage Singer sewing machines, similar to the ones I use at my Crafternoons.

This trip I picked up a stash of cards for the sewing ladies in my life. Would you love to receive this card on your birthday?

And all this pretty print fabrics....

I can't wait to pop down to Cornwall again to get my fix of Cornish life and pretty sewing supplies.

We stayed at The Old Dairy, Godolphin Cross Nr. Helston , a very family friendly self catering stay. Our Little L loved feeding the hens and pigs, it was very quiet with a short walk to the National Trust's Godolphin Estate.

I'm now ready for a wonderful Summer of Crafternoons!

Happy Crafting,

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