Reflections …

Recent musings and revelations.  No pics.

1 I don’t go to work any more.  I have retired.  Last week I took 3 sacks of no longer needed work clothes to the charity shop.  Included in these sacks were several ‘me made’ garments from the past year or two.  Not going to work means my clothing needs have significantly changed.  At home, I wear little else but jeans, T shirts, sweaters.  It means I’m going to have to reconsider the kind of sewing I do and, more and more, I think I will be sewing for others rather than myself.  I know I’ve said before that I don’t enjoy sewing for others, but I can only make so many T shirts!

2  I’ve realised I don’t really enjoy wearing woven fabrics.  I love sewing and wearing knits, and these are the things which survived last week’s wardrobe cull.  I also realised when my overlocker recently failed, that I missed it more than I would miss my sewing machine if the situation were reversed.  I do a lot of my sewing on the overlocker.  So much so, that when the overlocker was fixed, I promptly gave it to a friend and bought a slightly more sophisticated one with a free arm and a million complicated attachments.  (I have the rest of my life to learn how to use them!)

3  I recently purged my stash of wovens, donating them to friends who, in turn, donated cash to charity.  I kept a few pieces, suitable for sewing aprons and the like.  See point 4.

4  As mentioned in yesterday’s post, I lost a valued colleague to cancer 5 years ago, and a dear friend earlier this summer.  Another friend is currently fighting that same fearsome battle.  I feel a strong urge to support the local hospice, who have been wonderful in their support of my friends, which may mean sewing to raise funds.  I’m thinking aprons, cushions, scarves and so on – small gift  items, where sizing is not particularly an issue.  I’d like to have a stall at the hospice garden party or something.

5  This would also serve to keep me occupied, since ‘More Time For Sewing’ was a big part of my retirement plan.

Your thoughts would be welcomed.

My next post will bring news of major improvements to my sewing room – with pics!


More selfless sewing …

Friends, it’s been a while, I know. It’s been a busy couple of months.  I recently retired from paid employment, and I’m making some changes to my sewing room, which is coming along nicely.  I’ve also been reflecting on my sewing and my new wardrobe needs; now that I no longer have to go to work, my requirements have altered significantly.  I’ve reached a few conclusions, which I’ll share with you soon.

For now though …

I was asked to make an apron for my neice for Christmas.  It will be a present from her Grandma and, in return, Grandma will make a donation to my local hospice in lieu of payment.  How could I refuse?

The local hospice is a cause close to my heart, having lost two very dear friends recently, both of whom spent their last days in the hospice.

For the apron, I used a downloadable pdf pattern called Yaya’s Apron, by SivjeGoose available here:

It was a lovely project to sew, and quite absorbing.  I made the age 10 – 14 size; although my neice is only 7, she is tall and will soon grow into it.  Also, this way, it will last her a few years.   It’s a very practical style, which pops over the head and has a closed yoke to keep it on securely, and optional back waist ties – I opted to use them, as it will pull it in a bit for her until she grows into it.

I was also asked to make a matching hair tie, which you can see folded over on the hanger underneath the apron.   For this, I basically used the ruffle pattern piece, to which I added a matching curve at the ‘blunt end’.  I cut two pieces and sandwiched them right sides  together with the broderie anglaise trim on the curved edge, leaving a small gap to turn right side out and stitch closed.  It makes a nice elongated crescent shaped tie, which could also double as a waist tie if it is really tooooo big!

I did not follow the instructions slavishly, and went off piste a little with some broderie anglaise trim I wanted to use instead of the recommended bias binding for trimming the pocket and the ruffle.  I do like the pattern though, and I will probably use it again to make an adult sized apron.

The fabrics are a grey cotton/linen blend with a cute multicoloured elephant print, and red cotton poplin with cream mini polka dots, both purchased at a local market.  The bias binding is cream with a sweet strawberry print.

Back view


Front view


Gnomes World – Toddler Edition …

A quick post!

I made another Kitschy Coo Mini Penny Pinafore dress.  This one is for a two year old.


I did the long sleeved version, since it seems summer is over for another year.


And I stitched a little lace butterfly in the back neck, to help her with dressing practise 🙂


It’s oh so quiet …


Sorry I have not been posting recently.  It’s been a busy time.

I recently retired from work, and I’m planning a few changes to my routine and my sewing room.  I’ve taken a little time out to think about things, and to enjoy the freedom of not having to go to work.  I’ll be back soon!

Gnomes World …

Just a quick post today as we are going out shortly with the in-laws to celebrate a significant wedding anniversary (theirs, not ours!).

Yesterday I made this Kitschy Coo Mini Penny Pinafore for my little God daughter, Holly.  She’s six and a half.  We don’t have any children of our own, but Holly brings a lot of sunshine into our lives and is an adorable little girl with impeccable manners and a delightful nature.

Holly’s favourite colour is red, so I hope she will like this little summer dress.

The pattern is super easy to sew, and very practical, washable and supremely wearable.  I can see that I’ll be making more of these – no doubt in a variety of themes!


The pattern covers from 6 months to 10 yrs, and there are tunic and dress lengths, plus short and long sleeve variations.  After checking measurements, I made the short sleeve dress length in age 9/10, with age 8 length, as she doesn’t like things to be too close fitting.  I’ve turned up a generous 2″ hem, so hope this will last her for a couple of seasons.


One Trick Pony …


I’ve been a bit slack in the sewing and blogging departments lately.  We had visitors for the weekend of Le Tour De France, which meant a week of cleaning beforehand, followed by a weekend of feasting, partying and generally having a ball, and then a further weekend of extremely good weather which led to some much needed exterior painting of the house.  All in all, no time to sew.

Today I finally hemmed the brown & cream dress I made weeks ago, and made yet another Creative Cate.  This one is not for me though, it’s for my friend Carol, who liked my blue one very much when she saw me in it.  So I made one in her colours.  I hope she likes it!


happy birthday Vera! …

I made this apron for my Mother in Law, whose brthday is this weekend. I didn’t want to blog it last week in case she saw it, but I think we are out of danger now!



A birthday present for Vera

A birthday present for Vera