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Topics - BrendaP

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The Haberdashery / Ernest Wright scissors in Production again.
« on: February 07, 2019, 17:23:17 PM »
I've just opened an email from the new owners  0_0
Limited range at present but they are on the way back.

Patchwork & Quilting ... Welcome to the Darkside / Scrap Quilt
« on: January 22, 2019, 11:32:47 AM »
I've been working on my UFOs, one of which is a scrap quilt top measuring 42.5" x 66", not really big enough.
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I added a single row of light squares all around and decided that it still wasn't anything like long enough so I chopped it in half carefully unpicked and made a new middle section.  The unpicking took ages; the machine stitches were short and every cross seam had to be opened out and then restitched.
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It's now 90" x 45".  A good length but still a bit narrow.  I'm thinking that the most aesthetic way to add width will be another two rows of dark and one row of light squares down each side.  That would make it 90" x 66"
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Current Projects / Sewing kits for non sewists
« on: December 05, 2018, 23:09:26 PM »
Having seen the (very different) pincushion and thread holder which I made for a friend DD hinted that she would like something similar but wouldn't need so many different colours of thread!  At craft club on Saturday one of the ladies had a nifty little kit and so I've just finished making a couple of similar kits; one for DD and one for her twin sister - the eldest DD sews curtains and surely doesn't need such a basic kit which contains:
a mixed packet of needles
an assortment of safety pins
a few berry head pins
embroidery scissors - ( @Lowena   only £4-50 each but they cut well)
tape measure
4 spools decent thread, black, white and school uniform colours.

Two squares of fabric 12" x 12" and a square of wadding slightly bigger.
Place fabrics RS to RS and then the wadding.
Sew all around with 1/4 inch seam allowance, leaving about 2 inches unsewn.
Trim wadding away, turn so that the two RS are outside, close the opening by hand.
Press then quilt as you wish - I did all over FMQ squiggles, but anything you like.

Fold in half diagonally with lining fabric to the outside.
Fold corners over and adjust to get a pleasing envelope shape.
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Mark the fold lines, open out and machine stitch.  (This needs to be accurate!)
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Fold the corners back on themselves - should look like an open envelope on both sides with a pocket in the middle.
(I stitched the overlapping corners down but not strictly necessary)
Sew a length of ribbon to each point.
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Fill with whatever, fold the flaps down and tie the ribbons.
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Made with 15" squares it would be about the right size for travel size toiletries.

Access All Accessories / Bunting
« on: November 06, 2018, 11:23:04 AM »
Our little art group are taking a table at a craft fair in a couple of weeks time.  Whilst I'm not hopeful of selling much, or even anything, I am showing willing and spent much of yesterday making some bunting to decorate the stand.

It's made from a bit of blackout lining (which doesn't fray so no hems!) left over from some curtains which I shortened for DD,  a roll of cotton tape which I've had for ever and acrylic paint.  The font is loosely based on the Papyrus font which someone else decided on years ago.  When you enlarge those letters the edges are all jagged and whilst I did try to smooth it out I actually did a pretty good job of keeping those jagged edges!  It isn't easy painting with precision onto fabric :devil:

The whole lot is about 2m long plus extra tape for tying if there is anywhere to tie to although I'm donating a couple of quilting safety pins in case it has to go along the front of the table cloth.  [ You are not allowed to view attachments ]  

Vintage Machines / 29K museum piece
« on: September 21, 2018, 20:20:28 PM »
Yesterday morning I had a wander around the Somerset Rural Life Museum where they have a 29K leather patcher which came from the Clarks shoe factory in Street.  The musuem had dated it as 1909.

It's definitely a 29K, it says so on the badge!
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But if I've read the serial number correctly, F4990809 then according to the ISMACS website it's one of 130,000  28Ks from 1910.  ><
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It's clearly been well used, and although the belt is missing, and there's no needle in it, the fly wheel turned easily moving the needle bar and foot.  I wonder how many shoes were sewed with it?

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Your Favourite Suppliers / Shopping in Somerset
« on: September 21, 2018, 18:45:32 PM »
A week in Somerset; mostly out on the Levels, but I made it my duty to investigate what sewing related shops there might be in that area.

My shopping list:
1, Next month I am leading a workshop at craft club making Christmas tree fairies, so bits of lace and bling needed.
2, Dark side stuff; no project planned and with a very good shop locally nothing needed unless it was really cheap.
3, Light side stuff; again nothing planned, just whatever might take my fancy.
4, A couple of months ago a TSF newby in Australia wrote about freeform knitting (she called it scumbling but to me that a painting technique) and I have started doing bits of it for a long-term project and I need lots of different greens and yellows in 4 ply or not too thick DK.

What I found:
In Glastonbury there's Sew Over the Moon.  There's a fairly good range of knitting yarns but nearly all DK, a modest range of P&Q fabrics, lots of ribbons, laces and blingy bits, a good range of shiny/sparkly fabric (it is Glastonbury) but very little in the way of 'dressmaking' fabric.  I bought a ball of  :wool: and a couple of bits of sparkly silver fabric from the remnant bin.

In Cheddar I found Time Out,  a lovely shop with an excellent range of haberdashery including some upholstery bits, embroidery threads, a few bits of cardmaking stuff, buttons in tubes, a smallish range of P&Q fabrics and a good range of knitting yarns.  I bought two more  :wool:  :wool:

In Wells I found Mandy Wools with an excellent range of yarns plus all the habby associated with knitting/crochet including buttons in tubes.  I came away with :wool: :wool: :wool: :wool: :wool: :wool: :wool: :wool: and a handful of gold and silver pipe cleaners.

Vintage Machines / Birth of a Singer VSM
« on: August 29, 2018, 21:38:52 PM »
 If you've got an hour to spare
is a fascinating look at all the skills needed to make  :vintage: :vintage:  :vintage: :vintage:

No wonder they were so expensive in their day.

Current Projects / A wearable quilt
« on: August 18, 2018, 09:33:05 AM »
Following a recent thread and looking at the wonderful creations of Pearl Red Moon I've been inspired to have a go at something myself.

I opted for the applied patches over a base fabric approach and used the least shaped pattern I could find in stash; McCalls 7664.  Initially I was thinking 'just line it' but now it's come this far I think that it needs a bit more so I'll probably get some lightweight (2oz) polyester wadding and do some sort of quilting.  I think it will be a keep me warm on chilly evenings quilt rather than a wearing out cape.

It's a true scrap quilt combining P&Q stash and left over bits of other fabrics including some bits of silk which have been in the stash since David Evans of Crayford closed 20+ years ago, some poly crepe, a chopped up rayon shirt and a linen skirt.  The base fabric is most of what was left from three duvet cover backs which DD gave me - she'd done a job which required the patterned fronts.

All the fabrics have red in them; in memory of Vege and the Go Red campaign.  I'm sewing it now but it's likely to be September before it's finished!

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Patterns Discussion / Shoulder capelet dress
« on: July 15, 2018, 17:11:20 PM »
With the heat wave continuing it seems to be the right time to think about the autumn/winter wardrobe and a special occasion dress.  At the recent royal wedding the one dress which caught my eye was that worn by Earl Spencer's wife.
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I like that it has long sleeves, though I don't do straight skirts!  I am undecided though whether it is an integral part of the dress or two separate garments.  The only patterns I can find are
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Butterick 6479  and
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Vogue 1579
both of which appear to be integral to sleeveless dresses.

There are a few cape patterns around, including the two I've shown, with shaped shoulders rather than a circular poncho shape, which could be adapted to that front crossover.

My question is, would it be better to make it as a one piece garment or to make a separate capelet?

Current Projects / Foxgloves for Ed
« on: July 14, 2018, 19:17:51 PM »
Not sure if this belongs in the dark side, the light side, or just the twilight zone.

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At art group last week we had a talk/workshop "Towards Abstraction".  After the initial discussions the tutor set out some randm objects, including a vase of foxgloves, for us to work from.  All I managed were a couple of very rough sketches, but all the time I was seeing it as a textile piece rather than a painting.

A few weeks ago we sadly lost one of our members, and his brother had given all of his paints, brushes and other art stuff to the group to share out.  The stash included some rolls of transfer foil, and as there were only two of us who even knew what it was Kathleen and I took half each.  I also received a hot glue gun and a few marker pens.

I wanted to use some of that foil from Ed in my foxglove picture and this is what I've managed so far; and everything from stash!

Navy blue poly cotton supported by heavy dressmaking interfacing for the background.

The vase is a bit of really shiny holographic metallicy fabric, appliqued and topstitched using Husqvarna 'Vera'

The flowers are pink foil applied to polycotton with bondaweb then cut into small pieces and Pritt stick to keep them in place.

I originally thought to machine applique them down but the test bits were unsuccessful, they kept moving, so a layer of very fine organza over the lot and free motion squiggles over everything except the vase using the Featherweight.

Random straight hand stitches in a variety of greens for the stems.

Seed beads stitched over the petals.

The leaves at the bottom are cut from a layer of green organza fused with bondaweb to another very shiny, metallicy green fabric and machine stitched down just along the centre rib.

I think it's finished except for mounting/faming.  I can't decide whether to fuse a second layer of heavy interfacing to the back and then bind it and finish it as a wall hanging or to stick it to a board and get a wooden picture frame made to fit.  The finished picture will be 24" x 14".

It's not ever so abstract, but it's not particularly realistic either.

Fun with Fabric / Jersey fabric which twists
« on: June 23, 2018, 13:24:07 PM »
An interesting link posted on Ravelry about how knitting stretches

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However, the first illustration is a brilliant example of knitting that isn't quite symetrical, ie slightly more tension on one side of each loop.  It's the sort of thing that's more likely to happen with fabrics knitted as a tube and then cut open (weft knitted single jersey).  This is the reason why so many tee shirts twist.

Vintage Machines / Singer 201 has jammed
« on: June 12, 2018, 11:27:16 AM »
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I was sewing the lining into a jacket with my Singer 201 (aluminium body) and the lining fabric was horribly fraying with fibres all over the place.  Almost done and the machine stopped :o

At first it would move about a quarter of a turn on the handwheel but I tried to force it a bit and now it's not going anwhere.  Motor is OK and with clutch released it runs normally.

On close inspection there is a small piece of thread  sticking out from the shaft where the needle bar goes up and down so I think that is likely to be the cause of the problem though I'm reluctant to try and pull it hard in case it just snaps.

I can't see how to get at it without completely disassembling the machine.  The screw you can see holds the needle clamp on and on the other side is a screw holding the thread guide.

Fun with Fabric / Faux fur
« on: June 04, 2018, 18:30:06 PM »
I have a couple of metres of burgany/wine coloured faux astrakhan and some lining which is near enough in colour although the colour in the photo isn't too good.

Do I make McCalls 7257
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McCalls 7664
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Fun with Fabric / Making ponte fabric waterproof
« on: May 13, 2018, 22:03:23 PM »
I have just finished making an unlined jacket from poly scuba fabric

I used New Look 6142 and I am quite pleased with it, though it is quite roomy and feels as though it ought to be a raincoat rather than a light jacket.

So, is it possible to waterproof, or at least make showerproof, this type of fabric?  and if so is it better to use a wash-in or a spray-on product?


1.8m x 160cm
smooth faced jersey (ponte roma?)
60% stretch lengthways, 60% stretch widthways
cut ends overlocked and pre-washed
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£5.00 to include postage, UK only.  PayPal

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