Archive for March, 2011

Sewing Answers

Tuesday, March 29th, 2011

A few weeks ago I received from publishers David & Charles a little book that made the somewhat bold claim on its cover ďSolutions to every problem youíll ever face.† Answers to every question youíll ever askĒ.† What was my reaction to this statement?† ďI donít need a book for that; I have Google and YouTube to answer all my questionsĒ.† So because of my virtual ‘oracle’, I wrongly left this little book on the side to have a look at some other time (maybe when the internet connection was down).† I wish I hadnít. Without having to log on, register for endless offers I don’t want, reset my firewall settings, do something with cookies (gone are the days they were something you ate them!), or virus scan, the Sewing Answer Book by Barbara Weiland Talbert is a wealth of information for both the gurus and beginners.

Look no further, the answers to your sewing questions are in this book.

You might say that the best way to learn to sew is to, well, sew and maybe one of the best ways to do that is to sign up for a sewing class or join a sewing club; and I agree.† But what happens when you are at home reading a pattern, or wondering what is the best interfacing to go for, or why you are doing wrong when machine-stitching a stretchy knit hem the fabric tunnels and ripples.† Well this book has those answers.

What I like the most of this little book is that it doesn’t only give you the definition of a term or lists the different types of fabrics, it also tells you why it is important to do something or why not to do it.† Do you want an example for that?† Let’s take something very simple, topstitching.† Many patterns tell you to topstitch a piece of a pattern.† I sometimes did it sometimes not, mainly because I didn’t know what the purpose of that was.† Now I know that it is to stabilize the edge of a fabric amongst other purposes, now that I know this I never fail to do it.

Do I recommend this book?† Absolutely yes.†† Has it delivered what it states on its cover?† So far it has.† To test how good this book really is I have conjured up questions or and considered what would I need to do to if I ever wanted to this or that? and then looked in the The Sewing Answer Book and voilŗ the answer was there, prompting me to stop thinking about possible scenarios with my sewing machine and get sewing!

The Sewing Answer Book by Barbara Weiland Talbert is published by David & Charles ( ISBN-10 0715338390, ISBN-13 978-0715338391)

Motherís day gift ideas

Friday, March 25th, 2011

If you havenít decided about your mumís present for next weekend let me help you out.† I have a few very good ideas that I can assure you they will put a big smile on her face.† The only down side is that you will love them so much that you might have to buy one for yourself (I speak by personal experience here, so be warned ).

My suggestions are in no particular order, but letís start with 2 talented sisters, that I am proud to say that they are friends of mine too.† The 2 Pink Sardines have quite a few goodies in their Etsy shop, from clutches, iPad covers to very fashionable cowls, basically they can source presents all year around from motherís day, birthdays, to Christmas, even that cheeky treat to yourself!

You can't go wrong when something is made with lots of love

Another shop that I find myself very often browsing is Three Red Apples.† I own two of her handmade goodies and I cannot tell you enough how happy I am with the attention to detail and the how her designs just bring happiness to any room.† Do check the hoops and the messenger bag (if you donít get it I probably will!)

Adorable handmade goodies by Three Red Apples

Another clever girl with an Etsy shop is Fiona from Patchwork Delights.† I do love her Mug Rugs and the fabric covered magnets will be welcomed with open arms.† If your mum has a crafty soul, go for the covered buttons, they will certainly brighten up any project.

Presents like this are always cherished

Of course, I couldnít miss the opportunity to do a sales pitch here, so if you think that your mumís fabric stash is getting a bit low, come over the shop and get her one of our bundles or go ahead and buy fabric by the length.† Ths is a great option if you mum is anything like my nan, because she uses anything that I give her to make something for me :)

You can't go wrong with fabric, but remember that you have to give it away!

Happy Shopping!

About bags and fabrics

Tuesday, March 22nd, 2011

Those two words used in the same sentence are just heaven for me, and they often put my strong will power to the test when I am a bit short of cash; but it was certainly heaven when I made this bag a few months ago with 3 of† the fabrics that I have in stock.† I didn’t blog about it then because it was going to be birthday present for my sister.† I say “was” because she never got it.† The bag is still with me and I don’t feel the tiniest bit of remorse about it (as they say, to accept your problems is the first step to solve them).

I can fit anything in this bag!

The pattern is the Cosmo Bag from Amy Butler’s latest book Style Stitches (read my review here) and I used 2 of the fabrics from the Botanica Collection by Lourdes Sanchez and Kona Zucchini for the lining.

The bag was incredibly easy to make, for some reason if I see a big bag with pockets and things I usually think it is going to be difficult, but this pattern proved me wrong.† I do like the designs of the fabrics, but perhaps I should had used Springs in Cream for the handles instead of the one that I used or maybe a solid colour.† The thing is, I was so desperate to use Leafy Stripes that I convinced myself that it was the way to go.† I don’t think it looks bad, but I guess it could have looked better as the pattern of the fabric is difficult to appreciate, or what do you think?

Anyway, the bag is done and I am very happy with it.† Now whilst I don’t feel too mucho remorse I do feel guilty! so I must crack on and make one for my sister!

More than I expected

Saturday, March 12th, 2011

Yersterday I started my weekend a bit earlier and headed down to London to meet two lovely and very talented girls.† To my surprise, I didn’t only spent a great afternoon in Central London looking around fabric shops and eating cake with Margarida and V‚nia but also they gave me this sweet little bag:

Handmade in Portugal - Click on the photo to check their lovely shop

If you haven’t met them, I’d strongly suggest you visit their blog for lots of handmade inspiration, drawings, baking, and all about those little things in life that make you smile.

Enjoy the weekend xx

Just a moment to stop

Friday, March 4th, 2011

I am positive I am not alone when I say that I rush through out the week, wishing my life away and crying for the weekend to start, only to find that the weekend went so fast, and it is Sunday evening, I only did half of the things that I wanted to do and ended up feeling more tired than when the weekend started.

I have not come up with a solution for that, if I had I would certainly become millionaire selling my secret, but I am going to adopt a lovely tradition that many have already started, just stop and take a little detail from our lives and be happy for it.† So basically, if I manage to stop and appreciate something that I have experienced or I have come across, I might just start to slow down and, well, enjoy life even more.

So to stop and welcome the weekend I want to share with you an image of a Tea Room in enchanting Sintra, Portugal that made me stop and enjoy what it turned out to be an afternoon that† I will probably enjoy for the rest of my life.† So this is how I was welcomed in perhaps one of the friendliest little restaurants that I have ever been, Raposa Casa de Cha (and the cakes were delicious!).

P.S.† I want to thank 3 amazing ladies to recommended to go to Sintra: Margarida, Suzy and Kelly. xx

How to win 4 patchwork and quilting books

Thursday, March 3rd, 2011

Hhhmmm… It has been so long since the last time I updated this blog that I had no idea how to start writing again, so my dear friend Fiona from The Sewing Directory gave me the perfect excuse to get on a roll again.† We are having the best giveaway ever… or so I think. The prizes are 4 amazing books that will inspire you and will glue you to the sewing machine for hours without end!

What do you think? Pretty cool eh! How do you win one of these books?† Very simple, just go and have a peek at our New Items and Coming Soon section and let us know which one is your favourite, and don’t forget to let us know which book would you like to win.† Your answer should be submitted here before Tuesday 8th March before 18:00hrs.† Terms & Conditions and more info regarding this giveaway can be found here.

Hope you like the fabrics that we have in stock, and whilst you are browsing, don’t forget to also check the items on Sale ;)

Good Luck and Thank you for taking part in this giveaway!