Thursday, March 31, 2011

Being Creative

This month I joined up a fun arty group where you can use any medium to create something related to the given theme. March was 'garden'.
I made two tea cosies and a butterfly brooch and a pumpkin applique and stitched tea towel. My regular blog friends are probably sick of seeing what I made this month. Next month I will try to save my finishes up for the final reveal at the end but I was just too excited about it all this month :D



The yellow is felt background and the feelers are thin wire. See how I made it here

Thanks everyone for your nice comments on the flickr photos. I also enjoyed looking at all the photos and can't wait to visit blogs with the linky.
Being Creative is hosted by Julia Crossland. There is a linky on her site for visiting other 'Being Creatives' at the end of the month.


Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Christmas through the year

I have had a great time making some designs and playing with free motion applique. I still managed to make a gift. I have appliqued two tea towels with an Orpington rooster and an Orpington hen. I love chickens. I drew these from photos and I wanted to use my brown tone fabrics on the orange tea towels. The rooster was almost those colours but the hen was supposed to be black.

I used my silicone mat (bought it to use in the frying pan) to iron the rooster pieces together first then put him whole onto the tea towel. The mat is a bit see through. It goes on top of the pattern picture and you build the picture on the silicone, put a cloth over and dry iron. When it cools it peels off the silicone ready to stick on your project.

You can view and download the patterns.

You can visit Allie-oops Sweet Happy Life to see what others have made.

Happy Applique,

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Tickled Pink Tuesday and Tuesday Treasures Double Up

In keeping with my Monday holiday theme I have a few tea treasures that I bought on that trip. I couldn't buy a lot of china to carry back so I bought just one fragile package that was a little different. 
They are tea or coffee cups that are made in Lebanon. I bought them in the Printemps store in Dubai for for about $10 each and then had to carry them safely with me for 4 weeks!

The set of teaspoons I bought at Harrods in London. They were quite expensive but I am tickled pink that I bought them because I just adore them and I use at least one of them everyday.

The honey spoon is made of pewter and I found it in a gift shop in Salisbury on the day we visited Stonehenge. It was a toss up between the spoon or a stainless steel salt and pepper set shaped like little watering cans. I decided that I wouldn't use the salt and pepper set but I might use the spoon for jam or honey. So I went with the spoon.

Not the best photo but the little bee is cute.

Melody hosts Tuesday Treasures so pop over there to see who else is playing then tomorrow you can see what is tickling Allie on her Tuesday.

Happy Blogging,

Monday, March 28, 2011

Monday's Show and Tell

I have the cutest little cat on my desk. I mean the calendar :)
I bought him as a souvenier at a huge garden shop at the top of the stairs to the Notre Dame Metro stop. I look at it every day and remember my visit to Paris last year. They also had cute little bird houses for sale.
Come with me to Paris :)

I climbed to the top of the Notre Dame Cathedral. Those spiral stair cases are perfect for panic attacks. They are quite confined and I hated not being able to see the bottom or the top. It felt like it would go on forever. Enough of that though. It spooks me thinking about it. I climbed every tower I found this time. Won't be doing that next time.

I loved Paris. I had tea at little cafes and wandered the streets fascinated by all the little fashion shops that seemed to be everywhere. The first little cafe I went to had teapots for decoration - Le Jardin de The - very French.

The buildings all have flats above them and seem really dull til I happened upon one set of big double doors that was open. Behind was the most magical courtyard. I realised that lots of the buildings must have these hidden courtyards. 

I visited Montmartre and had tea in the artists square. The table was an artwork itself.

That's my cup still on the table.

On the way up I passed a patissiere with the biggest biscuits I have ever seen. They were bigger than my hand.

It was the beginning of April and all the trees were starting to blossom. Ah! Paris in the Spring!

Make sure you visit Sandy at Cookies and Cream Craft to join in Monday's Show and Tell.
Happy Sewing,

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Your photo made into a link

When I created my design page I just wanted photos to link to the related post. This is how I did it.

Put your photo in the same as usaual.

Select your photo then click the Link menu item to unhilight it.
(The Link item is hilighted because the default link opens the photo in a new page )

Next time you select the photo the link menu item is not hilighted any more.

Go to the page or post that you want to link to and copy the URL

Go back to your edit posts page.
With the photo selected click on the link menu item to get the add link dialogue box.

 Paste in the URL. Any text you add becomes part of the link.

(When you preview your post the links aren't active.)

To change the link info:

I worked out that if you want to completely remove the text just click on it and delete it a letter at a time. When I clicked change and did it in the dialogue box the whole photo was deleted too. To add text just click next to the photo and the text becomes part of the link. Probably better to add a caption or not.


Check out my butterfly brooch
Happy Blogging,

Saturday, March 26, 2011

My finishes

I have been busy creating. I want to share my ideas so I have created a  post for each design showing how I made it so I could use it to link to from my 'My Designs' page. The posts are directly beneath this post so you can just scroll down for a look.

Happy Sewing,

Butterfly brooch

I loved my butterflies so much I decided to make a brooch.

View and download the butterflies.

I traced the pattern onto the fusible applique paper in reverse - actually I forgot to do it in reverse :)
Then ironed it onto a large piece of felt and fre motion sewed the edges and the details.
I trimmed around the felt leaving a 1/8' border. Sorry the pictures don't match. I reused the tea cosy ones.

I pinned it back on the felt and cut out a backing piece.
I cut a little rectangle to fit over a safety pin. Give it a bit of extra length for ease of sewing. PLace it near the top of the brooch so it hangs nicely when pinned on.

I used my zipper foot to sew close to the pin then trimmed it back close to the stitching.

I made some wire feelers and made a little knot to catch into the seam.

I used monofilament in the top and yellow in the bobbin and sewed the top to the back around the edge of the fabric with the top facing up. You will have to flip the pin over a couple of times to get around it.

Wear it and be happy :)

Happy Sewing,

Butterfly tea cosy

I am part of the Being Creative group. This month's theme was 'garden'.
I wanted to make something all my own so I drew some butterflies from photos and put them on a tea cosy. This cosy fits over a medium tea pot - 2 or 3 cups.

View and download:
The butterflies
The cosy body
The cosy gusset

To make the butterflies I cut out the shapes and used them as patterns to cut out the fabric. Any future butterflies will be traced onto fusible applique paper in reverse. The fabric needs the extra control afforded by the glue.

I placed the fabric buttefly onto a large piece of felt and free motion sewed the edges and details. I then trimmed around the felt leaving 1/8" border.

I cut out the tea cosy body in 2 x outer fabric and 2 x wool for the lining.

I sewed a front outer to a front lining 1/8' from the edge to hold them together then I sewed on my butterflies in free motion just around their body leaving the wings free. I added the legs and feelers.

I sewed the back to the back lining close to the edge then with right sides together sewed over the curve between the dots.

In order to make the tea cosy stand straight I put in gussets. Sew one side of the gusset to the front from the bottom to the top seam allowance point. Sew the second side of the gusset from the bottom to the top seam allowance point. Repeat for the second gusset on the other side. You may have to trim a bit off the bottom of the gussets before you do the binding to stop the front kicking up.

I used a 2 1/2' binding strip folded in half. I sewed it to the inside and folded it to the outside and finished with machine sewing close to the fold of the binding.

Happy Quilting,

Pumpkin Tea Towel

I have made an applique pattern of a pumpkin and vine that I have used on a tea towel. I have made this one to put away as a gift.
I wanted the vine stitchery to stand out so I tried Pekinese stitch. I used fusible applique paper and machine stitched a narrow satin stitch  (3) around all the edges and did the detail with a narrower satin stitch  (2).

Because one of the leaves overlapped the pumpkin I have changed it slightly to make it suitable for stitchery as well.
You can view and download the pumpkin applique and the pumpkin stitchery
Just remember to trace the applique in reverse if you want it in the right hand corner.

If you use my design unmodified please give me credit - Design by valspierssews

Happy Quilting,
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