Tuesday, 7 December 2010

another bag

Another xmas pressie down - I got this one made quite quickly.  I really like this design - a few more friends might be getting this one ...

Monday, 29 November 2010

another xmas gift

I have been quite productibe today but I can't take all the credit for having achieved this plu s the slippers today.  When I gave my Mother-in-law her birthday present of the dog bag she commented that she could do with a peg bag.  When we got home my new issue of Sew Hip magazine had a peg bag in it - what a coincidence!  I made it almost straight away, but my top stitching was rubbish and needed upicking and doing again, and I needed to purchase buttons.

I finally got round to finishing it off today. Phew!

More slippers 3!

This will be the last post (at least until sew-quick.com gets jiffy grip back in stock!!) about slippers.  I've made my last two pairs for Christmas now.

This pair were made using bits of old black T-shirt.  The black and white are quite dramatic but I'm wondering if they need a little bit of something, texture and / or colour, to bring them to life.  Well ... I've got a few weeks to decide.

These ones are from a fabulous fabric I bought from a wonderful little shop in Hailsham called The Pumpkin Patch. They have a great central display with a range of folded fat quarters, all arranged by colour - a veritable feast for a quilter!  Anyway, love the fabric - pleased with the slippers

Wednesday, 24 November 2010

a new bag ... but not for me

I'm starting to panic a little about Christmas.  I had all these great plans for making pressies but life has kind of taken over so I need to rein in my expectations. But ... I have made another present that ISN'T slippers (more of them to come ...)

Sew Hip issue 15, described as a "Spring bag" ... well, it's a xmas bag now!  Made from the leftover material from my sister's living room curtains, I'm quite pleased with it.  I t was a relatively easy make so I might have to look into making one for myself too.

Monday, 15 November 2010

origami needle case

my sewing case was starting to look a bit of a mess so I found the instructions for this needle case in sew hip - my fave magazine!  It was really easy to make and other than the button I had everything I needed in my stash.

sock monkey

My husband was very upset when his wedding socks wore through.  I gave them a quick darn and then turned them into a memento to keep forever!  This sock monkey is so cute and was really easy to make.  there may be more sock monkeys to come ...

Tuesday, 26 October 2010

Baby gifts

In the latest issue of Sew Hip there is a fabulous pattern for a cute little teddy bear, and with two heavily pregnant friends I am aware that I need to pull my finger out and get creating.  This is the most detailed / fiddly project I have taken on and I loved it.  I bought waaaaaaaaay too much fleece for the slippers I'm making so had plenty for this bear (and more besides).

I got ridiculously excited when I made the legs - so much so that I walked them around for a bit ... ok, very sad!

and then when I got the body together ... well, that was another batch of over excitement.

And the final product ...

And so now onto the next one ...

more slippers 2!

so this might get boring soon, but I've started on the Xmas slippers now.  Here's the MIL's slippers - the fabric may look familiar ...

Monday, 18 October 2010

more slippers!

Yay - another birthday, another set of slippers ... and I remembered to take pictures of these ones.

greedy pigs!

In the first issue of Homestyle sewing magazine there was a cute patchwork pig.  I made him straight away and then rather than buying some toy stuffing I have kept him close at hand to stuff all my bits of thread and fabric cuttings, so he's environmentally friendly too!  He is now full so I have just made another one, ready to take all my cuttings

Sunday, 19 September 2010


For my friend's birthday I made her a pair of slippers from Sew Hip magazine.  They were really cute but I forgot to take a picture of them!  I have, however, bought LOADS of fabric so there'll be lots of slippers to come in the run up to Christmas!

Wednesday, 8 September 2010

catch up!

wow, ok, I'm behind again.  So a couple of projects I have done recently:

This is the purse I made using a kit purchased from u-handbag.com.  It was really easy to make and I really enjoyed making it.  Unfortunately the catch isn't amazing so I can't use it for much, but still ...

This is the second Tote I have made from the Sew Hip pattern.  This one was a birthday present for my Mother-in-Law.  She loves her dog so as soon as I saw this fabric in a different issue of Sew Hip I knew it would be perfect.  She was very pleased when I gave it to her so I done good!!  There's also spare fabric so her xmas present may be made from the same material ...

Saturday, 7 August 2010


My very kind sister paid for us both to go to Sonisphere as Iron Maiden were playing. So I decided to make myself an outfit to wear for the Sunday night and found a great tutorial on Threadbanger to make a halter-neck dress from 2 t-shirts.  I found a cheap Iron Maiden T-shirt on ebay and used my husband's old painting t-shirt for the other part ... et voila!

Sunday, 25 July 2010


Yes, it's been a while.  My sister has moved house and I promised to make curtains for her.  I have FINALLY finished one set.  This is my first task that I feel has to be done right so I've been nervous about finishing it.  In doing these curtains I have learnt how to do a French seam and also tried the blind stitch thingy setting on the sewing machine - have struggled with that so might just stick to a more visible seam.

Anyway, first set done.  So my plan is to get them to my sister so she can see if it works for her and then I can adjust as necessary.  In the meantime I might crack on with a few more smaller projects to get the momentum back up!

Monday, 7 June 2010

sewing for charity

So that I can feel like I'm doing something good for society I have found an outlet for my sewing that can help a children's charity.  Chicks provide free respite breaks for disadvantaged children from across the UK.  As part of the experience they give each child a memory bag and are looking for people to make these bags, so I made one!

If you want to feel good about yourself you can sponsor my bag production at http://www.justgiving.com/JoHobbs1

Wednesday, 2 June 2010

My own pattern!

I've finally given in and got an iPhone.  Now that I have carried it in my handbag in a sock all day (oh yes!) I realised I need a case for it.  Remembering that I have lots of fabric and some wadding I thought I'd have a go myself.


  • pencil

  • paper

  • normal scissors

  • Fabric scissors

  • Main fabric

  • Lining fabric

  • Wadding

  • button (or other fastening device!)

  • Sewing machine and thread!
So I started by drawing round my iPhone on the paper and then adding a seam allowance. I did this twice and on the second one added a flap towards one side of the top (to provide a closing to keep the iPhone secure but allow space to plug in headphones. And then cut them out.
I used these patterns to cut out the shapes in both lining and main fabric.  Make sure to flip the pattern over between doing the lining fabric and the main fabric so that when put wrong sides together the flap is on the same side!  I cut two of the non-flap pieces in the wadding, which means the flap isn't padded. Oh, and iron everything - you need flat fabric!

I started the sewing by putting the front main and lining right sides together and sewing across the top.  Turn right sides out and you have a nice, neat top seam.  Do the same with the back pieces, sewing around the flap end.  Turn right sides out and make sure the flap is fully pushed out.  You can then slot the wadding inbetween the front main and lining, and the back main and lining.

Put the two pieces together withe main fabric inside.  Sew around the three unfinished sides to create a pocket.  Trim the excess wadding (so that it isn't clumpy when you turn it out. ... Turn it right side out!  Hopefully the iPhone fits inside (mine did - actually if you try this yourself you probably want to double check against your phone the whole way through the process.

Add whatever type of fastening you like to hold the flap down to the front.  I used one of the many spare buttons I have knocking about and, for the first time, used the button hole setting on my sewing machine. It's so clever!!! Et voila! One padded iPhone cover.

Monday, 31 May 2010

An apology present!

Okay, so one of my best friends tells me she's pregnant.  Do I get excited? No - I sulk!  I'm not ready for my friend to stop coming out drinking!  So, now having come to terms with the fact, I decided that I should put my new sewing skills to good use and make an apology present. I found instructions for a baby book in Homestyle Sewing magazine and realised that I practically had everything that I needed.  I've got sooooo much fabric, and some left over wadding from my quilt, so with a bank holiday weekend to fill I got going.

I didn't realise how loooong applique takes.  I thought it would be a relatively quick make, but doing each of the animal heads took forever!  I did quite enjoy it though. May fav is the dog - he's so cute!

So, now to see my friend and actually make the apology!

Thursday, 13 May 2010

My new bag!

So my second completed project was a tote bag, from Sew Hip magazine.  I had great fun looking for fabric and found this fantatstic fabric with ducks on that I love.  I did realise once I'd bought the fabric that if I just used it as one piece the ducks would end up upside down on one side of the bag, so I had to cut it in half and stitch it back together.

I picked a plain yellow fabric for the lining.  And I love it.  I'm using it every day now.

Sunday, 9 May 2010

A Sunday afternoon project!

Yay! Something I've started and finished in an afternoon.

My sister gave me a cloth kits skirt for my birthday.  Whilst I'm trying to lose a few pounds before making it (as I would definitely like to fit into it!) I thought I'd try my hand at the bonus hat that also came with it.  Cloth kits print the pattern straight onto the fabric and send you everything you need to make the item, so as well as the main red fabric, there was black lining, fabric, a zip and a roll of thread in the right colour.  In the extra spaces on the fabric were printed the pieces for this hat.  It's fully lined and was quite easy to make.  It's real cute, but don't know if I'll have the guts to wear it in public!!

My first ever quilt!

Well, I've done it!  It's taken me a few weeks and a sore finger but I have finished my first quilt.  I found this pattern in Sew Hip magazine, issue 15.  I fancied trying something different and I thought a quilt was a good challenge for me.  As I wasn't entirely conifdent i my ability to get this one done well I thought I would do something to go in our spare room, so I picked a couple of fabric bundles from Fabric Rehab that included greens and yellows and got going.

Lot's of measuring, lots of cutting ... I got a bit confused over how to pin the circle quarters to the background fabric on each quarter, but got there eventually.  My measuring obviously wasn't spot on as there was quite a bit on wonkyness in this. I got the main front of the quilt done a while back:

I then stalled for quite a while as it was the next bit I was nervous about - actually quilting the damn thing. I got some lovely green backing fabric and some batting and eventually got going.  It didn't work out for a while as there seemed to be an issue with tension on my sewig machine  I spent ages testing on scraps and trying to get it right.  In the end I worked out that there was an issue with my bobbin - once I swapped bobbins it was all good.

Well, I say all good, but this project has shown that I don't have complete control over my sewing machine - my straight lines aren't exactly straight!  I quilted along both sides of the main seams across.  Also, in areas of extreme wonkyness I had to add in extra fabric to square it off.

Interestingly, I quite enjoyed making my binding.  I got a thin quarter of yellow fabric and sewed strips together with a diagonal seam.  Sewing the binding fabric onto the front of the quilt with the machine was a joy ... hand sewing it onto the back was not so fun.  I think I see the purpose of a thimble now!

But it's done. And I think it looks fab.

The colours are perfect for my spare room - we've got a green sofa bed from Ikea in there and a print of my favourite painting, Surprise! by Henri Rousseau, which has a lot of green and yellow in it.  One day, I plan to paint the room yellow!

Monday, 3 May 2010

"Project" bag

Right, so let's talk about something I have actually finished.  My first creation after buying my sewing machine was a "project bag".  It was a simple task, one to get me into using the sewing machine after all these years.  I didn't realise how small it was going to be though.  It was described as something you could keep your current projects in, but I can barely keep my spare material in it (and certainly not my current project of a quilt!)

Anyway, made from one fat quarter it was incredibly easy - just simple straight lines - and done very quickly.  It was a good intro back into using the sewing machine and does now give me somewhere to keep my material.  It was supposed to have ribbon sewn on but I am currently just tying it up with a saints and pinners ribbon, which does the job for me.

Tuesday, 27 April 2010


Ok, so tonight's project didn't exactly work.  I was watching some old videos on Threadbanger and saw this video for a cool halter neck top made from a T-shirt.  So I tried it out and, like some of the people who commented, it didn't really work on the larger lady!  The cowl neck drapped down to the navel with boobs completely out.

Interestingly, I managed to get the hubby involved in this one (and it wasn't just the boobs) and it then turned into an engineering challenge to work out how the measurements could be adjusted so it would fit.  So one old guiding t-shirt wasted, but a new challenge to try out.  Might have to start visiting the charity shops to pick up some Ts!

Sunday, 25 April 2010

here we go!

So, I bought a sewing machine.  It's been years since I did any sewing.  At school we stopped textile classes in the third year (aged 13ish).  For some reason I can't remember I did do some sewing when I was 17/18 - I hand stitched a skirt, including darts and button hole ...

So it has been a good 14 years since I've done anything serious, but I found myself constantly buying craft magazines and searching crafty websites and it became obvious that I needed to "do" something.  So after my birthday I bought myself a gift of a sewing machine - a Brother Innovis 10-A.

And since then I have been trying to create things and I thought a blog might be a nice way to keep my own diary of the things I have created, so now I just need to work out how to load some pics on here for the things I have tried so far.