Scary stuff, the sequel…

And so, at 2 am in the morning when poor F was being very poorly last Thursday, his main concern was that he’d miss the school Disco.  There had been a haircut especially and we’d even bought gel and there were many, many tears so in feeble attempt to cheer him up I promised I’d make Vampire capes and we could carve pumpkins over the weekend.  Now in true ‘I used to be a costume designer in a  former life’ style, I had been planning proper miniature period capes but due to time and circumstances, abandoned that plan for the easiest pattern I could find online.  I found a great simple solution via Martha S.  To be honest I didn’t even read the pattern, but took the picture entirely for inspiration and this is our version.

Obviously it will be worn with the rest of the ‘costume’ (school shirt, cravat and cummerbund made from the lining fabric, lots of white face makeup and dripping blood, you get the idea?) and then come Halloween we will go scare Aunti T and make her give us some sweets 🙂

The lining fabric looked black with dark red flowers on-line but is in fact a bit more…er…girly?  You can imagine the conversation:

F (from his sickbed overseeing the making),  “I don’t like that fabric, it’s for girls”

Me, ” No it’s not sweetheart, it’s posh fabric for a posh Vampire cape.”

F, ” But I don’t want to be a posh vampire, I want to be a normal one.”

Me, ” Well, Count Dracula is posh….he’s a Count, that’s posh.”

F, “I don’t want to be Count  Duckula !!?”

(We’ve been watching a lot of old kids TV shows recently).

It was a grit teeth day but we got there in the end and we also made these

(see those fancy squash on the left?  I grew those 🙂 ) and I took some time this week to get a few more decorations up,

now I bought this fantastic pumpkin card ages ago and feel very bad for taking so long to post about it, especially as the boys love it so much.  You can have one of your very own from Love Poppet at Folksy and you can read all about Claire’s work over at her blog.

We’ve also bought these fabulous printable Witches from Sally Boyle, again from Folksy.  I’m using Sally’s photo here as the weather really isn’t on our side today and I can’t get a decent shot of them but again, they are great and I love that we can print them off each year for decoration.

Now, what am I going to dress up as for Halloween…..somehow I don’t think the old black tights and polo neck jumper cat is going to work, although I would certainly look scary dressed in something that tight – ha!

Twice is nice…

Without going into too much detail, half-term got off to a bad start with everyone getting hit by a pesky Norovirus (otherwise know as the winter vomiting bug).  It’s been pants basically and you don’t need more detail BUT, today we are all feeling a lot better and then to completely cheer me up this little bundle arrived in the post.

My winnings from this giveaway over at the StuffedNonsense blog, where Bex and El create ‘all manner of handmade loveliness’ (and they really do, take a look at their Folksy shop and if you’re in the area their real life proper bricks and mortar shop at 40 Albion Street, Cheltenham which is open Thursday-Saturday 10-5 ).  Bex was one of the first people to find my blog and in those early days when you feel like you might be talking to yourself, she was a total boost leaving regular comments and making me feel welcome to the whole world of blogging.

Anyhow, I’m hiding in my studio to open my parcel in peace (not working very well right now as it appears WW3 is kicking off downstairs and my services as umpire are needed every few minutes) but here is what it contains:

A little jar of buttons…

A small package of lovely fabric scraps…

A button bouquet brooch (now on my tweed jacket)…

A cute little flowery ‘cobble’…

Some lengths of very pretty ribbon (how fabulous is that giant multi-coloured ric-rac?)…

Some scraps from vintage children’s books (loving the owl!)…

And finally, a totally adorable ‘Crabbittz’ called Paliki who likes Pumpkins and Craft Fairs (she’s going to fit in perfectly around here then!).

I really did need cheering up and it’s fair to say I do have a big smile on my face now. Thanks Bex and El 🙂

I’m a winner…!

Oh yes I am and not once, but twice, lucky me 🙂

A few days ago I won this lovely lot at Helen Rawlinson’s blog giveaway.  She was kind enough to include some of her Iron-on Fabric Patches (thanks Helen).

The boys have already stolen a bag each for their trick or treating in a couple of weeks (we are only going to Auntie Torie’s but they are rather over excited…..which reminds me, I must make their vampire capes).

All the above are available at Helen’s Etsy Shop and there is plenty more to see over at  her UK shop AND as if that isn’t enough eye candy, I have more than one of Helen’s  fabulous lampshades carefully lodged in my brain as the perfect finishing touch to our living room, see them here.

I have won another giveaway which will deserve its own post, but right now I’m off to buy a lottery ticket whilst I’m feeling lucky, can’t remember the last time I won anything and don’t these things come in threes? 😉

Work in Progress: Tweed Bunny Purses…

After a brief rest whilst my poor old Bernina had a service, I’ve been frantically sewing every moment I can, partly to try and catch up on Christmas products (they should have all been listed early October) and also because the half term holidays are nearly here and I want to make sure I’m free to make the most of having the boys home and not trying to ‘keep them quiet’ whilst I sew.

And so, I’ve been working on tweed bunny purses in the hope that finally, over half-term, I can update my shop with new Winter products.  At least that’s the plan.

I had a nice twitter debate about which trim to use on the purses using the original tweed.  In the end I went with my favourite, the dark, almost chocolate red.  It’s quite grown up and my lovely tweet friends had differing opinions (thanks everyone who tweeted back, I do value your opinions) but I had similar thoughts about the purple version of the Foxes, that it might be too dark a colour for my usual customers and yet the Mr Fox in dandy purple flew so quickly they were gone in a week (thanks ladies who bought Foxes, so pleased to see them go off to their new homes).

I’ve also tweaked the pattern slightly to make sure the purse (or should it be bag?) can hold an iPhone, it’s only fractionally bigger but I think makes more sense.

I have many pending blog posts, including a couple of giveaway wins (lucky me :)) and some new buys, but for now I need to get back to the sewing, photographing, listing and cleaning, school runs, gardening and………… 🙂


Finally *drumroll please* we have Foxes…

The above photo was taken back in mid September and it’s taken me a while to complete my Mr & Mrs Foxes, rather longer than expected (I blame those pesky kids ;)) but over the past few weeks I have made stacks of little clothing,

stitched many noses (one of my favourite bits as it gives each Fox a slightly different personality),

shirred lots of Liberty Tana Lawn and then (the best bit) finally dresses the Foxes!

Mrs Fox has a dress similar to my Wool Bunnies, shirred Tana Lawn with ties that fasten behind the neck to form a halterneck dress.

She then has a woven flower in her hair and, of course, a linen cape lined in green brushed cotton.

Mr Fox, the purple version is just as dandy as the blue, I don’t like to have favourites but if pushed, it has to be said that I am rather in love with this dark plum linen, especially teamed with the Mirabelle patterened lawn.

As with everything I make that might be played with by children, all seams are double stitched (except for top stitching) and where appropriate overlocked, and the stuffing Conforms to British Standard Regulation.  It should be noted though, that there are beads and small parts so the Foxes are not suitable for children under 36 months.  Clothing is washable by hand, I recommend washing the linen separately as it’s hand dyed and as I haven’t wash tested the tweed, I am opting for ‘surface clean only’.

You should have received and email from me, if you’ve asked in the past to be notified once the Foxes are complete, if I’ve missed you off my list, really, really sorry just pop me a message via this blog and I’ll get back to you.

Foxes cost £30 plus £3 P&P, hopefully some will make it to Folksy and my on-line store, they may cost a little more when they do and I do have quite a few pre-orders, but if you would like one now, I am happy to raise a PayPal invoice via email and pop one in the post to you.  Oh, finally they are 36 cm high by 32 cm (which includes their little tails).

Well, that’s all a bit blurby isn’t it? (today is making up words day :)) but I know that quite a few people are waiting on these and I want to make sure all the relevant info is here.

I was going to wait until each one is ordered before dressing them, I have become rather attached and I do love the dressing bit best, that and adding the final details (such as the flower in the hair), but I had a rough couple of weeks with the boys being ill and treated myself to a Fox dressing session, which cheered me no end.  With all my Foxes ready to go to new homes, I finally have time to de-fluff (remember, it is making up words day) the studio and attempt a tidy up. To top off my day, M is back and Friday night is takeaway night so I get to sneak upstairs soon and have an evening off and for the first time in a while, relax 🙂

Work in Progress: Christmas Mice

Well, we followed the boys colds with another one for C, only with added throat infection and then M being away, so as always when ‘home alone’ I’m a bit tired, but getting on with it.

I am always amazed at how much I get done with the boys early starts (we had 4.50 am on Thursday, I was delighted) for instance already today I have done 2 loads of laundry, baked 2 loaves of bread (1 white and 1 walnut, it’s a baking kind of day and we are out of bread), a Madeira cake and done F’s homework with him.  That’s pretty good considering it’s only midday.  I should stress, it’s not always like this but when tired, I kind of force myself to keep moving that way I manage, if I stop I will feel exhausted and unable to cope and although this does happen it’s better for us all if I can just keep going.

And so, I had set myself the task of finishing all the Foxes by the end of this week and it was going nicely until Friday when I was thinking of my list of Christmas designs and how late I am getting.  I then got slightly obsessed with the planned Christmas mice, thinking of how I would construct them, what materials I need to order and whether they should be young child friendly or not (ie no beads or buttons) and the poor Foxes have been put aside for a few days whilst I  play with silk and linen.

There’s a way to go and sadly my machine is being a bit temperamental (time for a service I think) but you get the idea.  I like them, they make me smile 🙂