Giveaway: Linen Rabbit Egg Cosy

It always amazes me how quickly things move on from Christmas. I LOVE Christmas, but come to New Year’s Day and I’m ridiculously keen to get the decorations down.img_20190109_121612Like half of the World, I am currently drinking only water, eating lettuce (in an attempt to undo the festive excesses) and dreaming of Spring.dsc_0323It’s the same with my sewing work, I’m all for flowers and bright, sunny colours, I’m done with Winter tones.dsc_0324Despite being away, I squeezed in some sewing over the holidays. The floral cushion was a little something for me, it took such a short time and I’ve had both the cushion pad and the tapestry hanging around for months and months waiting. I do find it difficult to carve out any time for sewing for myself.dsc_0326I also managed to run up a batch of new Linen Rabbit Egg Cosies, because…img_20190109_121136ta-da! I made Country Living again. Can’t lie, chuffed to bits.dsc_0334I did make more of the ones featured, with the woodland print ears, but I still had the Liberty Tana  Lawn out from my Fox and Badger making laying on my worktop and I couldn’t resist making some with ‘Mirabelle’ ears too.img_20190109_130012I also remembered that I have one of the very original rabbits left from years ago, with the first ears (I ‘improved’ the design with the second batch as it bugged me that it was so difficult to make the ears neat and symmetrical) so he’s here for giving away to anyone that comments on this post. I guess I’ll randomly pick a name on the 26th January.dsc_0344I’m not sure if I’ll make more, even with the newer ears they are a bu*%er to stitch evenly and the linen I use is also a nightmare to iron, but I can imagine lots more Liberty Tana versions in my head and once I get a plan I find it difficult to ignore. We’ll see.

 

 

Giveaway: Rabbit Egg Cosy…

Oh joy, in print and in one of my favourite magazines, oh comely.  I’ve been a subscriber since they ran a competition with Folksy back in September 2010 (one of the winners being the wonderfully talented Kirsty of Sixty One A), so I was thrilled to be asked if they could use my Rabbit Egg Cosies in their March edition.  Now, if you haven’t heard of oh comely, Monica over at Quilt While You’re Ahead said ‘It’s like a really cool blog, but in print format’ which I think is spot on, even my uber cool Berliner husband, who noticed it laying around, commented on it so high praise indeed.  They say of themselves:

‘oh comely is a magazine about people and their quirks and their creativity, rather than money and what it can buy.’

‘It’s a magazine that inspires people to be creative, talk to their neighbours and explore new things, rather than buy stuff or lose weight. Imagine sitting down with a cup of tea and a creative friend to hear all the strange things she says, all the curious stuff she does, and about the things she loves.’

You can buy a copy in WHSmith or subscribe here for £18 per year.

It did prompt a quick Rabbit Egg Cosy replenish as stock was very low.  I’d forgotten how tricky they are to make, getting the ears to match is a nightmare as they sit on a curve and tend to spring out at jaunty opposing angles, however much I baste them.

The linen is also very difficult to iron, even with a damp cloth and lots of steam.

Then again,  I am a bit of a perfectionist.

They are available to buy on my (fancy new! – more about that later) site or on Folksy.

I have 2 egg cosies for giveaway, cute though they are these ones have wayward ears and I’d feel bad selling them.  Just leave a comment, nothing more and I’ll pick two names out of the hat on Sunday 20th March, as always I’m happy to post Worldwide so this is open to everyone.  Nice and simple 🙂

Bits and Bobs…

I am feeing a bit more settled today, so part of the anxiety must have been F going back to school.  I’m not entirely sure why as despite the odd off day he quite enjoys going, I think it’s more the frantic mornings and school runs; we have really enjoyed the more relaxed start to the day over Summer.

So, I seem to be running out of everything at once at the moment.  I sent off a Linen Mouse yesterday (I love the boy version of these) and now only have one left in the grey Asha print, yet another thing to add to my ever extending list of things to do.

On packing said mouse, I had no tags ready so I spent some time in the evening getting a new batch beaded and threaded (phew, one to tick off!).

I decided to reduce my list a bit more this morning by making a start  on the new Christmas Birds.

As written in my recent Holiday post, I am very eager to get on in the mornings and I find it best to work on kitchen table projects whilst M sleeps/bike rides so I keep my impatience at bay.  The boys are generally happy to play and watch TV and I bring down some of my ‘work in progress’ boxes, these usually involve cutting or hand sewing, things that can be packed back up easily or stopped if the boys need attention (I love these stacking boxes from Ikea, I have quite a collection now as they help me keep organised).

I also don’t like to waste any leftovers, many of my designs come about from using up these pieces.  It’s a sad but true fact that I have zipbags full of snippets of felt waiting for their moment, but I enjoy working this way, I like the challenge of designing with these remnants in mind.

Above is my felt flower box, which was a way of using scraps left from the Bright/Christmas Birds and ended up as Blossom Egg Cosies (I have many other projects in mind for these beaded flowers, including the suggested Tea Cosy for next year).

M is back from his bike ride and we are off to look at bunk beds for the boys today so time to pack up the boxes and get the boys dressed and ready 🙂

Spring is springing…

Oh sunshine, now isn’t that a treat?  I was about to go for a potter in the garden but on opening the door realised it might be sunny but it’s not very warm so I though I’d catch up on some much needed blogging instead.

I noticed these in our lawn the other day, I shouldn’t be a surprise as I planted them last year but I forgot they were there, it’s so exciting to see the first signs of colour in the garden and it inspired me to make up another batch of Linen Mice

this time in my favourite colour way of the (expensive…whimper) linen I adore, the colour is aptly named ‘Snowdrop’ which I think says it all and teamed with some of the Kaffe Fassett Spots in Lilac makes a very Spring like Mouse.

I had bought the ‘Snowdrop’ linen some time ago (from Tinsmith) especially for making Blossom Egg Cosies, we have a Japanese Cherry Tree in our garden that I love, the frilly pale pink blossom really lets me know that Spring is here and I thought during Winter it would make a nice focus for some Spring products.

I knew how I wanted the cosies to look so it was just a case of working out the best way to make the blossom, in the end they are done exactly the same way as flowers we made at Primary School to decorate Easter Bonnets each year, isn’t it funny how you can remember such odd details?  I can precisely  imagine making these with the headmaster’s wife, minus the beads and in crepe paper not felt!

For the final cosy, I opted for single coloured blooms, it works better and is less fussy with only one pink used, I am really pleased with the result and feel these are very ‘me’.  I have kept one to add to my kitchen shelves where I keep a mixture of vintage and modern glassware.  They were listed a short while ago and a few sold rather quickly so I only have 6 left, not sure if I plan to make more before Easter as they are quite time consuming.  The other pink flowers will not go to waste, I had planned brooches which were, of course, all for Mother’s Day but I also think they will make nice Easter gifts.

Still in love…

With the Kaffe Fassett prints paired with linen. This time, I made a batch of new Mouse Egg Cosies using my current favourite combination of brown and yellow.

As with the recent Bunny Egg Cosy (which I realise, have yet to be added to the shop) the lining is in red herringbone brushed cotton with a thick interlining between so the cosies do, actually, keep the egg cosy!  I am running out of the recently purchased brown linen, originally bought for the Linen Mice, it’s so expensive but kind of perfect and although I have tried I can’t find a cheaper replacement.

The Ladies (see last post) have been very helpful this week, they came over yesterday to look at the pricing of all my products, we had everything laid out and they put them in price order and said what they felt was a fair amount to ask.  Generally they were a little higher than me, but they have a good eye and both sew so it was a very useful exercise.  As a result there has been a little price shuffling on both the Folksy and Linen Cat shops and I am finally getting on with listing all the new products, there’s still a way to go but I’m getting there and everything should be updated in the coming days.

Lastly I have been finishing off half done projects

and packing up orders.  Lets hope for some brighter weather for photos in the coming weeks 🙂

Hurrah! The Cavalry have arrived…

I’m not superstitious, in fact I laugh in the face of superstition frequently putting new shoes in table, allowing the boys to open umbrellas indoors and regularly looking at the new moon through glass (although my Gran took this one so seriously I do have a flutter of panic when it happens).  However, I don’t like to mock it all too much, because you never know and after my, “oh, the boys slept soooo well” comments on recent posts F woke yesterday at 3.30 and decided it was time to get up, yes 3.30!!!! (is it morning yet – no got to sleep – but it’s getting light outside and I can hear the birds – go to sleep – is it morning yet….grrrrrr).  Still, yesterday the Cavalry arrived in the form of my Mother and (twin) Aunt who are here for a little holiday.  Although they live ‘Up North’ they visit frequently, enjoying staying at my Sister’s house which is a 5 min walk away and means ‘Gran’ can see the boys every day but have some peace in between.

Here are the ladies above, looking rather splendid.  I love this photo, my Mother won a trip to Florida by creating a slogan for orange juice and there is an album of publicity shots, all of which I would love to frame and display when we finally finish our decorating.  Whilst hunting for the above photo I checked my old scanned ones and wanted to show you this

my brother dressed in my ballet gear.  I was enjoying reading Rachael’s recent blog entry where one of her boys is dressed in a lovely blue tutu and it reminded me if this shot.  My brother did spend rather  a lot of time in dresses, something we frequently remind him of at the most ‘appropriate’ moments now he’s a burly Yorkshire farmer 😉

I love the photo so much I’ve printed it off to go on my recently covered notice board,

it was a large cork pin board and wasn’t in the spirit of my Zen (I wish) like Studio so I removed the frame and covered it in white linen which makes all the difference.

Back to the point, I have just dropped the boys off and have been told not to come back until later this afternoon, which is great as I have a lot to do.  The above Moo arrived in the post this morning, they are new care labels for all the softies and cushion covers.  I used to print the instructions on transparent paper and attach along with a regular Moo Mini business card but I decided to just get a batch printed.  All I have to do now is attach them all.

And I hope to get one of my open projects finished….hum, ha, hum, ha, can you tell what it is yet?  This one has been planned for some time but not actually worked up into sample stage so I need to just get it done.  I was, of course, thinking of Mother’s Day as well as Easter but I am being so slow I may just aim for Easter for the new designs.

Right, I plan to treat myself to a sausage sandwich with a couple of my brother’s home made sausages (which are rather wonderful, he recommends the HFW River Cottage Pig in a Day course, I can recommend the Mushroom one) and then sew whilst watching an old black and white, maybe a Cary Grant, will make a nice change from CBeebies!

Bunny Egg Cosy…

Last night I finished the first batch of Bunny Egg Cosies so I’ve just taken a quick photo for the blog.  A real photo session will be needed but I’ll wait until I’ve made up some other new designs and the light is better.

It is pretty much as doodled last year in my sketch book (optimistically entitled ‘Easter’ I noted…I only made a fraction of the designs up as I ran out of time).

They have cute red herringbone brushed cotton linings to keep the eggs cosy and I even used my new scary maroon labels.

The labels have been inserted into the lining side seam, on the original Egg Cosies I stitched them flat into the back but it’s quite time consuming to do it neatly and get them straight.

They are a bit ‘Winter’ looking and not very ‘Spring’ like if you know what I mean.  I am torn between a kind of  fairytale-woodland-creature-deep-red and a more modern pale-linen-against-bright-cotton design style at the moment.  It could be the snow that’s throwing me back into Winter colours (or the fact that it is, after all, Winter!) but I like to try and keep a ‘collection’ feel about my designs so need to get into a colour palette and stick to it.  I am also running out of the beloved Lecien ‘My Folklore’ fabric used above for the ears, which I also use on the Cashmere Bears so need to go easy on that.

In the meantime I am waiting for M to return from the US (Hurrah!  Thai take away, wine and a huge backlog of TV to watch tonight, Lost, House, Heros, Wallander…have I ever mentioned my addiction to US TV shows?  Don’t think less of me ;)), he is also bringing back some fabric I ordered on Etsy which I am most excited about.

I am in the process of dying linen for the new mice in the machine.  I used to love dying fabric when I was designing and making costumes, I could spend many a happy hour mixing colours but it’s not the same doing it in your own washing machine.  The last lot I did was a dark navy and I swear, no matter how many cleaning washes I did the dye was there for weeks, seeping into my whites.  I said then I wouldn’t do it again but I made a mistake buy a while ago of a large amount of natural Linen, I then made it  worse by over washing it causing pilling.  I’m hoping a dye session followed by some good ironing will make is useable, we’ll see I guess.

Right, best get the house into order before M gets home.