Monday, 11 January 2016

What I want to make in 2016

Last year I put this list together (from what I'd left undone in 2014!!) of things to make during the year.  As you can see from what I've crossed out, it wasn't that productive a year!
  • Bedroom curtains - our room
  • new cushion for Lloyd Loom chair
  • bedroom curtains - sewing room
  • finish snowdrop sampler
  • something out of box of old cloths
  • bedroom curtains - top bedroom?
  • finish spring tapestry cushion
  • new canvas for garden chairs & coordinating bench cushions
  • use DH's old shirts to make tops?
  • something out of striped Mulberry fabric
  • Something out of Nain's pink/orange fabric (Amy Butler Lotus tunic?)
  • Scandinavian garlands from Scandinavian Needlecraft by Clare Youngs as Christmas presents - use stuff stored in boxes/attic?
  • key rings/fridge magnets - possibly from Made in France: Sweet Treats in Cross Stitch by Tinou Le Joly Senoville; garden secrets book at home; also see 'key to it all' post
  • Presents/cards for birthdays
  • Christmas tree skirts - as presents
But, looking on the bright side, I don't need to worry about curtains for the top bedroom as I brought a pair I made about 20 years ago from my flat (I was fed up with my tenants having my lovely curtains and the last one certainly didn't appreciate them). So, I have curtains made by my fair hand in all rooms but one of our house (and the curtains in that room have new linings made by me).

Another small plus is that now that the major projects (you guessed it, curtains) are done, I can hopefully concentrate on some smaller finishing touches, like the chair cushion and some tie-backs for the numerous infamous curtains.

I'm not going to promise to complete this list as a) I don't want to put pressure on myself, b) I know I won't manage it and c) I'll probably do other stuff that I haven't considered putting on this list.  I am hoping to concentrate on a few of them though:
  • tie backs for 'final curtains'
  • new cushion for Lloyd Loom chair
  • finish snowdrop sampler
  • finish spring tapestry cushion
and take it from there.  It is four years since I started blogging here and the last 18 months have been pretty poor to say the least, so hopefully this will be my blogging come-back year.

Friday, 8 January 2016

Advice from our grandmothers

Now I know where I've been going wrong all these years!

Tuesday, 5 January 2016

Merlin has new friends

You've probably noticed over the years, that I quite like making Christmas decorations.  It may also have come to your attention that I buy sewing/embroidery/craft magazines that often have free gifts or kits.

So in true Sew and Siw fashion, I bought a Christmas craft magazine with a free kit a couple of months ago.  And again, in true Sew and Siw fashion, I waited until the Christmas holidays to get the kit out and craft!

I'm probably 'officially' too old for finger puppets, but you're only as old as you feel aren't you?!?  ;-)

PS:  Merlin is our cat in the background - I don't think he's all that impressed with 'his' new friends though!  After all, they take the limelight from him ;-)

Monday, 4 January 2016

The final curtain

I know I probably shouldn't say this, but I really hope that the title of this post is true!

For those of you have been faithful followers of this (rather intermittent) blogger (and thank you if you are!), you will know all about my bumpy road to curtaining our home (is there such a verb as curtaining?!).  It has involved a huge amount of fabric, miles and miles of thread, aching knees and back and (literally) a substantial amount of blood, sweat and tears.  Not to mention an inordinate amount of patience on DH's part!

I hope that you are sitting down as you read this next part, because I have made the final* pair of curtains!!!!

I have been keeping fairly quiet about them I admit.  Partially because I'm so sick of making curtains, but also because we've had quite a big family event behind it all, which I didn't want to say too much about. It still isn't imminent, but at least the curtains are up now.

They should have been a quick and easy pair to make as the window involved is soooo much smaller than the others I've blogged about.  As ever, though, it all took longer than I'd hoped.  I didn't order enough fabric to start with (a bit of a boo-boo to say the least) and then I ran out of thread.  After getting more supplies and starting the next stage, the sewing machine decided to go on the blink!  To be fair to it, though, I've had it (or I think my parents would say, we've had it) for over 20 years and it hasn't been serviced once (shame on us), so it has done brilliantly to last this long.

So, all in all, my final (hopefully) foray into curtain making hasn't been the smoothest.  With all the experience I've had, you'd think I'd have perfected it by now though, wouldn't you!?!  As ever, I've decided to try something new again - blackout lining this time - and it is a bit weird to sew with.  I was a bit concerned that the stiffness of the lining would put me off them now they're hanging as it doesn't hang as nicely as 'normal' lining, but it isn't as bad as I expected.  That is one bonus of worrying yourself silly for months about something - it can NEVER be as bad as you expect! ;-)

Et voilà!

*At least, the final pair for a VERY VERY long time.