Thursday, 29 September 2011

Patchwork jeans bag

It's an absolute scorcher here today; although at 28 degrees some of my overseas readers will probably think that's quite mild!   We could have done with some weather like this in the Summer.
I took the opportunity to take some outdoors photos of a cross body bag I've been making out of old jeans.  Before anyone asks, they were my husband's (and son's) jeans but I haven't taken them from their wardrobes!  They were old ones I've had on my fabric pile for a while now.
I've decorated it with buttons and beads and the circle is reverse applique using some of the lining fabric.

I really love this fabric I've used for the lining.  It's from an odd pillowcase that my mother in law gave me and the colours are gorgeous.

Friday, 23 September 2011

Ain't no stopping me now

I've been hunting through mine and my husband's wardrobes for items to refashion and have come up with a few things.  
This t-shirt of my husband's is way too small for him now and it looked simple to alter so I decided to start with it.

I removed the sleeves, then laid a t-shirt of mine on top and cut it out down the sides and along the bottom, allowing extra for sewing up.  I hemmed what was the sleeve seam to form cap sleeves and sewed up the sides. 
It wasn't until I'd started cutting it out that I noticed the side seams were twisted.  There was no way I could straighten them up, so I cut it out as it was, which resulted in a slanting bit of the old seam at the bottom of each side.  After sewing the new side seams, this formed a small wedge shape at the sides which  I emphasised  by sewing a button to the top.
I finished the neckline with a small tab and a couple of buttons, and hemmed the bottom.

Monday, 19 September 2011

Facing the fear

I love reading refashioning blogs and really admire someone who can take a jumpsuit and make it into a dress like this or transform a dress like this.  
I've refashioned bedding and curtains into clothes using patterns but that's really just like using new fabric.  I haven't actually refashioned  an item of clothing (apart from the shirt for my husband but that wasn't anything major).  I have a fear of cutting into something without having a pattern and instructions to follow, but at the weekend I faced my fear!

I started with this t-shirt of my husband's which he's had for years and never worn.

I thought about taking it in  at the sides all the way from the hem to the end of the sleeves but the shoulder seam would still be way too long.  Instead I laid a t-shirt that does fit me on top, with the shoulder seams together, and cut down the sides and along the bottom about an inch wider to allow for seams.  
I wanted it to have long sleeves, so I drew round a sleeve onto a folded piece of paper to make a pattern.  I had to piece the fabric in bands for the sleeves and I could have done each one with three bands.  I thought as it had to have seams across, I might as well make it look as if they were a design feature and decided  three seams would look better than two, so I used four bands.   I kept the original sleeves at the bottom so that I wouldn't have to hem them.  
I was going to make a V neck, but after I'd removed the original ribbing (which was very wide) I was left with a nice round neck which was already turned under so I just stitched it down.

and this is the result

I stitched the bands on the sleeves together so that the edges roll up like so

I'm pretty pleased with the result and now I've got past that first hurdle I'll be looking out for other things to refashion!

Monday, 12 September 2011

North Yorkshire to Derbyshire

This weekend has seen myself and my daughter in North Yorkshire and Derbyshire.
On Saturday we took the train to Knaresborough in North Yorkshire.
It's a lovely town which lies on the River Nidd where you can hire rowing boats for a trip down the river.  (click on photos to enlarge)

This is the old castle
and the view from up here

A famous resident of Knaresborough is Old Mother Shipton who was born in a cave in 1488.  She grew up to become a respected prophetess and soothsayer, although some said she was a witch as she was also very deformed and had a pointed nose and chin which almost met.  The Petrifying Well at Mother Shipton's Cave has been a tourist attraction since 1630, with visitors leaving articles to be hung up under the running water which comes from a lake about a mile underground and is full of minerals which turn them to stone
Those two cup shaped bulges are said to be a gentleman's top hat and a lady's bonnet which were hung up in 1853 and never claimed.
In the museum you can see various items which were left by famous people such as a Stetson from John Wayne, a handbag from Agatha Christie and a shoe from Queen Mary.

It was another lovely (but blustery) day on Sunday and we had planned to go to Manchester until we realised the shop we wanted to visit doesn't open on a Sunday.
Instead we caught the train to Hathersage in the Derbyshire Peak District

and we walked along the river to Grindleford

where a cricket match was just starting - I didn't think cricket was played so late in the year.

We got the train back from Grindleford.  This is the station with it's two platforms, one to Sheffield and the other to Manchester.  The stone bridge is the road to the car park, and to cross from one platform to the other.  Beyond that you can see the opening of Totley tunnel which at three and a half miles is the second longest in the UK and took four years to complete

Friday, 9 September 2011

Day of contrasts

This morning I was woken up by the Post man bringing a parcel!  I was very lucky to win a giveaway on Daisie Days blog, the contents of which was a complete surprise.  This is what I got; all wrapped up - (click to enlarge)

A lovely sock monkey; isn't she cute?  Handmade notecards, decorated clothes pegs, a zippered pouch, a hair slide decorated with lilac flowers and also buttons!  Such a lot of loveliness.

Later in the day we had 50 sheep delivered who will be staying with us for a while to keep the grass down

Later on, my husband decided to take me on a little jaunt to the scrapyard - oh yes he knows how to show a girl a good time!  He's been gradually filling an old car of our's  with other bits of metal we were throwing out (gradually being years) and thought it was time to weigh it in.
Here is the tractor pushing the car onto the trailer

and for anyone who's never been to a scrapyard, here it is being lifted off at the other end.  I nearly didn't get this photo as the man on the grabber was so quick!

 and onto something more pleasing to the eye, some flowers that are out at the moment 

I first saw Zinnias over on Sweet Birdy Love when it was Winter here and Summer over there, and I thought I would sow some this year.  I'm really pleased with them because each individual flower lasts for ages and ages.  Some of these flowers have been out since July!

Monday, 5 September 2011

On Ilkley Moor bah t'at

Yesterday we caught the train to Ilkley in the Yorkshire Dales.
It's the first time I've been to Ilkley which is a lovely town.  I was surprised that only a very short walk from the station and we were on Ilkley Moor (the post title is an old Yorkshire song meaning 'on Ilkley Moor without a hat').
It had forecast rain but it stayed dry all day so we had a lovely long walk

How gorgeous does this purple heather look with the rocks and green grass? 

We wondered what those white things were on the horizon in the middle of the photo

Here's a closer look
I looked it up when I got home and it's RAF Menwith Hill which is a communications and intelligence sight for the UK and the USA.

After all that hill walking we took a train to Skipton and walked along the canal side.

Thursday, 1 September 2011

August Photo Scavenger Hunt

I found this month's photos quite difficult to find; in fact if I hadn't gone to Scarborough at the weekend I would have been improvising a lot more than I did!

A fountain

A boat

I thought there were no mountains round here and then I came across this little range whilst out on a bike ride

Street food

A picnic

Market day

A festival or funfair


Something bizarre
I couldn't find anything really bizarre so I've gone for this, which we've had for years in different places outside our house.  I don't find it bizarre myself and it looks quite innocuous in the photo but it freaks visitors out, even when they've seen it before.  One eye's glazed over and the other one is missing


A sport
well several water sports

Something ancient

You can find other entries for the scavenger hunt, and the list for September if you fancy joining in, over on Postcards from the P.P.