Tuesday, 28 August 2012

Time to get organised!

Suddenly I have orders! Sew Christine, a wonderful bag designer whose blog I follow, suggested that a good way of advertising was to make and use a bag so that others could see it. Well, two of my colleagues admired my 'bag within a bag' at work and I have orders to make four of them with matching small zip bags. Three are to be identical and then one is different.

I also have an order for three identical black and white wristlets with lace butterfly motifs appliqued on them as well as one made with poppy fabric. It's quite a challenge finding fabric to suit a person's wishes; thank goodness for the internet and online shopping!

The lace butterflies and the poppy fabric should arrive in the post within the next couple of days. Tomorrow I need to sit down and make a list of everything I need to buy and then make a trip into Hull, our nearby city.

Time to get organised!

Saturday, 25 August 2012

Bag within a bag

Yesterday I made something for myself! I take a tote bag to work and in it I usually have a bottle of water, coffee mug, small bottle of instant coffee (I drink decaffeinated, which isn't supplied at work), my snack box plus a banana. My personal items have been in a handbag I made some time ago.

I decided that it was a waste of a handbag to use it inside another bag so I made myself a large zippered pouch. It has a short strap handle on one side, two compartments inside and a strap with a snap hook on it. I hope I remember to put my car keys on the snap hook as I always seem to end up scratching around at the bottom of the tote bag for them! I also made a small coin purse that goes on the snap hook; I don't take my big purse to work as I seldom need money - just a few coins - but the little purse also has some pain killers in it in case my poor knees get too painful! There is enough room for any other personal items plus my diary and a spare pen.

As you can see, the pouch is quite big next to the tote bag. I used a 12 inch zip and the fabric might look familiar - it is the same as the fabric I used for my colleague's drawstring bag. I was given so much of it and am trying to use it up. I didn't make the tote bag; I bought it in South Africa and it has some lovely ethnic designs on the hidden side.

This afternoon I'm going to sit and listen to my book while I work on a cross stitch Disney Princess (Belle) for my granddaughter's birthday card. I love listening to audio books while I work!

Saturday, 18 August 2012

Pink flower wristlet

One of my colleagues has two sisters who both use walking sticks. They have found that small wristlet bags are ideal for use with a walking stick and I have made several for them, including two black and silver evening bags. Well, it's time for them to go on their summer holiday and I received a photo of a pair of cream and pink sandals with a request to make a cream bag with a pink flower on it.

I tried different flowers but decided on an applique flower as I thought it wouldn't catch on anything and, maybe, get pulled off the bag. I used cream 100% cotton for the outer bag and strap and pink 100% cotton for the flower petals. The inner circle of the flower is from a scrap of contrasting fabric I had. There is a matching flower on either side of the bag. I lined the bag with compact fleece (Vilene Thermolan) to give it body and squared off the bottom corners.

Do you see how convenient it is with a walking stick? It means the other hand is free to carry a tote bag or hold a grandchild's hand.

I was all ready to make a black and white wristlet but I don't have a white zip - so frustrating when the nearest shop where I can buy zips is in the centre of the city about 30 minutes away!

On the baking front: I went to visit my friend on Thursday and, as I walked into her house, her husband's hand appeared around the sitting room door. Fortunately, I had a packet of six scones to place in it! I had also left four at home for the Great Golfer to enjoy after his 18 holes.

Saturday, 11 August 2012

Sometimes I bake!

I don't bake very often as it would mean that the Great Golfer and I would eat too much cake with unhappy results. I bake scones more than anything else, especially when I'm going to visit one of my friends whose husband won't let me in the door without scones in my hand! Scones are also the Great Golfer's favourite but not even I can make them like his Grandma used to!

However, yesterday I picked up the instore magazine at a supermarket and saw a recipe for Honey Cake. The description says: This is not a big tall cake - it's meant to be quite shallow. It has almost a slightly chewy texture and is bursting with honey flavour. The shallow bit really appealed to me; most of my cakes turn out shallow, intentionally or not, and some have been known to be rather chewy!

So, this morning I baked a Honey Cake.
It looks just like the picture in the recipe. And, yes, we had to do the taste test...

It really is full of honey flavour. I thought that, with all the honey that went into the cake mixture and was then drizzled over the warm cake, it would be sickly sweet but it's not. I've put some in my bag to take to my colleagues at work tonight; I hope they like it too!

Maybe my baking days are taking a turn for the better...

Friday, 10 August 2012

Bags as gifts

At last I've completed the projects I've been busy with - the Olympics allowing, of course!

I made a drawstring gift bag for a colleague's birthday. I included some goodies inside the bag and she was pleased with her gift. Everything for the bag came from my stash: curtain fabric I was given for the outer bag; lining I had; felt I've had for ages. The little buttons in the centre of each flower have been in my button box for many years! I think I bought them about 40 years ago, so they must be vintage. They have obviously been waiting to be used on this bag as they match one of the colours perfectly. I made the drawstrings from the outer fabric using my bias tape maker.

My great niece is getting married next month. Although she has lived in the UK for over ten years, she loves her South African roots so I've made her a tote bag using fabric from the Safari Nights range. I hope she will like it. I used some scraps of the fabric to make two mug rugs for her as well. They are rather bright and turquoise but she does have a turquoise wall in her tiny apartment, so I think she likes the colour!

Monday, 6 August 2012

I am sewing!

I am busy sewing! Just no completed project photos to post yet. I've worked for two nights in a row so I've been sleeping during the day or 'resting' in front of the TV while watching the Olympics!

Watch this space...