Apparently a golden rule of blogging is to never apologise, for example for poor photos, for incomplete projects , for reduced blogging. I was brought up differently … and whilst I’m not exactly apologising for a certain creative void I thought I’d explain some of my distractions.
But first one creative venture is this tote bag. I seem to live at the small parade of shops up the road in a vain attempt to keep up with the voracious appetites of my teens, well my boys at least. So I’m always looking for bags, not massive one, just something to bung a few bits and bobs in to complement the vast tonnage of groceries that get delivered weekly from Tesco.
This was from the absolute bargain linen/cotton mix I got from The Fabric Guild for £10.
I wanted some thing that was practical but with a bit of style and zips…. I’m always nervous of bags without an enclosed and secured pocket, too much to lose, not necessarily lots of money just the hassle of lost keys, cards etc etc. So there are two zips here and a clip. I’ve got one of these clips in my riding jacket and a haversack I use for walking, it’s so reassuring to know that keys aren’t going to fall out accidentally.
I used Jen’s tote bag tutorial again. I used it last for this bag I made for a child.
It’s a great tutorial. It gives you the basic dimensions but you can play your own tunes with the design within it. In fact I increased the dimensions as this needs to hold more and Jen was designing it for young girl. Mindyou at 5′ 4″ tall I’m shorter than most young girls today!!! So to the boring bit in case I want to reproduce it. The cut width is 13″ and the bag length 28″ when assembled into one strip. I also increased the handles to 28″. I used my favourite stiffish interfacing even though it was a linen/cotton mix so already had more substance than plain cotton. It has a layer of batting which gives it a nice heft. This combination was a good call as being bigger it would have more tendency to flop.
So to the distractions… well this monkey to start with.
Felix arrived a couple of weeks ago and I’d forgotten how playful kittens are and how much attention they demand. I have sedentary teens helping out with the cuddling during half term holiday and at weekends but he’s definitely a fun time waster!
Our other cat, Skye, was not a happy bunny, literally or figuratively. She’d always lived with other cats so I was a bit surprised. When you introduce a new cat you are supposed to leave them in a secure place for a few days so they both get used to the smells of the other. My bedroom and bathroom are perfect for this. However Skye would hiss and snarl each time she walked past the closed door! And she is such a sweet natured cat I was really taken aback.
Suffice it to say the introduction was not a success. The only good thing that was that Skye didn’t actually go for Felix and he seemed unfazed by her unwelcoming behaviour. But this story has a happy ending as you can see…..
The next distraction was finishing some curtains. Oh how tedious curtain making is. Having spent a fortune on curtains for our kitchen/diner pre cats only to have them ruined as they were used as indoor climbing trees ….
…I’d bought some cheapish curtains for a large bay window but they’d got metal eyelets. These are in one way very easily adapted for a conventional curtain heading but it’s so awkward humping round all that fabric. Anyway I’d been promising to finish them and whilst they are not actually hanging up the sewing part is done. Well not the hems but they’ve got to hang first….. that’s my excuse.
And the other distraction has been the garden. I’m afraid it’s been somewhat neglected for the last two or three years. OK it’s been weeded and lawns cut etc but no tlc. The fact that I bought my sewing machine about that long ago is absolutely connected!! So furniture needed painting, moss and weeds from grass eliminating, patios power washed and grouted, much cutting back of excess shrub growth with a little help from my tree man….. So the pictures below are not so much product placement adverts but a reminder to me what I used so I can top up and patch with the same products in the future. The generally good weather here in the U.K. has mostly made these tasks enjoyable.
All this has meant that my attempts at getting blocks done for my show quilt well hasn’t happened…. I’m waiting for the urge. Perhaps a rainy June would help.
Linking up with Amanda Jean at Crazy Mom Quilts