It’s done!

I realise that I should have waited until the morning so I could take better photos with day light shining on Anabelle’s new dress, but I was way too excited about sharing the end result!

With kids in bed, I finished hand stitching the hem of the dress, ironed, checked for pins (!!!! Very important !!!! The first knitted cardigan I made for Anabelle had one hidden, which I quickly realised after she complained!!), cut thread ends off and tadaaaa!

I kept my pen and my sewing notebook handy while working on the dress, to note down all the mistakes I’ve made or things I should have or could have done differently.

By nature I am an incredibly impatient person (Ian will tell you…) and I’m trying to teach myself that good, lasting things don’t just happen overnight. I made mistakes, it took much longer than I would have liked, but in time I’m sure I will get better and quicker. Practice, practice, practice, right?

Still, I think this first little dress I made for my little girl is quite alright actually!

I think I know what Anabelle will be wearing to the movies tomorrow. I just hope she’ll like it!

Getting there

The Studio is coming along nicely. There’s still so much to organise though. I need to get lots of things and I need to paint lots of furniture before it is the way I would like it to be, but it certainly is getting there!!

I thought I’d show you what happened to the taped down wall

I was almost sorry to have to put the shelf on the wall and hide my lovely stripes! After I finished with it, I couldn’t stop smiling every time I went into the Studio. It’s sort of a cross between a circus and candy cane, don’t you think? The other side of the room is painted completely in the blue and the two ends of the room are painted in the Timeless White I used for the white stripes. Next on the list is the brown table on the picture and the chair.

I’ve painted the sewing/pattern/useful table but while the turquoise is a nice colour, I was too impatient with the drying time and didn’t wait long enough between the red base coat and the top turquoise, which means I can’t expose the red… Still, it’s better than it was before and I might paint it again. However, my darling husband helped me with raising the top of the table, so it is now at a perfect hight and my amazingly clever friend Jocelyn was ever so sweet and helped me cover it with interlining and a nice piece of fabric so I can now do this:

The table top is now thick enough that I can stick pins in it, and it doesn’t slide, so the fabric stays put. Good stuff!

Do you recognise the fabric? I think my friend Sarah might, as I used it when I made this cat for her beautiful little girl Zoe. This time though, I’m making a dress for Anabelle:

View 1. Should be sweet.

Well, it’s getting there! And look at that, you can even see the table and my inspiration board! That’s still a bit empty, but I’m working on it!! Can you believe I picked it up at a Boot Sale for £2? Bargain. I miss my Boot Sales.

Well, to finish the post off, I’ll include a few pictures of these wonderful Red Kites our friends and us saw recently at a feeding station. My wild life photography isn’t very good, so excuse the blurriness please!


Baby shoes

One of the first things I ever made with my sewing machine was this little pair of shoes for Anabelle.

I followed a pattern, but I can’t remember which book it was from. Once we unpack all of our boxes and I get my ‘studio-bits’ out I’ll find it and post it.

I was so pleased when I finished with it and one wasn’t enormously bigger than the other. And the fact that her little feet actually fit the shoes was icing on the cake!

There’s a few things I’d do differently now, like thread leather into the soles so she wouldn’t slide easily and make it half a size bigger so she wouldn’t outgrow it in… umm… 5 days!!!!

Nope, she didn’t wear them for long… but I kept them of course and have put them in Anabelle’s keepsake box, so one day she can look through and find them and think she had the cutest little feet to be able to fit these tiny things and that her mummy loved her beyond belief!!


So she’s done!


I just hope Zoe will like it!!

So, again, this was a Wee Wonderfuls pattern in Hillary’s lovely little book called….. yes, you guessed, Wee Wonderfuls! There are still plenty of adorable little things to make from the book and although so far I’ve only done one, I can say that it was very easy to follow. And I would highly recommend it!

One thing I would do differently next time though… I like to embroider the face before the head is stuffed. I find it easier to work with the fabric if I can turn it over. And it makes it neater too. For me anyways.

But this was the first time I made a little dress! How exciting!! And it worked!!! yay! Now to make it in 18-24 months size… Just blow the pattern up, right??

Ideally I would still need to make two more things out of my new fave book, for two more gorgeous little girlies. Let’s see, I have… how many?… 3 days left…

Chop, Chop!


Race against time

It’s always so exciting to receive a new book. I love books. I also love sewing, so sewing books are always double exciting.

Here’s what I received in the post a couple of days ago:

I have recently discovered Hillary Lang’s blog, Wee Wonderfuls and loved the dolls she makes. So, of course when I spotted her book, I had to have a copy.

Just the right timing actually, as I need to make a little something for an adorable little girl called Zoe in New Zealand. It really needs to be done yesterday, but because I was down with tonsillitis for a week then had an essay due, I only just started!! Here’s what I’ve taken pictures of:

This is some of my sources. I love it that nothing in there matches until you have a project, and then you find just the right stuff!

Here’s a sneaky peak at what I’m making. This cat is just so cute! I adore her shoes!

I think this colour combo is really nice for her. I hope that my theory will prove right!

All drawn up!

All chopped up. It’s funny to think that when I first start tracing, I start off with nice writing and spelling out, like Body, Cut 2, Body Fabric and by the end I end of the millions of cut out, I end up with B, x2, BF.

So, i really hope I will finish by Saturday. It HAS to be finished by Saturday, otherwise it will miss the big jet plane that offered to fly it all the way to Auckland! So sew hands, seeeeeeeeeeewwwwww…….


I really really really must start taking photos of things I make! Already there have been really cool birthday cards and bits and bobs that I could have uploaded onto my lovely blog space, but I just haven’t fallen into the routine of it yet! Of course a super-duper-cool camera would certainly push me in the right direction… (hint, hint, in case anyone in the Lavey household reads this…)

While we were at my parents June/July this year (after moving out of our story-book-cottage) before moving back to the UK, I had many nights where I had nothing to do, so I started drawing a few designs. I got quite excited about a bunny I came up with so drew it up, found lovely material, cut it out, then dashed out into my parents’ barn to look for the sewing machine amongst the millions of packed up boxes and hey presto… I found it!! I was thrilled! I raced back into the house, threaded the machine, lined the fabric, looked for the cord…. yes… LOOKED for the cord… but did not FIND the cord!!! So away went the thread and the machine, back in the box, back in the barn, back amongst the millions of packed up boxes. Hummm…

But, where there’s will…. I hand stitched Ms Bunny instead. It took a bit longer than doing it with the machine, but as I said I had many nights which needed filling.

Unfortunately I didn’t have the camera with me, so the process wasn’t recorded. However this is the end result. I think she’s way cute.

She is made of lovely pale blue (and contrasting pink) linen fabric and is now a favourite of my daughter’s.

Gotta Love those Fundraisers

Some of us mums organised a crafty fundraiser at my little boy’s preschool a little while ago. We wanted to raise money to upgrade the playground furniture. It was a great little event! The rule was that we could only sell hand made things. Hand made by us of course. Need I say more? We loved it!!
Ok, so it wasn’t for everyone, but those of us who love to pick up a needle and thread were well up for it. So much so, that we organised an evening when about 10-15 of us got together at one of the mums’ house with our little sewing machines and our already-started-projects and sat around the big table to work together and help each other. I absolutely loved that evening!
It made me wonder why we don’t do this anymore? Wasn’t it great when women sewed together and chatted and sang and formed a unique bond between them? And their little children just absorbed all the knowledge from around that table?

I mean, just look at these pictures from old times:
(‘The Quilting Bee’ by Morgan Weistling)

(‘A Quilting Bee in the Olden Time’, engraving by D.W. Peirce)

They are such happy pictures!
I am so starting something similar when we’re settled back in the UK!! Do any of you attend anything similar?

These are a few things that I contributed to the fundraiser with:

I found the pattern to this doll on the lovely lovely Purl Bee site. The pattern was made by Mimi Kirchner.

And I made about a million gazzillion of these little birdies:

The pattern to this I found on Spool Sewing and it’s called ‘Bird Mobile‘.

The fundraiser went really well by the way and the school received a lot more money than they anticipated for! Yay for us! 🙂

18 days

I won’t see my baby boy for 18 very long days..

I’ve only just come back from the airport after dropping Ian and Max off. They’re on their way back to the UK. For those, who don’t know, we have been living in Hungary for the past 2 and a half years, so Max can go to kindie here and pick up Hungarian like he was born here. He wasn’t btw. He was born in the UK.
So anyways, they are on their way to London and I’ll be here with Anabelle until the end of the month, then we’ll be joining them. That will be an other adventure… flying with little missy!! I’ve done it so many times with Max, but never on my own with Anabelle… Man, I hope she’s a good traveller!

I’ll write more on our future plans later, but for now here are some photos of the little mousette I promised in my last post. I made her for Lili. Lili is one of my best friend’s, Andi’s gorgeous little girl. Lili is blond, she has blue eyes, she’s tiny, but boy oh boy she can’t be pushed around! 🙂 Perfect combination for when she grows up!

Guilty Pleasures

I love hanging out with my kids. Both of them are lots of fun and both are in a fantastic little stage in their lives. And obviously Ian being my best friend means we always have a great time together. But… by the end of a busy day, after making dinner, washing up, reading stories, putting kids to bed, tidying up I am looking forward to a little bit of me-time. I wait until it’s all quiet upstairs and Ian is safely tucked away in his dungeon aka. his study and I get the machiiiine out. The sewing machine that is! I am nowhere near a pro at sewing (yet!), but it relaxes me and I love it! The last time I took the machiiiiine out this is what emerged from it… This is Spot. Well, a kiddie-friendly version of our cat called Spot. Max and Anabelle love him. They take turns in cuddling it and dragging it about! That makes my guilty pleasure not so guilty actually.. 🙂 .

In my next post I’ll put a picture on of another little thing asking to be let out from my sewing machine!