On my desk this week – 15 February 2017

The weeks are flying by this year already, so looking forward to spring coming.  I’ve got a few new projects on the go this week.  Two are long(ish)-term ones that I can hop in and out of to suit my mood and time availability.

First up, I’ve finally started the Persian Tiles crocheted blanket by Janie Crow.  This has been on my to-do list for a while now and I bought the pattern around a year ago, but have only felt like doing it now.  I’m using Stylecraft Special DK in 9 different colours.

Persian Tiles Colour Selection

I’ve finished my first motif and I’m pretty pleased with the way my colours have worked out.  I’ll be doing half the motifs in this colourway, swapping out Cypress and Pistachio for Storm Blue and Duck Egg for the other half.  I feel the chains in the middle are a bit long but hopefully the sections will stretch into themselves as I start to sew them together.

Persian Tiles

After my recent forays into cross stitching last year, I decided I’d really like to do some embroidery samplers, so although I’m a bit late, I’m going to jump into the “1 Year of Stitches” project.  Whether I’ll stick it out for the whole year remains to be seen but I would like to have a good variety of stitches in my finished piece.  I ordered some lovely Dove Grey linen …actually I ordered quite a lot, as I though it was sized in centimetres but it was in inches, but I’ll have plenty for a few projects.  I also couldn’t resist the little dinky oval embroidery hoop.  I only hope it isn’t too small to work on but if it is, I can always use it as a frame for a mini project and go back to one of my wooden hoops.

The last thing I started this week was at silversmithing classes.  I’ve decided my latest project will be a bracelet made of irregularly shaped links and connectors.  First link is done, although it still needs a good polish.  Doesn’t look much on its own but I’m hoping once it’s finished, the bracelet will be one I wear regularly.

Wonky Link Bracelet

I have to dash now, as really want to start my embroidery project tonight.

I’ll be back soon with more things to show and make.

2016 recap

Well, last year’s attempt at getting back into blogging didn’t quite go according to plan.  To be frank, my whole year didn’t go quite according to plan.  Nothing terrible happened to me but the year just seemed to fly by and I managed my time very badly indeed.  That said, I did 2 beginners blocks of flamenco dancing and also started silversmithing classes, both of which I really enjoy and hope to continue into 2017 and beyond.

Had great times in the kitchen, cooking up a storm, although still haven’t learned to decorate sugar cookies or make quite as many new dishes as I planned.

Beading took a bit of a back seat, with only 3 projects getting finished but have some new ideas and plans in the pipeline and I’d like to incorporate some of my silver work in with it once I develop my skills a bit.

I’ve been crocheting up a storm, it’s such a nice hobby to do on the couch, in front of the tv, on cold dark winter nights.

Again, I’ve failed badly at my attempt to dedicate more time to dressmaking.  I’m really mad at myself, as I love clothes and it is one of my ambitions to become skilled at making them.  I actually think I may be putting too much pressure on myself, so this year I aim to just chill and enjoy the process.

I’m about to embark on an embroidery sampler project, which I’m really looking forward to – I don’t know many stitches at the moment, so it will be a bit of a journey of exploration.  Can’t wait for my linen to arrive.

Anyway, enough chitter chatter, I have a ton of unfinished projects just begging to be completed.

 

Seeing Spots

I have no idea where this week has gone; I always think the worst thing about winter is leaving for work and coming home in the dark.  It feels like by the time dinner is done and dusted, I just want to have the lights turned low and the flat nice and cosy, which means that really the only craft I do on weekday evenings at the moment is crochet, as I don’t need good light for it.  Anyway, there has definitely been a touch of light in the sky the past couple of days, so onwards and upwards.

Last summer I made a dress to wear to the wedding of close friends.  I decided that, as I’d been hearing good things about them, I’d try out a StyleArc pattern.  They’re an Australian company, but my pattern scuttled its way from the other side of the world really quickly.  I chose the Layla dress, mainly because I loved the neckline.  I made some basic alterations to the sleeve and skirt style just to make it look a little more glam. (original post about the dress is here if you’re interested.)

I was so pleased with my dress, I decided to make another one.  I chose this black and red polka-dot fabric because it reminded me of Sevilla, and we all know just how much I love that place!

Ooldes of Obliciousness - Seeing Spots

Again, I decided to slightly slim the skirt, add a godet, and lengthen the sleeves.  I’ll admit I hate my arms, so I much prefer to keep the covered.  I’m happy enough to do that because I do love some fancy sleeve detail, as you’ll see in my next dressmaking project.

As I used a stretch cotton, I decided not to bother with lining it, as didn’t want either the dress sagging over the lining or the lining bulking under the dress.  It’s always going to be a dress that I wear for a few hours at a time, and the fabric is a good weight (and I’m lazy), so I don’t think the lack of a lining detracts from the dress, other making it look badly finished when it’s hanging up.  Luckily no one sees the inside of it when I’m wearing it.

I wore it to a friend’s birthday party at the weekend, styled with black patent tango-style shoes and a waspy belt.  I wish my belt had been a bit narrower as I have a really short, high waist, but as usual, I left it to the last minute and couldn’t find one the correct width.  I have one on my shopping list now though.  Here I am in all finery.

Oodles of Obliciousness - Seeing Spots

Now, I need to make some nice black jewellery to wear with it.

I’ll definitely be buying more StyleArc patterns in the future.  This one needed barely any alterations, other than the design changes I chose to do.  The instructions were great and just seemed to make sense (hahah, if that makes sense!).  There are a few I’ll definitely be getting in the next month or so because I definitely have the sewing bug now and appear to have overcome my fear of inadequacy.

Until next time, thanks for looking.

L x

A Stitch in Time

Hello, little blog, it’s been way too long since I last updated.  The intention was there but somehow life, laziness, time, and other stuff all just seemed to get the better of me.  However, I’m now back (still with what feels like a million ongoing projects, recipes in my head, crafty things I want to do, and places I want to visit, all jostling around in my head.

Anyway, onto the good stuff.  I’ve never attempted cross stitch before, and to be honest, it’s a craft that didn’t hugely appeal to me, mainly because so many of the designs on the market aren’t quite me.  Late last year however, I came across some designs by Bothy Crafts, which I really liked.  I had some Christmas money, so decided to go for the Love Tree one.

It’s been a slow process, mainly because of ends and it being a project I do for a few days then leave for months.  I’d love to get it finished before this Christmas though, as I want to make a gallery wall in our dining room after Christmas, and this is going on it!

Oodles of Obliciousness - Cross Stitck

As you can see, I’m on the outline stage now (not sure if that’s the official cross stitch term or not).  It’s pretty time consuming, mainly because I chose a design with tons of little motifs.  I’ll get there though, then it’ll just be quick wash and press then to find a frame.

Next up I’d like to an embroidery sampler, or maybe a cross stitch ouija board – decisions, decisions….

Are you a cross stitch fan?  If so, I’d love to hear of your pattern recommendations.

Thanks for reading

Oblibby xxx

Oblibby, you shall go to the ball

Okay, so it’s probably the coldest summer in Scotland in a long, long time, but at least the crappy weather gives me an excuse to stay home and get cracked on with projects.

I’m making a dress and jewellery for my friends’ wedding in a couple of weeks, and so far, it’s all going very smoothly.  My last attempt at a dress was a Gertie pattern (Butterick B5953), and was an unmitigated disaster. Even though I had added a FBA allowance,  the top part just seemed too low and wide to cross properly.  I may have another go at some point but will try using a fabric with a bit of stretch instead of the recommended woven.

Anyway, on to my current project, a much more enjoyable experience altogether.  I’d heard good things about Style Arc, an Australian pattern company and their Layla design seemed to be exactly what I wanted, albeit with a bit a tweaking needed to give it a bit more of an ‘Old Hollywood Screen Siren’ vibe. At the moment I’ve done the bodice and the skirt; I’ve made a minor adjustment to the skirt, opting for a slightly longer, narrower silhouette, and adding a godet at the back instead of the kick pleat. I’m not sure if the godet will stay, or if there is enough give in the fabric to just do a wiggle skirt.

I’ve chosen a thickish stretch cotton, with a slightly satiny sheen to it, which I ordered from Fabric Godmother. It’s my first time ordering dress fabric online and I have to say I’m very very happy with it – it’s lush.

Oodles of Obliciousness - Style Arc Layla
Oodles of Obliciousness – Style Arc Layla

(don’t let the hangar size fool you – I’ve made it in a 14.)

I’ve not decided if I’m going to put the zip in yet. Part of my thinks if it fits well without it, just leave it out, but we’ll see. The one thing I will definitely change are the sleeves; the cap sleeves on the pattern are lovely, but I hate my upper arms, so wouldn’t be comfortable with them on show, also if the temperatures aren’t fantastic, I’ll feel less chilly with 3/4 length sleeves. I just need to find another pattern with sleeves which will fit, but I have a feeling I have one in a Burda Style mag which will be perfect.

Oodles of Obliciousness - Style Arc Layla
Oodles of Obliciousness – Style Arc Layla

I can’t wait to show you the beaded jewellery I’m making as well; I’m hoping it will go beautifully with the dress style and fabric.

Wish me luck!