2017!

Hello, and, er, a very belated Happy New Year!

First day of February and I’ve just about recovered from Christmas. I’ve still got a considerable amount of chocolate to consume, but at least I’ve finally got the Muppets’ Christmas Carol soundtrack out of my head.

I LOVE Christmas. My excitement levels go into hyperdrive sometime around breakfast on December 1st (it’s no coincidence that that was the last date I managed to post a blog entry…) and I usually spend the next few weeks in a sort of craze of festive happiness otherwise only found in sugar-high five-year-olds (only in my case with added alcohol). Thankfully, unlike your average five-year-old I have a sewing machine into which I can channel some of my festive frenzy, and there are few things I enjoy more than making Christmas presents. So although this all happened some time ago now, and I’ve got heaps of exciting 2017 stuff to show you, I still fancied sharing my Christmas makes…

For my mother, on her country walks and mini-breaks, I made a second version of the Desmond roll-top backpack, as before scaled to 80%. Again, I used Liberty fabric from Fabrics Galore, reinforced with interfacing, and this time a grey needlecord for the lining. The hardware came from Kleins, in Soho. Such a satisfying make.

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The speed of my knitting is something of a running joke in my family, especially as Christmases past have often seen me wrap up some unfinished accessory – scarf, gloves – complete with needles and yarn and place it sheepishly under the tree. True to tradition, this year my lucky sister received a half-finished scarf in Rowan Kidsilk Haze, inspired by this one. Hey, at least I managed to finish it in the new year, and it is pleasingly fluffy…

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Also this year I had the added bonus of making for J, a man who was never going to realise on his own that what he really wanted for Christmas was a pair of red tartan pyjama trousers. I used Kwik Sew 4088, a versatile pattern that offers trousers, shorts, two top variations and a dressing gown. Unfortunately, he takes these trousers quite seriously and will only wear them for actual sleeping, not blog posing, so you’ll just have to take my word for it when I say they are great.

And, for me (because why stop at giving to others?) – I finally made the Christmas tree skirt of my dreams!

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It’s a project posted on the Village Haberdashery blog back in 2015. Christmas 2015 I was busy leaving my job to go freelance, overhauling my existence and in general freaking out about Big Life Change, which didn’t leave a lot of time for Christmas patchwork. This year, a consuming, unnecessary and completely indulgent craft project seemed the perfect way to mark the fact that I’d actually survived the aforementioned change. Piecing all those little squares (often imperfectly, but hey, it’s a skirt for a tree) soothed my soul, and inspired me to tackle an actual quilt which will be appearing here imminently…

Anyway, sorry to be oddly sharing my Christmas on February 1st; I don’t know where January went but it clearly wasn’t into productive bloggery. I celebrated Chinese New Year at the weekend and I think my rooster resolution should be blog more! x

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My first homemade backpack takes on the Rockies…

Desmond roll-top backpack (2)

Have you ever been to a place that has, quite literally, made your jaw drop? Have you then wandered around said place making strange aaaahing noises because there are simply no words, yet you somehow have to express your awe, wonder and joy? If you’ve answered yes to either or both of the above questions, you’ve probably been to the Rockies. Continue reading