Wednesday, 26 October 2011

cloud blouse

I signed up again for the Kids Clothes Week Challenge on the Elsie Marley blog. Like last time I only managed to finish one thing, and that was several weeks after everyone else. But, I'm amazed at what I've achieved being a novice seamstress!

I love this pattern. It's the Family Reunion Dress/Blouse by Oliver and S. It's so easy to follow, and although it's quite dear to buy, I can see that I'll be making it again and again.

The fabric is Free as a Bird which is part of the Cut Out and Keep collection by Cloud 9 Fabrics. I bought it from M is For Make.

There's a ruffle at the front and pin tucks front and back. It fastens at the rear.

I've already cut out the pieces for another version. A dress this time.

Monday, 10 October 2011


Here we are picking tomatoes at the allotment. We got a whole load extra thanks to a late heatwave. I reckon I've harvested at least 50kg so far. Mostly I've been roasting them by the tray full, pushing them through a sieve and freezing the sauce. Such a luxury to have a glut of tomatoes. Also on the menu has been minestrone and Tuscan bean soups and I made six jars of tomato and apple chutney thus...

1.5kg tomatoes skinned, (sort of) deseeded and roughly chopped
1kg apples (a mix of eaters and cookers) peeled, cored and chopped
200g sultanas
500g onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, crushed
450ml vinegar, (I used a mix of malt, white wine and cider - just what I had in my cupboard)
350g brown sugar, (I used demerara)
1/2 teaspoon of ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon of allspice
1/4 teaspoon of cayenne
salt and pepper

In a big pan heat tomatoes, apple, onion, garlic and vinegar until soft, (about half and hour).
Add the remaining ingredients and boil until reduced right down, (about 2 hours).
Ladle into clean jars.
Leave to mature for at least a month.

Sunday, 9 October 2011

knitting and stitching show

Oooooh! I had a fun day at the Knitting and Stitching show with my mum. Here's my hoard... a Miz Mozelle Dress pattern from the Raystitch stand (can't wait to visit their new shop/cafe in Islington), an Oliver and S dress pattern and various fabric from the wonderful Eternal Maker stand including some Echino and Tammis Keefe. Some Millamia yarn, and a beaded necklace made in Bawaqua, Tanzania by Maasai women. This was from the stand of Mary Sleigh who was exhibiting an amazing collection of African textiles and beadwork. Wish I'd had my camera with me. I've just discovered her blog though.

Thursday, 6 October 2011


Today I parceled off some work to Gallerytop in the Peak District for their New Domestic Ceramics show.

Tuesday, 4 October 2011

pixie hat

This is the Stella Pixie Hat from Kristen Rengren's book Vintage Baby Knits. I've used 1.5 balls of King Cole Merino Blend dk and modified the pattern slightly to include a 1x1 rib border and an i-cord tie strap instead of a button fastening. You can get a free copy of this pattern here.

Poor Betty, having to pose for photos in this heat wave we are having!