Winter sewing plans

Everyone knows how lame English weather is. Sometimes it feels like we jump straight from Summer to Winter.

But something that is different this year is that I’m embracing sewing a Winter wardrobe! I pretended Winter wasn’t happening last year by sewing sundresses but I can’t kid myself much longer.

I’ve got some quite ambitious plans. Here are the first few concrete ideas I have.

I hope you’re not too cold wherever you are.

And if you are I hope you’re whipping up something lovely to keep you warm whether it’s a blanket, a scarf, an outfit or a coat.

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Craft swap. October 21st

Anyone going to the craft swap at Fabric-ation Leeds on Sunday October 21st?

Looks like a great opportunity to swap a variety of items. The details encourage bringing whatever you like; patterns, fabric, magazines, notions, fabric paint/dye, craft kits, etc!
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I’m thinking of going because I might see something awesome but also because this might lift the lid into the Leeds crafting community!!

If you’ve not heard of Fabric-ation check out their website. They’re doing awesome things in the community.

They run loads of workshops on a crazy variety of things; intro to gold plating, corset making, card making, pewter jewellery casting… as well as a range of sewing sessions including refashioning and repairing skills for clothes that just need some love.

I’m tempted just to go work in the sewing lounge on one of the open sessions. £3 to sew around like-minded people and not have to listen to the Fifa game music in the background sounds like bliss, and a bargain!

If you’re thinking Amy, you’re telling us a bit early. Well I just want you to have time to put it in your diaries.

It’s Sunday starting at 12 so you’ll be home in time for Sunday roast and Downton Abbey, and you might just get a great swap! Or make a new friend…?

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Where have you been woman?!

Is what I imagine you’ve been saying. Or if you’re too polite to think/say that then please believe me that’s what I’ve been saying to myself when I look at the last time I posted.

I have actually been a busy lady which is reassuring (I’ve not been trapped under a pile of fabric unable to reach a telephone to call for help, etc).

Today is my first day back after a week in Spain. Aaaaaaaaaah lovely beachy sunshine and reading books.

I took my Edith Head auto/biography with me that I got as a birthday present. Using her first drafts of an autobiography this book was completed and added to by Paddy Calistro.

The semi-autobiographical story of Edith Head

For those of you who don’t know, Edith Head was one of Hollywood’s most memorable and rewarded fashion designers. She started work as a fashion artist with Paramount and worked her way up to being the signature designer for the studio. She won 8 Academy Awards for Costume Design; some for work she didn’t even think was her best!

She dressed too many stars to name but formed strong friendships with many iconic actors and actresses; Bette Davis, Barbara Stanwyck, Shirley MacLaine, Grace Kelly, Audrey Hepburn, Elizabeth Taylor, and Natalie Wood, Bing Crosby and Bob Hope. She was one of Alfred Hitchcock’s preferred designers and although she found working with Hal Wallis difficult at times, he always asked for her on his pictures.

This book really opened my eyes to how costumes were conceived, designed, produced and fitted for the movies in the 30s through to the 60s. The effect of the war on available fabrics, the changing styles as new decades passed and the politics of handling certain actors and directors are all covered with wit and detail.

I really recommend this book! It’s got so many lovely photos and anecdotes. There’s plenty for a dressmaker as well as someone just enthusiastic about film-making during the golden years of Hollywood.

The other thing I’ve been hidden away working on is a dress.

Aaaah the dress. I blogged about it here.

I had a wedding to go to in the Dales in Yorkshire. At a place called Danby Castle that I’d never heard of even living in Yorkshire all my life!

I wanted a new special dress to wear and dug out some lovely French Crepe I had in stock.

I made my sort of cambie dress out of the pajama pattern I got for my birthday. It’s not really that much like the cambie but it’s got that vibe which I like.

Smiley happy bunting photo!

Best photo I have sorry. I’m going to post a review with better photos soon as I think this is a good pattern and with a few tweaks becomes a very wearable dress.

The wedding was fantastic. Bunting themed cake, epic vegan food (courtesy of the chef who goes on tour with Thom York and Radiohead) and lots and lots of dancing. Plus an aggressive pony who only liked men. Humpf!

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I love Bunnies

Bunnies are awesome.

I doubt you’re going to disagree with me but I’m going to say why anyway.

I used to have a bunny called Honey. Yep that’s right, Honey Bunny. And I used to push him around in a replica of a silver cross pram. Only the best for my baby! (errr, I should point out that this was decades ago when I was like 9 or 10 and not last year).

He was awesome and I thought we’d be buddies forever. But Bunnies can’t last forever and Honey died of pneumonia. I was heartbroken and couldn’t bring myself to replace him.

Now Polly is an awesome rabbit that I’ve been impressed with from afar. I say “afar” because she’s a Swedish rabbit who lives with Ida (check out her sewing blog too).

I mean wowzers, a show jumping bunny? I’ve never heard of such a thing!

Cat’s are generally a seamstress’ best friend but Polly makes a good case for a bunny being a kick ass sewing companion too.

Finally the reason for this post is that a fluffy cutie bunny actually helped me win a competition!

I entered the giveaway by Fabric Godmother to win the book DIY Couture How to make a gathered dress by the lovely Rosie Martin.

And this is how my name was picked….

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IRq0blwOHiI?feature=player_detailpage&w=640&h=360]

Unbelievable awesomeness right?! And check out that ace bunny cushion!

Many thanks to Josie from Fabric Godmother for organising this giveaway.

The book take a simple idea, clearly lays out the steps and expands on different variations you can do. It’s well photographed and presented, is slim and well produced and is already sat with the rest of me sewing books!

In closing I’ll say that the hint I gave in my last post about bunny related sewing is in progress and more to follow on that. Woop!

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