Friday, 28 March 2008

This is .....'The Contents of my Handbag!'

Posting early again, it's still half term - gotta grab the internet when I can!

I bought my handbag last year to go on holiday with, so it needed to be largish with a long strap, and even though the piping looks a bit sorry for itself, I still really like it.
So here are the contents of my bag, in no particular order;
my purse, cheque book, random business card, mirror with box of pins on top, leaflet for my alteration business, receipt, flyer for a shop called Bargain Fabrics (still haven't been there!), lip balms (don't know why there are so many, but one is a nice one Mr.M bought me), lip gloss, various pens, spare car keys (one slightly bent, one only works if it feels like it), hairgrips, pretty tape measure (still in there from measuring baths we can't afford the other day), note book (covered in sample wallpaper from B&Q, place to jot random ideas and measurements of things we can't afford to buy!), phone (apparently it's retro darling, as opposed to out of date...), glasses, bag I made to keep glasses in that doesn't actually protect them at all (bad idea!), which is sitting on another bag/pocket I made from my favourite bit of Toile de Jouy to keep passports and stuff in and poppers to the inside of handbag (good idea!), which is sitting on top of a pink tote/shopping bag that is never actually in there when I need it!
So that's the lot, and there is no way I'm putting it all back in!!
Thanks to Angela for starting this Meme, I can't wait to see if everyone else carries around as much junk as I do!

Thursday, 27 March 2008

Shhhh!..Don't tell anyone.....

.....but i found this in the bottom of the washing machine....I think I've killed the Easter Chick. OOPS!

Wednesday, 26 March 2008

'This Is...MY CHOICE!!!'

Ha! I won! I get to choose what the next 'This is...' topic will be. The last thing I won was an Adam Ant calendar circa 1982! Thanks Angela!
The options I put forward were either 'This is fave colour combination' or 'This is... the contents of my handbag' , now after ooh about 3 seconds of deliberation, I've plumped for
'This is.......The Contents of my Handbag!'
Did I ever mention I'm a nosey so and so......?!

Now on a totally unrelated note: does anyone have any top tips for stitching jersey? My machine has decided to skip stitches on the most lovely polyester jersey trousers that I'm shortening, they have mesh panels- I'll not inflict further description on you. Well, I think I've got the right needle in, a nice new one. Maybe my machine is just objecting to man-made fibres!

Thursday, 20 March 2008

This is....My Demon

I'm posting early, half term kicks in today and Club Penguin obviously has priority over the internet!

My Demon? Nothing major and quite common I think - lack of self-confidence/self-belief.
I wish I was one of those people that decided something and did it rather, than feeling that they need permission, approval or just weren't qualified.
It comes and goes, annoyingly it's not even consistent! I packed up the family and moved them from London to Warwickshire without a second thought. I was always fine about starting new jobs, I knew I was good . But now if someone asks me to make them a dress? I get cold sweats and worry that I'm not good enough. Hello! 15 years as a pattern cutter and sewing since I could walk apparently. Someone give me a slap because I'm getting on my own nerves!!
Maybe it's because I was always The Good Girl, did as she was told, no fuss, smiley but quiet. I still wouldn't dream of parking on double yellow lines- that would be outrageous!! (I do grab the girls hands and make them run down the school corridors when no-one's looking though! Such a REBEL!!!)
Maybe it's because I'm short, 5'2", that's ALOT of arrogant tall blokes talking over the top of my head (and I mean literally) not listening or acknowledging me, not valuing my opinion only to repeat it back to me seconds later as if it's their own!!
Mostly it's fine, I've surrounded myself with great friends and family and the super-annoyingly confident bordering on arrogant people don't really have a permanent place in my life anyway. They add nothing to it.
But the thing I've wanted to do for the longest time is sell My Stuff, maybe alot maybe a little, I've wanted to do this since Bigski was a baby ( she's already 13) and I've realized I have to be pro-active, get over my self-promotion issues. I have to stop holding myself back. I don't need or want to change who I am, I'm nice and that's more than good enough. I just have to believe in me a bit more.

So here's THE PLAN!

Step 1: This blog was step one, it took me along time to do it, MONTHS and MONTHS!!!but now you can't shut me up!
Step 2: Craft Fair in Leamington Spa at the Pump Rooms on June 1st. I'll be there! (Selling that is, not just buying!)
Step 3: Register an Etsy shop. DID IT!!! Got nothing in it yet, but Rome wasn't built in a day you know!
Step 4: Coffee and cake
Step 5: Promote day job to pay for other faffings! ( Am self-employed alterations/sewing lady, which I like.)
Step 6: Breathe! Enjoy! Create! Coffee and cake!
Step 7: Get someone to remind me that I've got a plan, and it's just as valuable/important in the great scheme of things as everything else. Just as important, listen to yourself Shar, JUST AS IMPORTANT NOT LESS!!

This turned out to be a long rambling, emotional post. I'd say sorry for that, but I refuse to apologise for myself anymore! I knew you'd understand.

And thanks to Drewzel for this weeks "This is..... !"


Look what I was lucky enough to receive as a birthday present!

A handmade cafetiere cosy!

The inspiring friend that I spoke of in my last post, I shall call her Maria ( because that is her name ) is a textile artist and the lovely lady that showed me the way to screen printing , for which I shall be eternally grateful! Maria often makes the most gorgeous tea cosies that I have been coveting for sometime, but as I don't drink tea she made me this cafetiere cosy! She's used recycled textiles, in my favourite greens and blues, along with applique and machine embroidery, all the while looking after a four month old baba! Who, I must just say, does wear rather nice bibs! ;) (can you tell that Maria and I bonded over a love of old denim?!)

Thanks Maria,I LOVE IT!!

Maria does take commisions but doesn't have a blog yet ( hands up all those that thinks she should! I am working on her!), so if anyone is interested in one of these beauties email me and I'll put the two of you in touch.

Tuesday, 18 March 2008

Four(ty) Candles...

Well, I survived turning 40!

I actually started celebrating at the weekend with Iris and Helen the Cat Hater, we went into London, visited Tate Modern to see it's enormous crack, walked across Millennium Bridge and felt compelled to stop for coffee and cake. On the bus to Oxford Street (yes, on a Saturday-madness I tell you..) to visit MacCulloch & Wallis and John Lewis Haberdashery dept, just time for a quick run around Liberty's before a delicious pre-theatre dinner. And then on to see The Sound of Music!! Oh how fabulous! The new Maria ( Summer Somebody) was a triumph. We even managed to fit a couple of beers in afterwards! And a chocolate birthday cake on Sunday too! Cheers girls!!

I've had a lovely day today from being woken up with a pile of pressies and big smiles from Mr.M and the girls (and more chocolate birthday cake!), to coffee and cake with new friends and more coffee and cake (can you see a pattern developing here?) with a very inspiring friend, a surprise message on the blog of an old friend, and the kindest comments from new bloggy friends. Thank you all for making today great! I'd save you a bit of cake, but you all know that's not happening!
So being 40 isn't so bad, just like being 39 really (albeit with a juicy fat spot brewing on my chin, how? why?!) but with a reminder of all the good people I've collected along the way!
Oh and I've learnt that woman can't live by cake and coffee alone, they need to supplement with fish and chips! (actually the spot is beginning to make sense...)
(and the link below explains the title...)

Monday, 17 March 2008


Me: Ask me how old I am. Go on, Ask!

You (possibly in a slightly confused tone): Sharon, how old are you?

Me: Well, since you were kind enough to ask, I'm in my 30's.

But time zones being what they are today, might infact, be tomorrow ....and that means in some parts of the world I. might. not. be. in. my. 30's . anymore.

This is my.....Creation

Another Friday afternoon creation knocked up in an hour or so, this is one of four I whipped up at speed for Bigski and her friends as they were going to a birthday party, the others had to make do without the black underskirt, just for future reference one layer of net doesn't really make a great tutu but 13 year olds don't really care! And do you like the white elastic? That's a special design feature, I kid you not...
Well, must dash.... it's Monday morning and there is tu-tu much to do! ( Sorry, couldn't resist!)

Monday, 10 March 2008

Perverse Luck

I shouldn't have mentioned Mr.M's car in my last post. I must have offended it, because not an hour later off he goes to drop Bigski at a friends house (something I normally do) and the car makes a BAD noise. The nice man from the RAC said the suspension coil has snapped. Oh joy. The weird thing is it could have snapped anywhere, like on his fast hour's drive up the motorway to work this morning - which wouldn't have been good, but instead it broke on the drive way, so really it was lucky - perverse or what! I reckon it could be part of a conspiracy to get cars off the road....

And when he went to pick up Bigski, in my car, the iron blew up. Literally. Big blue flash and big bang! Obviously a conspiracy to stop me wasting Sunday evening ironing school uniforms!
It's a funny old life.....
Anyway, I'm off for a walk into town to attempt to buy a new iron (it's a small town), wish me luck!

Sunday, 9 March 2008

This is.....looking out of my front door.

Now when you think of a typical English front garden viewed from a front door, it brings to mind rambling roses, fragrant jasmine, perhaps a wysteria gently blowing in the breeze, inhabitated by butterflies of jewel colours visiting all the pretty little flowers whose names currently escape me...
Those of you who live in England know the truth - we've all turned them into driveways so we have a place to park our chariots! So, I've spared you the view of the back of Mr.M's car and here's a picture of my knockers instead...
(Ha ha!! Geddit! Knocker(s)! !...Sorry, bawdy English humour of the Benny Hill variety...but it made me laugh!)
Thanks to Brooke for this weeks theme.
Update! Thanks guys! I've never had so many nice comments about my knockers before!! ;) Old ones are obviously the best!

Friday, 7 March 2008

Pebble print

Another present post......

Bigski didn't want to give her friends aprons ( 13 year old twins) for their birthday, so she came up with the idea of pillows. She started off with the idea of a (rather complicated) applique, but I suggested (read brainwashed) that we screen print some fabric instead. The print design was developed for last terms college project and based on gorges and costal rock formations in Brittany, France.

She decided on a pink colourway for one and I think we were going for purple/lilac colourway for the other. My colour mixing being what it is we ended up with grey (vaguely lilac-y -nice -kinda -grey in my defense, your honour), but I forgot to take a picture before it was wrapped, aah well, never mind!

We had a great time printing on the kitchen table and it was really nice to share the process with her. And that old curtain came in handy again!

Another case of step away from the embroidery thread and needle resulted with a quick running stitch embellishment ( Oooh! Get me, I almost sound like I know of what I speak)

and Bigski finishes the day by saying "Can I use this leftover bit to make a bag?" which she did - beautifully, complete with overlocking. Which equals VERY proud Mum and happy friends! (and trashed kitchen...)

Wednesday, 5 March 2008


Now February is over and done with I can show some of the things that I made for presents for the girls' school friends. For the three little ones (now aged 8) I made an apron each. I made the main body made from a recycled curtain and trimmed with a lovely pale blue/red print that I've been hoarding for a long time. Littleski wrote 'chef whatever-her-name-is' below the pocket and I embroidered it and added a few random hearts poking out of the pocket, just because I don't know when to put the needle down and step away.

I haven't got a decent photo to post of the other apron, stroppy model and a bit out of focus - but you get the idea...

I made a bag for each of them as well and slipped in a cookbook for two of them, and a childrens craft/sewing book with a few supplies for the other.

And a matching birthday card as well!

Tuesday, 4 March 2008


I bet you thought I'd forgot all about posting the calendars this month,, yes - you'd be right! So you can stop waiting with bated breath, here they are....

sleepy patchwork elephants, ah cute!

Victorian smock like dress thingy, ah... less cute!

Sunday, 2 March 2008

This is....My Inspiration Board

I had a head start on this weeks theme, I attend college one morning a week to study textiles and surface decoration, so I already had a mood board ready - lucky me! The project at college is to produce printed samples using an artist as inspiration. So I chose Paul Klee, but have since gone off on a tangent and included Lucienne Day, Angie Lewin and spirographs(!) When I eventually get my act together I'll post the finished results.
To see other insipration boards go to three buttons, who has organised the 'This is...' meme

The Frame above is less inspiration/mood board, more of a happy accident... well that is if you can call taking down the old mirror, filling in the holes, redecorating the wall, painting this frame and then breaking the mirror a happy accident! ( We didn't call it a happy accident at the time I can tell you, but this is a family blog...). So as a temporary measure (ha! it's been like this at least 6 months) I used a piece of sample wallpaper and have just stuck stuff in that I like. The big picture of the girl is my Mum, she'll be so happy knowing not only is she on display in the front room, but she's on display in cyberspace!

So Happy Mothers Day Mum, you've been more of an inspiration than you know.....all that sewing and bad crochet, the blame is yours!