Hello Fabric!

I used to love buying fabric ‘just because’ but now that money is very tight (the joys of being a single mum) I only buy fabric for specific projects and mostly use my stash. It’s been great, actually, as I realise that there’s always more new fabric that is going to be my favourite and it’s nice to see your old favourites used and out ‘in the wild’.

I’ve signed up for the handpiecedminiswap2 on Instagram as I really enjoyed the first round. It was organised by Jo from A Life in Lists and specified that you had to make a mini that was completely pieced by hand. However, you were allowed to machine quilt and bind. I didn’t; I did everything by hand and had a total blast.


I did a little bit of hand quilting around the lantern and added a scrappy binding. I really loved it but I have to assume my partner didn’t as she never got back to me to tell me that she had received it. She also didn’t reply to Jo’s email either. It’s very sad when you put in many hours, design a mini, hand piece it and then nothing. Not even a ‘it’s arrived’. Nada.

This swap wasn’t a complete disappointment though, as I was given the best mini from Paula from Mud, Pies and Pins who’s been a real life friend for the last fifteen years and who lives only a few minutes from my house.

Paula's Mini

She used some of my all time favourite fabrics and even though we were talking about the swap every time we met I never realised that it was for me. Sneaky! And can I just say “Jackpot!”

Anyway, I was talking about the second round. My partner likes fabrics that I haven’t got so I decided to order some Cotton & Steel from Westwood Acres. I chose Bandana by Alexia Abegg as I really love the colours and prints. Some half yard cuts fell into the basket too. Compared to prices here in Switzerland they were a real steal. Service was fantastic and so quick. It was my first time ordering from them but it definitely won’t be my last.


I can’t wait to start stitching with these gorgeous colours. And did you see those two bits of fudge in the middle of my circle? I think I need to order more fabric in the hope of getting more as they were absolutely yummy.

A Bag

I’m always happy when someone appreciates handmade gifts but realise that not every one does. This week I made a bag for my running buddy as it was her birthday.

I used some dark blue waterproof rucksack fabric that I had leftover from when I made my sister a bag, some waxed fabric from Ikea (my Christmas table cloth) and some red webbing and produced this:

Steffi's Bag

I loved it but was ever so slightly nervous when I handed her the present. I needn’t have worried, she loved it too and it’s already in use.

I still have some of those polka dots and some turquoise rucksack fabric. I may just have to make one for myself…..

I did the boxed corners in a new-to-me way and I loved how quick and easy it was. I’ll show you what I mean on the next one I’m making as I didn’t take any pictures this time. That’s what happens when you finish a gift five minutes before you leave for the party.

Bag Handles

You know that feeling when your bag handles are cutting into your hands because you’re carting around lots of stuff for your kids or you bought more than you expected?

Last year Little Miss Bossy-Boots and I went to the swimming pool as often as we possibly could and even though we left some of our things at one of the lockers there, I was still lugging around towels, a picnic lunch, swimming costumes, toys, sun cream and lots more. The bag I used had very narrow handles and they were cutting into my hands or shoulder depending on how I carried it. So I made a padded bag handle whatsit that I could wrap around the handles and close with velcro.

Bag Handle Whatsit

I kept misplacing the pad whenever I took it off to open the bag so I added a little ribbon that I could attach to one handle. Then I rounded off the corners and added some stitching down the side so it wraps around more easily. Now I’m really happy with the result and I’ve made one or two for most people in my family. I usually have one in my handbag so that I’m always prepared.

I was asked to make some for my sister’s mother-in-law and one of her friends so I sat down and made a whole stack of them.

A Stack of Loveliness

I’m hoping to rent a shelf in one of our local fabric shops and sell some handmade goodies, including these. So I made a basket to display them in:


I had to take off the button and sew it on again as I couldn’t live with the wonkiness…

I thought that maybe you would like to see how I make my handle whatsits, which really need a catchy name, so I’ve prepared a tutorial and am just waiting for better light to take some pictures. Hopefully that will be done by this weekend. It’s snowing again today which makes it quite dark in my sewing room. I don’t want to complain, though, as I really like the snow.

The Purple Quilt

Worst blogger ever, I forgot to take a picture of the quilt before I gifted it…

The Purple Quilt

I did remember to put a label on it, though. I simply couldn’t think of a good name for it and I didn’t want to put the name in my head (Purple Sucks) on there as a lot of people love purple. So in the end it I named it The Purple Quilt. The Aurifil I used, purple 2581 in 50wt, shows up beautifully on the back.

Here’s a picture my sister sent me of it in situ:

Kristine's Quilt

Doesn’t look too bad, does it? It crinkled up nicely in the wash and I hope she’ll use it lots.

The next quilt is already in planning, although it’s only a mini for a swap I’m in. Templates have been drawn, fabrics chosen, thimbles sewn (I make my own leather thimbles) and the Aurifil’s ready. The only hiccup: my fabric is still in America. I’m hoping that it’ll arrive soon as I’m looking forward to this one.