Sand, sea, sun – and a successful toddler bag

We’re back from an amazing road trip adventure down to Cornwall, via Lancashire, Chorleywood near London to see my brother and his wife – and the house is even more gorgeous in the flesh than on the pictures by the way, am massively coveting – taking in Legoland, Somerset and Stonehenge on the way, then finally down to beautiful Cornwall for a week. We have never been before but we loved it, it does feel like a very different country to Scotland (I know it is technically!), particularly in terms of climate and temperature. Even the flowers bloom earlier and feel quite tropical, we saw banana trees and palms growing outside. Wouldn’t get that in Edinburgh…

And through it all the new mummy/toddler bag came through with flying colours. Here it is adventuring on the beach next to the other adventurer:

imageThe perfect size, and comfortable, hurray, we have a winning pattern ๐Ÿ™‚

Since our return, we decided to create a proper sewing room, as my hobby was taking over our house, with bits of fabric and notions gently multiplying… like triffids…

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There’s a computer in here too… I may never emerge again ๐Ÿ˜ฎ

So I have been putting it to good use already – well it would be rude not to!

Firstly a commission from my friend who wanted a new bag to fit all the stuff you need for a 20 month and 3 year old. She wanted a messenger, so I opted for a slightly small version of Jane’s messenger, blogged previously. It’s 13”W x 11”H x 4”D, and I think is a good size for the toddler stage. Charcoal grey canvas outer, waterproof interlining, grey and white leaf lining and the glorious Freebird Garden in Sky by MoMo for Moda. It took so long to find a fabric she loved with the brief “aqua, funky, but not too childish”, and then had to hunt some down through etsy, but it does look good! I still have to put a strap on it (in grey) but here it is (in my new sewing room hehe!)

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and then outside. I decided to add a matching zip purse as a wee surprise :image

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And finally, she also asked for a bag for her friend, similar to one on my flickr stream but zippered in hot pink and aqua tweed “Scottish enough – but still modern”: image

Here’s me trying it on for size; 14”W x 9”H at middle x 3.5” D – the bag not me :):

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It is empty, and my boy had suddenly charged the bag to get in the picture, so it looks a bit crumpled, but it’s softly structured with interfacing (fusible fleece) so will hang straight when there’s something in it.

Well I think that’s enough for today! I still need to make a felt flower brooch using my sizzix big shot to go with the bag as in the one in my flickr stream (https://www.flickr.com/photos/cuckoo-blue/7435741132/in/set-72157630302387894), so the night is still young!

Till the next time,

Poppy xx

ps you can email me at poppy@cuckooblue.co.uk

or visit my flickrstream at http://www.flickr.com/photos/cuckoo-blue/

In love with my machine

And I am! The new needleplate came superfast thanks to the lovely folks at http://www.uksewing.com/ who were just wonderful and coped admirably when I phoned up slightly hysterical – and it arrived the following day, hurrah! And it turns out, the whole episode was A Good Thing, as I now feel suitably chastised about not regularly cleaning out the machine now that it is supersmooth. And where is that ratatatatatat noise of it sewing? Gone. I had forgotten how quiet it is supposed to be! Ahem.

So I have been putting it to good use. First with the ill-fated quilt of my last post. It remained a bit ill-fated as I sewed a deep pucker into the back and couldn’t bring myself to unpick it after everything – I thought it would never get done! So I left it, beautifully scarred, but made with love. (and sanity). The back is completely plain, and with all our plain-backed quilts we never see or show the backs, so hopefully it won’t be too awful. The front looks good though, I think!

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This is the beautiful “Etchings” collection by 3 Sisters for Moda. I have used their fabrics a few times and am always struck by how unbelieveably soft they are – why aren’t all fabrics like that? More than any other Moda fabrics. And they are genuinely luminescent. With gorgeous classic designs.The biggest problem is they don’t show up as beautifully on photos as in real life.

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This is from a quilt I made with this same collection last year (https://www.flickr.com/photos/cuckoo-blue/7443697326/in/set-72157630302286578)ย  – just to show you that amongst all the muted classic colours and patterns there are street maps of Paris and blueprints of French buildings – quirky and sweet, but still grown up. I really like the collection ๐Ÿ™‚

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We ran across the road to take this picture against the backdrop of the forest we live next to after I complained that the car isn’t very inspiring, snapped a couple of pictures and ran back as the baby monitor was out of range despite us being 10 metres in front of the house… So not a great picture of the quilt, despite the lovely setting sun, but those wildflowers make me happy! I can’t imagine what the neighbours thought we were doing. N said it felt like streaking. If only we were so adventurous!

Quilter’s dream cotton batting, pattern is the “double slice” free pattern by Missouri Quilt Co again (link to the tutorial/ pattern is in my previous blog post).

… And I made myself a bag for the holidays, a pretty one which still carries all that kid stuff! Hurray. I initially chose this wonderful home decor print by Valorie Wells called Finnelopy in Curry from her Novella collection:

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It’s so great and I was so sold on this as THE BAG for the holidays. Started making it. Was uncommonly pleased with how it was all going. Then, partway through, the husband wandered in, casually said he “wasn’t keen on the yellow” – “but it’s OK, it’s your bag, if you like it that’s what matters”. Hmpfff.ย 

So. Somehow I just lost 100% confidence in it, and changed my mind; chose instead a lovely print called songbird in powder blue by Little Yellow Bicycle for Blend fabrics and here’s my new bag for the holidays:

Sorry in advance about the rubbish photos, I was losing the light! This is the fabric as it actually is, the colour is almost accurate, so you might just have to use some imagination and “superimpose” this on my bag picture!

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It’s a pleated bag, measuring 15” at botton, 14” height and 4” depth, and I can confirm it’s the perfect toddler bag size! image

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The interfacing makes it soft but structured and will stand on its own. I actually really love it ๐Ÿ™‚ So bring on the holidays!

I won’t be blogging for a couple of weeks as we will be enjoying the longawaited and most welcome sunshine with some time off, so meanwhile I’ll leave you with a picture of a finished lily stem – I did them with pipe cleaners and green florist tape. They look really lovely actually, and the flowers have been getting lots of compliments – another silver lining to the needleplate incident ๐Ÿ˜‰ I will show you how I did them in another post as the internet was no help in making the stems for me (though lily tutorials are all over the place, which is great!)

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Till the next time,

Poppy xx

ps you can email me at poppy@cuckooblue.co.uk

or visit my flickrstream at http://www.flickr.com/photos/cuckoo-blue/