Friday, November 30, 2007

zipped purse tutorial

ok here we go :: my first ever tutorial....

Measure your zip :: mine is 5 1/2".
Cut out the fabric for your purse. (you'll see what size you need later)
Overlock the edges, or zigzag stitch if you prefer.

Fold over 1cm and iron flat (this is a before picture!!)
Get your sewing machine ready. For practise I used the normal foot but once you are an expert zip putter-inner you can be a whizz with the special zip foot. Line the folded edge up with the raised zip and sew from end to end, stop when you get to the slider ::
Leave the needle in the fabric, raise the foot and slide the slider away from you. Lower the foot and sew until the end.

Repeat that step so both sides are attached to the zip like this ::
This is the crucial bit :: see in the photo below how far away from the edge the silver stop of the zip is? This is what you want :: 1/2" allowance. So when you measure your zip you MUST add 1/2" TWICE to work out how large your fabric needs to be. (you can of course do this step backwards and design the size of your purse first and then buy a zip to fit) This is what it looks like when your zip is going to go wrong (zip stop is too close to the edge) ::So when you have the zip sewn in it's time to sew the purse together. Start from the edge where the zip is and carefully line up the fabric edges (remember they are nice and crisp because you ironed it) Pin this so it can't slip. Sew the edge starting from the non-zip corner, down towards the pinned zip section. Sew right over the zip and back stitch so it is very strong. Don't be scared here...your sewing machine is made to do this :-)Once you have sewn both sides you can sew the bottom too, remember to open the zip before you do this ;-) :: another crucial bit :: look on the left hand side in the photo below...can you see the silver zip stop? see how the stitch line is half way between the edge of the fabric and the silver zip stop? Do it like that!!Trim the corners if you wish but they should turn through fine, with such small seam allowances. Tra-la! your zip ends will look like this ::
Once you are happy with this technique you can change to your zipper foot and sew nice and close to the zip.Yay! now you can sew zips of any size into anything you choose....

Thursday, November 29, 2007

chocolate and zips

Today I sent out my last big order before Christmas. The box contains 20 happy trees, 20 reindeer and 10 frogs.
It's on it's way to an independent shop in Plymouth, which is my home town, how weird would it be if people I used to go to school with went in and bought some?? small world huh??

I had to go to the bank too (it's all fun here!) so I went via a newly opened sweet shop and got these ::

Just as sickly as I remember, but the colours are so pretty.

The rest of the day was spent battling zips. I don't know what the equivalent of writer's block is for a sewer but I ran smack into it today! BUT I persevered and eight, yes EIGHT zips later I mastered it!!
hoo-bloody-ray !!!
So tomorrow, to mark the end of blogging-every-day-for-a-month in style, I shall be preparing my first ever tutorial.

If you want your zip purses to end up like this ::

then I'll see you tomorrow ;-)

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

mr. Zaubermaus

look who arrived here today, all the way from America

mr. zaubermaus :: isn't he cool? He came from a lovely shop on Etsy and I think he is amazing.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

could etsy be my new favourite?

I have had my etsy shop since June last year and haven't managed to sell very much
and because it wasn't an instant success for me I gave up and didn't pay it much attention.
But on Sunday I thought I would give it another go and guess what? I sold some things!!
Robot Cupcake maker even got featured on a treasury ::

I think that etsy has given me a second chance!!

Monday, November 26, 2007

business and busy-ness

So I received a phone call from my bank.

The fraud department.

Someone has cloned my cash card and got hold of my pin number.

And spent £120. In Ukraine.

I have to wait a good few* working days to have it all paid back.


The good news? it happened BEFORE payday and I didn't have much money in there!! HaHa!!

*no one knows exactly how long right now, could be 48 hours, could be 5 working days!!

It's left me wondering where it was that this happened (the bank thinks it was most probably a petrol station) and it's made me wonder if someone was actually watching me put my pin in *shudder* or if it was a camera? AND I want to know what they bought! Here's hoping they are living it up, just before they get caught ;-)

Onto nice crafty related things ::
This photo is for Katy, it is absolute proof that I am a box geek!

I had quite a few orders to make things for this weekend and decided to use a separate compartment for each one.

you have permission to laugh :-)

Sunday, November 25, 2007

my shops are fuller!

The upside of having a RUBBISH craft fair last week means that YAY!! my shops are now fuller :-)
I've topped up my etsy shop but the majority of all the goodies are on my website.

I think this will be my last big update before Christmas so let me know if there is something missing that you wish was there!

Saturday, November 24, 2007


This morning was such a lovely sunny morning I thought it would be a good idea to start photographing goodies for my shop update tomorrow. Except my batteries ran out and I didn't take any photos for the blog! So this is all I have :-)

Friday, November 23, 2007

a busy weekend

I've got a busy weekend planned. I'm off to work tomorrow then it's back to crafting for me :-) John has plans to spend his weekend at the garage so I shall be (willingly) lost in the world of craft!
I have orders to finish, new orders to start AND I want to list things in my shop.....
....anyone know how to make time stand still??
Have a good weekend xxx

Thursday, November 22, 2007

progress is being made

My little piles of felt are slowly coming to life. Tonight I get to do my favourite bit...the smiley's the time when they turn from felt things to little happy felt things, and the smiles really change the faces too, they give them a kind of personality! Or maybe that's just me? LOL

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

back to the normal routines

After my week off work last week it feels kinda nice to be back in a routine again.

:: get showered and dressed

:: check out emails and questions on the blog/website

:: wrap and pack orders before work

:: go to work

:: visit the post office

:: go home and blog

:: have some dinner

:: cut out felt

so today (my day off )my work was nicely prepared in little piles, and I have sewn all day long

I did start my day on the sewing machine with some purses that needed zips but it wasn't the day for zips, so I gave up!!

So Vanessa, Catherine and Nicola your orders are nearly finished!!

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

day 20 :: cupcakes for me :-)

Remember I met Nia the other day?
Well, lookee what she sent me today!!! What a lovely thank you card! Isn't she a clever bunny!
and look! A happy smiley cupcake for me :-) I really am the luckiest person in the whole wide world.
*The crochet genius is Berrysprite .

Thanks Nia, I love my cupcake, and I'm glad you liked your gifts too xxxxx
I shall return to craft posting tomorrow!!

Monday, November 19, 2007

day 19 :: gloves and cars

I can't quite believe this is my 19th blog post in a row!! I have a new found respect for people who blog everyday, not because they manage to find the time but because they always have something to say!!These are the gloves I bought for £1 yesterday at the disaster fair, I love them :-)
*kindly modelled by John

and this is a picture of all the cars that turned up for a Saab-owners meeting that John organised for yesterday. Isn't he a clever chap??

Sunday, November 18, 2007

day 18 :: craft fair update

Today the craft fair was RUBBISH

My sister came to join me (pics soon to be on her blog) but the weather was AWFUL. There were barely any customers all day and the ones that did come were soaking wet and windswept and miserable!!

My total takings for today were £14.45

It's safe to say that my goodies didn't really fit with the rest of the stalls offerings and I think that the prices didn't fit either !! I bought a pair of gorgeous hand knitted gloves for £1!!

It was a bit of a bargain bazaar rather than a craft fair!!

I'm going to investigate the possibility of attending a craft fair in Brighton next year (if anyone knows of one please let me know) because I think Brighton may have more potential customers than Worthing.

But the good news is I have loads of lovely things to fill my shop with...woo-hoo!!

Yesterday when Nia came to visit she left me with a Christmas present and she said I could open it when I got home and I did ::

such pretty wrapping :-)aaahhh look a lovely little bear :-) His name is Armstrong. Isn't he cute?

Thanks Nia, I absolutely love him :-)

I'm off to unpack, tidy up and have a hearty meal.

Saturday, November 17, 2007

day 17 :: 1st day of the craft fair

what a day !!
craft fairs are exhausting, but in a good way, I think!
John took some photos for me ::
none of mine came out...way too dark inside for photo taking today!!
It was quite a quiet fair. Most of the other stall holders said it was a lot quieter than normal and I think we are all hoping that tomorrow is a bit busier. I'll let you know what happens tomorrow!!
Today I FINALLY met my friend Nia, who I first 'met' via eBay.

Here we are looking very happy :-) (Nia is on the left)

Thanks for coming to visit me Nia, I had a great time, we should do it again soon :-)

I also had a visit from Lynn and Stella. Lynn was wearing the most gorgeous brooch that she had made and I had to take a picture ::

Lynn had purchased some felt from me a few weeks ago and when I realised she lives just up the road I shamelessly plugged the craft fair and she popped along!! I've just spent the last half hour or so looking at
Lynn's blog :: Lynn & Stella's shop blog :: and Lynn and Stella's etsy shop :: gorgeous things to look at :-) It was lovely to meet people face to face and talk about the blogging and crafts world and not get looked at like I'm crazy! Thanks for popping by, it was lovely to meet you :-)

I wonder who I'll meet tomorrow???

Friday, November 16, 2007

day 16 :: I am ready !!


I'm done :: everything is ready to go.

That's everything, all the things I have made and a whole load of felt and some cram cream goodies...doesn't look like a lot does it!!

I've also got my pinboard ready ::

my Dad made me this pinboard when I was about 12 years old and it is huge!! (thanks Dad, you're the best !!) John made a stand for me and I covered it with felt and have pinned ribbon on it so i can hang packets of embellishments with little clips :-)

As you can see it was mid-afternoon when I took this picture (and the first one) so the light is bad...hopefully I will be able to take some good photos tomorrow when it is all set up !!

I'm SO excited .... I'll let you know how I get on tomorrow evening.

Thursday, November 15, 2007

day 15 :: cupcakes and christmas

Yesterday I finished off a few more cupcake bags,
with a brighter version too!
Some firm favourites were finishedas were some more of my Christmas best-sellers

Thank you to everyone who said they liked the cupcake bag yesterday :-)

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

day 14 :: light at the end of the tunnel


I've actually started to put things together and my pile of made items is steadily growing *phew*

a little pile of mini fabric bags to hang on Christmas trees ::a few kid's size tote bags in my favourite fabrics ::and a new design which has been in my head for a long time now ::

I also want to make cushion with cupcakes on BUT I have given myself a stern talking to and decided that I'll do that for my next fair ;-)

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

day 13 :: fabric galore

yesterday I spent the day cutting out and ironing so this morning I started to make a dent in this little lot ::
and this lot is for tomorrow :: Tomorrow I will have some photos of finished things, woo-hoo !!

Monday, November 12, 2007

day 12 :: what lounge?

You know when you're reading blogs and people post gorgeous shots of their workroom, with gorgeous lighting, storage galore and a place for everything?
I don't know about you but it makes me feel quite jealous/envious.
Hopefully this shot will make you feel better about your own work area ::

LOL !!!

I think I have managed to cover every surface of the lounge today ! I abandoned my trusty tray in favour of the pasting table, much more room on there for fabric cutting :-) Hopefully I'll be done cutting today so I can put it all away again !!!

Yesterday I mentioned that we decorated some cakes and now I have a picture to show you...

smiley face cakes