24 July 2014

Colour Collaborative: July

Photo Credit: Anna Strumillo


White and blue and the two colours that are synonymous with this word.  The white of a crisp clean sail and the blue of a crystal clear waters.  For some reason though, as much as sail is a word inextricably linked with water, the first thought I have is of the sky.  Sailing and soaring through an empty blue sky, maybe specked with fluffy white clouds.

Maybe it's because I always used to dream of being able to fly that it comes so readily to mind.  But sailing through the sky like a bird is an appealing thought to me.  Swooping, floating, soaring and gliding through the aire, so peaceful, serene and calm.

Photo Credit: Public Domain Pictures

Of course, attempting the same sort of thing on a sailboat is a slightly more realistic ambition and if I ever get the chance, I'd like to think that it would be similarly soothing, skimming over the waves and taking time to drift along.  Maybe that's why blue and white is such a classic theme and the reason why we find blues generally so calm, cool, tranquil and relaxing.

Photo Credit: Cruising on white sailboat on sunny day 
by Varner Sean, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

Grey and green sea and sky blues have been among my favourite to work with for quite a while now and they work so well alone, but they work better (for me) with a little bit of spice added too.

In a way you'd think it wouldn't work, but the cool blues mix well with the warm and hot colours.  In palettes subtle or a little stronger.  In fact, my living room colours are similar to the ones in the middle picture so I suppose I've already been convinced.

Photo Credit: Griffin Keller

Photo Credit: Hans Braxmeier

Photo Credit: The Coke-Bear

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Don't forget to check out the other great 'Colour Collaborative' blogs
for more of today's great posts...

Annie at Annie Cholewa
Gillian at Tales From a Happy House
Jennifer at Thistlebear
Claire at Above the River

and our guest poster...

Leanne at Today's Stuff

What is The Colour Collaborative? 
All creative bloggers make stuff, gather stuff, shape stuff, and share stuff.
Mostly they work on their own, but what happens when a group of them work together?
Is a creative collaboration greater than the sum of its parts? We think so and we hope you will too.
We'll each be offering our own monthly take on a colour related theme, and hoping that in combination 
our ideas will encourage us, and perhaps you, to think about colour in new ways.

S x

22 July 2014

Craft Room Sprucing

Well, the summer holidays are finally here.  Phew, I can breathe a sigh of relief at last.  Well, sort of.  The holidays do bring another challenge all of their own of course but a change is as good as a rest and at least there's no rush to get up and out the door in the mornings.

I managed to get one last fun task into the last school week though.  Only about a ten minute job but one of those that makes such a difference.

I got some goodies from the lovely people at dotcomgiftshop the other day you see.  Some cute ribbons and knick knacks and these really pretty little jars, aren't they cute?

But possibly best of all, they sent some absolutely divine little shelves which would be just perfect for the craft room I thought.  I have a small bit of wall space left you see and I'd been wondering about putting a little something there to fill it.  I seem to have so many bits and pieces crammed on the shelves of my crafty space that anything that can ease the strain is immediately welcome.

So, I set about fixing them to the wall.  Always a scary proposition to see me wondering about with a hammer in my hand and I don't have a great track record with these sorts of jobs.  But, the DIY Gods must have been smiling on me that day because I managed it without too much difficulty and I even got them hanging pretty straight too.  Woo hoo!

It took me twice as long to arrange some bits and pieces inside it in a way that pleased me of course, but now I have, aren't they cute?  Just perfect for all those small bits that haven't got anywhere else to go.  I love how the ribbon spools look all lined up in a row and I'm so glad I decided to empty out my jar of washi tapes and put them on these shelves.  So much easier to see what I've got now and so much easier to get to it too.  I'll be using them a lot more now I'm sure.  I also can't wait to try out the fabric tape that they sent me too, I hadn't seen that before, it does look very pretty though.

The jars were a little too large for the shelves so I'm sitting them on my sewing desk for now, but that's fine because I'm happy to have them nicely out in the open where I can see them.  I decided on storing buttons and beads for the time being but the labels on the front can be written on in chalk and then updated whenever you like.  Perfect for a changeable soul like myself.  

I may even have to get some more of these, they'd work well in the kitchen too.  I love them so much and they came in different sizes and colours I seem to remember...

Links:  Small Ceramic Jar (Red)Small Ceramic Jar (Pink)

Links:  Sweetheart Mini Shelves, Pink Ribbon on a spool, Blue/White ribbon on spool, Red Gingham ribbon, Flowery Fabric Tape, Flower Pin Wheel

So, all in all I think it was ten minutes well spent in sprucing up my crafty spot.  Thank you dotcomgift shop, storage that is pretty and practical, it just doesn't get better than that does it?

S x

This is not a sponsored post and does not use affiliate links.
I did receive some of the items shown free of charge.

17 July 2014

The Craft Hub: Simple Mitered Napkins

How to sew a simple mitered corner for a professional finish

After I showed you how to make those little crocheted napkin rings on The Craft Hub last month I started thinking about the fabrics I'd used in the photos to act as my napkins.

Those fabrics weren't really napkins at that point you see, but once I'd seen how nice they looked with those napkin rings round them, I started to think how pretty they would look on my table and how good it would be if I could really use them.

The thought was too much and I had to turn them into proper, pretty napkins.  I went for a different fabric for each one, so they are all mismatched and adorable.

 The good thing is, they really don't take long to do at all and I've got a great trick to show you so that you can get a really neat and professional finish on your corners.

Pop over to The Craft Hub to find my Mitered Napkins Tutorial now to find out how.

S x

15 July 2014

Three things to avoid when adding a hem to jeans

Pretty jean turn ups using floral fabric with a split in the side

Or, 'When Thing Don't Work Out'

Yep, I've gone back to have another go at those pretty turn up hems that I talked about at the beginning of the month.  Last time, things didn't work out exactly as planned so armed with some new ideas I thought I'd revisit the idea.  Bad move.

I decided I wanted to not waste all that pretty material that I'd used last time.  So I painstakingly unpicked it all so that I could reuse it, then I came up with a plan to re-sew the hems but this time with a split in them, to allow for fat calves (ie: mine) to fit through them.

The plan was good and it worked pretty well I thought.  I managed to get a nice neat looking split and I even got a nice contrasting colour top-stitch going on which I think is quite fetching.

So it's all good right?  I re-used the pretty material and the hems worked out well?
Unfortunately, no.  The split works fine, but the small area above the split is as tight as ever.

Re-using the material was mistake number one.  Thinking about it, these jeans have a bit of stretch in them and the material I used doesn't.  What's worse is I used some interfacing to line the material.  A good plan for making it a little stronger for it's coming life as my new hem but a bad plan on the making it stretchy front.

Then there's the fact that I just didn't cut these jeans off in the right place.  That non-stretchy hemline is right on the fat part of my calf.  Not flattering and not practical it seems.  So there's mistake number two. I would have cut them longer but by the time I got around to tackling these hems a little part of the knee area had worn through too and so I was trying to solve two problems at once.

Close up of the hemline split detail

Pretty jean turn up attempt number three

Pretty rain drop material for the hem

Well, that obviously didn't go to plan but I wasn't too daunted yet as I still had my second pair of jean victims lined up for the pretty hem treatment.  For these ones I made the cut lower down, to avoid the fat calf problem.  I didn't use stretchy material but these jeans weren't stretchy and what's more they are a wider fit so I was reasonably confident that they would still be ok.

I picked out these pretty raindrops to use and I started with my third attempt.  You might be able to see from the photos but I didn't even get this attempt finished.  So what went wrong this time?

This time the jeans were just too darn baggy!  These were jeans that had quite a flare on them, that's why I didn't think they would be too tight, my thought had been that I would be cutting most of the flared part away so the turn up would just rest nice and loosely on the lower part of my leg.  Wrong!  Nope, even with a chunk cut off the bottom, these turn ups looked ridiculously flared out, only worse because it was in the middle of my calf.  That my friends, was mistake number three.

So I exited the sewing room in a fit of pique and although I've probably learnt enough to ensure I could make a decent pair of cute turn up hem jeans at some point in the future, right here and now I am pretty much done with that idea.

It's a shame as I do still want the end product but at the minute I'm out of victims to experiment on, so a natural break is called for and that's probably no bad thing!

S x

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