Remember me…?

Well, it has been an awfully long time since I said hello from Peggy’s Pickles – 16 months to be precise!

Although the lack of blogging suggests I have been completely consumed with nappies, sleepless nights and games of peek-a-boo (all of which have happened in abundance), I have in fact been quite productive on the sewing front as well. I don’t have that many photos but this is a list of all the things I have made since my little boy was born:

Baby quilt, done a local sewing course, embroidered cushion cover, scout woven tee x 2, sorbetto top x 1, drafted my own pattern from an existing jumper and made the jumper, made the jumper again for my sister, learnt to knit, knitted a scarf (which will never ever ever ever be done again, my word – the stress), two thirds of a granny square crochet blanket, t-shirts x 2, renfrews x 2, Clover trousers x 2 (although one pair may not count as they have stretched beyond all recognition), done a Craftsy course and…

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                      made a hoodie with a very big hoodie, self drafted trousers

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             Lucy Tunic for my niece (not the cardigan!), an owl pin cushion

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Wedding present pillows, lots of Flashback Skinny Tees

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Minikrea elephant trousersOliver + S Sailboat jumper and self drafted trousers

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Baby sling, and tee-pee (my fave!)

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And lots and lots and lots of baby trousers!!

This leads me on to make another announcement (no not more babies) – I have started my own business!

You can find my shop on Folksy here: http://folksy.com/shops/LittleBiscuit

In a nutshell, I am designing and making baby clothes from up-cycled fabric. The shop opened today and I will share the story of how it came about in my next blog post. In the meantime, do go and have a look and pass it on to all your friends!

The Lesser Spotted Gonolek

No, I haven’t finally crossed over the fine line into insanity! Last night I spent a cosy evening making African inspired Christmas decorations and gifts with charity Awamu.

The evening was held at Family Tree on Exmouth Market, with proceeds going to Awamu. Awamu works with communities in Uganda that are affected by HIV and Aids, and you can read more about their work on their website.

Greeted by a pile of amazing fabric made in Uganda, I couldn’t wait to get sewing.

Especially as these little fellows were sitting on the table in front of me:

Armed with the instructions to make a Lesser Spotted Gonolek (a bird commonly found in Uganda in case you were wondering!), off I went selecting, cutting and sewing fabric until I ended up with my finished little bird.

There was a cake break (or two) of course.

And here is my finished bird.

I think he’ll look great hanging on the Christmas tree. I also started making the elephant, but he is yet to be finished so I will show you him when he’s done.

As well as a night of crafty fun, Emma from Awamu offered to take some of the Pillowcase Dresses from my challenge out to Uganda on her next trip which will probably be in February. All in all a great evening!

Best go finish my elephant 🙂

Bit of a bodge job

In between bashing out pillowcase dresses for my challenge, I wanted to make something quick to prove to myself that I still have the ability to do other things!

Through reading other sewing blogs I came across Grainline Studio, who seemed to have the perfect answer to my needs. I liked the Scout Woven Tee as it looked nice and quick, was a downloadable pattern so I would have it there and then, was cheap, and I had the ‘perfect’ fabric already. I especially liked the full-back alteration as I would be able to put my pattern cutting skills in to practice.

So I downloaded the pattern and printed out all the pieces to then jigsaw them together.

This had worked OK when doing the Sorbetto, but I was obviously not being as careful this time and things didn’t always line up. I guess this will always be a problem with printing out patterns yourself.

I think I did the Sorbetto on a wooden floor rather than carpet which probably helped. Anyway, this wasn’t even really a problem compared with what was to come!

This is how the sleeves printed out.

In Grainline’s defence, they did send me the amended sleeve pattern, but it was a few days later so I couldn’t really use it. Maybe next time.

The fabric I wanted to use was from an old dress / tent that I was never going to wear again, and not entirely sure why I bought it in the first place!

I also thought I could cut a few corners by making sure I used the existing hemline. I did my pattern alterations, and cut the main part of the top out. So far so good. Then I realised that not only was it going to be impossible to make the bias binding for the neckline, but I also didn’t have enough fabric for the sleeves!

This is where the bodging started. I think I may have committed every sewing sin there is in the process of making this top, so look away now if you are a ‘proper’ sewer and don’t want to see what I did…

I made non-bias binding, which obviously didn’t go round the neck line very well, and in the end wasn’t even long enough. So I added a few tucks here and there round the back where I wouldn’t see them to make it fit.

I cut some sleeve like shapes from the scraps that I had left. Having never drawn / cut / made sleeves before this was mainly just down to guess work. Won’t be doing that again. Then I did a bit of gathering here and there, couldn’t work out how to attach these wonders of modern pattern cutting, stuck a few pins in as best I could, closed my eyes and put my foot down on the sewing machine pedal (kids, don’t try this at home).

The end result isn’t so bad, just a bit tent like. Someone even asked me if I’d lost weight yesterday when I was wearing it (thanks Emma :-)). As I made the larger size to fit in my bust, I probably didn’t need the full-back alteration after all! (This is definitely something I need to work on – grading a pattern so that my bust fits in, but everything else isn’t super big because of it)

This is me

This is a tent

Image source
http://www.belltent.co.uk/index.php?main_page=product_info&products_id=71