Sunday, 19 August 2018

Nesting

Clothkits, Chichester

The nicest part of going away is always the coming home bit, don't you think? I've really enjoyed spending the last few days at home, catching up with friends, family and myself. Re-grouping. I've tackled the garden and the housework, done what seemed like a truly never ending amount of washing, phoned doctors, dentists and hairdressers and made endless appointment, just got myself organised. It felt good. I've also been baking a lot more since the weather turned cooler, making tea loaf, chocolate banana bread and a flourless orange and almond cake. I'm nesting. 

We had friends to stay over the weekend and spent yesterday in Chichester. The children loved The Novium Museum, especially the Lego exhibition, and I bought these postcards of some of my favourite local places.


After successfully leaving the children with their Dads in a bookshop, my friend Abigail and I hotfooted it to Clothkits for a browse. Well, I don't know quite what came over me, but I found myself buying a pattern for a dress, and a couple of metres of beautiful teal blue linen.


It's a beginner's pattern and I've been assured by a colleague who's made a couple that it really is a simple make, so I'm optimistic that I can do this. Can you imagine if I made an actual dress, that I could wear? I'd have to tell everyone.

More delightful craftiness arrived in the form of the Summer Craftpod. I've mentioned these here before, I know, but I am a massive fan. This set includes a sweet rose cross stitch (designed by Lucy of Attic24!), and embroidered needle book along with the bits that make these boxes so thoughtful and pleasurable to open; a postcard, rose pin badge and tea.


The fabric for the cross stitch is aida with holes that are clear to see, so I was hoping that Bella might give it a try. She's a very creative girl but most determined to steer clear of anything that I enjoy doing, which on the one hand makes me sad, but on the other I totally get, because I was just like that, always wanting to do my own thing. The more I push and suggest, the less interested she is, so I have to go gently.


Before our holiday, I went through my stash of fabrics and started thinking about finally making that EPP patchwork quilt. I read and read about it until my head started to spin, to the point where I was researching needle types, then went to my local yarn shop which also sells quilting fabric and supplies. The woman who runs it is wonderfully no-nonsense and down to earth. She showed me which needle and thread would be best, and said to just get on with it and come in and show me when you've made it. 

I've decided to do 3 inch hexagons and I'm not sure yet exactly how many I'll need for a king size quilt but I think it's going to be five or six hundred. That actually makes me feel a little faint, typing that, but I've thought about this so much and I really want the hexagons to be small and mostly pale in colour. I have decided to hand baste each hexagon onto the paper template because I enjoy it and I'm not in a rush to finish this. It's going to be a slow burner of a project, probably something that will take a few years, off and on, and I'm quite happy about that really. I'm always in such a rush to do everything that I think I sometimes lose that mindful feeling of being in the present that gentle hand stitching, or crochet or knitting, can give you. 



29 comments:

Hooks and Needles said...

Lovely photos, love seeing Ziggy. All the best with your sewing. I too have bought some patterns and material to make some nightdresses. I've yet to start though, lol. As usual I have many other things on the go at once.
I always love to see your local photos, particularly Langstone, Bosham & Hayling Island etc. We did walk a very small part of the South Downs when we lived in Hampshire. We used to walk over Kingley Vale with a visit for a ploughmans lunch in the Hamlet.
We visited my Mother-in-law a few weekends ago in Petersfield. My parents have moved to Havant now, so we popped to see them whilst we were there.
Have a good week. Cathy x

CJ said...

I love the sound of hundreds of pieces, that is exactly my sort of project. The fabric shop looks wonderful, and your choices of pattern and fabric are lovely, I shall look forward to hearing how it goes. The postcards are great, in fact I was looking for exactly that type of postcard earlier today with no luck. Haven't given up yet though. Met a cockapoo today called Ziggy, which made me think of you. He was lovely too. CJ xx

Jennifer Hays said...

You have lots of exciting makes in the pipeline, how nice. I have not tried EPP yet, but I do hope to someday. I think the number of pieces might drive me up a wall, but I'm willing to give it a shot anyway. I can always stop when it's the size of a table runner or something like that. :)

daydream in colour said...

It looks like Ziggy is doing some nesting of his own. I understand about the number of hexagons though, I think it would make me a little faint too. The fabric looks lovely. xx Susan

Gracie Saylor said...

Brave woman! I look forward to watching your projects progress :) Perhaps Bella will be intrigued as she watches you! xx

Susie said...

all so lovely - look forward to your EPP project.

Librarian said...

Another wonderful collection of glimpses of your beautiful home, thank you!
Bella did enjoy making the miniature room with you, didn't she? Maybe she will one day become interested in needlework, too, and if not - so be it :-)
I still have my holiday (actually, two of them) to look forward to; two more weeks of work (and lots of it), and then we're off to our hiking-in-the-woods hols!

Lazy Days & Sundays said...

I must admit I am the same I like the thought of going away, I generally enjoy it whilst I am there but there is nothing like sleeping in my own bed. I must also admit that I suddenly realised I was slowly disappearing under a number of projects all at differing stages of a WIP. I did have a little sort out this weekend and I now think I can see the wood for the trees again well just about.

Mitzi

sewing green lady said...

It is nice to come home after a holiday and just enjoy your own home. The postcards are gorgeous I have a poster with places from Italy on it in the same style. I look forward to seeing the dress it's a great fabric choice.

Julia Higgi said...

You have made such a great choice for sewing your first dress! The 'Camber' dress makes up like a dream and the instructions are very clear. I am coincidentally on my 9th one this week! They are all in linen and just the thing for throwing on for everyday - or can be dressed up if need be.

I have made some with a faced rather than bias neckline and longer sleeves, which makes them a bit more formal I think. So once you have a couple under your belt, you can try that too.

Good luck; look forward to seeing the finished dress.

Jo said...

Looking forward to seeing your dress, you have chosen a great colour. I use a temporary glue pen from simply solids to baste my papers to the papers it means I can get on with the mindful sewing part with very straight edges and pointy corners. You should check it our (even though you said you want to hand baste them) You might change your mind in 18 months! Christina is making one over at Colourful life. Jo x

Deborah said...

I'll be very interested to see how you get on with the dress. I was given a book of their patterns for a birthday present, and I'm slowly gearing myself up to actually trying to make something (many years of not sewing have sapped my confidence). In the meantime, I love the photos of your home, they are always so inspiring and restful. I'd wager that home is not always like that in real life, but it's very inspiring to see it when it is.

Gina said...

The Camber dress is a lovely pattern and makes such an easy dress to wear. I'm sure you will have no problem and it will look lovely in that fabric. Such a pretty colour.

Christina said...

Lovely linen fabric Gillian. Linen is nice to work with, you'll enjoy it.

Your EPP quilt will be growing more quickly than you think, three inch hexagons are quite big. I have stitched together about 220 hexagons on mine, they are one inch and I'll need 695.... I am planning my next EPP quilt already (mad, I know). Here is a useful website with a hexagon number calculator: https://www.cddesigns.com/PaperPiecing/number.html.

EPP is fun to share, if you have like minded friends. I spent quite some time stitching and chatting with a friend a couple of weeks ago. Her contribution will be a nice memory of a good time with a wonderful friend. I like the style of your local yarn shop owner :-) Sometimes too much faffing and obsessing is a problem for me and I could do with someone grounding me every now and then. Happy stitching xx

Cathy said...

Another hexie quilt in the making, how wonderful. I have started to stitch on the final rows on mine in blue. You will love making yours.

Sabine said...

it is likely to take a while... I started my EPP probably about 2 years ago, I have only managed about 80 squares, not a great annual average! I do quite a few at times and then I get distracted by crochet and other things and nothing happens for months, then I start again. I'll get there one day, no rush

Anonymous said...

Can you write out the recipe for your orange and almond cake? I live in Canada so probably do not have access to the same cookbooks as you do. I am intrigued about the cake. I would like to make it.
Myra, from Winnipeg, Canada

wherethejourneytakesme said...

My girls used to wear some Clothkits clothes though it tended to be a more Southern thing - not many seen here in the North when they were young. My friend from Fashion College used to design there - good to see it is making a comeback with the new owners.
On the subject of Bella - both me and my husband trained at an art college - DH is an Architect so ver precise, I did fashion - both my girls are 'Arty' but in different ways again - the elder can copy a still life to perfection - probably the preciseness taken from her dad but give her a pile of craft items like tissue and string and she wouldn't have a clue what to do with it. On the other hand my younger daughter hated doing still life or copying anything she liked to create and would have made something wonderful with a pile of tissue and string. i am somewhere in the middle - not precise enough and not creative enough!! It made me realise though that even in Art and Craft people create in different ways - I am sure Bella will find her own way using her skills and may take up embroidery in a different way to you. Have you seen Anni's website A Stitchery Spellbook - she has some amazing free hand embroidery.
I love that little needlework book and the patchwork will be a long project - I made one by machine and it took me a while.

Jane said...

Looking forward to seeing your Camber dress - lovely colour fabric. I have the camber pattern, it was to be a step up from a skirt I made (my one and only hand-sewn garment to date) as part of a sew-a-long hosted by Lazy Daisy Jones a few years ago, but it's still languishing in the bottom of a bag with some chalky pink linen. Love Chichester, I haven't been there since my daughter left uni a couple of years ago and I miss it. Have a great week. Jane x

Anonymous said...

Good luck with the dress. I always enjoy your blog - and find your creativity inspiring. I have an odd question - I borrowed Apples for Jam cookery book from my local library and have found the typeface very faint particularly on the recipe part where its a smaller font--is yours like that too--- its not in stores here so I can't compare - is yours light on typeface also? I looked at it and thought I may have to use a magnifying glass. Jean/winnipeg

Gillian Roe said...

These places are all my local stomping ground! Although it's a while since I've been to Kingley Vale - the ancient yew tree forest there is stunning.

Gillian Roe said...

Hi Julia, thank you for the encouragement! I am nervous but keep hearing it's a good pattern so fingers crossed.

Gillian Roe said...

Jo, how well you know me! Thank you for the pen tip - I knew you'd used one so it's good to have the brand for when I inevitably tire of hand basting. X

Gillian Roe said...

How lovely to share quilting. That's a nice idea. Thank you for the link to the calculator, that's probably a lot more accurate than my back of an envelope scribbles!

Gillian Roe said...

Hi Myra. This is the recipe:

https://www.google.co.uk/amp/s/www.bbc.com/food/recipes/orangecake_83870/amp

Gillian Roe said...

I will have a look, thank you. :-)

Gillian Roe said...

Hi Jean. Yes it is very faint and in font that is not particularly easy to read. Things like this annoy me so much, style over substance. You want to be able to read the recipes easily, especially when trying something for the first time.

Katie said...

That teal fabric is beautiful! My auntie has just made me some much-needed maternity dresses and I'm in awe of her ability to produce a made to measure outfit so quickly!

Anonymous said...

Thank you for the reply. I'm glad it is not just my copy. I'm looking forward to trying some recipes. jean/winnipeg