Friday, 23 August 2019

All the C's

Ages ago I signed up for a local class to make a Catch All Caddy . I managed to keep up with the class progress on the quite involved pattern throughout the several weeks of the term and felt rather pleased with myself. What do they say about pride and a fall??

Putting the caddy together didn't go quite as planned and as I missed the last class I put the project away and only felt guilty now and again when I thought of it. With the sewing room nearly finished (I hope!) I came across the almost finished caddy again and resolved this time to complete it!

I had had real trouble stitching the caddy together at the curved ends through all of these layers, but resolved this time to grit my teeth, go slow and get through it and that is what I did :) Of course, I then had to do it all again to attach the binding :(

Thank goodness for clips, pins just couldn't cope with the layers of Soft and Stable

And here it is my Completed Catch all Caddy!

I resolved to only use stash fabrics for the caddy, as with the cost of the class (and the petrol to get there), the pattern, the Soft and Stable, the bag hardware and my time it worked out to be a rather expensive storage bag. We have all been there :)

The interior of the caddy has useful dividers to keep things neat and tidy

and as you can see the caddy itself is packed full of pockets, so I will not be short of places to put things!

When I started the class I had visions of whipping up several of these caddies, but having completed this one I think I will leave it a while before attempting another.

Thursday, 15 August 2019

Seafood and Sculptures

Last week to take advantage of some good weather we headed out to the Colintraive Hotel for lunch.

 One pleasant ferry trip later and a very nice lunch as you can see, we left the hotel to take the long way home. A few minutes later we were intrigued by a sign for the Scottish Sculpture Park at Caol Ruadh, so took a detour to find out more.

Here is what we found, this magnificent house was a private home, then a residential school and since 1998 has been a private home again. Since 2012, the gardens have been the setting of six summer sculpture exhibitions and we were lucky enough to be passing when the latest exhibition was open.

Sitting on the shore of the Kyles of Bute it is no surprise that water features quite heavily in the gardens as a setting for the sculptures,

as a feature of the garden

Woodland Choir by Kilmodan School & Teresa Hunyadi

or as a glorious backdrop.

You probably know by now that I love a good outdoor art installation, so this exhibition was absolutely my cup of tea :)

Clay bust with shells on shoulders and rays from head
Tellus by Frances Clark
Spring Boobs by Lotte Glob

Spring Boobs by Lotte Glob

Sprouting by Lotte Glob
As you can see there was quite a variety of styles on show but my favourites of all of the works were the metalwork pieces by Helen Denerley

Flying Raven by Helen Denerley
If I had a spare £5+K and a space to accommodate him this magnificent Raven might have found his way into the boot of the car! He would certainly keep those pesky window pooping seagulls away, don't you think?

The exhibition is on until August 26th, so if you happen to be in the area before then and looking for something different to do you can't do much better than a sail across to Colintraive followed by a delicious lunch and a wander around the Scottish Sculpture Exhibition at Caol Ruadh! Failing that if you click on this link you can check out the sculptors and their exhibits without leaving the comfort of your armchair, the delicious lunch you will have to sort out yourself :)

Monday, 12 August 2019

Diggers, Dolphins and Dilemmas

In between waiting for workmen to come and finish my sewing room I have managed to get the sewing machine out and stitch up a couple of summer shirts for gorgeous grandson number 1.

Like all small boys our grandson loves all sorts of utility vehicles but diggers are especially interesting, so when I saw the Small Things on the Move fabric by Lewis and Irene I knew exactly what to do with it.

I used the pattern by Pox Couture to make two shirts last summer, which were a tad big for him then so I used the same pattern size this year and will be keeping my fingers crossed that they are now the right size!

This one is also in a Lewis and Irene fabric called Spindrift. This time I triple-checked that I had the buttons and buttonholes on the correct side!

The shirts are fairly straightforward to put together, there is a bit of jiggery-pokery required to fit the collar on neatly but other than that it is relatively simple.  Less simple on this one was getting the buttonholes right. My sewing machine did not like that pocket placement on the dolphin shirt even although it was the same on the diggers shirt. When I was stitching the automatic buttonhole nearest to the pocket, the machine foot got stuck when it reached the pocket and had stitched repeatedly in the same place before I realised. I really hate unpicking buttonholes :( The solution I found was to stitch the buttonhole from the opposite end so that the foot worked away from the pocket not towards it.

That wasn't my only button related mishap though as I managed to miscount when I was marking the buttonholes and had to mark them out again. Now, I have some questions for the experienced dressmakers reading this. I made the mark above with an air-erasable marker and haven't ironed the shirt yet as I am worried that if I do it might set the mark permanently. Is that likely? How long should I wait for the mark to disappear and if it doesn't if I wash the shirt will that make it disappear? I am definitely regretting using a pink marker on white fabric!

Looking forward to getting the benefit of your advice :)

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