Tutorial Thursday: Embroidered Notebook ♥

Embroidered-Raindrop-Notebook

Hi guys! I’m excited to be here today to share a simple embroidery DIY for Alice’s blog.

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Here’s what you will need to get started:

• A moleskin notebook

• Embroidery thread and needle

• Pencil

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On the inside cover of your notebook, sketch out your design using a pencil. I went for a simple raindrop.

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Using your needle, make holes a long the lines of your design, around 0.5cm apart.

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Take a length of embroidery thread (I used all 6 strands) and sew around your pre punched holes using a backstitch. This video shows you how to make the stitches.

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Once you have sewn around your design, fasten off with a knot on the inside cover of the notebook. Snip the ends of the thread and you’re done!

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What I love about this DIY is you can change the design and colours to suit you. You could try a monogrammed notebook or flowers perhaps!

Thanks again to Alice for having me on her blog today!

Claire x

I have loved having Claireabellemakes with us this week. Her work is so delicate and gorgeous to look at. I do hope you will all continue to follow her work and do check out the interview she did with us on Tuesday. Coming up next week we have Lindsey Portas, who I am VERY excited about!!

Thank you Claire and HAPPY THURSDAY!

Tutorial Thursday: Getting Started with Embroidery ♥

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There is a slight change of plan this week. Emily, who shared her interview with us on Tuesday, couldn’t do a tutorial for us today due to spending some time away. However, I didn’t want to leave you lovely readers without a project.

I can’t say I thought about this project for weeks. It was definitely a last minute idea, but a sweet one at that. Also, how fitting is it, what with Great British Bake Off last night?
As Emilys interview was about her life as an embroidery artist, I thought it only appropriate to carry that theme on this week. Today, I am sharing with you how to do a simple but cute embroidery project. Some people are instantly put off embroidery as its fiddly or time consuming or ‘what do you even stitch?!’. Well, I hope after this today, you will be inspired to pick up a sewing needle, grab some thread and do some sewing!

tutorial supplies 

For this you shall need these following supplies:
Fabric
Embroidery thread (I use Anchor)
Hoop (mine is 6inch)
Needles
A design to sew onto the fabric
Pencil/fabric pen

measuring fabric

Completely lay out your fabric onto a flat surface and place your hoop in the corner. I suggest the corner as you then have the rest of your fabric to use, for other projects. You want to make sure that you have enough fabric for the hoop to work with, as when the fabric is placed in the hoop, the fabric will bunch. Always cut a little more than you think you will need. My fabric is roughly 9 x 8 inches for a 5/6 inch hoop. If unsure, always put the hoop together before you cut your fabric, to give you an idea of how much you need. Also, when you take the hoop off, you’re left with crease marks as a guideline.

tracing design

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Once your fabric is cut, grap the design you wish to use and find the right placement. This really is a ‘should it go here? or should it go there?’ step. Once you are happy, place the design under your fabric and trace. I used a pencil, as my fabric is quite thin and didn’t want it to leak through. If what you are using is nice and thick, go ahead and use a washable fabric pen!

sewing the design

When you’re ready, put your hoop in place. You want the bigger hoop to be at the top of your fabric, and the smaller hoop underneath. However, I have seen it the other way around if that works better for you.
Now, begin stitching! For a neater stitch, I find that a backstitch works best. This way you have no gaps in between the stitches and it follows your work nicely.

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As I finished sewing the delicious looking biscuits, I felt it was lacking something. So, I added some text to go with it. This is freehand, but can always trace another design.

biscuit anyone?

And ta-dah! There you have a one of a kind embroidery project! Something like this would look perfect in the kitchen as a decoration or if you know someone who has a bit of a biscuit addiction, it would make a perfect gift!

Thank you for joining me today and if you wish to see Emilys interview, you can click here. Next Tuesday, we will have Kate Marsden, who is a textile designer and fibre artist.

Until then, happy dunkin’!

Introducing: Emily Nicolet ♥

Emily Nicolet embroidery

When I first stumbled upon Emilys work, I was completely in awe (and still am!). The detail gone into her work and the stitches, are beautiful! I’m super excited to have her here with us today. Meeting people who have the same interests as you, and being able to share that joy is always an exciting moment. Emily really gives us true insight into herself, her life and work in this interview, so go grab a cuppa’, and enjoy a morning (or afternoon) read…

✎  Tell us a little bit about yourself…

My name is Emily, and I’m a student living in Scotland. I just graduated with a degree in English Language at the University of Edinburgh, and next year I’ll be doing a masters in Medieval and Renaissance Studies at the University of Glasgow! As you can imagine it’s tough to find time to do as much crafting as I like and having a dedicated ‘work room’ isn’t really possible (if only I could afford a flat with spare rooms!), but I do my best to do as much as I possibly can. When I’m not at school I’m in California with my parents, two cats, and Scottish boyfriend who we love to have come along.

Mulder, its me

✎  Where did your love of hand embroidery begin? and what inspires you for your projects?

This is an interesting question because I’ve actually had to have a hard think about this! I genuinely think that the thing that inspired me to start embroidering was that moment when you walk into a crafting supplies store, and there’s a huge wall or display of all the embroidery thread colours you could possibly imagine. It just looks so tempting! I started embroidering originally as an excuse to buy some pretty thread basically, and immediately took to it. I take inspiration for projects from all around, but specifically I always try to only embroider things that interest me. One of my favourite projects to do was an embroidery based on Scully from The X-Files, which came to me after I marathoned that show pretty hard! I also take ideas from lyrics I love; many of my nature-based pieces are inspired by Joanna Newsom songs. I’m currently working on designing a pattern based on one of my all-time favourite Simpsons jokes too that I hope will come out well.

bitches get stuff done

✎   What made you want to start your own business?

I’ve been a dedicated buyer from Etsy for many years! But I didn’t think to have my own Etsy store until I started posting what I had made on Facebook, and had friends and family telling me that they thought it was very good or that they’d like to buy it. Etsy honestly makes it so easy to start a business, so I put up a few things I’d crocheted and one embroidery and it was done. I mean, no one bought any of that stuff at first, but technically that was Fawn and Peach started! It wasn’t until I started creating more embroidery pieces that I started seeing any sales.

embroidery necklace

Whats your workspace like? Are you an organised sewer, or do you find yourself surrounded by threads and fabrics?

I’m the messiest person in the world. This sounds like it might be hyperbolic, but I don’t think it is! All of my embroidery supplies are vaguely sorted and placed into one of two massive ziploc bags. I truly need a better system, but I never have the time to implement one! One of the things I do like about embroidery though is that it’s fairly portable, so my workspace is wherever I need to be – in my bed, at my table, or even at a cafe if I’m looking for a change of scenery. I can just pack everything I need into a little pouch and go!

home is where the rabbit hole is

✎   You’ve ventured out into the business world of handmade craft. Are there any designers or companies you dream of working or collaborating with?

There are so many designers that I would love to collaborate with that it’s hard to only mention a couple! One of my embroidery friends runs her own embroidery business called Sea of Stars, and I would love to one day be able to work on a collaborative piece with her. I also follow a lot of sewing blogs, specifically independent pattern makers, and it would be an absolute dream to maybe contribute an embroidery pattern for a pattern they release! It would be so amazing to design an embroidered motif for an adorable Tilly and the Buttons pattern.

Fawn and Peach

 And finally, Do you have any tips or advice for someone whose starting out in this industry? 

Hmm, this is a tough one. In terms of people who are just starting out and building an online presence, I’d say that the best thing you can do is really make sure to have your social networking all set up! A lot of the sales or interest in my work or blog I’ve gotten has been via people sharing things I’ve made from my Facebook page, or liking the posts I’ve made on Instagram. I know that’s quite common sense at this point, but it’s easy to let things like this slip from your mind when you’re just starting out! In terms of getting started on Etsy, reading up on how Etsy SEO (that’s search engine optimisation) works is absolutely vital – I found I was getting hardly any hits at all for months, but after tweaking my listing titles to include more keywords my daily hits doubled. Little things like this can make such a big difference, and it adds up!

If you wish to purchase any designs from Emily, you can visit her Etsy shop, Fawn and Peach. Or check out her blog, Facebook and Instagram

A fresh start… ♥

Hello my lovely readers! I’m so sorry its been a while since my blog has seen some action. I can’t work out if its because life has passed me by, or life has been too busy. Either way, I’m back now and with awesome news!

For months, I’ve been desperate to create a pretty, eye catching, wonderfully inspiring blog. The first blog I ever made was on Freewebs when I was about nine (if I could call it a blog, it was more a page to share my girly obsessions! Oh wait…). Since then I have gone on a whirlwind with every blogging network possible. Luckily, WordPress has been my saving grace as I was definitely close to giving up! Also, working for someone else’s website, really gives you the blog bug! (Feel free to check out the lovely lady herself!)

So, what is this awesome news you ask? I guess its been since I last blogged, I’ve really had to think about where I want this to go and what I want to do with it. How do I make this different or my blog? Its so easy to route through other blogs and feel like yours is crap, or its terrible compared to theirs and think whats the point? Its always good to have healthy competition, but I got to the point where I thought mine would never be good enough to carry on. However, many words of encouragement from my boyfriend later, changed my way of thinking and I started to put plans into action! Why let talent go to waste right?

This is my new plan. Every month, starting in August, I will be having three guest bloggers! Two are covering specific topics, and one free reign! I shall be including my own inspiration related posts and more tutorials. Every guest blogger I feature, will have two slots. One day for an interview, the other to give us a tutorial on their chosen idea. Ideally, giving you a lovely connection!
I’m all about supporting other bloggers. The internet is a tough place, so sticking together is what I wish to do with everyone I meet and greet. If you wish to be a apart of this, please contact me here.

I don’t wish to give too much away, such as the topics and who I have planned so far, but I am really excited about where this is going and what could come of this. Fingers crossed everything goes to plan and, watch this space! Join me on August 8th with my first guest blogger. In the mean time, expect some stuff from myself.

Until then,

Happy Blogging!

 

 

 

It’s a… ♥

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Today I am doing something a little different. Today is ‘BLOG-HOP’ day! Last week, I got a lovely long email from Kirsty Neale, regarding taking part in this ‘blog-hop’.

What is a blog-hop? Well, its simply hopping around loads of different blogs every week, that have been personally invited to take part. Its such a wonderful way to get the blogging network connected, and to share such brilliant work! (Also, to meet new people and to keep blogging very much alive!) Yay for the blogging world!

You can check out the lovely lass that invited me, Kirsty Neale, on her blog Ginger And George. Kirsty has recently released a book, Hoop-La!: 100 things to do with embroidery hoops, which I had the absolute delight of working for and has an upcoming book due out in a few months time! Her work is very much ‘all things craft’ and is definitely for you if you believe in cute creatures and embroidery. You shall also find on there, her blog hop post, along with 3 other bloggers for you to check out. Its a very back & forth type thing, however I believe that adds to the fun!

I hope you have just as much fun following this round, as much as we have taking part! Below you will see the bloggers I invited, and I very much hope you will take the time to have a look, as they are all so wonderful and amazingly talented!

So, here we go…

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1. What am I Working On?

Currently, I am working on making an awesome career for myself! I can’t say I am doing some kind of HUGE project or working for a upcoming designer, because I’m simply not. (Unless, I count myself as the designer, then yes I am!)

I recently took on the challenge of making a dress, with a zip! Normally I skip all dress patterns that involve some kind of technical sewing. But, I wanted to push myself harder and thought a zip would be a good way to go… Can I get the zip in right? Of course not! Nevertheless, I shall not be defeated.

In September I shall be attending Bridalwear Summer School. My next, massive step into becoming a freelance Dressmaker! Until then, I shall be constantly working on my sketchbook and getting as much inspiration for my collections.

Over the last few months, I have done work for some really wicked people and I love that I’m constantly talking to new people from all over the world. You can look out for an article I did in the latest issue of ‘Mollie Makes’ magazine and please check out my previous work on www.shimelle.com.

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2.  How does my work differ from others of its genre? 

I always try to make my work stand out from the others out there. I always try to produce a unique creative solution; depending on the project. I constantly push myself to learn new skills so everything I do has my own touch on it.

I rarely settle on one style of work. I think thats what makes me stand out a little, every project I do, I do differently! Whether it be the photography/the style… I don’t see the point of sticking to one way of doing things as after a while, you get bored of it yourself – and thats not what you want!!

Over the last year, I have had the best teacher showing me the ways of the internet world! As well as showing me that you can do what you love, she’s taught me too learn as much as I want, teach as much as I can and proudly show it off however I wish!

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3. Why do I write/create what I do?

The same reason as anyone else who does something they love. I love doing it! I love everything about it. The process, the creating, the creation, the feeling of achievement and it getting recognised. The sharing part is definitely one of my favourites as you get a sense of pride and am like ‘yes! I made that!’.
Everything I make, I do because I want to. I may of seen it elsewhere and wish to re-create it or an idea pops into my head and I then turn it into something physical. Enjoyment definitely plays a massive part!

I’ve always know that THIS is what I want to do with my life. Being creative, hands on, bringing handmade goodness back to light, showing everyone that you don’t have to have a boring job to make a living! Whatever your dream job may be, make it happen.

The whole reason for doing this today, is not only to introduce you to my blog, but to show you other bloggers that I love and want to share! So, enough chatter now and I leave you with these three darling people.

imageAbigail Beach is a student studying at Durham University. She used to be a paper scrapbooker but with the demands of a student life and budget she has turned to digital memory keeping. She loves documenting the everyday, rejoicing in the ordinary and trying out all sorts of crafts. She writes about this at Creating Paper Dreams. You can also find her on Instagram as @abibeach.

image Anna Fazakerley is dotty about crochet, jewellery making, sewing and more. She love to design and crafting is an extension of that. Anna is constantly adding to her list of things to make and learn. Blogging about crafty life is a great way to document the journey to look back on. You can check out her blog, Dotty Doily & follow her on twitter.

image Lindsey Portas lives and grew up in Essex with her family and creates her work in her extremely cluttered bedroom. She studied BA (Hons) Printed Textile Design at the University of East London and is graduating in November. She now hopes to find a job within the printed textile design industry whether it specialises in digital print design or screen printed design. Please check out Lindsey’s website where you can find her blog, twitter and pinterest.

You can see their ‘blog-hop’ posts on Monday 9th June. Make sure not to miss out! 

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The latest project I did was for Halloween! It definitely is my most loved occasion of year. It hasn’t always been that way, but when I discovered the crafty goodness you could get from it, it didn’t take long to turn that around!! I wasn’t too sure what to do for this project due to it being so close to halloween, which left me thinking that an ‘all year round’ idea would be best but with a halloween theme. I decided on a pin cushion as not only is it practical and most needed in your sewing box, it looks ridiculously sweet on your table!! To make this, you need two pieces of felt, embroidery thread, fabric pen, toy stuffing and the essentials! Its easily down in FIVE steps!

Step 1. Draw your template on the fold of your fabrics. Pin down, add a seam allowance and cut.

Step 2. Sew on your pattern with your embroidery thread.

Step 3. Grab your sewing machine and start sewing the edges together (make sure your felt pieces are inside out!) leave a gap at the top of the cushion so you can add the stuffing.

Step 4. Once sewn together, turn right way out and stuff to the brim with stuffing! Make sure its quite stiff to hold. This will insure it isn’t flimsy and will hold pins properly.

Step 5. You shall now need to sew the opening gap together. I did this by hand stitching a blanket stitch. Fold the fabric inside and sew whichever stitch you find best and finish neatly.

Ta-dah! Your pretty pin cushion 🙂

x