Sunday, September 02, 2018

More drawstring

First cut into this fabric that I bought last summer in Florida.  I cut a strip off the top.....and used every scrap with denim to make a pocket inside.

Really pleased they look lovely.

Friday, August 31, 2018

New Makes

The weather has been so hot here this summer and I have been lazing around in the sun reading and enjoying my retirement, but last week I did get into my sewing room, and cut into some new fabric. 

So will do a few posts showing a few of my makes.

I did some new free motion sewing on applique, I used gloves this time and found it loads easier.  I actually bought some knitted gardening gloves from Poundland, with the little grip spots on
and they were perfect.

I posted some here previously:
applique in April

I have now realised that my Silhouette portrait cuts fabric, so did some on there - wow was most impressed.  I have a few of sizzix cutters that I used as well and are designed to cut fabric, but are just the same as any of the big sizzix cutters as far as I can tell Bigz.

The pink bags have an inside zipped pocket and a magnetic fastener.
the motifs are on a pocket on the front

Thursday, August 02, 2018

Denim bag

 Not made a denim bag in ages, this one had been half made for a long time.  I have sold a few over the last month or so, now this one is finished and can be added to stock :)

All pockets are usable, and a slip pocket inside.

Tuesday, July 31, 2018


Only bought this in the Threads and Patches closing down sale, thought it was cute...and I have already cut into it!

Often admire for a long time before using.

Love the chunky zips on these.

Saturday, July 28, 2018


Had this fabric since last summer and so far had only admired it - finally have cut into it and made these glasses cases and cosmetic bags.

The zips have nice and chunky and have a sparkle to them.

Thursday, July 26, 2018

Drawstring bag


I fancied doing something different today, so made this drawstring bag.  Still undecided whether to add a pompom to the drawstring.

I added a slip pocket inside and it has a denim bottom to give it some 'body'.

Had fun planning and making - so will make a few more.

Tuesday, July 24, 2018

Large Tote

I bought this fabric when I was in Nice a few weeks back.  It is a lovely thick material so decided to make a couple of large bags.  These are not lined, but all seams are 'french seams' so they are all enclosed and will not fray.

I added a largish zipped pocket to the inside.

What do you think?

Saturday, July 14, 2018

Lordship Farm and Tea shop

We have a new farm shop not far from here, and they are offering a bit of space to local crafts people.  So I took some things down there a month or so ago, and this week I went and restocked and took a stand with me so that I can hang the bags, and they look far better than in the boxes. 

They sell lots of local produce and have in the tea shop they are baking using local produce too.  Loads of room to eat outside, and a small tea shop inside, and also and under cover area outside too.

Lordship Farm Facebook Page

Friday, June 22, 2018

Re-use and re-purpose - stand for craft fair

I popped into the charity shop the other day and there was one of those wine racks that collapses down for 50p.....after much umming and ahhing - I thought I could use it on my table, the fact that it folds down is marvellous.

So on its first outing last week, I realised that it was better on a box, and that I need more hooks and a 'shelf' on the top.

So I set it up like this - and had planned to put a box on top - but was now too high, It was quite full - but maybe with extra hooks will leave a couple empty:

Found that I could kind of make a shelf so now have one!...Although think I my need a back on it.

Sunday, June 17, 2018

Craft Fair

Was my first craft fair yesterday, sales could have been better, but was still nice to be there and sell what I did.  I had a number of comments, and think if people were needing to buy a gift they would be back.

I can't decide how best to display my items, I still had items in boxes underneath, but maybe I should have left some more items out.

And here is how the room looked, should have taken a few more as missed the corners!

I did have a problem not being able to take card payments, and can see that this will be a continuing problem.  Or I need to be at the door and pick up the customers first.

So have now signed up for a machine, so will be ready at the next fair!

Friday, June 15, 2018

Craft Fair - Poplars Garden Centre Toddington Saturday 16 June

As the Ampthill Country Market has now closed I am going to the craft fair tomorrow, I will have to take some pictures once I am there and all set up.

I hope that you can come along.

I made these last night, following my very last day at work....I am now redundant/retired....

I thought they were really cute, and love the pom poms, I put a chunky bead on the top...I have a lot of beads too.

FB event

Saturday, June 09, 2018

Tea cosies

Decided to make tea cosies (or are they cosys?) the other day, and wasn't sure about the size and shape, so after much searching around, decided to go for a shape and then test out if they fit various tea pots at Country Matters at Hexton.

Was pleased to report that they all fitted, but I forgot to take pictures doh!

So these are the best photos that I have, like the daisy fabric, you can see them in the bottom of the picture.  The small one is for a small cafetiere.

Monday, June 04, 2018

Raspberry Muffins

An archived post from the Country Market stall blog...

We had homemade Raspberry muffins at the weekend, that my other half made using a square muffin tin, so thought I would share the recipe with you, delicious with a blob of vanilla yoghurt, or maybe some ice cream, or clearly great on their own. 

Here is the muffin recipe:

I have a large jug that I always use for making muffins and find it easier to pour the mixture as it is runny, and all muffins are delicious straight from the oven.

200g plain flour
100g caster sugar
50g soft brown sugar
Cinnamon to taste (optional)
2 ½ Baking powder
½ teaspoon salt
90ml skimmed or semi-skimmed milk
80ml vegetable oil
1 large egg, beaten
5 drops vanilla extract
200gms (approx) fruit

  • Preheat oven to 200 C / Gas 6 and add paper cases to a muffin tray.
  • Measure out flour, sugars, baking powder, cinnamon and salt in a large jug. 
  • Combine milk, oil, egg and vanilla in another jug.
  • Stir until just combined (mixture will be lumpy).
  • Gently fold in chopped fruit, divide amongst 10 cases, or around that number, cases 2/3rds full.
  • Bake for 20 minutes or until golden brown on top, sprinkle with icing sugar when slightly cool.
NB I have cheated and use loganberries in the picture as that is all I had in the garden and we used all the raspberries in recipe :)

Friday, May 25, 2018

Handknitted Baby Cardigans

An archived post from the Country Market stall blog...some of my knitted makes from a few years back...

Cute short bolero, will fit for a while :)

Friday, May 18, 2018

Re-use and re-purpose - jars

Now that we have closed here is an archived post from the Ampthill Country Market stall blog...

The Country Markets are 'known' for their preserves, we make jam, pickles and marmalades.  Most of the jars that we use are re-used.  We soak the labels off, and put them in the dishwasher, and then ensure they are fully sterilised before we add our homemade produce.  We top off with brand new lids and they are sealed so they will last a long time until opened.

So you can always pop your jars back to the stall, unfortunately we can't take those jars that have brand names in the glass, any we can't use we drop off at the glass recycling.  And we love it if you have taken the time to remove the labels and given them a wash.

There are lots of ideas on the internet to re-purpose a jar, have you thought about giving it a go?

Here are a few of my favourites:

There are loads of ideas out there like this on the internet:

Friday, May 11, 2018

Re-use & Re-purpose - kitchen pots

Now that we have closed here is an archived post from the Ampthill Country Market stall blog...

Have you got a tired old saucepan, that has a bit of character?  or a colander or something similar?

Well how about planting it up?  The colander is perfect as it already has draining holes, no worries about drilling.  You will need to line it with something, just some plastic from a compost sack, just make sure you can't see it through the holes, so black side out.  Or an old jumper could work sacking.

This is what I came up with last year - they soon filled up when the plants got established...

Bedding begonias will be on sale on May when you can safely plant them outside.

Friday, May 04, 2018

Re-use and Re-purpose - pots

Now that we have closed here is an archived post from the Ampthill Country Market stall blog...

We have plants for sale throughout spring to autumn, the pots are sometimes purchased, but more often than not they are re-used.  All the pots are washed and then refilled with new compost and then cuttings, seeds and plug plants.

I will be honest and at the moment we don't need any, but will post on facebook when we have run out.

It got me thinking what else can you do with a plant pot, so here are a few of my favourite ideas from around the internet

and on the flip side you don't always need a plant pot to pot a plant!  Loads of ideas out there, I have used colanders, and love to see old boots and is a good link:

Friday, April 27, 2018

Re-use and re-purpose - Chalkboard

Now that we have closed here is an archived post from the Ampthill Country Market stall blog...

We have had a chalkboard for many years that we bought from the Keech charity stall on Ampthill Charter Market.

However we have not been bringing it every week as it was looking a bit tired, but with a renewed enthusiasm I have now painted it (and glued it), so no longer primary colours of red and yellow, a little more sophisticated.

We just need to find someone with fab writing!

So it has been saved from the landfill for another year...

...have you re-used or re-purposed something this week?

Thursday, April 19, 2018


Had a play at applique, and made these little bags....have more cut out, just need to make some more - were great fun to do!

these have now all been added to bags, couple already gone and forgot to take pictures:

Friday, April 13, 2018

Re-use and re-purpose - Jeans

Now that we have closed here is an archived post from the Ampthill Country Market stall blog...

One of our producers is turning old jeans into bags, lots of different sizes and shapes.  

If the jeans have zipped pockets or other fasteners this will mean that they will have an extra pocket.  So maybe you have some jeans destined for the bin drop them off at the stall.  
If they are of no use they will be added to a charity bag, charity shop or the recycling.

Holes on the knees are perfectly usable.

Above are the latest acquisitions that are destined to be bags in the near future.

So the jeans are laundered and then stared at for a few days :) to try and decide how to make them into pretty bags!  The fabric to line and make the strap is chosen from a large stash of fabric that seems to be ever growing after a visit to the shops....and also a large drawer of haberdashery...oh dear :)

Once cut up into pieces they are accessorised with lace and other trimmings.  The linings are made from a pretty contrasting fabric and have a slip pocket added, and maybe a button pocket, really as the fancy strikes.  Normally a handmade fabric flower added using the same or contrasting fabric as the lining, big button and a strap made that loops around or buttons through and adds to the 'decoration'.  Button holes are great fun on the new machine.

The challenge is to get the right size bag, with enough pockets, It can often mean piecing together denim to make it wider, but it all adds to the charm.

You can be assured that any sales will mean that more fabric can be purchased.....fabric obsession confession

So as you can see they are all made with loving care, and take quite a while...

And here are a few that have been on the stall in recent months:

Friday, April 06, 2018

Re-use & Re-purpose - Mini cloches

Now that we have closed here is an archived post from the Ampthill Country Market stall blog...

Did you want to plant out a few vegetable plants in the garden and it is a bit early as the nights are a little cold, you can put a cloche over the top and they should be fine from April onwards - you may even be OK in March too.

We have lettuce plants for sale at the moment on Ampthill Country Market, you can put them in your garden with a little hat on now, and they will be fine.  I would suggest that you make sure they don;t get too hot during the day.  Leave the lids off as that will give them some air.

There are other plastic containers that will do the job just fine, just see what you are throwing away, just cut a hole for air circulation...and it didn't cost you a penny.

Just search for plastic bottle cloche - here is a little more reading

Plastic bottle cloche

25 ways to repurpose plastic bottles