Monday, March 25, 2019

Little gadgets and notions - bodkins/loop turning

These are another must have in my opinion.  I am not quite sure what they are called, elastic turner/bodkins.

I think I may have got them from here:


I use them for cord, ribbon, elastic, so much easier than the old traditional way of a safety pin.

Get them!

Monday, March 18, 2019

Baskets and bags

I saw these grey baskets (I have 2 more), and when I got home realised that they team up nicely with a couple of 'in tray' baskets that I had in the garage.  So have spray painted them grey to match, makes a change to the boxes and baskets that I use, what a shame I didn't have more. 

Loads of these baskets were being thrown away at work over the years - I saw one for sale in a retro shop for £5 recently, as everywhere is paperless, in trays are very much a thing of the past.

The drawstring bag was made with fabric that I couldn't resist at the Sewing Basket in Dunstable when we went there recently, here you can see the small basket better.

Sheep fabric is from Buttons in Biggleswade

Saturday, March 16, 2019

Another batch of denim bags - part 2

And here are a few more

Little gadgets and notions - Sewing/stitch gauge

I have not actually used this yet, so time will tell if it works. I have tried a magnetic one, but not enough metal on mine to make it useful.

The backs are tacky, and you can wash then and it becomes tacky again, clearly not tested that either!  I was just going to stick tape on for various hems, but this seems to be a good solution in theory, I got it from Amazon - Quilted Bear.

I do use the 1/4 inch foot from time to time if I am trying to be accurate!

Thursday, March 14, 2019

Little gadgets and notions - Iron and ironing board

As I am a small project sewist, (prefer that to sewer!), I found that leaving my sewing room and going to the ironing board was a real time waster, and a general faff.  I didn't need a big ironing board.  So a couple of years ago I set myself up with a mini ironing board bought from Dunelm, entitled a "table top", IKEA also do one, and numerous ones around.  (I think I paid around £7).

The cover was a bit thinly padded, so I took it off an added a tea towel under it and it is just fine.

My first 'travel' iron was rubbish, and it eventually broke, so I bought Swan travel iron - now if you like a handle then don't get this.  But having looked at a few travel irons the handles were flimsy and that is what broke on the last.  This is like holding a large computer mouse - I like it, but have had mixed results with the steam, and the water leaking out.  I tend to use a spray water or spray starch anyway, so not so bothered.

I do also have a sleeve board, I think that was Dunelm too, and again bulked it up with a teatowel under the cover.  Both of them fold flat and I can hang them out of the way.  But that rarely happens now, as every time I sew I iron!

The final must have gadget was the silicon iron tidy, can't do with out this.

silicon mat

I did have to buy a table to put it on, and got one of those fold up TV tables from Argos, I note that someone has made the whole thing into an ironing table, am quite taken with the idea, and I think I will do this one day, and complement it with the sleeve board.

this is my table TV dinner table - there are loads out there, this one seems to be sturdy enough

make an ironing table

Another idea:
roll up ironing table

I use spray starch sometimes and like this:
Lakeland spray starch

I also have one of these, that I was given years ago for the kitchen and use it all the time to spray water for difficult creases, bit fancy!
mist sprayer

I think mine is a bit like this - I know I paid around £7 for it
sleeve board

Sunday, March 10, 2019

Another batch of denim bags - part 1

I got a batch of kids jeans from a charity shop in Ampthill, and have been gradually re-purposing them into bags....

Added a zip to this one - and was quite successful - so will do this to a few more next time

this one I started before and was from a bigger pair of jeans.

Wednesday, March 06, 2019

Re-use and Re-purpose - Large hamper

I walked into town a couple of weeks back and there was a skip parked on the route.....and in it was this lovely basket.  To be honest there was a lot of other good stuff in there, but couldn't resist the basket, but didn;t have the nerve to sort through everything else!

I did knock on the door of the owners, and they were not in.  I spoke to a near neighbour and decided it was OK to take.  I have never taken anything from a skip before....but feel it needed liberating.

I have no idea what to do with it!  Gave it a wash and dried in the sunshine, it has the strap missing that holds it closed, but apart from that it all seems fine and dandy.

Monday, March 04, 2019

Little gadgets and notions - Iron hem gauge

I have seen these being used on a few you tube videos so thought I would give it a go.

This one I got from china, not sure if they are available in the UK I didn't really look.

The idea is that you fold the fabric over and iron so that you get a nice even fold.  I do a lot of things in inches, so would have loved this to be CMs one side and inches the other, but it is just CMs.

Seems to work a treat, but guess better for small projects rather than dressmaking.