Fabulous Places Christmas Fair

Howdy folks.

It’s always great to be writing a post for you lovely lot but today is especially nice as it means that camera is fixed! Last week I was really excited to finally be at home when their was enough daylight to take a few pictures of my recent purchases however after ‘the shoot’ I ended damaging the memory card and therefore was unable to download any of the pictures. After a quick visit to the shops to buy a new memory card and normal service can resume ūüôā

By the way out of the two interviews I attend I was offered two jobs so will be starting a new post on Monday! I will also shortly be moving back out of the mothers (I can’t believe I managed 6 months!) and closer to work. A few weekends ago, in preparation for the house move and to bring me luck with the interviews, I went hunting for goods for home decoration at¬†Fabulous Places Christmas Market. Although there were rooms full of fantastic crafters I ended up buying a print designed by Louise Wright and a tea towel and mug created by Jade Devall.¬†I’ve followed both of these makers on Facebook for some time so it’s really nice to finally own some of their work. As soon as I move both the tea towel and print will be framed, taking pride of place in my new living room.Louise Wright Design Owl
Jade Devill Ay Up
Jade Devall Designs Ay Up



A perfect afternoon

On Sunday I spent a perfect autumnal afternoon wrapped up inside Buttons and Bows Sewing Boutique eating cake and learning how to sew a basic capped sleeve blouse. The workshop, which involved constructing a sample blouse using the pattern New Look 6356, has taught me how to sew a concealed zip, ease in a sleeve and how to add bias binding. So not only did I have a fabulous time I came away with skills for life which is an awesome thing to happen on any day of the week but especially on a chilled out Sunday afternoon.

As a beginner the blouse does have a few areas that need ‘practice’ but I did learn that my concentration goes after the first hour then the ‘it’s only a sample’ attitude appears and it’s mistakes galore. Therefor I need to be a lot less slap dash and pay more attention to detail when creating an item to wear otherwise I’ll end up spending a fortune on fabric. Especially as Buttons and Bows stock a beautiful range.

With the new techniques fresh in my mind I’m going to attempt the¬†Sewholic Renfew pattern. I have a rubbish memory so hopefully the practice will help me to remember the techniques in the future. I’ll keep you updated on my progress with the sewing so wish me luck!

Buttons and Bows Belper

Sample top full


refew next project

What happened to September?

Hello, sewing friends. I’ve missed you so much. Over the past month I’ve been totally consumed by working full time and studying a masters full time, bad times. However in the past month I found an amazing vintage sewing machine in an antiques shop in Matlock and have started an adult education course in dressmaking so my favourite hobby hasn’t been completely abandoned.


Unfortunately I have decided to quite the dressmaking course as the tutor’s teaching style didn’t fit my needs. Think old school matron and lots of repression, not good if you like to learn by making mistakes. However I have caught the dress making bug and have decided to become a self-taught seamstress! Before I decided to quit the course I purchased the Sewaholics Hollyburn Skirt pattern and have brought some lovely 100% black cotton so the skirt will be this months project.


Indie month


A bit of a change from my usual sewing posts. Last month was #indiemonth so I want to share with you all of the beautiful things that I purchased plus this post has the added bonus of providing these retailers with some free publicity and it’s nice to be nice.

#indiemonth happens each year in July and is a month where¬†consumers are urged to change their shopping habits and show their support for local independent retailers. Having moved to rural Derbyshire my shopping habits have naturally changed to more independent retailers rather than big brands as the nearest large shopping centre is over 20 miles away. When living in city centres I was a sucker for popping to places like hobby craft or WHSmiths whenever I needed something where as now the independent retailer is the more convenient option and I’m loving it. Corny as it sounds I felt as though I’d lost myself when living in the mass produced jungles that are today’s city centres and now i’m back to a simple country life I feel a lot better in general and have become a lot more creative. The added bonus of changing my shopping habits is that independent shopping is also turning out to be a lot cheaper. As mentioned in my previous post last weekend I bought 6 (larger than fat quarter) pieces of liberty fabric for ¬£5. I have just started turning the fabric into gadget bags and have already managed to make two bags out of 1 piece of material, bargain!




So here’s a breakdown of what I purchased last month and where these items are from:

1.Beginners patchwork workshop – Quiltessential

2.Vintage chair – antique shop at Awkrights Mill, Cromford (sorry I can’t find the name of the shop)

3.5 week bag making course – The Craft Studio, Nottingham

4.Vintage mirror (bought for me by a friend) – The Vintage House

5.Fabric- unsure of stall name but was from The Vintage Suitcase fair

6.Hairband – Print Delight, Folksy


The Vintage Suitcase






Today I met up with one of my besties for a wander round the vintage fair in Buxton. As I’m currently saving for a deposit to buy a house it was Katie’s job to make sure that I stuck to ¬†budget and she did a fantastic job. I could have come home with loads of goodies but instead I managed to be sensible and just bought a few pieces of fabric and then went for lunch at Pizza Express. Katie kindly bought me the mirror as an early birthday present and at ¬£5 for 6 large off cuts of liberty fabric, ¬£4 for a meter of the dog fabric and ¬£10 for around two meters of the peacock fabric it would of been silly for me not to invest in my stash. I’m really pleased with my purchases and have already started to think about the bags that I’m going to make with the fabric. The liberty prints are going to be turned into pockets on a series of iPad cases and the dog print is going to be made into a laundry bag.

As you can see from my pictures there were loads of stall holders at the fair and plenty for me to buy, the home wears section was amazing! As the fair was run by The Vintage Suitcase who are based in Derbyshire I will definitely be keeping an eye on their websites for future events.

The Dome is part of Buxton College, which is an area that I look after for work, I am lucky enough to spend a few days a week working in this magnificent building. It really is an inspirational place and I feel lucky every day that I drive there. Myself and Katie are returning in two weeks time for a spa day and I can’t wait!


Sewing and the industrial revolution

Now that I have a bit of money in my pocket I’m making the most of it and am regularly booking on to sewing courses to improve my skills.¬†This Saturday saw me attend the beginners quilting class at Quiltessential. ¬†

I discovered this class a while ago whilst researching things to do once I moved back to Derbyshire. As soon as I discovered this class I got a little giddy and booked a place straight away. As Cromford contains a canal and lots of picinic spots I have been there many times as a youngster so I knew the class would be set in beautiful surroundings. However the reason for my excitement was the location of the class which is hosted at¬†Arkwrights Mill in Cromford – not only was Sir Richard Arkwright, who built the mills, a pioneer of the industrial revolution the mill that the class was held in is famous for giving birth to the UK’s factory system. As that mill was used for textile production being able to take a sewing class their was a fantastic experience and one I hope to repeat many times. I already have my eye on one of their bag making courses. *Im obsessed with bag making as not only do they make fantastic presents and products to sell their also practical. I’m not ¬†a ‘girly girl’ so the practical and therefore useful elements make sewing ok.


As part of the course we made a patch work cushion and although I tried to match the fabric to my new tattoo I think my colour choices could be improved. I’m really proud of how the piece turned out, especially when it’s compared to my disastrous attempts when I bought my first sewing machine last August.

Quiltessential beginners

Thursday sewing club

Hello friends, I hope you’ve had a good weekend. With Saturday being an absolute scorcher I spent the day inside hiding from the sun, I think I’m the only person who spends all summer pinning for winter. As today was a little cooler I ventured into the garden to take pictures of the bag that I’ve been sewing as part of a five week bag making course at The Craft Studio in Nottingham

As the first class was this week we started out making a ‘simple’ reversable bag. Well it seemed to be simple for the others but due to my dodgey cutting skills the handles on my bag ended up way too thin so I started it again on Friday. I gave v.1 of the bag to my mum, she’s a lot less fussy than me and has tied the handle material together and used it today to carry her work stuff.

At Thursdays class we’re going to learn how to sew the handles together. I have looked at the pattern and contemplated having a go myself but I don’t want to end up ruining my first handmade handbag so I’m going to hold fire and finish it off later this week.

I’m loving the course, as I’ve never had sewing lessons before I’m getting to learn lot of new techniques and really useful tips. However the style of the bag isn’t really me,¬†of course I’ll use it a few times so that I can brag that I MADE IT but as red’s my grandma’s favourite colour ultimately it’s going to end up as her bag.

By the way I’ve just bought my first DSLR and am still getting the hang of it so I apologise for the blurry images.



Handmade reversible bag

Very Purple Person Reversible Bag