Friday, 4 April 2014

Sewing Update & Little Gifts For Special People

Back in November I made some winter sewing plans. This post is a quick update on how I'm doing.

Necessities - vests, pyjamas and aprons.
- I made the vests here.
- My daughter bought me some lovely flannel pyjamas for Christmas so they are temporarily off the sewing list.
- Aprons - I wanted 3 for different tasks - I've made 2 so far and 1 as a gift for my Mum - post coming soon.

Basics - long sleeved t-shirts, versatile bottom halves for chores and dog walking.
- I wanted 2 or 3. I've made 1 and will post it when I've made it's friend(s).
- Versatile bottom halves - I wanted 2 or 3. I've made 2 corduroy skirts and would like a denim one that is better executed than my last one. These will likely be the next items to be blogged.

I love making things for other people but I'm pretty selective about who I make for. Basically I only make for people who will really appreciate the effort and love that goes in to a handmade gift! I cross stitched this card for my friend's birthday this year - the same one I made this apron for.

She is fascinated by Japanese culture, cooking and the country in general so it seemed like an appropriate choice.

I also made these little sponge/toiletries bags for my nephews and nieces.

This might seem like a strange present to give to children (rather than say toys) but as they live so far away they go to stay at both sets of grandparent's regularly and I know these will see a lot of use. I popped in some little odds and ends like flannels, toothbrushes etc. in co-ordinating colours too.

I didn't follow a pattern to make them, I copied a bag of my daughter's. They are the kind of bags that scrunch up when you pull the cords on either end. 

For the two above the outer fabric is from Debbie's So Grateful Giveaway. Thank you Debbie! This is what I had in mind for these fabrics when I saw them on her blog. I don't like to enter giveaways unless I can see an immediate use for a fabric/pattern because of hoarding (say no more). I know the boy who will receive the turtles will be very, very happy and I plan to use the remaining shell fabric on something for me, to remind me of how fabulous the sewing community is each time I wear it!

The red fabric is from the 1950's or '60's and was given to me by my mother-in-law many, many moons ago. I had to buy the pirate fabric ('Pirate Labels', The Henley Studio for Makower, £3 locally), so that I could continue the sea theme.

The bags are lined with a soft cream shower curtain that I kept when I redecorated the bathroom (it's now blue). Never throw a shower curtain away!! The fabric type are ideal for lining cosmetic and swim bags, and the plastic ones make great table cloths for messy art and sculpture. That's what I used our plastic one for anyway, when it got too tatty looking to stay in the bathroom.

The cords are from my cord tub. (Doesn't everyone have one!) If I'm recycling a hoodie or one of those fancy carrier bags with a drawstring, I always pull out and keep the drawstrings. I've never known why until now!

So only one new scrap of fabric was used making these and a modest amount of scrap reduction :)

I still have plans for more gifts. Do you love making them, too?

Happy sewing, 'til next time,

Philippa x


  1. Oh, that Japanese card is adorable! It's a great unique gift (and you're right - only for the sort of person who would appreciate it!).

  2. Your resourcefulness is inspiring! I'm going to keep in mind the tip about how to use old shower curtains and liners, as well as hanging on to drawstrings. Also, I just went through a major drawstring bag-making phase myself! Mine were shoe bags for some family, friends and my husband and me. They were really fun to crank out, production-style, and of course, it's always a good feeling to use up scraps.

  3. It nice to sit down a list you makes. You go "wow, I really did accomplish quite a bit!." You were able to get a lot of "to-makes" crossed off your list!

  4. Oo, the little toiletries bags are super cute and a terrific idea. I think I shall have to follow your lead.

  5. Lovely gifts! The bags are such a great way to use up fabric scraps too. The card is adorable as well! Love it.