A couple of days ago, I shared with you the video showing you Nampy and promised to share some pictures with you. Here they are as promised.
The following slideshow video shows the making of the bear from start to finish. I got so engrossed in making her, I forgot to take progress photos during the stuffing process. This is the time when you really get to see the personality of the bear.
It's wonderful to know that these memory bears go on display. They become part of everyday life and each time someone sees them, they trigger such happy memories. I really do think it's time I made one for myself.
I'd like to introduce you to the latest memory bear I've been privileged to make. In the video I tell you a bit about her, you might be able to tell, she's very squishable.
I'll share some photos with you later in the week.
For me, one of the best things about doing bespoke items is that you never quite know what you're going to be asked to make. It can be something that isn't out there, so you need to get the brain in gear and come up with creative ideas of how to meet a specific need. I always know I'm going to be in with a treat when they say, "I know you like a challenge..."
Fortunately, this was a challenge I had time to think about and formulate the way it was going to be made. I knew what I wanted as the end result, I wasn't sure if it was physically possible to sew it the way I wanted. So, what was the challenge? It was a cover for a black leather office chair. We had to take into consideration that the back is shaped, there are arms, the width of the back and seat of the chair were different, and, of course, the chair mechanisms underneath.
With it being handmade, the fabrics could be hand picked. Diane wanted a soft plush for one side, and then we got a coordinating cotton fabric to go with it. I have to tell you, it was a joy to handle even throughout the making up. It's definitely worthwhile spending just a little extra for good quality fabrics.
After some pondering and sketches, the design was finalised. We went for a cover that would go over the top of the chair, down the back and seat and fit over the end of the chair. There were going to be elasticed straps at the side to hold it in place and ties to go round the back for extra stability. I don't have a chair here to demonstrate so the photos had to be done on the settee.
This gives you an idea of what it will look like on the chair, but, there is a hidden bonus. This chair cover is reversible, so, the plush side can be top side instead!
That plush fabric is silky smooth, it will be so warm and comfortable to sit on. I've done a video, so that might give a better idea of how it looks and feels. The quilting was added to keep the shape of the cover and give it a cushion effect. I've used cotton wadding between the layers too, so there is extra padding.
The ties and elasticated straps on the side are what will keep it in place. I'm really pleased with how the straps have turned out. I just wasn't sure if I would be able to stitch them in the way I wanted, but it worked out well. The ties have made from the cotton fabric so everything is coordinated. I've added binding to the top and bottom edges to give them a good finish.
I can't wait for it to arrive in it's new home. It's been a challenge and I'm hoping it will be the perfect fit and Diane can sit comfortably and keep warm for the rest of the winter.
This grey wool just doesn't want to end. After the socks were finished, there was still quite a bit left, so I sent a message to the boys asking if they wanted anything else. I ended up with a request to make a tie, so his wish is my command. A knitted tie it was.
I've used moss stitch to give it some stability and it's shaped. I've narrowed the part of the tie that goes to the back. I think this is the most fun part....
....it has a loop to hold the tail! I think he was pleased, this is what he said on Instagram-"Many many thanks to @loopysplace for creating my most favourite tie!"
As to the grey wool, there is still some left but I won't be using it. I think I'm all greyed out at the moment, and it's off to someone else. Think some colour is needed around here.
As you missed out on the progress photos of Lady Eleanor being made, I thought you'd enjoy seeing this video. It's a slide show of the making of Eleanor, from start to finish.
It's been a pleasure to have been instrumental is bring Lady Eleanor to life and I look forward to meeting the next bear. I'm sure they will have an interesting tale to tell.
Earlier in the year, I was asked to make a special quilt. It was to be given to a granddaughter to be treasured, and, in years to come, remind her of the love her grandparents had wrapped her in. The colour palette was to be pinks and purples, and I was given creative freedom as regards the pattern.
I wasn't able to share the quilt with you during the making of it, but here is a video showing it's progress from start to finish.
This was the review I received: I ordered a very special quilt to be made for my beautiful granddaughter the service I got from Jane was outstanding she kept very close contact asking about colour, pattern and design and to top it all she added a personal message from us to our granddaughter. When the quilt arrived it was so beautiful and the wording we had chosen was beautiful I had a few tears it took my breath away. I would highly recommend this lovely , caring lady for any of your special makes. Thank you Jane xxx
I now know the granddaughter was thrilled with her quilt and I know it's going to be well used and well loved.
Changing Daniel's jumper into a backpack was definitely an interesting project to do. It was one of those projects where you stop and wonder if it was worth it. In the end, I loved it and would go through it all again.
I've made backpacks before, but making from new fabric, you have much more freedom as you're not limited to sizes. As it turned out, Daniel had wanted a small backpack, so he was doubly happy.
As I wanted the bag to be longer than it was wide, once I'd cut the top, I separated the back and front and flip it to the side. You can see the ribbing that was on the bottom running down the side of the back and front. The sleeves have been used for the straps and the top flap is taken from the top of the back.
To back the straps and line the inside, I've used a pair of trousers that I had in my fabric box. They had been Daniels, but he put the knee through falling over. These were smart trousers and patching wasn't an option. The whole knee was worn. It's like they've been waiting for this project. I just love the way they've worked for the inside.
The back pockets are now usable internal pockets, they just make me smile every time I see them. I was also able to use fabric from the trousers to form a tube for the cording closure at the top.
If Daniel hadn't liked the bag, I'd have been happy to have kept it for myself. He loves it and thinks I should make more. I've actually got a tartan dress in my fabric box, I just need to find the right jumper to felt!
Quite often, a little something extra gets sent with the quilt. This time, I made two lavender hearts. Each one was made from all the components of the quilt and filled with lavender. The ribbons were fixed in place with some vintage buttons. One of the hearts went with the quilt, the other was for the friend who commissioned the quilt. I wanted her to have a reminder of the quilt too. Each one is slightly different.
Here is a video slide show of the quilt from beginning to end. Hope you enjoy it.
When we were first discussing the quilt, lace came into the conversation. This led me to making some scrim lace to be used as an overlay. It just adds another dimension to the quilt and I had such fun making it.
It was used for the sashing between the photo panels. The same fabric without the lace was used for the borders. The darker colour perfectly framed the centre panel.
I had fully intended to do an allover quilting design, but after some discussion we decided to keep it simple.
As you can imagine, I had a great delight in hand stitching the binding on this quilt. The label was also hand stitched to the reverse. It's such a privilege to get a glimpse of the special relationships between the giver and receiver.
Once the binding and label was attached, the quilt was washed. It was baited breath time even though I'd tested some photos earlier. Once dried, it has it's 'proper' quilt look. I only had it for a short time and got great pleasure from it. I hope it will be part of many more happy memories.
October 1st was a special day for at least one couple and I had the privilege of being asked to make a quilt to mark the day. You did get to see snippets at the time, but not enough to know what the quilt was like. Now the day is passed, I can share some of the details with you.
The quilt was commissioned by a good friend of the bride. It was lovely to work with her to produce the quilt. The brief was to make a quilt that included photos and used neutral colours. As it turned out, the colours we used were right up my street.
I was sent a file with all the photos that were to be used. The first job was to change them from colour to sepia, this was so that they would all be uniform and tie in with the quilt. Fabrics were chosen and I got to make some scrim lace to add to the quilt.
All the photos were 'framed' with fabric and here, you can see us testing how the other fabric would fit with the scrim lace. The next stage was like piecing a jigsaw except, the middle pieces were going to be placed first and the rest built up around them.
You can see how it's beginning to come together. The photos have their places and the borders have been placed. Next, it was a matter of building up the piece to hold all the photos together.
Throughout the whole process, this quilt was evolving. As you see it come together you get a better idea of what will work and what won't. Modern technology was put to good use. I was able to do videos and send them back, it was so much easier to be able to talk about the options and to be able to show the quilt as it is rather than just relying on emails. It was the closest we could get to actually being in the same room to discuss what to do.
Here you can see the panels coming together and the scrim overlaid onto fabric for the sashing. Each piece coming together just added to the excitement. As you can imagine, there were lots of emails with pictures being sent. Come back tomorrow and I'll show you more.
I have had a lifelong love of crafts which started with being taught how to knit at a very young age. It didn't take long to realise that great joy and satisfaction came from making things. Even now, I get a thrill seeing something that started just as an idea, becoming a finished product, whether I make it, or teach someone else how to make it.