Keen to use every scrap of Emma Bridgewater fabric I had. (All NEW fabrics here!) I've been making some cute little purses. Let me know if you'd like one: sizes and prices below the pics!
UPDATE: Pink version now SOLD
With the Emma Bridgewater fabric being oh so popular I was on a mission to find some more. Frustratingly it was very difficult to find and the smallest pieces were going for mega-bucks!
Then I chanced on a cushion cover that had used a whole width of the fabric, so a massive cushion and lots of fabric for me to re-purpose. (Who needs another cushion when you can have a unique Tansy Tote?) I checked with the seller that it was in good order and purchased it at a fair price. I was a little caught out as there were some marks along the bottom I couldn't wash out, but I cut them off and there was still plenty left to make two Tansy totes.
With a soft wadding and plastic reinforced base to give some substance, leather handles and lovely purple or pink spotted cotton lining, they were great fun to make!
The pink version has an additional feature of the design details down the side and shows no obvious signs of its previous incarnation as a cushion cover.
Please note that the purple version has some stitching lines from it’s previous incarnation as a cushion, (e.g. see pic , running from cats ear upwards, which also extends down the side to the base). It doesn't spoil the overall look of the bag and if that doesn’t bother you and you’d like to add one to your collection or tick someone off your gift list, please message me below for more pics or to purchase:
👛£60 (inc UK p+p) 👛
Click on pics to see whole picture.
With the pandemic came...retirement! I finally decided that to keep my sanity, one less stress might help! I'll miss my work colleagues, helping them problem solve and knowing what they're up to in their stalwart and very brave efforts to meet the challenges the NHS now faces, but I won't miss getting up early, sitting staring at a screen and office politics!
AND of course I now have more time for my garden and making all you lovelies out there the bags you ask for!
Another colleague made the same decision, at the same time and our team, unable to give us the usual sort of send off with 40+ people wanting to attend a farewell party, came up trumps with a lovely tea, huge bouquets, bunting and balloons and lovely gifts which they brought to my back garden! So we had just a small gathering to keep within the guidelines, but it was a very lovely afternoon, all the same! Here are a few pics to show you how it was! (Click on a pic to enlarge.)
The Emma Bridgewater fabric has been so popular! I've now made four 'Rosa' bags and a little backpack and have just a shelf and a half of the 'dresser' fabric left! Also lots of little bits and pieces, which will make lovely little 'Zinnia' zipped top purses. So keep your eye on my Instagram account where they will gradually be revealed!
Sourcing more of the elusive discontinued fabric has taken up quite a bit of time-there's none to be found unless you can pay mega-bucks to secure it, but I have picked up a cushion cover which I'm hoping will arrive in good condition. I felt quite smug as no other Emma Bridgewater fans had spotted it, so it came at a reasonable price and it will make a lovely bag!
As one who tends to make things up as I go along, I was rather intrigued to try out this genuinely vintage Vogue pattern from 1952. I chose a beautiful barkcloth for the outer and a sumptuous 'Daisy Chain' Pat Albeck print. Mixing up the decades a bit but a lovely combination for a retro bag, don't you think?
I must say it was a bit fiddly to make as the flap was integral to the back piece. I think I might try tweaking the pattern for next time, as I like the general shape. I'll make it with a separate flap that I attach with its lining already in place as I do with my "Marigold" bag. Not so much in Vogue as in progress, I'd say! Come back for an update...
Apologies for the seeming silence! I have no excuse and I won't mention the unmentionable other than to say I have had a little more time in the Sewing Room recently! And after posting one "Rosa" tote made from an Emma Bridgewater fabric, called 'Dresser' on social media I had orders for two more and another who will give her husband a nudge for her birthday!
The first was made in the duck egg green colourway and I literally had only one shelf width to play with, so I married it up with a jolly stripe and pink handles, which worked really well. I've also taken to adding a zipped top for better security. My early "Rosa's" were open topped.
Having already accepted a commission for another bag I then discovered that the fabric had been discontinued! I finally found it in a yellow colourway and luckily the lovely client preferred this to the original. When I offered a selection of fabrics for the lining she chose a yellow and blue chicken design, which was a no-brainer really as she hires out egg hatching incubators to schools. It was a truly fun bag to make!
The third will also have the chicken theme and will eventually find its way to Australia! The young lady apparently likes yellow, turquoise and chickens, so I think this will fit the bill!
(Bill? Chicken? Get it? Oh ok!)
I spied an amazing book of craft card in a superb variety of colours that I had to buy from Lidl (as you do!) I knew exactly what I was going to do with it.
I rarely throw any of the by-products from my sewing away. Wadding goes to a toy maker, tiny fabric scraps go into a bag for school collage. Small useful offcuts go into my scrap box for purse linings or badges or in this case Christmas cards!
Great fun was had over a couple of evenings putting them together. Luckily I had a clear drying Pritt all-purpose glue, which when sparingly spread didn’t soak through and when dry worked like cement!
I soon realised that a smaller card was aesthetically more pleasing. The fabric prints lent themselves to a diminutive look. So just a quarter of a sheet of card was used on each one. Once I'd bought envelopes they cost about 20p per card, which I don’t think, is too bad, for something a bit different, even if, try as I might, I can't even think of a tenuous link between fabric cards and the Christmas message can you? Answers on a postcard or a Christmas card if you like!
And then I made some sets of badges as gifts and mounted those onto strips of fabric stuck to a luggage label quite a few of which were given to me from an office clearout for nuppence! Yay!
Needless to say I've left publishing this post until this week so as not to show them before they're sent out!
I love selecting just the right bits and pieces that go to make up a bag! With this little knitted "Nigella", I had four choices for the handles. Which one would you have chosen? The verdict from Facebook and Instagram was for the coffee leather handles. I finally went for the bright red leather handles to pick out the red fleck in the wool.
The last pic shows the bag yet to have its lining added, but with handles sewn in place. These have a piece of fabric stitched behind each fob for extra strength.
A subtle layer of wadding adds to the already oh-so-soft woolly loveliness and a vibrant lining with two open and one zipped pocket completes the interior, and helps to shape the exterior. It fastens with a magnetic snap.
I made hay while the sun shone during the warmer months. Once again I’m cosied up in the sewing room and can fill you in on what I‘ve been up to.
Here’s a fascinating cotton barkcloth that I was really pleased to acquire from an extensive vintage collection. The selvedge states that it is a ‘Sunlover ‘ fabric, but no other name apart from that and the seller’s label reports it to be from the fifties. The iconic design is typical of that decade with its sleek pottery lines and stylised plantlife reminiscent of Terence Conran’s design for Midwinter Potteries. It might be a Mary White textile design, but I don’t really know.
I’ve seen the same design against a bottle green and also with a black background with red and yellow, both of which work well. I love this design so much I have even framed a piece for the wall of my guest bedroom!
The remaining piece was to become a Bouquet (bucket) bag with an adjustable cross-body or shoulder strap. When I laid the fabric out on the cutting table, I found that there was some degree of foxing (little brown marks usually caused by moisture during storage) on some of the pattern. Mind you, it was 60+ years old, and had survived remarkably well! However, I couldn’t avoid it as I didn’t have enough fabric to play with. I had just enough for one side of the bag.
I contacted the seller on the slim off chance she had some more and she said she’d have to search through her stash. She finally came back to me offering a small piece that was just the right length for the other side of the bag, but a little narrow. I snapped it up, knowing I would be able to adjust the bag proportions a bit to compensate.
I already had a golden yellow and white fabric to accent and frame the design and some jolly gridded yellow cotton for the lining. Adding a yellow beaded zip pull and a navy leather strap completed the picture. Talking of the picture-you can just see my reflection in the window! Doh!
A bit of vintage chic with a name to conjure up warmer days, don’t you think?
And a real one-off!
It measures approximately 13 inches across the top and 12 inches tall, so a good sized bag for days out or as a work bag.
The leather strap can be adjusted from about 24 inches to 48 inches.
£60 with free postage in UK.
I can send anywhere tho’, so please contact me here for a postal quote to where you live!
Towards the end of May, I had contact via my Instagram account from Val, who lives in Canada. She was going to be coming to the UK for the month of June for a creative writing course and to enjoy the Suffolk and Norfolk countryside. She wondered if I could make a little purse as a wedding gift for a young friend she would be meeting up with during her time here. She specified that it should be made with a forget-me-not fabric as a reminder of the young lady's grandmother who loved these little blue flowers.
I was delighted at the prospect of creating such a poignant, thoughtful gift and agreed straight away!
She chose the Clover Clutch shape from my website and I started sourcing some suitable fabrics, as time was at a premium.
I found three fabrics: two Liberty cottons, from the "Cottage Garden" range, which were readily available and another beautiful fabric with oversized flowers, that I would need to have printed specially by Spoonflower, a US supplier of custom printed fabrics. Guess which one she chose? Yep! that one! I then had a couple of nail-biting weeks waiting for the fabric to arrive from Spoonflower's German distributor, hoping against hope that it would arrive in time for me to make the bag and post it off in time for the day towards the end of June that Val was meeting her friend. Time ticked by...
Fortunately it did and I did! And I posted it to her AirBnB address in Norfolk the week before it was needed! I sent an extra piece of fabric to attach to a horseshoe for the wedding day and a couple of little badges as a memento for Val. Phew! She was very pleased with it and reported that her friend really liked it. Another satisfied customer. Job done.
Hello, I'm Ruth Overton. My nickname as a child was 'Ruthie Toots' which is how the name