Twitchy Fingers

It may seem that Miss M gets the lion’s share of the handmade items, but this is not true, she just enjoys the whole process of modelling more than Miss E. Also, Miss E’s new shorts are still waiting for elastic to hold them up.

While we wait for the elastic we can look at Miss M’s new dress, another geranium dress to add to her collection, this time made from a vintage skirt donated to me by my Mum.

Geranium dress

Geranium dress


Vintage fabric

Vintage fabric



For kids that keep growing


Indigo Dyed Lazy Days Skirt

Indigo Dyed Lazy Days Skirt

I am so glad to have children that love to have clothes made for them, though I realise this will not last forever. So while they enjoy and wear them, I cannot help but make them more. Above is an Oliver + S Lazy Days Skirt, my favourite easy pattern for my skirt loving girls. The fabric is some that I dyed at home using indigo dye.

Indigo Dyed Fabric

Indigo Dyed Fabric

Lazy Days Skirt in action

Lazy Days Skirt in action


Miss M got a new shirt, another Oliver and S pattern, this time the Music Class Blouse. I normally avoid anything with buttonholes, but my new sewing machine has an easy buttonhole program and I will never be afraid of buttonholes ever again.

Music Class Blouse

Music Class Blouse

Music Class Blouse

Music Class Blouse

The fabric is a fine white gauze with Swiss dots and the buttons are vintage. The pink tinge is from the vest Miss M is wearing underneath – because she liked it. Miss M must have been happy with the shirt because she insisted on wearing it before I had a chance to remove all the blue pattern markings.

Sew and sew

This is a bit of catch up of some the sewing I have been doing over the past couple of months.

I had the Merchant and Mills Landgate jacket pattern and enough black British Millerain waxed fabric to make 2 jackets since last summer, but it was the impending Christmas gift season that spurred me on to get started. Dave was the first to get a complete jacket.


The lovely Dave and the lovely Maya in matching beards.

Dave has the version with the side pockets. A couple of weeks ago I finally got around to making my own jacket and decided to go for the patch pocket and to add a lining to the jacket. Instructions for a lining are not included in the pattern, so it was all a bit of an experiment. I cut out all the pieces of the pattern in the waxed cotton and all but the hood facing, drawstring band and pockets in the lining fabric. The lining was stitched together in the same method as the outer and the two were joined together at the topstitching stage. I was very glad to have already had the practice with making Dave’s jacket, otherwise I would have given up!

The Landgate Jacket with patch pockets


Here is a dodgy picture of the lining fabric.

Lining fabric

Lining fabric

The resulting jacket is warm and cosy, though I need to practice getting it off without removing all my top layers. The pattern is pretty straightforward, just follow the instructions and I liked the simple method of marking the notches.

So, what to make with my leftover pieces of waxed cotton?





For the love of dog

Nine years ago Gracie was born and I was very excited to meet her.

The dog I got and her brother.

Photo by T Moriarty

Photo by T Moriarty

With her Mummy.

Photo by T Moriarty

Photo by T Moriarty

All grown up with Macy.

Gracie & Macy

With her new Mum.


An easy life.

Rugby fans

A new friend.

Gracie & Maya

In the bluebells.

In the bluebells

Martha and Gracie on holiday.

On holiday

Evie and Gracie.

Evie and Gracie

9 Years Old! Happy Birthday Gracie!

Taming the jungle

Going on holiday in the middle of July results in returning to an overgrown jungle in the garden. The task of removing all the shoots from the tomatoes is all the more difficult as they have grown to an enormous size in the few weeks we were away. Oh there are so many of them! The lettuce has nearly all bolted and we struggle to get replacement seeds sown when we are trying to reclaim space in the overgrown raised beds to sow the seeds in. There are not enough gardening hours at this time of year.

The kale has transformed into a small tree and is intertwined with climbing beans.







An abundance


This is our garlic harvest and it has been a good one! This stuff really seems to love the polytunnel and whatever else is going on with the soil. I really should keep better notes about what we have done. I think the garlic bed had compost two years ago and legumes last year.

The poppies flowered a few weeks earlier this year, last year we missed them as we were on holiday.



The first peas


The broad beans are just starting to fatten up and the peas have given us our first small harvest. Not enough to take home and cook, but just enough to feed small people (and myself) straight from the plant. They prefer to eat their greens very fresh. Once cooked and put on a dinner plate the greens are usually rejected.



Turns out the big people are are sampling the greens in the garden too, though I would have thought it wise to correctly identify a plant prior to eating. Someone has been sampling the leaves of my bread seed poppies, thinking that they are a type of oriental green!

In the garden, 12 May


This week in the garden we built some structures: a bean teepee for the purple climbing beans and a trellis for tomatoes (which will be grown up strings). Last years support for the tomatoes struggled under the weight of the many fruits that grew, so this year Dave has tried to make it extra strong.

Wee Blaíthín

By the banks of the Bann

I find I don’t have quite as much time to knit these days, but I usually have something on the go. I finished this Blaíthín cardigan for Martha in February and she has got good wear out of it. Sadly, the ceramic buttons that I used were not up to the job, several of them broke and have been replaced with plastic buttons.


At the start of the year a had a bit of a sewing frenzy. I hope to share some of the items I made soon, but until then I leave you with this picture.



New Year, New Socks - 1/3662/3663/3664/3665/3666/366

366, a set on Flickr.

A photo a day from 2012. Some really terrible pictures and lots that I love. It has been hard work, especially after I returned to work in October – it is hard to find something to photograph when you spend all your daylight hours in a boring office.

Next year I will lessen the pressure and do a 52 weeks project.