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Fabric Houses

I was in Bath this weekend for my friend Helen’s Hen do. It was a crafty affair with a jewellery making session at The Makery followed by a little shopping.

First in the patchwork shop I picked up a half meter piece of this great house fabric. It’s going to become either a bag, a cushion or both. I love the colours.


And then a little jaunt to Wool where I found this beautiful alpaca silk.


Second sock is still coming along. I’ve turned the heel now and can’t wait to finish it ūüôā



Look what came in the post…

…from France yesterday.


It’s the Robe Reglisse dress pattern from Deer And Doe. I’ve never used one of their patterns before but the design is similar to a lot of the dresses I wear so if it works out it’ll get a lot of use.

It’s been quite a while since I’ve sewn anything. Like everyone else I go through phases with crafts and haven’t been feeling a great deal of sewing energy recently. But hopefully it’ll rekindle in the next couple of months.

Knit All the Things…ish

Remember Jabba?


Jabba on his couch...

Jabba on his couch…

Here he is installed on Eric’s sofa. He takes most of it up!

I had all of these grand plans for the Christmas break. I was going to knit all the things and read and watch all the things, too. Of course the reality is that I was only able to knit, read and watch some things. I do seem to go in phases of knitting certain accessories. Berets have been a favourite recently but cowls are my current obsession.

Burnished Leaves Cowl

Burnished Leaves Cowl


I bought this Mini Mochi yarn in shade 102 a couple of years or so ago from The Sock Yarn Shop.¬†I’d had various ideas for it but I finally settled on the Burnished Leaves Cowl by Chrissy Prange. Somehow I managed to accidentally skip the several rows of garter stitch at the beginning, I plan to pick up stitches after I finish and add them then. A little of this yarn appears to go a long way. I think it’ll take under one 50g ball to finish this so I hope to make some coordinating finger less mitts to g with it.

This began life as a cowl inspired by one I’d seen on Ravelry. The original didn’t have details of the pattern so I made my own.

Looks like rib but it isn't...

Looks like rib but it isn’t…

It was from some Rico Designs Creative Poems yarn that I’d bought in a sale. But as I knit, although I loved the pattern and the softness of the yarn, I didn’t love the colours. They seemed too dark for me, they were more manly colours really. So I asked Eric if he’d like it instead but as a scarf, not a cowl. I’ve knit two balls but I think it could do with being a fraction longer so it’s currently on a stitch holder while I see if I can find another skein in the store. One more would do it. I’ll post the pattern here soon.

Charlie and Billie are well but I came home on Saturday to a catastrophe. They’d broken my kettle! They knocked it off the counter top onto the hard kitchen floor tiles. It didn’t enjoy its encounter with the floor and refused to work any more. I’d hoped I’d be able to fix it but it was too far gone. Fortunately I picked up a cheaper kettle in the Argos sale. It’s not as good as my lovely Bosch one which could heat water to several temperatures for different tea types, but it’s a kettle and it helps make tea and tea is an essential in my house.

I’ve been knitting for thirteen years now but in recent years I’ve been quite curious about crochet. But aside from being able to badly make a chain for a temporary cast on when knitting socks, I’ve never been able to fully get to grips with it. I tried learning last year at a crochet club meeting at St Fagans and that didn’t work out well. It wasn’t the fault of the tutor, just that I couldn’t seem to grasp it. Learning a new skill can be harder than it looks and I really struggled. Holding the yarn was one of the hardest things, I’m so used to holding in a certain way for knitting that t feels unnatural to hold it any other way. But I’ve been falling in love with Attic 24… Lucy makes lovely things and she has such a fantastic sense of colour.¬† If you’ve never seen her blog before go and check it out right now.

I went to a crochet workshop on Saturday and it was still a bit of a struggle for me but I understand more about the stitches now. My work’s quite messy but then I remember my first project when I returned to knitting in 2001. It was a scarf and I picked up so many stitches knitting it that it looked more like a weird sleeve at the end of it! I couldn’t even frog it as I split the yarn or something.

Granny Squares in progress

I started the yellow Granny square during the workshop and I began the multicoloured one yesterday. I don’t think I’ve joined the colours properly and my tension is awful but hopefully if I do enough of it eventually it’ll begin to click!¬†I’m going to try and persevere and do a bit of crochet every day.





How I squished Jabba the Hutt under my sewing machine…

…and he only clogged the feed dogs once!

If you own Bonnie Burton’s “Star Wars Craft Book” then you’ll be familiar with the Jabba the Hutt Body Pillow. A few months ago I showed the book to my boyfriend and he loved the Jabba pattern so I said I’d make it for him for Christmas.

My Jabba’s made from two throws (bed spreads) and five and half bed pillows.

I followed the instructions for wrapping the pillows with the green throw and deciding on the best layout to make his sluggy shape.

2013-12-15 18.12.30

Please ignore the mess on my craft room floor!

In the book he’s hand sewn but I was determined to machine sew Jabba as much as physically possible. I rounded off the end off the head part of the throw.

2013-12-15 18.51.25


Next I cut out the sluggy head and stomach shape from the second, beige, throw. I had hoped to overcast the edge of this under my machine but this is where the fabric got stuck in the feed dogs of the sewing machine. So, plan b was to turn the edges of the fabric under twice and machine hem it. I made paper patterns for his facial features and it was a lot easier cutting them out with the patterns than going free hand.

Jabba's face, stomach and eyelids!

Jabba’s face, stomach and eyelids!

The book calls for you to hand sew his face-stomach first and then add his features but I sewed his features to the stomach first for the sake of convenience.

Jabba's features pinned before sewing

Jabba’s features pinned before sewing


As you’ll see my Jabba looks quite a happy Jabba because I didn’t crook his mouth that much.

In the end, the only parts of him that were hand sewn were his facial features. However the machine sewing did mean that I had to squeeze the pillow filled cover under my sewing machine.

Sewing the pillows, all 5 of them, into the cover

Sewing the pillows, all 5 of them, into the cover


You may question my sanity here because it was pretty tricky and very awkward to do! When I was halfway through the sewing I had to balance some of the pillow filled case over the top of my iMac, it’s just behind my sewing machine, in order to spread the weight and awkwardness! It was worth it though as I really dislike sewing by hand.

I split open a sixth bed pillow and used half of the filling inside to stuff his tail. I then finished the sewing and sealed off the end of the throw.

Finished Jabba!

Finished Jabba!

I had hoped to make his cover removable and therefore machine-washable, the felt I used for his face can be machine washed at 30 degrees, but I ran out of time. It might be possible at a later date to undo the main back seam and insert a zip but I would have to remove, or seal inside, the loose tail stuffing.

I think he took about a day in total to make but I’m really pleased with how he turned out! He’s really comfy in case you’re wondering what it’s like to squish five and half bed pillows into a sluggy shape.

He’s currently chilling out on my daybed before he’s moved in the new year to my boyfriend’s place. I have yet to decide if I may make another Jabba for me!

Eleven Years Ago Today…

I blogged for the very first time.

It’s still rather strange to think of old Space Craft is. Scifiville is even older, I bought the domain back in June 2000.


So I’ve made some new aquistions


I picked this up in my local Aldi for about £2.50 I think.



It contains this assortment of various sewing thingies


Perfect if you’re like me and have to have more than three of everything. ūüôā

I’ve had the same pair of fabric scissors for thirteen years and unfortunately they had an untimely death recently. But really, I probably should have replaced them earlier.

I bought these at the same time as the sewing tin and I have no idea how good they’ll be.



I’m visiting Helen this weekend and as well looking forward to seeing her my thoughts are also turning to which knitting project I’ll check with me. I’ll probably elect for something fairly simple and mindless. But the dilemma is whether is to start something new or take an existing project. I’ve not yet decided…




How much sewing could you do in 30 minutes?

The first post of 2013 and I’m looking ahead to taking part in Cake Pattern’s Tiramisu 30 Minutes Sewalong. It starts tomorrow ūüôā




I seem to start a lot of dress patterns and then become busy or distracted by something else but the sewalong is perfect as setting aside thirty minutes a day for it is so doable.¬† Everything’s done through Pinterest, there’s an enormous group of people all making it and what’s even better is that Steph, the creator is at hand to answer any questions that you might have.¬† So it’s going to be a very supportive environment in which to make the dress.

All I have to do now is locate the fabric I mean to use for the dress. It’s in my craft room somewhere… Oh, I’m also in the middle of preparations before I start to decorate my bedroom – it’ll be brilliant white and apple green. There’s a few layers of wallpaper to remove first but it’s coming along.

New Blog – Lucky Cats

I went to a craft supplies fair on Saturday with my friends Karen and Hannah. Sadly there were no stalls selling yarn but plenty were selling beads and I found a couple with fabric.


The red is what feels like a poly cotton mix. It was £3 a meter and I picked up 3m for a dress.

You can also see in this photo that I got a concealed zip for 50p, 3 meters of polka dot ribbon for ¬£1, some green glass crystals for ¬£2.50 which will make a bracelet and possibly some earrings,¬†ballerina¬†charms to make into stitch markers, some little “hand made” charms to add to things that I make and two little lucky cat beads.


A close up of the ribbon and ballerina. I don’t tend to be¬†attracted¬†to¬†ballerina¬†things really but they were quite big charms and looked like they’d make some sturdy stitch markers.


Bit of a blurred close-up of the¬†maneki neko, lucky cat, beads. They’re going to became a very happy pair of earrings. I just adore¬†maneki neko and have a small¬†collection¬†of them in my house.


And this is rather over exposed close up of the colour work in She’s Electric. It’s going rather slowly but steadily as I only ever seem to knit one or two rows an evening. I’d like to finish it this month but although I love the colour it doesn’t seem to inspire me. Too much startitus I think!

Making Monday – Earrings and The Spice Boys

The weather has been far too hot for much making but I’ve made some progress on my Lotus Tunic dress


Lotus Tunic front folded

That’s the front view and it looks a bit strange because I’ve had to fold the middle panel a little to take the picture.¬†¬†I still have to cut, sew and attach the lining. Then attach the sleeves and hem.

I organised a bit of making last week by having my friends Karen and Hannah over for a crafty evening. I let them loose on my bead collection and they each made a pair of earrings.


Hannah’s zuni bear earrings


Hannah fell for the turquoise loveliness of my zuni bears while Karen was enchanted by some of my Czech glass beads.

Karen’s double heart drop earrings

I think we’ll be doing this again but maybe it’ll be another craft next time. Sewing maybe?

With the weather veering between tropical showers and¬†sweltering¬†heat I’ve barely touched my garden but I have got some seedlings.

The Spice Boys

As you can see the seedlings are different colours. This seed mixture is called The Spice Boys mix and it took me far longer to get that joke than it should have!

I love basil but I never have any success growing it. The last time I tried slugs munched their way¬†through it all. But my love of fresh pesto keeps me persevering.¬† This time I’m keeping the seedlings on the kitchen window sill. They still face the threat of white fly but I’m hoping that my venus fly traps and other carnivorous plant will help fend that off. I can but hope!

Making Monday – Acquisitions

My Lotus tunic is still in progress. The darts are done and the zip is in so¬†that’s¬†the back of the tunic finished. I intended to sew the front during the Olympics Closing Ceremony but found myself watching rather than sewing. I did join one of the side fronts but I don’t think I’ve sewn the curve very well so it’s now waiting for the seam ripper.

I met up with the lovely Magpie Mimi today for a spot of fabric shopping,  tea drinking and cake eating. We succeeded on all fronts.

In John Lewis I gave in and bought 2 metres of this chiffon which was reduced to half price at £6 a metre.

Navy random dots

The roll was 145cm wide so I have ¬†lot of fabric towards a future project. I’ve been meaning to buy some chiffon for ages as so many of my fave store bought dresses are made from it. I am a little intimidated by the prospect of sewing it – I see a lot of french seams in my future – but¬†hopefully¬†it won’t be too bad.


Magpie Mimi gave me this beautiful cross stitch cherry button that she’d made.

Cherry button

she knows me well ūüôā


I’d been meaning to buy one of her bird rings for ages

Bluebird ring

I’m also having a pair of bird earrings made to match ūüôā Her etsy shop is here if you’d like to check out her fab stuff. There are better photos on her site. I was in a rush tonight so mine are’t great!

Making Monday – Lotus Tunic

I finally got around to cutting out my fabric for the Amy Butler lotus tunic on Saturday night. I’d meant to do it earlier in the day but I decided that my craft room needed a little reorganising. Ok, it was partly procrastination but it was necessary.

I also wanted to be able to watch streaming tv and DVDs on my iMac while I worked. This required a lot of fumbling around with the position of my router downstairs because my wifi doesn’t stretch to the craft room. I now have a weak signal in there but it’s not enough to watch iPlayer. So I’m probably going to have to extend the network which is annoying as it means buying more kit.

Anyway, after all that I didn’t sew a stitch until tonight. I’m currently working on the darts on the back panels. The pattern instructions are great but I still hate sewing darts.


Darts pinned in place before sewing