Category Archives: Embroidery

Some fun

I bought some tracing paper in The Cloth Shop at the weekend and while there, I spotted this fun ribbon.


I think I’ll use it with one of the awesome fat quarters I bought at Pippa Blue to make a cover for my overlocker. It was only €1.80 for a metre.

And speaking of bang for your buck, I picked up some dark brown embroidery floss and one of those plain canvas totes from Aldi. Last night, I printed off the free moustache sampler from Sublime Stitching and got started. Just in time for Movember!


My amusement, clearly, is as endless as my embroidery floss.

I stalled out on the blue top I’m making because I don’t have enough interfacing for the collar. So I dug out the tracing paper and got started on something I’ve been meaning to do for ages: revise my old skirt drafting notes. I got a straight skirt drafted and mocked up in about an hour. I love wearing skirts but I’m bored making the same pattern so I have a few simple ideas I want to draft up.

Because I got that done so easily, I dug out an old blouse I’d stopped because a detail wouldn’t come right for me. This was obviously user error because it was easy to solve and I should have a neat little navy blouse with white collar for the weekend.

Bits and bobs

Soon after my last post, I ran into some trouble with my sewing machine. In short, it ground to a halt and no amount of jigging about would fix it. I opened it up to find a cog had partially disintegrated so off to the repair shop it went. I’ve been busy with other things!

These tray cloths were started in November some time. I finished these fruits and wanted to stitch another before I sat down to hem them.

Pictures like these remind me that it won’t always be winter, even if it doesn’t feel like it.

The fruits were taken from a Sublime Stitching book and the others, from Doodle Stitching (motifs collection). I return to both of these resources time and time again. The motifs collection particularly is cute and interesting to stitch in equal measure.

I finished my hap shawl also. What a giant this turned out to be!

I ended up using the whole skein of tan and about two-thirds of brown. I’m not sure what I’ll use the rest of the brown for. I might make some felted coasters. The shawl is very scratchy and hairy, but it’s unbelievably warm. I find something very comforting about its sheepy smell when I pull it around me. The pattern is an oldie-but-a-goodie, this one, one I imagine I will make yet again in the future.

And here’s something that I acquired over the holidays.

Both are from etsy. I went searching initially for a simple sleeveless dress pattern – something I could use a few times over and embellish differently. In the course of my searching, I came upon the blouse pattern. I love pintucking in blouses and haven’t been able to find one in the shops that fits well enough to part money for. I love the short-sleeved version, too. Nice to wear when you want to wear a t-shirt but need to be a bit more dressed up. I am really looking forward to sewing all of these up!

FO: Damson and a few other bits and bobs

My silence here has been entirely due to a good thaw and my being able to get back on two wheels again. There was much rejoicing. Something tells me that this is to be short-lived, though, as we are to expect yet more snow over the weekend. Oh well! Let us make hay ride bikes while the sun shines – and knit wool while the snow falls!

Here is my Damson.

Yarn: Cashmere lace from Hedgehog Fibres in Nutmeg.

Needles: 4mm knitpicks interchangeables.

The yarn was nothing short of a treat to work with. And the colours! When I wound the skein, I thought that there was rather a lot of green in it but the overall effect is really lovely.

It is extremely warm and light so needless to say, it’s been getting a lot of wear these days. The pattern was straight forward and would probably make a good beginner’s shawl.

I finished my Heather Hoodie in double-quick time. It took a few days to dry fully from blocking but it was definitely worth it. I will talk more about it when I get some modelled shots.

The buttons I got a long time ago in Knoppenwinkel, Amsterdam. Happy memories!

There was wool on special in Lidl last week so I got a bag of brown sock wool – four 50g balls for something like €3.99! – and cast on for a pair of legwarmers.

I’m really not into the ’80s throwback fashion that’s been ongoing but they do seem like useful things. Sometimes my knees get cold on the bike and sometimes my ankles get cold when I’m sitting in the evening.

Are you noticing a trend with the brown? I can’t stop myself. I have officially fallen in love. I even acquired some yummy Cushendale DK wool in this fabulous peaty colour to make a cardigan.

I have been memorising a Prokofiev sonata the last few days and have found it hard work on my hands. I have begun to realise the importance of appropriate rest so I took up some embroidery. More handkerchiefs!

Current events

Things are beginning to even out a bit around here. I have some more days work lined up before Christmas but nothing crazy or very time-consuming so I am getting back to into my usual routine. Unfortunately, my stint of work on Footloose the other week aggravated some underlying tendonitis I am prone to in my left arm so I had to give the knitting a rest for a while. I did some sewing instead.

When I was in Galway for Tom Loves a Lord, the one-man play I played for, I had a little spare time to check out Pippa Blue (formerly Yarn). They have fantastic fabrics and patterns listed on their website and I wanted to see them in person. Unluckily for me, it was the same weekend as the Knitting & Stitching show so it was all out of town. Not to be deterred, I decided to have a look in Hickey’s instead and came up trumps with the Anna tunic pattern. It seems that the Hickey’s chain has now started carrying Amy Butler’s fabric and pattern line.

I had a few days at home shortly after that. Since this is my very first dress pattern, I decided to mock it up using some old curtain fabric. It was suitably ugly but I learned a lot from making a rough example first. There were techniques such as making button loops and sewing gathers that I had never done before. Back in Dublin, I picked up some gorgeous navy herringbone wool/cashmere in Murphy Sheehy’s and slowly, slowly made my way through the pattern.

I am just waiting on some buttons now! I got it all hemmed last night. Let me tell you – all that finishing where you attach the lining and do the hems, that really sucks up time. I will write more about my experience with the pattern and sewing my first dress when I get some modelled shots.

Whilst hunting in a drawer for something or other, I came across some lovely fat quarters I’ve been saving for nothing in particular. I decided to dig out my embroidery box and make up some hankies. It is the weather for it, after all!

The pattern is from a Sublime Stitching kit I’ve had for a few years now. All I did was cut out a 20cm square of fat quarter and of the white. I embroidered the white and then sewed them together, right sides together, leaving a little gap on one side to turn it right side out. To finish, I hand-sewed the gap shut and gave them an iron. I made two in an evening. I just find there is something so nice about pulling one out at a traffic light to blow my nose. I don’t know why. I will definitely be making more of these.

It’s Knit in Public Day!

World Wide Knit in Public Day, to be exact! How exciting!

The Dublin city centre event is kicking off at 11am on the balcony beside the lift in the Powerscourt Centre, right beside This is Knit. People are welcome to come and knit, crochet, embroider, cross-stitch, spin… whatever they like…. until 2pm. After that, I think the plan is, weather permitting, to move on to the band stand in Stephen’s Green.

I am filling in in the shop for Lisa and Jacqui because they’re at TNNA in Ohio this weekend (big exciting trade show for retailers). So if you’re in the neighbourhood, drop in and say hi!