Thursday, 23 July 2009

Infidelity

Readers of a nervous disposition may wish to look away now. I have a confession to make. I have been unfaithful. I have been playing away. And you know what? It was great and I'm planning to do it again.

Thanks to the lovely people at the Make Lounge in Islington, I have caught the embroidery bug. I've had a go before but have found a lot of the designs and transfers just a little bit mumsy although I can appreciate the retro chic of a crinoline lady table cloth like anyone else when its under a heaving table of French fancies and fairy cakes

Thanks to a whole new set of up to date transfers and ideas look what I am making - Rock and Roll tea towel -it's so cool it's hot!


In all seriousness it was a great class with good technical instruction. I can now do a French knot which I understand is viewed by embroiderers in the same way we knitters often view Kitchener stitch - with the greatest of suspicion...
Here's a closeup on my work where you can see the rather wobbly efforts of the first timer.I'm definitely going to keep going as I find it really satisfying but it will probably remain a 'bit on the side'. But don't stand too close you might find yourself embellished!

Not content with my dalliance with embroidery, on Monday I took my courage in both hands and, reassured by the relaxed approach of the Make Lounge (they serve wine for the super anxious) I decided to tackle my long held suspicion of the sewing machine, despite the fact that I have one upstairs gathering dust and signed up for one of their beginners' sewing classes. Again, with expert and very friendly instruction I managed to thread my sewing machine, cut out pattern pieces without drawing blood (Which is more than I managed to do on the embroidery course) and make this perfectly serviceable and rather stylish bag.
It's great to be able to use really good materials right from the start and to be filled with enough confidence that you aren't going to ruin them.
Look at that piece of machining (almost) perfectly straight.
I feel that this is going to be a practical and useful skill and plan to take some more advanced classes in the future. I really enjoyed both classes and whilst I can't imagine abandoning my knitting and spinning I will keep up both activities and try to improve my skills.
I know that this may have come as a bit of a shock to some of you so before you all knock me off your blog reader lists let me just tell you that I am down at Camp Bestival for the next three days helping out in the Iknit Knitting tent in the Magic Meadow. If you're at the festival please come by and say hello.
And if you see me struggling to put my tent up, please take pity on me....

13 comments:

Nicola said...

I ams o jealous you are off to bestival and to knitr :( am off to sulk

theyarnyard said...

Speaking as a reformed quilter who sewed her way through poverty stricken studentdom on the basis that I had to do it properly otherwise I'd wasted the fabric and STILL couldn't afford decent clothes.... welcome to the world of the sharp needle and the skinny thread.

Anonymous said...

I have found a couple of bag patterns which are really easy and make good looking bags.

Anonymous said...

The last comment was me, paraknit. Not sure how to add my name !

Suse-the-slow-knitta said...

it's all fibre fun in one way or another!
I could do with a swwing class myself to take away my fear of getting my head trapped under the foot!

Dee Beale said...

From one who can't sew for toffee... this sounds great, especially the wine bit.

Anni said...

Excellent work. I used to like cross stitch but can't do it now due to neck pain. I can't sew at all. Did a beginners evenign class but it made no difference at all so I'm very impressed with your bag. It's a useful skill to have.

Snailhannah said...

You can spin your own threads/silks for the embroidery...

LittleBerry said...

welcome to the4 dark side of embroidery... you'll be signing up for C&G CReative Embroidery before you know it ;o)

Love the bag....

kathryn said...

Your bag is great.

And I love the way sewing can complement knitting - there are lots of easy and effective bag patterns that make super knitting bags. And something that takes a day goes really well with the slower crafts. Hurrah for variety!!

tea and cake said...

Sit down. You are not gonna believe this. I used my sewing machine on a knitted cardi, just this morning!
So, you can combine all of these new skills, with the ones you already have. Well done, by the way the embroidery and sewing look brilliant!

Mise said...

That drum embroidery would look utterly stunning on the front of a classy white t-shirt.

Linda said...

I haven't tried hoop embroidery! That looks greata nd its nice to see a more modern picture. have fun at the festival.