About Me

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My name's Alison but for reasons too long to go into I'm known as Cockney Blonde or CB for short. I've been rubber stamping for several years but now spend most of my time either knitting or crocheting. However, with the advent of a New Year I have bitten the bullet and am tackling my usually hated pastime of sewing. I've even bought 'Sewing for Dummies' to guide me on my way. I've been with my hubby Dave for 24 years and between us we have 4 kids and 5 grandkids. We also have 2 cats and a dog, the latter features as my 'photo' image. I used to be able to blog daily but these days I struggle to blog weekly. Hopefully now we are settled into our new home in the country, I can get back to a daily (well almost) update from the room I now have to share with hubby. No more personal crafting space for me!!! Thanks to all the blogs and sites I follow for all your brilliant inspiration, and thank you to everyone who finds the time to comment on my blog.

Tuesday, 25 February 2014

The Sad Story of Teddy and Tedwina

Once upon a time there were two little bears, Teddy and Tedwina. They were very much in love and did everything together.
Then one day Tedwina stuffed her face so full of all the naughty things that little bears shouldn't eat that her eyes fell out. Her artificial button eyes were not safe for little children so she went to live at the Nursing Home with Nanna.

The End.

Friday, 21 February 2014

Three Little Birdies Hanging on a Door

 I found the pattern for these cute patchwork birdies in a recent copy of 'Love Patchwork and Quilting' magazine. I couldn't upload before as they were all for presents, the final one being delivered this week. Although I have to say the recipient, who is a BFF, loved it so much that she now wants a flock!!!!

Here are close-ups of the little cuties...
In the absence of safety eyes, and knowing they were going to adults, I actually used brads for their eyes.

By the time I had reached the third one I had mastered the art of turning the teeny, weeny wing inside out so that the stitching wasn't on show. 

I found fixing the wings to the body was easiest using my hot glue gun.

There are plenty more waiting to be sewn. Brilliant for using up all those pesky little fabric scraps.

Hoping to get some gardening done this next few days as #2 Son has come to stay...


Sunday, 16 February 2014

A storm, a few days away and a Cowl

As the pictures have decided they want to appear first I'll deal with the Cowl... This is it almost finished on the large loom. You may remember I got a pack of 4 looms from Santa.
Below is a closer picture
 This particular cowl is knitted on the flat. I found this a little confusing to understand at first. The looms are circular! Anyway, you just omit 1 or more pegs and knit backwards and forwards instead of in the round.

This is it lying flat after being stitched on the seam. This cowl gave me the chance to practice knit and purl on the loom instead of the traditional wrap stitch
 And this is it scrunched up looking a bit like a cowl.

This is better though, my pal modelling it for the camera. I was under strict instructions not to get her face in the shot. Goodness knows why as she's a lovely looking lady. She was chuffed to little mint balls with it and wore it several times during our stay.

We had a lovely few days in Perthshire staying with our friends. Fortunately we left Cheshire just in time. I first realised there was a problem when friends were emailing and texting to ask if we were OK. Apparently the North West had been absolutely battered by a fierce storm which closed sections of 3 motorways and 2 bridges. Luckily it also meant we missed the 12 hour power cut. Our poor neighbours went to bed fully clothed to keep warm.

We had driven through some pretty heavy snow in the Scottish Borders but fortunately that was the only bad weather we saw.

Almost home yesterday and we saw big signs up saying that the Forest was closed due to storm damage. Then on arrival home we discovered the power cut had knocked our boiler out so the house was freezing. We eventually managed to sort the fault and warmth was resumed.

I should just say this is only a mini moan. This is nothing compared to what the people in Somerset and now the Thames Valley are going through and we consider ourselves thankful that we were not more seriously affected. I do hope that all those affected by the dreadful rains are back in their homes soon.

'til next time, x

At Last I Can Share...

 Bags, bags and more bags.... This is my very first effort. The one I uploaded the other day was my fourth...
Below is the button detail I added to each side at the base of the handles
 ...the inside pocket and magnetic clasp
I take all my finished sewing items (and problems) to show my neighbour as she used to be a seamstress. After seeing my first effort she asked for one slightly smaller....
 An internal view...
 And a 'bottom' view.
 I then decided to go smaller again as I needed a bag for work. I don't wear a uniform but need something to carry my notebook, pens, scissors etc etc..
 This time I bought a ready made handle to stitch on
 The original pattern I found didn't include a gusset so I designed this as I went along
Hope you like my efforts so far. Back in a minute with another blog post, x

Saturday, 8 February 2014

Bags of Fun

I can't remember if I told you I'd been making bags or just making stuff in general that couldn't be uploaded because of forthcoming birthdays...
 So....I made this bag for my friend's daughter's 30th birthday this week. I had seen some fab material when I was looking for something else and hadn't bought it. Then typically decided I wanted it for this bag but couldn't get it.....drat! However, saw this vibrant material instead. It had to be PINK...she is a very pink lady. Unfortunately, I'm not very experienced with material and the silk type texture gave me a few headaches.
Nevertheless, she was thrilled with her pressie. All lined and a pocket to complete. Quite chuffed with myself.

Now what's this? I hear you ask. Some boring old drawstring bag......
 Oops! Looks like something is trying to escape.....
 What can it be....
 Its teddy.  Typical me....never start off with a simple project...oh no...this is a patchwork teddy from the latest copy of 'Love Patchwork & Quilting' magazine
 Isn't he cute, with a little tail too
 Here he is from the other side
 And so to bed.....
Another pressie for a lovely lady I have been working with in anticipation of her soon to be due baby. She loved it.

Hope you've liked todays offerings. Still more to come....x

Wednesday, 5 February 2014

...and then there were scarves

 Have you seen these fab scarf kits out there? Isn't this one just beautiful. I love it now its finished but, oh my word, it was difficult to complete. You're working on 3 stitches only so how difficult can that be, but the stitches are the threads of the 'material'. Well I got about half way through and dropped the stitches......couldn't fathom out how to pick them up, so had to start again.
 It looks lovely on and reminds me of a Spanish can-can skirt. Not a project I would wish to repeat except that I'd already purchased a black and white one to knit up for my step-daughter's birthday...
 This one was a little easier. This is basically 30metres of approx 5 cm ribbon with holes punched along the top edge. You knit through the holes (I used 5). It winds around on itself which can be a little annoying but is soon completed.
I gave this one to my Son's partner, she loves it.

Plenty more things have been getting made but I still can't share them with you until they are with their intended recipients.

'til next time, x

Saturday, 1 February 2014

Some Rubber Stamping at Last

At last, I made it to a meeting of the Victoria Stampers group. I can't remember the last time I went and to actually go and finish a project...yay!
Carol Clements of StampAttack was our tutor today and it was great to play and get messy and revisit techniques that I had long forgotten.
The covers (above and last picture) were made by embossing several layers of embossing powder, first clear and then coloured (I used 3) and finally some holographic. I created the pattern by stamping into the melted eps.
 Here are the pages which I made from swiping some grey card with distress inks and then stamping over in archival black.
 Some of them have a personal meaning which is pertinent to my circumstances at the moment.
 The 'happy accident' page above was following a drop of the inkpad on the page. Lovely Lorraine who was sat next to me suggested stamping a flower head on top....voila!
 The word circled is 'personal'
 I preferred to journal my words rather than look for small word stamps
 My last page sums up me and DH
 Hope you like it, x