Saturday, 9 November 2013

Im officially a Fandom In Stitches Designer! Sqeeee

For those of you who follow me on facebook and twitter this will not be news because Ive been soo super excited about it all day... :)

Today I was officially published on Fandom In Stitches with my first ever PDF Paper Piece Pattern!!!!! This is incredibly exciting for me bcos I have been a HUGE fan of FandomInStitches ever since I found them in Jan 2013. 

Click this stinky linky !

For some bizarre unknown reason in the UK Paper Piecing as a technique is like a massive secret in terms of all things quilty and crafty... which is mental bcos its AWESOME! Its also known as Foundation Piecing and is very very different to English Paper Piecing which is to do with hexis etc.

Having been introduced to it I very quickly fell in love with the technique, and Im super greatful to the Fandom In Stitches designers bcos they share their patterns for Free! Ive sewn some incredible patterns from the site! Heres my Flickr Paper Pieced pics and have a gander at the Fandom Flickr Group! Seriously AWESOME right....!

So whats Paper Piecing??? 
Well basically speaking its a technique which involves sewing pieces of fabric onto paper... its great fun and it looks complicated but I promise you its SOOOOPER easy, esp as its all straight lines!

I learned how to do it from YouTube. This video was the one I used but you can google Paper Piecing or Foundation Piecing to find the video that makes the most sense to you :)
Karen Johnson, of Connecting Threads, teaches you the most common version of Foundation Piecing - usually known as Paper Piecing. Achieve perfect points on tiny blocks with just a few easy tips.

Tools required
Paper and a printer - bog std printer paper works fine!
Rotary Cutter 
Self Healing Cutting Mat
Card - and old greeting card is perfect
Ruler - add a quarter rulers are expensive here in the uk I just use a normal school plastic ruler!
Quilting Ruler - is very useful for trimming seam allowances bfor you piece your crazy jigsaw at the end 

So you want to know what I mean by sewing onto Paper?  

 This is what my Ice King Pattern looks like when its printed out and cut ready to go :) And very basically you sew the fabric onto the paper folding it out as you go following the numbered pieces :) Its fantastically fun and the best bit is you dont have to precut any of the pieces :) 

 So heres some of the pieces as I went along... You can see Ice Kings features starting to take shape :) The paper is on the back of the fabric :)
 And this is the stage of sewing where all of your peices are sewn... I call it the crazy jigsaw stage :)
 Then you start to sew the pieces together...
And you end up with TA DA!
Lets all sing the Princess song in celebration :)

Watch this space for more Patterns to come! Princess Bubblegum will be my next pattern :) Shes all tested and ready :) Id love to know what else you would like to see :)

Tuesday, 5 November 2013

How do I organise my Fabric Stash?

I have an obsession... ok ok OBSESSION... I love fabric.... I mean LOVE fabric...

I own a large amount of fabric. Its come from all sorts of places, I have fabric from lovely friends who have sent me it as gifts, I have fabric from Hawaii, fabric from the USA and of course from the uk. I buy fabric online and in stores... I buy from facebook destash groups, I buy from charity shops and bootsales... 

My main favorites are novelty fabrics. Im a sucker for fabrics I know are no longer in print, or for things that I know are hard to get hold of. The best thing about fabric is that it pretty much holds its value, so I know that my stash is an investment and Im always mega careful about only buying things I can afford and at the best price I can possibly find.

The issue with having a large stash is that it takes up quite a bit of space and when you own a lot of fabric sometimes you forget exactly what you own and where it is....At the start of 2013 I set myself a challenge to be organised in my stashing and Im proud to say that Ive pretty much stayed on top of that! 

So how did I organise my stash 

1. I scanned every piece of fabric I owned above a4 size like this....

The benefit of this is that I know exactly what fabric I have in stock. I can see the size of the print on the fabric and also I can see what goes with what. I then upload all the pictures onto my facebook page into this album Fabric Stash Album

2. I reorganised my storage solutions... I have a small craft space and now that I am paper peicing a lot I need a cutting space next to my desk so the top of my chest of drawers needed to be clear. 
This is what my drawers did look like... semi organised yes but not perfect.
My top drawer was like this again semi organised but not perfect....

I found these awesome plastic storage trays 
They were from Home Bargains in the uk 3 in a pack for 99p BARGAIN! So I set about organising my fabric, I made a card template to fold the fabric uniformly and I categorised as I went. It took time but it was well worth it.

 Now my smaller pieces are a lot more portable :) They are categorised so I know where things are :)

Its sooo pretty too almost like having my own fabric shop and the plastic boxes fit into my draws perfectly! Being able to pull out a whole category is sooo useful! Bonus!
 And here it is in my drawer looks soooo much better right!!!

3. I made my own bolts for my larger pieces of fabric....
Approx 4inch x 9inch and 6inch x 9inch
  Not the sexiest pic ever hey LOL.. cardboard :) I was really lucky and picked up a load of precuts from my local scrapstore :) I totally love my scrapstore!!! You can make your own bolts to any size you like... these fit beautifully into my deep bottom drawer :)
 I started making bolts with these yummy Riley Blake halloween fabrics :) I loved how well they worked :)
 How awesome is this monkey fabric :) I have the most amazing and awesomely lovely friends :) These monkeys were a gift from a friend!!! Love you Lacey!!!!!

Its really lovely to have such an organised stash :) I can get my hands on the things I need when I need them and of course every now and then I just open the drawers and have a droooooooool..

So here are some more bolts in my bottom drawer :) Theres some space left which is great as Im not quite done organising yet!!!

4. Scraps....
One of the things I love most about scraps is that they have already been cut... so your not taking a fresh fq and cutting out a teeny bit making it not new anymore LOL. Scraps are just that they are leftovers. I have bought some INCREDIBLE scrap bags from the fabric destash group I help to admin on Facebook.
This is what my scrap stash looked like... and it was in that deep bottom drawer

 So one day I got all of it out and organised it, these little bags are sandwich bags with a zip closure or a press closure... Handy! I sorted it all into categories so that when I need a bit of skull or VHC I can grab the bag and off I go :)

 And then I had these little pots again from the scrapstore :) So the bags go into the pots and straight onto my new shelves :) Much better!
I guess im a bit over organised... and possibly slightly anal but honestly it sooo much nicer to have an organised stash :)

I do hope you enjoyed diving into my stash with me :) 
Do pop by and say hello to me on twitter :)

Tuesday, 22 October 2013

Im back to blogging :)

Well hello there reader... and how the devil are you?

Its been a while hasnt it... hope you arent covered in cobwebs and dust :) My blog had a spring clean yesterday, I wont lie there was swearing... Somehow the spiders of the interwebs ate all my pics on both my blogs and then I couldnt for the life of me work out how to change certain things so please bear with me im rusty at this!

So why am I back blogging... ? Well theres a few reasons.

stitching not itching
pattern from fandominstitches
1. Ive just come back from a break from crafting (altho I did a lot of cross stitch) due to a mystery illness that decided to pop along and make things a bit more interesting/blistery. Im still in the process of being diagnosed but its some sort of very rare auto immune disease that affects my skin... Rare = Special so il run with special, I tend not to do things by halves LOL. (At some point Il fill you in a little more about all of that but not atm :) So anyhoo as a result of my long mystery ilness craft break I am not doing any orders this christmas which means I can sew purely for the LOVE of it. This also gives me loads of extra time to do exciting other things :)

 2. Ive been designing, actual designing from scratch. I have now been crafting for about two and a half years, and a lot of that has been dipping my toe in as many craft ponds as I could find... testing the water, finding out as much as I could about all the weird and wonderful things in the world of craft...During my toe dipping a lovely friend introduced me to Paper Peicing aka Foundation Piecing and I fell head over heals in love with it. On Sunday last week I designed my first ever block... Im hoping to make it a free download, so I need my blog revived :) More about this in a seperate post :)
R2D2 designed by kristy
3. Twitter... is another revived addiction. I have had a twitter account for a while but I rarely used it. I have got back into it in a big way in the last few weeks. On tuesday last week I joined in on a fabulous hashtag chat called #craftblogclub which is run by the lovely @LivePeachy she blogged about it here Life Is Peachy #craftblogclub blogpost and even gave me a mention bcos I am a craft book hoarder :) The best thing about hashtags chats is that you get to 'meet' a whole load of new people who love to craft :) Getting involved in the chat made me think about my blog and how unloved it was.. hence the spring clean... Im going to do my best to keep it updated at least once every couple of weeks from now on!
My craft book stash... yes I hoard....

Soo here we are, if you wanna know a little bit more about what Ive been making in the last two and half years your best bet is probably to head over for a goosey gander at my Pinterest board of the things Ive been making Things Ive Made

Thanks so much for nipping by! ps come wave at me on twitter :) @BeekneeHoonies