Pin Up

Wow I have neglected this blog haven’t I? Let’s just move swiftly along and pretend it didn’t happen shall we? Fab. 🙂

Okay so I’m going to start back with a crafty post. I am slowly starting to sort out my craft things in the attic and whilst doing so I found an unused canvas. I’m not really one to paint or draw so I decided to use it to make a notice board for Little Lady’s bedroom. I had some pink fabric in my stash and some ribbon so I had a go while she was at school.

Hubby was a bit wary of allowing me to use the staple gun unsupervised after last time when I pinched my thumb in the handle lol! You’ll be glad to know I came away unscathed this time yay!

I roughly measured the fabric by folding it around the canvas.

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I then cut it to size, folded the corners neatly and stapled it to the frame. Of course you could finish the edges of the fabric but to be honest I didn’t bother.

I didn’t have enough of the ribbon I wanted to use so I had to space the strips very carefully. Once I was happy with their position I stapled those to the frame too.IMG_0950

The process was repeated with the ribbon going the opposite way.IMG_0951

And as easily as that it was done.IMG_0952

Little Lady loves it and has it hanging above her desk for her “important papers”. She is also pinning her dance rosettes to it which are looking good.

If I did another one of these I would use more ribbon to make the criss- crosses closer together but as I made this with only things I already had, I am quite pleased.

Have you ever made a noticeboard like this?

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Make Me A Wardrobe 2015

Jen over at Make Do And Mend Year set herself the challenge to make one piece of clothing a month, meaning she would expand her wardrobe by 12 handmade items in a year. Although I thought it was a great idea I didn’t actually get on board with it until the end of January. I didn’t think I would have time to commit to this along with all the other things I want to get done this year. But the more I thought about it the more it made sense. If I handmade items that I would definitely wear then it would be a big boost to my wardrobe that has been bursting at the seams with “nothing to wear”

Last week I set to work decluttering my wardrobe. I bagged up all the clothes that I haven’t wore for a while, those I have no intention of wearing again and those that don’t really suit me. I filled a bag and my wardrobe looks a lot less cluttered. I can kactually see what clothes I have now.

As I work mostly from home, I live in jeans, casual tops and cardigans. I have a few handmade dresses which I wear but only one handmade skirt.

Over the course of the year I would like to add the following handmade items to my wardrobe

*casual tops
*skirts that can be worn with tights/leggings and boots
*A couple of new cardigans
*3/4 length trousers for the summer
*and possibly some jeans

As we are already half way through February I need to get cracking. Anyone else taking part in mmaw2015? Why not follow #mmaw2015 on Twitter to see what everyone else is up to?

2015

I have put off and put off writing this post as I look for the “perfect” thing to write about! I wanted to publish my goals for 2015 on New Year’s Day but I kept changing my mind over and over again about what to actually put on the list. I am going through a pretty tough time personally at the moment which has really affected my self confidence. Comments have been made which has made me question everything I do. I won’t bore you with details but the whole situation has saddened me more than I would have thought it would.

My main aim in 2015 is to simplify my life. I am guilty of trying to do too much and then stressing when things are getting too much. I really want to do my part to reduce my impact on this world but I am afraid of failing. Everytime I decide how I will do this, my self doubt tells me I will fail 😦

So what I have decided to do is set out smaller aims and update them as and when I claw back a bit of self confidence. In keeping with the “reducing my impact” theme I am “reusing and recycling” a lot of last year’s goals 😀

1.Curtains for D’s bedroom I have bought the fabric so I have no excuse really. Just procrastination!

2.Decluttering I really need to get on top of this. I am fed up of the house being so full of clutter. I still don’t have my craft room in the attic properly due to all the stuff in there. I will concentrate on sorting and getting rid of items that I no longer use, ethically of course, not just throwing them away. I will also aim to use a lot of the fabric I have in boxes in the attic. What a waste that they just sit there!! I’m so embarrassed! 😮

3. Running I want to imporve my running again this year. I am looking for a sub 30min 5k and a sub 1hr 10k. The 5k is definitely doable but I will have to work harder at the 10k. I am also planning on running another 2 Half Marathons and would like to get 2:30hr for at least one of those.

4. Be more adventurous in the kitchen I want to bake more. I want to know more about what foods and snacks my kiddies are eating and what goes into them. I would like to buy more from local independant shops rather than big supermarkets but I can’t commit to going supermarket free like westywrites

5. Sewing Jen has posted about her aim to make one item a month in order to produce a handmade wardrobe. I don’t think I will achieve this as I want to make dresses for Little Lady and I would also like to start dabbling more in boy’s clothes so that I can make something for D. I will however, commit to weighing up whether or not I can make something before I buy anything new. If it can be made (out of fabric – I’m not that good!!) I will make it instead of buying it. Which leads me onto….

6. Handmade presents I was embarrassed by how little presents were handmad this year. In fact the best handmade present all year was the one made by hubby for his parents. Good for him!! I’m not committing to ALL presents being handmade as I don’t think, at this moment, that I would cope with the stress, but I would like as many presents as is possible to be handmade.

So there you go. My goals for 2015.They are not earth-shattering but they are good enough and I need to be content with that!

Succeeding to fail??

Well this year I have been rubbish at achieving the goals I set at the beginning of the year. It’s not that we didn’t achieve anything, it’s just that I didn’t achieve these specific goals. Let’s look at an extract taken from the first post of 2014 (extract in bold)

1.Sew a lot more. I am hoping to get the attic sorted out soon enough for my craft space to become a reality. I would like to make more of my own clothes and also clothes for Little Lady and baby D. Hubby has a lot of clothes and wears either a uniformed polo shirt and shorts or wet/dry suit for work so I’m not planning to involve him yet.

I did sew a lot more in 2014. I made 3dresses for myself and another 3 for Little Lady. I also made what felt like a million snowflake dresses, a fairy godmother outfit, some fairy wings and various other craft items. I am taking this as ACHIEVED

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2.During 2014 I am planning to not buy any new clothes for myself and only a small amount for the kiddies. Exceptions include; underwear and shoes. I will not skimp on shoes for the little ones and the thought of second hand underwear……well let’s not go there!!

Major fail here. I bought a bit of running kit for me, school uniform for Little Lady and other bits and pieces. This one is definitely NOT ACHIEVED ✖️

3.Running. I want to improve my running and I have my eye on a few races I would like to sign up for over the coming year. Starting off I have a 5k Virtual Race in January. (More to come on that later on in the month) I have also set myself a target of 500km total over the year. This is to try to get me to go running more often. I have set up my runkeeper app to count every run I do from today to the 31st December.

I didn’t quite make the 500km target I set myself but I definitely improved my running. Both my 5k and 10k PB’s have come down by quite a bit and I ran a Half Marathon too. Along the way I also ran 8 races (although one didn’t give out medals 😥) which is 5 more than last year so a definite ACHIEVED

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4.Curtains for baby D’s room. I have seen fabric that I like and plan to order it asap. We have taken D’s cot away and he’s sleeping in a big boy’s bed now so it’ll be nice for him to have a big boy’s room too.

😳 Bad mammy alert. Major fail here too. D’s bedroom has hardy been touched as the kids now have a playroom. This will be rolled over for the 2nd year running. I think it’s best if we move on quickly NOT ACHIEVED✖️

5.Continue in the garden. We acquired 5 blackcurrant bushes to add to the fruit trees we already have. I want to plant more and use the harvest to make a lot of our food from scratch.

We did pretty well at the growing this year. Unfortunately the birds are most of our harvest. We had a tree full of cherries which they ate, they also ate our blackcurrants and a few other bits too. This was a kind of achieved

6.Decluttering and sorting. Ruthlessly. I really really want my craft/office space in the attic so I really need to get my bum in gear with this one. It will be a long slog as not only do we have a lot of stuff in the attic, but the spare room soon to be play room, has a lot of stuff in it, as does the space under the stairs. Our house is almost bursting with stuff, and we need to continue the work we started, and abandoned, pretty much this time last year!

This is another “kind of” one. We have been decluttering but not ruthlessly. I still don’t have a proper craft space in the attic and the house is still bursting with clutter. This will also be rolled over to next year! So kind of achieved

So 2 achieved ✅
2 not achieved ✖️
And 2 “kind ofs”➖
“Room for improvement” I think is the phrase here. Tomorrow I will try to post a round up of 2014 and then I will post my new goals for 2015. Hopefully I will do better this time.

Happy new year everybody 🎉🎉

WIP

Over the last few months, hubby and I have been using the time that D is in nursery to try and get a few jobs done around the house. Unfortunately these jobs are taking much longer than originally planned. So while I dream of showing you before and after pics of my lovely new dining room, it’s actually still waiting for a last coat of paint :/

So instead I thought I’d round up all my Works In Progress and put them all in one post!

Let’s start with the kitchen. Our new sink is in and the cupboards have been re arranged to give us a better working kitchen. The cupboard doors need going back on, the radiator needs removing and a small bit of work top installed.

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The playroom upstairs has been tidied and treated to some new storage.

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Let’s not forget the dining room.

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Almost there but still not quite.

We are getting there slowly. We are decluttering as we go and have already donated a lot to charity shops and passed on to friends. We are being very careful so that unnecessary items do not go to landfill. There is still a lot of work to be done before this house is completely finished but it’s starting to take shape now and I am feeling good about the progress we are making.

I am hoping that it won’t be long before the WIP you see above will be finished and have it’s own post dedicated to it. Until then….

Craft room progress

We have been very busy here lately. I’m excited to say its because we have been decluttering. Oh my deary me, you won’t believe the amount of stuff I have sorted through!! We have started in the attic in a bid to make some space in order to move other stuff (like my craft things) up into the attic.

I mentioned here that I would like a craft space in the attic. I would ideally like space for a table for my sewing machine, and storage for all my bits and bobs. However, I have sooooo much stuff it’s unbelievable. I’m not sure if I have shown you this picture before but I actually find it embarrassing that I have so much stuff.

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That is only my fabric stash. That doesn’t include all the other bits and pieces I have 😮

Hubby and I have spent 2 full days up in the attic together and hubby has spent an extra day on his own up there, and it is starting to come together nicely. I have thrown away anything that has no use, bagged up some crafty things for little lady’s school, donated items to the charity shop, given fabric to friends and made a pile of unusable scraps that can be used as stuffing. I was physically and emotionally exhausted!

But!! Most of my bits and pieces are organised into drawers,

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My table is up and it is much cleaner, lighter and brighter than before.

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My fabric has been sorted through but I still need to organise it.

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It’s not quite there yet but it is getting there and I am so excited! It’s not the spacious, light filled studio I always imagined but it’s mine, it’s big enough and I will take that! Hubby is planning to rearrange the lighting and run an extension lead for power. I also plan to ask for daylight lamps/bulbs for my birthday to make sure the light is adequate.

I am so excited by this you can’t believe. And the fabric I have rediscovered is amazing! I can’t wait to get up there and get stuck in! 😀

Starting a new page

Happy New Year.

We celebrated last night with a Chinese takeaway and a Peppa Pig DVD 😉 Oh the joy of being outvoted by a 2 year old! We didn’t stay up. We very rarely do to be honest. New year isn’t that big a deal for us. We don’t go out and we don’t really make resolutions either. We do, however, make a list of things that we want to achieve over the coming year and I suppose that is pretty much the same thing.

Last year I made a list on here of about 5 things I wanted to achieve. Out of the 5 I achieved 3! I didn’t manage to make D some curtains for his bedroom, neither did I re-cover our settees. I did, however, embroider the 2nd curtain and get the fireplace finished. You can see both in this post here. We also grew, and harvested, a lot more veg than we did in 2012. We stuck to growing the same things, with the exception of attempting bell peppers, and had a good harvest.

This year I would like to:

  1. Sew a lot more. I am hoping to get the attic sorted out soon enough for my craft space to become a reality. I would like to make more of my own clothes and also clothes for Little Lady and baby D. Hubby has a lot of clothes and wears either a uniformed polo shirt and shorts or wet/dry suit for work so I’m not planning to involve him yet. Which brings me to a big one….
  2. During 2014 I am planning to not buy any new clothes for myself and only a small amount for the kiddies. Exceptions include; underwear and shoes. I will not skimp on shoes for the little ones and the thought of second hand underwear……well let’s not go there!!
  3. Running. I want to improve my running and I have my eye on a few races I would like to sign up for over the coming year. Starting off I have a 5k Virtual Race in January. (More to come on that later on in the month) I have also set myself a target of 500km total over the year. This is to try to get me to go running more often. I have set up my runkeeper app to count every run I do from today to the 31st December.
  4. Curtains for baby D’s room. I have seen fabric that I like and plan to order it asap. We have taken D’s cot away and he’s sleeping in a big boy’s bed now so it’ll be nice for him to have a big boy’s room too.
  5. Continue in the garden. We acquired 5 blackcurrant bushes to add to the fruit trees we already have. I want to plant more and use the harvest to make a lot of our food from scratch.
  6. Decluttering and sorting. Ruthlessly. I really really want my craft/office space in the attic so I really need to get my bum in gear with this one. It will be a long slog as not only do we have a lot of stuff in the attic, but the spare room soon to be play room, has a lot of stuff in it, as does the space under the stairs. Our house is almost bursting with stuff, and we need to continue the work we started, and abandoned, pretty much this time last year!

I hope you will join me in 2014 and let’s see if I can do better than the 3/5 I achieved last year.