January 29, 2011


I'd wondered for a while if you changed the colours of the Peacock pattern to shades of brown, would it look like a Peahen?.  I think it does.  Although I might do the tail slightly differently.

This will be in the shop early next week once it's finished.  If anyone is interested in ordering an embroidered envelope in time for Valentine's day, please order quick to allow for postage.

Most of this week has been spent playing around on the computer with layouts for my new PDF patterns.  There's still a lot of work to do on them and I will be on the look out for pattern testers soon (feel free to volunteer!)

The other big news is, by all accounts the advance copies of my book have arrived at C&T Publishing's office this week, ...and there is one on it's way to me!!


January 13, 2011


This is part of a little gift I've made, which really, really really needs to get posted, and it will do, once my car's sorted.  It seems to have developed an aversion to both 2nd and 4th gear!

January 11, 2011

Photographing your feet,

...is actually quite hard when you're doing it yourself.  Now, why would I be trying to photograph my feet?  Well, yesterday, it was cold, shocking I know, but at this time of year, the weather in the UK is pretty yukky.  So, there I was, sat at my desk, shivering, when a visit to Pinterest reminded of the cosy knitted wool socks and leg warmers I had been coveting, you know, the kind that can cost a small fortune.  But here I am, sat in a room full of felted jumpers and cardigans, some still with the sleeves attached.  There was the answer, sleeves.

After a bit of rummaging around, 2 matching sleeves were pillaged.    

I used the cuffs for the top part, so they can be turned over,

took them both in down the side to make them straighter and a bit narrower,

(note to self : must clean boots)

and edged the bottom with a zig zag stitch (or you could overlock it if you have one) to stop the knit from fraying or unraveling.  And there you go, legwarmers.  I feel very 80's, but very warm!

January 8, 2011

The year of the book,

I hope everyone has all had a good christmas.  We've had a busy time, lots of traveling and visiting, and also lots of snow.

2011 is a big year for me as in April my craft pattern book comes out. I think, business wise, that has to be the most exciting and yet nerve wracking venture I've undertaken so far.

Swan pattern from the book

When I submitted the proposal for my initial book idea, I was so pleased when it was as well received as it was.  Given the passion I have for designing and making Softies, it's easy to assume everyone else will feel the same way, which left me quite anxious when putting together the ideas for a full book of Softie patterns designed from animals of the British countryside to an American publisher!

The whole process has been a very valuable experience, one which I'm sure I will be blogging about often.  Out of all the chapters in the book, it was the 'how to' part which became the most difficult to break down.  I was reminded of this the other day, by Abby Glassenberg, who also has a book out, and is posting on her blog a fascinating series all about the mechanics of creating a Softie.  The issue I had with the instructions was whether to have a section at the beginning which covered all the construction techniques, or to keep this information within each individual pattern.  I chose to have a section at the front, to avoid unnecessary repetition.  This does mean that if you were to make anything from the book, there is a little cross referencing to do, but as many of the processes are used over and over, once you've sewn one Softie, it all starts to make sense.

Writing a craft pattern book is all about making choices.  I chose the write my book in a certain way, whether or not my choices suit everyone, well I guess only time will tell once it comes out and begins to get reviewed.

Happy New Year!