Last week I had a sudden urge to make a summer top. When I spotted Rae’s Spring Ruffle Top on Flossie Teacakes I knew exactly what I wanted to do. I’ve had the tutorial bookmarked for a while and seeing the version Florence made spurred me on to have a go using an Anna Maria Horner’s Voiles. A quick order of 0.5m of Diamond Mine Ink (which, incidentally isn’t so inky as I had expected, its a lighter shade than I anticipated but still very pretty) from Ray Stitch (who have a wonderful selection) and 2 days later I was ready to go.
The pattern really is very straight forward. I did have a major mental block with how to do the under-arm shaping. I sewed and unpicked it several times and just couldn’t figure it out. I decided to check the comments section on the tutorial but no-one mentioned having any problems at all and so I got quite annoyed with myself and fed-up with being incompetent. Eventually I spotted one of the comments linked to a YouTube video of making the top (the video is by Whitney and is very good – at least for idiots like me). Ah ha, that solved the problem……and in fact I was doing it right but just hadn’t appreciated how much it would change after ironing the seam. Basic problem here? Lack of familiarity and practice with an iron! I really don’t like ironing but do force myself to iron seams as I quilt and sew, but its only because I know I have to. Maybe I need to appreciate its value a bit more – possible, but not likely!
So, here’s the top. I love it and it fits very well. I’ve just realised that I didn’t iron the bottom hem after sewing it – oops, not very quick at learning am I?! Only problem now is that the weather has changed. Today is a jumper and waterproofs day. Definitely not one for a summer top, but I’m sure the sun will come back……at least, I hope so.
This is the view that’s greeting me every time I walk into the dining room. My parents are celebrating their ruby wedding in a few weeks time. My brothers and I decided not to get them a ‘thing’ – they have lots of lovely ‘things’ and are in the privileged position that if they see a ‘thing’ they really like they are usually able to buy it. So, instead we thought we’d make them a big photo collage picture (I had intended to use snapfish but have heard that Which have recently done a review of photo companies so I’ll need to check that out). The last few times I’ve been at mum and dad’s house I’ve tried to sneak a look at their photo albums and the piles of old photos in their study…….and haven’t known where to start. So, in the end I told them what we were planning asked them to sort their oldest photos and pick out the ones they want used and I’ve taken away the photo albums. All I need to do now is choose and scan the best ones. My hope is that by having the albums piled in the dining room I’ll get annoyed enough to do something in the next night or two, I must get on with it or it’ll be late – NOT a good idea.
I’ve been working away at decorating. Not something I enjoy but it really really needs doing. This is an old old house, which has some huge plus points, but it hasn’t been all that well cared for recently and the decoration is well past its best. The entrance hall and downstairs cloakroom and dog and cat area is all done, as are the stairs to first floor (most of our living space is on first and second floor) – the stairs are spiral stone (the stone is painted) and look great now they’ve had a few coats of paint. And our tiny kitchen (which drives me nuts as all the other rooms are huge) is getting a make-over. The units have been painted and the walls and tiles will be tackled next. In an ideal world we’d re-do the kitchen properly but that’s something I’ll just have to dream about for now. If I’m feeling brave I’ll post some photos once its done.
So, that’s my news. Alongside all this the kids are having a fun holiday. We had planned a cycle ride this afternoon but its far too wet – I think soft play may be beckoning!
Oops, I almost forgot about making this very pretty cake. I spotted the recipe on Posie Gets Cozy and decided to give it a go. I’m always looking for new ways to combine chocolate and cake. The cake was pretty yummy and the icing certainly looked spectacular BUT it is very, very sweet. So sweet in fact that Finn, our pudding-person, was the only one able to eat a whole slice. So, I’d recommend it if you want a very pretty cake topping and have lots of very sweet teeth, otherwise stick to really small slices!