Chanel Jacket Course Day 2

On Saturday it was the second (and final) day of our Chanel Jacket course at the Yorkshire School of Sewing. Anne came down the day before and we spent the evening finishing off our homework and comparing notes! By the time we arrived at Gillian’s house in Roundhay we had quilted all our pieces, tied off the ends and tacked the basic jacket together including one sleeve. I’d tacked mine by hand rather than machine, which did turn out to be an advantage when alterations were made.

Before fitting

The first job of the day was to check the fit, mine needed taking in a bit at the princess line. It was interesting to see how an alteration here made the sleeve fit so much better as the shoulder and the scythe were lifted up and in. Continue reading

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Nelly’s Parade

It’s happy dance time on Nelly’s Parade! I have finally finished the elephant quilt for my daughter Helen, it’s only about 12 months since she asked me! Last week I set too and finished the quilting, which as usual (for something I was putting off!) it didn’t take half as long as I expected.

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Project 70273

Today it’s #Global Block Day where hopefully lots of people around the world are making blocks for the 70723 Project. This is the brainchild of Jeanne Hewell Chambers, she is making quilts made of blocks which simply have two red crosses on. Each block represents another person who was deemed unworthy of a place in society by the Nazi’s in the early 1940’s. Jeanne needs 70273 blocks, one for each man, woman and child. For more information on the project, please follow the link at the bottom of the post.

The blocks are being made into quilts which will be displayed around the world. I think it will be very moving to see a large display of these quilts.

The blocks just need two red crosses on white fabric, very simple. Anyone can make them, they can even be made with a red marker pen. I’ve just made six simple ones this evening;

I cut a length of white fabric which was 6.5″ wide, then cut blocks which were either 3.5 x 6.5″ or 9.5 x 6.5″. Jeanne has listed three specific sizes for the blocks so they will stitch together easily. The first one I stitched was from red ribbon which I hand-stitched along the edge. I cut two squares from red felt and stitched those onto a big block…

I embroidered two of the smaller ones, I used two layers of ribbon with a running stitch down the middle for another little one.

My final one shows that you don’t even need to be able to sew as I just painted two crosses with my silk paints, but felt tips or marker pens would work just as well. These quilts are not going to be washed so there is no need to worry about colourfastness etc. As my fabric was patterned white I felt it needed edging so I just went round the edge with a red running stitch.

If you would like to make a block (or six!) please click over to the Project 70273 website where Jeanne has lots of help and information.

Jeanne says: “a big Thank You to y’all for helping us remind and/or convince the world that Every life has value. Every. Single. Life.”

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Chanel Jacket Homework

Yorkshire School of Sewing

I’ve just about finished my homework for the Chanel Jacket course I’m doing at the Yorkshire School of Sewing. Day one was two weeks ago when basically fittings and toiles were checked and all the layers were cut out and prepared, so all the tweed pieces were interlined with a light weight iron on interfacing and I had just started to quilt the lining pieces…

Chanel jackets traditionally have the lining and the outer fabric quilted together, this is obviously done before any construction so space has to be left for seams etc. I tacked the lining to each piece by hand, I did toy with the idea of using spray baste, but in the end I decided to just quickly hand baste it as I was concerned about the edges getting tacky. I used an old-fashioned ruler to work out my quilting lines as that was just a nice width. This is where I found perhaps my grainlines were not as straight as they could have been! I decided it was probably the underneath piece that was slightly off, with this fabric I don’t think it matters but it would be worth remembering for a more distinctive pattern.

The quilting lines were all stopped about 1.5-2″ above the hem or the seam, it wasn’t always easy to remember to stop!! This evening I need to thread all the loose threads to the inside and loosely tie them off.

Once the pieces were quilted we had to baste the jacket together for the final fitting. I must admit I couldn’t remember if it was to be hand or machine basted, I hand basted the seams as with the loose weave I thought undoing a machine baste would be an awful job! I cut out a size 12 but left a 1″ seam down the sides, so I’ve stitched the side with 1″ at the top but graduating out a bit to allow for my ample hips!

It looks pretty good on Florence, my muse, I’ll add a sleeve this evening then hopefully I’ll be all ready for day two tomorrow.

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Lizzie Stitching Wallet SAL

I said a couple of days ago I could do with a few finishes…well it’s not quite happy dance time but I’ve just finished all the cross-stitch for the Lizzie Stitching Wallet. We get the instructions to stitch it together over the next couple of weeks so I’m nearly there!

Last week I stitched the first half of the biscornu scissor fob which had a square of hydrangea florets on it. This week I’ve stitched the top square, it’s really pretty with a lisianthus flower and some beads and algerian stars around the edge. It took two to three  evenings to stitch each square, Faby has worked out the timings of this stitch-a-long pretty well, just enough time to get the stitching done comfortably without it hanging around too much. We had two weeks for these two squares, the next instructions come out on Monday when we will start constructing the wallet. Continue reading

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Nelly’s Parade

I’m in the mood for a few finishes. I like having several projects on the go but sometimes it gets a bit on top of me and I start to procrastinate instead of just getting on with stuff. Pinterest is a great timewaster with the unfortunate use of being able to argue that it is ‘research’ or ‘inspiration’.

At the beginning of the year I took the rash move of applying to hold a stall at a local Christmas Dickensian Fair, it’s really busy so hopefully I should be able to sell some of my wares! I didn’t get confirmation til August that I actually had a stall so I didn’t want to make lots of things before then…but I now need to knuckle down and make things. Of course now I’m worrying ‘what if they don’t sell?’…yes I’m procrastinating! Then there’s the other half made projects which need finishing but I don’t finish because I feel guilty doing them when I should be making stuff…you get the picture!

Well today I decided to clear one of those other projects and then I can crack on with stall stuff after!

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70273 Project

70273 Project Quilt

Following the Great British Sewing Bee exhibition I read several posts who mentioned the 70273 Project, I’ve never got into ‘protest quilts’ but this one touched me. I was intrigued and started to look into it and decided I wanted to make some quilt blocks for it; so what’s it about…

Jeanne Hewell-Chambers is the lady with the inspiration and the motivation to make it happen. She writes

“Between January 1940 and August 1941 (before the Holocaust began), 70,273 physically and mentally disabled people – men, women, teens, boys, and girls – were murdered by the Nazis. Though they never even laid eyes on the disabled person they were evaluating, the Nazi doctors read the medical files and, if from the words on the page, the person was deemed “unfit” or an “economic burden on society”, the doctor placed a red X at the bottom of the form. Three doctors were to read each medical file, and when two of them made a red X on the page, the disabled person’s fate was sealed. Most were murdered within 1-2 hours.

I will commemorate these 70,273 voiceless, powerless people who were so callously and casually murdered by gathering 70,273 blocks of white fabric (representing innocence and the paper the doctors read), each bearing two red X’s (representing one person), and I will stitch them together into quilts. “


70273 Project Quilt

These quilts are going to exhibitions all around the world, in the meantime Jeanne is asking for quilt blocks with just two simple red crosses on, they can be sewn, drawn with a marker pen, embroidered, anything really, so long as all that is on it is two red crosses. There are three different sizes to make so if you would like to make some too please do have a look at her website here.

October 14th is Global Block Day, the challenge is out to see how many 70273 project blocks can be made in one day. I’ve got some red ribbon ready…

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Flower Lattice SAL 17

This year is flying by, it’s three weeks since I last showed you my silk ribbon and stumpwork embroidery, I had just finished the orange tree;

The next diamond to embroidery has a lot of stumpwork, which does take longer than silk ribbon embroidery, luckily I had a day at Skipton Embroiderers Guild when I could sit and concentrate on it for a few hours. We even had a TV crew there filming for a series, we’ve been sworn to secrecy but you never know, my flower lattice might just appear (albeit briefly!) on the TV…or then again it could end up on the cutting room floor! Continue reading

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Lizzie Stitching Wallet SAL

I’m half way through stitching this section but it is so cute I had to share it with you!

Biscornu Scissor Fob

This is the final cross-stitching section as the next two sets of instructions are for making up the wallet. We’re making a biscornu scissor fob, I’ve made a biscornu once before (another scissor fob, photo on right) they are made from two squares but they are stitched together with corners in the centre of the sides, so you get a sort of zig-zag cube effect around the fob, fiddly but do-able!

I’ve just finished the first square, it’s got a little square of the hydrangea flowers in the centre with a variegated thread and bead design around the edge. It is so pretty! It always amazes me when I do something small like this as the centre is just 20 stitches each way, which is pretty small…but that still means there’s 400 stitches in this small area!!! It’s probably a good job I don’t work out stitch-counts for bigger projects!

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Chanel Jacket

Yorkshire School of Sewing

I’ve just had a lovely sewing weekend with Anne, we’ve met a few times at sewing bloggers meet-ups in Dewsbury and Leeds, I discovered she also fancied doing the Chanel Jacket course at the Yorkshire School of Sewing, so when I found one I could go on I contacted Anne and we made a weekend of it …

I met Anne in Harrogate for a bit of retail therapy first so we hit Duttons for Buttons, the remnant shop and finally Fine Fabrics. I haven’t been to Fine Fabrics for years as it always felt it was a long way out of town, (as a non driver) but having discovered it’s less than a 10 minute walk, I’ll be back again soon!

We both had a specific shopping list for our Chanel jacket, as it happened, Gillian, our tutor, was at Fine Fabrics teaching on Saturday when we went over, so we said a quick hello. I found some braid and some buttons at Duttons and some gorgeous taffeta to use as lining at Fine Fabrics.

The Chanel Jacket course is a two day course with usually a week in between, though we’ve got two weeks, which is probably a good job as I’ve quite a lot on at the moment. We had some homework before we arrived. We are using Vogue pattern 7975, choosing which view we fancied, I’m making a longer length, full length sleeves with buttons down the front. Continue reading

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