Bike ‘Broidery

A couple of months ago, my friend completed a Land’s End to John O’Groats virtual cycling fundraising challenge.  By her own admission, she is more of a “couch to couch” rather than ‘couch to 5K’ person, so she did amazingly well to complete this, ahead of schedule too.  During the same month, this kit came with my embroidery magazine so I thought this would make a great memento for Ruth.

The kit came with the embroidery flosses, a pink embroidery hoop and the image pre-printed on some cotton fabric.

The magazine gave instructions on which stitches to use for the different sections.

Once the picture was finished, I thought it would be nice to add a few details to make it personal.  I designed the layout on my computer and printed it out, then, using my lightbox, transferred the design onto the fabric and embroidered it.

To finish, I folded the edges of the fabric in and glued a circle of felt on the back to neaten.  Lastly, a loop of ribbon was added for hanging.

A Wedding Honour

Towards the end of last year, my friend asked me if I would help her with her wedding invitations.  I was really honoured to be asked! She and her fiancé didn’t really have any ideas with regard to the style of invitations but that their wedding colour would be purple.  After trawling Pinterest to see what is fashionable now, I made 8 invitations for the couple to choose from.  Some were stamped, some were from Cricut’s project library and some I designed from scratch.  I was so chuffed when they chose my own design.

My design was based on the bride and groom’s initials and an ampersand, all woven together.  I used my Cricut to cut these out of purple card and also cut out the initials themselves from silver card.

Since the card would be a gatefold, I wanted a belly band to hold the card closed.  This was decorated with a glitter heart and some purple and white ribbon.

The wording for the inside was done on the computer and printed out.  After being cut to size, I heat embossed a repeating silver leaf pattern all around the edge.

The envelopes had the same silver leaf embossing to match.

The back of each gate was covered with a piece of velum and the initials glued onto the front.

It was quite a nerve-wracking experience making these invitations – even more so than when Mr L and I made our own – I don’t think I’ll be going into the wedding invitations business any time soon!!  However, I love the fact that the bride and groom have their very own unique and personal invitations to send to their guests.  And that makes me happy! 😊

Kitty Krakatoa Bed

Our kittens that we adopted last October are now 9 months old and growing fast.  Whilst Scooby prefers to sleep on a sofa, Dill (or Dilly as he’s become known) likes a bed… or beds!  Since he was small, he’s loved his igloo bed but he’s now outgrown it.

I’d seen these ‘volcano’ pet beds on a website and wanted to try to make one.

The construction took a while to figure out.  There was lots of geometry and head scratching and I resorted to building scale models out of paper!

After I’d figured out the dimensions, I scaled them up and made a template for the base and side piece out of corrugated cardboard.  I had no idea how dangerous this part of the process would be! I somehow managed to poke myself in the eye with a corner of the cardboard and had to go to A&E with a scratched cornea.  That was not a pleasant experience, I can tell you!

After cutting out the pattern pieces, I attached Pellon Thermolam Fusible Fleece to the reverse sides to give the bed more structure.  I also decided to quilt the side panel.  Dill loves getting in the way  helping when I’m crafting: he particularly enjoys checking that gravity is still working… aka knocking stuff on the floor!

I keep all sorts of bits and bobs, ‘just in case’, and recycled some old padding from an ironing board; layered between the fabric and interfacing, it made a sturdy, padded base for the bed.

At this stage, a feeling I’d had earlier that I’d messed up but couldn’t quite figure out how, became a reality.  Attaching the side to the base, the top opened outwards rather than forming the volcano shape and the ends didn’t meet and I realised that I’d made the side upside down.  Doh!

After some remedial work, involving making the top edge into the bottom and binding the new top edge, I clipped the side to the base with right sides together and then stitched them together.  There was a LOT of layers and I had to switch to a jeans-strength needle.

Once the base was attached, the bed was then turned right side out.  It’s not quite the right shape but Dilly doesn’t seem to mind.

If you have cats, you’ll know how contrary the little beasts are and that, if you buy or make a bed especially for a cat, they invariably totally ignore it.  So, I was very surprised that Dilly got straight in it and went to sleep.  Result!

Next time, I’ll try resizing the side piece to make the shape better. I also won’t use a directional print!