August 2016

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My First Dress Making Project!

Howdy y’all!

Now you might have seen on Facebook that I have been very creative and adventurous with the sewing machine and thought after all these years, it’s maybe finally time to make something for my son Charlie to wear and decided, especially for his train birthday party, he deserves a train waistcoat!

Now this came about because we went to Hobbycraft for an event they did where the first 50 customer got a voucher, so of course we went, very early. During our Hobbycraft adventure, Charlie found some fabric that he just would not let go of, so I had no choice, I had to buy a metre. (I’m a soft mum, I know.)

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So then when I got this lovely fabric home I was like.. ‘What am I gonna do with this?!’

I had a gander online and finally found a waistcoat pattern, which you can try too, right here at Barmy Beetroot (and it’s free!)

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And here is what the finished waistcoat looked like! I had a search on eBay and found some lovely gold train buttons, excuse the messy button holes, it was my first time but I mastered it in the end!


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Time for a picnic!

Hey Crafty People! Are you loving this summer? I am!

Ever since I moved away to go to university (6 years ago now!) I have been keen to learn how to sew. I just think it’s a fantastic life skill to have as well as a wonderful, creative hobby. I’ll never forget my first day at my Halls of Residence at university, I unpacked my sewing machine before unpacking my clothes!

Anyway, during my pregnancy and such I tried my hand at sewing some absolutely rubbish things that I didn’t even bother posting about, however since joining Hochanda I have become a little braver and decided to try one of the kits from Aly, from Aly’s Stitchy Fingers, who you might have seen at Hochanda. I work with her a lot and she is a lovely lady! She set me the challenge of making a picnic bag..

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Now one thing I used to dread is the cutting out and following instructions. I am proper rubbish at maths and I always manage to get mixed up! Somehow I pulled this off and Aly’s templates helped a treat.

There was a lot of sewing involved and a lot of new skills learned including inserting a zip, working with insulated lining and making working lids and handles! It took me the whole weekend (I have a toddler running around interrupting me remember!) but I managed to pull it off and make this!




It is fully working, fully lined and fully gorgeous! I love the fabric here and it’s my favourite colour! I’m not a camper person but I really love the cute camper van look on all things crafty these days, it seems to be really on trend.

Now if I can do it, you definitely can! Get your machine out and check out Aly’s kits over on her website or on Hochanda.

Happy sewing!


My First Time Enamelling!

Hey guys, In my new job at Hochanda I have learnt so much, including a brand new hobby, enamelling!

I had the pleasure of working with the lovely Fiona Jones, who works for Efcolor and had a great website and Facebook page called ‘Projects for Crafters’.

Traditional enamelling uses ground glass powders which have to be fired in a kiln at temperatures usually between 750-850ºC making it a very expensive hobby to get started in. However Fiona brings Efcolor to Hochanda who sell resin based powders which only need to be heated to 150ºC to fuse and bond with the surface thus making it possible to fire them in an ordinary kitchen oven. This makes it a much more affordable hobby for anyone to try. Anything that can withstand 150ºC can be enamelled on e.g. metal, glass, wood, stone, ceramics, chipboard, papier mache etc, and it’s so much fun!

I made a little door plaque for Charlie’s birthday..

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Isn’t it cute? I love every minute of making it, it’s so easy and you can get so creative!

You can see more inspiration on Fiona’s website Projects 4 Crafters or join the community on Facebook. If you’d love to get started, there’s a great starter kit on Hochanda’s website.

Happy enamelling!