Sunday, 2 October 2011

Jane and a ***sewing machine*** (is this a dream? it's fairy magic)

Years ago, in the days when it really could be cheaper to make your own I actually did make my own clothes.( I also knitted, but that's a story for another day!) I made skirts, dresses, tops and I even made my own bridesmaids' dresses.

My parents bought me a sewing machine to use when I started needlework lessons at school. In those days machines were so heavy I used to have to work out just to lift the machine onto the table. I made clothes right up until my early 20s and then the machine started gathering dust and was put into the loft at my parents' home.  That was until I had a new mission....

In 1986, when I was pregnant with my daughter I decided I would make the covers, bumpers, bedding etc for her moses basket. So out came the machine, I waved my magic wand (aka sat and stitched at the table) and made a whole set of items with frills etc.  For the first 3 months of her life my sweet girl slumbered away amongst the covers I had lovingly made for her.

The machine then again gathered dust for 3 years until I was pregnant with my son. My daughter had a very special dolly at the time called "Katie". To help introduce the new baby idea to my daughter and ease my son's arrival I decided that I would make a doll's size replica of all the covers I had on the moses basket so that my daughter would be able to have her own matching set of covers for Katie. I was even able to match the fabric. The stitching fairy (or rather me) would stitch away at night so as to keep everything a surprise.

  On the day M was born I presented my daughter with a replica moses basket with all the accessories for her dolly Katie. It went down a treat as she thought she also had her own baby to care for and their bedding even matched. I think we told her that everything came from the same Cabbage patch her baby brother had appeared from ! All was well and she did everything with Katie her dolly that I did with M. It really was so sweet to see. When M was put into his Moses basket to sleep she would copy me and put Katie to bed too. She would even tell us to be quiet as Katie was trying to sleep. Sweet, sweet memories :0)

Over the years the machine again got moth balled and I think eventually ended up being given away.

So what you may ask is this...............................?

Well as you know I do love making cards and recently I had noticed a lot of card makers had taken to stitching the borders of their backing paper with real machine stitching.

I no longer had a machine and could not justify buying a machine just for that so I simply admired the technique from afar.

However my dear Mum recently bought a "mini" sewing machine just to do some tiny bits of sewing to save her hand stitching. It occurred to me that I could "borrow" her machine to stitch some cards with. I recently did so and ***joy*** what fun I had. I had forgotten the noise of a machine whirring along. Such fun!
You can see some of my stitching in a close up below.
 It's been 22 years since I stitched anything so I confess the lines are not perfect but I actually think this adds to the handmade appeal of the card. 

I had such fun stitching background papers, I even did some in preparation (Vivienne look away now) for my Christmas cards.

I thought I would show you  a couple of cards I made which also used my new skill of colouring stamped images..and now my new machine stitched borders.
Remember this...

With a touch of pixie dust she turned into 

and this cutie


and with one last abracadabra

I waved my magic wand and whirred the machine and out came.....

So do you now believe in sewing magic?

And if you would like a fairy of your own there is even one for sale here in my Etsy Shop ( you don't even need to go looking for one at the bottom of your garden ;0) ******EDIT 4.10.11 I have sold this card, if you are  interested in something similar just convo via Esty. Thanks Jx***********

We have had the most incredible record breaking  weather for the first weekend in October, nearly 30oc each day and the sun shone from dawn to dusk. My daughter and I had a brilliant time at the Bridal Fair in London and got lots of great ideas including an "alternative" wedding cake. I will fill you in soon. My Dad and my husband also sweltered in the heat and put the power and lighting in my studio. It still needs some more work but I now have lighting and 3 power is such such a great work space. 

Thank you all for your lovely kind comments on my last post about my new bag charms. They seem to be going down very well and as promised I have made a knitting themed one called  "Knitting Queen". Here is a photo shown below and I have put it in my little Etsy shop here
Also as I have sold my first Sewing Queen, Knitting Queen and Tea for Two bags charms (thank you so much peeps!) I have made new versions of these
New blue Sewing Queen for sale here
and finally my New Tea for Two for sale in my Etsy shop here

Have a great week everyone. Here in the UK I  really think that we really have had our bonus Indian Summer and our friend Autumn is finally on it's way.

Bye for now,

Jane x


  1. Great post Jane. Love your sewing cards, they are so beautiful and unique. I think you may have another wonderful item for your shop! I also love the sound that a sewing machine makes. Great little machine that your mom has, maybe she can borrow it from you!! So nice you are having such sweet weather. We are raining here and raining leaves too.

  2. What a brilliant idea Jane, it looks great on the cards! :)
    Not sure about the bit in the middle of your post, I looked away!!! ;)
    I know you're going to do well with your charms, don't forget to keep an eye out for a crochet hook and then I'll have a full set. :)
    I did manage to get a walk this afternoon but I wish this grey blanket would lift.
    Have a great week Jane,
    Vivienne x

  3. Thank you Robin, that's very kind. I have in fact given my Mum back her machine but I will not doubt be on the borrow again very's a very basic model but a great little worker! Sending you some sunshine, ours is due to last until about Tuesday.
    Jane x

  4. Vivienne, I thought it was only me late up on the computer (it's 10.30pm) LOL! I made some enquiries re a crochet hook with no success, there are real silver charms made but not the tibetan style but I will keep my eyes open and you will be the first to know if I find one. How sad you did not get this weekend weather...:0(
    Have a lovely week and I hope the grey blanket lifts soon,
    Nite nite!
    Jane x

  5. Dear, dear Jane,

    Your cards are adorable! I also love machine stitching on cards, I use some felt also and stitch that with into them. Your cards are beautiful, and that stitching adds some little extra there still!

    And oh those charms... I may need that sewing one later too (need is a great word, I actually love it!), when I have admired my knitting queen one a bit :)

    Wonderful week!


  6. Good Morning my dear Mia, another week appears and still more sunshine here!Thank you for your lovely comments, the stitching adds extra time to my card making but I agree it does add something special.
    I hope your Knitting Queen bag charm arrives really quickly :0)and thank you again.
    Have a wonderful creative week. Billy sends a purr (he is also loving this weather).
    Jane x

  7. Jane, you have so many crafty talents! I love machine stitching on papercrafts, and this really enchances your cards. I think you will just have to keep your mum's sewing machine now! Glad your studio is nearly ready.
    Have a lovely week.
    Helen x

  8. It's a fun addition to cards isn't it Helen. I really think I need to "adopt" my Mum's little machine...hmmmm!The studio is coming along perfectly.
    Jane x

  9. Jane.. you really are impressive! I have a friend who makes her cards with sewing fabric on them and I love how it looks. But your cards are the epitome of gorgeousness!! I think you need your very own little machine. I actually need one of my own, too.

    Sorry I missed your post about Greece.. I just looked it over and was so very awed by the sea and the buildings!

    ((hugs)), Teresa :-)

  10. Hi Teresa. Yes I might think about adding that little machine to my "C" list but it does seems a little excessive just to use for my cards!
    Jane x

  11. Dear Jane, your new cards are so adorable! The stitching really gives great handmade look for the cards! I'm happy to hear that you have catched again the sewing machine ... who knows ... now and then we will start something new!
    Have a lovely time!
    xxx Teje
    PS. I love your bag charms for the sewers and knitters!

  12. It's been fun sewing these Teje, I have not used a machine for many years. Thanks for liking my bag charms, they are selling really well. I took an order today for 3 "hairdresser" themed ones! Autumn seems to be now on it's way today.
    Jane x

  13. OH how I love the sound of a sewing machine, Jane..and your cards are amazingly charming! Wow, these are all are your beautiful jewelry pieces. So many talents and gifts you bring to all of's wonderful to hear about the studio! I am popping by your etsy shop now to check out your lovely pieces..always so good to see you and read your kind visits! A hug from California!

  14. Hi Shirley,yes the sound of a sewing machine is quite unmistakeable isn't it?Thanks for stopping by,it's always lovely to see you here,
    Jane x

  15. Hi Jane! I had to laugh at the part about lifting weights to be able to carry the old machines! I still have one of those "boat anchors" in the closet, and only bring it out for necessary projects. but what fun and neat effects the stitching adds to your paper art! All in the details! :o)

  16. This post brought back so many happy memories for me. Our son had a Moses basket also when he was a baby. Now he is 19!!
    I like your sewing cards and I'm sure they'll be a hit this Christmas.

    best to you,

  17. Hi Michele, yes those old machines were SO heavy. My Mum's is so lightweight that it can travel anywhere....including "borrowing" at my house ;0)
    Jane x

  18. I know Anne, I don't think Moses baskets are so all the range now but they were certainly a necessity for both of my "babies". Glad I bought some happy memories back for you,
    Jane x


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