30 September 2014

September Sunshine

We have had the most amazing September Sunshine here in Ireland.

I only took these photos a few days ago of my sunflowers.

Check out that blue sky!!


Hard to believe that this was taken in September in Ireland!  See .. it's not always raining here as some would believe.

As you can tell I got a bit carried away. Between the glorious sunshine, the blue skies and my gargantuan sunflowers, which I've grown very fond of.

I planted approximately 100 sunflower seeds earlier in the year but these are the only ones that survived my pesky slugs!!

I transplanted them from their pots to here, which is just outside my kitchen window.  Not ideal as it's very exposed and they needed strong stakes but worth it as they are just lovely to look out at everyday.  Little bursts of sunshine looking in at me.  

While I was out with my camera I took a few more of the garden. 

Hard to believe that we are in Autumn and that winter is on the way.

I will miss hanging my washing on the line ... one of my favourite things of summer.

I will also miss all the flowers I have sewn from seed this year.

  and the scent of my sweet peas.

However.  I do love Autumn.  For me it's like a mini New Year.  I am always bursting with ideas and enthusiasm ... possibly a little to do with the fact that Christmas is nearly here.  Those of you that follow my blog will know that I am a HUGE Christmas fan.

Do you like Autumn?  What is it you love about Autumn?
I have another post already written about this and will wait to share later in the week.

In the meantime enjoy the last day of September!

Michelle x

26 September 2014

A walk in the woods

Today has been, still is, such a BEAUTIFUL day here in the West of Ireland. 

We are being blessed with the most stunning September I can ever recall.  The skies are just the most perfect blue and the sun is beaming all day long.  I'm still wearing my summer clothes and sun glasses every day, it's just bliss!!

I was lucky enough to spend my morning with a lovely friend on a leisurely (hmmm maybe not so leisurely) walk (make that hike!) through Doughill Forest up Sliabh Ban mountain.  We checked it out on the map and estimated it to be 6k which is what I've been walking a lot lately but over three hours later we decided the map must be wrong :O) 

Hard to believe that this is only a couple of miles (or as they say in Ireland "a stones throw") from my cottage and yet I have never been here.  That is all going to change.  It was just glorious! I can't wait to go again. 

It was truly magical.  I don't think we could have chose a better day.

There is nothing on this earth that can make you feel as good as a walk in the fresh air.  It blows away all the cobwebs and I always come home bursting with ideas and enthusiasm. 

I got a little over excited in the moment and burst into song at one point !

After three hours we finally made it to the summit .... 

Can't say the summit itself was worth it, actually a little disappointing, but the walk up and back was most definitely worth it.  

I was so glad I had my camera.  Not only for the pics but for the fact that I finally worked out how to take a panoramic shot !!

Overall a truly fabulous day!

Have a great weekend peeps xx

22 September 2014

Happy Thoughts

LOVE this book my lovely friend Tracy bought me. 

I'm going to try and fill it regularly with happy thoughts.

Today's' happy thought .....

What are your happy thoughts?

21 September 2014

DIY Bloomers

If like me you're a fan of bloomers, aka pantaloons, you will know how hard it is to source them.  Actually that's not entirely true.  You can source them but they are either a) extortionately priced or b) from the Downton Abbey era and therefore TINY!  

So, armed with a pinterest board of inspiration, a boxset of Downton Abbey (not vital) in particular the above image that I adore from here, an old sheet (I kid you not but you could buys some nice cotton or linen), intermediate sewing skills, a determination, desire and need for said bloomers I set about making my own.  

I used a pair of pyjama bottoms as my pattern/template.  I just traced around them onto brown paper allowing extra width in the legs. 

I then folded the sheet flat on the table and lay my pattern piece along the fold and cut two.  You end up with two pieces of fabric looking roughly like this (when unfolded) 

If you are using plain white fabric (as I was) put a small mark on one side of each, or a pin, so you know which is the right side or wrong side.  Trust me you will be confused if you don't.

Fold wrong sides together

 Pin and sew the inside leg seams on both pieces so you end up with two tubes/legs. 

 Then pin and sew the crotch seam , front to front and back to back.

See here - the back crotch seam is sewn up (lying on the table) 

It should then look like this - a clowns pair of trousers :O) 

All you need do then is turn over the waist, allowing a 2inch fold where you will insert the elastic.  Take your elastic, put it around your waste and stretch  until it is taught, that's how long you will need it.  Insert it in the fold and secure by stitching into the seam.  

To finish the legs I used elastic in my bobbin to sew the gather and then trimmed the hem with some lace edging.

There you have it.  Super simple and pretty (I think so anyway) bloomers.

I'm dying to make another pair.  Will do a better tutorial when I do as I was too eager to get these ones made and didn't take enough pics.  

Would you like a more detailed tutorial?

Petticoats and Bloomers

It's 5.25 pm here in Ireland on Sunday 21st September and I've had to wear sunglasses and put sun screen on as it's so warm and sunshiney out there.  I kid you not.  It's positiveley balmy!!

It's all very strange as the kids are back to school and I'm making Christmassy makes for my shop and normally I'd be curling up on the sofa with the fire on and some crochet in my hand but I'm sitting here in my summer clothes and flip flops.  Don't get me wrong, I'm not complaining, it's just all a little confusing.  Nice but confusing.

The best thing is that I'm still getting to hang my clothes on the line.  Alas my washing machine is a little under the weather so today it was a hand wash.  Ironically it's my petticoats and bloomers (yes I said bloomers) that are on the line.  My mum is always telling me I was born in the wrong era as I LOVE hand washing and all that sort of stuff.   If I could go back in time it would be to Downton Abbey times.  Not sure if I'd be upstairs or downstairs though??  Which leads me on to tonight - it's the first episode in series 5 of Downton Abbey.  Are you a fan?  I can't wait.  I've been planning my whole evening all week.  God forbid if anyone calls to the house.  I'll just have the curtains pulled and the sound down low because I won't be answering the door, the phone, emails etc etc

If you are watching enjoy!

17 September 2014

Upholstery for beginners (more like fakers)

There I was, filling a half hour in town before meeting a friend for coffee, it's all her fault!  Or maybe I should be thanking her?    I wandered into one of my favourite shops Frances' Finishing Touches and the second I saw this fabric I just had to have it.  I had no idea whatsoever what I was going to make with it I just wanted.  You know what it's like.  I know I'm not alone here :O) 

So I go for coffee, catch up with my friend and a couple of hours later I get home.  I have orders to complete and invoices to send out (priorities) but I look straight at my beloved red chair and have a eureka moment ... 

I drop my bags and drape the fabric over it and know there and then that's what I'm going to do.  Cover the chair.  

Hmm .... not something I've really done before but then I remember the lovely Sarah Moore (check out Sarah's fab site here) covering a sofa on The Great Interior Design Challenge TV show and think I can do that ! :O)   So off I go in search of the staple gun ......  

20 minutes later ... I kid you not!


In hindsight I should have folded this in the other direction and have yet to stitch it.

Despite that I'm pretty darn pleased with how it came out. 

So there you go.  

Not bad for a purchase on a whim. 

Do you like it?  


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