An antidote to grey

…Is sometimes colour, and sometimes, more grey.

First, the grey. I’ve shown the fabrics for the latest shirt previously, but here they are assembled into the latest of three comfortable Hawaiian shirts. Grey, because that’s the background colour, even if they’re pretty colourful otherwise. Oh, and the hair, of course!

I’m showing the back first, because to be honest, it’s the more interesting side. At the top, the collar is a green batik on top. The underside is the same grey floral Kaffe Fassett fabric as on the yoke. I didn’t have quite enough length of the grey background lotus fabric for the back, so I added a strip of the front fabric to the top before cutting the back out. I think it works. The sleeves are also the lotus fabric, but cut a little shorter than the pattern dictates, as again, I didn’t quite have enough.

On the front, it’s the same scallop pattern as the strip on the back. The patch pocket on the front is the same fabric as the yoke, cut so that the flowers are nicely framed. All the fabrics are quite different, but they tie into each other in some way. The scallop fabric has lilac, blue and green, and touches of pink. The lotus fabric has grey, blue, lilac, pink and green, but in different proportions. The yoke fabric has grey, blue and pink, with some very small touches of a matching green.

It shouldn’t work, but it does.

And now for the colourful antidote: my new dupatta! I have always loved the combination of orange and pink, and while I was browsing Etsy recently, I discovered the most gorgeously juicy hot pink and burnt orange dupatta decorated with gold embroidery and a more complex decorative gold border.

It’s made of Banarasi (Benares) silk and is both light and cosy. it’s beautifully decorative and striking, whilst also being functional: sometimes I find air-conditioning a bit chilly for me while it suits other people. Plus it’s lavish enough to dress up a plain black or white tunic/t-shirt and pants combination. I just love having grey hair, it lets you wear stuff like this where my original mouse colouring would have receded and been overwhelmed.

So, despite the grey, overcast skies, the pouring sheets of rain and the misty veils of humidity, I have a radiant sun of lavish colour from Jaipur to light up my life!

Oh, and it’s getting really green outside!



First start – and finish – of 2020

It has become traditional for crafty bloggers to review their output at the end of the year.

I’ve decided to change things up a bit. No ‘here’s what I made’, because you’ve all seen it anyway, yes?

I have, however, chosen a word for the year ahead to inspire me, and my word is going to be FINISH. It’s a habit  I’ve got out of in recent years, and I’d like to change that. Finishes are good. Finishes make me happy, and they empty the cupboard (ready for more stuff, naturally…). And in that spirit, I began my first project of the year on 1st January, and today, 3rd January, it’s already finished!  Good start, eh?

Regular readers will recognise the fabric, particularly as I only finished the top I used it for a couple of weeks ago. I didn’t work to a pattern. I had only the amount of fabric you see, plus the odd small scrap. So I had to wing it. There was enough to make a nice bucket tote.

In the midst of nutting the process out and trying to avoid more unpicking than was strictly necessary, I have discovered an interesting fact. There is no way (short of a computer program and an A3 printer) to reliably produce an ellipse with a given circumference. There’s a formula for determining the circumference of an oval if you know the a and b values*, so in theory you could work back from a known circumference to get the a and b, but it’s many years since I did that much algebra. There’s a way to draw an oval with a pair of compasses, but it’s not the right shape for a bag base, too round. I needed an ellipse. So I winged it, as with so many other things.

The bag lining was two fat quarters from my stash and a spotted scrap for the base. The outer base is leftover fabric from another top, overlaid with a clear vinyl layer repurposed from the packaging from a set of bedding. It’ll keep the base clean and dry. The loop and clip are leftover commercial bias binding and the carabiner was liberated from the Husband’s basket of Useful Tiny Things. The bias binding around the top edge is home made bias binding, left over from yet another dressmaking project. Only the green leather handles are new and bought especially. It almost qualifies as scrappy, doesn’t it?

It’s going to be a gift for my friend Chippy, and she will have to wait until I see her in 57 days for our joint holiday down south. 


*In case any of you are in desperate need of this information, it’s C = 2 x π x √((a2 + b2) ÷ 2), where a is the major axis and b is the minor axis. No, I didn’t think so…. But isn’t it a pretty formula?


F²F³: three more beauties

I got another squishy this morning 🙂

The package was from Moira, who has sent me three really beautiful blocks for my amethyst and slate colour scheme. Aren’t they lovely? And what gorgeous fabrics and perfect colours. I particularly love the white-on-white pineapple print, perfect for its new tropical setting!

Click on any image to enlarge.

She also sent me a piece of wonderful Kaffe Fassett fabric as a bonus. I love this so much that I’m going to save it for a garment or accessory of some sort, so I can see and enjoy it all the time!

Two more sets of blocks to come and two more of my own to make, and I’ll have the full set. Then, of course, it’ll be time to start planning the quilt. I think this lovely colour scheme is going to be perfect for a quilt for one of our new bedrooms. Hmm… I’ve never tried wool batting, but it would be lovely and cosy for those cooler nights.

And now, back to my packing list!

More squishies in the mailbox!

While I was away, the postman brought me all kinds of lovelies.

First and best was a squishy envelope from Robyn, with three blocks for F²F (Footsquare Freestyle), as it’s my turn this month. Aren’t they fabulous? She’s used beautiful soft colours, just as I asked, and I can tell already that this quilt is going to be A-mazing.






Then there was my birthday present from the Husband. I’d been given the OK to order myself some fabrics from the wonderful Fifi’s Fabricology. It’s not cheap, but they have fabrics and designers I haven’t found anywhere else. Luckily, there was a sale on and two fabrics I’ve been pining for were in it, so I didn’t hesitate.

You won’t see these fabrics in a quilt except maybe as scraps. They’re going to become wearables, whether garments, scarves or whatever. When they’re worn out, then I’ll turn them into bits of quilt! From left to right, they’re Kaffe Fasset Orange flower border, Kaffe Fasset Blue Flower border, both from the Artisan range, and Holly Holderman from the Pam Kitty Picnic range in Periwinkle.

It’s taking me a while to catch up on things now I’m back from our trip. I’ve had piles of legal stuff to do in the run up to the settlement on our new house, and every time I think I’ve got a spare half hour the phone goes or the email pings. Never mind, only a few more days to go.

First things first, though. I’ve got a pair of wings to attend to!