Friday, 29 June 2012

Busy Busy Busy

With the fun of the party preparations past it was time this week to get my head down and sort out some more work related matters.

I've not blogged much about what I'm doing with Made and Making but it's keeping me quite busy. I don't want this to become some sort of constant advert for the business side of things. The blogs I've come across that are become dreadfully boring. This is has always meant to be a means of sharing the creativity.

However I can't avoid that Made and Making is now a big part of my life and our home so I can't not mention it at all. 

When I'm not teaching or sewing there are so many other things to think about. There is no one to pass the other jobs on to you see! This week has been focused on finalising the next few months and thinking about the coming holidays for Made by Me. What courses shall I run and thus designing and marketing some children's sewing classes for the school holidays. I've come up with six different workshops, four of which are based around learning to sew using a machine but with different end projects. Someone with experience of a machine would have just as much fun as they would be able to get on quicker and spend more time on the design and improving their finish.

Now some people might be all done with bunting, a bit bored with it after all the jubilee celebrations, but personally I can't get enough and I know it's a favoured project with the pre teens. 

I wanted some other sewing courses so thought about creating creatures which can be done with hand sewing. Jingle bunny as we call him, pictured here on the right, was machine stitched but there is no real need for him to be when being made for an older child. I made him a few years back when Niamh was small but I thought he was colourful critter just right for an inspiring picture. Biscuit bear on the other hand was completely hand stitched and always makes me smile. Being made of felt the possible shapes are endless as it's a much easier textile to work with for these sorts of projects.

A pencil case, or case for anything really (especially if you play with the dimensions which we can),.... but it added the interest of using zips, for those wanting to broaden their skills.

Finally, on the sewing front, making a drawstring rucksack style bag.. handy for school PE kit or popping to friends or anything.

Then I had an idea around something creative with fabric which didn't necessarily mean that you had to sew and created some more fabric art. I'd done these before and showed them at the open house and they got a lot of comments. 

This is another really simple example but the children could, and probably will, be far more adventurous with their designs. Half the fun is just holding and feeling the trims and fabrics whilst your mind gets to work on what you could create. When I made the flower canvas I had no idea what was going to materialise until it did. The key then is to embellish the picture always remembering that less can sometimes be more!

If you are reading and interested in any of these workshops then pop over to the website and take a look. They're running on weekday mornings, 9:30 to 12:30 and an early drop off is available by prior arrangement.

On another note I've also decided to run some evening classes and am launching a session of three, just ahead of the schools breaking up. Feedback during the open house weekend is that so many people are interested but don't have time during the day for a variety of reasons. 
They'll run on a Monday night from the summerhouse at the end of my garden. It's a lovely space that we don't use enough and will be perfect for a small class. Again if you're interested click here. It's a beginners class that will make a cushion. Working over three evening sessions there will be a bit more time than during the weekday sessions to delve into what a machine can really do and how best to use all those presser feet.

I love thinking about what to share with others. I try to ensure that all the projects make something useful that can be used again and again afterwards. There's only so much 'stuff' that we can fit into our lives and homes after all.

 Then it's all about making sure that everyone knows what I'm offering and mastering the techniques for sending creative and interesting emails to grab peoples attention. A little learning journey all about something called Mailchimp!

So there you are. A picture heavy post giving you a colourful insight into what I have been up to.


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