Am I Clothes Donkey rather than a Clothes Horse?

So this year I have actually decided to make a resolution that is nigh on impossible. 

I have nearly stopped smoking so it's not that

I took up running about 3 years ago so it's not that 

My liver function tests came back clear so no need to give up the booze yet. (thank god)

This year from the 11th of Jan I have vowed to buy no new clothes, 

Not one item ..... nothing

Not even bras or pants 

On Sunday I am going on a sock buying mission as I have no idea on how to make them but from Monday the 11th of January I am taking a year long vow of wardrobe celibacy. And this ... also....devastatingly... includes my beloved designer handbags (cries) 

I know this makes me sound shallow but let me explain my reasoning. 

When I was ill and unmedicated shopping was a real comfort to me, the horror I felt from gaining a pound or the misery I felt at my reflection could be glossed over with a shiny new outfit and thanks to Primark I could get a whole new wardrobe every week if I so chose. One of my old housemates once remarked that she'd never (in the 18 months we shared for) seen me wear the same item twice. When I recovered from my ED I sold all of my unrealistic sizes. Again though shopping for nice clothes helped me embrace my changing body and thus, unfortunately, the floordrobe is back....with a vengence. You see the issue is that yes I am currently a size 16 - 18 but a 12 doesn't seem that unattainable so on top of my winter and summer wardrobes I have a VERY SOON collection that outsizes them both.

We joke in my house that we have two infestations 1) Books (mostly my OHs) and 2) Clothes (mostly mine). We have these every where - in the kitchen cupboards = Books - underneath the sofa = Books and Shoes - next to the fusebox = books and bags and clothes. under the bed......... basically anywhere we can find a structural orifice = Books and Clothes.  It is a real problem.

When I say this I mean it both spatially and morally (well not so much the books). In a previous life I worked in fashion logistics so the fact that I will happily pay for ANY of the shit in the shops is a) A study in cognitive dissonance. b) a suspension of my humanity facilitated by my magpie brain. and c) pure stupidity from a cost view (when you see the bottom line for this crap it's nauseating.)

We all know that high street shops stock clothes made using slave labour. For those of us who can afford or have the creative means to do otherwise (and I mean ecological and fair trade, not designer), when we preen and coo in the mirror, marvelling at the fact that dress only costs £15, in that moment, when we are thinking only of our own self image, we are truly solipsistic.  And if you do that while saying that you are a (insert left wing ideology here) then you need to come to terms that you are voting right wing, capitalism at all costs, fuck everyone else with the vote that really counts .... your money. 

Me, I'm done 

I say this as a hypocrite, just last week I saw a coat I liked in the window of a discount shop and bought it for a tenner, walking out, beaming, bag in hand before saying to myself 'SHIT - I've just broke my new years resolution!' It was like I was programmed

1) Like....2) Fits......3)Cheap

I didn't even realise what I'd done, like I was hypnotised by the newness of the BARGAIN. It kind of shocked me though as the nature of my consumerism has been really bothering me recently, yet suddenly my belief is suspended by a pink and grey houndstooth with a fur collar. Not cool. And that is why I'm letting myself off (just this once). It was close to an unconscious action.

So I am setting myself a challenge that shouldn't really be a challenge but is because I almost feel like I've been brainwashed. (see above paragraph), and here are my rules 

1) If I absolutely have to buy something from a shop it must be a charity shop (so no new clothes)

2) If I make something I want I must sell/donate/chuck a similar item from my collection 

3) When something no longer fits I must sell/donate/chuck

4) I will spend no more than £50 a month on fabric

5) If I can fix it I will if I can't I will bin

So I have thought about doing this for a while but I really feel that now is the time to do it -bye bye primark hello ha ha ha ha



One of the main reasons that my initial attempts at clothes making were so bin worthy is that I just couldn't get my head around all of these different types of fabric, I mean what the f*&k is Gaberdine? I became obsessive about buying all these cool fabrics that I saw and yet I didn't have a scooby doo about what they were and what they could be used for. Even though I have literally over 100 sewing books and 4 suitcases of fabric I still couldn't work out what each one was for, what the difference was between a heavy weight and medium weight and of course invariably that meant that I was using the wrong thread, the wrong machine settings and the wrong needles. I am determined to get to grips with this so I will be doing videos on how to identify fabrics, what they are suitable for and all the other bits and pieces we need to know.

I will also be putting together fabric sample books that I will sell in my etsy shop for those who are interested. I know that for me this would have been an absolute godsend

Sewing Patterns

So any of you who have followed my blog will know that this all started because of my mother (so blame her). She used to regale me with tales of beautiful frocks that she whipped up in a jiffy so she could go out 'to the dancing'. I decided somewhat fatefully that I wanted to be like that - problems a) I'm quite fat and b) I am as practical as a lump of clay. Anyway my lovely mother and I bought a pattern and made a dress together she made me a nice dress. Where I do use patterns I will do a full tutorial here. As I know how to use this particular pattern I may make another dress at somepoint out of it. I do have literally dozens of patterns all of which I have started to use got frustrated at the sizing and then filed them under f*ck you I'll try this again later. Hopefully once I've taught myself (and hopefully you also in the process) I will put them up here with a full youtube how to.

In the mean time this is the pattern New Look Sewing Pattern 6567 - Misses Dresses Sizes: A (6,8,10,12,14,16) I used for the first dress my mum and I ever made and some pics of how it turned out

I am so sucking my stomach in here: Please ignore the mess in my bedroom !!!

BBOOOOOOOHHHHH - Why do I not listen to my own advice?

So some more exciting stuff has happened. I had my graduation (well second graduation) so I am now officially jacq '2 degrees' Allan :) and I have the pictures to prove it

We took a lot of pictures on the day, and to be quite honest, as queen of the selfie I am not very keen on photos other people take. I always stress how I look, try to hide my chin, worry about my clothes. With this kinda event obvi we are looking for the 'official' photo (ie the one I can't avoid from the last graduation). And there were many contenders for this round, I however want 3

1)  I totally want this picture as one of my graduation photos. I HATE the last one I had, it haunts me wherever I go, at the grannies at the aunties at the rentals it's EVERYWHERE and I hate, hate, hate it. And this got me thinking about how I think about myself and how I look etc. etc. I have been planning on losing weight for this graduation since May....MAY. I think that its fairly obvious I haven't. But I love this picture, it's me how I look now, in the moment and truly happy, with one of my best mates. I genuinely don't give a shit what my weight is

Picture 1, Me and Crazy Krysha ;p
 2) I love this picture BECAUSE of how I look, granted I'm not 'thin' as I feel I should be but I look like the perfect mix of my parents and I LOVE that. You can tell that from my cheeks up I'm like my mum and down I'm like my dad. Can I also just say that they look AMAZING for their ages (which I wont say ha ha) I know that particularly at the moment my parents are breaking their backs so I can do my masters and I really hope that they think it will be worth it until I can self fund. I used to think I was nothing like my mum but I realise now I really am a 50/50, the mum half was just a bit latent ha ha. I like this picture of the three of us and I'd much rather have this that one on my own. I wish my brother was able to come but he's on another continent so I'll let him off ;P

with the rentals
3) Me and my long - suffering, this picture really says it all (just smile babe!)

Anyway, underneath this wonderfully fetching robe (I swear next year I will be making my own it was sooooo ridiculously uncomfortable) I was wearing a new skirt that I made using this tutorial

Which is great by the way but make sure that you hem the skirt part first as she states she forgot. Also while this is a great tutorial, because I was using a checked fabric I ignored the pleating instructions, thinking that I could just place the pleat based on my fabric. I also placed the front and back of the pleated sections in 2 seperate bits This was a BIG mistake as, I 1) stupidly only folded over half a check, instead of a whole check (which would have been over an inch) trying to save fabric (why????), this means that the pleats fell straight out; and 2) Didn't get my bottom seams to line up as I used two separate pieces of fabric. I fucked up one of the side seams it looks like shit too. Anyway I have since gone back over it and top stitched some of the checks vertically so they stay in better and have restitched the side seam that was a mess- here is how it looks now
Can you still be punk rock at 32?
Anyway, because I was in love with this check I also made a new top. I screwed up the dimensions a bit, over cut the fabric at the zip, the fabric was quite stretch compared to the original cotton that I did this in so there are a few issue but - BOO YAH - I did my first collar using this tutorial (woop woop)

I will definitely make a dress using this video also. Anyway - I had some issues with the collar and I would now advise stitching as close to the edge as possible so that you keep shape. If I had taken any of my previous advice I would have held off on those because I couldn't be arsed to fix it even when I knew it was higgilty - piggilty. It still looks OK though (or not?? I dunno???) It is at least the body is perfectly symmetrical which does make me pleased     

I will again, try and take my own advice, and my my mums, when she says 'measure measure and measure again!!!!'

Next week I'm off to buy a shit tonne of £1 per meter fabric to make a whole load of proper slopers for future patterns. I will only be doing them until I get them right (hmmmmm or will IIIIIIIII rah rah ha ha)

While I have been writing this I have been listening to this 

Not So Crap at Craft? That's what I thought, until......

Yay I made stuffs!! And I've actually wore them, well some of them.

I started using this video to make an A - line Skirt. I have to say the video made everything really easy to understand and I made the skirt but for some bloody reason known only to my subconscious I used really inappropriate fabric. Or at least I can't decide if its too weird or not, I don't know. I have to say that it fits gorgeously and it's really really comfortable hmmm what do you think? I had a total nightmare with the zip for some reason but it now sits really nicely, I can't really think what else I would use the fabric for.

This was a really useful tutorial and now I have finally successfully used bias binding after avoiding it like the plague. I was really surprised that it was quite easy.

So following my relative success I got over excited and decided to make some more clothes. I now know that there are 3 key elements in dress making.

1) A proper pattern
2) Patience
3) Common Sense

Any regular reader of my blog will remember the mini breakdown I had when faced with the Burda patterns. I found this video on the internet and decided that rather than risk my sanity again I would make my own. I have to say I am really really pleased with the top I made using a pattern I drafted from another top. I also love this fabric which was part of my Walmart haul. Here is the finished result.

Must dashes and top hats, what's not to love.

So I did something that I've never done while making this top. I actually did it in stages over a week. Normally when I make something I'm so desperate just to get it wearable that I rush it, become frustrated and end up with wonky seams arms of different lengths and weird zip placements.

As you can see I used my new found confidence with bias binding to bind the edge of the neck. Once the top was finished it was nice but a bit tunic like and not really me so I threw a few bust darts in as the fabric was cotton and I hemmed the bottom edge after resizing the back piece to match the gap that the darts left and put an elastic waistband in so that I could play with the length and make it more shaped. It also has a back zip as the fabric is quite stiff. I am really chuffed with this actually because it is the first thing I've made that is very 'me' I love wide necklines and the print is nice and kooky and it's definitely something I would have picked up had I seen it in a shop.

And then disaster....

Just to prove that despite all this I am still totally capable of making the most ridiculous, novice errors, I did something really stupid. 

My mum bought me this skirt when we were in Matalan a few months ago and It's really comfy and really cute. I also loved the big box pleats. 

 So with this design in mind and using the previous A line skirt as a guideline I decided to make my own using the must dash fabric. I cut out my material adding 2 inches for each box pleat and stay stitched them in place and found a nice bit of elastic for the waist band and then 


Why I did this, why I thought that this would work I really don't know, it was as if I just suspended my belief in PHYSICS obviously it didn't fit and looked like shit before I realised that I need to make a waistband case, attach it to the main body of the skirt and then feed the elastic through to make the waistband. So I unpicked my fabric (delicately). I shaped one out of some scrap black fabric that I had and tried again. Thankfully this time it came together nicely

I have actually worn this skirt and its really comfy. fits perfectly and I'm now chuffed :) 

While writing this I have been listening to this (the woman is insane!!!) 

And the Heavens Opened and the Angels Sang and Lo! Behold! I Produced Something that I Thought,' Ahhh I can Wear that in Public'

Until my boyfriend told me that it looked like it was made from a pair of old curtains (it was).

So my wonderful mother bought me a new sewing machine for Christmas (although a while before the day) after the Argos value fiasco. Its a Singer (ooh posh I know). Now while I am eternally grateful for this lovely gift. I think it demonstrates a mothers love. She has too much faith perhaps. And initially, so did I.

Now me being me I thought, ooh a Singer, I will be AMAZING and make TONNES of shit and it will look so professional all the while forgetting the one basic flaw in this theory. I am shit. So I started with the burda sew along cape thing which is labelled in big letters EASY (in other words if you can't do this.... get tested.) in the catalogue. That disaster is catalogued below. After this I was so disheartened that I thought I'll take a break from sewing and try knitting'. My auntie told me how easy it was and how when she was younger she could run up a jumper in 2 days. 2 Days!!!!! I was a very happy and excited bunny. However, I just couldn't  get it. Had I bought the wrong type of needles, perhaps? WTF was I doing wrong? I took myself back to the shop to buy another pair 2x the thickness, to my dismay, no change!!! 4 days of crying, needle throwing, swearing and my other half asking me if I needed my medication upped again later I realised that I was missing a stage in casting on, and that's why I couldn't get past 1 row of knit stitches. Lets just say that 3 rows in I was still so angry with myself that the knitting is back in the cupboard.

Pissed off and forlorn, my crappy half finished cape was on my duct tape dummy (that's another Greek tragedy for a later day) and it was just really pissing me off, the first thing I see in the morning, mocking me. I thought ENOUGH and I decided to turn it into something else. And so I turned to the internet and found this tutorial:

And dear readers what can I say. I ACTUALLY MADE IT AND IT'S NICE!!!! (regardless of my boys opinion) In fact what happened was that I made one and I was so so chuffed with it that I made it a shorter version. Now I know that it's only 3 pieces of material but I also put in zips, WELL, and hooks and eyes and as one was just a smidge too big belt loops. I'm so excited I could peeeeee my self. Both my wonderful creations are made from old curtains from the charity shop = £6.

Here they are!!!!

This is hanging for drying that seam is actually in the middle (honest)

This is just out the wash which is why it looks like this. 
More importantly the wash DIDN'T destroy it YAY ME!!

In the picture it is also folded at the back but thrust me it looks OK. So yay go me and a MASSIVE thank you to sweet material for posting the video! Next time I guess I'll try some pockets, darts a lining maybe hmmm. I'm very happy that finally something worked. Minor miracle infact!!!

While writing this I have been listening to this 

GDMFSOAB: BurdaStyleBastards

Dear Burda Style, 

Why oh why do you hurt me so? All I ever wanted was a hobby, something to help me relax and feel a little better about myself. Alas this was not to be today. I know that when I look through your beautiful magazine I will not be able to make 99.9 % of your stuff and that is fine, I dream about 5 years in the future and being able to just 'whip up' a pair of trousers like the ones in your magazine. No, I know what I am and I accept that. However. If you publish a magazine that states it has an 'Easy sew along' Then it should really be EASY and part of that is actually starting with THE RIGHT BLODDY DIMENSIONS FOR THE PARTS YOU HAVE TO DRAFT YOURSELF. I have wasted a whole afternoon trying to relax and recuperate from root canal treatment, during which I had to have an injection RIGHT INTO THE NERVE YOU BURDA BASTARDS by using your pattern only to find that you have completely given the wrong dimensions to the lining strips for the pockets on the cape. In a normal pattern with someone who understands patterns, this might be OK , its probably being read by someone who could improvise. THIS IS NOT ME !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! IF YOU SAY EASY EASY EASY THE LEAST YOU COULD DO IS CHECK YOUR MEASUREMENTS YOU WANKERS. I am SHIT and IMPRACTICAL these are supposed to be FOOLPROOF. And anyway, even if they had have been the right length they would still be rectangles, bearing this in mind WHY THE HELL WOULD YOU STATE THAT YOU HAVE TO STITCH THE NARROW EDGES TOGETHER, WTF IS THAT SUPPOSED TO MEAN. ITS A RECTANGLE.

I hate you burda style, screw you and the horse you rode in on 

I have been listening to this 

365 Day Challenge Starting on the 7th November

Clothes: I have a shameful amount of Clothes, truly shameful. At least 3/4 of the stuff I own is clothes. No one needs as many clothes as I have, and of course I probably only wear about 20% of them so for the next 365 days I am not allowed to buy any new clothes. This means, nothing from a 'new shop'. I will be reserving £20 per month for things I really need i.e. underwear From tomorrow if I really want an item of clothing I will either have to thrift it or make it and the money for this will come out the £20 budget. This also goes for bags and shoes. I also have a ridiculous collection of both. Buying like a lunatic was fine when I had a decent salary but I'm a charity director now and it just feels wasteful and gluttonous.

Money: I will actually set myself a weekly budget take it out in cash and leave my bank card somewhere out of reach, part of my problem is that I don't really think about spending I just hand someone my card and ignore it. For the next 365 days the aim is to use the bank card at the cash machine once a week only. I will be setting my first weekly budget on Sunday and seeing how that goes, I will from now on always know how much money I've got and I will start putting money into my savings account. I will also finally ask the trustees at my charity for a wage to cover the loss of earnings I have as a result of having to work 2 unpaid days a week for the charity.

Health: I have a lot of issues with my health and I'm on a lot of medication. Some of that medication is non negotiable but some, although it makes things easier, I could come off with a little effort. Recently my Diabetes Consultant told me he would like to put me on Statins. I am 30 years old, that is not happening. I have to take responsibility for my own health. The first thing I have to do is stop smoking, from tomorrow I will be cutting down to 10 a day and working from there. I am also going to stop drinking during the week. This should help my finances as well.

Diet & Exercise: Urrgghh this is something that I find incredibly hard to talk about, again as someone who has recovered from an eating disorder which has involved binging/ purging/ insulin omission/ medication abuse and over exercising I am really really good at ignoring things I should and shouldn't be doing. Its all in the name of protecting myself of course but now its become toxic, time to grow up and sort it out. The irony is when I eat well I lose weight, starving just makes me put on now (thank you hypothyroidism) but I struggle to be mindful of what I eat. That little voice is always there whispering in my ear. Tomorrow I am going to look at what I have in the fridge and plan a weeks worth of food and I am going to stick to at least 75% of it. I am also going to get back out on my bike which I absolutely love. From tommorow I am committing to doing 2 decent sessions of exercise a week. I know that it should be more but I have to be realistic with DWED and uni and I don't want to throw myself into something that will make me feel even worse if I fail. 2 Sessions is manageable.

Time Management: I am going to start properly scheduling my work time with DWED, at the moment I just feel like I am constantly in the middle of one of those huge balls made out of rubber bands and I'm becoming inefficient by taking on far too much at once with not enough help. I have wonderful volunteers and people bending over backwards to help me, now I just need to get them, organised. 

Whilst writing this I have been listening to this 

Back to being Crap - Duct Tape Dummy Part 1

So I have been having a few weeks break. During this time I have started and abandoned at least a dozen projects, mainly down to sizing. I am so confused by the measurements, particularly the hip, bust waist ratios that are used on many patterns. Not to mention that you would need a degree in bloody physics to understand the patterning on the Burda style pattern sheets!I mean jesus look at them!

I was so excited to do my dress until I saw this. I think I would need a bloody sat nav to make my way around these sheet, and the sizing is just plain weird
Not a happy bunny

These make less than no sense to me so I have decided to go back to the beginning and start over. This has involved me making a duct tape dress form, yes that's right, duct tape. It started going wrong from the beginning when I covered our kitchen in strips of duct tape to make applying them to my body easier. It didn't, my boyfriend complained bitterly after realising that I had accidentally covered every surface in our kitchen in gunk and taped all the cupboards together. We ploughed on however and finally I had a plastic me, I am currently trying to fill it with news paper and insulating foam. As soon as it's finished I'll post a picture. As a side note, I don't recommend doing this if you have body image concerns. Seeing myself in 3D is pretty much my worse nightmare. I have NO shape, seriously, I'm just straight up and down and wide. This was cool when I was younger, played keys in a band, weighed literally half what I do now and I revelled in looking gender ambiguous but now it just makes me want to cry. This having been said it's also been a positive thing in a way. When you're recovering from an eating disorder you have to ignore your body image, I've become and expert at ignoring what I look like but the Duct tape Dummy has brought it into focus again and to be honest I think I need that. I want to lose weight but I think I might just be ready to do it without killing myself.

While writing this I have been listening to this

Shrug....Off? The Upcycle that didn't work

Urrgghh, Why oh why do I do it? At the moment I don't have a sewing machine but I didn't let that stop me crafting, oh no. I thought that I would look for something I could hand sew. Only one problem there, I'm crap at hand sewing. Anyway I found this tutorial on the internet to make something that I thought would be cute and quick

Seriously, looks simple enough right? Well I'm sure it would have been if I'd actually followed the instructions instead of 'tweaking' them to see if I could make something 'more me'. What I keep forgetting is that more me actually translates to more shit. So I took myself off to the charity shop and bought this

Total cost 3 pound. I had this image of a kind of fleece shrug with a huge bow. I got 1) the material wrong 2) the hand stitching wonky, I stupidly thought that by stitching in embroidery thread it would be a 'design feature', it wasn't it just looked shit, so here is the down cycle

Yes I live with a BSG geek
hmm this isn't what the internet one looked like

It looked even worse on, to be fair that photo doesn't do the crapness justice. So I have decided that I am not going to do any other sewing projects until I have new machine... more news on this later.

Anyway.... in other news, look at what I picked up from the charity shop

Look at the fruity fabric how cool is that!!! I have absolutely no idea what I'll do with it but it was only 2 poond so I couldn't resist.

Anyway I decided that I wouldn't be a one trick pony and I would do something else crafy. I really liked this tutorial on fabulously artsy and thought these would make lovely Christmas gifts.

Sooo Cute
So I started off with a scale model and hurrah it worked so chuffed was I that I decided to get experimental (honestly it's like I can't help myself). I had some fabric paper and tried to glue it on and yes disaster stuck and the thing fell apart, now take a look at the project above..... Here is mine .....

.... In the bin.

So here is the sum total of a whole day crafting yesterday

I did actually really like the project though and I will give it another go with the proper material at some point in the future. Anyway. I'm depressed now so here is something that cheers me up

Great Success and then DISASTER

I did it, I did it, I actually made something. Sooo chuffed!! Remember the Charity Shop bed sheet I bought for a poond? Well here is what it used to look like

I just quite liked the wonky polka dots and I wanted to do some cheap stuff. Using the Laura Marsh pattern (see last post) I made myself some pyjama bottoms woo hoo here is the obligatory blog shot

I want to be like the other pretty blog girls, they make make beautiful vintage repros, but can they rock the PJ's? 
If this was taken 2 seconds later you'd
be looking at my 'Chill Out' purple pants now 

Ah I love pyjama's and I imagine that they will feature quite heavily in this blog given that I'm skint, need practice and the bedsheets are cheap. Anyway I got over excited at the fact that I'd made something and unfortunately decided to take some 'action shots' which resulted in my seam coming loose. I just didn't get it!!! Until I got some scrap material and whacked it through my machine. The tension has totally totally gone, I tried everything to fix it sure that it must be something I was doing. Then I phoned my mum. Lets just say, it's screwed. I guess that's what I get for buying Argos value range. Anyway. It's going back to Argos tomorrow. It's crap.

While I have been writing this I have been listening to this

Structure I Need Structure Damn It!!

Ok so I guess this post is just to set out how I plan to stop becoming crap at craft and start creating something other than noise or mess. There are so may resources on the interet it's mindboggling and it would be foolish not to take advantage of that. I also have some books and the other day I bought the september edition of burda style. The patterns are graded in difficulty so I'm going to start off with the easier ones and then move up. Each month I will be hoping to complete 3 projects, 1 off the internet, one from a book and one out of burda style. I will be starting with this free pattern from Laura Marsh

Link Here
And this is the pattern I have chosen from burda style
Link to the single pattern here

And depending on how they go I will be doing a project out of one of these books

Link here

link here

Link here
That is of course if I and my machine are still in one piece ha ha

Anyway while writing this I have been listening to this

The Twin set that was a Crap set and a really Crap circle skirt

Ok so I decided to start small. Skint, I took myself off to the charity shop to see if there was some fabric or some hideous monstrosity of a dress I could upcycle into some vintage-esque wonder. Unfortunately I live in Tottenham and as such the charity shop really is full of shit, but, maybe that is because it got raided in the riots (no joke, I think you can tell how crap the area is when looters hit carpet right and the charity shop first!). Gone are my student days when I used to flounce off to West Hampstead from my halls of residence to pick up some cheap as chips 501's or something wonderfully Shoreditch twatish from the 80's, no unfortunately what's left of my local charity shop is all BHS and Atmosphere. Nothing to upcycle there. I did however manage to get my hands on some cheap arse curtains, some lace, an old bed sheet and 2 cushion inserts (grand total of £7, cheaper than 20 malboro lights or 2 pints in Dirt Dicks!). How difficult could it be to make a cushion? I took my fabric home ripped open the sewing machine (took an hour to set it up) grabbed an old zip and started cutting. So far so good . Until I had to put in the zip. I have watched 1000's of tutorials on this so why I decided to ignore them all I'll never know. The result is a weird looking thing that I'm sure if thrown at the wrong angle could take someone's eye out.

Anyway as you can see I probably should have given up there, but I was so impressed with myself that I decided to make something else - trawling the internet I came across this wonderful tutorial on how to make a circle skirt

Easy I thought!!!, I especially like the bit where she just whisked over how to actually insert the zip as by this point I was hating them and not wanting to ever see one again. So I made the skirt and actually it was Ok hurrah!!. So excited I was by my new craftiness that when the boy got home I was all like 'LOOK LOOK I MADE STUFF' he burst out laughing and said 'what you've made is a skirt/ cushion twinset. You can't wear that out, you look like a Lampshade'. Lesson number 1 just because something can be made out of a fabric doesn't mean that it should be.

So I had good old look through my stash (this isn't my first foray into making a mess) and found some material that I thought would make an amazing circle skirt - Unfortunately for me it was a stretch velveteen which my mum has since told me is very hard to work with, Lesson number 2 ASK MUM FIRST. I thought it was just me, all my measurements went wonky I had to unpick the waist band and resew the zip at least 5 times, the material kept riding up. But, Oh, was I happy when it was finished. Well yes. Until I put it on. Then I realised that the material had actually come away from the seam and mangled it. Gutted. But hey - At least I got the Back Zip and Seam nice. Lesson number 3 KNOW YOUR FABRIC otherwise your project will be CRAPTASTIC

   Anyway here is what I have been listening too while writing this

I, as always, blame my mother

My Mum is amazing at making things. when I was wee she used to tell me about dresses she would run up and alter for 'the dancing' and she made my clothes. Now she has a lovely big workshop in our garage making soft furnishing and blinds and all sorts of wonderful stuff. So recently I had a visit back home to Scotland and I fatefully decided that I wanted to make something, a dress, and I wanted my mum to teach me. Poor mum, urrrgghh the measuring, remeasuring, tacking, tacking, cutting more tacking, with me doing the equivalent of 'are we nearly there yet' at every stage, we did however make it to the end and I am the proud owner of a home made dress. I was so pleased with it that I completely forgot what a pain in the arse the process was and promptly bought a sewing machine (all be it an argos value one) on my return to London. I am determined now that I will become more self sufficient in my wardrobe needs and I will make clothes that I love. Even if it drives me mad I will learn serenity, (I will god damn it!!!!) I also have this idea about doing really subversive things with traditional methods of making. I.e. I absolutely love these but how amazing would they be spelling out SWEAR WORDS how awesome (or extremely immature I can't decide) Either way so begins my journey in to destroying eh sorry making stuff. If nothing else I'm going to have a good laugh at myself, why not

While I have been writing this I have been listening to this