Friday, 5 October 2012



I have had such a lovely week! Mr Tax Man sent me a cheque so I decided I was going to treat myself to a new sewing machine and settled upon this one
The Brother X5!!!! Cost £70 in Argos so got a £5 Argos voucher too, I have no idea what to do with said voucher but I am sure I will think of something. So this little machine is nice and light, 14 basic stitches and came with some accessories, I didn't want anything fancy and this fit the bill. I did consult with my dad before purchasing as many years ago he repaired sewing machines as an apprentice so knows what I need to look out for. Another first was actually reading the instruction manual! I wanted to make sure I knew what I was doing from the start. 

So to give it a little whirl I made Phoebe a PE kit bag, as her nursery do sports on a Tuesday. 
Here it is....
I bought this patchwork style polycotton about a year ago, I think it's very pretty but the Man does not like it. O well never mind, at least her teachers will know its hers.
The machine was wonderful, so quiet and ran so smooth. Its such a difference to the machine mum gave me (it's older than me!). 

On further perusal of the manual I found that I can embroider on this nifty X5. So with a few pennies I had left I ordered some metallic embroidery thread from this ebay SHOP HERE it fell on my mat yesterday
These colours are so beautiful and shiny I cant wait to use them.

So I have never done any sort of machine embroidery before and I really fancy giving freestyle a go since seeing it on Kirsties Homemade Home Series 2 Episode 5 so I have been browsing YouTube for hints and think I have got the idea now.

I have an idea for my first project, purely by accident this idea came to me, I wrote on my Facebook that I was going to be sewing up a storm on my new machine and a friend asked how one sews a storm and it got me thinking, I could literally sew a storm! 
I had a good rummage in my stash and found a large piece of white fabric (no idea what kind as I lost the label) and cut it into rough fat quarters. I then found some packets of dylon hand dye in ocean blue and violet. I went back on YouTube and looked at low immersion dyeing. 

I began it last night while waiting for the girls to come over for our weekly wine, dinner and chat.
Using the blue first as its the lighter colour I mixed and very strong dye, about 1/4cup water the whole packet of dye and 4tbs of salt and roughly poured it over the damp crumpled fabric and repeated with the violet. You always start with the light colours and get darker otherwise you get a nasty mess. I covered it in clingfilm and left it on the hob while the oven was cooking the dinner so the heat would help fix the colours.
Here its is doing its thing. There are 6 pieces of fabric in here. It was left for about 3 hours and then I just rinsed each bit until the water ran clear and hung it on the radiator to dry.

Here is 1 of the finished pieces
The colours are much more vibrant and the camera isn't great at picking up the finer details but you see the marbled effect and how the blue and purple bleed into each other. 
This effect I feel looks like the dark and ominous storm clouds before a huge lightening show. This lightening and some foreground detail will be done in the metallic thread on the machine. 

This afternoon I will be having a practise on the machine before going on to the real thing. 

Will keep you posted on progress. Have a great day everyone

P.S. I have been asked to add a link to the Granny Spike Crochet pattern Here it is enjoy xxx