Thursday, 3 November 2016

Missoni Inspiration

Back in the summer I went to the Missoni exhibition at The Fashion and Textiles Museum. The friend I went with was a huge fan, I'm not so keen, but a day out with a friend, textiles and lunch is always a winner.

Ottavio Missoni

However, I was blown away by this exhibition. I came away completely inspired and loved the different ways colour was used to convey pattern and structure. There were a lot of paintings, some by Ottavio Missoni, which were bold and breathtaking. 

Nino Di Salvatore 'Struttura Spaziale'

Gianni Monnet 'Construzione'

Giacomo Balla 'Linee forza di mare'

I came away wanting to create on many different levels and I actually wanted to paint. This isn't like me at all, painting and I aren't a good combination. But the desire was there and I did go home and get out my inks and played around in my sketchbook. 

I will definitely be experimenting with colour and shapes more in my future quilts as a result of this exhibition, the movement and flow of these painting have inspired me to try some more curved piecing.

Friday, 6 May 2016


I've been working on some quilt blocks lately, so it's high time I did a little round up here.

This is a WIP I found yesterday, I'd forgotten all about it, so it was a very happy find. I'm Engish Paper Piecing this, though I found it is a free Robert Kaufman Paper Pieced Pattern. I like to have some hand sewing to do when I'm at events and this was my winter project, which got put aside over Christmas and forgotten about. 
It's very deco and quite striking, I'm going to enjoy continuing with this. It's got me thinking about a monochrome deco quilt, I think I need one.

This block is for a community project which has been organised by Hillary of Entropy Always Wins. The quilt is being made for Merel (@merel_birdblocks on IG), who lives in Amsterdam and has suffered a bleed around her spinal cord. She has limited movement in her legs but is already making progress. You can read more about the project here. The way in which the quilting community comes together to offer support and encouragement is one of the reasons I love quilting so much.

This block is based on the charming work of Kajsa Wikman it was such fun to make, I used some Libery scraps for the birds and fell in love with free machine embroidery again. It's been a long time since I last did any and I'll definitely be incorporating some into a project soon.

These two quilt as you go blocks are for the Siblings Together block drive they are quick and fun to make, so if you have the time I know they would appreciate your donation. 

Siblings Together is a charity that runs summer camps for children that are separated by the care system, they come together and get to play and spend time with each other just like other siblings. At the end of the camp each child gets to take home a quilt, which will remind them of their time spent at the camp, and the good times they had with their sibling.

This year the quilt group are hoping to reach their target of 100 quilts and are just past the half way point. If you can donate a block or two, or even better a whole quilt it will help enormously. 


Sunday, 1 May 2016

Me Made May 2016

It's May again, and time for Me-Made Made 2016! I love this challenge, whilst I do wear something handmade most days I often tend to wear the same things in rotation, this challenges me to look at my wardrobe as a whole and dig deeper to find forgotten items. I'm thinking in particular about accessories - I often overlook them, so this May I will be donning scarves and brooches in abundance!

This is my pledge and I will try and do a round up each week of my progress.

'I, Colette of / ColetteMoscrop on IG, sign up as a participant of Me-Made-May '16. I endeavour to wear something I have made each day for the duration of May 2016, I often forget about the accessories - I need to dig them out! I also plan to make at least two new items of clothing during May.'

Are you joining in? I'd love to hear about your pledge!

Thursday, 28 April 2016

vintage pledge make #1

I've been busy working on a few commissions, but have managed to squeeze in a little sewing time for myself. My first make was the Flared Skirt from Gertie Sews Vintage Casual. I added the pockets with a flash of colour from Kaffe Fassett, because I love a dress or skirt with a pocket.

It's the perfect everyday skirt, a bit of swish but not too fancy. I can see a cotton one for summer being made soon.

Then onto my Vintage Pledge Make #1, the blouse from Simplicity 3688 1940's retro pattern. I'm on a mission to increase my vintage inspired wardrobe and this was a great top to start with.

I used a deep cherry crepe, which hangs beautifully, though I think it was a little heavy for this blouse as the slightly odd pleats in the front waist don't drape too well. The fabric was a remnant that I got for £3, so this was a super bargain too.

This is a very quick make and I think I'll make another in a  Liberty print as it will drape beautifully. 

Not sure what's on my cutting table next, so I'd better get rummaging through those patterns and work my way through some of that fabric stash. 

Friday, 11 March 2016

Liberty Inspiration

I was very much inspired by the recent Liberty in Fashion exhibition at the Fashion and Textile Museum, if you got to see it too I'm sure you felt the same. Beautiful fabrics made into such a variety of clothing throughout the ages, the same prints making re-appearances in different colour palettes and looking so different from one decade to another.

The dresses on display were stunning, some made in-house at Liberty, others by professional dressmakers and some that were homemade with their own quirks and appeal, all equally beautiful and with a story of their own.

The dresses from the 1930s - 1950s were my favourites. Elegant lines, intricate details and more vibrant colour than I had expected.

Every aspect of the business is considered and has quality and true craftsmanship at the heart. From supporting local businesses like the silk weavers in Spitalfields, to ensuring clients had final approval on the designs and fabrics for their outfits. By ensuring garments were embellished with delicate embroidery and hand finished to the highest standards. These high values are surely what make Liberty such an enduring inspiration.

Each dress is an investment of all these qualities and must have been a dearly treasured item.

The bold colours and designs of the 1950s and 1960's still have a very modern feel to them. They have a more playful appeal and must have engaged the new 'youth' market.

The textile designs of sisters Susan Collier and Sarah Campbell from the 1960s and 70s really inspired me, their use of colour and geometric designs wouldn't look out of place in todays market. The painterly quality and more abstract florals are just beautiful.   

I am most definitely inspired and I am brimming with ideas now for the #Vintage Pledge.

Thursday, 18 February 2016

half term bonus

It's half term and we're enjoying a much needed break. Days out with family, den making, baking, sewing and all the things we don't usually find the time for, it's been blissful so far.

My shop will remain open, and to celebrate the holiday you can save 15% with the code HAPPY15 at the checkout. Next shipping day is Monday and the code is valid until Sunday 21st.

Enjoy the rest of holidays and some slow time everyone! 

Saturday, 13 February 2016

memory quilt

I have boxes and boxes of baby and children's clothes that I just can't part with. Favourite trousers that were rolled around in at the park, dresses that were worn to birthday parties, pyjamas that are filled with memories of our favourite bedtime stories. The special items, the ones that were chosen everyday, now worn out at the knees - they are so precious. 

I've long been planning a memory quilt, but those boxes are just so overwhelming. After a huge New Year clear out, the boxes are a glaring reminder in the corner. So I've taken the plunge and have begun to cut the clothes up and I've made a start at cutting some into squares and rectangles.

This will be an improv quilt, I plan to work on blocks throughout the year, this is definitely a long term project, but one that I am going to thoroughly enjoy and savour. 

There is also a lot of pink, with two girls it was quite hard to avoid, especially if you're fussy and will only buy your children cotton clothing!  I hope I can tone it down with some of the blues and greens from my maternity clothes.

I have lots of jersey fabrics in the mix, I'm wondering if I should interface these, any suggestions? Now I just need to keep up the momentum!

Thursday, 4 February 2016

Vintage Pledge

I have a fairly small vintage pattern collection, but I do intend to build it up! Though most importantly I need to actually use them and increase my me-made wardrobe.  

Which is where the Vintage Pledge comes in, hosted by A Stitching Odyssey and Kestrel Makes.

Seeing everyone elses finished items is sure to keep me motivated and help me find the time for some selfish sewing.

The appeal of the illustations on the pattern envelopes is often too hard to resist, the style and glamour they portray makes me long for days gone by. 

So, during 2016, I, Colette Moscrop, pledge to complete at least four new pieces using patterns from my vintage collection. The theory is that this will also help me to use up some of my fabric hoard and encourage me to only buy new fabric with a specific project in mind. Wish me luck with that part!


Saturday, 30 January 2016

print workshop round up

The print workshop that I ran with Ruby earlier in the month was a great success. As this was our first one we were a little apprehensive, but needn't have been. We had a lovely group of creative people eager to try their hand at screen printing on fabric and Gelli plate printing onto paper and card. 

Both of the techniques are very different and our students enjoyed creating their individual pieces with different mediums.

Gelli plate printing is a form of mono-printing. You can add texture to your prints using a combination of techniques, with which you can create multiple layers of colour and pattern. The uses for your finished designs are endless, greetings cards, bookmarks, gift boxes and tags can be made, or you can really work into a piece to create an original artwork to frame. 
Once you have gained confidence with your skills you can also print onto canvases or fabric, which opens up a whole range of new projects to print.
We screen printed using acetate stencils that I had pre-cut. On this small scale you can print the same design several times to build up a repeat pattern, arranging the layout to create an individual piece of fabric or tea towel. 

As time was limited during the workshop most of the students did a one colour print, but some added an additional colour by block printing. This is another technique for printing on fabric and is fairly simple, but very effective.

This wonderfully vibrant combination was created with two of the screen printing stencils.

We're busy planning our next workshops, so stay tuned if you'd like to come along and try out these printing techniques! 

Friday, 22 January 2016

make it - stash busting

I have started this year with a good stride and intend to make a large dent in my fabric hoard. There is so much of it, it's beyond ridiculous.

I have many unfinished projects and I desperately need to tackle them. I need to make up the patterns that I have bought, with the fabric that has been sitting there, oh so patiently and I need to finish things as I go.

First up is Little Misses quilt, which I started about two and a half years ago, gulp. This week I have basted it and it's ready to be hand quilted, yes I know this will take forever, but it will be beautiful and worth it in the end. 
I am making one for each of my girls and I have hand quilted Missy Big's quilt. It has a lovely texture and drape to it and is just waiting to be bound. They will both be finished before the end of the year, I promise!! You can read about how they started here.

These cushions were a super quick and easy make, the girls choose their fabrics ages ago and have been waiting... 

These neck cushions have also been in the pipeline for too long, so glad to have ticked three things off the list this week and made a (very) small dent in the stash! These were made using this pattern from QuiltMag. 

It has been very satisfying to start and finish things in a week, lets see if I can keep it up.  

Sunday, 3 January 2016

New Year - New Print Workshop!

Happy New Year! I'm so excited by all the things to come this year, I have plans to expand on my handmade wardrobe, new designs I'm itching to print up and many family adventures to be had.

2015 whizzed by in a flash of excitement and opportunity. I am so thrilled that the year was a turning point for my little business, thank you so much to everyone who bought from me, left comments and generally cheered me on, each and every one of you made my year! 

I have many plans for this year, the first one being a Print Workshop that I am hosting with Ruby of Gelli Arts Workshop London and this happens on Sunday!! You will get to try your hand at screen printing onto fabric and Gelli printing onto paper and card. It will be a fun packed afternoon where you'll be inspired and learn new techniques. New Year - New Skills!

I'm working on some new designs that you'll be able to print up onto a tea towel and fat quarter, more to come soon!

The workshop is at Harrow Arts Centre and there are a few spaces left, if you're interested, email me to book up!