Perfect presents for perfect people!

Can you believe that it is December tomorrow-that is officially Christmas in our books. If that makes you panic a bit then don’t fret; we’ve come up with some super little gift combos for you. So now it’s super easy to choose and takes the stress out of your shopping, so you have more time to drink mulled wine and scoff mince pies! Just because we’re nice we are offering you FREE DELIVERY this weekend on all orders until Monday 2nd December, just enter ‘SHIP2013’ at the checkout and thank us later!


One of our most popular fabrics is the Daschund, it seems to be the dog on trend right now. So why not treat your loved one to a cute little purse and a ‘don’t I look dashing’ lipbalm. Click here to have a look. Even if they don’t have a daschund, then surely this is the next best thing as you can carry them around in your handbag just like a real one!


For all those bicycle lovers there’s the big and small useful purses that can be used for storage of many useful things. Toiletries, pens & pencils or even all your bike related gubbins! Or there is a notebook for writing down a list of adventures and places to explore on your bike. Buy them here.


The oyster catcher was one of Poppy’s first ever designs and still remains a very popular favourite today. Available on a little badge and useful purses. Catch them here!


and for all of the sewers, (we know there are quite a few out there!) why not treat them to a pretty little sewing purse to store all their needles, threads and treasured bobbins. They could wear an embroidered badge with pride as they happily whip up their latest make and enjoy some ‘sew lovely’ lipbalm. Take a look at them here.


For anyone who loves the coast, and dreams of lazy days on the beach watching the boats trawling by, whilst listening to the sound of the gulls then don’t miss our boaty combo set. Our flotilla useful purse, embroidered gul badge and cheeky ‘hello buoys’ lipbalm-the perfect boaty gifts. Click here to trawl it into your basket!

Hope we’ve given you some good ideas for gifts now and do utilise our FREE DELIVERY over the weekend by entering ‘SHIP2013’ at the checkout.  Now I better send the husband up in the loft to dig out the decorations and that ball of tangled fairy lights and get festive!

Choosing a sewing machine – good luck!

One of the questions we get asked the most is ‘how do I choose a sewing machine?’ We don’t profess to be experts on this – we use very old, very nice 1930s Singer sewing machines which do just what we want (most of the time!), but they’re not high tech and weren’t the result of a lot of research. There’s a quote from Poppy in our little film for the Eden project where she says ‘you have to kiss a lot of frogs before you find a good one’ and that is certainly true of the way we work.  Our machines have come from car boots, the dump, charity shops and the odd sewing machine shop (oh yes and ebay).  Quite often chosen because they’re pretty! We have about 13 of them in our studio at the last count!

One of our beauties in the studio we use on a daily basis - and nothing else!

One of our beauties in the studio we use on a daily basis – and nothing else!

Deciding on what machine to go for largely depends on what you want to do with your machine…..Do you want to just do a bit of dressmaking with an array of fancy stitches?  Some serious upholstery projects?  Or just have a play with freehand machine embroidery?

    • If you’re after something to see you through some really tough fabric, then a ‘flatbed’ machine is probably best – these are bigger, more industrial-type machines that take up more room but will serve you well when it comes to making curtains and other bigger projects.
    • Most modern machines will have a selection of decorative and functional stitches, some digital sewing machines will even do the sewing for you – you don’t even need to put your foot on the pedal!  Modern machines are great but we have found that a few people who own a new machine have said they are very light weight, even ‘throw away’ quality.  We think it depends how much you will be using your machine.  If it’s just for the occasional small sewing job, these would be fine.
    • If it’s the freehand machine embroidery you want to have a go at, then most machines old and new will have the ability to do this – it just takes a little practice to get used to the technique.


Your best bet to start with is your local sewing shop as they will have a wealth of experience on the subject, although be clear on your budget before you go in and don’t let yourself be seduced by the array of possibilities! It’s a good idea to write a list of what you want the machine to do first and then you’’ll know whether those extra features are of value to you or not. Experience says you should look for a machine that is metal rather than plastic and quite heavy and sturdy.

Our machines have a little screw on the undercarriage which allows you to drop the feed dogs and then we hold our fabric stretched tight in an embroidery hoop but if you can’t find one which does this then you can purchase a metal plate that covers the feed dogs whilst you’re sewing. We don’t use an embroidery foot when we’re stitching but again this is something you may have to experiment with for yourself, kissing frogs again!

Our Freya who makes all our lovely badges.

Our Freya who makes all our lovely badges.

Once you have your sewing machine you’ll find most bunching-up and bobbin-snarling issues are down to tension of the cloth, the machine and you! So you just need to play with it, and relax, till you get it right.

We hope you don’t have to kiss too many frogs!


A whole day of joyful stitching!

So last week my lovely new workshop played host to it’s first freehand machine embroidery day courses.
the singer sewing machines gleamed, the biscuits were melt in the mouth yum and lunch at Trereife was gorgeous!
But most importantly in between, nattering, drinking tea, getting a teeny bit competitive and mucking about with piles of yummy fabrics everyone managed to make either a bag or a tea cosy to take home with them!
Here are some photos of the courses so far….









20110731-223622.jpg a final action shot!


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