Wednesday, 11 March 2015


When I joined ig (instagram) in the summer I was told "welcome to the dark side". It is indeed the dark side, not only does it occupy a large part of my day, but I keep signing up for "things". There are loads of swaps and fun things to do. The hard part is deciding not to join in. No, the hard part is the making, the easy part is deciding what to join in.

Diane, ig id @willowbeckdesigns ran a make friends swap in the new year. This was to be a small informal swap between two allocated people. (often swaps are 3 way, I make for you and you make for someone else). We were to email and hopefully gain a friend in the meantime. Kelly ig @kellyfairy , blog and I were allocated each other. The swaps could be a pouch, a basket or something I can't remember. Kelly had made several pouches but never a basket. I had made one pouch for Hazel (the daughter) and reckoned that could act as a prototype. As for the other two options, I wouldn't inflict my first on a new friend.

We  emailed backwards and forwards, getting to know each other's tastes, but neither of us posted a final picture, so keeping the surprise. And Kelly's gift to me was beautiful. She made me a basket from linen with a fabric panel. By complete coincidence we both used fabrics from the same range, Summersville. Kelly used the understated fabrics, and I the brighter. Kelly added a little machine embroidery just under the panel and lined it with a gorgeous oakshott cotton. I have never used oakshott but always looked at it enviously, it is cotton shot with a silk thread, gives the most gorgeous shimmery effect. Kelly's basket is beautifully made, no bulky bits and everything matches up beautifully, she is clearly a very accomplished sewer.  I can't believe this is her first attempt. She also added some lovely cream crocheted bunting. It is just perfect for our piano, was my first thought, but we've sold the piano. It is also perfect for my dresser in my sewing room/gym/wine store. And I loved Kelly's choice of fabric so much I have ordered 3 more metres from the range.

Kelly's basket for me

I made Kelly a pouch, it too was linen but with a fabric base and a coordinating fabric used as hexies across the front and back, and rounded bottom edges. I also used the hexie fabric to line the pouch. I wanted to use a bright zip for closure, and the orange zip was exactly the correct length. I knew Kelly lived fairly near the coast and seemed to spend a lot of time on the beach with the children, so I included a carmex lip balm and a little tub of nivea, not the most glamorous, but easy to post and put in your pocket for the biting wind. By coincidence Kelly posted a photo of her reddened hands after a walk along the beach! I also included some hot chocolate and green and blacks chocolate which is essential after a windy walk. I also made her a covered notebook, using the linen and the two bright fabrics. I included a little surprise for the two gorgeous children and thankfully it made the post in time.

my swap for Kelly

So, no more swaps for a while, except for the ig #ukminiswap which I signed up for way ages ago and a little online ATC swap I signed up for the other night. I have loads of things to do for myself and loads of books to read, not to mention windows to clean. Oh, forgot about the #hexiefriends swap but I only took part in a little way.

Helen x


  1. Both sets of makes and gifts are lovely, nothing like a bit of happy mail!
    V x

  2. How lovely to be involved in such a swap.......both pouches are amazing..........I must join Instagram some fine day!


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