February 2022 Backstitch
Welcome to the first monthly roundup post for Honey & Rose - The Backstitch! My idea for this new part of my sewing journal is to write a personal behind the scenes insight into what I've learnt each month, what I'm working on and anything else along the way.
Being my 'birthday month', February seemed the perfect month to kick things off. This will be a new style of writing for me, so I hope you enjoy and thank you for coming along on my sewing journey - one that we all know never ends!
The hidden lever
Do you ever have those sewing tasks you put off or avoid because you think they're going to be too fiddly? Well that's what I have been like with buttonholes - until now! I've rediscovered how amazing it is to make your own buttonholes, and especially with an automatic buttonhole function, it really couldn't be easier! I just needed to dedicate some time to relearning and practice before diving straight into it.
So as you do, I got the buttonhole foot out for my Janome 525S, popped the button in, turned the stitch pattern to the buttonhole function and away I went - slightly too confident that this was all I needed to do.
After a few failed attempts of endless buttonholes I reached for the instruction booklet - ah yes, the buttonhole lever, there it was hiding at the back of the machine. Now we have takeoff - and buttonholes!
There was just one more thing going wrong and it was that the function wasn't resetting after the buttonhole (that should have given it away), so I reach for the instruction booklet one more time, turn to the next page and there you have it, I just needed to turn the stitch selector to reset and back to buttonhole again - genius!
As frustrating as it can be to go through this whole process sometimes, I find that if I think about how other sewists are going through similar challenges when they're rediscovering skills, that this can be something I can add as helpful tips when I'm writing my instructions.
My husband and I had been working on some repeating patterns for a design client mid last year and fell in love with the process. The idea of creating our own designs for fabric inspired by the beautiful Blue Mountains around us to sell from Honey & Rose became our new and exciting project!
Starting in our own backyard, we took our first inspiration for the Blue Mountains Ceratopetalum range from the our Ceratopetalum Gummiferum (or NSW Christmas Bush). These trees light up the lower Blue Mountains in the early summertime - truly a beautiful sight and often become the centrepiece of tables on Christmas Day.
Photos Credit ~ Gardens Online
In keeping with our Blue Mountains theme, the colour palette we chose reflects the cool tones of the Blue Mountains with a pop of orange colour in the leaf design. After sampling many fabrics we settled with the classic natural fibre blend of linen and cotton, a lightweight 135gsm that is perfect for so many garment projects!
How has it been a year already?
This month has been a big month for me personally as I headed back to my part-time graphic design job after finishing a year of maternity leave. The realisation that a year has passed and that Little Mr turns one soon doesn't seem real (wasn't he only just born?) With 4 months of lockdown and restrictions on seeing family and friends most of the year it was a completely different year to my first time around. I really feel for first time Mum's out there not being able to access the support and sanity through socialising after sleepless nights and hope they can start making up for it now!
Little Miss also started preschool this month (again, where has the time gone?) As much as I didn't want to let her go, you just can't match the amount of activities, fun, games, craft and books they can experience in one day - not to mention the new friends they make. And I couldn't send her without sewing something for her! In knowing that most clothes get trashed throughout their amazing day of play - a new hat was on the cards (and the day before her first day no less)!
My sister-on-law got me onto this great hat pattern by Peanut Patterns, their Elliot Bucket Hat. It's a great pattern and so easy to make, being able to get the cutting out and prep work on at the kitchen bench and once Little Mr was asleep for a nap, it was straight out to the machine! I love this Jocelyn Proust fabric which I got from Spotlight, and the lining (which is the exact same pattern and construction as the outside - actually making it reversible) is leftover from my Nancy Top make for the most recent photoshop, a beautiful teal linen from Minervas Bower. Topping it off with a cute little make-shift bow from the extra scraps.
Thank you for reading my first monthly roundup, I hope you enjoyed reading about my journey this month!
Happy sewing ~ Rose