english girl at home

A Sewing & Knitting Blog, Made in Birmingham, England


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SewBrum Meet-Up Update

Sew Brum Meet-Up Logo

Eek, I love the new SewBrum logo. It was designed by amazingly talented illustrator and sewing blogger Maike of Sew & Illustrate.

I have lots of exciting SewBrum news to share – an itinerary for the day, sign-up is open, and I’m planning a pre-meet-up swap.

The meet-up also has an event page on Facebook.

♥ Itinerary ♥

The planned itinerary for Saturday October 31st is below. Attendees can feel free to dip in and out, or only attend for part of the day.

10:00 – 11:00: Meet at the Edwardian Tearooms

We’ll be meeting in the lovely setting of the Edwardian Tearooms at Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery, where we’ll be able to drink tea and/or eat brunch while everyone arrives.

11:00 – 12:30: Birmingham Bull Ring Rag Market

We never made it to the market last year, so this year we’ll be heading there. (Two of Birmingham’s fabric stores are located close by (Barry’s Fabric & Fancy Silk Store) for anyone who would prefer to shop there instead / as well).

12:30 – 13:00: Reconvene and travel to Moseley Village (Guthrie & Ghani) by bus

The journey between the city centre and Moseley only takes 15 minutes by bus, and buses are every 5-10 minutes.

13:00 – 14:00: Moseley Farmer’s Market & Art Market

We’ll be buying lunch at Moseley’s Farmer’s Market, which has around 60 stalls (including some great cake!). The Art Market will also be taking place.

14:00 – 17:30: Guthrie & Ghani

At Guthrie & Ghani we’ll have time in the shop which sells a wide range of sewing and knitting supplies, and we’ll have use of the studio above the shop where we will be able to natter, compare purchases, hold a pattern & fabric swap, and a raffle. We’ll also have a demo of the Lutterloh pattern making system.

♥ Merit Badge Swap ♥

In advance of the meet-up, I’m hosting a merit badge swap, partly inspired by the crafty merit badges recently released by Fancy Tiger Crafts.

You can sign up to take part in the swap using the sign-up form below. I’ll randomly pair everyone who signs up, and you’ll make a merit badge for your swap partner. There are no design or size restrictions for the badges – the idea is to make a badge that suits your swap partner; perhaps focusing on something they are particularly good at, or a particular interest of theirs, crafty or otherwise.

Anyone can join this swap, you don’t need to be attending the meet-up in October or have a blog to join in (and meet-up attendees don’t have to take part in the swap, you can let me know when you sign-up if you want to join in or not).

Sign-up for the swap is open from now until 30th September. I’ll be sending out details of swap partners periodically until sign-up closes.

I’ve set up a Pinterest board with a few badge inspiration pictures.

♥ Sign-Up Form ♥

If you’re planning to attend the meet-up (and/or want to take part in the merit badge swap) let us know by filling in the sign-up form below.


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A Sunny #CCBloggers Meet-Up at Breadsall Priory

Creative and Crafty Bloggers meet, Breadsall Priory, June 2015

Happily, I have a few crafty weekends lined up at the moment. Two weeks ago I met up with friends on Sunday for knit and natter, this weekend I’m going to a dyer’s picnic event with my WSD guild where we’ll try a range of natural and acic dyes, and last weekend I attended a Creative and Crafty Bloggers (#CCBloggers) meet-up.

This is the second #CCBloggers meet-up I’ve attended, and they are meticulously organised by Sam and Kat. Sam and Kat are based in Derby, so meet-ups are held in the Derby / Nottingham area. This meet-up was held in a really special venue, Breadsall Priory.

Creative and Crafty Bloggers meet, Breadsall Priory, June 2015

The original Breadsall Priory was a small Augustinian priory, established before 1266, which housed two or three priests. The current building, which is a Marriott Hotel, was originally built as a private home on the same site in the 16th century.

It’s a beautiful venue, surrounded by gardens and a golf course, and was an amazing place to spend a sunny Sunday. We were lucky enough to receive spa passes so I’ll be heading back in the near future.

Creative and Crafty Bloggers meet, Breadsall Priory, June 2015

The #CCBloggers meet-ups differ from other meet-ups I attend because they include local bloggers with a wide range of different craft interests and blogging styles. While I can never resist a chance to talk sewing (and now knitting) with other sewists, it’s also great to meet bloggers with different interests, and who are part of different online groups and circles.

Creative and Crafty Bloggers meet, Breadsall Priory, June 2015

Our chatting was facilitated by a lovely afternoon tea, accompanied by raspberry ginger beers and bellinis.

Creative and Crafty Bloggers meet, Breadsall Priory, June 2015

Creative and Crafty Bloggers meet, Breadsall Priory, June 2015

The #CCBloggers meet-ups focus on giving attendees time to chat and network, to take part in crafts, and to learn from others. The meet-up was part of the Etsy Craft Party global event, so we took part in a range of crafts inspired by the craft party theme: colour, kaleidoscope and paper.

Creative and Crafty Bloggers meet, Breadsall Priory, June 2015

Creative and Crafty Bloggers meet, Breadsall Priory, June 2015

Creative and Crafty Bloggers meet, Breadsall Priory, June 2015

Creative and Crafty Bloggers meet, Breadsall Priory, June 2015

We also got the chance to try out products from organic beauty company Weleda, and paint company Polyvine, and to learn more about the Derby-based businesses/projects of two attendees, Lunar21, described as Derby’s ‘non-political think-tank’ and the Bless your Arts boutique.

Creative and Crafty Bloggers meet, Breadsall Priory, June 2015

Creative and Crafty Bloggers meet, Breadsall Priory, June 2015

Everyone went away with overflowing goody bags. Mine included aloe vera scented cotton yarn that I’m intrigued to try out. Apparently the scent is released as you knit, which sounds very soothing! The embroidery hoop contains my unfinished craft project from the day.

Creative and Crafty Bloggers meet, Breadsall Priory, June 2015

Each attendee contributed a gift for a swap – the idea being that you provided a ‘kit’ to inspire the recipient to get crafting. I received an envelope of colourful paper supplies from Emma.

Creative and Crafty Bloggers meet, Breadsall Priory, June 2015

The event also raised £100 for Mollie Makes Crafternoon For Comic Relief. Roll-on the next meet-up!

Creative and Crafty Bloggers meet, Breadsall Priory, June 2015


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Spring Sewing Swap Goodies

This year was my first time taking part in the Spring Sewing Swap. I was paired with Joy from A Charm of Magpies so we had an international swap (Joy is in New Zealand, I’m in the UK).
My lovely package from Joy included a beautiful vintage fabric from Joy’s stash. It has a really beautiful drape & weight. I cut something out of this the same day I received it in the mail (I couldn’t wait!) so this photo is actually of the tiny scrap I had left over.
Spring Sewing Swap 2014
Along with the fabric were these amazing buttons picked up at a market. The green buttons are 90s and the red wooden buttons are vintage Dutch buttons from the 50s, which came from the market seller’s grandmother’s stash.
Spring Sewing Swap 2014
My parcel also included handmade stitch markers which are now being used on my current knitting project. Joy made herself a matching set so these are in use in both England (well currently in Turkey as I’m travelling for work & always take my knitting with me when I travel) and in New Zealand. Pretty cool:)
Spring Sewing Swap 2014
Joy also sent me some white lace and a tea bag so I can tea dye it (which I will be doing soon), plus some lovely chocolate made in Wellington. Totally spoilt I know!