Wednesday 29 September 2010

WOYWW.....and a Rubber Stamp sale.....

Hi folks.  Yes another busy week has passed and it's Wednesday again when the world goes mad and we expose our crafting spaces.  If you want to find out more and join in the fun then please pop over to Julia's blog and put yourself on Mr Linky.

Mine has been a week of change as most of you will know so I am showing you how my  sewing/crafting space has altered this week.  If you look at the previous post you will see that the doorway between our sitting room and my sewing room has now been knocked through and to allow space to walk through my work surfaces and storage spaces have had to be moved. 

They have gone from here....... here.  Yes it is a pretty subtle change but the whole lot had to be taken off it's fixings and moved about 10" to the right.  I had to lose some width on the work surface on the right but I have gained a little in it's depth so this helps.  I liked how the machines were set out before and I believe in 'if it ain't broke why fix it' so really didn't want too much change there.

I have also gained a new 2 metre work surface the length of the other wall and can now store my boxes under this [I might be tempted to put a curtain to hang under here at some point....what do you think?].  As you can see there is still lots dumped on it's top but when I have a little more time I will be finding storage boxes and new homes for most of this.

Bless him, my other half even got injured in making all the changes...he came up under one of the work surfaces and scraped right down his back  :-(  Ouch!
As mentioned in the title Twiglet helped me sort out my rubber stamps into sets to sell.  I have used them all but have always kept them clean [and actually only used them very few times each] so they are all pretty much as new.  They are now for sale in the shop at £10 a bag and each bag has rubber stamps worth at least double that when they were bought new so are a good bargain....if you need more details on any of them just email me. 

Thanks for dropping in and taking the time to read my blog.  Have a great week.  Hope to catch up on as many WOYWWers as I can.

Monday 27 September 2010

A weekend of change and hidden finds....

 We have spent the last 3 days knocking through the doorway between my sewing room and the sitting room.  I have been taking lots of photos to record the change so if you want to browse through feel free.

Friday started with the making up of the door frame to mark out the size of the hole needed.

Then started the knocking off of the plaster...and the dust!


Lots of it everywhere...
......but it's pretty much all gone now  :-)

Once the plaster was knocked off hidden surprises were exposed....there had been a doorway here before but it must have been 70 plus years ago because my family have lived here for over 60 years and there was another couple living here before them.  We found two wooden lintels above where the door had been

As the bricks started to be removed the acrow went in to support the weight above.  Bags were filled with the bricks and rubble.  Only about 7 bricks could be put in each bag as they were otherwise too heavy to lift so a huge amount of bags were piled up outside ready to go to the local tip.

Skye thought the dust sheets were for her to lie on  :-)

As all the bricks were removed and the plaster on the other side of the wall the back of the wardrobe in my sewing room was exposed.  I was busy in my sewing room and I could hear my hubby's haste to get the back out of the wardrobe so he could peep through to me  :-)

And of course he wasn't the only one to peep through....I had several 'The Man, The Dog and The Wardrobe' moments  :-)

What's going on Mum?

As the wardrobe was removed the quarry tiles in the old doorway were exposed.

A peep at the chaos in my sewing room....don't forget it all has to be ready for me to work on Monday morning!

A new work surface going in in my sewing room to allow me extra storage underneath  :-)

Well that is all for now folks.  More tidying and organising to go yet but will update on Wed so all my WOYWW can see my new room layout.  Thanks for looking.

Wednesday 22 September 2010


Hello fellow WOYWWers.  Firstly I must apologise to those desks I didn't make it to last week.  It was a really manic week for me and there just weren't enough hours in my days to get round to you all.  I will aim to do better this week.

As you saw on yesterdays blog I hinted at the goings on here for me this week.  

On Friday I had the delivery of cadet uniforms from Shrewsbury school.  This is a regular job for me.  Once a year I am asked to sew the labels on the new cadets uniforms and this year saw even more coming through my door.
 I spent all weekend sewing name labels on 52 jackets .....

.....and 34 berets.  I have also has to hand hem 2 pair of uniform trousers and a skirt and all the buttons badges and rank stripes on a ladies uniform jacket.

Twiglet modelled the jacket for me to get the stripes level on the sleeves but we decided she looked more like Barbara Windsor and she maybe needed a slightly larger jacket  :-)

 For those of you who remember this pic of the crab apple blossom from our garden way back in May  I thought you might like to see a snap of the tree now the apples are ripe.......... 

It looks really gorgeous this year and the whole tree is really heavy with these plump fruits.  The tree was planted to provide the birds with food for the winter so I really hope they enjoy them.

Hope you have enjoyed looking into my world this week.  If you would like to check out the spaces of other crafters then pop over to Julia's blog and maybe join in the fun.

Tuesday 21 September 2010

Progress so far....

It's been a busy weekend [but what's new?].  Twiglet and I managed to fit in another fab Knit and Natter on Saturday at the Theatre but most of the rest of the weekend was spent on the house alterations.  

Books and Cds were boxed up from the shelves.  Videos and cassettes were boxed up for the charity shop and a lot of other unused items were sorted and disposed's a great way of having a clear out of old stuff.

The corner where the doorway is going to be knocked through was cleared and exposed.  You may be able to see all the wires that have to be moved to the other side of the fireplace.  This involved rerouting satellite, tv and phone wires.  There was lots of drilling through walls, carpets and floor boards lifted and wires pulled  to their new homes and dangled from new made holes in ceilings.
Here the telly table now moved to it's new home and all the wires are being reconnected with the techy boxes.  Head torch is a must here but don't think it will start a new fashion craze  :-)
Ta da.  The wall shelving and telly are now in their new home at the other side of the fireplace.  It will take a bit of getting used to but needs must.
Oh... and just in case you think I have been sitting watching the work being done watch out for tomorrow's blog cos the army moved in here on Friday and that kept me busy all weekend  :-)

Friday 17 September 2010


I've drawn a quick plan for those who are imagining me climbing through the window to get from my sewing room to our sitting room at the moment.  The darker black lines are the existing doors. 
Our house was originally two houses that were knocked together when I was 10.  When my Dad died in 1989 we bought the family home from Mum and made her a bed sitting room with her own bathroom and kitchen [now my sewing room and the two rooms below this on the sketch] and built an extension on the back with the kitchen and the utility in it [the dogs sleep in the utility].  When Mum died in 1997  her bed sitting room became my sewing room and in 2004, when I set up my sewing business, this made the perfect room because it had the bathroom next to it for me to use as a changing room for my customers.
As you all know we are very proud to say we are Grandparents to two beautiful little girls and I love having them here so we now feel the need of making a few more changes to the house.  If they come on days when I'm working then the route we have to take from my sewing room at the mo is through the [what was Mum's] kitchenette, the utility [dogs], the kitchen and living room to get to their toys in the conservatory.

Hmmm not practical eh?  

As you can see if we put a door where I've marked in red life will be a lot easier.  I can be available to answer the door to customers and the girls can get to their Nanny Annie when they want with ease.....that's the plan....and so far so good.
  1. The fitted wardrobe/storage you've seen in the corner of my sewing room is now empty [don't ask where it has all gone  :-) ].  
  2. The other side of the wall is where our telly normally sits and it has cupboards/shelves in the alcove.....they are in the process moving.
  3. We have bought the door frame.
  4. The wiring for telly has to be rerouted.
  5. The hole has to be made.
  6. Fitted wardrobe has to be moved from sewing room....I did suggest leaving it there and using it like in The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe but I had no takers.  :-)
  7. Walls have to be plastered.
  8. My sewing room has to be fitted with new storage and worktops
  9. the list goes on and on and on  :-)
But one thing I'm certain is life will be a lot easier when it's done and it will be worth it in the long run  :-)

Wednesday 15 September 2010


Hi fellow WOYWWers.  If you want to join in the WOYWW madness fun then pop over to Julia's blog for details, link yourself on Mr Linky with a photo of your crafting space  to share with the rest of the world.  

This week has been another eventful week for me.... 

My weekend was spent visiting care homes for my elderly neighbour and what vast extremes there are when it comes to what is available.  One I could have booked myself a bed in and another I wouldn't have booked my dog in and yet both have been assessed as excellent.

Fun Day Monday was just fun fun.  Twiglet came down as usual and then at around 10.30 our fun 2 gorgeous little Granddaughters arrived for a few hours while their Mummy was helping her hubby in their new business unit for their banner printing business.  We had 4 1/2 very special quality hours amusing the girls.  They were as good as gold and I feel so very blessed to have them in my life.

Tuesday was spent catching up on ironing and all the other little jobs that were put aside for better things on Monday. Oh and the odd customer or ten needing sewing and two or three friends calling in for coffee and a chat.  All in a normal day for me  :-)

Today being Wednesday I am exposing my space to fellow bloggers.  My space has plans for changes. 

We are planning to put a doorway in here where this fitted cupboard is so we can get through direct from my sewing room into our living room.  It will mean losing this storage and the one end of my work surface in front of my window will have to move.  I have to think carefully so that all changes are the right ones therefore more planning than doing is needed at this stage but last night we fetched a new door frame in readiness :-)  It's very exciting and I hope to keep my blog updated with the changes as they happen.

This is a quick snap of my table full of my crocheted brooches, now all packaged and labelled.  They have all been uploaded in the shop on the gifts shelf for anyone interested in buying one. 

That's all I have to show today so now pop over to Julia's blog to see what's going on in other crafting spaces all over the world.  Thanks for dropping in and taking the time to leave a comment.  I really do hope you all have a great week.  See you next Wednesday.

Friday 10 September 2010

Pixie Pete developments....

We have had another fab day here at Sewing by Annie's.  I was joined by Twiglet and my eldest daughter M with her 'pixie parts'   :-)

She started off by knitting pixie ears earlier in the week and then worked her way through all the other body parts....giggling and amusing her other half as she went.

She arrived here this morning with a lap full of pixie bits and shared the putting together and stuffing with Twiglet and I to end up with a gorgeous little pixie before she went home.  

What do you think girls?  I'm so proud of her efforts and the fact it gave us a lot of fun and entertainment is just priceless. 

Wednesday 8 September 2010


Yes it is that day again folks.  For those that have been in a cave with no internet access for the last 18 months and don't know what WOYWW is yet then please pop over to Julia's blog to find out more and to join in the fun of exposing yourself in public [well your desk at least  :-) ].

As ever my life is never boring.  This week has been full of excitement....everything from a theatre visit for our Knit and Natter group on Saturday and another visit there on Sunday night to see The Brian Conley Show with Twiglet and my darling hubby to yet more A & E hospital visits, care home visits, and of course sewing, knitting and crafting in between events.

This week my rails have been filled and my sewing days have been busy.  

I have made two poppy brooches. [sorry but the photo isn't too clear]

Finished another spike stitch design to go on the front of another bag and cut out the material to make the bag.....the material is actually purple [picture not good sorry] and I plan to use a patterned fabric to line it.

Last week several commented about my small tidy desk so I thought I would stand back and get a long shot of my main work surface with my [from the left] computerised machine, my industrial machine and my over locker on.  I love sewing here because I often can be sewing and have birds feeding in the feeder attached to my window only inches from me.

I know my daughter likes to check on my blog and leave me comments so this picture is just for her  :-)  Can you guess what it is yet?  She spent the afternoon here with me yesterday and decided to start some knitting and this is a pixie's ear [what else? I hear you say  :-) ].  We laughed and giggled while she refreshed her memory on how to knit and she reassures me she will have it knit by this space  :-)

So that's it from me today.  Hope you all have a really great week.  I plan to pay you all a visit at some point....busy life allowing  :-)

Monday 6 September 2010

100 Followers celebration draw winner.....

Twiglet has just made the draw for the winner of the brooch....this is her hand picking the lucky winner  :-)

And the lucky winner is.........

.........wait for it..........

Congrats Doone.  Can you please let me know which brooch you would like and let me have your Name and Address so I can post it to you.  Email me at

Friday 3 September 2010

Chutney before breakfast.....

Because I open up my sewing business at 8 o clock I have to do anything that requires me going down the garden before I open up so this morning I got up at 7 and before 8 had picked our wonderful garden produce.

The tomatoes from the greenhouse.  

Yes they really are that big!

The onions from drying on the trug in the greenhouse [Twiglet only gathered them from the garden yesterday!].

And I picked Bramley apples from our new little Apple tree in the garden [the whole tree is only about 4 foot 6 inches tall but has already produced us some wonderful apples].

I have chopped all the ingredients and filled my large preserve pan with the fruit, veg, sugar and pickling vinegar.  It's all simmering away as I type  :-)  
....and the smell is just wonderful  :-)

For those interested in making some here is the recipe I've used.....

  • 1kg ripe tomatoes, chopped
  • 450g onions, chopped
  • 2 eating apples, peeled, cored and roughly chopped
  • 200g light brown sugar
  • 600ml pickling vinegar
1. Put all the ingredients, apart from the vinegar, in a preserving pan or large, deep saucepan. Add half the vinegar and season.
2. Place the pan over a medium heat. Slowly bring the mixture to a simmer, stirring constantly, until the sugar has dissolved. Simmer for 30-40 minutes, stirring occasionally, until tender.
3. Stir the vinegar into the chutney. Cook for a further 30 minutes, stirring often, or until thickened. If it's still runny, simmer for another 10-15 minutes.
4. Divide the hot chutney between sterilised jars and set aside to cool.
Store in a cool, dry place, away from direct sunlight, for at least 1 month before eating. It will keep for up to 6 months. Chill after opening and use within 1-2 months.
Oh, and yes, Twiglet I'm sure there will be a jar with your name on it  :-) 

Don't forget to join in the celebration draw above  :-)

Latest update......The Result ......

Yum yum  :-) :-) :-)

Wednesday 1 September 2010


Here we are again folks.  Another week has whizzed by and our day of snoop is upon us again.  Be sure to pop over to Julia's blog to join in the fun when you leave here.  As I updated my blog yesterday with all my news today will be a short blog. [Phew I hear you all say :-) ].

This is my desk this morning.  As you can see it's all tidy and organised now since it got it's lick of paint on Monday.  On the front are the 4 brooches for my followers to choose one of if they are lucky enough to win the draw next Monday.  In the middle of the desk is my Tax return still waiting to be filled in and sent off.....groan really doesn't take me long but it's one of those jobs that is easy to put off til tomorrow.  Feel free to have a good snoop round  :-)

I've had my buttons and beads out searching for the perfect ones to go in the middle of my brooches.  

This is the button box.  It's pretty full of utility buttons for replacing clothing buttons but hiding in there are some really lovely ones too and I love looking through and sorting them.

This are my bead containers.  I have beads of just about every colour but must make a note to self that I need some bigger feature beads cos most of mine are too small for my brooches.

Thats all for today but don't forget to put your name in the draw if you are one of my 100 followers. and don't forget to let me know which one you would like to win if you're the lucky one.  If you're not a follower yet then I'm happy for you to become one to join in the fun....the more the merrier.