tea cosy

Owls, foxes and our new bunny …

by Helen on August 11, 2014

I’ve been very busy over the weekend working on the patterns for the September issue of the magazine, including my first Christmas pattern of the year (catch a glimpse of my penguin over on Instagram).  In September my thoughts begin to turn away from the beach inland towards the woods as the trees begin to shed the first of their leaves and mushrooms and toadstools peek up through the mossy ground. So I thought it would be fun to create a woodland-style tea cosy for the September issue and at first was considering an owl …..

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And put together a whole board of owls on Pinterest while I was looking.  There are so many lovely knitted owl tea cosies, but not many that are sewn.  I was nearly decided upon an owl, when I spotted a lovely illustration  …..

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From the very talented EvaJuliet’s shop on Etsy.   I did a little bit more searching and discovered that whilst there were lots of beautiful owl cosies, nobody seemed to have created a pattern for fox-lovers.   So yesterday afternoon while the Newfies were sleeping I did a little measuring and cutting, stitching and snipping and came up with ….

A sleepy fox tea cosy!  Perfect to keep my pot lovely and snug during the colder months.  The pattern for my sleepy fox cosy will be in the September issue of the Bustle & Sew Magazine.  Which will also have a bit of a makeover, including the new Bustle & Sew bunny on the cover for the first time……

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Isn’t she adorable!  Next month’s issue will also have some extra goodies inside with more to follow over the coming months!  This website is going to be given a new look in September too – with the updated Bustle & Sew bunny and a more modern (though still very cute!) style.  I do hope you’ll like it!

And finally … thank you so much to everyone who sent lovely emails and messages of support to Ben after his operation and sad experience with some very rude people.  Image4

He’s now fully recovered and allowed to go swimming again.  Here he is about to dive in – what could be a nicer start to the day? he thinks.

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A birthday trip to a far away beach ….

by Helen on December 20, 2013

Before my birthday I went on a very exciting trip to visit my friend Carolyn and her family. In particular I was delighted to meet her new baby daughter, Lottie, who is just six weeks old, and absolutely adorable!  I took with me the quilt that I had made … 

Lotte

 The “Baby Life” Quilt from a pattern by Vanessa on the Moda Bake Shop.  Carolyn loved it, and it will be great as a play mat for Lottie too as she grows … it’s very hot where they live and ther cool marble floor tiles will be hard on little hands and knees.  It was very strange to leave this behind ….

puppies… and find myself on the beach  …. 

dubaipics 046Rather like going from winter coffee in front of the log burner (pattern for Toadstools & Seedheads cosy in the January 2014 magazine).  

Toadstools & Seedheads CosyBack to teatime in my summer house (pattern in the August 2013 magazine)

English Cottage Tea Cosy

And that’s because Carolyn, Mike, Ky and Lottie live in Dubai – 3,500 miles from Devon, and a very long way south! Last week in fact I was dipping my toes in the Arabian Gulf and admiring all the wonders to be found in Dubai – a completely amazing place …  

Burj al Arab, DubaiHere’s the Burj al Arab, just off Jumeirah Beach where Rosie and I paddled, and enjoyed a special birthday brunch ….

Birthday CakeWith chocolate cake too – what could be nicer?  I’ve never ever eaten a birthday meal outside, or felt the sand between my toes on a birthday outing before – but then I guess as a December baby that’s hardly surprising!  And there was lots of sand – wait till  I tell you about our trip into the desert …..

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A nice hot cup of tea

by Helen on July 5, 2013

I do enjoy a nice cup of tea.  This is one indulgence that is guilt-free (being English I am obliged to drink lots of tea), very nearly calorie-free and can be enjoyed either alone or, nicest of all, in the company of friends.  I have a perfectly sized teapot for just two cups, and on these lovely sunny afternoons can often be discovered working in the summer house with my trusty teapot close to hand.  But until recently there was a problem ….

Naked Teapot!

I am sure you can see instantly what the problem was – that my second cup of tea was never as hot as the first because – my teapot was naked! But not any longer as now my English Cottage tea cosy is finished ….

English Cottage Tea Cosy

Much better!  This cosy was inspired by those lovely vintage tea cosy cottages.  I’ve always liked them and haven’t seen any more modern versions – until now.  My 21st century version combines machine applique with some touches of hand embroidery – the flowers are all French knots with satin stitch leaves, and I chose icecream coloured fabric from Susie Watson for a very summery feel.  And then there’s the back …..

English Cottage Tea Cosy

 and the interior (I think I may have got a bit carried away – but I do love my teapot, and my sewing machine too)

English Cottage Tea Cosy

The pattern for my English Cottage tea cosy will be in the August issue of the Bustle & Sew Magazine.  If you’re not a subscriber and would like to learn more about the magazine – and claim your 50% subscriber’s discount on all purchase from my website, then please just CLICK HERE to find out more. 

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Country Village Tea Cosy

I have butterflies in my insides … I was feeling very brave when I uploaded this, but now I’m not quite so certain.  But anyway (deep breath) here goes …..

 I want to introduce to you  my first-ever video tutorial.  It’s an explanation of the way I go about freestyle machine embroidery – and uses the tea cosy above as the learning project.  Before I recorded it I had no idea my voice sounded like that and  I’m not at all sure that I like it.  Ben makes a much better video subject than me, but sadly he is unable to (a) sew and (b) talk.  So there was really no alternative.  It’s in two parts ….

Tutorial Part One

Tutorial Part Two

Please let me know if you like it – it’s quite long (hence the two parts) as I wanted to include everything I could think of so that it would be useful to someone who’d never tried this before, as well as those who just want to pick up some handy hints.  Fingers crossed!!

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