The old ones are the best ones!

I have been doing a lot of sorting and tidying this weekend, emptying drawers and boxes, deciding what to keep and what to discard.  My new home will be quite a bit smaller than Coombe Leigh, so I am having to make some tough decisions, although I think I can say with reasonable confidence that my fabric stash will be remaining fairly intact – I can’t bear to part with any of it!  But anyway, during the clearing out process I’ve been discovering lots of very interesting items – and wasted quite a lot of time looking at them.  And I thought I’d share these pictures I discovered of me as a cute youngster ….


The top right picture is me with my knitting grandma.  She made all my childhood jumpers and cardigans and was never seen without some work in her hands (I take after her!).  My Mum made the stripey dress I’m wearing in that picture.  Below I’m very young – probably less than six months – but am wearing a lovely lacey dress that my grandma made me.  She also created the cheerful cardigan in the final picture.  I LOVED that cardigan and after I outgrew it, it was worn for many years by one of my teddy bears.  It’s amazing to think that my grandma was born in the 19th century, while Queen Victoria was still on the throne!  And so, in line with the title of my post – the old ones are the best ones, I thought I’d include a link here to one of my favourite vintage embroidery patterns. It’s not as old as my grandma, but was certainly published round about the time I was wearing the cardigan she made for me ….

But still looks fresh and modern today – yes it’s the Funky Chick embroidery.  Just CLICK HERE to download your free copy.  And finally, before I return to my sorting and tidying I must show you the cover of the June Magazine – it’s so pretty and we’re very excited to have a contribution from guest designer Simone of May Blossom Designs ….

Little Cabbage the Bunny in the middle of the top row.  If you’re not a subscriber, then please don’t risk missing this very special issue when it’s published next week – just pop over to my Magazine Page to learn more.  Now it’s back to sorting and tidying for me!


Thank you so very much for the pattern – especially as you are so busy. Might I give some friendly advice from one that has recently moved house – do not give away or discard any fabric. Not even a scrap. Put it in the attic or garden shed. Anywhere, but keep it! Good luck on the move.


Haha! A woman after my own heart! Quite agree with you. Thanks for the good luck wishes xx

Linda in Maine

Thanks so much for the pattern. I enjoyed the photos of you and your grandma and the lovely knitted garments. A very talented family!
XXX Linda


I do love those gorgeous photos of you as a toddler, the one of you with your Gran brought back so many fond memories for me of the times I spent with my dear gran and from whom I learnt so much about sewing, etc. In fact I have a very similar photo of the two of us in her back garden. I must see if I can fish it out to show you Helen!
Good luck with the rest of your packing!! xx


That would be lovely Jacqu, and thanks for your good luck wishes with the packing – I think I’m going to need them. xx


Good luck with all your packing Helen. What does your DH think of it all? Mine broke his leg as a good excuse to escape from helping out!!
Love the photos of the cutie pie you 🙂 The patterning on the baby cardigan looks very similar to the patterning on the shawls I knitted when I was expecting our twin daughters almost 30 years ago!! Doesn’t time fly?! Looking forward to the next issue of the magazine, just love everything shown and I don’t know how you have managed to find time to put it all together and write patterns. Thank you so much xxx


Hi Lynn – it’s just me and the Newfies, and I must say they’re not too impressed. Daisy has developed a rather worried expression, I’m sure she thinks if she stands still long enough she’ll be scooped up and packed into a box! Thanks for your kind comments about Bustle & Sew – Rosie and I have such fun working together on the magazine each month. xxx

Trisha M

I love the sweet pictures! My mother always had her hands busy. I take after her in that. Thank you for sharing your talent!


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