Friday, 18 December 2015

Another Year Ends... Another Idea Begins...

So, 2015 was quite exciting. I finally resigned as a teacher; I floated around, felt a bit lost and took some time to work out what I want to do; I researched a new business idea, did some training and am setting myself up in a new business; I finally got my crafting act out of neutral.

2016 promises to be fun. I have a couple of goals: Set up Stef Cooke Inventory Services (more to follow); to set up a small crafting business (again, more to follow) and to start sewing my own clothes RelovedSewing 

I shall post more as soon as I have content. But this blog shall be revitalised with tales of derring do, rather than relaxed reading. I shall bore any reader with pictures of charity shop and boot fair finds, daring refashions and adventures in recycling.

Well, I will once I have got Christmas out of the way :) 


Monday, 21 September 2015

All Change

Well! I did the Onion Fair and it was fun. I didn't sell much but did cover the table fee and paid for my lunch :)

I listened long and hard to the people who passed, many of whom were sewers. They liked the logo, liked the aprons but made their own of everything else. So they won't be my initial audience. Younger people liked the bright colours and took a card, many Nanas may be getting simple sewing items this Christmas - sorry!

But the most important thing was that I realised that I liked it and want to do more. So I will make another blog and I will separate my selling from my sewing, if you see what I mean. Here I will be starting a capsule wardrobe from scratch. That is drafting my own slopers, making my own clothes from new and refashioning second hand finds.

But as a teachery person (retired) I will find it really hard not to pass on all of the mistakes wisdom I gain from my attempts, so I will post about my Adventures in Sewing as I go!

Thursday, 20 August 2015

Hold that thought...

The Shambles
I know, it has been quite some time and I have been a very poor blogger. There is a reason for this, I have retired from teaching and am now setting up a small sewing/craft business. My Shabby Habby will be stocked in Sew Sew Studio which is in The Shambles in Newent. If you pop in you might find me there, sewing, smiling, stocking the shelves :)

Come and see me in Sew Sew Studio. If  I am not there, maybe Nic can help. She is a great seamstress and can alter anything to fit, make some great one off pieces and her kids clothing range is really cute. You can read more on Facebook Sew Sew Studio and I will be blogging much more to keep you up to date with all the changes that are in the pipeline.

Saturday, 4 January 2014

I am Resolved

OK, I don't do resolutions but I have had a thought, one that might force me into some sewing:

The Charity Shop Challenge

Wassat? Well, I already restrict myself to pre-owned stuff for my makes, mostly. So now I will only buy clothes from charity shops - not counting undies obviously.

I have been reading the Refashionista blog for a long time now and have finally decided that I could and should try out something similar.

So step one has been to clear out my wardrobe and I now have 2 pairs of jeans and 4 sets of workclothes to my name. That's it! Not even the celebrated 'capsule'. My aim is to keep on losing weight so I can't really buy new clothes, hence the Charity Shop Challenge. I'll have to buy stuff and refashion it to fit. Hopefully that will give me a lot of time to design, cut and sew and get much more skilled with my machine.

So that's it. I will investigate a new charity shop once a week or so and I will post about my finds and ideas here.

Saturday, 28 December 2013


Not at all craft related but, oh, have we had rain?

This is our lane, probably about 6 inches under water. It leads onto the bottom road, which is probably about 4 feet deep in places.

This photo came out really well. I may print and frame it!

None of this  is unusual round here. I had a good look a the pubs and houses on the river and they are still dry. Maybe this year they will be OK, it depends on next week's rainfall.

Sunday, 15 December 2013

New job, New Year, new beginnings.

Hello, sadly ignored blog. How are you doing?

Me? Well, I've finished the first term in my new role and all seems to be going well. I'll know more when we get the first set of results come through.

I am actually making things. No, really, truly, I am! I have bought a craft light and am cutting at weekends and hand sewing during the week... sort of. I found I needed pattern weights so I can make some rub off patterns of the few clothes that actually fit me. I found a book (No! Did you Stef. Going to review it? Waste a bit more time?), the review, and piccies of my makes, will follow. But it gave me an idea, a new one! It is a pincushion book and, taking the authors advice, I am stuffing some with aquarium sand. Weighs down patterns and fabric and keeps my pins sharp and clean too. Handy and fun!

I have had a wander round a number of town centres close to me and may have found a place I can begin to sell. I will go and have a chat with the organisers in the New Year. I am having a good think about what I will sell and have based my decision based on my own needs as a sewing newbie. So that means pincushions, needle books, knitting needle rolls, sewing bags, project organisers, pockets, pockets everywhere... that sort of stuff.

I wouldn't ask to do aprons and other kitchen stuff as a lady there already does those. So I thought notions for crafters always seem to need organising, I always seem to lose a thing just as I need it. So maybe some notion solutions might be nice for beginner and seasoned bod alike. I have quite a few patterns already and could make a nice list, create a couple of 'lines' and see what happens.

So, the hibernating months will be spent researching (yeah, I know, more procrastination), practising, pricing, and making lists. As soon as the winter lifts I will be back out trawling charity shops for materials, making like a demon and, hopefully, selling!

All in all, blog dear, this means that I will be back more often, prattling on about my trials and tribulations.

So, cheer up, I will be back, very soon xx

Wednesday, 17 July 2013

Sorted most of the stash

Well I managed to sort through it. Dragged it up from the cellar, out from under the bed, washed it, folded it, stacked it. OK, I have another 2 bin bags to go through yet and there is some in the washing machine.

But this is most of the fabric stash. The pink and green boxes have clothes that will be recycled and the shoe boxes have odd bits and pieces that will probably be sewn in as surface decoration, should I ever get to grips with free motion embroidery.

The bags at the bottom have interfacing, upholstery squares and pillowcases and tank tops ready to be brought downstairs and made into totes.

This one is my craft corner. the box on top has felted woollens and the pillowcase and golf balls it takes to full a jumper. Then books, a shelf of broken jewellery and beads and craft equipment, tools and lots of little trays to use for individual project pieces.

It includes a wire jig, pliers, glue gun, polystyrene block for drying paper beads, templates,  lots of hair scrunchies, clippies and other pound shop trophies.

I also have smaller trug things for felting, ribbons and one full of the doings for sewing books and needle cases - my next project. There is also 20metres of brown paper for patterns, a carrier bag of elastic and, out of shot, tea bag paper for use as tearaway paper and three bags of jeans and other clothes for upcycling.

I also have a rucksack full of threads, scissors, pins and other sewing 'hardware'.

Question: Do you think I have enough, or do I need to collect more before I could sit down and actually sew things?

Seriously, I have a red basket full of soon to be totes, project 1, and a pink truglet full of sewing case materials, project 2, all ready to go. The rollaway under the bed is full of jeans. This will be project number 3, skirt tops, bags, coasters, oven mitts etc. Then the box of jumpers will be project number 4. I will need to cut patterns first then hats, scarflets and wrist warmers.

Then, when I have cleared the space, I can start on making a skirt or 2 for myself. Project 5 is pattern drafting a pencil skirt and an A line skirt.

But, if you are still reading, you know that I read and think more than I sew. Maybe I will review a couple of books before I start :D

Hopefully I will be back soon with something from Project 1.