Back again! And sewing shabby chic pillowcases

26 Jun

I finished my study a while ago, and have been trying to decide whether to keep going with this blog. I’ve decided I will, and just see how I go with it again.

I did promise myself if I started again I’d get better pictures of my clothes, but I haven’t got that worked out, sadly. Still no reliable way of taking them apart from a selfie in the mirror. Oh well.

I might have been studying but of course I was still sewing to keep myself sane. I’ve even taken some pictures of what I’ve sewn. Organised eh?

Just for a start, here are the results of me putting my Sewing Skillz to practical use – new pillowcases!

Shabby chic-style pillow cover and bolster cover.


The sewing was easy, but the decision to use this fabric from my stash, rather than buy more at that week’s 40% off all fabrics discount sale at Spotlight, was agonising. I needed to get my stash down a bit, but I already had a Vision for this fabric, and it didn’t involve pillowcases!


Now, don’t get me wrong, I don’t have a problem with having a healthy stash. Of course not! One must have fuel to burn up in one’s creative fires! And one can’t always get to the fabric shop, or once there, necessarily find what one wants precisely when one wants it. Stashes are Good!

However there was a sadly practical element to my decision to use fabric from my stash. Space. I live in a small place, not much storage, and not much room generally. My stash has to fit into this lovely wooden chest that resides here under my sewing table. (It makes a great footstool, too 🙂 ) (And it’s like the Tardis, bigger on the inside than it looks on the outside :-D) (Also I’d just like to add, this is a pretty accurate character portrait of my cat.)


Fabric stash (and a very accurate character portrait of my cat!)


Oh alright, I admit, the fabric also spills over into my sewing shelf in the linen cupboard. But I do try to keep that available for things I’m either about to make or in the process of making.

So why the angst? Because my stash has recently been substantially beefed out by my sister, beyond even the bounds of my Tardis-like wooden chest. She went to India for a wedding a few months back and bought me all sorts of delicious fabrics. Silks, embroidered cottons, hand-blocked print cottons, some matching trims. Isn’t she an awesome sister?

However, living as she does in London, she can’t have realised all that wondrous fabric would cause a Stash Storage Crisis! Not only can I not possibly sew it all up immediately, but I also need to set it aside for and think about options for each fabric length, pet them occasionally, and think some more.

My practicality kicked in and I decided to sew some of my existing stash to replace my old, sadly scruffy pillowcases. Sensible huh? I’d originally bought the blue rose fabric to create something similar to this dress from Recollections I’ve had pinned and coveted for ages, on my pinterest Sewing List board.

Blossom Ensemble

But sadly, being practical, I was pretty sure I’d never really make anything like that, because I was pretty sure I’d never actually wear it. And it really kinda depresses me to have beautiful clothes sitting in my wardrobe so carefully and creatively sewn by me with many many hours work in it, and never actually worn. So it seemed like a good choice.

But now, although I’m very much in love with my new pillowcases, I am very sure I not only would wear something like that, I want to wear something like that, (sans hot non-tropics-friendly petticoats of course).

Gosh I’m contrary! *facepalm*

4 Responses to “Back again! And sewing shabby chic pillowcases”

  1. bimbleandpimble June 26, 2014 at 8:03 pm #

    Mmmm crisp pillowcases! These are the things that keep us going (I’m not even joking, I love fresh pillow cases hard) And epic stash, lady! So many future projects are just waiting to be assembled!


    • Tropical Threads June 26, 2014 at 9:09 pm #

      I think you might be right, about what keeps us going. It is definitely seemingly little things like that that make life nice to live. I’m thinking it would have been nice to replace the old pillowcases sooner. I’ll remember that for next time, for sure!

      Oh I know! All the ideas in my head, and all the beautiful fabrics to make them with. *happy sigh*


  2. Laura Rittenhouse June 29, 2014 at 4:18 pm #

    I know this isn’t what this blog is about, but how did it go studying writing? Did you learn heaps? Get inspired? Give up because it’s all too hard? How is you (non-blog) writing going?


    • Tropical Threads June 29, 2014 at 4:30 pm #

      Hey hello! So lovely to hear from you! I saw you’ve started blogging again 🙂

      It was good, I enjoyed it and learnt a lot, and got reminded that uni isn’t about a wider audience, it’s about showing to your lecturer what you’ve learnt in the way they want to be shown. A bit of a paradigm shift after such a strong focus on the intended audience needed for book-writing and editing.

      It was too hard healthwise though. I’m still just muddling along with my health and the pressure to turn stuff in on time was … I could do it but not anything else. Life narrowed down too much. If it wasn’t for that I’d still be going. I was learning heaps, and there were plenty of other units that appealed to me. I don’t think the degree would necessarily help get you published as a novelist, though. You’re still kinda on the outside looking in, you know?

      As for me, yeah, similar to where you left me! Just a bit older and more life experience! Still focusing on enjoying life with what health I’ve got. I’ve also got plans to write another book, try my hand at romance, at a pace I can handle. In the middle of plotting it out at the moment – not my strongest point.

      And you, how are you going?


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