Thursday, 18 July 2013

Monday, 6 May 2013

Quilts, tea towels and other bits of life

Magatha Bagatha is still here and still sewing! The quilt (above, with Bullseye inspecting) is one I have recently made to form part of the background for my new website which is currently being built (if that's the correct term!) by LJ Computers Ltd.

Much of my other work has been 'behind the scenes' stuff. I'm planning what products I want to sell, making things and testing them, visiting inspiring places and finding out what I love to make. All of this has been taking place amidst the chaos of lambing and the preparations for new sewing room (which should free up the dining table for actual dining!)

One thing that is certain is that I love appliqué, so that will feature on most of my products. Coming soon is a series of organic cotton tea towels featuring my favourite appliqué motifs. Currently I'm working on one based on the Dala horse I bought in Bergen, Sweden when I was six.

Others are likely to feature beach scenes...

... and puffins.

Saturday, 12 January 2013

Catching up

It's been a while since a Magatha Bagatha blog, but Happy New Year and I hope 2013 will be a good one!

I was busy throughout December making presents for my family and for customers too. It's all a bit new to me as a business but was tremendous fun. I discovered a new love of making bunting and it's so very reassuring to get comments like "Wow, I love it!" and "Maggie I am over the moon please can I order some more?" and "I just can't tell you how fantastic they are!"

My new ranges of personalised bunting was hugely popular and I'm still making appliqued cushions to order. Two of the many I made for Christmas presents included this pair for my Mum, Dorset Gull and Pembrokeshire Puffin.

I'm proudest of Dorset Gull, a happy marriage of a photograph I took on holiday and some beautiful fabric I bought in a pack of scraps.

Dorset Gull

Dorset Gull original.
I flipped the gull for the cushion because I wanted one bird to look left, the other right. On Mum's sofa they sit looking at each other (with her cat in the middle or snuggled up to the Puffin). The original (above) is post-Photoshop treatment to make it look more like a painting. I took the photograph in West Bay after we had enjoyed pollack and chips in the early evening sunshine.

Pembrokehsire Puffin

Pembrokeshire Puffin is from a selection of photographs I was admiring on the internet and from photographs of puffins Mum took on her whale-spotting adventure a few years ago. I made the pattern from the (very!) rough sketches I made. He's made from a mixture of fabric scraps - some of which are vintage.

This brings me on to Magatha Bagatha's ethos - I live on an organic farm and am very much a 'reduce, reuse' recycle' kind of person. I mostly buy organic fabrics (the white on the seabirds is a lovely organic Cambridge cotton), or fair trade cotton. The velvet here, though, is some I have had in stock for ages.

I then pick up bits and bobs of scrap fabric sold in packs by other sewing businesses. Dressmakers are a great source because they often have funny little shapes left over and vintage shops (such as My Giddy Aunt in Narberth) sell useful little pieces of pretty fabrics. Occaisonally, though, I succumb to the pretty bundles of fat quarters of quilting fabric, which this time included some spotty orange fabric just ideal for seabirds' legs.