Sunday, 22 February 2015


Last Summer I decided that I wanted to paint my studio, so I put together this little collection of images that inspired me. 

I love this colour, as I picked it from a Dulux chart it does not have a name just a number. So for argument sake I will say it's mint green. I find it very relaxing and is a great colour to match with. 

I've already been and bought the fabric boxes that fit into my IKEA shelving unit and have my eye on a new chair for my sewing desk but that will have to wait until I have some spare pennies. I've had a huge clear out and re-organised all of my sewing stash ready for my studio makeover. 

I picked these up at B&Q a couple of weeks ago in their sale. A teal coloured throw and two cushions. I don't really have a colour scheme but I figure that grey, teal and orange look really nice together with the mint green. I also have some prints to go up on the wall once it's all decorated. Just need to get this banister finished and then I can get started.

Friday, 13 February 2015

Red velvet yumminess...

Did I tell you about my list? No? Well I shall save that for another post. So on this 'list' was to attempt to make Red velvet cupcakes. I know I have made cupcakes before and some of you might remember that I went on a cupcake decorating course a few year ago. But all my previous baking has been based on the 3 egg rule. You know you take 3 eggs and weigh them, what ever the weight this is how much butter, flour and sugar you need. 

This recipe however came from Nigella's website and to be truthful the ingredients scared me a little. 

I've never used cider vinegar in cakes before or buttermilk for that matter. But I thought Nigella can't be wrong ( I love Nigella she's my favourite TV chef). I loved the deep red colour of the batter once I'd added half a ton (not really) of the red food paste. They smelt devine whilst they were cooking and I managed to get a modest 28 cupcakes out of the mixture. 

I made cream cheese frosting for the tops, again Nigella's recipe and it is the nicest one I have tried to date. Then I grated some chocolate on the top of the frosting. I took some to work and sent some over to Mr.B's parents, the rest were consumed by us with many a cup of tea.

I'm glad I took the plunge and tried out this recipe the cake was deliciously chocolatly and moist and light. This photos not great but they really were red, given it was a more demure maroon colour rather than the rich crimson of the raw batter but it was good enough for me and my testers who all said they were yummy!

So Red velvet cupcakes = tick! 

Sunday, 8 February 2015

Oooooh pretty!

And here it is my first new design bag in a long time! Boy does it feel good to say that, it has been a while. 

I love the anticipation of drawing up a new pattern with a vision if what it will look like in my head. I never make a mock up first, I always just dive in with my chosen fabric and work with any obstacles I come up against. 

Looking back I am thinking that was a mighty brave decision I took considering all the new skills I tried out on this beautiful bag. I suppose it never enters my mind that it 'won't work'. 

I have since purchased some thinner cord for piping and a piping foot to see how perfect I can get those seams.

Overall I am as us Northerners would say thoroughly chuffed with this one. It looks exactly how I had imagined right at the very start doodling away in my note pad. I already have two more orders for this style bag even though I have only been showing little sneak peeks so that must be a good sign :D 

I have another design waiting in the wings but i think that one will come later on in the Summer. Let this pretty lady have her day first.

Sunday, 25 January 2015


Proudly displaying my very first attempt of piping properly!!! It turned out better than I had hoped. To me it looks magnificent but I think that is mainly due to the fact I have always wanted to accomplish piping and that I didn't have to unpick it once. Was it a fluke I got it first time round? 

I can't really say that for the piping on the seams of the main part of the bag, now that was tricky!! I've come to the conclusion that the thick piping along side the canvas material and extra interfacing to make the bag really sturdy was just too much for me and my little machine to handle. There was quite a bit if swearing and unpicking but it paid off in the end.

I'm really happy with the overall shape of the bag. I just want to do a little bit of tweaking (as I always do). There are some little side panels to fit, a twist lock and the strap of course. Then I am going to tackle the lining, which includes the next thing on my "learn to" list which is to master the zippered pocket!!! ��

Wish me luck x

Sunday, 18 January 2015


Here's to a very belated Happy New Year to you all. So then that was 2014 done and dusted. Christmas seems like a distant memory already. Maybe it's because I'm so focused on 2015. I have closed the door on a few events from last year and I'm excited about moving forward. I've never really been one for looking back so here's to a fun filled, adventurous year.

I opened my 'new' order book and first in line was this campervan bag, admittedly this one is for my Mam but she has been waiting patiently since Summer last year so it's only right this one be the first new bag of 2015. 

It's a new shaped satchel type bag. I never really have names for the style if bags I design, as I make all my patterns from scratch it's just what comes to mind whilst sketching. I predominately think about practicality and then begin to add little details as the pattern progresses.

I really love this polka dot material and thought it added a little fun to the muted colours of the campervan fabric.

One thing I promised myself for this year was that I would push myself as far as I could with design. I've always wanted to add piping to my bags. I have a well known branded bag I was bought as a gift some time ago and I love the fact it has chunky piping along the seams. To be totally honest I was absolutely petrified about trying it out. 

So far it's looking great, still a way to go but once I've got the hang of it I'll be feeling a lot more confident. It's a slow and steady approach for the moment.

My order book is already filled to March but I'm looking forward to an opportunity to pick a fabric myself and create one that I can offer for sale.

I'll pop back and show you some more progress soon ��
Enjoy he rest of the weekend. x 

Tuesday, 30 December 2014

Time for a change...

I've been playing around with this idea for quite some time but the timing was never right (due to my order book being full/current projects) and there were still some small details I needed to figure out.

I've become aware that time is very precious and there are so many things that I wished I’d done or wished I could do. There is only me that can control what I do and when so its time now that I took the bag by its straps (see what I did there lol) and steered myself in a slightly new direction.

The only way that I can see that I can do this is to change how I work. I feel like I no longer have the time to sit and make stock for my website and facebook page. Its actually counter productive for me as I always feel like I'm rushing to get things finished and feel under pressure to constantly keep things ‘stocked up’. Now if I was an empire and had people working for me and had a production line this wouldn't be a problem. But since its only me, with my sewing machine, in my home studio with one pair of hands, I have a full time job, a house, a Mr.Bagladee and three kitties to look after, its a lot of pressure for me to put on myself…..and believe me I do.

I don't want to be churning out stock at the speed of light because I think I need to. I've never done this, if you ask my other half or my family they will tell you the hours that I sit, cutting out patterns, fabric, sewing, pressing, hand stitching, unpicking and restitching to make sure that everything I make is as perfect as I can physically make it. This then either eats into my time that I should be doing other things, family things, and then because I can't sit and craft (as I love to do) I then get frustrated with myself for not being “organised” enough. I'm sure you’ll agree with me that there are just not enough hours in the day! Which is why I've decided that how I spend those hours needs to be carefully thought out. I want to spend as much time as I can making the things that I love and that really makes me happy.

So here it is then…….

As from today there will be no more “stock” made, please don't be sad, this will be a good thing. It will mean that from now on I will be making one off bags and selling them as they are made. They will be new and old designs but with extra little bits added to them making them all that little bit more special. They will be a tiny bit more expensive, but they will be worth it. I will be selecting special fabrics, which also means I need to have a clear out!! I will also be making a wide variety of styles which means that you will see lots of different makes from me.

I will also be leaving little slots throughout the year for people to grab to have their own tailor made bags, but I will be keeping these to a minimum.

There is something a little bit different in the pipeline for my Gingerbread men decorations but more about that later, you will still be able to order these as normal for the time being.

I will of course plan in a “Market Night” maybe twice a year in which I will make a small selection of items that will be up for grabs, one being before Christmas and one maybe mid year.

Hopefully this will mean that I can get back to enjoying what I love to do which is create beautifully, well made bags and accessories for you to give a new home to and love as much as I did making them.

Now I am armed with a new direction, sketchpad, notebook and diary I'm ready and raring to take on 2015. Thank you for all your continued support and encouragement, without you I’d just be a woman sat in her creative space sewing, you make me Bagladee and for that I'm eternally grateful. x

PS. For those interested there are a few ready to post items in my For Sale album on Facebook.

Saturday, 27 December 2014

Let it snow

Even if it was a day late we eventually got some white stuff. Within about an hour we had a good covering. My poor Mam and step Dad had to drive back to Durham in it.

I'm pleased to say that they got home safely. 

This morning it's a beautiful scene, all white and beaming sunshine. So we might just have to go for a walk around the lakes whilst its all looking pretty.