Makes

Recent Make: A wedding gift for a fan of The Smiths!

I was recently commissioned to make a cushion for a wedding gift with the lyrics from The Smiths song ‘There is a Light That Never Goes Out’ on the front.

I found this pretty cream/beige fabric with tiny blue flowers on it in a shop in Sudbury, Suffolk and thought it would look great with a brighter blue fabric that I had in my collection for the letters.

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I usually tend to make most of my cushion covers 38x38cm in size however as this one had more words on I needed to make one that measured 50x50cm. If I’m making the lyric covers I tend to roughly lay out the words/letters on the fabric to figure out the best way to put them on.

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I use heat n’bond adhesive on the letters, tracing them all out first before cutting each letter and ironing them on, after they are all secure and in place I machine stitch around them to finish it off!

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Since I’ve started making the Sewing a Song cushion covers I’ve received a few requests for different lyrics and I’m happy to make ones for people so please feel free to get in touch if you would like something personalised made.

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Out & About · Travel

Bank holiday in Brighton/Lewes and Big screen on the beach!

Over the bank holiday weekend I headed down to stay with my friend who lives in Lewes, we hadn’t really made too many plans but I was lucky enough to win tickets through Camden Town Brewery to the Big Beach Screen ‘Quadrophenia” event on Saturday night!

We were so lucky with the weather over the weekend and as we headed into Brighton from Lewes early Saturday evening the sun was still shining. The showing of ‘Quadrophenia’ at the beach screen was to coincide with a whole weekend programme of events focusing on the history of mod culture and the famous bank holiday day clashes between mods and rockers in Brighton. Now days it’s the chance for people to show off their elaborate scooters along the sea front and dress up in 60s clothing!

After being slightly delayed at the bar (due to the fact they had run out of beer!) we got ourselves a rhubarb cider and some popcorn and found a space on the pebbles, before the film there were DJ’s and a pianist to keep everyone entertained. There was a great atmosphere in the crowd, with quite a few people decked out in sharp suits and 60s style dresses. With the sun setting behind the screen it made for a striking view. It was a such a unique experience watching a film whilst sitting on a beach and one I would definitely recommend (perhaps depending on the weather!)

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Once the film had finished there was a Q&A session with a couple of the actors from Quadrophenia including the lead Phil Daniels then a Who tribute band took to the stage to carry on the party! We hadn’t eaten during the film so decided to leave after a couple of songs to grab some food in Bok Shop which is a new tres trendy chicken restaurant if you’re ever in Brighton and in need of some chicken wings. We finished our evening with a rhubarb gin (best drink ever!) at The Office pub before heading back to Lewes.

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On Sunday we stayed in Lewes and checked out Artwave which is an annual festival where artists and makers open up their studios and homes for a couple of weeks, we didn’t plan which ones to look at but instead just wandered around seeing what we discovered and we managed to see some lovely things! Lewes is a really pretty town to  explore with loads of little cafes and tearooms to stop at along the way including Laportes which uses local produce and was super tasty! I wrote more about it in a previous blog post if you fancy a read! I love Brighton and its surrounding area so it was great to head down there for the weekend!

 

music

Now That’s a Festival!

Anyone that knows me will know that my guilty pleasure is 90s popstars (ok, I don’t feel guilty about it at all) so when I was offered the chance to check out this years Now That’s a Festival I jumped at the chance. I mean let’s face it a line-up that features S Club, Dane Bowers, Blazin’ Squad, 911, B*Witched, Damage and Blue is a line-up that speaks to my 12 year old self (and my 33 year old self to be honest).

Taking place in Dagenham’s central park the pop extravaganza returned for its second year after last year’s event was headlined by Peter Andre. The gates opened up at 1pm on Saturday afternoon with a few local acts  taking to the stage to start proceedings including Tony Roberts, a BBC Let It Shine finalist and The Voice Kids winner Jess Folley, the latter having SUCH a powerful voice for a 13 year old!

IMG_6191Unfortunately we managed to miss Dane Bowers and S Club (sob) due to being slightly delayed navigating across north and east London so it was down to Blazin’ Squad to kick things off for us. Making a comeback after Marcel’s appearance on Love Island Blazin’ Squad (well 5 of them) gave us a glimpse of what to expect when they take to the stage at Koko in October, their set was short and sweet with them performing just three songs, although to be honest I’m not sure many people could remember more than that, their last song ‘Crossroads’ provided one of the biggest singalong moments of the afternoon of course!

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One of my favourite performances was from R&B group Damage, I saw them a  few years ago on ITV’s Boyband Big Reunion tour and remember thinking then they were really good live and if they came along today they’d probably be really popular! On Saturday they played some newer songs as well as the singles ‘Ghetto Romance’ ‘Forever’ ‘Love II Love’ and their cover of ‘Wonderful Tonight’ before doing a little medley of some of their favourite songs including Tinie Tempah’s ‘Pass Out’ and So Solid Crew’s ’21 Seconds’. We managed to grab them for a quick hello after they had come off stage and they were the loveliest guys! I’ll definitely be keeping an eye out for future gigs.

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After a little wander around the festival site in the sunshine it was time to see 911, the pop trio showed us that they are still capable of back-flipping across the stage during Bodyshakin’ 20 years (eeek) after its release! and judging by the amount of people rushing to the fence to meet them after they came off stage they still have a very loyal fan-base!

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The double denim was no where to be seen but B*Witched provided us all with plenty of singalong opportunities during their performance with songs such as Blame it on The Weatherman, Jesse Hold On and of course C’est La Vie which they remixed with Ed Sheeran’s Galway Girl (well if two songs were ever supposed to be mixed it was definitely these!)

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The day went by in a flash and we would have happily remained in our 90s pop bubble long into the night but alas, there was a curfew so the time came for headliners Blue to take to the stage. They were on top form, sounding (and looking!) great, the crowd sang along to every word of ‘All Rise’, ‘Sorry Seems to Be the Hardest Word’ and final song of the evening ‘One Love’.

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It would have been good to have the stage times posted online a day or two before just to know the order of the performances but that would only be a minor criticism! Overall I thought Now That’s a Festival was really well organised, all the security we came across during the day were helpful and friendly. There were a good number of food stalls to choose from and the queues for the bar and toilets didn’t get too big! The atmosphere was fun and friendly throughout the day with everybody just there for a big pop party…which is exactly what we got! 🙂

Now That’s a Festival is returning to Dagenham in August next year with the legendary Dru Hill and BlackStreet on the line-up, find out more and buy (early bird) tickets here!

 

Photos by Hayley Goodsell

 

Makes

Babee bunting!

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One of my most popular cards over the last few months has been the ‘Mum to bee’ one (see photo at bottom of page) so I thought I’d try making some matching bunting to go with the design!

I made the bunting using plain white card triangles and drawing the bee illustration on two of the flags then using yellow paper and black letters cut from card for the words.

The bunting would be suitable for hanging as a decoration at a baby shower for a mum to be, or in the office for a maternity leave farewell.

You can find the bunting in my Etsy shop Gill Makes!

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Makes

Dinosaur bunting and cushion for child’s room

Once again I have neglected the craft side of the blog!….I seem to post so much on Instagram that I never really feel the need to blog about what I’ve been making, but I’ve just finished this project which was a present for my nephew who turned one last week. The idea was to create some bunting for his room that wasn’t too ‘baby-ish’ and something that would last for a while!

I’d already made a dinosaur scrabble picture frame for him so decided to continue with the theme, the bunting was made using the two green printed cottons and the plain green then joined together with the dark grey bias binding in a similar colour to the letters used for the name. Then I put two flags either side of the name with the dinosaur shape that I’d used before for card making.

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Ezra was also getting a new chair for his room too so with some of the printed fabric left I made a matching dino cushion!

You can find similar style items in my Etsy shop or please feel free to send me a message or comment on this post if you would like me to make you something customised!

 

 

music · Out & About

Festival diary: Latitude

It’s been a full on (and sometimes emotional) few weeks in terms of music related things for me, there was The Maccabees farewell’s in Manchester and London, a few days later a trip to Hyde Park to see longtime faves Kings of Leon, followed the day after by the Grenfell fire benefit gig at Bush Hall.

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Continuing on the gig wave I spent last weekend at Suffolk’s (my home county) biggest festival, Latitude, it was my fifth year in a row which I guess means I really like it there. As always I met up with friends from London and we headed to the cottage we’ve stayed at for the past few years – festival-ing in style no less – which makes it feel like a holiday as well as a festival. It’s been a strange year or so for me with leaving London, trying to spend more time working on my own business and trying not to spend too much cash in the meantime, so because of all this I made the decision to give up my Glastonbury ticket, NEVER an easy thing to do but it just didn’t feel right for me to go this year. So when the opportunity to go back to Latitude came up I jumped at the chance.

Anyone that’s been to Latitude before will know how lovely it is, the lakeside setting is so pretty and the forest provides plenty of hidden stages and happenings! It’s also super easy to run between all stages because everything is so close – great for people like me who lose their sense of direction easily or are trying to cram in 4 different bands in the space of 2 hours.

After picking up our wristbands on Thursday evening we had a wander around the site and took ourselves off to the restaurant by the lake run by East London’s Blixen, because when you’re at one of the most civilised festivals in the country why not eat steak off proper plates and enjoy a cocktail!? (nicest cocktail ever btw)

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I’m always keen to hear new music and check out bands I haven’t seen before, however I am also pretty happy when loads of bands I’ve loved forever appear on  a festival line-up and Latitude did not disappoint this year. The Coral, The Horrors and Mystery Jets made sure I spent most of Friday afternoon/evening at the main stage reliving the early-mid 2000s. Then Friday night delivered one of, if not the best, festival headline set I’ve seen for quite a few years from The 1975, the energy was INCREDIBLE and in Matty Healy they have the perfect pop/rockstar. After seeing them on the Lake Stage in 2013 it was great to see them back as headliners and absolutely win at doing so.

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Saturday delivered plenty of good things too including a Willy Mason acoustic performance on the tiny SOLAS stage which was hidden away in the forest. It was the perfect setting and felt like one of those special festival moments, having a chat with the man himself after made it even more special. Another trip down nostalgia lane happened early on Saturday evening with a set by Two Door Cinema Club, I had sort of forgotten just how many tunes they had and the fact that they are the perfect sunny afternoon festival band! It was great to see Chicago boys Twin Peaks again after missing their last date in London, they played an awesome set at the Sunrise Arena on Saturday night.

I headed up to the main stage to watch Mumford and Sons on my own (none of the group I was with are fans!). They may not be everybody’s cup of tea but the set reminded me how much I used to love them and the crowd singing back every word to them was quite an emotional moment! I headed to SOLAS after Mumfords to meet up with everyone and to watch Parcels – the Aussie bands midnight set ended up being one of my favourite moments of the weekend and a band I will definitely see live again, despite our weary feet/legs they managed to keep us dancing for the whole time they were on stage. I cannot recommend checking them out enough!

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Sunday afternoon came around far too quickly and featured the chilled sounds of Matt Maltese on the Lake Stage followed by a rare Latitude rain shower and Public Service Broadcasting at the main arena. Sunday also saw a bit of clash situation which involved me running around watching little bits of Childhood, Loyle Carner and The Magic Gang on three different stages, as mentioned earlier that’s why it’s so great the stages are all relatively close! Fleet Foxes were the main stage headliners on Sunday night but I headed to the Sunrise to watch Temples and once again did that thing of forgetting how much I loved them. After a quick half hour dance to BBC music headliner Fatboy Slim we reluctantly wave goodbye for another year. Latitude you remain firmly at the top of my festival list.

Head to the bottom of this post for a list of everyone I saw!

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In no particular order!

  1. The 1975 
  2. Mystery Jets 
  3. Two Door Cinema Club
  4. Afrikan Boy
  5. Sløtface
  6. HMLTD
  7. Parcels
  8. Life
  9. Honeyblood
  10. Formation
  11. Mumford and Sons
  12. Twin Peaks 
  13. Willy Mason
  14. The Magic Gang
  15. Matt Maltese 
  16. The Horrors
  17. The Divine Comedy 
  18. Loyle Carner
  19. Childhood
  20. The Coral 
  21. Temples 
  22. Fatboy Slim
  23. Dan Croll
  24. Strong Asian Mothers
  25. Sh!t Theatre – Dollywould