Out & About

My 2017!

It’s been a while since I wrote any sort of post…months in fact…eek, but inspired by other reviews of the year I’ve been seeing pop up since Christmas I thought I would do a little look back on my 2017. This year has been a little bit of a strange one for me…as I’m sure it has for many others. I started off thinking that it would be the year I moved to a different city having left London in Autumn 2016 to return to Suffolk. I am however still in Suffolk for the time being although the plan to move elsewhere is still very much a plan! I have spent most of the year working on getting my business up and running and although there is still a lot I want to do, compared to the end of 2016 it is looking much more how I want it to. I thought I would share some of my positive and happy memories from 2017…sorry its quite a hefty one!

I spent Valentines Day with Drake (and a few thousand other people) at the O2 Arena, with the most amazing seats near the front and it was probably one of the greatest live shows I’ve seen to be honest. Then in March I returned to Anfield to watch Liverpool play for the first time in years, it might have been a rainy game against Burnley but they did at least win!…and I got to catch up with old friends in Manchester and Liverpool.

As mentioned earlier I spent a big chunk of the year working on ‘Gill Makes‘ and ‘Sewing a Song’, the response since I started the song lyric cushions has been really lovely and I’m so happy when someone asks me to make a personalised item for them or just pops to my Etsy shop and orders something. There is still a lot of work to done but I can at least now say I am so glad I broke away from London to put more focus on it all!

2017 was my first year without a holiday for a while, in fact I haven’t been on a ‘proper’ holiday since 2015 so I appreciated any opportunity for a change of scenery (and a glimpse of the sea).  I’ve always loved Brighton but since my friend has moved nearby I feel like I’ve explored it a lot more and know a few more hidden gems!


Saying goodbye to one of my favourite bands was a bittersweet moment of 2017, I cut down on the amount of gigs I went to last year but there was no way I was missing these (which is why I went to three of the farewell gigs). I won’t bore you all again as I’ve already blogged about this (here!) but even though I was heartbroken back in June I am so glad I met so many friends via these guys!


Even though it takes place in my home county Latitude festival felt like a holiday in the summer so maybe I did have a proper holiday after all. It was a massive highlight of 2017 – as it has been every year since I started going in 2013 – staying in a cottage helps with the holiday feel too! Watching The 1975 headline will always be one of my favourite festival memories and it came at the perfect time after the post-Maccabees comedown!

In August I saw another one of my favourite bands, The Cribs, play two album release shows in two days (with the added bonus of an acoustic performance in Kingston’s market square). I always love seeing this band but this was a really lovely few days catching up with friends too ❤

Continuing along the music theme…although in a slightly different vein…during the same week in August as The Cribs gigs I relived the 90’s when I was lucky enough to write about Now That’s a Festival (read about it here if you wish!) I think it was exactly the occasion for my friend and myself to forget about all those things stressing us out and just for a few hours transport ourselves back to our teen years…oh yeah and I met Lee Ryan and Damage.


Another music related highlight came in September when Mystery Jets took over the Garage in North London for five nights of ‘Jetrospective’. The band played a different album each night and I obviously couldn’t choose which one to go to so went to them all…it was one of my favourite weeks of the last few years let alone just 2017 and made up for having to turn down a few other gigs!

As I touched on before in 2017 I managed to finally develop an idea I had a while ago (about 5 years ago in fact!) into a product. My ‘Sewing a Song‘ cushions are something that I am continuing to work on and am in the process of working on new designs and ideas but I am really grateful to anyone that has encouraged me along the way or has ordered from me in the last few months.

As a bit of a New Years Eve cynic I couldn’t imagine including it in a review of year highlights usually but 2017 into 2018 was one of the nicest NYE’s for a while as I got to be reunited with one of my best friends from Australia. Like proper tourists we watched the fireworks from the banks of the Thames, even though I don’t live in London anymore I still love it and seeing out the year with the fireworks and one of best mates has possibly made me a little less cynical 😉

Happy 2018 everybody!

G x



























































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.


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!)




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.


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!



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!


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



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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Sunset at Latitude



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.


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!