Sunday, 14 September 2014

The Colour Purple by Alice Walker

In a tragic sort of way, this book is simply a beautiful read. Written in Celie and Nettie's perspective through the letters they write to God and then to each other, like many books written in first person, I started to feel a bond with the main characters-especially Celie. As Celie begins to find herself and realise she can use her sewing skills to find some success, I found myself feeling proud and in awe (I admit I was teary-eyed for most of it).
 Reading about the hardships black women had to face in a racist and patriarchal society is truly shocking yet what I found most intriguing and inspiring was the character, Shug Avery who completely challenged the unspoken rules in the society she lived in. My favourite quote from Celie to her husband that treats her as if she is worthless is 'Until you do right by me, everything you touch will crumble. Everything you even dream about will fail'. I think the main reason I love this quote is that we can really see she is starting to value her life even if she has been through incredibly awful things.

Being one of my favourite books, I would have to give it a 5/5. It's thought provoking, triggers various emotions and has a beautiful underlying message.

Sunday, 7 September 2014

DIY: Cute Drawstring Laundry Bags

Last September, one of my older sisters was about to attend her first year of uni and to her dismay she'd be having to use a launderette so I thought I would make her a cute laundry bag out of left over material. The sewing machine I used at the time wasn't great and she used it often so it quickly fell apart, which meant she and my other older sister (annoyed that I never made her one) were both expecting an upgrade. They're really quick and easy to make so I thought I would take pictures along the way so you could make one too!

  1. Firstly choose two materials. For the front panels I would recommend buying about 1m and for the side panels I would say 1.25/5m-the extra is to make a base.
  2. Fold both materials in half so when you cut the panels out they are the same size. Then pin the materials together and cut out a rectangular sort of shape with curved sides.
  3. Pin the front panels to the side panels-right sides together-but don't pin the panels on either end together. 
  4. Measure a square base according to the with of the panels. Pin it to either of the middle panels-still right sides together. It should now look like this:
  5. Now just machine sew along where you have pinned it.
  6. Pin the other sides of the base to the panels and machine sew again. Then pin the end panels together and machine sew so the bag is fully joined together.
  7. Roll the top edge of the bag twice, flatten and pin it like this:

  8. Machine sew on the bottom edge making sure there is enough space to thread the drawstring through.
  9. Cut two small holes next to each other through one layer of where you have just rolled the top edge. Attach a safety pin to whatever you are using for your drawstring-I used a shoelace-and put it in one of the holes. Shift it through the rolled material until it comes to the other hole and pull it through. You can leave it like that or tie it in a bow.
  10. Finally (this part is optional) hand sew a lace trimming over where you machine sewed the rolled material so it looks like this:

My new sewing machine is from Hobbycraft-I would definitely recommend it!-
The fabric and lace trimming was also from Hobbycraft.