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A Bustle & Sew Publication Copyright Š Bustle & Sew Limited 2013 The right of Helen Dickson to be identified as the author of this work has been asserted in accordance with the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system or transmitted in any form, or by any means, without the prior written permission of the author, nor be otherwise circulated in any form of binding or cover other than that in which it is published and without a similar condition being imposed on the subsequent purchaser. Every effort has been made to ensure that all the information in this book is accurate. However, due to differing conditions, tools and individual skills, the publisher cannot be responsible for any injuries, losses and other damages that may result from the use of the information in this book.

First published 2013 by: Bustle & Sew Coombe Leigh Chillington Kingsbridge Devon TQ7 2LE UK


Hello, And welcome to the August 2013 edition of the Bustle & Sew Magazine. There’s a bit of a coastal theme in this month’s issue - you’ll discover seagulls and seahorses as well as a bevy of Bathing Belles inside, together with Sidney the little dog softie and English cottage tea cosy. You’ll see I’ve used the most delicious icecream coloured fabrics for these patterns - a new Susie Watson shop has just opened in my local town - Kingsbridge - and I’ve been taking advantage of their remnants and sale lines. If you’re not lucky enough to have one of her shops nearby, then they offer mail order worldwide. I love their ethos of using handmade, fairly traded materials, and there are two great videos on their website about the manufacturing of their pottery and textiles in Sri Lanka and southern India. My final project - Summer Gypsy cushion cover was inspired much closer to home - by learning about life on English narrow boats during the 18th and 19th centuries and I’ve included a little of what I discovered in case you’re interested too. You’ll also find an update on Rosie’s country wedding, my Recipe Corner, the next instalment of my series on natural dyes as well as much more too. All this month’s patterns were very much created with the idea of taking your stitching outside to enjoy the summer sunshine - so I hope you’ll have time to do just that this month! Happy stitching Helen xx

Notes from a Devon Village

Sidney PS The September issue is published on Vintage Idea; A Basket for Baby Thursday 29th August so watch out for it then! The Colour Orange

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Seahorse Dorothy Bag

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An English Country Wedding

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Noah’s Ark Transfers

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On the Beach

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Bathing Belles Applique

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Marvellous Muslin

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English Cottage Tea Cosy

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Recipe Corner Journal Covers Seagull Place Mats Craft Traditions: English Narrow Boats Summer Gypsy Cushion Cover Garden Harvest 3

Notes from a Devon Village

Here in Devon summer is at its height and all around my garden the air is alive with the sound of bees busy in my flower borders. Earlier in the year they loved to visit the pale pink roses that scramble through my apple trees before transferring their attentions to first the lavender which thrives in the hot and sunny garden at the front of the house, and then just lately the ice-plants which are beginning to come into flower. They are so funny to watch when they visit these, they seem to adore the nectar, becoming drowsy and heavy, hardly able to summon the strength to lift themselves in flight!

Of course the ice-plants flowering is the signal that summer will soon be over and autumn will be upon us. I love autumn, the whiff of wood smoke on the wind as everyone begins to tidy their gardens, the first chill in the air and the woods just edged in gold. But there’s still quite a lot of summer left as I sit typing this in the summer house on a warm and sunny July afternoon with two rather over-warm newfies snoozing happily by my feet. 4

Sidney Sidney is the most cheerful little canine with his cute button nose and shiny inquisitive black eyes. There is some simple wiring in his legs so they’re nice and firm, helping him to stand securely as he surveys the world around him. Sidney measures 8” tall approx - but there’s no reason why you shouldn’t make him larger or smaller - just resize the pattern accordingly.



Welcome to the next stage of our armhair travels around the world seeking out the historical dyes once used to transform all our textiles from dull, neutral colours into vibrant fabrics in all the colours of the rainbow. For many hundreds of years natural dyes were the only choice for dying textiles, since synthetic colours didn’t appear until the 19th century. We’re looking back at some of the amazing and inventive ways humans learned to colour clothes before that time, as well as discovering some interesting and little known facts about colour history. Last month we discovered the cochineal bug and its lesser-known European cousin the kermes insect, and this month we’ll be learning all about orange. harvest their madder crop after just two years in case the roots grew too long and strong, burrowing too deeply into the dykes and so causing floods. Although the root of the madder bush is actually pink, the addition of alum to a madder dye bath means that any white textile treated in it will emerge the most vibrant shade of orange. The bright orangey-red colour “Turkey Red” was produced in this way by the dyers of the old Ottoman empire. It was one of the best-kept secrets of the dying world and it took European dyers several centuries of bribery, espionage and negotiation to discover the secret in the early 18th century.

This month in our journey through the colours of the rainbow we’re looking at orange – and feeling mad about madder! The richest orange-red natural dyes were from a small bush with a pink root called madder. Madder roots have been used as a dye for over 5,000 years. Archaeologists have found traces of madder in linen in Tutankhamen’s tomb (1350 BC), and in wool discovered in Norse burial grounds.

The British took another 50 years to uncover the process and were finally helped by two brothers from Rouen, Louis and Abraham Henry Borelle, who arrived in Manchester in 1787 and offered the secret of Turkey Red to the city’s Committee of trade. It is safe to assume, even through the mists of time, that the city elders would have leapt at the opportunity to be able to produce their own Turkey Red dye, as throughout the 1790s, the Red Bandanna was every fashionista’s must-have item of apparel. Today these items are worn only occasionally – probably more frequently by style-conscious dogs

The madder plant The roots of the madder plant grow so long and so quickly that in 17th century Holland, where madder was extensively grown, farmers working on land reclaimed from the sea were legally obliged to 7

Seahorse Dorothy Bag I’m not entirely certain where the term “Dorothy Bag” originated, but I have always loved the rounded plumpness of these little drawstring bags. My version is easy to stitch and features two little seahorses, with eyes only for each other! Finished bag has 5 ½” diameter base and measures 8 ½” tall (approx)


Here at Coombe Leigh we’re all very excited about Rosie and Dan’s engagement and wedding next June. Over the coming months I hope you’ll enjoy hearing about our preparations - starting this month with “Save the Date” announcements ….. It was very much a team effort - and we were really pleased with the results. You could use this method to spell out any message with bunting flags - it’s really easy to do, but the finished result looked very professional (and I’m sure would have been quite expensive to purchase too). To make bunting like ours you will need:

Ÿ An assortment of medium weight fabrics in stripes and florals for the flags - don’t choose any patterns that are too bright as your letters won’t show up. Ÿ Another(!) assortment of quilting weight fabrics in bright colours for the letters. We’re very proud of our “save the date” bunting, created specially for our cards. Rosie and Dan arrived the night before our planned photo shoot and we all set to work.

Ÿ Bondaweb Ÿ 1” cotton tape - or you could use bias binding and fold it over if preferred - long enough to attach the tops of all your flags. I didn’t leave any gaps between the flags as I wanted the message to be easily read. Ÿ Embroidery foot for your sewing machine Ÿ Light and dark thread Ÿ Pinking shears Ÿ Flag template


On the Beach ….. I know I’m very lucky to live in such a beautiful part of the world, close to the sea and surrounded by open countryside. August of course is the time that many of us love to spend time by the water, whether we’re year-round residents or simply visiting for a week or two. We all love to collect shells, pebbles and driftwood, (although these days we’re very environmentally conscious and careful not to take too much of course - or alternatively purchase your shells from specialist shops) so I thought you’d enjoy one or two vintage suggestions of things to do with your beach combing treasures… Shell Lights The best shells to choose for lights are those with a wide bowl-like inside such as conch, helmet and murex. The outside of the shell should have bumps or ridges so that it will stand firm and level and the oil doesn’t run out.

When you’ve found a suitable shell then you’ll need a wick. You can either purchase these or make your own. If you’re making your own look at the channel along which the wick will run and decide on the thickness. A large shell with a wide channel will need a thicker wick than a small dainty one. Use soft cotton such as dish cloth knitting yarn and cut off three strands about 10” (25 cm) long and fold them in half. Loop the cotton over a hook attached to a firm piece of wood. Plait the strands of cotton fairly loosely together to make a 5” (13 cm) long wick. Trim the ends level and your wick is complete. This will be thick enough for a small shell, but you’ll need to make one thicker than this for a bigger shell.

The ideal shell is one that has a channel running very slightly downwards. If this channel is too steep the oil will drip out, but if the slop is absent the wick will dry up, so choose your shell with care. 10

Bathing Belles Applique Picture Here in Devon, as the summer really gets under way, the first of the season’s bathers are spotted on our beaches. You have to be brave to swim in the sea here in England as even when the sunshine’s warm, the water is likely to remain chilly until at least September. Shown mounted on A3 (approx 16” x 20”)


Marvellous Muslin Think of a flimsy, diaphanous cloth, that filters harsh sunlight into a gentle gauzy glow, but is strong enough to be used in cheese, butter and jelly-making – for example to wrap the curds for cream cheese so they can be hung and left to drain overnight. Yes - muslin - mentioned in Jane Austen's novels as a favourite material for ladies' gowns in the Regency era (early 19th century), though the practise of dampening petticoats to encourage the thin fabric to cling in a revealing manner was apparently much less common than we think. The origin of the word "muslin" is uncertain - it may derive from the Hindi word "mulmull" which has been used in India for centuries to describe a plain woven, sheer cotton cloth - or possibly from "Mosul" - an area in Iraq. Regency Muslin Dress

Butter muslin, cheesecloth, gauze and flag bunting are all different types of muslin. The first two names refer specifically to their original culinary uses - to strain or to wrap butter, cheese, bacon and puddings. Butter muslin is still used for this purpose today, and for straining and clarifying soups and sauces. These practical uses are reflected in the coarse, unbleached cloth that still retains the small dark flecks of the cotton seed that are removed in further refining and bleaching processes. In contrast, more than three hundred years ago craftsmen in Dacca (now part of Bangladesh) were spinning and weaving cotton into the most fine and beautiful cloth used only for royal and ceremonial occasions. This cloth was so light that, yard for yard, it weighed less than a quarter of the weight of a fine quality muslin today. As fine as a cobweb, with dainty "butis" or floral sprigs embroidered in a slightly thicker yarn, it caused a sensation at the Great Exhibition held in Hyde Park, London in 1851. Today the best and finest muslin cloth is made from Egyptian cotton - a name which no longer refers only to its country of origin,


English Cottage Tea Cosy Inspired by those lovely vintage patterns, and brought right up-to-date with freestyle machine embroidery, this little tea cosy is sure to please. Mine is shown on a 2-cup pot, but I’ve included instructions for measuring your teapot so that your cosy will fit snugly over your own choice of pot.


sometimes use up to four egg yolks in the measured egg (left over from meringue making) and make up the rest with whole eggs.

Auntie Joyce’s Lemon Curd “When life serves you lemons make lemonade” so the saying goes - but I think lemon curd and lemon ice cream are even nicer still! This recipe is courtesy of my Auntie Joyce who was a WI stalwart in the 1960’s and 70’s. I think it must date to the latter part of this era though as we certainly didn’t have our first microwave until the mid-70’s. Using a microwave really cuts down on the preparation time for the lemon curd - about 10 minutes as opposed to nearer 40 minutes if you’re making it in a bowl over a pan of hot water. The good thing about this recipe is that the eggs and the lemon juice are measured, so you obtain a consistent result whatever the size of egg or juice content of your lemons. I

This recipe makes about 3 lb of lemon curd and should take you no more than about half an hour in total. (excluding time to sterilize your jam jars). You can do this by rinsing your jars well in boiling water, then turn them upside down to drain. Place them on a cooling rack on a pad of kitchen paper and heat in the oven at 160o C/325o F/Gas Mar 3 for 10 minutes or until completely dry. Allow to cool before filling. Ingredients: Ÿ 7 oz (200 g) butter, preferably unsalted Ÿ 1 lb 9 oz (700 g) granulated or caster sugar Ÿ Grated zest of 4 - 5 lemons Ÿ ½ pint (300 ml) lemon juice - usually about 4 - 5 lemons Ÿ ½ pint (300 ml) beaten eggs - usually about 4 - 5 eggs Method: Ÿ Place the butter, sugar, lemon zest and juice in a large bowl and microwave on full power for about 2 minutes or until the butter has melted and the sugar has


Vintage-Style Journal Cover Prints Whether you want to make a diary of your seaside adventures, record your hopes and dreams or simply like a nice notebook to write your lists and things to do, it’s fun to make a shop-bought book into something special by providing it with a lovely fabric cover. And the good news is that it’s easy to transfer the cover to another book when your current one’s full - or you can make a new cover for each one if you’re tucking them away safely for the future. A fabric notebook cover is so easy to make - here’s a link to my “Sweet Home” cover - and why not ring the changes with these vintage designs too? Just print onto cotton fabric - you can purchase ready-to-print fabric or transfer sheets from most good stationers, stitch the text with backstitch for that special handmade touch, trim the edges with pinking shears and sew onto your background fabric.


Seagulls Place Mats Bring a seaside feeling to your table with these easy patchwork place mats. Choose a selection of bleached cottons, denim and linen - and perhaps some fussy cutting too if you find a suitable print - then add a fat little felt seagull applique for easy coastal chic. Finished mats measure 17� x 11� (approx)


Craft Traditions: English Canal Narrow Boats In the second half of the eighteenth century England was becoming an industrialised, commercial society. Manufacturing had already developed from local craftsmen meeting local needs to home-workers producing for regional merchants. But now it was moving from cottage industry to factories, where the workforce could be more easily supervised.

the 'Canal Age' began in the 1750's. During this time the watersheds of the Rivers Mersey, Trent, Severn and Thames were climbed and crossed by canals and the rivers linked, and two thousand miles of canals were built. Whole regions like the Staffordshire Potteries and the midlands Black Country were developed and became wealthy because of their canals.

Good transport networks were vital to move raw materials to the factories and finished goods to consumers, including those in the expanding British Empire. More roads were being built and improved but they couldn't easily handle heavy bulk materials like coal, or fragile materials like pottery. One horse could pull fifty tons in a boat, and there were over a thousand miles of navigable rivers that could be used for this purpose, but their potential was becoming exhausted, they didn't go to the right places - the new manufacturing centres - anymore.

But by the end of the eighteenth century the boom was over, most British canals were completed by 1815, and within ten years the coming of the railways brought competition and rivalry (after 1850) and canal traffic began to lose its importance, though canals were still an important method of transport for another hundred years or so.

The St. Helens Canal, near Warrington, and the first part of the Bridgewater Canal were opened on the 1750's. From this time onwards many more canals were built and


Summer Gypsy Cushion Cover Combine bright colours and a cheerful scarlet geranium - pom-poms and hexagons to evoke something of the feeling of the old English narrow boats travelling up and down the waterways of middle England. Easy faux- piecing technique make this cushion a lot easier than perhaps it looks!

Š Bustle & Sew 2013 18

Handstitched Christmas - a collection of seasonal designs from Bustle & Sew - now available from my website -and from Amazon too! Just click here to learn more. 19


Bustle & Sew Magazine Issue 31 August 2013  

What's in the August 2013 issue of the Bustle & Sew Magazine. Six new Bustle & Sew projects, articles, features, recipe corner and much mor...