Fancy a challenge?

Happy new year! It's been a fairly relaxed one here but it still feels like a blur. While I'm taking advantage of a few hours alone (so much to catch up on!) I wanted to tell you about a couple of fun things I'm taking part in during January and which you might like too. They involve two of the people I find greatly inspiring and have written about before -  a sew-along with the lovely Cal Patch and a daily drawing challenge with Lisa Congdon. Both require access to *Creativebug which I know many of you already have - if you're not a subscriber, you can get your first month free (HERE) with the code COZYCRAFTS .


I'm a huge fan of Lisa's work and thoroughly enjoyed taking her classes last year, so was delighted to see new content from her, and it's perfectly timed to get back into the creative 'swing' after a couple of weeks off. It's also a very small and manageable daily commitment. 

The Details: This is a fun challenge which anyone can join in, no matter how 'good' you are at drawing. Each day in January, Lisa will have a new short class which you can work alongside. Each class will feature a new topic - day 1 was 'trees' - and is designed to embrace the imperfection of hand-drawing. Using stylised simplified shapes, you'll be able to follow what Lisa is doing, and then to carry on with your own ideas, if you wish. 

All you need is some paper, your favourite pens or pencils (Lisa uses *Sakura Micron pens, which I also love) and a few minutes to access the class. If you miss a day, you can easily catch up as the classes will remain online after January.  If you use Instagram, tag your images with #creativebug and #CBDrawADay - if you post every day you can also be in with a chance to win a giveaway from Lisa and Sakura pens. 


Since I started crafting I've been aware that many people wanted a 'Ravelry for sewing'.  It looks like it's finally here, in the form of Textillia which was recently launched. It's early days for the site which is still being updated and improved, but it already looks great and has a growing community as well as an expanding database of patterns and fabrics, so it's a good time to start using it to record your sewing projects for 2016. (You can find my profile here, I've added a couple of projects to see how it works and will be using it this year in the way I use Ravelry.)

I first heard about Textillia from Cal Patch, and when I found out the sew-along would be using Cal's pattern drafting classes, I quickly decided to join in. I'll be back to tell you more about my own plans for this project when the children are in school (next week), but if you'd like to take part you can get started as soon as you like. 

The Details: Participants will be sewing something with knitted fabrics using a self-drafted pattern. I suspect many of you might already think this is beyond you, but as my own first sewn garment was self-drafted and made from stretch fabric, I can tell you with my hand on heart that it's much easier than you might think, and it's the handmade item I wear the most! If you fancy giving it a go, here's what you need to do: 

- Join Textillia (it's free) 
- Pop over to the Cal Patch Fan Club forum where you'll find all the details (here's the original thread
- Watch the classes (starting with the original classes for woven fabrics which teach you how to draft  to your own measurements)
-  Choose your knit fabric and gather your tools (all explained in the class materials)
- Get stuck in! 
- Post your progress updates (and any requests for help!) on the forum, and remember to tag any Instagram posts with #textillia and #calpatchsewalong so they can be easily found! 

I'll be posting updates on both of these challenges on Instagram too - hope to see you there! Next week I'll be more or less back to my regular posting schedule, in the meantime I hope you have a lovely weekend. 


*Creativebug and Amazon affiliate links are used in this post


  1. Oh, thank you for the heads up about Textilia (fun fact: one of the first magazines I wrote for was called this name), I'll see about joining, whoop! Oooh... sewing with STRETCH fabric, no serger machine?? Indeed, souds terrifying!! Happy 2016!!

    1. Happy 2016 Esther! Yes - it's fine!!!! Honestly!!!! :D


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