The sewing week that wasn’t

26 Oct

I had grand plans for last week. I had an entire week off work, and I planned to do nothing except sew. I’d been looking forward to it for weeks and had planned my list of things I was going to sew.

How much sewing did I get done? I made another (yes there is already one, no it isn’t blogged about yet) Kelly skirt. Well, almost. It still needs buttons and buttonholes. Man those buttonholes are causing me problems! And…that’s it.

Am I disappointed? Not in the slightest! You see, there was a very good reason for my not getting any sewing done last week, a reason that, in the long term, should hopefully allow me to get more sewing done. I ended up househunting!

Image source: Ruby Lane

I have wanted to own a house for as long as I can remember. I just want a place that I can make my own, and put pictures up on the wall without landlords getting stroppy. We can put nothing up on the walls of our current flat, nothing. Admittedly that is more because the walls would probably fall down than for any other reason. In the last couple of years I have got more serious about wanting to buy a place, but haven’t really be able to actually do anything about it. Oxford is an insanely expensive city to live in, and the only way I can afford it is with a lot of financial help from my parents and grandad. Luckily, they are happy to help me out, which I am incredibly grateful for.

The hosuehunting last week was kicked off by speaking to a mortgage adviser, who basically said he’d have no problems getting me a mortgage, and let me know how much I could borrow. House prices are really going up at the moment so my parents and I decided that if I’m going to do this, now really is the time.

So in the space of about 4 days I spoke to 3 mortgage brokers, visited 6 estate agents and viewed 21 houses! I was busy! But it was so worth it. Just seeing that many properties allowed me to hone down my ideas of what I wanted, and also give me a basis for comparison for any I saw. On Saturday I dragged Marcus out with me as well, and we saw about 9 houses that day. One of them we saw was lovely, and we both decided that it would suit us perfectly. It was bigger than most we’d seen, and space is definitely a big thing for us. Marcus works from home, so needs an office, I was desperate for a sewing room, and we do a lot of hobbies that seen to come with loads of stuff! Piled up in various places in our living room at the moment are 2 folding bikes, 3 tents, 5 sleeping bags, miscellaneous camping gear, climbing ropes and gear, climbing helmets, skiing helmets, cycling helmets…you get the idea! And that’s before we even get started on my sewing machines, fabric stash and related things! There really is not a lot of space, and we trip over things (literally) on an alarmingly regular basis.

House-hunting-card

So we liked this house, put an offer in over the weekend, and got a call from the estate agent on Monday to say that the offer had been accepted, and the vendors (who we had a long chat with and are lovely) really wanted to sell us the house!

I am trying not to get too excited, this is only the beginning of a long and stressful journey, and there’s a lot that could still go wrong, but it is at least off to a good start. And then not only will we not be tripping over things on a regular basis, but I can actually have a sewing room. Now to work out how best to use the space – I really want to get myself a decent sized cutting table, and some funky storage solutions – any inspiration/ideas from what you have done with your sewing room, if you are lucky enough to have one, would be much appreciated!

cutting tables

I have been browsing Pinterest for a little bit of inspiration…Source

Now we just have the agonising wait for everything to go through. And bizarrely, I still don’t really have any impetus to sew – I think I find it difficult to focus on more than one big project at a time, so although I have had a bit of time free this week, my brain has been whirring with house stuff so much that I just haven’t had the concentration to sew. I haven’t even been keeping up with reading sewing blogs, everything has been house-focussed! But I don’t mind, the sewing may have to go by the wayside for a short while, but hopefully once I can concentrate on it again, it will be better than ever!

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18 Responses to “The sewing week that wasn’t”

  1. Nessa October 26, 2013 at 15:34 #

    Huge Congratulations to you! This is such an exciting time for you both. How lovely to have such supportive and understanding relatives too.
    I hope it all goes through smoothly for you. I have seen too many English property TV programmes to have more than 90% confidence but I will have my fingers crossed for you!

    • Kelly October 27, 2013 at 23:58 #

      Thank you Nessa. I am very excited, just have everything crossed that it all goes well now!

  2. Elena October 26, 2013 at 18:58 #

    Such exciting news, congratulations! I’m always envious of anyone who owns their own home, as I too share your overzealous landlord pain :/ Whereabouts in Ox is the house? x

    • Kelly October 27, 2013 at 23:59 #

      Thanks Elena! It’s on Bartholomew Road in Cowley. I know 4 people who have bought houses recently within a 10 minute walk as well, so that’s nice :) I think there may have to be a sewing room warming party, so you’ll have to come and see it :)

  3. SeamsOddLouise October 26, 2013 at 21:33 #

    Good luck hope all goes well

    • Kelly October 27, 2013 at 23:59 #

      Thanks Louise!

  4. JacqC October 27, 2013 at 08:56 #

    Well done for getting a skirt made with all that going on. Fingers crossed for a smooth house purchase :)

    • Kelly October 28, 2013 at 00:00 #

      Ahem…skirt *almost* done! I still have no way of doing it up! Thank you, I’m just hoping it all goes well!

  5. Emmely October 27, 2013 at 15:46 #

    Congratulations on getting the house! For a sewing room I think it is really important to make sure that you don’t have to move around too much while you are working. Your cutting station, sewing machine and ironing station should all be easily accessible and close to each other. I’ve got a fairly large table in my room and I can fit 2 meters of fabric on it (when folded in half, not a single layer) and that is really great when I need to cut out large patterns so that I don’t have to crawl around on the floor (although I do need to clear the table before I am able to do this as it usually contains my sewing machine and cutting mat).

    • Kelly October 28, 2013 at 00:01 #

      Thanks Emmely! Yes, I want to have my sewing machine and overlocker on separate tables, maybe in a corner so I can have a swivel chair and easily move from one to the other. At the moment I have to use the same table for cutting, laying out, sewing and overlocking, and I spend half my time moving things around rather than actually sewing!

  6. Daniela October 27, 2013 at 19:27 #

    Hey, you made your Kelly Skirt and even two!
    I hope everything goes smooth and fast with your house purchase. That is such a big step, amazing. My boyfriend and me are also thinking about buying a property, but with London prices we can only afford a flat. And about your new sewing room, if you have enough space I would definitively put the cutting table in the middle of the room so that you can reach it from all sides :) BTW, have you done the fitting class with Mandy already?

    • Kelly October 28, 2013 at 00:04 #

      I did! Just about managed to get the first one out of leftover dungaree fabric, although I did have to do some creative piecing together! Will get it blogged as soon as the weather allows some decent photo-taking opportunities! Thank you for your good wishes! I don’t envy you trying to buy somewhere in London – Oxford is bad enough for prices! Good plan on the cutting table, hadn’t thought of that. I think I will try and put castors on it so I can move it around if necessary. And yes, I have done the fitting class, it was great! Also to be blogged when I have some time! Unfortunately I haven’t been able to try any of it out yet as I haven’t had time to do any sewing, but I’l really looking forward to trying it out!

  7. aupetitchou October 28, 2013 at 18:17 #

    Looking forward to help you with the move!
    Does anyone of you has found a good way to store and manage patterns? Mine are currently in arch lever folders…

    • Kelly October 28, 2013 at 20:04 #

      Aw, thank you :) The best way I that Really Useful Boxes (the nice translucent coloured boxes) do some that take suspension files (they also sell them with the files in but it’s cheaper to just buy the boxes and get your own files), so I have all my patterns in there (often in a brown envelope as well) – all the original pieces/tracings/taped together PDF patterns, and then each file has a little label sticking up so that I can see exactly what they all are :)

  8. Sandy at Sewing Patterns October 31, 2013 at 16:33 #

    Hope all goes well with your home purchase and move……big step.

    • Kelly November 6, 2013 at 15:27 #

      Thanks very much Sandy!

  9. Michelle October 31, 2013 at 21:12 #

    CONGRATULATIONS! Home buying is a fun and stressful process! My husband and I are wrapping up the purchase of a new home at the moment too.And, I’ve been busily searching for ways to make my new craft space more functional. I had my father-in-law build me a knock-off Bedford Project table (Anna White website), which is great for storage, but I certainly need more table-top space to have a fully functioning sewing room. Right now, I’m leaning towards the Ikea Expedit shelving/desk system for my machine. I’m still working out a cutting table. BEST LUCK! I’m eager to see what you work out!

    • Kelly November 6, 2013 at 15:33 #

      Thanks very much Michelle, I hope yours all goes well too! The table looks great, I’ll have to see if I can get something similar – maybe a good DIY project for the boyfriend once we actually have a garage and he can have a workshop ;) I’d love to see some pics of your space once you’ve got it all worked out.

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