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Bionic Gear Bag Number Five!

May 11, 2015


Rosemary, my 1948 Singer treadle,  and I finished stitching another Bionic Gear Bag. Find out more about this powerful organisation tool.

Happy stitching on Mother’s day!

May 10, 2015


Happy Mothers Day!

May 10, 2015


Wishing all Moms a wonderful day.

By the Book: Freelance editor, writer, and media consultant Tina Anson Mine’s reading highlights

April 15, 2015


All my favourite bits in one post! Tina Anson Mine is an author, a knitter, a quilter, and all around talented editor and media consultant. She’s truly a gem :)

Originally posted on BoldFace:

 Tina Anson MineInterview conducted by Jennifer D. Foster

Have you ever wondered what fellow editors like to read? We have, too. In our interview series “By the Book,” we get the inside scoop on editors’ all-time favourite books, their top style guides, and what their alternate-universe careers would be.

Tell us about your current job as a freelancer, Tina, plus a little-known quirky fact about you.

I primarily edit books these days, though the first phase of my editing career was in magazines. For the last year, I’ve focused mainly on the substantive editing of cookbooks and health-and-nutrition books. I’ve also worked on a couple of health-oriented recipe books that have an element of crafting to them, such as a handmade soap book and a homemade herbal remedies book. The latter two combined some of my favourite skills, because I adore both words and crafts.

It’s probably not a little-known fact…

View original 635 more words

Celebrating International Women’s Day

March 8, 2015


I am working on the full size Professional Tote. I love playing with my Singer 1948 treadle sewing machine. She’s amazing!

I am dedicating these stitches to women everywhere and to those who passed their knowledge into today’s stitchers.

How are you honouring the inspirational women in your life?

What’s on your hook, needles, or machine?

PATTERN REVIEW: The Bionic Gear Bag (BGB) by Sally Thompson

March 5, 2015

1948 Singer treadle sewing machineEvery so often a pattern is created that I cannot refuse:

  • It impresses me.
  • It teaches me new techniques.
  • It is written well.
  • It helps me create a useful item.
  • It is too tempting to resist.

16524808816_218865f97a_oI found such a pattern: The Bionic Gear Bag (otherwise known as the BGB) by Sally Thompson (aka: RipStitcher across the web and social channels). 

Sally chose the perfect name for this bag. It carries everything you need. It is just as useful to sewers as it is to knitters as it is to those who carry electronics and even those who tote around a lot of other accessories. This bag works hard to bring organization to your life. It is an amazing accessory that will help you keep you organized in your sewing room, your mobile office, and even in your bathroom!

Sewing the BGB helps you reduce your stash. You likely have everything you need to create one right now. Go ahead and find that perfect bit of fabric and some matching zippers and turn them into your very own BGB. The BGB is easily sewn in a weekend. 


Once you make one, you will make more…many more! Immediately upon completion, you’ll notice little changes and additions that you’ll add to your next BGB and you’ll begin rummaging through your stash to find more fabrics and zippers. Before you know it, friends and family will want one. You’ll show it off to your stitcherly friends and, after the ohs and ahs, you’ll be discussing how to customise a bag unique to them. You will not be able to stop at one! You have been warned.

What is a BGB?

The Bionic Gear BagThe Bionic Gear Bag is the brainchild of Sally Thompson. She is a long-time sewer with years of experience teaching and sewing. She created the BGB with sewers in mind.

The BGB features:

  • A place for everything you need.

  • A flat bed “box” that allows easy access to the essentials.

  • Larger slots that keep bigger items handy, but out of the way.

  • Zippered pockets that keep your small bits and bobs accessible and secure.

  • Side panels that keep everything from sliding out of the bag when it is fully closed or completely open

Who should buy this pattern? 

The Bionic Gear BagAnyone interested in bringing a little organization and a lot of stitcherly fun into their lives ought to begin stitching their very own BGB right now! You will need a basic knowledge of sewing techniques, especially sewing secure zippers (lots of them!).

The pattern includes a comprehensive list of supplies, technique instructions, and detailed photos that will guide you through the entire process of constructing the BGB. The pattern also includes instructions for the dumpling fabric dish accessory.

What if I need help with sewing my own BGB?

Sally has created a number of video tutorials that are available on her website. She has created a helpful and supportive community that begins on her website, but other crafty creators are more than willing to help you out. 

  • Sally’s websiteJoin Sally’s email list to stay up-to-date on the BGB and other patterns, check out pattern errata, access video tutorials, and find out what other sewers think of the BGB.
  • Birdcage and Thread: Michelle Wootton has put her excellent sewing talents on display. Visit her website to access video tutorials that show you exactly what to do when constructing your own BGG and dumpling fabric dish.
  • Sew Much Nicer (Facebook group): Whether you are in need of inspiration, encouragement, or just want to show off your BGB, this is the group for you. Over 1000 people from around the world share their experience and tips about BGB construction. 
  • The Collapsible Thread CatcherThis video tutorial will teach you how to use up your scraps and create a fantastic addition to the BGB. It folds down to allow for the bag to close. You won’t be able to stop at just one!

I’m sold! How do I buy the BGB pattern?

The BGB, and other Sally Thompson patterns, are available on Craftsy.

The sewing machine… the sewing machine!

February 25, 2015

1948 Singer treadle sewing machineCheck out this video on YouTube video that stars your friend and mine…the sewing machine! I love the musical movies from the 1940s. Betty Hutton was beautiful and funny in this one “The Perils of Pauline” (1947) is wonderful. I love my vintage 1948 Singer treadle machine (check her out on the left!). She shines in this era and it is nice to think her cousins are featured in this feature film clip!

I dare you to keep your toes from tapping or your feet from treadling to the beat of this catchy tune!

The words… as performed by Betty Hutton in the film “The Perils Of Pauline”

Ahhh, the sewing machine, the sewing machine
A girl’s best friend
If I didn’t having my sewing machine
I’d a come to no good end
But a bobbin a bobbin and peddle a peddle
And wheel the wheel by day
So by night I feel so weary that I never get out to play

Ohhh, the sewing machine, the sewing machine
A friend in need
If I didn’t having my sewing machine
A wicked life I’d lead
But a bobbin a bobbin and peddle a peddle
And dream about romance
So by night I feel so weary that I never get out to dance

Ohhh, the sewing machine, the sewing machine
Me pride and joy
If I didn’t having me sewing machine
I’d a married James McCoy
But a bobbin a bobbin and peddle a peddle
And that’s the end of Jim
‘Cause by night I get so weary I don’t even look good to him

Ohhh, have I got a boss, he looks like a ho’ss
His name’s Joe Gurt*
I’m willing to bet the wages I get
His face must hurt**
While a bobbin a bobbin and peddle a peddle
He keeps his eyes on me
Oh, I’ve never had a nightmare where I didn’t meet Mister G


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