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Sunday, 18 March 2012

For Mum

The other night, I watched the first in a new series, called Mary's Bottom Line, in which retail consultant, Mary Portas, goes on a mission to bring manufacturing back to Britain, starting with knickers. I really enjoyed it, and will definitely be watching the other episodes, not least because the first one made me think of my Mum.

Like Mary, she worked as a seamstress in the Harrods factory - first in the days when it was located above the shop in Knightsbridge, and then moved down to Swindon as a supervisor to help set up the operation there. Those ladies Mary used to train up the young recruits could have been my Mum - and, when I chatted to her about it, she agreed, saying shots of the programme bought back memories of her own early working days.

Sorry to spoil the surprise, but this looks like Mary and her gang of trainees were successful
- I will definitely be checking them out next time I'm in London.

With Mum's background as it is, you'll be able to understand why I always make an extra effort when making anything for her. Not because I think she'll criticise or anything - she always appreciates any effort I've made - but, I know she'll be casting a good eye over the stitching once I'm out of sight.

So, using this pattern for the first time, here is a bag for Mum. It was the self-covered buttons, pleats and piping that originally caught my eye - and I think they really help make the finished bag look special.

I adjusted the internal pocket size slightly, and added a hand stitched label I thought Mum would like.

The main fabric is an upholstery linen from John Lewis, called Wallflower - I've had it about a year (saving it up for the perfect project), but I think they still sell it. And the bigger dots fabric is from Fabric Rehab, the vintage style dots they sell. The other one is from a tiny Aladdin's Cave of an independent fabric shop in Nottingham.

The nice thing about Lisa Lam's patterns, is the instructions are really clear to follow, making new techniques - such as this zip at the top of the bag for me - pretty straightforward to pick up.

Happy Mothering Sunday. X


  1. Looks lovely, what a lovely present for your mum!

  2. I watched Marys Bottom Line too, it was fab!! And what a beautiful present, your mum must have been so touched!! :-) xxxxxx