Inspiration Strikes

Maureen’s ‘Jumper of Many Colours’


Maureen shows us the beautiful teacup pincushion she made whilst modelling the jumper she knitted for herself.  She has cleverly pieced together knitted squares from wools of different colours and textures, but most amazing of all she made this without a pattern!!

What to do with a Wine Box?  Well, turn it into a footstool of course! (Feb – Mar 2016)

We will be re-purposing the wine crates to make individual storage boxes. Debbie has already prepared each wine box by adding a hinged lid, topped that with a thick layer of foam and adding four wooden feet.

IMG_3705 2016-02-10 17.29.27

Over the coming weeks everyone will be working on staining, naming, waxing and reupholstering their boxes.

Making the boxes has been great fun with much hilarity.  We had ‘perfect’ stencilling and the odd missing letter (a reward is offered for the safe return of our missing ‘T’).

When we started this project creating these boxes felt like an impossible challenge.  But we all took one step at a time and divided the project up into manageable chunks with unbelievable results.  Let me show you what happened . . .

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

We have to send a HUGE THANKYOU to the people who made donations to make this project possible. Thank you to Drinkmonger Bruntsfield and Laurence Smith & Son for donating wooden wine crates, Thank you to John Lewis for the donation of curtain samples.

A Gift for Olly (February 2016)

Our wonderful Dawn will soon be getting her first grandchild.  She knows it will be a little boy and his name will be Olly.  So it is time to put our heads together to make sure that he will have something wonderful to decorate his nursery.

Our ladies chose a Winnie-the-Pooh theme and really wanted to include a train so we decided upon a wall-hanging.  We found a great image of Winnie-the-Pooh and his friends each riding the carriages of a train.  We thought it would be nice to include his name and have it written in the puffs of smoke from the train.  We decided to have a background of pale blue gingham.  Jeannie went away with these ideas and turned up this week with the cutest nursery wall hanging.

FullSizeRender IMG_3686

What a beautiful decoration which I am sure will be treasured.  I wasn’t there myself but I understand there were a few tears when everyone saw it.

Continuing the theme, our ladies are each taking responsibility for an individual flag which will be combined into bunting which will also be presented to Our Little Olly when he arrives.

Thursday 7th April 2016 and the ‘Bump Watch’ is over … Olly arrives, a perfect little bundle of joy!!  His nursery is beautiful and our gifts are part of the finishing touches to welcome Olly home.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

We wish Dawn and her family

all the happiness in the world

“You’re Making an Exhibition of Yourself”

Back in April, inspiration struck and an idea for a Stitch ‘n’ Time exhibition was born. The idea simmered in the background and possibilities and suggestions were thought about as we took our time brainstorming the plan (aka chatting while drinking tea and eating cakes).

I think the sentiment behind the exhibition is summed up perfectly here:

We have created this exhibition to give a flavour of what we get up to in class. We wanted to show how skills are passed down through the generations and how important it is to keep these traditions alive.

Our group is knitted together with a love of stitching. Each week we learn from and are inspired by each other. The group reminds me of a patchwork quilt, we are all individuals but together we can be something greater.

We often find ourselves ‘in stitches’ laughing and we have been known to shed the odd tear, but then this is the rich tapestry of life.

We hope you enjoy our exhibition and we would be thrilled if it inspired you to get stitching.

–  Debbie Wright

August 25th 2015 was the unveiling of “Stitching Through Time” which has been included in Whale’s “Big West Fest”, connecting our community to the Edinburgh Festivals.  And some exciting news – Gordon MacDonald MSP, Councillor Ronald Cairns and Elaine Gorman from Scottish Business in the Community will be attending.

The exhibition is an amazing achievement. There is so much for us all to be proud of.  We have been able to show a huge variety of skills and have made some fantastic pieces, many of which we can sell later in the year to raise funds.

Hopefully as people look around the exhibits they will be reminded of things from their childhood and remember their own family traditions.  Our hope is that we inspire others to go out and ‘give it a go’ and try their hands at some of the craft techniques.

2015-08-25 17.13.46 2015-08-25 17.15.05   2015-08-25 17.16.102015-08-25 17.16.14   2015-08-25 17.16.21 2015-08-25 17.16.52   2015-08-25 17.16.57 2015-08-25 17.17.05    2015-08-25 17.17.13   2015-08-25 17.17.32    2015-08-25 17.17.502015-08-25 17.17.53 2015-08-25 17.18.102015-08-25 17.18.15 2015-08-25 17.18.562015-08-25 17.19.03 2015-08-25 17.19.142015-08-25 17.19.37  2015-08-25 17.19.532015-08-25 17.20.04              2015-08-25 17.22.08

We try to always acknowledge when people help us with donations and supporting our fundraising efforts and there are many local businesses and individuals who contributed towards bringing this exhibition together.  However, we would not have been able to  do any of this without the constant support and encouragement we receive from everyone at the WHALE Arts Agency – “we truly feel inspired”.

Ample Samples

Elma is a new addition to our group and she was inspired to use some of the upholstery samples so kindly donated by John Lewis (see ‘It’s a Wonderful World” page).  Her first project with the group was to make a new bag . . .

2014-09-23 15.11.54 2014-09-23 15.11.25

Like others in the group Elma is keen to learn new techniques, share her skills and try different projects. I think we can keep everyone busy with the huge range of talents within our group including: machine sewing, knitting crochet, embroidery, cross stitch, hand quilting, beading, re-upholstery to name but a few.

Harris Tweed

Our group received some Harris Tweed samples thanks to a kind donation from Elaine Gorman.  Of course this made Debbie smile and set her creative juices flowing. Obviously when you think of Harris Tweed the immediate thought is to make Doggy Poo Bag Dispensers. Seriously, rather than being bizarre it was truly a genius idea and the little pouches have gone down a storm and have sold like ‘hot cakes’.

2014-04-27 13.45.29

So what else could be done with the sample squares????  CUSHIONS – of course.


These fabulous cushions were made with the collaboration of a few of our ladies and I think you will agree they are absolutely fantastic.  And now we have had a request for two Harris Tweed mobile phone covers.  So, watch this space to see what else Harris Tweed Inspires . . .

The Heart of the Matter!

Inspiration certainly struck today.  Jeannie was working on up-cycling an old footstool by giving it a bit of a makeover.


Complete with handmade fabric flowers this makes a beautiful, fun item from something that was old and tired.  It certainly makes you look around at home with new ideas about making changes to everyday household items … watch this space.


Another of her projects is this really pretty cushion. Its amazing what you can do with small scraps of fabric.


2014 Gets off to a Fun start!!!

Our first meeting of the New Year and it was lovely to see the familiar faces and get that lovely warm feeling that being with friends gives you.

Debbie set us a great workshop task to each make a scissor holder.  We all had the pre-prepared patterns and instructions and a huge pile of beautiful fabrics to choose from.

[Thanks to Anne for the donation of beautiful fabric and accessories which we used for this project]

photo (6) photo (5)














I think I can say we all had great fun and a real sense of achievement as we worked alongside each other.  It was a perfect session to start 2014 and hopefully we can do more of these workshop sessions and master classes throughout the year.


Susan spent today working on turning some unwanted curtains into pillowcases that matched her bedding.  What a good idea and a great sense of achievement!

2013-07-02 14.55.38


“The Bag Lady”

On my first day at the group I was faced with the immense problem of “what on earth do I want to make?”  I spotted a craft bag on the table and inspiration struck . . I would make a bag for my Mum who also comes along to the group. She has been inspired to start knitting again so I decided to make her a bag to carry her knitting in and matching cases to store her knitting and sewing needles. I have had those old wooden handles lying in the bottom of the draw for 5 years.  I take this as evidence that hoarding things that may be useful one day is totally fine and should be encouraged!

Complete Knitter

Complete Knitter

having had so much fun I just had to try making more bags . . .

“Sew Nice”

Patching things up!

Patching things up!


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s