Life Update…AKA Remember Me?

Life Update

Hello! Did you miss me? 🙂

Sooooo, I never really intended to take such a long break. A few days turned into a week and a week turned into months. I guess I could just say blame it on 2020 and that would be enough, and I know you would know just exactly what I mean,  but it’s been so long since I wrote and suddenly I feel more like putting pen to paper…or should that be fingers to keyboard… so I’ll explain and share a little more in this life update.

So Where Did That Sewjo Go??

I’m guessing I’m not the only one that felt like this but my Sewjo disappeared, running off into the distance and over the horizon. Then a general feeling of stress and low mood took over. I found myself not wanting to make myself any new clothes, feeling as though I had more than enough to get by on. I also stopped blogging as I felt I had nothing that I wanted to share.

Browsing Instagram I started to get the dreaded comparison syndrome when I saw many sewists creating and sharing. Suddenly nothing felt right and I vanished from social media. A rather low spell followed and then I got sick (no, not Covid thankfully). 

Making Plans

The time I spent resting while I was poorly for a couple of weeks meant I had time to think and process stuff…which is when I decided to switch over to home makeover mode as a creative outlet. The plans began…

I started off by giving my sewing room a refresh. Firstly it had a fresh coat of paint…white on 2 walls and pale pink on the other two. I bought a new storage unit and some shelves to make better use of space in one corner which was rather scruffy. Then I populated the shelves with smart storage boxes and magazine files to organise all of my patterns and Burda magazines. I also have room for my overlock threads, buttons, books and gadgets. It looks so neat and tidy now! 

Two new graphic fashion sketches adorn the wall above my work area and I now have a very cosseted backside in the form of a posh new state-of-the-art office chair. I really love my updated room now and it’s my favourite place to hang out.

Life Update
Graphic fashion prints in sewing room.
Life update
New office chair.
Life update

Next up was a dining room do-over. We got new dining chairs, a lovely new storage unit and curtains, a freshly upholstered armchair done by yours truly and a fresh coat of paint in a beautiful pale blue-y green colour that I ended up mixing myself (because buying paint online is apparently hit and miss as to whether the colour tuns out as you expected…ugh).

This Pre-Raphaelite painting was added to compliment two that already adorn my walls. I love the quiet serenity of the lady sitting sewing the flag. It’s called ‘Stitching The Standard’ by Edmund Blair Leighton and it’s very apt for the home of a sewist don’t you think? 🙂

Life update. Dining room makeover

Finally, I tackled our bedroom which I painted in a deep plum shade that picked out one of the tones in our tropical print dress curtains. I made all the curtains, bed headboard (not yet attached to the wall in this photo) and bed cover. It feels like a lovely boutique style room now and surprisingly the dark wall colour is not at all overpowering and feels very comforting. 

Life update. Bedroom decor

A New Face About The House

At this point I should mention that we have a new member of the household.

You may remember that I mentioned in this post how we had to say goodbye to our beloved cat Bilbo in April. Afterwards, the house just didn’t feel the same. I really missed having some feline company and after a few weeks had passed a series of events led to us adopting a lovely little rescue cat.

Just before lockdown a little grey and white cat was discovered pregnant and hungry in gardens on the outskirts of our local town. Cats Protection took her in and she was fostered by the same people who had been cat sitters for our Bilbo whilst we had holidays. I’d been in touch with them from time to time via Facebook as I follow their page and one day they said that the little cat would be up for adoption when her kittens were old enough and what a sweet nature she had. Well, the rest is history as they say and we officially adopted Molly on June 26th.

Molly has the prettiest face and lovely markings. She’s a small cat but what she lacks in size is more than made up for with her feisty, cheeky and lovely fussy nature. She is 16 months old and had a rough start in life, first as a stray kitten and then having 5 kittens of her own. For the first couple of weeks, she was extremely scared and shy but slowly she’s blossomed. She’s full of fun, loves to play and purrs up a storm when she has some fuss. Molly isn’t a lap sitter yet, but maybe that will come in time. We are smitten and our household feels complete again 🙂

Life Update.
Molly our new cat
Life Update.
Molly our new cat
Life Update.
Molly our new cat

And that brings me up to the here and now. At last, I feel ready to put on my blogging hat once again and to step back into posting on social media. Not sure how long it’ll take me to get back up to speed, but I’m looking forward to reconnecting with you all. And can I just say thank you to those of you on Instagram or via email that contacted me to ask how I was doing. It really was so very kind and thoughtful.

Well, I hope you enjoyed this little life update and I’ll be back again in a couple of days with a special blog post. 

In the meantime tell me how you are and what you’ve been up too. Have you found the Summer of 2020 to be an uphill struggle or have you coped ok? Drop me a line in the comments.

Take care and stay safe xxx

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  1. September 10, 2020 / 1:06 pm

    Loved seeing your home update Diane! Wow your sewing room make over is awesome! I love how much that corner changed the space. Stunning and very inspiring!

    • diane
      September 10, 2020 / 4:38 pm

      Ahh, cheers Emma! Glad you feel inspired. I love how it all turned out x

  2. Christine
    September 10, 2020 / 4:58 pm

    Good to see you back in blogland and that you are doing well. I know how you have been feeling as I feel similarly in that I don’t need more clothes for my very relaxed lifestyle in these times. But sewing is so much part of our mental well being so what to do? Those room makeovers are fabulous. Just love everything about them. Your sewing room looks so organized – can you come and do mine? I look forward to reading about your future makes when you are feeling able to share again.

    • diane
      September 10, 2020 / 8:35 pm

      Ahhh, thank you so much, Chris. It’s good to be back. You’re right, sewing is a huge part of our mental well being so it’s important to find ways to continue with it. Hopefully, I’ll be sharing some of mine soon x

  3. September 10, 2020 / 7:29 pm

    Totally understand, things year has been difficult for a lot of people. Glad to see you back in the blogosphere. Love the room makeovers and Molly is the cutest!

    • diane
      September 10, 2020 / 8:32 pm

      Absolutely Nicola…the strangest year. Thanks for the kind words. Glad you love my makeovers and new kitty x

  4. Kathy
    September 10, 2020 / 7:56 pm

    Your new cat is precious! And I’m looking forward to seeing more of your posts back in the blogosphere!

    • diane
      September 10, 2020 / 8:33 pm

      Isn’t she just? And thank you Kathy 🙂

  5. Vicki
    September 11, 2020 / 12:18 am

    Hi, nice to hear from you :). I feel the same re sewing – have so much already and nowhere to wear what I have let alone anything new. And going forward, will we even want to wear what we have in the past? If is all unknown. Love what you have done with the house. Looking good. And Molly is adorable. I live alone so have been stuck here on my own (WFH) since March (Melbourne is in lockdown). I wonder about a cat as I don’t want my furniture scratched. I’ve only just got new furniture after my daughter and her cat moved out a couple of years ago so don’t want to have that happen again. But could do with the company.

    • diane
      September 11, 2020 / 9:55 am

      Thanks, Vicki. Exactly…nowhere to go and nothing to do puts a real dampener on creativity. Thant said I do now feel the need for a few more Autumnal pieces. I read somewhere that once all this is over it’s possible we may crave a smarter look after being so casual for so long…who knows?
      Oh, a cat is such good company! Our Bilbo did scratch our furniture a lot 🙁 but I think he had never been played with much when we got him and had got into the habit of scratching to release energy. Molly on the other hand hasn’t done any damage and loves to play until she’s exhausted. You can get cat proof fabrics though that are very closely woven. We want a new sofa and are looking into it.

  6. monika
    September 11, 2020 / 6:31 am

    Good to see you posting again 🙂
    Monika x

    • diane
      September 11, 2020 / 9:48 am

      Thank you my lovely xx

  7. September 11, 2020 / 6:51 am

    So good to see you back and I love your home update! I need to do this too but can’t face it. My favourite change though is Molly and I wonder if she’s the reason you feel like sewing again? Pets are so good for mental health and general wellbeing. I look forward to following your adventures together!

    • diane
      September 11, 2020 / 9:49 am

      Thank you Sue! Yeah, you may well be right. I definitely feel better for having Molly around. she’s a constant source of joy and makes me laugh every day.

  8. September 11, 2020 / 8:38 am

    Diane it’s so lovely to see you back because you actually felt like it and not because you felt obliged. Molly is an absolute *darling* 🥰and oh! Your purple bedroom – absolutely stunning! Your pictures are so clear and wonderfully-composed as ever. I particularly like those fashion sketches above your cotton reel stand and you’ve made me determined to get my pictures ON THE WALL!! We’ve all been going through our own version of a strange time over the last few months and I suspect we’ve all learned something about ourselves on the way – I certainly have. How wonderful that you’ve managed to be so creative along the way!

    • diane
      September 11, 2020 / 9:57 am

      Thank you, Alice xx. Yes, that’s exactly it…I ‘feel’ like posting again so I’m glad it happened naturally 🙂
      Glad you like the decor and Molly says thank you!
      Now go and get those pictures hung! 😉

      • September 17, 2020 / 10:50 am

        Hammering…! x

        • diane
          September 17, 2020 / 11:32 am

          Adda girl!

  9. Sam
    September 11, 2020 / 11:17 am

    I’m so glad you are back and feeling better Diane. I personally missed you on Instagram although we kept in touch on occasions. Loved how you have decorated your home. You are very talented. Xx

    • diane
      September 11, 2020 / 2:50 pm

      That’s so lovely of you to say Sam. Thank you! xx

  10. Lodi
    September 11, 2020 / 3:25 pm

    Diane, you’re an inspiration! Love your room makeovers, which I can relate to because 2020 has really made me (everyone?) realize that I need to
    make updates for my new “housebound life”. Winter is coming. (And masks. A necessity that simply sucks the creativity from my soul. Even though I seem to be tweaking and redesigning them.)
    Best wishes for your continued creative inspiration, health, and joie de vivre. It looks like you are powering through!

    • diane
      September 11, 2020 / 4:06 pm

      Aww, thank you, Lodi! You’re so kind. Yes, I think many of us have felt that need to nest and create comforting surroundings which we’re spending so much time in…makes sense.

  11. Joan
    September 11, 2020 / 5:04 pm

    Hi Diane, So nice to receive your blog post! I love your decor choices, and your bedroom looks gorgeous. I went all white walls in my new home for the first time (did a metallic green + wallpaper in powder room, at least), so I love seeing color in your home!

    Molly and her amazing green eyes! She is lovely. And she is SO fortunate to be off the street luxuriating and playing up a storm in her own safe home! I used to do TNR (trap/neuter&innoculate/return to colony) and my last kitty, Valentina, was one of my rescues that needed an amputation (probably injured in a dumpster dive) and adoption, as she could not protect herself as well as a 4-legged feral cat. When life calms down, I would like to adopt again!

    • diane
      September 11, 2020 / 5:14 pm

      Ahhhh, thank you Joan. It’s nice to be back and to receive such a lovely welcome from everyone!
      TNR is such a great thing to do for cat communities. I’m so glad to have got Molly and she does indeed have gorgeous eyes 🙂

  12. Joan
    September 11, 2020 / 5:07 pm

    p.s. You did an amazing job with your curtains/soft furnishings!

    • diane
      September 11, 2020 / 5:14 pm

      Thank you so much!

  13. September 11, 2020 / 6:52 pm

    Your home projects are impressive – and so tastefully done. Many, many hours involved in those, right? Home decorative sewing is not my favorite thing to do, but the results are so satisfying. So happy to hear of your new little cat. She is beautiful. The sweetness and companionship of cats can never be overstated; we are so fortunate to have them in our lives.

    • diane
      September 11, 2020 / 9:10 pm

      Thanks for the kind words about my decor projects Karen xx. Yes, lots of hours for sure!
      And I agree…I love having a cat in my life 🙂

  14. Cath
    September 12, 2020 / 4:20 am

    Thank you so much for your honesty, yes you were missed and sad that you have unwell, glad your now recovered. Sometimes the need to rest and reflect is helpful in solidifying purpose and distilling and a decluttering of the soul. Your healing journey reflected in your home refresh. Well done. I have now adopted a slower sewing mind set due to Covid-19, gentle and only what is necessary. Love your new Molly. Move forward gently and care for your soul as you go forward. Breath and only post if you need to.

    • diane
      September 12, 2020 / 12:37 pm

      Aww, thanks for such a lovely comment Cath xx. I really did feel the need for that time of reflection and I’m feeling better for it. I’m going to take your advice and practice self care moving forward.

  15. September 12, 2020 / 4:13 pm

    Well… It is so nice to hear that I am not alone with my feelings of frustration about sewing. I have been sewing for 60 years and like a lot of other people have a huge collection of fabrics. When I retired I thought I would sew and wear all of it. Truthfully, I have done a lot but there is so much more to go and now there is nowhere to wear it! Thank you all for being out there and understanding how this feels.

    • diane
      September 12, 2020 / 7:19 pm

      You’re definitely not alone Elizabeth. It’s been a tough time for all of us to negotiate and find a way through. For some it’s about slowing down, for others it’s finding a new outlet for creativity and new ways to connect with people to share experiences. I hope you’re slowly finding ways to push onwards. Take care x

  16. September 13, 2020 / 3:19 pm

    So glad you’re back. Love your posts and enthusiasm. We all need time off now and then 🙂

    • diane
      September 13, 2020 / 4:45 pm

      We do indeed Shawnelle. Thank you so much!

  17. Melanie
    October 4, 2020 / 9:02 am

    I’m glad you worked through your lack of sewing motivation so creatively. I love your colours. Comparison is the thief of joy. It is hard wired in us to compare and doubt ourselves, so it is hard to fight it. I try to focus on my own journey while still learning from others. I’m so grateful for people like you who share your work and inspire the rest of us. We are all different so are inspired by different people and styles. There is room for everyone in the sewing world and I certainly appreciate a whole range of creativity and experience.

    • diane
      October 4, 2020 / 11:37 am

      Ohh, thanks for the kind words, Melanie. Such a lovely thoughtful comment that really uplifted me xx

  18. October 11, 2020 / 9:51 pm

    Sometimes it’s good to have a break and do something else. Your redecorating looks lovely and will make your home feel new and inspiring. Cute wee addition to the family too,

    • diane
      October 12, 2020 / 11:15 am

      Thanks so much, Julie. Yes, I really needed that break. It helped to get a different perspective and to rest my mind.

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