About me

My name is Jeni. The spelling comes from a babysitter I had as a kid, whom I adored.

I live in London with a husband, a daughter and a cat.

I’ve been sewing since I was about 10 years old, when my mom first taught me to make doll clothes on her old Elna machine.

The first item of clothing I ever made for myself was a rose pink circle skirt, with elastic waistband and a shoelace tie. I was about 12 or 13, and I wore it to a school dance.

My first job was working in a fabric store – a giant fabric store – cutting fabric, trims and generally offering advice. I worked there part-time throughout my school years. That was a pretty sweet job.

During University, I didn’t sew much. While I got a sewing machine for graduation, it was stolen (that’s dorms for you) and it wasn’t replaced for a while.

I still reckon one of the best machines ever is my mom’s old Elna. It may only do straight and zig zag, but it’s a serious workhorse of a machine.

Although I’ve been sewing for a long time, and made lots of items of clothing and taken classes at fashion colleges, I still reckon there is so much I don’t know and I’m constantly impressed by what other sewing bloggers have done in a much shorter time period. Quite inspiring (and occassionally annoying!)

leftie knitting!

Although my mom taught me to knit and crochet as well, I never took to knitting as a kid. I picked it up again in 2004, when a colleague offered to teach me. She was right-handed and I’m left-handed. She was really patient and the internet was really helpful and I eventually figured out that I knit best in the combined continental style.

Left-handed combined continental knitting is pretty much the exact opposite of how knitting tutorials and instructions are written. It’s been frustrating at time, but over the years, I reckon I’ve come to understand the art of knitting a lot more than others who never faced the challenges I faced.

Which brings us to why I started this blog – after frustrations with not finding useful tutorials on knitting techniques for lefties/combined knitting, I thought I would make my own. I have a couple of knitting tutorials on here for that small number who knit like I do. And plan to do more. In the meantime, I try to share interesting recipes and sewing successes and failures, for those who are interested.

The blog name, I made this!, comes from the production company sign-off for the people who did The X-Files. The excitement and pride of that exclamation kind of captures how it feels to have made something practical and useful and lovely by yourself. I also quite like other production sign-offs, like J J Abrams ‘Bad Robot‘ and ‘Grr Argh” for Mutant Enemy Productions (who did Buffy – best show ever!) – but they didn’t seem as appropriate. Even though I do often exclaim “Grr argh!” when something goes wrong with a project…

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4 thoughts on “About me

  1. THANKS FOR THE HELP GLAD YOU KNOW HWAT YOU ARE TALKING ABOUT AS MY COMMENTS WERE THE LAT 2 ABOVE
    ALSO I KNIT FROM RIOGHT TO LEFT LIKE YOU DO AND HOLD YARN IN LEFT HAND SO WHAT KIND OF KNITTING IS THAT
    AND WHEN YOU READ DIRECTIONS FOR DISHCLOTHS AM I CORERCT YOU JUST READ THE PATTERN FORM LEFT TO RIGHT LIKE RIGHT HANDERS EXCEPT FOR LETTERS AND NUMBERS UYOU DO OPPOSITE READING THE DIRCTIONS FOR THOSE FROM RIGHT TO LEFT BACKWARDS AND IF YOU READ CHARTS LIKE A RIGHT HANDED PERSON YOU WOULD READ CHARTS OPPOSITE READ EVERYTHING FORM BOTTOM UP BUT ALL ON LEFT HAND SIDE YOU ARE GREAT AND ALSO READ YOUR BLOG YOU ARE ABOUT THE ONLY ONE THAT ACTUALLY KNOWS AS ALL OTHER SITES KNITTING TEACHERS SITES ETC ON WEB THEY ALLS AY JUST LEARN TO KNIT LIKE A RIGHT HANDED PERSON AS THEY DONT KNOW WHAT THEY ARE TALKING ABOUT WHICH I KNOW YOU DO AS YOU ARE LEFT HANDED AND SOS GLAD I FOUND YOUR SITE
    WISH YOU HAD A SITE HOW TO CHART FROM BEGIONNING TO END LIKE GRAPHING POUT A NAME OR FLOWER OR SOMTHING SIMPLE FORM BEGINNING TO END AS THERE ISNT ANYTHING LIKE THAT PLEASE EMAILME AND YOU ARE GREAT

    • So glad to know the site has been helpful!

      I’ll make a note to do a post about reading charts and how to ensure that directional designs, like numbers and letters, turn out correctly. Not sure when I’ll get to it – things have been hectic since the birth of my daughter earlier this year – but hopefully you won’t have to wait too long!

  2. Your site is great do you have any sample chart that has a simple name on it maybe with a small flower
    Trying to figure out which ones would be purled or knitted as want to make my own dishcloth for
    My daughter I would pay you for the chart and directions your site is great please email me thanks

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