Pouf or Cat Bed?

I am ever so happy with my Closet Core Pouf, as is my cat Theo. He is ever so grumpy with my when it’s time to add more fabric to the inner.

This was not a quick make, though could very easily be made so, all you’d need to do is use a full circle for the top and use a solid strip of fabric around the sides, though I did enjoy matching different odds and ends from previous projects. The piping is also optional but I like the professional finish it gives.

I am not the most precise sewer and somehow ended up needing to add a panel to the top and side for it to fit together properly. It’s just a bit bigger. This project is perfect for anyone who hates throwing away fabric, you can also put old clothes in there if they are too scruffy for the charity shop. This is maybe a year’s worth in there. I’ll be making another one in the not too distant future.

I finished my Flint culottes just in time to get a few wears out of them. Autumn has well and truly set in now and they will be packed away until spring.

Flint are the make I can sew time and time again, be it linen, crepe, cotton or viscose I am never being disappointed. I made these with a lovely cotton lawn, measuring them up to hang around the knee. There’s a fairly thick hem and two large brass buttons that you can’t make out on these images.

I’ve got a few projects on the go at the minute, with no images of any of them yet!

Simplicity 1950’s Jacket 1319: I’ve been working on the vintage jacket for over year, it seems I’ve been spoiled with independent patterns as the instructions from simplicity confused me a lot.

Simply Sewing The Audrey Dress: This was a free pattern from Simply Sewing which happens to fit me perfectly, I’m working on a fully lined version as I’ll be using some gorgeous Broderie Analgise.

Deer and Doe Sirocco Jumpsuit: I’ve cut out the fabric but may wait until I’ve got my overlocker back to sew it together. I feel like the pattern would benefit from an sturdy overlocking stitch.

Crafty Sew & So PJ Bottoms: I shall whip this one up in no time, Crafty Sent me some beautiful lemon cotton to make a sample set for the shop. I love this make as it’s nice and simple to put together and very comfy to wear.

Thanks for reading and wish me luck! I promise not to start another project until I’ve finished at least two of these.

Kielo Wrap Dress

It turned out even better than I expected, the tiny cap sleeves work really well and the fit is so flattering. I used a crepe from Weaver Dee with maybe 20% stretch which allows me to cross my legs. The only alteration I made was to lengthen the split, if the fabric had more stretch I probably would have left it as it was.

Seeing as I’ve not left the house in around five month I took any excuse to wear my lovely new dress. My sister and family cam round for a socially distant picnic. Thankfully we are both out of the local lockdown zone so she could pop round before heading off on holiday. Look at how well my little niece is social distancing!!!

I’ve been working on making some sturdy face masks with nose wire and fabric flush against the skin to minimise the risk of catching a virus. Jesse Killion has produced a comprehensive pattern based on a template from The Fabric Patch, they have a link on the page to the the fitted instructions and templates. The Jesse is designed to fit to the face. It’s been a fascinating experience making up different sizes for my inlaws and husband. The masks are split into three categories, average, narrow and wide. Apparently I have an average sized face.

I took a day trying to find this pattern, there are almost too many out there. The written instructions were way too complicated for me so made them without. I altered the pattern a little, firstly adding an inch to the side seam to create a folded channel for ties, secondly I added a filter pocket for extra security. Im planning on writing up a set of simple instructions for my version of this mask so watch this space.

Thanks for reading, hope you are staying safe out there. Don’t forget to continue to support black businesses, pester your MPs and sign petitions. For ways to help go to Black lives matters.

Dresses & Shorts & Slippers, Oh My!

A migrain struck once again. I am getting pretty sick of these. The weather has probably had big impact, muggy days followed by thunderstorms. There’s still an aura circling the corners of my eyes. The heat needs to break with another storm. Anyway enough of my complaining and onto the makes!

A full photo of my Cardamom Dress! It’s gorgeous and summery, the fit is mostly good, the only thing I will do differently next time is add a couple of inches to the bodice, as my waist falls a little lower than the pattern allows and lengthening it will also ensure there’s no pulling about the chest.

I originally brought the fabric to make a kielo dress, it’s still in the works but I had a desperate need for shorts this week. Happily there was enough left over to whip up a pair of Flint shorts. They are perfect for this weather and came together in only a couple of sewing sessions.

So I pattern tested these for Crafty Sew & So. Utterly incongruous with the weather but adorably never-the-less. I’ll be writing up a blog post for Crafty which should be coming out in about august alongside the kit.

I cannot go into much of what i am doing with this fabric as its going to be part of a present. however I couldn’t resist showing off this stunning Ankara Fabric from Dovetailed London. It’s a fabric shop across using the Shut up and Sew Vendor/Shop List its a collection of BIPOC and Allied sewing businesses curated by Jacinta Green aka @pinkmimosabyjacinta. If you’re interested I narrowed down the list to retailers in the UK, It’s in the menu above.

Thanks for reading, I wanted to add It’s important for us all to keep the momentum of Black Lives Matter going. Be it buying from Black businesses, signing petitions, writing to your MP, educating yourself or speaking with family we cannot let the world slip back to “normal”. For more Information on how you can help check out Black Lives Matters.

This is not a moment it’s the movement.

My Shot – Hamilton

We are Not Going back to Normal

This week i discovered a wonderful resource for all your sewing needs. Shut up and Sew Vendor List, curated by Jacinta Green. The layout is a little tricky for me to read as I am working off a tiny laptop so I made a list of all the UK Based Allied and POC businesses Jacinta has listed in a way I can go back to time and again. If you want to know more about how I am personally taking responsibility for the damage my privilege can cause, take a look at my sister blog, Today I Wrote. All links will open in a new tab, I hope you find it useful.

I’ve ordered some beautiful wax printed fabric from Dovetailed London. I’ll be making a present with it so it’ll be a little while before I can show it off. I hope I have included all the UK stores but my eyes got a bit tired after a while so I may have missed a few. Now on to a couple of my latest makes.

Jelly Roll Cushion

Firstly a bit of patchwork. My step-dad mad a little bench during lockdown for my niece and nephew. We’re all getting a little creative whilst stuck at home. It was so much fun using a bunch of left over jelly-roll strips to make a super cute patchwork cushion. I used some quilted jersey whcih ive had for ages as the wadding. It gives the cushion a good sturdy feel. However it was a bit of a nightmare to sew through.

Cardamome Dress

I absolutely love my Cardamome dress. The cat buttons finish it off beautifully. It fits very well about the chest and neck! I was worried the neck would be too tight or the buttons would pop open but it works really well. The day I finished my dress the weather changed so I haven’t had a chance to get photos of it on me. I’m currently working on a Kielo Wrap Dress from some gorgeous stretch crepe. Hopefully I can get it finished by next week!

Thanks for reading, please check out the list of makers and take a look at #blackmakersmatter on instagram, we all need to work to make the sewing community more diverse.

Me Made May Week Two

Another Week of Makes for you all. still trying to keep to the pledge of appriciate one make everyday.

Day Eight: Coasters!

So on day seven I had a frustrating time trying to figure out how to use shirring elastic. I think it’s something to do with the top loading bobbin. So after over an hour and a lot of wasted elastic I gave up. I shall be asking some sewing friends for advice. I gave up and decided to make a couple of super simple coasters instead. Got to love a bit of top-stitching. I’ve made a pair of pj’s in this fabric so will pop it on my bedside so I match.

Day Nine: Pj Shorts

Super comfortable shorts. I actually wore these and a tank for most of the day as i was sewing up a top and wanted to be able to pop it on for fit. I made these with Seersucker so they are really light weight and worked perfectly for a sunny day. I actually added a cute little turn-up with a button but it seems to have vanished in the bright light.

Day Eleven: Mathide top

Now you may have noticed that I missed day ten. I suffered with a mini migraine. there was nothing mini about the pain but by some luck it only lasted around seven hours. My average attack lasts at least two days. I didn’t use to suffer too much but recently it’s been more of a problem. Anyway onto my make. Its a Tilly and the Buttons Pattern which is actually out of print now. I’ve made it a couple of times but this viscose version is my favourite, it works best in a very lightweight fabric. I have to adjust the neckline a little but the basic pattern works pretty well. This month is me want to dig out my older patterns.

Day Twelve: Fabric Basket

A handy little fabric basket made from some pastel tie dyed calico. Not much to say about this make. I just love the colours. Ive got a zipped make up bag somewhere made from the same fabrics. If your interested in the pattern check out the kits from Crafty Sew & So (full disclosure I volunteer with them)

Day Thirteen: Camas Blouse

This fabric is drapes beautifully with a little bit of stretch. The Camas from Thread Theory has a the look of a smart blouse but comes together very quickly. There’s no collar and you can have faux buttons and simply slip it over your head. The mustard top stitching was actually a happy accident, I ran out of red thread. I think Ive made four of them at this point.

Day Fourteen: Simple Tank

More of my face. I’d crop it out but then it would just be a shot of my bust so…no. I do not remember the pattern. This one of my very first garments, it’s lasted well. I’m working on a sweet cotton tank this week. Hopefully it will be finished by the end of next week.

Thanks for reading, stay safe, stay kind, stay home if you can.

Me Made May 2020

Here we go again, a month of celebrating handmade makes. It’s a little odd without leaving the house but a good excuse to show off things I’m proud of. My Pledge is to appreciate one make each day, I’m often negative about my makes so I will strive to notice what I like about each item. Here’s the round up for week one.

Day One: Bedside Tidy

This was really nice and quick to come together. I used My Poppet’s bedside caddy basic design and altered it for the amount of fabric I had. The original pattern calls for quilted cotton and as I didn’t have any I had to make my own. I’m pretty happy with how it came together. Love the harry potter prints. However it was a bit rushed so there are a few messy bits. nothing I can’t fix later and as you can see it’s very useful.

Day Two: Frida Skirt

This is a hack of two patterns, the waistband is Jessica from By Hand London but with the back panel split in two so I could use a back zip instead of side. The main skirt is the pleated version of All The Cute Skirts from My Handmade Wardrobe. As it was a bit of a hack I had to really focus on ensuring the pleats matched the seams of the waistband. There was a fair bit of maths and unpicking and resewing of the pleats. that’s one of the good things about having darts, it’s easy enough to change the size if necessary. I took this project slow and am pleased with how it turned out. Also It has pockets!

Day Three: Face Masks

Another simple project, I used a free pattern from Sew Much Moore.it was surprisingly tricky getting the right fit. I had to alter the length of the elastic on both of the masks for my inlaws. If I were to make another set I would grade between medium and large at the nose as it looks a little loose. I’m feeling a little useless despite all the requests for sewing projects from hospitals as I can’t go to the post office due to being a vulnerable person, it’s not worth anyone taking unnecessary trips either. Making these for my in-laws makes me feel a little more helpful.

Day Four: Camas Top

Now this one is an absolute favourite even though I had a bit of trouble making it. The Camas Blouse is designed for stretch fabrics, I thought i’d be alright just making it sleeveless. what i didn’t consider what that the neckline is designed for stretch, After fanagleing some darts at the shoulders and manipulating the button placket I made it work. I love the red strip of binding along the yoke. it’s ablong the back yoke too.

Day Five: Flint Pants

Another Wardrobe Favourite, Flint Pants by Megan Nielsen. These are perfect in those transitional days between seasons. A real simple make without just two buttons for fastenings. the fit is really flattering. I lengthened the pattern by maybe three or four inches to make them full length trousers. I look forward to making more of these when I get back home and have hold of all my patterns and fabric. I am noticing a theme with my favourites, it’s pleats, also there are very few patterns which I have not altered in some way.

Day Six: A Pattern

Not sure if this is a cheat or not. It’s a pattern I drafted a while back copying a Zara top with one pleated shoulder, pleats again! I made this up in a wearable toile and the back was a little tight, as it was a toile i just added a triangle of fabric to give more room. I since added to the pattern however after cutting this fabric out the back is way too baggy. My solution…..a box pleat along the back. I’ll get this pattern sorted one day. I’ll keep you posted on how this turns out.

Day Seven: Jumpsuit

I think I made this jumpsuit last year from a New Look pattern. Unfortunately I can’t remember the number. I had to be pretty frugal with the fabric as it was a remnant. One detail I’m proud of is the top stitching it really highlights the blue flowers. Next time I make this it will be half a size bigger. Just to give a bit more space about the the tum.

Thanks for reading. I aim to post a round up once a week but given my track record I make no promises.

Stay safe, stay kind, stay home if you can

The Dressmakers Ball

I had an absolutely amazing time at The Dressmakers Ball. For those of you who don’t know, The Dressmakers Ball is a fantastic event in which we can don our finery and dance the night away with fellow sewists.

This year, having a lot more experience with dressmaking I decided to go all out on my outfit. There were times when I regretted this. Particularly when I was tearing my hair out trying to figure out what strange maths I’d done in order to fit the waistband. However the final result was well worth it. I could not have been happier with my outfit. I was a little nervous because the plunging neckline was more than a little revealing but with the help of some body tape and many friends keeping an eye out there were no embarrassing moments.

My outfit consisted of 3 patterns the Magnolia from Deer & Doe, the Posy Pants from Rebecca Page and I added splits to the trousers from named’s Breaking the Pattern.

The night was such an ego-boost I got so many compliments, my Instagram and Facebook account were blowing up with likes and comments. It was truly affirming getting such positive feedback from something I worked so hard on. In fact it’s part of the reason I’ve come back to this blog.

If you’ve read any of my previous posts you’ll know I struggle with mental health issues. The original motivation of this blog was to help me recognise those positive things in my life and celebrate my achievements. I have recently gone back into therapy for my eating disorder and things have been very very difficult, changing behaviours is exceptionally hard and brings back all sorts of negative feelings and low self-esteem. There are times when I feel utterly useless and find it impossible to change my behaviours. The sewing community is such a positive welcoming and friendly environment that only good can come from sharing my makes alonside my doubts and fears.

Thanks for reading, I hope you’ll be writing again soon watch this space….

May Is Here And I’ve Got New Makes

I’m getting over a chest infection so the start of ‘Me Made May’ passed me by. I’m jumping on the bandwagon a few days late. For those of you who don’t know MMMay is an annual endeavour in which sewers make an effort to wear and love their handmade clothes. I’m planning to wear at least one make every day. I’ll post my outfits here, though it’ll probably be a weekly thing as I’m far from organised.

I’ve made a ton of clothes since last year and am really looking forward to showing them off this May.  It’s all about comfy and cool today so I’m wearing a bit of an oldie; a simple bias cut cotton Tee with lace trim. I’ve paired it with ready-to-wear shorts

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Today I felt fresh air for the first time in about a week. The cats were delighted to see me and my husband in the garden.

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That is one spoilt pussycat. My other cat came to play too but she’s a little camera shy.

Thanks for reading  x

Pride!

I had the most fun at my first ever pride festival! It was the perfect excuse to finally finish my rainbow skirt. I picked up this fabric from the market for the grand total of £1 a metre.  I believe it’s a crepe de chine, there’s a little bit of texture to it and it flows beautifully. However, it’s practically transparent so I improvised an underskirt which I finally completed this morning!

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We got our faces glittered by the fabulous ladies at Glitter Dolls UK, made smoothies by riding an exercise bike, went on terrifying rides, met a charming assistance dog from Recovery and generally had a grand ol’ time.

My Lungs just about made it to mid-afternoon before demanding I give them a break. Asthma’s been a little tricky recently.

It’s been a selfie heavy day. Here I am with my face back to normal and my sink a graveyard of sparkles. I swear I’m going to be finding glitter in all sorts of places for days or even weeks to come.

In other news…I hurt my foot this morning as I was hurriedly finishing the skirt I neglected to put away pins correctly. a thick pin went directly into the sole of my foot!



















 

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Sometimes It’s Fine To Give Up

So the Moneta party is coming up! If you’ve not heard about it, It’s an Instagram in which we make the Moneta dress by Colette.

As happens with anything with any form of deadline or pressure (even if it’s imagined) I panicked and messed up.

And then gave up.

Previously I made a small version, it fit fine but I thought I could use a little more give around the waist.

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This time I tried the size up in a Cotton and Viscose Jersey blend. The fabric is gorgeous but unfortunately, I managed to stretch it out beyond any recognizable shape. After yelling at my sewing machine a few times and snapping several pieces of clear elastic, it was time to give up.

Next time I’m going to just stick with the smaller size and use more stable fabric. Any further rescue attempts are not worth my sanity.

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This fetching fabric caught my eye at Crafty Sew & So, I’m somewhat smitten with it. Normally I go for more of muted tone but who can resist the allure of peacock feathers? It’s a Viscose Jersey, and shouldn’t stretch too easily. If I use the Sewing Cafe at Crafty Sew & So  I can make my next Moneta on an overlocker should make things a lot simpler and quicker.