Pauline Alice Faura Top and Vogue 1411: DIY white crepe tunic top and black faux leather leggings

DSC_8467

Pauline Alice Faura Tunic Top and Vogue 1411 Faux Leather Leggings

*Edit: Pauline Alice kindly sent me the Faura pattern as a gift to review, but as ever, all opinions are my own.

Hi Everyone,

Today I am back with a new me-made outfit which was super speedy to sew. Let’s start with the top.

The top is the Faura Top, which is the latest offering from Pauline Alice, and comes with the option to also make it as a dress. This top features an oval (ish) neckline in the front, an opening in the back, front and back princess seams, no side seams, an A-line shape and a waist tab to provide some shaping which is fastened using D-rings. The facings are topstitched in place. As ever with Pauline’s pattern, despite this being a simple top, the details are well thought out.

DSC_8482

Pauline Alice Faura Tunic Top and Vogue 1411 Faux Leather Leggings

DSC_8479

Pauline Alice Faura Tunic Top and Vogue 1411 Faux Leather Leggings

I made mine in a viscose crepe. I rarely seem to make things in white but I am trying to make neutral basics which make getting dressed for work in the morning easy, and so that’s probably what influenced my colour choice. Not a huge amount to say about this top which I don’t cover in my pattern review below. It’s a good wardrobe basic to have and I think there are so many different looks you could achieve with this pattern depending on fabric selection.

DSC_8475

Pauline Alice Faura Tunic Top and Vogue 1411 Faux Leather Leggings

Now about the leggings: these are made using Vogue 1411, a Sandra Betzina pattern and I chose to make mine from faux stretch leather. Possibly not the best fabric choice to start with on a pattern which I hadn’t tested before. Overall, I am ok with the fit and they are definitely wearable (not to work though!) The thing I am least happy with in terms of the fit is the lines I have at the backs of my knees. I am wondering if I need to do a full calf adjustment? I think I will try that if I make this again. That might also alleviate some of the lines in the front too? There is lots of interesting seaming on these leggings, which unfortunately you can’t see much of on my black fabric. Here’s the line drawing (I made view B).

V1411

Vogue 1411 line drawing

DSC_8471

Pauline Alice Faura Tunic Top and Vogue 1411 Faux Leather Leggings

They are definitely very comfortable, even if they do seem to make a somewhat alarming squeaking noise 🙂 I think these will get worn lots but I would like the chance to refine the fit somewhat.

DSC_8481

Pauline Alice Faura Tunic Top and Vogue 1411 Faux Leather Leggings

Faura Top Pattern Review

Pattern Description:

Top or dress which features an oval (ish) neckline in the front, an opening in the back, front and back princess seams, no side seams, an A-line shape and a waist tab to provide some shaping which is fastened using D-rings. The facings are topstitched in place.

Pattern Sizing:

Sizes 34 – 48

Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you were done sewing with it?

Yes.

Were the instructions easy to follow?

Yes.

What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern?

I like the simple design with the princess seams which make doing an FBA relatively easy (you will have to add in a side seam to do the FBA but tape it back up once you have finished if you want to keep the seamless side piece). I like the waist tabs with the D-ring feature and the fit. I think it looks very contemporary. Personally speaking, I think maybe I might add in a side seam for next time: I think I would prefer something to break up the fabric there, but maybe if I had used a pattern fabric I might feel differently about that?

Fabric Used:

Viscose crepe

Pattern alterations or any design changes you made:

  • 1 inch FBA
  • Added about 1 inch to the side back seams from the high hip down to the hem
  • Lengthened top by 3.5 inches
  • 1.25 inch full arm adjustment
  • Added interfacing to the facings and staystiched the necklines (not mentioned in instructions)
  • Made a bias rouleux loop and added a button for the fastening

Would you sew it again? Would you recommend it to others?

Yes, I might sew again and yes I do recommend.

Conclusion:

Contemporary, comfortable and some interesting features make this top a winner.

 

Vogue 1411 Pattern Review

Pattern Description:

Close-fitting pants elasticized waistband, front guide, seam detail, edgestitching and stitched hems. A: Straight leg. B: Tapered.

For moderate stretch knits only.
I made view B.

Pattern Sizing:

A – J.

Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you were done sewing with it?

Yes. Ish.

Were the instructions easy to follow?

Yep. Very thorough

What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern?

I know I will wear these and the only reason I am not fully happy with them is not to do with the pattern but the fit: I think I need to do a full calf adjustment to eliminate the lines at the back of the knees? But that is the risk you take when you don’t muslin. I love the interesting seaming detail. Also, its great that a seamless pant AND legging front is included in the pattern to cut a muslin or use to make plain front pants or leggings. Great value for money. Fitting pointers are included with the instructions.

Fabric Used:

Faux stretch leather.

Pattern alterations or any design changes you made:

  • I was advised on Instagram that this pattern ran a bit small so I sized up. The fit through the waist, bum and hips is good but I ended up narrowing the lower legs quite a bit
  • Added 3 inches to lower leg length, but ended up removing 2.75 inches of this.
  • FOR NEXT TIME, I would try the full calf adjustment and also a slight full bum adjustment of maybe 1 inch to raise the height of the back.

Would you sew it again? Would you recommend it to others?

I would like to try these again. I do recommend.

Conclusion:

A great pattern to have in the stash: very comfortable and not your boring basic legging.

Next up for me is more wedding sewing!

DSC_8474

Pauline Alice Faura Tunic Top and Vogue 1411 Faux Leather Leggings

 

 

Advertisements

Simplicity 8292: DIY Flutter Sleeve Fuschia Pink Crepe Sheath Dress

20170827_191335

Simplicity 8292 flutter sleeve sheath dress in fuschia pink triple crepe

Hi everyone,

I am going on a flying visit to the States at the end of September for my cousin’s wedding and I made this dress thinking I would wear this to the daytime/ church ceremony. Now I am having second thoughts as to whether it will be too warm (New Jersey at the end of September – Carolyn or anyone else, any thoughts?). Anyway, the pattern is Simplicity 8292. The main thing to note about my version is that I have moved the under bust/ empire line seam down to create a waist seam, which I personally find more comfortable and flattering. More details on that in the review below.

20170827_191356

Simplicity 8292 flutter sleeve sheath dress in fuschia pink triple crepe

The fabric is this triple crepe in fuschia pink, purchased from Minerva crafts. I have worked with this triple crepe before and it is quite weighty. I was worried it might fray like mad, but it wasn’t too bad. I put it through a hot 60 degree prewash and it cut and sewed very well. I did use a medium heat for pressing with steam and my clapper to get a crisper finish on my pressing.

20170827_191313

Simplicity 8292 flutter sleeve sheath dress in fuschia pink triple crepe

Can I just say I am thrilled with the fit through the back of the skirt? I would never be able to get a sheath dress like this to fit me RTW and I love the princess seams on this pattern for the fit opportunities. I did do a full bum adjustment and it worked very well.

20170827_191421

Simplicity 8292 flutter sleeve sheath dress in fuschia pink triple crepe

The main attraction of this pattern of course is the statement flutter sleeves. They do make this dress very of the moment, but other sleeve options are included in the pattern (including a cold sleeve option as well as a plain short sleeve option), so I would consider making this dress again for work in a neutral colour with the short sleeve option – now I have got the dress to fit me so well. One thing to watch out for: I wish I had chosen another seam finishing technique to finish the sleeve seam instead of overlocking. I mean, you can’t see it in these pictures when I have the dress on, but personally I think it looks a little ugly, and if I was making this dress again with the flutter sleeves I would reconsider this aspect.

I chose to fully line my dress. I used this tutorial to fully machine the lining around the armholes which I think worked well. Inside shots:

DSC_8426

Simplicity 8292 flutter sleeve sheath dress in fuschia pink triple crepe – machine finish lining attachment around armhole

DSC_8422

Simplicity 8292 flutter sleeve sheath dress in fuschia pink triple crepe – full lining

DSC_8418

Simplicity 8292 flutter sleeve sheath dress in fuschia pink triple crepe – machine finish lining attachment around armhole

Pattern Review

Pattern Description:

This Misses’/Miss Petite dress features three different sleeve options, princess seams, invisible back zipper, lined bodice and your choice of either long flare or pencil cut each in two lengths.

I made view C with some alterations.

Pattern Sizing:

6 – 22

Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you were done sewing with it?

Yes, although the most noticeable difference between the pattern and my version is that I moved the under bust/ empire line seam down to hit at my waist.

Were the instructions easy to follow?

Yes. I kind of did my own thing when it came to the lining.

What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern?

I love the finished dress: the fit and the statement flutter sleeves. Love the princess seams which give lots of fitting opportunities. I wish I had chosen another seam finishing technique to finish the sleeve seam instead of overlocking. I mean, you can’t see it in these pictures when I have the dress on, but personally I think it looks a little ugly, and if I was making this dress again with the flutter sleeves I would reconsider this aspect.

Fabric Used:

Triple crepe outer and polyester lining.

Pattern alterations or any design changes you made:

  • I cut my usual size 18 through the shoulders and bust and graded out over the waist and hips.
  • I cut the skirt pattern off at the marked waistline and taped the pieces I cut off  onto the bottom of the corresponding bodice pieces, overlapping the seam allowances, and re-adding new seam allowances at the bottom edges and at the new top edges of the skirt pattern pieces. I did this in order to move the under bust/ empire line down to waist level, which I personally find more comfortable and flattering.
  • 1 inch FBA
  • Added about an inch to the side seams but probably removed most of that when fitting the dress. Used a slightly larger seam allowance than suggested to insert the zipper in the centre back seam
  • 1 inch sway back adjustment on bodice
  • Added a full lining
  • Used the princess seams to fit: let them out approx. 0.25 inch in the tummy and bottom area
  • Did 1 inch full bum adjustment largely to add length to the back of the skirt to account for my full bottom
  • After making the FBA etc some of the seams didn’t match so had to make some adjustments to make the bodice and skirt seams match
  • Interfaced the skirt hems, vent area and zipper opening
  • Hand stitched hems

Would you sew it again? Would you recommend it to others?

Initially I thought my answer to this would be no. But the fact that a plain short sleeve is included means I could see me making this dress again in a neutral colour for work. Yes, I recommend.

Conclusion:

I love the fit, the colour and the statement sleeves. Remains to be seen whether I actually wear this to the wedding at the end of September in New Jersey or if it will be too hot.

Over on Instagram, Diane and Helen are currently running #sleevefest2017 – the deadline for which is on 31st August, so I think I am just in time.

Enjoy the long weekend if you have one, otherwise enjoy your week.

Until soon.

20170827_191246

Simplicity 8292 flutter sleeve sheath dress in fuschia pink triple crepe

 

 

 

Kwik Sew K4111 and Burdastyle 06/2016 #140: DIY Green Floral Crepe Tulip Skirt Dress and Girls Tie Front Blouse

DSC_7983

Kwik Sew K4111 Floral Crepe Tulip Skirt Dress

Friends!

This dress was born out of Instagram: I saw the fabric on Fabricgodmother’s feed, and I couldnt resist the super saturated colour (hard to capture the true colour in these photographs) or the floral print, so I ordered 3 metres a couple of weeks back. This was one of those rare occassions when, as soon as the fabric arrived, I was determined to sew something from it. I had Kwik Sew K4111 in my stash and I thought the crepe paired with the tulip skirt and feminine bodice would work well together. Also, I am no horticultural expert, but aren’t they tulips on the fabric? Seemed like a match made in heaven to me.

DSC_7980

Kwik Sew K4111 Floral Crepe Tulip Skirt Dress

I am super pleased with the fit I got on this dress, which I tissue fitted. I love the tulip skirt. It is very secure, with the underlap being sewn into the side seam, so even if the front were to inadvertently blow up, you won’t be showing anything you shouldn’t. Also, I LOVE the facings and the instructions which showed you how to get a completely clean, machine finish all around the armholes. Magic! Be bored with several pictures just of the inside:

DSC_7967

Kwik Sew K4111 Floral Crepe Tulip Skirt Dress – back facing (don’t ask me why I bought a purple zipper! It’s a good thing I am pretty good at sewing a concealed zipper in, because you can’t tell from the outside)

DSC_7969

Kwik Sew K4111 Floral Crepe Tulip Skirt Dress – front facing

DSC_7971

Kwik Sew K4111 Floral Crepe Tulip Skirt Dress – clean finish armhole

DSC_7993

Kwik Sew K4111 Floral Crepe Tulip Skirt Dress

I just love the finished dress, even if I am sad that the summer seems all but over for us and so I don’t know how much opportunity I will have to wear this until next year.

DSC_7986

Kwik Sew K4111 Floral Crepe Tulip Skirt Dress

Pattern Review

Pattern Description:

Dresses have bodice with partial gathers at waist seam, scoop neckline, back zipper, overlapping front tulip skirts with pleats, back darts and stitched hems. Neckline and armholes are finished with facings. Self-fabric belt. A: Sleeveless with neckline notch and topstitching at armhole. B: Self-faced cap sleeves.

I made view B.

Pattern Sizing:<

XS – XL

I cut a size L through the shoulders and  bust and graded out over the waist and hips.

Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you were done sewing with it?

Yes.

Were the instructions easy to follow?

Yes. I particularly love the facings and the clean (machine) finish you achieve around the armholes.

What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern?

I love the finished dress. I love the tulip skirt – very feminine – and also very secure, with the underlap portion sewn into the side seam of the dress. As mentioned above, love the finish inside with the facings. Love the overall drafting. Nothing to dislike.

Fabric Used:

Polyester crepe.

Pattern alterations or any design changes you made:

  • Graded out slightly (total 3 inches) over the hips.
  • 1 inch FBA, rotating the formed dart into the waist for extra gathers there.
  • 5/8ths inch full bottom adjustment on the back skirt piece.
  • Lengthened skirt 1.5/8ths inch.
  • Used an invisible zipper.
  • Staystitched neckline – no mention of this in the instructions.
  • I think I did a sway back adjustment of approx. 1 inch?

Would you sew it again? Would you recommend it to others?

I might sew again, maybe? I highly recommend.

Conclusion:

I think this dress is super cute and feminine. Sometimes that’s nice 🙂

DSC_7984

Kwik Sew K4111 Floral Crepe Tulip Skirt Dress

Now, there was a little bit of fabric left over so I thought, seeing as I had the machine threaded up etc, why not whizz up a little top for Kezia?

DSC_8260

Burda Style 06/2016 #140 girls tie front blouse

I used Burdastyle 06/2016#140 and there isn’t a great deal to say about it. It’s a simple, boxy top with cut on sleeves and incorporates a tie front. Of course the instructions were confusing and I think they intended for you to finish those front ties using a facing, but I could not be bothered to figure it out so I just did a narrow hem around the ties. It’s not my finest sewing but it works, and it will probably survive more washes than the time Kezia will fit into this top, the rate at which she is growing! Just for reference, this top was cut at the 140 cm height size.

DSC_8265

Burda Style 06/2016 #140 girls tie front blouse

DSC_8273

Burda Style 06/2016 #140 girls tie front blouse

Have a great week everyone!

Until soon.

 

 

 

New Look 6388: DIY Girls Cotton Lawn Summer Dress

DSC_7923

New Look 6388

Hi Friends,

A quick review today of a dress I made for Kezia (who is currently a tall 8 year old approx. 140+ cm height) using New Look 6388. This is a basic dress pattern but one which is limited only by your imagination. I just wanted to make a simple, lightweight summer dress for Kezia, and she picked out this soft printed cotton lawn. The bodice is lined with poly cotton.

DSC_7925

New Look 6388

One thing to watch out for is that the “waistband” is not actually a waistband (even though I have sewn it as one, joining the bodice to the skirt). The instructions actually have you sew the “waistband” on top of the bodice, rather like an emblishment, rather than a true waistband. Other than that, this is a pretty straight forward sew.

DSC_7946

New Look 6388

DSC_7898

New Look 6388

Pattern Review

Pattern Description:

This party dress for Girls features high low skirt with overlay or sleeveless dress with contrast waistband and lower band, both with bow in back, and short sleeve dress with ribbon or sleeveless dress with shoulder bows.

I made view C.

Pattern Sizing:

8 – 16

Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you were done sewing with it?

Yes.

Were the instructions easy to follow?

Yes. The only thing to be aware of is that the “waistband” is not actually a waistband (even though I have sewn it as one, joining the bodice to the skirt). The instructions actually have you sew the “waistband” on top of the bodice, rather like an emblishment, rather than a true waistband.

I cut 2 waistbands, one from the lining fabric and one from the outer fashion fabric which was interfaced, and used the waistband to join the bodice to the skirt.

What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern?

I like the finished garment. It is a simple pattern but one which can easily be adapted to all kinds of fabric and for all occasions. I am not sure if the fabric requirements are correct: I used a polycotton to line the bodice but I think I would have struggled to self line the bodice using the suggested fabric requirements.

Fabric Used:

Cotton lawn outer with polycotton lining for bodice.

Pattern alterations or any design changes you made:

  • My daughter is a tall (140cm+) 8 year old. I cut a size 10 through the bust and shoulders, grading out to a size 12 at the waist.
  • I shortened the bust dart by 1″.
  • I cut the skirt at the size 10 length.
  • See above for my comments on the “waistband” and how I treated it.
  • I ended up letting the side seams out by about 0.25 inches to gain a further 1 inch all round.
  • Used an invisible zip.

Would you sew it again? Would you recommend it to others?

I did the sensible thing and traced this pattern so yes, I could see myself making this again. Yes, I recommend.

Conclusion:

Great basic girls dress pattern to have in the stash. Lots of potential with this one.

I will leave you with some pictures of my beautiful, confident girl 🙂 have a great week everyone.

DSC_7929

New Look 6388

DSC_7902

New Look 6388

 

 

Simplicity 8295 and Closet Case Patterns Ginger Skinny Jeans: DIY Linen Lace Up Eyelet Tunic and Skinny Jeans

DSC_7841

Simplicity 8295 linen tunic with eyelet and front lacing detail and stone coloured Closet Case Ginger Skinny Jeans

Hey Friends,

Hope you are all doing well. Today I am sharing a me-made outfit that has already had lots of wears. Neutral coloured pieces in great (breathable) fabric that can be mixed and matched with other pieces in my wardrobe are winners in my book.

Let’s start with the top: Simplicity 8295. This is a great pattern with some lovely details/ options. The only thing I would be wary of is, IMO, it is cut quite straight through the hips, so whilst its fine as a top, if I was making this again as a dress I would have to widen the hips.

DSC_7848

Simplicity 8295 linen tunic with eyelet and front lacing detail and stone coloured Closet Case Ginger Skinny Jeans

The fabric is a linen/ cotton mix purchased from Fabworks. Unfortunately it looks like this particular fabric is sold out but they have lots of other linens at very reasonable prices. I just love the fabric!

Here’s a close up of the eyelet/ lacing detail. I used eyelets I already had in my stash. I couldn’t find any twill tape in a colour I was happy with so I ended up making my own lacing in self fabric. I find that in order to get eyelets that are really robust and not going to fall out you really need to experiment with your particular fabric to find out how many layers you need to support the weight of the eyelet. I interfaced scraps of the linen so it would be the same thickness as the placket and then experimented adding further layers of linen behind the eyelet to get an appropriate thickness. So behind every eyelet, inside the placket, there are extra squares of linen to take the weight of each eyelet. My other tip would be don’t make the size of the hole for the eyelet too big: better it is slightly smaller to hold the eyelet in place.

DSC_7874

Simplicity 8295 Linen Tunic – eyelets and lacing detail

DSC_7862

Simplicity 8295 linen tunic with eyelet and front lacing detail and stone coloured Closet Case Ginger Skinny Jeans

You can see my first pair of Ginger jeans here. They were the first pair of jeans I made and they looked great when I was standing up….but my gosh they were so uncomfortable when I was sitting down, and I think that was largely down to the pocket stays that I had included (cut from a firm woven cotton). As a result, I think I have worn those jeans about twice. This time around I eliminated the pocket stays and gosh, what a difference! These jeans have already been worn so much. The light colour is great for summer, they are smart enough to wear to work without looking like they’re jeans and, whilst I will probably only ever wear them with longer length tops, they are just so much more comfortable. The fit still needs some tweaking (see my notes below), but these are a huge (wearable) improvement for me. The fabric for these jeans was purchased locally to me.

DSC_7845

Simplicity 8295 linen tunic with eyelet and front lacing detail and stone coloured Closet Case Ginger Skinny Jeans

Pattern Review Simplicity 8295

Pattern Description:

This tunic or dress Inspired by Project Runway features optional lace up or trim at the neckline. Make the tunic length to wear over skinny jeans or dress length for a casual event.

I made view C with the collar from view A.

Pattern Sizing:

6 – 22

Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you were done sewing with it?

Yes.

Were the instructions easy to follow?

Yes, although I used my own techniques for a neater finish.

What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern?

Love the finished garment. Love the eyelet/ lace up detail. Nothing to dislike as such, although I would say this pattern is fairly straight cut so if you are making the dress length I would say you might need to widen somewhat at the hips if you carry weight there like me 🙂

Fabric Used:

Cotton/ linen blend.

Pattern alterations or any design changes you made:

  • I did a 0.5 inch FBA
  • I shortened the bust dart by about 2 inches
  • Next time around I might lower the bust dart just a smidge
  • 1 inch sway back adjustment, adding removed length back to hems
  • Shortened sleeve length by 1.5 inches. I don’t think I will ever wear the sleeves unrolled, but if I wanted to on future versions I might add some length back again: the cuffs are actually quite narrow
  • 1 inch full arm adjustment
  • Cut 2 back yokes and used the burrito method for a clean finish inside
  • Took 3/8ths inch seam allowance at hips
  • Increased length of side slits by about 2.5 inches (making them 8 inches in total)
  • Flat felled the sleeve seams so it would look neat when the sleeves are rolled up
  • Took 1.25 inches for the hems

Would you sew it again? Would you recommend it to others?

It’s quite a distinctive look: don’t know if I need another one right now, but never say never. Yes, I recommend.

Conclusion:

Love the detail on this top, which elevates it somewhat. Great summer piece.

Notes on Ginger Jeans:

  • Added 0.25 inches at front and back sides and 0.5 inches to waistband
  • Removed pocket stays
  • Scooped out front and back crotch by 0.25 inches
  • Removed 3 inches from length
  • Let side seams out fractionally at knees
  • Next time around I need to remove some length above the knees
  • Still not happy with some of the wrinkling in the inner leg: need to play around with this
  • For next time I am going to raise the back pocket position up by 1 inch
  • I have already made a 0.5 inch full calf adjustment on the pattern for next time, tapering back to the original width at the ankle

Hope you’re all having a great weekend. Happy sewing!

DSC_7850

Simplicity 8295 linen tunic with eyelet and front lacing detail and stone coloured Closet Case Ginger Skinny Jeans

 

The Great British Sewing Bee Live: Tickets Giveaway Winners

GBSB Live CMYK

Hey Everyone,

Thanks to those who entered.

Without further ado, here are the winners, as selected by random number generator:

  1. Faye Ward
  2. Hazel
  3. Camila
  4. Diane Hall
  5. Anne G

Edit: Anne G cannot make it so Jane – you have been selected.

Edit number two: sorry Jane and Faye – I did leave replies to your original comments informing you that you had won but as neither of you got in touch I have had to redraw. The last two tickets have now gone to Shauni S and Diane G. Well done ladies.

Please can you all get in touch with me (my email address can be found under my “About” tab in the header at the top of this blog), and let me have your full name, address and which day you would like the tickets for.

Thanks again for entering and hope you all have a wonderful time!

 

The Great British Sewing Bee Live: Tickets Giveaway

GBSB Live CMYK

Hi Friends,

This year marks the first year of The Great British Sewing Bee Live, which is going to run from 21 – 24 September 2017, at ExCel in London. I have been lucky enough to be offered 5 pairs of tickets to give away for either Thursday 21st September or Friday 22nd September. It sounds like it’s going to be an amazing event, featuring:

  • Comedienne Jenny Eclair hosting 2 live shows a day featuring Patrick Grant and Esme Young, as well as past contestants from the show

Great-British-Sewing-Bee-Esme-Young_720x405

  • Patrick and Esme sharing some of their tailoring and dressmaking tips
  • Members of the audience and former contestants putting their sewing skills to the test live on stage (there is still time to apply to be an audience contestant I believe!)
  • 250+ workshops and demos

Janome sewing machine workshop

  • Dressmaking drop-in clinics
  • A make at home fashion catwalk
  • Garment and vintage galleries
  • 200+ dressmaking and sewing suppliers
  • An exhibition of archive Liberty pieces presented by the London Fashion and Textile museum

Sounds like an amazing day to me and I am very sad I won’t be able to make it 😦

To be in with a chance of winning one of the 5 pairs of tickets for either the Thursday or the Friday just leave a comment below and tell me, what’s your favourite pattern or item to sew in 3 hours or less? Winners will have to get up on the stage infront of 1000+ audience and prove it at the live event*.

Patrick Grant &amp; Esme Young 2

*Patrick: Oh Esme, that made me chuckle. Esme: yes, I mean, we would only give them an hour!

Terms and conditions:

  • Comments must be left directly on this blog post by midnight GMT on Sunday 23rd July 2017
  • 5 winners will  be picked at random. You can specify whether you want a pair of tickets for either Thursday 21st September or Friday 22nd September
  • You must use a valid email address to leave your comment, or check back for the follow up post which I will publish next week to claim your tickets. If tickets are not claimed within 3 days of me announcing the winners I will re-draw.
  • Winners are responsible for all travel costs incurred

Good luck everyone and I look forward to hearing all about it.

*This giveaway is now closed*

 

 

Vogue 1496: DIY Sandwash Rayon Challis Cocoon Style Dress

IMG_7479

Vogue 1496 Sandwashed Rayon Challis Cocoon Style Dress

Hi Friends,

We just got back yesterday from a weeks holiday in Cornwall. It was great. Warm weather, beautiful beaches and fresh seafood. I am dashing off first thing tomorrow morning for a 3 day business trip to Barcelona, where temperatures are currently soaring. I made this dress a couple of weeks ago with Barcelona in mind, and we snapped a few pictures of it on the beach in Cornwall. This is Vogue 1496 by Sandra Betzina. I have made my version in a delicious charcoal grey sandwashed rayon challis, kindly sent to me by Stylish Fabrics. This fabric is beautifully soft, drapey and perfect to wear in hot weather conditions.

IMG_7478

Vogue 1496 Sandwashed Rayon Challis Cocoon Style Dress

Not a tremendous amount to say about this pattern that I haven’t said in my review below. I do like it a lot, and it will be perfect for hot weather dressing, and you can easily dress it up or down. The only thing I dislike about it is that the facing is flapping around a bit and I am going to topstitch it into place I think. Other than that, this is a really interesting shape and the way it comes together is fascinating. It’s made from just two pieces (front and back), plus pockets and facings. You might just be able to make out in the rear view picture a (flat felled) seam which joins the front to the back and creates the armholes. There are no shoulder seams in this dress.

IMG_7475

Vogue 1496 Sandwashed Rayon Challis Cocoon Style Dress

Pattern Review

Pattern Description:

Very loose-fitting, tapered, pullover dress has V-neckline, optional pockets (stitched in place), front extending into yoke back, no shoulder seams, back armhole openings with narrow hem, and stitched hem. A: Optional neckline inset.

I made view B.

Pattern Sizing:

Sizes A – J.

Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you were done sewing with it?

Yes.

Were the instructions easy to follow?

They are easy to follow but 1. as other reviewers have mentioned, the instructions have you use Steam-a-seam on virtually every seam. I didn’t bother. 2. There is no mention of finishing any seams (apart from the facing) and for that I chose to use my own preferred method of obtaining a clean finish on the facing, sewing the interfacing to the facing right sides together, then turning and fusing in place, rather than just overlocking. Instructions are given on how to raise the (very low) neckline and also how to pick your correct size.

What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern?

I really like the finished garment. The ease of wearing and interesting shape. Don’t like the way the facing wants to flap around. I am going to topstitch in place.

Fabric Used:

Sandwashed rayon challis.

Pattern alterations or any design changes you made:

Based on my measurements, I should have cut a size E through the bust but, based on the finished pattern measurements which are given for bust, waist and hips, I cut a size D through the bust and waist and graded out over the hips.

I raised the front neckline by 3 inches.

I am 5’3″. I actually cut the view A length and added 1.5 inches at the hems.

I finished my side seams before sewing the flat fell seam that connects the front to the back piece.

The pattern and instructions don’t seem to indicate how high to make the side slits. I made mine 3 inches high.

Would you sew it again? Would you recommend it to others?

Don’t know if I need another one of these in my wardrobe, but I do recommend.

Conclusion:

Breezy, stylish and something a little different. The husband didn’t say anything negative so I guess it has a little allure 🙂

Great week everyone!

IMG_7482

Vogue 1496 Sandwashed Rayon Challis Cocoon Style Dress

Simplicity 8341: DIY Pineapple Print Cold Shoulder Ruffle Front Button Up Shirt

DSC_7611

Simplicity 8341 pineapple print ruffle cold shoulder button up shirt with collar (worn with Butterick 6331 white denim boyfriend style jeans)

Hey Everyone,

Today I am excited to share my review of this Simplicity 8341 pattern by Mimi G. We have had a spell of wonderful hot weather and this shirt has already been worn lots. It’s made from a fine, soft viscose voile and it’s been perfect for keeping cool but with an element of coverage.

DSC_7587

Simplicity 8341 pineapple print ruffle cold shoulder button up shirt with collar

This was not a fast make: there are a lot of narrow, rolled hems to sew on both the upper and lower front ruffles, as well as on the sleeves. My fabric was quite challenging to work with but it worked out ok in the end. Less confident sewists might want to try a more stable cotton shirting. It’s important to take the time to ensure the front plackets and the points where the sleeves join the yokes match. Speaking of which, I think that possibly larger size sewists may find that their sleeves don’t match the yoke points. The only reason mine match in the front is because I pinched out a 0.5 inch dart at the armhole (and transferred the dart volume to the side bust dart), but in the back the sleeves are about 1 inch lower than the yoke. (See also this picture on my Instagram account which shows a definite pattern discrepancy). I decided to just live with the discrepancy in the back on this version, but if I make this up again I would have to do something to address that. FYI I cut a size 18 through the shoulders and bust and graded out through the waist and over the hips.

DSC_7631

Simplicity 8341 pineapple print ruffle cold shoulder button up shirt with collar

My overall conclusion is that I love the finished blouse. It’s an absorbing sew which keeps you on your toes and very on trend. Check out my full review below for full details of adjustments made – note that I deepened my ruffles!

DSC_7639

Simplicity 8341 pineapple print ruffle cold shoulder button up shirt with collar

Pattern Review

Pattern Description:

Mimi G Style shirt dress and top pair perfectly with high waist leggings. The button-down top and dress have a collar and feature cold shoulder with ruffle on the sleeve and across the bodice.

I made view C.

Pattern Sizing:

6 – 24

I cut a size 18 through the shoulders and bust and graded out over the waist and hips.

Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you were done sewing with it?

Yes.

Were the instructions easy to follow?

Yes. I especially like the way the hem is formed. Neat. Also, I think the collar instructions match those given on the Four Square Walls blog, which is my preferred way to sew a collar. The armholes are finished with bias tape.

What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern?

I love the finished garment, especially in the fun pineapple print viscose voile I chose. It’s so light and breezy and this style is very on trend.

I think that possibly larger size sewists may find that their sleeves don’t match the yoke points. The only reason mine match in the front is because I pinched out a 0.5 inch dart at the armhole (and transferred the dart volume to the side bust dart), but in the back the sleeves are about 1 inch lower than the yoke. (See also this picture on my Instagram account which shows a definite pattern discrepancy). I decided to just live with the discrepancy in the back on this version, but if I make this up again I would have to do something to address that.

Fabric Used:

Pineapple print viscose voile.

Pattern alterations or any design changes you made:

  • Deepened upper and lower ruffles by 1 inch to account for my larger bust. I thought the proportions would look better, and I think they do.
  • Lengthened sleeves by 1 inch to match ruffles.
  • 1 inch sway back adjustment, with removed length added back to hem.
  • Shortened bust dart by 1.5 inch and moved bust dart down by 1.25 inches.
  • Pinched out 0.5 dart at the armhole and transferred the dart volume to the side bust dart.
  • Changed direction of grainlines on neckband, sleeve band and collar to preserve direction of print.
  • Instructions don’t seem to mention interfacing the sleeve band, although it’s shown in the cutting layout.
  • Added interfacing to the button placket area.
  • Note that only single yokes are cut but I don’t think it would be too difficult to cut double yokes and use the burrito method to clean finish the insides. I overlocked my sew allowances.

Would you sew it again? Would you recommend it to others?

I might sew again. Like I say, it’s not a particularly fast sew. I do recommend, although maybe to more confident sewists.

Conclusion:

Love the finished top. It’s an absorbing sew which keeps you on your toes and very on trend. Make it fast before the trend disappears!

This top is being packed to take with us for our holiday next week in Cornwall. Here’s hoping for warm weather. Have a great week ahead everyone.

DSC_7615

Simplicity 8341 pineapple print ruffle cold shoulder button up shirt with collar

 

Pauline Alice Eliana Top and Butterick 6331: DIY Gauze Peasant Style Top and White Denim Boyfriend Style Jeans: Stylish Fabric

DSC_7768

Pauline Alice Eliana Dress modified to top and Butterick 6331 White Denim Boyfriend Style Jeans. All fabric from Stylish Fabric.

Hi All,

Today I am so excited to share a perfect summer outfit made using fabrics from L.A based Stylish Fabric. They got in touch with me recently and asked if I wanted to try out some of their fabrics. The fabrics in this post were provided at no cost to me, but as ever, my opinions are my own.

DSC_7777

Pauline Alice Eliana Dress modified to top.

The blouse was made using this gorgeous cotton and rayon gauze in blush colour. This fabric is delicious to wear and was easy to sew. I was expecting it to fray like mad, but it didn’t. I overlocked all my seam allowances. One thing I would say to watch out for is that I think this fabric shrunk quite a bit in the wash (unless I wasn’t sent as much as I initally thought?) I asked for 3 yards but I think I had about 2 yards (?) to play with. So, yep, not sure why that was. But, no matter, I ended up with a beautiful blouse that I will be happy to wear in hot weather.

DSC_7766

Pauline Alice Eliana Dress modified to top and Butterick 6331 White Denim Boyfriend Style Jeans. All fabric from Stylish Fabric.

DSC_7726

Pauline Alice Eliana Dress modified to top and Butterick 6331 White Denim Boyfriend Style Jeans. All fabric from Stylish Fabric.

The jeans are made using this white denim (currently 60% off). This non-stretch denim is the perfect weight for denim jeans, and is, I would say, ever so slightly off white. It washed, pressed and sewed beautifully. I used a Schmetz jeans needle and Gutterman top stitching thread, even though you can’t of course see the details. Full details on patterns below.

Top:

  • Made using Pauline Alice Eliana Dress pattern modified to top length. You can see my first version of the top hack here.
  • Moved the bust dart up by 1 inch.
  • Added 3/8ths inch to side seams at hip.
  • Made narrower self bias tape to bind the neckline and sleeve openings.

Jeans:

  • Made using Butterick 6331. See first version of these pants here and my floral version here.
  • These white denim jeans were actually version number 2, so see my first version for details of pattern amendments. Even though I didn’t make any alterations to the pattern from version number 1, these feel very different. Amazing what changing the fabric can do. These are boyfriend style, so fairly loose fitting, but still quite slim I think.
  • I essentially followed the Closet Case Ginger Jeans instructions to make these.
  • Interfaced the fly.
  • Omitted interfacing in the waistband.
  • Used lining fabric for the pocket bags to cut down on bulk.
  • Added back pockets, fly shield and topstitching.
  • Extended length of waistband by about 5 inches (much better to have too much length IMO that can be shortened as required).

Thanks to Stylish Fabric for the opportunity to add some really versatile pieces to my wardrobe. Sometimes plain basics can be the most valuable thing you can make!

Happy sewing!

DSC_7772

Pauline Alice Eliana Dress modified to top and Butterick 6331 White Denim Boyfriend Style Jeans. All fabric from Stylish Fabric.

 

%d bloggers like this: