Crafty sew and sew in Dorset

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February Sewing

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Some how i managed to make 8 items of clothing this month (the shortest in the year!) as i think having extra days off to use up my leave helped. I set a plan to make 5 items, 3 that were already cut and ready but only manged to complete two of these.

The first make was for my friend at work; New Look 6104.

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This was gifted to me with the pattern, fabric and buttons at Christmas as she had given up with sewing. It had been cut out in size 18 so i made it up in that size for her – turns out her daughter had cut it out who was bigger than her!! I am planning to take it in for her next week, luckily the bust area fits and just needs the waist tapering in.

Next was the Fairfield shirt from Thread theory – I started this back in November and finally finished it this month and he really likes it.

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Matching shirts

I bought the shirt for my son and my husband asked for one. This design is so well drafted for fit and quality of finish with flat felled seams throughout.

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Practicing his model poses

My third make was Named Kielo wrap dress. I have seen so many of these on instagram so when one was for sale in someone’s destash i jumped for it. I used cream and grey jersey from my stash bought from girl Charlee. This fabric was probably a little too thin for this dress but i just about get away with it and it will be perfect in the summer heat.

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Sorry about the footwear – not ready for sandals yet!

Fourth make are my Burnside Bibs from Sew house 7. I found these overalls in Seasalt but they were £80 and i thought “I could make those” and started to search for a similar design. It came down between these and the Roberts collection dungarees and picked the burnside bibs as they looked more flattering and fitted.

I used 2.25m of this linen type fabric from Fabricland – the pattern calls for 3m but i managed fine with what i bought.

I have plans for the view 2 version in navy viscous linen as i feel they will be looser fitted and be a great staple through the spring and summer. Check out #sewbibs over on instagram for a contest running through March.

Next is a self drafted dog coat for our saluki lurcher Ziggy – he loves the coat but is not a willing model:

I bought some polar tec fleece on E-bay and some parachute clips to hold it on around his midriff. I then trimmed the neck and edges with a gross grain ribbon – we are testing this one out for fit before I make his second one with Green fleece.

The 6th make of the month was for my daughter – her third Mini suzon blouse in this beautiful Lewis and Irene beach border fabric. I only bought a metre at the first Dorset meet up to make her a skirt and had thought she had outgrown this design but she asked for a blouse so who was i to say no! It was stretching it to cut the ruffle on the border and it’s actually 4 pieces sewn together and think i got away with it.

Next up is a TNT pattern for me, made quickly as my contribution to #sewmystyle which was t-shirts for february – the Megan Nielsen Briar tee. I made the longer version but shortened to somewhere between cropped and full length, in burn out jersey from Girl charlee.

It’s clearly a little see through so need to get a vest top to go underneath or save for beach wear in the summer. This fabric was tricky to work with as it kept getting chewed up by my sewing machine!

Finally, make number 8 is a pair of dungarees for my son. He has been asking me for some dungarees for a while but it seemed odd for a 10 year old but he has been insistent and I rarely sew for him so searched for a pattern and found I Dig Dungarees from Made By Jacks Mum.

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I had the Higgs and Higgs denim in my stash that i bought for Ash jeans but it didn’t have enough stretch. It was lovely to work with and might have to buy more for a second pair of Morgan jeans.

i added facings and pocket linings with Guardian of the Galaxy fabric from Lovely Jubbly fabric also in my stash.

Luckily these will be used for his world book day outfit next week!!

March plans

Monthly stats

Number of Makes: 8

Number of New fabric purchases: 4

Number of Stash Fabric used: 6

Number of New Pattern purchases: 3

Number of Stash patterns used: 5 (dog coat pattern was made up)

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January Sewing

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I have decided to try and be more dedicated to this blog as a means to track and share my making and not just use Instagram. The plan is to write one blog piece at the end of each month highlighting things I have made that month and plans for the following month.

This month I have made six items which is pretty good going as the whole family lost 10 days to the flu (one after the other like dominoes) and I managed to write and submit a 9000 word assignment to uni.

First up is my second Helen’s closet York Pinafore made in heavy cotton from Ikea – I made this version in the longer length and higher neckline so I can wear it without tights in the summer. I think i prefer the lower neckline and maybe a length somewhere between the two – I have a denim one in mind for the summer when it starts to warm up.

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Next up on my list is the Darcey Bra and Frankie pants from Evie La Luve – this was a Christmas present from my husband (sort of, i may have purchased and wrapped it for myself!!).

I have been wanting to try underwear for a while and decided to brave it after making swimwear which is a similar process. I got a kit with all the findings and fabrics as it was this part that put me off when this was the discounted pattern for #sewmystyle2018. I am so pleased with the finished item and fit and will be making more this year.

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Number three on my list of makes is the Cable knit jumper from Lauren Aston designs down in Exeter. My Parents bought me this kit for Christmas and the wool was truly gorgeous to use – it’s merino wool in hanks you need to roll into balls. I made the small version and although it is no where as roomy as Lauren’s in the photos it is a good fit on me and really warm. I would like to make another one in medium but searching for equally beautiful wool without wanting to spend a fortune!!

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Beautiful wool

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Back

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Back of Jumper

There is a little bit of piling from wearing it but hoping this will settle down and dreading the first time it needs washing for fear of shrinking it!

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I had enough wool left over to knit a snood which is so needed in this recent freezing weather:

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My 5th make of the month was for my daughter – a friend sent me a link to the Little legs website, who sells stunning kids jersey, to highlight some llama fabric (daughter’s current obsession).

We went through my patterns, as at almost 13 she is just about fitting the smallest sizes on most patterns with a few tweaks, and agreed on the Jarrah pattern from Megan Nielsen patterns.

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I had to remove 8cm across the width of the front and back pieces – add in 4 cm to the length as she didn’t want a waistband and i would’t have managed to cut one out of the 1m of fabric i had.

i had to shorten the shoulders and narrow the arms, basing the changes on an existing sweatshirt she has. The fit came out perfect and this was such good quality fabric to work with.

I have this pattern ready for me to make one in some Guthrie and Ghani jersey i have had stashed for almost a year!

Next up are my juicy watermelon leggings!! Sew my style 2019 set a theme for January of active wear so i went to my local fabricland and invested in this great fabric to make a pair of high rise Avery leggings from Helen’s closet.

I am yet to wear them for anything but lounging around and not sure I am brave enough to wear out to a gym class but i do love them!

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I had enough fabric left over to cut out a Nautilus swimsuit from Tuesday Stitches which i was aiming to enter to the Monthly Stitch ‘seasonally inappropriate’ – i might need to enter on the 28.2.19 for the Amnesty posts.

February plans

My plans for February have already started with this New Look 6104 pattern which I am making for a friend at work’s birthday. She gifted me this pattern, fabric and notions at Christmas as she bought them a few years ago when she went to a sewing class but could not get on with it and gave up. I love the pattern but this fabric is not my taste so I thought i would complete the project for her.

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I set myself these nine patterns for the Make nine contest on Instagram; i have already made the York Pinafore and Evie La Luve set.

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I have taken to cutting out my fabric ready to sew in batches this year so I have the following items in my basket ready to sew:

Monthly stats

Number of Makes: 6

Number of New fabric purchases: 4

Number of Stash Fabric used: 2

Number of New Pattern purchases: 2

Number of Stash patterns used: 3 (4th scarf pattern was made up)

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Happy New Year

Happy new year to all my readers sorry for the radio silence! I have really neglected my blog since I signed up to Instagram ( @craftysewandsewindorset ) as I’ve been able to share and enjoy others makes on there.

I have so many makes I have not blogged about I am not sure if I can catch up without boring you all! Therefore I have decided to write them up as pattern reviews to cover off a couple at once and hopefully be more useful to those reading.

These are just some of my sewing makes from 2017.

I’m a bit too late to the party to complete my top 5 highs, lows and reflections but I will let you know what my favourite makes were and some sewing highlights.

1. Having my colours assessed.

I arranged an evening at my church with my friends to have our colour tone assessed which was great fun. I was then offered a full consultation for arranging the evening and spent a morning with Colleen at her home. I have been assessed as a cool summer and now have a wallet of my colours…..it had transformed my wardrobe and sewing as I now match all fabric choices to my set of colours and know it will suit me and coordinate with everything else!

2. Megan Nielsen Flint trousers

These were great in the summer for work and home. Cool in hot weather and comfortable all day. I planned on making a full length pair on black crepe but now I’ve been advised to avoid Black I need to find another fabric to use 🤦🏼‍♀️.

3. Sew over it Florence dress from Love Sewing magazine.

This dress not only looks great and was another staple in my wardrobe over the summer; it also won me two prizes via Instagram!

I won the Love Sewing magazine competition and was given £50 to spend in Sew over it. I bought a few metres of orangey boucle wool to make a Lola coat. I’m planning on making this in February instead of the Rumana coat in the #sewmystyle line up.

My second prize was from the Instagram competition to Sew a shirt dress in the summer. I won a Sew Hayley Jane box of goodies and aiming to make a dress with the fabric when the sun resurfaces!

4. My kids sewing

My daughter has always shown an interest in sewing but this year she has been far more independent with her hobby and is showing real talent. She made this doll for her friend with minimal help from me, all I did was sew the body together on the fiddly hands. My daughter did all the designing, cutting out and hand sewing.

They two sided cloud toy is my son’s work of art. He has been learning sewing at school and wanted to make a bonus item to show his teacher. He designed the toy and helped to sew it together on my machine. It has been lovely to share my hobby with them both as they are getting older.

5. Meeting instagram Sewing friends in real life.

This year I created the hashtag #dorsetmeetup and with the help of local sewing shop Hanson’s in Sturminster Newton we now have a logo.

5 of us met up to go fabric shopping and then talking about our sewing journey over lunch. It was such good fun and amazing how 5 strangers can get on so well based on a shared interest.

We have our second meet up next Saturday 20th January during Hanson’s sale with breakfast first at Sweet pea cafe in town to swap fabric and patterns. I am hoping there will be 12 of us there this time!

6. Going to the Sewing Bee Live

This day was amazing!! I went with a friend after winning free tickets from Lovely Jubbly Fabrics in Ferndown.

There were so many beautiful fabric stalls and shows going on plus it was great to meet lots of online sewing community in real life. I really want to go again in June at the second show.

7. Making Cleo

I finally submitted and made myself a Tilly and the buttons Cleo dungaree dress in pale blue cord purchased during the Dorset meet up in the summer.

I altered the pattern slightly to make it more fitted on the waist and I really love it. I wore this to the sewing bee live (with 100 other people!!) and was really comfortable all day.

8. I made swimwear

I actually made two swimming costumes last year and realised how easy it is.

This was one of the things I never thought I could do and now feel more confident to tackle underwear and jeans in 2018.

I have a few plans for 2018 but will write another post for those!!

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Flint trousers 

I made these trousers a few months ago (I can’t keep my blogging up to speed with my sewing) and love them. They are so comfortable and cool in this hot weather.


They are slightly cropped culottes from Megan Nielsen bought during a sale. I have a few Megan Nielsen patterns now thanks to sew my style and I am really happy with the finish of them all.

I made these in chambray from fabricland and made the view with side tie.


The closing is one of the things I like most about these trousers. The ‘entrance’ is through the side pocket yet it still retains both pockets. I used floral quilting fabric to make my pockets.

I have bought some black crepe waiting to make a button up version of these.

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Summer sewing plans 

I had a bit of a sort out of my fabric stash this morning; removing small pieces of fabric remnants from previous projects and deciding what patterns to pair with fabric. 


I think I need to accept I am a fabric hoarder. If I have a piece left over I think I could use to make a top or shorts for my kids then it goes back in my stash pile, but then I end up buying new fabric for a project!

I have now sorted out 11 sewing plans (all from my stash!!).

Here goes:

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I picked up a free copy of the elisalex pattern from By Hand London from my love sewing magazine a few months ago. I bought this stretch cotton from fabricland a very long time ago for a pair of trousers but when I made a toile I didn’t like the design so it has sat in my stash. You can read about this dress here.

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My daughter agreed I could make her an outfit and selected this tween pattern from new look and wants view b. The fabric is black with mint green spots and is a viscose polyester so should be okay if the sun comes back again!

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This is part of the sew my style line up and due to be sewn for July. I have tried a few Megan Nielsen patterns now so confident that this will fit well. I didn’t want another chambray dress so I am going to see if I can fit the pattern on to this Tula pink fabric (originally destined to be a Collette ginger skirt). Again, I’ll omit the sleeves as prefer sleeveless in the summer.

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This was another free pattern from itch to stitch released on Mother’s Day in the US. I’m going to try it out on my stash jersey and might make a few of these for the summer if it works out.

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I made one pair of these flint trousers on chambray but keen to make a button up pair on black crepe for a smarter look.

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This was from last summers list!! I won this pattern in last years indie pattern month on the monthly stitch but never got round to making it. I think this might be more of an autumn make…..

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This is jersey from the girl charlee sale at Easter time. I’ve made a couple of briar tops now but fancy another brighter shirt in my wardrobe.

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This will be my third attempt at this pattern. My first was in black rib which came out okay but a bit too much stretch. My second one was in pink jersey but not enough stretch so I had to alter into a tshirt!

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This is another pattern that has sat in my stash for a year. I have made a couple of jackets recently and they are not as difficult as I think so need to get on with this.

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This is the August pattern for sew my style and I failed to use my imagination and found fabric like the photo!!

I also have a few other patterns waiting such as the paper cut bowline sweater, French navy orla dress and chalk and notch farah top!! 

I think they should see me through to autumn!!!

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Final 10 days of May

And it’s done!! A whole month of me Made outfits, some days I actually managed to wear totally handmade which was really surprising.

What this month has shown me is that I have lots of work clothes and basics like tshirts (which is why the challenge was not as hard as I thought) but really need to focus on more difficult makes such as jeans and dedicate more time to the process!

I also realised I have no where enough summer makes!! The sun came out in Britain last week for a few days, reaching 30 degrees and I was starting to struggle to find me Made outfits. I have a few Cami tops, a play suit (but no good for work!!) and one maxi dress. I need to get on with some shorts for the next bit of sunshine…. you never know when it’s coming or for how long in this country!!

Monday


Jacket – simple sew notch collar jacket- fabricland 

Top- designer stitch Kat top – fabricland 

Trousers- burda palazzo trousers- fabricland 

Tuesday 

Dress – Mccalls m7351 – fabricland 

Wednesday 


Jacket- grainline studio Morris blazer – Minerva crafts

Top- closet case file Nettie bodysuit (as a tshirt) – fabricland 

Skirt – sew over it Erin skirt – Ikea fabric 

Thursday 


Top -Kwik sew 3844-  fabricland 

Trousers- new look 6900- Amy butler fabric

Friday 



Top – sew over it cami top – fabricland (spare from my kimono)

Skirt -RTW from Boden 

Shoes – prym espadrilles kit- fabric from fancy moon ( that doesn’t seem to exist any more 😩)

Saturday 


Sweatshirt- sew house seven toaster sweater- fabricland 

Top – Megan Nielsen briar shirt – fabricland 

Jeans – RTW from next

Sunday 


Repeat outfit alert!! But the first in a month!!

Moss skirt with Agnes top, plus RTW next cardigan 

Monday 


Top- soi silk Cami top – fabric peachskin from soi

Trousers – began Nielsen flint trousers- fabric chambray from fabricland 

Tuesday 


Top – soi Anderson blouse – fabricland 

Trousers – soi ultimate trousers- fabricland 

I now have about a dozen makes I realise I have never blogged about…..

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Me Made May week 3

Another week completed and no repeat outfits yet…. I need to figure out if I can find 11 more outfits!

I have a half completed Nettie bodysuit (that doesn’t fit so needs to be hacked ☹️) and fabric ready for a pair of flint trousers to make this week. I also picked up the new free tank top pattern from itch to stitch to fit in this month.

Monday 



Top – Megan Nielsen briar top – fabricland 

Dress- vogue v8667- fabric from an independent shop in a little village 

Tuesday 


Top- sew over it Ella blouse – fabric land

Skirt – sew house seven alberta street skirt – fabric land

Wednesday 


Dress – simple sew Kate dress – girl charlee 

Thursday 


Top – sew over it Molly top – fabricland 

Skirt – simple sew 2in1 skirt – fabricland

Friday


Top – Tilly and the button Agnes top – fabricland 

Saturday 


Top – Tilly and the buttons Agnes top – girl charlee

Dress – self drafted – fabricland

Sunday 


Dress- pattern from love sewing magazine- fabricland

Leggings -RTW 

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