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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Pattern review: Sunny dress by Friday pattern company

This pattern is the first in the #sewmystyle2018 line up and is such a simple but great tshirt dress.

I bought some textured ponte Roma from Fabrics galore in the January sales which only cost £6 for 1.5 m. This fabric is great for hiding any bumps from too many mince pies at Christmas but didn’t have a lot of stretch.

I cut out the back piece in my size according to the instructions but when I pinned it to my mannequin it only just reached the midline. I then panicked and had to adjust the front piece to ensure it would fit!

To widen the front piece I moved it in approx 1.5cm from the foldline rather than adjust the width on side seams as this pattern has quite distinct curves to get a great fit. This worked well on the fit around my body but think it had created an issue with the back neckline. It now rides up and although the pattern states you can wear this dress back to front this is definitely not the case for my one.

Talking to Lynsey at the #dorsetmeetup on Saturday it seems she had a similar problem so maybe it wasn’t my pattern adjustment!

This pattern has had some flack on social media groups for the lack of instructions and not even giving a drafted neckband; especially as this basic pattern was around £8. I was happy to pay as they do give a % of sales to charity but agree this should be great for a beginner as so simple but the lack of notches and guidance would hinder someone who is not used to sewing in jersey.

For an experienced sewer this is a super quick sew. I decided to time myself and challenge myself to complete it under 2 hours. It only took me 1 hour 40!!

I finished the hem and sleeves with my overlocker and twin needle. The neckband was attached with my overlocker and again twin needle finished to stop it turning up.

Although the pattern said it needed 1.5m of fabric I managed to make an itch to stitch Lindy petal skirt from the left overs of my fabric! Although I did have to sew two pieces together to make up one of the front sections but you can’t tell under the overlap!!

My final verdict: I’m happy with the fit of this dress apart from the back neckline. I would use this pattern as a base for a jersey maxi dress in the summer but not impressed with the pattern and instructions at the price it retails at.

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Indie pattern month shortlist


I have been shortlisted (sort of as all entries were added to the finalist list!!) over on indie pattern month on The monthly stitch. Check out all the entries and cast your votes 😊

https://themonthlystitch.wordpress.com/2017/08/04/ipm-2017-indie-royalty-let-the-voting-begin-again/

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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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My monthly stitch contribution to put a bird on it!


https://themonthlystitch.wordpress.com/2017/06/28/a-birdy-for-good-luck/

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Me Made May week 2

Another week down and found it easier than I thought to wear two or more me Made items to work or at home.

I love participating in me Made May as it makes me think about wearing clothes I have made ages ago but keep pushing aside.

Monday 

Top – TATB Agnes top- fabric from fabric galore 

Skirt – RTW from marks and spencer

Tuesday 


Jacket- Grainline Morris blazer – fabric from Minerva crafts 

Top – TATB Agnes top – fabric from girl charlee 

Skirt – sew over it tulip skirt- fabric from fabricland 

Wednesday 


Cardigan – RTW from next

Top- Sew over it silk Cami top – fabric from fabricland 

Trousers – Tilly and the buttons marigold – fabric from fabricland 

Thursday 


Dress – simple sew Lena wrap dress – fabric from girl charlee 

Friday 


Jacket – Grainline Morris blazer (again!!)

Top- designer stitch Kat top (again!!)

Skirt – itch to stitch Lindy petal skirt – fabric from girl charlee  

Saturday 

Top – Megan Nielsen briar top – fabric from fabricland 

Trousers – adapted sew over it ultimate trousers – fabric from fabric land

Sunday

 

Top- Tilly and the buttons mimi blouse- fabric from fabric land

Trousers – soi ultimate trousers-as above 

The other thing this last fortnight has made me realise is that I have quite eclectic taste and a varied wardrobe….. and I’m terrible at blogging things I have made. I have a lot of makes to write up!

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Sewing hygge

Quick post to share this article, I love the ideas in this blog article …. lots of inspiration for 2017 sewing.

https://thefoldline.com/2016/12/10/sewing-hygge-style/

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Top 5 Misses of 2016

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Number five
Tilly and the buttons coco top

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This has been included due to poor size judgement!! I finished this top to a good standard with matching stripes and the softest fabric ever……and then it didn’t fit! I have since worked out that the marker I was following on my overlocker was more than 1.5 cm!!

Number four
Simple sew pussy bow blouse

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This was a terrible fit on me, I had to insert pleats at the shoulders to raise the darts up but the bust was still in the wrong place. The neckline then still wouldn’t sit right. I have worn it a few times out of principle but it has gone to the charity shop now.

Number three
Sew over it silk cami top

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I have since cracked this pattern and made a successful one which is yet to be blogged. I made a satin version which was far too tight so having cut out the original paper piece (doh) I had to draw out the pattern again in a larger size.
In doing this inadvertently cut out two fronts and produced the above top!!!

Number two
Kwik sew K3045

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This was one of the few makes for my husband but it had more been relegated to sleepwear! I was able to run this up in just over an hour on my overlocker but the cut and design looks terrible. It’s too short in the body and wide on the chest but it does look like the packet. The key to this lesson was to avoid the big five and stick to indie pattern designers.

Number one
Simple sew skater dress

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This is so bad I have no photos!! I decided to make this in cappuccino satin with lace overlay for a wedding in the summer, sounds lovely but the cut made me feel like a nine year old back in the 80/90’s!! The bodice joins at the rib cage above the waist so really unflattering on me and the lace and satin just looked flouncy!
So I decided as Christmas approached that I would tackle it again and turn it into a skirt…..
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The plan was to wear it with my sparkly crop Sophia top but it still looked terrible and frumpy so I resorted in buying a RTW pleated skirt instead.

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Half term fun (and a Dungaree dress)

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We had a great half term this October, generally doing very little and relaxing around at home but with the occasional day out. This allowed me the time to catch up on some quality time with hubby and the kids, get some sewing done and get some better shots of the finished item.

We went to a pick your own farm with the kids and their cousins; selecting three of their finest pumpkins to turn into Pumpkin soup and Pumpkin pie, plus a tonne of blackberries and raspberries – more went into the kids mouths then in the punnet but that’s the fun of PYI.

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We had a day out at Thomas Hardy’s cottage in Dorchester, my home town, which the kids loved. Running around the woods and then exploring the cottage looking for clues – the National Trust are great at keeping the kids occupied so we adults can have a good look around without them getting bored.

The woodlands offered a great backdrop to show off my latest make – a denim dungaree dress (with TATB Agnes top underneath).

I self drafted this pattern using the skirt from New Look K6035 and then made my own bib, back and straps, plus pockets.

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I used denim from Fabricland where I managed to buy the buckles and jean buttons for a few pounds. I used the left over fabric from the dress I made the other week to line the pockets, back piece and made my own bias binding for the hem.

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i think i actually prefer the inside to the outside of this dress. The dress was finished with yellow top stitching on the pockets, bib and hem.

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