Crafty sew and sew in Dorset

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Dorset Meet up -Summer 2018 plan

It’s happening again but this time it’s bigger, better and a lot more organised!! This is a long post telling you about all the amazing contributors to this years event so get comfortable……

We are meeting on the 22nd September at The Old Thatch pub for lunch followed by some serious fabric and wool shopping in the Bournemouth area 😊

Menus can be found Here

Due to the size of the pub and some of the shops we have had to limit numbers to 20 people and tickets are still left on Eventbrite….3 left when I checked earlier today!! Click here to get your ticket.

This year I wanted to use this event to raise money for the MS society as my mum was diagnosed almost 20 years ago and so much more research is needed.

I contacted some of the amazing sewing community and have been astounding by the generous response received….we now have 15 prizes up for grabs in a raffle to be held on the day 😊 and more prizes on reserve for the next time we meet up in 2019!

So here goes (tickets have to be bought on the day but if you can’t make it you can always donate directly to the MS society for support or ask a friend who is coming to get you some tickets 😉):

1. Minerva crafts have donated £50 worth of fabric and I have thrown in a book on making things with felt!

2. Girl charlee have kindly sent £25 gift voucher to spend online.

They sell some stunning jersey fabrics perfect for this hot weather…..fancy making a kielo wrap dress this could be your prize! They are also sending 15% discount codes for all those attending!

I bought this fabric today for a sweatshirt from girl charlee:

Mark from girl charlee also sent us lots of badges for our goody bags:

En-Dorset …….get it!!!


Tilly and the buttons have offered an online course. I’ve never completed one of thee but there was an article in the current Sew magazine which highlighted a couple of their courses:


Our fourth supporter is Kay from Clothkits in Chichester. Kay sent in two kits for the raffle so one is being kept for the next raffle and up for grabs this time is the Red wiggle A line skirt worth £29!

The write up describes it as;

Flattering cotton chambray a-line skirt sewing pattern. Wonderfully rewarding to make, and can be tailored to suit your shape. Fun, funky, flattering and practical too, what more could you want from a skirt? This skirt is also available in navy.

Skirt kit contains printed skirt fabric, an optional lining, easy to follow instructions, zip and high quality sewing thread. All beautifully folded and bound with a satin Clothkits ‘Tape Measure’ ribbon. Makes an inspired gift too.


Up next is a prize for the active amongst us (or those who like their clothes to stretch!).

Melissa from Fehr trade has donated a signed copy of her new book ‘Sew your own active wear’.

I have a few of Melissa’s patterns and they all have special twists to make them interesting and not obviously handmade. Melisa told me at the Sewing Bee Live at the Excel that she adds features that make you think WTF at some point in the process!!!


The first shop we are visiting on our little tour is Lovely Jubbly Fabrics.

Jade is offering all those attending on the day 10% off all full price fabrics as well as donating two generous gifts to the raffle.

First up for grabs are a set of her beautiful wash bags that jade sells under her other Instagram name @lovelyjubblydesigns_

These bags retail at £30 and could be used for your sewing supplies as well as your make up.

The second prize from Lovely Jubbly Fabrics is a jelly roll from Lewis and Irene called Welcome to the world.

I used one of these to make this mini cot quilt earlier this year:


Our next stop will be HobbyCraft . The manager Mark at the local store has donated a £10 gift card to be spent in store or online.

HobbyCraft has something for everyone, whether you are interested in sewing, knitting, decoupage or drawing.


Our next stop will be at the newest sewing shop in town- My Sewing box in Wallisdown.

Amy and Angela have offered a bundle worth £20 which includes fabric, a pattern and some haberdashery! They have some beautiful fabric in store including Liberty London and Lady McElroy jersey.

My sewing box offer monthly sewing boxes sent out with fabric for quilting and lots of courses in the store to make popular patterns such as Tilly and the buttons Cleo dress plus sewing social events.

They have offered us tea and coffee with room to sit and chat!

9. And 10.

The next two prizes work brilliantly together so you’ll have to buy plenty of raffle tickets to try and win both together!!

Sew over it have offered a pdf pattern of your choice to the lucky winner and Fabric magpie have donated 2metres of Lisa Comfort’s All the roses Fabric.

Why not make a Rosie dress with this beautiful fabric? You can always buy the fabric if you don’t win it!


Lucy from Sew essential have offered a £15 gift voucher to spend online in their amazing store.

I know what I would buy….one of these fantastic button gauges!

There is bound to be something you need or want from their great supply of fabric, sewing patterns and quilting.

Still with me?! There’s been so many prizes offered it has been really overwhelming and I am super hopeful everyone will donate generously to the MS society when buying raffle tickets.


Ana from Cocowawa patterns has offered two pdf patterns to the cause and has agreed that we will offer one this time and offer the second one at our next event!

You have the choice of any of Ana’s patterns which will be a hard call.

The chestnut sweatshirt would be my first pick but the Honeycomb shirt dress would be close second:


Athina and Hattie from Smyly have been busy designing some stunning new patterns and have offered 2 patterns for the raffle. Like with Cocowawa, we have decided to hold one back until next year which gives you more chances to get your hands on one of their patterns if you join us again then!

The Abi jumpsuit is my absolute favourite, such a cute design.

If you’re not a fan of the all in one jumpsuit then maybe something like the Samantha dress which shares the same wrap top half:

You could always top up the prize and purchase the add on packs to link the two patterns together!


Local shop owner Caroline from Sew La Di Da vintage based near Lyme Regis has sent two patterns for the raffle and once again we are reserving one for next year!

Up for grabs this year is the 1950’s Rose Sewing pattern:

This would make a stunning dress for a Christmas party in sequins or satin.


Our final prize was a personal gift from Maxine who works at Fabricland. I approached the shop,also on our agenda for the day, for discount but was advised that they are not able to offer any above the ones they offer periodically. However, Maxine asked if she could donate a prize personally and has sent us a very generous prize of £20 gift voucher for Next.

I am so excited about this event and hopeful we can raise some money for the MS society and receive done fantastic prizes in the process.

Tickets are £1 a ticket and only available on the day but please feel free to donate more for each ticket.

On top of the raffle we have a great line up of shops to visit, some offering us additional discount:

lovely jubbly Fabric (10% off)


– my sewing box


– the wool shop (20% off)

We have also been offered 20% off the sewing chest online and 15% off girl charlee .

I would like to say a huge thank you to all the sponsors of this raffle and for everyone else that is helping me with organising this event.

Looking forward to meeting so many new people who love food, sewing and shopping!!!

follow us on Instagram @dorsetmeetup for more details and up to date information. Remember there are three tickets left so still time to join us…..

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My #Sewtogetherforsummer prize 

Last month I was picked as a winner for my sew over it Florence dress (you can read about the dress here) and the lovely Sew Hayley Jane gifted me a surprise box as my prize.

The parcel arrived beautifully wrapped with string tied around it and a note attached.

I was given the summer garden party box which contained so many lovely things.

Look at all those goodies!! In the box I got:

– four fat quarters to make bunting

– pretty bias binding tape for bunting 

– prym wax for hand sewing 

– white gutterman thread

– a lovely notebook

– a cute jar of jam

– a few metres of gorgeous white eyelet fabric!!

I had already thought about joining in with #anorlaaffair on instagram and  decided that I would use whatever fabric Hayley sent me and I think this fabric will be perfect.

You can download the Orla dress free following this link. As part of the line up of posts Allie showed her version in white eyelet with a yellow slip underneath which looks beautiful. 

Being a tad obsessed with pink I have bought a stretch cotton in bright pink to line mine (as the white was a tad sheer and holey to not be lined!!).

July is turning out to be a very productive month so far. I have a pattern testing top to finish this week for Sinclair patterns (20% off if you join her Facebook page) and then I can get on to this dress! Plus I need to make my daughter’s play suit and my Megan Nielsen darling range dress for sewmystyle!!

A huge thank you to Hayley, Sarah, Suzi and Monika for organising this sew along and for my gift 😘


Florence dress

Firstly I wanted to apologise for the lack of posts on my blog….. I found instagram and got a bit hooked on there. Plus felt that I was sharing with less effort / words but I will try harder to do both ( @craftysewandsewindorset )

Anyway, onto my blog post. This is the Florence dress from sew over it, released early via simply sewing magazine. I bought this fabric from Ikea ages ago for £12 for 3 meters pre cut and thought it would be perfect for this maxi dress even if the pattern requires fabric with drape!

The magazine planned this to be a slow sewing challenge as the patterns were in two issues but I just don’t sew like that. Therefore I waited until 2 days before the second issue before I started sewing!

I decided to omit the sleeves, mainly due to the 30 degree heat wave Britain had (note had sadly!!) been experiencing. I made my own bias binding to edge the sleeves using my little bias binding tools.

I originally decided to add poppers as I had bought a new prym tool for this very job, however tiredness and cider made this harder than it sounded!

I eventually gave up after several back to front connections and punching a hole in my dress and added buttons!

This cotton worked so well in the heat so will definitely become a holiday favourite. 


Tulip skirt from sew over it


I feel the need to apologise now for the photos in this post. I’m so behind on blogging things I have made because I haven’t managed to get decent pictures that I resorted to the selfy stick I was given by my aunt at Christmas.
I have little need for a selfy stick in my life but then I thought about this blog and became very happy for my gift!!
Any way, back to the sewing……

I joined up to the sew over it pdf club a few months ago which gives you 10% discount and advanced access to monthly pdf pattern releases for just £5 a year, and you get to choose a free pdf pattern worth £7 when you join. I picked the tulip skirt as I have been looking at this for a while now.

In an attempt to make a more capsule and cohesive wardrobe (read plain and basic and not all patterned fabric) I decided I needed to make a few black and navy tops and bottoms(which I have, but not blogged….jeans, skirts, t shirts).
I am wearing my tilly and the buttons Agnes top with the skirt in these photos and really love being able to wear a whole me made outfit, coat included!


This is a really simple design skirt with pleats at the front and darts at the back.


The other great thing about this pattern is that it has pockets!


I made this skirt with black cotton blend suiting fabric from fabricland, so overall a pretty cheap skirt to put together in about 2 hours.


Capsule wardrobe and filling the gaps

I really want to plan my sewing better this year now I have covered most of the basics (except jeans).
I am completely drawn to fabric by print and design but this has left me with a mismatch wardrobe.

I think I got away with it during the summer as I could just wear dresses and sandles and not worry about matching tops etc.
I almost have a totally home sewn wardrobe now and only bought a handful of items last year as RTW.  Therefore I photographed by whole sewn wardrobe to identify gaps for me to focus on….. Get ready for a lot of photos!!


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Spotty Playsuit


The monthly stitch blog set a theme for July of spots and stripes.  When I was buying fabric for my Anderson blouse I picked up 1.20m of spotty fabric with the plan to make a second sleeveless Anderson blouse.

Then the sun arrived in blighty and I decided to finally make the poppy playsuit from sew over it that was free with a sewing magazine before it vanished again.


This was a quick make with a simple top and short that you sew together and add elastic around the waist in the seam allowance.

It has cute turn ups on the sleeves and shorts (that I need to add a few stitches to stop them unfolding).  I added a loop and button to the back fastening as the pattern suggested a hook and loop but I didn’t think that would hold.


I took the photos on our local dog walk on Canford heath.  We are so lucky to have this beautiful heath land on our doorstep and the beach 10 mins drive away.




Working nine to five, what a way to make a living…..


I won a competition for sewing….well all contestants won but they said it was because all entries were so good!!

I had been sewing solidly for four days but I managed to get my outfit finished in time to enter the bonus competition for the bundles from indie pattern month.
I ordered the first three items from the working 9-5 bundle as I have been after the sew over it Anderson blouse for a while, so to get a bonus skirt and jacket with it was too good to miss.
I decided to enter this competition on the day it opened so I decided to go for the blouse and skirt as I thought this was achievable.


I made the top from this fantastic crepe de chine dragonfly fabric from fabricland. I wanted to buy the ostrich feather fabric in the link but they had sold out and then this caught my eye. I got the last 1.70 m off the roll which was perfect for the top.
I cut a straight size 10, which fitted perfectly. The design of the blouse means it is very unfitted at the front, so much so that you would flash everything to all of you don’t add a stitch at the front.
When I made the sleeves I was worried they were a little tight so I tacked them on first to try on before I serged them and was pleased to find they fitted well.


I love the design of this shirt and received a lot of compliments at work when I wore it. Little features like the ruched shoulder seams and pleats on the sleeves made my colleagues surprised to hear I had made it.


I will definitely make another Anderson blouse, fabric is on my sewing desk ready (spotty in case I get it finished this month!!) (this has now become a sew over it shorts playsuit) But would make it a little longer next time. The finished length is fine when the hem is pulled tight and worn high on the waist but most my trousers are low waisted so this doesn’t always work for me.
The instructions for this top are interesting to say the least, it’s a really quick make but I read the instructions half a dozen times and couldn’t understand the description to make the facing or the casing for the ribbon at the hem. In the end I threw out the instructions and made my own casing design. I am not the only one with this issue, ciara also struggled with this… not just me!!

The skirt pattern is the Sew House Seven Alberta street pencil skirt.
This skirt has great reviews as being a quick make…..but it was a nightmare for me! I only didn’t throw it in my ufo pile because of this competition.

I used another fabric land fabric in navy blue which is Sturdy cotton weave and looks smart now finished.
I cut a size 8 as the pattern tells you to measure your body and go by that. An 8 says hips 39″ and waist 28 1/2″, I measure hips 39″ and waist 29″ so sounded good to go.
The pattern also says not to be put off if it looks snug, it will fit fine…..I added a little extra when I cut out as not convinced.
I tacked the side seams and added the waist band to test it and found the front panel fitted perfectly but I had a gap of 5cm for my bum to hang out the back!!
I used the back pattern piece to recreate the side curve and made up two small sections to add on either side.


I think I got away with it in the end, but swore a little to get to the finished garment. I had to unpick the seams to add in the new sections, then unpick them again to add in the pockets and again to add the waist band….I found my fabric did not like this at all and kept fraying. The waist band actually fitted so I had to grade in the extra section at the top.
By the time I had finished the inside looked a huge mess….Thank goodness for my overlocker that saved the day.

Although I am not convinced by the sizing chart, I do think the instructions were really clear on this pattern and had I not sewn the sides to test the fit it would have been a quick make. I wore this to work today and it was comfortable but smart for the office, I had no comments which my husband interpreted as “must have looked like a rtw item”!

I might make the jacket to match the skirt but want to see how well this fabric washes first before I spend too long battling with fraying fabric!

That’s all from me for now, thanks for having a look and feel free to check out my other posts.

I won two pdf patterns from designer stitch so will let you know what I ordered soon.

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