Welcome to my Blog where I aim to chronicle and share my experiences in Sewing. My Wonderful Mum taught me how to sew many moons ago, but I hadn't sewn for many years until 2012 when my now husband and I decided to get married in Lapland.The only way I could create "The Winter Queen" image I had, was to make it myself. It re-kindled my love of sewing and have been sewing ever since. And yes, that is me in my profile photo…
I walk. A lot. Here in the UK it rains. A lot. So I have a winter coat and I have a raincoat. But believe it or not the sun does sometimes shine and this spring, I don't want to be going out in my all weathers raincoat looking like I'm a pessimistic fool expecting rain.
So I needed a new coat
This pattern was my introduction to Sewaholic Patterns. For months I kept seeing this pattern getting so many good reviews and seeing everybody's wonderful versions of it. I was also intrigued by the online tutorial, having never done one before.
So now spring is here, and it hasn't rained for at least 2 days (!) my lush warm winter coat bought in NYC, and my old faithful raincoat have had to step aside to make way for my new Minoru Jacket.
The pattern offers the choice of just collar or collar with hood. For me it was a no brainer because the hood cleverly tucks away hidden inside the collar and sealed with a zip, so you get the best of both.
I did start to wonder if I would ever get this jacket started let alone finished in time for spring. The hardest thing for me was deciding what colours I wanted and then what fabrics! Once these decisions were finally made and fabrics ordered, all I had to do was sit and wait for them to arrive at my door.
And wait I did....
And wait some more....
I purchased the outer shiny twill fabric from My Fabrics based in Germany. Each day I would anxiously track it's progress only to find on its arrival to the UK it had been detained and needed further instruction from the sender.
But Finally after 10 days, it arrived!! I had never been so happy to see the Postman!
But 10 days gone and there was also still no sign of my lining fabric either. Boo Hoo. The lining was what I was most excited about too. I mean, check this out..
Sadly mine got lost in the post but Mat from Frumble kindly sent me out a replacement only for it then to arrive the day we went away!
It seemed I was destined not to start this jacket let alone finish it.
But start it I eventually did and finished it now is. I followed the online tutorial (HERE) which was just brilliant. I was constantly looking forward to getting onto the next lesson. You can make this jacket up with the instructions included in the envelope but for me, the tutorial made the sewing so much more exciting and inspirational.
There were no pockets on this pattern so I added patch pockets
So, the British weather can throw anything at me now. I can go out on a nice bright breezy day in my bright and breezy jacket!
Oh and I can't go without a flasher mac pose of the amazing Sepia Paris Lining! :)
This top is my March project for the MAGAM challenge. I chose something simple this month as I already had a work in progress (This Dress). The top actually only came about because of these super funky purpley-purple Levi Jeans. It's all about the jeans!!
Anyone who knows me will tell you I am not a huge fan of jeans. I have a couple of pairs but I wear them little. But these are no ordinary jeans, these jeans are mint!!
Anyone who knows me will also tell you that I am not one for shopping. It has never appealed and I see no fun in traipsing around busy crowded shopping centres.
The exception to this appeared to happen on our latest visit to NYC back in December. Manhattan has shops like nowhere else I have ever been. I once heard someone say, that if you can't get what you want in New York then it probably doesn't exist!
NYC is addictive. For the first time ever I could have spent a fortune on one single shopping trip (and that was without the fabric shops!) instead I settled for just jeans... purple Levi jeans!
So anyway, back to the sewing; with these funky little legs, I needed a top to go with.
I wanted a baggy top to fall off the shoulder, but as I dislike bagginess around my middle this pattern with the fitted rouched hemline band was perfect. I'd read from several other pattern reviewers that this came up big and it did. The neckline is anyway, so for my kind of off the shoulder look this came out perfect!
The fabric is a purple ponte knit I already had in my stash. But Minerva Crafts have a similar one HERE and also comes in a vast amount of 21 different colours! Truro Fabrics also have a purple one HERE and several other colours too.
I had 2 metres of this fabric so as an added bonus, there was just enough fabric left over to make a matching skirt
But of course, what does the skirt matter when its all about the jeans?! ;)
So it's March. The nights are gradually drawing out and the daffodils are out. Even the spring sewing patterns are out! Which is more than can be said for the sun.
But us Brits have learned to live with whatever the weather throws at us. And sun or no sun, sewing for spring has started.
My first spring project is 1950's retro pattern Burda 7174. I think it has recently been discontinued as I cannot find it on the Burda Website, but it looks like this
I made this dress considerably shorter for a more fun look rather than formal
I used a bright patterned cherry print on navy stretch cotton available HERE from Truro Fabrics (although on such a grey, dismal day it's not looking all that bright!)
I was drawn to this pattern because of the high neckline and the pleated hem.
I tackled the pleated hemline first as I knew it would the most time consuming and pleats are not something I have tackled for over 20 years.
I'm not going to lie, this dress and I had a serious fallout. And on more than one occasion! I was meticulous in my marking, read, re-read and read the instructions again but on occasions I was still left scratching my head (and swearing to myself once or twice too!) I love Burda designs but Burda and I just can't seem to hit it off!
But despite having a love/hate relationship with this pattern, I am always up for a sewing challenge and this pattern certainly gave me that. And to see it all come good in the end is much more satisfying than a pattern that went together with no issues.
and as you can see, as I do my Irish jig, this dress and I are friends again :)
When fashions and hairstyles from the 80's are mentioned, we all seem to cringe! Including me, the girl who had her hey-day in the late 1980's. Yes, I am guilty of big hair, shoulder pads and dodgy fashions.
But what's going on? Cropped boxy tops and leather look trousers seem to be everywhere!
Including back in my wardrobe once again some 25+ years later
It makes me feel quite nostalgic making and wearing a top like this. If only I had saved all my old cropped tops from the 80's lol. It's good to see them back in fashion.
For the cropped look, I cut this pattern at the waistline. And for the neckline, I just made the collar band much narrower.
and also available in all THESE wonderful colours.
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For the trousers I decided I'd make a muslin first for 2 reasons:
1) trousers are probably one of the hardest things to fit
2) I used a soft pvc leathercloth (pleather) fabric (also available HERE from Minerva Crafts in various colours) and didn't want hole punches from the needle all over the fabric from my unpicking!
As it happened, The muslin fitted perfectly and needed no alteration what so ever. Bingo!
So because I had never made a wider leg trouser before, the trousers were going to look just like they look on the pattern envelope,
only as you may have already noticed, they don't!
Half way through construction I decided I wanted a slim fit leg. Had it not been for this, these would have whipped up in no time at all! Hmmm not the best fabric to be working with when you change your mind half way through the project but at least I was taking in and not taking out :)
So ok, these aren't the sort of trousers I will get much wear out of. Somehow I cant see myself wearing them to the supermarket or to work for example. But I had never worked with this fabric before and that was the whole point.
And hey, if Joey Tempest had a pair, then so must I. Enough said ;)
I am extremely lucky to have my own sewing room. Well, it's actually a room that I do everything in! When we bought our house it was kind of my office space, audio space, book space and occasional craft space.
When we first moved in, this is what it was like
Then hubby and I got engaged and even though I hadn't done any dress making for many many years, I knew I would make my dress and coat for our Lapland Wedding.
From that day forward my room was taken over by sewing and to this day it still dominates the space.
And so these days it looks like this!
It's disorganised and cramped, and has no style but I make do because any separate space for sewing should be considered a luxury.
So when we decided to move house again some months ago and have found a new house which enables me to have a room just for sewing and sewing only, I am ecstatic!!
The move itself is drawing pretty near so I have been gathering together ideas for my new room
I am visualising yellow. A pale yellow with white
A centre island for a cutting table
with desks and shelving around the walls
pretty little baskets containing notions in the shelving
organised shelves containing sewing things only!
Or something like this would be a dream...
Or perhaps something completely different? I love this idea too
However my new room ends up, the planning and creating will be exciting.