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Dungaree Shorts!

September 11, 2018

Whoop!  At the expense of looking part-Minion, I made myself a pair of denim dungaree shorts as my July project for the Minerva Crafts Blogger Network (but am only just getting around to blogging them!).  I made them just in time for my summer holidays, hurray!  The pattern I used is Burda 6599, and the pattern includes the option for dungaree trousers too, which would be great for autumn and winter.

You can read my thoughts on the dungarees and the materials I used on Minerva’s blogger network page here, where there are also some holiday photos 🙂

A Beginner’s Guide to Sewing with Knitted Fabrics by Wendy Ward – book review

July 10, 2018

Several months ago I was asked to be part of a promotional book tour for Wendy Ward’s new book ‘A Beginner’s Guide to Sewing with Knitted Fabrics’, in conjunction with Minerva Crafts.  I was sent the book free of charge, and allowed to choose the fabric for a sewing pattern from the book, in exchange for a review blog post on Minerva’s website.

The garment I chose to make was the ‘Peak tshirt’, extended into a knee-length dress, with an elasticated waist, very much like the one pictured on the front cover of the book.  I chose some stripy metallic jersey from Minerva.

You can read the full review, and see more pictures, over on Minerva’s blog here.

Tilly and the Buttons Cleo dress

July 3, 2018

I have made a fourth Cleo dungaree dress! My others are feeling a bit tight at the moment so I wanted a bigger version because I’m really missing being able to wear them. I had a remnant of dark green needlecord in my stash that I picked up for about £4 at a craft cafe in Hornsea last summer. I originally thought I’d make a Moss Skirt with it as it didn’t appear to be big enough for much else, but with a bit of fiddling I was able to squeeze out a Cleo. I had to use contrasting fabric for the facings, though. I also had some brown poly lining – no idea why or where it came from, but I used it to underline the front and back dress pieces. As a consequence, it is slinky on the inside and so doesn’t ride up on whatever I’m wearing underneath.

This time I chose to make the knee-length version of the dress with the split at the front. I like it but when I bend or crouch down the bit where the split stops is under quite a lot of strain. I did the securing stitches as directed by the pattern, but I do wonder if, over time, the stitching may give way. Time will tell!

I have worn the dress twice already, once with a t-shirt underneath and the next time with a shirt. With the shirt on, I know I look as if I’m size 1000, but I’m working on trying to accept my body, mainly because I love food too much to deprive myself at the moment, and I have a bad back so I don’t feel like running.

Although my red Cleo dress is still my favourite, I think this new one is my best in terms of quality of make – underlining it makes a big difference to how it ‘hangs’. I would definitely do this again on future dresses. I didn’t technically need the facings, but I liked to add then for increased stability, and also because they make the insides prettier!

Cleo pattern: I am not done with you yet. I definitely want to make a denim one at some point, and maybe another red one in the bigger size.

Tilly and the Buttons Miette skirt

June 27, 2018

This month, I have another Tilly and the Buttons pattern to add to my list of completed projects: the Miette wrap skirt.  I’ve always liked the look of this pattern, despite not being a fan of wrap skirts/dresses (too liable to expose me) and not being a regular wearer of skirts (I usually opt for dresses instead).  With this skirt, it’s all about the pockets, the bow, and the 70s style, which makes it stand out as something that little bit different from your average skirt.

Photography by Dr Dawn Wilson

I was pretty clear on wanting to make the skirt in a denim, but when I found the Art Gallery Fabrics denim collection, I was drawn to the ‘Cherry Crimson’ red chambray.  It’s a lovely fabric, and I think it worked well for the style of the skirt.

Photography by Dr Dawn Wilson

You can read more about my making this over on Minerva’s website here, as it is my June project for their blogger network.  They provided the fabric and the thread, and I borrowed the pattern from my friend Nicola.

My only reservation about the skirt is that the pockets are still not quite deep enough!

 

Baby girl’s dress – Burda 9750

June 22, 2018

I have used this Burda 9750 sooooooooo many times to make little girl dresses that I have lost count. I mean, it’s probably something like 20 times! Here are a few photos I have dug out of some of them.

My first version of the dress, made with ready-prepared patchwork fabric from John Lewis

Red Polka Dot cotton with patch packets and broderie anglaise trim on waistband and hem

I’ve made two, almost identical versions of this dress (one for my daughter and one for someone else)

Piped on waistline seam and raw edges bias bound

Similar bodice but with a fully gathered, ankle length skirt

This is made with a light cotton voile

I used a contrast fabric for the bodice for this version

I used ready-made bias binding for this version and black velvet ribbon trim on the waistband

Dress made with Linton Tweed and fully lined

Burda 9750 – Age 18-24 months

So that’s 12 different versions I could find pictures of easily, but I’ve a feeling there are others I’ve made! Quite a handy little dress pattern, eh?!

Here’s my latest, for the extra cute and beautiful Rosalie.

And here she is wearing it:

Isn’t she a cutie? Here’s a picture of another of my friend’s babies wearing the dress I made for her daughter:

Soooooo cuuuuuuuuute!!

And one more:

Awwww. It’s lovely to make special dresses for special girlies 🙂

Hoodie dresses

June 19, 2018

A whole year ago I made my first hoodie dress, and it has proved to be an absolute wardrobe staple. My original dress was made with the ‘Hide Away Hoodie’ pattern from an Ottobre magazine, which became my starting point for making a similar dress for my friend Jody.

Burgundy hoodie dress in quilted ponte fabric

She liked her first dress so much, she asked me for another in black!

Another hoodie dress, this time in black

I had enough leftovers of fabric to make her a mini pencil skirt, too!

Simple mini pencil skirt

And then I made another hoodie dress for my friend Carrie, for her birthday, this one in a lightweight loop-backed sweater knit.

It’s the ultimate cosy dress! I would like to add a contrast hood lining to my next version, inspired by the Stella Hoodie by Tilly and the Buttons.

Tilly and the Buttons Stella hoodie

Pirate outfit

June 17, 2018

Ahoy thar mateys!  I made my daughter a pirate outfit when she was three.  Once it no longer fit, she passed it on to my son, who wore it up until very recently.  He is five now, and not only is it too small, but it’s also falling to bits!  I used the Simplicity kids pyjama pattern 6932 for the original outfit, and self drafted a waistcoat.

Pirate Tweedie! Finished costume with skull and crossbones applique motif

Daughter in pirate dress with my son in the pirate outfit I made for my daughter three years ago. CUTIES!

We have a pirate themed party coming up in a few weeks, so I thought it was high time for an updated costume for my son.  I found a second-hand shirt lurking in his drawers that had been passed on to us by a friend, but which my son hadn’t worn yet.  Rather than waste fabric making something new, and leave this shirt languishing in the drawer, I decided to revamp the shirt by adding on some applique patches.  I’ve used a fair few pirate and nautical themed fabrics over the years, and I usually save the scraps, so I had plenty of options.

For the shorts, I had a small scrap of striped fabric left over.  Ideally I would have made the shorts a bit longer, but they’re fine, and it is satisfying to use up every last bit of a scrap of fabric.  I used the pyjama pattern again – this time in age 6.  In order to preserve as much length as possible, I didn’t hem the shorts, and I pinked the raw edges to prevent fraying.

Looking at the photos of him wearing the outfit, I think the shirt won’t fit for much longer, so I may have to make a different top next year, should the need arise.

This’ll do nicely for now though!

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