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Tuesday, 3 November 2015

How I made my Polka Dot dress and Jacket for Minerva Crafts Blogger Network

My beautiful spotty, dotty dress and jacket. A Minerva Crafts Blogger Network post using McCalls and Butterick patterns




I love polka dots, and I love the combination of Navy blue and white.luckily MinervaCrafts.com sent me  a large piece of Navy and white polka dot print stretch cotton fabric, so I was overjoyed.  It is a beautiful fabric, quite heavy and with a bit of stretch too. View it on MinervaCrafts.com web site click here,  Navy and white polka dot cotton

I was not quite sure what to do with it and my  first thought was to make a long dress, but when I calculated how much fabric I would need there was a large piece left over but not enough for anything useful.The fabric is very heavy and hangs well so I decided to make a short dress and a jacket.  Jackets and me go together. I love making them and I love wearing them. I go out a lot in the evening and so I wear them a lot. I prefer them to a cardigan in fact. I have a favourite jacket pattern which I have altered and adapted so many times I cannot remember what the original one looked like! I love this pattern though, it fits me well, it is easy to alter, it always looks different, so why change? Anyway, more about the jacket later. Let's get on with the dress.



Before we start to make the dress though I wanted to show you the dress and jacket together. I honestly thought that the two garments worn together would be far too much, but in fact they make an incredible outfit and I love it. I envisaged wearing the jacket separately, and I will, but they do look good together don't you think?



Monday, 31 August 2015

How I made my Butterick 4386 in Orange Linen with machine embroidery


I bought this butterick pattern some while ago and thought that it would look fantastic made up in a variety of fabrics. I have some pale grey silk dupion which will be lovely for parties later in the year but I wanted to make it up first of all in this orange Linen.



The fabric needed pressing and shrinking with a steam iron through a linen pressing cloth, i folded it in half matching the selvedges and proceeded to lay my pattern pieces out in my correct size.
I say this each and every time, please take your measurements and compare them to the pattern envelope, cutting out the pieces according to your measurements which could be two or three sizes different to your commercial dress size.


I decided on the version with small cap sleeves, knee length skirt and crossover front. This will be worn on summer holidays in hot climates so linen will be cool and the cap sleeves will protect my shoulders from the sun


Friday, 3 July 2015

How to make a man's shirt with a collar. Blog post for Jaycotts.co.uk

How I made a mans shirt.

I am delighted to be doing this blog post for jaycotts.co.uk This is the first garment I have made on my new Bernina 350. I chose to make a mans shirt because it gives me the opportunity of trying out a lot of the machine's functions on one garment.
 I enjoy sewing mens shirts probably more than anything else, they give me an opportunity of being creative with materials and designs, and producing something which is totally unique .Be warned though if you do decide to make a mans shirt then you need to ensure that it looks professional because if it looks home-made then he just won't wear it.having said that do not be put off too much as this tutorial can be used to make yourself a shirt instead.  





This is the machine I am using, it is a Bernina 350PE  To view it on jaycotts web site  CLICK HERE



Jaycotts sell other makes of sewing machines at different prices so please do not be afraid to ask them for advice on choosing the correct one to suit  your needs and budget



I am using two different cotton fabrics, one in an uneven black and white stripe and a plain black. I will also be using some red piping. The pattern is a very old one which I have adapted and changed many times to make different variations of the shirt. I have made over a dozen shirts so far and no two are the same.
You may like to read my previous blog alongside this one, it gives more detailed  instructions for making the various components of a shirt.Click here to view it:- How to make a collarless shirt

Wednesday, 24 June 2015

How to make a Mans collarless shirt

HOW TO MAKE A  MAN'S collarless Shirt




This is showing you how I make collarless shirts, my next post will show you how to add interest with a contrast yoke and piping, and it will include a collar.
There are many mens shirts patterns, all the major pattern companies have one.The one I am using is an old one which I adapt time and time again.

For this project I am going to be showing you how to make a shirt for a man, of course the same principal applies to making a shirt for a lady. Please do not feel daunted, it is not as difficult as it sounds.
I have made plenty of shirts for my other half and he delights in helping to choose the fabric but the buttons are all his own choice!

So, you will need a pattern.i am using McCalls M6044.
Interfacing,  the weight will probably be a medium unless he intends to wear a tie with it when you would choose a heavy weight sew in. For this project though a medium should be sufficient.I am making it without a collar, but will explain how to do one with a collar on the way.
You will need some buttons too.and matching thread.
If you intend using a contrast fabric for the collar and cuff linings you will need a small piece of fabric which coordinates or clashes with the main fabric in the same weight and same fabric composition.
The reason for using the same type of fabric is that you want it to wash and wear evenly, without going limp or shrinking.
                                   

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The fabric has been ironed and pinned together along the selvedge - this makes sure the grain is correct which is so important.
The pattern has been cut out, so I am all prepared to cut it out later this evening. Please look again later for photographs and updates on my progress. Meanwhile find some spare fabric and make the tie, you will find it easy and rewarding.
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