DO YOU WANT TO LEARN TO SEW THE LATEST FASHION WITH STYLE? IF SO THIS BLOG IS FOR YOU.
With lots of hints and tips I inspire you to create a beautiful garment even if you have never sewn before.
Sewing is ethical, sustainable, you can upcycle, recycle, and the garment you produce will not only fit you perfectly it will last a lifetime, it is empowering to dress beautifully especially in bespoke clothes made with love and care by yourself without damaging the environment
list of additional pages, click on any one to view
This jumpsuit is amazing. I have made one before but found it difficult to get in and out of, not so with this one
It reminds me of a WW2 siren suit. These were all in one garments which everyone wore over their normal clothes to keep them clean as air raid shelters were filthy. They were also quick to put on at night over nightwear. Sir Winston Churchill wore them, but his were hand made by a Saville Row Tailor!
Do read all about this fabulous pattern and fabric and learn how to make your own Bias Piping too!
All about our favourite clothes to relax in - pyjamas and lounge wear
I love pyjamas don't you? They are so wonderful for relaxing in after a hard day working at the sewing machine. They are something which, at least in my case, are the garments I spend least on yet I love them so much.
I decided to address this immediately and kit myself out in PJs made only in premium cotton.
The pattern is straightforward and you can choose design features which appeal to you. The tops have optional pockets but I left them off. You have a choice of sleeve length and there are shorts as well as trousers.
These three fabrics were actually from Seasalt but they are no longer in stock. You will want to choose your own colours anyway so may I suggest either a. Cotton lawn or a cotton Voile. Cotton Lawn Cotton Voile
Both of these come in a wide range of colours, designs and prices
A fabulous summer dress by Sew House Seven in a John Kaldor luxurious 100% Linen fabric.
A MCBN post
This fabulous fabric together with this amazing and very wearable dress pattern makes the most perfect dress which is just right for summer afternoons. Holidays and anything else you can think of. I just love it.
The fabric is By John Kaldor it's 100% pure linen, breathable, and worth every penny. The pattern is by Sew House Seven and it can be made in various lengths. It comes in UK sizes 0-20 which is a massive size range!
Want to know more? Yes of course you do! So hop over to the Minerva Crafts website on this link and find out more on this link A fabulous Summer Dress
Let's make some lovely staying at home clothes to wear
Maybe like me you never thought about what to wear when staying indoors for long periods of time. I know some people are wearing PJs but really I think it is better for morale to make a clear distinction between day and night. If you are wearing something which you feel good in and which is comfortable you will feel more " normal"
These are some items I have made for myself to wear and I am really happy with them.
I made a pair of trousers in a stretch fabric (another pair is cut out ready to sew)
The top I am wearing is a piece of jersey with a silver sparkle running through it.
The front top I am holding is made from the same fabric as the trousers with the addition of a scrap of fabric taken from a t-shirt I never liked.
The top on the left is made from a more cuddly knit fabric and it has a cowl neckline.
There are many Lingerie patterns around and lots of people seem to be wanting to try them but are scared to even start. The problem is they look fiddly and the list of haberdashery seems daunting. However if you look again at the instructions you will reconsider . It really is not that difficult to achieve amazing results.
This beautiful summer dress is made from a Double Cotton Gauze. If you have never sewn with it before then you really should try it. It is soft, lightweight and perfect for warm days . It is made from two very fine layers of pure cotton which are basted together every half inch or so in a grid pattern These stitches cannot be seen.
You cannot tell from the photographs but the leaves on the design are a shiny silver on blue. The overall effect of this beautiful fabric is one of elegance
I like this dress pattern very much. It is actually a wrap dress but there is the option of having it button through or with a tie belt.
The rest of this post and fabric and pattern details are on The Minerva Crafts Blogger Network on this link Cotton gauze summer dress
I hope that you enjoy reading this post and that you decide to use this incredible fabric yourself
This fabric is absolutely perfect to brighten any day. With its vibrant tropical flower digital print it will bring summer into the room whenever you wear it.
I just adore shirt dresses too - without a belt they are cool and easy to wear on a warm summer's day, with a nice belt it can take you out in the evenings too.it is so versatile and fashionable!
To find out more about the fabric and pattern and to order your supplies hop over to this link where you will find my blog post describing how I made this fabulous dress My Tropical print Vogue Shirt Dress
I look forward to seeing your interpretation of this pattern and fabric
Why go to the trouble of making a beautiful garment if it does not fit you perfectly?
I don't know about you but I read a lot of blogs and I see a lot of people showing themselves wearing lovely hand made clothes which quite frankly just do not fit.
What's the point? Why go to all that trouble and expense only to end up with a garment which is either too big, or worse far too small?
I bought some stretch denim Stretch Denim from MinervaCrafts as I wanted to make a skirt. Some stretch fabrics - as this one does, just stretch across the width, some stretch in all directions. You need to ensure that with a two way stretch fabric the stretch goes across the garment.
This is perhaps the most daunting yet the most satisfying garment you can ever master. Jeans are personal and we all have differing views of what the perfect pair should look like.
Get them right and I guarantee that you will love them so much that you will never buy another pair again. I know I won't
This is not a quick project and you have homework to do before we even consider looking at patterns!
First of all, what is your preferred style? I love a high waist, narrow leg Jean which is very well fitted. If that is not your style there is straight leg, flared leg, boot cut, ankle length. And then there are jeans which fit below your waist or on your waist.
The first thing you need to do therefore is to figure out which style you prefer. You may already own a pair which you love and which fit you well. This is good news because you can use them to refer to when making your own. If not then go along to a clothes store and try on as many pairs as you can and take selfies of those you like. Make a note of the style and if you dare, measure at least the hips and waist.
For your next task take a look at jeans in general and make a note of different top-stitching ideas and ideas for pockets. You can customise your jeans in so many ways so do take time to look for ideas. Pinterest is great for ideas.
I tested a few different Jeans patterns and this is the one I recommend you buy first. It has a large variety of design choices and different sizes. This is the link to purchase it from Jaycotts. B5682 Trouser and Jeans pattern I chose this one because it is not complicated and the instructions are easy to follow.
The first part of the pattern to look at - and you can do this on Jaycotts web site before you order - is the size chart.
Ignore your shop bought size and go by your actual measurements, the sizing is very different in each.
We are going to be sewing with a stretch denim which has " negative ease" ( more about that later ) so if you are between sizes it is likely you will require the smaller size.
Sometimes magic happens with sewing and by sheer chance the perfect fabric and fabric combination happens. This is what happened to me when I received this fabric to try and this pattern literally jumped out at me when I went into my sewing room to see what I could make.
I absolutely adore this dress. It is the most elegant one I have seen in a long time and I am looking forward to wearing it very much, It is perfect for any occasion, I only wish I had a wedding to attend as it would look stunning.
The style could not be simpler. A boat neckline, princess seams and a gathered skirt with a belt which ties in a bow at the front.
If there are two things I love they are Art Gallery Fabrics and The Sewing Workshop patterns.
Lucky for me this post uses both.
The fabric is Endless Paradise Chambray from the Denim Studio collection by Art Gallery Fabrics. This has to be my favourite fabric brand. I love their innovative designs and the quality of the fabric is superb.
This pattern is suitable for beginners who have a bit of sewing knowledge. The instructions are superb.
I am sure that you too will want to make this fabulous shirt so do follow this link to read the rest of the post and find out how to order fabric and pattern.
Kwik Sew 4250 Jacket, top and pants. A blog post for total beginners or those returning to sewing after a break.
In the first part of this post we will make just the Jacket.
This is the three piece loungewear outfit and isn't it fabulous!
I thought long and hard over this blog post.
The first thing I considered was how much detailed instructions to give, and how much opportunity should I allow for you to follow the actual pattern instructions. It is vital that we are able to read a pattern but I appreciate that they don't always make sense. I hope that I achieved a balance which is right for you.
This is the range of fabrics which I used to make each garment featured in the pattern. These fabrics are a very good quality quilting weight cotton from - believe it or not - Jaycotts! They are only available in store at the moment. You cannot buy them online.
You will however easily find good quality pure cotton in most fabric shops. Do choose a medium weight or quilting weight cotton as it will make sewing your garments so much easier.
Mix and match colours however you like, sewing is all about making something which you enjoy wearing.
By the way these particular fabrics are quite narrow, Dress fabrics tend to be wider.
If I could make another suggestion as to fabric comfortable for lounge wear, I would choose a Cotton Lawn it is easy to work with and comes in at all sorts of prices .do take a look.
Fashion is very personal. I showed the pattern we will be using to some friends and asked them where they would wear it, some said lounge wear, some said beach, some said everyday wear, all depending on the fabric chosen.
I have worn my garments in different ways and matched them with other garments and I wanted to leave it to you to decide where and when you are going to wear your lovely new garments without influencing you.
We are going to start by making the jacket. The pants and top will follow in another blog post. I didn't want to put you off by doing too much all in one go!
In the next post I will show you how I styled all of my garments and there will be photographs.
These are the fabrics I chose to use for the jacket. We are always told never to mix prints but never be afraid to bend the rules , these two prints actually sit very well together.
All about Sewing Patterns, Fabrics and Cutting out.
It is daunting knowing where to start isn't it, so I am going to talk about the basics of cutting out and why you need to follow the guidelines on your sewing pattern. I am making two garments, one in velvet the other in suiting and at the end of the post you should be well on your way to cutting out with confidence.
You can start with any garment but I have chosen a pair of straight leg trousers which are actually simple to make and always look good on.
All the links to patterns and haberdashery are given in the post making it easy for you to place you order with Jaycotts
When choosing a pattern consider what styles you already own and like and look for patterns which are similar. After a while you will want to make garments which are new to you, so it is a good idea to go and try clothes on and to take a photograph if at all possible, then you can look for patterns in a similar style.
I would like to show you how to work with difficult fabrics. In this case a Tweed which needs careful pattern matching.The thickness of the fabric also requires a lovely finish to the waistband - a faced waistband, which is a couture technique. The waistband also has an abutted closure at the back. All this makes for a beautiful elegant skirt.
To make a skirt with handsewn zipper and waistband , not to mention pattern matching, is a garment requiring patience and time. A project to be savoured and enjoyed.
If you have just a bit of sewing experience, this is definitely within your grasp and will help you to grow as a sewer.
Please remember that nothing and nobody is 100% perfect so if your garment makes you happy then that is all that matters, even if something is not quite right. The point is you made it yourself and that is certainly worth celebrating.
My skirt was made with a length of stunning Derbyshire Tartan. This Tartan comes in different weights and for this project I am using the Harris Tweed on the left of the photograph below
This Tartan was created by my lovely friend Fiona and her husband, and is registered with the Scottish Register of Tartans. They moved from their successful business and home on the Isle of Harris to Derbyshire and were inspired by the colours in the Derbyshire countryside and it's heritage to design this beautiful fabric.
To find out more about what the colours represent and to order goods or fabric then please visit their website Derbyshire Tartan I really admire how they had the courage and inspiration to look around their new home and to express it's very identity in fabric.
I therefore feel honoured to be given the opportunity of working with this Tartan and decided it deserved some of my very best work.
I love The Sewing Workshop Patterns. They have just enough difficulty about them to make you think, but are not impossibly hard even for beginners. They are edgy and just that bit different. I have made several of their patterns and wear each garment lots of times, I use the patterns more than once too.
For this design I chose a Boiled Wool Fabric in cerise pink. This fabric is easy to cut and easy to sew and the best news is that as it doesn't fray you do not even have to worry about finishing the seams.
To find out how I made this gorgeous jacket and to view and order fabric and pattern please go to this link. The Tremont Jacket
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This post is all about my Overlocker - and rolled hems
The Brother 3034D from Jaycotts
My overlocker is the Brother 3034D from Jaycotts.co.uk. To look at it on the web site click - Brother 3034D overlocker There are plenty of other choices and Jaycotts will be happy to talk about and demonstrate other models to you if you visit them or telephone them
An overlocker is used to finish most seams very neatly, it can be used as a hem, it can be used instead of a regular sewing machine to stitch stretch fabrics together. It can be in a matching thread or a contrast.
What else can I do with an embroidery machine other than embroider clothes?
"An embroidery machine is an investment, so what else can I use an embroidery only machine for" is something I get asked a lot and I know Jaycotts have the answer!
These are a few of the items I make on my Brother embroidery machine.
To view the range , this is the link Embroidery Machine
If at all possible it is well worth a visit to try a few and to discuss options
I have to admit that once my embroidery machine comes out, I never want to put it away, I find it addictive and before I know it I have been sat at it all day long.
So I hope that by sharing some of the things I use it for will make you realise that they are a really good investment. There are so many ways to use it and even when you think you have tried everything you could purchase the software needed to make your own designs!
Fascinating to watch, no matter how many times you have used your machine