Wednesday, 11 May 2016

SEWING WITH STRETCH FABRICS

A Jaycotts.co.uk "How do I do that?" Post

At this time of year there are dozens of T-shirts in the shops, all looking the same, all at various prices from the very cheap to quite ridiculous prices.
I am guilty of buying new ones most years, but wait, why should I keep spending money just to look the same as everybody else? Why should I put up with the store dictating to me what the neckline should be like, what length the sleeves should be, how long in the body it should be? And thats only the start of it, try buying a nicely patterned one..... You see the problem?



Many people ask me about sewing with stretch fabrics, and are daunted by it. But don't be, with a few simple rules you can be sewing your own "designer" tops quicker than you can go to the shops to buy one.
Your first attempt at sewing stretch fabrics might not turn out exactly as you would like, which is why I recommend you making a Toile or test garment first. For this find some cheap jersey fabric or an extra large men's t-shirt to practice on.



Thursday, 25 February 2016

Having fun sewing Melissa's Bolero Jacket from Zierstoft Simply Sew Patterns


The Melissa Bolero Jacket from Zierstoff Simply Sew was a most enjoyable garment to sew. Even better it is a great fashion garment suitable to be worn by all ages.



Meet a brand new pattern company who design the most beautiful patterns for women and children. Zierstoff.com is based in Munich. Ilka and Joanna are two beautiful young mothers who have only recently began their journey to show people just how easy and fun sewing can be. Not only are their PDF patterns attractive and easy to follow they come with an extensive range of support from video tutorials to downloadable pattern instructions.
Zierstoff - simply sew is the brand new English branch of the very sucessful German company Zierstoff.
Do look at their video on You Tube and see just how lovely Ilka and Joanna are in person.
Zierstoff -simply sew on you tube


Tuesday, 23 February 2016

The Eliza M Pussy Galore Top - Using a Walking Foot to sew Chiffon


I really like the new pattern companies which are appearing and I especially like Eliza M patterns. They have a vintage look but fit today's sizes without the fuss of using and altering a true vintage pattern. This blouse pattern is especially pretty but is very easy to sew - made easier by the clear precise instructions.


For this garment I wanted to use some Chiffon which I bought from Abakhan Fabrics
Chiffon poses some sewing challenges so if you are new to sewing I would recommend choosing a fine cotton lawn instead.



The fabric is very sheer and can  also fray easily so care has to be taken with it. When cutting out use plenty of pins which you have placed inside of the seam allowance to avoid making homes. If it is difficult to tell the right and wrong sides apart it is useful to mark the wrong side of each piece with a small mark,or a piece of masking tape, again inside the seam allowance.

Monday, 1 February 2016

How I made my Purple Trouser Suit. A Minerva Craft Blogger Network post

Purple Haze


How I made my purple stretch trouser suit. A Minerva Crafts Blogger Network post. Pattern by McCalls


 Adaptable, wearable, comfortable and very easy to make. A beginners project with no buttonholes to worry about.


I seem to live in trousers and jackets and wanted a smart trouser suit for travelling in. The fabric I chose for this suit is a stretch Bengaline/Rayon which has spandex I  the mix so that it stretches. This fabric is a medium weight and has no drape in it so it is best suited to garments such as this trouser suit.

Monday, 30 November 2015

HOW I MADE MY FAUX FUR HAT AND JACKET.A Minerva Crafts Blogger Network post

WINTER WONDERLAND
Coat pattern by Simplicity. hat pattern by Burda




I have been looking at these coats in the shops and noticed how expensive they are, so when I saw this fabulous faux fur fabric on MinervaCrafts.com I knew I had to make one my own coat.
Here is the list of items you need to make one of your own
  • Faux fur fabric.2m made both hat and jacket in size 12 /14  I used the long pile fur in Grey. It comes in other colours and in a short pile version.  PLAIN LONG PILE FUR
  • Anti static dress lining in Navy Blue,    Lining
  • Prym fur coat hook and eye fasteners in Grey Fur coat Fasteners
  • A very small piece of interfacing for the collar Interfacing
  • Simplicity 2150 pattern Jacket pattern
  • BURDA 7175 for the hat HAT PATTERN
  • I am fond of COATS sewing thread, you will need both Grey and Navy  COATS THREAD



Faux fur  ChiChi or headband from Jewellery Bank  see the web site for more information Winter white faux fur ChiChi



You will need to gather together your sewing machine with a new needle for heavyweight fabrics, an iron and ironing board, a pressing cloth and one more essential item - your vacuum cleaner! 
You will also need a few very long pins,  tailors chalk and sharp scissors


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