Disclaimer: I was given the Block Tee from Tara (Paper Theory Patterns) in exchange for my thoughts. I didn’t have to post anything but here you have it!
Formerly known as the Kabuki Tee it’s been given the new name and now goes under The Block tee.
After some feedback and consultation with the community, Tara felt that having no Japanese heritage herself, it was only right to change the the name.
As well as a big name change, The Block Tee has has some small changes in the grading. This was also from feedback from previous customers. The change is small yet will help with the fit on the shoulders. The shoulder grading increments has decreased between the sizes 18-28, so the length of the sleeves aren’t as long.
Making the Block Tee was fun, quick but somewhat challenging as doing sharp right angle turns is not a quick job and you want to take care doing it.
If you are stuck and I was just needing that little extra visual, Tara has a really good video of how to do the Right Handed corners on her website, which helped me a lot.
Without any doubt, I cut two Block Tees’ … yep I didn’t do a toile, yep I’m a bad ass but I had totally faith in Tara’s design. I used linen: mustard yellow from Selvage and Bolts and the green from Blackbird Fabrics.
I graded from a 22 at the arms and bust to a 26 at the hips. I could always go down a size all over since the pattern has lots of ease.
I found that I used under 1.5 metres especially without needing to cut the piece for the bias binding as I wanted to use some of the bindings that I bought from The Specky Seamstress (The “Sewing Appreciation Society” Bias was received as a gift).
It’s quite a handy pattern and I feel I’m going to potential do a Block Tee with some of my scraps (watch out for that!).
I’m pretty chuffed with the results and yes I feel I need to practice these right angles! It’s a lot trickier than I thought but don’t let that put you off. Just take your time and pin pin pin!
Like most makes these days, before I start sewing pieces together, I overlock the edges. One for finish and two, to stop any fraying.
The details of the Block Tee are really smart. I like the lines that it has. It’s just has a different spin on the Box top.
I’m super chuffed that the block tee goes to 57.5”/146cm hip body measurements. It’s got a good amount of ease in it too. It’s going to be a nice staple in my wardrobe, especially in linen over the summer period.
If you haven’t tried The Block Tee yet and would like to give it a try, I’d definitely give you a gentle nudge of encouragement. However (again!), go slow round those corners!
The Mustard Yellow Block Tee Details:
Mustard Linen from Selvedge and Bolts
Label – “Handmade” This is for Makers
Label – “Slowly Does It” The Pink Coat Club
Bias Binding “Ruler” – The Specky Seamstress
Label – “Sewing is the F♥️cking Best” – Kylie and the Machine.
Necklace from Lynsey Walters
The Green Block Tee Details:
Green linen from Blackbird Fabrics
“Perfect Me” label from Little Rosy Cheeks
Bias Binding “Sewing Appreciation Society” – The Specky Seamstress.
Gold and white cord necklace from Stitching Me Softly
Ever since I did my tester on Friday Pattern Company‘s Sagebrush Top, I’ve been hooked!
Hooked in the sense that recently I did a batch cut and I’ve already sewn one of the up – yes already I’m churning Sagebrush Tops out!
I really love this pattern and the details of it. From the frill at the front to the gathering at the sleeves it just makes me happy.
This Sagebrush is slightly different to the others and I’ll explain why, in a moment.
You see it lies with the fabric choice. Previously I’ve went with a viscoses and a viscose-linen blend but I decided to take inspiration from the lovely Jen (@jenlegg_teescreatives) (I’ve met her in real life, as she came up to Edinburgh Frocktails, October 2019 and she is really lovely) who has already sewn the Sagebrush in the very same fabric.
The fabric is a Lady McElroy Chantilly Single Ladies Cotton Lawn from Sister Mintaka which I bought a wee while ago after seeing Jen’s version and looks like there is some in stock. It’s a lovely quality and has sewn up a treat. I love the colours of the print, it will be so diverse! I’ve already thought of a few outfits featuring this top, including pairing it with Jeans, as shown in the photos.
And apparently I’m not the only one who was inspired by Jen, Louisa was too!
Ok, my top was going so well until I decided to use my overlocker to finish the seams on the sleeve and front and back pieces …
At that point of seeing the blade chop into the shoulder what like watching a horror movie. Urgh. I had to step away. It didn’t stop me from sharing my disaster on Instagram stories that night – but it also helped me come up with a plan to save this make.
I had two options, one seeing if I had enough fabric to cut out a new sleeve altogether but I couldn’t really justify using it as I was going to try and make a scrunchie and hair band plus other things from it. The other option was two interface the wrong side and the right side and hope that I wouldn’t need to do a patch work … my needlework is erm shockingly bad 😂
So once I got that bit out the way I could move on and get it finished – yes that’s what we like – a happy ending!
On this Sagebrush I took a bit off the length off and made the hem deep And I actually really like it. So I think I’ll do the next couple this new length.
As you can see, using the cotton lawn gives the frill real structure and the sleeves extra va va voom! I do really like the effect that this cotton lawn has on the pattern.
Well, that’s the 4th Sagebrush of many more to come … I’m excited to do more!
Well this is a first! I’ve made one of my first Make Nine projects and that is the Closet Core Cielo Top within a week of publishing my #makenine2021 plans!
I went with option B and used fabric that I bought from Sister Mintaka.
The fabric is Viscose Twill and is a wonderful medium-light weight and features illustrations of famous mid century architecture. It’s now (no surprise!) Sold out. It does come in a white version aswell but I think it’s all gone unfortunately!
It’s lovely to work with and it really suits the Cielo Top.
The Cielo top is part of the Rome Collection from Closet Core Patterns. The Pietra Trousers and the Fiore Skirt also are part of this collection.
Closet Core patterns now have a bigger size and it comes in two size brackets, 0-20 and 14-30. It’s more inclusive size wise.
The Cielo is the second pattern I’ve tried from the new size range and again I’m really happy with the results. I recently did Elodie Wrap Dress which was the first. I’m hoping to try the new Kalle Shirt which was re-released in 14-30 size, earlier in 2020.
Closet Core patterns have great instructions and it was quite easy to follow them.
I love the fit on this top. I graded from a 22 bust to a 28 hip. I used the size 22 sleeve. This top really suits this twill.
I’m already thinking of trying version A and C once I’ve got a few other make nine projects under my belt.
So yes, I’m super happy with the result and looking forward to matching some of my fabrics from the stash with future Cielos!
Thank you for reading, happy sewing and Stay Safe xx
Well here we are and I’m off to a flying start as I’ve almost finished one off my make nine grid!
This going alongside a YouTube video where you can see me chatting about my make nine 2021 plans. It’s kinda like the show notes from The Love Sewing podcast if you’ve ever read them – I find them really interesting!
Ok … so here’s my #MakeNine2021 / the image below is linked to my Instagram Post! The individual graphics are linked to the pdf patterns corresponding to to pattern house shop just in case you would like to buy it. (I get squad all for this but they are lovely independent pattern brands that I love)!
I’m taking part in the Sheffield Sewcial “Jeans January” over on Instagram. I’m hoping to cut them out ASAP and hoping that they fit well. I go for this style in jeans in Rtw/ Shop bought.
I’ve got some stretch denim but haven’t yet made up my mind which one to choose, that’s the trouble with hoarding fabrics 😂
I’m not sure on the finished garment measurements though …
I’ll be grading waist size 28 and hip size 30.
Ok next up is …
I’ve got at least three fabrics set aside for this and I can’t tell you how often I’ve hesitated about Zadie.
I’m absolutely going to toile it. One reason being it’s generously sized or so I’ve heard. So I think I should just be cautious and do a mock up before I cut into precious fabrics.
However, I will probably going to have to grade between a 20/22 bodice and 26/28 trousers, which is the usual for me.
Back to Megan Neilson and this time we have The Darling Ranges Dress.
Without a doubt I was really in love with this style/pattern before it had the upgrade to the curve range but I patiently waited and now it’s here I have no excuses not to make it.
Although I have heard some grumblings about the bodice fit … I’ll need to look into this as I’m not sure what the details are regarding the grumbling! Have you tried the new Darling Ranges dress, did you have fit issues?
I’ve not yet decided on what fabric for this project, but no doubt I’ll let you know when I do find something from my stash that I’ll go – “that’s the one”!
Next up is the beautiful Pona Jacket from Helen’s Closet.
Now … I must I have AT LEAST 5 fabrics now set aside for this project. I think I just love this jacket because it’s so versatile. I’m really drawn to the short version but I think I’ll do at least a couple of longer versions in the future. I’ll probably do a batch cut & sew just to get them sewn up so I can wear them!
I might have to grade from a 22 to 28 but I’ll assess that when I come to looking at the pattern pieces and measurements.
To start I’ll be trying up a wool from Minerva as part of the blogger network. It’s black so it’ll probably go with a lot of other things in my wardrobe, both me-made and RTW.
Another jacket which I’ve been eyeing up is the Sapporo from PaperCut Patterns.
It’s funny how a lot of people raved about it and “had no problems” making this jacket up and it took one person to really point out the flaws that so many didn’t to get a update on the pattern pieces and a bigger size range.
Like the Pona Jacket and you shouldn’t be surprised – I have been collecting a few fabrics for the Sapporo.
I think I’ll be doing videos on my makes as we go this year, plus I’ll pop into posts on here with photos of the fabrics. That way, you can see the movement and colour – how’s that?
Now the Cielo Top from Closet Core Patterns.
I’m baffled this is my only top in my make nine but it won’t be the only one I make this year. I’ve already batch cut a little pile of Friday Pattern Company’s Sagebrush Top, my tnt pattern of the moment!
To my amazement I’m almost finished the first cielo top and I’ll probably be starting a second very soon.
For my first version I choose to go all out and went for option B / see the big gathered sleeves always draw me, I like a little drama in my clothes.
I think the second version I’ll let the fabric do the talking and just go for version A as pictured. Yes, I’ve got rifle paper co fabric set aside … and it’s so dreamy! But I’ll not spoil the surprise 😉
The sizing is good. Like the Elodie I’m really happy with the fit. I think this is going to one top pattern that I’ll come back to again and again!
Ok – I don’t think it would be right if I didn’t squeeze in a Friday Pattern Company pattern into this make nine, so I’ve chosen the Adrianna Dress.
Unlike its sister (Adrienne Blouse), the Adrianna is designed for Wovens in mind. I’ve completely overlooked this pattern as I didn’t realise that it went up to 4X until recently!
Sooooo … I’ve decided on some fabric for the Adrianna BUT I’ll need to lay it out with the pattern pieces in the next coming week or two as I’m hoping to cut this out and have this as a birthday dress. My birthday is the 17th of January… just in case you need to know 😂
The fabric is an Atelier Brunette Viscose which I’m hoping I’ve got enough to squeeze this dress out off. I might have to lessen the bulk and length in the sleeves to do this.
Ending on two trousers and first up is the Flint Trousers by Megan Neilson Patterns.
I’ve heard so many good things about the Flints, so again I’m eager to go through my Stash and see what would be a good choice to start off with for this pattern.
I’m also liking this pattern because it could be a good staple for work – when I finally get another one. TBH, At the moment the job searching isn’t strong but I think come mid January I’ll have a wee look!
Anyway back to the flints. I like the detail and the fact they now come in the curve range is 🙌🏻🙌🏻🙌🏻
And the final make nine choice is …
This will be the third pair of trousers I’ll be aiming to make this year.
On top of being floaty (frickin love culottes) I’m going in for comfort and doing the elasticated back and flat front hack that Helen has in her blog.
I’m going to make a pair out of black viscose but I’m thinking for another pair perhaps for something heavier as I don’t think viscose is a suitable option if I’m trying to stay warm, do you have any suggestions on this?
The culottes are said to be quite roomy and I’ve read somewhere (probably HC’s website) that I can adjust the darts as-well!
So if you haven’t already picked this up yet – I’m super excited and geared up for this year’s #MakeNine2021 – eeeek!
I feel like the last couple of years I’ve learned enough skills now to not get that overwhelmed feeling and can honestly say that I think I actually might just manage this make nine!
I hope you’ve enjoyed this blog post relating to my YouTube, please comment in the box below if you have any questions or suggestions in relation to the choice of makes I’ve made and this blog post and if you have a chance, please go and view my YouTube video!
It all started when I saw By Hand London’s sample of the Jessica Skirt in this Valentine Red and Pink viscose … it was love at first sight!
I thought the chances of sourcing it would be second to none but what’s the harm asking? The worst answer would be no or sorry we’ve ran out, so with that in mind I did some digging! You guess it, long story short I found some at The Rag Shop via pigeonwishes shop.
Yay! So I contacted Steph at The Rag Shop to let her know that I was doing a blog post on the viscose and she kindly gave one meter in return for the blog post (I already purchase two metres) so having that extra meter allowed me to play about with more options.
The Wildergown by Friday Pattern company has been on my sewing list for ages, I just love the fluidity of the dress. The Valentine Viscose and the wildergown dress would be a beautiful match!
I choose the xl according to the finished measurements but I could’ve gone up an extra size on the skirt but I might come back to that as I’ve still got some fabric left. Obviously, I was going to go on the full-on gown – I think it would have been be rude not too!
Ok, for adjustments I shortend the bodice because I’m only 5’3″ and my torso isn’t long at all. I went for even layers in the skirt but on hindsight, shouldve keep the top tier longer and the bottom tier shorter – but nevermind.
Sewing with the viscose was a dream. I didn’t find it too slippery to work with either. I did use a light weight needle just to be sure it didn’t punture the fabric whilst sewing it. I’ve been reading that even using a microtex needle can sometimes still lead to tiny fractures in the fabric (in some makes more than others) which is quite nerving wracking after you’ve made that investment.
Before I started putting the pieces together I overlocked all the edges to stop them fraying. Of course, I could always try french seams to finish the seams but let’s be frank here, 1. I’ve not got the patience to do that and 2. I’ve still not got the patience.
I really wanted to try and pattern match some of the lines of the grids and this worked out better than expected even with the gathering. For gathering I used lots of pins … LOTS of them and I tend to use the Prym glass headed pins now, just my preference.
I’m still sitting on the fence if I should add waist ties just to give a bit of shape and I may shorten the bottom tier to be just below the knee. I think it’s all to do with my height but I may leave the length as it is if the waist ties help. I’ve heard that Julie Uzor has a great tutorial on her Instagram for rouleau loops via theminisewist (but I’ve yet to find it).
However I’m slowly falling in love with the dress as when I first tried it on, I was like “what have I done?”. For me it’s a bold change with the grid lines, because I’m short and rather curvy I think it accentuates certain features. But everytime I’ve tried it on I’m feeling more confident.
To add to the love of this wildergown I am loving the drama of the neckline. The pull tie that gathers the neck and gives the shape is such a simple yet clever design feature.
Everyone looked amazing, we raised over £500 quid, enough to feed 41 kids for a year in education for @MarysMeals, the raffle was on fire, much so we were running out off tickets!
I am so humbled to get lots of compliments on my dress and fabric choice after having to an emergency repair before I left Home on the zip making me late!
Again, I didn’t take any photos on the night but others did – thankfully 😅
I’m so sorry if I didn’t get round to catching up with you but I do hope you had a lovely night. You all had wonderful outfits and it just goes to show how wonderfully talented you all are. You should be all so proud of yourselves and give yourselves a pat on the back. Each outfit was lovingly handmade and each unique in its on way, just like you!
So the dress …
So after the first attempt not being successful but it will be (it just needs a bit of tweaking!) I decided I was going to try it again.
Fortunately it came together eventually (pockets took about seven attempts)! Yes 7. But moving swiftly on … I got there in the end but had to do an emergency repair on the zip literally 30 mins before I was due to leave and the my machine was playing game so had to had stitch. Drama!! I know!!
Here’s some photos of the Jungle Crepe V9075 …
Fabric: Lady McElroy Jungle crepe from Remnant Kings
Lining also from Remnant Kings, black pongee.
Pattern – Vogue 9075
Accessories – “me made” pink coat club necklace and earrings from Accessorize.
I’m going to give version b a go, which is the culottes Style bottoms with some pretty funky fabric from Rejects in Kirkcaldy. Definitely going to finish off the first version “Chelsea” though, so watch out for that. I’m going to try my first stretch project now and that’s the Colette “moneta”. It’s high time I tried stretch fabric and my overlocker. Also I will finish of my Harris tweed coat!
I just want to thank Lesley @sew_sleep_deprived for taking the reins and going full throttle on this. Without our her organisational skills and wit, I don’t think we’d have a brilliant night to remember. You were a triumph on the microphone and you are such a star!
Since the 5th May I’ve been on a fabric ban but this Friday past I broke it and I broke it hard!
You see when you see something RTW and the stock is low in your size but you have the sewing skills (this does not include boning or lace!!) you go what the heck and go all in, pretty much head first.
So this is the RTW dress I’ve fallen IN LOVE with and just wanna swosh about in.
The RTW dress is a beautiful Monsoon one but as said a second ago, the size I was looking for had gone out of stock. I would definitely pay £139 for it but that’s if they had it. But I’m not going to buy that dress, I’m going to make it eeek!
After ordering several different swatches and doing a ridiculous amount of searches for “mint guipure lace” online I wasn’t anywhere forward. Locally I was starting to loose my confidence in getting what I really wanted. It was on the final straw that I took the tip from a previous co-worker to visit Fabric Focus. It should’ve been first choice – doh!Above the linings, there lay the beautiful lace guipure in exactly the colours and shade I was looking for and too even make my July better the lining was there to make it pop! It’s a-lot more minty than the photo suggests. The lining is a skin tone. But I may have to double it up with a cotton because of the boning!
The Pattern:The pattern was a lot easier to find and in the end the McCalls 7720 was a very close fit.
I’ll get the boning, hook & eye, threads and zip organised at a later date. I might make a toile and see how that goes before I start back at my evening classes in August if I get other projects finished! I can’t thank Kevin at Fabric Focus and his lovely Mum (who actually served me) enough for stocking this lace. You made a very happy lady. This is just a perfect example why we should support local shops like this!
We’ve all do it. We’ve all piled so much pressure on ourselves and when something went wrong we left the unfinished garment in a crumpled mess on the floor in a corner. I’ve admitted defeat on one or more handmade garments. I’ve still got to pick them up and see what I can do to rectify the mistakes but for now, they sit it a small pile away from my view!
At the moment I’m amending a shoulder sleeve due to them being lopsided – don’t know how I managed but this is going to be worthwhile in the long run as it’s one of my favourite makes so far despite the sleeve issue. Making mistakes is also learning from them, how else are you going to learn and stretch that skill base?
2. Ask for help.
I’m very lucky to have such a good teacher at the sewing class that I go to. I also have a couple of very good sewing buddies I can bounce off ideas and problems with alongside a fantastic community on Instagram too.
3. Measure yourself.
Pattern sizes are completely differencing to ready to wear sizes (RTW). Please don’t buy a pattern and go on you RTW as you’ll have a garment that won’t fit once you put all that time, effort and lovely material (and dosh!) into it.
Measure yourself. Take that tape measure (grab a friend if you need help!) and jot down your measurements. Pattern companies can differ in finishing measurements, so check each new pattern before you start the project!
Remember this: Don’t beat yourself because it may seem you are going up a few sizes from the RTW to the pattern sizes and also your finished garment will fit you better if you take your time to measure yourself correctly 😘
4. Seam allowances matter,
Again. Check, check, check! Read your instructions a couple of times before you even start the process of cutting out. Highlight the seam allowances on each step.
Get yourself a seam guide and test to see if your seam allowance is really 1/4”. Same with 1/2″ and so on.
When you find the spot on your machine that is 1/4” mark it with washi or masking tape that way you won’t forget where it is.
5. Invest in a basic sewing kit.
Scissors (Straight, pinking, little snippers for cutting little threads and ones for paper), Measuring Tape, chalk, pins and a seam ripper is all a good start and then you can add more, such as hand sewing needles, extra bobbins (make sure you get the right ones for your machine as there are not universal where as are machine needles are), pin cushion (homemade or bought). This list could go on for miles (trust me!) but get the basics and add from that, which should keep you right!
When a chance comes up to get all glammed up I will jump at it. But then the overwhelming feelings that I’ve got to make what I’m wearing fit like a dream, it’s scary – REAL SCARY and It’s to be ready for Saturday the 2nd of September!
Speed isn’t my strongest point when it comes to making something. I look at all the Instagram feeds and see what and how many creations are made in a day and some people creative sometimes 3 or 4 in a weekend, which again scares me. The fact is, if I do rush things, then it looks rushed and not brilliantly finished.
So instead of me leaving the frock until the very last minute, I better start thinking pattern and fabric now.
Question, How glam are we talking about? (cause I don’t want to be under or over).
This dress must be easy to make. But it has to be wow (at least to me anyway).
Plus like Lesley of Sew_Sleep _Deprived, we also have a big fat zero of weddings to go to and feel the need to actually get dressed up. I am lucky that we have a social life due to having no kids though. And like Lesley, I am super jealous of the Dressmakers ball and the Sew Brum meet up, we really need to add a disco ball event for us Scottish Sewists!
So what am I thinking?
I love to do something with a lace panel. Maybe just the bodice and then the skirt and just flow.
So that’s the thought process at the moment, I’ll let you know how I get on with it later, perhaps leaving the big reveal until the actual #edinburghFrocktail date (yeah I know, I am a big tease)!
So if you’d like to come and join Lesley and the Scottish Sewists for a cocktail, please note your interest in the comments section on her blog post.
So I’m guessing you know what this is all about then! The last month I’ve been adding up a range of patterns that I quite like to own. And instead of having loads of tabs open on my laptop, I thought it would be quite cool to pop them into a blog post and share them with you (also I can close some tabs since I have a record of them, ha ha!). Who knows when I’ll get round to them, but they would be nice to have.
First up, is the newest pattern company that I’ve come across and that’s Sew Different. I’ve already mentioned the Everyday Chic Dress pattern in the blog post that I purchased at the #knitnstitchshow via Emma Garry but had my eyes on the cocoon jacket too. I like the fact the go up past an UK size 18 to fit my oh so roomy hips in!
Then we have another coat and that’s from Sew Over It – The Chloe Coat. Looking at my Instagram feed, there’s been a few good ones and I’m really inspired to do one. Also, the big plus is that if you buy the pattern you get an online class to keep you right (honestly I’m not on commission) so it’s ticking all the right boxes. I really would like to make a coat, this might be the right one to start with!
Another SOI pattern is the “Silk Cami“. I love the simplicity of the top – and it looks like a winner in my book for summer tops or a little black number for a night out. It’s in PDF form to purchase but that won’t stop me now that I’ve figured out a low-cost printing place, which you can read all about here!
Closet Case Patterns has been getting my attention of recent, with two of their patterns. One is the Ebony Dress which looks delightful in Scuba (one of these fabrics that I haven’t quite got round to playing with, yet!). The high-waisted Ginger jeans are ticking my “oooh” box! I’m tempted to but another coat? I really shouldn’t (The Clare Coat is amazeballs), but I think you know what’s going to happen, don’t you?!
Next, we have The Avid Seamstress with their Day Dress pattern. Again I’ve been Instagram inspired … It’s getting as bad as Pinterest!!
Another pattern which I’ve been going back to is the Paola Top from Named Clothing. I really like this staple wardrobe top. And it looks like a quick make.
Coco from TATB is another one I keep looking at. One reason, in particular, is the Cowl neck – I’m in love with it and it looks splendid in the dress form.
So I think (I’m sure I’ve left something out!!) that’s the list. I won’t be getting them all at once because that would be silly and the bank manager would be taking my card off me!
Let me know if you have tried any of these patterns (I’m sure you have!) and tell me how you found them – it would be really nice to hear from you.
Happy pattern stashing!
Disclaimer:All opinions are my own and no I’m not on commission (ie I’m not being sponsored)!