Disclaimer: Jennifer Lauren Handmade gave me a copy of the Dulcie Pinafore in return of a honest review.
The Dulcie Pinafore is one of JHL’s most recent patterns and it really did appeal to me. The pinafore is in the new size range which goes from a size 6 to a 34 and also includes 6 cup sizes.
One of the design aspects of the pinafore that appealed to me was the square neckline as was the princess seams and the button details.
For sizing, I carefully followed Jennifer’s instructions and cut a 22 C-cup size in the new curve range for the bodice. And for the skirt I cut out the size 28. I used the back darts in the skirt to take out the excess that was left where I matched the bodice and waistband to the skirt piece. Ideally I think if I had realised how much excess there was before I added the side pockets I would put some of the extra fabric in the dart behind the pocket. Nevertheless it seemed to work out.
Talking of the pockets, they are a really good size and I like how theyare positioned. I had to add a label to one of them just to highlight them!
This red corduroy was from my stash, unfortunately I can’t remember where I bought it from but it’s a lovely jewel tone. I had 2.5 meters of the corduroy and it worked out well although I seemed to have got the nap upside down … you know the stroke direction. The corduroy has a slight stretch to it as well which isn’t a bad thing especially with a pinafore and lockdown weight!
Lovely stretch corduroy and perfect for the Dulcie Pinafore!
The 22mm buttons were from the Textile Garden. I wanted something that was going to compliment the red earthy tones and I think I did pretty well matching up via the internet. If I was stuck on buttons I would have normally went and checked out The Cloth Shop (Remnant Kings) but they closed just before the pandemic hit and if we are in lockdown and in tiers, it makes it more difficult to factor in travel and sourcing locally. Anyway, I think the Textile Garden buttons are just the match for this pinafore!
I love how the bodice is lined. It just finishes it well. I used some lining that was gifted to me by a friend and it lay in my stash waiting for the right project. I wonder, if I could line the skirt on and future Dulcies’? I probably could, I’d would just need to sit down and work it out.
Ok, the verdict – I really do love it. However, I know I need to make some knit tops that will work with it other than this black RTW top but that’s not a bad thing now is it?!
I might go up a size in the bodice, just for a little more wiggle room, cancel that – its fine. Stretch corduroy is a good friend!
Ok. I’m definitely loving this pinafore. Prepare for another one in the future!
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!
Yes I finally cracked my Moneta obsession, don’t worry there’s plenty more of them coming with hacks but for the moment I’m trying out different patterns and I have a few exciting things that are happening but I can’t tell quite yet!
Ok, lets talk Myrtle:
Do I like and will I use the pattern again, if so will I make any changes?
I love it, especially the cowl neck feature. I’d definitely use the pattern again but I would shorten the shoulders to avoid the embarrassment of showing of my assets too much!
Where did I get the fabric from?
I bought the lovely viscose jersey from fabric focus this winter, unfortunately for you I took the last 3.5 meters (sorry but not sorry) in fact, originally i bought 2,5 meters realised I didn’t have enough and the luckily there was 1 metre left when i went back to the shop – phew!
Myrtle needs quite a drapey jersey and lightweight I’d say and for me it was a good skill builder. This was the first time I did a cowl neck and used the main fabric for a lining on the front and encased elastic in the skirt.
For a quick make, once you’ve done it once it makes sense.
Ok here’s the fun part – PHOTOS … Hooray!
Now, where I’m I going to fit in time to do a woven version in this pattern? I love how this pattern is versatile like this!
Currently I’m sewing up a line of Colette’s Moneta Dress … you could say I’m obsessed (the title gives that one away!).
It all started with seeing the Moneta Party on IG way back when I first got the itch to stitch. It’s only take me a couple of years to summon up the courage to thread up the overlocker and have a go of this Jersey malarkey.
Here’s a Summery of my dresses so far!
Fabric: John Lewis – dark green and black
Sleeves – short length
First trip out was at Tantallon Castle!
Fabric: Fabric Focus, Mustard and grey knots
Sleeves – 3/4 length
Shortened bodice length and slightly shorter skirt
Made it up for #OWOP18
My mustard snag tights match up perfectly with this version!
Moneta 3 –
Fabric: Fabric Focus
Hack – scoop back
Sleeves: 3/4 length
Wore to a friends exhibit opening night!
Fabric: Fabric Focus, Sage green with floral design.
Hack – scoop back
Have to re do front bodice due to overlocker punching a hole in it 🤬
Sleeves– 3/4 sleeves
Date night with the bestie for this one!
Well that’s four so far and there’s at least another four to be sewn including a Christmas one, so watch this space and IG for more to come with other hacks (I love the scoop back hack!).
Also I am going to put a couple of other stretch/Jersey pieces in between now and the rest of the Moneta’s so you don’t think I’m a one-trick Moneta! I’ll be talking about my next few projects in my make nine 2019 post soon!
I’m going to be quite truthful here, I’ve only made one of my make nine patterns but I have made two dress out of the same pattern (although one is not quite finished).
To be quite frank, I’m not that great at sticking to plans. Reason: Maybe there’s too much being released and I want to deviate (LOADS!!) away from a structured plan.
But I have progress in other patterns … Hoooraahhhh!
I’m in the midst of doing two Vogue 9075 (view a), one in crepe and the other in cotton lawn.
I’ve still got to finish a McCalls 7536 (the burgandy rose fabric) but I’ve completed a McCalls 7582 and a McCalls 7381.
After these I’m probably going to do a wrap dress in a stretch fabric which I got from Sewisfaction.
And then the Colette “Moneta”.
Mind you, I’ve had the colette “Moneta” pattern for yonks and the material, so maybe I should do that first – but before I make a plan, I’ll probably do both at the same time – well, can you blame me?
Oh yeah and then add all the wonderful fabrics I’ve got recently to the table …
Whilst in town on the Edinburgh Frocktail poster and prize mission, I picked up a few fabrics from The Dress Fabric Company, Bruntsfield. Eh, It was a sale, so how could I resist? The Edinburgh Fabrics had a lovely Tiger print on black, which I think @sew_sleep_deprived is in awe of. Also I picked some gorgeous Viscose Lawn from Dragonfly Fabrics online as well as a lovely crepe with birds on it from Fabric Focus.
Yeah, you can pretty much say I have truly fallen of the “self fabric ban” wagon and landed in the muddiest puddle known. Oooooops!
Another conclusion to this post is that you can say if I do make nine it won’t be the original nine as posted earlier in this year – that shouldn’t be a surprise!
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!
So with little over a week I decided to start the dress that I planned to not only have finished but moved on to the the project.
As you know life doesn’t always allow you plans to go swimmingly well and time can just drown with you realising how little you have left!
I bought the Lady McElroy Cotton lawn “Brushstrokes” from StitchyBee a while back.
When I saw the McCalls 7381 pattern that I received free with Love Sewing Magazine a while back, I knew it would be a simple quick make providing I followed the instructions correctly.
Building the whole thing went brilliantly well until it came to me wearing it. It was huge, it was a tent on me. Where did I go wrong?
I had one resort, take it to class! So I did! Thankfully Abi saved the day but it meant me taking in at the waist (a lot!!). But I did it, It only took a few hours and a few swear words.
So where did I go wrong? I only went by the measurements on the back of the pattern envelope and not the ones on the tissue. I can definitely go down one size on the bodice (woop woop) next time. Also for next time I’m considering sleeves and the next version in viscose. So no I’m not put off – yeah! It’s so comfortable to wear as well, especially when it comes to eating a lovely German buffet and cheesecake because of the ease and the elastic!
A week on after the #SewScottish Afternoon Tea another group of lovely ladies held a smaller but equally nice meet up in Dunfermline.
We all met at the Heaven Scent Cafe, which is set in the new building beside the abbey. The cafe has a lovely selection of cakes and hot drinks on offer but as the weather was so warm I opted for a cool fizzy elderflower juice.
We sat round a couple of tables for about an hour exchanging information about patterns, materials, fabric shops, discount codes and a little bit about our wonderful selves. It was a lovely chilled out affair and “suited me down to a t” as I had been up at 3:30am that morning for a 4:45am start at work!
After some much needed refreshments we headed up to the newly opened Sewing Studio. The Sewing Studio is a fantastic extension of Sew Yarn Crafty after locals were giving feedback back to owner, that there was a massive dressmaking following and they wanted more fabric choice and classes. It all came together pretty simply as there was a property available to extend into and that’s how it all happened.
It’s been a little over a year since I’ve been up to Dunfermline and checked out Sew Yarn Crafty. The last time I’d took a trip up was with my mum and my aunt. Mum was not that great at that point but wanted to get out the house and always supported me in my hobbies. That woman was always pushing herself, where she got the strength from was unbelievable.
Anyway before I go to a dark place … (everything connects!!)
The sewing Studio has a great range of fabrics and independent patterns (TATB’s, papercut, cashmerette, Sew over it and a couple of others.
I actually saw quite a few fabrics that I really wanted but I had to refrain as I’m only a week in from making that (damn) pact with @Sew_Sleep_Deprived so I wouldn’t buy anymore fabric – urghhhh!
I was stroking them and crying 😭. It was tough. I did refrain from fabrics but I bought two cashmerette patterns and a book about drafting dress and skirts.
The weather was on it’s truly best behaviour as it was gorgeous. I really need to come up and check out the Abbey.
So all in all, it was a lovely afternoon out and I’m looking forward to catching up with the girls again. Hopefully I’ll have made a few me makes by then and I can show them off!
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!
Having “had” to sew in living room because of my lack of tidying up mojo of the sewing room this week I’ve been focusing trying to find the floor of it.
I had a great idea last year to wash all of my fabrics, iron, fold away whilst measuring and recording them. It was such a monumental task, it all became quite overwhelming to dealt with. It was all very well in idea form but when you decide to get a puppy all things and plans go out of the window. I’m not blaming the puppy nor myself here, I’m simply addressing the matter that I took too much on and something had to give.
Move on 4 months and I finally can sneak up to the sewing room and finally get to grips with the hoarding of fabrics and goodness knows what else! Don’t think for one second did the puppy stop me from buying fabric nor the billion bags of fabric already up in the S.R. Ha!
I’m seeing a clear path now. It’s looking pretty organised now. There’s a plan to go through all the magazines and pull out projects that I might get round to. I’m going to be stopping my magazine subscriptions as I’m finding I just don’t have the time to read them just now and feel I can keep up to date with other methods. Plus I’ve got to keep the momentum up with my make nine and need space to concentrate on that!
Here’s some photos of the progress so far – sorry don’t have any “before photos” but just imagine lots of bags on the floor!