Myosotis Dress by Deer & Doe

Although I’ve published my photos on Instagram, I thought it would be good just to have my thoughts on the pattern and fit here for my first myosotis dress.

So before I started I check my back measurements according to the pattern piece and shortened the bodice. I think it’s a tad too short in this version but hey ho I’ll still wear it. For my next version I’ll definitely used the for bodice piece and original length. I cut the largest size and instead of 1.5cm/5/8” seam allowance I went for 1cm. The bodice fits really well.

The skirt has no real issues and was fairly straight forward although I only cut one of the lower ruffle and had to do a last minute panic of “ok where’s the remaining pieces of fabric” – which was fine. I pattern match this piece because there’s an extra seam at the back of the dress now because of this rookie mistake!

I think my favourite part of the dress is the sleeves. I’m just loving the ruffles and to me that’s something that’s surprising to me!

The fabric is a Lady McElroy Cotton “Marlie” lawn. The print is digitally printed onto the fabric. The print itself is called “Shades of Autumn – Midnight”. I bought this from The Cloth Shop by Remnant Kings, Edinburgh a good year ago for a myosotis dress and who knew it would turn out so well! I’m pleased it didn’t have too much time in the stash.

I found the collar to be a bit of a nightmare though. The instructions aren’t clear to be frank and if you follow them it leads you into a fiddle. So conferring with my sewing buddies, I’m advised to go and have a look at Professor pincushion on youtube and hey presto, the dress lives!

So there you go – my first and not last Myosotis Dress by Deer & Doe patterns. Thanks for reading and see you back here soon!

Seamwork’s Skipper Sweater

This Liberty fabric has been sitting in my stash for a wee while now. I knew it was going to be a sweater but was unsure which pattern I was going to go for.  I think originally it was going to be a SH7’s Toaster but changed it for the Seamwork’s Skipper purely because it was going to be in my size range for hips.

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Seamwork’s Skipper

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Sew House Seven’s Toaster

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“Heketh” (Snowdrop) Liberty Sweatshirt Fabric

The fabric was bought online from @FabricsGalore a while ago and now is no longer stocked (sorry!) although you might be lucky and see if eBay has it.  I bought 1.5m of it, it was £11.00 per half a meter, so not cheap.  Although the pattern asked for 1.7 for my sizing, I managed to get all the pattern pieces out of the piece of fabric – PHEW!

The humble snowdrop – Galanthus nivalis is my birth month flower (January) and I always look out it at this time of year, so this jumper will always fill me with joy.  When I was born, the snowdrops in my Gran’s garden came up and my gran always referred to me as “Granny’s little snowdrop” even when I was thirty!

“Already now the snowdrop dares appear,
The first pale blossom of th’unripen’d year”

Anna Laetitia Barbauld, “The Snowdrop” (1835)

My Gran & Grandad lived up in the Cairngorms, so any school holiday we (Mum, my Brother and I) were up walking, orienteering, ski-ing (both cross-country and down-hill!) and get our bit of fresh mountain air, not forgetting engulfing ourselves with Gran’s fudge and gingerbread cake and listening to Grandad’s tales of Billy Gruffs and Trolls!

Right, better skip back to Skipper.

Cutting the pattern out was really straight forward. I graded it from a 20-22 bust & waist to a 24-26 hips as i didn’t want the top bit to be too big.  I left the pocket out as I thought that the busiest of the fabric pattern would be spoilt.

Constructing the pieces was a dream and this was my first sweater pattern, so was super surprised how well I coped. I found Cheryl from Stitchy Bee’s tutorial a real help doing the neckline.  It’s also a really good vlog on how different materials look different in the same sweater pattern (Cheryl used Grainline’s Linden).

So hear it is …

 

 

 

But it’s not Moneta, it’s …

Myrtle Dress by Colette Patterns!

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!

 

 

The Moneta Obsession

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!

Moneta 1

Fabric: John Lewis – dark green and black

Sleeves – short length

First trip out was at Tantallon Castle!

Moneta 2

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!

Moneta 4

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!

Oooopsa lacy!

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!

Fabric:

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!

Disclaimer: all opinions are my own!

Sewing: McCalls 7381

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 big thumbs up to M7381!

5 things I wish I knew before I started sewing.

1. It’s ok to mess up.

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!

Sewing Plans: My #MakeNine2018 Choices

DRUMROLL PLEASE …

So, it’s taken me until now to get my shit together.  Yeah I know I’m already slipping!

However, rather than ramble on anymore to delay it even further here are my choices for #MakeNine2018 …

1.  Cleo – Tilly and the Buttons (TATB)

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Cleo by TATB

2.  McCalls Top 7360

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McCalls 7360

3.  Seamwork’s Mesa

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Seamwork’s Mesa Dress

4. Penny Dress By Colette

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The Penny Dress by Colette

5. Toaster – Sew House 7

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The Toaster by Sew House Seven

6. McCalls 7536 Dress

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McCall’s 7536

7.  Colette’s Moneta

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Colette’s Moneta

8.  The Washi Dress – Made by Rae

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The Washi Dress – Made by Rae

9. The Scout Tee by Grainline Studio

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Grainline Studio’s Scout Tee

I’ll be able to match them up with Fabric without purchasing anything new.  Most of the patterns I’ve also got.  You may know That I’ve already sewn a Cleo and the McCalls 7536 but definitely attempting another of both!

Once I’ve dug out my fabric choices, I’ll do another post.

Here’s a sneak peak of my 2018 Sewing BuJo too, which I’ll leave you with!

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My #MakeNine2018 in my #SewingBuJo

 

Thanks for visiting!

Emma

 

Sew what’s ahead?

So it’s the first of January and we’ve all made these new year resolutions, right?

I haven’t. Yesterday I made a pact with myself not to set massive goal posts that I simply can’t fill. Instead I’ve decided to make a promise to myself to look after me.

Last year we had two massive and devastating blows when cancer told hold of both our mothers and they past away. Both gave it there all to fight the horrible disease but unfortunately there was no miracle in both situations. Cancer sucks big time, right?

Life has been somewhat mental as we went all in and got an adorable puppy, who’s now five months. Adorable but mischievous and a boundless amount of springer energy!

Sewing has definitely taken a step back as I’m trying to really have the almighty clear out of possessions that I no longer need nor remember that they existed. It’s going to take a few charity runs but at the end of it less clutter in the house.

I’ve been trying to get my sewing room in order, but ever since I did a massive “wash all my fabric” it’s been sitting in bags waiting to be ironed, folded back into board and put away. Of course I want to take a photo and enter it into my Cora app and that takes up more time.

That being said sewing hasn’t ceased altogether. I’ll be back at my Monday class, which I enjoy immensely. Not just seeing but socially too. Abi is a great teacher and keeps me right! I’ll probably finish the coat mum started for me but never managed to finish. Hopefully I’ll make a good job and I’ll get some wear out of before the weather gets warmer (here’s wishing!).

I don’t think I’ll be putting myself in for #sewmystyle this year but I’ll try #makenine2018. I’m trying to narrow things down so I can actually finish challenges! So I’m just doing #makenine this year and trying to think carefully at which patterns I’m going for as I’m definitely aiming to step onto different garments but I do love a dress! Really want to add a couple of tops, jackets, skirts to the handmade wardrobe, maybe even jeans before the year is out.

So in order to do this, I’m going to carefully sieve through my pattern collection and see what I’ve got and try and make use of the fabrics I’ve got (boy there’s a lot!) and that can some make space in my sewing room. Don’t worry I’ll put my selection into another blog and Instagram it!

Having the journal last year was enjoyable but I overspent in time on it. This year is going to be basic and more to the point. It will still have the illustrations and the doodles but I’ll be looking at what worked for me and what didn’t.

Another thing that I want to start using is my fabric cards. I’d just like to see what I’ve used and what I’ve got as a record (perhaps it’s double the work as I’ve got the Cora app but having a swatch of fabric is slightly different than just a photo).

Not sure if I’ve missed anything in my sewing plans for 2018, but I’m sure you guys will keep me right!

I hope you all have a full on sewing and Fun filled 2018!

Till next time x

An Open letter to Vogue Patterns

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When I first laid my eyes on Vogue #1353 I fell in love. Yes, it was love at first sight.  I’m still in love with the actual shape of the garment on the pack but for how long?  The reason behind this question is because whilst putting the front and side bodice pieces together my sewing teacher, Abi and I found a massive flaw in the pattern. annoyan

 

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HUGE GAP!

 

 

It’s definitely (the flaw!) in the F5 (16-18-20-22-24) edition, I’m not sure if you have come across the same problem in the smaller size pattern.

When you put the notches to match on the front and side pieces there is a HUGE frickin gap.  For sure there is is no way that you can stretch the front bodice piece with the dart in to match the side bodice.  BUT as soon as you take the dart out, it magically fits (yes I have a magic wand –  It’s Abi!).

I have to shorten the bodice pieces as my back is shorter that the standard.  But that shouldn’t affect the darts, notches and all, should it?

But then looking at the line drawing it does have a dart but the haven’t given enough of the front bodice to include that!!

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If ANYONE else has come across this fault, please let me know!

I’m pretty annoyed at VOGUE patterns right now.

  1. Vogue patterns are bloody expensive, so you expect no flaws AT ALL.
  2. Now I’ve removed the dart, there are tiny holes where the thread went through the fabric – my lovely woodland fabric!
  3. From what Abi has seen, the dart isn’t really needed as you have pleats on the front bodice anyway.
  4. You carefully take the time to put a dart in, making sure its pinpoint sharp, then realising after you need to take it out because it’s NOT required.   But if the dart is required and it’s on the line drawings then surely you should remember to get enough allowance for that so it that when you come to sew the front piece and side you don’t have a gap! ??!!

I’m hoping I get some correspondence back from McCalls/Vogue.  I sent a message via the contact form on their website.  I’ll update you all when I get an update myself.

Just so peeved right now. Can you imagine?!!  I bet some of you have been there!

NOW I’m going to take a deep breath and try to relax because I go near the pieces (need to go and get interfacing first, anyway).

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On that note: The pattern says for “sew in” but both myself and Abi thinks this might be too stiff, so might opt for the “iron on” – What do you guys think?

URGHHHHH!

Emma