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Showing posts from 2016

Cosy Cable socks

Hey everyone, popping back after a long absence!  Hopefully I will find more time to post in the New Year!

Unfortunately I have not had much time for sewing, but I have been knitting.

I finally finished the socks that I posted about here. I started these back in April and I've only just finished the second one!

The socks are knitted using  a simple cable pattern that came free with Simply Knitting. The socks are designed by Jane Burns, and are knitted on four needles.

The cuff features a twisted rib and then the main sock is knitted with a cable at the front and the back. The heel is reinforced with slip stitch.

Unfortunately the pattern had some errors so thank god for Ravelry. Luckily another knitter had made these, and had made notes on how to work these correctly as the pattern had me scratching my head.

I did not use the yarn specified in the pattern, Instead I used a funky variegated 4ply from my stash..

The pattern also specified 3mm needles, however if I was to knit these a…

The Sylvie Dress...a perfect summer dress

Let me introduce you to my latest make - the Sylvie Dress by Christine Haynes. It was a lovely day on Saturday so I persuaded my daughter to take some pictures.  As you can see I am squinting terribly, and Oscar was keen to get in on the action as usual!

There are two different versions of this pattern that you can make. Both versions of the dress feature an unlined sleeveless bodice with three small darts under the bust and a wide lined waistband. I will point out that the waistband looks much thinner on the pattern illustration that it actually is. The waistband is lined and interfaced which gives this section some structure.

The back bodice has darts and the neckline and armholes are finished with bias binding. View A has a gathered dirndl skirt which is basically a rectangle of fabric. The dirndl skirt also has large patch pockets.  View B has piping and a fitted pencil skirt. The illustration makes this look more like an an A-line skirt than the photos on Christine Haynes's w…

New Look 6483.... in less than a week

My last post was a round up of my favourite simple sewing patterns in my stash. I've finished my first make, New Look 6483! And it look me less than a week! I spent a bit of time adjusting the pattern last weekend, and then it probably took two evenings of sewing plus a little bit of of  extra time hand sewing. Not bad for me!

The pattern came free with Sew Magazine this month. It comes with 5 different options. I chose view E with the wider neckline as I felt this was the most flattering.  The suggested fabrics are ginghams, laundered cottons (which is just cotton that has been washed to remove the stiffness caused by the sizing), silks, silk types, rayons etc. So fabric with a bit of drape is required.

The top does not have a zip and is fasten with a simple thread loop and button.  There is an all in one facing for the neck and armholes. The pattern is rated "easy" and claims to take one hour to sew! (not including cutting out time etc).

However, my major rookie mistak…

Six simple sewing patterns

If you read my last blog post, you'll know that I discussed making simple everyday items rather than making more complicated, time-consuming patterns.
Whilst I love sewing, I work full time and I'm also a mum.  I have found it really difficult recently to find the time to sew and then that it is taking me several weeks to finish something that I've started sewing, which can be a bit frustrating at times.
Also although I love making and wearing dresses, I  want to have more me-made items that I can wear on a daily basis.  It would be nice to be able to sew something fairly quickly and not get bogged down by it. 
I thought it  would be a good idea to check my pattern stash to see what simple patterns I already own. I've chosen patterns I've not sewn with before.
Here are my top six picks from my pattern stash....
New Look 6096

This is a "Design Your Look" pattern from New Look, with knee or maxi length versions, 2 different bodice options and sleeve variati…

An Emery Dress... at last

At last I have got some photos to share with you of my latest make my Emery dress.  It's been a long time coming, it seemed to take forever to make this dress and then of course I had to get some half decent photos. Always an impossible task!
Overall I'm pretty pleased with my new dress although the bodice is a bit on the snug side. Despite making a muslin, I seem to have got this wrong. 
I made a size 8 based on my measurements (bust 36, waist 28, hips 38), but I think I need to size up next time by doing a full bust adjustment. Also the bust darts are a little too long and need shortening. 
I made the neck darts wider to deal with the gaping back neckline. The only other change I made to the pattern was that I shortened the waist slightly and I think I got this right. 
I'm really impressed with this pattern, the instructions were very good and if you got stuck, the sew-along on Christine Haynes' website is really thorough. I think an ambitious beginner could tackle …

Setting in sleeves. How do you do it?

To be honest I have always had difficulty setting in sleeves. Often I catch the garment in the seam, and I always seem to have some little puckers in the sleeve head no matter how hard I try. The result is much frustration and lots of unpicking!
The method I've always used, involves sewing two rows of long ease stitching and pulling up to fit, then trying to smooth out the gathers to fit, and then pinning and machining sleeve side up.
Having failed to set the sleeve in successfully on my latest make, the Emery dress despite the following the excellent instructions on Christine Haynes' sewalong, I thought I'd see if there were any other methods that might work better for me.
Anyway after a quick Internet search. I found this post on Craftsy for a method that involves pinning only! I won't go into too much detail as the blog post on Craftsy is really thorough, but I thought it was worth sharing. 
The key thing to learn from this is that strategic pinning can replace usi…

The Daisy New Look 6262

So I made New Look 6262 again! I finished this a few weeks ago and if you read my blog you will know that I am now stitching the Emery Dress but I thought I should blog this as I had some photos!

I have made New Look 6262 four times now and I am pretty pleased overall with the fit of this dress. It's a simple dress with bust and waist darts and a gathered skirt, so very wardrobe friendly. I have made changes to the fit of the bodice previously, if you want to read my post here.

It can be made with or without sleeves.This is the second time I have made it with the full sleeves and to be honest there is something not quite right about them.  They don't seem to sit quite right and they pull the bodice slightly I think.  I am sure that I read somewhere  that bodices for sleeve dresses and for sleeved dresses are shaped differently so maybe that is what is wrong as this pattern uses the same pattern piece both both styles of dresses.  Anyone know more about this?

 Anyway it works b…

Have you heard of The Foldline?

Have you heard of The Foldline?

The Fold Line is a fairly new site that was launched for sewers. I was recommended to me by Poppy in stitches after reading my post about organising my knitting stash on Ravelry, I'd asked if there was something similiar out there for sewers.

I use Pattern Review occasionally but it seems a bit dated and clunky to use sometimes.  Anyway so recently I signed up for The Fold Line and these are my initial thoughts.

It's much more modern looking. You can search through their database of patterns, and like Ravelry, you can add patterns to your own library.  The forum seems good and it's a good place for arranging meet ups with like-minded local stitchers. You can browse and follow members, designers and bloggers, and add friends to  your network.  There is a blog too if you want to follow that. There are also sewing resources that look quite useful, for example links to all your favourite Indie pattern designers sew-alongs. There is even some fun…