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Monday, 11 July 2016

Another crack at the Negroni Shirt


Introducing my well overdue second shirt project for Jay. I stuck with the same pattern as before, the Colette Negroni because I didn't get the first one quite right last time so wanted to redeem myself. I nearly achieved that pledge (until I put the button holes in... more on that later).


I kept the sizing and the adjustments the same as last time, see my post here for a more in-depth look at what I did.

The fabric is a cotton poplin that I ordered from Acorn Fabrics. The weave is nice and tight resulting in a silky smooth fabric. It is the only fabric I have ordered from there so far, but they have a lovely selection of shirtings and I would definitely try them again.


I am happy with the shirt overall and I managed to put the sleeve plackets in the right place this time. Last time I somehow managed to put them further towards the front of the sleeve and it always bugs me whenever he wears his linen one. The fact that he wears his sleeves rolled up 99% of the time is my only saving grace.


To line the collar, the inner cuffs, and the inside of the back yoke, I used up some red linen scraps. This should soften up with repeated washing, making the insides of the shirt nice to wear.


I wanted to put the yoke on a diagonal grain but Jay disliked the idea so I kept it straight and tried to pattern match the lines as much as possible. It was difficult because of the box pleat across the back, that threw everything off. I couldn't match everything up across all the seams but did a pretty good job with the pockets!


I mentioned a niggle with the button holes. See above. I sat down to put them in and didn't even think about the direction I was sewing them in. Why did I put them in horizontally? Why? I don't know. It even gave hubby a moments confusion when he was buttoning them up. To which my reply was 'Hmmmm...' But you don't unpick buttonholes unless you have a day to sacrifice and a LOT of patience. I have neither, so they are staying put.


Navy buttons sourced by Jay off Ebay. He loves buying buttons! Just tell him a quantity, a colour and a size and he will happily browse-click-buy! Sewn on with a red thread to colour match the checks.

I do have a couple of other shirt patterns that I would like to try so next time I will give a different pattern a try. It is still a thumbs up for the Negroni though!

Tuesday, 14 June 2016

Kwik Sew K4113 Skort


Pattern: Kwik Sew K4113 (View D: Skort)
Fabric used: Cotton Lycra Jersey
Size Made: XS


I spotted this great little pattern whilst looking for some gym clothes for my eldest daughter. A lot of the children's patterns have her in the largest size or she is slightly out of the range altogether. This caught my eye because the smallest size seemed to match her measurements and there are 4 more sizes to go, meaning it will last, and as a bonus.... it will fit me too!


I didn't have to adjust the length for her. The waistband is nice and deep and the elastic is concealed inside the top of the band making it soft and comfortable to wear.


There are 2 different styles for the skort. This one has a straighter skirt and side panels so you can contrast the fabrics. I really like the block of solid in between the front and back pieces. The other view is a faux wrap style which reminds me of a swim skirt.


Not forgetting of course, these great little shorts hidden underneath. Totally stitched into the waistband, perfect for active kids. I would also make up this pattern and forgo the skirt. The shorts on their own would be very useful.


My full review of this pattern can be found on Pattern Review here.

Tuesday, 7 June 2016

Contrast Yoke Sundress: New Look 6296


Pattern: New Look 6296
Size Made: 10
Fabric: 3 different solids of single jersey knit



We went swimming last week and it suddenly occurred to me that she didn't have a dress that was easy to get on and off over her costume. Little sister has loads to choose from so I realized I needed to crack on with a few knit sundresses for her.

I could have flicked through my Ottobre Design magazines as they are the place to go for knits but I had this pattern in my collection and was eager to give it a try.

Boo's measurements actually put her in the size 12 but looking at the amount of ease I decided to go down to a 10. If I am being picky, it looks a little too big around her chest. But I am not sure if I will get around to retracing all those pieces in a smaller size. I think that by the end of summer I will still have a dress that fits her well so I can live with that.


The construction was a breeze. With a serger and a twin needle anything is possible!
I love the detail of the back, it is sporty and casual, yet wonderfully girly from the front.


I chose three different solid colours from the remains of my knit fabrics. I had enough scraps left over from previous projects to cut out all the pieces and so went for a mix and match approach. I nearly went for a different fabric for the skirt, but let me tell you I am so glad I chose the lime green. I could spot her a mile off through the kids on the playground and so always knew where she was. Lol!


Monday, 6 June 2016

An Oliver and S Summer Wardrobe


I have been stocking up on a few summer clothes for Boo over the last few weeks. Upon assessing her wardrobe what she really needs are skirts, play dresses, shorts and tee's.

I love the playful feeling of the Swingset skirt from Oliver and S. So I made three! All with stash fabric because that is becoming an obsession. I don't have a massive amount compared to some of you, but I bought lengths suitable for a child's garment and with this one growing fast, I need to use them quick!

I genuinely adore this fabric. I bought it from the Ottobre Design Etsy shop after seeing it in one of their magazines. I remember it arrived super quick, much faster than estimated and it is beautiful quality. Heavier than a normal poplin but still with some movement to it. The colours are vibrant and it will match with a number of different tee's.


I think I bought this fabric for a sundress but it lends itself quite well to the fullness of the Swingset. It was a large border print so I isolated the pattern and it fit well on the size 10 skirt.

Last one is a bright and cheery yellow. Not a colour we have a lot of I will admit but it means that I will spot her in a crowded playground over the summer holidays!


This is the perfect play skirt, I may get around to making up some shorts to go underneath
from the Playtime Leggings pattern. They have always worked really well in the past as a modest cover up underneath skirts.


Here we a have a hit and a miss. The Butterfly Blouse and the Sketchbook Shorts. The blouse is only a miss in terms of size. Heartbreakingly, it is too small for her. But the shorts are fantastic!


Made up from self dyed linen, they are light and breezy and a bit longer in length than her others, making them look a bit smarter.


I made the size 12 with my fingers crossed and thankfully they fit her! I may be the last Oliver and S fan to have made the Sketchbook shorts, and I hang my head in shame. Aren't they wonderful?! My justification is that I have girls so never thought I would need this pattern. However, there have been enough blog posts and posted photographs to convince me that this pattern is a must for girls too.


The linen will never survive a car journey, but at least the wrinkles drop out fairly quickly afterwards. I shall make up some more of these while I can still get her in the pattern.

Lastly, the Butterfly Blouse. So so beautiful but even in a size 12, it is a squeeze for her to get into. It is snug across her chest, so this one is going away for her little sister.


I love the pattern, the peplum across the front is adorable and the flutter sleeves complete the pretty girly look. I actually prefer the capped sleeve option but this is what she wanted and I was happy to make up the pattern regardless.

The finishes on the armholes are what I love most about the construction. The instructions are brilliant as usual and you end up with a really well made top. I will look forward to seeing this again on L when her time comes!









Sunday, 5 June 2016

Kids Clothes Week May 2016

kid's clothes week


I joined in with KCW this season after missing it for a while. Sometimes you just know you are never going to get it together in time to take part, this time I did a bit of forward planning, chose my patterns, and rejoiced in the timing of the challenge being the week before the kids broke up!


I chose an old favourite with the Reversible Bucket Hat from the book 'Little Things to Sew' and something different with this Simplicity Cardigan.


The pattern is Simplicity 1025 a knit top and cardigan in one. The faux tshirt joins the side and shoulder seams of the cardi to create a 2-in-1 piece.
The raglan sleeves are shaped with a dart at the centre, giving the sleeve head a nice shape. The waterfall style of the cardigan opening makes it very feminine. My daughter loves it.


This orange knit was from my stash, I have used it before on a Lunchbox Tee and it sews up beautifully and has good drape. The white knit is a regular single jersey.


Overall, I am really impressed with the pattern. The length didn't need adjusting, the sleeves were also a great length and overall, the size 8.5 was the perfect fit for her. Did I mention this is a half size pattern? I have couple of them now because the measurements seem to match my daughter better than the regular size guides.


Give a big cheer for projects that use up some of your stash scraps! All of these hats were made from my scrap pile. Pieces left over from other projects that I couldn't bear to throw away.

I paired a poplin with a heavier weight fabric for all of them. The blue and pink on the right above are denim. The blue denim specifically is from my husbands old jeans which he kindly donated to my sewing room. The denim is soft, well washed and worn, making it just beautiful to look at. It is my favourite one.

The beige hat is a stretch twill and the underside of the blue flowery hat is a herringbone chambray.


I made the girls 2 hats each, as most of their sunhats get lost at school and so it is important to have a spare.

Monday, 16 May 2016

A Baby Gift


Patterns: The Puerperium Cardigan by Kelly Brooker and the Lullaby Pants by Oliver + S
Size Made: 0-3 months for the pants, the cardigan is one size (up to 10lbs)

Fabric: Robert Kaufman Herringbone Chambray and Makower Flo's Friends Koala print
Yarn: King Cole Bamboo Cotton DK

One of my best friends from school recently had a baby boy. He arrived a tad early and so I wasn't quite prepared for sewing up his presents yet! Luckily I stumbled upon this lovely cardigan pattern on Ravelry which caters for very small babies, up to around 10lbs.

I really liked the design and the feature of the buttons going off to the side so I grabbed some soft yarn and got going. It is a seamless, top down knit and comes together so easily. I was finished in around 5 days. It was a pleasure to knit and the yarn is super soft.

As you can see, I chose the short sleeved version seeing as we are in Spring over here.


I paired the cardigan with a couple of pants from the Oliver and S Lullaby Layette pattern. I haven't sewn up any of the pieces from the set before, but knew that it was the perfect pattern to have on hand for newborn gifts.

The construction of the pants is so clever and thoughtful. There is no side seam to irritate little skin and there seems to be plenty of room to accommodate nappies.



I got to use my baby boy buttons too! It always pays to have a little stock of baby themed trims - just incase!



It might be a while before he fits in the pants, he is still quite little. I have been promised a photo when he does though so am looking forward to seeing that!


Thursday, 12 May 2016

The Moneta Dress (my new favourite thing)


Pattern: The Moneta Dress by Colette Patterns
Size made: L
Fabric: star print interlock and floral tissue knit (both from Abakhan Fabrics)


I have discovered my perfect everyday dress in the form of the Colette Moneta. I decided on a whim to sew one up after sitting on the pattern for a few months. Now I wish I had tried it sooner, it is perfect!

I didn't make any alterations, just a straight size L (12-14) and I tried the short and 3/4 length sleeves. The weather is warming up so the short/sleeveless versions will come in very handy but I love the 3/4 sleeves. They make it just that bit more wearable for me.


The pattern is aimed at beginners and so it is quite straightforward. There are 3 different versions (sleeveless, short sleeved and 3/4 sleeves) and the option to add a collar with facing. Go to the Colette website and you will find a bonus free download with five additional collar variations.


Perfect for the school run as it requires little thought to throw on or with a fancy pair of heels would look dressier for a lunch out.

My short sleeved version is made from a very lightweight knit and I had to interface my seam allowances for fear of the twin needle chewing holes in my fabric. It has gathered beautifully as a result of being very drapey. I used elastic to gather it as specified but ended up trimming it off altogether with my serger knife as it left a ridge around the waist seam. The blue version, I tried gathering as you would a woven with a long basting stitch and it worked just as well, but has a little less stretch than the short sleeved version.



I skipped the pockets in the blue version but kept them in for the grey one. Who doesn't love pockets? I will put them in on my next ones just so I have somewhere to stash my phone!



All in all, a great dress pattern. If you have it but haven't got around to sewing it up yet, grab it down from your shelf, you won't regret it!