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!


My Sewing Room

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!

Loom there's a Floor! Just a couple of pieces ... Ohhh more fabric...And more fabric!Even got the overlocker out of it box 📦 (finally!!)<<<<
ks for popping by!

Happy Sewing xx

Sewing Plans: My #MakeNine2018 Choices


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)

Cleo by TATB

2.  McCalls Top 7360

McCalls 7360

3.  Seamwork’s Mesa

Seamwork’s Mesa Dress

4. Penny Dress By Colette

The Penny Dress by Colette

5. Toaster – Sew House 7

The Toaster by Sew House Seven

6. McCalls 7536 Dress

McCall’s 7536

7.  Colette’s Moneta

Colette’s Moneta

8.  The Washi Dress – Made by Rae

The Washi Dress – Made by Rae

9. The Scout Tee by Grainline Studio

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!

My #MakeNine2018 in my #SewingBuJo


Thanks for visiting!



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

Sew Shop Local: Rejects, Kirkcaldy

Kirkaldy has fond memories for me as I used to study at Adam Smith College back in 2008 and completed my Higher Diploma in Interior Architecture there.

Rejects was a go-to place for the velcro we needed for the back of our display boards at the end of year exhibit of works but I had never explored the fabric section or knew of it.

So when it came to meet the lovely Carol, who I’d been chatting too via Instagram, it was a perfect date to explore the fabric department and have some fun with Carol.

We met in the cafe first off for a much-needed coffee and cake and a good old chin wag. We then skidadeld up to the fabric department, where I was wow’ed.  I had to hold on for dear life as I wasn’t expecting this awesomeness!

Are you ready?  Here come the photos!


Crafty things.


Rolls and Rolls …


and more rolls of gorgeous fabrics 
Check out all these gadgets!
Need I say it?
Boom! More rolls ..
Plenty of craft fabrics too.


So there you have it. A good insider of Rejects.  I saw lots of beautiful fabrics and in case you are wondering if I did buy any fabric, then yes I did!


Here’s a map and the address…. now go go go!

Rejects, 123 St Clair St, Kirkcaldy KY1 2BS


Sew Shop Local: Glasgow Part One

So I’ve been putting this visit off for a while now. Many factors have kept me from making it through but finally just went and thought “what the heck, just do it”. I had to come through to Glasgow anyway as I needed to get my passport renewed – “kill two birds with one stone” comes to mind but not literary!

Once I had done the interview bit for the passport, I had 4 hours to fill. It’s a hard life!

I started off at Mandors as I can park in Cambridge car park which is a fantastic location for Mandors and the shopping streets of Sauchiehall, Buchanan, and Argyle but put on a good pair of walking shoes!

Mandors is huge! Yes, HUGE!! Why on earth have I not been here before now? Where have I been for the last five years since I started collecting fabric – yes you read right! I seem to buy more fabric than I can keep up sewing … the thought of putting myself on a fabric ban just doesn’t work. Most of the fabric I’ve bought, I know what I’ll be doing with project/ pattern wise.

Oppps, went off the rail there, think I’m just excited to tell you how I got on!

When you walk into Mandors it’s well laid out and there are different departments that are clearly signed.

I went straight up to the dressmaking fabric department and started looking at the poplin. I wanted to match up a red to go with the red in the lipstick fabric. The poplin is going to used for the facings. I got some black poplin too but I think I’m going to for the red and be daring to myself!

Next was a cord. Think it’s baby cord. But it’s lovely and flowery. Possibly a Cleo or a simple shift dress.


I really want a black skirt to go with the lipstick top, so added some black twill – Seamworks’ Brooklyn is the pattern for this project!


The creme de la creme is this stunning liberty piece.


Oh, I got a meter of woven black interfacing too for various projects.

I had a look round the departments – haberdashery and curtains. Lots to choose from too! I ordered some samples of curtain fabric as I really would like to make our new living room curtains. It’s going to be a tall order but I have a lovely friend who has offered to help me and keep me right! I bought some fabric to make some cushions for our new suite (putting this one off until we get the puppy and get it housetrained!!).

The customer service was brilliant from start to finish! High five to Shona for helping me and giving directions to other stores 🙂 And I didn’t get lost!  Glasgow strikes fear in me as I get a wee bit disorientated but thanks now to google maps I didn’t this time!

map (1)
Mandors – 134 Renfrew St, Glasgow Metropolitan Area G3 6ST


If you need some lunch, I recommend The Project cafe (it’s right next door to Mandors) for a cuppa and spot of lunch or a lite bite (cake!!). I had both.  Here’s what I had for lunch.


Next up is Remnant Kings, Argyle Street but I’ll put that in another post (Shop Sew Local: Glasgow, Part 2)😉

Keep on Sewing!

Edinburgh Frocktails update

Can’t say it any better – sign up via the facebook event page!

Sew sleep deprived

So plans for Edinburgh Frocktails have been moving at pace.

We found a venue

We lost a venue

We found a better venue! Hurrah forAkvaa scandi bar in Tollcross for saving my bacon. Their menu looks lovely and they’ve given us a private room upstairs so plenty of room to mingle.

Now the big news – raffle prizes!

As some of you will know my co-host Emma Ciarrocca, lost her mother to cancer 2 months ago. She spent the last 10 days in a Marie Curie hospice and received truly excellent care. So we agreed we’d like to hold a raffle in aid of Marie Curie to give something back. It costs £500 a day for these hospices to give that kind of care.

So I bashed away at the keyboard and contacted some lovely suppliers and had a brilliant response for our little gathering. So drum roll…

View original post 175 more words

VLOG: Yes I released a vlog!

It’s been a while since I first talked about doing a vlog and then a few things like life took over and then the vlog took a back burner!


But now I think I’m on top of things and I hope this will be the first of many vlogs that I share with you.  Looking back on the vlog, I have lots to learn as there are a few erms and shaky camera bits but that will take time (hopefully not too much!).  There’s so much to learn and I didn’t want to keep putting it off just because it ain’t perfect!

giphy (2)

If you haven’t already, please view it, like it – even comment on it (I will respond/reply!).

The link to the Video is: https://youtu.be/GnQHl_DcRD4

Many thanks for continuing to read my blogs,

Happy sewing!


Sew Shop Local: St Columba’s Hospice

Down Leith Walk, there lies a little haberdashery, not your typical find either as it’s not set in a traditional fabric shop or department store. In fact, it lies in a charity shop and it’s full of bargains.

I’ve been meaning to explore this shop for ages. Today was the day. I had the day off from work and it looked good weather wise to pop into town from mine to tick this little shop off my list! I also treated myself to some gelato 🍧 and coconut toast (both at different times!). 

To get into town, I got a dayticket and hopped on the bus. Door to door it took about an hour as I live out of town. 

The haberdashery is really well stocked with buttons and lots of patterns. There’s some fabric on offer too! 

I was interested to see if they had any nice patterns and buttons. One of the patterns had a pair of scissors ✂️ inside it. They have lots of buttons and I mean lots! 

I got all this for £3. I could of went bonkers but I didn’t. I’d be tempted to go back soon and have a longer look (very dangerous)!