A frock for cocktails & #EdinburghFrocktails

When a chance comes up to get all glammed up I will jump at it.  But then the overwhelming feelings that I’ve got to make what I’m wearing fit like a dream, it’s scary – REAL SCARY and It’s to be ready for Saturday the 2nd of September!

Speed isn’t my strongest point when it comes to making something.  I look at all the Instagram feeds and see what and how many creations are made in a day and some people creative sometimes 3 or 4 in a weekend, which again scares me.  The fact is, if I do rush things, then it looks rushed and not brilliantly finished.

So instead of me leaving the frock until the very last minute, I better start thinking pattern and fabric now.

Question, How glam are we talking about?  (cause I don’t want to be under or over).

This dress must be easy to make.  But it has to be wow (at least to me anyway).

Plus like Lesley of Sew_Sleep _Deprived, we also have a big fat zero of weddings to go to and feel the need to actually get dressed up.  I am lucky that we have a social life due to having no kids though.  And like Lesley, I am super jealous of the Dressmakers ball and the Sew Brum meet up, we really need to add a disco ball event for us Scottish Sewists!

So what am I thinking?

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I love to do something with a lace panel.  Maybe just the bodice and then the skirt and just flow.

So that’s the thought process at the moment, I’ll let you know how I get on with it later, perhaps leaving the big reveal until the actual #edinburghFrocktail date (yeah I know, I am a big tease)!

So if you’d like to come and join Lesley and the Scottish Sewists for a cocktail, please note your interest in the comments section on her blog post.

Cheers,

Emma

Disclaimer: All opinions are my own!

My Shopping List: Sewing Patterns

So I’m guessing you know what this is all about then!  The last month I’ve been adding up a range of patterns that I quite like to own.  And instead of having loads of tabs open on my laptop, I thought it would be quite cool to pop them into a blog post and share them with you (also I can close some tabs since I have a record of them, ha ha!). Who knows when I’ll get round to them, but they would be nice to have.

 

First up, is the newest pattern company that I’ve come across and that’s Sew Different. I’ve already mentioned the Everyday Chic Dress pattern in the blog post that I purchased at the #knitnstitchshow via Emma Garry but had my eyes on the cocoon jacket too.  I like the fact the go up past an UK size 18 to fit my oh so roomy hips in!

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Then we have another coat and that’s from Sew Over It –  The Chloe Coat.  Looking at my Instagram feed, there’s been a few good ones and I’m really inspired to do one. Also, the big plus is that if you buy the pattern you get an online class to keep you right (honestly I’m not on commission) so it’s ticking all the right boxes.  I really would like to make a coat, this might be the right one to start with!

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Another SOI pattern is the “Silk Cami“.  I love the simplicity of the top – and it looks like a winner in my book for summer tops or a little black number for a night out. It’s in PDF form to purchase but that won’t stop me now that I’ve figured out a low-cost printing place, which you can read all about here!

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Closet Case Patterns has been getting my attention of recent, with two of their patterns. One is the Ebony Dress which looks delightful in Scuba (one of these fabrics that I haven’t quite got round to playing with, yet!).  The high-waisted Ginger jeans are ticking my “oooh” box!  I’m tempted to but another coat? I really shouldn’t (The Clare Coat is amazeballs), but I think you know what’s going to happen, don’t you?!

 

 

Next, we have The Avid Seamstress with their Day Dress pattern.  Again I’ve been Instagram inspired … It’s getting as bad as Pinterest!!

 

Another pattern which I’ve been going back to is the Paola Top from Named Clothing.  I really like this staple wardrobe top.  And it looks like a quick make.

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Coco from TATB is another one I keep looking at.  One reason, in particular, is the Cowl neck – I’m in love with it and it looks splendid in the dress form.

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So I think (I’m sure I’ve left something out!!) that’s the list.  I won’t be getting them all at once because that would be silly and the bank manager would be taking my card off me!

Let me know if you have tried any of these patterns (I’m sure you have!) and tell me how you found them – it would be really nice to hear from you.

Happy pattern stashing!

Emma

Disclaimer: All opinions are my own and no I’m not on commission (ie I’m not being sponsored)!

Made it: 1920’s style!

So I was invited to a 1920’s murder mystery that took place last weekend.

I scoured the internet for some sort of 1920’s dress but then remembered I had a lovely lace dress that I bought from Monsoon so that was that sorted.

Then the necklace and feather boa came from WM Armstrong store which hosts a selection of great vintage wear. The pearl necklace,  I found at the Grassmarket Armstrongs and the Black Boa in the Clerk Street store.

Tempted to buy a fake cigarette and holder and long black gloves but I held off. The thought of more fancy dress never to be worn or used again was too much!

For the head-dress, I decided to make it. YES, you read right!

I found this tutorial, which kept me right for the basics – Head Dress Tutorial

From Remnant Kings, I bought some stretch sequin trim. Abby, my sewing teacher kindly gave me three peacock feathers to complete the look.

It was a pretty quick process and one I’m quite happy with. I stitched the feathers in with thread and a small piece of stretch sequin to stop the bottom of the feathers from scratching my forehead. I think it took my roughly half an hour to complete it and finish it, which a huge jump from any of my current makes!

*Disclaimer:

  • Please don’t use any photos without consent from myself- ta!
  • All opinions are my own!

Sewing: Project Deadlines 

How many of us try to set up a deadline and never actually finished the project on time? I’m one of these sewists that really find it difficult to get things done on time. To be honest, it’s maybe more than a month for certain projects (or even a year) to get finished and modelled.

This dress has be shamed so many times since all I need to do is the darn hem!

I’m scratching my head and really thinking if I will actually take part in the #sewmystyle challenge – one it’s sizing for most patterns (my hips are chunky and my back is short) and two, its timing. 

Yes, know you can adjust patterns but there is only so much give on the patterns themselves before you have to move darts, calculate where else it needs to be adjusted and then “lose” it. There is definitely a couple of patterns from #sewmystyle I’d love to try. Maybe not pressuring myself to a deadline might be a wise decision. So many things tend to go wrong when I rush and material is precious! 

My favourite Patterns from the #sewmystyle challenge. 

The Toaster Sweater

I’m definitely thinking with going to try and kick my “never worked with jersey” box if I do this one. 

These dresses just cry out at me! I love this style … yeah I will do this one. I personally like the back! 

 Dresses always get my appeal first – probably because I don’t have to think about separates until this blouse / such a lovely piece – yeah the dresses can wait on this one! 

So after purchasing the “Bennett Dress” – I now see another Megan Nielsen dress that gets my heart pulsing! 

I have the “Anna Dress” already, so I won’t have to get another – I love the look of this pattern – it’s screaming “make me, make me”!

So if I’m going to do any challenges, if may not be the whole thing unless miracles happen but st least I’ve tried some and hopefully can wear them too as well as maybe learn other sewing skills from them – who knows?!! 

Another deadline and it’s coming to unveiling it very soon –  is the little red dress. 

You bet right, I’ve not even started cutting the pattern out! Argh – what is wrong with me! Then again, I have been rather busy with other life adventures and usually exhausted before I get even near the sewing machine! Mmmm, lets see if I can do this in a week, which will be interesting, very interesting!

Sewing: Simplicity 4789

It’s week 4 at Fabric Focus’s Beginners Dressmaking class and I’ve not had to unpick a single thread – woo hooo!

 

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Simplicity’s 4789

 

Amazingly I’ve not had a tantrum with pockets (Simple Sew’s Sophia Skirt has the blame for that). It went a bit like this with the skirt hitting the floor and scaring my husband in the process. It went a bit like below!

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So moving on (quickly) (in fact, the speed of light quickly)… I’m seeing this cotton fabric is quite slippery whilst getting it on the sewing machine.  I’m still in love with it despite it trying to escape the sewing needle.

Darts are now in the front with the front part of the pockets attached.  I’m going to attempt to attach the back pockets on the back bodice/panel then tack the sides together.

Remember in my first project I said I wasn’t going to go full steam ahead of the rest of the class, well I’ve kept the pace – woo hooo (again)!

Also, I’ve learnt how to do tailor’s tacks, which I will be using from now in my sewing!

I’m still collecting fabric and patterns, that won’t stop (now that would be weird if I did) and in a few days time, I will release a post about my November Haul!  Plus there will be a post on the #SewScottish / #ScottishBloggersMeetup and also on my visit to Dovecot Gallery.  Plenty of reading for you to look forward too (plus lots of photos!!).

Only 2 more days until #SewScottish / #ScottishBloggersMeetup (at the time of this post-release) Woooooppppppeeee!

Over and oot!

Emma

Disclaimer: All images are my own and opinions are too, in no way are they sponsored!

Fabric Haul: November 2016

As you know I do like to keep topping up my fabrics for all of these projects I have in mind. But Boy, the list is now bonkers – I don’t really have a list on paper as most of the ideas are in my head!!

Most of you know I’m doing the #thelittlereddressproject by the lovely running with style’s Renata and finally I’ve got my fabric – woot-woot! To date the PDF still has to be printed, which I’m concerned about as time is tick, ticking, tocking away – should I opt for a pattern I already have? The answer to that one should be a yes, now the big question- WHICH ONE? I think it should be a nice easy number, something that’s straight forward but party bound.

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Next, we have some gorgeous cotton and it’s a John Lewis own brand. I instantly fell in love with it as it has lovely wildflowers on a dark green background. It was £14.99 per metre but it’s totally gorgeous and has a lovely feel to it.

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I also bought the rather Christmassy Nordic fabric at the same time as the green John Lewis fabric. It was reduced to £5 per metre, so couldn’t say no to the bargain. Plus I actually need it to back my homemade advent calendar. And on that note, I’m still looking into wadding as I don’t want polyester wadding. I got a metre of the Nordic fabric to back the advent calendar. Looking at the date, I better get this done and dusted. Might have some time this week to sew it up. Might. Otherwise, I’ll be sewing it for next year 😂😂😂

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Next up, is the fabric I bought from Susie D Designs Shop in Penicuik on her most recent open day. See post for more details about her shop! I have a soft touch for geometrics and this called my same. I bought 2.5 meters of it so it will be a dress! It’s an Art Gallery Fabric, 100% cotton and a lovely feel to it.

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Fabric focus has this gorgeous suede in both Khaki and tan colours.  I opted to go for the Khaki.  Got 2.5 metres of it.  More than enough for a simple shift or CLEO!

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Erm … I added something else and that was the trip that the Lovely #SewScottish Meetup and this was some more lovely suede polyester material.  At £9 a metre from Edinburgh Fabrics, it has a lovely texture.  I thinking another classic shift style dress , perhaps the Bennett Dress from Marilla Walker.  Edinburgh Fabrics has a good range of colour with the suede – it’s worth checking out. Also, I bought matching thread but now I’m thinking contrasting thread and with that i would have to ultra careful of stitching!

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BENNETT DRESS by MARILLA WALKER – Gorgeous in suede!

Not only fabric lies in this “Haul” but some niche little tools have been purchased also …

 

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Awing tool

 

 

Corner tool

Both purchased via amazon. And a bargain as under a fiver each. I picked up from a youtube video by Last Stitch

 

Some tailors chalk … I seem to lose mine quite quickly and no idea how!

This handy box should keep the chalk from getting bashed!

Patterns on my radar …

Yes there are always patterns on my radar, don’t  you know I have a list? Ok now you do and boy it is long.  It only seems to be getting longer 😂

And to add to the list is the cute “Cleo Pinafore & Dungaree Dress” by Tilly and the Buttons – isn’t it just adorable? I ❤️ it! I’m head over heels for the dungaree dress 😍!

With Black Friday looming Cleo was quickly purchased with a nice 25% off!

And then ALIX from By Hand London was also snapped up in PDF form!  SO WHEN THERES A NICE DISCOUNT – it’s just impossible for me to say no.  Impossible.

 

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ALIX from BY HAND LONDON – so in love with this dress.

 

And then there are all the Seam work patterns that I have in my library – eek, I just love seam work (I actually did a wee post about them a wee while ago and all about why I love them). The “Kennedy” and the “Mesa” are the top two favourites to try first from seam work. And I’ve just heard that you can now use your credits to buy Collette patterns- Eeeeek!   YES, YOU READ RIGHT!!

Seamwork’s Kennedy
Seamworks’ Mesa

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Adding to my stash of patterns and these were from the swap at the #SEWSCOTTISH meetup –

With these patterns came two bits of fabric – I may have to ask who put them in to the haul and also if they remember what it is … I have a mind like a sieve!

 

Then there’s this month’s gorgeous pattern from simply sewing magazine – well I think the Audrey dress is stunning and at one point I will try and make it.

So not just fabric, notions, patterns and tools have been added to the haul but also books 📚! Yes, I am also a sucker for a good sewing book.

The most recent one is “The better bag maker” by Nicole Mallalieu. One of my many projects is to make a bag, a weekender bag specifically and this book shows you how with handy techniques, tips and tricks. It’s got loads of lovely bag to make as well as a weekender.

I spotted it via Instagram and I’d say it’s a good find judging by all the hashtag #thebetterbagmaker attached photos!

Beautiful makes from various instagramers.

Next we have

Couldn’t put this one down …
Love the look of these garments!

I was just in Dobbies and spotted these two and somehow they managed to be brought home with me … mind you total bargains!


Talking of bargains, the buttons below were too. I bought them from a stall at the North Berwick Quilters Exhibition. I will post more on the actual exhibition very soon on the blog.  The buttons were £1 plus a book, which was also £1 too.  I’m hoping this holds a couple of good shortcuts for garments.

A little less of a bargain were these buttons bought from Kathy’s Knits on Broughton Street – there’s a nice selection to choose from and are vintage finds! The thicker metal ones are ideal for a jacket!

Remember I said I have a mind like a sieve.  Let me reinstate that dramatically – I received this “Simple Shift Dress” Sew Over Pattern yonks ago with a magazine subscription, only now I realise it has actual fabric in the box – total revelation and I realise I’m quite ditsy at times!

So for December, I’ve decided no fabric, no books, no nothing unless it’s interfacing or lining for projects.  We will see how long I last … Day 3 and still nothing bought!

That’s all for now,

Emma

Disclaimer: All opinions are my own and I was not sponsored in any way, shape or form. All copyrighted pictures are my own.

 

Sewing: Sequin Time with Simple Sew’s – #017 Sophia (Update 3 of 4)

When I decided to cut out the sequin fabric with my rotary blade I had no idea how tough it was going to be, but that didn’t stop me from doing just that! Actually was that wise?

I did it.  But I’m sure my rotary blades will now a) need a sharpen with tin foil or b) need a new blade.  Oh well – a lesson learnt there.

Talking of rotary blades I may be purchasing a new one for ease of use. Spotted a fiskars blade that looks a little less fiddly in Biggar Stitches!


So after cutting out the front and back of the top I then pinned it all together and  tried it on.  I knew that I had to put darts in because I made up a toile earlier, so I did just that and then had to get my mum to straighten then up whilst I wore it!

Now I just wished I removed the sequins along the seams to ease the job for my machine (I’m sure it felt pain when stitching the sequins – I did).


Sewing the sequins was nerve racking (my first time doing sequins).  My Brother did the job, the top does need a press as the darts haven’t got the finesse finish I wanted.


I’m glad I added the lining – less jaggy!

Time is running out and rather get into a state like below, I’ve opted to wear a “bought dress” – fear not the dress will be completed for Christmas and worn then!

Trying the homemade garment on was a near death experience as the pins scratched my arm – ok, maybe not near death but still, beady sore!

The backup garment: Katya Kimono Wrap Dress

At this point, the top needs hemmed and finished off.  The skirt still needs the waistband on (which itself needs interfacing applied!! (Note to self: you need to buy blinkin’ interfacing!!)), zip applied, possibly now lined and then hemmed.

The final update should contain a picture of me wearing it! Watch this space!

Happy Sewing!

Some places I went to online for advice:

http://www.burdastyle.com/blog/sequin-savvy

My Sewing Room

My sewing room needs to become functional and comfortable to use.  It needs organising, so I can pull fabric and pattern out, yet put them back in their place when I’m done for the day.  This “putting thing back” needs to become my ethos all over the house, but that’s another post for another time! And before Mr C quickly jumps in, I’ll change the subject!).

I’ve pulled a lot of ideas rather from Pinterest so “had to” create a mood board so I could scale down some ideas and think what I want from my SR.

Two tables would be useful, preferably the same as I join the together to cut out patterns and fabric. One would sit under the skylight as that would be ideal for using the naturally light, providing it’s not too bright to take photographs of my finish projects.

Before I get ahead of myself – the three main points that need to go into the sewing room are: atlier

shelving and lots of it!

a workspace to sew creations

and a seat!

 

The Skålberg/Sporren chair (IKEA)
Billy Shelving from (IKEA)
Linnmon Desk (IKEA)

I don’t want to spend a fortune so as you can see Ikea furniture it is and it’s the basic range as everything adds up very quickly!

 
The notice board will be handy for what project I’m currently working on and what the next few are.  It should keep me focused. It will also a provide a place for all these business cards and fliers that I seem to collect!

I started this post 5 months ago but there have been some changes already and I can now share them!

The room has finally been painted and now shelving has been installed and is very quickly being filled up!

Trying to organise with billy shelving
The desk is much bigger now and is now under the skylight for ultimate natural light!

My sewing space is still going through changes so don’t think these are final photos.  I will post the final touches and a much tidier space very soon!

Do you have a sewing room? Do you have any tips on how to organise it? Have I missed anything, I’m sure I have!?  Please feel free to comment below and give tips!

Emma

Canoodling with Chiffon

Seeing all these occasion dresses at work makes me wanna twirl in something elaborate, and I particularly like a bit of silk chiffon.

It’s lovely and floaty, but I’ve never worked with such delicate fabric.  The thought of working with such gives me a slight buzz, I’m not quite such if it’s excitement or anxiety!

This post stems from looking at Pinterest and becoming inspired to make such a dress. After spotting a dress, I decided to make a Chiffon Board.

 

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Above, is the dress that started the Chiffon trouble!

 

Above are a few of the Pins on my board.

You could say I’m a hoarder of projects and i’ll admit that, I think  I know my Husband will say that on my behalf also!  What can I say, I just can’t help myself.

My sewing room is in a mess so before I start on any projects it has to be organised and finished.  Yes, still getting refurbed – it’s taking a lot longer than planned.

Oh, big news!  I have a second job and it’s in a fabric shop … my life struggle with fabric, patterns and projects is only going to get worse!

For the time being I’ll be looking into patterns for the chiffon dress – if you know of any please comment in below and any tips would be appreciated!

Emma

Disclaimer: All Opinions are my own!