Saturday, 22 April 2017


Soooo, as I am sat blogging, I will share with you another of my 2016 makes (4 months late).

This is the dressing gown I made by hubby, Phil, for Christmas:

Phil is the warmest person I know - he is always boiling hot and is my own personal radiator, and all he does in summer is moan that he is too warm.  I stole his, what I thought was, lightweight dressing gown one day and realised how very warm that was too, no wonder he moaned so much, so an idea was born - I would make him a summer-weight dressing gown from lightweight cotton.

I knew straight away that  wanted it to be a Hugh Heffner smoking jacket style dressing gown, so the hunt was on for appropriate fabric, and I found this perfect polycotton from Minerva - navy with blue spots and plain burgundy for the bands.

I used a pattern from the last series' Sewing Bee Book, tracing it off the pattern sheets which was a pain in the butt, because they are stacked burda-style on the pattern sheets.  I got there in the end and construction from then on was fairly straight forward with not too many seams to deal with.  I even included in-seam pockets.  My main problem was keeping Phil out of my sewing room while I was trying to sew.  I put a sign on the door and everything, and he still kept coming into the room.

I was going to top stitch the bands in place and did try this but didn't do too fantastic a job, so gave up, unpicked and then handstitched them in place.

Phil was not too impressed with his present (rude!) and said it was too Hugh Heffner - duh!  that is what I was going for.  However, since it has started to get a little warmer I think he is happy to have a lighter, cooler, dressing gown to wear to solve him being too warm or having to walk around the house in the nuddy pants.

Hopefully I will be back soon with some more makes.

In the meantime . . . 

Happy Crafting!


Wednesday, 12 April 2017

The Pink Lady

Soooo, sorry for the delay AGAIN!  Life just seems to take over and prevent me from blogging at the moment.

I've managed to find a spare half hour while I am mother-sitting today.  She's going through a spot of treatment at the moment and needs someone with her 24 hours, so today is my shift.  She's fine - just needs someone with her just in case.  She's sat doing her sudokus so I thought I would take  the opportunity to do some blogging.  I'm also going to crack on with some studying and even brought my knitting so she can constructively criticise to her hearts content.  Nothing makes my mother feel better than when she can constructively criticise something her children are doing.

I've made a couple of bits since I last blogged - some Pippa dresses, which are now in my shop, half a pair of PJs, a quick dress for myself, which I've not taken pictures of yet, and this dress for my baby sister:

unfortunately, on a hanger does not present the
dress at its best

It was her 29th birthday at the end of March and she will love me for telling everyone that, and she wanted a dress making to replace the one I made her a few years ago, which you can see here.  She says that she has loved this dress, and she has worn it a few times, but it was getting a bit worn and she wanted a new one.  Not a problem I said, I would make her a replacement for her birthday.  She told me she wanted something similar but with an off the shoulder look, so I search my pattern box and found Simplicity 1418, which was perfect.  I have previously used this pattern to make a skirt, which I blogged about here, but haven't yet used it to make a dress.  It is a princess seamed bodice with a pleated skirt - a perfect me conbination really.  We went for View B (I think)

Gilly sent me her measurements and I was glad to see that she was perfect sized for one size.  I had thought I might need to do an FBA, but non.  I was also a little happy to see that although she is much skinnier than me, we are essentially the same shape :-)

When she told me she wanted a pink dress I nearly spat out my drink - Gilly is or was a bit of a tomboy and not usually one to 'do' pink.  She also said that she wanted quite a sturdy fabric.  Her previous dress had been chambray so I looked at that, but couldn't find anything I liked.  I also looked at some solid colour drill, but then found a lovely John Kaldor cotton sateen on the Minerva website which now seems to be sold out.  She wanted it lining so I also ordered some lining.  

When it came to cutting out the fabric, I was so confused.  The pattern, to me, runs sideways, which meant that I would either have to cut the pieces on the crossgrain, which I really didn't want to do, or have the pattern the wrong way up, which was causing my brain to hurt.  I kept going back to it and looking at it again, and just couldn't decided what to do.  I consulted the husband.  I consulted the step-mother (non-wicked).  I took three days to decide, but eventually decided that I would have to make a decision, so decided to cut on grain and live with the sideways pattern.  I am sure that the pattern is as intended by the designed, but having the florals run sideways along the fabric, rather than up and down was just to much for my brain to cope with.  Anyway, now that the dress is made up, it doesn't look bad actually.  I just won't look too closely at it.

Construction-wise, the dress was very simple to put together, and if it hadn't been fully lined, it would have been a really quick make - perhaps a full day at most.  As it was though, it was fully lined and that lining was a slippy devil, so it took a bit longer.  I also hand stitched the lining down, and I am the slowest handstitcher in the world, so that increased the time.  I did compromise and machine stitch the hem.  Normally, I do handstitch blind hems, but I simply ran out of time on this one, as my sister wanted the dress for an event she was going to, and didn't she look beeee-autiful?!

The only advice I would really give when making up this dress would be to make sure you mark up the dots for adding the sleeves.  I don't think I could have figured out how to attach these without the markings.  Otherwise, it was a straightforward make, but maybe I have just made enough princess seamed dresses now to be able to do them in my sleep?  Maybe I need a new challenge.  Before then though, I need to finish my PJs and I have a princess seamed dress please.  I also need to take photos of the dress I have already made.

In the meantime . . .

Happy Crafting!


I could really hate my sister
for being so pretty at times

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