Thursday, 4 December 2014

Why Sewing Bloggers Are The Best

Hiya everyone!  I swear I never intend for my posts to be this far apart.  I always have the best of intentions then nothing happens.  I'm not even going to promise to post more.

But any way, on to more exciting chat.  A couple of weeks ago I got to meet up with my fellow Scottish Sewing Bloggers at The Cloth Shop in Edinburgh (which also happens to be our store in Edinburgh, I might have made the suggestion of meeting there, my marketing hat was firmly on!).  As always we had a great wee afternoon thanks to Franca's amazing organising and suggestions of Mimi's Bakehouse for tea and cake.  And oh my goodness, I think that everytime I go through for work I'll have to go and get cake from there.  THAT. GOOD.

Kerry, Helen, Franca, Nessa, Elaine, Amy & Me
All of us in Mimi's, photo from Elaine's blog.
L-R: (I suggest you click through to all these lovely ladies' blogs, you won't be disappointed!)

One thing I was mentioning to the girls whilst there was my new work blogging vs personal blogging dilemma.  We're working on developing the RK blog which means I'm spending a lot of time researching other sewing blogs, platforms and coming up with new and exciting content.  A lot of what I'd like to post in work (tutorial and dress fabric wise) is of similar content to what I'd like to post here and vice versa.  I don't want to recycle posts and bore any one but I also don't want to choose one over the other, so please bear with me while I try and work out some kind of balance!

So what did I buy while I was there?  I got some supplies to make my NYE dress.  We're going on holiday for Christmas/NY this year so I wanted something special.  I'm doing floor length black gown using this crepe and some corded lace.  I've literally just finished the dress and cannot wait to wear it.  It was one of those moments when I tried it on and knew it was exactly what I wanted it to be.
I've got a few other things to show you, so I'm off to schedule posts so it seems like I'm still keeping on top of this blogging thing!  What is everyone else planning for some festive sewing?

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Thursday, 6 November 2014

What's happening?!

Ok so it's been a crazy bust few weeks!  I feel like I've not stopped and today's been my first day of 'normality' back in my office.  But what an exciting day it was.  Oh yes, sewing friends, it was a spreadsheet day but that means one thing, new fabrics on!
Wanna see a few of my faves?

 I'm super excited about a few of those and I have grand sewing plans wizzing around my head.

Not only am I dreaming about fabric, I'm dreaming about some of the new patterns circling the blogosphere right now.  
 I instantly bought, downloaded and stuck together Grainline's Linden Sweater (I've found something to use the rest of my scuba on!), Katy & Laney's Geometry top and the beaut that is the Ginger Jeans pattern by Closet Case Files.  I'm working on sourcing some denim to make them up and I think I might have found the perfect one (need to get on to some suppliers about it).

Finally, and I know it's a week late, I got to collaborate with new Glasgow video sharing company Veeemotion and make some no-sew Halloween costumes for their site.  If you want a good laugh at me and some no-sew inspiration, check them out below:
No-Sew Tutu:
No-Sew Superhero Cape:

It's safe to say that not much sewing has been going on, just a lot of planning!  We're decorating my room just now so I'm all over the place but I did get a few things finished at the beginning of the week and I'm about to finish a jacket.  And I picked up some random fabric buys whilst we were at Hobbycrafts & Crafts for Christmas at the SECC with RK last week.

At least all these happenings have been keeping me out of trouble! What's everyone else been up to?

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Sunday, 19 October 2014

Perfect Pattern Parcel #6 - True Bias Hudson Pants

It's that time again guys, Perfect Pattern Parcel Launch tour for parcel #6!  And this time it's a good one!  I love being a part of the inspiration tours for this wonderful idea that benefits such an amazing cause.  Although now well established, let me remind you what it's all about:
'Here at Perfect Pattern Parcel, we believe in supporting independent pattern designers. It’s our opinion that indie patterns are just, well, better than big box patterns, and we’re pretty sure our customers think so too. So, we allow customers to show their support in naming their own price for each Parcel.  We also encourage customers to allocate part of their Parcel price to the charity in order to help classrooms in need. Pattern Parcel donates all profits after expenses from Parcel sales to the charity as well. Together we've raised over $12,000 for classrooms in need!'
Parcel #6 includes: 
Pattern Parcel #6: Choose your own price and support DonorsChoose. Win/win

Syrah Skirt by Lauren Dahl (exclusive release!)
Bronte Top by Jennifer Lauren
Julia Cardigan by Mouse House Creations
Hudson Pant by True Bias
Zsalya Dress by Kate and Rose
BONUS PATTERN: Odette Dress by Bluegingerdoll

Bonus Pattern:
Choose a price of $32 or greater for Parcel #6 and you will automatically also be sent the Bonus Pattern! That's only $5 a pattern. The Bonus Pattern for this Parcel is the Odette Dress by Bluegingerdoll. Vintage inspired silhouette is had two flattering necklines and a gorgeous skirt. The Odette Dress pattern goes from a size 4 through a 24! 
Pattern Parcel #6: Choose your own price and support DonorsChoose. Win/win

 With such amazing patterns to choose from I was definetly spoiled for choice!  But I finally decided upon the Hudson Pants by True Bias.

I missed out on the fun of these when they first went viral because I had jusst bought the Anima Pant pattern by Papercut Patterns and couldn't justify a second (similar) tracksuit bottom pattern.  It's so difficult to know what to do when two designers release something that totally appeals and you have that difficult decision on which one to buy.  So I'm glad I got to try them out for this make.

I cut the largest size based on my measurements which fit really well around the butt but I found for me that the came up a little short-waisted (I'm pretty long in the body so this is more to do with my awkward shape than pattern drafting!).  I always struggle with trousers because of this so for the next time I make these I know to add a bit of length through the waist.

These sewed up a treat and took very little time from cutting to completion.  Drafted well and easy to follow instructions definetly helped!

The fabric I used was from Remnant Kings (eventually I'll get round to referring to it as my work as casually as I can) and can be shopped here.  We also have it in white and navy and each is as amazing as the other.  This is from a realitvely new supplier we met whilst in Paris as PV (did I not mention that trip?!) who we also got a lot of other lovely new things from.  When you're over on be sure to check out the new in section for more of these gorgeous fabrics!  I think I used about 1.5m of it so have a little left over from my cut for a top or something.

What I like about the pairing of this pattern with this fabric is that it loses the casual-ness of the tracksuit bottom look and makes it totally sports luxe.  I feel I could almost get away with wearing these formally.

So there's only one last thing to say and that's head on over to Perfect Pattern Parcel and get your hands on this amazing bundle!
Pattern Parcel #6: Choose your own price and support DonorsChoose. Win/win
The Facts
Pattern: Hudson Pants by True Bias
Size Cut: 18
Fabric: Houndstooth Scuba from Remnant Kings
Notions: elastic
Alterations: none
Notes: make rise higher next time!
Wearability: 9/10

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Sunday, 5 October 2014

Lucky (Papercut Patterns) Clover

It's very rare that I'll see something (especially online) and buy it there and then.  I always want to go away and think about it, make sure it's really what I want to spend my money on.  Sometimes there's an exception to this rule, in the case it was the Papercut Patterns Clover Dress.  I seen it on Instagram, headed straight to the Papercut site and ordered my paper copy and waited patiently for it to arrive.
I cut it out straight away and quickly realised that I didn't have anything suitable in my stash to make it up with.  Then this fabric arrived in at my work and I thought yeah that's the one.  Then when I went to visit Argyle Street store to pick some things up and didn't leave with that fabric, but rather the one I made it up in.
It's a viscose crepe in a dark brown with such a good drape, I knew it'd be perfect for my clover dress.  I paired it with some black corded lace for the yoke detailing.
I kind of rushed making this dress as I wanted to wear it to Paris for my trip to Premiere Vision (keep your eyes on this week for all the new fabrics that are coming!  I've got a busy week uploading them all!).  It took me about 4 hours from cutting to completion on the Saturday before my trip.  It was super easy to put together.  I treated it as two halves then sewed the fronts together, I couldn't even tell you if that's the way the instructions want you to do it as the piecing is clear enough from the pattern pieces.
Upon wearing it, I discovered that the lace wasn't the best for the yoke detail as every time I moved so did it and it left me flashing half my bra! Which isn't a massive deal just a but frustrating.
 All In though, I'm really happy with this dress.  So much so, I made a second version!
This time I used a light poly crepe I picked up in Mandors at the blogger meet-up last Saturday.  I had a great afternoon trying not to be Hazel from whatever fabric shop but as expected I totally failed and ended up talking about work!  And instead of lace this time, I used some leftover poly for the yoke.
I really like this crepe and the colours used in the print.  Almost tempted to go back and get some more for something else!

The Facts
Pattern: Papercut Patterns Clover Dress
Size Cut: XL
Fabric: Brown crepe from Remnant Kings and Floral print crepe from Mandors
Notions: Used bias tape to hem necklines on both versions.
 Alterations: None whatsoever
Notes: again nothing to note for this dress, other than better consideration on the yoke.
Wearability: 8/10

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Friday, 26 September 2014

Following on front the Success of my last Biker Jacket - Kwik Sew 3764

You'll remember back in the spring I made this jacket (aka my favourite ever make).  Well I've only gone and made a winter version!
For the last few years, I've practically lived in my DKNY biker jacket (that I picked up for a bargain in Winners whilst in Canada) but the amount of wear it's had is beginning to show and I needed a new black biker in my life.  And voila!

There's not much else to say about this jacket compared with my last version.  Again I top-stitched all the seams for a couture finish.  I find those little touches really change up my makes from home-dressmaker to high end fashion-y.  This time I used a heavy-weight felted type wool that I bought ages ago in Mandors on special for £5/m.  The dearest part of this make was the zip!

I lined the jacket in left-overs from this dress.  And clearly chose to wear them on the same day for maximum impact!  Ha!  I've always been an advocate of me-mades should be as interesting on the inside as they are on the outside.  You're not bound by anything so why not put a treat for yourself on the inside, whether that be a print or a better quality plain.

The only one real change I made on this jacket was to put the pockets in differently.  This meant making them as more of a welt pocket.  The wool was too bulky so I used my lining which I probably wouldn't do again, I'd use a more structured plain.  It did make for a much neater insertion though.

This was actually the 3rd version of this jacket I've made.  After my mint one, my mum asked me if I could make her a navy version and that became version 2.  Here are the two of us on Stonehaven beach before we got soaked by a rogue wave!  Mum's is made from a looser weave wool than mine which made it a little more awkward to work with, but I am pleased with the finished product.

The Facts
Pattern: Kwik Sew 3764
Size Cut: XL, taken in about 5 inches on the underarm seams
Fabric: Felted Wool from Mandors and print georgette lining from Remnant Kings
Notions: 3 zips, hammer-in studs
Alterations: Just the underarm seam take in
Notes: want to try a different fabric next time, maybe the new jersey's coming in to RK soon ;)
Wearability: 10/10

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