Tuesday, 31 December 2013

A little bit of lace, a moth-y refashion!

I have had this lovely angora dress in my wardrobe for years.  However a couple of years ago I lived in a house with a serious moth problem.  I managed to get rid of the moths when I moved out but I was left with some very upsetting holes in my beautiful dress which made it more or less unwearable :(

However, in a ruthless wardrobe cull earlier in the year I decided this dress either had to be refashioned or go into the recycling (luckily I still desperately wanted to keep more or less as it was or it could have become one of the many pairs of cosy mittens I have made so far this year). I started by darning the moth holes but some of them were really big and even if you are better at darning than I am, those big darned patches are never going to look that attractive so I needed something else to make this dress fabulous again.

I found 3m of off-white, stretch lace trim in my local fabric shop for 60p!  I couldn't believe it, this was exactly what I needed.  Along with some chunky vintage buttons I had found in a charity shop for 50p, I had all I needed to make my dress a thing of beauty again.

There are a few holes that are not actually covered by the lace, particularly in the back but I took care over the darning and I hope they're not too obvious.  Can you spot them?

I hand stitched all the lace so it was a bit of a labour of love this refashion but I have worn it out a number of times now and always get lots of compliments on it.  I love it and to be honest it is much more me now, I don't often wear plain, simple clothes (although there are those who argue that I should) and the trim makes this dress into something that is much more my style while still leaving me with a dress that is smart and elegant (or at least I think so), not bad for £1.10!

Happy new year everyone!  I hope everyone has the new year festivities (or not) planned for this evening and that 2014 is a wonderful year for you all.

Wednesday, 25 December 2013

Merry Christmas

I hope everyone has a lovely few days with family, friends, lots of food and of course sewing related presents!

Wednesday, 18 December 2013

A wonderful French present

I'm lucky, I have a very lovely French lady in my life who I look on as a second mother.  She is my mothers best friend and is brilliant at knitting and sewing and gives me lots of dressing, sewing and knitting tips (even when they are not necessarily asked for).  She has been telling me for a while that I should wear more empire line dresses and now this arrived in the post:

Isn't the packaging lovely.  Although I like being able to get pdf patterns instantly, I love the beauty and romance of the paper patterns and their packaging.

Look it arrived from France by snail mail.  I'm really excited to try this out but I want to do it the justice that it deserves and I'm a little swamped by Christmas sewing at the moment so it may have to wait for the New Year.

Merci Maman Odile!

More haste, less speed

The sewing blogging world has gone silent or is full of posts about how we're all in a mad panic to get everything finished in time. I definitely fall into the later category. Did anyone watch the The Great British Sewing Bee Christmas Special (those who haven't watched it should definitely check it out) with joy but also a little bit of sadness that there is no way I will have a chance to even attempt any of the lovely things they were demonstrating between now and Christmas. Maybe for Christmas 2014!

Being under serious time pressure is making me do silly things! Look at this:

This is the second seeing machine needle I've broken in a week! The first one, in fairness was not my fault but this one was definitely a case of too much haste. I'd left a pin in what I was sewing and the needle didn't like it. Oops! 

Hope your present buying/making is going a bit more successfully. 

Tuesday, 10 December 2013

The problem with christmas shopping

Ok so I'm sure most sewists/sewers/stitchers have this same problem but I've got a serious problem at the moment.  I went out to buy fabric for some Christmas presents and when I got back I had this:

The two on the left are the materials I bought for presents and the FOUR(!!!) on the right are for my stash! Clearly I haven't quite grasped the 'presents are for other people' concept. This is not just me is it? Do the rest of you buy self presents when Christmas shopping too?

Saturday, 7 December 2013

What would I Iike to be sewing? Simplicity 5424

Last time my Dad came to visit, he brought me this wonderful herringbone tweed:

Its hard to see from the photo but its a brown and cream tweed with some little flecks of autumnal colours running through it.  My Dad appears to live in a fabric tardis, it's this old family house and generations of the family have been buying fabric for things and when my Dad turns something up in a drawer, he donates it to me.  I'm definitely not complaining, especially when the donation in question is this lovely tweed.

The Simplicity 5424 dress has been on my to make list for ages and I really need some more warm, winter appropriate clothes.  So this is what my lovely tweed is destined for (I know tweed is not a conventional choice for a dress but I'm hoping I can get away with it as its not a very heavy tweed).

I have a stash of 1970s patterns which were given to me by a friend of my mums who used to make lots of her clothes in the 70s and was roughly my size. She clearly had a similar style to me as well because I love almost all of them, how lucky am I?  I used one to make my parasols in the park dress in the summer.  Definitely I think some more will appear on here. 

I do have one question though.  Were people in the 70s really short or was it just appropriate to have A LOT of your legs on show?  I measured this twice and it seemed like it might be a fairly short  but decent dress on me but having made 1970s dresses before I have added 7cm to the pattern.  This made my skirt pieces look really long but better that than a dress I can't wear later.

All my pieces are now cut out and good to go but sadly they are probably going to stay like this for weeks as Christmas is coming up scarily fast and I have a ton of Christmas stitching to do.  I'm sewing like a total obsessive and I can't blog about any of it yet as that would be a massive spoiler.  Watch out for the gift posts following Christmas!

Talking of Christmas presents, has everyone seen the AMAZING giveaway on Tilly's blog.  How wonderful would it be to win this?  Go and get entering. 

I'm off to go ice skating now, stuff the Christmas presents.  Happy pre-Christmas celebrating people!