Saturday, 29 March 2014

A trio of skirts do Leeds

This past weekend I had a little trip up to Leeds to see some very lovely friends of mine. We hadn't seen each other in months and it was lovely to have a couple of days together and catch up.  We headed to a vintage fair in Leeds corn exchange which was a lot of fun and Elizabeth found a great cape:

We pretty much just took ridiculous photos this weekend.

We had dinner in this amazing art deco restaurant which I completely failed to get any photos of so you just have make do with this one of us with cocktails (you also get a little glimpse of another lady skater that I made but haven't blogged yet).

However this is not just a post about my weekend.  For each of the girls' birthdays I made them a skirt and because they are lovely and perfectly prepared to deal with me demanding that they be models, we had a little photo shoot.  Luckily we had this great spot for photos right outside our hotel.

How cute are these two?

Alice's skirt was Simplicity 1717 made from a navy wool (from the much missed Atlantic fabrics in Brixton) with a Liberty trim.  I made piping to go between the yoke and the skirt and bias binding to trim the pockets. 

 This skirt was really straight forward to make and I definitely need to make one for me soon!

Elizabeth's skirt was a nautical Collette meringue made from a red wool picked up at Simply fabrics in Brixton.  The facings and pockets were made from scraps from Alice's skirt.  The pockets are not part of the pattern so I drafted some myself and added some super cute anchor buttons that I had in my stash.

Saucy Elizabeth!

 Thanks so much to the girls for modelling for me.  Especially as it felt like it was about minus 5 degrees when we were taking these.  The coats and scarves and gloves all went on again immediately after.

I did not want to be left out of the photo shoot so I made myself a skirt in preparation for our weekend.  Mine was New Look 6873 which I snapped up for £2! in the Atlantic fabrics closing down sale.  The wool was also purchased on this same trip.  You can't see very well in the photos but it's a grey wool with white and pink flecks.
 I have my hands in pockets!!!  I realised this is the first thing I have ever made with pockets.  I forget how useful pockets are as so few of my clothes have them but having them in this skirt was so great as I have been full of the cold for what feels like forever and I could have all my remedies and tissues easily available.

  I'm in love, I think this may be one of my favourite makes.  There will definitely be more of these in my life, I think it will be a perfect summer skirt, however I may add a few cm to the length if I'm going to wear it without tights.

Friday, 21 March 2014

Blogger swap

So we're a little bit late to this party as everyone else posted about their swap at the end of February, gosh we're almost a month behind, where did the month go???  Back in November I took part in the super fun blogger swap organised by Miche and Martyna, so when they asked who was up for another go, I jumped at it. My partner was Jenny from the experimental crafter, she writes a crafting blog with some really cute stuff.  I recommend checking out her latest post about making a yarn pendant, I love it! However, we were frowned upon by the postal gods and the first parcel Jenny sent me went missing in the post (hence the lateness of this post). Jenny very kindly offered to send me a second package which luckily did arrive safely. Here's what she sent me:

One beautifully wrapped parcel. So much better than my poor wrapping effort. 

Such cute ribbons for crafting or accessorizing some of my me-made clothes.

I love this sewn illustration that Jenny has made. It may have to become a patch on an item of clothing at some point. 

I don't know what this is (apart from a piece of fabric) but I LOVE the pattern. I'll have to think of something fabulous to use it for. 

Jenny sent me one of her own illustrations. It's so cute and I'll have to find a spot for it in my sewing room. 

This last item came from Austria. The dancing people are so sweet. I have no idea how I would use this so any ideas are really welcome, please comment. 

Check out the swaps that these lovely ladies did.  I loved seeing their posts and discovering some new blogs.
Spoolish and Mrs Fox's Finery 
Buttons and birdcages and (my previous, awesome blog swap partner) Alligatortoe 
Frou frou by lovenicky and Thrift your heart out
Dash of Rose and BeingZhenya
Extra extravagant and That cold September night

Contact Miche or Martyna if you want to take part in the next swap. It's a really fun thing to do.

Wednesday, 19 March 2014

Iceland and Simplicity 5424

So in some ways this post is a story about a failure on my part to follow my new year's sewlutions, with resulting poor results!  I have been planning on sewing up my Simplicity 5424 for ages and I had this fabulous wool to make it in.  Then I realised that I was going to Iceland for four days and that a heavy wool pinafore dress would be the perfect thing to wear while I was away.  Also I thought my outfit photos would be epic and beautiful and I could totally show off my new dress.  I was wrong, this is what all the photos of me wearing my dress in Iceland look like:

And yes, I know I look like a bear!  It maybe should have occurred to me that Iceland was going to be cold before planning to take dress photos!  (Also, I am standing on an actual frozen lake in this photo!!!)

However just because Iceland itself was beautiful, here are some more photos (*warning this post is photo heavy*):

 An actual geyser exploding behind me!

 There were a lot of puffins in Iceland, i got involved.

 Pushing apart the tectonic plates of Europe and America!

 Frozen Gulfoss waterfall!

 Beautiful view

 Hi Steven


Ok so back to the dress.  I rushed to finish this so did not try it on during sewing and did not realise that the centre front panels are not sitting correctly and the hem is seriously wavy.  I think this project is going to have to meet my seam ripper again!  However as spring has apparently arrived in London, this may be postponed until I feel the need of warmth again.

I like the concept of this dress but the reality will have to wait until I've made the necessary alterations.  However the length modification I made was very necessary, I would not want this dress to be any shorter.  Apart from that, it fits perfectly and I think it will be a dress I will make again. 

Despite making this in a fabric with very little drape I think it will hang pretty well once I've adjusted it.  I really want one in denim, great for this layering look.

Ok lesson learnt: however much I want a new dress for holiday, the mistakes I will make when rushing are not worth it and will make me cross.  Silly Alexa!

Introducing Rosie and a plantain

So official, I am the kiss of death to all forms of technology.  I have already documented that my sewing machine has been out of action for a while.  Well no sooner did I reclaim my sewing machine than promptly my internet died, swiftly followed by my camera!  So I now have quite a few posts backed up so you may be hearing from me a little more than usual!

I meant to post this ages ago but time has completely slipped away from me.  I am pleased to introduce you to Rosie my new dressmakers dummy.

My lovely mother gave her to me for Christmas and I'm so excited to have her in my life.  I forsee fitting becoming a lot easier (I just need to remember to try things on her a different stages).  It seems really unoriginal to call her Rosie as she is covered in roses so its not hard to see where the inspiration came from but I think it suits her.

This is my first (there will be others) plaintain t-shirt from pattern company deer and doe.  I started this when the pattern first came out and it started life as the long sleeved version with elbow patches.  However the elbow patches became victims of my broken sewing machine and the sleeves were totally mangled and salvageable so this became a short sleeve t-shirt.  I love it, I wear it all the time and it was so easy to knock up (if your sewing machine isn't broken) and extra bonus the pattern is free!!!  Definitely I will make more of these, everything worked so well and it has spurred me on to start the Aubepine dress which has been in my stash for a while now.