The Mother’s Day Hug Cardie – a Seamwork Oslo Cardigan

Thanks to the current coronavirus lockdown in the UK I can’t hug my mum right now. This last Sunday was Mother’s Day over here, and I was feeling really sad about the prospect of missing that hug.

Then I realised that the fabric I had earmarked for a wearable toile of the Seamwork Oslo Cardigan would be absolutely my Mum’s style. And what better substitute for a warm hug than a warm, snuggly cardigan? It’s like wearing a hug!

Seamwork Oslo cardigan in textured sweater knit

You’ll have to put up with some poorly lit pics of me modelling said cardigan, as obviously there are real difficulties taking pics of my Mum in it. She’s roundabout the same size as me so it looks about the same on her. But it suits her better, I reckon! Continue reading “The Mother’s Day Hug Cardie – a Seamwork Oslo Cardigan”

The Ride-Sallie-Ride Dress – a monochrome Sallie Maxi Dress

Oh wow, what a week….

When I wrote my blog post last week I was in a state of extreme agitation and worry about my mum, who has a chronic lung condition and seemed to be in a state of denial over how serious the COVID-19 threat was. I tried to distract myself by writing a post that didn’t acknowledge the situation in any way, and I hope it didn’t seem too frivolous to be posting sewing projects at this time.

The thing is, I think we need some distraction and things to lift our spirits right now (and for the forseeable future). So I’m going to continue blogging my sewing projects. There probably won’t be many party dresses because I don’t think there are going to be many parties this year. There might be more in the way of practical sewing–I can’t buy toilet roll so who knows, I might have to make washable wipes out of fabric scraps!

I’m less emotionally shaken now that I know my parents are self-isolating reasonably strictly, although I’m somewhat apprehensive about having everyone (including my teacher partner Andy, who also has a lung condition) at home ALL THE TIME. For who knows how long?

I think I’ll be going out for lots of runs and get myself fit again. Also sorting out my garden. Silver linings…

Closet Case Sallie Maxi Dress in Lady McElroy crepe jersey

So without further ado, here’s a share of a Minerva post I wrote some time ago, about my joint favourite dress of last summer: Continue reading “The Ride-Sallie-Ride Dress – a monochrome Sallie Maxi Dress”

The Wedding Guest Dress: Charm Patterns Rita dress hack

I’d been meaning to make the Charm Patterns Rita Blouse ever since it first came out, and finally I got around to it. Only as a dress!

I’ve got to admit, it had been years since I’d been to a wedding. Maybe it’s my age: most of my friends got their weddings out of the way in their early thirties (if they got married at all, that is), and there’s been a bit of a dry spell since then. So imagine my delight when Andy and I were invited to a friend’s daughter’s wedding last September, and I got to put my fancy-pants sewing skills to the test!

Charm Patterns Rita dress hack

Continue reading “The Wedding Guest Dress: Charm Patterns Rita dress hack”

The Sweetheart Dress: sewing the Ottobre Bubu Dungaree dress

So, this is me sharing a make from last May, and the photographs are from back then too. Lauren definitely doesn’t fit this one anymore! It’s the Bubu Dungaree Dress from Ottobre 1/2019. I meant to share this last week, but I completely forgot! Never mind. Here it is:

Ottobre Bubu Dress in upcycled chambray shirt

Doesn’t she look a little cutie? I love dungaree dresses, which I’m sure won’t come as a surprise to anyone who’s been following this blog a while. I’ve made three Cleo dungaree dresses for myself, so it was about time I made something similar for my baby girl. Continue reading “The Sweetheart Dress: sewing the Ottobre Bubu Dungaree dress”

The Silver Stripe Boat Neck Top

Today I’m sharing a make from last March, which is late but at least I can give you an idea of how much I’ve been wearing it. Silver linings for a silver-ish top 🙂 This is the Boat Neck Top variation of the Knit Sweetheart Top from my favourite sewing book, Gertie Sews Vintage Casual (affiliate link) by Gretchen Hirsch.

Boatneck Gertie top in silver stripe jersey

This was a bit of an experiment for me as it’s the first time I’ve ever even worn, let alone sewed, a boat neck top. I don’t know why I’ve avoided them. Perhaps it was just down to not being sure which colours looked good close to my face, so I’ve tended to go for lower cut necklines in the past. Continue reading “The Silver Stripe Boat Neck Top”

The Quilted Pencil Skirt – sewing Seamwork Margo

I made the Seamwork Margo skirt again (previous version in navy scuba crepe here), this time in a rather lovely quilted jersey. I actually made it last March, but at least after a year I can give a true picture of how useful it’s been in my wardrobe.

Seamwork Margo skirt in black quilted ponte

The answer is: sadly, not as useful as I thought it would be, although depending on the weather that could change this next year. Let me elaborate… Continue reading “The Quilted Pencil Skirt – sewing Seamwork Margo”

The Leopard print Nursing Bra – sewing Jalie 3131

So, I finally went and made a bra. And actually, I made this one back in September 2018 when Lauren was a tiny baby. I’ll catch up on all the unblogged stuff eventually! This is Jalie 3131 which contains both regular and nursing versions of a cami and simple bra (more of a bralette really). I made the nursing version of the bra, and here’s me wearing it back in May of last year when I still had need for breastfeeding access.

Jalie 3131 Nursing Bra

I’ve just realised that I’m blogging a leopard print bra on Valentine’s Day, which really wasn’t planned! Honestly, I wouldn’t class this particular bra as sexy, and I’d honestly forgotten it was Valentine’s Day. I am planning a lovely meal for Andy this evening so all romance is not lost, but we’re not big Valentine’s people. It’s a bit of a Hallmark holiday in my mind, and I don’t like being told I need to buy tacky crap covered in hearts to let someone know how much I love them. Continue reading “The Leopard print Nursing Bra – sewing Jalie 3131”

The Whatever-the-Weather Cardigan – a Jalie Drop Pocket Cardigan for Daisy

I made one of my TNT patterns, the Jalie Drop Pocket Cardigan for Daisy. And this post actually went live on the Minerva blog back in July, but hey, I’m sharing it here now. Better late than never!

Jalie Drop Pocket Cardigan in Cloud print French Terry

Ah, the Jalie Drop Pocket Cardigan. My love for this pattern knows no bounds! Seriously, I wear one of my two versions (blogged here and here) nearly every day, even if that’s just around the house in the evening. And quite often that’s not the case: I’ll be wearing it as part of my outfit for the day.

Why do I love it so much? Continue reading “The Whatever-the-Weather Cardigan – a Jalie Drop Pocket Cardigan for Daisy”

The Velvet Citrus Leggings

Oh yes, I made leggings! And in stretch velvet! Read on to find out the complicated route my Velvet Citrus Leggings took from a maternity version pattern test to the final (non-maternity) version pictured below…

Velvet Citrus Leggings

I’ve never been particularly drawn to pattern testing. Perhaps it’s my background in self-publishing, but I’d only ever expect friends or superfans to want to read and comment on my unfinished writing for nothing. I’ve always paid to get proper edits and proofreads. Seriously, this is valuable work and people deserve remuneration. Continue reading “The Velvet Citrus Leggings”

The Bits and Bobs Pocket Top – Ottobre

I thought it was about time I shared one of my favourite kids’ makes from last year: the Longline Loop-back Sweater from Ottobre Magazine.

French Terry Ottobre Design Boys Sweatshirt with pocket

This make hit the Minerva blog back in August, but in case you missed it then I thought I’d better link it here. Also, I like to have a record of everything I’ve made on my own blog. The full write up is over there, but I’ve got some more thoughts to add here.

Gabriel loves this top and pleasingly he’s wearing it right now, with no prompting from me. In fact, I’d only just put it back in his drawer clean yesterday, so this is definitely an item of clothing in regular circulation. That’s definitely what you want with kids makes as they grow so fast, it seems a total waste to make something they only get to wear a few times before they grow out of it. Continue reading “The Bits and Bobs Pocket Top – Ottobre”

The Vintage Baby Beach Set – Butterick B3405

Here’s my review of making up Butterick B3405 baby dress and bloomers. Or what I can remember of the process, at any rate!

Butterick B3405 Vintage style baby dress and bloomers

Okay, time for a very belated blogging of a dress I sewed up for Lauren in the very early days after she came into the world. It was born of a desire to get back into sewing by making what should have been a quick and simple project, and one that was suitable for the insanely hot summer we were having in 2018. Continue reading “The Vintage Baby Beach Set – Butterick B3405”

The (unseasonal) Party Animal Jumpsuit: Closet Case Patterns animal print Sallie Jumpsuit

Yep, this is a very belated sharing of my very last make as part of the Minerva Blogger Network, and it’s the Closet Case Patterns Sallie Jumpsuit in a rather in-your-face animal print. Don’t say I didn’t warn you!

Sallie Jumpsuit

The post actually went up in August so I’m more than a little tardy in blogging it here, and it’s definitely not seasonally appropriate (unless you’re lucky enough to live in the Southern hemisphere), but hey, if I’m going to catch up with all the unblogged stuff I’ve got to start somewhere!

There are lots of sewing details on the Minerva post, so I’m going to skip recapping all that and just muse about jumpsuits in general. Continue reading “The (unseasonal) Party Animal Jumpsuit: Closet Case Patterns animal print Sallie Jumpsuit”

The Sewing Bee Zebra Swimsuit: making Butterick B6358

Just popping by to share my latest Minerva Blogger Network post, which is a super-cute zebra print swimsuit, using the now out of print Butterick B6358. You can find out all the nerdy sewing details here: https://www.minervacrafts.com/blogger-network/post/the-sewing-bee-zebra-swimsuit

Butterick B6358 zebra print swimsuit

This post is also my penultimate Minerva Blogger Network post (for the time being at any rate), as I’ve decided to step down for a while. Continue reading “The Sewing Bee Zebra Swimsuit: making Butterick B6358”

The Black Linen Shirt Dress – Vogue 8903

Hey up! Now that summer seems to finally have arrived in the UK, what better time to share my version of Vogue 8903: a classic shirt dress in black linen. This is my June Minerva Blogger Network make and you can find the full post with lots of nerdy sewing deets here: https://www.minervacrafts.com/blogger-network/post/the-black-linen-shirt-dress

Vogue 8903 shirt dress in black linen

Continue reading “The Black Linen Shirt Dress – Vogue 8903”

The Margo Scuba Skirt: making the Seamwork Margo skirt with scuba crepe

Hello peeps! I’m back with a make I completed back in January, a lovely version of the Seamwork Margo skirt using John Kaldor scuba crepe gifted to me by Minerva in return for a 500+ review with pictures over on their blog, which you can find here: https://www.minervacrafts.com/blog/projects/the-margo-scuba-skirt

Seamwork Margo skirt in navy John Kaldor scuba crepe

Yeah, I made this in January! However,  sometimes those Minerva Fabric Focus blogs can take a long time to make their way onto the blog. Even longer if you’ve been a bad blogger and taken ages to write the post up. In my defense, Daisy had heart surgery just after Christmas so my mind was somewhat preoccupied in the months after.

But what I really needed after the ordeal of Daisy’s surgery and post-operative hospital stay was an easy win. The Seamwork Margo skirt definitely fits the bill! Continue reading “The Margo Scuba Skirt: making the Seamwork Margo skirt with scuba crepe”

The Purple Not-a-Turtle Neck – Seamwork Neenah top hack

Hey peeps, I’ve found a few minutes for a drive-by blog post, so here goes! This is the Seamwork Neenah dress pattern which I hacked into a top. The real star is the John Kaldor Isabella Jersey which I received free from Minerva Crafts in return for writing the post on their blog, which you can find here: https://www.minervacrafts.com/blog/projects/the-purple-not-a-turtle-neck

Seamwork Neenah cowl top in John Kaldor Isabella wool jersey 1

Now, I absolutely love this top and wore it loads before the weather warmed up. Partly it’s that gorgeous colour, partly the Seamwork Neenah pattern, which I know by now works just right for this kind of snuggly, slightly looser but still narrow fitting garment (for other versions and hacks of the Seamwork Neenah, see here and here). But I think the real star is the fabric itself (affiliate link). It’s pretty much the holy grail of garment fabrics for me, as it has that soft drape from the 72% viscose content, the four way stretch and recovery from the hefty 8% elastane, and the snuggly warmth and general resilience from the 20% wool. I still have some decent size scraps from this and over a metre of the gunmetal grey I bought years ago and haven’t dared use yet, so there will definitely be more of this fabric appearing on the blog in the future… once I’ve figured out the perfect patterns for it 🙂

Seamwork Neenah cowl top in John Kaldor Isabella wool jersey #1

Random Musings

I’ve been feeling a little guilty about the fact that I only seem to blog my Minerva makes just lately, and don’t want this blog to come over as some kind of extended advertisement for them. Not that I don’t really appreciate Minerva for all the freebies and buy some fabric from them still in addition to that I receive free, I hasten to add.

But I have been making things that aren’t Minerva makes and with three kids to look after I just don’t find much time for blogging them. I have to blog the Minerva ones and have deadlines, so they always jump to the top of the queue. I’m thinking I might just have to do really short blog posts to clear the backlog of projects. That would make me feel a whole lot better about the situation.

And the fact remains: if it weren’t for my Minerva Blogger Network allowance I wouldn’t be able to sew much. Spare money is hard to come by in this house at the moment, so I really appreciate the chance to splash out on fabrics and patterns I wouldn’t otherwise be able to afford. I’ve been choosy about my projects, though, and am planning them to be things I really feel a need for in my wardrobe, or that the kids could do with (there are a few kids clothes projects in the pipeline, so watch this space for cuteness!).

I have been thinking about my big stash of old clothes and decent size scraps in the loft, though, and am hoping to get them all sorted through in the next couple of weeks so that I can start using them to make new garments (possibly for the kids as they use smaller pattern pieces) or failing that, something like washable cloth wipes. I’ll let you know how I get on with that one.

Right, I’d better get off as I have to wake a sleeping baby then take the boy to his swimming lesson. Cheerio!