Dress · Jacket · Simple Sew · Wedding

Simple Sew Amelia Tea Dress & Notch Collar Jacket

When I read that Simple Sew had released the Amelia Tea Dress pattern, it reminded me with all that happened since the wedding,  that I hadn’t blogged about the Amelia dress I made to wear to my son’s wedding , the Amelia dress was a free pattern with Love Sewing way back in issue 28.

tea dress pattern 2

After I finished and handed over the wedding dress I only had a couple of weeks to make my own outfit.  I started looking around for a suitable dress  pattern suitable for  small and informal wedding following by a plough man’s picnic in a 16th century Ale House, very much a homemade handcrafted wedding.  So a formal two piece and a large hat would be a bit over the top.  I wanted a Tea Dress and luckily I had just the pattern.

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I  made up a muslin with some fabric from my stash and cut out a size 14 straight from the envelope, the fit was pretty good and the only change I made to go down a size on the shoulders and neckline.

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Then the question of what fabric to use, well if you follow my blog you will now I love a bit Liberty Tana Lawn, perfect for a Tea Dress.  I wanted to wear Navy shoes and the theme of the wedding was books and the colour red.

 

I searched the internet and found it on e-bay 2.2 meters of Liberty Tana Lawn Kayleigh  Sunshine.

Kayleigh sunshine

The instructions on Simple Sew patterns can be a bit sparse  and though I don’t really mind too much I do wish when the seam allowance  changes  it is mentioned on the instructions and not just on the paper pattern because if you don’t use a 1cm seam allowance at this point the front won’t align with the back of the dress.

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As the weather is always unpredictable in this country I made a navy jacket from another Sew Simple pattern and again another free pattern from Love Sewing magazine .

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I used 1m of navy triple crepe from Minerva Crafts.   This was not my best sewing, the crepe seemed to stretch as I manipulated it,  this is an unlined jacket but I always prefer a lined one so I cobbled together a lining at the last minute with lining fabric and bias binding (the binding was part my Stitching Santa gift last year from Corinne who blogs at Applebymakes@wordpress.com –#Stitching Santa thanks Corinne)

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Blouse · Dress · Liberty Tana Lawn · Sewing

Edith Shirtdress and Blouse

What could be better than shirtdress in cool Liberty Tana Lawn to wear in this very hot weather we having in the UK.  I bought this fabric from a  sale at Alice Caroline last year.  Occasional Alice Caroline hold a sale from their stone  barn studio on the edge of the Cotswolds.

 

I have lots of shirt dress patterns but I wanted a quick sew and cut out a Maria Denmark Edith dress on Sunday, finished sewing the buttons  on Monday after work and wore it to work on Tuesday and it was very cool and comfortable to wear.

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I just met the deadline this morning to join in with the  #sewingtogetherforsummer on instagram.

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I didn’t have enough of this fabric for a shirtdress but I did have for a blouse version of the Edith pattern.

I can definitely recommend Liberty Tana Lawn as lovely cool fabric for hot weather.  I am off to cool down, this laptop is sooo hot on my legs!

Dress · Uncategorized

Just a Jiffy

I am very behind with blogging my makes lately  so first up is my Pinafore dress or Jumper depending on where you live.

Simplicity Jiffy 1252, some of the reviews, and there are not many, for this dress are not very encouraging bemoaning the fit of the dress, but I stuck with it anyway.

I shorted the pattern at the waist and the length, I didn’t use the facing as I fully lined the dress and so managed to squeeze it out of 1 metre of fabric, a half price bargain from John Lewis  a couple of years ago.   The fabric frays a lot so I added some strips of  lightweight interfacing to  the seam allowance to strength the side seams.

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It does have a weird kind of dart  up the front and the neckline is a tad wide, but overall  I like it.

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I was a bit unsure about this dress at first but now its a great addition to my work wardrobe.

Dress

Jersey Wrap Dress

After success with  Simplicity K2369 tunic view C here I though I would give the dress version a go, view B.

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The fabric is a AVOCA Liberty jersey described as a 100% cotton light weight jersey print. bought online from Fabworks.

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The dress went together without any problems, using the stretch stitch on the sewing machine.

I was able to use another buckle from my recent ebay purchase.

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Twin needle stop stitching on the sleeve and hem.

I am really pleased with this dress, I think I am getting the hang of sewing with jersey,  but looking at the fabric on these photos I think the pattern is upside down, oops!!

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Dress · Sewing

Pleasing Plaid or Terrible Tartan?

Maybe it wasn’t such a good idea to make  my favorite and most made dress pattern, McCalls 6696 Shirtdress  in a tartan fabric, with so many pieces to pattern match, cutaway pockets, yoke, bodice, wasitband, sleeves, cuffs, buttonband and gathers and darts to think about (or not in is case).

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McCalls 6696 Shirtdress

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Nearly matched the pockets.

When cutting out I though a lot about matching the pattern across and down, but didn’t take into account the effect the gathers and darts would have on the back of the dress.PENTAX DIGITAL CAMERAI cut the wasitband, yoke, buttonband and cuffs on the bias, mainly to save on the pattern matching!

I altered the sleeves by adding  a simple cuff cut on the bias instead of the wing cuffs.PENTAX DIGITAL CAMERAI feel I should have cut the pattern so the dominant black lines were centralised on the back and more equal  on the front.  I also had a problem with the gathers and darts on the back of the dress as the pattern disappears.PENTAX DIGITAL CAMERAAh and the buttons, these grey ones were  my original choice, but I have lost them, yep lost in the depths of sewing room so I gave up looking for them and used some from my button tin,  I can’t remember where they came from!PENTAX DIGITAL CAMERA

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Overall I am pleased with the finished dress in that I wanted a  cosy winter tartan dress  and that’s what I have but disappointed that I didn’t think it through more, but its a lesson learnt on the great sewing experience!

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The fabric is  a grey and turquoise polyviscose tartan fabric from Oh So Crafty.

And if you are interested  in the difference between tartan and plaid……..

Plaid’s original definition is ‘as a woolen cloth having a checkered or tartan pattern’ It evolved to mean any such checkered or tartan pattern.Tartan’s first definition is a ‘woolen cloth woven in stripes of various colors at right angles to form a rectangular pattern; also, the pattern and design of such a cloth’.

So now you know!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Dress · Jacket

Summer Wedding Guest Dress

I was really excited to receive an invitation to my Nephew’s wedding, the perfect opportunity to sew a special dress, I don’t wear or sew dresses very often, apart from shirt dresses which I love.  After  browsing the internet for patterns and fabric for months, I just could not decide on a pattern.

Some contenders were: three in row

I finally made a decision  and ordered the fabric and zip, lining and thread with only 2 weeks before the wedding!!

Fabric arrived!

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Cotton Poplin in a pale blue blossom print from Ebay and Habotai lining from Minerva.  I have never used Habotai before but it gave the dress a lovely luxurious feeling.

Changed my mind, again, and used  a completely different pattern, the Classic Empire Line Dress (sleeveless version)  from  a book called  Dressmaking – The complete step-by-step guide by Alison Smith.

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The pattern can be downloaded in PDF format from a website address given in the book.  There was quite a lot of printing and sticking involved, but as the book only cost £6.99 from The Works, its a bit of a bargain.

I  adjusted the pattern with a narrow shoulder adjustment, I have discovered this is something that I always need and made up a toile.  The bodice was too tight across the bust but with gaping around the armholes.

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With or without sleeves?

After quite a lot of head scratching and trying to void a FBA (full bust adjustment) I bit the bullet and altered the pattern with a 1 inch FBA and eureka it worked, no more armhole gaping.

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Looking very creased after wearing to the wedding and long car journey back.

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As British summer weather can be very unpredictable, I made a matching jacket, New Look 6028, view with 3/4 sleeves.

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And what is really needed here is a picture of me wearing the dress at the wedding, but lots of  Pimms,  Pink Champagne and generally enjoying the wedding, caused me  to forgot all about taking photos of my self!!

But I did mange this to take this photo of my sisters family.

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A beautiful wedding, with the reception held in the Brides parents garden.

Dress

The Autumn of 1000 Shirtdresses: The Evening Shirtdress

1000Shirtdresses -- 250

Back in November  I finally  joined a sewing challenge, The Autumn of 1000 Shirtdresses hosted by Mary over at Idle Fancy,  I have fallen in love with shirtdresses and have already made 2 versions of McCalls 6696, which you can see here.  

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Inspired by this 1970’s book that suggests a shirt dress for evening wear. I  decided to make view D again but with long sleeves, a sheer version with a slip to go underneath.

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 I bought the fabric from a little shop in Ryde on the Isle of Wight a couple of years ago and since then it’s been languishing in my stash, it was described in the shop as Crepe de Chine and I think £5 a metre.  It’s very delicate, and sheer fabric.

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The photos really don’t do justice to the fabric but it’s so hard to take photos at this time of year when the light is so bad.   I have really struggled to get decent photos, but there was no way I was going to venture outside with the camera, it’s far too cold!

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There is a lot of work involved in this dress, a lot of hand sewing and all the seams are French, thank goodness the deadline was postponed, twice!

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The shirtdress truly is a dress for any occasion.