Tag Archives: I Sew

French Navy Forsythe

Another Black Friday grab, the Forsythe from French Navy has been on my radar for a while now.  I have always wanted this pattern, but never felt I had the right fabric for it.  So I re-purposed some Jersey stripe from Girl Charlee that was originally intended for my grunge dress that has failed to materialise into existence.

The main thing I love about french navy is the illustrations – I love a good sketch.  I don’t know if it is because I appreciate it more as someone with a background in art, or that it just looks better in a pattern as apposed to a photograph.  Either way it is perfect and something I would like to do if I too made patterns.

I already have the Orla Dress Free pattern (if you don’t, i recommend you get that here)  but I am yet to use it, despite many plans for it.

So How Did It Sew?

 

Overall, I think this particular Jersey may have not been the best idea and a stiffer fabric would be better.  Although I tried to pattern match, it seems I lost my way around the pocket area and it was a complete fail.  The dress is comfy and I like to wear it, but the pattern and draping feel a bit off to me.  This is purely my choice of fabric, that I had purposely bought for another project.  I have some lovely linen like pieces in my stash that I would love to give this another go with in the future.

The pattern itself is amazing, and I love that the instructions have photographs!  As much as I praised the main illustration, and was surprised this trend didn’t follow throughout, I still loved the neatness and precision of photo instructions.

Please check out the PDF here, you won’t be disappointed and it is a staple sustainable sewer pattern.

My Pattern – Babydoll Dress

This idea had been forming in my mind for a while;  I think its clear by now that I like an oversized simple casual style that I can dress up.  Which sounds simple enough, until you try to shop for this AND are a plus size.  Hence why I sew.  But I still search for inspiration, sometimes things fir the criteria.

One thing that kept popping up was a simple babydoll dress with puff ball oversized sleeves (I am assuming oversized sleeves, but these are on tiny models so just sleeves) So I set about planning one out:

20170531_000504

Again, this was another idea I had to purge, it was haunting me and I found that I had to get it out into the world to move on with other projects (the creative mind!) I had a semi sheer crepe fabric in my stash that wasn’t doing very much, I felt that it could be semi wearable, if not, I have not wasted a good fabric, at least get a wearable Toile out of it.

This work was completely self drafted, I made a practice bodice and one sleeve, adjusted the height of where the skirt would sit on my breasts and hardly needed to adjust the paper pattern before jumping right in.  To be honest, I find this the best way to work, throwing caution to the wind and just doing.

I am not ashamed to admit I watched a few tutorial and read a few blogs for this one.  The online sewing community is amazing, full of talent and an abundance of information.  Use it!  My sleeve was drafted purely from looking at pinterest diagrams!

So How did it Sew?

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Date Completed: 13th April 2017

For a fabric I had little faith in, I am not hating it, its definitely something different in my wardrobe, even though it is a little stiff still.  (I am planning a fabric softener soak if possible)  This dress was simple and quick make, from idea to draft to completion.  This was due to the skirt part just being two large gathered rectangles rather than a drafted piece, but i feel it added to the dress and allowed for maximum gathers.

The bodice part is double layered, despite this I will be wearing it over a slip or the classic vest and leggings due to its sheerness.

One plus about this fabric being stiffer is how the puff sleeves fit.  Depending on the materiel for my next attempt (and there will be one) i may have to consider a mesh or a supporting fabric inside the puff.

A great bonus of self drafting is not having to follow a pattern, and although it was a bit of a freestyle, the freedom is a relief.  Not that I tend to stick to instructions, its just nice to figure it out yourself. Its definitely more fun, and quicker as long as you don’t make a mistake.

I absolutely love this dress on.  As a plus size sewer I was worried about adding volume around the bust without highlighting the waist, but I love the silhouette it gives me.

I have already selected my next material for another of these.  I am even considering a single button at the top as something a little different.

 

Made By me: The Grainline Alder with Sleeve Hack

The Grainline studio is something i have had on my radar for a while, yet never actually got round to purchasing,  Yet after seeing Alder after Alder (both versions) on Instagram, I  finally took the plunge and got one.

The pattern itself is beautifully designed, I love the simplicity of it:  Block colours, simple line drawings – it’s a minimalist dream!  This continues into the actually paper pattern pieces.  I have to admit I do prefer a white paper for a pattern.  I am not saying that I hate the brown/cream/beige colours, I just love the crispness of a white, especially when they use a blue print too.  Pattern porn!

The instructions are simple and well illustrated – although I would suggest making the two versions more distinguishable, purely for the ease of coming back to reference the booklet whilst working,  But this is so minor it really doesn’t matter.

So how did it Sew?

20170212_17593820170212_175925

Completed:  30th January 2017

I really enjoyed this pattern, it was simple and easy and quick.  I used a shirt material with tiny burnout holes in it.  I am prepping for better weather, until them this can be layered!

I added sleeves as a bit of a hack for this.  I debated 3/4 length, but in a debate with myself I concluded that a full length can be rolled to a short, and still be worn under a cardigan ( i like the cuff to sit out the bottom of the cardigan sleeve, it looks neater to me)

I achieved the sleeve but tracing round the pattern to start making my own sleeve template… i then discovered, after a bit of a rummage, it was an exact fit for another sleeve I had previously drafted.  Gotta love that when it happens!

The buttons were meant to replace some on another project I had used basic buttons for, but I am not gonna lie, I couldn’t be bothered to cut them off an re sew! So I just used the fancy ones for this.  They really make the dress though, so I am really happy how they turned out.

I even like this dress done right up to the collar, which is rare, especially with gigantic boobs like mine I can sometimes look quite matron like without the open neck line.  But this is Super cute.

I cut this out in the largest size and it is the perfect fit for me.  The is a slight gap at the bust BUT, this happens on everything for me.  Again those pesky gigantic breast always making a bid for freedom.

Overall,  I LOVE this pattern, especially the version I did with the rouching on the side.  It is so flattering on me.  I am planning another in a plaid fabric (again with the sleeves)  I MAY hack it a bit more and do a full skirt instead of a button front… I will see where the fabric takes me.

p.s sorry for the sub-par pictures!  The lack of good lighting combine with the time I haven’t got to optimise that lighting means you are just getting some full mirror shots…. sorry x

Cocowawa Crafts: Marshmallow Dress

I was so excited for this dress after I saw EVERYONE’S makes for it on Instagram, all at the same time, so I eventually ordered it and made it.

coco-wawa-crafts-marshmallow-dress-blue-2-533x533

Check out Cocowawa Crafts Marshmallow Dress Here.

The pattern is amazing, I have been looking for a big dress like this, with a ruffle detail hem, for quite a while now.  I was also looking for a suitable pattern to whip up out of a bit of Tartan over Christmas. It was a perfect match.  I went for a Dark Tartan, with Navy and Bottle green, I am not 100% sure where I got it from, but it arrived just before December.

When I cut out the pattern I extended down the hem of the sleeve as I planned to make it long sleeve, like a shirt. I use this method a lot to get the perfect fit on a sleeve if a long sleeve version isn’t provided (almost a custom fit in a sense)

So How Did It Sew?

Completed: 4th January 2017 (Majority made in December 2016)

This was a good sew as in the way it goes together, although it has been one of my most challenging patterns, but that was due to my own stupidity:

All was going well until The sleeve!  I had made the majority of the top when I decided to sort out the sleeve before attaching (it was sewn, just needed a taper down to the cuff)  Before that I thought I would slip it on to pin the taper and get a good fit.  This is when I discovered that the upper arm was too tight.  I was devastated as I had already chopped up all the fabric (it was narrower than usual) and wouldn’t be able to cut more sleeves.  So in a bit of a Huff I dumped it into my To Do box to deal with later.

I had planned to have this as my Christmas day dress, so I then whipped up a plan B and went for the Red Crushed Velvet Sudley (see previous post)

After Xmas, in that weird time before New year that no one quite knows what to do in, I wanted to tie up some loose ends, so picked up the Marshmallow again.  Just to see how much I was off by, I slipped on the sleeve to see what I could do… and would you believe it, it fitted!  Honestly i have not lost weight on my arms, I must have just had a stupid moment first time round (blame the Xmas December Madness)

So I finished the dress, with long sleeves that fit, and I love it!  I cannot wait to wear it out properly.  I love how it is floaty, yet doesn’t add volume to my figure!  I highly recommend this pattern, and I can;t wait to see what Cocowawa Crafts has lined up for the future.

Megan Neilsen -Sudley Dress

I have had my eye on the Megan Neilsen patterns for a while, I have seen many makes pop up on my Instagram feed, but I finally took the plunge over Xmas with a 30% off.  I got three patterns: The Sudley dress and top (of which I have completed the Dress) Darling Ranges and the New Karri Dress.  Unfortunately I got so excited adding in all the Patterns, I forgot to add the MAKER tee too.  Honestly, it wasn’t till a couple of days later that I realised!  OH WELL, next time maybe.

I had seen that the sewing community had erupted into a frantic sewing frenzy of crushed Velvet, brought on by the festive season no doubt.  I myself looked on longingly, I really wanted a red velvet dress, but HATED the reds I was seeing… The orange red is really not for me due to a combination of skin colour and my current fake hair colour.   This was until I found the colour CRUSHED BERRY!  Oh the pinky/purple hues were exactly what I was looking for, and one of my fave little fabric stores on Ebay had LOADS (check that out here)

Never one to shy away from a challenge, I decided to make this Dress Christmas Eve… to wear Christmas Day.  We all joke about not making things the night before but we all do it!  I had a bit of a fluff with the previous choice of Christmas me made dress, and had kind of given up wearing something special.  I had been toying with the Idea of using the fabric for a Kimono, but I am so glad I picked the pattern up (although a kimono would have been much quicker)

So how did it Sew?

From pattern cut to complete, this took one evening, and I thoroughly enjoyed it.  The pattern itself is very user friendly, plus I love getting patterns with more than one option of what to make.  I also adore the graphics on the front, I love the hand drawn feel and they are super cute.  If I ever made a pattern, I would want something similar on the front.

I opted for the version with  no collar and tie strings.  THe pattern does recomend a hook and eye fastening as well as the tie.  I recomend this, even though I had a lot of friction with my fabric, the tie still started to sag and slip open.  It just saves you re-tying during the wear.  I also went a bit rouge on the sleeves and added an elastic, i just prefer the look on me, but might not do thins on a more flowing light material.

I will definately be making this again, I am just going to hang out for the perfect material.  I can see me making many cute summer/festival dresses with this pattern.

I can’t wait to try the other two patterns.

 

 

Made By Me – PaperCuts – Coppélia Wrap Cardi

I stumbled across Papercuts and had no idea how amazing and innovative their patterns would be until threw came through the door. When they say on their site ‘beautifully packaged paper patterns‘ they really do mean it.  I just love things that are clever in little ways; the fact that you cut out and fold a little concertinaed booklet, which is filled with the most beautiful images.

13651735_316898365320658_1264855955_n

The pattern itself can also be cut and HUNG on the actual box. Amazing little touches.
I have bought two of their patterns so far, the other being the sway I have seen so many lovely ladies make on Instagram over the summer. But as the first make i felt that there was an overwhelming need for a coppélia in my wardrobe. I could see it solving issues of sleeveless makes for me, as well as being made extremely casual and used as a cover up over pyjamas ans slob around clothes.

So How did it Sew?

 

Completed: 23rd August 2016

The make was extremely simple. Despite using a cheap cut of fabric as a ‘dry run’ I will probably still wear it round the house.
With that in mind I didn’t even bother using a coloured thread… i just used black.
This was a quick and simple sew due to the Raglan sleeves. The only thing that took up the most time was folding and sewing the tie part.

I can’t wait to make one in every colour, I use this so much round the house and when i am planning outfits I keep thinking back to this, a black one is definitely on the To-Do list.

Made by Me: No pattern Smock Dress in Tie Dye

If there is one patterned fabrics I love above all other patterned fabrics, it is the tie dye. Especially grey tonal tie dye.  Its something I always gravitate too and is something that has seeped into my sewing stash.  It gives a pattern without being frumpy, and it also goes with everything.  I picked up some in my early days of sewing, a soft jersey knit.  I had 3 metres worth so it has made a couple of items.

My no pattern oversized smock dress:

20160716_16303420160716_163051

This was a simple make.  I drew out a rough oversized smock shape on some brown paper, and used it for the front and slightly adjusted for the back.  I made a simple Bias binding for the collar.  The skirt I simply cut out two rectangles and gathered.  I then attached that to the bodice and it was done.

The bodice slightly flared out and droops down at the sides, which i love.  The material is so light that it flows when on.

I have worn this dress so much since I made it.  Now I have my over locker, I am considering going over the inside to make it more durable for the wearing to come. Although I made this in the summer, I feel i can layer it up and wear it for Autumn and into winter with tights.

I definitely will make something similar in the smock style, i might go for a crush velvet style for winter, or even a thinner stretch denim with a pattern.