Megan Nielsen Rowan Bodysuit

Monday, April 17, 2017

I pulled out my credit card as soon as I saw the latest releases from Megan Nielsen, I loved them both and the new packaging is so pretty!

The Rowan bodysuit was also one of my planned projects for April so I'm really happy to be able to tick it off my list and best of all I really, really like it.

I'm not certain what height MN patterns are drafted for (I think it's 5'5") which is a long way short of my 6'.  I've made this in a size L and added an extra 3 inches through the body and 1.5 inches to the sleeve length.  I also blended out to the XL at the waist as I'm pretty straight up and down.

I'm not dropping my pants so you'll have to take my word for it when I say that it fits really well around the bum too, not too tight but still has good coverage.

I'm too self conscious about my stomach to wear the bodysuit as I've shown it in these pictures, in all likelihood I'll layer it up under other shirts and jumpers, but I love it.  I've used a beautifully soft merino that I purchased from Tessuti a year or two ago.

I'm so happy that I've used one of the lovely fabrics in my stash, tried a new pattern and ticked a project off my sewing list.  I feel like I'm winning at the moment!

April Sewing Plans

Sunday, April 9, 2017

I've got a few days off over Easter and wanted to make the most of the extra time in my sewing room.

I have a massive wish list of things that I want to make but figured if I could focus on just a handful of items I'd be more likely to get them done!
So here's five things that I'm hoping to sew up over the rest of April:

First up is a new skirt for work.  It's Vogue 1170, a Rachel Comey pattern from a few years back.  It's no longer listed on Vogue's website but you can pick it up on Etsy or Ebay easily enough.  I'm planning on making it up in a beautiful Italian wool that I bought at Tessuti several years ago.  

The Birkin Flares are one of my #2017makenine picks and something that I've been wanting to make for a couple of years.  These will be a great addition to my weekend wardrobe and will likely make an appearance for casual Friday at work too.

I fell hard for this beautiful viscose poplin from Blackbird Fabrics and all I could think of was making the Grainline Archer shirt.  Also, I need tops for work so this seems like a winner.

Next up I'm planning to make Vogue 1460 in a gorgeous denim coloured merino jersey from The Fabric Store.  A warm, cosy winter work dress.

My last planned make is Megan Nielsen's Rowan body suit - colour and style as per the picture below.  I layer all my clothes in winter so I think this will be a winner.

Picture via

If I'm crazy productive my two bonus projects will be a Tessuti Sydney jacket in a gorgeous charcoal marle boiled wool and a pair of navy stretch cotton Ginger (jeans) pants.  I'm pretty excited by all these projects so I hope I can them all sewn up.

Style Arc Halle Skirt

Monday, April 3, 2017

So I blinked and March was gone, this year feels like it is absolutely flying.

These days I don't have big chunks of dedicated sewing time.  I had some great suggestions in the comments about ways to use short periods of time effectively, so that's what I've been trying to do.  It's also about changing my own mind set - I've always thought I couldn't achieve much in 5 minutes so I just didn't start. Now I just get suck in and use those few minutes to sew a seam or two, change threads on the machine, get the next step sorted etc.  It has given me a little burst of energy and I love seeing what I can achieve at the end of the week.

Today's post is about two such projects.  The skirt is the Style Arc Halle skirt.  I received it as a free pattern and wasn't sure whether I really liked it or not.  Let me say that I now love it!  The asymmetric front wrap is lovely and it's not too revealing when you sit down either.

I went up a size and made this as a straight size 14 in a lovely rayon blend double knit from Spotlight.  I haven't added any length and really like where it hits on me.  The waist isn't as neat as I'd like, so I think I'll probably cut the elastic off and run the sides in a little more but other than that I wouldn't change a thing.

The top is the Tessuti Frankie dress/top.  I've been loving the look of the Closet Case Patterns Ebony tee but thought it was close enough to Frankie that I didn't need to buy another pattern.  I've made this in a medium with an extra 1 3/4 inches added to the sleeve length and 2 inches added to the top length above the waist.  I've used the most amazing fabric, it's modal or bamboo, with a beautiful weight and drape.  This is going to become a strong favourite this winter.


Monday, February 20, 2017

It's official.  The True Bias Ogden Cami is magic!  I haven't seen a version I don't like.  It's gorgeous as drafted but there are so many ways you can alter it to make it your own.  And it's about the easiest thing ever to sew.

I fell in love with this printed rayon at Spotlight and knew that I'd found the perfect fabric for my first (yes there will be more) Ogden Cami.

Because the fabric is a little bit sheer I did a full lining instead of just the partial lining included but other than that this is straight off the PDF.  Next time I think I'll add about an inch to the length to give myself options with the hem.  I've finished this version with a baby hem because I didn't want to lose any length so it would be nice to be able to adjust that slightly next time.

When I bought this pattern I also bought the Southport Dress, Colfax dress and the Sutton blouse and now I'm really keen to get them sewn up.  I was really impressed with the drafting and instructions and the final fit.  I have no idea what's next in my sewing queue - I want to make all the things!

The real deal

Saturday, February 11, 2017

The lazy days of summer are over, life has kicked back into full swing and just like that my sewing time has vanished!

I'm hoping I can find 20 minutes a day just so I feel like I'm making progress.  So far I've managed an hour in the last two weeks so I've got some work to do!

But this post isn't about my lack of sewing time, it's a short and sweet update about the 'real' versions of Jalie 2564.

I've made three matching singlets and ladyshorts using Art Gallery cotton/elastin and I've got to say that this fabric feels fabulous, it's soft with great stretch and recovery.  The designs aren't ones that I'd wear as outerwear but I love them for pyjamas.

I made a couple of minor tweaks to these versions.  I added an inch to the length at the hem and shaved about a quarter of an inch off the side seams at the bust only.  I'm really happy with the way these have turned out.  Unfortunately the hot pink fold over elastic I used on one version is really poor quality and doesn't stretch and support the way it should.  I really need to replace it but...I'd much rather make something new!

I feel like I have sewing ADD at the moment - I keep starting projects and then moving on to the next thing.  Time to finish them off so that I can actually wear them.

Trial run - Jalie 2564

Tuesday, January 24, 2017

Why is it that everything feels like it wears out at exactly the same time?  My sleepwear of choice is a singlet top/camisole with built in shelf bra and a pair of boyleg shorts.  When I went to replace my well worn PJs I discovered that a single tank top was over $30 which felt like a ridiculous amount for what it is.  You know the feeling - you know you could make it for less than it costs and choose whatever colours/patterns you like (irrespective of whether you actually have the time or energy to do it).

Being the great procrastinator that I am I put off doing anything for another 12 months and my pjs were disgusting - the elastic had completely gone, they were all stretched out of shape and you could see through the fabric.  So. Bad.

Enter Jalie 2564 (I couldn't find it listed on Jalie's website) which I bought years ago in anticipation of making my own singlet tops.  For my trial run I used a foil print stretch cotton from Spotlight and fold over elastic from Etsy.  I was tossing up what colour elastic to use but in the end I figured anything Mickey Mouse needed a touch of red.

I wasn't happy with my initial application of the fold over elastic - it made the neckline look really baggy so I ripped it out and followed this tutorial from Emerald Erin and it worked a charm.

To finish the set I sewed up a pair of the Cloth Habit Rosy Ladyshorts.  Couldn't be happier with them and I'm so glad that I fussy cut Mickey.  One of my girls even asked for a pair so I must have done something right!

After sleep testing these my only adjustment would be to add about another inch in length to the singlet top/camisole.  I bought some beautiful cotton/elastin Art Gallery Fabrics  for the real deal, hopefully I get a chance to post about them later this week.

Trying the trend - Style Arc Adeline dress

Monday, January 16, 2017

Despite it's popularity I'd stayed away from the Style Arc Adeline dress fearing that the cocoon shape wouldn't be very flattering on me.

While I'm not convinced this is my best look I do really like this dress.  So many of the versions I have seen have been made from a beautiful linen and I chose to make this from a lovely rayon crepe that I bought online from The Fabric Store.  It was so nice to work with and is a dream to wear, especially on really hot days.  It gives the dress a lot of movement and it kind of feels like it's just floating around me.

I made a straight size 14 and I'm pretty happy with the way it fits.  I'm 6 foot tall (183cm) so keep that in mind when considering the length on you.  I forgot to remove the centre back seam but it's really not necessary.

I really like the V neck - it's not too low and the facing finishes it beautifully.  I also really like the slightly shaped high/low hem, which was something that I was unsure about when I was cutting it out.  I'm glad I left it as is.

The only complaint I have with this dress is that, on me, it tends to slip backwards on my shoulders so the front rides up and the neck sits too high.

I haven't heard anyone else have the same problem so it might be the fabric I've used or maybe it's just the shape of my shoulders!  Either way it's not a deal breaker and I'm sure that this dress will get plenty of wear.  This is a great dress that comes together really quickly and I have to say that I really like the construction methods that Style Arc use.


Thursday, January 5, 2017

I'm not on Instagram but love the idea of nominating nine items that you want to make in 2017 so I'm playing along here.

All photos used in the collage above are via the individual pattern companies.
I've loved the Sophie Swimsuit pattern since it was released and wanted to have a pair made up for our recent trip to Byron Bay - I ran out of time but hope to get these made up soon.

I don't know if flares will be popular again this winter but I still love them and plan to make the Birkin Flares from Baste and Gather.  In winter I live in denim so being able to play with a different silhouette will be great.

The Cascade Duffle Coat has been on my to sew list since it was released.  I have all my supplies but I bought the PDF pattern and I just can't bring myself to stick that many pages together!  I've just bought the paper pattern so hopefully this gets made before winter rolls around again.

The Ruby top/dress is another pattern that has been on my radar for ages.  I really want to make both the top and dress variations - I think they'll be really versatile additions to my wardrobe.

The Blaire shirt from Style Arc is a departure from I normally wear but it has been calling my name since it was released.  I'm going to make this in white linen but I love the version my sister just made in a gorgeous rayon.

Number 6 isn't a pattern, it's a gorgeous pieces of fabric.  I couldn't resist the beautiful city lights silk crepe de chine from Tessuti Fabrics but I've been too scared to cut into it in case I stuff it up.  Time to get over it - there's always more beautiful fabric!

Everybody wants beautiful undies and I want to add the Montgomery briefs from Orange Lingerie and the Bella and Esme undies from Evie la Luve to my collection.

I feel like this is a really achievable selection.  There's a nice mix of quick makes and more detailed projects and I know I'll feel pretty awesome if I manage to get all these made up.

So do you Instagram?  I'm tempted to sign up but all the comments about the new algorithms have made me wary.  Are you on Instagram and do you like it?

Style Arc duo - Charlie and Ginger

Sunday, January 1, 2017

Happy New Year!  I'm looking forward to doing more of what I love in 2017 and hopefully getting back to this space a little more often.  So many of the clothes I made in 2016 didn't made it to the blog but I really wanted to post this duo because I like them so much.

This is the Style Arc Charlie skirt in a stretch denim and the Style Arc Ginger top in a bamboo knit.

The skirt is straight size 14 and sews up pretty easily.  Style Arc are known for their sparse instructions (the great drafting makes up for it) but the instructions for completing the waistband on this skirt will make you scratch your head.

I chose to do my own thing and left out the elastic.  I sewed the front skirt as instructed and then folded down the back casing and top stitched before sewing the side seams.  It produced a nice neat finish and there is no danger of this skirt falling down.  In fact I have to pull this over my head as the denim doesn't have enough stretch to pull this up over my hips!  I've put a picture below, hopefully you can see how I've completed the waistband.

I really like this skirt and can see it getting lots of wear.  If I was sewing this again I'd probably sew the front split down another inch.  It just feels a little bit too high, especially when I sit down.

I am absolutely in love with this top.  The construction is really simple, but clever.  It's comfortable, the bamboo feels amazing and I think it's quite an elegant top.  Again no alterations needed, this is a straight size 12.

I'm on a bit of a Style Arc bender at the moment with several items half finished.  I seem to have acquired sewing ADD and keep starting the next project before I finish the last one. There are just so many things that I want to make!

Thank you to everyone who visited and left comments this year.  Wishing you all a happy and healthy 2017, may you create many happy memories throughout the year.