More vintage making!

I posted recently about the vintage patterns I had being buying on ebay. Well, last weekend I took one of my favourite trips to the fabric shop with some specific ideas of material and colours for the skirt I loved but…..really did not have fun when I got there! I usually love a browse, mooching through the piles of fabric weighing up the different patterns I have…though I did take a shopping list! But yuck! The pay and display metre was not working and ate my money so I only had one hour, which always puts me on edge as the traffic wardens of the City of Liverpool are fierce!!!! With my time limit eating away in my mind, and the fact I went unprepared with little cash and having to spend over a certain amount to use cards and not being able to take materials go between floors to pay for it…..oh it was stressful!
I eventually picked up on this patterned fabric in the last lot of materials I got round to, always in the last place you look! I loved the pattern and thought it would work wonderfully with the skirt pattern and I would get the opportunity to work on matching a pattern, until I got it home and realised I had not studied the pattern properly and needed the main sections of material to be cut on the bias (across the grain – see I’m learning!) But this pattern on the fabric for me was only going to work along the grain, so as I seem to be doing alot lately, I adapted the pattern. I cut the material and made the skirt following the pattern instructions and it obviously fell very structured and straight which made it stick out in an aline shape ALOT. So, I turned the skirt inside out and repinned the shape to a slimmer aline from the bottom of the yoke and it has made a lovely aline shape skirt which I am really happy with.

On a windy, cold day in May!

On a windy, cold day in May!

Obviously there is always something I would like to work on as I’m improving my sewing skills and with this material I was hoping to have a go at matching patterns, which was impossible as the pattern was too erratic. Without studying it, which I couldn’t in my brief time fabric shopping, I could not see the repetition was sparse and matching up the rows was …….difficult.
I am happy with the outcome, especially that I had a purple zip (matching the skirt) in my stash and put it in super easy! I’ve been wearing the skirt, a true sign of a happy outcome and will be using this pattern (the correct way, with the correct material) in the near future! Happy sewing!


Vintage Wonders!

I have discovered vintage patterns on ebay….and eventually had to stop mooching as it was going to end up costing me a fortune! But over the past couple of weeks I’ve bought some lovely patterns at incredible prices…..and have already made up two patterns, slightly adapted to modernise (they are from the 70’s and 80’s).


I chose these 3 patterns as they look similar to more modern patterns I had seen and I thought I would suit them and they would suit my ability level.

Vogue 8347 – Not even cut…..amazing!

The Vogue pattern has a very similar dress shape to what is in a lot of the shops but have elastic running across the waist (I’m planning on adding this to the dress in the near future). I took the shoulders in nearly half way across and didn’t want the button up neckline feature, so just stitch the front yoke to the back. I also reinforced the yoke with interfacing, which I’m now debating the decision as it would be nice even slinkier round the neckline. Following the pattern measurement there was a lot of material and so I cut the material in about 2 inches from my size to make it a closer fit. The material has been hanging around my fabric stash since early March and I kept debating making a circle skirt with it, glad I didn’t as this dress gave me achance to practice my french seams (getting much neater and smaller) and I think it falls lovely and shows off the pattern, if the material was stiffer it would be much more sticky out, though I do want to try it with a thin flowery cotton. I really like the outcome and can’t wait to wear  it out, maybe even with black tights and boots as the weather  will not warm up!!!

Cinched waist, looks lovely with a belt.

Cinched waist, looks lovely with a belt.

Pattern on show.

Pattern on show.

Simplicity 9205- Cut and ready to go, in great condition and I actually did more damage to it the first time I used it than it had in over 30 years! Ooops!

I was looking for a button down dress, which I’m being really fussy about, and though the buttons on this dress are decorative, they achieved a look similar to what I wanted and I liked the idea of making a four panelled skirt, as I’ve seen a few of these around on other sewers blogs. The picture of this dress does not do it justice, as it is nicely fitted around the waist and the skirt then flares out. You may have been able to see this better if I hadn’t altered the neckline by widening and lowering the v. This was the first time I had made a v neck with bias binding though and I was made up with the outcome. I love the contrast of the red and navy (and i’m a big fan of buttons which look like sweets) and wore this with patent red pumps! I am also in the process of making a skirt from the pattern. I need to lower the waistband, as I cut to high up the waist from the pattern, reinsert the zip and hem it!

Wearing my dress to the theatre to see the truly amazing Matthew Bourne's Sleeping Beauty! I also need to learn how to pose!

Wearing my dress to the theatre to see the truly amazing Matthew Bourne’s Sleeping Beauty! I also need to learn how to pose!

Butterick 3929 – In incredible condition, cut and the paper is thinner than when fresh, but in great condition.

This pattern I love as the panel across the stomach looks like it will be really flattering. It did only turn up this morning though, so I’m afraid I have not had time to attack it yet.

I love that people have used and loved patterns and are passing them on (for a small cost – but who wouldn’t!). These patterns have history and with slight adaptations they can be brought back to life and loved again!

Colette, The Anise Jacket

IMG_1983It’s been a bit like Christmas this week….well I suppose it’s last week now. There is a new niece….’hello Freya!’ that was obviously the biggy….and hello to her Mummy if she reads this before I visit tomorrow! And parcels in the post….feels like Christmas! Oooooo what could it be! There was a 70’s vintage dress pattern I purchased from ebay! And this little gem the Colette Anise Jacket! Bought from sewbox, so very prompt, think it was next day it fell on my mat and with a little freebie of some lovely ribbon!!!! Always a pleasure….thank you very much sewbox! Now why post about a pattern without any plans or any making to show I hear you tick tock! Well, I bought a lovely rusty pink (if that is actually a colour) of linen and silvery habito (don’t know how to spell it sorry-my failing) to line for a summer jacket, but am now thinking the linen may be too stiff a fabric and it will not fall right and really would like people’s advice…. on various factors….

the type of material to use

the sizing guide

bound or stitched buttonholes

any hints and tips…..

The book with the pattern is great, but I would really appreciate any advice from people who have made colette patterns before or have experience with this jacket. This is something I really want to take my time with and get right as I feel I’m on a mission whenever I start a pattern and can’t leave alone until it’s complete and then find it’s too tight here or it would have been better if I’d have done such a thing instead. This I want to enjoy taking my time making and have it turn out wonderful….so even if the material is wrong and I need to get different….. I am willing to do what I must!

Bow Cuff.

IMG_1977I have seen cuffs like this around, in real leather, and had the thought ‘I can make that!’…. not in real leather. It was a while ago I saw these and cannot remember where I have seen them, whether it was on a blog or in a fashion mag. My process of creation (oooo check me out) was checking out how to put on poppers by googling and then…… winging it! It literally took minutes to make (after I dug out my hammer and hot glue gun!).

Here’s a quick tutorial.

1) Cut 2 rectangles of faux leather: large 8″ by 2″ and small 2″ by 3/4″ these are trimmed as go along to fit your wrist and get the look you want (I used a rotary cutter to get easy straight lines.


2)Pinch in the centre of the big strip making sure the edges turn under (towards your wrist – just makes it look neater) and stitch through a few times to hold it in place.


3)Get your glue gun ready- make sure the glue is runny so it won’t dry so fast.

Wrap the small rectangle around the pinched in section so it is edge to edge, trim depending on how tight your pinched section is. Now it’s quite fiddly but glue the material and stick the wrong side to the wrong side of the material (glue doesn’t stick to well to the slippy side of faux leather I have found.


4) Wrap the cuff around your wrist, with a little give so it doesn’t cut off circulation and leave an overlap of an inch. Measure out where your poppers are going to go and mark them on. 1/2″ From the end and 5/8″ in.



5) Get those poppers on! And mind that thumb with your hammer!!!


And you have one gorg designer looking cuff! I have plans to make this into a belt too!