A perfect afternoon

On Sunday I spent a perfect autumnal afternoon wrapped up inside Buttons and Bows Sewing Boutique eating cake and learning how to sew a basic capped sleeve blouse. The workshop, which involved constructing a sample blouse using the pattern New Look 6356, has taught me how to sew a concealed zip, ease in a sleeve and how to add bias binding. So not only did I have a fabulous time I came away with skills for life which is an awesome thing to happen on any day of the week but especially on a chilled out Sunday afternoon.

As a beginner the blouse does have a few areas that need ‘practice’ but I did learn that my concentration goes after the first hour then the ‘it’s only a sample’ attitude appears and it’s mistakes galore. Therefor I need to be a lot less slap dash and pay more attention to detail when creating an item to wear otherwise I’ll end up spending a fortune on fabric. Especially as Buttons and Bows stock a beautiful range.

With the new techniques fresh in my mind I’m going to attempt the Sewholic Renfew pattern. I have a rubbish memory so hopefully the practice will help me to remember the techniques in the future. I’ll keep you updated on my progress with the sewing so wish me luck!

Buttons and Bows Belper

Sample top full

sampletopsideview

refew next project

The Hollyburn skirt

As promised earlier in the week I now have better photo’s of the skirt to show you. As highlighted in the close ups shots the skirt does have a certain ‘handmade charm’  but I’m still really impressed that I’ve managed to create and wear (at the office a day after it’s creation) a piece of clothing that I’VE MADE!!!!. Plus as its October I’ve got at least the next five months were I can wear a thick wooly jumper over the skirt to hid any errors.

Sewaholic Hollyburn Skirt

Hollyburn Skirt Pocket

Hollyburn zip

For my first project I used the  Hollyburn Sewaholic pattern from M is for Make whilst the fabric was sourced from Buttons and Bows Boutique

The things I have  learnt from this project:

1. If I’m going to regularly make my own clothes a dressmakers dummy is needed as I’m rubbish at measuring by eye

2.I am very impulsive when it comes to shopping as I purchased the dressmaking dummy above before I’d even finished the skirt

3.My sewing machine has a zipper foot and hates sewing in zips without it

4.If the sewing machine starts playing up I need to walk away and have a rest

5. Following patterns isn’t my thing. After the first few instruction I became confused and started to refer to the photos from a Hollyburn Sew-Along

6.Creativity and personalisation is my thing. Although you can’t tell from this skirt, as I was too impatient and wanted a finished garment like yesterday, but I had really strong urges to alter the pattern and customise the skirt to reflect style. I can’t ever see me following a sewing pattern step by step and I’ve already started to use pattern paper and my dressmakers module to create my own pattern for my next sewing adventure.

Look what I’ve made!! My first piece of dressmaking.

Ta, da, my first finished piece of dressmaking! Apologises for the poor quality photos but I wanted to show you the straight away. With straight away being as soon as I’d got back from dashing out to the pub to show the skirt off to one of my friends (that’s why it’s a bit creased).

There’s a few ‘home made marks’ around the hem and waist line but I’m rather impressed with my version of the Sewaholics Hollyburn Skirt. I was doubtful that dressmaking would be right for me as I’m not great at attention to detail  but I really enjoyed creating the skirt and it felt great earlier being out and about in an item that I’d made! I’ve got my eye on  a vintage t-shirt dress next and I will hopefully make it home one night this week before it is dark so that I can take some better photographs of the Hollyburn.

Hollyburn skirt front

hollyburn side skirt

What happened to September?

Hello, sewing friends. I’ve missed you so much. Over the past month I’ve been totally consumed by working full time and studying a masters full time, bad times. However in the past month I found an amazing vintage sewing machine in an antiques shop in Matlock and have started an adult education course in dressmaking so my favourite hobby hasn’t been completely abandoned.

VintageSewingMachine

Unfortunately I have decided to quite the dressmaking course as the tutor’s teaching style didn’t fit my needs. Think old school matron and lots of repression, not good if you like to learn by making mistakes. However I have caught the dress making bug and have decided to become a self-taught seamstress! Before I decided to quit the course I purchased the Sewaholics Hollyburn Skirt pattern and have brought some lovely 100% black cotton so the skirt will be this months project.

hollyburncuttingtable