A great British sewing feat – my first me-made dress

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Evening folks. Wanting a push to get me sewing more often, and eventually out of my sewing comfort zone (once I find it) I’ve decided to join The Monthly Stitch Collective. As each month participants are challenged to sew one or ore items based on a certain theme. I was certainly pushed to try something new this month as the challenge was to sew something out of a book.

I’m terrible at buying books based on their gorgeous photographs of colourful handmade creations yet I never seem to get from buying the book to actually making any of the projects. For this months stitch along, having recently purchased a discounted copy of the Great British Sewing Bee, I eventually decided to sew the free tunic pattern from the back of the book. Being a shorty at 5’2 the muslin has ended up as a loose fitting dress however I’m happy with the result.

Having made the muslin in a plain black jersey and with it turning out ok I’ve decided to declare this my first me-made dress! I even wore it to work and a sewing class this week and after a bit of LOOK AT ME I received lots of compliments about the garment. I eventually want to add embellishments to the collar area but seen as I had a job interview on Friday and have another next week (I will hopefully find out about them both next Friday) sewing is on hold for the moment whilst I prep.

Once I’m able to get back into the sewing room I’m also going to make another version of the dress/tunic in  blue flowery liberty jersey as it doesn’t take long to cut and sew the garment pieces together.

Great British Sewing Bee Tunic

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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.

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