Saturday, December 29, 2012

And now,back to Lisette!

I was so excited when Liesl Gibson released the Lisette patterns.
I went a little nuts and sewed up a mini wardrobe of Portfolio   dress's,tunics,tops and trousers.

And then life got in the way.

I was recently sent some very pretty voile from two sweet friends and with the two pieces I was able to make myself a new Portfolio dress.
In the past I sewed the size 12. This was great for the tunic but I found in the dress I was splitting the back seam pulling it up to feed Matilda.
I made this up in a size 14 and it is perfect. Plenty of ease through the body and the voile falls so nicely that it is not tenty at all.
As I am waiting on some felt to finish up Lidia's shark costume I decided to make up another Portfolio top.
This time I made a size 10 to wear as a fitted top.
I used a lovely grey stretch poplin and added a wee tab&button and quick embroidery.
I used a coral coloured thread as I find it works nicely with pink or orange and the beautiful MOP button was a gift from a dear friend.
I really really like the fit of the size 14 Portfolio in voile and think I will make a few more for summer.

xxx N

Thursday, December 20, 2012

An Australian Christmas Fairy Tale.

I have finished Zara's dress.
It was the oliver+s Fairy Tale dress.
I will blog the complete construction after Christmas.
Zara is very pleased.

Isn't she wonderful?

xx N

Saturday, December 8, 2012

I hope it has a happy ending.......

Costumes  completed.

On with the fun stuff!
Zara has requested a very fitted bodice full skirted party dress for Christmas.
I think the oliver+s FairyTale will be just the job.

Now,my Twins are pretty canny. They can read a line drawing on a pattern packet well but Zara was a wee bit concerned it may be a bit babyish.
After all,she is 13!
Once I showed her this version,she was more then happy for me to proceed. 

It is recommended to sew a muslin before cutting out your 'good' fabric for the dress as the bodice is very fitted.
After measuring Zara I cut the size 7 with the length of the 12.
That seemed a bit hinky to me but that is what a muslin is for!
I use a white calico for my muslin.
I went with the size 12 darts as that was the length I drafted.
When you sew a muslin you actually work on the right side as most bodies are uneven.
For a first fit I was pretty happy with the front.
The armsicles (I am taking the pee here) were a bit firm and the neck needed lowering but pretty good!
I basted the darts in place and re-marked the lines.
If you draw on the basting that will give you the new stitching lines when you come to unpick the muslin.
The front bodice,darts basted,ready for the next step.

Now,I said the front looked pretty good....
But the back needed some work.
I decided to cut a size 12 back with size 7 armsicles.
A better fit around the waist but no go across the shoulders.
So I added some fabric to the centre back seam to give me some more fabric to play with.
This worked really well and we were able to get a good fit.
I draw in my stitching line between my pins on both sides.
Then I just join the dot-to-dot!
By marking the seam allowances it gives an idea of the finished bodice.
Next up I added the seam allowance by measuring and marking the 5/8'' at regular increments.
I also trimmed the waist back to suit Zara's high waist and design choice.
I may or may not have got slightly distracted at this stage,sigh......
And there we have it.
A perfect fitting bodice for Zara.
In less time then it took me to listen to my new Jesus Christ SuperStar DVD.
Ready to unpick and start the dress.
I Can't Wait.

xx N


After last years mermaid effort I learnt a lesson.
Costumes are much easier if you use a pattern!

I am a convert.
So much so that when a pattern website recently had all their patterns reduced to 99c I purchased a dozen costume variations.
I am positive it was a worthwhile investment.

Hugo starred in his class production of Romeo&Juliet last month and 'puffy' shirts were required.
I sewed three.
A heavy white linen with lace trim.
A self stripe cotton with black leather thonging.
And a fine white linen for my Handsome son.
They used a lot of fabric,nearly four metres each,but they were pretty straight forward to sew!
This was the pattern I used and it was a ripper!

For presentation night Lidia needs a shark costume.
After a quick scoot around E-bay I found this pattern.

I used a wet look vinyl for the front. I purchased it here and I can thoroughly recommend this seller.
I used black drill for the back.
The eyes,mouth and teeth are made from felt.
Two layers of tulle cover Liddy's sweet little face.
He has a dorsal fin padded with polar fleece and a pointy cushion to pad out his head.
It was actually very simple to sew. The instructions were straightforward and the pieces fitted together well.

Costumes sorted!

Next up Zara's Christmas dress!

xx N

Thursday, December 6, 2012


Do you know what makes me happy?

Obviously my husband,my children and friends and listening to Tim Minchin.

But do you know what else makes me really really happy?

Sewing something for a friend that sews.
Its not that my non-sewing friends are ungrateful-they are not.
But they really don't understand how long it takes(to be fair,how can they)?
The time you spend laying out the pattern and matching the print.
Finding just the right buttons.
Trying to get the finish perfect.
 Worrying too much because that jolly facing just won't match up! 
Your sewing friends know all this and understand and appreciate that little bit more the time that goes into a home made garment.
It is not a cheap gift-It is a gift that comes with all the love in the world.
And this one is for you Karen.
xx N

Clever Charlotte Starling dress found here