Saturday, 25 July 2015

Tilly and the Buttons Bettine comes on holiday!

  I rather liked the look of the latest Tilly and the Buttons dress the Bettine and as there was a deal on to buy the Bettine and the Fifi together I thought it would be rude not to take advantage of the offer. I had a crazy busy week last week and was due to take the little people on a UK holiday so knew sewing the Bettine would have to wait until I came back. However I just kept seeing wonderful versions of it all over the blogosphere and by Thursday I could wait no longer I was going to HAVE to make it! I had the perfect fabric in my stash - back in the days when I knew even less about fabric I fell in love with this quilting cotton and bought 2m I think I had planned to make a Megan dress with it (from love at first stitch) but realised that the dress was just not going to suit my figure no matter how much I loved it. It was a bit of a squeeze to get the dress cut out - I had to use different fabric for the facings and my cuffs are ever so slightly smaller.

  So the afternoon before we were due to leave despite not having even ironed our clothes let alone pack them I found myself finishing up the dress. Sewing the Bettine was a breeze as Tilly's instructions are so clear - my elastic kept getting stuck in the casing as I was passing it through but that was the only issue I had. I sewed a straight size 5 but added 3 inches to the skirt length. I did have a major panic after sewing the bodice and finding it really tight, but I trusted in A closet full of posies who said via instagram that she had a similar issue which seemed to sort itself out once the skirt and bodice were joined together - she was right. It is a little tricky to get off but I think if it was too much bigger it might just look too big.

  I do feel a bit classy in this dress! Most unusual for me! I was worried that the tulip part of the skirt made my hips look even huger but I think its ok!
  So I managed to finish the dress and pack up all our gear just in time - we left home bright and early to make the most of the day - just as well as it has been so beautiful. I thought I had better get some pics of the dress today in case we didn't get such a beautiful day again! We had been on the beach all day so forgive my very windswept hair!!


Enjoying a post beach elderflower cordial!

POCKETS!!!!!!! (obviously I especially love this aspect of the dress!)

So have you made a Bettine yet? Or do you have plans for one? I'm thinking one in a nice drapey fabric - rayon perhaps and one in a denim for winter................
Thanks for stopping by!
           Su xx

Sunday, 19 July 2015

A couple of Lou Lou's!

So a few weeks ago English Girl At home launched her new pattern the Lou Lou dress. As soon as I saw it I knew I had the perfect cotton crinkle look broderie anglais in my stash to use with a contrasting lining. Imagine my excitement when she ran a competition for the pattern, and imagine even greater excitement when I won a copy!!!! There are three versions included in the pattern and even the pattern illustrations are wonderful!

  The pattern is actually made for really drapey fabrics, but I'm just not a really drapey fabric type of person so I just kept my fingers crossed that my fabric choice would work. I found a wonderful midnight blue muslin to use as my contrasting lining and decided to go for view A (the one without the pleat). The pattern has no darts, zips, or fastening and so is made to be loose fitting - not for everyone perhaps but I really like this kind of look. The instructions are very clear and easy to follow with fantastic illustrations. I had not made a fully lined dress before and had not used this method for finishing the shoulders, but was able to understand what I had to do with no problem. It is a really quick make and the finish is nice and neat. My only gripe would be the lack of pockets - I feel lost without pockets!
   I rushed to finish making the dress while my parents in law were visiting so that we could take photos at some lavender fields we had planned to visit - sadly it was wet, cold and windy - no way was I taking my coat off!!!!

 Finally today the weather was good, I was not working and we had a little time to take some piccies!

  I know that perhaps my fabric choice and colour might not be to everyone's taste but I love this dress! I have worn it on several days and it is very comfortable but I think looks like I have made a bit of an effort without being too dressy. I can see how you could make it really special with the right fabric.

  I had a small amount of fabric left over and decided to make a top. It is a little shorter than I would normally wear but I actually like the sightly cropped boxy look worn with cropped skinny jeans - perfect for work!

The lining peeks out a tiny bit but you can't really see it with the dark trousers.

  It seems like everyone has broken up from school - we have three more LONG days before my little people finish for the year! I am crazy buzy with work and have a holiday to get ready for so its gonna be busy! I get my overlocker back on Wednesday so hopefully I can squeeze in a teeny bit of sewing.......

     Thanks for stopping by!

               Su xx

Monday, 6 July 2015

True Bias Southport X 2

With all of this summery weather we have been having I have been feeling that my wardrobe is lacking in summer dresses. I bought the Southport dress pattern when it was on offer after it was released and at the time I thought 'why am I buying a dress pattern, I should be buying work related patterns' but I am so glad I did!! For anyone who doesn't know it is a loose fitting summer dress in both short and maxi versions, it uses bias binding to finish off the neckline and armholes, and has a front button placket on the bodice.

  For my first version I used a duvet cover I found in a charity shop, I only made it a week ago but have already worn it several times! I made a straight size 14, it is supposed to be loose fitting and drapey but even after taking it in an extra 1/2 inch it is still a little too loose. I also wanted the back to be lower than the pattern so I just traced off the front neckline onto the back pattern piece. Unfortunately I think this makes it fall off my sloping shoulders!! I also added two inches to the length. I decided not to add the buttons because I really dislike buttons of any kind and they are not necessary as the dress slips on and off easily without them, I cut the front bodice piece on the fold. Despite the issues it is so comfie and I think looks OK?! Anyway I loved it an knew I wanted to make another in 'good' fabric from my stash ASAP!

I used cord for the drawstring, I think it provides a good contrast.

Beware the dipped back with sloping shoulders!!

 For my 'good' version I had this amazing art gallery fabric I bough on sale from Dragonfly Fabrics ages ago that I thought would be perfect. The cotton is just divine to sew with - I can see how spending a little more on your fabric is worth while! Again I added two inches to the skirt length, I cut a size 12 bodice and graded out to a size 14 on the skirt. I added 1cm to the front neck and cut the back a little higher than on my first version. My overlocker is currently being repaired (and I am deciding which child I am going to have to sell to pay for it!) so I used french seams on the bodice and because I didn't know how to finish skirt seams with pockets I just used bias binding to finish off all the raw edges. How do you finish off your seams if you don't have or didn't want to use an overlocker?

I just LOVE the pockets!!

The fabric is just so light and cool!

Being unwittingly photo bombed by my very cheeky middle child!

And again!

This is my perfect summer dress pattern!!!!

I've seen some really wonderful versions out there, both short and maxi - Has anyone else found their perfect summer dress pattern?

   Thanks for stopping by!