Sunday, 31 May 2015

Finished 3 Hour Sweater and adapted pattern

Here is my finished 3 hour sweater! Ok, it may have actually taken around 10-12 hours, but for a beginner knitter, that is still really awesome! I guess I could call this the 3 skein sweater, as I only used a bit less than 3 balls of yarn

And as promised, I have written up my version of the pattern, should anyone be wishing to attempt it and wants to use the changes I used. I did try to stick as closely to the original pattern as I could, just making changes for the difference in size and also to make my stripes even.

You should all be used to my dodgy selfies by now, but I will apologise for my lack of make up and just general tired looking-ness.

Dixie's 3 Skein Sweater (adapted from the 1930's 3 hour sweater pattern)
Size 40-42" Bust
Needles: 4mm for Rib and 5mm for stocking stitch
Yarn: roughly 3x100g skeins 8ply (but 5ply works too)

Cast on 80 stitches. K2 P2 to form ribbing for 24 rows (changing colours every 8 rows if you wish to create stripes like mine) then alternate knit and purl rows to make a stocking stitch for the next 54 rows, casting off 6 stitches at the beginning of the next 2 rows. Now change back to rib stitching (K2 P2) decreasing 1 stitch at each end of the next 3 rows, then one every second row, for a total of 24 rows of rib stitches and cast off

Cast on 84 stitches and knit up the same as the back until you're up to the neckline ribbing. Then continue knitting up half the stitches, with the other half on a stitch holder, decreasing 1 stitch every second row on the armhole edge. After 18 rows, cast off 8 stitches at the center front of the neck edge, then decrease 1 stitch on the neck edge every row, and 1 stitch every second row on the armhole edge, until all stitches have gone and cast off the last stitch. Repeat for other side.

cast on 6 stitches. K2 P2, increasing 1 stitch at each end of every second row. Change colour after 10 rows if doing stripes, you should have 14 stitches
K2 P2 for another 8 rows, increasing 1 stitch at both ends of every second row, ending with 22 stitches, and changing colour again.
K2 P2 with increases for 8 more rows, ending with 30 stitches. Change colour again
Change to knit 1 row purl 1 row for 8 rows, still increasing each end of every second row, ending with 38 stitches on your needle and change colour again
Keep alternating knit and purl rows for 8 more rows, stil increasing, ending with 46 stitches, then cast on 7 stitches each side of the sleeve t give you a total of 60 stitches.
knit a further 16 rows of stocking stitch (8 rows each colour)
For the last 8 rows change colour and go back to a K2 P2 Rib.
Cast Off

Join all your pieces together and finish off with a row of single crochet around the whole neckline. Make a button loop on one side of the front neckline opening with a few chain stitches, and attach a button to the other side. Now you're Done!

After I finished my first sleeve I realised I had a problem. The way I had cast off my knitting had left my sleeve edge quite tight with no stretch, and absolutely not able to fit around my upper arm. So I carefully undid the casting off, and re-cast it off using a method that would allow stretch. I used this Youtube tutorial to learn how. I believe there are other methods to do this, if you have a preferred one, please use that. I knitted up the second sleeve, leaving out the decreasing before the ribbed edge, and decided I liked the fit much better, so I undid the edge of the first sleeve and re-finished it without the decreases (which is how I have written my version of the pattern)

I finished my sweater with a cute little purple ship's steering wheel button, and wore it with a pink singlet underneath as the large guage knit has left it a tiny bit sheer.

And now, just because I haven't posted any Cat Photos in a while, here's a snap of my girls

Tessa using Mabel's butt as a pillow


Monday, 25 May 2015

Another Knitting Project!!!

I know, I know, I haven't even finished my first knitted garment yet! But it is almost finished, I promise! Only the collar left to do, but I got bored and needed another project to entertain myself.

The 3 Hour sweater, a 1930's raglan short sleeve sweater, has had me tempted to try it for a while, so I thought I would give it a go with some odd balls of yarn that I had, bought in a mixed bag from an op-shop for a few dollars. I used an 8ply Mint Green acrylic with a 5 ply purple acrylic. Technically I don't think you're supposed to use 2 different ply yarns, however I did and found it to work out ok, the purple stripes are just a little thinner than the green ones. A quick google search will show you that there are quite a few forum and blog posts around about this one, and I, like most people who try this pattern, did find the needle guage to be way too big for the suggested yarn weight. I did find someone, somewhere (I can't remember where) saying that the needle sizes listed were wrong, as they were old needle sizes and not the mm measurement of the needles, but I'm still not sure what ones should have been used, instead of the 5mm and 10mm ones the pattern says. I chose to use 4mm needles for the ribbing, and 5mm for the stocking stitch. I think normally there should be a bigger size difference between the needles you use, but this is what I decided to do. Also, due to using smaller needles than recommended, and me needing a bigger size than the original 36" bust, I cast on 80 stitches, instead of the original 52. I just guessed this amount, with no idea whether it would end up fitting or not.

Lunch Time!
I love that with knitting projects (rather than sewing projects) they are small enough to take to work with me and work on during my lunch breaks

Progress so far
At the moment I have completed the back and I am half way through the front and so far the sizing seems to be working. A lot of people I found who had tried this pattern were not happy with how it turned out, but as far as I can see, the pieces look about right for a raglan sweater. When I'm finished I will post the pattern with my changes for anyone who wants to try it.


Friday, 22 May 2015

Me Made May, Week 3

Wow, Week 3!

May 15
The Ensemble I chose for work this Friday consisted of my self drafted yellow shirt, Resort Skirt (Sewn by me, but you can buy them from Elsie George), me-made petticoat, Teal handbag from Elsie George and chunky Orange sandals that I picked up for $3 from Target. I didn't get an outfit photo, so here is one of the Elsie George Resort Skirt, modeled by the beautiful Brooke!

Elsie George Resort Skirt

May 16
A lazy Saturday around the house, and 2 quick visits the the other side of town to check on a friend's children staffies. As I was going to have dogs jumping all over me, I decided hard wearing pants would be a good idea, and so I went with my Navy Pants, along with a polka dot knit top that I made one night on a whim in less than an hour, soley on my overlocker. It's soft and comfy, but not perfect, so I will probably make it again differently, as I bought about 20m of this fabric from one of my local op shops.

May 17
No-one said I couldn't repeat my outfits during Me-Made-May. So I wore my Border Print Dress for a second day this month, to church. As I was on Morning Tea duty, I took along a cute pink floral apron to wear while serving so I wouldn't spill tea/coffee/jam/chocolate brownie all down my lovely new dress. As usual, my wonderful Grandma made Scones for morning tea, and I whipped up another batch of brownies, the recipe to which you will find linked to this previous post

I'll just re-use this photo again....
Unfortunately when I got home from Church, Matt met me out the front saying he was experiencing severe chest pains and to take him to the hospital. I got him up there quick smart. Luckily it turned out to be nothing, most likely a strained muscle from climbing up ladders and crawling around in the roof cavity to install wires, but after all that time in the emergency department I was regretting wearing heels, and not having a big enough handbag to fit my knitting in (yes I'm still at it)
worn with me-made petticoat, teal handbag and pink heels from payless shoes (I think, I've had them many years)

May 18
Monday I had an appointment in town, so went in a little early and did a little op shopping. I wore my Cupcake skirt and matching self drafted top. I think the fabric came from Lincraft a few years ago. I managed to get about 5m of a navy knit fabric, a bit over 1m of a stripey lilac satin and some very cute sheer curtains with baby animals printed on them, for future use in a possible nursery (for $3 I couldn't leave them behind) Later in the evening we had our CWA meeting, and I changed my top to my self drafted yellow shirt as it was a bit warmer than the cupcake top. It was handicraft night, but we all brought along our own projects and worked o those (mostly knitting and crocheting)
I don't seem to have any photos of this outfit anywhere, and I forgot to take one on the day, but here is a little thumbnail of the fabric I used.

May 19
Crazy hectic day at work. I wore my pleated pink floral dress that I made for Nostalgia fest earlier this year from a 1956 Australian Home Journal Pattern. Worn with me-made petticoat, teal handbag from Elsie George and pink flats from target

But I don't have pink hair anymore
May 20
Pulled out my Floral Elizabeth dress (which features in my first blog post) to wear, despite it being a very light summery dress, and the weather outside that morning being far from summery. Even though it was a cold, dreary, rainy morning, it had all cleared up to a beautiful sunny Autumn day by 11am. We managed to catch up on a few things at work after such a hectic day the day before. Worn with teal handbag from Elsie George and pink flats from Target

May 21
Wore a dress that I made years ago and haven't worn for ages. The fabric is the cutest strawberry and polka dot border print from lincraft, but unfortunately my self drafted bodice was not my best work and gapes at the front of the armholes. I have been meaning to unpick it and remake it for a long time, so it has just hung untouched in my wardrobe. I wore it with a red cardigan, so the armhole problem was covered all day while I was at work. Again, I didn't get an outfit photo, so here is a photo of me wearing this dress in 2012

I liked the truck....

I completely dropped the ball with the Outfit Selfies this week, After successfully making it through 2 weeks of Me-Made-May, I was getting quite confident I was going to make it through the rest of the month fine, so I think I may have become a little bit complacent. All in all, I am still very much enjoying Me-Made-May.


Sunday, 17 May 2015

A Fabulous Vintage Suit for a Fabulous Lady!

A good friend of mine asked me if I could whip up a new outfit for her to wear to the races, with less than a week to make it. So of course I said "Yes!"

She wanted it made from a pattern of mine, a vintage Simplicity 3624. The envelope of mine is in a very sad way, so here is a photo of it from Vintage Pattern Wiki as well.

I luckily picked this beauty up for 60c from a local op shop 2 years ago, and every piece is accounted for (although some are torn and some have been repaired with tape) I think it could possibly be a late 40's pattern, judging by the styling, the sizing and the use of snaps to close the skirt instead of a zip. It looks very Dior New Look to me. But it could just as easily be from the early to mid 50's. 

I have the pattern in a size 34" bust, and my friend is a 35" bust, so it was very easy to grade it up ever so slightly for her (and now I'm thinking I may have to grade it up and make it for myself...) The fabric she picked was a lovely heavy weight black with little white crosses, which unfortunately turned out to be super stretchy. Never fear! Nothing a little interfacing can't remedy! She had also picked a lovely textured white embroidered chiffon for the collar and cuffs

The fabric

I started by tracing all the pieces out, as they were quite fragile, then cut into the fabric. As the fabric was very wide, I cut the front skirt piece on the fold, eliminating the need for a seam in the centre front of the skirt. I also moved the fastening to the back as requested, and added in seam pockets to the side seams, which Rachel didn't ask for, but I thought she would appreciate.

The pattern pieces all traced out

After all the pieces were cut out I ironed interfacing onto the cuffs, collar and facing pieces, then overlocked around the edges of all the pieces, starting with the cuff and collar, as I had the overlocker threaded with white thread, then rethreaded it in black for the rest of the pieces. The Collar and Cuffs were then sewn together, turned right sides out and pressed. The Darts were then all marked out and sewn on the front bodice pieces, back bodice pieces and sleeves.

At this point I shoved the bodice pieces in a bag and took them with me to work with a jar of pins. After work I walked up to Elsie George (I work less than 200m away!) and pinned them together to check the fit on Rachel. We decided to nip the waist in a bit more with the darts and take 1/2 inch off the shoulders. I got home and got to putting all the bits together to make this fabulous suit. Rachel showed me the fascinator she planned to wear with the suit, and we decided to add a piece of the embroidered chiffon to the base of it to bring it together with the rest of the outfit.

I got it all done, just in the nick of time, driving over to her place at 10pm the night before the races to get it to her.

Unfortunately I did not take any progress photos while working on this outfit, as I had my head down to try and get it finished on time. But Rachel did make sure to get some photos of herself out and about at Muswelbrook Races.

Rachel with her daughter at the races
Seriously though, aren't  they the cutest?
Whilst working for a deadline does motivate me to actually get things done, This was a big project and my sleep did suffer for it. You can bet I enjoyed my sleep in on Saturday! That being said, I love how it turned out, and making it has given me a push to make my own vintage style winter suit, which has been on my "to sew" list for some time.


Friday, 15 May 2015

Me Made May, Week 2

We are now up to the end of the second week of Me-Made May!

I was hoping to have some time this week to sew myself a few things to fill some wardrobe gaps. but alas, I have not had the time. All these extra hours of work have been keeping me pretty busy, plus Mother's day on Sunday, not to mention all the sewing I have been working on for Rachel at Elsie George.

May 8
I was very thankful I had made it to Friday. It had seemed like a very long week at this point. Friday's are cleaning day in my office, so I wanted to wear something that wouldn't mark or stain easily, so I went with my version of Butterick 6582 (reprint of a 1960's pattern) which I made out of a slightly shiny, slightly stretchy, silvery grey fabric with darker grey roses printed on it in almost a watercolour look. I purchased quite a lot of this fabric about 2 or 3 years ago when a local discount store (that had loads of fabric) went out of business, and made this dress for a business trip to Hamilton Island about 2 years ago. The fabric seems quite resilient and doesn't seems to pick up dirt or fluff or anything, but it is a bit sheer, so I wear a slip underneath. I've worn this one for work a few times before, as I feel it has a vintage business look to it. I wear it with black stiletto pumps bought from Vinnies.

Butterick 6582
May 9
Being Saturday, I had a lovely sleep in, but then later in the day my asthma was playing up pretty bad. I was in my pyjamas for most of the day, but did eventually get motivated enough to get dressed. For comfort's sake, I just wore my Maudella blouse and black stretchy 3/4 length pants that I made earlier this year. I wore my matching turban for a little bit, but was getting a bit of a headache from coughing, so I took it off. No outfit photo today, as I was feeling too gross, so here is one from when I made the turban, and wasn't feeling as crappy.

May 10
Mother's day
I thought I might pull out my walkaway dress. Made from Butterick B4790 reprint about 2 years ago from a light strawberry print cotton from Lincraft. Unfortunately I made this before I was as aware of my personal fit issues, and so it is too long in the bodice, and I just haven't had the energy to pull it apart and fix it (unpicking all that bias, urgh) so it has not been worn very much. I might just end up taking it up dodgily at the waistline for a quick fix. In retrospect, I think if I was ever lucky enough to an actual vintage version of this pattern, I think it would fit a lot better. This reprint has been drafted for modern proportions, and that never seems to work for me in patterns. The shoulders are always too large, and the bodices too long. perhaps vintage patterns were drafted for shorter women?

Anyway, the colours of this dress made me think it would be perfect to wear for Mother's day. Luckily I chose to wear a slip underneath, as it was quite blowy, and I might have flashed a few people were it not for the slip. First of all to church, where the service was being run by our church vocal group, then Brunch at Grandma's with my husband, my mum, my uncle, my brother and his fiancée, as well as my grandparents. To try and limit any mess made at their house, mum and I brought ready prepared foods to bring and serve. I decided to go a little fancy and made a delicious Banoffee Pie. Unfortunately there was a bit of family drama during lunch, but I guess that happens in every family, right?

Also, I tried rag curling my hair overnight for the first time. They didn't dry enough over night, so I tried using my vintage lady sunbeam walkabout, and while that helped I probably didn't use it long enough, as a few of the curls still hadn't dried enough. The ones that did work out held their curl for days, but the ones I tried to fix with my curling iron fell out as soon as the wind got to them. I didn't use any product at all, so I was really pleased with how long the rag curls that did work lasted. I will definitely try them again, and work out how to perfect my technique. Unfortunately I didn't have time to take any photos of the results

Later my husband and I went to his parent's place to cook them dinner, and I whipped up a second banoffee pie for dessert.

Apologies I did not get a photo of me wearing my walkaway dress, but here is a photo of it on the hanger, so you can at least see the cutesy fabric I used.

Strawberry Walkaway Dress
May 11
Not a very Exciting day I'm afraid. Trip to the doctors to get my asthma checked, then home to do some sewing. I just wore one of my favourite throw on and go dresses, my Floral Doona Cover Dress made from New Look 6457. This photo is from when I made it back in December.

New Look 6457
May 12
Tuesdays at work is when I update the travel specials on the chalkboard. I have learned not to wear black on chalkboard day. So I went with my current favourite skirt, the Knitty Kitty Skirt! paired of course with my pink shirt made from the Eliza tank pattern from Jo-anne Anderson Studios, pink flats, teal handbag from Elsie George and teal hand knitted cardigan from one of the ladies at church. If I did get any chalk on myself, I certainly couldn't see it on this skirt.

May 13
Nothing too exciting today either. I wore my Navy pants again, but this time paired them with a self drafted yellow shirt, pink flats and yellow hand knitted cardigan also from the same lady from my church. Just another day of work and sewing. It was getting to be quite cold, so I was thankful to have more than just dresses in my me-made wardrobe. Sorry, I didn't get a photo on this day either, and don't have any existing photos of this outfit. I might need to add one at a later date.

May 14
Despite the fact it was super chilly here today, I wore my Kitty Valentine Dress to work today. I wore a slip underneath, as the fabric is very light and it has been a bit windy lately, but unfortunately this made the dress static cling to the slip. But it still looked good and kept me a bit warmer. Naturally accessorised with my red mary jane heels, my vintage red handbag and a skinny red belt. I did manage a quick selfie at Elsie George during my Lunch break, however my new Asthma medication make my hands a bit shakey, so it was difficult to hold my tablet still enough to get a clear focussed photo.

Kitty Valentine Dress
This week I think I did fairly well, apart from remembering to take Outfit photos each day. I did cheat on a few really cold nights and wore my store bought flannel pyjamas, instead of my me-made nightie, and I did wear my teal and yellow cardigans, which aren't me-made, but were hand knitted by the mother of a lady I know through church, so I figured it was still a lot better than wearing store bought.

I am starting to find new combinations of some of my me-made separates, which is cool as it means things are getting more wear. My self drafted yellow shirt was originally made to wear with a Christmas circle skirt I made. I have worn it with other circle skirts, but realising I can also now wear it with my me-made pants gives me more wearable me-made outfits!

While I had hoped to have time to sew a few things to fill a few gaps in my wardrobe, I have not been able to squeeze in any sewing for myself this week. Perhaps by next May I will have filled all those gaps with Me-Mades.


Monday, 11 May 2015

Banoffee Pie for Mother's Day Brunch

Last Year for Mother's day my mum and I tried to take my grandparents out for breakfast at a fancy restaurant. Grandfather wouldn't come as he had too much to do in his shed, and while grandma came with us, she seemed very concerned about the prices on the menu, even though she wasn't paying. This year when mum suggested we take grandma out to the same restaurant, I told her I thought she would enjoy herself more if we had it at her house and brought the food with us.

And so, I decided to make a Banoffee pie, while leaving mum in charge of something savoury. Banoffee Pie is so easy to make, but is definitely a little bit naughty and special. But it has fruit in it, so it has to be good for you, right? Hehehe

Here is the recipe I used, taken from the Woolworths website, with photos by me

125g butter for the base, 50g for the filling
250g arnott's granita biscuits
395g tin of condensed milk
1/2 cup brown sugar
2 bananas
300ml cream

Start by crushing up your biscuits. Use a food processor if you have one, I just used my mortar and pestle which did the trick pretty quickly. Mix with 125g of melted butter, then press into a pie dish. Chill in the fridge for at least 10 minutes.

Put the condensed milk, brown sugar and butter in a saucepan and put over a low heat, stirring constantly.

When the mix starts bubbling, cook for 5-10 minutes, making sure you keep stirring and scraping the mixture in from the sides so it doesnt burn.

Take it off the heat and pour into the pie crust you made before, then put the whole thing back in the fridge to set.

Once the caramel is set, slice up the bananas and lay them over the top of the pie. Whip the cream and pile it on top. Finish by grating a smidge of chocolate over the top.

Ta Dah!

I hope everyone had a lovely mothers day yesterday.


Friday, 8 May 2015

Me Made May, Week 1

So here is a round up of all my outfits for the first week of Me-Made-May. It certainly is a challenge to remember not to just grab any old thing out of the wardrobe, and actually put even more thought into what I'm wearing.

May 1
I didn't have a chance to take a good photo of the outfit I wore to work today, but it was my Navy Pants and Floral Maudella Blouse, which I accessorized with pink flat shoes from Big W and my favourite handbag at the moment (which you can see in this post) from Elsie George Boutique. Simple, but workplace friendly.

I have just found out I'm going to be working 4 days a week now, instead of 2. While this is great news, it will make it even more difficult to find enough appropriate workwear from my Me-Made clothes. But I'm up for the challenge (or shocking the boss by wearing very bright dresses)

Later in the same day my Husband and I headed to the Regal to see The Blues Brothers on the big screen. We dressed up, and I won best dressed! If you want to read more about the construction of my Penguin Costume read this post. I also quickly whipped up a black tie for my husband and elasticated ties for my friend and her kids.

For a full post about the evening with more photos, go here. To read about the last time we dressed up for a Cult Classic movie at the Regal, read this post.

May 2
Ok so this was a rainy Saturday, after a very late night......
I admit I spent most of the day in bed watching movies (I finally watched Horton hears a who) and catching up on some knitting (I'm still working on that blouse)  and crocheting (Snoods!). As my only Me-Made sleepwear is a light nightie, this has made me realise I should make myself some warmer jammies if I want to stop relying on store bought clothes.

May 3
While I was sorely tempted to spend another day in bed, I got myself up, dressed and to church. I wore a Navy/Indigo Gingham dress that I made some years ago for my day wear for the NSW heat of Miss Pinup Australia. I wore it with a Me-Made petticoat, and a black elastic belt and black wedges, both from op shops.

It was made from this Vintage McCalls Pattern (graded up) which was my first ever vintage pattern that I bought from the Fifties Fair at Rose Seidler House in Sydney.

McCalls 5807

May 4
Mostly spent at home, sewing and cleaning. For ease of changing while I was sewing I wore my Swirl dress. We also went out to dinner at my little brother and his fiance's house. I was tempted to wear the new light pink dress I had just sewn, but realised my swirl would probably be more practical when visiting the house of a mechanic. Whilst I was sewing in my Swirl, I thought it would be really easy to alter the swirl pattern slightly for a perfect vintage style Maternity dress. You know, for when that happens down the track......

 I didn't take an outfit photo of myself, but here is one from when I finished sewing the Swirl dress last year.

Except this time I accessorized with a dark red vintage handbag and the dark red Mary Jane heels I purchased on my valentines weekend away.

May 5
I decided, what the hell! I'm going to wear my new white and pale pink border print dress that I had just finished sewing the day before, to work. My boss did not even raise an eyebrow. I guess after 2 years my wardrobe no longer surprises her. I did get a lovely compliment from a brand rep that visited the office that day though, as well as a few compliments and admiring looks from a few senior citizens when I ducked over to the bank.

I wore this dress with my me-made petticoat (which is not hugely fluffy, so great for this skirt) and some white flatties from an op shop that are almost falling apart, because I couldn't find both pink heels I wanted to wear....

May 6
I thought I might stay with the Pink theme for work and rocked my Pink Roses Skirt and Pink shirt made from a shortened version of the Eliza tank pattern from Jo-Anne Anderson studios to work. Luckily I did manage to find both of the high heels I wanted to wear the day before, then during my lunch break, I managed to pick up the cutest pink flatties from Target for only $7!!

May 7
I really wanted pants to wear to work today, but didn't want to wear my navy Pants twice in one week. A rummage through my wardrobe, and I found these pants. Made from Simplicity 3688 some time ago from a soft cream fabric. I can't recall what size I made, but these are now quite big on me.

I paired these with an old self drafted shirt that doesn't get worn much anymore (due to a stain on the front) and my Capelet from a Decades of Style pattern that we used for Sew Retro Rose's Capelet Sew Along. The outfit was completed with my dark red vintage handbag, and dark red mary jane heels.

With Capelet
Without Capelet
 After work, some friends and I headed out to Bunnings for their Mother's Day Family Night. We figured I have furbabies, so I count as a mum right? There were free scones, smores, popcorn, softdrink, giant jenga and Wreck it Ralph on a big projector screen. The Adults DIY was potting a succulent in a clear pot with decorative coloured pebbles on top. My friends and I added coloured pebbles to the bottom as well, to help drainage within the pot, but I really like the bit of extra brightness it gives.

Mabel wanted to see what it was....
After a week of entirely me-made outfits, I can already see gaps in my me-made wardrobe. While I knew I needed more work wear (but wasn't prepared for my work hours to double) I hadn't even thought about my lack of me-made pyjamas. Hopefully this weekend I will find some time to sew some more work clothes, and maybe even some pyjamas, even though it is a bit hard to justify the effort of making them, when store bought ones are so cheap and easy to come by.


Wednesday, 6 May 2015

How to Crochet yourself a Snood - Guest post at Sew Retro Rose

The lovely Beccie over at Sew Retro Rose was nice enough to let me post a Guest post over on her blog. I really wanted to offer a quick and easy tutorial or pattern for a vintage style accessory to her readers (and mine) So after umming and ahhing over a few options, decided on a nice easy Crocheted Snood. While I'm pretty sure Beccie doesn't knit or crochet, I thought it wouldn't hurt to give her readers something different, but still in a very Beccie aesthetic.

For my Full tutorial, head over to Sew Retro Rose


PS. While attempting the arduous task of emailing all 46 photos to Beccie for the Tutorial (in 8 separate emails) My husband and I were watching Big bang theory. Howard walks into his apartment and Bernadette has baked him a big plate of Brownies. That made us both want brownies..... So an hour later I've whipped up a batch using this recipe, which is quite basic, but doesn't include any cooking chocolate, so is a great recipe that uses ingredients most people would have on hand. Great, but perhaps dangerous, for late night cravings..... (but do cook it at least 20mins longer than the recipe says)

Tuesday, 5 May 2015

A Fabulous new border print Dress!

Often when I sew garments for Elsie George Boutique, I like to test the pattern out before I cut into the good fabric. So that I'm not wasting fabric, I grade the pattern up, and make a test one in my own size (and at the same time, that gives me a traced out, graded up copy of a pattern I wouldn't have had before!) The most recent pattern Rachel has asked me to make is this one:

Vintage Butterick 7648

Now the one I will be making for the shop will have quite a few modifications to it, and won't look much like the one I have made at all. However, making this one has shown us a few areas that are going to need to be modified, such as the neckline (way to high) and the arm holes (which are quite small)

The original pattern features a circle skirt (or pencil skirt), but the fabric we will be using is a border print, so naturally it will have a gathered skirt instead. I was lucky enough to have a gorgeous white and pale pink border print fabric in my stash, so decided to use that for my test dress. It wasn't a huge bit of fabric, but it was very wide, so I managed to use it all very carefully, and even had just enough left over to add pockets. If I can, I always have pockets in my dresses!

Here's how the dress looked almost finished. Apart from grading up the width of the pattern, I also lowered the neckline by 1" and lowered the bottom of the armscye by 1"

I decided to use the pockets from Butterick B6055, but had to piece a little bit of the white on pink border to the piece of pink on white fabric that I had left to make it big enough for the pockets. I both lined the pockets and faced the neckline/armholes with plain white cotton. Mabel tried to be very helpful.

Quick messy sewing room selfie
I finished this dress up around midday yesterday, and even though it probably ended up a bit snug in the waist, I love it.

Work Selfie
I love it so much, I wore it to work today!

Then snuck up to Elsie George to show Rachel, and use her lovely big mirror for a better, less messy selfie.

This dress is just absolutely darling! While walking about town I had quite a few (quite a bit) older people looking and admiring it, and also quite a few compliments. Although I did need to spot clean it as soon as I got home, as I somehow managed to get something on one of the pockets (don't worry it came out) Which I guess is why I don't wear a whole lot of light colours....

Now I'm  just sitting in bed in my polka dot me-made nightie, crocheting myself a new pink snood and rewatching bomb girls