Merchant and Mills sewing class…

Back in early March this year I did a sewing class at Merchant and Mills. I was already to blog about it straight after as I really enjoyed it, and found it very useful. However I wasn’t hundred percent happy with the the garment I made. The class was for the Camber dress. I have been wanting to make this pattern for a few years, but have been put off by seeing others comment about some of the fiddly bits. And I have first hand experience of M&M fiddly bits! SO when I saw they were running a class for this pattern, I jumped on it!

It wasn’t cheap, but it was worth it. You get a very experienced tutor , and I think the most they have in a class is 4 people, so you get some very individualised attention. the  class I did we only had 3 pupils, which was nice. Also the workshop which is above the M&M shop, is gorgeous, and you get a lovely big cutting table to work with and all the bits and pieces you need to make your garment. Oh and they provide you with a very tasty lunch on both days. Yes it is a two day course.

I really enjoyed the experience and I picked up some great tips from Chrissie, our tutor. I also realised just how many gaps there are in my sewing knowledge, being self taught, I pretty much make it up as I go along. So when you come across a professional and a perfectionist, makes one realise just how sloppy ones sewing can be!

Now I have to say that my Camber dress is THE MOST PERFECTLY made garment I have in my wardrobe! It really is. I did have some help from Chrissie at times, she had to finish a couple of the steps for me, as I got a little frustrated at times with having to keep unpicking and redoing, and things were just getting worse, so I would look at her with eyes that said “help me” and she would have it done in a flash. If I’d been at home doing this, I would have stopped and started again another day. But I wasn’t and I really wanted to have a finished garment to take home.

I was the last to finish, but thats okay, it wasn’t a race.

As I said, the dress is the most perfectly made garment I have ever made, but once home and I tried it on, I really wasn’t sure I liked it on me! I decided it was too long as it was, it came to just below my knees. So I took off a couple of inches I believe, can’t really remember now it was a while ago. And I felt a little happier with it.

Here it is, worn with jeans after shortening.

I wore it once like that, but still wasn’t really happy with it. So I recently took it up a bit more. However I hadn’t worn it since that first time.

We went on holiday last month and I decided to take it with me, as I knew it was going to be hot and I wanted to take as many dresses with me as possible. I did wear it on one of the days, and I loved it. Felt really good to be wearing such a well made garment too. I was quite proud of it. And the Husband liked it too. Which is a nice, he doesn’t always like the style of the clothes I make.

Here I am wearing it on holiday

As I now feel happy with it, I thought it was time I blogged about it. I don’t have any pics of the details on the dress, as it was really tricky to take good photos of them. which is a shame, because this dress is deceptive. It looks like a simple shift type dress, which it is, but there are lots of exquisite little details that elevate it to a different level.

I will make another, not sure when. But I will.

 

Best dress ever part II…

So remember this dress

Last year I called it the best dress ever. So I tried it on a few days ago, and decided it was now just that bit too short. I think having made the Maxi dress, this one feels short, and I like the way a longer dress looks now.

I still had about 2m left of this fabric, so I made the decision to add another tier.

Its a slightly different colour, as it fades with washing, and the dress has been washed quite a bit already. I think it works though. I also did the sewing of the seams with wrong sides together again so the seam is on the outside. I like the extra detail it gives.

Very happy with it and have worn it already. I felt good in it. I love that I can alter garments to make them suit me, as I change my mind about things.

A maxi dress…

I love this dress, and have been planning it in my head for ages. I’ve just been too nervous to actually make it after my recent disappointments. The fabric I’ve had since August, its a beautiful cotton poplin from Fabric Godmother. And I’ve been looking at it and wondering what to make. And when this idea popped into my head I just knew that I had to make it. after the alteration to my Trapeze dress I made last week I decided I was ready for this.

I got 3metres of this fabric, now normally I try to get 2 garments out of this much fabric. Thinking it makes more economical sense, but this time I just thought F*^@k it! Use it all on one garment.

So this is a Trapeze/marshmallow combination. Trapeze on the top with a marshmallow bottom. Oh and an extra tier for length. Very happy with it, really really am.

Lots of pics to follow…

Lovely neck line.

Sewed the tiers wrong sides together, to get the ruffle detail.

I can’t wait to wear this in the warmer weather! If we get any…  Feels amazing on.

Dress for a wedding…

So my niece is getting married tomorrow, and here’s the dress I’ve made for it. A navy Crepe Trapeze dress. I added about 7inches to the length I believe, might have only been 6, can’t remember now.  Its a mid length dress, and I love it. Feels amazing to wear and it moves beautifully, drapes really nicely.

Makes me feel elegant and sophisticated!

And with the bag I’ll be carrying.

Another best dress ever…

This time I used a beautiful Brodarie Anglais in navy. Blue and variations there of, it would appear is my fave colour!

 

I plan to wear it with a nude slip underneath, as it is a little see-through.

 

And here with heels…

 

I really am loving these dresses in this hot summer we are having.

Marshmallow dress…

One of my Nieces is getting married next May, and I’m trying to decide on what to wear/make. I want to wear a Marshmallow dress, but can’t decide on length. So I’ve made a wearable toile. I quite like this length but can’t decide if its too casual. But then again I’m hoping the fabric I’ll end up making it in for the wedding will make it more formal, so to speak.

And of course I won’t be wearing it with Birkenstocks or bare feet!

Cropped my head out of the pictures as had really bad bed hair!

Here’s a pic with good hair!

NEW PATTERN! I’m so excited about this make…

I flipping love this dress. I’ve been looking for a pattern for this type of dress for the longest time. I even considered making my own version with a pattern hack of my trusty Trapeze dress pattern, after reading the blog by nobleanddaughter.com, but I couldn’t quite get my head round the idea. And then luckily this pattern popped into my radar. I believe I had seen it a while ago before, but think it was probably only in a PDF version, and so I bypassed it. Now though its available in a printed paper version too.

It is the cocowawa, Marshmallow dress ! And I bloody love it…

I’ve always loved this style of dress, and when I saw the this one by Victoria Beckham I so badly wanted one or to be able to make one like it, so the pairing of this pattern with the fabric was like a dream come true.

Okay so mine isn’t exactly the same but I think its a pretty good example of this style of dress. And dare I say I prefer mine. Not least because it only cost me about £20 instead of several hundreds of pounds!

I made it in a ponte roma quilted jersey from Fabricgodmother and at £8 a metre and 150cm wide its quite a bargain. Plus in this fabric I actually feel like I’m wearing a marshmallow!

I’ve done my usual and simplified my version. I’ve taken out the button down back, and because its in jersey I haven’t done a facing. Nor have I used any of the add ons like the collar or the bow. I also shortened the sleeves more than the recommended amount, the original short sleeve length was elbow length.

I find measurements on sewing patterns to be quite confusing sometimes and if I’d followed the guide on this pattern I’d have made a size 14 which would have been way too big. I plumped for making a 12 and its still a bit too big. The next one will be made in a size 10.

I managed to make it using about 1.75m of fabric.

There will now follow lots of pictures…

I just love the silhouette of this dress, its just so damn cute I can’t stand it!

I love it with heels, as seen above.

And I love it with flats/converse.

But the bestest thing of all about this pattern is…

POCKETS!

It has inseam pockets and they are the best!

 

 

Oh I know, its getting boring now…

Here comes another Trapeze!

I’ve had this fabric for a couple of years now, when I bought it I made the mistake of thinking it was horizontal stripes (its a mistake I often make for some reason), so it threw me when I realised it was vertical stripes. So it languished in my stash box for the last 2 years. And on top of the stripe mistake I also went off this type of fabric (I think its a cotton poplin) and started making with knit fabrics more often than not.

Since I discovered the Trapeze dress pattern works well as a maxi length dress, I looked at this fabric again. Pondered on it for a week or two and decided to go for it.  I bought 3 metres which is just as well as its only 107cm wide and the trapeze uses a lot of fabric at the bottom, and even more in the maxi version! I was just able to squeeze it out of the fabric, but it was really really tight!

I decided to not to do a facing which I usually leave off doing when using knit fabrics, haven’t done it with a woven fabric before though. I made sure I had enough fabric left if I ended up needing to do a facing. I only left it off as I was feeling lazy!

So without further ado here she is. Husband says its quite striking…

I like the way it looks like the stripes go in different directions due to the way it drapes.

Stripes almost match at the sides.

I have to look twice when trying it on as the centre back seam blends in so well I can barely see it. I managed to put it on Gertie (my mannequin) the wrong way round once and wondered why it didn’t look right!

 

Works well with Converse and one of my bags

And also with sandals.

Side view looks better in the flesh.

Another successful Trapeze and happy to have finally used this fabric.

Multi spot Trapeze dress…

I love this, one of my more simple makes. No alterations made to the length, this is how it is. The fabric is another lovely ponte roma jersey from Fabric Godmother.

I’ve worn it a couple of times already and just know its going to be perfect when the weather gets really hot!

I think I’ve said it before, but I love working with jersey fabric as the seams don’t need finishing so it results in a  very quick and simple make. Which from time to time I really enjoy.

There won’t be as many pics as usual as like I said its a simple dress and a simple make and you’ve all seen similar from me before.

And there we have it. Happy dance from me.

I would just like to add that its Four years this weekend since I made my first cushion cover, and I couldn’t be happier with my decision to take up sewing. It makes me so so HAPPY :0) Xxx

 

It was meant to be a dress…

it didn’t quite work out as planned. I felt it looked more like a nightshirt and when the Husband agreed it was a done deal. So I turned it into a tunic instead. And I love it and have worn it so many times already. The fabric I got for my Birthday and it came from the fabulous Fabric Godmother, seriously that website is so dangerous for me! The fabric is a gorgeous crepe and it feels wonderful to wear. I think its sold out now otherwise I’d get some more.

Here’s a couple of pics of the dress version.

When I look at the pics again I quite like it now, I’m definitely going to have another go at making a dress version.

And now for the pics of the tunic.