Fabric from Tanzania…

I’ve been given some gorgeous fabric from a colleague/friend who recently came back from her trip home to Tanzania. I am incredibly touched that she thought of me whilst so far away.

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The fabric is printed in panels and usually sold as two panels. The two panels together measure nearly 3 metres and they are 1metre wide. You can find lots of examples on google. Whilst usually used for traditional dress in Africa I will be using mine for probably an Imogen top! I reckon I can make quite an interesting one using the border print for certain pieces of the pattern.

I believe the words in the middle of the panel mean “Thank God” in Swahili.

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I can’t wait to get cracking on making this into something lovely. Thank you Mia, rafiki yangu. Xx

“Sew me something”, Imogen pattern hack…

The last Imogen top I made if you remember I made about 8cm longer in the bodice and 11cm longer in the sleeves. I really really like those lengths on me so I’ve made an addition to the paper pattern to make it easier for me next time I make one (which will be soon).

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A VERRY MERRY CHRISTMAS…

To you all. And a big thank you to everyone that reads my little blog! And I wish you all

A HAPPY NEW YEAR! Xxxx

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Sleeveless navy…

So I had some of the navy jersey left over. It was just enough to make a sleeveless top, which was somewhere in length between the tunic top and the regular top. Now I’m not too keen on the sleeveless look on me any more but I just couldn’t waste that amount of fabric so I had to go for it.

And I’m really glad I did.

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I could only manage to get a top out of the amount of fabric I had left because its jersey and doesn’t need a facing of any kind. and I do so love the seams don’t need finishing, as it made for a really quick make. 3 hours in total.

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I simply folded over the edge of the armholes and the neck by 1.5cm and sewed in place. I know a lot of sewers frown on this, but I say if it works why not?

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It hangs really nice. Its a lovely weighty jersey.

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Apologies for the headless pics, but had really bad bed head hair!

I’ve decided I don’t mind sleeveless on me when its in a plain fabric and a certain length. I think I might even try a sleeveless dress for summer.

 

In the Navy…

Lovely lovely lovely navy jersey that is!

I have Tweaked the Trapeze pattern again and now have the perfect length for a mini dress or a tunic top. The last post was about a mini dress this one is about a tunic top. Giving it a very small hem this time as this jersey fabric didn’t sit too well without.

I’ve made two now, the first one was Ok but the sleeves puckered up a bit, its wearable but not great.

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See those two giant tucks in the sleeves. I tried unpicking the sleeve on the left and redoing it, which improved it a bit. It was far worse before.

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The rest of it worked out fine though and I love the length. Looks perfect with jeans.

And below is the slightly better one, sleeves still not quite perfect but looks much more acceptable.

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The fabric was lovely to work with and feels gorgeous against the skin. Fabric came from Fabric godmother and was I think £14 a metre, quite pricey but it is quality stuff. I bought 3 metres of it and managed to make 3 items from it, so worked out quite cost efficient in the end.

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Works well with my jacket too.

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Wore it for a day out in London recently. Was very comfortable.

 

Does your mood affect your sewing…

Mine does. I haven’t made anything since July! I just haven’t been in the right head space to feel creative I’m afraid. I have had and do have many ideas of things I want to make but I’m just not feeling the flow of creativity to my hands. So I apologise for a lack of sewing blog posts at the moment. I have just bought a truckload of fabric so hopefully having some lovely new fabrics will help inspire me.

Here’s some pics though of something I did do this last weekend. SAILING! yes, I went sailing. haven’t been for nearly 5 years. Stopped enjoying it, had one too many bad experiences. However recently I’ve been feeling the call to sea again. So I went out with my husband, who has been single handing since I stopped going with him. which is just as well  as I can’t remember a damn thing about boats and what do to do with all those ropes. So I was just a passenger.

And luckily/amazingly the weather, wind and sea state were all in harmony for once. THIS NEVER HAPPENS, NEVER! Well at least not to me. But it was amazing and wonderful and I loved it.

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The above pic is when we were heading out, and below was when we’d tacked and were heading back.

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My Husband, the Skipper.

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Perfect sea state.

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Look at that beautiful sparkly sea.

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Above and below, looking towards Beachy Head. Below you can just about see another couple of boats. It was quite busy out there, lots of people taking advantage of the glorious weather.

 

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We were only out for a couple of hours, but believe me it was quite a triumph for me to overcome my fears and actually make it out of the harbour. So I am very pleased with myself.

We moor the boat in Eastbourne Marina, where she has been for about 8 years now. And on a sunny day you can easily believe you’re in the Med.

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Above and below are views from the balcony at the Sovereign Harbour Yacht club. In the pic below you can just about see our little boat, she has a purple towel hanging. Just in front of the pale blue building to the left of the pic.

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And of course a little bottle of Prosecco or two doesn’t hurt…

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And then there are the gorgeous sunsets…

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We spent two nights at the Marina on the boat and its like a little holiday. Especially when the weather is good.

So thats one of the things I’ve been doing instead of sewing. The other it seems is work, and I don’t have any pics of that!

 

A wedding…

Went to the wedding of my middle Niece Kim last month. I wore this..

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Which I wore to a wedding reception at the beginning of the year. Very happy to have worn it more than once, as its the most expensive fabric I’ve bought yet!

Here’s a pic of the lovely Bride and Groom and the Brides aunts my Sister and I, and our other halves.

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And the beautiful Bride and her Groom. Her dress was stunning, I especially loved the skirt. Was not made by me!

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It was a fabulous wedding. Been so long since I’ve been to a family wedding and it was much fun. Looking forward to the next one now and wondering what I’ll make for that?

Tie me up…

I added ties to the black crepe rectangle top I made a while ago, was just playing about to begin with to see if I could add shape to it. And it worked.

Before…

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And after…

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Wore it on a girls night out recently, only I ended up wearing it with flat sandals, didn’t take any pics unfortunately as I didn’t think I looked any good, but on reflection I didn’t look any worse than anyone else there that night. And I was comfortable.

I simply cut out two strips of the fabric the same as the top, and zig zagged all the way round the edge, then sewed them to the side seams. Simple yet effective.

 

Oh flipping heck…

Shortened another dress. This time the grey Trapeze dress. Only not exactly shortened but decided to hem it properly, so it was shortened by about 1.5cm.

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I think it shows the way the hem dips down to the back more clearly. I’m very happy now. Loved it before but wasn’t happy with how frayed it looked even though I’d zig zagged the edge.

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Its only a slight difference, but above is before and below is after.

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Gigi Trapeze top…

One of my work colleagues was going home to India last year for a visit, and I asked her if it wouldn’t be too much trouble and she had the time, if she could possibly bring me back some fabric? She was unsure as wasn’t sure what I would like or what sort of colours I like. I said I really didn’t mind anything, but can’t do Yellow! So she said she’d see what she could do. I of course said I’d pay her, and I didn’t mind what cost, we discussed what I usually paid for fabric here and she seemed happy she could probably find me something. I was just excited at the possibility of something different, maybe something I wouldn’t pick for myself.

And boy did she deliver. I loved it when I first saw it. The pattern was quite different to anything I might have picked for myself, so I was pleased about that. However it did take me nearly a year to make it into something.

And guess what I made?  Oh yeah you don’t need to its in the title. DOH!

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There we are, a lovely Trapeze top. I’m not sure how much fabric there was, but I think at least 2 meters. One of the reasons it took me a while to turn it into anything was I wanted to make a Trapeze top but didn’t know if I’d have enough, as the fabric was about 115cm wide. Unfortunately I lost the pic of the pattern pieces laid out on the fabric, as there was only just enough, and it was lucky I wanted to make it with short sleeves.

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Took me a while to decide which way up I wanted the pattern to be, but I think really its a no brainer that the red is at the top. At first I could see a sort of abstract flower design in the pattern but rather disturbingly it turned into a red devil wearing a black suit! What do you think? Anyway I love it, and Gigi wouldn’t let me pay for it as she couldn’t remember how much it was! So I’ve named it the Gigi top.

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Not sure if the necklace goes or not?

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Pattern matching didn’t happen as it was too tight a fit to have the luxury and also I’m rubbish at it…

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I love it, the cotton is so so soft, feels like I’m wearing a cloud. It will be perfect for when/if the summer ever gets going.