Tag Archive: sewing and knitting

My Ancient Toyota Sewing Machine

First things first, the winner of my The Button Box giveaway is Ciao Linda. Do read the 157 comments about buttons – there are some lovely stories there. Whilst my Bernina is being serviced, I have done what I swore … Continue reading

read more

National Button Day Giveaway

Well, that’s my Bernina, off to be serviced. See you in a week, little fella. A week. Gulp. Distractions, distractions, need distractions… How about a giveaway? Did you know that it’s National Button Day today? Yup, turns out that there’s … Continue reading

read more

What Does A Sewing Blogger Do When She Can’t Sew Or Blog?

This is quite the dilemma. What does a sewing blogger do when her sewing machine isn’t working? Those issues I had with my last make? Tiny stitches and fabric that doesn’t want to feed. I’m having the same issues with … Continue reading

read more

Sewing A Jersey Breton Stripe Top

I can’t claim that this Tilly and the Buttons Agnes top was the easiest make but I can claim to love it! Why so tricky, Karen? Well first, there were the one million pins needed for stripe matching. Then there … Continue reading

read more

Top Five Tips For Sewing Meet Up Nerves

Over the years, I’ve been to a lot of sewing meet ups of all shapes and sizes… Whenever I meet someone new, they always tell me how nervous they are to join a bunch of sewing pals they’ve only previously … Continue reading

read more

Winter Culottes

Can you wear culottes in the winter? I think so. Pair wool and chiffon? Definitely! This is my third pair of B6178 worn with my chiffon Sew Over It Pussy Bow Blouse. The culottes are a dream to wear, sewn from … Continue reading

read more

Just Add Water

Water is water, isn’t it? Not when it comes to ironing – or should I say pressing. Do you know the difference? Ironing is when you use pressure and friction; when your iron glides across fabric. Pressing is when you … Continue reading

read more

Lost Your Sewing Nerve?

A blog reader (thanks, Jen!) recently made a fantastic suggestion for a post – how to push through when you lose your sewing nerve. A wobble can happen for all sorts of reasons: You take a break and lose your … Continue reading

read more

Lost Your Sewing Nerve?

A blog reader (thanks, Jen!) recently made a fantastic suggestion for a post – how to push through when you lose your sewing nerve. A wobble can happen for all sorts of reasons: You take a break and lose your … Continue reading

read more

Happy Autumnal Sewing

Is there anything more delicious for autumn than a new Tilly And The Buttons Cleo dungaree dress sewn in jumbo cord? Answer: Yes! New woollen tights to match the top stitching. Buttons bought on a long-ago trip to Hay on … Continue reading

read more

Less Than The Sum

This is The Pleat Detail Dress from Maker’s Atelier, and I can’t help feeling that I’ve sewn myself not quite the most flattering dress! Which is an awful shame, because the pattern is super-lovely, so is the linen and so … Continue reading

read more

Moving On

Oof. One of those days where the moment you step out of the front door your hair goes to hell. Damn you, humidity! I’ve finally worked this dress out of my system. I think. This is my fifth Charlie Caftan, … Continue reading

read more

What Would You Wear To A Party In 1940?

1932 design from Madeleine Vionnet: “When a woman smiles, her dress should smile too.” Wanna help me with some vintage fashion research? Go! You’re a young British woman in the late 1930s/early 1940s. At a party. Wearing a lovely dress. … Continue reading

read more

Dragonfly Fabrics Giveaway Winner

Just a bit of housekeeping this sleepy Sunday morning. The Random Number Generator picked the 72nd person (out of a massive 475 – thank you!) to sign up to my newsletter – and that’s Emma Martindale. Emma wins 2.5 metres … Continue reading

read more

What To Expect From The Handmade Fair, Hampton Court

The Handmade Fair at Hampton Court opened today and I popped along. Here are my Top Five Things To Expect. To bump into friends. Even better, arrange to meet them at the prosecco tent. 2. To join a queue at … Continue reading

read more

A Fabric Buyer’s Guide To Walthamstow Market

Feeling the fabric – when markets trump interwebs I first wrote a guide to Walthamstow market years ago, and it felt time to update it. Did you know? Walthamstow market is Europe’s longest market. It’s open every day, other than … Continue reading

read more

A Simple Guide To Tailoring A Coat

We need to talk about the innards of this beast. How do you sew a coat or jacket and avoid failure? Start with the details. This coat pattern has 76 – count ’em – steps. Ignore the running order of … Continue reading

read more

The Cocktail Hour Sewalong – V1537

How long does it take to sew a coat from scratch? Three weeks. What’s the best fabric to use? Keep reading… When it comes to sewalongs, The Cocktail Hour is a marathon not a sprint. In aid of The Eve … Continue reading

read more

How To Sew A Back Stay

If sewing a coat or jacket, it’s a good idea to add a back stay. This: Stops fabric from stretching out across the shoulders Stabilizes the back of the coat Increases the longevity of the make Improves the line of … Continue reading

read more

The Village Haberdashery & Hampstead Heath

Yesterday was Ella’s 5th birthday – so what better way to celebrate than with a trip to see Annie at The Village Haberdashery, with Ella wearing her High Five Kerchief? Sounded like a good idea to me! This was my first … Continue reading

read more

Practising bound buttonholes

I’m working on a project that requires four bound buttonholes. Bound buttonholes seem scary because you slice your scissors through a pattern piece. If you mess up, you mess up – and you’d better have spare fabric to hand. So, … Continue reading

read more

Summer Holidays – How To Still Make

The schools have broken up and everyone is off on their holibobs! But how do you squeeze making into the back of the car, along with everything else? This is why I love knitting. It’s so transportable. This was me … Continue reading

read more

Ogden Cami Sewing Tips

Fabric Choice Affects Sizing Take note of how tight the weave of your fabric is. A light, fluid viscose with a bit of spandex (my first version) is going to fit differently to a tightly woven silk (my second version). … Continue reading

read more

What Should I Sew This Weekend?

This! The Ogden Cami from True Bias. I tell ya, I’m in love and it layers up like a dream. Twinned with my Miriam cardigan from Quince & Co What do I like about this pattern? It’s a 13-page PDF … Continue reading

read more

The Great British Sewing Bee Live – Giveaway

First things first, you lucky people. Have you heard that 2017 is the year of the first live event associated with The Great British Sewing Bee? Highlights shall include: Over 100 workshops Live refashion challenges set to members of the … Continue reading

read more

She Walks In Beauty Like The Night Of Cloudless Climes

I expect at some point I shall get bored. Of making Charlie Caftans. Or maybe not. Two more future makes already light up my imagination. The question is: at what point do you reach maximum caftan on a sewing blog? Hey, … Continue reading

read more

Kaftans and Kimonos

The release of the Charlie Caftan reminded me how much I adore kaftans and kimonos. (We can debate the spelling of kaftan/caftan some other time!) Kaftans and kimonos are perfect for summer months – for home, for the beach, for … Continue reading

read more

Charlie Caftan In Viscose Victory

This beautiful viscose was kindly gifted to me by Bobbins & Buttons in Leicester. You can see their full supply of viscose here (though sadly none of this leaf print left). Don’t weep! I have found an alternative source of the … Continue reading

read more

Tips For Sewing The Charlie Caftan Bodice Panel

I thought I’d share my tips for sewing the bodice panel into view B of the Charlie Caftan from Closet Case Patterns. These steps are covered in pages 13-15 of the PDF instructions. As the instructions tell you, accuracy is … Continue reading

read more

Closet Case Patterns Charlie Caftan

It’s ages since I sewed from Closet Case Patterns, but as soon as I saw the Charlie Caftan I knew what I was doing with my weekend. Want to know how long this dress takes to sew from scratch? Five … Continue reading

read more