• Dresses

    Watercolour Papercut Patterns Adrift

    Hello everyone. This pretty spring dress is crying out to be worn! I can’t wait to take it for a stroll through Ilkley. It’s colourful and floaty and just perfect for the start of fresher weather.

    almond rock watercolour  Papercut Patterns Adrift dress with Abakhan viscoseI partnered with Abakhan for this make. They let me choose something from their new Spring/Summer collection of fabrics and I chose this stunner which has now sold out but there’s plenty more in the collection to enjoy. It was sent out the fabric for free to see what I’d make with it. 

    almond rock watercolour  Papercut Patterns Adrift dress with Abakhan viscose
    I chose the Adrift pattern which has a lovely frilled skirt. There’s a draw string waist dress or darted skirt option. You can also add frilly sleeves to the bodice but they were a bit too frilly for my liking so I adjusted to use cap sleeves. The bust darts are mostly for show. I made a size S dress bodice by laying my Mayberry dress size 12 pattern pieces on top to get a similar fit since that is also a cinched pattern with waist ties. I also used the Mayberry dress sleeves since it’s such a similar bodice and adjusted the armholes to match. Then I graded out to an XXL at the hip.

    almond rock watercolour  Papercut Patterns Adrift dress with Abakhan viscoseThe fabric has so many lovely colours in it. The reason I love viscose is that lovely drape and cool smooth feel to the fabric. It’s important to pre-wash viscose as it does shrink and use a nice sharp needle to avoid pulls. I overlocked all the edges as viscose frays a lot too. almond rock watercolour  Papercut Patterns Adrift dress with Abakhan viscoseLengthening the skirt was a real challenge. There were no clues on the pattern or the Papercut website for how to approach this. I ended adding about 3″ to the upper area of the skirt where the ruffle is relatively straight on the front, so I could then extend the frill pieces at the top rather than the middle. It was successful in the end but it may not be the right want to do it. I’m 5ft4 ish and if I had to add 3″ I wonder how indecent the length is on a taller woman!

    almond rock watercolour  Papercut Patterns Adrift dress with Abakhan viscose
    The finished dress is pretty cute and I’m sure will get lots of wear this year when life starts to return to normal. One of my friends already commented that she wants to see the fabric in real life which is lovely. And I could imagine wearing it around the Mediterranean one day too. If you pick up anything from the collection, let me know! I’d love to see what you make. You should definitely check out Rosey Sews’ gorgeous skirt in the same fabric.

  • Tops, blouses and shirts

    Watercolour Sutton blouse

    Hello everyone! Things are returning back to normal and I’m pleased I’ve had time to write blog posts here and there. I’ve got to write up about my honeymoon wardrobe but maybe that will be a fun activity when the inevitable crap weather arrives. It’s already gone pretty chilly so I’m trying to plan winter garments (something I’m rubbish at). I also made sure to sign myself up to the 2019 Dressmaker’s Ball! It was such a blast last time, I had to get in on the fun again! Will I see you there?

    almond rock sutton blouse true bias indie patterns croft mill polyester

    So what am I sharing today? I made another version of the Sutton blouse by True Bias. Again, without the centre front seam and self made bias binding for that lovely inside finish.

    I think this will be my last but I’m still happy with how this great little scrap buster turned out. The shoulder yoke means you can get the pattern out of short length of 60″ wide fabric, because the front and back bodices are much shorter. I wore this top a lot on honeymoon as it was breezy but still pretty, but it’s important (for me) to wear a camsiole underneath where possible as one lean over and you can see everything down the front. Ooh la la!

    almond rock sutton blouse true bias indie patterns croft mill polyester

    Polyester like this watercolour print, can be prone to snag so I always use a sharp needle around size 70. Static cling will always be a risk, but that  camsiole top underneath will help with that too. French seams are great for the yoke seams but those pesky side splits and drop hem mean overlocking and pressing open your seams is needed. That lower hem is great bum coverage though!

    almond rock sutton blouse true bias indie patterns croft mill polyester

    I love the colours in this 100% polyester print; teal, brick and blush. It’s from Croft Mill and is slightly sheer but with a good handle and weight. It didn’t shrink in the wash and I took care not to put a hot iron near it, using a pressing cloth where needed. Staystitching that neckline is a must by the way, as it’s quite open and would surely stretch out just by looking at it wrong if you didn’t haha.

    almond rock sutton blouse true bias indie patterns croft mill polyester

    If I look a little delirious in these photos, they were taken at the end of a crazily long shoot day with what felt like a thousand props to pack away at the end of the day. Some days all I want to do after photoshoots is get in the bath, then get my jammies on and then go straight to sleep. I think I need to build up my stamina!

  • Other stuff

    Raise your glasses! *clink clink*

    Oooh happy news in Sewing Land!

    A new pattern company for us to drool over and patterns which can race to the top of our sewing queues.

    almond rock capital chic patterns

    Capital Chic is a new, independent sewing pattern company based in London and offering work wear, cocktail wear and day-to-night looks. The designs have a wonderful modern, fashionable feel, with clean lines and excellent attention to detail.

    The patterns currently come in sizes UK 10-18 and are designed for the intermediate to advanced sewer. The Summer 2014 collection comprises six patterns (each with multiple options) which if you haven’t guessed are available right now as print-at-home PDF files.

    And lookie! All the patterns are named after cocktails… mmmm delicious.

    Here’s a little taste of what you can expect:

    Martini almond rock capital chic patterns

    Martini is a cocktail dress with a twist. A crop-top shape with an above-the-waist skirt, the silhouette creates the illusion of a narrow waistline. It comes either as separates OR as a lined dress that looks like separates. Genius.

    White Russian almond rock capital chic patterns

    White Russian is a cute sweatshirt; use pre-quilted jersey or sweatshirt fabrics for quilting your own design. The pattern comes with templates for lion and fox quilting and appliqué designs.

    Bellini almond rock capital chic patterns

    Bellini is a loose-fitting, cap sleeved blouse with either a cutaway collar or (my favourite) a scalloped collar. The collar provides a blank canvas for embellishment (sequins, beads or sew-on gems), or contrasting fabric like leather/pleather for an edge.

    manhattan almond rock capital chic patterns

    Manhattan is a more than just a pencil skirt thanks to the curved side panel. View A has a sexy, jagged hemline and exposed zip, or View B for a chance to showcase special fabrics in the curved side panel.

    Click through to see the final two patterns in the collection Champagne and Cosmopolitan, and make sure to visit all the patterns to see line drawings for the garments, oodles more photos of the variations for each garment… you won’t be disappointed.

    So have you spotted someone familiar in these photos?

    Bellini almond rock capital chic patterns

    Capital Chic is designed by Sally, who you should all know from her fabulous refashion blog Charity Shop Chic. Did you know she’s a self-taught pattern maker and sewer? And if you haven’t guessed her influences include the catwalk, the red carpet and London street style.

    I love that Sally has focused her creativity on pattern drafting for the rest of us! It’s really nice to see extra touches like French seams, zip guards and boning included in the patterns and instructions. Plus I’ve had the pleasure of sharing a cocktail (or two) with her in the past. Congratulations Sally!

    I can’t wait to sew up the Bellini blouse and share it with you all. So tell me which is your favourite?