Sunday, 15 October 2017

Kitchen Curtain

Most people would find it rather insulting to be told their dress looks like a kitchen curtain.
 Me? Not so much. That's why I bought this dress. 
I really like happy floral fabrics! 
Quite unlike me, I bought this dress instead of making it. I saw some adorable things popping up from Joanie Clothing and thought a cheeky purchase was in order.

I thought I would be kind on myself and get a nice dress without all the work that goes in to making one myself.
But the problem with working in Alterations is that you can't wear a garment that doesn't fit right and yet you don't really want to be doing alterations when you get home from work. Vicious circle I know!!
And so this dress sat a while untouched before I mustered the will to get the sewing done.

Sewing wise, I let down the hem to the maximum( Joanie Clothing does tend to run short in length) and I managed to get an extra 1.5 inches length in the skirt. I also took in the bodice.
Not a huge amount of work for sure, but just enough to procrastinate from getting the job done.

And if this dress goes on sale at any point, I think I will buy another to make a kitchen curtain too. That would be super cute!

For its debut outing, I wore my curtain dress to the FrockMeVintage fair in Chelsea town hall. Which I was super excited to attend. But it was packed full of people and the stock was expensive and often not vintage at all, just second hand.

Also there were no other vintage wearing people about so I just looked a little blizzard, not that I minded, it just wasn't what I was expecting.

Outfit Details
Dress-Joanie Clothing
Cardigan- Me made- handknit Salal Cardigan by Andi Satterlund
Shoes- Rocket originals
Hair flower- Pinupcurl on Etsy
Sunglasses- Joanie Clothing
Belt- old H&M
Bag- vintage

I am glad that I managed to stop by the fair though, it was nice to swan about in a pretty dress just before summer ended.



Monday, 25 September 2017

Oh I do like to be beside the Seaside

I turned my back for a second, and summer is gone!
It won't stop me from wearing my pretty summer dresses though, I haven't even had my summer holiday yet!
Who needs to be dressed appropriately anyway!

This is not a dress I made, it was a vintage purchase that languished in my alterations pile, quite pitifully, for nines months before I bothered to take a look at it. 

The issue I had with this dress was that it was too tight in the bust, the rest fit perfectly (ok, maybe not perfectly, more like adequately, but that is pretty good for a ready to wear garment).

I managed to steal some gingham from the inside neck facing, which I replaced with a plain white cotton. I then used that scrap of fabric to add panels into the side seams for extra room.

It worked really well, though I also had to add in a little dart, as the panels made the armhole gape in front.
That is the issue with alterations, fixing one area often results in a problem popping up elsewhere. It's a vicious circle!

As  a sucker for gingham, what I like most about this dress is the mixing of the two sizes of check together and the use of bias cut pieces to create a different look.
I need to give this a try myself, it would be a lot of fun to play around with.

How cute are those pockets!

Patch pockets are definitely my favourite, It is a shame to hide pockets in the side seams where only you can appreciate their presence.
They should be slap bang in the middle of your frock, for the whole world to enjoy!

The yolk cut on the bias is so clever!
And the perfect brooch location!

It was the lining of the back yolk that I removed fabric for panels. You can't tell from the outside at all!
I was tempted to put in a new zip as well, as this one is sewn in a bit wobbly, but I'm trying to learn to accept the flaws in vintage garments and not try and make them perfect. It is a slippery slope for me once I start fixing things, I will just keep finding more work to do.

It's not the perfect garment, it was handmade by someone else long ago, I felt a bit bad actually opening it up and making judgements about the seamstress.

I wonder what someone will think one day when they look inside one of my garments. Hopefully it won't be a garment made the day before an event and finished in the car on the way! They would be seeing staples, and all sorts going on inside that no one should ever see!



Monday, 14 August 2017

Lavender lady

I have wanted to visit a lavender field for the longest time, so when an opportunity presented itself I knew I needed to make a dress to wear. 

I wanted something with a whimsical feel but a simple shape because it was a very last minute make and I didn't have a dress pattern to work from. 

The fabric is a cotton Broidery Anglaise which I had in stash.
 I don't usually like to keep fabric in stash because I find I tend to go off them if they don't get made into something while I am still excited about it. 
I had got to the point where I had forgotten what I had bought this fabric for and I was irritated that it was taking up space in my very limited storage. 

It is such a beautiful fabric though, and I didn't want it to go to waste. 

I used a classic men's coat buttons in brown down the front. 
They have an almost tortoise shell effect that I rather like, and compliments my new Joanie sunglasses that I picked up in their sale last week. 

I naturally had to team this dress with my favourite straw hat for a stroll about the lavender field! 

At first I cut the neckline totally straight, but I went back in mid sew and slightly curved it into a slight sweetheart shape, which I much prefer. 
It is still only a very subtle change but I do think it looks softer. 

Outfit Details
Dress- Me Made, self drafted
Hat- Old Accesorize
Sunglasses- Joanie Clothing

The hem ruffle is possibly my favourite element of the dress!
I allowed the scalloped edge to border the bottom hem and the result is such a sweet little detail. 

I am so happy with the result, and the white fabric photographed much better than I had thought it would! 
It's always such a shame when the beauty of something just doesn't translate well in a picture. 

My new favourite shoes from Rocket Originals are absolutely darling and go with practically everything! I would most definitely recommend the brand to anyone that has been on the fence about purchasing from them online. 

The lavender was magnificent, and the smell was intoxicating! 
I could smell it in the air as soon as I got off the bus. 

The Mayfield lavender field was a lovely little afternoon trip, it is always so refreshing to take a step away from the usual, everyday routine to see something special. 



And a special thank you to my lovely friend Maria who took an afternoon jaunt to the countryside and who took such lovely pictures for me. 

Tuesday, 27 June 2017

Butterick B6413

It's not often that I see a dress pattern and know instantly that I need to make it. 
But with this dress, I bought the pattern immediately. 
It is the Gertie pattern- Butterick B6413, based off the Fuchsia pink dress worn by Marilyn Monroe in the 1953 film 'Niagara'.

I made the dress up in a pale blue crepe, thinking that would make it a more daytime piece, and so more wearable.
 Turns out this dress is incredibly inappropriate for daytime attire, regardless of the fabric you choose.  
Could be the low cut neckline, or the bust peephole, but that didn't stop me wearing it out for brunch. 

I made one adjustment to this pattern, and that was to make the front tie detail a functional tie and not a faux detail.
 I am really happy that I took the time to do this adjustment, as it has come together really well!

Also, pastel pink and pastel blue seems to be a very pretty combination that I must remember for future sewing plans! 

My vintage dead stock jewellery set matched the outfit perfectly, so I finally managed to wear it.
 I had put it away because it was much larger than I had thought it would be, when I ordered it online. It is also incredibly delicate and I was afraid to damage it. 

Outfit Details
Dress- Me Made, Butterick B6413
Jewellery- Vintage Dead stock, Bow and Crossbones
Shoes- Old, Agnes and Norman

I shamelessly chose this location after finding that this little cafe was an Instagram hotspot. Not my usual requirement for the backdrop for my pictures, but it was so pretty, I had to pay a visit.  

Just look at that picturesque setting. Adorable!!

And I now officially want a vintage bicycle with a basket full of flowers. 
Which is ridiculous as I have no bicycle riding attire or the ability to ride a bicycle on the roads in London without being run over by a bus. 



Tuesday, 6 June 2017

Spoonflower Rue Dress

Polka dots are definitely one of my favourite prints!
So when I was approached by Spoonflower who print custom fabrics, I went straight for the polka dots. 

Polka dots prints are usually repeat prints with a symmetry to them, but what I liked most about this print is the random placement, it gives it that more designer feel and seems like a fun and happy print. It is also extremely difficult to find prints with a soft cream base, opposed to a harsh white. 

I wanted a pretty summer dress that would be elegant but also fun and playful. 

To showcase this stunning cream and red polka dot print, I decided to sew up the Rue dress from Colette patterns. 
This dress is a classic shape with some interesting details which need a crisp but not too stiff fabric to maintain the shape. 
The Kona® Cotton Ultra fabric that I chose was the perfect choice for this pattern, it's heavier weigh held the skirt and bust pleats in shape perfectly and was very easy to sew. 

The piping in this pattern was incredibly exciting! I don't often get the chance to use it, so it was a nice addition to this project. The red piping really does make the polka dots pop!

Although the skirt of the dress is pleated, it isn't super full, so I feel that I can wear it that little bit more casually. 
Of course my idea of casual is somewhat skewed, as this dress to me is a casual look. We should wear the clothes we love everyday, and not just for special occasions!

I added my Cupid brooch from The Pink Bungaloo to jazz up the simple bodice, this can be a difficult brooch to wear as it is on the larger side and won't sit nicely on a collar, but it is quite at home on this dress. 

Outfit Details
Dress- Me Made, Collette Rue dress. And sewn with Spoonflower cotton fabric
Brooch- Pink Bungaloo
Shoes- Rocket Originals, Ida shoes in Red suede

This has been such a fun project, it was so liberating to choose the exact fabric that I wanted, from such a huge range of choices.

And I have ended up with a pretty summer dress which I need to take on picnics, to the seaside and the circus! 



Please note, I received this fabric without charge for my collaboration with Spoonflower, my opinions are of course my own. 

Sunday, 16 April 2017


Happy Easter dear readers, and what better day to reveal my #EasterSpringDress2017

  When I saw that Gertie was hosting a sew along for her summer dress pattern-Butterick B6453, I dropped all other sewing projects and had to start sewing this dress.

It also quite happily fitted in with the #EasterSpringDress2017 sew along that Akram from Akram's ideas blog and Judith from Judith Dee's World hosted.
So it ended up being extra fun!

It is a super simple and fun make, which allows a pretty print to be centre stage.

And the little straps have metal sliders which make the straps adjustable and give a professional, polished finish.

I wore this particular outfit to Greenway Estate in Devon, which was of course the summer home of the British author Agatha Christie- but then you already knew that, I'm sure.

It ended up being an incredibly warm and sunny day, perfect for wondering around the gardens in a pretty floral dress.

You can just see the house in the background. 

And never one to go on an outing without a craft of some sort, I spent a little while sat outside doing a little knitting in a deck chair, absorbing some sunshine.
How very British!

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