Tuesday, 23 January 2018

Pattern review: Sudley dress by Megan Nielsen

The Sudley dress by Megan Nielsen ticks all the boxes for me. Its loose-style means I can eat all the food. It is simple and easy to make, with an easy tie fastener. Even better, the dress is reversible! It requires light to medium wovens which is great for me as I love working with viscose.

It also has my guilty pleasure as one of the main design features – the Peter Pan collar. Now, a Peter Pan collar is very Blair Waldorf in 2009 (XOXO) but for me, this type of preppy dress will always be in-style.

Difficulty: Easy
Fabric: lightweight crushed velvet and polyester mix
Sewing time: 1 day

Tuesday, 9 January 2018

New year, new stitch

It's a new year and when January the 1st hits, we all measure our self-worth and decide on how we can make our lives just that little bit better. For me, it's not about beating myself up for not blogging, or not sewing, but rather working out where I want my sewing journey to go over the next year.

So here's to a year of smashing content, Insta-worthy photos and creative makes like no other.

Find out what I got up to in 2017 and what my #2018makenine features.

Sunday, 13 August 2017

My summer wardrobe 2017

It's probably a coincidence that summer arrived and there has been a huge lack of activity on my blog, and on my Instagram profile.

This year, I've struggled to find the time to make anything in the midst of weddings, bank holidays, festivals and beach days this summer. Much like the constant change in weather and the traditional British 'summer', I've also had ups and downs in having the motivation and inspiration to sew.

There have, however, been some really exciting makes over the past few months, and my summer wardrobe has been a pivotal change in my usual style and the shapes and silhouettes I usually go for.

From the classic fit and flare dresses that I'm used to (the Orla dress) to the silky, strappy shift style of the New Look 6499, this is my summer wardrobe:

Sunday, 23 April 2017

Sewing Cleo

The Cleo dunagree dress has probably been one of the most popular independent sewing patterns in the past year; it seems like everyone on Instagram has made one, so much so, Tilly (and the Buttons) claimed there was an international shortage of dunagree buckles!

The pattern has revolutionised dressmaking, by being both a bang-on-trend statement piece, but also a design which is a dream for all creators. The fabric options are vast, and the outfit opportunities for such a versatile dress are endless. It's been so exciting to see everyone's Cleos and I finally jumped on the band wagon.

I had some leftover mid-weight stretch denim in my stash and fortunately, the Cleo only requires around 1m of fabric making it the perfect stash buster, or a super cheap make.

The hammer-on jeans buttons in bronze and the bronze dungaree clips came from eBay, although I have also since picked up a pair of dunagree clips from Fabric Land for a mere 55p.

The process of the Cleo is super easy - it's the first time I've used a Tilly and the Buttons pattern and it didn't disappoint from the raving reviews I've heard before. I have recommended her patterns to newbie dressmakers and can't wait to see what she brings out in her second book (coming soon).

I like how the centre seam is top-stiched to create a really professional finish to the denim, and the edge stitching also creates a good effect. I opted out of having the centre front pocket, or the hip pockets on this dress as I wanted a clean dunagree look without the dress being too busy. I also think the pockets might have made it look a little childish, which considering I'm shorter than some actual human children this wouldn't have been a good look for me!

When I finished the Cleo I wasn't particularly happy with it and ended up taking the side seams in to make it more fitted rather than loose and baggy. I didn't think a dunagree dress would need fitting as such, but I certainly feel more comfortable with having it hug my waist and hips, rather than just hanging off me.

I also used some leftover bias binding on the seams which is something I've not done before. This actually made me feel so much better about the dress even though the seams are hidden.

Much better...

This has been such an easy make and I'm already planning more Cleos for the summer and taking some inspiration from the amazing dressmakers on Instagram - so many Cleos, so little time.

Sunday, 8 January 2017

Seamwork Magazine pattern reviews: Adelaide and Astoria

I'd been lusting over the Seamwork Adelaide and Astoria patterns since I discovered independent pattern labels on Instagram; the Adelaide has an effortless, casual look to it, and the Astoria meant venturing into a new world of knitwear.

So, when I decided to sign up for Seamwork magazine, these were the first two on my list of downloads.

If you don't already know, Seamwork magazine is released as a PDF every month to subscribers. The subscription only costs a few pounds (charged in dollars) and includes enough credits for 2 downloads a month. There's a mix of cool patterns which are modern and practical - most aren't my style but they're a great alternative to the patterns you get from mainstream labels.

The magazine itself is beautifully designed, with great photography, interesting articles and fresh takes on fashion.

So how did my first Seamwork makes go?


I downloaded the Adelaide after seeing some great versions across social media. One of my favourites was a white cotton version, without the belt, which looked like it came straight from the 90s. I wasn't sure on what I'd want my own version to look like - denim would be too stiff, poly cotton may not be casual and viscose would be great, but the pattern calls for a sturdy fabric.

Sunday, 1 January 2017

Hello 2017

Happy new year and all that jazz! It's 2017, a new year has sprung and it's that time when people make resolutions for the year ahead.

For me, a resolution isn't something I must keep, it's just where my priorities lie at the moment, and when better to work out my current priorities than the start of a new year.

2016's resolutions were a mixed bag of ideas... you can see the full blog post here to see what I had initially planned, but I can tell you now that I didn't stick to it. But that's ok. I didn't really need a dinosaur print dress or a maroon blouse. I failed at making the Ultimate Trousers (it's on this year's list again) and I didn't bother trying fabrics such as damask or wool which were also on my list.

Sunday, 9 October 2016

The Seamstress Tag

The Seamstress Tag has been going around YouTube and I've loved learning more about my fave sewing ladies and discovering new people to follow!

I definitely do not have a YouTube account because I struggle to keep up with my blog, let alone editing video, so here's my written version of the tag.

  1. Who are you?

    Hellooo, I'm Jenny. You can find me on Instagram and Twitter to find more about me and my makes.
  2. When and why did you start sewing?

    I've sewn as long as I can remember, making clothes for my dolls with old pairs of socks and tights. My mum has always been into stitching so she taught me how to use a needle and thread. It wasn't until I was in my teens that I really wanted to make my own clothes because I didn't find anything I liked in the shops. And... the rest is history really!
  3. What is your favourite or proudest make?

    My Simplicity Blogger Challenge dress from last year pushed me into understanding the shapes of patterns and how I can use my creativity to create something quite different to the style of dress laid out for me. I also got to use an old skirt of my Grandma's as the main fabric, so that in itself is something I'm super proud of.

  4. What is your most disasterous make?