Wanda revisited

I always wonder if old patterns I made still work so when I was about to make this dress in silk, I thought I should make it in a fabric that was easier on my anxiety level.

Working with silk is always a raised anxiety level project so when I used this paisley damask fabric, the chill factor kicked in.

Piping worked again on the neckline at that the waistline too.

The bodice is fully lined for this version and I’ve hand sewn the hem.

This fabric didn’t need to be matched but all the seams match.
The key adjustment was made along the bust pleats. They are too wide so I had to hand stitch the outer bust pleat. It just looked weird – out of place.

Another dress pattern that works!

Me made May 2016 final

The end of May was an absolute whirlwind but I did manage to photograph what I wore.
It was still warm in mid-May and you can tell from these photos.

Brynna dress

Some days at work I didn’t need a jacket so this cotton dress was fine for work. 

Simplicity top using John Kaldor fabric and a trusty red skirt from years ago.

It was nice to make and wear a new colourful Simplicity (1425) top to go with a trusty red skirt made way back. All of my skirts are fully lined.

McCalls 6460

Again it was a warm day so I wore this dress as I added pockets to the side seams for work.

Burda blouse and fully lined pants

The Burda shirt 2564 is a Minerva make from last year. The Burda pants are fully lined pants that work well when it gets cold. I made these 5 years ago.

Vogue 1204 jeans and Vogue 8815 top

When I got up in the morning, it was time for a bit of colour because there were a few office functions on that day. Both pieces are Vogue patterns and are three years old.

Then I got to wear a New Look top using shiny lycra top with my black jeans on a night out. It still was warm enough to go without a jacket. I can see why I like sci-fi costumes. The jeans were my Minerva jeans from 2 years ago.

Tessallate tee and Steeplechase leggings.

 Again I paired this new Tessallate tee from for Winter with a previously made pair of leggings. The colours work well together and brighten up a 5.30am gym room.

Vogue 1378 jeans, Burda 7140 jacket and Tessellate test tee 

So you can see the activities at the end of May drained a lot of my energies. I had to go to a workshop the day I wore this so I just threw anything together. The jeans are a Minerva Crafts project too.

Candor outfit made from factory cut offs
I loved wearing this outfit to work. It was another tough day but knowing I had two new pieces on made me start the day out better.
Butterick 6062 coat, stripe tee and Jalie 2908 jeans
On the last Saturday night is was cold so I got to wear my new coat with Jalie jeans and a green stripe top.
Burda 7140 jacket and Simplicity 2154 pencil skirt

The cold finally hit last week so I was able to drag out the boots for these Me Made pieces. So you’ve seen the Dauntless jacket again because it’s so comfortable. The skirt is a new one to be blogged. The top was made a few years ago too.

1960s Simplicity 2154 jacket and pencil skirt: to be blogged.

It was finally cold enough to wear this 1960s set using Elliott Berman fabric worn with a grey wrap top.

The bottom line is, Me Made May gave me to opportunity to wear new pieces with some favourite existing pieces. 
I hope everyone who participated enjoyed the experience. Thanks Zoe.

Sweet paisley aka Marrikesh

Paisley. Such a classic print. So why not make a classic knit dress?

Burda 7828 has a summer knit dress but a long sleeve top – switch the pieces and you get a knit dress that can be layered for Winter – fabric provided by Pitt Trading called Marrikesh.

Winter Burda 7828

With a set of boots, this becomes a bit 70s.

Love wearing this dress with my Quart coat: my Pitt Trading Winter look.

The colours are bold and the fabric is strong and opaque.  
Pitt Trading just happened to have a lovely red fold over elastic I used on the neckline of this dress to go with this Marrikesh print.

Sewing on the fold over elastic on the neckline

Pitt Trading has lots of these knits (from a designer in Sydney) in store now. The original idea for using swimwear fabric for non-swimwear clothes was the Jillian’s idea.

Sylvia did a good job tempting me with some lovely prints but I stuck to this Marrikesh print with a contrasting trim.

So no need to line this dress for everyday wear. I’ve worn this dress a few times now.

I originally thought to make this fabric into the same style top bu decided to make this into a winter workout top using Kwik Sew 3567

Kwik Sew 3567

All the seams are overlocked in white. I’ve machine sewed the v-neckline flat and twin needle stitched the hems. All in about 2 hours – a very quick sew!

It get a bit chilly in the weights room at the moment.

That’s a measly 10kg bar. You gotta start somewhere.

This top does the trick in keeping me warm in between sets. The girls at the gym love this top. Yes – they know I make most of my activewear.

I’m trying to choose a weight #newbie.

You might notice this is a really long top. That’s so I can hang on the bars (while trying to find my waist) and not show any skin to the general public.

I do prefer like wearing this top with jeans, so it’s very versatile. 

Jillian at Sew Unravelled also gave herself the challenge of working with the latest lycra prints from Pitt Trading this month. Jillian has stretched herself with sewing lycra but you’ll love what she’s created using Jalie’s latest legging pattern Cora. Jillian’s done an awesome job. You have to have a look at her latest post.

Thank you to Sylvia and Julia for providing me with these fabrics and Susan for her amazing sewing knowledge.

PS: I do have enough of this print and powermesh for a pair of bathers.


I wore these ‘test’ Esther ‘ shorts when we traveled earlier this year. They did the trick.

I widened the inner thigh seam because I cycle.

Increased the depth of the centre back crotch curve to suit my shape.

Lengthened the centre back seam for sway back by 3cm.
My husband is convinced I need to see physio for my sway back curve. He could be right.

Checked the waist width and adjusted the grainline.

The seams are 1/2″ on this pattern and it uses an invisible zipper on the left side seam.

So the first version felt big on me so tapering this in at the centre seams and back darts before I added the waistband was an easy fix. 

The leg length is 2″ too long for my height (#petite) so again, that was easy to adjust. 
Then I shortened the body pieces by 1″ (#toohighwaist). Another easy adjustment.

Here’s version two.

I’ve added a feature that I like on shorts – a zipper fly. The other feature I would add to a future pair are belt loops. 

The pattern matching was fun. The invisible zip is not so invisible…

Here’s the final set using Vogue 8815 peplum top.

So I think I now have a cute shorts set to wear for the Summer BBQ season.

Minerva make – I just couldn’t decide

These two great shirt fabrics from Minerva Crafts screamed ‘shirt’ for my work summer wardrobe. And their colours are strong enough to contrast against the purple fabric. But I love a good shirt and a good shirtmaker dress. So that’s what I did.

Classic shirt using Pattern Magic collar
January is one of our hottest months in Australia. It’s holiday time for lots of people until after Australia Day (26 January).

If you work in an office, the aircon can be icy but you’ll get a warm blast of heat as you leave the office at the end of the day. 

The fabric is a stretch sateen and when I prewashed it, I thought the pink/red colour would run into the white background and it didn’t. Hurrah. This fabric is also easy to manipulate where the pattern has easing. 

I wanted to make a white shirt with a twist so the fabric is kinda white but the collar (with two distinct impressions) is from Pattern Magic. My Pattern Magic collar post is here

This shirt (Butterick 5538) was adjusted for me at a workshop but I took more volume out of the side back piece because the shirt felt a bit too loose on the previous versions. It sits much closer to me without pulling lines. The centre back panel needs a sway back adjustment.

I did a test collar construction last week, just to refresh my memory and make sure I didn’t waste this fabric from Minerva.

Because this fabric is a bit heavy, the collar looks like a double collar, which it is. It just doesn’t sit up as I wanted.

Using a satin bias tape finished the collar constructions nicely. I love how the french seams give this shirt a beautiful finish.

Check out the buttons Vicki chose for this shirt. Thanks Vicki.

 I used tiny white buttons on the cuffs from my stash. 

This works well with my Minerva trousers and jacket. If this was a summer weekend blouse, I wouldn’t have included the sleeves, but for work, sleeves are a must.

Shirtmaker dress
This classic, dark paisley print was meant for a second shirt but because the paisley is large and I’m short, I thought the fabric and I would look better if this was a shirtmaker dress. 

This fabric is a light weight cotton, washes easily and irons so well. Another good choice. I love a well ironed dress. And the dark print hides creases too.

This pattern (New look 6214) has a two-piece collar and this fabric was lovely to work with. This is the third time I’ve made this dress so all the adjustments were already done last year.

Vicky was the ‘button master’ for this dress. And as I changed my mind (women’s perogative), I used self cover buttons on the skirt.

I’ve used a bias tape to finish the waist seaming. 

The same bias tape is used as piping on the sleeve. And I made a belt with it too.

French seams were used throughout the rest of the dress.

It’s great to wear and I can pair this with my Minerva jacket. 

Does this all match too much? 
I love my Minerva summer work collection – trousers, jacket, knit top, blouse, dress and skirt. I got the skirt fabric from the left over jacket piece.


Hop over to Minerva Crafts and see what fabrics catch your eye for your own summer collection.

Fabric stash #4 – summer silk McCalls 5050

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} catch(err) {} I bought this fabric on sale a Tessuti’s a couple of years ago and I easily made it into a top. French seams are a must but the fabric is so soft, making the top is just so enjoyable to do.
Don’t get me wrong, it’s not smooth sailing because the last time I made up this top, I placed elastic on the sleeve so I automatically did the same to this top and the effect was useless.
The top of sleeves didn’t match to the top of the front and back views so I breathed deeply and used my scissors to make them match.
The fabric needs very little ironing and I used see-through elastic on the waistline and neckline. Again, I had to be courageous when I placed the wider elastic directly on the waistline. I also had to adjust the neckline elastic so that the neckline fell nicely on me decolletage.
It’s steaming hot outside so I’m happy to stay inside with the aircon and sew a few nice summer pieces for the fabric stash contest.

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