Liberty rethink

This is one of the first Liberty print fabrics I bought 4 years ago but I was too scared to cut into it. It’s called Daydream blue/purple and it’s a silk cotton voile.

I bought this print because the colours are dark and the print is two-way. That makes it much easier to ‘match’ across the body.

While it’s now a new work Liberty shirt, it’s much softer and I probably should have made this into a soft-styled top and not a traditional shirt. 

I do enjoy wearing this and this new shirt does work with my work skirts and jackets.

What’s next?
There are a few more Liberty prints in my stash that I bought at Mood LA with PammyOh on my last holiday so I’ll have to do some research to figure out a better way of using lighter weight prints. Got any suggestions?

Liberty love

This Strawberry thief print was a remnant from my previous White Tree Fabrics dress. It’s too lovely to let languish in the fabric stash so it’s now a shirt (McCalls 5433).

Work look

The original plan was to make a short-sleeved shirt, but there was enough for a basic long-sleeved shirt. I can always roll up the sleeves when I wear this shirt to work.


I had a couple of hours one morning with no power at home, so in desperation to do something, I cut out two shirts. I don’t like wasting time but I wasn’t going to do the housework as a substitute to sewing.



When I work with prints, there’s always the issue of print placement and do I add piping or not. Thankfully this pattern has a folded button band at the front so I can play with print placement and button placement.


Heading out to drinks look

This year one of our local retailers sold Liberty print shirts and when I saw the retail price I decided to make my own shirt from the remnant fabric.


The fun part of using such a dominant print like this was to line up the birds across the shirt body and sleeves. Originally I thought I might only have fabric left for cap sleeves but there was enough for long sleeves using a mock cuff.

I love the darkness of this colourway of this print and I wear plenty of blue to work and on weekends so it made sense to apply blue piping on the collar and button band and use blue buttons between the bird print.


I know we’re in the middle of a blisteringly hot Australian Summer but the cotton in this fabric breathes well and is a lovely weight for this shirt. With the prospect of wearing this shirt a lot, I applied French seams and folded over the armhole seams so this shirt will survive many, many washes because it’s going to be worn a lot.

Piping and machine feet:
I started with store bought piping so I used the cording foot on my machine to prep the piping.
Then I used the zipper foot to sew the piping on the collar and front seam.
When I sewed up the collar, I used the piping stitching to guide my sewing. Yes, there were some instances where I had to resew part of these seams just to get the piping to sit neatly.
back view

Work or weekend?

Clothes for work and weekends sit separately in my closet. I do this to keep these too aspects of my life separate. But this shirt might just throw me off kilter.

Best news of is I now have my very own Liberty shirt!

Merry Christmas everyone!


Dark blue buttons

Thank you for the comments. The dark blue buttons won, so 9 button holes and 9 buttons sewn on later, the shirtmaker dress is finished. Even though this has taken a while (three months) in between study, rugby and family commitments, I will make this again. I never thought rugby would ever impact my sewing.

 Here’s a list of what I did to this toile.

– normal seams and turned over edges, like I was first taught at school,
– lining front and back using a combination of chiffon and poplin. I ran out of the chiffon because this was a last minute decision to go from toile to wearable toile
– blue and white ribbon tape with white border on collar stay and sleeve hem
– 9 x 13mm shank buttons. I did buy a spare button.
– hand stitched front tab, inside collar and buttons.

– roll shoulder adjustment
– sway back adjustment
– dropped bust point by 3cm (age/gravity)
The back bodice looks messy because this fabric is as stiff as tissue paper. When I make this dress again, I’ll use fabric with some drape to it. Then I will also taper the hem so that it sits closer to my body.

UFO – Shirtmaker dress

This is a classic shirt style (McCalls 5433) that I thought would be worthwhile making. It has tab front and enough detailing to wrestle with a few finishing options to make the same dress look a bit different. You would remember this dress from Sharon’s blog. And I made the shirt version in December last year.

The toile fabric is from Rathdowne (Melbourne fabric shopping visit in 2009). It’s a chambray blue colour and light weight but stiff and very sheer. The fabric irons really well and the weave makes it unravel easily. So with that in mind, halfway through testing out this style I decided this version could be wearable, so I’ve lined it with a 3/4 chiffon and 1/4 poplin. I didn’t have enough chiffon in my stash, so I’ve made do with some poplin.

The original toile was going to have long sleeves with a cuff, but because the fabric is lightweight, I’ve decided on a short sleeve with cuff. I saw a someone on the street wear the same dress and it had short sleeve with cuff, so that helped me make up my mind.


As you can see, the sleeve has the same ribbon detail as the inside collar stand. The lining is the same dark blue colour  as the ribbon detail, so I think it might be worthwhile getting dark blue coloured buttons. What do you think?
With the left over fabric, I’ll make a belt.
I don’t love the sleeves at the moment so at some point I’ll have to either take them out or change the length of the sleeves. I can add another horizontal pleat if need be.

By the way, yesterday we visited Sydney’s first fabricabrac to see what fabric was on offer from other like-minded sewers who were selling from their stashes. The venue was probably large enough but it was packed with curious sewers. They also had a coffee bar so I think the organisers should have had a successful event.