Tag Archives: jersey

Sewing the Joni dress by Tilly and the Buttons

Sewing the Joni dress by Tilly and the Buttons

I have a new post on the Minerva crafts blog ! Here’s a quick summary but be sure to read the full post here.

As many of you will know already, I love to sew with knit fabrics! and so when Minerva Crafts sent me some of their gorgeous spandex stretch jersey* to review I was delighted and couldn’t wait to get sewing! 

Sewing the Joni dress by Tilly and the Buttons

With the two recent book releases from Wendy Ward* and Tilly and the Buttons* both dedicated to sewing with knits I had plenty choice of patterns. This time, I chose to make the Joni dress from Tilly and the Buttons’ book – Stretch! Make Yourself Comfortable Sewing with Knit Fabrics*.

Sewing the Joni dress by Tilly and the Buttons

You can read about how I got on with the fabric and see more pictures of my dress over on the Minerva Crafts blog.

Sewing the Joni dress by Tilly and the Buttons

The details:

Pattern: Joni dress from Tilly and the Buttons’ book – Stretch! Make Yourself Comfortable Sewing with Knit Fabrics*

Fabric: spandex stretch jersey from Minerva Crafts*

Notions: 5mm Elastic

Alterations: Size 3 – small amount of extra room added to bust (approx 5mm)

Sewing the Joni dress by Tilly and the Buttons

I think my Joni dress is my new favourite make (the newest is always my favourite!). I loved making it so much that I think I will have to buy some more of this fabric in a few different colours to make some more!

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Sewing the Joni dress by Tilly and the Buttons

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Sewing the Joni dress by Tilly and the Buttons

Sewing the Joni dress by Tilly and the ButtonsSewing the Joni dress by Tilly and the ButtonsSewing the Joni dress by Tilly and the Buttons

(Link has a * next to it? That’s an affiliate or referral link. Full disclosure: I get a small commission if you buy via this link but I will only send you to products I truly think are worth it!).

Stretch by Tilly and the Buttons - a book review by HsHandcrafts. My first make - the BiBi Pinafore

Stretch by Tilly and the Buttons

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The new book, Stretch by Tilly and the Buttons* has taken the sewing world by storm. It’s no wonder really given the amazing patterns and wonderful tutorials that fill its pages.

I make it no secret that I love Tilly and her books. In fact her first book, Love at first Stitch* was how I learned to sew, I read it painstakingly cover to cover and made each of the patterns in turn picking up new techniques along the way.

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Stretch by Tilly and the Buttons

This new book is no different, each page is full of lots of helpful hints and tips and I’m sure if you had never sewn stretch fabrics before it would give you all the help you could need. I have, of course, sewn with plenty of stretchy fabrics and they are quickly becoming my favourite type of garments to make and so I was super keen to get my hands on all of the lovely patterns in this book.

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I decided it would be best to start at the very begining and so chose to make the very first item in the book: The BiBi skirt. This is a simple pencil skirt to be made from a sturdy knit such as Ponte de Roma or scuba. I opted to use up the scuba* I had left from making my Peak T-shirt dress.

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One of the things I love the most about this book (and Love at First Stitch) is the optional extras you can do with each of the patterns. In this case I followed the instructions to add an optional side split to the skirt and even managed my first ever mitred corner! It was such a quick make and I was really pleased with the results that I couldn’t help but dive straight into the next project.

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If you are an Instagram fiend like me you cant help but have noticed that the second optional extra to the BiBi skirt, turning it into a pinafore, has proven extremely popular and there are loads of wonderful versions popping up everywhere so I decided I just had to make one.

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I used a black blister jersey from Fabworks and decided to shorten the skirt length to be mid-thigh rather than knee length by taking 10 cm off the length. I added the pinafore front and the straps but ended up cutting about 14 cm off the length of the straps before fixing them in place!

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As with all my makes I couldnt resist but add some pockets! For the Pinafore dress I decided to add a couple of patch pockets to the front and I think this works really well with this pattern.

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I really love this pinafore and it works really well with my Sew Over It Alice tops as you can see here but I absolutely adore the combination of it and the Freya pattern from the book so that was definitely lined up to be my next make from the book, but more on that another time.

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The details:

Pattern: Bibi Skirt from Stretch by Tilly and the Buttons*

Fabric: Large flower print scuba from Minerva Crafts* and black blister jersey from Fabworks

Notions: Gutermann thread

Alterations: Shortend skirt and strap length for Pinafore dress

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If you are looking to learn to sew with knit fabrics then it seems there are plenty of resources available right now so you’re sure to fins one that works for you, whether it be an online course such as that run by Sew Over It that I reviewed in a previous blog post or one of the new books on the scene by Wendy Ward* or Tilly Walnes*.

In other news, today is the first day of MeMadeMay! The brainchild of Zoe at “So, Zo, What do you know?”. This challenge encourages those of us who make our clothes to develop a better relationship with our handmade wardrobe. This year I will be taking part again and I’ve set myself a bit of a challenge but I think it is achievable. So here is my pledge:

‘I, Helen of HsHandcrafts, sign up as a participant of Me-Made-May ’18. I endeavour to wear only me-made clothing (with the exception of underwear, socks, tights and footwear) throughout May 2018′

If you want to keep up with my progress I will be sharing my daily outfits on Instagram stories and hopefully I will be able to share some take-away thoughts with you here on the blog at the end of the month! I find it is always a massive learning experience to find the gaps in my memade wardrobe and learn which of my handmades I look forward to wearing and which get pushed to the back of the wardrobe!

If you liked this overview of my project why not keep up to date with my current makes over on Instagram

Stretch by Tilly and the Buttons BiBi Pinafore

Stretch by Tilly and the Buttons BiBi SkirtStretch by Tilly and the Buttons BiBi Skirt
Stretch by Tilly and the Buttons BiBi Pinafore

(Link has a * next to it? That’s an affiliate or referral link. Full disclosure: I get a small commission if you buy via this link but I will only send you to products I truly think are worth it!).

Plaintain T-shirt – free pattern review

 

Free to download pattern from deer & doe

The Plantain T-shirt is a free to download pattern from Deer & Doe so there is absolutely no reason not to give it a try. Given my new-found obsession with sewing with knits after completing the SewOverIt online course I was looking for a few good staple knit patterns and this one seemed to fit the bill.

It is a simple shaped t-shirt but with three different sleeve lengths and optional elbow patches it is so versatile I think it would fit into anyone’s wardrobe!

ELBOW PATCHES

One of the defining features of this pattern is the elbow patches – now whilst they might not be to everyone’s taste I was enamoured and so excited that I could add a small patch of fabric from another make to this one – giving the whole outfit a feeling of cohesion! For this first version. I chose a fun triangle print fabric from Girl Charlee and paired it with remnants from a simple jersey pencil skirt I made a few months ago. It is not amazingly obvious in these pictures but the skirt is made in a black jersey that is SPARKLY!! So now i also have sparkly elbows!!

At first I wasn’t sure how I would get on with the fit of this T as I prefer my t-shirt fitted through the torso and this one is more of a swing style. However, after a few wears I am convinced and actually like that it is a bit roomier! I will obviously still stick to my tried and true silhouette most of the time but this is a good one to through into the mix to change it up every so often.

As this is a free pattern it is only available in pdf format – altogether it took me about 20 mins to print out, stick together and cut my chosen size – not bad at all considering what you are getting for free!

The details:

Pattern: Deer and Doe Plantain T – FREE

Fabric: Triangle print jersey from Girl Charlee and sparkly jersey from The Village Haberdashery

Notions:Guterman thread

Alterations: size 36 at shoulders up to 40 at bust(front) to 40 at hip

 

If you liked this overview of my project why not keep up to date with my current makes over on Instagram

Plantain T-shirt: The free sewing pattern that is worth every penny

Sew Over It Online Course: Intro to Sewing with Knit Fabrics

Following on from last years Me-Made-May I decided I needed to stop sewing so many fancy dresses that would only get worn occasionally and start bulking up my me-made wardrobe with items that I could wear everyday. For me, this means comfy clothes that are smart enough to wear for work – the perfect solution? knit fabrics!

Sew Over It Online Course: Intro to Sewing with Knit Fabrics

Some of you might be aware that over the past four years I have been working towards my PhD and that at the end of last year I finished it and am now a doctor! Well, as part of that process I had to write a thesis (around 350 pages) and then defend it in a two and a half hour interview. Only then could I say I had passed. After I had finished writing the thesis and handed it in I was ready for a good break before I started my new job and had the interview to prepare for so I decided to take a week off and bought myself the online course on sewing with knits from sew over it as a fun thing to do in my new found free time!

In that first week after completing my thesis I worked through the whole course and had sewn my first version of each of the included patterns : the Emma dress and the Alice top. Since then I have sewn another version of each of the patterns. So I have definitely achieved my aim of bulking out my me-made wardrobe with comfy everyday clothes that are smart enough for work

The course starts out with a some tips on picking your fabric (the two patterns that are included require quite different fabric choices with different amounts of stretch and so this is a really useful starting point. I then went straight onto my first Emma dress which I made in a navy blue Ponte from Girl Charlee. The fabric was lovely to work with – it only has a small amount of stretch and so is quite easy to sew as it doesn’t need to much attention to prevent it stretching out.  

The instructions for the Emma dress were really clear and I whizzed through the first one in no time – even inserting an invisible zip in a stretch fabric! Something which sounds quite daunting but the instructions were so clear and before I knew it I had done it. Although, given the fact the fabric is stretchy I don’t think the dress really needed it and so I decided to omit it from my second version and I have no problems with getting it on and off so I think it is only really required if you choose a fabric with hardly any stretch.

I was so pleased with my first Emma dress I made a second straight away. For this dress I decided to risk straying from the instructions slightly and chose a lighter weight jersey, and omitted the zip – the dress has a lot less structure in the lighter fabric but I still really love the style of it and love the fit you can get with those princess seams (FBAs are so much easier!)

I then moved onto the Alice top. The construction of this top is really interseting as it has a lined bust panels and I must admit the first one I made I was convinced I had wrong until i turned everything through to the right side and miraculously it looked like a top! What I really love about this top is that the pattern comes with three different cup sizes so there was no need for me to make any adjustments.

The first Alice top I made (not pictured here) was in a blue diamond jersey from Girl Charlee – unfortunately the pattern was not on grain and so I decided to abandon all hope of lining it up anywhere and just went straight into cutting. Given the different panels on this top I don’t think it really matters as there is so much going on with the gathered centre front and separate panels. My second version is made in the softest grey jersey it is just the most comfy top ever!

This top is definitely a lot simpler to make than it looks and again the instructions are clear and easy to follow – I can see myself making a few more as it is a good work-wear staple and I have already have loads of people ask me where I bought it from (cue smug face when I tell them its handmade!)

The details:

Pattern: Sew Over It Intro to sewing with knits online course Emma dress and Alice top

Fabric: Navy ponte de roma, charcoal and black gingham, blue diamond jersey, soft grey jersey (all from Girl Charlee UK)

Notions:Invisible zip in the navy Emma dress, Gutermann thread

Alterations: Navy Emma dress size 12 with 0.5 inch FBA, Grey Emma size 10 with 1 inch FBA, Alice tops both size 8 with D cup

I can truly recommend this course, I had already sewn with knit fabrics before starting it and had really just bought it for the patterns that were included. This would definitely have been worth it if that were all I got from it as the patterns are really lovely but actually I learned quite a lot from the course. The instructions were super clear and I picked up a few handy tips along the way

If you liked this overview of my project why not keep up to date with my current makes over on Instagram

Planning Moneta

I have had my eye on Moneta by Colette patterns for some time, and so when they had a sale last week I decided to snap up a pdf copy. I have recently come round to liking pdf patterns. Although they can be a bit of a pain to stick together, there is no need to trace the pattern just cut out your size. Then if you want to make another size at a later date, you can just print it out again!

I am currently a bit snowed under with sewing projects! I started a pencil skirt from Freehand Fashion but then decided I should make a dress for my holiday instead. It turns out this was a good plan as we go away on Thursday, and the dress is not quite finished yet! So when I get back, I will finish off the pencil skirt and then get to work on my dress for the Outfit-along. Once those are all done, Moneta is next on my list. Jersey dresses are just so comfy yet still look like you’ve made an effort with your wardrobe. I hope it will quickly become one of my sewing staples! I have already been admiring lots of lovely jersey fabrics but am holding back from buying them until I am ready to make it!

Here are some of my top picks at the moment

I would love a good basic dress that can be worn with anything and I think a jersey dress is perfect for this. This grey jersey has just enough texture to it to make it interesting while still being versatile. I think I could make one in every sleeve length in this sort of fabric!

 

 I always love a good stripe fabric, and these two are just perfect. Monochrome for autumn and winter and a bright red and teal for summer. But which one to make first?

 And speaking of summer, I love this abstract palm tree print it would be perfect for strolling down the beach in.

 

 

So many potential Moneta dresses to make I don’t know where to begin. I hope this is an easy make so I can make them all in super quick speed!

Helen

Goldhawk Road

A couple of weeks ago I took my first trip to Goldhawk road.

A quick trip around bloglamd and the sewing community will  have you realise that this is THE place to go for fabric shopping in London.

I wasn’t dissapointed we walked from Kensington gardens through Shephards Bush and arrived at Goldhawk Road. At first it just looked like any other street and I began to wonder what all the fuss was about. Once we started to walk down the street though I realised what an amazing place it really was. Pretty much every other shop was a fabric store and not only that some of them were like Aladdin’s caves which got bigger and bigger the more tiny archways or crooked stairwells you ventured down.

Unfortunately I don’t remember the names of the shops from which I made my purchases but the first purchase of the day was this aztec print jersey at just £6 a metre.

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I bought 2 metres and hope to use it to make a slouchy cardigan with all the new skills I hope to learn in the new year as I work my way through the Colette book I won a few weeks ago.

My other purchases were all from the same shop, again I dont remember the name but they had all sorts of fun cotton prints. I checked and these 2 are 100% cotton, another bargain at £6 a metre. Again I got 2 metres of each.
Elephants

bears

I’m not sure what I will make from these but I am picturing spring/summer blouses or dresses.

All in all it was a great trip. I’m so glad I went and I got some great fabrics to play with in the new year when I am back home and can sew again!

H.