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Emily’s Simplicity 1325 Jacket

This week on the blog, Emily has shared her stunning Simplicity 1325 blazer that she made from our Rose Gold Metallic Jacquard. I love how chic it looks!

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Today’s post is on a little blazer I’ve made using the Simplicity 1325 pattern. This project is a little out of season as it’s getting colder and colder here but sometimes it’s nice to just make something a little bit different!

I was sent some gorgeous striped jacquard from Like Sew Amazing – it has a pure white background with pink and blue stripe running across it and even has some rose gold metallic threads running through it. It’s a beautiful fabric!

I really liked the idea of turning it into a simple blazer. I was feeling a bit Chanel inspired at the time!

I chose to use the Simplicity 1325 pattern mostly because I already had it. I’d used it to make this and this a couple of years ago but hadn’t used any of the pattern’s other views. I liked the simple fitted shape of the collarless blazer. It looked classic!

Sewing up the blazer was nice and simple. I chose to underline the front, back and sleeve of the jacket rather than try to make a full lining. It’s the first time I’ve tried doing it this way and I think it was quite successful!

To do this, I cut out the front and back in both the main fabric and lining fabric. In this case I used a lovely smooth cotton lawn that I got from Sea Salt. After sewing in the bodice darts I laid them over each other wrong sides together and essentially treated each piece as one.

The sleeve was a little trickier as I wanted to get a nicer finish on the hem. Here, I trimmed 1.5cm from the edge of the sleeve of the lawn lining pieces only. I then sewed the sleeve seam on each of the fabric and lining pieces. Right sides together I stitched the sleeve hem then turned the lining to the inside. After that I matched up the seam and sleeve head to treat this as one! Simple, no? 🤣

(It does need to be pressed a little. I hadn’t realised how wrinkled it looked from the back!!)

If I made it again, I’d do a narrow shoulder adjustment. I don’t feel like it’s sitting as snugly there as it should. Apart from that, I like it! I’m a fan of the cropped length which is flattering on my shape.

All in all, it’s a cute little jacket. A little light for the weather but it’s summer somewhere right? 😆

Jen’s Jenny Overalls

I am so pleased to share the first make for the Blog by my Sewing Wife, Birthday Twin and all round Sewing Goddess, Jen from Gingerthread Girl! Jen has made the awesome Jenny Overalls by Closet Case Patterns from our Mono Daisy Linen/Viscose mix and they look downright adorable! I love the styling too!

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Guys, I am so excited to share this make with you! Not only is this my first project as part of the Like Sew Amazing Blogger Team, but this is also my first ever pair of Closet Case Jenny Overalls and I can’t stop gushing over them!

The fabric I used was a linen viscose blend with this giant daisy monochrome print from Like Sew Amazing, and using it with this pattern was complete marriage made in heaven. This blend of linen/viscose  has a lovely balance of structure and drape, making it ideal for this make.

I had a bit of trouble with attempting some pattern matching, as the pattern was so large, and had some very slight differences across the fabric. I tortured myself for a while, trying to get it perfect, and then realised that I might as well just get on and enjoy the process.

I fretted for a while over the sizing of these overalls – convincing myself that they wouldn’t suit me, or fit around my hips/bum! I ended up sewing a straight size 10, and I’m astonished at how well they fit. Seriously – they’re so good!!

And I thoroughly enjoyed every part of the construction of these gorgeous overalls – from the faux fly to the side zipper (I inserted 1 only, and that is fine for me). The instructions were as you would expect from Closet Case – crystal clear and enough detail to stop you (me) from screwing anything up.

I honestly cannot stop raving about his pattern. If you’re toying with the idea of making these, then I urge you to bite the bullet. One of my all time favourite patterns!

 

 

Sew My Style – Lander shorts review

I had already made a pair of cropped Lander pants from linen earlier in the year but I really fancied making the shorts version. I had got the fit spot on with the trousers so knew what I needed to do for the shorts version.

I was going to make the shorts from some black linen for a chic look, however, as we have been having such a lovely summer in the UK and I’ve been wearing lots of colour lately, I changed my mind and opted for this gorgeous tropical themed Palms Peach cotton by Cotton and Steel. I think the colours are so stunning and it really gives the shorts a great summer vibe.

I lined the shorts with some scraps of the flamingo linen that I made my Jenny Overalls from, to continue the tropical theme!

The adjustments I made were to take out half an inch from the centre back seam graduating to the normal 5/8 inch seam allowance at the back notch. I then just cut a really long waistband so that I could cut it down to size to fit the trousers.

I decided to go for the inside front pockets. I had seen that Kelly from True Bias had posted this hack on her blog and thought it looked good. I wasn’t especially keen on trying to pattern match this busy print so this was a good alternative! I think it works really well and would definitely use this finish again.

I used some large red buttons from my stash and I think they look really good against the fabric.

As with my latest Carnaby dress, I used the cute Cotton and Steel selvedge as a label on the inside of the waistband. I used these gorgeous sunglasses for some cute detail!

I love the length and fit of the shorts – they fit so well and don’t feel too short! I will definitely make another pair now that the fit is spot on. Maybe a denim pair next?

Suzie’s Seren Dress

Suzie from Threadquarters has made the most stunning Seren dress from our mid blue Tencel. There is some serious dress envy going on here!

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I am back today to share my second make for the Like Sew Amazing Blog Squad. For my first LSA make I wasn’t exactly sure what I wanted to make, and just perused Sarah’s gorgeous selection of fabric for something that I loved (I ended up making a fab cropped Kalle Shirt out of the most beautiful palm print cotton lawn, you can check it out here). However, this time around, I knew that I really wanted to make one of Tilly and The Buttons’ latest patterns, the Seren dress.

The Seren dress is a button down strappy sun dress, with an a-line skirt and a very pretty (optional) flounce at the top of the bodice. It needs fairly light weight fabric, and if you are sewing the flounce version then drape is going to be your friend. Sarah actually has an option on her drop down menu specifically for ‘drapey‘ fabric, which is simply genius, and made my picking process a *little* bit easier (I say only a little, because all her fabric is gorgeous! lol).

I ended up picking the Medium Blue Tencel Chambray. Like Sew Amazing is one of the very few fabric shops in the UK that I have come across to stock tencel, so I was very excited to find this. And I decided that since I ALWAYS go for a big, bold pattern, perhaps I should introduce a little bit of solid into my wardrobe, so a soft blue dress would be perfect.

When the fabric arrived I nearly DIED! I just wanted to curl up in it and fall asleep. Talk about soft. I have never felt fabric as soft as this. And so much drape – it really is like liquid chambray. Truly astounding. But, be warned, it isn’t without its challenges – more of that later!

The Seren Dress

I was pretty excited when Tilly revealed her two latest sewing patterns – a simple shift dress or boxy top (the Stevie), and a button up sundress, (the Seren). If you watched my last YouTube video, where I took you shopping with me for sewing inspiration, I list a number of styles that I wanted to sew up…and these two patterns ticked a lot of my boxes…perhaps Tilly had watched my video and designed these patterns especially for me? Probably not, but I snapped them both up straight away.

I came across a rather strange situation while decided what size pattern to cut…my bust was coming in as size 6, while my waist and hip were size 5. This never happens to me. I am very much a pear shape and I have a pretty small bust, so I was a bit confused by this. Nonetheless I went with it and cut a 5 waistband and skirt and a size 6 bodice, grading to 5 at the waistline.

Something to note when picking your fabric for this pattern – due to the a-line nature of the skirt, it needs a wide fabric! And if you are going for a flounce and the midi-length be prepared to use the FULL 2.5m that the pattern recommends. I had about 1cm left under my last pattern piece! This hardly ever happens as I usually try and play ‘pattern tetris’ and squeeze all the pieces into the smallest amount of fabric possible (in the hopes I’ll have enough left for something else…Ogden Cami anyone?).

Tips for working with Tencel

As beautiful as this tencel is, it is definitely a bit of a challenge to sew with. I would perhaps not recommend this fabric to complete newbies, but if you are up for a little bit of  a challenge then go for it!

As I described the fabric before, it has such an amazing drape that it is almost like liquid. Unfortunately, it is that movement that makes it a little tricky to work with. Here are some tips to making your sewing process as stress free as possible:

  • Instead of cutting out your pieces with pins and scissors, it’s a good idea to switch to a cutting mat, rotary cutter and pattern weights
  • You might also like to try a spray starch to give the fabric a bit of temporary structure while you work with it. I haven’t tried this, but hear it’s very good. Don’t forget to do a test with a small piece of the fabric first!
  • When ironing on your interfacing, get out the paper pattern piece and make sure your facings are exactly the right shape before attaching the interfacing
  • Pins, pins and MORE pins when sewing!
  • If you have a walking foot, now is a good time to use it. This fabric can creep quite a lot while being sewn and a walking foot (along with all those pins I just mentioned), will help prevent this
  • Press with a pressing cloth as much as you can to avoid shine
  • And don’t forget about the PINS!

That being said, I don’t want to put you off! If you take your time and follow these tips it is completely worth the extra effort. This dress is so soft and ridiculously comfy that I could nearly put it in the Secret Pyjama category.

Somewhere over the rainbow

So, you may have notice my colourful buttons? They are, in fact, snaps! When I first started on this project I had a much more muted, understated version in mind. I picked up some really beautiful grey buttons and was excited to use them. Unfortunately, my sewing machine had other plans. I just could NOT get it to sew a buttonhole on the waistband! It would sew up beautiful buttonhole after beautiful buttonhole on my test scraps, but I just kept getting big thread ‘nests’ on my actual dress.

So, because time was against me, I had to come up with a plan B. Searching through my sewing stash I pulled out some lovely pearl snaps….but I only had 6, and this dress requires 15 (YES, 15!) buttons/fastenings. I also had some heavy duty black snaps, but again I only had 10 and they were really a bit too clunky for this fabric. Finally, I pulled out my large stash of colourful plastic snaps which I had originally bought for baby clothes. I was not convinced. Every colour I held up to the dress looked tacky and a bit childish. I really didn’t know what to do.

That day my Instagram feed had been filled with rainbow coloured pictures to celebrate Pride2018. I think that is more than likely how I ended up deciding to just use every single colour of snap that I owned on this dress! Initially I thought it would look ridiculous, but as I laid them out I just KNEW this was it. And so my rather proud Seren dress was born!

Does anyone else have issues with their machine sewing buttonholes on waistbands, collar bands, or just fabric with a bump near it? Do you have any tips of how I can overcome this? Or do I just need to get a better machine?!!

I always say that everything happens for a reason, and had my machine sewn up those buttonholes perfectly, I never would have dreamed of using a rainbow of snaps down my dress! But I’m so glad I did!

 

Myosotis dress – Pattern Review

The newly released Deer and Doe Myosotis dress was the SewMyStyle 2018 pattern for May. We were unaware of what the pattern would be until a few weeks before its launch but we took a chance as we all love Deer and Doe.

When I first saw the line drawing, I wasn’t too sure it was going to suit me, as I don’t really like things with a boxy silhouette. I decided therefore to make my Myosotis dress in a viscose so that it would be a drapey as possible.

I used this lovely black and white irregular spotty print viscose from my shop and I am so pleased I did. It was lovely to work with!

I chose to make the version with the frilled sleeves and frilled hem. I wasn’t sure how it was going to turn out but figured that ruffles and frills are really in at the moment so I would give it a go.

Construction-wise, it is pretty simple. There are some darts in the front and back bodice and just three buttonholes. I found that by running a long basting stitch along the top of the frill pieces, it naturally gathered enough to fit the corresponding piece – winning!

I love that there are pockets included, as they complete any dress!

I was going to do self covered buttons on the bodice but in the end I chose to use some bright red buttons that I had in my stash. I think they give the perfect pop of colour against the black and white.

When I first tried it on, I was a bit concerned that it looked a bit too like a beach cover up (and I think it would be perfect for holidays, especially in a light viscose). The more I looked at it though, the more I liked it – it feels very festival chic! I think in reality, I will wear it most over leggings or skinny jeans as it does have the potential to whip up and flash the world my underwear! I’ve worn it all day today over my jeans and I am now in love with it – it is so comfy!

I would urge you to give this one a try, even if like me, you are a bit nervous of the shape. I think in the right fabric, it will work out well.

I can’t wait to see everyone else’s versions this month!

 

 

 

Join the Like Sew Amazing Blogger Team

If you are a keen sewist and would like to work as part of our blogger team, applications are now open.
Each blogger will be sent free fabric for their chosen blog projects, and their make and blog post will be featured on the Like Sew Amazing blog and shared on our social media channels.
Fill out this survey if you would like to be part of the team.

A few notes:

  • You don’t have to have huge numbers of followers – you just need to show a love of sewing!
  • You need to be able to commit to getting projects made and blog posts written within the timescales agreed.
  • You need to be comfortable with your images being shared on the Like Sew Amazing blog and social media.
  • Unfortunately, this is restricted to UK residents only.
  • Entries close on midnight GMT on Friday 20th April

Thanks

Sarah x

                    

Sew My Style – Rumana Coat – Getting Started

Hands up who’s excited to make the Rumana Coat?!

I have been itching to get my hands on this pattern since I knew it was coming out last August and we were fortunate enough that By Hand London agreed to work with us for February to have it as our featured pattern.

For those sewists who are fairly new to sewing, or coat making, I thought I would give you an idea of where to start when gathering supplies.

Printing:

Firstly, as this is a PDF only pattern, I would recommend printing via a copyshop. There are five AO sheets so, goodness knows how many if you were printing A4 at home! More power to you if you are up for that challenge, but I would much rather pay a few pounds extra and get someone else to do the leg work!

I personally use Netprinter, who are an online copy shop. I have used them for during 2017 and have never had any issues with them and find them super speedy. They do deliver internationally too. You can use the code ‘SEWMYSTYLE – Can I have my chocolate please?’ for an extra sweet treat with your order!

Outer fabric:

In the UK, we are still in the depths of Winter, so this is a great chance to break out the wool fabric. There are lots of lovely options out there and you can look at different wool blends with a fibre such as cashmere, for a more lux coat. Of course, if you are in a warmer climate, or would like a lighter coat, you could opt for more of a linen mix.

When I was shopping for wools, I found it much easier to shop in person. As the fabric tends to be more expensive, I really wanted to be able to see and feel the fabric to make sure I was 100 percent happy with it. Most online shops do offer samples though, if you do want to order online.

Lining fabric:

I love a colourful contrasting lining for a coat. It is mostly hidden but you get a flash of it, as you take it off. You can of course, use a more traditional acetate/polyester lining fabric and sometimes you can get them in a polka dot or similar pattern, however, they do tend to be quite plain. If you are looking for a patterned lining, I think a lovely cotton lawn or rayon would be perfect for the Rumana.

I adore the contrast lining of this version by Cotton Reel Studio.

One thing I would add, is that you should try and use something slinky on the sleeves, to allow you to get your arms in and out easily. You can use something different to your main lining fabric on the sleeves, but if you are using a cotton lawn for the entire lining, it will make it harder to get the coat on and off if the sleeves are also cotton lawn.

Fabric preparation:

I always pre-wash my fabric before sewing, however, with wool, I am going to leave it, as I won’t be washing it when it is sewn up into the coat. I would simply spot clean or dry clean. There is also an option to put the wool into the tumble dryer with a damp towel, however, I haven’t tried that myself, so please don’t take my word for it!

Lauren from Guthrie & Ghani has just done an excellent vlog on fabric care which you can find here.

Top Tips: 

Consider adding a small fabric loop on the inside under the collar (stand). This will help no end when it comes to hanging the coat up!

For a perfect fit, make a toile from a cheaper fabric before cutting into your main fabric. There are lots of areas that you can adjust the fit with this pattern – ie, the princess seams and the two part sleeves.

You may find it easier to block fuse your fabric. To do this, simply apply interfacing to a section of your fabric before cutting out your pattern pieces. I find this much easier and quicker than cutting out the interfacing separately from the main fabric and then fusing them together.

I can’t wait to see what everyone makes this month!

SewMyStyle January – Sunny dress

I was already sold on the Sunny dress by Friday Pattern Company as soon as I saw the sample picture of it. We chose this as the first pattern for the Sew My Style challenge as it seemed like a quick and easy make and would be a good way to ease everyone in, especially the more beginner sewists.

I managed to squeeze my dress out of a metre of leopard print jersey that I bought recently from Stoff & Still.

As I didn’t have enough to make a neckband with only one join, I decided to try just folding it over and coverstitching it. It actually worked out fine and was just one less step to worry about! I also coverstitched the sleeves and the hem.

One thing I have noticed about this pattern, is that due to the nature of the scallop, it can lead to quite a wavy hem, particularly if sewn in a lighter jersey, and twin-needled on a regular sewing machine. The coverstitch machine eliminates this waviness and gives a much more professional finish.

I didn’t make any adjustments on the pattern, however, next time, I would take the sleeves in slightly as they are just a little on the wide side for me, but not so much that I will alter this version!

Head on over to my YouTube channel for a more in depth review of this pattern.

Thanks

Sarah x

Pattern Review – Nina Lee Southbank Dress and the #smyly2018 challenge

My first make of 2018 was a real comfort food of a make – the Nina Lee Southbank dress!

I’ve made a couple of Nina’s patterns previously – the Portabello trousers and the Bloomsbury blouse and I absolutely love them both so had high hopes for the Southbank!

I had bought some gorgeous leopard print french terry with the softest fleece on the reverse from Stoff and Stil when I was at the Knitting & Stitching Show and was waiting for the perfect project to use it. I could have made a trusty Linden from it, but when I saw the Southbank pattern, I thought it would be perfect, as I would get more use out of it, as I could even wear it to work during the colder months.

I did think about doing contrasting neck, arm and hem bands from a grey rib knit, but I’m really glad I stuck with the leopard print throughout.

I didn’t make any adjustments to the pattern, apart from moving the pockets up by about half an inch, as I heard that they can be a little bit low down for short girls. This worked out really well and I am happy with their placement now, so will make sure I adjust the notches on my paper pattern.

The other thing I did with the pockets is use the reverse side as the right side so that the cosy fleece is against my hands.

The dress was a pretty quick so and I have to say the Nina Lee has done it again! I absolutely love it! So much so, that I chose it to be my outfit for the #smyly2018 (sewing makes you love yourself) challenge. I was asked to be an ambassador for this by the organisers. They are asking people to create a garment that makes you feel beautiful and I think this dress really fits the bill, for several reasons:

  1. it is leopard print
  2. it is so cosy
  3. it is comfortable
  4. it is secret pyjamas
  5. pockets!!
  6. it just looks really cool – such a great shape

While this wouldn’t be the type of silhouette I would normally go for, I really love the slouchiness of this dress – it is a great length, not too short but short enough and is great worn over tights and boots. I am going to try the hip length sweater version next and see if it can give the Linden a run for its money!

So, if you want to see more about my entry for the #smyly2018 challenge and more about my sewing story, head on over to my vlog.

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#SewMyStyle 2018 Launch

I am very excited to be part of the leadership team for the #SewMyStyle challenge for 2018.

We have been working hard behind the scenes to confirm the schedule, patterns and prizes.

Jessica Lorraine is heading up this year’s initiative and all of the details can be found over on her blog.

The other lovely ladies on the leadership team are:

Catherine – Threadsnips

Elizabeth – Pins and Pinot

Maddie – Maddie Made This

Charlotte – The Sewing Blog of a Professional Stitch Ripper

Laura – The Petite Passions

Each month of 2018, we will have a specific pattern that we will be featuring. The aim of the challenge is to end the year with a lovely capsule wardrobe of handmade clothes.

The leadership team will be writing guest blog posts and hints and tips throughout each month.

We have picked some absolutely stunning patterns, which I think you will all be really pleased with. I know I can’t wait to get started on them.

As a participant, you will get a discount for all of the featured patterns – so it is definitely worth signing up, especially as it doesn’t cost you a thing!

You can sign up at any time during the year, but those who sign up early, will get to see the schedule! You just need to be signed up by the 20th of the previous month to receive the discount codes.

We have taken on board feedback from the 2017 #SewMyStyle challenge and hope you will agree that the changes we have made for 2018 are really positive.

You can find out all about #SewMyStyle and how to sign up, here and please join in on the fun!

I will be sharing all of my makes here and over on my YouTube channel, as we go along!

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