Tag Archives: sewing agnes

The cat’s pyjamas

I had some of this stunning Cat Nap Pink Art Gallery Fabrics cotton that I bought from Sew Me Sunshine in my stash for a little while. I was planning on making the Carolyn pyjamas by Closet Case Patterns, however, as I always wear vest tops to bed, I didn’t want to make the Carolyn top as I knew it wouldn’t get worn.

While browsing through one of my wholesalers, I spotted that they had the same design in a jersey and I couldn’t resist getting some for the shop. I then decided to go the whole hog and make my perfect pyjamas using the Tilly and the Buttons Agnes top as a base.

I have made several Agnes vests previously and it is my go to pattern so this was a no brainer.

I only had enough fabric for the Carolyn shorts, but I think it worked out really well as I love wearing pj shorts in the summer time. I opted for the piped version, using some shop-bought ivory satin bias binding. For the three pairs of Carolyns that I have made, I have adapted the waistband so that I can add ribbon as a waist tie. To do this, I simply attach the waistband side seams to match the trouser side seams. I then add two buttonholes to the front to lace the ribbon through. Easy peasy and I think it gives a lovely professional finish.

The Agnes vest was made in my usual way, with a dipped back and then coverstitched hem, neckband and armholes. I also added a bit of the lace trim to tie the two together.

I think these are officially my favourite pjs ever!

Oh and maybe I made a little cape for Jasmine too…just maybe!!




Jenny’s Cute Kitty Agnes

Jenny from Give us a Toile shares the first LSA Blog Squad blog post, and it is cute as a button!!
Given that I was so late to the indie pattern party after my long break from sewing, I couldn’t go on too much longer without tackling some Tilly and the Buttons. After making her name appearing on the first series of the Great British Sewing Bee, she’s now so famous in the sewing world that she’s even become a drinking game on my favourite crafty podcast Stitcher’s Brew, and I must admit that her Stretch book has become my bible with all the jersey sewing I’ve been doing. Her patterns are incredibly popular, thanks I’m sure to their simplicity, great visual instructions, and high quality paper which you can easily re-fold and get back in the packet unlike traditional patterns which seems to expand as soon as you release them from their paper prison. As I’m on a bit of a stretchy roll at the moment I chose to start with the Agnes top. A great wardrobe staple with a few options to choose from to mix things up.
Usually I would diligently trace off my pattern to allow for alterations but this time I was feeling impatient and I figured ‘It’s Tilly, she knows what she’s doing’ so I just went from my measurements and cut the size 4 straight from the packet. My wearable toile showed up a few issues, namely my age-old problem of having narrow shoulders. Luckily as I’d chosen the ruche sleeved version I didn’t have to faff about adding anything to the sleeve head. Score! it was also just a bit too tight in the body for me. It’s a pretty curvy pattern so I just added a little to the waist curve and hip and it was problem solved.
Being as the sleeves are so pretty it deserved a pretty fabric and this good quality jersey from Like Sew Amazing was the perfect choice.
What’s not to love about the kitsch but wearable qualities of a fabric like this?! Best thing about it too was that it didn’t roll at the cut edges which made the process of constructing my Agnes a whole lot easier.
My one top tip for anyone making the ruched sleeve version is to allow more elastic than Tilly tells you to. She gives you an extra bit to hold onto at the bottom as you pull to get it through the machine, but if you also allow yourself a bit extra at the top you avoid potentially back-tacking off the end and you get a much more robust starting point for all the tugging it takes to get a good result. See the difference?
Just a little snip of the excess at the top and you have a far nicer effect.
Given the kitty print I couldn’t resist a little extra cuteness with a feature bow at the neckline. Some good quality cream scuba gave the perfect spring-back to make it hold it’s shape. Do you think Tilly would approve?

Sugar Skulls Agnes Top

I have liked the look of the Tilly and the Buttons Agnes top since it was released but didn’t get round to buying it until I was at the Knitting and Stitching Show a couple of weeks ago.

I thought about buying it while I was chatting to the girls on the stand, but it was only when I spotted the perfect fabric over at Fabrics Galore, that I headed back over to buy the pattern too.

sugar skull fabric

I made it up last weekend and absolutely love it! I only regret waiting so long to buy it!

The pattern itself is a pretty easy make – just a front and back piece, two sleeves and the neckband and I managed to get it out of under a metre of fabric.

Due to SWT (sewing when tired!) I made the very silly mistake of cutting out two back pieces, instead of a back and a front, but fortunately, the front piece fits neatly inside the back piece so crisis averted!!

disaster averted

As the fabric edges were quite wavy, I used the design to line up the grain line and that worked really well. I used the upside down heart noses on the sugar skulls as a guide!

I cut out a size 2, as that was closest to my measurements, and as I wasn’t sure of the fit, I sewed it using the stretch stitch on my sewing machine and overlocking the edges, but next time, I will go straight to the overlocker.

Pretty insides

I chose to go with the plain sleeves on this occasion, as I thought that would show off the fabric better, but I went for the ruched neckline, as I think it is super flattering and adds some interest. I did this using the same clear elastic that I had used to stabilise the shoulder seams.


I didn’t make any changes to the pattern and I think it turned out really well. I used a narrow zig zag on the cuffs and hems, as I didn’t have enough thread for twin needling!

I did try out some stretch knit stay tape that I bought to prevent wavy hems but it didn’t work out as expected, as it actually removed all of the stretch from the fabric, meaning the cuffs hardly fit over my hands. I decided instead to remove it altogether and it worked out fine without it.

I can’t wait to make some more Agnes tops, as they are perfect for layering underneath dungarees or tucking into skirts.

I am currently making an Agnes top hack for a Moulin Rouge theme costume from a burgundy stretch velvet. I am going to use a matching stretch lace to create capped sleeves and will shorten the bodice as I will be wearing an underbust corset over it. I will share more pictures of that one once the outfit is complete.

Velvet Agnes

I can also see it working nicely as a dress, so will be on the look out for some suitable fabric for that.

If you haven’t tried it already, you should definitely give this one a go!

Agnes top