Fabric Market Shopping List

Today is the last day of September, which is both a little bit scary that this year has flown by so fast, but also exciting as one of my favourite events is coming up super soon! 4 times per year, the Dutch Fabric Market (Stoffmarktholland) comes to Frankfurt for one day of stash expansion crafty joy! I am extra excited this time around as I unfortunately missed the market’s last visit as I was away on holiday … so I have waited a whole six months for this one! As we don’t have a huge selection of places to go fabric shopping in Frankfurt, it’s great to just have a splurge at very reasonable prices and to feel the lovely crafty vibe of all the other excited shoppers.

The last time I went to the fabric market, I learnt two key things:

  1. Thou shalt not visit the fabric market without a giant blue Ikea shopping bag to hold your swag
  2. Thou shalt always write a shopping list in advance, or thou will be mighty overwhelmed

So, heeding these two important commandments, my Ikea bags are at the ready, and today, I set about writing my shopping list. To create my shopping list, I decided to delve back through all of my scribbles and notes and have a look at what patterns I still plan to buy in the near future and which projects I would like to tackle next. I came up with the following:

Phew – and that’s the consolidated list! I definitely won’t end up buying something for all of those, but it’s just good to keep in mind what you want to make so that the fabric has some sort of purpose! As you can see, my sewing is looking pretty jersey heavy right now, so I may also look out for some more jersey sewing machine needles.

As a result my shopping list looks something like this:

  • Nice black jersey knit
  • Soft t-shirt jersey in stripes
  • Sweatshirt fabric (one for the Burda, one for the track pants, one for the McCalls)
  • Felted wool
  • Plain jersey in jewel colours for Moneta
  • Thick striped jersey for Coco
  • Cute print fabric for PJ trousers
  • Funky Buttons
  • Backing fabric for my Mum’s Quilt
  • Thread rolls

What I am not allowed to buy is zippers or any more fat quarters! I am drowning in them as I can’t resist a cute print or two … I’m sure I’ll end up with a couple and maybe some mystery fabric too! That’s the joy of the fabric market, you never know what you might find!

I can’t wait to show you what I come home with in a couple of weeks … in the meantime there seems to be a few babies on the way around here so I am going to set about sewing an army of Ernest elephants!

Advertisements

Pattern Pyramid Giveaway!! 

I have to say I am so excited to be able to participate in the Pattern Pyramid Giveaway. A couple of months back, right when I started the blog, I was picked out of the hat by the lovely Megan of Pigeon Wishes to be the recipient of this amazing pattern box of goodness. I could not believe my luck!

The Pattern Pyramid was originally started by Karen of Did You Make That when she received a box of vintage patterns and decided she wanted to share the love with the sewing community. Since then the box has travelled to Australia, America, New Zealand, Scotland, Canada, England, the Isle of Wight and many other interesting places! It’s now sitting here with me in Frankfurt, Germany and the box is ready to make its way on a new adventure!

Basically, the way the pattern pyramid works is you receive a box of patterns, you get to keep a pattern from the box and you add a pattern in and send it off around the world for the next lucky recipient to do the same! Seeing all these beautiful patterns is such a treat – there are a range of sizes, shapes, decades, styles and just unpacking the box is a joy in itself!

So here is what I added to the box …


I think there are a few treats in there for people! And here is what I took out … The lovely Megan told me that on account of how many she had added, she thought it would be ok for me to take an extra one! It’s just so hard to choose!

I love the shape of this shirt dress – I think it could really work on me! It looks complicated, but I think if I get it right the sleeveless version could be a bit of a summer staple!

This skirt had to come too … I’m a bit unsure on the sizing, it’s probably going to be way too small, but I’m hoping to just add a few inches all over! I love the pockets and the button down front! It’s my incentive to master button holes!

This one won me over on account of the shorts! How amazingly cute are they?! I can’t wait to give them a go!

And I just couldn’t resist trying Anna out … let’s see if she and I get along!

So if you want to get your paws on this pattern box of goodness, what do you need to do?

The rules:

1. You must be committed to passing on the pattern pyramid. So hosting a giveaway, picking a winner randomly and paying for the delivery.

2. Leave a comment in my reply section, with a link to your blog, by midnight on October 3rd 2015.

And that’s it! I’m afraid this one is open to bloggers only (on account of you also needing to host a blog giveaway). Winners will be drawn from a hat! This is a WORLDWIDE giveaway so give it a go! You may be the lucky winner!

Fat Quarter Projects

It’s been a bit of a quiet week on the sewing front this week on account of my wisdom teeth having to make an assisted exit from my jaw … I’ve spent most of the time lying in bed and although I thought I’d spend the time reading nice sewing magazines and making plans, I really didn’t feel up to much but sleeping and Netflix. I have now watched so much Nashville I am planning to add “y’all” to my vocabulary and am ready to launch my own country music label! In order to save you all from that horror, today I thought I’d do a little simple stitching with my chipmunk face using things I already have in my stash.

I bought this cute fat quarter bundle during Tschibo’s craft week (what didn’t I buy during Tschibo’s craft week?!) I really liked the colours and prints and thought they might come in handy for any number of things.

You may remember that following my Foxy Drawstring Pouch make I had designs on making larger versions as travel laundry bags. I decided that the rose print would be great for that. As I only had the one piece of rose print fabric, I sort of winged it on the dimensions by folding in half and cutting in two and sort of eyeballing what would be good travel laundry bag size (sorry I know that’s not helpful tutorial stuff haha!) I again used the instructions from Heather Ross’ Weekend Sewing book and it came together nice and simple. It was the perfect simple make to keep me busy and distracted from my chipmunk face, but achievable enough not to leave me feeling exhausted.

I decided it would be nice to do a bit of embellishment to jazz it up a bit, so I added this cute little contrast tag and label. I need to seriously practice my hand stitching (or decide at the beginning rather than the end to add these so they can be machine sewn!) It was a nice opportunity to use my zig-zag scissors though! (I know they have a proper sewing name but it is being elusive right now!) 
  
  

So here it is … the finished bag! I put some laundry in it to achieve the full effect!

As I had a little bit of the rose print fabric left, I used it to make a little needle book. I’ve needed one of these for ages as my hand sewing needles seem to go walk about all the time! I’m pleased to have finally made them a home! Once I’m feeling a bit better, I might put a little tutorial up on this one, as it was super simple to make but also a very practical thing to own!


So there we have it …. a couple of nice little fat quarter projects to cheer me up! All that excitement has worn me out so I’m off for a nap! I hope everyone is having a lovely Saturday!

Bettine Dress in Chambray

After the success of my Bettine Dress in in Funky Florals, I decided it was time to add another one of these workhorses to my wardrobe. I’d actually bought this lovely Chambray online a couple of weeks back as part of my Autumn Sewing Plans – so a Chambray Bettine has always been on the cards for me, it was just seeing Tilly’s “Sew a Jersey Bettine” Blog post that helped my floral dress jump the queue! As I feel like I’ve bought a lot of fabric recently, it was good to sew something from my stash!

For the pocket skirt non-jersey version of Bettine, you need quite a few more pattern pieces, so my first step was to Pi-Dy these. I then set about cutting.

Snipety Snip

This fabric makes the most delightful noise when you cut it – it was just a treat! I cut exactly the same sizes as I did the last time – a 7 on top and a 5 on the bottom, which were great from a fit perspective, but slightly more problematic without the jersey stretch when it came to construction. It was a little bit more of a fudge this time to join the bodice and skirt at the waistline, but on account of the elastic I think it hides ok! Apart from that though, I really enjoyed the construction of this dress. I felt like I got to try a few more techniques – I’d never made a bag pocket before for example, and I was really pleased with the results. I was a bit baffled by Tilly’s instructions for adding the sleeve cuffs, until I realised it is on account of the rolled up sleeve effect. Essentially if you’re making the tabbed sleeve version it’s the opposite of the jersey version – gah! I just went with it though and learned the valuable lesson that you should always listen to Tilly!

Buttons Galore!

I was really happy to make the tabbed sleeve version as I was excited to get to pick some buttons! I’m developing quite an extensive button collection, but due to my fear of button holes have yet to have had much opportunity to use them. I spent ages choosing from this little lot, and even got the PB involved! In the end we chose a subtle blue with little polka dots, and I think now the sleeve tabs are my favourite feature.

What I also love about this dress was that it was an opportunity for me to use one of these cute little labels that I’d bought from Tschibo! It makes me smile every time I see it and it has the advantage that now it’s easier to find the back of my dress when I’m sleepy in the morning!

So here it is, my final Bettine! I’m afraid I am having my wisdom teeth taken out today so there won’t be any pictures of me wearing things until I look less like a chipmunk! I did however wear this dress to sewing class last night and it was great! I particularly love the pockets – it’s definitely worth the extra pattern pieces to make them and the instructions are really easy to follow! The only changes I would make next time are to lengthen the skirt an inch or so and to allow slightly more ease in the skirt where I have taken out the Tulip Skirt shaping. It would just give a bit more breathing room when I sit down!

I’ve become a bit obsessed with making Bettine dresses now … last night at sewing class I saw this super super cute hare print jersey fabric in the shop … it’s mega expensive but I think it would make the BEST jersey Bettine! Maybe as a post-op treat …?

Hope you are all having happy sewing times this Autumn/Spring (if you are in the Southern Hemisphere!) Let me know what you’re up to!

A Visit to Gay Paris! 

This last week has gone flying by and hasn’t left much time for sewing! On Thursday evening I set off for Paris for a full day in the office on Friday followed by a fun Friday night in Paris with my mum and her friend Alison. We spent the evening wandering the streets of Montmartre and eating Confit de Canard, which was absolutely delightful! Today the wandering continued and after we’d stopped for a Pain au Chocolat for breakfast,we accidentally stumbled across the most delightful sewing and knitting shop! 

     

Le Comptoir is situated in the 9th arrondissement and is such a treasure trove of wonders! We spent ages perusing patterns and notions and just marveling at the wonders of the interior. The owner was super friendly and helpful, she even gave us a little history of the shop and told us that the interior was the original from the habadashery shop in 1861. 

  
The wool and all the draws were so enticing, it practically made me wish I was a knitter. Maybe I’ll get something on the needles soon, especially as it’s really getting chilly enough now to make me want to wear something woolen!

  
Even though I have done much too much sewing shopping of late, I couldn’t resist buying myself a souvenir from this lovely lot! In the end I settled on two patterns (in French – ooo la la!) and three little packets of buttons. The patterns are for a drapey jersey style dress and for a button down play suit! I’m very excited to make them both! 

    

Have you ever done any fabric shopping abroad? Is there anywhere I should make a pilgrimage to?

An Unexpected Surprise

I’m super excited and surprised to have been nominated by the lovely Clare at The Red Door Makery for a Liebster Award!!! It really brightened up a really very soggy and grey day here in Franky-town!
liebster-award

To be honest when I started my blog, it was a bit of a whim to have somewhere to collect up my photos of my makes and to meet some like-minded people. I never thought I would find it so enjoyable – it’s added a completely new level to my hobby and made me feel really part of a community. I love to read everyone’s comments and other people’s blogs – I feel part of a lovely group of creative and inspiring people which is such a special thing. I can’t believe the time is flying and I’ve gotten so in to it, and even that I have found readers around the world! So Danke, Merci, Gracias, Grazi, Ta-Mate, and thank you to all who follow, comment or just pop-by for a browse! It’s so great to have you here and to make new friends!

Here are my answers to Clare’s questions:

  1. What was the ‘kick’ that made you start your blog? What made you think “Yes, today I’m going to do it”? Funnily enough, starting a blog was a bit of a whim for me. I know some people take time thinking about the concept and what it should be, but I took up blogging like I took up sewing, on an impulse and with plenty of gusto! For me it was really about being able to share what I make with people who might be interested and meeting some other  like-minded people. I just thought, “why-not give it a go?!”
  2. How do you fit your blogging into your life? I’m a bit of a late night blogger and sometimes I even draft a blog post while I’m waiting for a train or sitting on the tram. I have even been known to do it on my phone on my lunch break in the park at work. Doing it on the go doesn’t always have the best results though, so I always come back and make sure I check them for typos and picture alignment on a proper screen!
  3. What was your least fun blog post, and how did you overcome that? I think my least fun blog post to write was my Scissor Pouch Tutorial. Although I loved the finished result and I really wanted to share the results and my idea with everyone, I also realised that writing tutorials are time-consuming and not as easy at it looks on other people’s blogs! I will certainly be coming back for more though, as it’s great to see when someone else makes one of your tutorial ideas!!
  4. Who/what is your biggest inspiration? I’ve actually written a whole post on inspiration hunting, as I think there are some great things out there. Beyond that though, maybe it sounds a bit cliched but other bloggers are a great inspiration to me! Just seeing their designs and fabric choices can be so inspiring to go out and make something yourself. My mum is also a great source of inspiration to me though – just the way she is always so enthusiastic and supportive when I want to try something new. I don’t think I would have done half the things I’ve done in life if she hadn’t given me the confidence to just give things a go!
  5. What is your one goal for 2015? (doesn’t have to be a big one!) So this is actually coming to a blog post fairly soon, as I’ve set myself a couple of little sewing goals for the rest of 2015. One is BUTTON HOLES. For some reason, I have just avoided them like the plague until now, and I’m sure they aren’t as scary as I’ve made them out to be but just – gah. My other goal for 2015 is to learn how to do a proper FBA (rather than just fudging it by cutting a bigger size and sticking in some darts!).
  6. What is your ‘medium’ of choice, and why do you like working with it? I’m not really sure I have a “medium” …. in a sewing context I would choose a favourite fabric though! I am a big big big jersey fan! If I could I would make everything in a  jersey knit and I love a good pattern you can make in jersey. It’s comfortable and stylish – what’s not to love?! If you know of any good patterns for jersey fabrics, as we say in Germany “her damit!” or “let’s be havin’ it!”
  7. Is there a skill you wish you had? I would love to be able to restore furniture. I just love the idea of taking something really old that someone might even throw away and then turning it in to something really beautiful and useful. I always loved woodwork and crafts, so maybe it’s something I could learn in the years to come. I’ve always been a bit put off by the need for real bonafide power tools and a space that get’s a lot more messy than a craft room though!
  8. Have you ever considered turning your hobby into a career? I actually think about this a lot at the moment. I love my current job, but I also love the idea of a fabric shop with a Dachshund curled up in a basket in the corner. Maybe it’s just a romantic fantasy. I am sure there are a lot more sleepless nights, spreadsheets, tax returns and stock taking involved than feature in my fabric shop Dachshund dreams currently, but you can dream, right?!
  9. Aside from blogging, what do you like to do in your spare time? Oh so many things! If only there was more “spare time” and less “busy time”! I like running with a girls running group here in Frankfurt, and hanging out with my girlfriends (my Mädels 🙂 ) I like cooking with the PB and watching detective dramas on the couch together. I like walking and cuddling dogs (my parents’ dog, or anyone’s dog they are willing to lend out really!) So lots of joy in my spare time really!
  10. Do you live in the town, or in the countryside? (and do you like it there?) I live in the town, but I grew up in the countryside, and I think Franky-town is probably the closest I can get to a countryside-like-town. I love the green-ness, the forrest, the river, the parks, the bike rides to the out of town beach in the summer, the outdoor swimming pool, the ice cream parlours, the summer festivals, the running tracks and the red-squirrels that come out in Autumn, along with so many things. For a city that lots of people have a big-downer on for being “boring”, Frankfurt is the city that stole the country mouse’s heart!
  11. aaaand, because I had to get a foodie question in here somewhere, what is your favourite thing to eat? It’s a strange answer (and probably disappointing to a foodie!) but cereal. I just LOVE cereal. Any time of the day or night, you can’t go wrong with cereal. Preferably granola. Or the chocolate kind!

As part of the award rules, I need to nominate up to eleven other bloggers with less than 500 followers. My nominees are:

Sarah Kate Makes – I love Sarah’s creations, they are always so pretty!

SaSiBeau – SaSiBeau makes some lovely things and I love popping by to have a look for inspiration!

JustJessica – we are both beginner sewers and I love to look over at Jessica’s site to see her progress and what she making!

Liebster Award Rules:

In order to be eligible, a nominee must:

  • link back the person who nominated them
  • answer 11 questions designed by the person who nominated them
  • nominate up to 11 other bloggers for this award who have less than 500 followers
  • create 11 questions for new nominees to answer
  • let the nominees know that they have been nominated by going to their blog and notifying them

Here are my questions:

  1. If you had a “craft super power” what would it be?
  2. What is your favourite time of year?
  3. What was your favourite project and why?
  4. What one new technique would you like to learn?
  5. What’s your least favourite part of the creative process?
  6. What is your craft space like?
  7. Do you have a favourite place?
  8. Have you ever considered turning your hobby into a career?
  9. Do you have a favourite blog, store or site?
  10. If you had to pick a favourite fabric, what would you choose?
  11. Which city do you think represents your style?

Thank you so much for taking part!

Burda Easy Sweatshirt 6718

When you make an order from stoffe.de, they conveniently send you a small booklet of next season’s Burda Style patterns. I thought I would have a little peruse before I put it in the recycling, and came across this cool pattern for a sweatshirt. I loved View B with the roll neck style and thought it would really suit my partner.

 

I asked PB if it was something he’d like me to make and he seemed to be a pretty keen bean, so I promised him it was finally his turn to get something home made and we had some chats about fabric. He really wanted the check version as shown on the pattern packet, but I was a bit scared by the idea of matching the checks and fortunately in the end I couldn’t find any checked sweatshirt fabric! As a result we had to settle for a sensible charcoal grey with black cuffs and waistband. 

Surprisingly I couldn’t find any fabric for the cuffs and waistband online (potentially because I didn’t know the right German word to get exactly what I was looking for) so in the end I went to trusty Karstadt. I managed to get the required 2m of charcoal grey sweatshirt fabric along with 35cm of black ribbed fabric for the cuffs. It was an occasion where I was pleased to be able to hold the fabric in my hand and know exactly what I was getting, but I’m starting to think I should maybe just get my paycheck diverted to Karstadt at the moment! 

The fabric turned out to be really lovely and soft on the inside and was a treat to work with. This pattern is so easy, it really does warrant its ‘super easy’ label. I think the fact that I have done so much sewing with jersey recently also helped. I feel like I spend every Saturday attaching cuff bands and waist/neckbands at the moment which meant it was really easy to just stitch these on! After I’d cut my fabric I did realize I had made a fatal error though … It turns out Burda style patterns NEVER include seam allowances and I had not added them on. Measure twice, cut once Amy, measure twice cut once.

Fortunately for me, PB is on the smaller side of the pattern size I cut, so I decided to plough on and fit as I went. I used the overlock stitch on my machine (my new best friend) which gave a great finish on the inside as well as requiring considerably less than the suggested 5/8 seam allowance. Poor PB, every time I sewed a piece together, I made him get up from the couch and try it on, but the result in the end was actually a great fit! 

  

The only change I would make next time is to lengthen the sleeves ever so slightly. Hell, I might even add a seam allowance! I love the snuggly oversized collar so much, I think I might even make one of these for me for the winter. The only change I made to the collar was to leave out the eyelets. From a cost perspective they were quite expensive and it seemed a shame to buy a pack of 50 when I only needed two! Instead I cut two small holes and finished them with a tiny repetitive zig-zag stitch, a bit like a button hole. The result was actually quite tidy and they seem to function just fine. The whole project only took 4 hours from start to finish, which is a pretty speedy make. 
  
Overall I’m really pleased with this project – I think there might be a few more to come! As my first venture in to men’s clothing it was a real confidence builder, and now every time PB puts it on I feel all proud! 

How about you? Do you have any makes you are particularly proud of? Do you also sew things for friends and family? 

MIY Collection Brightside Shrug

When I saw the Brightside Shrug Pattern from Miy Collection on R3DRobinsnest’s Fall/Winter Wardrobe Planning Post I was so keen to get hold of the pattern! I used to wear a lot of shrugs back when I was at uni, but they don’t seem to have been so hip since then so I haven’t seen many in stores. I love a shrug cardigan for my shape, and this one had the coolest flared sleeves!

As this pattern is only available as a PDF, I set about printing and sellotaping (which I loathe), however I did realise in the process that I could just cut out the pattern and no tracing would be required which made me feel quite cheerful. The next day I set about cutting out – at a mere 3 pattern pieces it doesn’t come much quicker and easier than this!

The fabric I used for the shrug was a ridiculously expensive dogtooth knit which I bought about this time last year. I had bought it to make a dress, and then promptly realised I required more than the 2 metres I had bought so was a bit disappointed. At one point I made a pencil tube skirt out of some of it, which wasn’t a very successful make, so I was just left with a sad little remnant which I didn’t know what to do with to show for my expensive purchase. I cannot tell you how smug and delighted I was when I realised that my sad little remnant was the perfect amount to make this shrug!


The fabric itself is sort of slippery, so was a bit of a pain to pin and cut, but was lovely to sew with and has this lovely weightiness to it which means it falls beautifully. I sewed it with my newly discovered Overlock Stitch on my Pfaff which is a real treat. It means that I feel more confident that things will stand up to the washing machine and will look good on both the outside and the inside! As I’ve done a LOT of sewing with jersey recently, I felt like this top came together super fast. I feel like I’m becoming a bit of a pro at attaching sleeve bands and neckbands which is a great feeling. The Simple Sew Jersey Top really stood me in good stead! 

Overall, the Brightside Shrug felt like a great and easy sew. So much so, that my mum and I have both ordered a copy of MIY Collection’s Wendy Ward’s book, The Beginner’s Guide to Dressmaking. I have really high hopes for it as every pattern of Wendy’s I’ve seen so far seems to be right up my street style-wise. I’m sure in addition to the patterns from her book there will be at least another two or three Brightside Shrugs. I wore this one to work and it’s so easy to just throw on and feel good in!

Do you have any patterns or pattern designers that you would return to time and again?  Or a favourite project you managed to squeeze from a remnant? I’d love to hear from you!

Simple Sew Jersey Top in Mustard

I enjoyed making the Simple Sew Patterns Jersey Top so much the first time round, that I decided to come back for more. This time I chose a mustard yellow jersey which I bought at the Karstadt haberdashery. I was very pleasantly surprised to discover that it was a bargain EUR 6/m and I absolutely love mustard as a colour for autumn, so I nabbed a couple of metres and thought I was bound to make something with it.

I actually made this top a couple of weeks ago when my brother and sister in law were here to visit. As having visitors doesn’t leave much time for sewing, I was looking for something quick and simple to make with fabric from my stash and this pattern was just the job. I haven’t blogged the finished result until now as I really wasn’t sure if I liked it or not yet. What surprised me most about this project was how different the top came out when using a different fabric. Compared to the relatively stiff jacquard jersey which I used for my previous Simple Sew Jersey Top, this knitted jersey had so much more drape. So much so that I think I would have been better off going down a size, but you live and learn! Next time I make this I will also be taking out a bit of the fullness across the back, maybe a couple of inches, as I feel like it makes me look a bit boxier than I really am. When I did the Jacquard Jersey version, I’d also added about an inch and a half to the length. For the double knit version this really wasn’t necessary – it just seems to add more fullness.

Anyway, in spite of my whinges and moans, I’ve decided that I actually really quite like this top now and I really love the colour! I’ve worn it to work a couple of times with black skinny trousers and a blazer which was nice and comfortable. I’m also thinking it will look cute with my tan boots in winter, with maybe a long sleeved black t-shirt underneath.

I’ve also got quite a good chunk of the fabric left over. I was thinking maybe a mustard pencil skirt? Or a sort of mini circle skirt? What do you think? Any ideas of what else I could make with this fabric much appreciated!

Jersey Bettine Dress in Funky Florals

A match made in heaven …?

I’ve been pretty excited to sew the Tilly and the Buttons Bettine Dress ever since the pattern was released, but dilly dally-ed around a little in the hope that one of the German stockists would decide to start selling it as the exchange rate is awful at the moment. However, once I saw Tilly’s “Tips for Making a Jersey Bettine Dress” post, I knew I could not wait any longer and it had to be mine, so I splurged on the exchange rate and postage from England!

Ever since I made the Simple Sew Jersey Top, Jersey fabric has become my new best friend. I love the fact that it is more forgiving on fit for my problem areas, and I have had much more success with simple fit alterations than I have had with cotton. In addition to that, you can’t really say no to the comfort factor of jersey! I am always looking for things that are chic enough to wear to work, but comfy enough to survive a long day at a desk, and I had high hopes that a Jersey Bettine would do just that!

The jersey fabric I used for this dress was an impulse buy from the Karstadt Haberdashery when I “popped in for a zip” (yep – that ended in a €50 fabric splurge)! This bolt of fabric was lying on the cutting table while I got some other fabric cut and I just decided I would grab two metres on a whim. It was really quite cheap by Karstadt standards, from memory about 8 Euros per metre, and quite nice quality, so seemed a good idea at the time! When I got it home, I wasn’t sure I’d done the right thing with the pattern, which was promptly reinforced by PB’s most sceptical of faces. However, I thought I’d crack on and give it a go anyway – that’s the beauty of sewing yourself, you’re the boss!

Funky Florals

Although I was excited to put pockets in to my Bettine dress (one of my favourite features on a dress or skirt) I heeded Tilly’s tutorial advice and stayed well away on the basis that they may stretch and look weird in jersey. I was pleasantly surprised as a result of this that I would only need 5 pattern pieces to make this pattern, which meant I managed to Pi-Dy it and cut it all in one evening. I had a minor moment of panic when I thought I didn’t have enough fabric, but then was quite proud when I got to use a technique I’d learnt at sewing school the week before for getting more out of your fabric when you need to cut on the fold. Basically you take the two selvedges in to the middle of your fabric, giving you two folds to cut from – ta-da!

I cut a size 7 on top and a size 5 on the bottom (thank you Lord for my massively disproportionate figure!) and decided to run the risk that the bodice and skirt wouldn’t match up, all the while praying the elastic would help me out. After cutting I was also slightly concerned that I had made a dress to fit the hulk …. look at the size of it!!

It turns out that Tilly is more than a little generous on her seam allowances and the elastic also does a good job of bringing everything together!

When it came to sewing, this one came together like a dream. Tilly’s instructions are super simple and easy to follow. Also, by making the jersey version, the number of steps are significantly reduced. I made the top on the same evening that I traced and cut the pattern, and then decided to take it along to sewing class last night to finish it off. I was delighted to discover that my sewing machine has an overlock stitch, so I tried it out on this garment and absolutely loved the finish. Thanks Pfaff – I think that’s my justification for the purchase of an overlocker out the window!

Surprisingly, despite my cutting the top and bottom in two different sizes, I didn’t have any problems attaching the bodice to the top. I just sewed right round making the casing for the elastic as described and it was absolutely fine. I used 10mm elastic, which seemed quite thin, but is actually really comfortable to wear. The only other alteration I made was to take out the “tulip” edges of the skirt in the side seams. They were in the initial version, but it just looked weird and slightly bulky, so I pinned to fit my shape better and then just sewed a much less pronounced curve. I haven’t worked out whether it was because of the jersey fabric that it looked weird, or whether it’s partly to do with my body shape, so I shall investigate further the next time I make this pattern in a non-jersey fabric. In addition to this, I would also probably alter the pattern to provide a little extra length on the skirt, just because I like the thigh region covered at work. Speaking of next times, next up is a Bettine in Chambray …. yay!

So here it is! My finished Bettine …

And here’s a picture where you can see the sleeves. I’m trying to give you a thumbs up for the joy of sewing a Jersey Bettine (not sure what is going on with my left hand but it’s out here on the internet for all to see now!)


Have any of you sewn a jersey Bettine? I’d love to see them! Do you have any other patterns I can make up in jersey, seeing as it’s my new best friend?! I’d love to hear about them!