of corset will fit!

OK, the moment of truth, after carefully cutting, stitching, punching and lacing my fabric we get to see if this toile actually fits. Thanks to the kind assistance of one good friend (how else are you going to lace it up?) you finally get to see what it looks like on me!

I have been a bit naughty making this toile, I have literally used a seam ripper to expose the areas where the busk needed to peek through. Still, it did the job nice and quickly. I’m hoping the boning will also help with the shaping, it’s hard to tell what the effect will be at the moment though.

A small update on my original posting. Please do not laugh too much at my expense. I apparently have managed to try this on upside down. Yes, I am a fool!

photo 2

photo 5

steeling myself for the work ahead

The last few days (apart from the little dress I reviewed yesterday) have been spent cutting out the multiple pattern pieces involved in making a corset, then working out how to fit the dratted things together.

You see, unlike most dressmaking pieces there is no automatic “up or down”. It’s like a big jig saw puzzle. Even when following the Simplicity 9769 pattern instructions it involved careful attentive glances to ensure I was on track.

My sister (who is one completed corset ahead of my newbie status) has strongly recommended making a toile. So, despite my normal aversion to the time required in making one I have decided to invest this time round. I still have tried to skip (ok, I am a bit lazy!) as many parts as possible.

How far I can get away with things I am unsure, as without adding grommets its going to be rather hard to lace up. I have this mad idea of using a hole punch as a quick and dirty alternative.

Anyway, here’s what it looks like so far. Of course my dress dummy has no “give” at the waist so the poor thing is looking a bit strained. At least, from what I can see, it’s not going to be too big! I’ve made my usual size 12 at the top, and graded out to a size 16 further down.



twit twoo – bringing the latest project to you


So I walked in to my lovely local fabric shop and was supposed to buy just some fabric for a friend. Then I saw this lovely design and the rest as they say, was history.

I used one of the vintage patterns I mentioned in a previous post (this one is from 1985 Mccalls 9630 view E) and it was extremely quick to sew up. I actually spent about as much time wiring out the best pattern placement (I wanted to leave the owls whole and not overly cut in two too often).

At the top we have mummy and daddy, plus baby owl (humour me..) and I even got the facings to match. I know, I doubt anyone will ever notice. But I know its there, and its good practice!

spot the pattern

Notice a theme going on here? yes, these are all children’s patterns. Yours truly has very happily enlarged her collection of patterns courtesy of a very nice new acquaintance who had saved these all from when she was sewing for her now grown up children. Now, this all relies on my friend’s little girl continuing to like what I sew (fingers double crossed) but I am hoping to get the chance to make some of these up. My favourites are these:




and I also have these (some of them are for older children):



I love vintage patterns and am looking forward to trying some of these out in future. Wish me luck!

is it green to go?

Happily I can announce that the pillow cover trial is complete, the actual making of taught me a lot about what a full size quilt version would involve. So well worth doing. It was quite interesting the amount of zipper foot three point turns were required to get to the finish line. All those sharp little corners to navigate. 

Thank goodness this is not a dress. Somewhere with the cutting out things didn’t go perfectly according to plan so on the inside the seam allowances are really not even. Fortunately from the outside this isn’t an issue!

I like how the design has turned out, but am a little unsure of the colour mixture, any feedback would be appreciated, I do like the colour contrast between the light and dark bias tape, it gives the design a lot more punch. Rather different from what I have worked on so far…..


a glimpse through the window (of a sewing devotee)

Well, after all the recent sewing of fabric I have created some more storage space. Naturally the perfect excuse to shop for more to fill the gap. I imagine the staff at my usual shop were quite pleased at the quantity (of fabric) that exited the store and the amount (of money) that stayed behind.

I’ve got two new projects in mind, and I am exited about both. One is for a corset  (simplicity 9769) which I have been meaning to make, but has stayed in my dream box for quite a while. The up coming pattern stash contest on pattern review has helped encourage me to dust it off. As the rules state I can’t actually start on cutting anything out (sigh) until the first of July you are going to have to wait for more details! suffice to say, I am in love with the silk with a small amount of cotton blend I have purchased for it.

My second project has also been a long time in waiting, Vogue 8648. I bought it as part of a craftsy course (couture dress) which has been sadly neglected. I found some great fabric, but am now wondering if my proposed idea will work. I had thought to make view F, but am now wondering if view C might be better. Thoughts anyone?


can you spot the windows?...

can you spot the windows?…

Then of course, just to throw something else in the mix I am still busy with the pillow cover. Its taken some carefully prepping to get all the bias tape lined up, but at least the sewing of it all isn’t too bad. I’m about half way through it so far!




squaring up to a new project

I have never really enjoyed maths. Calculations even less so. Midway through trying to map out my own (oh such a clever idea) design I was feeling distinctly underwhelmed in terms of the happiness and satisfaction.

I ditched the attempts at recreating using ruler and pencil. Back came the favoured tailor tacks. Fold everything in half, then again and the combination will result in guaranteed even design placement. Wish I had figured this out before spending a rather frustrating evening! anyway, what an earth am I doing and talking about?

If you had a recent peak in my current and future plans page you might have seen this:

rosies quilt design GIF

It’s based on a roman mosaic I saw in Tunisia. Beautiful things, and easily adaptable to a quilt design. Courtesy of some help from a very kind neighbour, I got this designed on a computer, much quicker than my slow and clumsy attempts by hand. Thanks to the feedback on my favourite source of wisdom and advice, Patternreview, I am going to use bias tape for the lines instead of giving myself a migraine cutting it all out.

I decided to be sensible (for once) and make a to scale version as a pillow cover first to see how things worked out. Which resulted in the above mutterings. However, I now finally have the reverse appliqué done (hooray) and can shortly start on the bias tape. Wish me luck……


it’s blossomed in to a winner

I knew the chances of this being a real success were high, but I am still really pleased with how cute this has turned out. Figuring out how to get the bow position just right was something of a pain, but I got there. This project has been punctuated by more unpicking than usual as I’ve been a bit tired this week from busy days at work. Resulting in less than stella focus in the evenings when sewing.





romping to the finish

I’ve already talked about how much I adore this fabric. So it’s time to share how it’s turning out. After an entire evening spent agonising over how to cut it out (pattern placement and where to place the white section) to best effect. I love the effect of patterns with a repeat, but it does take a lot more time to cut it out compared to a plain fabric.

I stupidly sewed the top to the back instead of the front. Only discovering this of course after trimming. Which of course resulted in more time thinking of how to fix it. Fortunately a decorative ribbon has replaced the missing fabric. I’m getting more confident at working with more complicated fabric whilst sticking to (at least for the moment) more simple shapes.

This is the front, the legs still need hemming but you can get the idea of the general theme.


new doors (open)

Well, after talking about it a while ago I have finally set up that Etsy shop. I’ve called it by my Dutch name (which I don’t use day to day) Roosemarijn. In Dutch you can add “tje” to indicate something is small. As my creations will be small (toddler) size it seemed appt. I’ve had a difficult time trying to decide on a price. Clearly above the cost of materials, but how much more?

Well, wish me luck. I certainly don’t expect to make much money, but hopefully it will be fun!  Do you think this will win over my first customer?

P1040882 P1040884 P1040885 P1040886 P1040888 P1040887


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