and the final petals and stitches fall in to place

Well, I got over my usual button hole phobia and bit the bullet by finishing the 4 button holes (ok, we all have our fears, this is one of mine) needed to complete this project. 

Funnily enough it was actually trying to pose this dress that presented more of a challenge. You see, the little lady due to wear this creation is 5 1/2 hours train journey away and not exactly available for a quick pose. Careful use of cushions has created hopefully an idea of what it looks like when worn.

I am really pleased with the silk lining, which is gives it that something extra. I literally had just enough in terms of length. Still, its meant that very little has been wasted. This fabric actually has “elvis” written on it interspaced with little guitars. Very cute rock and roll. I used it for a jacket I made a few years back and thought it would be such a shame not to make more use of the left overs.

I’ve added mother of pearl buttons purchased on my recent holiday to Croatia, I think they match really well.

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yes, it’s another blooming dress!

I’m just back from holiday, and you can guess the first thing on my mind after the usual unpacking – you’ve guessed it, I missed my sewing machine. Today has been spent doing not much, bar the occasional bit of work on a dress which is now (almost there) nearly finished.

It’s another one of the vintage ones I blogged about earlier, Simplicity 4878 – from the 1960’s. It still needs a bit of final work (buttons and button holes, plus the back belt) but it’s looking pretty good. I chose a cotton Cath Kidson fabric to give it a more vintage feel and will be using some lovely mother of pearl buttons I picked up on my holiday (perfect excuse to do some shopping).

I’ve added a silk lining to this which I’ll show off later. A few key changes, I’ve lengthened it by about 10cm and reduce the hem to 6.5cm instead of the instructed 11cm.


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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!

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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!