V1564 raincoat, #21564

Cutting this out took AGES.  I’d already selected a pattern size and cut out all the tissue pieces [mwahahaha NO TRACING here!  Do I make you wince?]  Strangely, on starting to lay it out on the fabric, some pattern pieces were missing.  I checked the packet, where I’d returned the surplus bits, to no avail.  I must have scrunched up some of the ‘scrap’ tissue paper by mistake…and unfortunately, the recycling bin had been emptied.  Bum.

Eventually, after much muttering and swearing, and even considering buying another copy of the pattern, I contrived:  the pattern is multi-sized, and I’m ignoring the size suggested to fit my bust, as it had EIGHTEEN inches of ease.  Now, loose fitting or not, that’s a bit much for me.  I wanted size D.  I seem to have thrown away the back pattern piece for sizes DEF, and the one for the belt loops. [Not... [read more]

A confession – I don’t sew things that often for Christmas.  In fact, it’s really rare for me to give sewn goodies for Christmas!  But this year I thought a change was due.  This was mostly brought on by the purchase (in October!!) of a superking size brushed cotton duvet set from my local Aldi.  The minute I saw it I knew it would be fabulous for some Christmas pjs.


It seems I was infected with a pj making bug for a while.  Using Closet Case Patterns Carolyn pjs, I traced the 8 and the 10 and made 3 pairs of pants in those sizes, one each for my girls and one for a friend.  Each pair has a different trim detail on the cuffs and different topstitching.  I can only show you Daughter No2’s set, the others were packed up and sent off!  Then Daughter No1 asked nicely if I could make a pair of men’s pj pants for her partner, and a full set of pjs for his... [read more]

It's Toaster Sweater Week here at Cookin' and Craftin'! And I've got a giveaway for you!!

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This does sound a bit overdramatic, doesn't it? Well, maybe a tad. But no other dress I ever sewed, except my wedding dress, put me through the wringer quite as much as this Sophia Dress from Burda Style Magazine Vintage Special. It took a long time, a lot of head scratching and a lot of swearing to turn from pattern+fabric into a dress I can slip into. And all for just one wear... Was it worth it? Well, read on and tell me what do you think...

Freesewing is looking for Patrons. Read the blog post. Seriously, read it. Link in bio 👆

The Challengers have been working hard this week, and we have another one – Ruth of Corecouture!  Here is Ruth’s Designer Original from Issey Miyake … and her Designer me-made Copy.   Ruth has many more photos on her blog, so take a look here.   Have you got a favourite designer? A favourite designer […]


Se vi dicessi Ferrari, a cosa pensereste?

Io penso solo ad una persona, Alberto, mio carissimo amico, che si è sposato a settembre. Ora, è plausibile chiedersi cosa centri il mio amico Alberto con la Ferrari.

Iniziamo da principio: compagnia di amici, Alberto che si sposa in autunno, “Raga, dove gli facciamo l’addio al celibato?” “A Riccione, ovvio!” “Dobbiamo vestirlo! Ma da cosa?” “LO SO! Lo vestiamo da pilota Ferrari con la muta anni 70!!!” “Morirà di caldo… È PERFETTO, GRANDE LOLLO!!!!” Questo in sintesi il discorso avvenuto fra gli amici di Alberto, tra cui il mio moroso, Lollo,  e quindi niente, mi son messa al lavoro!

Partiamo dal presupposto che Alberto non ha saputo niente fino a luglio e che quindi prove assolutamente no.

La cosa più sensata da fare è stata partire da un modello più grande, molto più grande di tuta, cucire l’imbottitura insieme e vedere il... [read more]

Embarrassingly enough, this is the fourth year in which I’ve had this project hanging over my head. It’s a top … More

Happy Holiday Peeps!

Mori needed a Little Black Dress for  Holiday Gala and this is what I came up with. She had one major request for her dress and it was that the dress had to have a deep "V" front. I knew right away that I was going to use the top of Vogue 9253 and the bottom I used Simplicity 1559. I had used both patterns for prior garments so the fit was not going to be an issue.

I picked this awesome scalloped lace and a stretch velvet, sadly both are no longer available but there are other options. I had to add a black mesh under the lace. The dress is fairly simple and you can make this in under 2 hours.

We'll end this post with my pick for best picture of the bunch!

I also want to share that my sewing magazine was released Nov 17th and I sold out of my first issue! 
The second issue is on sale now and I some great things lined up for this... [read more]
Yesterday was a weird day. I started off taking lil man to school and then I went into Hanley to finish off Christmas shopping. I had great success and managed to finish off all of Rikki's presents. Then I popped home, had a quick dinner and got ready to go to my friends interment.  Which was.... well not great. I couldn't find the plot so I ended up being a bit late but I was there for
I finally got an opportunity to wear my new dress New Look 6469 earlier this week as the weather turned cold enough to wear.

I took these photos right before leaving for work and used my iPad to take them.  The background colors are not real conducive to showing off this dress and I played with editing as best I could.

I wore this with tights and my camel suede colored booties, only I left my feet out of the shots.

Back of the dress!  The dress calls for a zipper.  I interfaced the back seam edges for the zipper insertion.  This worked well.  I used Design Plus Stay Tape for this.

Here is the side view
This is a high low hem.  To be perfectly honest, I did not recall using the low hem back piece.  When I put it on to wear that day and I saw how the back hung, I thought it might have to do with snug bust. The pattern indicates that it is close fitting in the... [read more]

I’ve been thinking of patterns and styles I wear of late, and found some more inspiration pics.  Then I matched up some of the patterns I already have.  I’m not narrowing anything down yet, no rush, as most of these are simple enough makes so I don’t need any kind of major sewing timetable.


I have several more patterns that fit in, but I couldn’t be bothered to go and get them physically, so I just sat at the PC and found a few images to paste!


Here’s what I have so far- remember, it will all be grey/black for neutrals, with red accents and some print.




It’s coming along nicely!

Just been rummaging, and some more contenders include Butterick 6241, V8434,  V8793 and V1552

I think nearly all of these get the geometric, mathematical vibe.  Now to see if I can realise it as a wardrobe!  The problem as it stands, is that I like to wear dresses, and the... [read more]

I never thought dungarees would be a big hit in my wardrobe and even whilst making my teal linen Turias I was doubting whether I could pull them off or if I would just end up looking like an oversized toddler. However, I wore that pair at least once a week over the summer, got compliments on them every time and still have a couple of people constantly hounding me to make them a pair! I wore them as long as I could through Autumn but had to concede defeat to the plummeting temperatures about a month ago and have been really missing them as an outfit option ever since. A warmer pair was definitely needed!

Diary of a Chain Stitcher: McCalls 7547 Dungarees in Grey Stretch Denim from Higgs & Higgs

I actually had plans to make a denim version before I even thought about the linen pair. I bought the McCalls 7547 pattern at the Knitting & Stitching Show at Olympia way back in the spring. I'd been looking enviously at women rocking dungarees... [read more]
Hi there, just a quick announcement. I have been thinking how to make these files a bit easier to access, so instead of leaving a link on my blog which can get easily lost I have created a listing on Etsy for the minimum amount they allow. I hope this is still as good as free! From there you will receive files for the pattern, an A0 copy shop file and also instructions.

Have a good weekend everyone! xxx

We have a another Designin’ December 2017 Challenger!  Diane of Dream Cut Sew.  Diane found her inspiration with this Valentino, her Designer Original … and after a bit of pattern hacking, she finished her Designer me-made Copy.  I love the vertical stripes mixed with the horizontal stripes. You can browse more detailed photos and read […]

Back in August I got an emergency phone call from a friend. "Do you know anything about overlockers?", she asked. There was a hint of panic in her voice. I went over to her place and found her struggling with an enormous cloud of lace, satin and organza. She had promised months ago to hem her daughter's wedding dress and procrastinated doing so till four days before the wedding. And then her overlocker refused to do a rolled hem. We spent the evening reading manuals, changing settings and trying different needles but nothing worked. When it was way past bedtime I took some offcuts of the dress home to see if my machine could do the trick.
The next evening I was again reading a manual and looking at settings because I had never before used the rolled hem function. What a relief when good old Bernie produced a lovely, wavy, tiny rolled... [read more]

Last year (Evie’s first winter) we had this great quilted suit for her that we bundled her up in every time we went outside (which was at least a couple times a day for our regular walks). I wanted to repeat the idea this winter but it needed to have more mobility since she’s no longer a cute little blob that sits patiently in our arms or stroller or carrying pack (that is admittedly a bit of a revisionist history as she’s never been patient), she’s a full blown toddler, still very cute but o.m.g. all over the place.

When it started to turn to fall I started sewing a small stack of fall/winter clothes for Evie. I picked out “7. Marsupial” from Ottobre Autumn 4/2017 and went up a size since it was meant to be a sweatsuit and I knew she’d need some more ease to fit over her clothes. Well, it was comically large (this is without the ribbed... [read more]

I bet that title got your attention!

A week or two ago a friend at Kop vzw got in touch about an exhibition they were organizing, and asked me if I wanted to join in. It would be an art show about jean jackets, where different artists create pieces on the back of a jacket. This had my name all over it, the only problem was that the deadline was... A bit tight. Like, I only had two weeks. And of course I was going to make a jacket from scratch, I mean, was there any other option?

I panicked at some sewing friends who all told me to suck it up and just do it. A trip to the fabric store behind the corner got me some 100% cotton non-stretch denim (yay!) and I knew I was going to use the Hampton Jean Jacket since it looked closest to the shape of my own favourite jacket. The only problem was that the denim looked so... New. And a bit too dark. At first I tried to... [read more]
Spoiler: I LOVE this dress!  The pattern is called Dune, and it's by Valentine and Stitch.  I spotted this when Sarah from Sew Sarah Smith made this gorgeous version.

The pattern is a top and also a maxi dress, and it has two neckline options.  It also has neck and armbands to finish the neckline and armhole.  These can either be sewn to the right side, folded to the inside and stitched; or sewn to the wrong side, folded to the outside and stitched.

I made the higher neckline on both my versions. Firstly I tried it out as the top in some random scrap of jersey fabric I found at the bottom of my jersey fabric box.  Me, being me, didn't stick to the pattern completely, and made two changes.  

The first was to the neckband.  I had planned to sew it to the outside, then fold to the inside, but my fabric was a bit thick and it was going to look... [read more]
From left to right, top row to bottom row:
Elastic Waist Shorts - Thread Theory Jedediah (seen previously here and here)
Hoodie - Clothes for All Seasons
Pajama Set- Vogue 8964

Chinos - Clothes for All Seasons
Button Down shirt - Liesl & Co. All Day Shirt
Trench Coat - Japanese coat book

Pea Coat - Thread Theory (or Japanese coat book)
Tee shirt - Clothes for All Seasons
Boxers - Clothes for All Seasons

Is the first 2018 resolution post you've seen? I mentioned in my post about Japanese menswear sewing books that I want to sew more menswear, and although I've never participated in #makenine before (since I usually change my mind about things a hundred times and also, make way more than nine things in a year) I've decided that nine is the perfect goal amount of men's clothing for a year, especially since I've made Alex mayyybe 9 things total in all the years I've been... [read more]

…shall I or shan’t I?

I completed my first ever SWAP [Sewing With A Plan] wardrobe in 2016.  It was just after we first delved into steampunk, and had decided to go the annual Steampunks at the Asylum festival in Lincoln, August 2016.  So I did my SWASPP collection [Sewing With a Steam Punk Plan.]  The competition/challenge is run by The Stitchers’ Guild.

What was I thinkng?  11 garments, organised round the concepts of 3 packs in two main colours, to make up as many coordinating outfits as possible.  PLUS I decided to make all the undies, corset, drawers, petticoats etc.  Lunatic.  I did it though, including miles of hand made trim, soutache braiding, and gawd knows what else.

And I did very well, thanks to those who voted for me!

Last year, the rules didn’t really call to me, but I’d enjoyed the experience once, and thought I’d dive in.  I didn’t need any... [read more]

Butterick 6248 tunic in leather-look jersey, with rib knit sleeves and collar

Another bit of fabric matching, because I didn’t have enough for the whole thing in either colour!  Also, I thought a whole garment in the leather-look might be a bit much!

This was a very simple make, and the pattern is well-drafted, with several very different  looks-3 neckline options and 3 back options.  This is view D, almost a mini dress length on me at 5’3″, but I didn’t originally plan to shorten it at all…but I reconsidered and lopped off several inches, as it looked fine over trousers in the long length, not so good over the ‘matching’ skirt.  The sleeves are meant to be 3/4, but I’d heard they were drafted full length, and had to shorten them, despite my monkey arms.

Only one problem with this- the pocket piece is not drafted to fit all sizes, and I’d cut it out... [read more]

Hi readers!

It’s PARTY TIME here at the CSC and we’re busily sewing and celebrating this month for the holidays.  Continuing with Jessica’s post with ideas for patterns, I’m here to inspire you with FABRIC!

Pajama Party!

If your preference is to lounge around in luxurious fabrics to match the baubles on your tree, perhaps you’d like pajamas sewn from silk charmeuse or flannel backed satin or to drape yourself in a velour robe.

flannel back satin (JoAnn) / star print silk charmeuse (Mood) / crushed panne velour (Cali Fabrics)

If you prefer to be comfy and warm, maybe some pajamas in flannel, fleece or a jersey knit in fun prints are in order.

cotton+steel illuminate twill flannel (Hart’s Fabric) / stewart plaid fleece ( / cross stitch christmas cotton jersey (Fabric Fairy)

Work Party!

How about sewing a stretch velvet dress, twill trousers or a wool... [read more]

Editor’s note: Now that TNT month is over, we’ll be posting a few “Who We Are” posts while we start planning in the background for February’s theme month! We’ll announce the theme in early January!

Who We Are (7)

We asked the community to share their experiences of being a sewist living with pain, chronic illness, or health concerns. I wrote about my own experience of chronic pain back in 2013 in this post. and I even filmed some of the physiothereapy exercises that helped me!

Here’s what the community had to say on the topic:


Dee (who is @sbooriel on Instagram) says:

I come from a maker family but I only started sewing my own clothes in my twenties. I had plenty of energy at the time and was doing lots of other things too. Over time things, that previously I didn’t think twice about, started to become more and more stressful. It happened so... [read more]

Our next task in this Handmade Christmas Challenge is to plan a wonderful and welcoming tablescape for the Christmas meal. And participating in another … More scandi christmas tablescape with ikea to the rescue »

The post scandi christmas tablescape with ikea to the rescue appeared first on My French Twist.

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