Day and Night

Sorry for missing another Scrap Sunday but we only came back from the famous wedding weekend yesterday. And whilst, as a family we had been wearing lots of Scrap Sunday projects, unfortunately I did not manage to take decent pictures. Same problem for the even famouser (I do realise that this is not a real word, thank you) wedding outfit. By the way, much to her disappointment, the bride had only been wearing a normal wedding dress (luckily the kind bride had prepared us by sending us a picture beforehand – I guess she had a feeling the expectations of a certain young lady might be a little bit higher than she could provide with her “normal” wedding dress. Apart from that, the wedding has been great, lovely couple, lovely family members, lovely guests, great food, even greater music. We really had a good time and a lovely short break. As usual I am getting side-tracked, I am clearly not attending big events often enough.

Anyway, today I had the pleasure to hand over a present to a 12-year-old girl who had a big day today. I find her style really cool, very grown-up. Definitely more grown-up than my style. But then, that doesn’t mean anything considering how I usually dress.

Anyway, I tried hard to match her taste, I am not sure if I managed.

The fabric is a design by Susalabim, called Mannequin. It is the first time I have used a fabric which comes in pattern repeats (so you have to buy any multiple of 80cm if you see what I mean). As one repeat would have been a bit short, I used  a pattern with a yoke which allowed me to use a different fabric on top. It is called Pia and is a pattern for a top by pattydoo. So I elongated the main part of the shirt to the 80cm of one repeat to get the maximum out of it.

Unfortunately, I am unable to show you pictures of the dress being worn. Whilst I did manage to squeeze in to find the right hight for the belt, it would not be suitable to show of the features of a loose fit dress.  A clothes hanger will have to do.



pattern: Pia by pattydoo, fabric: jersey by Lillestoff, design Susalabim



Personally I am rather pleased with the result, almost what I had in mind. I just don’t like the armhole/sleeve cuffs. But surprise-surprise. I had cut out the fabric before thinking things through. Next time I would add two cm to make a normal hem.

In any case, I hope the new owner likes it, I will never find out, the whole family is far to polite to tell me if I have just ridiculed myself.

Scrap Sunday: A few Me Made May thoughts and a perfect match

May is long gone and I still haven’t summed up my Me Made May experience. So lets have a look.

I pledged

To declutter my wardrobe. Which I did.

To wear me made items three times a week. Which I think I mainly did. Sometimes not for the whole day. But you try and live with a little vomitter and don’t get changed 7 times a day.

To create some new me mades. Which I definitely did.

And to make some progress on the perfect breastfeeding top. Which I haven’t really. Except if you are accepting a head full of vague ideas as progress. Oh well, I will just have to continue breastfeeding for a while.

I guess, I did the challenge only half heartedly as I have so many things on my plate these days but it was still a very good and inspiring experience. And I am already looking forward to taking part next year.

I have realised that my wardrobe consists of lots of ill fitting and mismatching items. I still kept those that might fit again one day. Even though it is hard to tell where kilos things will be going.

The mismatching is another problem, probably unsolvable. I have the colour palette of a parrot so it is difficult to match things. I guess i should add some neutral colours to the mix to be able to combine things better. But if you know me, that will be a difficult task. I might just accidentally turn something that started as a navy blue top into a parrot coat again.

I have also realised that I tend to think that me mades are precious and not to be worn at messy times. For the children I might be making casual items but I still have a tiny bit the feeling that they shouldn’t ruin them because mummy made them. So they shouldn’t be wearing them when they play. Or eat. Which is basically what children do. So whilst in my knitting classes I am always preaching of “making and letting go”, I do struggle a tiny bit of following this for my own makes.

For myself it is even worse. I love making dresses. Especially nice dresses. But I am not an everyday dress type of person. I am a jeans and whatever shirt I pulled out of the wardrobe type of person. So I don’t really have occasions to wear nice dresses and if I wear them for the school run I feel uncomfortable and overdressed.

I guess the main lesson learned from Me Made May 16 was to make not only more clothes for myself and the children but to focus on staples and more wearable items. And to take it more seriously in general. The ideal would be to be able to make all the clothes for the family myself, wouldn’t it. Which would also mean to not only look out for those cute and special printed fabrics but some plain colours too. Even I wouldn’t mix a patterned top with a multicoloured even more patterned skirt. I said “wouldn’t” because I have done it in the past. Due to lack of a plain item in the right colour.

Oh, and when I say “all” the clothes, I don’t include things like rain clothes or winter coats,… Not for now at least. But I am actually planning to make trousers. As I am clearly wearing trousers more often than dresses.

One good side effect of that new plan would also be to reduce my stash considerably. It had gone down lately. Until dotsnstripes had a super sale, selling some lovely fabrics for £3 a metre. So I am back to huge piles of fabric. I wish a day had 48 hours.

So this week started pretty well, I cut out a T-Shirt and a dress last weekend and managed to sew both on Monday. Then I thought, I could continue with one piece a day but this was it 🙂 Well, apart from a Pippi Longstocking apron which I will show you in a seperate post.

Both patterns  are from my klimperklein book Naehen mit Jersey Kinderleicht!

For the dress I used some of the fabric that had been in my Advent calendar last december. And what a perfect match for the size I had to use 🙂 (the pattern doesn’t even include seam allowance yet!):



I love it, it is obviously girly but not the usual boring pinkish stuff.

For the pirate shirt I had plenty of fabric because I had bought that fabric for  a onesie which never happened. So for once I actually looked at the position of the pattern when cutting out rather than just squeezing it into a corner of the fabric to have as little waste as possible and so the motives are spread out evenly.


I combined it with palm tree green stripes for the sleeves and orange for the neck and sleeves.


After I had made the sleeve cuffs too tightly, I panicked and the neck binding is now slightly too loose. But I love the combination and have decided to make a similar combo for his brother. I don’t normally like matching children but I guess pirates usually do come in bunches.

Oh, I almost forgot. I also made a pair of shorts out of scraps. The pattern suggested jogging sweat and I had grey or blue. The boy chose blue (believe it or not but I would have preferred the grey) and as I am struggling with plain colours I put lots of other stuff there, like a double layered application. Which is also a good way of using up tiny pieces of scrap 🙂


I am a teeny weeny bit unsure about the material choice. Obviously a certain thickness is needed for robustness. But then it might get quite warm. Which doesn’t make sense for a pair of shorts. Hmm. I might just try the same pattern with a woven fabric. It will be much cooler and we will see how long it will survive. But that will have to wait a little bit as this week it will be my and mini pirate’s turn.


Made from scratch

It has once again been quite on here because we have been on holiday and I didn’t even bother have the time to announce it before leaving. Anyway, we had a lovely time climbing mountains, swimming in cold water, having encounters with big cows and celebrating the baptism of my niece who happens to have, by the way, a lovely and very well dressed god mother.

I will really try to catch up on all the things I have been working on (believe it or not but I have been knitting a lot) but for now I’ll have to start with a dress that I made a few months ago as I have at least a few pictures on the computer already. And no, it is not a scrap project.

It was a proper independent project from start to finish. I took my client to the fabric shop and she chose, very unsurprisingly a rather odd fabric considering that she is not a 50s wall in need of a fresh wallpaper. And wanted to combine it with a not at all in any sense matching fabric. (The second customer joining on this trip chose a light grey cotton with big white dots for a knight costume still to be made)

I asked my client to bring some sketches to our second appointment where I tried to find out what she was really looking for and what would suit her type.


Once we had agreed on the final design, I took her measurements and made the pattern and a calico version (sadly no picture of that step) to see if it would fit her.


The next appointment was about necessary alterations and to see if it needed a zip or not. Together we agreed on a zip just to leave a bit of room for growing.

In the next step I started to work on the actual dress but before I could finally hand it over we needed another urgent meeting to discuss the trimming around the neck and armholes. My choice would have been a plain white bias binding but hey, I don’t have to wear it.

So, we have a straight and long upper part in a nice medium weight cotton and a rather bouncy skirt with three layers of frills (each being a full and separately cut circle –  I have used up more than a meter of that lightweight cotton, just for that short skirt)

The bias binding for the edges have a mini crochet edge which make it a bit stiff and therefore not ideal to go around narrow curves and I particularly struggled with the finish of he invisible zip. Hopefully I will do better next time 🙂

In any case it was a perfect dress for the baptism and both, my client and I, are very happy with the result. I wouldn’t want to be the person who has to iron this nightmare though. Knowing the client she probably has some kind of housekeeper who has to do it for her.

Paulas Designerkleid 01

busy (sewing) bee

So the super hero guinea pig has apparently been easy to guess, which I am very happy with as I had been worried it might just look like a fat mouse.

The other teachers became each a flower or a butterfly, either on a hairpin or as a brooch.

IMG_2142sAs you can see, I have also made two pairs of ear rings, easy peasy with my new crochet skills 🙂


They have all been very much appreciated.

After all those tiny knits lately, I am now looking for a bigger project but I am unsure what that should be, but I will only use yarn from my stash. Promised.

Other than that, I am trying to focus more on sewing lately and I can proudly present a finished dress… if you remember in one of my mistakes posts I was talking about a wrongly cut dress. Well, I am still planning on repairing that one soon but in the meantime I finished the second attempt and after a lot of altering the initial pattern which seems to be made for people with unusually large backs (or do I have an unusually narrow one?), here it is, just in time for the week of British summer 🙂 :



I am extremely pleased with it, but then I already knew nothing could go wrong with that fabric when I stumbled over it in one of the fabric shops in Shepherds Bush in West London…

Ok, a lot of things went wrong along the way but I finally made it (with lots of brilliant input from my lovely sewing teacher Esther).

Two people said, it reminded them of Mary Quant (who I had not known before that as a not-really-fashionista). Fine by me (now that I googled her) 🙂

I will still try to fix the discoloured and wrongly cut first attempt and it will be really interesting to see both next to each other. I wonder which one I will like best…