Travel Clothes

When I’m travelling I always like to make something new to wear. Often it’s quite odd but comfortable for plane travel and something I probably wouldn’t normally wear at home. I’m not sure yet whether the latest little number is something I will wear back in Bris Vegas but it was the perfect travel companion taking me from Brisbane as a simple dress…

…to Denver with an added coat – able to be worn in multiple ways. Likes this…

…as well as like this…

and like this…

Of course, for Denver I added tights and changed to knee high boots, not seen in the photograph above or below that I prepared earlier. I also added an infinity scarf.

The infinity scarf was surprisingly simple to make and very comfortable to wear.

The jacket was made from Vogue Pattern 8305. The dress was based on the camisole pattern in McCall’s 6112 (now on clearance). For the infinity scarf I just joined a few scraps of fabric together to make a long loop – 15cm wide by 2.2m long. I simply overlocked the edge and it worked out perfectly.

Grey Maxi Skirt

Do you remember when I made the black and white print maxi skirt?  I probably mentioned back then that I generally don’t wear anything maxi…I’m quite short and have always felt that the extra length made me look even more short.  Well, having tried it I no longer care whether I look short – I love long skirts! Although my black & white maxi skirt is a little too long and I often feel like I’m going to trip over it and pull it right off. Given that the waist is elastic it could happen!

It was just so simple to make that I decided to make another one, this time a little shorter.  I cut the full 150cm width of fabric to 95cm long. Joined it to make a seam and then hemmed the top and the bottom. Then slipped some elastic through the top to form the waist.  Voile…

Apologies for the slightly strange self portrait. Can you tell I was using the timer on the camera? :) It’s a shocker but I didn’t have time to try again and didn’t want to delay getting this post up.

I’m trying hard this year to show you my sewing projects on me. 

If you are thinking of starting sewing this would be a great little project to have a go at. Please do let me know if you’d like any more specific details on how to make this maxi skirt.

Silk Georgette Dress

I’m sure I’ve promised that I’m not going to make Simplicity 8741 again…but I just did and I LOVE it!

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How gorgeous is this silk!!!

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I love this fabric and I love this pattern. So, no more silly promises…I am going to make this again.

A Great Winter Travel Dress

Next month I’m travelling to the US so I wanted to make something warm and easy to pack. I found this Charlie Brown Camel Wrap dress online and was inspired.

I already had the pattern for a similar dress and New Look had classified it as “*easy”. Perfect!

I had read a number of reviews on Pattern Review that identified a few issues with the pattern but I decided to press on regardless.  There were some concerns about the facing but I thougth I’d try following the pattern initially and then make adjustments if necessary.  It came together quite easily and without too much drama…initially!

The fit is great, and I really like the ‘v’ in the back waist line.

Sometime towards the end of making this, when I was at the point of sewing the side seams I made a few guesses rather than pulling out the pattern pieces to make sure I was joining the wrap section into the seams at the right point. I really shouldn’t have done this!  Fortunately the belt, that is attached at the back side seams, mostly hides my mistakes.  Here’s a close up with the belt tied…

…and without the tie (hiding the hideous mistake!)…

It’s a little disappointing and a constant reminder that good sewing is all about precision, patience and unpicking!

Overall, I’m really happy with this dress and I think it will be great to travel with.

Back to School Chair Bag

Today I made some chair bags for the boys to take back to school to keep all those school books I was complaining about covering yesterday!

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I have made quite complicated versions in the past with lining, lots of pockets, personalised with their name. Today I was really after a slightly quicker option (but still with pockets) given how close it is to school starting! I still wanted the strength of the lined version so I used rubber backed curtain fabric that I just happened to have in my stash. Here’s a quick tutorial…

1. Cut a rectangle of fabric 50cm wide by 90cm long.

2. Cut a second rectangle 50cm wide by 25cm long. This will act as the flap that goes over the chair.

3. Now cut some small squares or rectangles in contrasting fabric to form pockets on the front of the bag. I cut one large one for books 30cm by 30cm and a tall narrow one for rulers and pens 12cm x 30cm. I overlocked the edge of each square and then folded and pressed the fabric edges before sewing around the edge.

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4. Next I folded the large rectangle of fabric in half with the right side of the fabric on the outside. I placed the hemmed pockets onto the fabric and pinned them in place before sewing them. Be careful to leave enough space on the edges to allow for the side seams.

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5. Next step is to sew the smaller rectangle of fabric to the top of the large rectangle to form the flap to slip over the chair. To do this you will need to sew the right side of the small rectangle to the wrong side of the large rectangle. Then fold the fabric flap over before top stitching on the right side of the larger piece.

6. Next you need to hem the edge of the small rectangle, now attached to the large rectangle, and the bottom edge of the large rectangle.

7. With right sides of the fabric together, and the flap folded down, pin the edges together and sew.

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8. I then covered the seam with bias binding, but over locking would be fine too.

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I know there are lots of steps here…and I’m hoping it all makes sense. If you have any questions please just let me know and I’ll try to clarify. It may seem like a lot of work but it really is quite straight forward if you can decipher my instructions. And the best part is that in the end your child will have a unique chair bag, like no one elses in the class – hopefully in a good way!!!

From Teddy Bear to Super Ted

When Hamish was a baby my parents gave him a gorgeous soft blue teddy bear. It was actually the same size as him as a newborn.

In the last couple of years he has given this teddy a name – ‘Super Ted’. He has been begging me to make an outfit for Super Ted. Today I finally did…

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The outfit gives a great deal of strength to this little bear…

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Hamish is happy but already looking at enhancements to make to the outfit!

Maxi Skirt

I recently bought two metres of this pretty knit fabric from Spotlight (40% off!) with the intention of making a dress of some sort. 

But this afternoon I decided to make it into a maxi skirt.  I simply cut the full two metre length to 95cm wide.  I sewed it with right sides together to create a seam and then created a casing at the top for elastic and hemmed the bottom.  This was a half hour project, and I’m very happy with the end result.

I’ve never been into long skirts or dresses but I’ve really enjoyed wearing this this afternoon. I think it’s going to be a favourite!  And the best part – I have the remaining 55cm width of the two metres of fabric to make a short version.  You really should give this a try…if you can sew a straight seam this is the project for you.