OWOP! Day 2…

OWOP day 2

Hooray I dragged myself into and out of the shower and even did my hair and make-up for OWOP day 2!

This was the second Violet I made and it gets worn A LOT. But never before with these trousers. I fished out these wide-legged trews from the back of the wardrobe as I wanted to try something new and different in the spirit of OWOP. I also pulled  out my favourite platforms so I am waaaaay tall. I love being tall – look at how I rule the world! Platforms are about the only heels I can walk in without looking like I have rickets. When I feel tall I like to stand at the sink and laugh at how far below it is. Does that sound weird? It’s a point of reference – come on! Usually I have to tippy toe to turn on the tap…

I like this look – I look a bit like my mum circa 1979. Yeh! Rock on OWOP!


Completed: Tuck ‘n’ silk ‘n’ lace violet

Tuck 'n' silk violet

I’m breaking with tradition here by not modelling this make and I do apologise, but I’m displaying my Tuck ‘n’ Lace Violet here on the washing line for the following reasons:

  1. My husband has gone to the Tate Modern for an exhibition so can’t do pics
  2. I am still feeling poorly and snotty and don’t want to inflict poorly-snotty-pics on you
  3. As the result of 2 I am still in my pyjamas despite it being 1.20 in the afternoon
  4. I’ll be modelling it later in the week as part of OWOP!

Does that excuse me this one time, miss? Please?!

Tuck 'n' silk Violet

So I wanted to do something different with this Violet. I had some beautiful creamy gold lace in my stash that was just sitting there and I realised it would go perfectly with the bronze-y silk I was making the Violet with. Remember I got a whole five metres for £15? And it’s vintage Liberty silk?! I love this fabric but it is a BITCH to work with. Pressing seams leaves terrible water marks that you have to steam out, it frays like a mad fraying thing… but it’s gorgeous isn’t it? So we’ll forgive its diva tendencies.

Tuck 'n' silk Violet collar

I used no less than THREE brilliant Colette tutorials. One for making little loops for the buttons, one for making tucks and one for adding a lace overlay to the collar. My tucks leave a lot to be desired and some of my loops are a little bigger than I wanted but overall I’m pleased I attempted them and I reckon it adds a vintage feel to the overall make.

Tuck 'n' silk Violet tucks and loops

Another beautiful day here in London! I’m going to go and have a shower now, nip over to the garden centre to lust after plants and stop feeling sorry for myself! Have a wonderful weekend!

OWOP! Day 1…

Oh I’ve been remiss this week. It was only that I read Elisalex’s post on OWOP! yesterday that I realised it started today, and not on Monday like I thought. Oops! Actually I’ve been laid up since Thursday with womanflu. Nasty horrible headcold has left me quite out of sorts. I had planned to do my Mad Men photos today but after examining my swollen eyes and sore red nose I thought best not – let’s wait til tomorrow eh chuck?

Matt decided I needed a walk in the fresh air to convalesce a bit after being cooped up for almost 48 hours so we ventured up to Alexandra Palace to take in some sunshine. What glorious weather – for March!

OWOP! Day 1

This is my go-to outfit for the Violet – skinny trousers. Usually I wear them with boots but today it was warm enough for espadrilles! Fear not – I have more than just skinny trousers planned for this week.


There he is – my own Lawrence Nightingale. We took a walk down an old disused railway track that runs behind Muswell Hill. The views are stunning on a good day. You don’t get many views like this to the pound in London town:


When I’m faced with sights like this I feel compelled to say ‘London, England’ in my best BBC received pronunciation voice.

I have to say the walk took it out of me a bit so I spent the rest of day swaddled up at home on the sofa watching Downton Abbey, which I got as a boxset from the husband for Christmas. Isn’t it good!

Hope you’ve been enjoying the spring weather, wherever you are. Looking forward to catching up on all your OWOP pics  too!


The best laid plans…

…can easily be derailed by the arrival of some new treasures. I had previously scheduled all my sewing projects into a nice well-ordered list. But these little beauties are just crying out for some attention and threaten to disrupt ‘the list’. Oh well, never mind. But look at the shiny new things!

Striped seersucker

I went for an innocent browse in The Cloth House in Berwick Street last week and ended up coming home with two metres of this charming striped seersucker. Isn’t it just so Missoni? I love the colours – they’re unusual together and the texture of the fabric is so tactile. I keep stroking and scrunching it. I’m so enamoured with the vintage pattern I used for the Mad Men dress challenge (Simplicity 5961) I’m considering making another version using the seersucker almost straight away. Speaking of the Mad Men dress – here’s a better quality sneaky peek than the one I put up last week. You can tell I’m dying to reveal it can’t you?

Mad Men dress

I also received a couple of delightful vintage patterns in the post last week:

Simplicity 6535

This is such a sweet little A-line dress, especially with view 2’s neckline. I’m thinking of using this wonderful Japanese cotton that was donated to me by a lovely lady named Cassy. Possibly with a cream/ivory contrast neckline.

Japanese cotton

I’ve been searching for a pattern to recreate this blouse. It’s a vintage blouse from either China or Japan and it’s got the most beautiful ruffled neck which is one of my favourite looks.  Sadly the arms are a bit tight and the fabric is becoming a bit bobbly in certain places so it’s time to try and recreate the magic! A good look at the design reveals it’s actually just a simple low collared shirt with ruffles attached.

Vintage blouse

and here’s the pattern to (hopefully) do it:

Vintage Vogue pattern

What about you? Do you find your plans are constantly being reprioritised depending on what pretty new thing has caught your eye?

Guilty as charged!

Eurch. (yes that’s an official word in that I just coined it – Ed) Why does the interweb torment me so with amazingly pretty things, useful things,  outrageously gorgeous things? My monthly budget for sewing is supposed to be £50 and that’s supposed to include things like patterns, notions and occasional tools as well as fabric. Do I stick to it? Do I heck. Weekly budget more like. But it’s not my fault you see. In almost every purchase the seed of temptation has been planted by another scheming blogger, intent on crushing my willpower and emptying my coffers. Ladies and gentlemen of the jury, examine the evidence before you, if you will.

Cascading hangers

Exhibit A: Cascading hangers – two packs from Amazon inc delivery £13.98

Blogger temptress: Did You Make That?

Police report: After observing the defendant’s superlative Sorbetto storage skills, StitchandWitter felt compelled to follow suit. Within two days she had taken receipt of said items and had corralled several garments into colour coded blocks, not only startling herself with her new-found storage utopia but also inadvertently leaving more room in the wardrobe for the cats to hide.

Verdict: Guilty!

Sublime stitching by Jenny Hart

Exhibit B: Sublime Stitching by Jenny Hart (£8.44)

Blogger temptress: Tilly and the Buttons

Police report: The suspect not only tracked down StitchandWitter’s musings on where to find a good book on embroidery, but proceeded to tempt the unwitting victim with pictures of a certain raccoon, described as ‘adorable’ by all who witnessed it. To add insult to injury, the suspect provided a link to a well-known book superstore where the victim surrendered her credit details and subsequently purchased said item.

Verdict: Guilty!

Exhibit C: Marc Jacobs silk crepe de chine (3yds – £31)

Blogger temptress: The Selfish Seamstress

Police report: By this time the victim was so inured to suggestive messaging from the blogosphere, she was unable to recognise or fight off the manipulative advances of the suspect. Selfish Seamstress not only extolled the virtues of the fabric in question by presenting salacious images of handbags, summer dresses and other fripperies, she also presented a link to a well-known marketplace where such goods are exchanged for hard-earned cash. Again the victim, defenceless and by now almost senseless, made a financial exchange.

Verdict: Guilty!

So you see – it’s really not my fault, is it? Is it?

Mad Men dress challenge – a wee tiny peek

I know I’ve been very quiet this last week but it’s not for want of sewing to talk about! I’ve been uber-busy on my Mad Men dress (part of Julia Bobbin’s Mad Men challenge). I made massive leaps and strides over the weekend and the first part of the week. I danced on the heads of pins, leapt gazelle-like into the gaping maws of the zipper and skipped my way to the hem-finishing-line… then I got a tummy bug.

So it slowed down a bit. But wanna see a sneaky peek? I just have to hem it now and all is done! Apologies for crappy mobile phone pic but it is a peek after all 🙂

I mustn’t reveal the finished item until Julia says it’s OK. Then I shall pirouette across the interwebs in it. Can’t wait to see all the other Mad Men dresses busily under construction out there – can you?

Bloggers of the world (well… a couple of countries) unite!

Last night I had my first ever blogger meet up at Oh Sew Brixton, in aid of International Women’s Day and Oxfam. Tilly and the Buttons organised a coterie of sewing bloggers to attend, of which I was one. Did You Make That was another, Handmade Jane another, Lazy Stitching too, plus a group of other sewing lovelies.

Do you know, I was so nervous beforehand? I can only liken it to a first date after a flurry of emails: finally meeting in REAL LIFE the people you ‘speak’ to almost every day, having seen their homes, their wardrobes, hearing about their projects, their work, their day – all before you’ve even slapped eyes on them in the flesh. And heard what they sound like! I didn’t know Alana was from New Zealand! Karen didn’t know I was Irish! Everyone was  lovely and friendly – it was hugs all round at home time. I even caught up with Alana on a delayed Victoria line tube and we yacked all the way to Highbury & Islington.

In my excitement (even though I brought a camera) I completely forgot to take any photos, so meander on over to Tilly’s and Karen’s blog for the goodies. Alana and I made make-up bags, Jane chucked out beautifully made pouch after pouch and Karen made a gorgeous iPad cover. Unfortunately its size was based on some dodgy half-remembered arithmetic and the conspicuous absence of said iPad meant that it was slightly too small. But look at what she’s done with it! Gorgeous.  Tilly embroidered the cutest raccoon… I’m itching to try embroidery – any good book recommendations for beginners?

Here’s my make up bag.

And some swishy inner lining…

It was pretty easy if you discount that my continuous yacking led me to sew one side on upside down and back to front and that I was probably the only person in the room to use the seam ripper TWICE. If you fancy having a (better) go you can get the pattern and instructions for free from the Oh Sew Brixton website. Do try their classes – I went to the wardrobe cloning workshop (£35) last year and it was brilliant.

In other news, I have purchased this thing of beauty:

Kwik Sew Onesie

Yes, it’s a onesie for adults. Stop laughing. STOPPIT.

I plan to do version A and leave out the elastic waist – who wants elastic round their cuddly bits? I may also add a padded pouch at the front for slipping in and securing a hot water bottle. Genius? I think so. Why are you still laughing? By the time I finish this it will be time for winter again… Ok so now you’re choking and spluttering and unable to speak so I shall take my merry leave of you. You’ll be jealous when the time comes. Mark my words… jealous and COLD. Hmpf.