Monday 5 November 2018

George and Ginger Lively dress release

If you don't already follow Kristi of George and Ginger Patterns I highly recommend you go and find her on Facebook, Instagram or just follow the blog on her website. She is definitely one of the most stylish people I have come across online, and a trendsetter for sure!

Her newest pattern is no exception - I just love all the pretty details in this dress! 

This is the Lively Dress, and it is now available and on sale with 25% off the standard price.

My favorite thing about this pattern is the beautiful ruched bodice - this really jumped out at me when the tester call was posted. The top of the dress is lined, so if you wanted to go for a more simple bodice without ruching, you can just use the lining pieces and voila!

The pattern has a massive size range, going from tween size 12 and 14, through to women's sizes 0-26. The pattern pages are trim free and include the layering option for ease of use.

Options include top and dress length and two sleeve types - bell or elasticated.

I went with the bell sleeves, which is a style I haven't tried before. I was initially a little reserved as to how they would look on me, but they are so fun and 'swooshy' (is that even a word?!) - so I was quickly converted!

If neither of the sleeves are your style though, you can always leave the bottom part of the sleeve off and hem at elbow length!

Make sure you check out the listing page of the pattern to see all the lovely dresses and tops created by the other testers - they all came out fabulous! The tester pictures have been cleverly set out in size order, so if you are one of those people who wonder what a pattern might look like on you by comparing to someone with similar measurements - wonder no more!! Check it out!!!

Saturday 6 October 2018

Cher Skirt - new pattern from Made For Mermaids

I have been craving a skirt with buttons down the front for ages, so when I saw the tester call for the Cher Skirt, I was very keen to try it out!

First up, I made a basic version just to check the fit - it's important to measure yourself accurately for this skirt as it has a fitted waistband, and being made from woven fabrics means there is little to no give.
I used a suiting fabric - It's medium weight, has no stretch and has a very tiny houndstooth print (hard to see in the pictures!) and I used snaps to fasten my skirt.

I made a size Indigo (I really love the non-number based sizing used by M4M - it really makes you stop and think, and measure every time you sew!) Indigo is my usual size for M4M, and my skirt fit perfectly first time.

So now I was happy with the fit I went on to my second skirt. For this one I wanted all the options - pockets and belt loops.


I used a nice black denim, which is quite thick, so I omitted the interfacing along the front edge, as I wasn't sure if the little spikes on the the snaps would be long enough to go through all the layers! I also decide to line my pockets - this isn't necessary - I just wanted a nice clean finish on the insides.

I love this skirt - it turned out just how I wanted it! I know I will get tonnes of wear out of this - it's perfect with tights and boots now that the autumn weather seems to be fully set in here in the UK.

Other options in the pattern include a zip closure rather than buttons (zip is on the side seam), and the pattern also gives advice on using stretch wovens and cutting woven fabrics on the bias for a different look (great for fun plaid fabrics!)

This skirt is part of the new Clueless collection - check it out, as there are plenty more great patterns - the bodysuit I am wearing in the picture below will be in the next round of patterns released :)

The patterns are all on sale for a short time only, so if there's something you have your eye on, snap it up quickly!

Saturday 22 September 2018

New pattern - Wardrobe by Me Hepburn Pants

Say hello to my new favourite pair of trousers! These are the Hepburn Pants, and they are now available from Wardrobe by Me and they are on sale until the end of September.

There are lots of lovely details in these trousers - welt back pockets, slant front pockets- which are nice and deep and a zip fly. I love all the pretty top stitching - I chose to go with a traditional 'Jeans' look, so I did yellow top stitching on my stretch denim fabric.

Construction wise, there are darts in the back and the waistband is contoured - so the trousers fit beautifully.

As with all WBM patterns, the instructions are clearly written, and each step is accompanied with a digital illustration. You can print just the size you want with the layers feature, and the pages are trimless (for A4 and letter paper) - so you save a lot of time putting the pattern together.

There are two leg widths to pick from - I chose to sew the narrower leg. Check out pictures of the other testers version on the pattern listing - they all look great!

If you have not done a zip fly before and are nervous about trying - don't be! Firstly the instructions are great and easy to follow, and if you want even more detailed images, Christina has also done a really helpful How-To on her blog - Here

The pattern is now available at the sale price of $10 (normal price $12) until the end of September.

Monday 10 September 2018

New pattern - Itch to Stitch’s Petaluma Faux Wrap Dress

Just released is another beautiful design from Kennis at Itch to Stitch - and as with the majority of her other patterns it includes cup sizes (A-DD) - it's such a joy to sew her patterns knowing that a great fit is easily achievable without having to worry about doing full bust adjustments!

This dress has a beautiful wrap over style (which is stitched in place - so no embarrassing moments every time the wind blows!!) - it is an incredibly flattering style - and so much easier to wear when you don't have to wrap it in place and get it positioned every time you put it on!

It has a tie belt which is stitched into the side seams, so you can tie either in the front or at the back. The ties are also long enough to wrap around the back and tie in the front if you like a belt to go all the way round.

The dress is designed for drapey woven fabrics - rayon, crepe de chine, viscose would all be great, and it closes with an invisible zip at the back.

Construction techniques are clearly described in the pattern instructions, which all have clear images for those of us that are more visual. The pattern itself is easy to navigate - there are plently of notches to help you get everything lined up nicely and you can print just the size and cup size you need.

I chose to make my dress with the short sleeve option, but there is also a butterfly sleeve and a double petal sleeve, which is very pretty and unique - check out the other tester's images Here to see all the sleeve options.

Always a must - POCKETS! This dress has easy to sew, in-seam pockets:

If you fancy giving this pattern a go, grab it while it's on sale Here (20% off the full price)

It's such a pretty style, I have worn mine lots of times already.

Wednesday 29 August 2018

New pattern - Piper BoHo Tunic from Wardrobe By Me

Well technically this pattern isn't new, it's a refresh of one of Christina's older patterns - so let's just say, it's as good as new! Here is my Piper BoHo Tunic:

If you are after a versatile top pattern that will work across all seasons - this is a very safe bet! With three length options, three neckline options and three sleeve options - that's already a potential of 27 different tops! And then if you throw different fabric weights into the mix, the possibilities are endless!!

I already loved the look of the original Piper Tunic, and Christina wanted to update the pattern to bring it in line with the newer style of her other Wardrobe By Me patterns - I was very excited to help test out the new instructions and sew up my own version.

I chose to sew a tunic length version with long sleeves (with tabs) and shirring at the neckline and I'm really pleased with how it turned out :)
Based on my measurements I sewed a size 10, and the fit came out great first time.

Fabrics with good drape will work best for this pattern, as they will hang nicely - rayon or viscose would be perfect. If you used a stiffer fabric, the resulting top would look a bit more boxy. You could also use jersey - but it would be worth going down a size if you do.

If you like the pattern and fancy trying it out - grab it quickly while it's on sale! You can get the pattern HERE, and I'd love to hear what options you would sew for your top?

Sunday 26 August 2018

New Designer Stitch pattern - The Gemma Twist Top

Well Ann from Designer Stitch has been at it again - all of her patterns are so now and on point - and the Gemma Twist Top is no exception!

Ann showed us her original concept a while back in the pattern tester group - a beautiful drapey top with a fun twisty knot in the front - all of us testers loved the style.... But then Ann took it a step further and added a second style to the pattern - a knot in the back!

Both styles are so fun, but I couldn't resist the beautiful lines of the back twist top - so this was what I made first!

At risk of sounding like a gushing fan girl - Ann's patterns are always perfectly drafted - so I dived straight in with my good fabric and trusted that my top would come out great! And I wasn't disappointed :)

I would advise having a little read through the pattern before starting, and then just trust the instructions - it comes together in a really clever way. And for what looks like a complicated pattern - it's actually very quick to sew.

I love this fabric I got from Flamingo Fabrics - I saw it a while ago and loved the colours - then spotted the bolt end on the website, it was just less than a meter and I managed to squeeeeze this top out of it! (For reference I made a size 3)

When you pick out fabric for this pattern - the drapier the better! Rayon and viscose jerseys are best.

I have my fabric picked out for my twist front version - now if only someone would add more hours to the day.....!!

Thursday 26 April 2018

New pattern from Itch to Stitch - the Giverny Dress

Whenever Kennis from Itch to Stitch posts a tester call I rarely have to think for long about whether I'm going to apply - I know with Kennis' designs the fit is always perfect for me (helped by the fact that many of her patterns have cup sizes - big bonus!!) - but she's always really on trend and stylish too.

When I saw the tester call for the latest pattern, the Giverny Dress, I don't think I even stopped to breath before I'd filled in and submitted the application form!! Such beautiful and classic details - I knew I needed to make this dress.

As I mentioned before, the pattern comes with cup sizes (A-DD) and the finished garment measurements are given, which I find always makes it much easier to get a great fit first time.

There are options for either a short sleeve (as I have on my version) or a 3/4 length sleeve, but have the pretty pleat details.

The front bodice has a slit at the neck with a button closure, and some pretty pintucks. 

The dress is completely lined, so the insides are as beautiful as the out sides! This also means you can get away with using nice light fabrics, without having to worry about see-through issues!

I used crepe de chine for my dress, which is lovely to work with - it's the perfect balance between having a good drape, but it's also nice and stable, so much easier to work with than a silk or satin.

The dress has an invisible zip at the back with princess seams for a nice fit and the skirt is made up of seven panels, so it's lovely and full and flowy.

The waistband is curved for a flattering fit and there is an optional sash to tie round your waist for a bit of extra cinch!

Oh - I nearly forgot to mention - the dress also has pockets! Always a winner for me! They are in seam pockets, but they're cleverly anchored to the waistband so they don't drag the skirt seam down when you pop anything in them.

So all in all, I'd say this dress is a massive winner - stylish, flattering and practical - YAY!

Because of all the pretty details and the additional fabric cutting for the lining pieces, this isn't a super quick make - but sometimes things are worth a little extra time and effort - and this is definitely one of those things!

Be sure to grab your copy whilst it's on sale (20% off for one week) HERE