Thursday, 28 August 2014

Linen-Look Silvia Dress with a touch of Dior!

Today I've got a project to share with you which I started over a year ago (!) and it's a make which I've got mixed feelings about. I snapped up the Silvia Dress Pattern from Salme Patterns right back when I first got really into sewing. It was exactly what I wanted in a chic summer dress and is a shape I find generally suits me. It was a little advanced for me at the time (featuring some very clever construction it's rated as intermediate) but towards the start of last summer I just couldn't wait to wear it and dove straight in. Work then went crazy for the next six weeks or so and before I knew it the heat and sunshine had departed and the dress was only half finished. The lure of sewing garments I could wear straight away called; queue me only picking it up again this August.

Diary of a Chainstitcher: Salme Sewing Patterns Silvia Sundress in Christian Dior Silk Blend

I wish I'd found the time to get to grips with this and more of Eliza's patterns as especially for summer I'm a big fan of her classic and wearable styles; looking at the website I'd pretty much wear every single one over and over again! They are all only available in PDF format and the good news is they are all very affordable. I did have a couple of little niggles with the pattern, although please bear in mind that I bought this pattern a LONG time ago (probably about 2 years) so changes may have since been made. Firstly there are no seam allowances included. I find this really irritating as I think (with the exception of your personal alterations or PDF assembly) patterns should be ready to go. You also have to draft your own strap and waistband pieces which is not difficult as they are simple rectangles and clear dimensions are given, but again I feel it's something that should be included. The main issue I had was that the dimensions given for these include seam allowance and it's the recommended seam allowance of 3/8". I had added my preferred seam allowance of 5/8" to the main pattern pieces so when it came to attaching the waistband this led to some confusion.

Diary of a Chainstitcher: Salme Sewing Patterns Silvia Sundress in Christian Dior Silk Blend

Aside from that the instructions are compact but great and I particularly liked the tip for stitching along the princess seam lines and curved neckline before assembly with a long stitch. Not only does it prevent these curved areas stretching out, it gives you a great guidelines to match up when pinning the pieces together and easing them in. I also really loved the inclusion of a facing as well as a lining for the bodice (for which separate pattern pieces are provided which is awesome). I think it makes a project just that bit more special inside and makes the neckline nice and tidy with no chance of lining peeking out. Aside from fitting which we'll get onto in a minute the only change I made to the pattern was to add a lining to the skirt to make it fully lined.

Diary of a Chainstitcher: Salme Sewing Patterns Silvia Sundress in Christian Dior Silk Blend
Inside Front Bodice

What I'm most excited to share with you about this make is the fabric! It's extra special to me for two reasons. Firstly I bought it in Paron Fabrics in New York's Garment District when I visited with my sister last April. Secondly it's Christian Dior!! It's a stunning silk and rayon blend which I found in the 50% off section at the back. It has the appearance of linen but none of the wrinkling and also has a really exquisite sheen which seems to come from within the fabric rather than on the surface if that makes any sense! I knew as soon as I handed over the cash that the first thing I wanted to make with it was a sundress; the mint green and the luscious drape were screaming for it. I also picked up some coordinating lightweight rayon lining in the same shop.

Diary of a Chainstitcher: Salme Sewing Patterns Silvia Sundress in Christian Dior Silk Blend

Ok so onto the real issues. As much as I love the fabric and design of this dress the fitting of it has been a bit of a disaster. I'm getting wrinkles in strange places and I think I need a sway back adjustment as I'm getting a lot of pooling of excess fabric in the lower back. It does in general actually look a lot better than it did as I took a giant dart out of the back to bring it close to matching my measurements. When I completed it, it was at least a couple of inches too big all over and because of the way it is constructed it's really tricky to adjust once the facing or waistband are attached. However I love both the style and fabric so much I couldn't bear for this to turn out unwearable so turned into a naughty makeshift seamstress! It's definitely more wearable now and I'm kinda pleased with how the dart turned out if you consider how badly it could have gone! I wonder how much the fitting problems might be solved by simply going down a size? I think I will need to make up a muslin of a smaller size before the next version rather than trying to make adjustments based off this one.

Diary of a Chainstitcher: Salme Sewing Patterns Silvia Sundress in Christian Dior Silk Blend

Completing this project now, a year after starting it, has made me realise how much my sewing, and especially fitting skills have improved in that short space of time. I was very lax with fitting, never made a muslin, always just ploughed on in and hoped for the best which is exactly what I did with this. Kind of a silly thing to do as every previous experience with a Salme pattern had resulted in a too large garment. I used to put this down to my lack of sewing knowledge but after making this one I'm thinking there must be a large amount of ease built into Salme patterns as standard. There are no finished garment measures included so it's hard to tell if that's intended but I cut a UK 10 which should only be very slightly bigger than my measurements so there's something funny to do with ease going on!

Diary of a Chainstitcher: Salme Sewing Patterns Silvia Sundress in Christian Dior Silk Blend

Aside from my dodgy dart fitting I made a couple of changes to the pattern as I went along to account for my height. I took 2" off the length of each strap but I actually wish I'd taken a little more as they feel like they want to slip down. The clean finish of the bodice of this dress is gorgeous but it does mean it's pretty much impossible to make little changes like adjusting strap length once you have moved past a certain point! I took a whopping 5.5" off the length (and using 1.5" for the hem) which was probably more to do with how short I wanted it than the length of the pattern as it it. With the shape of the skirt I felt a little overwhelmed by it when it was knee length and I fancied having some shorter dresses in my wardrobe.

Diary of a Chainstitcher: Salme Sewing Patterns Silvia Sundress in Christian Dior Silk Blend

I definitely should have added twill tape to the seam allowances of the neckline to keep it sitting flat against the chest. If I had eased this in right up close to the stitching line it would have helped it curve slightly inward instead of gaping away as it does.

I am however incredibly pleased with the invisible zip. It was my first time inserting a side seam zip which doesn't extend all the way to the top of the dress. The dress is sewn closed both above and below the zip. I was a bit nervous about this as invisible zips can be a little tricky anyway, particularly when it comes to keeping both sides even and waistband seams e.t.c matched up. I took it slow and made use of all the little tips and tricks I've picked up from different projects and was really happy when it came out like this first time! I used my regular zip foot to attach the lining to the zip after inserting it, keeping everything sleek and tidy inside.

Diary of a Chainstitcher: Salme Sewing Patterns Silvia Sundress in Christian Dior Silk Blend
The close up also gives you an idea of the texture of this beautiful fabric.

All in all not a roaring success of a project but I learnt a lot from it. I actually even wore this dress on my birthday last week as there is still so much I love about it! I really like how the dress comes together in such a neat and clean way as well as the general style of it. As with all of Eliza's designs it's really simple, classic and chic with beautiful lines. Despite my fitting issues I'm still really pleased I chose to use some of my special fabric for this dress as I think the chic luxuriousness of it is a perfect match! Luckily I still have over a metre and a half of this gorgeous fabric left as this pattern only used less than a metre. Those little princess seamed bodice panels don't take much fabric! Now to plan what you use the remainder for...

Thursday, 14 August 2014

Tie-Dye Gabriola Maxi Skirt

Diary of a Chainstitcher: Tie-Dye Gabriola Maxi Skirt from Sewaholic Patterns

I always have big grand plans for summer sewing as it's my favourite time of year to dress for. I'm always so inspired by lightweight fabrics, abstract prints and breezy styles of summer garments. The list of things I would like to make is endless, however the summer months are usually the busiest time of year for me work wise so before I know it the good weather is vanishing and my dream list is still endless. I made a concentrated effort to get started early this year and am therefore happier with my summer wardrobe than I have been before. After seeing Sophie from Ada Spragg's stunning pattern tester version, one item that made it straight onto my summer sewing list when it was released earlier this year is Sewaholic's Gabriola Maxi Skirt pattern. I finished this a few weeks ago now so I am super pleased to get at least one version of it made up in time for plenty of wear!

Diary of a Chainstitcher: Tie-Dye Gabriola Maxi Skirt from Sewaholic Patterns

I was on the look out for the perfect Gabriola fabric on Goldhawk Road during Rachel's huge sewing blogger meet up back in May. I wanted to try out the sizing before sewing up anything too pricey and as the beautiful fullness of the skirt means that this pattern eats fabric I was after something cheap and cheerful. In case you were wondering, I started with 3 metres of 60" wide fabric and had nothing left but scraps when I was done! The fabric I chose was the very first bolt to catch my attention that day, loitering in the doorway of A to Z fabrics. It's very polyester but is just the type of print I am drawn to and at £3 a metre for a wearable muslin you can't go wrong! It wasn't the most enjoyable fabric to handle when sewing (there was a particularly nasty incident involving the iron, some melting and the recutting of a yoke piece!) but because of the full style of the skirt it remains very cool to wear and has a gorgeous drape.

Diary of a Chainstitcher: Tie-Dye Gabriola Maxi Skirt from Sewaholic Patterns

I had quite a debate with myself about which size to cut as although I am slightly bigger on the bottom half I am not as pear shaped as the figure Sewaholic Patterns are drafted for and I was keep for those lovely panels to fit snuggly around my top hip. In the end I decided to stick with the size 4 I usually cut for Sewaholic patterns and it's turned out pretty great. The waistband fits perfectly and although there is a bit of room around the hips it retains the intended flattering smooth shape well.
In general skirts tend to be fairly quick projects. Whilst this one is not a particularly lengthy project it may eat up more time than you expect because of all the small yoke panels and long skirt seams. I chose to overlock all my interior seams which made the whole process much quicker than a more involved finishing technique but if I was working with silk I would seriously consider french seaming everything. Plus I love looking at lovely tidy insides and just think how lovely all those intersecting french seams would look!

Diary of a Chainstitcher: Tie-Dye Gabriola Maxi Skirt from Sewaholic Patterns

If you are thinking about making your own remembering to mark your notches is key! There are lots of similar looking pattern pieces that are slightly (and importantly!) different. I then did spend a fair bit of time trying to decipher which was which from the notches later on so I would also recommend naming each pattern piece 'side front' e.t.c by pinning a scrap of paper to each piece. It didn't help me that my fabric was only very slightly different on the right and wrong sides so I had to work out which was right and left of each pair too!

Diary of a Chainstitcher: Tie-Dye Gabriola Maxi Skirt from Sewaholic Patterns

I really enjoy sewing which requires you to be neat and accurate and this is definitely one of those projects! I'm really pleased with the matching of the seams at the front but the centre back seam could be a little better... I was so keen to get this sewn up and start wearing it that I decided with this busy print I wasn't bothered by things being a few millimetres out but next time I will definitely try harder! I think abstract prints are the best way to go with this skirt if you are not going plain. I can imagine a directional or large scale print being a complete nightmare as there are so many different panels with intersecting seams being cut at different angles to the grain.

Diary of a Chainstitcher: Tie-Dye Gabriola Maxi Skirt from Sewaholic Patterns

I took 2" off the length the skirt, so as I'm only about 5ft3" if you are tall you definitely want to consider lengthening to begin with. My hem was 1" and I used my favourite method for sewing a curved hem; stitching all the way around 1/2" from the raw edge and then using that line as a guide to press up along, then pressing it in by the same amount again to hide the raw edge. I machine stitched the hem up as I was never going to achieve a totally invisible finish by hand in this very lightweight poly. 

Diary of a Chainstitcher: Tie-Dye Gabriola Maxi Skirt from Sewaholic Patterns

The only other change I made to the pattern was to the fastening at the back of the waistband. The pattern calls for the zip to be inserted up to the waistband which is constructed to overlap slightly and fasten with either a button or hooks and bars. I've never got on particularly well with this style of waistband so I opted to trim off the overlap and insert the zip right to the top. I'm really pleased with the clean finish of this.

Diary of a Chainstitcher: Tie-Dye Gabriola Maxi Skirt from Sewaholic Patterns

Overall it is a pretty straightforward make which I think a beginner could tackle. I think a seamstress of any level would need to take the construction nice and slow and pay attention to the instructions as there is room for error because of all the pieces to fit together but the only remotely tricky part is sewing the point where the skirt panels meet the yoke at the centre front. Gabriola is yet another cleverly thought out design by Tasia, she's got such a fantastic knack for considering how a pattern works with the curves of the body and drafting patterns that ladies want to wear. I love that this skirt is fitted flat at the waist, cut so flatteringly over the hips but still has all the fun of a full, swishy skirt!

Diary of a Chainstitcher: Tie-Dye Gabriola Maxi Skirt from Sewaholic Patterns

Tuesday, 5 August 2014

Embroidered Silk Archer and Twill Miette Skirt

For this month's Mood Sewing Network project I worked with two very different fabrics to make separates. First up is the blouse, for which I used this Marc Jacobs Silk with Embroidered Dots which I've had my eye on for months! It's a beautiful silk crepe and when you get close up you realise the polka dots are actually formed of dense embroidery making it wonderfully unique. I was a little apprehensive about working with a fabric which sounded like it could be quite tricky, especially for a project with some fiddly aspects, but I took my time and had very few problems.

Diary of a Chainstitcher: Mood Fabrics Marc Jacobs Embroidered Silk Sleeveless Archer Shirt and Cotton Twill Miette Wrap Skirt

I washed the silk on a gentle 30 degree cycle as I wanted this to be a garment which I could wear often and not need to get dry cleaned. I like to think about how I want to be able to wash the completed garment when deciding how to pretreat and if I am particularly worried about shrinkage I give it a good couple of washes. It held up beautifully and took a medium heat from the iron too. Clean hands and concentration are a must when working with this silk as any mistakes will leave their mark, including any stray pins. I used a size 70 microtex/sharps needle in my machine and silk pins which I endeavoured to keep within the seam allowances as much as possible. I eliminated most of the topstitching as I wanted to keep the overall look clean but for the mandarin collar it was essential and the front placket needed some to help it lay flat.

Diary of a Chainstitcher: Mood Fabrics Marc Jacobs Embroidered Silk Sleeveless Archer Shirt and Cotton Twill Miette Wrap Skirt

I finished any raw seams on my overlocker and both this and my regular machine handled the silk well. The only real issue I had was when sewing though the embroidered dots as my machine wasn't all too sure about the change in thickness from delicate silk to thick embroidery thread. I had a feeling this might be tricky so when cutting I tried to lay out pattern pieces to ensure this happened as little as possible, especially around the collar! On the roll there is quite a wide area with no dots next to the selvedge so I was able to keep the plackets plain at least. It worked out ok with some gentle encouragement but if working with a similar fabric in future I would be tempted to unpick the dots in any areas where crossing them was unavoidable.

Diary of a Chainstitcher: Mood Fabrics Marc Jacobs Embroidered Silk Sleeveless Archer Shirt and Cotton Twill Miette Wrap Skirt

The pattern is a v-neck adaption of the Grainline Studio Archer Shirt which Andrea has posted an excellent tutorial for. This make turned into the blouse of many tutorials as I used Andrea's collar tutorial and then Jen's own tutorial to adapt the shape of the armholes for a sleeveless version. I also used Jo Sews' tutorial to do a small no dart FBA which I think has dramatically effected the drape of this version compared to my first and I'm really pleased. I did wonder if the alteration was necessary in a sleeveless version but in this soft silk I think any pulling would have been very obvious and it needed to drape correctly. For reference I cut a size 4 and my FBA spread the pattern pieces just 1cm across and 2.5cm down.

Diary of a Chainstitcher: Mood Fabrics Marc Jacobs Embroidered Silk Sleeveless Archer Shirt and Cotton Twill Miette Wrap Skirt

With no sleeves, pockets or turn down collar I only needed one solitary yard for this variation and it felt like a much quicker process than my first Archer shirt. I used binding to finish the armholes but used some scraps of plain cream crepe I had in my stash for this as dealing with silk binding is tricky enough without trying to work around those embroidered dots! I made some effort to line up the rows of the polka dots evenly across the front, back and yoke pieces and I think the dots ended up pretty well spaced. The buttons were left over from a project some time ago and I'm so pleased I still had them as I'm really enjoying how they imitate the dots!

Diary of a Chainstitcher: Mood Fabrics Marc Jacobs Embroidered Silk Sleeveless Archer Shirt and Cotton Twill Miette Wrap Skirt

I had originally intended to make jeans to pair with this blouse and tie in with Sew Busy Lizzy's Jeans in June & July challenge. However, a severe lack of time to get stuck into such a major project (especially for someone who has never made a single pair of trousers before!) turned into quite the happy accident as I could not be more pleased with the resulting skirt and how it works with the blouse. My rather lovely stretch denim will have to wait to be turned into jeans while I make do with RTW for the time being, as the Archer looks great untucked with skinnies too!

I'd ordered myself some of Mood's Organic Cotton Twill in Plum to try out after reading fellow MSN blogger Lauren rave about it on a couple of occasions. That girl has some seriously good taste in fabric and was not wrong when she said that this stuff is great. It's so enjoyable to sew with; it just does what it's told and presses beautifully. The colour is wonderfully deep and vivid and the good news is there are a huge range of hues available. It does attract fluff like nobodies business though, my photographer (read boyfriend!) was constantly picking stuff off me during these photos and I have no idea where it was coming from!

Diary of a Chainstitcher: Mood Fabrics Marc Jacobs Embroidered Silk Sleeveless Archer Shirt and Cotton Twill Miette Wrap Skirt

So as well as stealing fabric choice from Lauren I pretty much just went ahead and copied the whole design concept as her red tie-less wrap skirt is basically one of my favourite things ever and I needed to make it my own! The pattern is Tilly and the Button's Miette and features a waist tie which I love but I thought I'd probably get more wear out of it without as I generally don't like a lot of bulk around my waist. Lauren's version replaced the waist ties with buttons at the back which is an equally cute design feature in my opinion! It was really simple to make this change. I just assembled the waistband as usual but omitted the waist ties. Then I trimmed down the band slightly to match the waist of the skirt when it was sewn up and turned through. Two buttonholes later and you're done! I think this works really well in this fabric as it has some body and stiffness too it which, while perfect to hold the shape of the skirt might make for quite a bulky tie.

Diary of a Chainstitcher: Mood Fabrics Marc Jacobs Embroidered Silk Sleeveless Archer Shirt and Cotton Twill Miette Wrap Skirt

I had 1.5 yards of the twill and used pretty much all of it cutting this skirt without the waist ties so if you are doing ties you will need more. The buttons, which are placed at each end of the wrap, came from my stash. I couldn't believe I had the perfect number in the right colour! I fell between waist sizes in the pattern so cut between the size 2 and 3 here and the straight 3 at the hips. It comes up true to size I think as it sits comfortably, although there is of course some leeway due to the wrap style. I cut 4.5" off the length; I am pretty short but felt it wasn't the most flattering on me at the intended length so kept on trimming a little at a time until I was happy. Even at this shorter length the overlap of the wrap is just perfect to prevent any unwanted flashing! I'm really happy with how flat the opening sits when worn.

Diary of a Chainstitcher: Mood Fabrics Marc Jacobs Embroidered Silk Sleeveless Archer Shirt and Cotton Twill Miette Wrap Skirt

This was such an enjoyable make, with only a few pattern pieces in felt like it came together in no time. It took less than two hours to sew up (not including cutting time) but about half an hour of that was spent deliberating over the length. I thought the instructions were (as marketed) fantastic for beginners. I love the step by step photos as you can really sure that you have sewn it up right by comparing your results. I've noticed this feature in a few indie patterns recently, it was a huge help for me with the Bombshell Swimsuit. For a more experienced seamstress I'd still recommend it as it's a great project for when you need something quick and satisfying as a break from a more challenging/lengthy sew.

I've had a lot of wear out of both items already, both are perfect fabrics for the summer heat we've had here in London recently. The skirt has even been worn for a game of tennis...although I'm not much of an athlete so the biggest test it was really put through was a bit of wind and bending over to pick the ball up repeatedly!

Diary of a Chainstitcher: Mood Fabrics Marc Jacobs Embroidered Silk Sleeveless Archer Shirt and Cotton Twill Miette Wrap Skirt

Thursday, 31 July 2014

July Indie Pattern Update!


It's the end of another month and this one has absolutely flown by for me! It's been a bit of a hectic one for me work wise and the number of posts waiting to be read in my bloglovin' feed has reached new heights! As a result I'm fairly sure I've missed some important goings on or got the wrong end of the stick with others so please feel free to leave your own additions/correct me in the comments and I'll be sure to update the post.

New Indie Pattern Companies


  • There's another new pattern company in town this month readers! Jolie Marie Louise is the brain child of Anto from blog Stardust Soul. Her first PDF release is the Lea Dress, inspired by French Actress Lea Seydoux and an intermediate sew, it's a stunning classic design. I know from pattern testing (another secret design!) how detailed Anto's patterns and instructions are, they even include tutorials for some of the more common fitting adjustments!

New Patterns


  • Sewaholic have had a busy month, releasing two new patterns! I'm trying not to buy any new patterns at the moment but the stunning wrap style of the Yaletown Dress and Blouse has seriously tempted me. They've also released a new beginners skirt pattern in both PDF and paper form, the Rae Skirt. It was designed with sewing teacher Carley from SewGood so should be the perfect first project!
  • I'm also really loving Colette Patterns' newest release, the Myrtle Dress, which can be made up in knits OR wovens. I think it's got a really sophisticated 1970s vibe to it with the cowl neck and skirt shape, especially made up in crisp white as in one of their promo versions.
  • Along with some 1920s inspired couture dress patterns (!) Ralph Pink has released a whole collection of beach cover up patterns which made in a variety of fabrics can double up as casual day dresses or elegant evening wear too. I'm yet to make up a Ralph Pink pattern but often drool over the designs, I must take the plunge soon!
  • The most recent pattern from Imagine Gnats are the Juba Shorts which has slight variations for both men and women. I'm loving the idea of these unisex patterns I've been spotting recently, buying one might encourage me to sew more for my boyfriend!
  • I have been waiting with bated breath for the new release from Grainline Studio. I was just about to attempt altering the Archer Shirt to make a dress version when I spotted Jen's sneak peak of the Alder Shirtdress. It is exactly the pattern I have been looking for and I can't wait to find some more time to sew so I can get started on it!
  • After the huge hit that is the Lady Skater Dress, Kitschy Koo has released another fantastic knit pattern, the Comino Cap Top and Dress. I've spotted some rave reviews and if it's anything like her first pattern the instructions for working with knits will be worth your pennies alone.
  • Sarah from Ohhh Lulu produces what seems to be a constant stream of stunning underwear and patterns. Considering the swimwear sewing love I've been sensing on many sewing blogs recently you will surely all be excited to know that she has just released her first swimsuit pattern! The Zooey Bikini Top and Bottoms
  • Measure Twice Cut Once has also been offering gorgeous knicker patterns and has now branched out and released a new collection of basics! The first pattern in The Basics Collection is a simple ladies racer back vest. The collection will be added to over time and every pattern comes with a 'Designer Manual' which will inspire and guide you to put your own personal design spin on the block patterns.
  • There's a new free pattern available from Sew Loft, The Diana Cami! It's just the kind of top I like to pair with skirts in summer. As with all their patterns (many of which are free) there are sew-along resources available on the Sew Loft Blog.

Sew-Alongs


  • The sew-along for Pauline Alice's latest release (the Alameda Dress) started on Monday 21st July, complete with some video tutorials! Are any of you joining in? If this is the first you've heard of it the resource will always be there to follow so you've got plenty of time!
  • Not so much an official sew-along but Papercut Patterns have been publishing a series of posts with hints and tips to help you along with sewing their Soma Swimsuit. I've been reading these eagerly as they are definitely feeding my swimwear sewing addiction!
  • Sewaholic are running an in depth sew-along for their new Yaletown Dress and Blouse. It starts on Monday 8th September and I think there's a high chance I will have given in and bought the pattern by then so I'll probably be joining you if you're in!
  • Jen from Grainline Studio has just announced this very morning that she will be running a sew-along for her new Alder Shirtdress. She's including instructions for a wide number of variations on the pattern including an Alder/Archer combo! Starting on Wednesday 6th August.

Other Exciting News



  • For those of you overseas you may be happy to know that Waffle Patterns have just released Japanese versions of some of their patterns. Isn't it fantastic that many Indie Designers are now available all over the world?
  • PDFs have been taking the Indie Sewing Community by storm over the last few months and both the By Hand London Anna Dress and Sewaholic's Cambie Dress are now available in this instant download and print at home format!
  • As well as releasing a brand new pattern this month Jen from Grainline has launched a new (and rather lovely) shop design and has begun to release her patterns in paper form. I'm a huge fan of Jen's drafting talents so am incredibly pleased for her and can't wait to try one out.
  • It's been new studio's galore this month with Jen from Grainline, Heather Lou from Closet Case Files, By Hand London and Tilly and the Buttons all spreading their wings or reshuffling. It's so wonderful to see these ladies doing so well. Tilly had a moving sale, did anyone nab a bargain?
  • Pauline Alice published a great tutorial for sewing your own stylish beach bag. It comes with a free downloadable template for your project!
  • Tasia's much awaited first book 'The Sewtionary' has been released! It's a kind of sewing dictionary, taking you alphabetically through sewing terminology, techniques and tips with photographic step by steps where necessary. Has anyone been lucky enough to get their hands on a copy yet?
  • If you're now missing a sewing book release to look forward to (though don't forget 'Gertie Sews Vintage Casual' won't be long!) I've got another exciting one for you. Written by Lauren Guthrie (runner up in the first series of The Great British Sewing Bee and owner of the Birmingham haberdashery and sewing school 'Guthire & Ghani') 'Learn to Sew with Lauren' is due for release on 1st September.
  • Another little nugget to keep you going, Jennifer from Workroom Social is going to be releasing her very first pattern soon! There's only been a sneak preview so far but we know that it's called the Tate Top.


And here's some really wonderful inspiration for you this month, I just love light, bright colours and prints in the summer months don't you?!