Pushing a Thread & All her other buttons / Rich Wehrman
Independently Published, 2019. 55 p.

This little book of humorous essays and anecdotes from the perspective of a sewist's spouse was offered to me by the author. While I don't usually review things by request, this one looked like fun, and fed right into my interests. So I said yes.

Rich Wehrman is a writer who has published various humorous essays, and this collection has 12 short chapters about the overlap between his retirement and his wife's sewing career.

With topics like "Confessions of an S.O.S (Spouse of Sewer)", "A Sewing Husband's Dictionary", or "What do Bigfoot and Fabric Stashes Have in Common?", there are many points that a long-time sewist will recognize.

The humour is based in everyday life -- like adjusting to being the same house all day long -- or having one's wife ask "How... [read more]


Oh, I’ve been having fun with the coats!  This is the second of the year, and boy are there more to come!  Today is the chance of the Sienna Maker Jacket from Closet Case Patterns.  I rather liked the pattern when it first came out, but didn’t buy it immediately.  I thought about it for a while first, and when I saw the perfect fabric at Fabworks at the end of November, I knew I needed to put the two together.


sienna maker jacket cc

I bought 3m of black windowpane wool (sold out now) and the PDF pattern and sent it off to the other half for printing.  To check for shrinkage and finish change, I cut a 10cm square of the fabric and threw it in the washing machine with some other woolies.  No shrinking and it actually felt less pricky and rough than before it went it!  So in went the three metres.  But then it sat around a while, Xmas was in the way and I wasn’t quite... [read more]

My new hobby is to sew lingerie.  I’ve been taking a few online classes and practicing with some knit fabrics that I had on my stash and reading lingerie making blogs.  In this post, I’m sharing my last lingerie projects. … Read More

The post Sewing Lingerie: Black Beauty Bra & Vera Panties appeared first on My Handmade Space.

Hello again!  I'm back already!  It seems to always go like this - radio silence for weeks on end and then suddenly I'm popping back in all the time.  LOL!

I'm back here today because I've got another project up on the Minerva blog today!  This is a dress that combines two of my favourite dress patterns that I was able to bring to life when Minerva sent me the most gorgeous large scale John Kaldor cotton sateen last summer.  The fabric was silky smooth and gloriously lightweight and perfect to mash up a By Hand London Anna dress bodice with the swishiness of the Sew Over It Betty's skirt.  This dress is everything I love in a dress.  Fitted bodice, swingy full skirt and of course pockets!!!

I am absolutely dying to wear it, and hoping spring hurries the heck up here on the prairies so I can dig out my favourite red Lotta from Stockholm clogs and throw on... [read more]

Although I haven’t posted much [because I’m waiting the weather, mood, non-wobbliness of hips to take photos of me actually wearing some of the stuff]  I have been preparing blog posts and sewing steadily away.

So far I’ve made

2 black linen skirts

2 black shirts [posted]

2 black polo necks

2 white polo necks

1 ivory blouse with appliqué trim

Still need to make some black trousers [desperately needed] and the corset-waistcoat to tie the whole set together.

Meanwhile I’m itching to get cracking on my World Book Day Anne Lister outfit…

So a few teaser pics to keep you all going!

yep- all hand-stitched!
To me, sewing sometimes means stepping out of my comfort zone. After living in pregnancy and breastfeeding friendly clothes for almost 2 years, I was ready to embrace the loose fitting/casual chic trend by making some culottes. 
McCalls 7133 Culottes Floral Chambray
My blog post on this little number (and the cropped linen top) is live today on the Minerva blog! Go check it out! 
This jazzy pair of culottes has got quite a lot of wear already (and they work a treat with my boxy top, too). The only regret that I have is not adding pockets to them. Maybe next time!

Hot on the heels of making my black linen pair of the fabulous Closet Case Patterns Pietra Pants, I knew I wanted a decidedly winter version to wear and took a look in my stash to find some very soft and warm grey wool flannel, which I think was gifted to me by “Neighbour Helen” years ago and which I used to sew up a different pair of trousers a few years ago, too (still worn!).

I just used the same pattern pieces as the black linen pair so my crotch adjustments and leg lengthening is the same, except I felt those were still ever-so-slightly too short so on these I extended the legs by an extra 2cm (1in) to bring the total up to 7cm (2 3/4in) added in length to the legs! These are just the perfect length now IMHO.

Worn here with my yellow merino turtleneck made a few years back (minus the thumb cuffs, which got chewed up and worn)…

Of course the pockets... [read more]

Along with some of the social sewing I've been doing recently, I've been trying to get busy with some other projects. This what I'm working on now, and hoping to get done before the end of the month!

I've cut a Burda dress from this very cool knit fabric. It's like a glen plaid, and has a black flocked print on the thin grey knit base.

But look a little closer, and that print gets even more interesting!

I'm using a magazine pattern from September 2019 that I've had my eye on since I received that issue; there's a self belt that I am hoping will work out in this fabric as well.

I'm also on the verge of cutting out my #BHMPatternDesigners project, a floral Khaliah Ali top, Simplicity 2230.

That should take me to the end of the month!

I am also planning on tracing out a few more patterns from some of my Burda magazines, especially a skirt from the May 2019... [read more]

With both my sons planning weddings in 2020, it’s no surprise that veils and boutonnieres and bouquets are on my mind. In fact, I’m … More front door wedding wreath »

The post front door wedding wreath appeared first on My French Twist.

Last January, a comprehensive and passionate discussion around size inclusion by pattern designers raged across the sewing Internet. That month we posted a “good news in sewing” piece that looked at some of the inclusion work that had already happened or was announced by designers.

We thought it was time to update you on some developments since last January, focusing on indie designers. Sadly, the Big Four pattern companies (McCall, Butterick, Vogue, and Simplicity) have not shown much progress in making the majority of their patterns size-inclusive, so we won’t look at their progress here.

Grainline Studio followed through with their promise to create a new block and released two new patterns up to size 28 or 30: the Thayer chore jacket and the Reed skirt. Look how cute their model is rocking that skirt!

A model wears a Grainline Studio Reed skirt, which is made in a woven, striped fabric that is gray and white. The two front pockets of the skirt are cut on the cross-grain of the fabric, so that their stripes run parallel to the hem of the skirt; the body of the skirt features vertical stripes. The model also wears a rust-colored knit top knotted at her midriff. The model is curvy, and is modelling the newly-expanded size range of the new release from Grainline Studio.


Closet Case Patterns... [read more]

I'm absolutely loving all the new fabrics that Rico Designs have brought out recently. Naturally I couldn't resist this quirky mermaid coated cotton, and wanted to make Freya a little raincoat. I turned to the tried and tested Ikatee Grand'ourse pattern again - see my last version here
Ikatee Grand'Ourse Raincoat Mermaid
This is another project as a Minerva Maker, and I'm so happy to be a part of the team! Read all about the project, including tips on working with coated cotton fabric here!
I (like the majority of half of the online sewing community it would seem!) fell in love with the Wilder Gown pattern from Friday Pattern Company when it was released last year. Bohemian and easy breezy chic with on trend gathered tiers, it was irresistible to image it sewn up in a plethora of different fabrics (and if you search #wildergown on Instagram you can see just that!). Despite wanting to make it and wear it right that second I was a little hesitant about what the high gathered neckline would look like on me. I'm quite petite and short in the shoulder with a bit of a bust so this kind of style is never a failsafe win in my book. After seeing it look wonderful on lots of different body shapes as it surged to popularity online though I thought it was worth a go. As the pattern for the full length gown is quite a fabric eater I... [read more]

You’ve been warned that 2020 is the year of weddings (2 of them in my life!), so what I’m digging in February should come … More what i’m digging in february »

The post what i’m digging in february appeared first on My French Twist.

Years ago when the True Bias Roscoe was first released, I wanted to make it but the original sizing was a few inches smaller than my own. The finished measurements were probably okay at first but then I grew a bit more with my disability majorly limiting my mobility. Now the Roscoe is in sizes 0-30! I had to make it right away, especially since I have been looking for flowy dressy patterns that still had a high level of comfort to them.

I made a size 24 with no alterations in view C. No alterations. Seems I am on a spree for that lately!

The fabric I used is a purple lightweight satin. I think the fit is pretty good. It’s meant to be a blousey/flowy look so there isn’t much to the fit.

That said, without the belt, the dress looks pretty Victorian nightgown. Will I be visited by the ghosts of sewing past?! Oh god, please do not... [read more]

After almost six years of sewing, I’ve successfully made myself a pair of well-fitting pants. These Lander pants are a sewing triumph for me; more details about the make can be found on my blog. I’m proud of this accomplishment, but even more so of the journey to get here.

Coincidentally aligned with the Sewcialists denim month, I finally feel ready to make myself a pair of classic blue jeans. My readiness has nothing to do with sewing skills necessarily. In fact, if you’re a brand new sewist who wants to make jeans, then go for it!

For me, making my own jeans is a special project and before I dive in, I want to reflect on the two most important skills I have developed through sewing: patience and self kindness. In this post, I’ll also give suggestions of some of the ways you can incorporate these skills into the... [read more]

‘Oh Brett! Why must you play with me like I’m some sort of board game for your amusement??’

This is serious Dita Von Teese grocery store wear!

This is my only hope for doing that ‘half tuck shirt thing the cool kids do. What’s up with her toes??

I see Formal Fester.

Sparkly squid- do do da do do do…..

Hmm….a fisherman’s knit with a lobster bib. That is inspired!

Let’s take up a collection in the front row to buy her another pocket.
I think her thong is trying to kill her!
You should see how embellished her crocs are!
Sign my petition to get Kiernan Shipka in this dress!
Fooled you! You just signed my petition to make Kate Middleton wear this to Beatrices wedding! Bwahahaha!
Photo credits:

I have been working on a new dress pattern this month, the Agnes Dress by Halla Patterns. It's a free pattern, and a simple swing dress style.

I wanted to test it out and check the fit before using my newest, fancy printed stretch velvet -- so I found some similar weight/stretch fabric in my stash and gave it a go.

I like to call this my "Blue Velvet Bookstore Dress". Why? Well, because my husband and I ran a second-hand bookshop for a few years called Chumley & Pepys Books. And this blue crushed velvet was what I bought to cover the stryrofoam sheets that we used as pinboards, and also to make a curtain to draw over the lower shelves of a counter that we used as storage. So I had a fair amount of it sitting around from those days!

This was a super easy dress. My fabric is stretchy, but maybe not as much as a rayon knit, so I could have cut it a tiny... [read more]

I really wanted to share this striped Seamwork Astoria crop top with you, but not sure it was worth a proper post on its own. So I decided to make it the feature of my blog series on how to style a handmade item in three different ways, for work, for comfort and for fun. I previously styled my beloved pink culottes and my favourite summer pattern from last year, the Fibre Mood Mira dress. Firstly, a quick work on the Seamwork Astoria. I wrote a review back in the day when I made my first version, and there is…


Can wallpaper light a spark for a new creative space? 

I've been thinking about my sewing space and wanting to make a change for some time. I currently use two spaces in my home to sew, one for personal sewing and another where I teach students. I've been thinking about a way to combine those spaces, but the daunting task seemed overwhelming so I procrastinated.

I routinely get collaboration requests from a range of companies. Each time, I thoughtfully consider the offers and accept or decline based on fit. I recently received it a collaboration request from Photowall a swedish wallpaper company. They offered to provide me with wallpaper of my choice in any space I wanted. In exchange, get to share the experience and discount code (thanksimadethem2020) with my readers.

I explored their website and looked at all the amazing wallpapers they... [read more]

Seamwork Magazine has been one of the few indie companies who has gone up to a 58 inch hip for a while. They have received some criticism in the past but I have been pretty impressed since they redid their block. One of the pattern gaps I have noticed for size inclusive patterns in the indie world is the classic jogger. There are a few patterns out there for joggers but most have only reached the XL sizes until the past year. I was super excited about a jogger pattern. I know it’s basic, but us larger people need basics, too!

Edit: You can buy the Seamwork Mel here.


Measurements: Bust 52; Waist 48; Hips 55-57 (fluctuates based on pain/inflammation); 5’3″

Pattern Size: 26, since I wanted a loose fit and to adapt to my fluctuating hip size

Alterations: None

Fabric: A multi-coloured animal printed ponte knit that I got in a local swap

Fit: These... [read more]

I’ve not sewn with Georgette fabric before, so I recently chose a large gradating stripe Georgette dress fabric from Minerva to learn about the fabric. You can read more about the Georgette dress I made with it over on the Minerva blogger network. Full details here.   Until next time, Melissa E of mahlicadesigns

Hi Sewcialists!

How exciting this is, the first time I write for the Sewcialists blog! When I read the theme was denim I immediately thought about my bucket full of torn-apart-jeans. I got this bucket from a local lady who was giving away her fabric stash and it has been sitting under my cutting table ever since I got it, waiting for the perfect moment for me to dig in it.

Plastic tub full of jeans cut into large pieces

Before we get on to the projects I made, let me give you some background information: I’m originally from Puerto Rico and moved to Texas around 5 years ago. I am a preschool teacher and I have a 22 month old son. I barely have time for anything, especially sewing but I was really feeling the anxiety of not having that moment to myself where it’s just me and the sewing machine. That moment that helps me unwind and calm down the nerves of everything that goes on back at home... [read more]

Sew Serendipity / Kay Whitt
Cincinnati: Krause, c2010
159 p.

I picked up this book because I've made one dress from a Sew Serendipity pattern before (the Sally Shirtdress), and thought that the pattern was really well designed. So when I saw this book, I thought I might find something else of interest here. 

I liked it. I did expect going in that I wasn't going to jive with her fabric choices -- she uses a lot of quilting cottons in very 'sweet' prints in her regular patterns, and the cover hints that this will be the same here. It is. But fabric choice is easily changed to something more along my lines; it's the styles and designs that I was interested in. 

There are three main patterns here: a skirt, peasant top/dress, and jacket -- and then variations on each, for a total of 18 designs. The pattern pieces are all in the back of the book. Sizing ranges... [read more]
Online goodies galore!

this page takes me to 
this page

which you can download
DAMN I love the internet

I got here looking for
which wandered into my view on Ebay.
Description : 


by Louise J. Kirkwood (Author)
Oh yeah

Now I need someone with a keyboard to help with this.

This is actually my first bona fide make of 2020, which is kind of crazy, but I zipped this little lady up in no time at all and I adore this dress! It’s a clever, elegant and flattering design. I saw Nina Lee put out a call for makers to test out her new extended range for the Mayfair dress (as well as a couple of other patterns) a month or two ago and signed up as I’ve been intrigued by other patterns of hers I’ve seen around and about. The Mayfair dress actually came out at the end of 2018 and there are some lovely versions around the internet already, such as this maxi version from Diary of a Chainstitcher and this one from Sew Dainty. The extended sizing will go up to size 28 (54″ bust) and will be out soon.



Mayfair Dress Pattern

The Mayfair is a knit dress that comes in knee-length and maxi versions that has some really nice detailing on it, which... [read more]

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