Laughing Moon #137 Pelisse for Anne Lister outfit, World Book Day 2020 [next THURSDAY!]

HOURS of cutting out, HOURS of rummaging for appropriate linings, then pressing and cutting them out, and now an hour of prepping, pinning linings to main fabric to be hand basted, cutting bias for piping, pinning pieces ready for the machine.

I’ve ended up with a black satin lining for the bodice, and a slinky, slightly stretchy two tone gold cotton blend which I bought to make the blouse for my steampunk outfit inspired by Lincoln Cathedral.

[If you remember, I got all the materials, spent forever making the cathedral window squares by hand, then ran out of time and in any case found the stretchiness of the gold fabric made it impossible to use for the full-sleeved Edwardian look I wanted. ] The stuff is not really my colour, and the missus showed no interest, so it’s... [read more]

My first Sew My Style project this year and it’s a goodie! Even better, you get two for the price of one, as my husband nearly blew my socks off my saying he would be up for trying to sew one as well! He had fancied trying a crossbody bag for a while and when I saw the Summit Pack was one of the choices for the February pattern, I showed him the pic, thinking he’d have forgotten all about his desire. To my surprise, he seemed keen and so his first sewing project was game on.


Now, I have to be honest – this is not necessarily an ideal first project. It’s quite a complex bag, as bags go, with lots of zippers, pockets and other details that make it a fantastic pattern, but a lengthy effort for a beginner. It’s actually rated as Intermediate or Higher, but, nevertheless, we decided that with me here to help and demonstrate,... [read more]

Hello everyone! The usual disclaimer applies to this post. I tested the Sculthorpe pants for Muna and Broad but my opinions and snacks are my own.

The Sculthorpe pants are a tapered elastic waist pant with a mid-high waist. They have side panels that feature large pockets with a V shape. The pattern starts at a 46.5″ hip and goes to a 71.5″ hip.

I made my pants in a gorgeous lavender linen from a local store called Fabric Fabric and it was gifted by Leila and Jess, from Muna and Broad, for testing. Since the shopping trip was with Leila and also Sara from Fabric Scraps, I got a chance to try on size 1 of the Sculthorpe pants and they fit great! My hip size fluctuates based on inflammation so I can be anything from a 54″ hip to a 58″ hip.

Here is the frustrating part of taking blog pictures. Sometimes you just can’t get the right... [read more]

 Sometimes you make something and you wear it over and over and over again. But not this time!  I've worn this cardigan approximately 3 times since I made it. [and I made it a WHILE ago]   In theory I like it. The pattern is simple. Its the Kinder cardigan from Wendy Wards "sewing with knitted fabrics" which is a sewing book I would HIGHLY recommend.  And the fit is surprisingly

Students, you’ve made it to the final stages of your clerical training. Angelique will now mentor you In Working in more specialized office settings:

Posing while the copier warms up-

Discretely waiting out your bosses trantrum over not successfully blowing up his enemies Greeting Mr Bond-Lets practice our ‘Nobody gets in the conference room!’ Demeanor-Greeting the disappointing group of kidnapped scientists for a daily scolding- Selective officewear that completely hides a wet suit for when the volcano/office lair explodes. Waiting for Mr Bond to die….photo credits:

Denim is pretty high on the list of things to tackle in the sustainable fashion world. Like many places, where I live (The Netherlands) there is a huge appetite for denim, to the point that I’ve heard sometimes wedding invitations state “no jeans” in their dress code! Fortunately there’s a lot of innovation in sustainable denim, including recycling post consumer denim waste into other fabrics – like this one here which I used to make my top.

Side view of Kate wearing a loose denim top over a black turtleneck.  The side view clearly shows that the front of the denim top is a lighter color than the back.

Just to mention a few other things that come to mind when I think about sustainable denim: there’s use of organic cotton; innovations in indigo dyeing; the UK based-Ellen Macarthur Foundation manufacturing guidelines to “Make Jeans Circular“. And in The Netherlands, back in 2018 fast fashion brand C&A produced Cradle to Cradle Certified jeans that were sold for just €29.

How denim is... [read more]

When Stef announced February’s theme I knew I’d be taking part!  I love stripes of all shapes and sizes – and directions!  I had thought the best thing to do would be to combine last month’s denim jacket and the stripes from this month – in the denim jacket!  The denim I have has a herringbone pattern, so effectively, it’s stripes, right?  I managed to get the second toile of the pattern fitted and checked earlier this month, but as I was too busy making coats, didn’t make the alterations to the pattern.

I then got distracted with other striped fabrics!  I love stripey tees, so decided I’d have a few new ones for the summer.  I started with a piece of organic cotton lycra from a local store – white with narrow black stripes.  I knew I wanted to make the Basic Instinct Tee from Sasha at SecondoPiano.  She has a clever formula on the pattern that helps to... [read more]

Beige DIY quilted ballon sleeve sweatshirt, hacked from Fiber Mood Nala pattern, worn with wide pinstripe wool culottes and block heel suede ankle boots. Clothes sewing | handmade | style OOTD

After 10+ years of sewing, I find that it’s quite hard to just sew something right out of the pack. I just get this itch to add a twist or change even a small detail, or downright hack the life out of a pattern. Case in point, the Fibre Mood Nala top. This is from the very first issue of Fibre Mood magazine. If you’re not aware of who they are just yet, check out my review and more details here. I can call this my ‘name day (or saint day) jumper’, as I bought the fabric with the money…

The post BALLOON SLEEVE QUILTED TOP | FIBRE MOOD NALA HACK appeared first on [read more]

I love following along with the #BHMPatternDesigners Challenge on Instagram. There are so many neat makes rolling in, and lots on info about new and upcoming black pattern designers. It's so great to see people creating and sharing so many new designs. The organizers of the challenge have the perfect mix between info, rules and relaxed making.

This Khaliah Ali pattern, Simplicity 2230, was my first pick for my #BHMPatternDesigners challenge make this year. I've been wanting to make this top for ages. I was lucky to find this pretty rayon challis in my stash to make it from, and as it happens I was also able to find all the bias tape and elastic I needed in my stash as well. Hurrah!

I really enjoyed making this top once I got to it. I ironed the challis with a bit of Best Press to give it a bit more body to help me cut it out smoothly. I made View B,... [read more]
I ran across a picture of a v-neck tee a while back that had a double layered neck band and added it to my collection of interesting clothing details to try someday. Unlike most things in my little collection, I did spend some time working this one out using the Tabor V-neck pattern and I’ve … Continue reading Layered V-Neck Tutorial from mahlicadesigns

World Book Day 2020 is NEXT WEEK [I’ve been telling myself I’ve got lots of time eek] so I thought I’d better get to grips with my ‘Gentleman Jack’ inspired costume.  I wavered between greatcoat and pelisse or spencer for a while, but eventually settled for these as my main inspiration

Image result for gentleman jack pelisseImage result for gentleman jack pelisse

Laughing Moon #137  pelisse.  Fabric is a ‘cotton blend’ from The Italian Textile Company on eBay, one of my great favourites.  It is described in their usual fabulously detailed and mis-spelled style:

FOR HUGO BOSS... [read more]

The second installment in my thrilling Zero Waste series is here! And not before time, as I made these projects around Christmas time. If you missed the first part in which I took on the trials of making scrunchies, the ubiquitous Closet Case Patterns pouffe, bias tape and stuffed some cushions, it’s here for your delectation. Basically, I’m trying to use all my little scraps and small pieces to make quick and useful things (hopefully not just for the sake of it) and the truth is – I have used everything I made in the first part a lot – so it was totally worth it!


Here are my most recent projects:

  1. Tiny Treasures Trays

This is a free pattern from Anna Graham, aka Noodlehead, and I trust anything Anna produces. She has such a great aesthetic and you can tell she tinkers with a pattern until it’s just the way she wants it.


I... [read more]

February is the month for celebrating those we love. 

As busy parents, my husband and I take any opportunity we can to have some quality alone time. I found this wonderfully romantic Pink Roses on Grey Bamboo/Spandex Jersey at Nature's Fabrics.
It evoked images of quiet music playing, candlelit Chianti bottles, and the aromas of a meal not prepared by me. I knew it would be perfect for a Valentine's Day date night dress. I have previously used Butterick 6678 to make a dress with the pattern recommended woven fabric. I liked that dress and wanted to recreate it with in a knit fabric with slight variations from my first.

For this version, I chose to make view B with the sleeves of view A.

To modify this for a knit, I went down two sizes from that needed for a knit. This allowed me to reduce the ease for a figure-hugging fit.

One of the hottest new indie pattern designers in recent months has been Muna and Broad, whose plus-sized focus drafting starts around the sizes where many indie patterns stop. If you’ve been following curvy sewists on Instagram at all, you’ve probably already seen many versions of their initial pattern release–the Glebe pants.

I thought that I already owned plenty of pull-on pant patterns, but upon reading that the Glebe pants are drafted with a full tummy adjustment and high hip fluff adjustment already built in, I was intrigued. And then upon seeing curvy sewist after curvy sewist post their versions with no visible tummy lines, I was sold. After sewing up a quick pair of pajama-pants-as-muslin, I knew that this was money well-spent.

The Glebe pants are drafted for hip sizes 46.5″ (118cm) – 71.5″ (181.5cm). If you fall out of... [read more]

Hello Sewcialists!

I was sitting at my computer in my sewing room when the call for contributors for Denim Month came up in my blog feed. I looked over to my fabric stash where a large piece of denim sat, thought “Yep, this one is for me,” and immediately responded. I had purchased a heavier weight denim from Mood about 4 years ago with the intent to make jeans. Soon thereafter I realized I don’t like wearing jeans, at least not the traditional style for which this type of denim was meant. There it sat for four long years, lonely and sad (I swear, every year the folds turned downward a little more into a distinct frown), waiting to be transformed. As you can see, the story has a happy ending with the denim fabric being turned into a long denim jacket.

Kim models her long denim jacket. The large hood drapes over her shoulders, showing the contrasting bright green and blue patterned lining fabric. She has used the same contrast fabric for the jacket's cuffs and welt pockets; her right hand rests in the right jacket pocket.

Once confirmed as a contributor, I had to determine exactly what I was going to make; off I went to... [read more]

The overalls were a little unexpected for the office, but the Ophelia's are pretty cute and corduroy, so they passed muster.
I started a new job and there's not been a lot of sewing going on. 

Mostly what I need to do is warm the office wardrobe up slowly, and then I can start wearing the usual wardrobe. I've been sticking to black pants and low interest patterned knit pullovers. It's still winter, so not much call for tshirts and dresses.

The Mom Job Wardrobe could be anything I felt comfortable in, with a mind to not clashing too much when I left the house. A large amount of novelty fabrics were worn.

And when I had this same job twenty years ago (no shit, the exact same job in the same office for the same company, all new staff and software to learn), it was a pretty loose wardrobe. When I was hired, the office was wide open, so you had to look... [read more]

This past December (December 15 to be exact) I got my daughter two male guinea pigs.

Their names are Yuuto (chinchilla grey) and Mareo (white). Throughout my life, I’ve had guinea pigs, so guinea pig care isn’t new to me, however, I must admit these guinea pigs have it great.

To reduce the headache of cleaning their cage (and expense) with disposable bedding I sewed their bedding using fleece and Uhaul furniture pad (which is made of 100% recycled denim and serves as the absorbent layer.

My daughter swaps out their liner daily, sometimes she misses a day but that doesn’t happen too often.

The bulk of the guinea pig care is done by her, of course, I pay for their food and will pay for their vet bills, however, everything else is... [read more]

I’ve been sewing lingerie non-stop these past few months and this is one of my favorite sets.  For this set, I used the Fenway Bra Pattern by Orange Lingerie and Frankie Panties Pattern by Evie la Luve. I live in Massachusets and … Read More

The post Fenway Bra & Frankie Panties appeared first on My Handmade Space.

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!
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