How to do Fashion Nr 7 Vanlose

[ADVERTORIAL FEATURE] Readers, the sewjo is back! With a vengeance, I might add... It's been a shameful weekend of binging, both sewing and...wait for it, Killing Eve.
My husband was away for the weekend, so I took the opportunity to sew, guilt-free, to my heart's content. And I also switched my laptop on and dived deep into Villanelle's awesome pink wardrobe.

These two binges are weirdly connected, as you might realise in a second. Yes, blush pink/beige is officially the new neutral in my wardrobe. And I am putting this forward towards the minimalist scandi look I'm going for lately... No sure how Nanna would feel about this...

Ermm, who is Nanna, I hear you ask. She is a lovely Danish designer who is the creative power behind How to Do Fashion sewing pattern brand. (If you need a refresher, check out my interview with her in the latest instalment of the... [read more]

What the hell is ease, anyway?
First disclaimer: this kinda wanders in bits, but it finally hit 90F today.
I don't do 90 very well.

Blame Seamwork for the question. Today's video from them is on this topic
"Learn everything you need to know about ease in a sewing pattern. We'll cover wearing ease, design ease, negative ease, and how to calculate ease so that you get the right fit when you sew a new pattern!"
Well, not everything. 
Yes, ease exists. But how much of it do I want? How much is built in?  How much is useful? Sewing knits will forgive my measuring fail, but I am all about those woven novelty cottons. They are not forgiving.

This is the Vogue Patterns ease chart, and it's pretty much the same as all the others now, because One Company To Rule Them All. 
These are the numbers that are baked in to the pattern, per the... [read more]

Hello CSC! Me Made May was a great month for me. It was so incredible seeing all the handmade garments on Instagram and in blogs. I’m enjoying reading summaries of the month on blogs now and can’t wait for next May. The CSC was also out in force creating amazing garments all month long.

@lynnsewsnow made an Ottobre top from the 02/2019 issue

@sheila.okelly made a Mandy Boat Tee

@joyfulemon made a Hey June Lucerne blouse in a gorgeous silk noil

@amyloumagoo made a Friday Pattern Company Adrienne blouse

@sandraadee.a made two lovely striped Ottobre tops

@raches made a 100 Acts of Sewing Shirt No. 1

@tilleycharlotte made a Cashmerette Montrose top with a POKEMON yoke!

@needles_and_paint made a Cashmerette Springfield top

@idlefancy made a Chalk and Notch Fringe top

@neeferduir made a top using a pattern from New Vintage Lady

@amy_absolutely made... [read more]

After making the Paper Theory Olya Shirt in March, I vowed to make it again in a block colour to really show off the outrageously good construction/style lines... but it's just so hard to keep a word when the perfect fabric presents itself! 

Olya Shirt Dress
I at least half followed through on my promise to this fantastic pattern, this time making the dress version. Whilst I like my previous Olya Shirt, and had the most fun making it, it hasn't seen as much wear as I would've liked, in part because I just don't really wear shirts! I haven't seen as many people make the lengthened Olya Shirt Dress, but for me, it hands-down tops the shirt, with absolutely perfect proportions. 

Sacrés Coupons on Rue d'Orsel
Now let's talk fabric. This viscose twill is arguably one of my best fabric buys of all time and it's purchase perfectly rounded off the... [read more]

The lack of diversity and inclusion (D&I) in fashion is a thing. If you’re interested in the online sewing community, you’ll know the D&I issue has been increasing in profile in recent months. The upset, irritation, and anger from feeling excluded is palpable.

I haven’t contributed to the discussion thus far as I have felt like a fraud. Despite being able to legitimately use the hashtag “person of colour who sews” (#pocwhosews) or “sew in colour” (“sewincolour“). But today I’m going to talk about my personal experience as I think D&I is an important part of the ethical fashion and sewing conversation.

sew in colour graphic from @thelittlepomegranate on instagram
Who could forget this post on Instagram?

Attitudes to Diversity and Inclusion

At this point in time, the two big issues that fashion and sewing have in common comes to D&I in representation in media (e.g. magazine covers) and a size-range... [read more]

So, I’ve been on holiday for a month, almost a month ago now (where did the time go?!), and come back to find two allotments needing lots of care and attention, a backlog of sewing projects and a mountain of fabric purchased while on holiday to wash and iron.  And allocate to future projects.  So what do you do?  You go gardening!  One thing that will not wait, is the allotment.  Weather permitting, that’s where I needed to be, but I was desperate to get back to my sewing, just needed to pick a project to start.

blue paradise 1
Butterick 5487 cowl drape cami in silk

As it just so happened, that first project was something for Daughter No1.  She had a wedding to go to, (a family member of her partner) had a fabulous pair of tropical print wide leg pants, but no top to wear with them.  So I dug through the stash, I had a feeling a silk cowl drape cami would do the trick!  Originally on... [read more]

เคล็ดลับดูแลผิวหน้าให้ดูอ่อนเยาว์ 01


ถ้าหากเราดูแลตัวเองดีมาจากภายในนั้น ก็จะทำให้สาวๆ อย่างเรามีความแก่ช้าลงได้อย่างแน่นอน สำหรับใครที่กลัวว่าจะแก่เร็วนั้น ในวันนี้เราก็ได้มีเคล็ดลับดีๆ เคล็ดลับดูแลผิวหน้าให้ดูอ่อนเยาว์  มาฝากกัน ที่จะต้องดูแลตัวเองไม่ให้แก่เร็วมาฝาก ที่จะมาพร้อมกับการมีผิวพรรณที่ดูอ่อนเยาว์ มีความสดใจเป็นอย่างมาก

เคล็ดลับดูแลผิวหน้าให้ดูอ่อนเยาว์ 02
Credit : Pinterest


  1. ทาครีมกันแดดทุกวัน เป็นอีกหนึ่งตัวช่วยที่จะทำให้ผิวหน้าของเราสามารถปกป้องจากความหมองคล้ำจากแสงแดดต่างๆ ได้เป็นอย่างดี และยังช่วยป้องกันปัญหาผิวต่างๆ ได้อย่างมีประสิทธิภาพอีกด้วย ไม่ว่าจะเป็นสิว ฝ้า กระ จุดด่างดำ ริ้วรอยต่างๆ เราก็ควรที่จะต้องทาครีมกันแดดอยู่เป็นประจำ เพื่อถนอมผิวของคุณให้มีความสวยกระจ่างใสอย่างยาวนานต่อไป
  2. บำรุงแบบพอดี การที่เราจะมีผิวหน้าที่สดใสได้นั้น... [read more]
Its been a while again huh? What can I say I've been a busy girl! Anyway I made this top MONTHS ago!!! The fabric was from the abakhans fill a bag sale that I went to with my mum, dad, sister and lil man. Its a printed jersey and whilst i it wasn't a huge piece I knew it would be coming home with m because LOL this girl loves her some Disney!!!!!!  I used my old faithful

  Disclaimer: Some of us tested the My Body Model system before it was released and other received credits to create croquis in exchange for this review. Our opinions are all our own.

My Body Model is a web app that generates fashion croquis (a body outline for sketching garments) based on your measurements.

The site has unlimited free previews that allow you to make sure that you croquis looks like you before you purchase.

You need zero drawing experience to use the croquis. There are tutorials on the website. There are also several different templates you can download to help you sketch, including one for hair.

Once you create your personal croquis, the credit includes several different printable templates (check out the table of contents here to see what is available). Since creating your My Body Model also includes several measurements, you can also print off your... [read more]

It seems that other people are also thinking about thrifty sewing these days. In the last couple of weeks some of my favourite podcasts have featured episodes about this topic, in one way or another.

Love to Sew's last podcast was about "Rubbing Off Ready to Wear". If you want to learn more about this technique of copying RTW which I've just been talking about in my last Weekend Review, check out their podcast and definitely check out the show notes, where they link to youtube videos, classes, and a great book by Steffani Lincecum, all on this subject.

Over at Sewing Out Loud, Zede & Mallory talk about thrift and resale resourcing this week. This mother & daughter team are always entertaining, and have lots to say about this subject. This time they are focusing on clothes and materials -- in earlier episodes they've discussed the pros & cons of  buying... [read more]

This is my last vacation related post, which is sad because I want to go back to Colombia and whoring out photos on my blog was my therapy.

This is M7787 from McCalls. I just realized that my other vacation outfit was also McCalls. Usually I’m using indie patterns, so two of the Big 4 so closely together is rare for me!

This pattern comes with a bikini and also the jumpsuit. I planned on making both but after the bikini top was too large I gave up and just threw it aside. I plan on rigging it up later and making the bottoms. Tip: size down on the top, unless you want your nipples to hang out. I made view C, which is described as a lined halter jumpsuit has tie closure, encased elastic at waist, belt, and pockets. You know they had me at pockets.

At the time my measurements were 36-30-39 and according to their size chart put me in 14-16-“15″... [read more]

Lentils get a bad wrap. People either think they are bland and tasteless or tedious to prepare. Let me enlighten you. This Curry Lentil … More quick & cozy curry lentil soup »

The post quick & cozy curry lentil soup appeared first on My French Twist.

basket full of vegies

Handwoven basket from garden prunings

How cool is this? A lovely handwoven basket made from prunings from the garden. Just perfect for harvesting the vegies. The idea for the basket came from a recent episode of Gardening Australia (fact sheet and video here).  Making the basket is fairly easy, although a bit time consuming. The shape of this one is quite broad and perfect for harvesting vegies and fruit.  Finished dimensions for the base is 60cm x 35cm and 20cm deep

The main frame of the basket and the darker woven canes are from an Indigophera that I had to pull out. I’d planted it near the frog pond to give it some shade and somewhere for the birds to sit and preen after a dip. While it did it’s job, I only just realised that that the leaves were traditionally used to stun fish in waterholes. No wonder a lot of the pond-life struggled after it... [read more]

Graphical banner, with text saying: "You could be the next Sewcialists Editor! Help us keep the Sewcialists going! We are looking for someone to help with emails, social media, planning theme months, and communicating with volunteer authots from July to December 2019. If you are interested, contact us by Instagram DM or email."

Are you passionate about contributing to the sewing community? Do you have a few hours free each week? Do you enjoy working with a team, being organised, and doing small tasks that add up towards a great whole? You could be the next Sewcialists Editor from July to December 2019!

Look, I won’t lie. It is a lot of work to run Sewcialists, which is why we have a permanent team of 3 core Editors: Chloe, Becky and myself. We also bring in 3-4 temporary Editors for 6-month stints, for fresh perspective, ideas and energy!

Here are some of the tasks you would take on if you join the Editorial team:

  • taking turns running The Sewcialists Instagram account, including posting, reposting, responding and commenting
  • emailing back and forth with guest authors
  • liaising with our incredible copy editor team to make sure posts are ready for... [read more]
Maxi Week

I’m coming in a bit late on this MMMay wrap up, but that’s ok, right?

My final week of Me-Made May was all about Maxi dresses, which are my favourite thing to sew. More specifically: sleeveless maxi dresses in ITY knit!


22: A maxi mashup from 2017 – a self-lined Jalie tank as the bodice, Closet Case Sallie as the skirt, and the curved hem from the Tuesday Stitches Ultraviolet tee!


23: Oh hey, it’s another hack involving a Closet Case Patterns! This is the bodice of the Amy jumpsuit made into a maxi dress. I was a pattern tester for this pattern and Heather won my heart by letting me test a woven pattern in a knit.


24: My Sewcialists Mini Challenge “spicy” dress! Aka. the boob flower dress, minus one boob flower. I was told I looked like a movie star in this dress, which probably is mostly because I was wearing sunglasses inside, but hey, I’ll... [read more]

That’s a lot of alliteration! I guess Papercut Patterns must have realized this when they came up with the name. I bought this pattern when the collection first came out as they reminded me a little of the Named Alexandria pants, which I loved and have been wearing tons since I made them (hence the second pair at the end of this post).


I have quite a few Papercut patterns in my stash as I very much like their style, but haven’t actually made too many of them yet. In fact I think I’ve only used the Anima pants pattern for my mother, and the Kyoto tee for myself, which I adored. Another pattern that’s on the “I REALLY must make another” TNT list. Oh yes. Anyway, this pair of pants has everything I was after for a comfortable spring wardrobe staple: an elasticated back for some comfort, but a flat front for shape,... [read more]

…well sort of.

I keep telling myself my list is down to one page, crossing several things off, then thinking of more ‘small’ jobs to do to improve things.  Sigh.

I was doing very well last week, using up all my gain time at work making or sorting or laundering things.  The rail is filling up nicely, the accoutrements like masks and wigs are piling up most satisfyingly.

Then on Friday, before school even started, I intervened in a fight between two girls and ended up sprawled full length on the floor [still holding onto the arm of one combatant.  I wasn’t pushed, I just lost my balance or slipped.  Anyway I got the wind knocked out of me, and lay there waiting for the laughter…which didn’t come.  I just got shocked faces and expressions of concern, which was a surprise.

Anyway, I took a while being patched up as I’d ripped my tights and accumulated... [read more]

Thank you so much for the overwhelming responses to my Gucci-inspired Jasika Blazer in the past week! I tried to respond to each any every comment as best as I could. I had numerous questions about how I sewed the trim on my blazer, so I thought I would put together this tutorial. If you have questions about fabric and trim sourcing or my review of the pattern see my first blog post about my jacket here.


  • 1″ Petersham ribbon
  • 1/8″ lip-cord trim (available on Amazon and Etsy)
  • Tailors chalk
  • Clear quilter’s ruler
  • Walking foot
  • Zipper foot
  • Fray check (optional)
  • Lite steam-a-seam 2
  • Rotary cutter (optional)

First, remove the seam allowances where the trim will be applied. I like to use a rotary cutter to avoid jagged edges.

Here, I am using the pocket flap as my example for instructions, but the steps are the same... [read more]

Patterns from finished clothes: re-creating the clothes you love /
Tracy Doyle
NY: Sterling, c1996.  127 p.

I have a couple of older books on making patterns from your current clothing. This is a super way to get a copy of any RTW that you've worn to death. And it's an affordable way to make a pattern from something that you already know fits you, and that you love.

This book, from 1996, is a good primer. The author starts with a basic intro to the concept of tracing off RTW, from analyzing your garment to noting how to keep a record of what you're doing and storing your new patterns. There's also a section on basic equipment before you get going.

Then there is a long section on techniques, complete with many, many photographs and clear instruction. She points out some of the common difficulties and how to overcome them, like when you can't get a... [read more]

Many many moons ago, somewhere in 2013, I pinned a picture of a skirt on Pinterest. I loved it so much that I made it the front picture of my ‘Skirts Board’. Also many moons ago, in March 2014, I bought two pieces of fabric to recreate this skirt. And then this project got buried in my sewing queue…. until two weeks ago.
Then Me-Made-May 2019 came along and I created three wardrobe capsules. With my third wardrobe capsule, I gave myself a bonus: “I could replace any of the selected garments with a freshly sewed garment.” And boom! Out came the idea of sewing this Mashup Skirt out of the depths of my sewing queue!

Mashup Skirt

The Mashup Skirt pattern

Although the example skirt is an A-line I decided to make a flared skirt because I  love flared skirts just a tiny bit more. I used one of my oldest flare skirt patterns that I sewed already a zillion times!

The original skirt... [read more]

May was an amazing theme month. We have really enjoyed your makes for #SewBraveSewcialists and wanted to share them in a round up post.

This month, you have been brave in so many ways! Sewing precious fabric, trying new techniques and silhouettes, and getting out of your comfort zone. But most of all, you’ve been brave sharing the ups and downs of the journey with the Sewcialists community! It’s good for all of us to hear that other people struggle or stress too, that we sometimes make mistakes, and that new skills are worth the effort to learn. That you for sharing your #SewBraveSewcialists journey with us!

These trousers are a breeze to fit and are super comfy to wear.

Style Arc’s description ‘this trendy wide leg pant is not only fashionable but very comfortable with it’s elastic waist, interesting patch pocket itch side opening and wide faced hem makes this pant a must have’.

The pockets open onto the side seam, and I added iron on interfacing to the openings.

To highlight the pockets I changed the stripe direction. The pockets are rather low, I raised them an inch after reading other reviews.

I omitted the hem facing as I already had the pocket contrast. The waist of the trouser folds over to case the elastic.

Just the right leg width, I made these straight from the pattern shortening the leg after trying on.


The blanket that I was knitting for my daughter was put on hold for several months. I’ve finally gotten around to bringing it back into my active knitting in progress queue. I’m hoping to finish it before the weather turns cold. We’ll see! It’s been extremely busy, which explains the reason it has set on the sidelines for so long.

I’m also slowly gearing up to start spinning again. I know I mentioned that I would be doing that in my last post, however, that wasn’t happening. A few unexpected things happened which made me put a stop to most everything as I focused on finding the issues, with the help of my health care provider, and doing what was needed to improve. Outside of the wrist issues, that I had last year (related to the work I was doing) pregnancy (2003) and an appendix operation (1992). I haven’t had any reason to be seen by the doctor,... [read more]

Are Your Clothes Polluting The Ocean?

Hot on the heels of Wednesday’s World Environment Day, comes today’s World Oceans Day. Thanks to a certain Mr Attenborough, people are really starting to…

The post Are Your Clothes Polluting The Ocean? appeared first on Thimble End.

This is the Deer and Doe Luzerne Coat and is number 4 of my 2019 Make Nine.

It's described as:

"Close-fitting, unlined, double-breasted trench coat with princess seams. Pleats at front and back, diagonal welt pockets, and two-piece sleeves"

I made a size 38 for the bodice and sleeves, and graded out to as size 40 at the waist.  I shortened the sleeves (and need to turn them up a bit more!), but didn't shorten the bodice (which is, frankly, astonishing), and lengthened the skirt.  I wanted something that would cover the skirt of my dresses, and as I have the PDF pattern, used the skirt length on the size 52 which is the largest size. 


I didn't make the belt, because it would have got lost in no time; and didn't add the back tab because I didn't have enough buttons for it.  Also, I thought it would be a bit uncomfortable to sit in with a button... [read more]
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