Sunday, 29 October 2017

Butterfly Print Alex Shirt Dress

As you may be able to tell, this Alex Shirt dress from Sew Over It is something I sewed up way back in July. When I could still fit into the majority of my summer clothes and get up off the sofa without help. That being said it is a dress I still wear a lot now as it has such a relaxed fit and I can just wear it with a belt above my bump. Its only really obvious its not a specific maternity dress when you look at the hem as it is now several inches shorter at the front!
This was my first time sewing this pattern with sleeves and the full length, after my previous sleeveless flowery version. The set in sleeves were straightforward and I like the tabs at the end, making the sleeves a flattering 3/4 length. The fabric I chose was this gorgeous mustard soft peachskin crepe I picked up on my last visit to my old London neighbourhood at Fabrics Galore. They have now improved their website considerably so I've since bought a few bits of fabric online too which arrived pretty quickly.
The fabric, although crepe, was not too slippery so I found it reasonably straightforward to cut out and sew together. It was only when it came to the hems that I couldn't hack it and put off doing it constantly. So I decided it was about time I got myself a walking foot. I fully expected to have to buy one online, but on a whim decided to check one of my local sewing shops. Its an amazing Aladdins cave of machines and every possible tool you might need, and after a bit of a rummage at the back the lovely owner found me one for my brand of sewing machine. If I had known how much easier it would make my life, I would have got one a lot sooner!
I really love the finished dress, and its one that always gets me lots of compliments. However it's also an outfit that really needs a belt to pull in it at the waist, otherwise its falling the wrong side of frumpy. It's quite 'art teacher chic' as Mr Makes once put it. The fabric choice was also an absolute blessing when I realised it doesn't crease, so I've never had to iron it.
So if you're looking for sewing patterns that you can wear through pregnancy and beyond, I highly recommend the Alex shirt and dress, at 32 weeks I've still got a bit of room left for my ever expanding belly. The Capsule Wardrobe eBook also has a couple of other patterns that work well, my Lola Coat is the only one I can fit in this winter, and there's a great Molly maternity pattern hack on Lisa's vlog I recently used for a dress I'll be showing you very soon.
Emily Kate.

Friday, 13 October 2017

A Vintage Storage Suitcase

Its been almost 10 months now since we moved into our very own house, and decorating is still ticking along nicely. The very first room we finished was the loft conversion, which Mr Makes endearingly calls 'the penthouse'. It doubles as both my sewing room and the spare bedroom. After spending the first 3 years or so of sewing using a table next to the fridge, in the corner of our small flat in London, having an entire room to spread my stuff about is awesome. Plus having a bed in it for a mid-sewing marathon nap is not too shabby either. (not to mention the fact at 30 weeks pregnant I need a rest after making it up the two flights of stairs!)
However we did make an agreement that I would keep it tidy and not have things lying about, so I've been working on some storage solutions!
I got this idea from Pinterest, where some people had used shoeboxes to house their thread collection. My family got really into collecting vintage furniture from flea markets and the like a little while ago, and I picked this little wooden suitcase up on one such trip. To turn it into thread storage, all I used was some plastic golf tees I picked up on amazon for a few quid, and a glue gun.
 I would recommend measuring out the spacing for your spools of thread, most of mine are 250m, so I made sure the tees weren't too close that they would fit in nicely. I also left a gap at the side that I could use to house a few other sewing essentials, such as shears, measuring tape etc. I have now bought a pegboard for the wall though, so when that goes up I might just glue a few more tees down and move the shears to a peg.
So there we have it, a nifty vintage storage solution. Where do you keep your thread spools?
Emily Kate.