Gingham Mimi Blouse

Continuing my theme of using patterns from ‘Love at First Stitch’, my latest pattern to use from the book was the Mimi Blouse. It uses a lot of techniques I haven’t tried for a long time including buttonholes and sleeves. I have some zebra print voile that I want to make this blouse out of but decided to make a wearable toile first from all the gingham that is sitting around in my fabric stash.

The only real problem I ran into with this pattern, was that my sewing machine ate one of the front bodice pieces when I was attaching it to yoke taking a huge chunk out of the bodice piece and the yoke. Luckily, it was only those two pieces that I couldn’t save and I had enough gingham lying around to cut two more pieces out and carry on with the make.


(With one front bodice piece attached to the yoke)

This was also my first time making a collar, something I’m really proud of, because it sits and looks like a collar! Sure, it’s a little bit puckered at the back but overall I am very pleased with it.


(Faced and collared)


(The checks on checks don’t really work, let’s be honest)

To give the shirt something to make it stand out, I used some big bright pink buttons from my stash for the front which surprisingly work really well. They match the ends of my hair and when I wore the shirt out the other day they also matched my shoes bringing the outfit together.


The fit on the blouse is also pretty good although the sleeves are quite tight which is something I need to look at fixing before making this up in my zebra fabric. Overall though, I am very pleased with this blouse pattern.


Fabric Haul!

I’ve had a few chances this summer to go home and visit my parents in Leeds. While I was there, I also made the time to visit the fabric stall in Leeds market where I’ve been buying my fabric since I started sewing. They always have high quality fabrics in every print under the sun and for the most reasonable prices I’ve found. If you’re in or around Leeds go check out B&M Fabrics in Kirkgate Market in the city centre. They have a stall inside the market and recently opened up a shop along the outside giving you even more fabric to choose from.

As for what I bought, this was purchased across two visits. I haven’t cut into any of this fabric yet but most of it has a project in mind that I will hopefully be sewing up between now and Christmas.


I picked up 3 metres of this burgundy polka dot cotton (A Rose and Hubble print I think) with the Tilly and the Buttons Francoise dress in mind. This is going to be my next project I think as the dress looks fairly easy and I think I’ll do the version with sleeves and maybe the collar.


This navy blue poppy print is another Rose and Hubble cotton however this is one I don’t have a definite item of clothing in mind for. I’m toying with the idea of a self-drafted midi skirt, much like the one I made earlier in the year as a more autumnal coloured skirt.



I’m not sure what type of fabric this is – I think maybe a polyester. All i know is that it’s slippy and will be another challenge given that I’m only really used to sewing with cotton. However, the zebra print was too lovely to resist and I’m going to make a Mimi Blouse from ‘Love at First Stitch’ with it – I even have some plain black buttons ready to go with it!


This daisy print is another polyester/viscose that I bought because it was too pretty for me to resist (a running theme with me when fabric shopping you’ll find) I’m in two minds with this. Part of me wants to make it into a Fifi pyjama set from Tilly and the Buttons, however another part of me wants to make it into a dress to actually show off how pretty I think this print is.

For my second fabric shopping trip I bought all of this:


Another polka dot cotton, this time in black and white. I got 3 metres because I may make a dress or  blouse (there’s a bowling shirt in one of the Great British Sewing Bee books that I want to try out.)


Some medium weight green cotton. This one has a definite project for it. The Arielle skirt by Tilly and the Buttons (are you sensing a theme with my sewing endeavours?) is the intended use for this. I have some silver buttons for the fastenings, although I’m still debating whether to try to lined version.


I saw this super soft and lightweight blue pineapple print cotton on my first fabric trip of the summer but having limited space to transport the already purchased fabric back home, I held off and hoped it would still be there when I came back. Thankfully it was, and taking it as a sign I decided to snap up 3 metres. This is either going to be a Lilou dress or a Mimi blouse I’m just trying to decide which I’d get the most wear out of.


Another polyester/viscose daisy print. I love daisy prints and I’ve seen so many lately that I had to get as many as I could to satisfy my craving for them. This will probably become a dress.


This was an impulse purchase but I’m so glad I bought it. Another viscose fabric, the elephant print is what caught my eye and I think I’ll make it into a blouse. I am very excited to sew this up because I really love this print.


And finally, I’ve begun the dive into the world of Christmas fabric. There was a lot of Christmas fabrics in the shop when I have getting my other fabrics but this dark green cotton with gold holly leaves and red-purple berries stood out to me. I’m going to make a Lilou dress from this and wear it over Christmas.

I have done some more fabric shopping this summer, ordering online from Abakhan Fabrics. Mostly I bought interfacing but I also picked up some other bits and pieces:


These 2 floral fabrics. They’re both curtain fabrics but have the weight and design of tapestry fabrics and I want to make either a dress or a skirt with structure from them both.

I also got some bias binding for a few projects and some buttons that I liked the look of but don’t have anything in mind for just yet.

That’s all the fabric I’ve bought and all I will be buying for a while now. I don’t think my bank balance can take any more fabric shopping.

Watermelon Dress in the Wild


There has finally been a day sunny enough for me to wear my watermelon dress! It’s been grey and windy a lot lately so when we had a sunny day I took the opportunity to walk up to the common near my house and take some pictures of my dress. My girlfriend was kind enough to take these for me and they make love this dress a lot more!





Dress: Lilou pattern from ‘Love at First Stitch’
Cardigan & Boots: Primark

Watermelon Print Lilou Dress

My second foray into dresses this year was another pattern from ‘Love at First Stitch’ and it was the Lilou dress, a dress that feels distinctly summery to me. For it then, I decided on a bright and definitely summery watermelon cotton. The 3 metres of watermelon fabric were bought as a birthday present from a friend and saved for this dress specifically. Originally for the lining I used a pale pink anti-static nylon lining that I usually use to line the midi skirts I made earlier in the year. However, I ran into a multitude of problem with this that lead to a lot of my watermelon fabric going to waste.

The first time I cut out the pattern pieces, constructing the watermelon bodice was simple as was the lining. Attaching the two together at the neckline was a breeze as well. But trying to attach the fashion fabric and lining at the armholes was when problems arose. The lining fabric was slipped around when I cut it out and so was too small to reach the armholes, significantly so. I tried unpicking the lining around the neckline but ended up butchering both the fashion and lining fabric and decided to do over with new pattern pieces.

Take two: the lining attached to the fashion fabric at the armholes – hoorah! With everything understitched and trimmed it was time to pull the back bodice pieces through themselves and turn the bodice the right way around. I began to do this only to be greeted with the tearing of the lining fabric. Again, fixing it butchered the fabric even more than it already was. Now having just watermelon fabric left to cut a bodice and a self drafted pleated skirt from I threw in the towel with the pink lining fabric and went to my local fabric shop and bought a few metres of blue-green poly-cotton which I knew wasn’t going to fray everywhere and ruin my dress.

Take three of the bodice looks like this:


I was very relieved when this attempt worked out and moved onto pleating a skirt to attach to the bottom and all the zips and finishing off resulted in:


I’ve worn the dress briefly to the shops but it’s been too cold to actually get some nice summery pictures of it in action. As soon as the sun makes a reappearance though I’ll be donning it for real and get some proper pictures!

Flamingo Print Megan Dress

The first make I wanted to write about on here was a dress I finished at the beginning of August. It’s the first dress I’ve made and been able to wear since the monstrosity that kickstarted this blog in the first place. The pattern I used was the Megan Dress from ‘Love at First Stitch’ by Tilly Walnes. I made some alterations to the pattern to fit my style but I’ll get to those later.

For the fabric, I used a navy blue cotton with a pink flamingo design on it for the bodice. Originally this was going to be for a skirt so I didn’t have enough to make the whole dress from and ended up getting some navy blue synthetic trouser material to cut the skirt from. The navy blue match isn’t exact but I wasn’t really expecting it to be.


I made the bodice up as a toile in some cream poly-cotton I had in my stash and, happy with the fit, I cut into my flamingo fabric and began to put it together. The bodice is fairly easy to put together with bust and waist darts and facings to bind the edges and give the bodice shape.


Up until this point I followed the pattern to the letter. However, the pattern called for capped sleeves which I didn’t really want as I knew it would make me less likely to wear the dress once it was finished. Instead I simply turned the raw edges of the armholes under once and stitched them down. After one wash, I noticed this has started to fray a little though, so I’ll be getting so bias binding to edge the armholes properly.

The skirt of the Megan dress is also meant to be a close fitting skirt, another part of the dress that didn’t hugely appeal to me as I wanted to my dress to be loose fitting and feel summery despite the navy base. I then decided to pleat my trouser material instead to give the skirt more volume. This gave me the desired effect on the skirt of my dress. I even edged it in pink ric-rac trim to match the flamingos on the bodice and break the skirt up a little!


All that was left to do then was to insert the zip into the back seam and hem the dress and then:


Ta-Da! Excuse the toilet and the terrible picture quality but I haven’t had chance to get a good close up of the dress so this will have to do. I’m pleased with my Megan dress. It’s not exactly the same as the pattern but it’s comfortable and cute. I’ll make another one in the future hopefully and this time maybe follow the pattern the whole way through!