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Minerva Crafts Blogger Network: Sew Over It 'Doris' Dress

When the Sew Over It 'Doris' dress came out last year, I wasn't immediately struck. It was one of those patterns where I wanted to wait to see versions on various body types and in different fabrics before I made up my mind whether it was for me. And I've been slowly but surely falling in love with the look of it since.



Sewing Summary:



Notions: I used 5 heart shaped buttons, 1 x 16" invisible zip

Sewing time: Half a day to a day.

Modifications: Absolutely nothing!

Fit: Spot on!

Difficulty: Confident beginners and beyond.

Watch out for: Making a tidy button up front and facing, I did lots of ironing along the way.

Make Again?: Yes! I love this dress, and see myself making lots more.

--

For my full sewing pattern review, CLICK HERE

If you'd like to see everything I've made so far for the Minerva Craft Blogger Network, you can view my profile HERE.

Thanks for reading, pinups!
Abi xo

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Better Late Than Never! Retro Butterick 1961 - B6318 Tie Waist Dress 

Hi pinups! This post has been shelved since last Summer, but I'm very happy to finally be sharing it with you on the Minerva Crafts Blog! It's also getting me in the mood for some Spring sewing which I'm very happy about.

When I first started my dressmaking journey about 2 years ago now, recreating vintage dresses was high up on my sewing agenda. So when scouring the internet for 1950s and 1960s inspired or reproduction sewing patterns, the Retro Butterick B6318 tie waist dress pattern stole my heart immediately. It ticks all my vintage style boxes as the late 1950s and early 1960s are my favourite periods for fashion. This vintage pattern combined with some equally vintage looking floral Liberty fabric, I hoped this dress would be a pattern and fabric match made in heaven.


Sewing Summary:

Pattern: Retro Butterick 1961- B6318 Tie Waist Dress

Fabric: Liberty Vintage Style Floral Cotton Poplin Dress Fabric Pink

Notions: 22" invisible zip

Sewing time: A day.

Modifications: I used a concealed zip instead of a lapped zip.

Fit: Other than a long bodice, I'm pleased with the fit.

Difficulty: Simple, this would be great for beginners looking to sew their first vintage dress.

Watch out for: Getting a tidy neck edge and even gathers on the skirt.

Make Again?: Yes! I love this pattern and look forward to sewing this again.

--

For my full sewing pattern review, CLICK HERE


Thanks for reading, pinups!
Abi xo

Disclaimer: Contains affiliate links.
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Simplicity 8232 - 1940s Apron + Sew Along Video!


For February's Stitch by Stitch video, I wanted to create something with a touch of novelty about it. I don't often venture into kitsch sewing and novelty printed fabrics, or if I do, I save it for pjs. But with Valentine's Day in the air, this Simplicity 8232 1940s vintage apron with a big heart detail seemed very appropriate.

Here's a peek at the pattern:


I couldn't resist sewing option A of this pattern for my Valentine's themed make. I thought if I was going to try my hand at a kitsch make, I might as well go all out with hearts, ruffles and ... doughnuts.

See this sweet and simple apron come together in my video below...

Stitch by Stitch with Simplicity - 8232 Apron Sew Along

Stitch by Stitch with Simplicity - 8232 Apron Sew Along - YouTube

You can see in my sew along video above just how fast this apron is to make, along with how happy it made me to wear! But there is a little something to watch out for with this pattern and I think there may be a miss print. All is explained in my full review in the video. Otherwise this pattern is a super simple and fast make.


I held a little vote over on my Instagram Stories when I was in the early stages of this pattern to see if people thought I should use an equally kitsch printed fabric or use plain colours or colour block. Novelty printed fabric was an overwhelming winner and I hope my bright and cheery doughnut fabric didn't let you down!


Sewing Summary:

Pattern: Simplicity Pattern 8232 1940's Vintage Aprons


Fabric: Donuts Rose and Hubble Cotton Fabric

Notions: None.

Sewing time: Less than a couple of hours.

Modifications:
4 ruffle pattern pieces cut instead of 3.

Fit: Great.

Difficulty: Easy.

Watch out for: Cutting an extra ruffle piece and tidy binding.

Make Again?: I think this is a great pattern to sew as a gift.


Overall, the 8232 1940s apron pattern is a simple and quick make. Whilst I don't think I'll be sewing with a novelty print again any time soon, this apron has really brightened up these gloomy winter days and has me dreamy of Spring. I think this pattern would be great to make for gifts and will be sure to put a smile on someones face!

--

I'm really excited to be continuing to work with Simplicity UK to create a brand new selection of videos. This time around I've chosen a wide range of sewing pattern styles so hopefully there'll be something for everyone in this upcoming series.

Watch all my Simplicity Stitch by Stitch videos in my playlist HERE.

Thanks for reading, pinups!
xo
Disclaimer: This post is sponsored by Simplicity.
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What I've Been Loving in January

Wearing a jumper my mum knitted me this month!
I've been thinking of putting together some sort of monthly blog post series for a little while now and I've finally settled on this topic - what I've been loving each month. I wanted to create a series which would feature my sewing picks of the month and things I've been obsessing over. Much like an email newsletter. I always enjoy these types of posts myself so I thought I would create my own to share with you.

January can be a pretty gloomy month all round and it can be hard to stay motivated and creative when the weather is so grey. But there's been lots still to lust after this month which has certainly spurred me on!

1 / 2 3 / 45


This month I selected and received my next 3 month batch of Minerva Craft Blogger Network projects, it feels like my birthday every time I get my supplies in the post. I used the opportunity to tick off some of my 2018 Make Nine projects, so it feels super productive too. This spotty viscose called my name instantly and I can't wait to use it next month for a sassy Valentine's Day dress. I also finished another from my make nine selection, the Kyoto Sweater, which I'll be sharing with you very soon!

Some big sewing news dropped as the amazing Tilly and the Buttons has released her second book for pre-order, I can't wait to get my paws on this. I loved her first book 'Love at First Stitch' so much and this looks even better. More sewing news comes as my pal Oh Sew Quaint reopened her shop, I've got to get one of the magnetic doughnut pincushions!

I hope you guys have enjoyed a look at what I've been loving this January! I sure spent a lot of it on Pinterest... I'm aiming to put these posts up on the last weekend of the month, but we'll see! What have you been loving this month?

Thanks for reading, pinups!
Abi xo
Disclaimer: Contains affiliate links.
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A few months back when I was choosing my current batch of Minerva Craft Blogger Network makes, I'm not sure why I thought sewing a strappy pair of Tilly and the Buttons Fifi pjs was a good idea to sew in January, but that's exactly what I decided...  So whilst I might not be getting much wear out of this make for a few months yet, I'm still very happy to finally be sewing this gorgeous little pattern.


Sewing Summary:


Fabric: Dalmation Spot Print Cotton Dress Fabric Black & White

Notions: 2 x gold hoops, 2 x gold sliders, mini baby pink bow, satin binding.

Sewing time: A couple of hours

Modifications: Babydoll & ruffle hack

Fit: Great!

Difficulty: Simple.

Watch out for: A good fit on the cups and tidy pleats.

Make Again?: Yes! I think you could make some lovely versions of Fifi and I can certainly see myself sewing this again in the Summer.

--

For my full sewing pattern review, CLICK HERE

If you'd like to see everything I've made so far for the Minerva Craft Blogger Network, you can view my profile HERE.
Thanks for reading, pinups!
Abi xo
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I don't have a particularly large fabric stash, it keeps to a humble size in a large plastic tub that I keep tucked away under my desk. I buy fabrics with projects in mind and don't usually wait too long between the buying and the sewing. But every so often, they'll be a bad day, a glass of wine and a total impulse purchase.

I had no intentions of shopping any fabric sales. I find the start of the year stressful enough, then everywhere you visit online you're bombarded with flashing 'SALE' graphics. If anything it makes me want to avoid the internet until the month is over. But this January, left unattended with my laptop I tripped and fell onto the Minerva Craft sale, where I certainly didn't hold back...

But luckily I have an eye for a bargain and regret NOTHING. Along with my Minerva haul, I've also been gifted some beautiful fabrics from a store reasonably close to me (but has a great online store) Textile Express. These fabrics are extra special and I picked up a fabric I've been lusting after for a year, and if you're a fan of mid century style, you're going to love it too.

Check out my entire fabric haul in the video below, along with some very vague sewing plans. If you have any sewing pattern suggestions for me, please do leave a comment in the video or on this blog post! I could sure use some inspiration...

HUGE JANUARY FABRIC HAUL! - YouTube


If you want to pick up any of the gorgeous fabrics for yourself, here are all the links you need:


--

I hope you enjoyed my impulsive fabric haul! Did you treat yourself to some new fabric this January? It sure is a fun way to start the year and get that sewing inspiration flowing!

Thanks for reading, pinups.
Abi xo
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Hi pinups! It's a brand new year and with that comes a brand new batch of Simplicity Stitch by Stitch videos. I'm really excited to be continuing my work with Simplicity UK as their ambassador, sewing a selection of their gorgeous patterns for you to follow along with on my YouTube channel.

Last year you saw me sewing the decades for Simplicity's big 90th birthday, but this time around I wanted to try my hand at some more modern and fashion forward sewing patterns. I'm starting 2018 with the reasonably new 8454 ruffle blouse.

Here's a peek at the pattern:


This pattern caught my eye straight away and whilst I don't particularly pay much attention to high street fashion trends, this ruffle blouse really appealed to me. In my 2018 Make Nine sewing plans I discuss how reflecting on my 2017 sewing made me think about items in my handmade wardrobe and the clothes I actually wear. I'm in desperate need on smart casual tops to throw on and the 8454 pattern ticked all my boxes.

See this sassy and simple ruffle blouse in action and how it comes together in my video below...

Stitch by Stitch with Simplicity - 8454 Ruffle Blouse Sew Along

Stitch by Stitch with Simplicity - 8454 Ruffle Blouse Sew Along - YouTube

You can see in the video just how quickly this blouse comes together. I really enjoyed sewing this pattern and whilst viscose fabric does tend to get on my nerves, I love the end result.


I love everything about this blouse and I'm so happy that this is how my 2018 sewing kick is starting! I enjoyed sewing it (which I can't say about everything I make!), the fit is spot on for me and it was surprisingly simple to sew. The small struggles I had were due to my fabric rather than the pattern but I'm glad I persevered as I am in love with the end result.

Sewing Summary:

Pattern:
Simplicity Pattern 8454 Women’s Tops with Sleeve and Flounce Variations

Fabric: Leopard Print Viscose

Notions: Elastic loop & button

Sewing time: An afternoon.

Modifications:
Omitted the long sleeve ruffle.

Fit: Surprisingly good for my larger bust!

Difficulty:
Simple.

Watch out for: A tidy neck edge, and over handling/fraying if you're sewing with viscose.

Make Again?: Yes!


Overall, the 8454 blouse pattern is one of my new favourite sewing patterns. Besides the sewing, this blouse suits my style and my shape, is easy to wear, looks smart and was exactly what my wardrobe needed. I look forward to sewing this pattern again and trying out the other gorgeous variations.

--

I'm really excited to be continuing to work with Simplicity UK to create a brand new selection of videos. This time around I've chosen a wide range of sewing pattern styles so hopefully there'll be something for everyone in this upcoming series.

Watch all my Simplicity Stitch by Stitch videos in my playlist HERE.


Thanks for reading, pinups!
xo

Disclaimer: This post is sponsored by Simplicity but all thoughts and opinions are my own.
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Hi pinups, it's time for #2018makenine! I thought I would share my plans with you on my blog and YouTube channel instead of just sharing on my Instagram page as I can talk a little more about my sewing plans, fabric options and tempt you with my choices too of course.

In the video below, I go through all the patterns I've selected and why I've tried to stay clear of the big name sewing pattern brands. Some are patterns I already own and have plans for, and some are only a dream! I also show you some of the fabrics in my stash and decide on some options for my chosen nine. Watch below:

2018 Make Nine Sewing Plans! - YouTube



Are you taking part in the 2018 Make Nine? Hopefully this year I'll smash my sewing plans! Are any of these patterns on your to-sew list?
Thanks for reading & watching, pinups!
xo
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Hi pinups! It's my last make of 2017, and I'm ending in style with the Burda Style 6829 wrap effect dress made with sumptuous midnight blue velvet. I suppose you could even say this is my Christmas dress, although it may also be my New Year's Eve dress, my Halloween dress and just about everything in between dress!

Here's a peek at the pattern:


Like my previous post where I try my hand at bag making (see the post HERE), I opted for a dress a little out of my sewing comfort zone. Never in a million years did I think I would sew a clingy wrap dress and in velvet of all things! But I have and I absolutely LOVE it.

I made option B of Burda's 6829 but with A's shorter hem. 


When I decided I'd be sewing a dress for Christmas, I didn't want anything novelty or kitsch and I've seen a few of the velvet wrap dresses on the high street and have seen a few other bloggers sewing similar styles. This appealed to me far more than a red or Christmas pudding print fit & flare dress. This style is also a lot more versatile and will work for so many occasions. Not only is it out of my sewing comfort zone (velvet sewing virgin), it's also out my of style comfort zone and not like anything I've worn before. Maybe my style is changing...

When I saw THIS delicious deep navy blue stretch velvet, I knew it was the one! The quality is gorgeous, and it almost sparkles when it catches the light. It's also really soft against the skin, and with a walking foot on my sewing machine, it was dreamy to sew with.


The one thing that annoyed me about this dress was Burda not adding seam allowances. As a speedy, one session sewist, I find it so frustrating that these aren't included. But once I got over the hassle of cutting out, this dress was a breeze to sew. 

I know I've already moaned about it, but I've had no time whatsoever over the past few months for anything other than work. So I had to leave sewing this dress until the last minute, but thankfully in an hour and a half I had a completed dress. Luckily the body con style, stretch fabric and wrap effect made this really easy to fit. I did change a little of the sewing process up. Instead of setting in the sleeves (no thank you), I opted for one long arm and side seam. This also made fitting adjustments really easy. 



Sewing Summary:



Notions: None

Sewing time: An hour and a half

Modifications: None

Fit: Spot on!

Difficulty: Easy

Watch out for: Sewing with this stretch velvet I used my walking foot and a stretch needle. 

Make Again?: I'm not sure how many velvet wrap dresses I need in my wardrobe, but if I ever need another, I'll be coming back to this pattern!


Overall, I'm very happy with my Burda 6829 velvet dress. It was great to sew, easy to fit and most importantly it's comfortable to wear. The dress also had a pretty sassy effect on me, which probably shows in these photos. But hey, it's Christmas!

Thanks for reading, pinups!
Abi xo

Disclaimer: This post is sponsored by myfabrics.co.uk. All thoughts and opinions are my own.
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Hi pinups! I took a little break from the Minerva Craft Blogger Network whilst I moved house and got my life together. Whilst it completely disrupted my sewing mojo, I'm so happy to be slowly getting back into the swing of things and cracking on with my makes. When I was choosing this project a few months back, I wanted to challenge myself and sew something out of my comfort zone What better way to do that then to make a bag, and a faux leather one at that!


Sewing Summary:

Pattern: Burda Accessories Easy Sewing Pattern 6961 Drawstring Hand Bags

Fabric: Plain Soft Faux Leather Dress Fabric Baby Pink

Notions: Hemline Metal Eyelets Kit with Tool Gold

Sewing time: A couple of hours

Modifications: I left out the cording and the stopper

Fit: N/A

Difficulty: Surprisingly simple!

Watch out for: Make sure you use a leather needle on your sewing machine.

Make Again?: I don't know if I need another one, but I'd definitely recommend this pattern!

--

This bag also made an appearance in my latest Sew & Tell video. Watch below to see everything I've made since moving house...

Sew & Tell | Autumn Makes & Home Sewing - YouTube

--

For my full sewing pattern review, CLICK HERE

If you'd like to see everything I've made so far for the Minerva Craft Blogger Network, you can view my profile HERE.
Thanks for reading, pinups!
Abi xo
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