31 March 2017

Leopard Maternity Dress

Hello, finally as a little respite to all the baby sewing I am pleased to say this week I am here to show you some slightly more grown up sewing in this lovely leopard print maternity dress.

I love wearing dresses when pregnant, nice big stretchy ones! You see all these stunning pictures of pregnant ladies in their skinny jeans, but its not for me. I wish I could wear a pair of jeans but I just find them so uncomfortable. Hand me a nice stretchy dress instead and I'm so much happier. As you can see my bump is progressing very nicely (with a big help from chocolate!) so its nice to get another outfit to add to my currently very limited wardrobe of clothes that actually fit (and look good).

The dress is actually a mash up of two of the patterns from the Megan Nielsen Maternity survival pack set of sewing patterns. It is the Erin skirt and the Cara top. I cut out both patterns to my size and they overlay one over the other. The ruching is in slightly different places in both patterns so I had to wing it a bit but it came together really nicely. I think the ruching maybe could have been slightly higher but it works where it is perfectly fine.

These patterns really are so quick and easy to sew and this dress was no exception to that. The fit is lovely and its just so easy to pull on and can be worn with tights or without. I can definitely see me adding at least one more of these to my collection before baby is due.

The fabric is some very old jersey that I bought at a local market which I used to make my first lady skater dress (some time ago now). Its been sitting in a box in my craft room for at least 2 years maybe more. I hadn't managed to find a better project for it before now so its nice to see it finally getting some love and in turn making some more room for me to buy more lovely fabric in its place.

I hope you like the dress, and I hope it inspires you to have a go at making one if you haven't already. Its so nice to make maternity clothes, even if they aren't going to get the most wear ever.

Now i'm off to go consider whats next on my ever growing list of sewing projects, whats your next project going to be?

24 March 2017

Floral Teddy Romper

Well spring has finally sprung and despite being pretty cold this week its nice to see the return of the sunshine today. All this lovely sun and finally seeing the flowers spring up has inspired me to make this gorgeous little cotton floral romper in a hope that my little summer baby will get a chance to wear it before the autumn finally sets in.

Isn't it just adorable <3

The fabric is some very thin swiss dot cotton lawn which I bought from ebay. Its a lovely lightweight fabric and will be perfect if we get any really hot and sweaty days this summer where we want to keep baby covered, but wearing something light and breathable.

Something odd has happened to me though since finding out I am having a girl, and that is a new like for floral fabric. Historically the mere hint of a flower on fabric had me looking in another direction but instead now I am looking a them with new eyes. I think it will still be a while before you see me in anything with flowers on, but it has certainly opened up a whole new world of opportunities for me!

The pattern is another Puperita, the Teddy Romper and as per usual the pattern is utter perfection. I was drawn to this pattern because of two things, the flutter sleeves and the popper fastenings. Mr Fox hates it when I make any kind of romper/dungarees as it makes the whole nappy changing thing an absolute mare. So this pattern keeps him happy and will allow for a nice easy nappy change. 

Everything about this pattern is just adorable, the sleeves, the cross neck, the gathered leg holes, I absolutely love it. It also has a version for boys. It can also be worn over a vest and tights for those slightly cooler days. 

Again, I wouldn't say this was a particularly fast sew as I took my time with it, and there are a lot of bound edge seams, but the time and attention to details really are what make handmade look really special.

Hope you all have a lovely weekend and enjoy mothers day.


17 March 2017

Hand Built Ceramic Fruit Bowl

I'm coming at you with something a bit different this week, some pottery!

I posted a while ago about how I have been attending some hand building ceramic drop in classes over the last year with David Sampson. Due to family life and some personal things I sadly haven't been able to attend much the last 6 months or so. Its such a shame as I really enjoy the classes. Whilst sewing is so satisfying, its really nice to get your hands dirty and actually form something using just these and a few basic tools.

This is a bowl I was working on before I stopped attending. The idea was for it to be a replacement fruit bowl as ours is rather dull. Rather than using the coil technique like I did for the kitty pot This was made by rolling out a really big slab of clay and laying it over a bowl form to create the shape.

As you can see its not really a perfect bowl, its rather wonky and has wobbly edges but this was thankfully intentional. I think the idea was for it to look a bit more organic the finely produced.

One of the reasons I love going to these clay workshops is that I really do have no idea what I am doing, so everything that I make is a complete experiment. I don't really like the thought of going in knowing exactly what I want, its nice to sort of see it sort of shape in front of you, and see how the different techniques can cause such different effects.

The kitty pot I made was very smooth and sleek, and was very simply decorated with a bit of coloured slip, some oxide painted on and some clear glaze. With this bowl I wanted to go a step further.

On the bottom I rolled thin snakes of clay and adhered them on in a sort of spiral pattern. I then used a knife and cut away small sections to make the patterns you can see here. I really like pattern and ceramics, I don't really know why I just sort of like the rhythm of it. I really like the bottom of this bowl, I think I probably prefer it to the top so its a shame you don't really get to see this bit!

For the main part of the bowl I used a technique called sgraffito to create the pattern. First I painted the surface of the bowl with some coloured slip, starting with the brown. I actually had hoped this would come out more black than it did, but again I don't mind its all part of learning what different things do when fired. I then painted a strip of blue and a strip of white to add some more interest.

Using a small tool I then carved these circular patterns around the bowl working my way to the edge. I worked in rings using slightly different thicknesses and pattern each time to create a more interesting effect.

I really love the way the sgraffito turned out, and the dark colour really compliments it well. I think the bit on the blue section looks a bit too much like a sundial for my liking but not so much it bothers me.

Sadly I've not read great things about the chemicals in glazes and pregnancy so I wont be able to attend again for a while now, but I really hope once the family have settled down after the next arrival I will be able to go back as I really enjoy David's workshops. I did manage to get one more pot ready for a final firing, so hopefully I can pick that up in the next month or so as well, it will be exciting to see how that one turns out.

10 March 2017

Liberty Milky Way Sweetheart Sun Dress

I don't even know where to begin with this post, this dress has me almost speechless. There are not enough words to describe how much I am in love with this little dress and just how proud I am of it. The dress is such a dainty little thing, sewn up in a beautiful lightweight cotton lawn in size 0-3 months, its just so delicate. 

Not only am I super chuffed with the final thing I just really enjoyed the whole process of making this. From the cutting out to the final bits of hand sewing the whole thing was a delight. It wasn't a fast project, but it wasn't too complicated either. I wanted to make sure that I took my time, and didnt make any silly mistakes. I think this was mostly down to fear of ruining the fabric but thats not a bad thing.

The fabric is some beautiful Liberty Tana Lawn in their new Milky Way pattern. I'm not really a fan of Liberty prints, they are a bit too dainty and floral for my liking, plus they cost an absolute fortune, but this one really caught my eye. Mr Fox thinks its a bit gawdy but I love it, what do you think?

I was hoping this would be a lovely little summer dress, but in reality I think by the time Little Miss Fox is big enough to wear it we will be coming on to winter, but she can pair it with a long sleeved vest and some leggings to keep her warm so we should still get plenty of wear out of it.

You need to think carefully about making baby clothes because they need to be made from a fabric which will be soft enough on baby's skin, but also breathable. This is why I knew I wanted to make a dress in a cotton lawn as its so soft and lightweight. The fabric really was beautiful to sew with, it behaved spectacularly well, cottons usually do, but I was expected a lightweight lawn to be a bit more temperamental. Who knows, maybe this will be the start of a new found love for Liberty fabrics??!!

The sewing pattern is another gem from Puperita and it is the Sweetheart dress. It comes with 2 options, one with a skirt and this one without which is a bit more tunic style. Puperita do a few lovely dress patterns but I wanted one which was very simple to really showcase the fabric pattern which is why I chose the plain tunic version of the dress. The dainty flutter sleeves compliment the fabric perfectly and I think this was a great pattern choice for this fabric. As always the instructions were spot on and this was a really nice simple pattern to make.

I hope you love this as much as I do! I could just stare at it all day, is that weird?

So if you have any recommendations for me, of any of your favourite girl sewing patterns or places to buy cute baby fabrics I would really like to hear from you. You can never get enough inspiration and the sewing community is my favorite place to find it.



3 March 2017

Lightning bolt baby romper

Oh look, another romper! I made this romper ages ago as a present for one of my friends in Denmark who recently had a little girl. I love hearing people having girls it makes a nice change to sewing boy clothes (and I love an excuse for sewing with a bit of pink). I guess this is something I will get to do more and more of now hazaa!! As you can imagine I already have the fabric for one of these for Little Miss Fox.

There's not much more I can say about this pattern, I have done it to death, but for quick reference it is the Puperita Jumpy Romper and this beautiful lightning print fabric is from Mauds Fabric Finds. Sadly there is non of this left which is such a shame, I could do with making myself an outfit from it I love it so much. You can see all the other iterations of this romper on my made by me: children's clothing page.

Annoyingly what has just happened is I have opened both the Puperita and Mauds pages to add the links and I think a new sewing project is going to get purchased in the next 10 minutes. I'm so weak!

Its really hard to take photos of white clothes, especially in the dull winter months.

Anyway I hope you didn't mind the quick whistle stop tour around this little make. I have actually made quiet a bit of stuff over the last few months, just that I either haven't had time to blog it or haven't had sufficient daylight to take a picture. Its a real shame I will try and get a few more quick blog posts up to show them off in the next few weeks.
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