About a month before school finished for the year, I was giving some serious thought to what to make for gifts for the boys’ teachers. Both boys have been incredibly lucky to have teachers that they adored, and who thought my boys were pretty good too, so I wanted to make something a bit special!
All the sewing ideas I was coming up with were not quite right, and I was getting a bit frustrated that I wasn’t having that ‘tadaa’ moment of clarity. I took to trying to find inspiration in the lovely craft shop I work in, Made Marion. One of the many fun things in the shop is a small weaving loom, so I googled the company’s site, and my ‘tadaa moment’ was had. They had a video that declared that you could go from warping up to completed scarf in about 2 hours. I wasn’t so naive to think I could do it in 2 hours, but my takeaway from it was that it was reasonably quick.
I bought a loom, and some yarn to practise with, and set to teaching myself to weave! My first attempt was a little wobbly and uneven, but all in all, not too bad. I decided I might just be able to pull this off in time – by this stage, I was now down to 2 weeks until the end of the year!
So I went back for more yarn in colours that suited the teachers who would be receiving them, and went on a scarf weaving jag. All were woven with Ashford 8ply corriedale wool – plain warp, and variegated weft.
Lt lilac warp
Lt blue warp
I am pleased to say, I managed to get 3 scarves woven and wet blocked in a little over a week, and all of the teachers were incredibly pleased and appreciative of their lovely scarves.
I am quite enjoying weaving as a change of pace from sewing, and so will continue to explore what I can do with it. I have also now bought myself an 80cm rigid heddle loom, and some different sized heddles, so I have more options to play with in terms of fibre thickness and am not constrained to scarf width pieces.
So I sewed this shirt up about two years ago ….. and didn’t like it.
The fit seemed off, and the fabric not quite right. I’m not sure to be honest. So it hung on the back of the door unloved until I could be bothered figuring it out.
Recently, someone in the Hot Patterns facebook group asked about the fit of this pattern as she was looking to make it in the size I had made. I offered to take a couple of pictures of mine for her to see how it fit which she gladly took me up on.
As you may have guessed, when I tried it on again, I can’t remember what my issues with it were, and I really quite like it now!
I acquired the fabric in a fabric swap. It is a lovely floral cotton, that has the look of Liberty about it, but definitely isn’t. It sewed up nicely though!
My younger son has been doing drum lessons for a few months now, and really enjoying it.
We recently got him some proper drum sticks to practice with, so I made him a case for them to keep them together in his school bag.
He chose the fabric, and I made a long skinny pouch with a dome and some padding.
One of the Facebook groups I belong to is a Sewalong group. They have previously done a monthly sewalong of a specific pattern, but earlier this year put forward a wardrobe sewalong.
The start date and format were similar to a Pattern review contest, but rather than the 2 month time frame over there, this sewalong had a more sensible (to me) four month time frame.
The general premise was that in the time period you sew up 8 pieces that can be worn with each other. No orphan garments here please!
I started with a big list of patterns that wanted to make, and then loosely decided that I would follow a 2 dresses, 2 tops, 2 bottoms, 2 toppers plan to make up my wardrobe.
I also decided I would like to try and make it all from stashed patterns and fabric.
Style Arc Toni Designer Dress / Maven French Dart Shift Dress
|Itch to Stitch Hepburn Turtleneck / Hot Patterns Breton Tee
|Sewing Rabbit Cowl Sweatshirt / Swoon Scarf Neck Cardigan
|Trousers from my trouser block / Style Arc Allison Skirt
With a few patterns swapped in and out over the course of the sewalong, I finished up my 8 piece wardrobe and kept to the plan!
All of the fabric is from my stash, and only one of the patterns, the French Dart Shift, was purchased after the sewalong began, so I’m calling that a win!!
This has been a fun experience, and these pieces are already getting a good workout in my wardrobe.
I recently made up the Allison skirt by Style Arc, a pattern I’ve had in my stash for a while. I was intrigued by how the pleats were made so they weren’t bulky.
When I finally got to printing out the pattern, I have to say the pattern pieces are odd looking!
While it wasn’t at all difficult, it did require some fabric origami to achieve. Once I had that figured out, it was reasonably quick and painless.
I used a royal blue merino I’ve used previously, and am happy with how it came out.
|Worn here with my turtleneck to create a faux dress
The only alterations I made were to lengthen the back and shorten the front, which seem to be standard alterations for me with my prominent bottom and tilted waist.
I would like to try this again in something a little weightier, perhaps a ponte.