Friday, September 28, 2012

Pattern Review - Vogue 8815

Here's a peplum top I made up for my daughter in our Italian digital printed ponti knit Blue Mazzetto. Claudia chose both the style, inspired by these images found on the net and the fabric, from our latest arrivals of printed ponti's. The top pattern is super easy Vogue 8815

After making a calico out of a black ponti knit I had, I made minor alterations such as adding a neck facing, shortening the sleeves, taking out some excess fabric out of the back and taking it in slightly at the shoulders. More importantly the peplum wasn't as full as the pattern envelope illustrates, so I added some more fullness. 

Claudia's requested a couple more in plain ponti and happily modelled her new top for me today, so I take it as a thumbs up!

PS. I forgot to mention that I eliminated the back shoulder dart by pivoting it out on the pattern.

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

More yummy Italian stock instore and online...

Here's another delivery on their way to our stores, we're adding these and all new fabrics on our online store daily.

Sunday, September 23, 2012

A (belated) gift for my best little mate who just turned 8

Y'know, it wouldn't be a true hand-sewn birthday gift if it wasn't late. And so it was. Late, that is. Almost two months, in fact. But the way I look at it, perfect timing for spring because this shirt ain't no winter-warmer, that's for sure.

E chose the fabric - Axion Red (100% cotton, Liberty tana lawn - also available in black in Melb only) - and I chose the pattern, Burda's Button-Up Blouse with Gathers #145 (4/2012). Now let it be known that I have a very healthy collection of Burda mags and a Burda mag pattern to-do list that errs well on the excessive side. But this was the first Burda pattern I've ever seen through right to the very end. 

I'm not going to say it was a walk in the park but I will say it was totally worth the effort. I will also profusely thank my sewing teacher Vikki for guiding me through the instructions which were, um, somewhat lacking in detail. I've since learnt that this is a common issue with Burda patterns. Overall, and eventually, it came together beautifully and I'm fairly confident that if I ever made it again, it would take me half the time that this one did. The shirt has a Chesterfield (aka hidden) placket and a mandarin collar. Even though no one else can see these heart shell buttons, she knows they're there...

I made no changes other than to eliminate the collar button and buttonhole because I don't know any kid who likes to be constricted around the neck in such a way. And my kid, well she's part monkey so movement and comfort are top priority...

She's also very, very funny...

...and very, very patient. Thanks for waiting E. x

Saturday, September 22, 2012

Feature Fabrics Of The Week

Our latest shipment of beautiful Italian designer fabrics have arrived! The most coveted fabrics are these latest striking summer weight Italian knits, ideal for cardigans, tank tops, pull-on straight skirts and dresses. As the knits tend to move when sewing them, it's a great idea to pin together the zig-zag stripes, keeping pins in place while you sew as well as using a walking foot when sewing down seams. If you look at Hilary's simple tank dress closely you will notice that the stripes start off matching at the top of the side seam (underarm) and as she's sewn down towards the hem the seams have moved slightly. Hilary has since invested in a walking foot!  

Friday, September 21, 2012

Colour Blocking with Vogue 8805

Here's Shirley's other version of Vogue 8805, this time she created a great colour blocked dress in a combination of 100% Silk Crepe de Chine in colours Neon Punch, Charcoal and Smoke. Again the only alteration made to the pattern was that the back opening was eliminated, the dress slips easily over the head.

This pattern is now definitely on my 'to make' list!

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Sneak Peek - Chloe Pants Pattern

Here's our latest Tessuti pattern - The Chloe Pant. This straight leg pant has front and back darts, a side invisible zipper and stitched down facing. The width at bottom hem is (for size 10) 51cm wide and the finished pattern length is 108cm (can be shortened or lengthened).

I made these pants (above) in our Enzyme Washed 100% Linen - Como Storm. The pattern will be available in sizes 8-16 and is ideal made up in linen or wools. It's particularly suited to fabrics with drape. Fabric with any kind of stretch or give (eg. mechanical stretch) are not suitable. They are very quick and easy to sew up and suitable for all sewing levels.

Julie from Bernina Chatswood kindly pattern tested the Chloe Pant pattern in Como Oatmeal (size 12) and gave them a big thumbs up.

PS. To those of you waiting oh-so-patiently for the release of the Mia Tunic Top/Dress pattern, I promise it's up next!

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Tessuti Awards - the final hours....

As I type this there are only 16 hours and 39 minutes left before entries close for the 2012 Tessuti Awards! I know for a fact that there a more than a few people out there sewing as we speak. Today in our Melbourne store - and proving that there a some folk out there that thrive on a deadline - we sold fabric to two ladies who were planning on entering! Who doesn't love a challenge, ey? Best of luck to those who entered and to those who are in the final throes of sewing and uploading entries. All photos MUST be uploaded by 4pm AEST tomorrow. The Awards website went into overload and overdrive at closing last year, so the more time you give yourself the better.

Check out all the entries here and keep refreshing to see the latest.

Oh, and thanks again to Skiddoo for sponsoring our first prize :)

Monday, September 17, 2012

Piper's Quilt

I while back Emma sent me pictures of this amazing and beautiful quilt that her mother had made for her daughter Piper (who's 17 months now). These hexagons are pieced together by hand, this is what I call a real labour of LOVE!

The gorgeous quilt is in a lovely combination of colours and cottons, including timeless Liberty of London cotton tana lawn Betsy.

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Pattern Review - Vogue 8805

I turned up to sewing classes this week to find Shirley in this fabulous new dress!  The pattern used was  Vogue 8805, a semi fitted pullover dress ideal for colour blocking. Shirley has already made this pattern up in a colour blocked version of neon punch, slate navy and taupe ( a great colour combination) in silk crepe de chine, I must remember to get photos of that one.

For this dress Shirley used our 100% silk habutai Porteno for the front and back top panels, joined the front and back middle and bottom panel pattern pieces together (cutting as one piece) with the front cut in Porteno and back cut in 100% silk crepe de chine in Rouge. The only alteration made to the pattern was that Shirley eliminated the opening at the back as this dress fits easily over the head and doesn't need an opening. A neater and cleaner look.

I find Shirley so inspiring and the fact that she once was a textile designer is obvious in they way can mix colours and prints together. We knows the right styles that flatter her figure and isn't afraid to have fun with accessories to jazz up the simplest outfit.  I'm excited that Shirley has started her own blog called Fashion53, a blog dedicated to stylish dressing and fun shopping for woman 50 and over. Stop by say hello and be sure to add her blog to your favourites.

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Isabel Marant inspired top

So happy that Spring is finally here! My preferred season and I'm keen to get started on some new sewing projects, more and more sundresses, flowy pants, tops galore and lots and lots of prints. Well that's the plan anyway.

Here's a top I made recently using a combination of Liberty of London Wiltshire Cranberry and Japanese 100% Cotton Embroidery Anglaise. The pattern is my own, inspired by this Isabel Marant denim dress I love. The pattern is nothing tricky but it still needs some more tweaking as I hope to make some other versions from the pattern for some cool and easy slip on dresses to wear this summer. I'm on the look out for some cool batik or ethic prints. Bring on those balmy nights!

Monday, September 10, 2012

Lily Linen Dress in colour!

Julie from Bernina Chatswood has made up our Lily Linen Dress pattern up in 100% Linen Hanky Mandarin to wear to the Better Homes and Gardens show. Julie says she made up the size S and that she tapered down the side seams a bit to eliminate some flare.

Julie will be demonstrating and teaching sewing techniques at the show this Friday, look out for her in this fantastic vivid orange dress!

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Spotted : another great (kooky) Gabby!

Back in July, I spotted this ace Kooky Gabby over on Burdastyle which led me to Lauren's blog Smunch.

After making a muslin of the pattern, Lauren narrowed down the side seams for a more fitted a-line style. The simple Gabby Dress is perfectly suited to such a fun and quirky novelty print. Lauren picked up the fabric at a garage sale (score!) and the addition of an exposed metal zipper at the back is a great touch. Check out her blog post here.

PS. Lauren, it's great to know that the sewing instructions helped you achieve a better finish on your neckline bias binding. It looks perfect.

Saturday, September 8, 2012

Tessuti Awards - 10 days to go!

With less than 10 days to go until entries close for this year's Tessuti Awards, we thought we'd post some motivating images for those of you still deciding whether to enter a dress (or not). Create a dress in this years Spots and Stripes theme and be in the running for a chance to win a trip for two, from our sponsors Skiddoo, anywhere in the world (valued at $5000).

Here are some Pinterest-inspired travel photos to get you in the mood. What are you waiting for? As the entrants currently stand, there's a one in twenty seven chance of winning the grand prize. I call them VERY fine odds.  In past years these talented sewers had the opportunity to jet around the world. YOU could be next. Once you've made the dress, the hardest part will be choosing your prize-winning destination!



New York?





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