Vogue 1350 by Rachel Comey
Raspberry Purrfectly Happy from Catnap by Lizzy House,
lined with Freespirit Solid Plum Voile
Here’s my entry for the Lizzy House Catnap Dress Contest!
I don’t think I could have chosen a more difficult pattern to do under a short deadline. This pattern was not a sleepy catnap, it was a real challenge! I had wanted to try something new for the contest. I also wanted the dress to be a bit more formal to contrast the adorable cat print.
This dress is a beautiful design. It is also completely lined. Not just a lining that is dropped into the dress, but a lining that is sewn onto the facings and finishes the insides and hems cleanly. It’s serious. The front placket hides a row of snap closures. There is so much great detail and fitting in this dress. It’s pretty much a work of art.
While I was sewing it into the early hours of the morning before the deadline, I was definitely cursing myself for not choosing an easier pattern. That said, I do love this dress and how it turned out. It seems the perfect way for me to sport some kitty cats. Quite a few people have asked how Maisy feels about this dress – She doesn’t mind, she loves Lizzy House cats as much as I do.
You can check out all the entries into the Catnap Dress Contest here. There are so many wonderful Catnap dresses!
Portfolio Tunic : Lisette for Simplicity
Liberty of London Tana Lawn : Claire Aude
It seems like winter may never end, so it’s best to embrace it! Or in this case, head outdoors in a short sleeved shirt for 15 minutes to catch some natural light!
I have had the Portfolio Tunic in my pattern stash for a while. Amanda sent it to me ages ago but I could never decide which fabric to use and other patterns always seemed more pressing. Recently I spotted this Portfolio Tunic made by Allyson. (Thank you, Pinterest!) Immediately, I knew I had to make one and it had to be this sunny yellow Claire Aude print from Liberty of London that I had in my stash. Just the thing to cheer up some winter blues!
I chose to do the short tunic to see if I liked the fit and the pattern in general, so I missed out on doing the awesome pocket detail with this version. But I already have a next Liberty print set aside for my next version and it will be the longer tunic for sure. The pattern is a dream! Very simple, clear instructions and easy sewing. The front square yoke detail is so cute. The sweet two button closure at the back was the perfect place to use a couple of vintage glass buttons from The Button Dept. My only note would be that you need to really clip the seam allowance for the curve of the sleeve so that it sits properly.
Unfortunately, this pattern is out of print! I didn’t realize it, but quickly found out as people started asking where they could get a copy. Luckily, Liesel Gibson commented on one of my posts that she is working on an updated version of this pattern that she’ll be putting out herself. Hooray!
A few times a year, I pick a month to dedicate to finishing projects. The main objective is to cross things off my list whether they are brand new projects or projects that have been lingering for months (or even years!) Sometimes, all it takes to finish something is sewing on buttons. For larger projects, like quilts, finishing a block or a stage of the project is considered a ‘finish’ to me.
January seemed like the perfect time to start a finishing campaign. I also took a week off work towards the end of the month to just stay home, relax and sew. Heaven! I had ten solid finishes in January, ranging from a quilt top to a duffle bag to a knit cowl that I started over two years ago. Here are a few sneak peeks!
Grainline Studio Scout Woven Tee
Liberty of London Tana Lawn Cotton in Mistral
Firstly, a woven tee. Such a great wardrobe addition! Secondly, a simple and quick sewing project! Brilliant on so many levels.
This is actually my third Scout Tee. I made two during The Sewing Factory. One in Nani Iro double gauze and one in a strawberry linen. I love those short sleeve tees, but with the fall here, I knew my wardrobe really needed a tee with a longer sleeve.
I pulled out the sleeve piece for the pattern and traced it out. I made the sleeve piece about 14.5″ long, but when I sewed it up, I found that length a bit short and had to hem the sleeve with binding. I will cut my next version out with a sleeve piece at 16″ or 16.5″. I also adjusted the side seams of the sleeve and brought them out a bit so that they drop straight down. I feel like I could adjust the sleeve a bit more, but I’m going to need some expert advice on this. I am wondering if I need to add any fullness to the sleeve cap due to adding the length and weight to make it sit nicer. I’ll report back after I do some consulting!
I also added a couple inches to the length of the body. I tend to like things a bit longer in length.
I love having good basic patterns to fall back on and this is definitely one them. The Liberty Tana Lawn is perfect for this pattern. Okay, it’s pretty much good for everything. But once I perfect my changes, I will be turning out a dozen more, for sure.
p.s. This is our garden!
Victory Patterns : Roxanne
Liberty of London Tana Lawn Cotton in Susanna
I have had the pleasure of watching Victory Patterns emerge from dream to reality in the last couple years. When Kristiann Boos, one of the workroom’s instructors, told me she wanted to start a pattern company I was absolutely thrilled! Kristiann’s sense of design and style is so unique, I knew right away that she would produce patterns that were unlike others out on the market. She started out with PDF patterns and finally this year launched printed patterns. Kristiann’s patterns are lovely to work from. They are clearly written & illustrated, plus beautifully packaged.
The Roxanne pattern is a beginner level pattern. I chose to make the sleeveless version, mostly for the amazing collar detail. I went with the dark navy Susanna print from Liberty. The pattern was very simple, with the most complex part being that collar. The design of the collar is very clever and I got huge amounts of satisfaction sewing it. Once you’ve completed the collar, the rest of the top flies together. The top has a lot of volume, there are pleats that fall from the yoke at the back. With the right fabric, such as the Liberty Tana Lawn this volume creates a gorgeous silhouette and movement with the high/low hemline. I love that this top feel very elegant and dressy. I can’t wait to try a version with sleeves next.
This is the second Victory Patterns pattern that I’ve tried. I made the Hazel first, but still need to photograph it now that the weather has cooled down enough for long sleeves.
See all the Victory Patterns here & see the Roxanne pattern here.
Lizzy House ‘Constellations’ fabric
This dress was made earlier this summer when Lizzy House was in town. Lizzy was here for ten glorious days teaching classes at the workroom, plus living and working at The Sewing Factory. Lizzy explains The Sewing Factory perfectly here. Basically, The Sewing Factory is a team of three comprised of Katherine, Lizzy and I. It’s what we love to do best, which is to be together and sew everything we can.
You can see all our adventures together in photos here.
You’ve seen this Simplicity pattern before in many versions. This won’t be the last, it’s just too good. I knew I needed to have a Constellations dress using this pattern since it’s my idea of a perfect dress and Constellations is my idea of a perfect fabric line. And I got to fussy cut some adorable fabric covered buttons for it! This dress is a dream. And it’s blue. I’ve made a lot of blue clothes this summer. You’re about to see them come your way as I’m photographing them slowly.
Speaking of blue. I just got some Chambray for a skirt. It will probably be made with this Simplicity pattern. To add to the 2215 collection that I’m creating. I think Chambray is the fabric of the season. I am falling in love with it for clothing projects and I love that it’s coming out in other colours besides blue. We just got some Chambray at the shop yesterday and we’ve got even more on order for the fall!
I also wanted to introduce you to Ashley! I had the pleasure of meeting Ashley in person this summer, when she visited the workroom. She was sweet enough to drop by to meet me at the shop while she passed through town, as she is all the way from California. She has been sewing up a storm of beautiful clothes that has got me inspired these days and I think you’ll love them too.
Hoodie pattern by Guy Latulippe
Alice’s Garden : Liberty of London Linford Fleece
As soon as September arrived, the temperature at night seemed to drop down to chilly. I’ve been enjoying throwing on my cozy new hoodie for my night walks with Maisy. Making a hoodie has been on my wish list for a long time, so I was thrilled when Guy told me he had a hoodie pattern that he had designed.
The first Hoodie class was held as a day camp in August. Day camps at the workroom are one of my favourite things!
Let’s talk about the fabric first. This Liberty of London fleece is incredible. Not only is it a cotton fleece printed with a gorgeous Liberty print, but it also so thick and soft. We had received two prints (Manning & Alice’s Garden), just in time for the Hoodie class. This print is called ‘Alice’s Garden’ and I just know it will cheer me up in the winter months when I am missing my garden.
I’m always excited to demystify basic pieces of clothing like the t-shirt and underwear. We sewed the hoodie up on a regular sewing machine and used the serger as we went along to finish the seams. I usually will do all my serging at the start before I sew, but for this project it made sense to serge the seams together as each step was sewn and then they got top stitched down. I used a light shade of mauve for my sewing and did a double line of stitching for all my top stitching. Little details like that make me pretty happy. But my most favourite detail on this hoodie is that I did a pretty great job of pattern matching the pocket. I’ve had a lot of practice pattern matching my Wiksten Tank pockets, so this one was a piece of cake!
All the hoodies made in class were so beautiful. Each one different and very professional looking. Guy talked to us about variations on the pattern, so I think my next version will have a zip front. The fall session of the Hoodie class starts soon and I can’t wait to see the next round of hoodies.
There’s just a week left for my #junefinish goal. I’ve finished up 7 things so far and I’m hoping to add a few more to that list. I’ve been so happy to see other people joining in and finishing up some of their projects too. It feels good!
One of the things I was able to finish was another Wiksten Tank. Once it was done, I decided to gather up all the tanks I had made and count them all. I’ve made nine Wiksten Tanks to date. This is definitely my most used pattern by far!
You can find the Wiksten Tank pattern here!
The Staple Dress : pattern by April Rhodes
Innocent Crush voile (Maybe print) by Anna Maria Horner
photographed near the Humber River
I’m giving myself a challenge for the month of June. I’m going to focus on finishing projects. For the first part of this year I’ve been all about starting projects. If I was inspired by a quilt or dress or anything, I just went ahead and started it. The constant feeling of a new project is amazing, but I’ve realized that I should balance that with a month of finishing. The challenge has a hash tag, #junefinish and you are welcome to join me! You can follow my finishes on Instagram or Twitter and please post your own #junefinish projects too! As of today I’ve finished 5 things this month! It has felt so satisfying to finish up new projects and older projects. My Staple Dress was my #1 finish for the month of June!
I started The Staple Dress a few weeks ago. It was all cut out and just needed to be sewn. (There is a sizeable pile of cut out clothing in this state right now) This is a simple pattern that doesn’t take much to finish off. It’s great for a beginner sewer and very satisfying for an experienced one. I was able to sew it up in one night with some finishing details in the morning. There are two variations on the hem and I went with the drop hem. It seemed a bit dressier to me and also just something different. I really like it!
Many people have made theirs and skipped the shirring to wear it with a belt, but I’m the opposite. I love shirring and never wear belts. I am really loving the weight of the voile with this pattern. I’m planning on making a couple more of these dresses and they will definitely be either voile or Liberty Tana Lawn.
This dress has so many things going for it. It’s super cute, very comfy and sews up very fast. Pretty much the perfect combo. I just read that April will be releasing a couple new patterns soon and I can’t wait to see what they are!