10 Years ago today!
Sorry, more By Hand London dressing going on here…
Let me introduce to you Annalex; Elisalex’s bodice and Anna’s maxi skirt. More Mrs Robinson on the leg front though than Angelina! I made this a long long long time ago (August!) but By Hand have just released this ‘love child’ post so I thought I really ought to start attending to this here blog again now I’ve sat those exams!!
You got a sneek peak of this dress in my post about my Victoria Blazer. There’s not a lot really to say about this dress! The bodice is lined and the skirt french seamed. It did take a bit of adjustment to get the skirt panels to continue the lines from the bodice, but nothing overly complicated. I just made some skirt panels wider and some narrower as necessary!
I originally had a completely different plan for this dress. I wanted to use a tropical print for the centre panels of the skirt and bodice and then a plain black for the sides to give a really neat colour block effect but I couldn’t find the print I’d imagined in my head anywhere. I’m still on the look out though as that dress has to be made!
So I used this cotton sateen that came from my Goldhawk Road jaunt. I love polkadots but if they’re too regimented it annoys me for some reason! I much prefer a more random dottiness (which describes me quite well…). So when I saw this fabric in a window display I needed 3m of it! Needed I tell you! At £5 a meter and 60″ wide that was no hardship either. As long as you don’t have a directional print it’s perfectly possible to get a maxi from a reasonable amount of fabric.
My only miff with the fabric was that when I got it home it had a grubby mark at intervals along the selvedge where the roll had been propped on the shop floor. I could not get this out so had to work round it. If I’d known it was there I would have negotiated a better price on the fabric. Ah well, live and learn.
So the bodice is lined (using some nautical vintage cotton) as per the Elisalex instructions and the skirt is french seamed as per Anna’s. I hemmed the slit by hand as well as the hem and used a hand picked regular zip rather than an invisible one.
There’s not a lot more to say really! The mash-up of two gorgeous BHL dresses is a success in my eyes and those girls can do no wrong. Georgia is in the que and Charlotte has also been added so I now have the full collection… I really must photograph Anna; the post is written but, photographs…
Oh, and it was my birthday over the weekend! The Charlotte skirt was a gift from me to me (to be made up in a small hounds tooth), I also received a new food processor as I blew up the last one (it was 15 years old!!), the Batman Trilogy (Christian Bale versions), a new cycle helmet, a Crud Catcher rear mudguard and a bike trailer for Boy as he’s not up to long distance rides yet. Also the Rock of Ages sound track as well as Despicable Me 2 (if the postman ever brings it – it’s allegedly out for delivery as I type…)
I was also treated to a pedicure so I have pretty toes at the moment and as I’m rubbish at coming up with a gift list I now have money to spend on Amazon and some cash to spend on whatever I like! Any suggestions?!
Life, it is happening and blogging is not. Fireworks have been and gone (no more late nights on that front), I’ve got three law exams next week being fuelled by tea and have started planning Boy’s 4th Super Hero themed birthday party. After the exams I hope to have a little more time to spend with you guys. Sewing has been neglected but I still have things I made in the summer I haven’t shared with you yet plus a more recently completed Archer and Bombshell! I also owe Evie some photos and really ought to sort out the house… I have a week off soon and I am really looking forward to it!
I thought I’d break up the By Hand London love in that’s going on around here with a return to our favourite Canadian designer! This is my second version of the Cambie and this time I chose to use the A-line skirt as gathers on my waist aren’t my favourite thing!
I made this dress for a party with a BBC theme – which is about as broad a remit as you can get! I decided to go with Star Trek as I used to spend every Tuesday evening sat on the floor in the lounge, eating dinner with my Dad watching The Next Generation on BBC2.
Captain Jean-Luc Piccard was and is one of my heroes! And when I saw the above it was just perfection.
But back to the dress! As I mentioned, it’s Sewaholic’s Cambie with the A-Line skirt. Bodice wise it is identical to the first version; usual FBA and sway back adjustments. The skirt is as Tasia drafted. It all went together beautifully.
I had a lot of fun turning the plain Enterprise printed fabric (from Plush Addict) into the gorgeous Ombre you see! I did a bit of Google research (seriously, doesn’t all research start there?!) and used this tutorial to dye the dress. Because I wanted the Ombre fading down the dress I made the dress shell first and then dyed it in a mix of Navy and Amethyst Dylon dye with the shoulders staying in the longest. That was fun and messy! But as I made this dress back in June (I did warn you I was way behind on blogging my makes!) I played with the dye outside.
It’s not a perfect job, there are some bright pink spots where I didn’t quite mix the powder properly into the water before dunking the dress, but I kinda like the odd bright pink spots dotted across it.
I then finished the construction with the bodice lining etc as per Tasia’s instructions.
Just to finish off the outfit, I bought a communicator style brooch from eBay and wore that on the dress as well (Not a TNG one though too much ££! It’s the style in the recent films which I loved!). I got so many comments on the dress and I can also wear it as day wear. In fact I’m wearing it today, along with my Victoria Blazer whose lining coordinates beautifully with those bright pink spots!
The Victoria Blazer, of course. Not named for me but I can dream, right? I mean who wouldn’t want to be one of the By Hand London girls?! I bought this pattern on the way home from the Goldhawk Road meet-up in August and all the fabric for this project came from that venerable street of fabric retailers although I only paid for the lining! I also made this in August and am still catching up with all the garments I’ve made and want to share with you!
Now before you start to panic that I pilfered my way from one end of the road to the other I have one word for you: Swap. I have never experienced anything like it in all my life. Seriously, there was so much gorgeous fabric needing a new home! Everything from Liberty Lawn to mystery vintage synthetics, miles of jersey, notions, patterns… It was somewhat overwhelming!
So I hung back and didn’t lunge for the table, I just let everyone else do their thing and then had a look to see whether there was anything I wanted. I picked up two pieces, some navy cotton drill / twill and a mystery fibre tiny houndstooth.
The navy twill / drill became my blazer.
I’d actually bought the lining earlier in the day whilst Roisin was still with us as I’d seen it in one of the shops (on the same side of the tube station) and as I knew she’d already made the cropped version which was also my plan I sought her expertise on the amount needed. 1m was advised and it was perfect and I think the fabric was only 45″ wide.
So this little jacket cost me the price of the pattern and £5 on some sort of cotton blend brocade in cerise and blue and a thank you to whoever brought that navy fabric to the swap!
I love this little jacket and whilst I didn’t line the sleeves like Sonja I did slipstitch the lining to the armhole seam, enclosing all the raw edges. I also used one of the lovely labels that come with the By Hand London patterns; for some reason I guard these things and this is the first one I’ve used despite now having made four iterations of BHL patterns!
And I also have the winners of the Simplicity Give Away!!
Congratulations to Jenni and Tracy who each won the trouser pattern and to Amy and Grace who each won a copy of the dress! You should each have received an email from me!
I’m slowly catching up with all the things I’ve made over the summer! This dress has earned the status of being ‘precious’ for a number of reasons.
First up, it’s responsible for starting my love affair with By Hand London patterns. This was my first pattern from those incredibly talented girls and what can I say, that bodice is a dream, a dream I tell you! I love the scooped neckline and the plunging back and the princess seams.
The second reason is that I wore this dress (having hemmed it the night before using a head torch in bed) to the Goldhawk Road meetup in August. So this dress was made for a much anticipated event and has a lot of very happy memories attached to it.
The fabric is Michael Miller and is called Rigging from his Ahoy Matey collection. It’s a gorgeous fabric that just behaves really well and presses beautifully. Rosin who blogs at Dolly Clackett is also a fan of this range of fabrics and has used this print here and using Ship Shape in the orange colour way here as well Stay the Course here (which I also have in the stash and is destined to be a Belladone, probably next spring now.)
The dress is an Elisa-ish as I chickened out on the tulip skirt. I’ve got curves as is and I didn’t know if that was a step too far so for this version I created a pleated skirt using the full width of the fabric. Nice and simple and doesn’t add too much bulk at the waist. I also used a ‘Tango’ orange invisible zip. I have no idea how I cam to have such a blazing orange zip in my collection but it matches the orange accents beautifully.
I’ve been wearing this dress a lot and will be wearing it with tights and a cardigan as the weather is now so autumnal (well it is at the moment as I’m catching up on blog posts and scheduling like mad!) although if we do have an Indian Summer and late September gives us one last burst of sunshine I wont complain! In short, I wish I’d bought this pattern a year ago when it was released rather than waiting a good twelve months to get on the By Hand London band wagon!
Put it this way, I felt so good in this dress and received so many compliments on that sunny day in London I ordered the Victoria pattern on the train on my way home!
PS. I haven’t forgotten about the Simplicity Pattern giveaway, I’ll be posting the winners soon!
I love wearing dresses and cute tops and skirts that I’ve made. I also love coming home at the end of the day and putting on something that I can lounge around in comfortably. Enter the Tofino pattern by Sewaholic!
I’d intended to make these at the time Karen ran her Tofino PJ party but didn’t have time to make PJs in the run up to my sister’s wedding. So these were made a while ago but definitely after the pyjama party. I absolutely adore the fabric and have to say a massive thank you to Kate at M is for Make in helping me select the right coloured solid turquoise blue to go with the Supernova fabric. I made the piping in navy and I don’t find it uncomfortable to sleep on.
In fact these have been keeping me company in Preston whilst I’m on a course for work. It’s nice to end the day lounging on the bed wearing these and a vest top whilst catching up with what you’re all up to and watching a bit of telly.
I did alter the pattern a little in that I took some of the width off the leg pattern and added it to the side panel to get a better balance between the two. I also lopped an insane amount off the leg length (a not uncommon adjustment with these!) and they still drag on the floor a little when I walk, but I like to be able to tuck my feet into them when on the sofa. Helps to keep my toes warm as I’m not a great fan of slippers; I’d much rather be in bare feet. Other than that they’re made as per the instructions and were a very fast and satisfying make. Not a lot more to say really other than these are incredibly comfy and just a little bit more glam than the rest of my PJ collection! I’m looking forward to making some more in a soft flannel for the cooler weather.
PS If you fancy winning either of these two Simplicity patterns, please let me know which one you’d like on this post! You have until midnight BST / GMT+1 on Sunday (just before Monday begins!)