Come together

I like a good plan and Mel and I have cooked up a big one – a mega sewing meet in the central North Island!

So do you love to sew?  Do you want to meet new people who also love to sew? Maybe you want to come hang out with us for a weekend?

Introducing:

  
We know the name isn’t sexy but it gives you the idea. There are still some details to work through but the general idea is that we’ll hire a suitable venue in Rotorua to meet up on the first weekend in August 2015 – that’s Saturday the 1st and Sunday the 2nd.

We’ll sew, gossip, swap fabric/patterns/knowledge, go fabric shopping, eat food and have a fun weekend making lots of new sewing friends…and hopefully some clothes too 😉

We’ve created a form to aid us in our planning, please follow this link for more details and to register your interest.

Hopefully you are as excited as us and maybe we could even make this an annual event.

Welcome to my world!

It is now my turn to take part in  Gemma from 66 Stitches “Great WSBN sewing  room tour” a blog tour featuring our sewing spaces.  My space is not glamorous or worthy of pinterest.  In fact it is a well used, over stuffed space that I probably should be embarrassed of…but I am amongst friends and I haven’t had time to tidy…so here she is.

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Such a lovely sunny spot to sew in my bay window.  My Brother sewing machine is a basic workhorse I got two years ago for Christmas.  My overlocker is an Elna of undetermined age and pedigree that I got from the op-shop 3 or 4 years ago.  It has no instruction manual, just a decent threading diagram and some permanent pen marks on the tension dials for optimum overlocking.  My thread catcher is a cool ceramic container also from an op-shop.

Maybe we shoule zoom out a little

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desk

My desk is an old door on top of a bedside cabinet and a filing drawer.  The pile on the left are recent pdf patterns that need to be filled and some abandoned projects.  My seat is an old piano stool that I need to recover.  The drawers are filled with notions, buttons, patterns and other stuff I can cram in there.

Maybe we should zoom out some more…

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Arrrrgh! The mess!  That is my cutting table, that I can barely cut on as it is always covered in fabric from past, current and future projects.  I mostly cut upstairs on the lounge room floor.  Just ignore the mess on tne floor… I have no idea where it should live…if I did it would be there.

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The ironing station (in pinterest speak).  This gets used daily by my husband ironing his work shirt and my sewing, so it is normally clear.  The iron is a Phillips and the only thing I would change about it is for it to not be pink.  The bags hanging above are projects cut out and ready to sew.  Behind that door is a narnia world of fabric. Or a least a wardrobe full.

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This is directly behind my sewing desk.  The shelves are filled with old sewing books, burda and pdf patterns and some oither random books.  Tallulah (my dummy) is modelling a badly made knit skirt and my second hand corduroy bomber jacket that I need to make longer wrist bands on.  Across her back is my unfinished Belle bow blouse.

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These are a few of my favourite things… my pin cushion given to me by a friend.   My thread snips which I use at the end of each seams so no tails of thread in my garments and my quick unpick because I like to keep it close by.

Finally some fabric pretties

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Some cottons for summer tops/dresses that hopefully I will make before the year is out.

So that is my space…hopefully it helps you realise that the sewing room doesn’t need to be perfect.

Colours and Winning

Today I did the colour run in my new espresso leggings and screen printed top.
I used some sale table lycra from Spotlight that had glitter spots all over for the tights.

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And we enhanced the colour run t-shirts with the WSBN logo by screenprinting.

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Before:

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I am actually happy...

After:

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Wellington Sewing Bloggers in Colour

Zara, Mel, Me, Kat.

And last week I asked what inspired you and would reward you with a Natalie Bray drafting book… and I drew the winner tonight:

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Kat said what inspires her  ” I get inspired by, well, pretty much everything, actually! Descriptions of things in books I’m reading, characters in books and movies, fabric, patterns, RTW, things other people make, you name it. I think that’s one of the really fun things about sewing – you can just let your imagination run wild whenever you feel like it and make something! Yeah!!”

So hopefully she will be inspired by the book.

24/52 Zoo Trip

Juliet of Crazy Gypsy Chronicles proposed a WSBN meet up at the zoo with an animal theme.  The invite on facebook had a very tribal print as the header image  and I knew that I had something similar in my stash.   It was a large rectangular tablecloth with circles print shown below. I had always intended to make a circle skirt from it, but I changed my mind and instead made a maxi dress with an empire line.

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I used a Kwik Sew pattern from the op-shop for the bodice and fabric left over from my friends skirt.  I measured under my bust, made sure it matched the bottom of the bodice piece.  I then did maths to figure out what radius to use to cut out a circle from the centre of the tablecloth.

Cut out circle and bodice pattern

Cut out circle and bodice pattern

It was a pretty simple make, I lined the bodice with some cute cotton I had in the stash and hand stiched in my zip in the side.

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See it really is a just a huge lot of fabric…it too ages to hem around the edge of this.
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We had a great time at the zoo.
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We found a african style village with drums
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The boys got in on the action
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We danced
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And found the other girls
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Clockwise from top-left: Jo, Juliet, Joy, Zara, Gemma, me, Kat and Sophie-Lee

Gained some wisdom
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And saw some animals
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Let Us Eat Cake!

I love pretty clothes and I love pretty plates so when the WSBN bloggers put forward the idea of Cake High Tea I put my hand up to host.  I have a bunch of cake plates and china that need using and the amount of food that arrived in my house filled ALL the plates.

Everyone turned up wearing their Cake – there were Pavlova’s, Tiramisu’s and Hummingbirds as well as other cake patterns. 

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Back row: Nicola, Marylouise, Me, Zara, Mel, Emma, Johanna, Joy, Holly, Maryanne, Sandra
Front: Nikki, Wendy, Gemma

The plates they bought contained sausage rolls, weetbix slice, salmon blinis, chocolate pots, banana muffins, cupcakes and louise slice.

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pavlova, Tiramisu, lemon drizzle cake, truffles, gingerbread cake, chocolate éclairs, cheesecake, cucumber sandwiches and asparagus rolls,

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There was much twirling of skirts, eating of cake, drinking of tea, welcoming new members, taking of photos and talk, talk, talk.

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The Pavlova set

At the end of the day I was FULL and satisfied from great company.

Thanks to everyone and I cannot wait till we all meet again.

11/52 On the Rebound again and meeting new peeps

Since my confidence was boosted and I had a self imposed deadline of a bloggers meet up I knocked out another re-make of my rebound dress. This time I used some green cotton with trees on it that I got from Arthur Toyes in Palmerston North. I had 2m again which I had the first time I made this dress…but my pattern pieces did not fit. Then I realised this fabric is a quilting cotton so it is only 112cm wide whereas my feathers voile was 140cm wide, so I did not have the same room to play in placement. I fitted the front and back of the top on then took the remaining fabric and folded it in half. This gave me the maximum length of the skirt which was just over an inch shorter than the original, but I was determined to make this dress and as it turns I like it this length.

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Re-re-bound dress in green

The only other change I made In the making of the version was that instead of the slight gather of the sleeves onto the cuffs I made a pleat instead.
But then I decided to challenge myself more. I was doing this dress the day before I met the Wellington Sewing Bloggers Network. I was a little scared as I have been following many of these women’s blogs and find their sewing and styles very inspiring so I felt like I had something to live up to. So to up the anti even more on the morning of the meet up I created an obi to go with the dress.

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I copied the shape from a cummerbund that I normally wear with this style of dress. The main fabric is from a brown cotton sheet (that I used as the pockets on my square skirt). I decided to use the fun red and green mushroom print cotton for the opposite side which I would wear with my original black version of this dress. The creation was straightforward but I forgot to take any photos. I traced out the cummerbund shape, added a stiff interfacing and sewed it all together then turned it in the right way. To ensure the interfacing didn’t crumple I topstitched on an argyll pattern through all the layers. On the brown side I used green thread and on the print side I used white thread.

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Brown Obi with green thread.

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Bright Print with white thread

I finished it all in time for the meet up. And even better the women I met were not scary at all! We had great yum cha, swapped patterns and fabric and showed off our works in progress. I will show off what I scored in the swap as I make them up and the wait shouldn’t be too long as one is already cut out.

Finally here is a full pic of my black rebound frock that inspired my last two makes.

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Black rebound dress with mushroom obi