McCalls 7193

Hi Everyone

It has been another of those weeks where I feel like I’ve been running around like a mad woman but I don’t seem to have achieved a lot.  Where does the time go?  With it being Easter I’ve had the week off from work and yet the more spare time I have to myself the more things randomly appear to fill it up.  Does anyone else find the same thing happens to them?

On the plus side I did eventually manage to complete a top from another new pattern, McCalls 7193 (new for me, not necessarily newly released).

This is a fairly photo heavy post.


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Greenstyle Laurel tunic in Liberty jersey

On Friday the sun put in a rare appearance, indeed I would go so far as to say it was almost warm.  Now most ‘normal’ people would think things like ‘lovely, I’ll go for a walk’ or ‘a perfect day for gardening.’ But not me, my first thought was ‘who can I drag outside to take photos of my new top?’  I eventually persuaded (ok bribed is more accurate) son no. 2 to take a few for me.  But darn, the sun was so bright that most of them were over exposed and I had to resort to getting the rest taken inside.  But no matter, needs must.

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My new top – a bit meh!

Hello Lovelies

I’ve spent the last couple of weeks working really hard on a new pattern, two muslins, lots of fitting adjustments, beautiful Liberty tana lawn and the final garment is meh.  Although it is perfectly wearable I’m just not happy with the finished result and it has really knocked my sewing mojo.  I’m sure I’m not the only one who feels disappointed when something that you’ve poured my heart and soul into just doesn’t turn out as well as you expected.  I am struggling to get the confidence back to try another new pattern as it takes so much work to get a good fit and yes, I have a number of T&T patterns now in my array but there is something about wanting to keep learning, improving my skills and of course playing with new shinies (patterns).  Can I ask how you deal with the disappointment when a garment you have worked so hard on doesn’t turn out how you envisaged?


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Two Renfrews

Hello Lovelies

I met a friend today for lunch at the fabulous, newly opened, café at Harlech Castle.  They proudly boast of having the best views in the whole of North Wales and I quite agree.  You can see all the way over to the Snowdonia mountain range and indeed Snowdon itself and closer to home there is the beautiful Harlech beach and the sea.

For lunch I enjoyed the most delicious Welsh Rarebit (cheese on toast) made with locally brewed Purple Moose beer on top of freshly baked sour dough bread.  Oh my goodness – it was so delicious I didn’t want to finish it.


I wore my new royal blue Renfrew top as, despite the blue skies, it was decidedly chilly on the walk down.  I am really starting to yearn for warmer weather and to be able to feel the sun on my skin.  At least the daffodils are now coming out into bloom so everything is starting to feel more cheery – it is amazing how much those bright yellow flowers can lift your mood.

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The Sarah Shirt

Hello Lovelies

As soon as I saw the new pattern release from By Hand London, the Sarah Shirt, I knew that it was destined for my shopping basket, nothing was going to stop me from buying it.   Sometimes I will have an internal debate with myself where that sensible part of my brain will shout ‘you don’t need another pattern’ but it never really makes enough of an impact to stop my fingers hovering very long over the ‘buy now’ button.


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My first garments as a returnee sewer

Hello Lovelies

I wasn’t really sure whether to blog about the following two blouses and the longer I’ve left it the more I’ve debated shelving the post and moving onto more recent makes.  The reason for my dilemma is that I made these blouses all the way back last summer so it feels like a bit of a cheat writing about them now, almost 7 months later.   Not only that, but the lilac blouse was the very first garment I made when I returned to sewing last year after a 30 year break.  Even though I had sewn a lot in the past, such a long break meant that I was pretty much a newbie, I could remember almost nothing about sewing or how to put a garment together.  Having said that, now I look at the photos (and the blouse) I’m pretty happy with how they turned out.


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Greenstyle Laurel Tunic In Powder Blue

Hello Lovelies

It is such a bright sunny day here in North Wales that I had to photograph the view from my back garden this morning.  We have had days on end of grey drizzle and so to see the sun again is a balm to the soul.  Having said it is sunny, don’t be fooled.  That is snow on the mountains and it is bitterly cold – as I found out when I came outside to get these photos taken in nothing more than a thin top!


I had many plans in place this weekend, I was going to spring clean the house, clear out all of the accumulated junk from cupboards and drawers and then treat the family to a home cooked Sunday lunch with all of the trimmings.  But, none of that has happened – oops.  I genuinely did have the best of intentions but yesterday morning I sat reading blog posts whilst drinking my coffee.  I came across the Greenstyle Laurel tunic on one such post and then started looking at photos of other versions and then next thing I knew I had purchased the pdf, downloaded and then printed it out.  Second coffee in hand and I’m cutting out the pieces and putting them together.  Before I knew it the day had gone, my cupboards were still messy but I was in possession of a brand new Laurel tunic – so in my book, not a bad day really.

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Washington Dress in Teal

Hello Lovelies

When the new Washington Dress pattern and photos were released on Monday I thought how gorgeous the three models (including Jenny) looked in their versions of the dress.  However, I’m in my early 50s and I just couldn’t picture me wearing anything like the designs being shown.  But I am a true Cashmerette fan and I adore the Appleton dress so I had to order a copy of the pattern even if, at the time, I wasn’t sure I would actually make it myself.

Luckily Elaine quickly posted a review and photos of some of her Washington Dress makes – a gorgeous lacy top version and a two pattern hacked tunics.

Elaine is in a similar age demographic to myself and once I had seen her versions I realised that I could make this dress work for me.  Hooray to all of the other bloggers out there who take the time and effort to show what they have made.  I find it really helps me to see the endless possibilities of any particular pattern


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Moneta dress in red

Hello Lovelies

Now why am I making a lightweight summer dress in the middle of November?  I haven’t lost the plot, I promise, there is method in my madness.  You see, in a few weeks I’m off on a cruise – something I’ve wanted to do for many years and finally I’ve taken the plunge (well I hope not literally seeing as I’m going to be on a large boat).  I’m going with a group of friends from Southampton (UK) to San Francisco, calling at Aruba, Barbados, The Azures and Mexico.   Now while it will only be just over freezing here in the UK in January, apparently it will be 29 degrees in Barbados.  Hence why I’m in the middle of sewing a collection of lovely, light, floaty summer dresses.


I did have visions of taking one of those huge trunks that you see in many old films and filling it to the brim with beautiful cocktail dresses, pretty tops and plenty of accessories but unfortunately, a vision was all it was ever going to be.  Because at the end of my holiday I’ll be flying home from the US and the airlines there don’t seem to be partial to a gal with a big trunk.  So one large suitcase it it going to be – which isn’t that much considering the cruise is 23 days and then I’m touring around the West Coast and then over to Washington for a further 10 days.   At least with all the knits I’m making I know they won’t take up too much room in the suitcase and hopefully they won’t need much in the way of ironing – after all, who wants to spend their holiday in the laundry room?

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