Friday, 24 February 2012

Swing Dress in Plaid

Finally! A sunny day and I can take some pics of the swing dress I made for Christmas. I used the same Sense and Sensibility 1940's Swing Dress pattern that I made my first swing dress from.
Having grappled with the instructions previously, I just about managed to get the bodice right without too much unpicking.

I'm not sure it's actually meant to be so 'blouson' but I like the way the bodice looks like it's a separate, I think the bodice pattern pieces are too large for my frame, although the skirt is a great fit.

Side zip

And boy I really matched up those checks didn't I - I unpicked the skirt panels umpteen times to get the checks to line up nicely at the front. 
But after all that angst guess what - I really wish I hadn't bothered. I wish I'd cut the skirt panels on the bias - I think the dress would look much nicer with the plaid on the diagonal! It might swing nicer too. Ce la vie. 

Not sure how my hula-hoop got in that pic.

 Well matched checks down the centre back

 Matches my dancing shoes too.

There is a lovely photo of this dress in action on Flickr, taken by photographer Lucie Robinson. I was dancing at the Royal festival Hall with Young John at Christmas - one of the nicest partners a girl could wish for and still up for lifts and drops.

Sunday, 12 February 2012

Quilted Phone Case Tutorial

It's a phone sleeping bag with a button and elastic loop fastening. 

Having just invested in a shiny new phone, I was equally excited at the prospect of making a cover for it. This is quick tutorial in keeping with the blog title ethic ... just Make It Up as you go along and put some good tunes on the turntable.

1. Fetch some wadding and two contrasting fabrics, enough to wrap around your phone once - there will only be one seam down the back. Essentially you will be constructing a quilted tube.

2. Cut the fabrics to size (centre a motif on the outside fabric if you like) and make a wadding sandwich. I free embroidered the cactus motif - this will become the front of the case.

3. Trim the outside fabric and wadding from the top edge of the quilted oblong sandwich leaving the backing fabric longer. This is then turned over and used to seal the top edge of the case. Hand stitch in place.

4. Fold the oblong in half right sides together - you're about to sew the back seam. But first grab a length of elastic (about 12cm) and stitch the loop firmly in place to the right of your intended seam line.

5. Fold the the oblong in half again and sew this back seam, making sure it's a snug fit for your phone.

6. Now you have a tube with the elastic loop in place, trim away the excess seam fabric on the loop side. Trim the other side of the seam enough to fold under and cover the loop. This will lie flat like a french seam inside the phone cover and look very neat. Hand sew this neatened seam in place. 

7. The last thing to do still with right sides together, is sew the bottom seam making sure the quilted motif and loop are centred. 

8. Now turn the case right side out. Voila!


Grab a coffee and a well earned treat whilst you congratulate yourself on following my improvised instructions thus far.

(Cup cake made by my daughter, mug decorated by her also)
8. Finally dig about in your button stash for a suitable button. I chose an 'almost sombrero' early plastic hat. Sew the button into place - I opted for the brown one.

You're done!

Thursday, 9 February 2012

Another Blog Win

Yes! I appear to have a winning streak!

These inspiring pencils came through the post today - my prize from Laura at She Draws. I came across Laura's blog when I was blog hopping looking for drawing inspiration and her blog is inspiring, do check it out.
One of a stack of 2012 promises to myself was to sign up to an art class - I want to get deep and dirty into actual sketchbook productivity - you know with real pencils, paint and glue and all? (Pinterest can only hold my interest for so long).
My first class is in a week or so and I'm looking forward to getting away from my desk and into an Artroom once again - and then out and about as the course promises field trips.
So I'll need to brush up on my camera skills too, which was another promise to myself for 2012 - to read the instruction manual for my camera. The whole manual. And understand it.

I've noticed quite a bit of blog buzz about Bloglovin recently, so in order to keep up to date with blogs I love and people who make me want make, I will be signing up.

Follow my blog with Bloglovin

That's another promise for 2012 - to immerse myself in the good stuff, but know when to shut the laptop and unhook the phone.
Has anyone started a self-help group for Pinterest yet? I hear a lot of crafters say they're hooked into the void of endless cupcake, kitten and fabric pinning.

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