Sunday, 29 January 2012

Burda Style February 2012

Hellooooo there !

I have just got back from a ski trip (Flaine, France) which I will share with you tomorrow as I am totally knackered. In my absence Burda waved its wand and deposited its goodness in my front hall. Lets take a little looksie at my February picks shall we ? I must admit, for me - there were very few stunners this month, however I still feel it is worth the cover price on the whole. Burda Style for me is a little like a lucky dip - you pays your pennies and take your chances. Sometimes you are happy, sometimes sad !

                                       The source of all these lovely images can be found here

LOVE this skirt !
I hope it can be made without the full length zip. Not sure that my derrier is up to that amount of scrutiny !

Lovely lines - I think would make a smashing work dress in a wool crepe. LUSH.

Pretty shape - simple and I think would look fab on pear shapes.

A little SAD. F.M. I know - but I do love a Kimono.
Would be lush in an actual kimono silk.
Dream ON - anyone seen how expensive that sh1t is ?

LOVE IT ! Feels like its should have been in Kill Bill.
Uma Thurman would have looked HOT in this  number !
Not certain of exactly the same effect on my own body.

hmmmm hideous deck chair trousers anyone ?
Thought not.

May I present myself as one of the most hideous skirts ever seen.
The Fabric ! The Cut ! The Hideousness !

The source of all these lovely images can be found here

I need to point out at this stage that my Burda picks are just that - mine.

I probably don't have the same tastes as everyone else, and that is fine. If you happen to love the deck chair trousers, that totally rocks.
Don't EVER let my own views detract from your own taste, it is good to be different  :-)

In other news I was also excited to come home to a little giftage from the gorgeous Ginger Makes - it's a brown and black neck scarf and I cant tell you how much I LOVE it !  Thanks Ginger ! I will post a snap of it tomorrow if I can. I am still always amazed by the generosity of fellow bloggers.  If you have not already seen Gingers blog I suggest you go there right now and take a peek !   :-)

I feel I have been quite lucky this year in terms of receiving gorgeous stuff from other people and as such I will be giving something away this week (I do believe in Karma) - more on that in a few days. But it will be open to anyone, anywhere, and I hope that you will like it.

Also - because you have been so good - I have 2 (yes 2!)  'Jackie's cakes' to show ! Hot DAMN that lady can bake. I count my stars every Monday for her cupcake cheer. Almost makes a Monday bearable. Almost.

Toffee gorgeousness right there.
Yes I am pretty snazzy.
Unfortunately my life span was not so long.

Er, my creator apologised for me and said I was boring !
ahem ahem !
Have you SEEN the orange chocolate loveliness of my hot body ?
I rest my case. 
Right - off to bed for me.

I will be back tomorrow with some photos of Flaine, pictures of my new neck scarf and details of my give away. As it is a Monday there will also be a special cake post ! Can you wait for all that excitement ? MAN I don't think I can !

Hoo ha,

K xxx

Monday, 16 January 2012

Beautiful days

Hello there,

                                                                    Look at where we (are lucky enough to) live......

                                                                We call this place Bora Bora

                                                           Come, take a walk with me.....

                                                            To see what we could see......

                                                    You can pay for the views using the Oceans currency....

                                                          And I like to leave my mark (for a short while at least).

K xxx

Friday, 13 January 2012

The perfect skirt. YES !!

Hello people

errr I have only gone and made myself the perfect skirt. BY ACCIDENT.

How did that happen ?

Not only that but I have worn it twice already ! 2 days in  row and I absolutely LOVE IT !  I have had so many compliments   :-)  Its so nice to be able to say you made it yourself !

The skirt started as a dress, V8630 to be exact. But I didn't like the bodice. So out came the seam ripper and I made myself a skirt. The fabric is dark indigo denim which I had in my stash. Its hard to see in the pictures but its lovely, and was really easy to sew (other than when in layers !). I am definitely going to sew more with denim. I like the classic take on the casual denim skirt :-)

I didn't have a pattern for a waistband so I made a self drafted waistband using various tips provided by Chris and Jill, You-tube and the New Complete Guide to Sewing. 

I am so happy with the way it turned out. Only bad thing is because the skirt is denim, the waistband is extremely thick ! And it was a little too long. But I managed to sew it no real dramas. I sorta bodged the ends of the waistband, but for my first attempt I am super happy  :-)  

Next time I will remember my mistakes and can make it better.

Attaching self drafted waistband - very excited !

oops ! Bit too long and should have cut and finished the edges before I sewed it on - but lesson learnt for next time !

Oh Serger - how I love thee. King of the neat finish !

Gratuitous neatness shot including zip and waistband !
This is my neatest job so far I think... Seams and Zipper all very neat. I did sew the seams with the serger - but I strengthened them after with stitches from my Singer. It felt safer to do so ! I was frightened I would sit and the seam would rip. Could be V embarrassing !

I also got these labels - and I could not wait to sew it on the finished article.

Not exactly neatly sewn - but I was going for the 'rustic'look (ahem)
So - only proper that I document both outfits that I wore using my new skirt, right ?  (excuse the photo's - I really need a nice backdrop now I have my tripod !)

                                  I have shared on 'Sew and Tell Saturday' here - why don't you ?

Outfit 1

Wistful mustard look
Outfit 2 (which can I say I especially pleased with as it consists of 2, 2! handmade garments. I wore my Sencha and I totally LOVE this outfit ! Thats why I posted 2 pictures ! Double the love !

Ahoy there Sailor !
Loving my outfit ! feelin a little more than horrified  about the state of  that barnet tho !
So, I didn't get 2 items sewn last weekend (I still have NOT sewn the Jasmine - oops), but I DID get 2 outfits out of the one thing I DID sew. Jobs a good un.

I have got a 'Jackie Cake' to show, but I will save that for tomorrow, this post may self destruct if I write any more !

Hope you are all going to have a wonderful weekend ! I am going to try sew the Jasmine tomorrow, what are you up too ?

K xxx

Saturday, 7 January 2012

Happiness comes in small packages !

Happy Saturday ! YAY we made it !

Thanks so much Chris and Jill for the waistband tips - really appreciate you sharing with me. I feel confident enough to have a go at making one today.

The title of the post is because I bought some navy overlocking thread and it just arrived !  (I was not sure that it would arrive by today so doubly happy )

Which means its a GO for the indigo denim pencil skirt (I wanted to sew the seams using the overlocker for a change, rather than my singer - to see how they come out !

So, right after I have finished my Baileys hot chocolate (I know its early - but I swear its still Christmas so its fine) I am setting up my sewing space and gonna finish my Jasmine and my skirt.

In other news I bought some brown linen to make Burda style October 2011 Skirt 119b - its going to go a treat with my Jasmine. I am very excited just thinking about possible outfit combos in my mind !)  I am tres tres sad ! (but looking forward to posting an outfit pic just as soon as everything is finished!)

I hope you are all having a very Happy Saturday.

K xxx

Friday, 6 January 2012

Waistband help

Hello there !

I found the very first item I ever made the other day - it was a denim dress.

The bodice did not fit at all, but the skirt part fits like a dream and I have wanted a dark denim pencil skirt for some time. As such I decided to ditch the bodice and keep the skirt. So out came the trusty old seam ripper and I separated the 2 halves.

Now I have the problem that I want to add a waistband and a zipper to make the skirt a proper skirt. I don't want facings or bias binding - I want a real waistband. I cant trace a waistband from the original pattern as I have lost it - oops.

Does anyone know any good tutorials for creating a waistband or have any tips to draft one and attach it ? I would be eternally grateful !

Its not beyond the realm of imagination that I could have 2, yes 2! finished garments tomorrow (waistband permitting).

In other news it's only flipping Friday ! I hope you all have a good one,

K xxx

Tuesday, 3 January 2012

Using the Colette Sewing Book (and Jackie's Cakes !)

Hello people

Well, we are well and truly into 2012 now- can you believe how quickly time flies ?

I have just been having a gander at the new folks up on the Sew Weekly site  (you can too here), and although I will miss seeing DebiVeronica DarlingOona and co, I am excited to get to know and see what the new gang are going to be making  :-)  I always feel so inspired seeing other people's makes, and I love the format of the Sew Weekly where we can see LOTS of makes, every week, from different people.

Exciting !

I have been working on the Jasmine, and although I cant share the finished garment yet (as it's not finished ! I have cut and interfaced the fabric, sewed the darts, but am yet to stitch it together) I hope to 'show and tell' soon.

I thought I would share my first experience of using the Colette Sewing Book as an actual reference book. Whilst sewing ! Wooop wooop ! Which actually is very easy with this book due to the way its spiral bound !

I referenced page 84, to be exact, as I needed to make the waist larger on the pattern and so I traced the pattern and then slashed and pivoted as shown in the book.

I must admit I found making these changes much easier using a cardboard table. Actually I have wanted one of these tables after watching Fit for Real People -The Basics DVD, and have spent many a happy hour browsing for one, without any luck (thank god otherwise I would have spent money on one !). Then, this weekend I thought what a waste of money buying one when I can use a large old box. For FREE. And that people, is exactly what I did !

It was amazing ! I laid an old piece of thin decorating vinyl material over it, which thoughtfully of the fabric was gridded, and I used my new table (well actually a flat piece of thick card covered in vinyl to be exact)  to anchor the pattern while I made my adjustments.

Here are the changes that I made to the pattern in practice (and although I did change both the length and  width by 1.5 inches, I later reduced the extra width after making a muslin - it was too much ! Eventually I widened by 6/8 of an inch.

Slashing to make a 'hinge'

Slashing and using my new cardboard 'table' to anchor the pattern pieces, LOVE IT !

Birds eye view

The book advises to mark the seam line on the pattern, and slash at the place where the side seam and underarm seam meet - however - you cant do that on the Jasmine pattern because as you can see above, due to the shapes of the seams, a slash would not be possible at this point. As such I slashed it as near as I could to that point, whilst making sure I had some tissue either side of my slash.

Make sure you add width at the stitching line

Using a pin to drag tissue paper under the pattern - STILL loving the cardboard !

Tissue added - now to tape down and trim off the excess.

Hmm - now the dart needs fixing !

Easy peasy !!   :-) Just match up the ends to the point !
I made a muslin and it seemed to fit pretty well, but I made it a little too wide ! Doh !

I took a gamble and did not make another muslin, I reduced the width on the pattern and just cut the fabric as I am certain that it will fit. Especially because the fabric is drapey, and I plan to wear it tucked in, so a little extra around the midriff is not going to hurt. I draped the pieces over Dolly, and it looks good so far. I made a hybrid of the 2 versions, using the collar from version 1, and the sleeves from version 2. I am using a silk/cotton blend and cutting on the bias, both firsts for me, and I no likey cutting on the bias. I especially no likey trying to mark the darts etc.

Anyone got any good marking tips, especially when cutting on the bias ? Chalk just dragged and I didn't have much luck with tailor tacks.

Hopefully I can finish it at the weekend - it will be nice to start the year with a freshly made garment. I especially love thinking about what I can wear with a new garment to make an outfit !

I other news - I took a picture of a cake, but not just any cake. My colleague makes them every Monday - and they are so beautiful ! I think I may start a little feature called 'Jackies Cakes' so I can share her amazingness with the world !

And - to be fair - after this gigantic post if you made it this far - you deserve a treat !!

YUM !! And soooo pretty !

I hope 2012 has been kind to you so far. And that you have a lovely person in your life who makes you beautiful cakes !

K xxx

Sunday, 1 January 2012


I have been adjusting patterns and sewing for the last 48 hours.

I have nothing to show for it as yet. Gave up with the Peony - the bodice needs a lot of work (like ALOT) and I want a (relatively) quick fix !

I have changed from one Colette pattern to another and am now working on the Jasmine - I have made M.A.N.Y. changes to the pattern and have made up a muslin - which looks pretty good - except for I added too much at the seams and now need to shave a little off ( I used the technique in the Colette sewing handbook to slash and pivot to add extra at the waist - I also added 2 inches in length).

I am going to make these changes to my pattern tonight and cut and sew my fabric tomorrow.

I may well have something handmade to wear tomorrow. Fingers crossed ! Oh how I LOVE handmade clothing !

I hope that the New Year is treating you all well so far.

K xxx

Happy 2012 !! (resolutions and bicycles in Amsterdam)

Hello folks !

WOW 2012 !!  I hope you ALL have a fabulous 2012 !

Ok - so first post of 2012 - and I am already feeling excited for the coming year   :-)

So - I have some resolutions - I know I wasn't really going to make any but hey ho.

1 - To sew more (talking of which - made a muslin of the Peony bodice this evening - it is soooo bad - I need to start again tomorrow !)

2 - To try and keep in touch with family and friends more ( I am soooo bad at talking on the phone (I hate it) and really need to visit more )

3 - To try and be a little less sensitive - it does me no good. Really.

4 - To keep calm and carry on    ;-)    whatever the weather !

5 - To try and use up my ever growing fabric stash. I am now all about the stashbustin - you just wait and see.

What resolutions have you made ? Did you manage too see any through from last New Years ?

In other news - Mr P and I recently took a trip to Amsterdam to see the band 'Little Dragon' (who unfortunately cancelled just before we left the UK - we are going again in March - YAY). Although we DID see these bikes ! I seemed to have a strange fascination for them !

I am here for comparison purposes ! PAH !

I am shabby chic. Check out my distressed Duck Egg blue.

Thank you, I think I am pretty too !

Check me out ! I AM the snazziest of snazzer bikes !

Ahhh all these pretty bikes ! If I lived in Amsterdam I would have a prettied up bike !

Happy New Year People !

K xxx