We Sew Retro

Monday, 30 May 2011

Half Term Challenge

I desperately need to make the most of this week to break the back of all the sewing I have to do. I have 3 patterns I want complete by my holiday at the end of July. In addition, I have made my life more complicated by deciding to make my fancy dress outfit for a friend's birthday (as you do), so that's another 2 items to make by the start of July. I also have some school work to do as well, so no pressure.

Have to say though, I absolutely love a challenge: if someone says I can't do something, or something seems impossible, I am suddenly inspired to prove them wrong. Don't know whether this is passion or childishness, but it's served me well enough in life.

As part of adjusting my wardrobe, I have decided to join Creative Miss W in her mission to Make Do & Mend, so please check this out. It's creative, ethical, economical and fun to do.

Ready, steady.......GO!

Reliving the 80s...

Don't really think the pattern illustrations do this one justice, and certainly the left view is very 'Abigail's Party'. However, decided to do the shorter style with the tie, so I could wear it with leggings. Only change I made was to add some elastic onto the opposite side to the tie for a little more shape. I used a lightweight green crepe and the loose shape means it'll be lovely for summer and allow plenty of layering for winter.

Really could do with some green heels now. Maybe sequined!!

Friday, 27 May 2011

Cheers Ears!!

Just to say thank you to the people who have already commented on my blog even though it's only been going for a day!

This really does prove my point that crafters have much more of a community spirit than artists, which first became apparent at the Knit & Stitch Show in London. Crafters are always more than happy to chat about how they create their work and what materials they prefer to use.

God, we're cool...wink.

Flowery and Flouncy

I love summer dresses, but I hate looking like everyone else and the high street shops are churning out the same old stuff year on year (must be running out of ideas). As a teacher I also don't really fancy bumping into students wearing similar clothes haha. I opted for view 2 as I love the frill, and a vintage-looking, small, blue flower print cotton.
It goes perfectly with the vintage shoes I bought from Affleck's at the age of 17, and just the right amount of 'girly' for me. I found a great navy and gold belt in Miss Selfridge in the sale bin that emphasises the waist as I'm not really into ties of the same fabric - I like a contrast.

 I used a pattern stitch to attach the trim, but don't have a great selection on my machine.

I also added a lining in flowery white cotton as the blue print was scarily see-through! I think I did a pretty good job as I haven't done this before .

Navy Sweetheart Blouse

Made this last year and opted for view 2. It fit so perfectly that I am planning to make another top from this, maybe views 3 or 4? Here's what the finished blouse looks like...
I didn't have to make too many adjustments, which I thought I would with my petite frame. I used some crepe navy fabric I found with the pattern, added some vintage buttons I got from Affleck's Palace in Manchester and a ribbon tie.

I'm really chuffed with the finish but don't wear it nearly enough because I'm frightened of ruining it at work (even though it's the students using the paint, it nearly always finds it's way onto me!).

Thursday, 26 May 2011

Bit hard to tell, because of the brown vest I'm wearing, but it is a skirt, not a dress I've made here. Found an old scarf in a charity shop in Stroud (Stroud has the best charity and vintage shops), which I knew straight away I wanted to make into a skirt. I already had a skirt like this that I bought from Topshop, and love to bits. Scarf sat in my 'to-sew' bag for about 1 and a half years until I finally plucked up the motivation to sort it out.
I folded the scarf diagonally twice and cut the middle point to the measurement of my low waist divided by 4. This left a round (ish) hole in the centre where I attached a foldover waistband. I used an old ribbed knitted boob tube that was a sparkly brown as the waistband.
It fits great and doesn't ride up or down, and is perfect for my holidays as the fabric is so silky and cool. Will have to post pics when I'm in Italy. Think I'll wear with this vest and a vintage leaf belt I have somewhere in my wardrobe!

Greetings from the Grim North

Hello fellow bloggers/crafters/miscellaneous.
My name is Helen and I class myself as a crafter not an artist. The latter seems a wee bit poncy for a Lancashire lass like myself who like pints of real ale and a curry. I also do indulge in a variety of creative activities, which largely end up in various states of disarray and incompleteness. This here blog is my way of organising myself, so that I may finally complete my memory quilt, I may finally mend everything in my wardrobe, I may finally get round to processing the films from my toy cameras in the bottom of my drawers and I may finally do some art for myself.

I'm an art teacher and find by the end of the day I'm creatively frustrated and the best, most complete art I manage to do is generally exemplar material for my students. I may also post pics of some of these little random objets d'arts because they are quite fun and often inspire me to do my own things.

See you soon, hopefully...