Thursday 26 August 2021

Sun safe rash guard set

Other people: hey, weather forecast looks great, so let's book a last minute trip to the beach this weekend!

Me: the above, plus, must sew a rash guard set for my daughter to wear in the next 24 hours! 
rashguard shorts sunsafe going home sweater lightning leggings
I'm not someone who usually enjoys speed sewing at all, but this time I relished the challenge.

Monday 2 August 2021

Sew your own period underwear - a comprehensive introduction

This is the first of a series of posts that I will be sharing on sewing your own period underwear. It’s a bit of a whopper!

Warning: this post contains frank and personal discussions about periods. Please feel free to scroll away if this you are not a fan of TMI.

TMI intro – what has led me to make my own period underwear

Periods and I have had a difficult relationship, even though we’ve muddled through together for nearly two decades. I used to absolutely dread it, because I would be curled up into a ball and drugged up for a day or two each month due to deliberating cramps. It was always an embarrassing thing to explain to my managers and colleagues as well. Now, after baby, my cramps have eased (thanks Freya!) but I’ve swapped them for hormonal migraines. The joy!

I could never get on with tampons at all, so have been a pad user for the majority of the time. I started using a menstrual cup a few years ago, and after a dodgy start (think – late arrival at work due to lengthy retrieval of cup😅), I’ve grown really fond of it. It has transformed my sleep (no more waking up at 5am fearing a leak), my exercise (it gave met the confidence to show up at pole classes in my little pole shorts) and made me feel a lot better about sending less disposable products to landfill. I also enjoyed learning about my “flow” as well. However, on most days (when I'm out and about) and at night time, I still used a pad as back-up for fear of leakage (even though this hardly ever happens).

A few years ago, I became aware of Thinx, and as a result, period underwear as a new concept. However, the price tag and the international shipping from the US put me off. When ASOS UK started stocking them, I invested in a pair but wasn’t happy with the fit. However, a seed was sewn in my head from then that perhaps one day, I will make my own.

Fast forward a few years, I've gone all out and made 6 pairs in one go! This entire project was finally prompted by potty training my toddler, which made me look into making reusable training underwear for her, a project that would require similar materials. By now, not one pair of toddler training underwear has been made, but mummy has 6 pairs of period pants prototypes 😉 The truth is, once I got started, and my juices flowing (no pun intended), I couldn't stop (and could barely sleep). There were so many options and so many ideas! 

sew your own period underwear pants panties thinx

Sunday 4 July 2021

More activewear - Greenstyle Cavallo & Elevate (including Fit Capsule Part 2)

2018 was when I started dabbling in sewing activewear, and 2021 is the year it finally took off! Considering that I'm quite a bit less active right now (thanks multiple lockdowns!), it's quite surprising that I find myself rather addicted to making sporty outfits! 

greenstyle elevate crop cavallo leggings activewear supplex tactel
But it's not all plain sailing. These Greenstyle Cavallo leggings jammed my beloved coverstitch machine so much that I had to take it back to the dealer for repair/un-jamming. Worse still, I was mid reverse coverstitching inside the left trouser leg when the machine halted to a stop with a louse noise, and it was so jammed that I could not get the leg back out for the life of me! To my huge relief, both the machine and the fabric came back good as new. 

Sunday 25 April 2021

Matching Camo Joggers

Remember those leopard print matching joggers? These have been such wardrobe staples for lockdown life! They have served us so well, and may just be the most worn items for the last year or so! 

Although we still both fit into those pairs, I was itching to make some more in anticipation of any growth spurts (for Freya, I should add) :)
matching camo ellie mac kids joggers greenstyle brassie
What better fabric to use than this amazing camo print French Terry? It's perfect for hiding dirt and stains, and are (just about) trendy enough to wear outside the house as well.  

Wednesday 31 March 2021

#Frugalfrocks2021 French Navy Orla Dress

Ta-dah! It is reveal time for #Frugalfrocks2021, where you sew something using fabric from your stash and a free sewing pattern. 

Since I'm a big fan of freebies, and, let's face it, there's not a lot else to do other than sewing during lockdown, I had to participate. 
French Navy Orla Dress Nautical Seersucker
The French Navy Orla Dress has been on my list to sew for ages, and the challenge was the perfect excuse for me to finally have a go at it. This pattern is totally free to download (no subscription or checkout required), and even comes in A0 for copyshop printing! 

Can you tell that I added pockets? I can't seem to get my hands out of them! Speaking of which, let me share my favourite in-seam pocket tutorial with you - I just love the clean finish this provides! 
French Navy Orla Dress Nautical Seersucker
I had high hopes of this pattern, and it didn't disappoint. It's such a classic shape, and could look so different depending on the fabric you choose. I also liked the slightly high waistline, and the above-knee length. It's rare for me, but I decided not to make any adjustments to the pattern, and just cut a straight XS. Note though that I'm rather petite, so you might want to adjust accordingly if you are on the tall side. 

The other thing to mention is that the instructions are pretty basic - it contains narrative only, with no illustration or photos. I didn't actually use it, but I'm pretty familiar with sewing this type of dresses. For this reason, I probably wouldn't recommend this to a complete beginner, as tempting as a free dress pattern may be! 
French Navy Orla Dress Nautical Seersucker
I love how simple this dress is, and how it's turned out. The only slight issue that I have is that the neckline doesn't always lie flat. This was something that I was aware of, so I did pull out all the tricks during the construction process, but still didn't manage to get it to lie totally flat. 

The fabric is a lovely nautical seersucker, which I picked up from C&H Guildford a few years ago. I knew that I had to have it, but for all this time, did not know exactly what to make with it. I had 1.5 metres of it (which has quite a narrow width), and I managed to squeeze out this dress without too much trouble. Neither did I end up with too much in the way of scrap, mind you! 
French Navy Orla Dress Nautical Seersucker
And there you have it, my little nautical summer dress, just in time for the beautiful weather! 

Now I'm off to see all the reveals today! 

Tuesday 23 February 2021

Fit capsule 2021 Part 1 - Power Bra + Tempo leggings

Wow, I'm so pleased to be participating in the Greenstyle Fit Capsule challenge this year! I've been trying to make more activewear for some time, and this challenge was just what I needed to kick my arse into gear, whilst thinking about building that capsule wardrobe.  

greenstyle power sports bra psb tempo tights leggings fit capsule

Here is my first post on the Fit Capsule, showing off my new pair of Tempo tights, with a matching Power Sports BraI had bought this floral jungle fabric from Funki Fabrics, and matched it with this navy technical legging fabric from Frumble

Saturday 6 February 2021

Getting active - Super G + Jalie 3247

Do you know how long I've been planning on sewing a set like this? 

Since June 2019, to be precise. Too long, in other words! I had sewn up the sports bra with some pole shorts then, and carefully put away the remnant of this amazing marl activewear fabric back in my stash, until the day I was ready to make matching leggings. 
Sure,  thought about those leggings in between other projects, but couldn't quite settle on the exact project. I really love the marl fabric, for its softness, sketchiness and recovery, but was worried that using only this fabric for an entire pair of leggings would be "too much". It's pretty jazzy in its own right, and make your eyes struggle to focus sometimes. 
Finally, last autumn, Tia Knight emailed about the new medium weight (280gsm) supplex that it started stocking (in addition to its lightweight supplex), and I jumped on the opportunity to buy some as soon as the newletter landed in my inbox. The navy and this marl worked beautifully together. 
After a lot of deliberation, I went with the Super G tights by Greenstyle Creations. As someone that enjoys yoga and aerial workouts (pole, sling etc), that huge "Lulu" gusset which allows for all sorts of ranges of motion sold the pattern to me. 

Monday 11 January 2021

Matching cross-back aprons

Twinning with Freya is always awesome. 

I've been needing a new apron for some time, and given Freya's recent addiction to "baking", I saw an opportunity to be matchy matchy on a regular basis. 

hey june handmade allspice apron matching cross-back japanese
I was so happy to get my hands on this beautiful Art Gallery Fabrics chambray, which was just what I had in mind for this project! I used the brand spanking new FREE AllSpice apron pattern by Hey June Handmade for my version, and you can read all about how I've crafted Freya's, and how I added those oh-so-important grow-with-me options, on the Minerva website here!

Thursday 7 January 2021

New workout/casual set - merino low back top and Brassie joggers

Do you do new year resolutions? Personally, I don't (mainly because I know I won't stick with it!), but I do believe in making new workout clothes for the new year. Anything for a bit of motivation, am I right? 

I've been trying my hand at sewing activewear for some time. I may not have featured a lot on my blog yet, but you may have seen a few projects on my instagram grid. So far, they've mainly been pole fitness-related, even including a couple of sets for a photoshoot, so it is definitely time to sew something sporty with more coverage! 

Introducing my new set for yoga, pole fitness warm-up/cool down, stretching and just generally lounging about. At a push, I'd be pretty pleased to wear these as PJs, too, I'm sure. 
low back merino p4p tulip tee greenstyle brassie joggers
It comprises a super colourful pair of Brassie Joggers by Greenstyle Creations (one of the best places to go for activewear patterns, in my humble opinion), teamed with a low back top that I eked out of a rather tiny remnant of merino jersey which I picked up from the Fabric Store in Melbourne a few years ago (cos, you know, what else would you buy from a trip to Oz?). 

Wednesday 6 January 2021

The Present Dress

"Why has Mummy turned into a present?" Exclaimed my 2 year-old daughter as I emerged with my newly sewn Ruska Knot Dress.
named clothing ruska knot dress
I'm not sure which way to take this really. Perhaps I should be pleased that the knot, which is the great design feature of this dress, was exactly that, a great feature, and one that's instantly noticeable. Or could this be that Freya had too many presents to open at Christmas, so much so that everything looks like a present now?

Anyway, Happy New Year, my dear readers. I do hope that 2021 turns out to be a better year for everyone! 

I'm starting 2021 with my very own Ruska Knot dress, from the Breaking Pattern book by Named Clothing. Read how I downloaded the pattern for free (hint, check out Love Sewing Magazine website), and how I altered and constructed it without instructions on Minerva :)
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