This year I made just the one handmade Xmas gift, which was totally unplanned. Jon had ripped out a picture of this posh looking Drake's tie from a copy of Time Out, complete with £125 price tag.
|Drake's silk tie|
So three days before Christmas I hot footed it down to Goldhawk Road to hunt for some fabric. As the schools had broken up I had Charlie with me and I knew it would have to be a lightning quick visit (he's not keen on lingering in shops, unless they happen to sell watering cans). In the end I had to bribe him with lunch at Pizza Express, but it was well worth it because I found the perfect fabric pretty quickly. It was from a new, posh looking fabric shop called Misan West, which isn't the cheapest, but has lots of good quality suitings and silks. I bought a metre of Prince of Wales check lightweight wool suiting for £15 and the girl kindly added a bit extra in case I mucked up. I didn't muck up as it happens, and as the fabric is quite wide, I still have enough for a pencil skirt if I so wish, hoorah! For the lining I used some scraps of Venezia lining fabric left over from this skirt.
Sadly my tie making partner in crime - Joe - was busy doing a panto run (he's a fabulous Ugly Sister in Cinderella if you're interested!) and I must admit, I missed his expertise. I also realised he had all the tie patterns we'd worked on together so I had to improvise! I remembered that there was a tie in the Sew Over It Vintage book, so set about drafting one from the book myself. I made a couple of small changes: lengthened it by 10cms to match an existing tie and narrowed the bit that goes around the back of the neck so that the shirt collar would cover it. The drafting took one afternoon and I spent another afternoon actually sewing it. There are only a few bits of machine sewing involved, the lengthy parts of the process were spent at the ironing board and hand stitching the central seam.
Apart from the obvious difference i.e the posh Drake's tie is silk and the one I made is wool, I don't think they're that different to the untrained eye. I couldn't adjust the colour properly on my photos, so you'll have to take my word for it that my tie is much lighter in real life - the colours and checks really are very similar. And Jon's face on Christmas Day when he realised I'd made it was a picture!