Wednesday 9 August 2017

Simplicity sundress mark two

Way back in 2013 I made myself a strappy sundress using Simplicity 2176. During its short life it was a great success, it was made with lovely fabric and had a cool vintage vibe. Sadly it came a cropper in the washing machine when the blue dye from the main dress seeped into the white bodice band, leaving it an unsightly shade of dishwater grey. I know, I know, I probably could have saved it by unpicking the bodice band and adding a new one, but as we all know I'm totally lazy and that was never going to happen. The dress was donated to charity and I was left one sundress short in my summer wardrobe. This year, I finally got round to sewing a replacement.

I did a bit of tinkering with the bodice for this second version. The fit on the bust on my original dress was always quite tight, which made the waistline ride up as a consequence. This time I added a one inch full bust adjustment (FBA) and lengthened the bodice by 5/8". I also added a little extra to the side seams as I find very tight waists unbearable in hot weather. Overall I think the fit on the bodice is much better - it's not actually that noticeable but I feel the benefit!

Original on left, new version on right
The skirt is from New Look 6557, the same one I used for my Fireworks dress. I love this shape of skirt (a quarter circle) in the hot weather as it's cool and airy without being too big. The only other change I made was to substitute the lapped zip for an invisible one and attach the inside bodice band to the zip by machine for a neat finish. 

The duck egg blue fabric is a lovely lightweight floral lawn that I leapt on when Freya was de-stashing at a recent meet up. There was 2m to play with, which was just enough for this dress, thanks Freya! The colour is slightly brighter in real life, more like the photo below.

Spot the felt tip marks that still need to be washed out!
Because the fabric is very light I underlined the bodice sections and cut a separate skirt lining with white silk cotton. I probably should have added a full lining to the bodice instead of underlining it as this would have concealed the notched princess seams. I also added strips of interfacing either side of the invisible zip for extra support and stay tape across the top of the bodice to prevent it stretching.

Without really intending to I seem to have put quite a lot of effort into making this dress! The irony is that there hasn't been a truly hot day in London since I finished it, so it hasn't actually been worn yet. It does look good with a cardigan though! x

Sunday 6 August 2017

Great British Sewing Bee Live ticket winners!

Thank you so much to everybody who entered my giveaway to win tickets to The Great British Sewing Bee Live, I loved reading about everybody's first makes! The five winners who each win a pair of tickets to attend the show on either Thursday 21st or Friday 22nd September 2017 are:

Pendle Stitches
Maria Makes
Sharon Pickles
Frankie Baldwin

Congratulations ladies! Please email me your address details and I can arrange for the tickets to be sent out to you.

If you weren't one of the lucky winners, don't forget you can still claim £1.50 off advance adult ticket prices by quoting my discount code HMJ.

Looking forward to seeing some of you there! x

Tuesday 1 August 2017

The Great British Sewing Bee Live giveaway

If you're a fan of The Great British Sewing Bee then you'll no doubt be aware that The Great British Sewing Bee Live will be taking place from 21st to 24th September 2017 at Excel London. I loved the GBSB when it was on TV and am really looking forward to seeing how the concept translates to a live show format.

From the information I've had so far, it looks like there will be LOTS going on to attract dressmakers and sewing lovers of all abilities, including:

  • The GBSB Live Super Theatre featuring Patrick Grant and Esme Young and hosted by comedian, author, Grumpy Old Woman and red lipstick fan Jenny Eclair
  • Workshops and demonstrations by GBSB contestants and top sewing tutors
  • Dressmaking drop-in clinics
  • A make-at-home fashion catwalk
  • The Fashion and Textile Museum's Liberty in Fashion exhibition, specially curated for the event
  • 200+ dressmaking and sewing suppliers

If this sounds like a description of your perfect day, then you're in luck as I have five pairs of tickets to give away to UK readers. Please note that the tickets are for either Thursday 21st or Friday 22nd September only so you must be able to attend the show on those dates. 

To enter leave a comment on this post telling me what was the first thing you ever sewed. The closing date is midnight on Friday 4th August 2017 and winners will be chosen at random and announced on my blog.

If you're not one of the lucky winners then don't despair, I also have a discount code - HMJ - which gives readers £1.50 off advance adult tickets bought here.  Come along, it will be a laugh!


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