My first ever Simple Sew blog

I was delighted to be asked to review the Tara Dress from Simple Sew.

The Tara Dress is the first pattern I’ve reviewed for Simple Sew, and I couldn’t wait to get started.


The dress is supposed to have a button back closure, but I decided to add in a few changes due to being 26 weeks pregnant at the time of writing this and wanting my outfit to be as comfortable as possible.


What changes did I make?

I’m a big fan of Simple Sew patterns as they tend to fit me well and generally don’t have loads of pattern pieces to cut out. I don’t know about you, but I often enjoy making quick speedy projects, rather than more detailed and involved makes.


The Tara Dress is supposed to be made in a woven fabric, so the first change I made was to make it in a jersey fabric instead. I used a light-weight scuba fabric I bought from Leicester market a while ago. Unfortunately, the fabric is not great quality and has lost a bit of its colour in the wash, but I think it still works well for this.

Buttons are supposed to be added to the back of the dress, but due to using a stretch fabric I decided to miss out this step and instead sew up the back-seam. This means I just slip the dress on over my head.


In order to miss out the ‘button steps’ in the pattern I cut the pattern on the line marked for the centre back-seam, rather than adding on the extra width across the back to form the button closure.

I then added 1.5cm to the centre back-seam before I cut my fabric, this was for my seam allowance.

How was the sizing?

I normally make a size 10 in all Simple Sew Patterns, but I was worried the back skirt pieces were going to be to ‘straight’ for me as I prefer an A Line design, so on this occasion I graded out to a size 12 for the skirt.


However, I didn’t need to worry. I ended up taking the dress in by a couple of inches on the back-seam in the end to achieve a more fitted look.

I’d definitely recommend trying on your dress during the making process, before you finish your inside seams with a zig zag stitch or an overlocker. This way you will have the chance to reduce the size of your dress like me if you wanted to.

The pattern 

The pattern includes the usual easy to understand instructions you would expect in a Simple Sew pattern, but of course I think it would probably be best if you had made a few garments before tackling this project. This is particularly if you wanted to make similar changes to me, just so you have a bit of extra confidence more than anything else.

Would I recommend this project/fabric?

Yes, I am really pleased with my new dress. I’d recommend both making this in a light-weight scuba fabric and trying the Tara Dress pattern; both are wonderful to sew and wear.

Keep up to date with my latest makes

I hope you enjoyed reading this review.

If you would like to keep up to date with my latest sewing projects subscribe to my YouTube channel or follow me on Instagram  .

Until next time, happy sewing.

Becky x



My May makes 2020 – part one

Today’s video is all about my latest May sewing projects.


Styling Funky Pieces (12)

Watch my video here.

This is part one of a two part series. Mentioned in the video: New skirt hack is a mixture of these patterns:

https://gatherkits.com/shop/product/t… (with a gathered skirt) https://www.sewaholicpatterns.com/hol… Nora cardigan hack: https://www.tillyandthebuttons.com/20…

Hope you enjoy watching.

Don’t forget to subscribe to see my latest content.

Until next time, happy sewing.

Becky x


Sewing tutorial: easy no pattern Face mask

I decided I wanted to make a face mask for me and my husband to use when we go out and about so started to look around for an easy version to make.

 I think this is the best one I have found so wanted to share it with you.
Watch my video here. 

This is based on a Crafty Daily video linked below, but I have changed it a bit to make it both use up-cycled fabric and be more comfortable to wear.

Hope you find this useful.

Don’t forget to subscribe to my channel to keep up to date with my latest content.

Until next time, happy sewing.
Styling Funky Pieces (13)

Becky x



My button up skirt review

This month I was delighted to be asked to review the new button up skirt pattern, from Crafty Sew and So.

The pattern 

The skirt pattern is the latest edition to the Crafty Sew and So pattern collection, under the brand My Handmade Wardrobe Pattern.

It will be available to buy from 1 May 2020, if you want to give it a try too.

It is a panelled skirt, made up of eight separate sections and a waistband.


I really enjoyed making this project as although I make quite a few skirts and dresses, this was a new challenge due to the way the skirt is constructed.

The pattern allows you to be creative with top stitching if you want to, sewing down each of the panels on the right side of the fabric for decorative purposes.

I made my skirt in a grey stretch denim fabric. It is a light to medium weight fabric as I wanted to be able to wear my skirt in both summer and winter. I used regular grey cotton to sew up my skirt, both on the inside and on the outside to do my top stitching.

The pattern gives you the option to add belt loops and patch pockets if you want to. I decided to leave these out of my design, as I very rarely wear belts with skirts and I’m not a huge fan of patch pockets on garments I make.


I’d say this project is suitable for intermediate level sewers who have made a few items before and feel confident in their dressmaking ability. The reason for this is the number of pattern pieces, understanding the pattern markings and being able to adjust the pattern to skirt your exact shape due to the panelled design.

The skirt has a 1970s feel about it, and would be suitable to sew up in denim, corduroy or other heavier weight cotton fabrics.

I decided to use some bright red buttons to decorate / finish my skirt. I love adding a pop of colour to the clothes I make, and I wear a lot of red so I thought the red buttons would work well with one of my red spotty t-shirts or a cropped red cardigan.


The sizes for this pattern are very clearly described in the pattern instruction booklet. I made a size three at the waist, grading out to a size four at the hip. However, I overestimated my sizing and ended up taking a lot of fabric out of the panels around the waist area before I finished my inside seams with the overlocker.

I would recommend trying on your skirt during the sewing process so you can check the final fit before you do any overlocking or top stitching on the outside of the skirt.

The end garment is lovely and flared. Although I’m spending a lot of time at home at the moment due to the lockdown, I have enjoyed wearing my new skirt around the house all day. It is comfortable and practical, so I think I will get loads of wear out of it for years to come.


I followed the instructions – they are very detailed and hold your hand through each step of the sewing process. The only change I made was to the sizing, making my skirt smaller, as noted above.

Would I recommend this project?

Yes, I am really pleased with my new skirt. I would certainly recommend it to anyone who fancies making a skirt, that has fun panelled details.

You could play around with the fabric you make this project in, the buttons you use, the top stitching thread and choose to include pockets or not.

Keep up to date with my latest makes

I hope you enjoyed reading this review. This is also included in my latest You Tube video (link below to my channel).

If you would like to keep up to date with my latest sewing projects subscribe to my YouTube channel https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCLebXtybVIzPAhp0ys2RCeQ?view_as=subscriber or follow me on Instagram https://www.instagram.com/notes_from_the_sewing_room/?hl=en .

Until next time, happy sewing.

Becky x


Latest video: April makes part two

Hi everyone. I’ve uploaded my latest video to You Tube (link below) if you would like to watch. This week I’m chatting about what I made in April.

My video includes two Sew Over It Betty Dresses, a new button down skirt pattern I reviewed for Crafty Sew and So and a few other projects that have kept me busy over the last few weeks.

Hope you enjoy watching. To keep up to do with my latest You Tube content, don’t forget to subscribe to my channel 🙂 .

Until next time, happy sewing.

Becky x


My new Sew Over It Betty Dress

I was delighted to be asked to review a beautiful bright red viscose fabric from Material Girl Laura.

The fabric is really pretty and has a beautiful drape to it, so it was difficult to decide what to make with it.

What did I make?

Betty Dress by Sew Over It

I’m a big fan of Sew Over It patterns as they tend to fit me well and the vintage inspired style is normally right up my street in terms of design.

I used the viscose to sew myself a new dress that will be perfect to wear from Spring into the Summer months ahead.

The Sew Over Betty Dress pattern is one I have made a few times before, but this time my project has a few minor changes.

I used the Betty Dress bodice but reduced the seam allowance from 1.5cm to 1cm to make my dress have a slightly looser feel which works perfectly with the drapey fabric.

The bodice was then sewed on to a simple gathered skirt, which I decided would finish just below my knees.

I can’t wait to start wearing my new dress, the colour is really eye-catching – I love it.

The pattern 

Gathered skirt 

The pattern includes the usual easy to understand instructions you would expect in a Sew Over It pattern, but of course I only followed this guidance to sew my bodice and then cut three rectangular pieces of fabric to form my skirt (one for the front cut on the fold, and two for the back).

I downloaded the Sew Over It Betty Dress pattern for free on International Women’s Day last year, and I can honestly say it is now one of my favourite patterns I own.

The pattern is supposed to have a circle skirt, but you could also try a pleated skirt if you were to either draft your own pattern pieces or join the bodice on to another pattern you already have in your stash. I may try this next time I make this pattern!

Back of dress


I decided to grade between two sizes to make my dress. I cut the size 8 bodice up the bust area and then graded down to a size 10 towards the hip.

The sizing for the Sew Over It pattern is clearly marked on the pattern pack. I recommend looking at the finished garment measurements so you can make a decision what size you will make based on how much ease is included.

The fabric I used

The viscose has a pretty flower design on it – the flowers are white, peach and black.

The fabric would be perfect to use for lots of different projects including tops, dresses, floaty trousers or pyjamas.

The viscose is 140cm wide, so this helps to reduce the amount of fabric needed for projects that are fabric hungry.

Would I recommend this project/fabric?

Yes, I am really pleased with my new dress. I’d recommend both the red viscose fabric and trying the Betty Dress pattern; both are wonderful to sew and wear.

Keep up to date with my latest makes

I hope you enjoyed reading this review.

If you would like to keep up to date with my latest sewing projects subscribe to my YouTube channel or follow me on Instagram .

Until next time, happy sewing.




Feb and March makes 2020

This week’s video is all about what I have made in Feb and March this year. I have made a few different projects including a top, skirt and two bags.


I hope you enjoy watching my latest YouTube video.

Let me know what you are making this week, I love to hear about your projects too.

Don’t forget to subscribe to keep up to date with my latest videos.

Until next time, happy sewing. Becky x


Sew Fearless challenge: My latest March make

My latest video is all about a project I decided to make as part of the Sew Fearless online sewing challenge.

I made the Sew Over It Dahlia Coat, using wool from Birmingham Rag Market and a silky lining from ebay.

Link to pattern: https://sewoverit.co.uk/product/dahli…

There are a number of vloggers taking part in this challenge throughout March. I have noted their details below.

Check out their channels to see a range of inspirational projects.

Monday, March 09: Slap happy sewing

Saturday, March 14: Megan Sullivan https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCwNg…

Sunday, March 15: Alex judges Sews https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCTsv…

Monday March 16 : Claire Who Makes Things https://www.youtube.com/user/TheTidyg…

Wednesday, March 18: Maeve Fanningg https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC8jW…

Sunday, March 22: Loopy mable’s closet https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCImN…

Friday, March 27: The specky seamstress https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCga-…

Saturday, March 28: Akram’s Ideas https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCx6n…

I hope you enjoy learning about my coat. I really loved making this project, it’s sometimes good to have to concentrate on a bigger sewing make!

Thanks for watching. Don’t forget to subscribe to my You Tube channel to see my latest content. Until next time happy sewing. Becky x


My latest makes: January 2020

Hope you’ve had a good week. I wanted to share my latest sewing projects with you that I’ve put together over the last few weeks.

My video this week is all about what I made in January this year, including a new cosy jumper and a smart dress for a family party.

I made the Grainline Linden jumper in a lovely jersey from Crafty Sew and So in Leicester.

Here is a link to the pattern: https://grainlinestudio.com/products/…

I also made a new spotty dress in a scuba fabric #gifted to me by Minerva.

I used the Simple Sew Grace Dress to make this: https://www.simplesewpatterns.com/pro… I found the scuba worked really well for my dress as it looks smart and is comfortable to wear too.

I hope you enjoy watching my video. If you are interested in seeing my latest content, click the subscribe button.

I’d love to hear what you are making, feel free to leave me a comment below.

Thank you for watching.

Becky x


My Tilly and the Buttons coat review

I’m so excited to share my latest project with you. It has been a few weeks in the making, but here is my Eden Coat.

This month I was delighted to be asked to review a beautiful brown wool fabric from The Fabric Guys.


This is a heavy brown wool fabric so will work well for jacket or coat projects.

What did I make?


I’m a big fan of Tilly and the Buttons sewing patterns, so after having the opportunity to try on a sample of the Eden Coat at a craft fair I visited last summer, I knew I had to make a version of the coat for myself.

The pattern includes two different coat options for you to make. You could make a practical raincoat or a warm and snuggley duffle coat like me.

The Eden Coat has a hood (which is a lovely size, not too small like in some shop bought coats), raglan sleeves, patch pockets and a helpful hanging loop on the inside to allow you to put your coat on a stand in style!

I decided to make the longer length coat and include toggle fastenings, as well as a metal teeth zipper. The zip is optional, but I wanted to ensure my coat was as warm as it could be, and that the breeze could not blow inside my jacket in the cold winter months.

The pattern 

The pattern includes the usual easy to understand instructions you would expect in a Tilly and the Buttons pattern. The pattern is for improvers, rather than those new to sewing. I think this is correct as although the instructions include good clear pictures and hold your hand through each stage of the construction process, there are a few complicated steps such as inserting the zip and bagging out the coat so none of the seams are on display. If you are looking to make your first coat, I’d advise taking your time with these steps, and maybe asking a fellow sewer for advice if you get stuck.


The pattern is available as a pdf to download at home, or a printed version. I bought the printed version as I wanted to add this to my growing Tilly and the Buttons collection.


I decided to grade between two sizes to make my jacket. I cut a Tilly and the Buttons size four at the top, grading out to a size five at the bottom. I decided to cut a bigger size than normal for a couple of reasons, one being I decided to quilt my lining fabric to make it extra warm and two because I wanted to have enough room to fit my thicker jumpers underneath for winter.


I followed the instructions, apart from adding in a few minor alterations. To make my coat winter-proof I purchased a quilting wadding from a local shop and tacked this to my main bodice lining. I then drew diamond shapes across my lining in chalk, before using a regular straight stitch to hold the two materials together.


I used an anti-static lining fabric for the inside of my coat sleeves. I then added an interlining (between the anti-static fabric and the wool) to keep my arms extra warm. I used a plain cotton fabric for this which was actually an old bed sheet.

If you decide to add toggles on to your jacket, I found it worked well to temporarily hold my toggles in place using sticky tape and pins. My toggles had pre-punched holes which made it easier to hand sew them on to my coat.

The fabric I used

The wool fabric I was sent from The Fabric Guys is perfect for any coat project. There are a few different colours available on the website, but I think the brown I choose works really well with my animal print lining.

Would I recommend this project?

Yes, I am really pleased with my new jacket. I wore it out to the shops for the first time yesterday and felt like I wanted to tell everyone I made my own coat.

It took me quite a few weeks to make my project including a number of evenings and an hour grabbed here and there on the weekends, but it has definitely been worth it.

I’m sure I will be wearing my coat for years to come, so I’d certainly encourage others hoping to try this pattern to take their time too.

Keep up to date with my latest makes

I hope you enjoyed reading this review. I have also recorded a couple of videos about my experience of making the Tilly and the Buttons Eden Coat. These can be found on my YouTube channel if you fancy a watch (link below).

If you would like to keep up to date with my latest sewing projects subscribe to my YouTube channel https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCLebXtybVIzPAhp0ys2RCeQ?view_as=subscriber or follow me on Instagram https://www.instagram.com/notes_from_the_sewing_room/?hl=en .

Until next time, happy sewing.





My December makes and Tilly and the Buttons Eden Coat update

Hope you had a good Christmas. I’ve been really busy this month so it has been a few weeks since I uploaded a new video.

Today’s vlog is all about what I have made over the past few weeks including a jumper for my husband (look out for his cameo appearance!!) , a festive table cloth, Christmas napkins, bunting to decorate the house and my progress so far on my Tilly and the Buttons Eden Coat.

I’m really enjoying my coat project, I’m using a brown wool on the outside #gifted to me by The Fabric Guys online as well as a cotton sateen lining I bought from Material Girl Laura. The jumper I made was sewed up using a Burda pattern number 6718. I hope you enjoy today’s video.

Don’t forget to subscribe to my channel to see my latest content.

Until next time, happy sewing. Becky x


My December sewing plans

This week’s video is all about what I’m planning to sew in December including a coat project, a table cloth and a new top.

It’s such a busy time of year, so I’m hoping to squeeze in a few crafting evenings during the month.

I was gifted two of the fabrics in this video from Minerva and the Fabric Guys online in exchange for an honest review.

I hope you enjoy watching. Don’t forget to like my video and subscribe to see my latest content.

Until next time, happy sewing x


Sewing hack project: Sew Over It Tulip skirt

I teamed up with Adele from Button and Pip this month to hack one of our favourite sewing patterns, the Sew Over It Tulip Skirt.

This time we both hacked the Sew Over It Tulip skirt into two different projects as part of a challenge we call #thehackoff.

You can see my dress here on my channel and learn more about Adele’s version on her vlog.

I really enjoyed the project. I joined a Butterick pattern free in Love Sewing Magazine a while ago to the Tulip skirt and it worked well.

Hope you enjoy my latest video.

Until next time, happy sewing x


My November sewing projects so far

Thanks for visiting my channel today. I’m excited to share what I’ve been working on so far this month.

This week I’m chatting about making a new dog bed, a couple of cushions for the house and my new plans for #thehackoff with Adele from Button and Pip (on Instagram and YouTube).

I’d love to hear what you are making so feel free to leave me a message here.

I’m pleased to be back on my sewing machine after a couple of weeks off, and I am looking forward to my new project plans.

Don’t forget to subscribe to my channel to keep up to date with all of my latest content.

Until next time, happy sewing. Becky x


My first ever Fabric Guys review

I’m excited to have been asked to write my first ever blog for The Fabric Guys online.

The Fabric Guys gifted some beautiful cotton lawn fabric to review, in return for an honest blog post.

My new floral dress made in fabric gifted to me from The Fabric Guys

What did I make?

As soon as my fabric arrived, I decided it would be perfect for a dress project. Initially I considered making the Sew Over It Betty Dress, but eventually settled on the Butterick B6556 pattern I got free in Love Sewing magazine over the summer.

This is the second version of this dress I have made. I made the first version in a cotton sateen for Goodwood Vintage Revival Festival in September and couldn’t wait to try it again.

This sewing pattern has a square neckline 

The pattern includes a fitted bodice that you can make with or without sleeves, a square neckline and a full pleated skirt.

The bodice is fully lined in the same cotton lawn fabric and I lined the skirt in a black anti-static material I had in my fabric stash.

I made the dress with sleeves but you have a choice of two designs in the pattern pack. 

I found the sizing on the pattern a little confusing as I couldn’t find the finished garment measurements. The first version I made was a little on the loose side, so for this version I sized down to a UK size 10 and the fit is much better.

I think this pattern is really versatile and could be made in many different fabrics. I cannot wait to wear my new dress to a party I’m going to soon.

The fabric

I would describe this fabric as a light-weight cotton lawn fabric.

As I’m planning to wear my dress through the winter months, I decided to line my dress, but the fabric could work well for many unlined projects too. Albeit if you are making a dress or skirt ad are not adding a lining you may want to consider wearing a slip underneath as the material is slightly see-through in the light.

I found that the fabric washed and ironed well, plus the colour didn’t run which is always a bonus.

The fabric is 58 inches wide. I used just over two and a half metres to make my project, which is good for a smart dress like this. I don’t like projects that are too fabric hungry as it can be expensive!

Would I recommend it?

Yes, this is a great quality cotton lawn fabric and has a really pretty design. I think it would be suitable for lots of projects including tops, smart shirts, dresses or even pyjamas.

I really enjoyed working with this fabric and would consider buying some more in a different colour if it was available.

Keep up to date with my projects

You can see my latest makes on my new You Tube channel or by visiting my Instagram  channel.   

Hope you enjoyed my review.

Until next time, happy sewing.




My September sewing projects: part two

This week’s YouTube video is all about the dress I made to go to Goodwood Vintage Revival Festival. I used a beautiful cotton sateen from Material Girl Laura online for my blue and white version.

The pattern I used was free in Love Sewing Magazine – It is the Butterick B6556. I was inspired to make this pattern after reading a great review in the magazine, as well as seeing lots of beautiful versions of this pattern popping up on Instagram.

My second version is made in fabric gifted to me from The Fabric Guys online and is made out of a cotton lawn. I’m looking forward to wearing this for a party I’m going to soon.

I really enjoyed making these projects and would encourage you to try this pattern if you are looking for a new dress project.

Don’t forget to like my video and subscribe to my channel to keep up to date with my latest content.

Until next time, happy sewing. x


My September makes: part one

This week’s video is all about what I’ve been sewing in September. It has been a few weeks since I made a video as I’ve had a really busy few weeks, but I have been looking forward to showing you some of my latest projects.

I’ve made a Sew Over It Betty Dress in cotton lawn from Material Girl Laura, a new Tilly and the Buttons Agnes top and a Simple Sew Grace skirt. 

I wore my Betty Dress to a family wedding. I’m sure I will make lots more of these dresses as it is such a lovely pattern for many different occasions.

Hope you enjoy this video, I’d love to hear what you are making at the moment – feel free to leave me a comment if you want to.

Don’t forget to like my video and subscribe to see my latest content. Until next time, happy sewing. Becky x


My September sewing plans

This week’s video is all about what I am planning to make in September. I have lots of sewing plans this month as I am going to a few different events, and just love wearing a handmade outfit!

I’m planning to make a Sew Over It Betty Dress, an Agnes top and try out a Butterick pattern I got free in Love Sewing Magazine for the first time.

The fabric included in this video is from Material Girl Laura, Sew Over It and Guthrie and Ghani.

Hope you enjoy watching.

Until next time, happy sewing.

Becky x


My first ever Sew Over It Betty Dress

I’ve wanted to make the Sew Over It Betty Dress for ages, so taking part in the British Heart Foundation’s Big Stitch competition was the perfect opportunity.

I made my dress out of a duvet I bought from my local charity shop. I’ve never considered how much fabric there is in one double duvet cover, but I managed to squeeze my full dress out of only one side!

I loved making this project and can’t wait to try this pattern again soon.

You can learn more about my project in the video blow I recorded for my vlog:

Until next time, happy sewing x


My Stevie hack for #TheHackOff

This week’s video is all about how I have hacked the Tilly and the Buttons Stevie pattern in to both a different type of top and a gathered skirt.

#TheHackOff is a project I join up with Adele from Button and Pip (visit her on You Tube and Instagram) every couple of months to create fun alternative design using some of our favourite patterns we already have in our collection.

I loved creating my project for #TheHackOff this time, so I hope you enjoy watching this video.

I got my top fabric from Coles Sewing Centre in Nottingham and the skirt fabric from Guthrie and Ghani.

Don’t forget to subscribe to my channel to keep up to date with all of my latest content.

Until next time, happy sewing.

Becky x


My July sewing projects

Today’s You Tube video is just a short update on the projects I was sewing during July 2019, ahead of my holiday to Wales.

I made a gathered skirt based on the Gather Patterns Mortmain Dress, a Sew Over It Molly Top and a Tilly and the Buttons Agnes Top.

Hope you enjoy watching. Don’t forget to subscribe to my channel to keep up to date with all of my latest content.

Until next time, happy sewing. Becky x


Sew Over It: Alex Shirt Dress

My latest Minerva Crafts review is all about the Alex Shirt dress from the Sew Over It City Break book. 

I was sent three metres of viscose fabric to review and thought it would work well for a dress that I could wear everyday (rather than for a special occasion).

My Alex Shirt dress 

I purchased this e-book a while ago and I am slowly trying to make my way through each of the sewing patterns. I previously made the Molly Top and Mia Jeans and hope to try out the other projects soon.

The e-book is suitable for sewers of all levels as there are a range of things to make.

I’ve wanted to make a shirt dress for ages but I kept putting this off due to the time involved. However, I really want to try out new types of projects this year and would like more practice sewing collars so thought the Alex Shirt Dress would work well.

I added a tie belt to my dress 

You can read my full review on the Minerva Crafts blog today.


New vlog: fabric haul and project plans

My latest You Tube video is all about my sewing project plans for the next few weeks.

I’m hoping to make a range of things I can wear lots over the summer including a Sew Over It Alex Shirt Dress, a pair of Ultimate Trousers and a new light-weight top.

Hope you enjoy watching my vlog. If you would like to see all of my latest video content don’t forget to subscribe to my channel 🙂


New vlog: Sew Many Questions

My latest vlog is all about why I love to sew and why I would encourage others to craft in their spare time.

My video is based around a hashtag that has been set up for people to learn more about sewing vloggers – including me 🙂 .

The hashtag was created by Jay Jay at the Camden Stitch and Laura at the Specky Seamstress .

I chose all of the questions myself so I hope you find this interesting and can find out more about why I love to create my own clothes as well as bits and pieces for the house.

I hope you enjoy my video. Don’t forget to subscribe to my channel if you want to see all of my latest content.

You can view my You Tube video here:


You can also find me on Instagram here . 

Happy crafting x


New vlog: sewing with scrap fabric

My latest vlog is all about making the most of fabric scraps and turning them into lovely projects you can be proud of.

I can never part with my fabric scraps as I hate the idea of throwing them away so coming up with a range of stash-busting projects seemed like a good idea.

This video includes five sewing project ideas, but I hope to share a few more potential projects in a future video or two.

It’s amazing to be able to use scrap fabric to make presents or treats for yourself!

Hope you enjoy watching. How do you use up your left over materials?


Don’t forget to subscribe to my channel if you want to see all of my latest content.

Until next time,

Happy Sewing x


Mortmain Dress project review

I was excited to be asked to review an animal print Stretch Cotton Fabric from Minerva Crafts this month.

The Gather Patterns Mortmain Dress is one of my favourite ever patterns, as well as being one of the first dress patterns I made on my own at home.

I’ve been making my own clothes for a while now, but I still keep returning to this pattern.


Although I’ve made the pattern a few times before, for my latest project I added a few variations to change things up a bit.

You can read my review on the Minerva Crafts website.





Selkie Pattern: Making the London Skirt

As soon as I saw the London Skirt by Selkie Patterns, I knew it had to jump to the top of my to-sew list.

I’ve recorded a vlog all about my Selkie Patterns London Skirt, this will be part one of a three part series. The next edition will be focused on the peplum top and then the dress all made from the same pattern pack.

My new skirt

My skirt is made from a medium weight grey denim fabric from Material Girl Laura (I bought this around Christmas time). This works well if you want to create a structured skirt that shows off the pleat detail.

The project is fairly straight forward to make as the paper pattern comes with a detailed instruction booklet that guides you through each of the steps. You can also buy the pattern as a pdf version if that works better for you.

Curved waistband

I decided to add pockets into the side seams of my skirt. There is no pattern piece included for this so I made my own using baking paper and simply drawing about my hand to create a curved shape that had a straight edge at one side to be stitched in to the seam of my skirt.

The skirt has a beautiful curved detail on the front waistband and overlaps at the back allowing you to make a feature of the button closure / bar-tack closure if you want to.

I decided to close the back of my skirt with a lapped zip and button closure, this is a fun detail that makes this skirt different to any of my others.

Back skirt closure

The pattern is designed to be fairly long so I shorted my skirt by three inches so it finished around my knees instead.

I’m really pleased with my final skirt and have already worn it out twice. Plus, I’m now planning to make another version in a light blue denim fabric for summer!

Have you made this skirt yet?

Until next time, happy sewing.

Becky x


Making an overnight bag

A free pattern from Love Sewing Magazine caught my eye a few weeks ago, so I decided to step outside my comfort zone to make an overnight bag.

Bag making has lots of benefits including creating something that is a really practical edition to your wardrobe.

My new bag 

As you probably know if you have read my previous posts, I normally sew my own clothes rather than bags so this project encouraged me to think outside the box to consider what I wanted out of this experience and what are useful bag features.

I wanted to create a bag I would get lots of use out of so, although this is a big bag it will be perfect to take away for weekends. I normally drive my husband crazy by taking lots of small bags so hopefully this will be an easy fix for this!

The bag, based on the Super-Sized Kwik Sew pattern free in issue 63 of Love Sewing Magazine, was supposed to close with a clasp at the top and include handles made from the same fabric as the bag.

The pattern I used to make my bag

As the bag is really wide on the top, I decided to add in a zip closure instead as well as using some grey canvas handles (bought from my local fabric shop).

The bag is made from a heavy-weight cotton duck fabric from Cath Kidston. I picked this material up last year in the sale originally thinking I’d make a dress with it, but actually I think it works perfectly for this project instead.

The lining and inside pocket made from a green cotton poplin (I’d had this in my fabric stash for a while) to add a contrast to the overall look of my final project.

Although the project is a ‘Kwik Sew’ project, it took me a while to make although this could be due to me being new to making my own bags.

I’m planning a trip away to Northumberland soon so I  will definitely be packing my things in this bag to take away with me.

It was fun to try a new project. The instructions were fairly straight forward, although depending on what you want to use your final bag for you too may want to consider altering the top fastening like me to make your bag more secure.

I’ve made a video about this project, you can see this on my You Tube channel if you fancy a look. 

What are you making at the minute? Let me know if you try out this project too.

Until next time, happy sewing.

Becky x



New vlog: The home edition

My latest vlog is all about creating some new curtains for my home as well as two cushions using my fabric scraps.

I’m still quite new to the world of You Tube, but I’m enjoying recording videos based around different things I’ve been making.

video pic 1
My latest video is all about projects for my house

There are lots of creative vlogs out there, but through my videos I hope to share how I found making my projects, any challenges involved and my top tips to remember if you are trying something similar yourself.

I guess my motto for sewing tends to be just have a go and if it doesn’t work out, you will always learn from your mistakes next time. I kept this in mind as I dived in to making some curtains for my spare room.

curtain fabric
My blue cotton duck fabric 

Buying some light blue spotty cotton duck fabric from Cath Kidston in the sale last year, it has taken me ages to get around to making my curtains (this was my first ever curtain project). However, I’m not sure why as they were actually fairly speedy to make.

I used the old curtains as a template and literally drew around them, amending the length to my preferred measurements. I then used my left over fabric to create two envelope cushions for the bed.

Curtain 1
My new curtains

I’m pleased with how this project turned out and it got me thinking about how I should push myself out of my comfort zone more often to make different projects.

My latest video also includes my Tilly and the Buttons Orla top made in some light-weight crepe I was sent to review from Minerva Crafts. 

You can find my You Tube video here. 

orla top
Orla top

Minerva Crafts review: Denim Cambie Skirt

Love love wearing casual skirts in my spare time, so was delighted to be able to review a blue denim from Minerva Crafts this week.

A-line skirts and dresses are amongst my most loved handmade garments to make, so the Cambie Dress pattern by Sewaholic is right up my street.

Cambie skirt
My new skirt. I love the pockets!

As I have made this pattern a few times before as a dress, I had a brain wave to hack the design into a skirt instead.

You can read my review of the denim and the pattern on the Minerva Crafts website.  


New vlog: Holiday shopping

My latest vlog is all about fabric shopping in California.

As someone who makes most of my own clothes, I love fabric shopping so was delighted to be able to visit a few shops overseas.

Vlog six holiday shopping

I was in California for two weeks during which time I travelled from San Francisco to Mendocino (north of the city). It was an amazing trip where I got to meet some lovely people, eat lots of yummy food and visit a range of famous sites.

In my latest video, I talk about the fabric shops I came across on my travels and what I picked up along the way.

You can view my video here. 


Minerva review: a spotty orla top

Spotty fabrics are always at the top of my list, so I was pleased to be able to review a black and white crepe fabric from Minerva Crafts recently.

I decided to make a Tilly and the Buttons Orla Top with the material I received. My husband bought me the pattern a while ago, so after making a sparkly ponte roma version at Christmas time I decided that I needed to try this pattern again but this time using a woven fabric.

Orla top

Lace zippers are always fun to work with so I decided to add one to the back of this top.

You can read my fabric and pattern review on the Minerva Crafts website today. 

1112659497Becky sofa pic 2

Until next time, happy sewing.

Becky x



Holiday makes

A few metres of some pretty Jersey fabric and a bit of sewing time allowed me to make two new dresses and a new t-shirt for my recent holiday.

I was lucky enough to travel to San Francisco a few weeks ago so planning ahead I decided to make a few things that would be practical to take away with me.

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Agnes dress with a gathered skirt

If you have read my blog before, you will know that I’m a big fan of Tilly and the Buttons patterns so this seemed like the ideal starting point for my holiday makes.

I firstly added a twist to my favourite Coco Pattern by shortening the sleeves and adding a different coloured panel to the section of the front bodice just above the bust. I’d love to tell you that I dreamt up the idea because it was my perfect top, but in actual fact this was not the case.

I bought 70cm of cranberry cotton jersey from Guthrie and  Ghani a while ago because I liked the colour. However, I knew I would need to add another fabric to this to make a t-shirt so I looked through my off-cuts and pulled out a piece of rainbow striped jersey fabric that seemed to fit the bill nicely. I then measured the pattern to my desired length and then cut the different fabrics to fit my design (I used a 1cm seam allowance to join the two different fabrics).

Opps! We both wore the same colour on the same day. I’m wearing  mustard Agnes / Joni dress here.

To mix things up a bit, I also added a narrow neckband and cuffs to my Coco top. I’m pleased with the final t-shirt, albeit it does feel a little high on the neckline for me.

Next, I used the Agnes pattern to create two different dresses. One is made out of a lovely pink animal print jersey from Material Girl Laura and has a gathered skirt, and the second is made from a mustard cotton jersey and has a fuller skirt.

I always think its crazy the amount of different looks you can create from using the same pattern and different fabrics.

Thinking ‘outside the box’ to maximise my mustard fabric (I only had 1.5 metres), I cut the front and back bodice on the bias as I didn’t have enough material to cut the pattern on the fold as directed.

The skirt section of this dress was made using the Joni pattern from the book Stretch!

It was the second time that I had joined both the Agnes and Joni patterns to make a dress and I’m sure I will make another version again. I really like the fitted top and a-line skirt, plus the two patterns fit perfectly together if you use the same seam allowance and cut the patterns in the same size. I made the size 3 top / skirt and used a 1.5cm seam allowance.

If you would like to learn more about these projects, head over to my latest vlog as I talk you through the fabrics / projects in more detail.


Although it was a bit of a rush finished these projects before my trip (I was sewing until about midnight the evening before we drove south to go to the airport), I was pleased I was able to wear my latest projects on my holiday.

What are you making at the moment? I’m hoping to work on some curtains for the house this weekend and may be a top for my husband inspired by the latest series of Sewing Bee.

Until next time, happy sewing.

Becky x




Sew Leicester meet up

I had the opportunity to attend my first ever Crafty Sew and So meet up last month.

It’s always great to meet fellow sewers and if course do some shopping.
Me outside the shop
Ahead of the ahead of the event, that happened on Sat 19 Jan, I’d looked on the Crafty Sew and So website and had eyed up a couple of my things I wanted to buy.
I picked up some lovely black and gold lightweight jersey and some cotton poplin in a beautiful red colour (this looks a bit like something Cath Kidston would use to make their clothing products).
The day started meeting at a cafe in Leicester city centre. I had to pre-plan my journey there as I haven’t been into Leicester before, the park and ride worked well for me!
The lovely Freya from Crafty Sew and So then guided us around the market pointing out some fabric stalls before showing us where to find a number of other sewing and knitting shops in the city before finishing the day at Crafty Sew and So.
Crafty Sew and So really is a beautiful shop. Its packed full of gorgeous fabrics, zips, buttons and of course patterns too. I love shops that feel bright and airy, as well as having lots of choice of products too so this store was right up my street.
20190119_142452_resizedThe event lasted about four hours in total, including lunch to start the day. It’s always fun visiting a new city and I discovered that Leicester has a lot to offer in terms of shops, cafes and restaurants. I think its weird how you can live less than two hours away from places yet you have never before found time to visit!
The event was advertised on the Crafty Sew and So blog if you fancied attending a future event, I will definitely try to go along to the next meet up too. Even if you don’t buy anything, it is still great to be able to browse the shelves packed with craft supplies and dream of what you could make, as well as chatting to lots of different like-minded sewers. I was hoping to attend the sewing ball being organised by the shop in March but unfortunately I can’t make it this year, hope you have a fab time if you’re going.
I’ve been meaning to blog about this for a few weeks but I’ve been busy with holidays and other boring house ‘admin’!!
What are you making at the minute? I’ve got a few things on my to-make list so I will keep you posted on how I’m getting on both here and on my You Tube channel. 
Until next time – happy crafting.
Becky x

Making Nora

This week’s post is all about making my first ever Tilly and the Buttons Nora top.

On the face of it, this is a simple project that doesn’t take long to make but if you want to spend of a bit of extra time adding in some ‘extra special’ top-stitching you could do. I also think you could have some fun teaming up contrasting fabrics, adding cuffs or stitching on a fun patch or applique.

Nora pattern

I made the cropped version but I was a bit worried the front bodice was going to be a little short for me so I added 1.5cm to this section before cutting out my fabric.

My Nora top is made out of a medium weight ponte roma fabric that has a lovely gold shine to it. January is such a dull month if you let it be, so I decided a needed a bit of extra sparkle in my life so this worked perfectly.

In terms of the hem detailing Tilly’s instructions as ever are very clear, but I didn’t read them properly the first time (before I cut out my project) so had to change the way I hemmed my top to keep my final jumper as long as possible (I didn’t want my tummy to get cold). Rather than folding up the deep hem as directed in the pattern instructions, I simply overlocked the bottom of the front and back bodices and used my twin needle to

My new top

finish off.

If I was to make this again (and I’m sure I will) I’ll consider lowering the neckline as I think it is a bit high for my taste, although it is probably ideal for the colder months.

I’m pleased with my final project and have already worn it out this week for coffee with friends.

If you want to learn more about my project and see more pictures, I have included it on my latest You Video.



Starting a sewing vlog

Hi everyone, hope you had a fantastic Christmas and New Year. Today’s post is all about my new You Tube channel.



I had quite a quiet festive period really apart from cooking our Christmas dinner, I didn’t have lots of entertaining to do this year so this allowed me to watch lots of Christmas TV!

I’ve been thinking about starting my own sewing vlog for ages, so I have decided that the time has come to give it a go!

There are loads of inspirational people out there who share their makes online already and I really enjoy spending any spare time I have reading blogs, watching vlogs and pondering images of gorgeous clothes / craft projects other people have made so I hope that mine is of some use.

My vlog is going to be focused around my hobbies: sewing, crafting, baking and day trips (mainly walking in the countryside with my doggie) – although there will be a constant theme of me wearing / sharing something I have made with you.

My new channel

It would be great if you could check out my new You Tube Channel and let me know your thoughts. The link can be found here. 

I will still be updating this blog as often as I can so you can still read about my makes here too.

Now 2019 is here, I need to start thinking about my New Year projects so will keep you posted on my plans as they develop.

What are you hoping to make this year?

Until next time, happy sewing.

Becky x




My handmade Christmas tree

Inspired by Kirstie Allsop’s handmade Christmas programme on TV I have decorated my tree with lots of homemade bits and pieces this year.

I love Christmas but if I’m honest I haven’t been feeling completely in the festive spirit this year. So, to try to change this I decided to make a few new things for my tree using crafty bits I already had in my stash.
Handmade heart decoration and pom poms
I made pom poms in red and green using wool I’ve had for a while. There’s something about making these little things that is really relaxing. I could literally sit on my sofa for hours making them if I had both the time and loads of wool, although I’m not sure what I would actually do with lots and lots of pom poms in reality!
20181217_143811_resized (1)
I already had a few felt crafts I made for the tree a while ago so I decided to add a few more to my collection making heart shapes as well as snowmen, Christmas puddings and Xmas stockings. To make these I used a mix of felt (you can buy sheets really cheaply in the kids section of shops like Wilko in the UK), iron on interfacing and bits of ribbon I had in my craft box.
Christmas puddibg
Don’t know about you but I am always on the look out for little bits of ribbon, buttons or items I think I may be able to up-cycle at some point.
I’m pleased that I was able to use up old bits of fabric I’ve had sitting doing nothing for months by making some of these decorations. I think next year it may be nice to spend a bit of time making Christmas decorations for friends and family for gifts, I know I always appreciate a handmade Christmas present.
2018 seems to have gone so quickly and Christmas seems to have come around so fast this year. I know they say as you get older time goes quicker, I always thought this was a myth but may be not, or may it is just because we all live such busy lives these days.
Next year, I need to take a bit of extra time for myself and spend more time doing things I enjoy like crafting, walking and baking. Life sometimes just gets too busy and I am too tired or feel too stressed to enjoy anything – so I’ve decided I need to be a bit more selfish and sometimes say ‘no’ to things to free up a bit more ‘me time’ (I don’t think there is anything wrong with that, right?)!20181217_143819_resized (1)
Whatever you are doing for Christmas I wish you all the best for both the festive period and the New Year. Thanks for reading my blog in 2018, I hope to be a bit more organised next year and post each week (or I will try to at least!).

Fabric style pom pom
A merry Christmas and a happy New Year to all.
Until next time, Becky x

My pre-Christmas adventure

I do love a pre-Christmas adventure and this year I was lucky enough to have one to Krakow in Poland.

Of course, no trip would be complete without me making a few new bits and pieces to take with me, so I thought I’d share both what I made and a few more details about my visit in this post.
Getting ready to board!
I love to travel and any excuse I get, I try to make the most of it. Over the last few years I have been lucky enough to be able to visit Christmas markets with friends in both Berlin and Hamburg, so this time it was cool to visit a different country.
I was a bit worried I wouldn’t be able travel anywhere early last week as I’ve been suffering from a horrid virus, but I tried to rest lots before I went away as I really didn’t want to miss out if I didn’t have too. I guess it’s the time of the year or may be being a bit run down but I still can’t shake off my cough, rubbish.
Unfortunately i didn’t find any fabric or haberdashery shops on my travels, but I did buy a few handmade treats from the market including a pretty bookend and some slippers (neither are for me – they are presents, sshh!).

Relaxing with a glass of wine!
So, thinking it was going to be freezing in Poland in December I thought I needed to take warm clothes to wrap up in.
Looking in my pattern stash before I went to plan my makes I turned to a couple of my old faithful patterns (what can I say if you love a pattern why not make it loads of times)!
I’ve been trying use up fabrics I already have recently although couldn’t resist buying some cool cherry printed material to make my latest Agnes top, oops.

My new Linden top
I made a Grainline Patterns Linden Sweatshirt using a few remnants I picked up during the Sew Brum a few months ago.
I didn’t have enough fabric to cut the front and back bodices on the fold so instead added one centimetre to the centre seam so I could join this with a straight line of stitching.  I actually think adding a centre seam adds a bit of extra detail to the jumper and makes it look different to my other sweatshirts. I used a mixture of medium weight jersey and look back jersey for this project from Guthrie and Ghani, I love that the colours are a bit autumnal!

My new Agnes top in a cool sewing inspired cafe we found
I also made a plain pink coco top great for layering. I added some star transfers to the front of this I got from eBay. They were  super easy to use, I literally ironed them on it a few minutes.
My final make was another Agnes top, j can’t get enough of this pattern!  The cherry fabric is from Material Girl Laura and is great quality, not too thick and not too thin. It’s a cotton jersey of medium weight, my favourite to work with.
My Christmas projects seem to be on hold a bit at the moment but I need to get motivated and get making as the big day is really not far away now (only days in fact, I’m going to be busy this weekend)!
What have you been making this week?
Have a good weekend.

Making a Kelly Anorak

Making my own anorak was a huge project but it certainly pushed me to learn new skills.

December is just around the corner and the cold weather has now set in, so this meant the coat project I started in May this year really had to be finished!

Mustard lining on show!

Making a coat of any type can be hard work and even harder if it involves a range of different techniques like a zip, pockets and press studs but some how making something of your own that you can wear over and over again makes all of this worth while.

I made a Closet Case Patterns Kelly Anorak – this is the first anorak I have ever made and the first time I have ever used waxed cotton so this was a new experience all around.

You can choose to make the anorak with or without a hood – I decided to include one as I’m planning to wear this out in winter so I’m sure i’ll need it at some point to protect me from the rain.

As this was such a large project, I decided to treat myself to book on to a course at Guthrie and Ghani in Birmingham to make my coat alongside some other sewists. The course was great fun, the other ladies on the course were all really nice (I’ve not actually met any sewers I don’t like) and we also spent quite a bit of time socialising so that was super too.20181118_160505_resized

Most of day one of the course was spent cutting out the pattern and the fabric. There are quite a lot of pattern pieces and depending if you decide to line your coat or not, this adds extra materials to cut too. I’m not sure about you but I don’t really enjoy the ‘cutting out’ process, its hard work at times as well as being a bit tiresome – although I know it is always worth it in the end.

The best thing about starting a project like this on a class is that you have the reassurance that you  are moving at a similar speed to other people and you can check any instructions you are unsure about with other fellow sewers – like your body measurements or what length you want your final garment to be.

By day three of the course, my project was well underway – although I didn’t manage to finish it may be due to chatting too much!

Since then months have past by and my unfinished coat has sat in a box at home. This was partly due to the fantastic summer weather we had and me not wanting to spend my time sewing a winter jacket and that partly I was quite scared of making a mess of any of the anorak by myself at home.

Its funny really that I put off sewing the final parts of my jacket for so long, as when I got down to it – it only took a few hours to put on the arms, cuffs and finish adding my press studs.

With ball thrower in hand!

If you are thinking of making this pattern, the instructions are detailed and do guide you through the steps of the coat making process nicely – although this is not a project for beginners.

I found the project really challenging which can be good and bad. By day three of the course, I had managed to melt the top of my zipper a bit on the iron (note to self use a metal tooth zipper in future for coats) which upset me a little as I couldn’t stand the idea of having to undo all of the stitching I had done so far to ‘set in’ the zip. However, I managed to save the zip in the end my using my unpicker to ‘pick’ the random melted bits out of my zip teeth so it will now zip up almost to the top of the coat (which is good enough for me, I always wear a scarf anyway).

I’m really pleased with my final project although don’t think I will rush into making another version too soon as it took a long time as well as lots of concentration (something I’m short of sewing in the evenings at times)!

I got my tan waxed cotton from Guthrie and Ghani (they have a few other colours too), lined the body with a mustard cotton lawn I picked up on holiday earlier this year and lined the arms with some anti static dress lining I had left over from something else. 20181118_153902_resized

Have you made this pattern before?

Until next time, happy sewing.

Becky x


Getting ready for Christmas

This post all about my Christmas gift planning and how I’m trying to get organised earlier this year!

I have always loved Christmas. I enjoy the fact that there always seems to be a bit of festive cheer in the air, with people wishing each other a Merry Christmas (or happy holidays if you are in the US) and that I have a good excuse to do some extra baking.

Having a go at toy making

Christmas present buying can be stressful and trying to make gifts at the last minute can cause unneeded pressure too.

This year I’m trying to plan in advance what I’d like to make for my loved ones, trying to use patterns or materials I already have in my stash (although I guess this may not be possible in every case).

So far, I’m thinking of making book bags for a few friends (they are a great way to use up fabrics and I can have a bit of fun mixing and matching materials to act as the lining).

Book bags are so simple to make and can be made big or small depending on if you imagine it will be used to carry supermarket shopping in or just someone’s lunch on their way to and from work etc.

Book bag

I’ve made one book bag already out of some pink cotton sateen I had left over from a recent skirt project.  If I’m honest the handles are a bit too long but this probably doesn’t matter too much.

Curious Rose sewing pattern

My brother is really tricky to buy for generally so even though he is a grown up, this year I’m hoping to make him a cuddly animal toy from a pattern I picked up at Kirsty Allsop’s Handmade Fair in September. The pattern is by Curious Rose and includes a bunny, mouse, cat and hare design.

Pin dog will be on hand during my project making!

In 2017, I made my husband a sweatshirt for Christmas based on a ladies jumper pattern I got free in a magazine.

It was an oversight on my part though not to raise the neckline as when I’d made it the neck area was quite low. He has worn it a lot though in the house, but this year I’d like to better my previous efforts and make a jumper he can wear out and about too. I may turn the men’s t shirt pattern from one of the Sewing Bee books I have into a jumper by lengthening the sleeves and adding a hem band.

Finally,  I’m hoping to make my friend Jane a Tilly and the Buttons Coco Dress. I made her one a while ago and it’s great to see that it fits so well, I will may be make version two in a different colour fabric with cropped sleeves but I’m not sure yet!

Have you got Christmas sewing plans?

Until next time, happy sewing  x



Attending Sew Brum 2018

This week’s post is all about attending Sew Brum 2018.

Sewing is fantastic as it’s a hobby you can do on your own or collectively with friends or at classes. More often than not though, I sew on my own at home squeezing in 15-20 minutes on my machine in between making the dinner or doing something else. That’s why it is lovely to meet other sewists in person at events like Sew Brum and exchange ideas and tips on projects, as well as of course admire each others handmade outfits.

Having lunch with fellow sewers in Birmingham

I’ve never had the opportunity to visit Birmingham when Sew Brum was taking place before, so I was really excited to see what it was all about.

This years event was attended by around 300 people, some of whom stayed for the whole event and others who just attended some bits depending on their other commitments.

It was an early start for me and it was freezing when I left home, but the excitement of meeting up with ‘old’ sewing friends and meeting new ones kept me focused on why I was up so early on a Saturday morning.

The day began in Birmingham’s John Lewis cafe, where many people enjoyed a bite to eat. The large group then split up to visit the rag market, Barry’s fabric store and the silk shop (located not too far from the market). A lot of people then made their way over to one of my favourite fabric shops – Guthrie and Gharni by bus to do some more shopping and take part in a charity raffle.

Waxed cotton I picked up to make a dress

I left home with a few ideas in mind of what kinds of fabric I may like to find, but I’m afraid to say this list kind of went out of my mind when I arrived (note to self – write down ideas next time)!

Fabrics I picked up included some jersey remnants to make a jumper, some denim to make a new skirt and some waxed cotton fabric to make a dress with. I might take me a while to work my way though the fabrics I bought, but I’m looking forward to using them anyway.

Fabrics I picked up during the event

Sew Brum is an annual event organised by the English Girl at Home. If you weren’t able to attend this time, and don’t live too far away I’d recommend going next time – I had a great day 🙂

Until next time, happy sewing.

Becky x


Going crazy for pencil skirts

This week’s blog is all about my office capsule wardrobe.

I set myself a challenge a few weeks ago to make a selection of outfits that I can wear into work. Working in an office means I need to be fairly smart each day, so it’s great to be able to create exactly what I want to wear from fabrics I have chosen.

My new Ultimate Pencil Skirt 

It’s been a busy couple of weeks for me due to starting a new job, but I was able to squeeze in making two new pencil skirts before this.

The skirts are both based on patterns I’ve used before but the bonus with this is that I knew what I would like to amend/change from last time.

The pink floral skirt was made using the Sew Over It Ultimate Pencil Skirt pattern and a bright cotton satin (also from Sew Over It). If I’m honest the cotton satin did have stretch but probably not quite as much as I would like in a fitted skirt like this.

I graded between two sizes at the waist to make this skirt, as I’m a different size on my waist to what I am on my hips. This was fairly easy to do, it just took a bit of trial and error tacking the skirt on my machine, then trying it on to check the fit. I also reduced the length by a few inches, which is surprising me being so tall but I only wanted it to come down to my knees.

The second skirt I made was the Tilly and the Buttons Bibi Pencil Skirt, made using a very stretchy ponte roma sourced from a local shop (I can’t include a link as they aren’t online). Last time I made this project I decided I didn’t really like the waistband as it seemed to go a bit baggy after I wore it, so this time I decided to make a facing around the waistline instead that simply folds to the inside and was sewed in place using a few a stitches along the seam lines.

My Bibi Pencil Skirt 

I’m pleased with these skirts, albeit I don’t think the floral one is quite as comfortable as last time due to my fabric choice.

I’m still trying to work my way through the other projects I wanted to make for my capsule wardrobe, but I’m getting there slowly. I will keep you posted on my progress.

Until next time, happy sewing.

Becky x



My Sewing The Scene entry

I’ve been a Disney fan for as long as I can remember so thought I’d use this as the theme for my Sewing The Scene entry for 2018.

Sewing The Scene is an online competition hosted on Instagram by @theunfinishedseamstress and encourages sewists to make something they love inspired by film or TV and share pictures of their projects by the 1st of October.

My new Coco Dress 

I gave a lot of thought to my entry wondering how I could create an outfit based around one of my favourite films or TV shows, but in the end settled for the general theme of ‘Disney’.

If I had to choose a favourite Disney character I’d go for Minnie Mouse so used this as my inspiration to make my 2018 competition entry. Minnie, as you probably know, is famous for wearing a red spotty dress. I love polka dots but felt that a red spotty outfit, although lovely, wouldn’t really fit in to my everyday wardrobe so I decided to go for a black spotty fabric instead and accessorise it with a red cardigan (from Bettie Vintage), belt and necklace (one my husband bought me for Christmas a few years ago).

I used the Tilly and the Button’s Coco pattern to make my dress, picking the fabric up from the recent Handmade Fair at Hampton Court Palace in Surrey. I loved the ponte roma material as soon as I saw it on the Sewalicious stall so had to buy it, it’s a beautiful medium weight that has spots on the outside and stripes on the inside so you could actually have a lot of fun with using both sides of the fabric if you wanted to.

Minnie Mouse in her red spotty outfit

The dress also ticks off one of the handmade makes I wanted to create for my new ‘office ready’ wardrobe too, so I’m pleased about that. I actually wore the dress out for dinner tonight and it is super snuggley – great for a cold September evening.

A close up of my dress worn with a red belt 

Are you entering the Sewing The Scene competition? It’s a fun challenge as there are so many possibilities of things you could make.

Until next time, happy sewing.

Becky x


Making myself a ‘work ready’ wardrobe

This week I wanted to share my plans to make a few new outfits for my new job.

Working in an office I need to look smart each day, but the cool thing about making your own clothes is that you can choose the fabrics and designs that work best for both you and the wider work environment.

My latest Agnes Top

The Sew Over It Work to Weekend E-book literally couldn’t have been published at a better time for me. I’m just getting ready to start a new job and want to update my work outfits so the trousers and Dana Blouse from the book will be perfect.

If you have ready my blog before you will know that I generally like to make clothes that I can wear for lots of different occasions, including for work, so I thought I would make myself a little ‘to sew’ list to try to organise my sewing plans.

Patterns from the new Sew Over It E-book
  1. I picked up some gorgeous black spotty ponte roma fabric from the Sewalicious stand Handmade Fair – I think this will be a great Tilly and the Buttons Coco dress.
  2. I’m planning to make a plain purple Sew Over It Molly Dress, this will be great for winter to wear with thick tights. I’ve had some purple ponte roma material in my stash for ages and this will work well for this project.
  3. Blouses are great to wear for the office so I’m planning a floral Sew Over It Dana Top from the latest e-book. I bought a remnant of black viscose fabric from Sewalicious to make this (this project is now cut out and ready to go).

    Light weight fabric I’m going to use to make my new blouse
  4. Since I started making my own clothes, wearing pencil skirts has become something I now enjoy as they actually fit! My smaller waist and bigger hips just don’t work for shop-bought patterns. I’m planning my second Sew Over It Ultimate Pencil Skirt in a beautiful stretch cotton satin (I got this as part of a kit my husband got me for Christmas last year).
  5. I made a Tilly and the Buttons Bibi Pencil Skirt a while ago (from the Stretch book) and have since had loads of compliments on it – so want another in my wardrobe. A stretchy skirt is really comfortable to wear in the office as well as looking smart. This also works well as I want to make more projects from the sewing books I already have rather than buying new patterns all the time.

    Fabric from Sew Over It I’m going to use for my new Ultimate Pencil Skirt
  6. Finally, I’m hoping to make a few more plain jersey tops (the Tilly and the Buttons Coco or Agnes tops but have’t decided yet) to wear with my new skirts that can be mixed and matched over the course of the week. I often find myself swayed towards patterned fabrics when a few new plain tops would be much more practical for my everyday wardrobe.  I just need to find some suitable material now!

I’m hoping to make a start on my sewing list soon, so will keep you posted on how I’m getting on.

So far this week, I haven’t had a lot of time but managed to make a quick Agnes Top in a spotted viscose jersey I got on a recent Sew Notts meet up. I’m sure I can wear this in to work but its great to wear on the weekends too. Plus, the fabric only cost me £1 as the shop was closing down, amazing!

What are you working on at the minute? Have you made any projects from the new Sew Over It E-Book yet?

Have a good weekend,

Becky x


Visiting the Handmade Fair

This week I’m sharing my experience of visiting the Handmade Fair, a creative paradise for craftaholics like me.

I was so excited to visit Surrey this week and explore Kirstie Allsop’s Handmade Fair.

Me with my bird feeder 

If you are unfamiliar with the fair it is one of the biggest craft events around and allows visitors to take part in workshops, listen to talks and visit a number of craft-based stores exhibiting on site.

I booked tickets pretty much as soon as they went on sale and have been looking forward to attending for months.

Wanting to make the most of my day, I booked a couple of workshops themed around crafts I hadn’t tried before. I took part in a class to make a wild bird feeder which gave me the chance to have a go at basket weaving. This was actually really tricky, particularly as the willow we used was really long and seemed to have a mind of its own moving in every direction apart from where I wanted it to go in the weaving process.

I felt a bit sorry for the man running the class as he had a lot of people to help to make the bird feeders, but I think everyone had a good time and all left with their own individual project.

Meeting Tilly at the Tilly and the Buttons stand

The next 30 min class I tried was based around paper crafting. I made three butterflies using origami techniques following what the teacher was demonstrating at the front of the workshop. I’ll be honest I wasn’t very good at this but it was still cool to test out a new craft.

Paper butterflies 

There were two large tents filled full of small shops selling fabrics, craft items and jewellery, as well as two smaller tents selling food-based products (I did pick myself up possibly the best tasting brownie I have ever had there).

As well as smaller retailers being on site there were also brand names you would  recognise like Sew Over ItTilly and the Buttons and Sewalicious. Kirstie Allsop could also be found wandering around the event too (I was really excited about this) so I got a photo with her.

Visiting the Sew Over It stand

If you are planning to visit, I’d recommend planning your day carefully, particularity if you want to take part in a few workshops, to make sure you can fit everything in. I wished I had got more time to try out the class upcycling some old wooden pallets into a new usable storage box, but this was fully booked.

It was such a fun day and definitely worth the long trip to Hampton Court Palace and back. I’m looking forward to next year’s event already.

Have a good weekend.

Becky x


Printing PDF patterns

This week I discovered printing PDF patterns online, saving me loads of time. I thought I’d share what I learnt in this post with you.

I was really excited to hear that Sew Over It have released a new e-book called Work to Weekend as this sounded perfect for me.

Printed patterns 

I had promised myself that I wouldn’t buy anymore patterns for a while, but I love the Sew Over It brand so had to order the latest e-book particularly as there are at least three things in there I would like to make.

Finding clothes that I can wear in to the office and out during my time off is always a challenge so hopefully these designs will fill a gap in my wardrobe.

The only thing that puts me off buying PDF patterns and e-books generally is the printing. The idea of spending hours sticking A4 pages together fills me with dread as I just want to get on with the sewing. I find it a pain having to print out the patterns and lay them out on the floor to stick together with sticky tape, if I wanted to do a paper-based craft project I would!

Me with my new patterns

Discussing the draw backs of PDF patterns with a friend, it was suggested that I try printing my patterns on A0 sized paper – completely reducing the time I would have spent sticking the A4 pages together.

I’d researched how much printing on A0 paper would cost at my local printers and was horrified to be told it would be as much as the e-book itself to do this. My friend said I should check out Net Printers as she had used them before and it was really cost effective.

It was actually really straight forward to order my printing online – I literally uploaded the files and added in my payment details. Just two days later my patterns were delivered to my door by courier, amazing. It was about £1.50p per A0 printed sheet plus delivery and I was pleasantly surprised at the good quality paper the patterns are printed on.

I will certainly print my patterns online again. Saving that vital time sticking means I can maximise my time sewing my new outfits, yey 🙂 . I only wish there was more hours in a day to squeeze in more crafting!

Not sure which pattern to make from the e-book first, the trousers and the Dana Dress both take my fancy 🙂 . I’ll keep you posted on my progress.

Until next time,

Becky x


Simple Sew: Sienna Dress

This week I’m sharing a project I managed to make over the course of a week for a party I was going to.

With a family birthday party on the horizon last weekend, I thought this was the perfect opportunity to make myself a new dress.

My new dress 

It probably sounds boring, but I hardly ever go ‘out out’ these days so the idea of going out for dancing and drinks filled me with excitement so I wanted to try to look my best for the occasion 🙂

The party was held on the Thames in Surrey in a pub and was the perfect location for people watching and catching up with old friends and family.

I didn’t know what people would wear for the party so as normal I just decided to do my own thing and wear what I felt comfortable in. I picked up some lovely mustard kitten heel shoes from Marks and Spencer and a matching cardigan from Hell Bunny so wanted to make a dress that would work with these things.

After hunting online for ages and then ordering a few things, no fabric I came across seemed to be right for my project. Then I had a brainwave and dug deep in my fabric stash to find a lovely chiffon fabric I’ve had for a while that is navy blue and has a lip design all over it. I thought this would work perfectly, so with one week to go launched into making my second Simple Sew Patterns Sienna Dress.

I got the pattern free on Sew Now Magazine last year and the design of the dress is right up my street. It is fitted into the waist and has a flared skirt. As the fabric I used was a bit see-through I lined the bodice in the same fabric I was using on the outside and lined the skirt with a black anti-static material.

A close up of my dress fabric 

This was the second time I’d tried this pattern so I tried to learn from my last attempt. I reduced the seam allowance slightly to make the dress a bit more roomy (I used a 1.2cm seam allowance instead of the 1.5cm noted on the pattern), and this time I tried the sleeveless design instead of the version with cap-sleeves.

I’m pleased with my final project, although it is may be slightly on the long side. If I decide to make a third version I may reduce the length a bit so the skirt finishes just above my knees.

Now the party is over I’m hoping to get plenty of wear out of my dress in the daytime after all what’s the harm in dressing up to go shopping or out for coffee?!

Have you tried the Sienna Dress? How did you find the pattern?

Until next time, happy sewing.

Becky x


Sewing projects ‘on the go’

This week’s post is all about trying to fit sewing into a busy lifestyle.

This week, I thought I’d share a few sewing projects I have ‘on the go’.

A previous Simple Sew Sienna Dress I made last summer 

I don’t know about you but I often find myself day-dreaming about what I’d like to make and immediately feel the urge to start whatever my latest idea is (time permitting of course) 🙂

Life has been so busy recently though with working, trying to get fit (I’ve started to do the ‘couch to 5k) and other boring house stuff like shopping, cleaning and DIY there hasn’t been much time for sewing. However, trying to be resourceful I have cut out and started a few new projects so that when I do have time I can sit down at my machine and dive straight in!

You may have read one of my previous posts about trying to make more patterns from my sewing books – I’m challenging myself to make more projects from resources I already have rather than buying new paper patterns or downloading new patterns all the time. Plus, buying new patterns is expensive so using books I already have on the shelf should be good for my purse too!

The first project from the Sew Caroline Weekend Style Book I’ve decided to make is the Tilly T-Shirt. It’s just a really simple top, but I honestly think I can’t have too many t-shirts in my drawer, plus I can maybe use it as part of my new exercise regime! I’m going to make this in some bright pink cotton jersey I have left over from a project I made ages ago so I will keep you posted on my progress.

Weekend style book

Next on my list is another Sew Over It Cami Top. I’ve made quite a few of these already but I’d really love a plain white one to wear with patterned skirts. This project is cut out and ready to go soon 🙂

Fabric I’m using for my new Simple Sew dress 

Finally, I’ve been rushing to the finish line to make another Simple Sew Sienna Dress for a party I’m going to over the bank holiday weekend. I’m using a chiffon fabric with red lips all over it to make my new outfit. I’m really annoyed at myself that I have left it sssooo late in the day to make this but time just seems to fly by sometimes. I’ve been squeezing in 15 mins here and there though so fingers crossed this will work out.

I don’t know about you but even if I sewed non-stop for a few weeks, I’m sure I still wouldn’t be able to make all of my dream projects. If only there was more hours in a day… 🙂

What have you been making this month? Do you cut out projects so they are ready to go when you want them?

Until next time,

Becky x


Making a Mortmain Skirt

This week I delved into my pattern box and pulled out one of my favourite ever patterns to make myself a little present!

It’s my birthday this week so I decided to make myself a new skirt. I’m not really going anywhere special but I wanted to make myself something new to wear anyway, is that sad?!

My new knee length skirt

I picked up a lovely blue and cream cotton poplin fabric for about £2.50p per metre from Material Girl Fabrics (can be found by searching on Facebook) which I thought was a great bargain.

I fancied making a light-weight gathered skirt and thought the Gather Pattern called The Mortmain would fit the bill nicely. I’ve made this pattern as a dress I few times and absolutely LOVE it.

The pattern I used for this project

In order to make the skirt I literally used the two skirt pattern pieces and then added a waistband, along-with a 9 inch invisible zipper. The pattern is designed to have a pleated skirt but gathering is also an option of course.

I don’t normally go for the ‘gathered’ look mainly because it always takes me ages to make gathered skirts/dresses and I’m always a bit worried the gathering is not completely equal. Plus, I often prefer an a-line or circle skirt design but I thought I would give it another go.

I’m really happy with my new birthday skirt and will definitely wear it out for lunch.

My latest project 

Have you tried The Mortmain pattern? I’d recommend it if you haven’t – it’s one of my favourite ever patterns as it looks smart but has a relaxed fit.

Until next time, happy sewing.

Becky x



Making a reversible tie hat

Here I describe how I recently had the opportunity to put my sewing skills to good use in making a tie hat for a friend.

This week’s post is focused around a project that I was asked to do by a friend who was recently diagnosed with an illness meaning she may temporarily lose her hair.

Seeing my sewing machine sat on my dining room table, my friend asked if I would be able to make her a head scarf or tie hat of some description that if needed she can wear during the course of her treatment.

Here I model the tie hat

It’s not my place to go in to the ins and outs of her illness, but I can say it is an illness that touches the lives of too many people around the world.

I felt honoured to be asked to undertake such a useful project and wanted to do my best to make something that was both comfortable to wear and stylish.

Hunting through the internet I managed to find the perfect downloadable pattern made by brimmingwithlove.com . The pattern comes with easy to follow step by step instructions, as well as including images for the more tricky steps.

A close up of the fabric I used

Having never made a reversible tie hat before, I had to concentrate on how to construct the hat as I wasn’t really sure how it would all come together.

I used a pink floral viscose fabric to make both the inside and outside layers of the project, although there is an option to use contrasting fabrics on either side if you wanted to wear different colours / patterns on different days.

I thought a floral viscose was light-weight and perfect for summer, meaning that hopefully the hat wouldn’t be too hot to wear in the warm weather we are experiencing in the UK at the moment.

The pattern actually came together really easily in the end, and I was delighted to be able to hand it over to my friend who was over the moon with her gift.

My pattern pieces before I started sewing the project

To be able to bring a little bit of joy to someones life who is battling a serious illness was amazing. Sewing is often something I do to pass the time or selfishly make myself something new, so to be able to put my skills to a much better use was amazing.

I wish my friend all the best and know that her positive attitude to life will serve her well.

Until next time,

Becky x