Wednesday, 19 May 2010

Built by Wendy Dresses - Review

So you know how it is? When you say you won't buy anymore sewing books, due to the mixed results from too many of them? Well I saw this, it teased me on pre order for months, then I read the reviews, and Wendy's reputation is pretty rock solid, so I had to buy it. And for what you get it's a bargain.

So what is inside? Well 3 pattern pieces to make the above 3 dresses, a sheath, a shift and a dirndle!

Then what you get is a breakdown of each style of dress into how to alter the pattern into a variety of other dresses! Below is a selction:

From the Sheath dress.

Sheath dress.

Sheath dress.

Shift Dresses


Shift dress
Dirndle dresses
Dirndle Dress

dirndle dresses
dirndle dress
alterations example

pattern layout example

sewing up example
I just wanted to show how in depth this book is. It is not for a novice, but if you have done a bit of clothes sewing before, this would be suitable for an advanced beginner/ intermediate sewer. There are no seam allowances on the patterns, which is no big deal, as you copy them anyway.
The first step is to make a muslin, then alter that as necessary to fit correctly, instructions are in the book. Then once you have your own base pattern, you can use the other patterns and create a wealth of dresses! I'm making my 1st muslin, for the sheath dress, so I will see how that goes. But it is an exciting book, and offers great value for money (when most patterns cost £8+) I will post again on my successes/ failures!

Tuesday, 18 May 2010

spring 2010

Just some things to remember Spring by.

From the top; Easter bunnies, at the Yorkshire Sculpture Park, jelly from my husband's 40th, parrot tulips for our bedroom balcony, seeds we have sewn that will give us food to eat through the summer. Some is on our balcony, and some will go into the communal veg plot!

Happy days!

Thursday, 6 May 2010

The Upside of a Downer

Well the upside of a downer, is that you start thinking about alternate ways to bring in more money into the house. We are both doing that, and we're both thinking creatively, which is great.

So we're remaining upbeat and positive, of where our future will take us.

I have designed my very first pattern for a girl's pinafore dress. If anyone would like to test my pattern and instructions for me I'd be very grateful. It's to fit an age 3 child. I have yet to grade the thing, another new skill to learn! The dress is really cool as it's one pattern piece and ties with 2 buttons, or press studs. Anyway, let me know if you can! I'll have to post you the pattern, as I have no idea how I get that onto a computer!

PS. Vote if you haven't already (in the UK!)

Saturday, 1 May 2010


I don't usually write about my private life on here. I have kept it separate. But yesterday we received dreadful news. My husband is being made redundant. This is his 3rd job loss in 6 years. The first 2 job losses were when both businesses he worked for closed down, so everyone lost their jobs. This time people have been picked out using criteria. To my husband it feels like a stitch up. But I won't go into that. As you may know I only work part time, on a relatively low salary, so I can look after the children, after school. So this is really awful, as my husband earns 4/5s of the income.

I'm not sure where our future will take us, as in the past we have lived in London, Dundee (Scotland), Leeds and now Brighton. I love Brighton, and we've made roots here in the 3.5 years we've lived here. Neither of us want to move away, again. Also our eldest is at school here, he's made loads of friends, and sure he can always make new friends, it would be such a shame.

Life at times, deals out too many rotten cards.