sewing

Sophia Dress from Burda Style Magazine Vintage Special

If a dress could kill you | Burda Vintage Special Sophia Dress

This does sound a bit overdramatic, doesn’t it? Well, maybe a tad.

But no other dress I ever sewed, except my wedding dress, put me through the wringer quite as much as this Sophia Dress from Burda Style Magazine Vintage Special. It took a long time, a lot of head scratching and a lot of swearing to turn from pattern+fabric into a dress I can slip into. And all for just one wear…

Was it worth it? Well, read on and tell me what do you think…

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Seamwork Astoria in green ribbed jersey 2

Simple make for when everything else is chaos | Seamwork Astoria

My living room floor is currently covered with the ENTIRE content of my sewing room! It’s complete CHAOS! (Psst, don’t tell my husband, he’s away for a few days and I hope to have it all back to perfection before he gets back). And it all started with getting my eyes checked and having pupil dilation drops put it.

Wait, what?

Lately, I have been thinking about overhauling my sewing room more than I do about new sewing projects. I am really grateful to have a sewing room – our spare bedroom – but that leaves us with the issue of where do our guests sleep. Currently, it’s an airbed on the sewing room floor. I have been working my brain for ages to figure out how to put in a better sleeping solution. Well, try as I might that’s not happening, but I am getting a built-in wardrobe to tidy things up a bit. And I am shuffling things around to make a bit more room on the floor for a bigger air bed. Not ideal, but I will have a really nice sewing room.

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Red Knit Jumpsuit | McCalls M7444 Review

I feel that I definitely did not make enough jumpsuits this year! And as you guys know, I absolutely LOVE them. I had planned this one for ‘Jumping into June’ challenge, but I didn’t even get close to finishing this one in by then. So here I am showing this red knit jumpsuit in mid-August, but with my track record and the backlog of unblogged projects, this is really not too bad.

So, as I was saying, I’m a sucker for a new jumpsuit pattern. And I was looking for a new summer TNT pattern for a while, as an alternative for my all time favourite pattern, V9075. I have been following Nikki from Beaute J’adore for years now, so when I heard she is releasing a range of patterns for McCalls, I was intrigued. M7444 got on my radar and after umming and erring for a while, I bit the bullet and bought it in a sale.

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Raglan tunic dress in lilac crepe | Burda Style 10/2014 #127

As I wrote in my previous post, August is #TributeMonth in the #sewcialists world. I wrote on the Sewcialist blog about 5 inspirational bloggers and instagrammers, 5 ladies whose style and attitudes I love. But there are so many more sewists I get inspiration from. So I want to dedicate my first post in August to some more of my favourite sewists.

As you already know, I love Burda Style Magazine, in spite of the copying sheets bonanza and dodgy instructions, so I take a lot of inspiration from sewists like Mokosha and Chris from Said and Done, who bring Burda designs to life in so many inspiring ways. So this particular project is a tribute to Mokosha, Chris and all the ladies who sew a lot with Burda. Mokosha made this very pattern here and here, in two very different fabrics. Thank you, ladies, and here’s my version.

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La Maison Victor UK issue #1 | Sewing Magazine Review

I’m not one for the regular sewing magazines, as I never actually have the patience to actually read the content. The only ones that do attract me are the pattern magazines. I do love Burda, with all its limitations, and I feel I get so much for my money because of the tons of free patterns, but they also have such great styling and photography. To be honest, I had seen other pattern magazines, like Ottobre, but I was never convinced, they just did not catch my imagination in the same way. Though I keep an open mind and I am quite curious about other options out there.

So, I kept hearing about this Belgian sewing magazine, called La Maison Victor, on French sewing blogs and sometimes here and there in the UK ones. And lo and behold, it’s now landed in the UK as well. So off I went to check it out for myself and write a review for you guys.

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Sometimes you just have to go back | Vogue 9186 hack

You guys, the summer seems to be holding on in London, and it’s absolutely amazing! Nothing makes me happier than hot, long days and balmy summer nights. And wearing summer dresses and other delightful projects that I get to only put on a few days a year. And because I only get to enjoy them for a short time, most of my summer clothes are stored away for the majority of the year. But that’s ok, it’s even more fun to unpack the summer wardrobe and rediscover clothes you almost forgot you had.

Though sometimes there’s a downside… Things I loved last year just don’t work for me this year anymore. Sometimes I just pass them on, and sometimes I can actually be bothered to do something about them.

This is what happened to this particular dress. You might remember it from last year, the pattern is a rather peculiar asymmetric shape that I had also added a few modifications to as well. Well, when I put it on one day the other week, I just wasn’t feeling it anymore. But it’s a really lovely fabric and I quite still like the shape, it was just the elastic gathering didn’t work for me anymore, it felt really constricting.

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First attempt on the ballet wrap top | Seamwork Elmira Review

Hey guys, I’ve got the post-holiday blues! You might have spotted on IG that I was in Tuscany in Italy last week. I know it’s now almost a cliche to rave about how amazing it is, but it really is. I had been dreaming of going to Florence since I was 14 and got an A+ for my essay on Lorenzo the Magnificent in History, but this was the first time. And I was truly blown away! I absolutely adored Florence, in spite of the hoards of tourists being spewed out of tour buses and the ridiculous queues for anything remotely interesting. But perhaps the best parts met us when we stepped out of the cities, in the Chianti countryside, with vineyards and rolling hills and the most beautiful light anywhere!

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My tips & tricks for tracing Burda Magazine patterns

This was supposed to be the perfect sewing weekend. My husband is away indulging in his time consuming and expensive hobby – karting, so I had the house to myself and absolutely no chores, plans or obligations to take me out of the house. Or rather, I had plans: to spend as much time as possible sewing! I need to make a dress for a wedding we’re going to next weekend, so I needed to get going.

It is now Saturday evening and I have not sewed a stitch. Why, you might ask? Did something come up, did you get lazy? No, actually, I have been doing sewing related things until 11 last night and from 9 AM this morning. And still haven’t cut out my dress.

And the reason is TRACING!!! I am using a Burda Style (the magazine) Special Vintage, but this goes for any Burda magazines. It’s a lovely design, but has 12 pieces and it took me hours to copy them out!! I could have finished the whole blinkin’ dress in that time!!

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Pinkie & the Rib |Vintage Simplicity 8977

I’m finally getting around to posting about a little dress that I made ages ago (I’m sure you’re seeing a pattern here…). I took picture last weekend, while enjoying the fantastic weather we had in London. In hindsight, good call, Batman, because it went back to being freezing here (although quite sunny) and those toes would not have lasted in sandals even for a few seconds. And I had it in my head that this dress requires chunky heels. I feel like I’m impersonating Mimi G while wearing this dress and you can’t do Mimi G without the heels.

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Culottes jumpsuit in rust knit | Vogue V9075

Guys, beware! The jumpsuit season chez Sewrendipity has begun! Again! Yes, that’s a few good months to go until #JumpIntoJune hopefully kicks off again. But as I was saying in my previous post, sometimes a fabric + a pattern just equal love, and you have to go for it! And I do love my jumpsuits, and as a matter of fact, my culottes too!

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Sheath dress in embossed scuba | Seamwork Ida

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You know how sometimes you’ve had a piece of fabric in your stash for a while and then you see a pattern and they were just meant to go together? This is what happened in this case. I was browsing the Seamwork website just before Christmas, as I had some credit to spend and I saw Ida. She really spoke to me, and then I remembered that I had this piece of embossed scuba in my stash, so the decision to get it was a no brainer. And it turns out to be such a quick make that a few days later, it was ready to wear during the Christmas party season!

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An off shoulder tunic in navy taffeta | Hot Patterns Metropolitan Urban Gypsy Blouse

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Hey guys, look who’s back?

Not sure if you’ve noticed, but it’s been a bit quiet on the blog lately. We have actually been closed for holidays, and if you follow me on Twitter or Instagram, you would have seen some pics from South Africa popping up. And of course, I was not organised enough to schedule any posts while I was away, so you got radio silence.

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How I take pictures for my sewing blog

 

In my previous post on things I have learned since I started my sewing blog in 2014, I ran out of time (and word count) to cover all the topics I wanted to share. I previously covered my experiences with setting up the blog and WordPress, choosing your look & feel, logos & design and blog planning.

In this post, I want to talk about photography and imagery, how I take the pictures for the blog and a few things I learned along the way.

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Comfy and stylish asymmetric winter tunic | Vogue V9186 (hacked)

The Brits talk about the weather ALL.THE.TIME! This may be a stereotype, but it’s nonetheless, true. And before I moved here, I could not for the life of me understand why. But, after years of dealing with the mad, sad, bad, unpredictable English weather, I talk, and think, and worry about the weather as much as the next person.

So, of course, my wardrobe (and especially my newly crafted handmade wardrobe), needs to adapt and reflect my new meteorological reality. True, in Romania, we get -10 and even -20 degrees (that’s Celsius), but you just pull out the one mega thick jumper and moon boots for those few days, and then you’re back to your stylish regular schedule. Well, here, it’s never that easy. It’s never super cold so you can bring out the heavy artillery, but neither is warm enough for just a top or dress.

So, the question is, what do you wear when the temperature is neither here nor there?

Let me introduce the snuggly tunic with a stylish twist. We’ve got asymmetry, turtleneck and pockets! Nuff said!

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Top 5 Misses of 2016

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I’m sat on the sofa looking at our beautiful Christmas tree and nursing a blasted lurgy – trust me to be perfectly healthy all year and manage to come down with something while I actually have some time off to enjoy myself… Anyhow, I can’t really contribute to food preparations, and my husband ordered rest so I can be well tomorrow. So here I am, writing blog posts. In case you were wondering…

I’m continuing with the Top 5 series (see my Hits here). Again, thanks to Gillian from Crafting a Rainbow for hosting this series for a 5th year in a row.

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Top 5 Best Makes of 2016

#sewintop5 Hits

For the first time this year, I’m taking part in Gillian’s (craftingarainbow.wordpress.com) #sewingtop5. The rules are simple, just post your recaps on your blog, IG or other social media and use the hashtag during December 2016. Gillian is doing a round-up on her blog, so be sure to ping back.

I’m starting, as you do, with the hits, i.e most loved or most worn items I’ve made this year.

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An unstructured wool coat |Butterick B6244

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I know I’m being controversial, but I’m close to being fed up with Christmas with 3 weeks to go. Which is why I am a bit in two minds about this project. I do feel a bit Santa Claus-y all wrapped up in this big piece of red wool. And that is definitely not a look I’m going for here. But it was quick and easy to make, it’s fairly warm AND the fabric was from Oxfam, nuff said! Too bad I don’t get to wear it until spring, this is definitely not a winter coat, my friends!  (more…)

80s throw-back culottes |Simplicity 3135

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You have no idea how happy it makes me to finally write a post that’s about something I actually made! This is a very long overdue one, that I only just managed to photograph now. I’m telling you, sewing is a breeze, is the taking pictures that’s the killer! So really glad they are making an appearance on the blog at last.

As you might have seen here, I do love my culottes this year! I actually made this particular project in spring, but the weather got really warm before I got a chance to document them. They are really warm, so out they come again in this chilly weather we’ve been having in London. But I did get to wear them loads, so happy to report on how they fared in user tests as well.

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Art, science & tools for sewing blogging: Part 1 – Starting a blog

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WordPress reliably informed me that this is post number 100 on Sewrendipity!

As a relatively novice blogger, it was a steep learning curve for me, with so many things to figure out in areas that were completely unfamiliar. Probably more experienced bloggers (sewing or otherwise) will have more words of wisdom and tried and tested methods, but sometimes, if you’re a newbie, it might be easier to talk to other newbies, or at least to those who went through these things not so long ago. So here are my two pennies’ worth and a few of the tips and tools I picked up writing my 100 posts!

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Autumn is coming – Cardigan edition (Burda Style 10/2014 #102)

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Guys, it’s official, Autumn is here, so bring one the cosy sewing! Which is exactly what I did last week, with a nice wardrobe staple that’s definitely missing from mine. I think I’m going through a navy phase, as everything I’m sewing lately is in shades and variations of this colour. On the plus side, I am keeping to my colour palette, which I will tell you more about in a future post, which has navy as a main component. On the down side, navy is so difficult to photograph, so I hope these pictures will make sense at all.

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A little bit of Addison

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Hey sewing guys and gals, looks like I skipped a week, but back with sewing goodies! I’ve been doing almost nothing other than sewing this weekend, so I will have plenty to entertain you in the following weeks.

Let’s get the show started with a little Addison top from Seamwork Mag. I have been lusting over some of their patterns for a while, but it was Addison that made me take the plunge and actually subscribe (that and the offer they had for Seamwork Radio podcast listeners). If you’re not familiar with it, Seamwork is an online magazine from the team at Colette patterns, which also offers two free patterns to download every month with their subscription. You can always go through the back catalogue and choose any pattern you want, so I chose the new Addison and the Astoria, which I haven’t made yet.

Anyhow, to Addison!

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Asymmetrical navy fun with Vogue V9186

I’m the first to admit that I have been pretty ropey on the blogging version of sew & tell lately. That’s because I haven’t actually had loads to share. But boy, have I got a great one for you today (even if I do say so myself)! I absolutely love this funky little number, which is a very unusual twist on a nautical theme.
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My first fully lined jacket

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July has been heavy on the sewing but unfortunately, a tad light on the finished garments front. That is because I was working on a more complicated unselfish sewing project, which was full of firsts for me, so I had quite a big learning curve to deal with, plus a very active social life, which didn’t help very much either. But all ended well, so I can go back to selfish sewing and some show & tell for you soon!

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Things I’ve learnt in June

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Hello, darlings, how is summer treating you? As I hope you might have noticed, I’ve taken a bit of break from blogging, partially because I was on holidays for a few weeks, and partially because I came back so relaxed that I just could not gather the willpower to get back into my regular posting. But this one is long overdue, so I thought I’d better sort it out before it’s time for the July one.

Although you wouldn’t think it from my silence, June has been quite busy on the sewing front. I didn’t have much success of actually completing stuff, other than the jersey & lace top I posted about here, but I have learned some of the best tricks & techniques I ever came across. It is all thanks to the fabulous Sara Alm and her Craftsy classes, one of which I have reviewed here and the other one soon to come.

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[Review] Mastering Construction – Zippers & Waistbands (Craftsy class)

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After a fairly productive week of sewing, I had a beautiful pair of pink culottes to show you. Unfortunately, I wore them to work on Friday and managed to spill something down the front and they were no longer blog pictures worthy. So I am changing the tactic and bringing you the review of the class that gave me some very useful tips to make said culottes.

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View from the top

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My life is full of trousers in various stages of completion at the moment. I have taken a break from jeans making with a bit of culottes making, and a break from that with a top, which I thought will be a quick make. But since we’re talking Burda Style here, of course it was anything but. However, still a nice little top to show for it, plus a really cool photo shoot on top of the Shard to delight you with.

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Pretty Bees with cherries on top

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Hi guys, what glorious weather we’ve been having! And to make everything even better, the Great British Sewing Bee is coming back on the 16th of May! That is why I have interrupted the regular scheduling (a post on my wool pin striped culotte) with a Sewing Bee related summer dress that I got to go to the park and take pics of without accessorising it with purple lips and gooseflesh.

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