Butterick 5537 | a review

 

Pattern: Butterick 5537

Fabrics: Dutch Wax print from Middlesex Textiles.

Notions: Epic [polyfil] thread.

Pattern description: Loose fitting, shawl collar dressing gown.

Pattern Sizing: Small, Medium & Large.  I made the medium.

Did it look like the photo/line drawing on the pattern once finished?:  Yes

What did you like or dislike about the pattern?: Well written pattern, with clear instructions.  Simple and straight forward.

Did I make  any pattern alterations or design changes?  No.

Would I sew it again or recommend to others?  Yes, I will definitely make it again.  Thinking of a winter weight version, may be lined with terry towelling.

Conclusion:  Great pattern and it is quick to make.  I like the sleeve turn up detail.  It's the first time i have sewn with Dutch wax fabric and I love it, pre-washing is essential to remove the stiff finish.  Used the whole 5.5m length with only a little fabric left over - the pattern say 6m.  The fabric is sold in 6 yard lengths [5.5m] and is a brilliant economic fabric in a huge array of prints.

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This is not a sponsored post, all opinion are my own.  I purchased the pattern and fabric.

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This month has been super busy work wise and I haven managed to do any sewing for myself, just a little knitting in the evenings.  With the first huge project this year I have used 2 downloadable PDF patterns from Black Snail Patterns, I don't usually make up PDF's as a rule, but these shapes were perfect starting point shape wise.  They worked out in the end, although I did give up on the instructions completely with one pattern - sometimes things just get lost in translation.  I also choose 2 other pattern companies I have never used before, Folkwear and Sense & Sensibility I bought via a brilliant pattern company called Habithat.  These patterns were brilliant and thoroughly recommend them, below are 2 sneak peeks of a s&s blouse and a hack of a Folkwear during construction.

I've had to do a lot of research for this project and dived into Downton Abbey on DVD as well as books and searching for original clothes from WW1.  The costumes on Downtown were wonderful and it has been a joy to watch again.  I visited the Imperial War Museum for the first time and spent a day looking at the collections and in the research library, the V&A collection was also a huge inspiration and a place I love to spend time.

images: top Downton Abbey,

bottom row from the left V&A collection, Downton Abbey & vintage photograph.

I hope to be able to show photographs of the collection I made, the actors start rehearsing next week and I can't wait to see them in action.

 

Make Nine challenge for 2018

2018MakeNine I read about the #2018MakeNine via Rochelle over at Lucky Lucille.  If you want to see what others have picked use the hashtag #2018makenine over on on instagram.  Below are my 9 pattern choices.

Project 1, Vogue 9103 summer dress.  This dress has some nice fitting details, is easy to make and there for once fitting it done quick to make.  I am thinking view C or F as they are a good midi length.

Project 2, McCalls 6600.  A simple shirt-waister style that will be great for spring or autumn, thinking a light weight corduroy or dutch wax fabric.

Project 3, the ultimate pencil skirt.  I love this super easy and fast skirt, perfect all year round depending on the fabric.  My thoughts are heading spring/summer in a jersey, so would be a great everyday basic.

Project 4, the box shirt. A super simple shape and perfect to wear with the pencil skirt or jeans, excellent every day basic for spring, summer & autumn.

Project 5, the holiday shirt & top.  Another Maker's Atelier pattern, again super easy to wear and would cover spring, summer & autumn.

Project 6, simplicity 8014.  A shirt dress that made me think of Kirstie Allsopp and Samantha Sung, although a little more streamlined around the waist.  Again this has good options for wearing all year round, depending on the fabric I use.

Project 7, the Nell shirt.  I have been wanting to make this shirt and even have the fabric ready!  A dear friend gave me around 5 metres of a very beautiful white window pane cotton shirting.  This would be lovely for spring, although a perfect all year staple.

Project 8, simplicity 1059.  Thinking about what I need in my wardrobe, I need a couple of more formal dresses and thought this would be lovely in a silk.

Project 9, simplicity 8013.  Again this is another evening dress, have seen a few versions made and adored Marcy Harriell version.

I don't have a fabric stash to raid, so will be buying fabrics as I go along.  Have a rough order to work though, the maker's atelier patterns and a shirt dress I'd like to have done by June for my holiday.  One more dressy dress for May.  I'll be posting my progress here and over in instagram with the #2018makenine and I'm @cloth_scissors_thread

Slow fashion October

roald dahl

October is #slowfashionoctober

Slow fashion is the deliberate choice to buy better-quality items less often. When purchases are made, they’re environmentally and ethically conscious rather than trend-driven. The garments are durable and lend themselves to repairs, not disposal. Slow fashion is also transparent: Buyers know where their clothes are coming from, and items are often handmade by artisans.

Consider it the “farm to table” of the fashion world.

source

I have been concerned for a long time about the ethics of fast fashion, firstly my concern over the sprays used on crops and pollutants pumped into the water, secondly the people who make them, especially after the Rana Plaza disaster brought the horrific working conditions to light.  During the summer after being made redundant I took a course called 'who made my clothes', this helped teach me how to discover exactly who had made my clothes and also where the fabrics came from.  It brought up some interesting issues and also challenged those of us who took the course to do research and share what we found.  Some of the companies I wrote to were brilliant, Community Clothing for instance could tell me where the denim fabric came from and the factory who made it.  Me and Em were able to tell me what country the item was made in and the country of origin of the yarns used, Uniqlo didn't respond to any emails, facebook or twitter questions.

image top left from Ray Stitch and bottom Celia Pym

I have been passionate about buying British quality products for may years and this has now started to become easier, making my own clothes as well helped - slowing consumption.  Although when buying fabrics, it is the fabric content that lead me, be that wool, cotton, linen or mixed fibres.  Thinking cotton was better than viscose or another man-made fibre, not thinking of who grew the fibres, processed them etc.

Slow-fashion-October-weeks

My goal for this month is to repair and darn a few things, replace a zip in a pair of jeans for my daughter - maybe even teach her how to!  Having said that I've never replaced a zip in a pair of jeans.  Go though my wardrobe and if I've not worn something, see if it can be altered so I will wear it or donate to charity.  I also have an idea to make a few things, work load dependant.

Are you going to take part in #slowfashionoctober ?  If you'd like to read more about it, pop over to Fringe Association and not just a label.  If you'd like to learn more about slow fashion and more about the impact of fast fashion on people and out planet there are some good resources, this film by Thread is worth watching, as is The true cost.

wash bag - a little jungle fun

At the festival of Quilts in August, my daughter fell in love with this adorable quilting cotton at the Sew Hot stand.  So while buying some outback wife barkcloth for a dress for me, we bought a fat quarter of Bwindi Forest Moutain gorilla in green designed by Katy Tanis for Blend fabrics.  Miss T had decided she wanted a washbag for a university field trip, it needed to have a water proof lining and be large enough to hold all her lotions and potions.  After some thought she drew a shape and asked me to make it, initally I made a calico toile, added a 3 inch gusset and enlarged the shape by 2 inches all around.  This proved to be massive and I cut the inclease to 1 inch - inches easier as I am waiting for my new reading specs to arrive!

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I used a water proof fabric I had from my old job, after we cleared the studio - no idea what it is - would have been used to make snow boarding clothes many years ago.  To begin with I quilted the whole fat quarter quite heaverly and then cut out my pieces.  The gusset was cut and I inserted the zip before constructing the bag.  The lining as handsewn in afterwards, as I found that the quickest and easiest way.

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Delighted with how it worked and Ms T loves it.