Cutting it short 

I love the Named Clothing Inari dress I made at Easter, so I followed up with a totally un-customised, straight from the pattern Inari Tee.

It’s in Nani Iro double gauze with lovely pearlescent dots which I got (for free! First competition I’ve ever won, and the most I’ve ever wanted to win sonething) from Miss Matatabi (much more from this generous haul to follow).

I love it, it’s great with my high waisted skirts and smart trousers at the office; but at the same time it’s too short to wear casually unless I get / make some high waisted jeans. So I’m going to make more of these, but a bit longer. Watch this space!

Educating Reeta

I cut this dress out way back in April and quickly got it about three-quarter done. But then my Masters exam started looming so it was put aside. Last week, I did my exam, and a few hours of the bank holiday weekend were fruitfully directed towards completing this glorious garment. 

It’s a Named Clothing Reeta dress, in Nani Iro linen which I bought with some reward vouchers from work at John Lewis. I’m pretty delighted that John Lewis has started to stock Nani Iro. 

And this dress! It’s so stunning! I’m in love. The weather has been humid and hot and this dress has been a godsend. I love the length, the comfiness, the way it flows about my legs. It’s the perfect summer dress. 

Blooming

My two sewing passions right now are Nani Iro fabrics and Named Clothing patterns. 

I bought the pattern for the ubiquitous Named Clothing Inari Tee at the new Ray-Stitch shop a few months back. I want to make at least half a dozen of these tees in Nani Iro double gauze for my summer work wardrobe, but first – a dress! 

I added a gathered skirt. In my usual way with these Japanese fabrics, I just used the full width (selvedge to selvedge) to avoid raw edges. It’s such narrow fabric that it just makes sense. 

The fabric was from one of my favourite online shops, M is for Make. 

Snowdrops in September 

I was totally smitten with Named Clothing’s new collection when it recently launched, in particular the Tuuli dress. I’d actually been scouring the Internet for a pattern like the Tuuli for a few months, to dressify some stunning jersey (print: my beloved Hesketh) I had picked up in the summer at the Liberty sale. 

I took a day off and set to dressmaking! 

I just love this dress. It’s so comfortable and gorgeous and soft and fine, and moves like a dream. But I really do need to get a better sewing machine. Even just having a straight stretch stitch would be a huge improvement. 

Sweating it

A year ago, I made a sweatshirt in delicious fluffy-backed liberty sweatshirt fabric in one of my favourite prints, Hesketh. I’d self-drafted it based on my very first self-drafted sweatshirt, which sadly shrank lengthwise by about 6 inches the first time it was ever washed. It’s now a mainstay of my winter pyjamas, but nonetheless, tragic. 

So I carefully pre-washed my fabric and cut a new sweatshirt out of the Hesketh. And… It was still pretty tragic! The fabric this time stretched, so it was falling off my shoulders and the sleeves drowning my already apeishly long arms. I wore it on weekends sometimes, but generally just felt bad about it whenever I looked at it.  

Thankfully, its  enormity gave me a bit of wriggle room. I sliced it apart at the seams this weekend and managed to salvage the front and back pieces, and then miraculously had enough left over for new sleeves, cuffs, neckband and waistband. I recut it into a slightly modified (wider neck!) Apollon sweatshirt, my first experience of French I AM Patterns

I’m delighted! Its such a relief that it’s wearable now, and just in time for autumn. 

The pattern itself was a bit dodgy – firstly, my printer only printed some of the lines (!), and secondly, even on screen there were no notches to tell the front from the back of the sleeves. Anyway, it all came together and I’m very grateful for this pattern having rescued what seemed like a lost-cause project. 

As a basic, quick pattern, it’s brilliant. I like the set-in sleeves much more than the raglan sleeves of the Linden sweatshirt I made many moons ago (and have since given to a friend… Raglan sleeves and I don’t mix), and I look forward to making more. 

One sweatshirt clearly wasn’t enough, so on the same day I also whipped up another Named Clothing Sloane sweatshirt. This one’s in the same Liberty fleece, the print is apparently called Poppytot. I got 3m as a half price remnant at Liberty last winter. Hopefully still enough left to make my mum a dress. 

The Sloane sweatshirt remains a perfect pattern. The darts make it just a bit sophisticated. I’ve just printed out the Tuuli pattern from Named Clothing’s new range and I have very high hopes (watch this space). 

Troubled waters

It’s been a pretty grim couple of weeks in the UK. Rain, politics, and work have been a bit unrelenting.

However, I did find time last week to start mentally preparing myself to sail away from all these tempests (on holiday!), staying up late one night to convert a recent gem from the Liberty summer sale into a fantastic Sloane sweatshirt from Named Clothing.

I’ve only made one other Named thing – my Leini dress – but it got me a bit hooked. The Sloane sweatshirt is every bit as good – elegant, comfortable and easily wearable. I actually wore it to work this week  without criticism.

Llama time

I feel like using a pompous statement today: it is a truth universally acknowledged that bank holidays were made for sewing.

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I made two things on the bank holiday weekend, the second of which was this gorgeous Leini dress from Named Clothing in llama-donkey-pig lawn. I love it!

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It was the first pattern I’d made from Named, but the construction, style and fit are great so I think I’ll look into others.

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I’ve been hoarding the fabric for over a year. I had two metres but it wasn’t quite enough – there’s a seam up the centre back of the bodice and one of these back bodice panels is upside down. Still, you really can’t tell and it means I have a few potentially useable scraps left over.
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