Thursday, 20 July 2017

Pattern testers wanted

Hello lovely sewing peeps. I'm looking for a number of sewists to test some new children's wear sewing patterns. Have a read of all the details, and if you'd like to apply please complete the sign-up form by 31st July. Everyone who completes a test will receive a free pattern and be entered into a prize draw to win some sewing goodies.

This is how is works:
  1. Choose a pattern and size that you'd like to test (full list below).
  2. Complete the sign-up form by 31st July
  3. If selected, you will receive 2 PDFs by email on 5th August - one will be the pattern and the other will be the instructions.
  4. You will need to print the pattern pieces and join them together. The instructions can either be printed or read from a computer or tablet.
  5. You will need to supply the materials to make the pattern. Most of the patterns only require a small quantity of fabric, so can usually be made from leftover remnants. You will receive the materials list in advance of the pattern.
  6. You will have up to 3 weeks to make the pattern (less then this is fine too!). Please take photos, notes or scribble feedback on the pattern pieces/instructions as you go.
  7. You will be sent a short questionnaire by email. Please fill this in by 26th August to be entered into the prize draw. You can also email photos and/or scans of any handwritten notes.
  8. All questionnaires received by 26th August will be put into a draw to WIN a tote bag filled with dressmaking goodies (see prize details below).
  9. All pattern testers will be contacted when the patterns are released for sale to choose ONE FREE PATTERN. This can either be to the final version of the pattern you tested, or one of the others.
  10. I will be eternally grateful for your time and feedback.

Girls skirt (beginner friendly)
12-18 months
18-24 months
2-3 yrs
3-4 yrs
4-5 yrs
6 yrs
7 yrs
8 yrs

Personalised apron (beginner friendly)
XS (2-3 yrs)
S (4-5 yrs)
M (6-7 yrs)
L (8-10 yrs)

Girls dress (intermediate)
12 months
2 yrs
3 yrs
4 yrs
5 yrs
6 yrs

Girls/boys pyjamas (intermediate)
2 yrs
3 yrs
4 yrs
5 yrs
6 yrs


Tote bag
Copy of Simply Sewing magazine (latest issue)
5 sewing patterns
3m fabric
Bundle fat quarters
2 bobbins of ribbon
Pin wheel
Cath Kidston button factory kit

Looking forward to hearing from you! Good luck.

Alice x  

Saturday, 15 July 2017

Lullaby layette baby clothes


For the last few weeks I've been working on this gorgeous Lullaby Layette from Oliver+S for my soon-to-be-born niece or nephew. I've loved making this pattern and can't wait to wrap it all up in tissue paper and a beautiful gift bag for the new parents.


This is the Lullaby Layette from Oliver+S. It includes trousers, bodysuit, shirt and reversible jacket in sizes from 0-3 months up to 18-24 months. I downloaded the PDF pattern, which is definitely less sticking than an adult pattern! As it's a US pattern all the measurements are imperial, which takes a bit of translating. On the whole it's a great pattern. The shirt placket instructions made my brain hurt a little, but I got there in the end! I made the 3-6 months size, thinking ahead to an outfit suitable for the autumn.



The jacket is so simple and comes together brilliantly. Pay close attention to the instructions, and don't be tempted to shortcut any of the bias binding steps. I love the fact that it's reversible and the poppers make it really practical too. I combined stretch and non-stretch fabrics, which worked really well. I was originally going to go for a navy bias binding, but I'm glad I went for grey in the end. I think it gives a nice balance.


Again, this is a super simple pattern. I love the way they're constructed, and there's plenty of room for a nappy bum! I changed the pockets from the pattern and lined them with the Liberty tana lawn. To do that I cut two pocket pieces and joined them right sides together. I traced the final pocket placement shape from the pattern onto the fabric to guide where to sew. I sewed round leaving a gap to turn them through. Then I trimmed using pinking shears to reduce the bulk. I turned them through, pressed, and topstitched along the top of the pocket. I then attached them to the trousers as the pattern instructions. I really like the detail of lined pockets.


This is probably the trickier pattern, but so lovely to make. You create a pleat in the back and then underneath the placket at the front, which makes it nice and loose fitting. The placket takes time and brain power, but just read the instructions carefully and it works. Make sure you press at every stage to keep it all accurate and neat. I really love this pattern and will be making more for baby gifts I'm sure. Perfect for using small pieces of leftover Liberty fabric.


This is basically the same pattern as the shirt, but with an extension for the poppers. I had originally intended to make a jersey bodysuit with tana lawn contrast placket, but when I started making it I realised the placket fabric went on the inside, so it was all back-to-front! I have thought about swapping it all round to get the contrast placket on the outside, but then I ran out of time and patience. But I reckon this is a complete outfit without the bodysuit, right?! I do have all the materials, so may well tackle it again before too long.

So, baby layette present all finished and waiting to be gifted. Just waiting for baby news now :-)

Happy sewing,
Alice x