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Simplicity 1369 skirt pattern

Happy New Year, dear readers! Hope your break was relaxing. I spent quite a bit of time at the sewing machine over the Christmas break, testing out various patterns.

Below is a skirt I made using Simplicity 1369, View ‘E’ with 2.5 inches added to the length. It took me a while to get the sizing right, as usual the pattern size was too big (by a whopping 8cm!), despite making the skirt to the correct measurements, it sat too low and loose. The “ease” allowed for in the finished garment was just too much. It wasn’t difficult to alter, but it did add unwanted time to the whole process.

A couple of “firsts” for me using this pattern – my first ever pockets! The pockets were so easy to add, and cleverly hidden in the design. It was also my first attempt at interlining, which I had initially thought would be a daunting process. The fabric was too sheer, so I basted a light cotton to my pieces, then assembled as normal. It worked out really well, the only down side was the added time in making the skirt. Combined with the alterations, it took twice as long as it should have. But, now I have some new skills under my belt, so future skirts and dresses will be much quicker and easier. I’ll definitely be using this pattern again, but with a smarter fabric choice and the right size!

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DIY Christmas tote

Five days till Christmas, just enough time to whip up a little Christmas tote! One lucky recipient of my book did exactly that, taking the ‘Spare Pair of Shoes Tote’ and converting it into a Christmas sack for someone special, simply by choosing a festive combination of fabrics and embellishing it with her own designs.

Below is the original project, and Judy’s Christmas sack. Very clever, well done Judy! May it bring much joy and happiness to Indie this Christmas.

I’ve also included the instructions for you, should you wish to make your own (click the image to enlarge). Please send me a photo if you do, I’d love to see your creation!

Merry Christmas everyone!

Kitty x

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Dress Pattern – New Look 6723

If you can see past the gaudy fabric and the creases, this dress pattern from New Look is really very good. I bought this fabric online after seeing it in a catalogue. It looked beautiful in print, muted pinks and blue…a lovely combination, I thought. Until I opened the delivery, only to have my retinas burnt by the flourescent pink blooms. A lesson for all of us…unless you’re sure about how the fabric will look in the flesh, don’t do it.

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But never one to let things go to waste, I used it to test out New Look’s 6723 dress pattern. It took me a good 5 hours to make this, though I did skim over instructions in parts, resulting in a little bit of unpicking. Another lesson: always read the instructions! The bodice is lined and the whole dress was easy to assemble. The pattern offers alterations for sizing variations, for example size 10 across the bust and size 8 across the waist. I made the complete dress in size 10, but for the next one I’ll take the waist down to an 8 for a better fit. No changes required to the length, and the dress looks just as it does on the pattern envelope. Many more of these (in nicer fabric) to come!

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