Inspector Gadget Strikes Again…A Roundup of my Latest Fave Sewing Tools, Gadgets & Gizmos!

It probably won’t surprise you when I say I really believe the right tools and gadgets make a huge difference to my sewing projects; whether it simplifies a process, neatens an outcome or just makes me smile in using it. So I thought I’d share a collection of the latest gizmos to have quickly become indispensable to my sewing kit. Who knows, something here may catch your eye! They’d all make great Christmas Stocking fillers; just sayin’.

First up, I’ve got this funky little acrylic sleeve placket template from LunaGrafix.com’s Etsy Store. If you’ve sewn sleeve plackets before, like me, you may also find the trickiest part is actually marking your fabric pieces sufficiently. There’s a lot of marks to transfer (fold lines, notches, slash mark etc). This nifty little tool, designed to produce a 1″ wide placket, has cut-outs in all the right places to make pattern transferring that much easier. I’d also imagine this is really handy if you’d like to add a placket to a sleeve that isn’t drafted with them. As a caveat, I will say that this template is obviously of a fixed average size…and it may be bigger (or smaller!) than you want; however, I still think it’s useful for transferring those pesky markings!

It comes with an illustrated instruction booklet or see Inside The Hem’s vlog on how to use it here.

Next up we have what I think is one of the handiest little tools, perfect to pop into your bag when out fabric shopping or if you’re wanting to check your stashed fabric meets the stretch requirements of your pattern, I’m talking about the … Read More

The Mystery Blogger Award : Your Questions Answered!

You may have seen posts on this ‘Mystery Blogger Award’ popping up in your feed; it’s basically an awesome shout out and works like this – a blogger nominates a number of their favourite bloggers and asks them to answer some questions they pose. In doing so, the recipient must then nominate some fellow bloggers and pay the Award forward. I was nominated by some pretty awesome sewing bloggers who asked some really interesting questions! An opportunity to thank them and pay the award forward, as well as answering their questions, meant no way could I pass this one by!

So, what is the award exactly?

“The Mystery Blogger Award is an award for amazing bloggers with ingenious posts. Their blog not only captivates, it inspires and motivates. They are one of the best out there, and they deserve every recognition they get. This award is also for bloggers who find fun and inspiration in blogging and they do it with so much love and passion.” Created by : Dkoto Enigma

What a lovely gesture!

Colourful canvas sueFirstly, I was nominated by the titian haired goddess that is Sue (A Colourful Canvas). I adore her blog, she’s an engaging writer and always has something interesting to say, and show, with her fabulous creations.

The questions Sue posed are: Read More

The winners of #sewtogetherforsummer 2018!

Hi All!

A massive thank you to all who took part in this years’ #sewtogetherforsummer challenge; an astonishing 450+ dresses were completed and submitted by the deadline date. Once again, myself @SewSarahSmith, Suzy @Sewing_in_Spain and Monika @rocco.sienna were absolutely delighted with your boundless enthusiasm and creativity!

Whilst checking the entries to put in the Prize Hat for drawing the winners, it became clear that particular pattern companies and certain wrap dress patterns were extremely popular for this years’ Challenge. So, before we jump into revealing the winning entries later on in this post, I thought it might be interesting to analyse what those favourites are… Read More

#sewtogetherforsummer 2018! Sewing a Wrap Dress for summer? We’ve got you covered!

It seems strange that I’m actually typing this up as the last of the recent snows finally melts away but snow be damned; it’s officially spring and I’m getting tired of sewing Winter Warmers so let’s talk about … sewing together for Summer!

Myself @sewsarahsmith, Suzy @sewing_in_spain and Monika @rocco.sienna have been putting out little teasers across our Instagram feeds recently and we’re so happy to finally be able to share:

Thinking of sewing a Wrap Dress for Summer? Good, we’ve got you covered!

The #sewtogetherforsummer Instagram Sewing Challenge is back!

2018 brings you a host of pattern and fabric discounts (see below) and a HUGE array of sponsored gifts!

We’re running the Challenge on exactly the same principles as before; again the aim is to encourage sewists of all levels to take part; to share your knowledge with others or taking the opportunity to learn new skills and techniques, i.e. to sewcialise and to make yourself a great wrap dress into the bargain!

The ‘rules’ (for want of a better word) are:

  1. Pick a wrap dress pattern. That’s any pattern in any fabric (woven or knit). Perhaps you’ve got the pattern or fabric in your stash already or use the discount codes given below to go shopping!
  2. Follow us on Instagram; that’s myself, Sarah @sewsarahsmith, Monika @rocco.sienna and Suzy @sewing_in_spain to make sure you don’t miss anything as we’ll be sharing hosting responsibilities;
  3. post your newly sewn dress to Instagram with the hashtag #sewtogetherforsummer Please also tag your post with our three Instagram @ to make sure that no entry gets missed! We want to see every single one!
  4. before the Closing Date of 21st June 2018
  5. Thats it!

Participating in the Challenge gives you:

  • Discounts on several major Indie wrap dress sewing patterns;
  • Fabric discounts;
  • Support;
  • Inspiration;
  • the opportunity to potentially share in the huge pile of sponsored sewing gifts! (You can read the full list HERE!) As last year, the lucky recipients will be entirely chosen at random, this is not a competition;
  • and by no means least, a beautiful wrap dress!

So why the Wrap Dress?

It’s an iconic and classic garment that’s been reinterpreted again and again; there’s such a diverse and fantastic range of wrap dress sewing patterns out there (and we’ve got loads of pattern and fabric inspo coming your way!) But that doesn’t mean sewing a wrap dress is without its challenges; getting a good fit at the crossover front (or back!), choosing the right style for your shape, potential issues working with knits or fine floaty wovens; doing an FBA/SBA on a Wrap Bodice piece etc … but we can conquer any issues by sewing it together!

So, for the Challenge, what constitutes a wrap dress?

A wrap dress should have a front or back closure formed by wrapping one side over the other and knotting the attached ties or fastening buttons. It should not have a zip. We will also accept faux wrap dresses which cross at the front and are slipped over the head.

We will not accept dresses that cross on the skirt but not the bodice.

Yes, the Kielo counts! In fact we’ve got a discount code for it!

Your Discount Codes: please be mindful of the expiry dates, so you don’t miss out! (Click on the graphics for direct links)

Watch this space – there’s lots planned – see HERE for the details of our Sponsors and the full list of gifts!Helen of Helen’s Closet has picked her top Indie wrap dress patterns, Caroline of Blackbird Fabrics will be discussing fabrics; we’ll be looking at wrap dress patterns from Burda and The Big 4 Pattern houses, sharing resources and running a wrap dress Q&A ‘hints and tips’ session over on Instagram – we’d love your input – so as to collate and share the feedback here.

So, you in? Good, let’s ‘sew together!’

Sewcialise with me on Instagram here x

All Sewn Up : Jan-Feb … a bit of a ‘Life Lately’

Hello sewing friends, thanks for dropping by. I could do with a chat!

Although fully intending to, I haven’t written one of these ‘All Sewn Up’ diary style blog posts in a while. My life has been subject to some…flux…lately and I found myself unable to find the words with which to contextualise my sewing, so I dropped them for a while whilst I tried to process what was going on… Read More