June: clothes-making and flower garlands


So it’s been a while…

May took an incredibly busy turn and just seemed to fly past. As well as going full steam ahead with my beginner crochet workshops, I’ve been busily preparing and making for my up-and-coming fairs in July; and, on top of that, I finally gave dressmaking a go!

Inspired by the Sewing Bee and the Me Made May challenge that I spoke about here, most of May (when I wasn’t crocheting) was spent researching and learning about the basic dressmaking techniques and construction processes. As it turns out, just one month isn’t enough time to achieve all my dressmaking dreams, it takes so much planning and practice pieces before you feel ready to move onto the real deal. I did however stay true to my pledge and wore as many handmade items as I could at work, including the two skirts I proudly made last summer.

Being self-taught is always challenging not only in regards to understanding the techniques but also in terms of talking yourself out of your fear and self-doubt about ruining nice and expensive piece of fabric and instead into believing in yourself and (in Shia LaBeouf’s words) just doing it. So that’s how June began for me. With a fresh month came a fresh attitude and in the end I just told myself to get stuck in and have a go!

So far I’ve made:

  • Two pairs of pajama bottoms (one for myself and one for a friend’s birthday which definitely gave me the kick up the bum I needed to start the darn thing). I made both of these pj’s from some lovely Jersey fabric from the shop I work in. It’s a stretchy and comfy fabric so ideal for this project. I didn’t use a pattern per se but instead made them from a leg piece of my sister’s old pj’s which were unpicked and laid flat to create a template. I cut around this piece and then flipped it over to to create the other leg piece. As there were only two pieces involved it was quite achievable for a clothes-making novice like me but I was still so proud of my finished make!
  • A dress with a gathered skirt which I made from my own measurements. I took inspiration from this Pineneedle Collective blogpost on how to make a your own dress.
  • A t-shirt that I made with my friend based on a t-shirt he already had. Again we didn’t use a pattern, we just cut around the existing t-shirt with an added seam allowance. The style was very boxy and had grown on sleeves (a term I learnt from Sewing Bee the other week!) so again it only involved two pieces sewn together. Still, we think it came out really well and are both pleased as punch!

I have plans to make:

  • My dream pinafore dress (see my pinafore inspiration post here)
  • A pair of tapered jersey fabric trousers for a friend’s very belated birthday present (I’ve already bought the fabric, it’s just a case of finding the time…)
  • More dresses (of course!)
  • Tilly and the Buttons Francoise and Coco dresses (anything by Tilly really… all her projects are so lovely!)

I have a Pinterest board completely dedicated to ideas I’d love to try out if you’re interested in seeing you can look here.

At the risk of this blog completely betraying it’s roots, I’d like to finish off this post by talking about my current crochet workshop’s: Flower Garlands! I’ve been very excited to move onto this next class as I really enjoy sitting and making flowers myself and garlands have a tendency to cheer up any thing they adorn. They are quick, easy and so open to variations, the possibilities are endless!

After my beginner workshops in May, which taught the absolute crochet basics, I needed a project that offered something that was easy but that could still be a challenge to those really savvy beginner-crocheters. I had my first flower garland workshop yesterday in the beautiful setting of Sulby Glen on the Isle of Man and it was an absolute blast! The basic flower pattern used a simple picot-edging to create the petals so it lent itself well to changes. Between us we came up with a fair few which I’ll showcase below. In a future post I’ll show you how to make a picot-edged flower garland with all the variations so look out for that!


In the meantime I hope you all had a lovely weekend! YG x





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