Earlier this year I made one of my cute clutch bags for a friend's birthday. On a night out, a friend of hers happened to see and loved it. As a result, she has asked me to contribute to her arts and crafts website that is launching in October (I'll make sure to post a link once it's live).

I'm so flattered to have been asked and I'm excited to crack on! It's also an opportunity to see if there's any money to be made and it also gives me  plenty of motivation to make stuff on a regular basis, which is no mean feat when you're holding down a full time job!

Apart from the clutch bags,  she is also interested in selling my 1940s inspired aprons and felt rose broaches.

I've also been experimenting with small tote bags (again from Pip Lincolne's Meet me at Mike's) and here is the result:


On Sunday I dove straight into my pattern stash and picked out my new project – Simplicity 1598. I have so many beautiful vintage patterns, but I think I've been too afraid to use them and expose my sewing inexperience. So in an attempt to cast my self-doubt aside (which mostly has to do with the fitting side of garment-making), I cut out my pattern and can't wait to get stuck in.

I've chosen to make the body of the dress in a black cotton with a slightly stretchy feel. Although you can't see the detail in the picture, the black fabric has small raised polka dots on it. For the sleeves I chose a chintzy looking flowery cotton (a £2 sheet from a charity shop) for a vintage feel. Hope it turns out well!

After my hideously long sewing hiatus, I have finally completed my 1940s Advance 'Buttons and Bows' apron...minus the buttons and bows. I do intend to add them to the apron, but it's so pretty as it is and I thought I'd snap some pictures while the weather is nice.

This was my first Ric Rac encounter, not sure I'm in love with the stuff, but I did love working with Broderie Anglaise. The biggest surprise was how intricate and fiddly the pockets were to make, but they are super smart. Likewise, pretty much every hem required turning up and stitching which was annoying, but well worth the neat end product.

I think it would be easy to go a bit crazy with the many different variations you can have of this apron...that's Birthday and Xmas gifts sorted then!

With my Vogue 5510 firmly on the back burner after deciding I need some distance before tackling the severe fitting issues I'm having, I'm giving something new a go!

I'm so excited about this super cute Advance Buttons and Bows apron and I really hope it comes out well. In the meantime, I thought I'd share a little sneak peak...how do you like the little pockets?

And the winners of my pattern giveaway are...

Amy - Simplicity 2967

Laura - Simplicity 7672

It would be great to see pictures of your dresses sometime!

Thanks to everyone who left a message and a big sorry to those who didn't win...maybe next time!?!
July has been a super busy month for me, leaving no time at all for sewing or blogging...which makes me sad. I thought I'd at least kick off August with good intentions, by jumping on the pattern-giveaway-band-wagon.

My first ever giveaway has a 1960s flavour and all you have to do is leave a comment letting me know why you want either or both of the below patterns. I will choose a winner randomly and I'm happy to post anywhere in the world, though it may take a while to reach you! The winner will be announced next Wednesday (11 August), so please check back and leave your email address if you've won.

Simplicity 7672

This pattern is a size 10 (bust 32.5, waist 24, hip 34.5), but you must be warned that sadly it's missing pattern piece E, which is the sleeve. If you feel confident that you can draft a sleeve from scratch, then please go ahead and 'bid'. The rest of the pieces and instruction sheet are in excellent condition. You might also be interested to know that this pattern gave birth to my Sinister Dress, but please don't let that put you off! I'm sure you can do so much better than me!

Simplicity 2967

I think this one is a 1960s repro and it's brand new and unused. It covers sizes 6-14 (UK) or: bust 30.5–36, waist 23-28, hip 32.5-38. 

In other news, I'm really struggling with Vogue 5510! The bodice is really saggy and I'm finding hard to 'fix' because the pattern called for a side zipper. I think I'm going to have to take the side zipper out and place it in the back. That should make it easier to take in the sides and adjust the bodice...or is that wishful thinking?! If anyone has any hints or tips, please do share...