Sooooo...the boy and I are in the process of buying our first house...and reality has started to sink in! Among all the excitement, it has dawned on me that my rather large sewing stash (which has grown further since that post) is in need of a crash diet! I know that moving from a flat to a house equals more space, but I really want to take this opportunity to 'start afresh' by having a bit of a clear out.

I'm giving plenty away to charity shops, but I'm hoping that by listing some special pieces on Etsy I can quarantee they go to a good home. There's absolutely no pressure or expectations on you dear friends, but do feel free to browse my Etsy shop if any of the below take your fancy. And don't be shy to ask as many questions as you need to either.

**SOLD OUT** Vintage floral fabric - the very same I used for my Elisalex. Multiple metres available.

Another vintage, medium-weight, large-scale floral print. Multiple metres available.

 Deep blush, vintage 1950s dress fabric. Multiple metres available.

**SOLD OUT** Unique Mediterranean-print cotton lawn, as seen beautifully on Kat
Fixed number of metres available.

**SOLD OUT** Retro swimmer print cotton lawn, perfectly utilised by Jo. 
Fixed number of metres available.

**SOLD OUT** Tribal print cotton sateen, as soft as lawn - shown off wonderfully by Katy.  
Fixed number of metres available.
That's pretty much it for now, but I'll be adding more fabric and possibly some vintage sewing patterns in the coming do keep your eyes peeled. In the meantime, thanks for browsing!

The 163 comments left by you following the announcement of the return of One Pattern, Seven Bloggers don't lie! You guys are clearly as excited as us about our little challenge, so thank you so much for your enthusiasm. Before revealing our final Macarons in a week's time, today we're sharing our inspirations.

I originally had a different fabric combination picked out from my stash, but then the generous people over at Minerva Crafts got in touch and offered me any length of fabric from their extensive collection. Boy was that a hard decision to make! It actually took me a couple of days to decide, but I'm so excited about my pick. I went for a rich, autumnal-looking cotton sateen from Minerva Craft's designer range, with such a pretty abstract, watercolour-effect floral print. For the yoke, they even picked out a matching grey cotton for me...what excellent customer service!

Although I've loved the countless variations of Macaron that I've seen, tulip skirts are not flattering on my body shape...unless they are as exaggerated as the Elisalex. So I always knew I'd go for a different skirt and when I saw Dixie DIY's asymmetrical circle skirt (with handy how-to), it was love at first sight!

Finally, I'm a sucker for an interesting collar and I'm considering attempting to draft my very own Alva Collar using the Macaron's facing pieces. Wish me luck...despite my collar obsession, I've not always had the best results!

There's still plenty of time to enter our epic giveaway, which has already proven to be very popular, and do please check out what has inspired my gorgeous partners in crime:

Rachel - My Messings

**Disclaimer - I made this before my Sew Bossy disaster, so I'm not out of the woods yet!** 

I'm not going to lie, I'm smitten with my Neolithic Hawthorn Dress. So much so that as soon as it was finished I immediately cut out a second version, and guess what?!? I'm smitten with my Polka-dot Hawthorn Blouse too! 

I used some polka-dot seersucker from my stash and the gold buttons are from a blogger swap, so I guess this was a super cheap make. I know the buttons give it an 80s vibe, but I seriously love this's so sweet and retro looking!  

I've said it before and I'll say it again: this pattern is so flattering and simple to make! The collar is really special and I love the nipped in waist and body-skimming peplum. One thing I would say is that the collar can potentially get really bulky (it's three layers including the facing), so it may be worth thinking of a lighter-weight facing fabric if your fashion fabric is medium or heavyweight. Seersucker's pretty lightweight so I didn't have that problem, but I did opt for lining my facings with silk cotton rather than interfacing. That worked well for both my Hawthorns and makes them feel super luxurious too.

Once again I cut out a straight size 6 and only shortened the bodice by 1 inch. This was a perfect fit last time, but I think for the sleeved version I could do with going down to a size 4 on the sleeves and armholes. But I'm happy overall, so no major complaints here!

Please excuse my weirdly wrinkly neck (eurgh!!!), I just wanted to show off my well-fitting back bodice...

As you can probably guess, I want more Hawthorns in my life. I still have plans for a winter version in chambray and I'm dreaming of cotton lawn blouses. Have you felt like this about a pattern recently?
You've all heard of the genius initiative that is Sew Bossy, right? In case you've been living under a rock, it's the chance to buddy up with a blogger you admire and send each other a complete project kit (pattern, fabric, lining and notions) by mail. When the beautiful and multi-talented Kat of Petticoats and Peplums asked me to buddy up with her all the way from Australia, I said 'of course' as I've long admired her adorable makes and delicious-looking baked goodies.

Kat certainly delivered the goods with a cute 1960s-inspired Kwik Sew pattern along with some lovely lilac fabric and white notions to match. I was excited to make up something in a solid colour (I'm usually a sucker for prints) and you just can't go wrong with an awesome collar!

Alas, complete and avoidable disaster struck. I totally messed up and despite having already apologised to Kat profusely, I still feel I've let her and Sew Bossy down! My troubles are a combination of cramming too much in and getting cocky. Life is really busy at the moment, but I hate missing out on sewing fun, so I thought I'd be clever and skip the muslin. I've gotten away without making muslins for my last 7 makes, with only minor alterations needed, but I went one step further this time. I stupidly cut two sizes down (cutting one size down is normal for me and then I always end up taking bits in)...BIG MISTAKE!!! It obviously came out way too small and no amount of clawing back seam allowances and attempting to add extra panels worked. I butchered this good and proper and I feel ashamed for being so brazen on a collaborative project like this. I'm so sorry Kat - I hope you can forgive me and I hope I haven't just alienated an entire sewing community that may have wanted to share challenges with me in the future!

This would be a pretty depressing post if Kat hadn't agreed to me featuring her divine make instead. I sent over Butterick reproduction 5748 and a really unique Mediterranean-print cotton lawn, as well as some cotton lawn lining and a yellow, vintage zip.
And once again, Kat delivered the goods! I think you'll agree that she's done both pattern and fabric justice, she's taken as much care over the inside of the dress as she has the outside and she looks simply stunning! I'm so glad one of us pulled it out of the bag at least! Please pop over to Kat's blog for more pictures and details about the making of her dress.

As for me, I'm still mortified about how badly I messed up, but I'm grateful to Kat for being so understanding about my momentary bout of madness! It doesn't help either that Heather - one of Sew Bossy's masterminds - has paired me with Anna from paunnet in her fantasy draft pick. I'd love to oblige, but not sure I dare take the risk of disappointing any more people :o(

Have you taken part in Sew Bossy? How did you get on?
Back in 2011, I took part in a very fun challenge called One Pattern, Seven Bloggers. Two and a bit years later we've 'reunited' to have another go! I'm relieved that this time round I'm much more confident in my sewing abilities - last time I was pretty nervous about the whole thing and my finished dress wasn't up to much. 

So, what's the premise of One Pattern, Seven Bloggers?

It's pretty simple really! The seven of us are tackling the same dress pattern - the Macaron from Colette Patterns - which we can make in its true form, or adapt should we want to. We're hoping that our finished makes will showcase just how versatile any given sewing pattern can be. We also think it's interesting for people to physically see how patterns can be interpreted and to see how individual sense of style comes into play. 

We're kicking off with an epic giveaway today, followed by an inspiration post on Monday 26 August and our big reveal on Monday 2 September

Who's taking part?

Miraculously, despite the time that's elapsed, we've managed to secure exactly the same line-up as last time! Alongside little ole me, there's also:

Rachel - My Messings

Celebratory giveaway!

To celebrate One Pattern, Seven Bloggers we’re hosting an epic giveaway thanks to 8 fabulous sponsors! 

The Prizes

1 x Macaron Pattern thanks to Colette Patterns 

1 x Macaron Pattern thanks to Guthrie & Ghanie 

1 x Macaron Pattern thanks to Stitch 56

1 x Pattern of your choice thanks to Sew Squirrel

1 x Colette Pattern of your choice thanks to Indie Stitches 

1 x Colette Pattern of your choice thanks to The Haby Goddess

1 x $20 gift voucher thanks to Fabric Worm 

1 x $30 gift voucher thanks to A Fashionable Stitch 

Terms & Conditions

To enter the giveaway comment on this post before Saturday 31 August with your email address so we can easily get in touch if your name is drawn.  

One entry per blog please, but make sure you head on over to all of the other participant's blogs for up to 7 chances to win!

The winners will be drawn at random and prizes randomly allocated to each of the 8 winners across all 7 blogs. The winners will contacted by email on 2 September

You may remember that not so long ago I reviewed an upcycling class offered by The Amazings. Well, their newest online class sounds like another absolute corker - Machine Embroider a Textile Necklace. And best of all, if you sign up to the £18 class, you'll receive an email about entering a prize draw to win a £300 sewing machine! Not too shabby, eh? The draw is open to crafters worldwide...all you have to do is submit your details by Sunday 15 September.

Personally, I've been curious about free motion machine embroidery for a while and who better to learn from than an international textile artist!?! Although I'm pretty snowed under at the moment, I sincerely hope I find some time to try the class out soon. In the meantime, you can see the wonderful necklace that Rachel machine embroidered after following the class.

Are you familiar with this machine embroidery technique? Is it as fun as it looks?

After examining how Google Reader's closure may affect our blogs, I totally forgot to claim my own blog on Bloglovin'. D'oh!

Better late than never I guess...

Follow my blog with Bloglovin

When Tilly posted about this cute little baby dress back in May, I knew it would be the perfect gift for two very close friends of mine who are each expecting their first baby (girls obviously) within a week of each other.

The Itty Bitty Baby Dress pattern from made by RAE is a free download and super easy to make, with plenty of variation possibilities. It’s sized for newborns, so it comes out very tiny and takes minimal fabric and time to make. I stayed true to the pattern for these two versions because it’s too cute not to really - I just cut out the larger of the two sizes and lengthened the shoulder ties a smidgeon.

There’s just one seam at the back of the skirt which I french seamed, I overlocked the waistline for extra strength and I finished the lined bodice according to the Elisalex instructions so there are no exposed seams there. If you're interested, Rachel has had a successful go at making an equally adorable reversible version.

To give you a sense of how small these dresses are, I thought it would be fun to photograph them against my two Mathilde blouses. Bonkers isn't it?!?

And thanks to your sound patchwork advice here, I was also able to make a colourful blanket for each friend and her baby! I don't know why, but these were so much fun to make. They are much smaller than my first patchwork project - a bunting tablecloth - so they came together with a lot less hassle. I was even surprised when all the squares actually lined up perfectly!

To make these I sewed the squares together in rows and then sewed the rows together to make the full blanket. I decided to press my seams to one side instead of open this time and ironed vigorously. I then smoothed and pinned on a plain flannel backing (a lot of smoothing and pinning on a flat surface was required) and finished the edges with some wide bias binding.

I made these cute bundles with so much love and knowing that they have gone to very appreciative homes (not everyone 'gets' handmade after all!) has quite literally made my month...or maybe even my year! I now can't wait to meet the itty bitty recipients, but we're still waiting for them to make an entrance!


I should say that I attribute much of the success of these projects to the gorgeous fabrics I had at my disposal. They were all sourced from two excellent shops - The Village Haberdashery and m is for make - both of which have amazing fabrics in their 'sale' sections, yearlong it would seem. In fact, thinking about it, I picked all of these up in their respective sale sections!
I'm back from another relaxing and enriching holiday in Portugal! My parents moved out there ten years ago and despite visiting them each year, I'm always struck by the country's beauty. This is why I can't help sharing some holiday snaps, but I promise some stitching-related posts are coming your way soon, including some delightfully teeny tiny sewing, a couple of secret projects, an Anna dress and a Hawthorn blouse. Oh, and about a squillion other makes that are on my ever-expanding wishlist!

Kooky restaurants

Mouthwatering food, of the sweet and savoury variety

Gorgeous architecture

Stunning tiles and paving

General beauty, everywhere you look

Badass graffiti 

Have you been on holiday this year, or better still, do you have one coming up?