Plastic free July!

Design team member Rudy is taking part in Plastic free July!

Are you like me trying to do plastic free July? It’s super hard! You can’t buy anything convenient! It has made me so much more organised, especially with packing my own lunch to take to the office…

To assist with this I decided to make some beeswax wraps. I picked out some awesome printed fabric from Sew Crafty, rainbow for me (obviously!) and the black for my husband because he is boring and wouldn’t take my rainbow ones to his office ha ha! I got half a meter of each which has left me with plenty spare. Wraps are said to last about 6 months, where you can re wax them or start again. These fabrics are perfect for it as they are pure cottons which don’t react when heated up in the oven, I would be wary of using polycottons as I’m not sure how they would react in the heat.

 

I set about my research for the best recipe for the wraps, which apparently was much more complicated than I had intended. Some recipes call for pine resin, coconut oil, jojoba oil and bees wax, others call for a variation of the above so I decided to look a little deeper.

Pine resin is a) expensive! And b) not very good for humans to ingest. I was wondering why this seems to be a key ingredient in most the wraps recipe but came to the conclusion you aren’t actually eating the food wrap, but as my food was going to be very close I decided not to risk it.

Coconut oil is readily available and I already had some in the cupboard, though when you use it on your wraps it makes everything a bit slimy! I did variations to see the best recipe and I think I will omit coconut oil now. Whilst it helps with the bendiness of the wraps I feel like the oil is coming off on my hands every time I touch it.

 

Jojoba oil is expensive too but something I’d probably use more often as a carrier for other essential oils etc. I bought the one from Holland and Barret but I’m sure any health food shop would have something similar. The jojoba oil has disinfecting properties which helps keep them clean and fresh for the next batch of food.

Bees wax is easily bought from lots of places. I bought mine from Ebay. I made sure it was food grade pellets which are easier to melt when you put them under heat. As this is the key ingredient you can’t really do without this one but if you wanted you could just use beeswax as I think this works really well also.

So there’s some background into my research I’d love to know if you have anything else to add to help with the wraps?

My method is as below:

1.     Cut the fabric to you desired size, and overlock the edges or pinking shear them whatever you have available to make sure the fabric doesn’t fray. If you are making them into pouches sew the sides together at this point as the wax will soak into multiple layers.

2.     Use an old baking tray and line it with greaseproof paper. If you get wax on your baking try you probably don’t want to use it for food again so bare that in mind when selecting the tools.

3.     Heat the oven up, I did mine at about 180’c

4.     Lay your items out on the tray, if your wraps are too big for the tray don’t worry the wax will seep through layers so fold them over.

5.     Sprinkle the beeswax over the fabric. I probably use too much as there is wax deposits on the outside of my fabrics so use it sparingly.

6.     Put in the oven for about 2-3 minutes, or until all the wax has melted.

7.     When you take them out the over sprinkle a few drops of jojoba oil over the fabric while it cools.

8.     Leave it on the tray until it is cool. If you are making pouches or layered items it’s worth separating the layers whilst it is still warm so it doesn’t stick together too much.

I hope this is helpful and you have many more picnics to follows!  I even made some to replace the cling film i use in the fridge, for when i have leftover in a bowl or need to cover over some fruit so it doesn’t go dry. The wax lets it mold around things.

See you next time!

70s vibes!

Rachel's fabulous 70's inspired dress

For my second make for the sew crafty blog I was immediately drawn to this stunning 70’s chiffon over in the Sew Crafty Shop, having not worked with chiffon much in my sewing journey, I knew this fabric would need careful handling but also which pattern would show off this amazing print to its fullest, Vogue V9253. I have made a version of this pattern before but don’t let the extremely low cut front neckline put you off, its very easy to alter it to make you feel less exposed!

This pattern was released by Vogue a couple of years ago and is one of their easy makes, the pattern consists of a front and back bodice with grown on sleeves and a front and back skirt,  the caftan design with waist ties can be made knee or maxi length and features pleats in the front bodice and skirt, an invisible back zipper and ties which are stitched into the back seam and tie at the front, it comes in sizes XS though to XL and I cut the size S, I lengthened the bodice by an inch but apart from that made no other adjustments to the base pattern. Due to the design of the pattern pieces, this pattern is very fabric hungry and I needed almost 4m of fabric to create this dress.

For this version I omitted the stitched in ties and created a separate belt that was detachable. I also partially lined the bodice with some ivory lining fabric from my stash, and created a short underskirt as chiffon by its very design tends to be fairly sheer. I chose to sew a narrow hem which gave me the opportunity to practice this sewing technique and finishes the dress off perfectly.

 

This chiffon is fairly sturdy to work with but to make it even easier to handle, I sprayed it with spray starch first, this is a great tip for working with floaty fabrics and washes out easily.

With some left over fabric I created an additional headband to complete the 70’s vibe and I absolutely love the result, it’s totally ‘Margot’ from the good life and perfect for swishing in and swanning around the garden with a glass of something.

 

As always, thanks to the Sew Crafty Team for gifting this fabric to me.

 

The Margot Playsuit

Lisa makes the perfect summer playsuit

Hi Again

I’m back this month with my favourite summer playsuit.  It’s the Margo Playsuit from Sewladida Vintage. This is actually my 3rd of this pattern that I have made however it’s the first time I’ve used lace.

Browsing online recently and I came across a RTW dress in bright yellow lace that I really really liked.  Now, obviously as a sewist, I wouldn’t dream of buying a dress would I? (Well not at the price they were trying to charge anyway!)  ;). I did have some reservations about the yellow as it’s really vibrant and I definitely wouldn’t have chosen anything this daring before I started sewing my own!  I then started to wonder whether the yellow dress would get much wear what with the iffy weather in this country but knew that this would be perfect for my holidays!

 

 

 

Anyway after much procrastinating (did I tell you I’m queen of procrastination and my old neighbour nick named me Last Minute Lisa ☺) I decided the Margo would be perfect for the lace.  So I made my wish list and chose the yellow crepe to line the lace with and the lace for the outer.

 

 

When it arrived it did not disappoint!  It was just as gorgeous as it was on the picture on the Sew Crafty Website.  I quickly got it pre washed and dried and set to work. I got to say the fabric washed and ironed beautifully.   Looking at the fabric it is scalloped on both selvedge edges so I decided that I would trim off the edge just leaving the scallop so this would then form the hem of my shorts.

I started to cut out and realised that because its stretch lace it was gonna be a slippery little fella but tacked it into place using long basting stitches on the diagonal and this worked really well.

The first thing to do is the shorts and they came together very quickly.  Once the shorts were done I knew I was gonna love this suit. To reduce the bulk in the seam allowance I trimmed away the lace between the crepe.

I decided that for the bodice I would treat the crepe as the bodice lining as per instructions rather than try and fit another lining in as well.  I made sure to under stitch as much as I could wherever possible to stop the crepe from rolling to the front side and this worked really well.

I opted for the lemon invisible zip and I was relieved that it went in first time and lined up just right.  Whenever I put in an invisible zip into a garment with a waistline seam, to try and get it lined up when I get to the second side I zip up the garment and I use my tailors chalk to put a mark on the zip at the waist seam line then all I need to do is line it up with the waist seam and (fingers crossed) it lines up perfectly.   I generally tack the zip in then zip the garment up to check my cross points. Once I’m happy they match I go ahead and stitch it in.

 

 

 

And as you can see it lines up

All that was left then was to wait for a day when the sun decided to come out so that I could get some nice sunny photos to go with my lovely jumpsuit.  Well fortunately this weekend we got a day!! I wore this jumpsuit out to go shopping then went to our local reservoir for pictures. I got so many compliments whilst I was wearing it.  I definitely think it’s going to be a fab holiday outfit for my imminent trip to Mexico.

Hope this has inspired you to try something that you wouldn’t usually wear whether it’s a fabric choice or garment.
Until next time, happy sewing ☺
Lisa x
* This fabric was gifted to me for my monthly Sew Crafty Design Team project however all opinions are my own and honest.

Romy’s floral jacket project

Romy shows us her floral summer jacket

I’ve been sewing for nearly 4 years now and love sharing my makes on Instagram, but there’s only so much you can write in a photo caption, so I’m very excited to be blogging properly for the first time!  

I spent ages trawling the Sew Crafty website; I tend to buy fabrics without a plan and keep them in my (rather large) stash until I find a pattern I want to make, but as I had to pick a project fairly quickly I decided to go with a pattern I had wanted to make for ages and find some fabric that would work.  Enter the Joy Jacket by Chalk and Notch patterns.  I bought this last year as I wanted to branch into making outerwear, but just hadn’t got round to it.  They recommend a tencel or viscose fabric as it’s meant to be quite a light and drapey jacket, but the Navy Floral Scubahad already caught my eye and I thought it would work well for this pattern.  

 
 
When the fabric arrived I almost wished I was making an elegant dress or skirt as it was so pretty but stuck to my original plan as I don’t have many occasions to wear fancy dresses.  I chose a plain navy viscose for the lining so that it would feel soft and cool against bare skin, as I’m planning on this being a summer evening type jacket.  The only other notions I needed were a zip and some interfacing from my stash, as I decided against adding any hardware or drawstrings for simplicity.  The pattern calls for stretch interfacing but I went with a regular lightweight one as the fabric doesn’t need to stretch to fit and that worked fine.
 
Navy scuba fabric samanthaclaridge studio fabric shop
 
 
 
I spread the cutting out over a few evenings as there are A LOT of pattern pieces and I didn’t want to rush and make a mistake.  I’d planned to pattern match the pockets but didn’t have quite enough fabric, but I don’t think it matters as the print is quite big and doesn’t have an obvious repeat.  The instructions call for stay stitching around the neck hole but I used iron on stay tape instead as it’s quicker, and that worked fine.
I decided to follow the sew-along instructions as I find it easier with a photo of each step, and they’ve even put little videos in when there’s a complicated bit, which really helped.  The way the pockets are sewn did confuse me a bit, as they’re not bagged out like I had expected.  I think next time I would try and do that as the way they recommend leaves you with raw edges inside the pocket.  It’s not noticeable and probably won’t bother me but I think it would give the pockets a neater finish.
 
The fabric sewed up really easily.  I used a stretch needle and walking foot to make sure the stitching looked neat, and I’d definitely recommend that because my machine struggled a bit to feed the fabric when I used a regular foot.  I sewed the main jacket seams with a zigzag stitch but as it’s quite a relaxed fit you could probably use a straight stitch.  As it’s a scuba it wasn’t the easiest fabric to press, but using quilting clips and topstitching where recommended really helped to keep the fabric flat and looking neat.  You could also overlock the seams to help with stretch if you were making something more fitted.
 
I have to share a tip I saw recently on Facebook that I used when making the hanging loop.  It’s a godsend if you ever make rouleau loops and need to turn them easily.  
Step 1: Sew your loop with right sides together and trim excess.
Step 2: Push a drinking straw down inside the loop.
Step 3: Using a wooden skewer, push the end of the fabric down inside the straw and keep pushing until it’s fully turned through.
Step 4: Admire your finished loop!
 
You can thank me later 😉
 
The rest of the jacket came together fairly easily.  I like how the insides are neatly lined and finished with facings so that you don’t have any raw edges showing.  
 
It also has a lovely V detail on the front which gives it a bit more interest.
 
I’m definitely going to make another, probably in a plain fabric so I can pair it with more things.  This one has already had a trip out to walk the dog in the evening, between the seemingly constant rain showers we’re having, and was really comfortable and nice to wear.
 
 
 

That’s all folks, see you soon for the next one!

Cute wrist pin cushion DIY!

Anyone else always dropping pins while sewing or is that just me?

I decided one rainy afternoon to make a little pincushion that I could wear on my wrist to stop the inevitable pin drop and save my poor toes from further pain! The FIGO fabrics terrazzo collection has been calling me since is first landed in the shop so this was a nice quick, satisfying project to use up a small amount!

It’s very easy so here we go…

You will need

  • Fabric ( I used the FIGO Terrazzo cotton)
  • Leather or pleather or thick felt
  • Elastic
  • Toy stuffing
  • Pins
  • Scissors
  • Sewing machine

Step 1

Cut out 2 circles in your main fabric (approx 10cm in diameter) and an oval shape in a thick fabric (leather is ideal…it’s just to protect your wrist when you stick the pins in the cushion!)…

Step 2

Measure out a piece of elastic to fit comfortably around your wrist…

Step 3

Pin the elastic to one of the circles of fabric, fabric right side up

Step 4

Sandwich your elastic between both pieces of fabric right sides together and stitch around the outside leaving a gap for you to turn it through

Step 5

Cut notches around the edge to give a smoother edge when you turn it through…

Step 6

Turn right side out and stuff with some toy filling, then slip stitch the hole closed

Step 7

Stitch the leather or pleather patch to the underside of the pincushion

Et Voila!

Let us know if you make one and share on Instagram using the hashtag #showcrafty

See you next time!

Natalie @natalieywhite shares her adorable #SCdesignteam project!

Children’s wear with the Riley Blake saltwater collection…

 

 

I can’t quite believe that I am part of the Sew Crafty design team; such an exciting opportunity that I cannot wait to get stuck in…So what is my first project I hear you ask?

I have never done anything like this before and I was a bit overwhelmed, to begin with as I had so many ideas and things I wanted to try.

Then I came across this pattern that I have had stashed away for a while and decided to give Children’s clothing a go and in true Natalie style, I did the toile in a Disney fabric I had lying around and a pillowcase. This helped me to understand the bodice pattern and work out the best way to understitch the small size.

Sew Crafty have a wealth of cotton fabric to choose from but as soon as I saw Riley Blake Saltwater collection, I knew that the mint & multicoloured turtle fabrics were going to look gorgeous. I decided on using the mint as the main fabric as its my favourite colour and also too much white on a toddler dress is never a good idea…especially when my toddler is involved. The multicolour turtles contrast fabric livens it up and make it a more fun summer party dress than an occasion dress.

The bodice was much easier to make the second time around and I just love the affect of the fabrics with the lining peeping through– the cotton is a little heavier than the pillowcase I used with the toile so holds itself so much better with no need for interfacing. 

As the skirt is not lined; I wanted to make it look neater and as I don’t own an overlocker (yet) I decided to do French seams for the first time and oh boy I am so glad I did as it just makes it look so pretty and totally finished without raw edges fraying and on show. 

Also check out my pattern matching! I was so chuffed with this as I wasn’t sure how it was going to work out … with the type of pattern it wouldn’t have particularly mattered but I think the added detail of it matches just makes it much more of a finished project and more professional looking. 

I also decided to roll the hem twice for the same reason and it didn’t take too much length away and I think sits perfectly on my 2 year old. I used the 2 year old sizing and it has worked a treat – I had to take a bit in on the bodice when I attached the zip otherwise it was a little baggy but all in all a very good size and a lovely addition to her summer wardrobe.

Jenny @jennystitched makes a fancy robe

For my first Design Team make, I wanted to fill a gap in my wardrobe that was definitely more a ‘want’ than a ‘need’. I’ve been hankering after a lightweight summer robe for throwing over pyjamas in the warmer months and when I spotted this viscose print in the Sew Crafty shop, I knew it would make a brilliant robe. 

The viscose is a very bold print which typically is not my normal style, but when it comes to nightwear and loungewear I think anything goes! It’s a classic combination of black and white stripes and florals (who doesn’t love a bit of pattern clashing from time to time?!), but the scale of the floral design makes this fabric look quite fresh and modern rather than twee. I think my favourite flower in the print is the beautiful pinky-red poppy!

Despite picking this fabric quickly, it took me ages to choose a robe pattern. I felt like the big 4 pattern companies either offered ‘comfy and cosy’ or ‘lingerie’ and I wanted something that fell somewhere in the middle of the 2 options that I could just chuck on when it’s a hot evening. We have a great charity shop near me that has a large haberdashery section and I found this great vintage 1950s housecoat pattern that looked like just the thing. I did modify the pattern, I took 12 inches out of the skirt section – apparently, women in the fifties were built like Amazons, and I, most definitely, am not at just 5’ 3”! I also took about 4 inches from the sleeve to make it bracelet length so I don’t always have to roll my sleeves up to do anything, and instead of easing in the sleeve head I gathered the fabric to give the shoulder a more vintage look.

To complement the floral viscose I’d chosen from Sew Crafty, I used a cheap and cheerful black viscose from my local market for the roll collar and belt, but the floral is better quality. It’s got a great drape (for swishing around the house like a Hollywood starlet) but as it’s viscose it can be chucked in the wash over and over again without doing too much harm to it (because I am not a Hollywood starlet and have to do my own laundry).

The print on this is big but it doesn’t seem to repeat in any obvious way so I didn’t bother to pattern match as I think when a print is this striking it’s easier to get away with. As the black stripe runs horizontal to the selvage I chose to focus on lining that up for the pockets and pinned all the pieces in the same direction.

The fabric sewed up nicely and I finished the insides on my overlocker. I used a black Guterman thread for all the seams and the hem. Viscose can be quite slippy when pinning and cutting out so I would recommend cutting on a slightly grippy surface like a carpet if you can as this will help prevent any shifting around whilst you cut and avoid any funny shaped pieces! You can also use a starch spray to help make the pieces more stable as this will wash straight out again. I prewashed the fabric on a 30 degree with a colour catcher sheet setting and there wasn’t much shrinkage or colour bleed.

I feel very glam when wearing this – anything that elevates a pair of tired old pyjamas into an elegant lounging outfit is a winner!

Jenny

Clare @missmaker SDCT Jade Jacket Adventure

SDCT Jade Jacket Adventure

 

Hammers at the ready for this one! Not sure I have ever put so much hardware into one project but I’ve got to admit I’m now quite addicted!

 

Putting together a really beautifully matched set of snaps, zip, toggles, elastic cord (gold!!!) and eyelets has really lifted this jacket and I know I’m going to be grabbing it every cool summer evening or nippy winter morning.

A total coating of Scotch Guard once complete will mean I’m totally shower proof. If I had had enough to spare I’d have made a snap-on hood, but I used every mm of the 1.5m of beautiful Jade denim from www.sewcraftyshop.couk for this project with some very nifty pattern placement to get all I needed from the fabric.

The base and starting point of this jacket was a shirt pattern I have made three or four times already (and love the fit). I always grab a pattern that is close to what I want as my starting point, there is no point in re-inventing the wheel and drafting from scratch if the basic shape of what you want is already in your pattern stash.

I wanted a traditional denim jacket look with a bit of military/bomber/utility mashed in, so we have the traditional yoke and shaped panels front and back but then the collar, zip, snaps panel, shaped hem and pockets shimmied their way in to create the overall look.

The first part of the process was to split the shirt panels. At the front, I threw the dart away from the side seam and into the vertical seam. The seams at back and front were curved to give shape at the waist but a slightly broader fit across the shoulders, so even the chunkiest of jumpers could be accommodated on especially chilly days.

The collar was a total ‘off-piste’ adventure, I brought together the button panel, collar stand and collar into one continuous shape, curved toward the shoulder line and cut on the fold so it could be joined as one single piece. The front centre panels and front yoke were curved to mirror the collar shaping so the front of the jacket all worked together to give a nice line whether the collar is up or down.

I was a good girl, I made a toile…… and I can’t stress enough what a good practice this is when you are making major changes to an existing pattern.

The amount you learn about the whole balance of the garment and how your changes have a knock-on effect for other elements of the pattern is fantastic. I went to town and even put the pockets and epaulettes in place to check their sizing and position before taking my scissors to the denim (as I mentioned earlier re-cutting any element of the pattern was a no-no as I had no excess fabric!)

The lining on this jacket is extra special and has a couple of nice little features. Firstly, there is a shaped phone pocket that sits to the left-hand side of the lining and snuggles in under the arm. This idea actually came from my brother who was grumbling one day that his phone always ruined the line of his jacket when he put it in the inside breast pocket and “why couldn’t they tuck it under the arm?”

Hey presto – the nifty, line preserving, angled, inside pocket was born!! I was a bit nervous about tucking a welt pocket diagonally into the lining, but with a bit of stay stitching and using both the denim and flower lining fabric for welts, I ended up with both a pretty and stable pocket opening.

The lining also has this beautiful floral fabric across the yoke. As soon as I saw this fabric I fell in love with it and knew I did not want to use all I had been given by the lovelies at Sew Crafty and hide it away inside the jacket. It was also so beautifully lightweight I knew the areas of stress at the hem and under the arms were going to need something a little more robust.

So, after a rummage in the workshop I unearthed about three meters of taupe linen mix that I had picked up in charity shop ages ago (fabric Womble alert!! I once went to a funeral and still managed to come home with some fabric, so there you go!)

When I laid it all out together it was a match made in heaven, but please don’t fret about the floral fabric lying dormant for too long, I had intended to add colour stripe cuffing (another new product in the sew crafty store) to this jacket, but once it had all come together I felt (a very rare feeling for me!) that less is more. So the stripy cuffing and floral fabric will be making an appearance in my next SCDT project, watch this space….!

The lining follows the outer pattern completely, the collar was cut twice from the denim and I popped a reinforcing semi-circular panel at the back of the neck to take the hanging loop and a lovely big label as I am too chuffed to hide my light under a bushel on this make!!

The exterior of this jacket has been topstitched into next week! Luckily I have made my own jeans a couple of times already, so making sure all rows of topstitching had been meticulously added during the construction process was something I was well prepared for.  I opted against a twin needle as 1. I didn’t have one that had a wide enough separation between the needles and 2. I had corners to turn in some places, which never goes well with a twin needle!!

This project has been so totally and utterly enjoyable from start to finish and I am so pleased with the results. It involves everything I love about making your own clothes: beautiful finishing, total uniqueness, attention to detail and perfect fit.

This Jacket will be worn and worn which, at the end of the day, is what you do with clothes you love!

Clare

Sally @theyorkshiresewist and her Nautical dream dress!

A Nautical Dream

Geez, what a crazy couple of months… Had a stint of nearly 2 weeks in the hospital to an un-confirmed IBD which I’m back and forth to Hospital and GP but fingers crossed I’ll get there in the end eh?!

Thankfully in between, I had some energy to concrete on a bit of selfish sewing which of course involves a twirly dress!!

Since it was International Women’s Day on 8th March, Lisa from Sew Over It has kindly given the pdf pattern for free and of course, the Yorkshire lass in me couldn’t say no a freebie!

With this pattern having a full circle skirt and plus couldn’t be bothered with taping copious amounts of A4 paper together I sent my copy shop version to a local company to print.

Now when Sammy asked the Team of what materials we wanted to use… Now that’s where the hard part began as there is so much choice and they are all so pretty!

So after much consideration, I decided to go with The Robert Kaufman Anchor Print Chambray as I am quite a fan of nautical and you can’t go wrong with the quality of this fabric either.

I tried to get the thread to match the best I could and of course, I don’t do the ordinary and went for a lighter colour zip.

Just how cute does your bundle of goodies arrive too, I love little attention to details like this!

So before I cut out my pattern pieces, I checked my measurements and I fell in-between the 14 and 16. So I started at size 14 for shoulders and bust and graded to the 16 for the waist and hips.

Rather than cutting into the good stuff straight away, I made a toile of the bodice out of an old bedsheet and with disbelief it was a perfect fit, no alterations needed!!

With the sun shining, I brought my sewing supplies to the garden and cut out my pattern pieces, nothing better than sunshine and sewing!

Don’t know about you guys but sometimes I just can’t get a straight line for my darts so I still now even mark my dart placements using Tailor’s Chalk.

As always, since I am vertically challenged (aka short!) I had to shorten my zip. So I measured down from the top towards the bottom to my preferred length which is 16”. I then marked the spot with a pin as this is where the new bottom stopper will be.

I then heated up a metal knife on my Gas hob and then carefully placed the knife onto the plastic teeth to melt it.

Then I trimmed off the excess zip and there we go a zip that fits me!

Also whilst I was altering my zip, to help with the install of the invisible zip, later on, I gently ease the teeth with my iron (on low Setting as we don’t want to melt it!) to be more accessible and to get a closer stitch line the first time.

This dress was sewn up in no time at all, as always I finished my seams before I started to sew just to speed up the process and plus saves bringing one machine up at a time. To remember where my notches were, I just placed a pin for reference.

As always I have my Man Mog at hand as my Sewing Assistant!

As I’ve previously made the Silk Cami and the way you sew the straps together is great and is visually pleasing.

So the long part was letting the dress hang to make sure the circle skirt dropped and there was no uneven hem. Also, where did I think it was a good idea to double hem a full circle skirt?! It took absolutely ages! It does look good though!

Then I slipped stitch the shoulder straps, so a bit of hand sewing thrown in too!

Here’s a view of it before putting on.

So here you folks my swishy nautical dress whilst I was at Teesidecreatives, a very nice Sewing weekend break with fellow teamie Carol, her daughter Vicky and Becca.

Sally

Rudy @roodlesrunique makes the perfect summer cover-up…

Rudy's Cardigan

This blog post is the perfect blog for the crazy ‘summer’ weather we have been having recently! I have made the Helens Closet Blackwood cardigan which has been in my to-do list for a long time. I bought it when it first launched as I wear a lot of cardigans in my day to day wardrobe, basically I don’t have a winter wardrobe just summer dresses and cardigans! This cardi comes in two lengths and I picked view B which is the longer length.

I used the beautiful mint coloured French terry jersey from Sew Crafty Online. The weight of this fabric is perfect for a cardi for the cooler summer evenings but also to keep you warm enough in the office when the air con wars start, it can’t be just my office, right? The loopback fabric would be brilliant for any relaxed jersey clothing, even baby clothes, as it is so super soft on the outside but the loop gives it a bit extra structure and warmth. The fabric washes really well too, sometimes jersey can go a bit bobbly after washing but this survives really well. Also, added bonus, my furbabies hair doesn’t appear to stick to it in some magically amazing way so if you’re a dog lover this is the fabric for you! J I think it would make a great Linden sweatshirt or Tilly and the Buttons Stella set.

I also was lucky enough to use the amazing rainbow ribbing as my cuffs. This is super easy to use as you don’t have to fold it over and just attach it like you would a normal cuff. I think this gives this cardi which could have been quite plain a nice pop of fun! Though I didn’t think through white being on the cuffs as that’s generally the bit I end up dunking in my food or something to that effect haha! The cuffs would be great for the bottom of trousers too as you cut the length you need for the pattern on a roll and you have plenty for multiple makes, so you could have matching cuffs for all the family.

I made this pattern without any adjustments but I omitted the pockets. I felt if I decided I wanted to add the pockets I could do this afterwards and I wasn’t sure my arms would be long enough for pockets on the full-length version. The pattern is super easy to make up and only has a few pattern pieces, I like that about Helen’s closets patterns. The neck and bottom bands give it a lovely finish too all in one piece around the back which means no fiddly hems which are perfect for the jersey. I made the whole thing on my overlocker, the only bit I did on my normal machine was sewing the cuffs together as I wasn’t 100% sure where they needed to join and it’s easier to unpick sewing machine than overlocker!

I think this will get a lot of wear all year round and will be perfect for throwing in my handbag just in case it gets chilly. I hope you like it as much as me!

Rudy