In Which A Bit of An Enthusiast Admits To Ignoring A Favourite Thing In Lieu of A New Favourite Thing

Tweed Grey Hollyburn

Dear River Island Favourite Favourite Grey Tweed Dirndl Skirt with the secret, tiny flocked black hearts on the inside- you were my first love.  My first skirt love, I mean.

Tweed Grey Hollyburn side

You started a passion for skirts with sweater tops and tees, skirts with big belts, skirts with cowboy boots, skirts with cute Mary Jane flats… five years of Skirt Love which you kindled.  But time passes and threads start wearing thin.  It’s not that I wanted to replace you- I just wanted to preserve you, you see.

Tweed Grey Hollyburn pocket & tab closeup

Which is why Hand Made Favourite Grey Tweed Hollyburn Skirt appeared on the scene and you were, sadly, relegated to the drawer.   I do have a guilty start when I see you lurking under a pile of pajama bottoms.  But you see, Grey Tweed Hollyburn is new and handmade and has lovely crisp pockets and cute vintage buttons on the tabs… well, you know how it goes.

Tweed Grey Hollyburn

It’ll need washing before too long and then you’ll see the light of day again.

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In Which A Bit of an Enthusiast Engages in Social Sewing

Hello chickens!  It’s Monday but here in the UK we’re lucky to have a holiday, hurrah!  So we’re celebrating with friends, a roast din din and pie.  The start of the weekend was pretty good too- my sister in law and I cooked up a plan to get her new-but-mostly-untried sewing machine in action by making a beginners’ skirt pattern by her, for her, with guidance from yours truly.  I was so proud of her!  She went to the fabric shop and got everything she needed after a flurry of messages about what to get, how to ask etc.  Which made me all the more aware of how handy Tilly’s tips in her book about going into fabric joints are!  That lovely book may well be winging its way to Anna at some point…

Well, my devious plan to get her interested in garment sewing seems to be a success!  A full day of measuring, cutting, marking, sewing, pressing, pressing and more pressing (got to get those important details in, right?) and we finally finished late but happy.  The smiles wreathing her face as we neared the finish line were truly wonderful.  Such a great feeling helping others learn a skill!  I found it really interesting seeing how confidently she was machining by the end and- and!- I received a message and piccy the following day: “Hem is complete and pressed (obviously ;0)), thank you soooo much, I had such a great day!”.  Well now!  The pressing message clearly got through hahaha.  Do we have a convert???

Here’s my muslin.  Not terribly interesting but it was a good exercise to practice before I trialled it on someone else!

Sewaholic Hollyburn Muslin

The pattern: the Sewaholic Hollyburn skirt (my muslin)

Here we are with smiles and the finished article (without hem quite yet although it has acquired one since).  And POCKETS!

Finished Hollyburn Skirt

 

You still with me?   Because last weekend I did the opposite- I was the student at a lovely class I was so very lucky to receive from my mumma as a gift.  That lady is an enabler!!  Well, she bought me a class with the legendary Chinelo (from Sewing Bee).  It was the Maxi Dress free cutting class in Canning Town- and I loved it!  I must say I do love meeting groups of people so this is my sort of thing but add into that some sewing and I was in seventh heaven.

I adored the experience of learning a bit of free cutting- this is a technique where you use measurements and make the garment in your head into reality without the use of a pattern.  No draping involved, no paper, just your bod, your tape measure, scissors, chalk, iron and machine.  It was really freeing not needing all the paraphenalia that we associate with a sewing hobby.  This is simple stuff- you need to learn it for it to become simple- but I really enjoyed it.

Maybe one day I’ll find a course and learn the ins and outs properly as I would put this class in the category of taster sesh- I replicated the bodice based on my notes and memory but I wouldn’t be able to just throw my scissors at fabric and make some of the awesome creations Chinelo manages quite yet!  She really is smart- I loved the whole experience.  Thank you to Chinelo and the other lovely participants I met- please ladies start some micro blogging so we can keep in touch hehe!   I’m still working on mine- I decided to line the bodice and add some straps and am still working on it around several other projects (but of course!).

 

Free Cutting with Chinelo Bally

 

Have you been on any sewing courses you really loved?  Do tell- I may be catching the bug!