Archive | January, 2013


19 Jan


For the record I am not, and never will be, a Scrappy-Do fan.

He may have been the thing that killed the cartoon in the hearts of children all around the world.

In fact I’m not sure I know anyone who actually liked that annoying pup.

But the alliteration was calling to me.


I love pinning and will continue to do so but I really want to use Pinterest to drive action and results in my creativity rather than just being a mood board.

Last year I made few things from my pinterest boards.

elsie pinpumpkin pinink blot pin

Souces: dress via A Beautiful Mess; cookie cutter pumpkin tutorial; tote made with ink blot tutorial

This year I want to aim for at least TEN makes from pins but would love to do TWELVE. A bit like the Pinterest Challenge (which seems to have gone a bit quiet lately).

So how are you going to do this Amy?

The “Don’t Just Pin In!” Challenge

I’m not going to allocate each month a pin but instead go with the flow.

I mentioned my desire to conquer blouses in this post so I made a pinterest board for my blouse inspiration.

I  also want to action anything I’ve pinned that incorporates scallops into my clothes! And definitely in collaboration with the above point.

Recipes are encouraged as it will develop my cooking skills. Ideally I’d like to make more savoury food than baking but I am obsessed with sweet treats so let’s see.

And finally anything home or DIY related would be great to include.

My first pin turned to reality for 2013?

karahi pin

Fish Karahi – Fish cooked with onions, peppers, tomatoes, garlic and ginger to create a rich authentic taste.

I made this the second week of January by sort of following the recipe here and what I remembered of an amazing meal at from Akbars restaurant.

What next?

There are already some front runners for this year:

pinata cookie pinThis is likely to be the next make. Piñata Cookies for Mr AR’s Birthday.

blouse pinAfter that, this blouse by Charlotte Azou has been paper drafted using a similar pattern and I’m currently refining the collar.

topshop pinAlso lined up is this polka dot Topshop dress. I have fabric and a pattern ready!

fabric paint pin

Next, if I manage to overcome my previous fabric stamping fails I’ll be making a horse print dress just like this.

quilt pin

And if we move to a new house this year I’ll definitely be making a triangle quilt.

I want this exact style but with slightly different colours.

So do you use Pinterest for making mood boards? Or do you actually turn these pins into tangible real life makes?

I’m taking the Don’t Just Pin It challenge this year. Anyone want to join me?


**And yes I know I have one too many full points in my ellipsis but it took me sooo long to make the graphic and the button while poorly that when I spotted it I didn’t have the heart to amend it, even though the professional editor in me is very disappointed in my sloppiness**

How a magnetic little thingumy took the sewing world by storm…

11 Jan

There’s nothing like a bit of international post to brighten up the day!


This lovely item comes from Australia. One of my favourite countries!

I was lucky enough to win a giveaway hosted by Sew Well

(yes THAT OTHER Amy, of Burda Style and Mood Sewing Network fame!).

She teamed up with Hollie (the inventor of the Seam Allowance Guide) to share an amazing sewing tool.

What is it?

The seam allowance guide is genius in its simplicity; like I said it’s a magnetic thingumy that “sticks” to the side of your scissors with an adjustable rubber band.

Wait it gets better…

When you come to trace those fiddly Burda patterns that don’t include seam allowance you don’t have to worry about adding it on. Just trace it as it appears in the magazine!


Then what…?

Pin your pattern piece to your fabric. Set the band to the required width (or your personal preference) of seam allowance. Then cut lining up the edge of the guide with the edge of your pattern piece.



The pack comes with two guides. One for sloping scissors and one for non-sloping.

Perfect for:

  • Burda Style Magazine patterns = that you’ve laboriously traced by hand while screaming to the sewing Gods “why are you punishing me?!
  • Bought Pattern books = ahem, see above
  • Copying your own clothes = as in Patternmaking for a Perfect Fit (which I just happen to receive as a Christmas gift)
  • Creating patterns from scratch = of which I’m just dipping my toes in to like a terrified kitten
  • Altering patterns = well hello, it’s hard enough measuring the right fit and then having to calculate ease, and THEN having to add seam allowance

Two thumbs up from me.

I’ve put it to work 7 hours after receiving it.

It would have been sooner if I didn’t have work today!

Happy New Year!

9 Jan

I’ve written this blog post about five times now.

I’m both scared and excited to think about what 2013 will bring and my brain is racing at a mile a minute.

Unavoidable changes are heading my way and I’m trying to figure out how to roll with them.

I’m not going to start waffling on about all of that because it’s been a long day and this is still a sewing blog right?!


Regardless of any drama the new year has brought, I’ve also done a smidgen of sewing!

2013-01-09 21.02.35I eased myself back in slowly. I put an elastic waist in a B5653 strappy floral top UFO that’s been lingering around since Summer.

This Butterick top is sort of a refashion and a muslin.

I salvaged the fabric from an old Topshop dress and wanted to try out the strappy view of the top before investing other fabric in it.

I’m already plotting many more versions of this is.

And I  think it’d look lovely extended into a sundress. Yes yes I know we’re expecting snow this weekend.

2013-01-09 21.09.46

Then I hemmed the striped NL 6808 I started before xmas.

Tweet peeps are sure to be sick of seeing this top. I’ve posted pics of it in every stage of construction.

Check out the bitching stripe matching on it though! On the sides and on the sleeves (this damn near killed me).

I also added an exposed zip to the back.

Yessssssss (smug).

Roisin suggested a tutorial post which I’m eager to supply.

I will not be showing you the insides of this bad boy but will instead draft up something neater for show and tell.

I wore this one today and wasn’t most impressed with how I looked but think that’s just because I’m full of cold at the minute and in my mind I look I have bats nesting in my hair and the pallor of a jaundiced gremlin.

And on that delightful note I shall leave you for now.

I will return shortly with organised thoughts rather than the deranged stream of consciousness I’ve been trying to fight back…