PDF Pattern Storage

PDF sewing patterns have become a real staple of my sewing pattern hoarding habit. Problem is, where to put ’em? So I’ve worked out a couple of ways to keep my tiny sewing space almost neat and tidy.

An easy way to store PDF patterns is to buy clear plastic document wallets and print a copy of the pattern cover to add inside. This is a great way of keeping everything together, clean and tidy and tucked away either in a lovely basket or neatly in a drawer.

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Another way to store patterns is to take ideas from the pattern designers. Many designers use pattern hooks and keep all their pattern pieces together on a hanging rail, like this example at Prada. Source: gujiguji on Tumblr.

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The pattern hooks look like this:

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There aren’t many places which sell these hooks here in the U.K, but they are more widely available in the U.S although they can be pricey.

I made my own alternative to keep costs low and as I have limited space in my sewing room, I wanted less of a footprint than a floor hanging rail. So here’s my version with my first few favourite patterns on.

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The rail I use is a simple over-the-door towel rail, designed for kitchens mainly.  It’s great over my fabric cupboard door and it’s also extendable which is handy to fit any cupboard.

I bought these hooks to hang the patterns from, but you can buy them from Ikea too. I used a single hole punch to make the holes, then reinforced the holes with plastic-coated hole reinforcers – great for avoiding tears. I used shower curtain ring clips to hang my patterns onto the hooks, but you could use string or similar.

You can see my ideas in action on my channel here.

Thanks for stopping by. Until next time,

Cheryl.

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Sew Over It Eve Dress

Having shared my reviews over on You Tube more often than writing on here, I thought it was about time to document my thoughts.

The Eve Dress from Sew Over It is a gorgeous wrap dress with fluted sleeve options and varying hem choices. I was just the thing I was looking for to wear on my holiday in Greece.

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I chose a rather lovely crepe with a huge peony print – not for shrinking violets, but I thought the Greek summer evenings would forgive such loudness, especially after an Ouzo or three.

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The pattern itself is a PDF, and I chose the traditional way of printing, cutting and taping it together, although I do fully intend to make use of the fabulous Netprinter who will print and post your beloved PDF’s on one or two large sheets and post to your door. Just be sure to upload the relevant size, i.e. A1 or AO from your downloads. Always worth double measuring the test box too on the first page before cutting out.

So, the pattern was surprisingly easy to sew, there’s nothing too tricky for relative beginners. The only thing to take care with is to use stay tape on the neckline to prevent stretch. The sleeves were the easiest I’ve sewn.

The overall look is super flattering – there’s something about wrap dresses which suits every figure, and the wrap closure helps get that perfect fit – or the ability to loosen one’s ties after too many Greek Gyros.

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Excuse my laziness at not changing the overlocking thread – but it’s a pain right?

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The other version I made was with the straight 3/4 sleeve, but I kept the high/lo hem as it’s so pretty – you can make a straight version if you prefer less swishy-ness.

The sleeves were a little tight after I used a pure polyester fabric with no give, but next time I’ll just decrease the seam allowance to help. It’s still wearable, and I may remove the sleeve for next summer.

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Both versions can be seen in action on You Tube here and here.

Until next time, happy sewing!

Cheryl.

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McCall’s M7094 top, plus another Kimono for summer.

I do love a freebie. Especially one which comes with my favourite sewing magazine Love Sewing.

April’s edition came with a free sewing pattern in the form of McCall’s M7094 , a perfect everyday top that I just knew I’d wear loads.

I popped to my local fabric shop (SewCraft in Swindon) and picked up a lovely viscose to make the top.

Now, at first glance, you;’d think that a freebie pattern with a mag would be fairly simple to make? Maybe not. There are a few tricky elements to this project, interfaced collars, yokes, gathered back and curved hems which will all challenge even a seasoned sewist. Having said all that, I persevered, and worked out a cheats way of attaching the yoke without the prescribed ‘hand stitching’ :-O Yep, there’s a bit of it, but at least I managed to avoid some. I explain in more detail here.

I made the long sleeve version and instead of adding tabs to roll up the sleeves, I turned the tabs into cuffs. My hand just fits through, so do check if you try this method.

Overall, I’m really pleased with with finished top, it’s one I’ll wear again and again, especially as view D is ‘bottom covering’ 😉

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Also this week I just had to make another Sew Over It Kimono Jacket – the perfect floaty cover-up for Summer.

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Both tops are on my vlog here.

Thanks for popping in, see you next time.

Happy sewing,

Cheryl.

 

 

 

Tilly and The Buttons Bettine Dress and Agnes Top

As the weather is looking a tad more promising of late, I’m conscious my Summer wardrobe needs a few additions. I’ve been after a summer dress for a while, something non-fussy, cool to wear but stylish. Enter the Bettine dress from Tilly and the Buttons. It’s a gorgeous scoop neck dress with pockets, and easy to wear and make with no closures to worry about.

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Fabric-wise I’d just bought the most amazing viscose from The Textile Centre on eBay and at only £3.99 a metre, it’s a bargain.

The pattern was easy to follow and the handy colourful booklet made it enjoyable to work through. The neckline came out beautifully and as a hater of facings flapping about, I love that this one is anchored with topstitching all the way round – I’m gonna do all my facings like this from now on.

Tilly’s patterns have their own sizing chart and I plumped for the size 4 after looking at the finished garment sizing I figured I’d have enough ease. I was a tad concerned when the bodice wouldn’t fit my mannequin, but all worked out well in the end. It fits me really well, although I’ll sew a size up next time as I prefer a slightly looser fit, especially for summer.

I didn’t make any major adjustments, just the usual addition of an inch to the bodice and I also added an inch to the skirt section too as I’d seen many Bettines looking a bit short online. As a result I only turned up a 1cm hem too. I didn’t sew up the cuffs on the sleeves, I just added the cuff as it came, which added some welcome length to the overall look.

I’ve reviewed this on You Tube too where you can see it a bit better.

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Now for the Agnes top, also from Tilly and the Buttons.

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I’d bought some gorgeous Viscose Jersey from Tia Knight Fabrics and it’s the nicest I’ve seen, so I didn’t want to mess up this make!

I opted to make the gathered sleeve version with a plain neckline. I hose to sew the neck band with the stripes running vertically as in the pic below from TATB.

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I also chose to cut the sleeve with the stripes running vertical too – for no other reason than I would have less stripe matching, ha ha always thinking!

Size-wise I made a size 7 as I didn’t want to take any chances of the fit being too small. I needn’t have as the jersey was very forgiving and a size 5 would have sufficed, so after taking in the sides it all worked out in the end.

The sleeves were easy to sew as they are sewn flat rather than in the round, so for a beginner this would be a great first make if you are thinking about sewing jersey. Just use a new ballpoint needle on your sewing machine and take the plunge!

More info on this is also in this week’s vlog on You Tube

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Thanks for popping in, see you soon,

Cheryl.

Sew Over It Chloe Coat Online Class and Pattern Review

After gaining some confidence and making the Iconic French Jacket last year, I’ve been ready to take my sewing to the next level. I was delighted when Sew Over It released their Chloe Coat as an online class with the aim of being ‘an introduction to coats’. Truth be told, I was hoping for just the PDF pattern as the class was £40, but having taken the plunge and buying it with a little discount at launch, I can see why it’s an online class as it really helps to see each stage made.

With the online class, you do get a PDF pattern, a monster of one! It’s 84 pages in total, but it does include separate pattern pieces for the lining and interfacing too, so it’s not all coat. The actual coat is a very chic and simple outline, with no fiddly collar to attach, so once you’re all prepped withe the copious A4 pages, then it’s plain sailing from then on.

The pattern also comes in copy shop sizes so if you can get it printed out then do!

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The fabric I chose was actually a furnishing fabric from Dunelm (in the UK). I loved its pastel colours and thought it would make a good Spring/Summer version. I chose a satin crepe for the lining.

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Lisa explains each stage really well and it’s great to be able to pause and re-watch bits. If I had any criticism, it would be that a few more close -ups would help, especially for beginners, but overall, it’s a fab class and it was so satisfying to finish and hang up my new coat.

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More detail on this pattern is on my You Tube channel where I review this pattern and class in two parts. I’m also making a winter version of this in a gorgeous camel coloured melton wool.

Thanks for dropping by, hope to see you soon.

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Sew Over It Susie Blouse Review

Hi everyone, hope you’re having a lovely day in this warmer weather here in the UK.

This week I’ve reviewed the Sew Over It Susie Blouse, which is also live on my You Tube Channel. I’ve reviewed this post here on my blog before, but it’s nice to see it come to life on video.

This is a PDF pattern from Sew Over It and is a brilliant wardrobe-builder. I love this type of top, it skims across the body, is not clingy at all and is easy to wear – you can just throw it on over jeans and you’re good to go.

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I’ve now made 2 versions, one from viscose and the other from satin. Click here to see them in action.

Thanks for stopping by, see you next week.

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Craftsy Iconic Tweed Jacket and Colette Sorbetto Review

As you may have read in my previous post here I made a Chanel-style jacket last year. This week I talk about this in more detail on my You Tube channel.

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Plus, this week I have made the all new Colette Sorbetto top. It’s a great pattern with two lengths to choose from and you can make it with sleeves or without. I made mine from a very sheer light crepe bought from Abakhan. This pdf pattern is completely free too, so great if you want to experiment.

It’s an easy pattern, suitable for a beginner, although try to choose a fabric which you can control easily – light crepes are a bit of a faff when it comes to necklines and hems, but all do-able if you have time and patience.

Next week on my channel I’ll talk about my versions of the Sew Over It Susie Blouse. I love this pattern, it’s very me, simple and easy to wear. Hope to see you next week.

Thank you for reading, really appreciate it.

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Sew Over It Kimono Jacket and March Sewing Plans

Last week, Sew Over It released their brand new pattern to PDF Club members, the “Kimono Jacket” (now available to all). SOI have that knack of releasing the pattern that I really need, and this was no exception. The Kimono Jacket is the perfect layering piece, perfect for Spring and cool summer nights.

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I had some Liberty Tana lawn in my stash, which is a beautiful drapey cotton, although this pattern works really well for all fabrics with a good bit of drape.

The pattern itself is a PDF, 32 pager, but super fast to sew. In fact, the taping of the pattern took longer than the sewing! Really easy to make up, with no challenges. I made the medium which was listed as a 12-14, but it is quite large in a cotton fabric. A chiffon or satin would add less bulk.

Really happy with how it turned out, and I know it’ll be a staple over the coming months. Another great pattern Sew Over IT, looking forward to more.

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(Shoes are from www.clarks.co.uk, high waisted skinny jeggings are from M&S)

So, what’s next?

For my next sewing project I’ll be downloading the brand new release of the Colette Patterns Sorbetto top, which is their free PDF pattern. It promises a better fit and a longer length option which I’ll be making in a sheer bright pink crepe from Abakhan.

Next up will be not one, but TWO Chloe Coats from Sew Over It! I’ll be making a Spring/Summer version in a surprisingly good curtain fabric from Dunelm of all places. Plus, I’ll be making up the coat in a gorgeous camel melton wool  from Fabric World ready for Autumn. Why not take advantage of an already-prepared PDF pattern eh?

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Phew, that’s a while lotta sewing, but it’s all explained on my new You Tube Channel here.

Thanks for stopping by, ta ta for now.

Cheryl.

 

The Stitchy Bee You Tube Channel

Having enjoyed watching many sewing blogs recently, I have created my own.

I wanted to make a channel that shows the kinds of reviews I like to watch, so here it is! This week I talk about my Top 3 Beginner Sewing Patterns. When I first started making clothes 3 years ago, I would have found videos on this really helpful, so here’s hoping you will too.

Coming up over the next few weeks, I’ll be making a Spring coat, a kimono jacket, skinny trousers and showing you my favourite fabrics.

If you like watching sewing channels, I’d love it if you subscribe – it’ll save me thinking I’m just talking to my dog, ha ha.

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Thanks for reading, have a lovely day.

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Bird Print Pussy Bow Blouse

I’ve fancied making this blouse for ages now, so when I found an amazing bird print crepe on eBay, I had no excuse.

The pattern is from Sew Over It – ok, I’m a big fan of their patterns and size-wise they always get it spot on for me.

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I download the PDF pattern which is 32 pages long. I learned not to try to print, stick and sew all at once, it’s too much, so I tend to do one steep each day – handy doing the taping together with a good box set and a cuppa.

The pattern and instructions are pretty easy. I lengthened my sleeves by 2 inches as I’m very tall and have long arms. Also, as the crepe I bought had a bit of stretch to it, I omitted the need for a button on the cuff by simply adding plain cuffs – which worked a treat. The potentially tricky part is adding the bow to the neck. I made view 2 with the v neck. I was a bit disappointed that the back of the neck band has to be hand stitched in place on one side – note to self, must find an alternative technique. But it worked out well and I managed not to have too many visible stitches – not easy on a crepe.

Go careful too when hemming the curve if your fabric is slippery. Helps to use a tailor’s clapper when sewing with this type of fabric.

Really happy how this turned out, had some lovely compliments already. It’s the perfect top and a great length. I’ll definitely be making a few more.

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