Pressie for Mum, New Look 6086

Sewing for others is always tricky, but I reckon I have a fairly good idea of what Mum likes to wear so I took a gamble on this tunic pattern from New Look as a gift for her Birthday.

I wanted something fairly simple, with 3/4 sleeves, no closures and a V neck and came across New Look 6086. As is often the case with some patterns, the envelope image is not very inspiring, but I could see potential in creating something pretty. I made view B.

6086_env_front_1Seeing as I was in a gambling mood, I also bought the fabric without seeing it from eBay (insert shocked face smiley here!) and luckily for me it is absolutely gorgeous. It’s a butterfly print stretch cotton rayon viscose. The weight and drape of this is excellent, and it feels very expensive. At just £7 per metre I did well. The pattern required 1.5 metres of 60″ wide fabric, so my 2 metres left me plenty spare.

The pattern was easy to cut out and the instructions were simple. The only thing I’m not a fan of is the narrow neck facing (the pattern piece is only 3.5cm wide) – note to self to find an alternative. But I secured it to the shoulder and back seam allowances so it was OK in the end.

The neckline is quite big, so next time I’ll definitely cut this higher, and I felt that the seam allowances of 1cm were a bit mean and there was definitely room to use 1.5cm without the fit being affected. The cuffs and hem were simply turned and topstitched and the neck facing was turned inside and topstitched – be careful with this part as it’s very visible if you wiggle off course.

Overall a beautiful top, the fabric made it come to life. Here’s hoping Mum likes it!



My favourite tee – New Look 6217

I made this about a year ago and have worn it lots since. It’s a simple kimono sleeve t-shirt from New Look 6217. The envelope image is hardly inspiring, but I was looking for a simple shape to create a satiny/silky t-shirt and this seemed perfect with only 3 pattern pieces. I made view B.


My fabric used was a gorgeous polyester charmeuse in navy which I’d bought a lot of my my shower cap business, so handy to use some of this stock. It was a bargain from Abakhan, and I bought several metres in sand to. Sadly they have now sold out but it’s the loveliest fabric and washes and irons well too.

The pattern was easy to follow, with the only sewing challenge being working with slippery fabric which I’m used to but I added a tiny rolled hem which is always fiddly in satin. For this type of fabric I tend to roll it freehand as I sew – I know, I know I’m mad, but having tried a rolled hem foot (chews it up)or pressing and pinning (leaves pin holes), I find this is the best technique for me.

The back has a seam which you could omit, but I prefer the little details of adding a button and loop closure.

Overall I’m pleased with this t-shirt and have got lots of wear from it over the last year. I made it again in a fine Japanese floral cotton fabric too but I prefer the hang of the charmeuse, plus it goes with anything. Will definitely make a few more.



The Susie Blouse – Sew Over It

I’ve had the Susie Blouse on my “to sew list” for a while now. It’s really similar to my all-time favourite top from Cath Kidston which I’ve practically worn out. So I was excited to find a way of recreating something I knew I’d wear lots.

The Susie is a PDF pattern from Sew Over It and is 32 pages long plus instructions (I never usually print these as it’s easy to read on screen). I quite like the process of printing and taping the pattern together – I’ve learned to embrace this prep part with a glass of wine to hand!

Susie blouse front coverA5

The envelope states that SOI patterns tend to be closer fitting, so I checked the size chart carefully and cut out a size 14. I’m usually  12-14 so went for the larger size.

Fabric-wise I chose a gorgeous viscose poplin which I bought in the Abakhan sale for just £3.33 per metre (now £4.99). It has a beautiful drape and is lightweight, perfect for this unusually hot weather.

The top itself was fairly easy to sew, although the collar requires two layers of fashion fabric plus interfacing, and it can be a bit fiddly to turn and press, so be careful not to use a heavyweight fabric. It’s really important to clip the curves properly or it won’t lie flat.

A great pattern and I’ve already had compliments on it’s first day of wear. The fit is good and hangs really well. Will definitely make up a few more in different fabrics.