Handmade Wardrobe | fall collection beatrix


Indiesew fall collection Made By Rae Beatrix top
Well now... what have we here?

I'm back from my little blogging break with a real cracker of a pattern - the Beatrix by Made By Rae.

I was lucky enough to be asked to be part of the Indiesew Fall Collection tour to launch their new Fall Collection. And this pattern totally called my name. Darts at the front, buttons at the back, what's not to love?

Indiesew Fall collection Made By Rae Beatrix
I've been looking for a pattern that would be great for work - simple and unfussy but that wouldn't make me look like a total slob.

Plus, I needed something quick and satisfying to make up (since the bambino started crawling I've had my hands pretty full!) This pattern totally fit the bill.

Indiesew fall collection Made By Rae Beatrix top
This was a lovely pattern to sew up. The drafting is solid - you can chose from A/B cup or C/D cup (basically an inbuilt FBA - nice one).

And the instructions were some of the best I've followed in a while - full of tips and points to remember so you don't end up with a gaff. Always a lovely touch.

I made this up in an X-small with the C/D sizing and I love the way it came out. The fit is pretty perfect.

Indiesew fall collection Made By Rae Beatrix top
I had this particular fabric in my stash. I've been avoiding plaid for ever. I figured it would be a nightmare to match - especially since my default approach to sewing is pretty lax. But this g-i-a-n-t pattern made matching super easy.

I also used this tutorial by Tilly and the Buttons - (it's for matching stripes, but I still found it really useful).

Plus this rayon has the perfect drape for a shirt -  soft but with a slight bit of structure. Nice one.

Indiesew fall collection Made By Rae Beatrix top
So I'm really happy with how this came out. I'd definitely recommend checking out the rest of the patterns from this collection. I think they'd work together really well.

I'm thinking it's going to be a great staple piece. Don't you think it'll look great made up in a whole bunch of different fabrics?

Keen to see more? Check out these other inspirational ladies great makes:

Monday, August 24th: Lauren | Right Sides Together
Tuesday, August 25th: Lori | Girls in the Garden
Wednesday, August 26th: Kimberly | Straight Stitch Designs
Thursday, August 27th: Trine | Groovy Baby and Mama
Friday, August 28th: Taylor | Blueprints for Sewing
Monday, August 31st: Erin | Sewbon
Tuesday, September 1st: Elena | Randomly Happy (that's me!)
Wednesday, September 2nd: Tara | Girl Like the Sea
Thursday, September 3rd: Lola | Love Lola

p.s. You may have notice the change of scenery. I'm in Toronto for a friend's wedding and am staying for a few weeks. So any fabric haunts/tips would be greatly appreciated!

Handmade Wardrobe | casual slouchy trousers


Sew Caroline Happy Home Art Gallery Fabrics Casual Sweet Clothes trousers
I know.

I have a problem.

I am addicted to sewing casual, slouchy trousers.

Sew Caroline Happy Home Art Gallery Fabrics Casual Sweet Clothes trousers
But guys, these beauties had to be made. They are almost 100% close to my ultimate dream pair of summer trousers: tapered in the leg with a relaxed fit, topped off with an elasticated waist all made up in a breezy, modestly jazzy fabric.

And this pair has belt loops. Belt loops (more on those and other juicy details at the end of the post).

Sew Caroline Happy Home Art Gallery Fabrics Casual Sweet Clothes trousers
I was very kindly gifted this fabric from Art Gallery Fabrics. It's from a collection they recently released designed by possibly the sweetest looking sewing blogger - Sew Caroline.

I'll be honest, I was worried the fabric weight wouldn't be quite right for the relaxed trouser style I was going for. But man, was I wrong. 

Sew Caroline Happy Home Art Gallery Fabrics Casual Sweet Clothes trousers
And now this fabric has totally made me rethink my feelings about 100% cotton for clothing. I'm all in now.

The pattern's pretty interesting too. It's from the Japanese pattern book Casual Sweet Clothes which a friend at work recommended. I've not tried pattern books before, but I think I may be becoming a bit of a fan.

Sew Caroline Happy Home Art Gallery Fabrics Casual Sweet Clothes trousers
These still need some work. The excess fabric in the hips and around the side seams is definitely bumming me out. But I reckon an hour with some pins and the sewing machine will sort out most of the issues.

So, what do you think? Have you been making any fab trousers for summer? Have you been tempted to sew with 100% cotton lately?

The great Instagram stash swap


instagram stash swap

Alright guys. Let's do it. Let's have a stash swap.

And let's do it via Instagram.

Crazy idea? Possibly. But think about it - it's probably pretty likely that all of us have some hidden gems lurking at the back of our fabric cupboards. Why not try and make the most of it?

So the details...

The swap will start on the 27 th of July and run for two weeks - or until everyone's swapped their fabric. That gives you two weeks to short through your stash and take photos.

How to take part

1. Sort through your stash. Try and be honest - will you actually ever use that fabric, or could it go to a better home somewhere else?

2. Take photos of your stash. Make sure there's good, natural light so the colours are accurate. And try not to squeeze too many fabrics into the photo. Maybe have a max of 3 fabrics per photo.

3. Gather some key details. You're going to want to include key details in the description so that people get an idea of what's on offer. Be sure to include the length and width, the material content (or your best guesstimate), and drape quality (like medium, light, heavy).

4. Decide where you can ship to. We all know shipping can get expensive, so have a think if you'd be willing to ship internationally, or if you'd find it easier to stick closer to home.

5. Get swapping. Start posting your photos on the 27th of July and be sure to tag with #InstaStashSwap.

instagram stash swap

How to swap

So I reckon the easiest way to do this would be for people to search through the #InstaStashSwap tag and see what goodies people have on offer. Once you've found something you like then contact the person via direct message to see if they'd be keen for a swap.

And that's it.

The Instagram stash swap had landed. Do you think you'll be taking part?

Handmade Wardrobe | maya top


Marilla Walker maya top
So, it turns out I totally cave under peer pressure.

This here has become one of my favourite makes from me-made May.

Not bad, right?

Marilla Walker maya top
But, if you follow along on Instagram, you'll know I wasn't always quite so sure. Heck, at the start I was 50% sure I would be sending this to a charity shop.

So, what happened to change my mind? 

Well, I posted this to Instagram as part of my me-made-May challenge. I was practically minutes away from sending it away. 

But then, people started saying lovely things. Really kind things.

And then all those things that bothered me at the start (the large buttons, the shoulder pleats) started looking OK.

And then they started looking even better than OK. They started looking pretty awesome.

I love the way that's happened. And now, this is one of my favourite summery tops (seen here in sunny Lisbon).

Marilla Walker maya top

Marilla Walker maya top
Thank you lovely people of Instagram.

Has that ever happened to you - about to throw something on the 'to donate' pile, and then had your mind changed?

Travel | Lisbon


Lisbon travel blogging
So we escaped again. This time to Lisbon.

I don't know about you, but I'm a warm weather person. All this chilly business we've been having this spring and summer here in the UK? Well, that just isn't acceptable I'm afraid.

And so we decided to get away. Somewhere hot and beautiful. Somewhere new (to us).

Lisbon travel blogging
To be honest, it didn't take long for us to decide on sunny, tile-filled Lisbon.

Lisbon travel blogging
And man, was I sure excited about breaking out some of my more recent summery makes. Makes that have been quietly pinning away waiting for summer. Yup, those babies went straight into the suitcase.

So, read on for gratuitous photos. Oh, and to hear some of the (Lisbon and me-made) highlights. Of course ;)

Lisbon travel blogging


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