Friday, January 25, 2013

Summer of DRESSES

Burda 7502  made from a heavy stretch cotton.

Completed and being worn to my local ASG meeting at Erina another easy Burda dress.   This is the fist piece of my SWAP collection, and features the princess seams running from the shoulders.


PATTERN: Burda 7502
FABRIC: 3plus m. of cotton cream stretch
COSTS: $15.00 for fabric 3.00 for other(cotton,zip)
Fabric from stash used 3.5  (including pants)

Thursday, January 24, 2013

GAP Year

"Sneaky Snazz"  aka  "Prince Rotton"  "The Grey Lord"  or his common name  "  Cranky Puss" had a hard night at the
 Black Cat CLUB   or maybe just hanging out with the teenagers?

  I am the one who is having a GAP why does he get to lie around furring up the place.
This is my formal dining room.  What has happened to the sewing room?

 My son has moved to the room next to my sewing room;  is using the adjoining room for his computer and to entertain his friends.  Teenagers talk to 4.30am which renders them useless, until sometime in the afternoon.  They are appearing on couches,  the floor adjoining my sewing room and use my cutting table for drinks and food....

So I am trying to sew in the formal dining room ......however,   Sneaky Snazz has discovered the new area and  is trying to hatch my next project: a pair of slim pants from the same fabric.


BURDA7502  is the first garment for my SWAP collection, and first to be sewn in the upstairs dining sewing room.
  It has the design features that suit a "rectangle" with   princess seams that start at the  shoulders,  topstitching, heavy fabric and an 'angular look'.  I used an old fashion zip,  not having an invisible zip that long in my stash.

 The only alteration was to shorten the dress.  I cut a size 44 and just sewed it up!  (Love a Burda Pattern)

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Stash Busting

    Stashbusting Sewalong

I have decided to join in the fun of sewing down the stash.   "Everyone " is doing it,   Artisan Square, my local sewing guild "Frocks" and EmSewCrazy at Tumbleweeds in the Wind .  I would like to say that I will not buy more fabric.... Can I pledge to purchase fabric once a month rather then weekly?  That I can commit to.

For 2013:   I would like to sew from the stash especially those "special" fabrics
                   I would like to compete in the SWAP contest at Artisan Square
                   I would like to make lingerie and maybe swimmers. 
                   I would like to buy more patterns and fabric

Summer of Dresses

Burda 7515  made from a navy silk crepe

It was a mild overcast day,  just perfect for a pic of this dress that I completed last year!  (Sister to my Xmas Day red dress) It is real 'easy to wear' and ' easy to make'.

I followed the pattern and overlocked the edge,  next time I will try a 'rolled' hem using my regular machine.  This dress took about 2 hours to complete.   No zip, no buttons, no hem, no interfacing and very little pressing

Three rectangles  sewn together,  what an easy dress,  just perfect for

Red dress 7515

Fabric:  1.5 m.  (so old I forget the cost)
Notions:  Cotton from my stash.
Shoes:  Faithful old Crocs, just perfect for the beach.        

Wednesday, January 16, 2013


I have been spending more time on my blog.  Today I reached 18 followers.... I am so not in the league of Jessica Stern's blog Tuula with 351,000 followers.    My daughter is a  photographer and has  been photographing Jessica for her very popular blog.  

Photographs taken out and about at Terrigal by Josephine Willcox.                                                                                                               

"Her" Shirt

Burda Mag.  6/2011
I am really enjoying wearing my new beach cover-up.  It is about a 2 1/2 dot pattern and fairly easy to make up with 'mock' princess seams in the front.  It is really a dart from the shoulder and the front facing is turned to the rightside  and top stitched down.  The most difficult part of this pattern is Burda's instructions  and the square "setin"  sleeves which are a little tricky.    The back hem is about 6cm longer then the front which is not visible in the photos.  I like to roll up my sleeves and use french seams when the inside of the garment is going to show.  I just prefer the way they look in preference to overlocking.

Tims shirt from the same Burda 6/2011

The pink linen was a small remnant which cost $3 and is just right for this comfortable summer  top/tunic.  This is the 'her' version of my husband's shirt  also from the same issue  6/2011. It has already been washed and I like wearing it very much.    Tim has asked for another but with shorter sleeves.

          Burda Style   6/2011
          Material:     $3
          Cotton:   already had some in stash

 Close up my Pirate ear rings   by Robert Clerc

Tuesday, January 15, 2013


Lots of sewing happening on the SWAP 2013  thread,  but not with me,  although I have just finished cutting out a cream dress Burda 7502 and Burda jeans  7863.   I have been working on my Story board,  trying to create a collection of garments that share design  (construction) lines.  In the beginning,   I could not get a linking garment to work with two different capsules... so I decided to select  the linking piece first.   This is "Rivera Kiss Me Coat" by   Hot Patterns .

Hot Pattern   "Kiss Me Coat"  and navy silk.    Burda 7863  and a peak of the cream stretch cotton.

 I am happy  using some of my brighter coloured silks to make some classic pieces for the two capsules,  but want the design lines of the garments to be similar.   So,  I decided to concentrate on the princess seam  (used in the Coat)  for my shells, dress and shirt.  As well,   I want the inner garments' necklines to compliment and sit well under the coat.

I am feeling happier with this plan as I want the garments to look like a 'family' and share similar aesthetics almost as if they have been "designed " by the same person.   As well,  the long vertical lines of the princess seams suit me.

Burda princess seam top on the right
Dress sharing princess seams

Saturday, January 12, 2013


I purchased these Ziera shoes and didn't have 'anything to wear' with them.   These  shoes are  for 'real walking'  and have this metal spring running down the middle.   (is this colour Burnt Sienna?)
I have not let brown into my wardrobe for years,  preferring jewel colours and have used navy and charcoal as my basic colours.  Sometimes I just get these weird impulses.   I needed something  quick and decided on this easy knit dress  Burda 7646.  

The neckline is faced and I have used a twin needle to sew the facing down.  Knits are not my favourite fabric to sew because there is so much variation in how they behave,  and I always end up ripping of the rib because it is either too long or short.   I now realise that knits with lots of drape are more suited to gathers and  a style like this is best in something a little more stable and beefier.

PATTERN    Burda  7646
PENDANT    Lapis scarab  by Robert Clerc  Egyptian collection
SHOES          Ziera

Friday, January 11, 2013


     This was one of the last paintings that I completed, and it was pre children.    It is a mixed media of gouache/charcoal on water colour paper.  Myself and a girlfriend took out our mountain bikes and art stuff to a National Park down at Tamor.  We rode in the  morning ( I can remember riding off the wharf into a lake)  and painted in the afternoon.  A storm was coming over and the sky  changed to
dark violet with a strange yellowish tinge.  This painting I gave to my husband.  So much of my work stayed in shelves/sketch books and was thrown away when we moved (de cluttered) overseas in 2000.

   At Art College,  I can  remember the design lecturer asking me how did I put on my makeup....apparently,  I could not keep within the lines when doing the infinite amount of colour wheel and mixing exercises.   In painting I had much more success and remember being told "you will most likely get married, have children and stop painting".   And that was what happened.  I did take my art gear out once with my toddler daughter,  she ate dirt, was stung by an ant and to console her I ended up painting 'sharks'  with her on my expensive piece of rag paper.  That was the last time I painted for myself.

    I would do a little sewing,  and to keep track of my ideas I drew in my Visual Art diary.  On the SWAP Thread at Artisan Square  there are amazing  story boards showcasing  computer  and photographic skills;  I still draw using felt tipped pens and do an occasional 'colouring in' job with textas usually in front of the TV.   Pages are removed and pinned to the sewing room wall, with other inspiration.

My Visual Diary is full,  and here are a few pics of what goes on inside.

I think you may have an idea why the lecture thought I may struggle 'putting on makeup'.   I have  a new Visual Diary but miss the old ones'  bound pages and heavy acid free paper  and black sturdy cover.  The new book is spiral bound,   has a plastic cover  and is bigger.

 As well,  I have been using loose leaf pages and just pinning them to the sewing rooms' wall.  I love spending  time illustrating my ideas and have been digging around finding my old water colours,  gouache paints,  coloured pencils  and anything else that makes a mark.  This is what retirement is about....

Today my son Harry turned 18.  Happy Birthday

Wednesday, January 9, 2013


Red dress made for Xmas but I only just completed it!   Purchased the fabric from Lincraft  last year and originally planned to make a Trench coat,  but it has ended up as a dress.   The fabric is  stretchy,  shiny  and is matt on the wrong side.  I have enough to make some red pants!

Another Burda pattern,  I luv that I can just  cut and sew,  no mucking around with mock ups or having to measure and add up.  This style always suits  me with a collar,  topstitching, zip and princess seams from the shoulders.

Just noticed the pin in side of the collar.

Burda Mag.  5/2009

PATTERN   Burda Style Mag.   5/2009
SHOES          Ziera  sandals (last years)  and so comfortable.
FABRIC        Red satin stretch cotton from Lincraft maturing in the stash!

Tuesday, January 8, 2013


BURDA DRESS  7515     made from a red printed rayon.

It is almost year since I have worked.   The time off is great,  shame about the pay.

We take Lucy the Labradoodle for a walk to the beach most mornings.   She prefers Avoca Beach as she gets to play ball in the ocean and in the Lagoon as it has a large  'Dog Off Leash area' unlike Terrigal.   Terrigal is busier and a meeting place for joggers,  bike riders,  mothers and walkers.  The break at Terrigal is gentle and it is  very popular with families and young children,  unlike Avoca which had a drowning last month where two teenage girls were washed from the  rocks.    Across the road from Terrigal beach is the Crown Plaza which boasts one of the best views in the world.  Both Terrigal and North Avoca are about 1.5 hours from Sydney....  and a popular holiday destination.   We live within walking distance from both beaches.

Xmas Day 2012. 
I was trying to make a few dresses to suit our casual lifestyle.  This was very easy and speedy to make and I wore on Xmas Day.

Burda 7515
Of course I have made the navy one;
from a silk crepe.

Zip Dress

Zip Dress   Burda   6/2008

Norah Head Light House

Lucy the Labradoodle loves
 retrieving the ball.
     Burda dress made from a red/orange synthetic with a metal thread.  This fabric was difficult to press,  but relatively easy to sew.  It has an   exposed zip in the front and metal eyelet/notions on the pockets and  at the waist and  hem.

    Made this dress for the 2012 SWAP  and it has been on heavy rotation.  Wore it over my swimmers to the Norah Head Lighthouse on Sunday.  Temp was about 32C.  We were able to have a paddle in the



Monday, January 7, 2013

Easy Ageless Cool

EAC  pattern by Louise Cutting

I was able to talk the children into gifting me 5 LC patterns.  This is the first of my present made is a navy linen cotton mix.  These are an easy to wear pull on pant.  The waist is elastic,  they finish at the ankles and  have big side pockets!   So 'easy'  to wear and make with LC instructions.

EAC pants.  size Small
EAC worn with another LC pattern MHF