Deep Breath and Dive In

Bow Blouse

Alright, make yourself a cup of tea and get comfy. We have a lot to get through. First off, the bow blouse. This was based on my remake of a shop-bought blouse, as blogged about here. This version was entirely inspired by the tiny bow detail on the grey cotton bought from Ditto, link here. I just had to make a big bow to go with that print!

Aw, cute!

On this make, I added a narrow upper chest adjustment, applying my new sewing tutor’s top tip of using masking tape (you can use it on pattern adjustments rather than sellotape with less fear of tearing fragile paper):

This is a cute blouse for everyday wear. I think the cotton only just stands up to clothes making – it’s a little bit on the stiff side.

Moving on!

Remember the Einstein or Eeyore Giveaway I recently announced? I invited opinions on using a semi-sheer silver pinstripe linen with my make of the Simplicity 2443 jacket. You guys came good – just as I knew you would:

  • Boo Dogg and Me has already made this jacket, and thinks it demands a fabric with some body.
  • SewOm suggested referring to The Party Dress book. Like I need an excuse to buy a gorgeous book like that?
  • Lucky Mia pointed out from her own make of a linen dress that linen can pull at the sewing line, leaving holes. Yikes! I don’t want that on a jacket I’ve slaved over.
  • Several of you made extremely sensible suggestions about lining, underlining and French seams.

My conclusions? That linen may just be too fragile to stand up to the rigorous demands placed on a jacket. But it does deserve a fabulous colour lining it. I think a skirt, possibly. Whatever – I’m ordering a couple of metres of that baby. More news as it happens!

But the winner, the winner! you cry. Okay, calm yourselves. Here’s me picking the winner of the giveaway:

And here she is:

It’s Jeni!

Jeni, I’ll contact you separately about postage. Well done, and thanks to all of you for your sage advice, as ever.

Finally, an extra-special thank you to Nancy, Danielle and Handmade Jane who joined me for a jaunt to the 30 Years of Japanese Fashion exhibition at the Barbican yesterday. This is how the venue looked when I arrived:

We had a fabulous time, spending the best part of two hours in the exhibition itself, which is full of radical fashion including:

  • shredded paper
  • A dress made out of 14 shoulder pads
  • A ruff created from 33 dolls
  • transparent film transformed into a skirt
  • an awful lot of origami, honeycomb structures, jersey, silk – and polyester!

After that sensory overload, we retired to the Barbican’s lounge for refreshments and chat. Wow, did we compare notes! Sewing, blogs, life – we had it covered. Finally, Jane made my year by bringing out a copy of one of the books I’ve written and asking me to sign it for her boy, who’s a big fan of ‘Beast Quest’, the children’s series I’ve contributed to. So sign away I did, and here’s Jane proudly holding her copy with Danielle looking on:

Children’s books, exhibitions, giveaways, new friends and a touch of sewing. All in a typical weekend. Okay, I need to go and have a lie down now.

Happy Sundays, everyone!


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3 Responses to Deep Breath and Dive In

  1. Suzanne says:

    What a wonderfully busy weekend! I like the bow pattern on the blouse.

  2. Jane says:

    I had a fantastic day, thanks so much for organising it. And thanks for signing my boy’s book – he was thrilled and will almost certainly be strutting around the playground with his prize later. x

  3. Tilly says:

    Karen, you’re famous! How exciting – I bet you were chuffed!

    Exhibition sounds great – really sorry I didn’t make it. Learning to work from home is haaaaard! She says, reading a blog when she should be working.

    I’m going now…

    Oh, nice blouse BTW! You’re so productive!

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