Thursday, 29 July 2010

Boden or Anthropologie?

So I just got the new Boden catalogue in the post, I covet Boden very much, in fact its been part of the inspiration to make a lot of my own clothes now as I love the fabrics they use but I don't like their prices.  Whilst browsing this morning I was struck by how familiar lots of their pieces are and I realised that they are similar to loads of posts that various bloggers I read have done recently which have mainly been influenced by Anthropologie (which is not a company I was not aware of until recently discovering all these great sewing blogs) and J Crew, so I thought I'd show you a few and see if you agree.


Embellished Tee-shirts
Frilled T-shirt
Pleated neckline top
Ribbon trimmed cardigan which exactly like this one
Ruffle top which I already made a sorta similar version
Rosette cardigan
Corsage necklace
Pleated neck
Circle Applique Dress
Ruffle jacket

I can't link the images from the Boden website!

I've seen so many examples of these kind of garments in recent months, Suzannah (who's fabulous at making her version of stuff she sees), Disney (even though she's gone into retirement)  to name just a few!

And look what I saw in Phase Eight yesterday and heres how you can make one yourself!

So the question is
  • have Boden been reading all the blogs I do and making their own versions,
  • have Boden been looking at Antropologie for inspiration,
  • is there a world-wide common inspiration source
  • or are there no original ideas and we all steal from each other!?





Tuesday, 20 July 2010

Drafting Tutorials

One of my most favourist blogs is doing a brilliant new series.  Lorraine at Ikat Bag and her life-long friend Jen from My Measuring Tape are starting a series of posts to show you how to draft your own patterns starting with children and hopefully moving on to adults as well!  I'm very excited about this as this is exactly what I need.  I like making clothes but I find commercial patterns a) expensive b) restrictive c) not always flattering for my body shape.  I've made some garments that I drafted myself, some using Cal Patchs book some just winging it with varying success but its the thing about sewing that I really enjoy.   I was going to go to college to do a dressmaking course but basically all they would teach you was how use a commercial pattern which I already know.  What I want is a real-life person to show me how to draft but as I don't have one I'll have to rely on Lorraine and the beauty of the blogosphere.  I've already told Lorraine how much I admire her work and how I need a real-life version of her but I think I'm starting to move into stalker territory so these tutorials will help me!  If you are interested in expanding your sewing knowledge then check her out!


Tuesday, 6 July 2010


As part of my new venture I put some t-shirts in my Folksy shop this evening.  They are really cute and I've been getting good feedback from people about them so hopefully they won't take long to sell! 

Got some other things planned so watch this space.......



A friend of mine is having a baby soon and she already has a  4 year old boy so I thought I would make a special gift for him to show that the baby won't get all the attention.  I was thinking about how being a big brother or sister means complete adoration from the baby (usually!) so I made him a Superhero cape. 

I also made a certificate to give him


I think its all really cute and I'm hoping that the little boy and his mum will like them too.  Just need to get one and make some stuff for the baby.........  Any ideas?  Not sure of the sex so needs to be gender neutral.  Baby shower is in a few weeks so need to pull my finger out!


Thursday, 1 July 2010


As a family we've started geocaching recently which involves wandering around the countryside with a satnav, drinks, things to swop etc etc etc so I decided to make a bag to carry everything in.  The design brief was to make a bag which would hold the satnav, a book, a flask, pencils and assorted junk to swop (usually old party bag toys and Happy Meal toys!), the bag need to have an adjustable strap as it would be carried by both me and my husband and due to that point absolutely no flowery fabric!  So I ended up with some brown corduroy and some stripy material for the lining.  I took all the things we wanted to carry and spent a while designing the internal pockets so that the lining was flat but the pocket was big enough to accommodate the object.  I got some heavy sew-in interfacing to give the bag structure and I ended up with.......

I had to google how to put in an adjustable strap and found this helpful tutorial from Nikki.

Inside you can see the pockets for the pencils on the left and a larger pocket which has hygiene gel and probably keys will end up in there.

The big pocket on the right holds a book with details in it and the pocket on the left has the satnav.  In between the pockets is a large 6" base which I will put some plasticard in as a firm base to hold the flask and swops. 

So there it is, it was tricky to sew such thick fabric especially with the interlining and turning the bag through was a bit awkward.  The top-stitching probably isn't the best I've ever done but given the thickness and the straps I'm just happy I managed to get round!

Try doing some geocaching, its a great excuse to get the kids out and about and find somewhere you didn't know was on your door step.  The kids love the whole secrecy aspect of it and how people who aren't in the know are called Muggles, in fact we're not allowed to say the word geo-caching out loud, we have to say You Know What!