Thursday, December 25, 2014

The Loot!

So I recently went on a fabric buying extravaganza, my bank account has been shuddering in fear ever since. But  I thought it would be nice you use my blog as a planning mechanism to keep track of what I've purchased, what I plan on doing with it and then getting to post about the finished product. Also included in this post are Christmas presents that I received since I'm a bad blogger....

1. Two Yards of this great Marcus Brother Blue Plaid Cotton Flannel Fabric with these cute matching buttons. I don't have the pattern yet (it's possible it might show up for Christmas Yay Christmas. Mummum got me the pattern not only for the hooded blouse but also the overalls/trousers!)

2 & 3. Simplicity 1957, a 1930's coat with cape. This counts as two because I've gotten fabric to make a hip length mock up (black, cream, white outer fabric with jade green lining and black buttons) from the pattern as well as a fabric for the full length version.

4. Simplicity 4366. Some of you may recognize the pattern from my Red Ike Jacket. I got an Olive corduroy for the jacket with the peplum and matching skirt!

5. A modern pencil skirt Butterick 6060 for go with a store bought top.

6. Butterick 6094 by Gertie! in awesome Blackberry fabric with a fushia/burgundy accent on the back collar. (oh and don't ask about the fabric names because I don't think the burgundy is appropriate for that color but who knows what JoAnn's was thinking

7. Chemise, under petticoat and the strapless stays from Fitting and Proper (green)

8.  Colonial Jacket C from Janet Arnold and a petticoat from Waverly Curtains

9. Colonial short gown and petticoat. Polkadots for the short gown! Pattern from Fitting and Proper

10. Christmas Present Fabric! for Simplicity 3489. The fabric is from  pop over and take a look!

11. Christmas Bonus! Mummum also got me Gertie Sews Casual so now I get to learn how to sew with knits!!

Friday, October 31, 2014

HSF Challenge 22: Gentlemen

Wow it looks like I don't have hands in this picture....
So my Halloween costume ended up doubling as a HSF Challenge, specifically Challenge #22: Gentlemen. The aim of the challenge was to either create a garment for a man or a menswear inspired piece for a woman. Well I made overalls so I guess that counts!  I went as a Woman's Land Army: Crop Corps member. The overall's are made with denim from my stash, it has some stretch so I'm assuming the fabric has lycra in it (not historically accurate but using up the stash, yay!) The buttons, zipper and bias tape are also from stash. The only thing I had to purchase was the pattern. I used Wearing History's Overall pattern (I see jeans and other pants in my future) during Lauren's Kickstarter campaign. I chose not to line the bodice and instead I used bias tape to face it. The tops of the pockets are also faced. The buttons were from something my grandmother gave me to chop up but I can remember what. The hem is hand stitched and so it the zipper. I added a zipper instead of the button placket because 1 I didn't feel like making all those buttonholes, 2 I didn't have more of the same buttons in the stash and 3 I wasn't quite sure how to attach the placket so I try that another time when I don't have a deadline. With the overalls I made a WLA armband. I used red and navy yarn for the design and some scrap navy fabric for the main piece. These overalls are super comfy once you get used to the lower crotch length. Mummum gave me the shirt to wear with it and then I just wore my brown boots to complete the look. I feel like I should have my hair in a bandanna or a snood but oh well.

The Scoop:

Fabric: Stretch Denim from the Stash
Pattern: Wearing History Overall and Trouser Pattern
Year: 1940's

Notions: Bias tape in two colors for top and pockets, two button and a zipper.
Hours to Complete: Sewn over 4 days including a mock up
First worn?: Halloween
Make again?: Yes! plus pants and shorts and a short overall playsuit too!
Total cost: $12 for the pattern but everything else came from the stash.
I'll Leave you with a picture of me wearing my new overalls with my red wool Ike Jacket! 

Friday, October 17, 2014

American Duchess Strikes Again!

Let me introduce Virginia a perfect fit for your 1580-1630 costuming needs!
American Duchess collaborated with Jamestown to create a unisex style shoe that looks fantastic and I'm sure is super comfy.  Pop on over to her blog following the link below and enter her giveaway to have your very own pair!!

Thursday, October 2, 2014

Down the Rabbit Hole We Go (HSF #18)

So I've been flirting for years with the 18th Century and I've finally jumped. I ordered some lovely linen from (use coupon code ilovelinen for 7% off) and immediately started to work. I drafted a pocket pattern based on Costume Close-Up: Clothing Construction and Pattern 1750-1790 by Linda Banumgarten & John Watson with Florine Carr. I used my fabric swatches from for the (uneven) squares and then linen from for the lining and the back of the pocket. I'm going to bind the pocket with 1/2" linen tape from once I know how long I want the waist tape. The pocket also qualifies for the Historical Sew Fortnightly Challenge 18: Poetry in Motion because of this little poem:

Lucy Locket lost her pocket,
Kitty Fisher found it;
Not a penny was there in it,
Only ribbon round it.

The poem was written during the 19th century and is possibly about two courtesans in King Charles II's court. So without further ado here is my first completely handsewn (with linen thread mind you) 18th century project.

Sorry for the poor photo I'm away at school and I only have my iTouch to take pictures with. The waistband is sewn on yet because I don't want to make it the wrong size because I don't have my stays made yet (or my shift for that matter). But I'm pretty proud of it for being my first completely handsewn item.

The Scoop:

Fabric: White Linen and Linen from fabric swatches, sewn with linen thread
Pattern: Costume Close-Up
Year: 1740-1770

Notions: Linen tape for a waistband (not applied yet), beeswax for the thread
Hours to Complete: Sewn over 5 days
First worn?: not yet
Make again?: Yes but I think I'm going to try and embroider one
Total cost: The swatches cost $5.25, and a whole yard of linen cost $6.37 but I might have used a little under a quarter yard for the backing and lining so about $1.50 coming to a total of $6.75

Friday, August 15, 2014

Historical Sew Fortnightly Challenge #15: The Great Outdoors (part Two)

For my second entry for the Great Outdoors challenge I made a red wool version of Simplicity 4366.
I love Ike jackets and I wanted one of my own for a while but then I found the red wool and decided that I would pay homage to the Ike jacket but make it my own. I have to give credit to Tasha from By Gum By Golly for starting the sewing bug for the jacket. Tahsa made a great 1940's jacket for Rochelle's Sew for Victory last year (2013) in a wonderful green fabric. From the moment I saw the jacket I knew I had to make one and here it is. The shoulders are gathered into a yoke and the waist of the jacket is gathered into a waistband. The sleeves are gathered at the wrist and finished with a cuff that buttons. The buttons are self covered and the red wool cooperated in waves that Murphy's buttons couldn't dream of doing.
The pattern called for self made shoulder pads but instead of stuffing them I used two layers of crinoline. The crinoline made the jackets shoulders keep their shape but don't make me look like a linebacker (which I appreciate). The Jacket is also fully lined; the pattern didn't call for it but I knew I wanted it lined because of the wool. I had to adjust the facing piece because of the change but that was a quick fix. For all of the buttonholes I used my grandmothers Singer 9134 which is cranky but works most of the time. I added the pockets to the front, they're from Colette Pattern's blog Coletterie and can be found here. For attaching the pockets I had to wing it since I don't have the original Colette pattern the pockets actually go to.

The Scoop:

Fabric: Red Tango Wool and Medieval Blue Lining
Pattern: Simplicity 4366
Year: 1942 (Thank you Anne)

Notions: 9 self covered buttons
First worn?: Only around the house, it's not cool enough outside to wear wool
Make again?: Yes but the peplum version in green corduroy with flannel lining

Total cost: Pattern $12 but I'll say $6 because there's a skirt pattern with the jacket, Wool Fabric $19.24, Lining $9.98, Self Covered Button Kit $5.99 so total $41.21

Thursday, August 14, 2014

Birthday Surprise!

So Mummum's birthday was on Sunday and in celebration we're running a 25% off coupon in the Etsy shop. Just enter BIRTHDAYSURPRISE at checkout!

Picture credit:

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Ohh the Irony and Historical Sew Fortnightly Challenge #15: The Great Ooutdoors

So I found this little skirt in Make and Mend for Victory (Downloadable here) and made it up over three days. The booklet was published in 1942 by The Spool Cotton Company. To make the skirt you need 5 bandannas. You sew 4 of them together leaving a 7" long opening on one seam for snap closures. Then you cut the waistband from the 5th bandanna. I took a 1/2" seam on sewing everything together because in my downloaded copy the seam allowance was missing, as was the width of the waistband which I made an 1 1/2". You then gather the skirt into the waistband. The directions say that you can close the skirt with ties on the waistband but I decided to close it with a wooden button instead (Belle Button-Natural Wood Burnout 18Mm from Joanns if you're interested)

The booklet also has instructions for a top to go with the skirt and that is next on my sewing table once I finish my Red Ike Jacket. The buttonhole on the skirt is done with my grandmothers Singer 9134 which does a one step buttonhole. The buttonhole didn't come out perfect but I think it had to do with how much the skirt is gather into the waistband. The irony part comes from the fact that it's raining outside today so I had to take pictures on Audrey, my dress form.

The Scoop:

Fabric: 5 Pink Batik Bandannas from Joann Fabrics
Pattern: Make and Mend for Victory Booklet
Year: 1942
Notions: Snaps and a Button
Hours: 3 days off and on
First worn?: Not yet, it's raining out
Make again?: Maybe not for me but my grandmother has been eyeing it up so perhaps one for her

Total cost: Pattern: Free download, Bandannas: $12.95, Buttons: all 3 cost $2.96 (yay 50% off) but since I only used one we'll say $.99, and the snaps came from my stash. Total: $13.94

Monday, August 11, 2014

Historical Sew Fortnightly Challenge #14: Paisley & Plaid

Ok so the challenge was due on August 1st.....10 days late isn't tooo bad. My entry to HSF is a 1939 Purple Plaid Brushed Cotton Flannel Dress. I've dubbed it the "Secretary Dress" it's justDuBarry 2347B made with the long sleeves ( I LOVE the darts on the sleeves!). I made the short sleeve version last year. This time around I took a 1/2" out of the waist and went with regular machine made buttonholes instead of bound button holes. The skirt is lined with a poly/cotton lining but I didn't line the bodice because I would rather feel the flannel next to my skin than lining material. Matching the plaid was also a challenge on the dress but overall I'm very pleased with the way it came out. This dress matches my favorite pair of shoes which was part of the allure in making the dress but the hunt is still on for  proper purple stocking. Found them! I hope to update the pictures the next time I wear the dress.
The belt I made from a 1950's self covering buckle kit that I found on Etsy. This was my first time making a belt but I had fun with it. The fabric is just a solid purple flannel that you cut 3 times wider than the belt and fold so there are no exposed raw edges. The fun part came when I had to put the grommets in because at that point I realized I did not have an awl so I scurried out to JoAnn's to buy one and then came back to finish the belt.
The prong was the most difficult part and I'm still not 100% satisfied with it but the belt works and stays where it's supposed to. I'm thinking of making some belt loops on the dress to keep the back and sides from shifting around. 
All the dress needs now is a tie!

The Scoop:

Fabric: Purple Plaid Brushed Cotton Flannel from their Plaiditude Collection
Pattern: DuBarry 2347B
Year: 1939
Notions: Zipper and 5 Buttons
Hours: I didn't keep track
First worn?: Not yet, it's too warm out!
Make again?: I'm not sure. I like the style but I might find something else I like more

Total cost: Pattern $7 (but I've already used it so it doesn't count) Fabric $20, Lining $5.08, Buttons $5.18 and Zipper $1.49 Belt Kit $4.50 Belt Fabric $.45 Total coming to $36.70

Etsy Sale!

Hello Folks!

My grandmother and I have put together an Etsy shop and we're running a 15% off sale at the moment. Just enter FACEBOOK14 during checkout. We have Fabric, Sewing Patterns and Vintage Jewelry so come check us out at

And Just because they're adorable have a hedgehog!
Photo Credit goes to

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Murphy's Law Hat and a surprise HSF

I've made a cap and a headscarf but never a proper hat until now. The pattern was from the Vintage Pattern Lending Library a reproduction of Simplicity 1353 dated 1934. I made the caplet from this pattern for my first Historical Sew Fortnightly Challenge.  Incidentally Murphy also qualifies for the Historical Sew Fortnightly for Challenge #13: Under $10.
The fabric is a raspberry colored suiting from Joann's that I made my 1936 Suit from (that I haven't posted about yet. oops.)
The lining is also from that suit and is just a poly/cotton mix.
 This was my first time working with crinoline and also using self covered buttons. The Self covered buttons were good practice for what I actually bought the kit for, a Frankensteined Ike Jacket, because I found out a ball pein hammer works better than the little blue plastic setter the kit gives you.  But let's get back to the fact that this hat fought me the whole time I was making it. The fabric argued with me, the directions tricked me, I wasted at least 4 button backs, and I sewed every seam at least twice. Everything that could have gone wrong did go wrong.  One other fix I had to do was add a pipe cleaner to one of the seams because it kept wanting to collapse for some reason but I fixed that too. But I kept hacking away at it and now I have a very stylish hat named Murphy.

The Challenge: # 13 Under $10

Fabric: Raspberry Colored Suiting Fabric and Purple poly/cotton lining.

Pattern: Vintage Pattern Lending Library 1930 Ladies Hat, Gloves, Purse and Collar Ensemble a reproduction of Simplicity 1353

Year: 1934

Notions: 4 Self Covered buttons

Hours to complete: About a week of on/off sewing

First worn: Not yet. 

Total cost: Pattern $15 but since it has four items I'm saying the pattern for the hat cost $3.75, Crinoline was $2.99, Fabric scraps from stash, Self Covered Buttons free, and thread was also from my  stash. So Murphy cost $6.74

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

HSF Challenge 3: Pink

I finished this one early as I didn't do challenge two; while I'm away at school I figure I'll try to do the half marathon and if I'm luck over summer I can do all of the challenges. The third challenge in the 2014 Historical Sew Fortnightly is due February 15th and the challenge is pink. Awhile ago I bought some pink jersey fabric for McCall 1358,
the pattern is from 1947and featured in McCalls Style News for September of that year. My pattern is the colored version at the bottom. I was looking into why my envelope was in black and white and found that some patterns printed in Australia and New Zealand were not printed with colored envelopes. Even though the cutoff for the HSF is 1945 I still think this project can count.

During the war women used headscarves like this to keep their hair away from machinery, so I thought this style could have been used during the war and was kept on after it. But then I could be completely off base. This project was two firsts for me. 1) This is the first time I've sewn with knit jersey.  2) This is the first completely hand-sewn project since I was around 6. I completed this over three days but if you are using a machine I think this could be a great instant gratification kind of project. I stitched a line with dark thread so I would know where i needed to turn the seam.
Then I ironed on that line and folded the raw edge  under and did a hem stitch to sew it down. The trim is just three pieces of fabric braided together without finishing those edges. I had to redo the braid three times till I was happy with it. I apologize for the grainy pictures, I had to use my school's ipad to take the picture because I stupidly forgot my camera at home.

The Challenge: # 3 Pink

Fabric: Raspberry colored Jersey

Pattern: McCall 1358 

Year: 1947 but I think it would work for the war years as well

Notions: none

Hours to complete: 3 days with one intense day of hand-sewing and two of cutting and doing the trim.

First worn: Right when I finished it to see how it looked and then for pictures 

Total cost: When I get home I can figure this one out 

Friday, January 24, 2014

A Little Help

So I know not many people read my blog yet but I thought I would reach out anyway. I am a college student and this semester I have to opportunity to travel to Ireland for one of my classes. I want to be a grief counselor in the near future and in Ireland I want to study the grief process involved in such a drawn out conflict. If everyone who looks at this could go to and just make a donation it would really help me out. I know there are bills to pay and fabric to buy so any little bit would help. I have $1,400 out of the $3,500 so I'm not just relying on donations, I had some money saved from my summer job after I got home from my semester abroad in England. Thank You.

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

My First Entry in the 2014 Historical Sew Fortnightly

So I decided to dive into the 2014 Historical Sew Fortnightly hosted by the wonderful Leimomi. 
She hosted the same event last year but most of the sewing I did fell outside of the dates for the challenges. This year the date has been extended to 1945, so my WW2 pattern stash can finally be put to work!  The first challenge was in spirit of the WW2 campaign for 'Make Do & Mend' a huge task for those on the home front in Europe and the US because of rationing. Ironically I chose a pattern that would have worked for last years challenge; a reprint of Simplicity 1353 dated 1934 from the Vintage Pattern Lending Library ( also has a reprint of the pattern in a larger size, the one from VPLL is a medium) The pattern consists of a hat, collar, gloves, and a purse. I made the collar for this challenge from fabric left over from my 1937 skirt.

I had to cannibalize the scrap piece left to match the grainlines but it worked! I also lined the collar in some of the fashion fabric because of the reveres that would show the lining and also I wanted the front piece line in the flannel for warmth and stability. The other bits of lining came from my 1936 suit skirt  lining (again post to follow) but those grainlines don't match up because the word cannibalize doesn't even cover what I had to do to those scraps though I am proud to say I only had to piece together one section of the collar. This pattern is a good example of the "expectation and reality" of sewing because unless you are magic those points don't come out as pointy as the picture and the revers aren't quite as picturesque as the drawing, (till you press them within an inch of their lives and then tack them down.) But I am insanely in love with this piece and I do plan on making more.

1930 Ladies Hat, Gloves, Purse and Collar EnsembleThe Challenge: # 1 Make Do & Mend

Fabric: 100% Brushed Cotton in a Blue and Black Herringbone pattern and Navy poly/cotton lining.

Pattern: Vintage Pattern Lending Library 1930 Ladies Hat, Gloves, Purse and Collar Ensemble a reproduction of Simplicity 1353

Year: 1934

Notions: One Button

Hours to complete: It took 4 days of on/off sewing

First worn: Not yet. Audrey had the pleasure though I do plan on wearing it for an upcoming lunch date.

Total cost: Pattern $15 but since it has four items I'm saying the pattern for the collar cost $3.75, Fabric from stash, Button and thread also from stash. So all in all it cost me $3.75 to make.