The Pre-Blog Makes

As I’ve been in possession of a sewing machine for more than a year I have made several things, however, I still feel that everything I’ve made looks a bit home-made and wonky. This is a quick rundown of the things I’ve made so far.

Firstly, the floral dress adapted from McCall’s 9172, the one hour dress which took me one week! (I’m a slow sew-er!)
I made view D, the short sleeveless version.


Because the initial pattern measurements are smaller than mine I added a couple of cm into the centre seams, without realising that this pattern has about 5″ of ease built in. It ended up enormous! Once it was slimmed down a bit I realised that to actually suit me I need something with a little more shaping. I added vertical darts to both the front and back, and put in a zip down the centre back to further take out width. I also added small gathers to the neckline to make it sit flat.

I’m proud of this dress because it’s the first garment I made, and it’s wearable, but I won’t be remaking this pattern as it doesn’t really flatter my shape.

My first attempt at sewing with stretch fabrics resulted in this top, an adaptation of the simple bow tie top from Sweet Verbena.


I put an additional slash through the top of the back to allow my bow to sit there, and also gave the top a high-low hem. The bottom was left unhemmed as it doesn’t roll or fray. I have no idea what the fabric is, but it came from Abakhans in Manchester. Now that I’ve moved to London I miss spending Sunday afternoons browsing in there.

Next up are two versions of the Sorbetto top, a free pattern from Colette Patterns. For both versions I used a very fine denim-look cotton from Walthamstow market. It was £1 per metre, and each top only uses about a metre, so it’s a very cheap make.


Although I like these two and do wear them I’m not sure how long they’ll hold up as the cotton is very very fine, and I didn’t finish them particularly well. The fine nature of this fabric also caused some problems during sewing, as my machine kept chewing it up.

My most recent make has been this grey patterned mini-skirt. It was originally intended to be a self drafted dress, however the bodice section would not cooperate, so I cut my losses and cut it off.


The fabric is a mystery product from Walthamstow market, however in retrospect it doesn’t have quite enough body to be a skirt, although it’s a bit stiff to be a top. I like the pattern, and have some leftover, but because of its qualities it might have to become cushion covers!

I have quite a few patterns and fabrics all lined up to become my next makes, as a result of trips to Abakhans and Walthamstow market, and over the next few months I really want to up my productivity level so that I can take part in Me Made May next year. My eventual aim is to improve my skills until I can make garments which fit well and are finished nicely, and which I can wear regularly.


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