…Im in sewing pause mode

Since my last post announcing the birth of our baby boy, Ive not had time to do anything sewing related, except purchase a pattern or two & sew a border to a baby blanket!

I stare at my sewing machines every day while I hold this precious bundle & even though I long to get back to sewing I acknowledge that these early baby days are few & I may never get to have them again.quinn1

Lil’guy is 11 weeks today. The first 8 weeks were tough. Let me say it again, T O U G H. He’s just emerging out of the ‘hold-me-all-the-time’ phase which has been particularly exhausting as he wouldn’t sleep (or do anything in fact)unless he was held. He also had reflux issues which seem to be improving now thank goodness. I know everyone tells you how hard the first 3 months will be but boy oh boy, nothing can prepare you!

We coming out the worst of it hopefully so all we’ve got to look forward to now is teething & the teenage years, amiright?!? haha

Love this lil’guy to bits so do excuse me while the sewing stays on pause for just a short while longer…

Hope you’re all well. xxAnge


Our special delivery arrived on Friday, 3rd July 2015 at 08h04.  baby1

He is by far the finest & most rewarding me-made ever and I still find myself in awe of the fact that I made him. Feel so blessed and grateful.

Mommahood so far has been a whirlwind of adjustment – something no-one could ever have prepared me for, but at the same time just full of beautiful moments.

If you dont already follow me on Instagram, click on the right IG sidebar now & you’ll see more pics!

Trust you are all well. Hope to be back at the sewing machine soon-ish ;)

Ange x



{ SIMPLICITY } Star Sewist Blogger Challenge

On a total whim, I decided to take part in the Simplicity Star Sewist Challenge because lets face it, who wouldn’t like to win a years supply of patterns amiright ?!? So I chose to go with the dressmaking pattern, New Look 6145, because I like dresses & I knew dressing my baby bump would be easier adjusting this pattern to maternity rather than the other two patterns on offer. NL615_side3 Out came a beautiful piece of navy linen which I accented with some navy & white Shweshwe fabric I purchased while on holiday at home in January. The two pair really well I think. I sized up in general to allow for my pregnancy measurements as well as a little extra for ease. At first I was just going to use the shweshwe for the sleeves & inner facing but then decided rather than make my side seam godet inserts in linen, to make these in shweshwe too. I wasnt entirely sold on the contrast so I cut one of each, basted them both in & decided almost instantly on going with the shweshwe contrast as soon as I saw the dress semi-fitted. In all honesty, the inserts dont work 100% because I didnt trim off the angle required on the side seams. I left them as they should be because I really want to remove the shweshwe panels once Im able to wear the dress post-pregnancy. The inserts really just give me the added space for the baby bump & ass. NL6145_side Overall, it was an easy sew & I { ADORE } the pleated sleeves…but then again, Im gaga over pleated anything! NL6145_front Thank you to Simplicity for offering the challenge & for the free pattern. I’ll certainly be making more of these shift dresses in the future. Also, good luck to all the sewcialists that have entered the competition. Cant wait to see who wins.

This will probably be my last sew for myself until after baby arrives. Im finding the bump so hard to gauge on size since Im in the final weeks & this Noodle is growing like crazy. Ive also hit the exhausted & rather uncomfortable stage so sitting for hours in front of my sewing machine is proving a little challenging. Ive gained 10kgs until now & Im feeling every.single.gram I tell ya. Ive had a relatively uneventful pregnancy to be honest with very few issues but these final few weeks things have definitely amped up. Dont get me wrong, Im loving being preggy & I couldn’t be more grateful for what is about to change our lives forever but this third trimester is tough on your body & your mind. Anyway, hope you’ve enjoyed my little me-made. Till soon. Ange x

{ DECOR } Sunshine roman blinds…

One would think being in the interior industry, self-made decor would come naturally to me.


The opposite is true for me in fact. I previously loathed doing my own home decor sewing. Curtains, blinds, cushions, the lot…. { LOATHE IT }. It most probably has much to do with the fact that Ive always had professional curtain workshops make my clients curtains, bedspreads, blinds etc & it may have become a luxury to have the same workshops whip up things for me in the past too. Decor sewing always reminded me too much of work & I prefer sewing garments anyway.

Since moving to Austria, I have found it incredibly difficult to find such workshops in & ’round my ‘hood. They probably exist in the big cities but since I live in the sticks, it really has forced me to make things myself.

I really needed to get some window dressings for the baby room so I decided to do simple roman blinds complicated with the need to line these with a good block out lining because the morning sun streams in through the one window & the other window is flooded with an annoying 10,000,000 watt halogen flood light from a neighbour that Im pretty convinced is signaling aliens “Land Here”! Cant have either!!

As you know, we are not aware of whether we’re expecting a boy or girl so we needed to go with something kinda neutral. Yellow is neutral. Non?

I had purchased this happy Ikea fabric a year or two ago just coz I loved it & had cushions planned in but never got to it. Unfortunately 2m was only sufficient for one window so off I darted to Ikea to pick up a further 2m. Thank goodness Ikea still had & might I add, still at the same price! I love the ‘watercolour-type’ effect of the yellow especially. stockholm-meterware-gelb__0175068_PE328506_S4

Since I had never made roman blinds before, I went into this project…well…blind. I hit YouTube for a tut & came across this Debbie Shore video. She explains things so well, I actually felt like I had the confidence to give it a go.  Here are the results : roman_blinds_1


We have aluminium venetian blinds integrated to the windows already which when closed give good results but the blinds just add something extra to the room & the blockout does its job extremely well. No more halogen flood lights, thanks neighbours! Instead of installing cleats to the wall to wind the cords, I use the integrated venetian blind fixings because I hardly ever lift the venetians so there was no point in adding extra cleats for the romans. By the way, WTF is up with blinds being named after the Italians???

My experience with decor in general is vast even though I haven’t actually made things myself. Working with professionals in the industry though, I have learned a thing or 10 about the do’s and don’ts so I’ll share some essential tips.

Always use the best quality supplies you can afford. Don’t be tempted to use cheap alternatives because especially with blinds & curtains, the sun does damage & cheap supplies will just fall apart in no time.  Good quality lining is paramount.

Check your measurements again…..& again before cutting anything!!

Work systematically – it really does help to keep things clear especially when you’re dealing with various sized windows. Lengths & widths can vary ever so slightly so deal with one window before moving onto another.

Make worksheets. Simple diagrams with measurements will help. { PROMISE }.

Take your time.

Ive also included a list with links to the various places I purchased my supplies if your’e interested. Im supplying these links because Im thoughtful, not because Im affiliated in any way. Clear!

Supplies :

{ Fabric } : Ikea Stockholm

{ Lining } : Black out “Natur”

{ Blind fittings } : Toggles, tapes, cords etc

{ Batons } : Husband supplied

{ Rods } : Bauhaus

We’re almost finished with setting up the baby room so I’ll be sure to update pics as soon as its all done.

Hope you’re all well

x Ange

{ New Look 6254 } The non-maternity, maternity top…

Ive not wanted to turn this blog into a maternity/pregnancy blog by any means but the fact is Im expecting & since I sew mostly for myself, its natural that Id hit a stage whereby my life would be consumed with baby stuff, baby bump & dealing with dressing it. So feel free to skip these maternity frock posts if you have no interest – I dont mind :)

This New Look pattern has been in my pattern stash since 2004, not because I was hoping to be pregnant by then { NOOOO }. I bought it because it looked cute. Its not a maternity pattern BTW !!! After making it way back then & realising it made me look extremely pregnant, I decided to hang on to it for that day Id need it. Well folks, that day came – about 2 weeks ago. Im only due in July so its going to heat up pretty soon & then there’s the postnatal period which still requires a little bit of maternity wear so I decided to give this a go. NL6254 I used a polyester from my stash, probably also purchased around 2004 believe it or not. I was never overly fond of the fabric so I figured if the top didnt work for me, it would be no great loss. Turns out, I really like the fabric now that its made up.  It pairs well with both white & blue which will be perfect for Summer. I lined the bodice with a cream cotton to keep things stable. There should have been more gathers under the bust however on fitting, I realised it was a little too snug gathered right up so I let them out a little to allow for some extra room for the growing bewbs. Its still a little snug so Im hoping these milkies dont grow too much more. NL6254_side On the up side, there is plenty room on the lower front for the expanding baby bump. The sides have splits to a decent height allowing for extra swish which is nice. NL6254_side2Overall, its a quick easy sew & a top suitable for maternity, although it wouldnt work as a nursing top unfortunately. Now, all I need is the snow to move on out so the sun can come out. Roll on Summer. x

{ NEW LOOK 6248 } The quick linen skirt…

It was the weekend before the Monday we were leaving to go on holiday….so what did I do….well, I whipped up a last minute skirt for the holidays didnt I?!? Dont you?

Good thing this tried ‘n tested pattern is a breeze.

Might I also add this was { LAST } year Summer. Whoops!NL6248

I used some of the 100% white linen I had left over from the shirt-dress. Love the fabric. It may crease like no-ones business but its crispness is such a pleasure in the heat.

I made view E without the ruffles, which admittedly woulda looked really cool but I didnt have the time to ruffle about in honesty. 8 panels sewn together, each seam topstitched with a 4,5 length on my Sapphy, in go the facings & the zip, hem & she’s done.

Easy as that. N6248

Just thought Id share if any of you are considering this little skirt for the coming summer.

Till soon my dears xx

PS – Ive paired the skirt above with the BurdaStyle wrap top I made yonks ago incase you interested in that pattern.

{ BIGGEST, TOUGHEST } project of my life…

Lovelies –

Ive eluded to my absence in the recent past & although I dont feel pressure as such to post to my blog regularly any more, I have felt a little guilty for keeping you all in the dark. Your’e not just readers. I value you all as friends – whether Ive personally met you or not. Anyway, the time feels right to let you in on my news… 19

The hubster & I are expecting.

After many many years of trying, we’ve finally been blessed. We are so very grateful for this little miracle & Ive naturally done everything to protect & grow this little human to give it the best opportunity for a healthy start in life.  Having just passed the halfway point in the pregnancy journey, things are now moving full steam ahead in preparation for the lil’un to arrive early Summer.

In other news…

I havent been doing much sewing to be honest. I took a little break in November-ish time to focus on the pregnancy & then December I caught a cold. With no medication allowed, the cold developed into a chest infection with a very slow recovery unfortunately. I did manage to make a maternity skirt and some other small things which I’ll share over the next few weeks.

Mid-January we jetted off down south for 3 weeks to visit family & friends back in my ‘hood. It was so lovely to get away from the cold, fuel up on sun & love before returning to what is hopefully the last of the cold weather.

Since the bump is growing Im having to make up some more maternity items which is really exciting. Ive naturally been going through all the maternity patterns available & Im thrilled to see there are some real lovely options available out there….but still, are there enough?! .

Thats all the news I have for now. Trust you’re all healthy & happy






{ COLETTE } Purple Peony…


I told you a few posts back that I had made the Colette Peony some time ago – so here are the deets. Thanks for your patience.

Inspiration was not hard to come by. Just google “Colette Peony” & a flurry of pretty Peonies start to load your screen. Abbey from Sew Charleston made the most beautiful floral Peony in 2013. I mean honestly….{ BA BOING } !!! & this perfect polka Peony made by Amy, just gorgeous.

Being a newbie to Colette patterns I decided to err on the side of caution & investigate every possible person that had anything to say about her patterns, good or bad. What I discovered quite quickly was many of you talking about how difficult Ms Peony was to fit!!! { EEEECK }. I instantly panicked. I haven’t told you guys what a hard time Ive had with fitting the BHL Anna have I?? Oooh, can I rant quick??.. Anna has probably been the biggest nightmare Ive ever had in my journey of sewing. Now I know many of you will disagree saying how fucking easy she is to make & just so you know, it irks me when I see how some of you have sewed multiples of Anna in various fabrics (yes, Im looking at you Ms Oona) but come hell or high water, I just cant get that biaatch to fit me! Ive muslined her bodice too many times to even count & while she appears to be the easiest bodice, believe me, my bewbs disagree! Strongly. Rant over (rolling eyes)…until another day!

So approaching the Peony with possible similar problems was not an experience I particularly wanted for myself. Regret management is evil evil shit so instead of cutting into that tissue, I decided to adopt the tracing way of life like a grown up. I traced a size bigger than the finished measurement suggested & then got to making a muslin of the bodice. The first muslin was too big so I retraced in a size smaller & re-muslined.

Perfect fit…. Well kinda.


I had to pinch myself to make sure I wasnt dreaming.

So I proceeded to cutting  & she was stitched up rather quickly. colette_peony_front1

I left out the pockets of course. Coz really. I always do. And even when I do have a brain wave & think pockets might be a change from the norm…I end up taking them out anyway. You’ll notice I also left off the sleeves which may not have been the best decision since I do think the sleeves would stretch out the neckline & keep it from gaping in front which it does at the moment…ever so slightly.

And because I left off the sleeves, I needed to finish the edges here & without facings I decided to improvise with bias tape. Now you’ll know why I remembered the dyeing trick. I had no purple bias tape so out came the dye. { ABRACADABRA } white became purple bias tape in a matter of minutes! Your’e welcome. Purples dont match 100% but its good enough no?! I sewed the bias tape in by hand to avoid any machine stitching on the end & although it took some time, it was well worth the effort. biased_edges

I played with the idea of finishing the hem with a spanish stitch but ultimately, I decided to keep her plain. Of course as ‘ol murphy would have it, now that she’s all finished I think the spanish stitch might have been the better way to go! { DOH }. So I may go back & do that. Also, if the gaping neckline continues to irritate me, I may just pull out the bias tape I lovingly matched & insert sleeves too.colette_peony_front2

I used an invisible zip for the back which was a bit of a pain to sew for some reason. I think it had to do with the fact that I couldnt find an exact match to the fabric. On the hanger you cant see the zip, on the body there are parts that show unfortunately. Only after did I think why on earth didnt I bomb the zip in with the purple dye?? { WHY OH WHY }

My favourite details of the dress are the pretty little gathers at the front waist. Love those. They hide all kinds of crazy.  The fabric is 100% linen I found for €8/m which in my neck of the woods is a bloody bargain so naturally I purchased more than I needed because thats what one does when they find a bargain….in a colour that suits them! ( Or is that just me).

Im happy with Ms Peony but there are some issues that need sorting as mentioned. But overall, she’s comfortable and I definitely know that she fits well.

I like her, I like her alot.

Hope you’ve all had a good start to the New Year. All the best for 2015.





{ VOGUE 1247 } Rachel Comey top…

Friends, Ive been scarce around the blog due to a combination of things really. Work, stress. Then I got sick. Its just made me really tired and in the meantime I lost my sewjo so bad I started wondering if it would ever return. Luckily, Im getting back into it but the break has been good.  Trust you all had a good Christmas (if you celebrate) and I’ll wish you all a good New Year now.

This V1247 pattern had been on my wishlist for forever but it was only once I saw “Seeker of Sewing Highs” Sophie’s insanely gorgeous version, did I gasp & decide I had to have the pattern.  Don’t get me wrong folks. There were some stunners out there already, Sophie’s just spoke my kinda language. Luckily for me, Vogue were having a sale at the time. { WHEW }.

I knew just what I was looking for in fabric too – something soft & patterned without a pattern if you knowwhatimean. I wanted the panels to mismatch but be matched at the same time to show off the front panels. Anyway, once I stumbled upon this cotton/silk (70%/30%) blend, I knew immediately it would be the one & due to all the lovely reviewers who agreed the pattern runs rather large & one can easily go down a size or two, I ordered the minimum of fabric & used every last scrap. V1247_front V1247_back

She sewed up without fuss. I took great care in matching up my shoulder pleats and did my best to align the front panels. As 2 separate pieces (top and bottom), the seams aligned perfectly but once I sewed together the top portion to the bottom, my lines were off slightly so I didnt get the perfect point but hey-ho I swoon at all the other bits of perfection.V1247_alignmentV1247_pleats

With french seams throughout and a lovely bias neck facing, she’s casual but with some awesome finishes. I didnt fold my sleeves over as instructed because my fabric, while beautiful, is not that slouchy slouch so when folded they just stuck out too much overall & decided therefore to leave it sheer.

My fabric is sheer but perfect for summer & you may be wondering why Ive been sewing summer instead of winter… Simple really. Im headed home on holiday for 3 weeks soon. Home means hot, summer, friends & family – a decent vacation. Its been 3 ½ years since Ive been home.

I cannot wait!

A xx

{ IM STILL HERE } Was there any doubt…

Its true, I’m still knocking around although I realise my last post here was more than a month back. { CRAP }. Where has the month gone ?

Ive been so busy. Work has been crazy with 2 London projects wrapping up more or less at the same time which means double the amount of stress…. Not good!! We’ve also been working on our basement preparing to move our office down because it just wasn’t acceptable in our living space any longer. The constant work reminder resulting in no boundries between work & home was just not working for me…add to that the { MESS } dear me, the mess!!! As you know, I like things in order but I just could not stand to look at the office any longer. So we’ve finally moved. More space, more storage, more office-y equals more happy :)

Added to all that its the end of year rush. Need. I. say. more!

And then just to add things to the already stressful mix, Ive been working on a huge project. { HUGE }. Cant share the details just yet but soon…I promise :-)

Ive also been sewing, not much, but Ive been sewing. I have quite a few things in the draft folder to blog – just need to sort out the pics. Ive got the Colette Peony to show you, Ive got a lovely linen NL6248 skirt that I made in summer to share, Ive finished the V1247 blouse & Ive whipped up a gorgeous coral Maria Denmark Kimono tee which Ive been wearing all the time so I need to show you that. Soon. Promise.

For now though, SLEEP.

Have a lovely weekend xx Ange