chit-chat · sewing

{ ON THE CUTTING TABLE } & other news…

Hello friends –

London was great. Busy but good. I wish we had planned in Friday as well just to do our own thing but sadly ….next time huh. On Thursday I decided to clear my schedule for 2 hours while I jumped the tube & headed off to Goldhawk Road for a quick fabric shop.

I found some gems to be honest – absolutely not what I was expecting because I feel like when I shop under pressure I can never really enjoy it & end up leaving frustrated. Do you have that too? Anyway, it was weird to see all these fabrics popping out at me even though I was { VERY } aware of being on the clock. Here are the fabrics I took home with me :fabric_shop

{ left to right }

// multi-coloured (but mostly pink) irish linen which is heavy & beautiful quality.

// great floral cotton – so crisp but so soft too

// a viscose blend but the colours & pattern are rad

// an olive-ish green poly

// a black cotton with cut-outs – very cool. i only got a metre of this because i only intend on making a sleeveless top but thinking now, i really should have got more for a dress.

// a black & white cotton with the most adorable paris print

I picked these up from a variety of stores along goldhawk road. Every store I went into, the staff were super friendly and eager to assist. Where I felt fabric was a little overpriced for what it was, I said so & the sales staff had no problem negotiating.  Looking forward to visiting again – perhaps with more time on the clock!

Before leaving for London, I took advantage of the McCall Company sale & ordered a whole stack of new patterns so I was excited to see them sticking out my mailbox when I arrived home. There is { NOTHING } better than arriving home to sewing bits ‘n bobs – Im sure you know the feeling 🙂 Anyway, new patterns means I have to find an afternoon to sit & cut them all out. I really dont like having to cut patterns out before I start sewing so I like to get that done asap.  Cutting 7 patterns literally took all afternoon. Some of those suckers were huge! This is the recycle pile : pattern_cutting

And new to my sewing room is a drawer unit to help with storage of my threads and smalls, stationery & general crap. I was quite keen to use one of those thread holders to display them but then I started looking at how much thread I have and quickly realised my thread holder would have to be one giant coz I got lots…so I ditched the idea & used the drawers instead which doesnt look too bad. Whatcha think ? threads_drawer

The sewing room has been taking shape over the past couple of months & its almost { ALMOST } finished. As soon as I think its photo worthy, I’ll give you a peek inside ok?!

Ive also finally decided to make something of the yellow silk I purchased  a few months back. Silk has been pre-washed, pressed & ready for cutting 🙂  Coming soon…silk

Ive also got 3 or 4 pieces that have been finished for some time but Ive been wearing them to death so I really do need to photograph them to show you. Ive made a linen skirt with an offcut from the white linen I used to make the shirt dress plus I recycled one of the hubsters shirts to make another Datura which Im so in love with…so those should be popping up here real soon.

I know its only Thursday but have a good weekend 🙂 x Ange

chit-chat · sewing

{ VELVET } What to do ?

I was gifted a lovely piece of black velvet recently.

Its a 2m x 1,5m wide piece….not stretchy in any way.

I have { ZERO } experience with sewing velvet so I would love to read anything you have to throw at me….

PS.  Ive been really crap at keeping my blog up to date lately. I have excuses but  I know I dont need excuses  – just know that Id much rather be here than busy on these other things that are taking up time in my life right now. Thats all 🙂

chit-chat · sewing

{ DYEING } How to ombre…

Ive had a few emails requesting advice on how to dye to achieve the ombre effect which I posted about here. So I thought I would give advice via a post & share what I have learnt about dyeing.

Before I go on, I want to say that I am not a dyeing expert nor have I been doing this for very long. What I know I have learnt by trial & error, research & by using my common sense and what I know about fabrics & colour.

So, one of the questions I received was this :


Well, most dye packaging will give you an indication of how much fabric vs dye you will need to obtain a certain level of colour or vividness. For example, my bottle of dye recommends that 600g of fabric will give an intense colour, if I had to double on the fabric I would get a more muted shade & if I were to add a further 600g it would be an even paler shade. Also, the longer you leave the fabric in the dye, the darker your fabric will become however this is only to a point &  no further.

Also, to intensify your colour you can let your fabric dry thoroughly before doing a second dye { JUST TO THE MOST INTENSE PART OF THE OMBRE } because if you try to go further you may disturb the effect of the ombre.

The most critical part of dyeing is fixing the colour in using a colour fixer & salt. Some dyes have the colour fix & salt already added however real dye requires you add the salt & fixer after or during the process.


This depends on the intensity you are wanting to achieve however I use the following guide I found on pinterest…ombre_guide

I like to start at the top & work my way down because the dye will naturally run downwards as you move the fabric out.

If you are dyeing a blouse then hang it on a hanger as you normally would. If you are dyeing a flat piece of fabric then peg it to a hanger to make it easier. I do this in my bathroom using a large square tupperware/tub & I position it under one of my mobile clothes rails. My clothes rail has adjustable sides (from Ikea), so I just have to adjust the rail height to have the fabric sit at a level permanently.  I dip dye until Im happy with the overall colour & then I let it dry.


Be extra careful with its first wash after dyeing…colour will run somewhat so wash like with like as you normally would however Ive found that washing the first one or two washes in cold water, by hand, helps with keeping my white parts white.

Hope this helps with your dyeing projects.

The last week or so we have had amazing weather, 33+ degrees so I have been taking advantage of being outdoors & sorting out our patio for summer. Also, we have guests arriving today so my sewing room has been transformed into a 3rd bedroom for the kiddo…I have a few projects to share, just haven’t had the time to process pics, write posts etc….I will get onto it as soon as the craziness subsides.

Thanks for stopping by x



{ ON THE CUTTING TABLE } Denim shorts…

I mentioned many weeks back that I was wanting to make these New Look 6100 shorts. I was not settled on the fabric choice so I decided to “sit” on it until the fabric choice was clear.

A week or so ago I had to pop into the fabric store for some lining & zips…lo & behold there sat the most amazing denim. So unusual, I just had to have a piece. There was not much fabric left on the bolt but it was sufficient to have the piece I needed. The salesman pointed out that there would be less than a metre left on the bolt after my cut so he offered the remainder to me at a very reduced price – I couldn’t say no. { AND } I promise I did not plan that *evil grin*


Slowly becoming view A  & Im so excited to see these finished. I have thought about playing with a trim, perhaps a cotton embroidery anglaise peeking out the bottom or some cotton lace…maybe a little piping ??!! Lets see.

Last week I had asked about your experience (if any) with sewing & weight loss etc. The general consensus was to stitch things with knits etc to allow for the change in sizes which I have been doing. I considered those thoughts with this project but ended up deciding I dont give a damn…I want shorts. end.of.story!! 🙂


{ MUSLINS, TOILES } Call them what you want…they suck!

See, this is the reason I absolutely HATE doing a muslin/toile.

Every single time I muslin, I lose interest.

I muslined up the maxi dress bodice & now Ive lost the will to actually make the real-deal dress. What is with that ?

Its annoying..

Does that make me an instant gratification sewer…is there even such a thing?

Muslins, in some instances, are VITAL, especially when you fear cutting into an expensive piece of fabric.  Now Poppy is sitting pretty with a great fitting maxi bodice & Im over it. Im so over it, I feel like the maxi is done & dusted – moving on.

& I was so darn excited about my maxi.




I could never { EVER }  go on a fabric buying diet. I simply love the stuff too much.

And I dont buy fabric every day or even every month – but when I see something that I love & can visualise it as a garment, then I will indulge in a metre or two. Sales do help with persuasion.

A few weeks back, I indulged

With this soft cotton floral from Komolka in Vienna, floral_komolka

and this black & white stretch something something from Stoffwelt in Wiener Neustadt, b&w_fabric

and more recently with this floral silk from the Wenatex Haus der Stoffe in Salzburg, floral_wenatex

oh & this cotton “oil painting” masterpiece panel also from the Wenatex shop in Salzburg..oil_wenatex

The florals are destined to become maxi dresses (see Mapping a Maxi), & the panel directly above I think I might use for the front of V1174 which is a Cynthia Steffe strapless number from Vogue which Ive been coveting for some time. I would leave the back in plain black but carry through the contrast piping to tie it all together. Im thinking a deep magenta or purple piping!! What do you think??V1174

Id better go & get on with the muslin for the maxi…yes, Ive picked one 🙂

Thanks for stopping by x

chit-chat · travel

{ TRAVEL } Salzburg

Im so sorry Ive been a little MIA lately.

Firstly I lost my sewing mojo after completing the riding jacket, the DKNY dress & the BS frilly top.

I hammered them out so fast my head was spinning.. .

I needed a little break.

I broke to { SALZBURG }!

SalzburgThe day we arrived  – it was beautiful.

The next two days – were crap…I mean, really SHIT.

The rain, the wind & therefore very little photo op.

My foot ballooned up forcing me to retreat back to the hotel to lick my wounds & watch trashy Austrian daytime soapies.

Albeit, it was a good getaway & I visited a fabulous fabric store on the drive out…I’ll share more on that soon though.getaway_salzburg


chit-chat · sewing


One of the pitfalls of living in the country is without a doubt, being more than a half hour drive from any decent sewing supply stores.

I have almost completed the Vogue 8601 riding jacket (more on that soon) & Im trying to decide on what to start on next. I have a stash of fabric, but its kinda impossible to have everything you need to complete a project ie. trims, cords, buttons, zips so I do need to visit a supplies store from time to time. Everything pattern I pick at the moment needs something dont have…zip, cotton colour, button, cord….{ UUUUURRRRGGGGHHHH}. I hate ordering this kind of thing online because you never know what you going to get in terms of colour matching etc so for me, going to a store to physically see & match is paramount!

My nearest most decent, store is Komolka in Vienna. If I were to say getting into Vienna is a bit of a circus I would not be over-exaggerating. Driving in takes me no less than an hour to get into the city centre itself, then to find parking which costs an arm & to top it off, Komolka is not cheap. Its a fabulous shop…4 floors of heaven, but you do need to ‘gird your loins’ before entering.

It makes me wish we had stores like Mood, Hancocks, Joanns & Fabricland…I envy you folk that live close to these places..I do, I do!



Happy Friday to you all –

A few days ago I was sorting some of my fabric stash because since we moved into our new house, I pretty much transferred fabrics straight from boxes to their storage without giving it much thought – in other words – I simply needed to have the boxes out of the way so I could think.

I use the Ikea 4-drawer Malm chests for my fabric storage.


{ source : Ikea }

I line the drawers with craft paper first and each drawer is dedicated to a specific type of fabric ie. on the bottom I have heavy winter fabrics (wools etc), next drawer up I store my cottons, then my lightweights ie chiffons, lace etc.  I do this because its easier for me to keep track  & I dont have to wade between heavy fabrics when Im looking for a silk…you get the idea right?! In the top drawers I keep my bits ‘n bobs for instance, buttons, ribbons, bindings, notions etc. As I mentioned in my NY resos post, I do plan on doing some shelves in the sewing room for books & I had thought of using the underside of the shelves for bottles of notions etc – we shall see.

Anyway, while I was sorting I realised that I have so much fabric that Ive bought on my travels and there are a few pieces I simply {CANNOT} even think of cutting. Its like Ive grown some attachment to them & its gotten all emotional & stuff…. {SERIOUSLY?} yes, seriously. Ive posted a few pics below so you can see which ones Im referring to :



I’ll admit, the majority of these fabrics are found on my travels to Canada, South Africa, Holland & UK so they all kinda hold sentimental memories of these travels. I guess cutting into them would still mean I have memories albeit in the form of a garment…Im pathetic with this {CANT CUT} thing but I feel like they are all too sentimental…..what can I do ?? Ive thought of going shopping for new pieces which might help to cure me because as soon as you have a new favourite, the old favourites seem to be demoted {HOWEVER} looking at how old some of these favourites are – it would appear Im not demoting anything. ever!!

Do any of you suffer from the same syndrome ? & if so, how have you overcome it?

Thanks for stopping by x

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