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NEW ∙ Wiksten Sewing Pattern Collection

Posted on July 12, 2019

I'm delighted to have recently added the full range Wiksten sewing patterns to our online store. These gorgeous patterns are designed by Jenny Gordy in Portland, Oregon, where she lives with her husband Joe and their daughter Iris.

Jenny Goady Wiksten Sewing Patterns 

Jenny originally worked as a technical designer and fit model in New York City before studying Patternmaking at the Fashion Institute of Technology.  

She launched Wiksten in 2004 as a line of handmade clothing but later transitioned to the home sewing industry after developing patterns, and teaching classes, in Brooklyn in 2010.

Ruth & Vern Wiksten Sewing Patterns

If you're wondering "why Wiksten?", well there's a personal reason for this since it was the Swedish last name of Jenny's grandparents, Ruth and Vernon, a doctor and a nurse who met and fell in love.  In their spare time they would make things by hand. Jenny was inspired from the beginning by their love of making, and her grandmother Ruth spent hours teaching her to sew as a child and then to knit as an adult.

The Wiksten Collection currently consists of two adult patterns, the first of which is the Haori Jacket, pictured below. It's a Japanese inspired style with large patch pockets and a fold-over collar.

Wiksten Haori Jacket Sewing Pattern

Their newest release is the Shift Dress + Top, and seeing the various samples made by the pattern testers over on Instagram a couple of months ago clinched it for me, and I knew that I had to add these patterns to our thoughtfully curated range. With three options to chose from, this loose shift is both comfortable and elegant, in fact it's the perfect wardrobe staple!

Wiksten Shift Dress + Top Sewing Pattern

In addition to the two adult patterns there are three toddler and baby styles including a Smock Top & Dress, Harem Pants and Bloomers. All three have been thoughtfully designed and cleverly constructed, I just wish I had a little one to sew for!

Wiksten Baby & Toddler Sewing Patterns

 I hope you'll love hand writing and thoughtful details of these patterns as much as I do, first up for me will be the Shift Dress in our Sevenberry Broken Stripes, one of our customers had a fabulous version which you can see in our Instagram feed, so I'm going to be shamelessly following suit....

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The Assembly Line • Cuff Top Sewing Pattern Review

Posted on April 13, 2019

I first came across The Assembly Line over on Instagram, and as soon I saw their fabulous collection I knew I had to contact them to see if they would consider working with me on a wholesale basis... and I'm so pleased that they were open to the idea!

The Assembly Cuff Top Sewing Pattern

The ethos behind the brand is to design contemporary, functional and, at the same time, gorgeous items of clothing for us all to make and cherish. One of the styles that I was particularly drawn to initially was the Cuff Top, shown above, which, at that time, was one of their newest designs. 

The Assembly Line Cuff Top Sewing Pattern in Draper Denim

For my first make I chose our Draper Denim by Robert Kaufman, this lightweight denim has a lovely sheen to it which gives it an elevated look.

The instructions are really clear and easy to follow even though they've been translated from Swedish. I really like that they give you technical tips along with different options for sewing a seam for example.

It's classed as suitable for beginners and I'd say that it is, with no bust darts and grown on sleeves, it sews up really quickly.

The Assembly Line Cuff Top Sewing Pattern

When you sew the elastic to the sleeve it's really important to make sure that the elastic is evenly distributed.

The Assembly Line Cuff Top Sewing Pattern

To do this I recommend that you divide both into four equal sections and use a pin as a marker, as shown in the photo above.

The Assembly Line Cuff Top Sewing Pattern

Next, match these pins first and pin in position, again as shown above, and then stretch the elastic and pin between these points.

The Assembly Line Cuff Top Sewing Pattern

I was so pleased with my first make that I very quickly made a second one, this time in one of our Nani Iro double gauze fabrics.

The Assembly Line Cuff Top Sewing Pattern

The Assembly Line Cuff Top Sewing Pattern

As you can see this style works equally well in both printed and plain fabrics.... for this summer I'm planning to make a dress version simply by tracing off the pattern pieces an lengthening them.

Click here to see the full range of patterns by The Assembly Line.

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Great British Sewing Bee 2019

Posted on March 05, 2019

It's been a long time coming but finally The Great British Sewing Bee is back on our TV screens! As before, the fifth series features 10 amateur sewists, who have been described described by Patrick Grant, as the most talented group yet, and they're all keen to win the title of the best home sewer.

The Great British Sewing Bee 2019

Judges Patrick Grant and Esme Young are joined this year by Joe Lycett, who replaces Claudia Winkleman as the host. Each week the contestants have to complete three challenges designed to put their skills to the test with different garments and fabrics.

There's a different theme each week, however the format of the tasks remains the same, and these are: Pattern Challenge, Transformation Challenge and finally Made to Measure.

The theme for Week 1 was Cotton and the tasks for were definitely more challenging than in previous years. The first challenge was the Wiggle Dress comprising of 12 pattern pieces... no mean feat for your first make when you're under the glare of the camera. Next, a denim up-cycling challenge!

The final task was the jumpsuit... on trend for SS19 and very much on my "to make' list! It was really interesting to see how different they all looked. My favourite was Juliet's one shoulder version!

Jumpsuit Sewing Patterns

We've several jumpsuit patterns including the Yari by True Bias, which, at the moment is top of my list, shown above left, the Burnside Bibs by Sew House Seven are another option, as is the Helga Wrap Playsuit, above right, by Named Clothing.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Coming Soon ∙ Nani Iro 2019 Collection

Posted on February 22, 2019

The 2019 Collection by Nani Iro launched in Japan mid February and, I'm excited to say, our stock arrives here in the UK in w/c 22nd April!

Nani Iro 2019 Fabric Collection

Designed by the artist Naomi Ito, for Kokka Fabrics, these designs have a beautifully distinctive painterly quality to them. This Collection sees the return of some favourites from previous seasons which have been re-coloured, alongside several new designs.  A carefully edited colour palette ensures all the designs sit together cohesively.

One of our favourite designs, Lei Nani, has been re-coloured, and looks really fresh in Green as pictured below.

Nani Iro Lei Nani Green Cotton Sateen Fabric 2019 Collection

The bold abstract painterly stripe design Grace is another design that has been re-coloured this year as has Wild Flower and the large scale floral design Fuccra.

I'm really pleased to see that Tencel has been used for some of the designs in this years's collection, including the beautiful Fuccra on Blue. This fabric is made from wood pulp harvested from tree farms that are sustainably managed and traceable. The fibre production itself is more eco-friendly than cotton production due to its’ closed-loop process. This means that up to 99% of the water and solvents used are recycled and reused.

Nani Iro Fuccra on Blue tencel Sewing Fabric

There are plenty of new designs too including Temps, a subtle colour blocked design overlaid with a delicate botanical design, as shown below.

Nani Iro 2019 Fabric Collection Temps

I think this is her best collection yet... though I think perhaps I say that every season!

The new Collection has now started to arrive.... click here to shop the new fabrics as they arrive.

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The Knitting and Stitching Show 2019 Olympia, London

Posted on January 12, 2019

Come and join us at The Knitting and Stitching Show 2019 at Olympia, London, this Spring.

Use the code SPRING11 to get £2.00 OFF advance full priced ticket prices... you can purchase your tickets online by clicking here, or alternatively, you can call 0844 581 1319 and quote the code SPRING11.

 The Spring Knitting & Stitching Show 2019 Ticket Offer

The show, which runs from Thursday 28th February to Sunday 3rd March 2019, is the definitive event for anyone with a passion for textile based crafts. If you love dressmaking, knitting or textile based crafts then this is THE show for you! 

The Spring Knitting & Stitching Show 2019 Ticket Offer

The show will be showcasing a sneak peak of the ‘Zandra Rhodes: 50 Years of Fabulous’ exhibition that will be on display at the Fashion & Textile Museum in September of this year to celebrate her fifty years in fashion along with the professionally curated textile galleries.

The Knitting & Stitching Show champions creativity with hundreds of workshops, demonstrations and interactive features on offer as well as 200 exhibitors, including us, selling specialist craft supplies.

The Spring Knitting & Stitching Show 2019 Ticket Offer

I'll be there with a thoughtfully selected range of our beautiful designer fabrics including Nani Iro, Kokka, Atelier Brunette and Lady MeElroy to name a few, together with indie sewing patterns including brands such as Merchant and Mills along with the relatively new Swedish brand The Assembly Line, both big favourites of mine. You can find out more about the ethos behind The Assembly Line by clicking here.

You'll find us on Stand F52 in the West Hall, please do come along and say hello....

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