Zweig sweater

Zweig sweater

I know a fair few of you who love to sew have also taken up knitting over the winter, so here's one for you! I've really enjoyed being able to pick up some knitting for a little bit each evening and in December I decided to move on from socks to a sweater. Being me, I steered away from traditional first try choices, such as chunky wool or a simple pattern - they just aren't my style. I was entranced with the beautiful fingering weight jumpers that I had seen on the many YouTube channels and knitting magazines that I've been looking at. Many of them would involve learning lots of new techniques, but it goes back to my basic attitude of, if you have to learn it sometime, you can learn it all on one project and end up with something that you really wanted. Hence, my Zweig...
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Colette Moneta hack

Colette Moneta hack
Finally, I made a Moneta! I feel like everybody else in the sewing community has several of these in their closets and I'm very late to the party, but I am now a Moneta member. Before, I was put off by some of the design features that I knew wouldn't suit me, but by finding the right alterations and fabric to use, I've made something that I already know will be replicated many more times. Normally the Moneta pattern features a scooped front neckline and a gathered waist. This version has a boatneck bodice with a pleated skirt instead.
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Dior: Designer of Dreams exhibition at the V&A Museum

As soon as I heard that the popular exhibition of Dior dresses that had been on display in Paris was coming to London I booked tickets for as soon as I could go. It was a truly inspiring collection that has made me think carefully about my future dressmaking choices (as well as one of my souvenirs - his book of advice for women),

If you are not able to go, here are some of the highlights of the collection (well, for me anyway). I hope you find them just as inspiring.

The most iconic image of Dior's New Look...

....and the current look under  the first female director, Maria Grazia Churi

The collection starts with a tour through Christian Dior's original lines....

Then takes you through a series of themed collections including designs from all directors since Dior himself. However, I am mainly drawn to either Dior or Churi's designs throughout.

Historical themes:

Global inspiration:

Le jardin:
The inspiration behind dress designs and perfumes.
This spectacular gown is from a very recent collection.

The exhibition then takes you through the signature looks of design directors after Christian Dior.
(Apologies that all my photographs were of Maria Grazia Churi! I was attempting to snap anything that really spoke to me.)

The room of toiles made me think about taking time to perfect fit and design before using a quality fabric.

The finale of the exhibition is the gown room which really is the show stopper. The room itself changes from dawn to dusk through the night and back again which shows the gowns off in golden and silver hues.

Well worth a trip, if you can get tickets.
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By Hand London Alix Maxi Dress

By Hand London Alix Maxi Dress
This week, the Great British Sewing Bee had a 1970's theme which means that the #gbsbsewalong is vintage themed. I was totally taken in with all the gorgeous maxi dresses from the final challenge; whilst I was watching all I could think of was the By Hand London Alix Dress pattern that I had, and how I had always wanted to improve on my first version with a summer maxi, so here it is (in March!). I took a lot of learning through from my first version and I'm much happier with this maxi.
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Comparing Melilot, Kalle and Alex shirts

This week I'm guest posting on the Minerva Crafts Blog with my Deer and Doe Melilot shirt made from their Cotton and Steel rayon. The pattern I picked was more to do with testing out the versatility of the fabric (more about that on the Minerva Craft site here), but got me to thinking about what I prefer about the different shirt patterns I have used and which I will use most often. Seeing as this year I'm really focusing on which patterns I can use a lot, it made sense to compare the best features of each. All three are casual shirts but offer different looks and making experiences.

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Bluprint Class Review: Couture Dressmaking Techniques and Couture Finishing Techniques

Bluprint Class Review: Couture Dressmaking Techniques and Couture Finishing Techniques

First up...I used these classes through Craftsy. It's now been taken over by Bluprint. Everything is still available, it's just under a different name. I have only dipped into the new platform but it seems to work the same...
So many people have recommended Craftsy for online classes that when they were on sale last, I had to have a go! I signed up for two classes by Alison Smith; Couture Dressmaking Techniques and Couture Finishing Techniques. I figured it was time I tried to improve what I was making, and was interested in the kinds of techniques that I could use to achieve a really professional finish to my handmade garments. If you are also thinking about spending more time on the quality of your makes, read on to find out more about these classes - I definitely recommend giving them a go.
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Hi, I'm Laura. Welcome to my journeys with modern, feminine dressmaking; pattern reviews, tips and guides for beginners. I'm a lifelong foodie, so you'll also find some delicious recipes and places to get that foodie fix.

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