I know what you sewed this summer

I spent some lovely days this summer sewing another version of the Myosotis dress from Deer and Doe! After making two shorter versions during the lockdown sans ruffles, I was curious to make a dress version that fully embraces the ruffle trend that seems to be big both in and out of the sewing world at the moment!

I didn’t have that much of this fabric so I spent a long time deciding how to best place the pattern pieces and how big to make the skirt pieces and the sleeve and skirt ruffles. It’s so fun when you only have a limited amount of fabric as it forces you to be creative and methodical and flex those problem solving muscles. It’s also interesting when design choices – in this case the length and width of the ruffles, and the length of the skirt – are determined by what is possible – so you end up with something you might not have chosen if you had had more fabric to play with! I used nearly every last inch of the fabric, with just enough left over to make a face mask and a handful of tiny pieces to add to the ‘don’t know what to do with these but don’t want to bin them’ pile.

In any case, I’m really pleased with how this dress turned out – and I’m keeping with my waist tie theme. It’s quite a crisp cotton so it gives it quite a structured feel – would be interesting to make this dress in a floatier fabric too. The fabric was bought on a pre-lockdown trip to Goldhawk Road in February – it was one of those ‘ok, now this is actually the last piece of fabric I’m buying today’ purchases.

An unashamedly cheerful summer dress I’m also looking forward to wearing with tights come colder days!



Snap Happy

Let me introduce you to my industrial hand press for setting snaps!

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After a few frustrating adventures with hand held snap pliers and good-for-nothing cheapo plastic snaps, I started researching different ways of snap setting. This incredibly useful blog post from Closet Core Patterns on how to install snaps and the different types of snaps spurred me on to buy my own hand press and some good quality spring snaps.

I found it really hard to find where to buy one from though! I wanted to find a seller as close to Belgium as possible but in the end I bought one from the Laughing Lizard Store on Etsy which ships from Ukraine – going by the box I think the press itself is manufactured in Turkey. I definitely recommend this seller. It was about 100 euro including the delivery – certainly an investment but I can’t see why I wouldn’t keep it forever, so worth the money!

Here are some recent projects I’ve added my lovely brass spring snaps to!

Firstly, this is a yellow tote bag I made using some fabric I bought in the sale at Dille and Kamille – couldn’t believe they were selling a decent amount of this lovely embroidered mustard yellow fabric for only 5 euros! It was sold as a tablecloth but I’ve given it a more exciting life as a tote bag with three snap closures at the opening.


Its previous life as a tablecloth….


Snaps are of course incredibly useful for sewing child and baby clothes! I recently made this dress for one of my favourite little people using the Madrid Dress/Playsuit pattern from Ikatee Patterns. I think this is such a lovely pattern and with so many mix and match options that you could make a whole wardrobe for a baby/young child with just this pattern! And making baby clothes is great for using up those small leftover pieces of fabric.


A good skirt pattern can be hard to find – but I really recommend the Fiore skirt from Closet Core Patterns. It is described as a ‘chic, high-waisted A-line skirt with just the right amount of flare and volume’ and I have to agree. This version is just ever so slightly too big for me but it is perfect with a t-shirt or top tucked in, so is great for the colder months. I used a really nice denim twill that I think comes from Passion Tissu in Saint-Gilles but I couldn’t be 100% certain – oh how I wish I had kept a log of where all the fabric I have bought over the years came from!

Love the brass snaps on dark blue!


The press in action!

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Wrap it up and start again

I seem to have officially fallen for tie-around wrap styles of late, and banished buttons and zips from my stitching répertoire – at least temporarily. Here are four things I’ve made in the last few months with ties and/or wrap-around styles as closures.

I made this in early June and I looove it – it is a lovely cool red linen I bought at La Maison Dorée in Brussels (not a fabric shop I go to that often but I will definitely go back to see if I can get some more of this linen). It is basically a quick self -drafted loose-fitting front and back bodice with a gathered skirt, and some ruffles on the straps to jazz it up. Perfect for heatwaves.

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 The Doon (13)
The Doon (14)

Next is a top made from fabric I’ve had in my stash for a long time and I have no idea where it came from! (I wonder how many blog posts I’ve started with that sentence…) I didn’t have very much of it though but I managed to eeek out this top.

I used the Deer and Doe Myosotis dress bodice pattern as a base. I cut the bodice on the fold and changed the neckline to this square-ish style with a pleat at the front, and I added a gathered peplum and waist ties. I love this top so much and it fills a gap in my wardrobe in the category of ‘tops to throw on with shorts in the summer’.




A few months ago I made this free wrap top pattern by In the Folds which is available as part of the Peppermint Mag Sewing School. Such a great (and free!) pattern! The fabric I used is a bit of a cheap and nasty viscose so I’m not mad about the finished result (and I certainly will not be wearing it when it is really hot!), but it was good to use up this fabric as a more-or-less wearable muslin to test out this pattern.


And lastly, I hacked the above Peppermint Mag free wrap top pattern into this dress. I was really pleased with the outcome and my hacking/drafting. Both the outer fabric and the lining come from Passion Tissus on Chaussée de Waterloo – the best fabric shop ever!

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