Sew Saturday at Sew Creative

Sew Saturday at Sew Creative Challenge one, to make McCalls 7582 dolls

What a day packed full of fun challenges. Sew Saturday at Sew Creative in Petersfield was a jam-packed event, which coincided with the shop’s third anniversary too so it really was a day of celebrations.

Team challenge 1 – McCalls 7582

Customers were invited to participate in one of two team challenges – the first in the morning to make a pair of dolls from McCalls 7582. The pattern pack includes a number of cloth dolls with different outfits including shoes and hair variations.

The dolls, lookalikeys of Sharon, Clare, Jo and Steve

The Blue team, lead by Clare had to make dolls of Steve and Sharon whilst Sharon’s Pink team had to fashion their dolls into Jo and Clare. Lots of hilarity, doll stuffing and fevered activity resulted in these amazing dolls. Mini Jo has four arms – so she can continue to multi task! Mini Steve was suitably adorned with gold rim glasses whilst mini Sharon – smaller than the rest (as is she) had a lipstick in hand. Well she is a very smart lady.

Little Clare also has a mini copy of the pattern McCalls 7582!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Whilst all this was going on, other areas of the shop offered alternative activities, such as programming and stitching out your name on the latest Janome Horizon sewing/embroidery machine. The complete piece of stitched graffiti will be displayed in the shop. Or you could hand stitch a patch to a chair – the aim being to cover it completely throughout the day.

 

A really simple project to sit and sew whilst chatting with friends

Happy Hearts

If you preferred something quieter and comradely, you could sit down at a table covered with felt hearts, stuffing and embroidery floss and make a hanging Happy Heart. A moment of relaxation, chatting to fellow customers and learning different hand stitching techniques from each other.

 

The Live challenge make-overs: hat into sewing basket and dreamcatcher

Live challenge

Back to the bustle of the shop, Jo (owner of Sew Creative and organiser of the Sew Saturday adventures) and I were challenged to turn something into something else in30 minutes. We found out what that would be 5 minutes before we had to start. Both had spent a sleepless night the night before, trying to think of what we would do with a T-shirt, pair of jeans, tote bag etc – but neither of us had thought about a hat! So thinking on our feet, Jo chose to make a dream catcher and I decided on a sewing basket. With the clock counting down we began, and to add to the ‘fun’ we had an audience asking questions at the same time and were filmed for a live facebook feed! No pressure then….. The results may not be magnificent, but they were achieved within the 30 minute time slot. Both of us were relieved when it was over and time for the next customer team challenge.

 

Upcycle challenge

Again new team blue, lead by Clare and team pink led by Sharon (both these lovely ladies are regular tutors at Sew Creative) found out what they had to upcycle moments before the 1.5 hour challenge began. It was a curtain, pair of fluffy socks, long sleeved t-shirt and belt. Fortunately both Sharon and Claire were full of ideas immediately – hats off to them (excuse the pun) and away the teams went.

 

The pink team’s upcycled ensemble, skirt, gypsy style t-shirt, armwarmers and waistcoat

The Pink team turned the curtain into a fishtailed skirt with elastic waist and waistcoat using the gathered top as a ruffle around the waistcoat edge. The T-shirt had the sleeves shortened, the neckline removed and a gypsy style gathered top instead to go with the Spanish theme. The socks were turned into arm warmers (pretty and practical) whilst the belt became a headband. One of the team bravely wore the ensemble for the final reveal.

 

Impressive results from the Blue team – curtain, t-shirt and fluffy socks into pinafore, bunny and bag, PJs and hat with pom pom

The blue team went down a completely different route – making a pinafore dress for a toddler from the curtain. The t-shirt was turned into a little top and leggings, both of which were trimmed with a little of the fluffy socks. Another team member made a cute hat with pom pom (from the curtain and more of the socks) whilst team leader Clare made a very cute bunny with pink fluffy ears and body from the curtain which she popped into a bag made from yet more of the curtain (with strap from the belt).

 

It was really impressive how the teams worked together and against the clock to produce something very wearable.

 

So another successful Sew Saturday at Sew Creative. It was wonderful to see how the customers and staff are such a community, sharing their passion for sewing on this special Sew Saturday. And of course, I bought some fabric too – a lovely soft jade coloured jersey which will be a new Vogue Pattern shortly!

Pretty Vintage Pinny

Make this Pretty Vintage Pinny, Vogue Pattern 8643
Make this Pretty Vintage Pinny, Vogue Pattern 8643

Pretty Vintage Pinny

This pretty vintage pinny is just one of the patterns available in the Vogue Pattern range of retro styles. Vintage designs are still incredibly popular so I’ve made this retro-style pinny (Vogue 8643) all ready for a swish dinner party!

 

The apron came together easily although it does have some unusual shaping, which adds to the vintage style. There are two side panels which are gathered to a shaped centre panel. Big patch pockets can be trimmed along the top with lace or ric rac, or have appliqué or lacy edging.

I made view A which has lace edging along the top edge – a nice touch with a definite vintage feel.

 

Patch pockets

The first step was to make the patch pockets. Step one is to add the lace edging along the seam line of the pocket top. With right sides together, stitch in place so the straight edge of the trim is along the seam line and the scallop edge hanging down towards the pocket. Then add the pocket lining sandwiching the lace trim between the layers which are placed right sides together. It’s best to work with the pocket front uppermost so you can see the stitching holding the lace trim in place, and therefore sew just to the left of the first row of stitching so it will be encased within the seam.

 

Continue around the pocket and to get a smooth curved seam, at the curves, stitch slowly, stopping with needle down, raise presser foot slightly and pivot the fabric. Leave a turning gap in the bottom edge.

 

Again to help the curved seam turn through smoothly and without visible lumps and bumps in the seam area, clip and notch the curved seams of the pockets – cut little wedge shapes from the seam allowance at the outer curves.

Edge stitch the pockets to the side front pieces
Edge stitch the pockets to the side front pieces

Edge stitch the pockets in place

The pockets are then edge-stitched to the side panels – edge stitching is just stitching close to the edge. To achieve a straight seam, nicely on the edge, use the inner edge of the presser foot as the guide and move the needle to the far right  (using the stitch width button to move the needle when sewing with a straight stitch).

 

 

Add gathered side panels
Gather the top of side front pieces to fit into the curved front
Gather the top of side front pieces to fit into the curved front

The side panels are then gathered and attached to the front panel but first, it is important to stay stitch the inner curves on the front panel, to prevent them stretching out of shape as you sew and attach the sides (to stay stitch – stitch with a standard stitch length just within the seam allowance, close to the seam line.) To gather the top of the side panels, sew just inside the seam allowance with a long stitch length of 4-5mm. Pull up the bobbin thread to gather the fabric to fit the inner curve of the front and sew together.

 

Trim added to top edge

Attach trim to the top edge just like the pockets
Attach trim to the top edge just like the pockets

The top of the apron has ties and a facing, but before adding these, first attach ric rac or lace trim to the top edge of the front piece p following the same technique as attaching the trim to the pocket top.

 

Ties stitched and attached
Attach ties to the back section for a neat finish
Attach ties to the back section for a neat finish

The ties are stitched, right sides together around the pointed ends and up to a large circle near the other end beyond which is left unstitched in order to insert the apron back into the tie end neatly. This is an unusual way of attaching ties, but does produce a neat finish.

 

The apron is then finished with an interfaced facing across the apron front to give a waistband effect.

 

I hope you enjoy making your own pretty vintage pinny.