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APRIL 2015

Home&Style 5 in1 PATTERN Stitch&Wear




ELibAeSrtyYraS-rEa sW kirt





MAGAZINE APR 2015 ISSUE 70 £5.99

Pencil skirt pattern DOWNLOAD IT


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*SEW APRIL 15 ISSUE 70_SEW 26/02/2015 10:08 Page 2


S.Nutt Sewing Machines Unit 56, Cuckoo Road, Birmingham 87 SSY Tel: 0121 327 2828 Web: Eastman Staples Ltd 31 Lockwood Road, Huddersfield HD1 3QW Tel: 01484 888888 Web: Singer Machines Ltd 217 - 219 Whitley Road, Whitley Bay, Tyne & Wear NE26 2SY Tel: 0191 252 5825 Web:

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Editor Lorraine Luximon 01206 505420 Deputy Editor Steph Durrant Group Editor Lynn Martin 01206 505980 Publishing Director Helen Tudor

Suit your style

Advertisement Sales Clare Dance 01206 505495

Welcome to your Fashion & Style issue, which is packed with gorgeous garments to make, plus expert advice and how-tos. We have two very special gifts for you this month; a versatile New Look Poppy dress pattern and Style magazine – we hope you enjoy making the frock of your dreams, and are inspired to try something new! We also have some great special offers for you, with 1,000 of New Look patterns to win (see p13 of Style), plus head over to p19 of your mag to make a pencil skirt from the latest Sewing Bee title. You'll find the FREE download at Elsewhere we have gone hopping mad (sorry!) for Easter stitching. With great makes such as cute April Bunny to stitch (p62) and seasonal decs (p84), these delights are Subscribe sure to add a little fun TODAY! to the occasion!

Sarah Collins 01206 506255 Jackie Weddell 01206 506221 Jo Bluck 01206 506253 Art Director Phil Dunham Designers Rick Allen, Gemma Eales & Clare Brasier Ad Production Brian Peck Photography CliQQ Photography Accounts Denise Bubb 01206 505958 Subscription Enquiries/ Back Issues 01795 592967 Website Enquiries Newstrade Sales Marketforce 0203 148 3300 Marketing Manager Andrea Turner Subscriptions Executive Fiona Burrows Published By Aceville Publications Ltd 2015 21-23 Phoenix Court, Hawkins Road, Colchester, Essex CO2 8JY © Aceville Publications Ltd All projects from this issue and the FREE online patterns are for personal home use only and cannot be sold or used for commercial purposes. All patterns that are featured in Sew are reproduced in good faith that they do not infringe any copyright.

Happy stitching!

The publishers are not responsible for any safety issues arising from any items created from projects contained within Sew magazine.

Check out our fantastic subscription offers on pages 50 and 82!

meet our experts May Martin The Sewing Bee judge offers her dressmaking advice each month.

Claire-Louise Hardie Make the Sewing Bee's sewing producer's pencil skirt from her new book which accompanies the series.

Wendy Gardiner Wendy talks perfect topstitching, and reveals our pattern of the month.

Kate Smith

Lorraine Luximon, Editor

While all possible care has been taken to ensure the accuracy of all projects, we are not responsible for printing errors or the way in which individual work varies. Please read instructions carefully before starting construction.

The owner of craft hub The Makery brings us a stylish pyjama shorts pattern.

GET IN TOUCH Write in and share your creations, tips and views




01795 592967 sewhq

Twitter @sewhq

Sew Magazine, 1 Phoenix Court, Hawkins Road, Colchester, Essex, CO2 8JY. 03

Contents_Layout 1 27/02/2015 16:49 Page 1

Get Sew delivered straight to your door! Subscribe today and receive one of these books FREE (see p50 & 82).

April 2015


Subscribe at






In Every Issue

Freebies & Offers

03 Welcome

Say hello to the Sew team.

06 Want it, need it

dress pattern 11 Poppy

The best news, products, shows and more.

08 Dear Sew

Tips and advice for using your FREE dress pattern.

FREE 36-page Magazine

Take a look at our latest reader makes and find out how you can win stitching goodies.


50 Subscriptions

Never miss an issue of Sew – subscribe today for exclusive offers, gifts and more.

Simplicity Style magazine

60 Q&A

Our experts answer all your stitching questions and queries.

Your 36-page dressmaking and home magazine is packed with advice and patterns you’ll love to shop!

83 Bookmark this

Find the best online resources for your stitching.

50% off Simplicity pattern of the month

Spoil yourself with 50% off Simplicity 1421, a stylish jacket pattern.

13 WIN!

Enter to win a stylish New Look dress and bag pattern in your FREE Simplicity Style magazine.

92 Giveaways

Enter our giveaways today for your chance to win prizes worth over £1,000.

106 My sewing soom

68 Love that fabric...

Next month we have a FREE Simplicity 1467 wardrobe pack, a Sewing Bee shift dress pattern FREE inside and more!


70 Tea party set

97 Start right

Make a cute springtime companion.

94 May preview

Get the practical information and advice you need on all aspects of needlework.

105 Sew on the go

Keep in touch with Sew, wherever you are.

We chat to The Great British Sewing Bee’s Alex Florea.

62 April bunny

Home 63 At home with... Stuart Hillard


Stuart tells us his plans for an Easter-themed party.

56 Spring stitching

64 Home trends

Our top 10 favourite kits for making everything from quilts to accessories.

69 Sew personality

We meet Alice Garrett to talk Liberty and more.


Decorate your home with seasonal shades and prints.

66 Hare cushions

Create beautiful pillows with this simple technique.

A quirky April showers print selection for your home. Time for tea with Alice in Wonderland inspired Liberty prints.

72 Quilter’s corner

Get the latest patchwork and quilt news and products.

77 Block of the month

You’ll love this month’s Patience block.

80 Love that fabric...

The best new releases from Cloud9 Fabrics and Art Gallery Fabrics.

84 Easter tree decs

Get stitching a fabulous centrepiece.

86 Bunting and bags Make cute decs for your home.

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Dressmaking & Style

34 pages of fashion, garments and more!

FREE this month!




Stitch five different dresses to give your wardrobe a boost with the New Look 6184 Poppy dress pattern. With easy to follow steps, why not try bold prints and really showcase your style? You can alter the length and mix and match belt styles, too!

Flattering shapes

Five garment options


11 Poppy dress pattern

33 Love that fabric...

16 Dressmaking with May

34 Learn with... Vanessa Mooncie

Use your FREE gift to make five different dress options.

88 Dog bed & pillow

Pamper your pooch with this set.

90 Susie’s stitch school

Discover Assisi embroidery and make a spring Scandi pillow.

Gifts 58 Tortoise pattern weights

May Martin gives advice on lightweight jackets.

18 The really useful guide Tips for topstitching and more.

19 Lace pencil skirt

Learn how to work with luxury fabrics and make a stylish skirt.

Our dressmaking prints are inspired by botany this month.

Adorable baby bloomers in step-by-step.

36 Pyjama shorts

Easy to stitch and made with gorgeous Liberty lawn fabric.

38 How I made it

Sew meets Caroline Smith from Sew La Di Da Vintage.

These tortoise-shaped weights will keep everything in place when cutting.

22 Draped top

96 Spring wreath

24 Liberty ra-ra skirt Make a sweet little girl’s skirt.

We review the best sew-all machines on the market.


26 Fashion forecast

44 Jersey skirt

52 British Sewing Award results

28 The busy bee

98 Templates

30 You can do it! Pattern hacking

A great no-sew adornment for your home.

Your votes are in! Here are your winners. Find all the templates to make April bunny and Easter tree decs.

Sew a simple jersey top for spring.

We look ahead with tropical-themed prints. Lauren Guthrie gets excited for spring.

What it is and why you should try it!

41 Machine spotlight

A great choice for beginners.

47 Best of... Indie patterns

We bring you the latest in the pattern world.

48 Bowling bag

Corinne Bradd shows us how to make a handy tote. 05

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Totally tropical


Ever dreamed of meeting Sewing Bee judge Patrick Grant? Increase your chances by purchasing a Singer sewing machine from an authorised UK stockist before 31st May and you could win a place at a half-day sewing session with the Savile Row tailor himself at Singer’s central London stitching school! What are you waiting for? For further details, visit

Embrace the bold and bring the tropics indoors with Harlequin’s stunning new range of fabrics and wallcoverings. Designed by Louise Collins, Amazilia consists of seven decadent prints featuring large scale flowers and foliage, finely painted hummingbirds and butterflies, which are perfect for home furnishings and accessories. The coordinating velvets collection is also ideal for creating luxurious upholstery. Visit for stockists.

want it, Things we’re coveting in the world of stitching this month


If you’re looking to update your home for spring then we think these special edition cushions by Sarah Campbell are just the ticket. Inspired by nature, each design depicts birds, butterflies and leaves hand-painted directly onto calico before being digitally printed onto 100% cotton half-panama. The vibrant illustrations are sure to bring a fresh feel to your living space. Priced from £40, see to view the range.

Cute kits


If, like us, your haberdashery collection is crying out to be organised as it spills over drawers and out of cupboards, then these colour-popping tins from Berry Red could save the day. We love the clashing prints and cute French phrases, plus they’re the perfect sizes for filling with buttons, bobbins and threads to display on a sewing table or shelf. Priced from £9.95, visit


If you’re looking for a quick stitching fix while watching the TV, then get your hands on one of these fun kits from Dunelm Mill. There are projects for all abilities, from pincushions and felt toys to aprons and shoulder bags. Everything is pre-measured, all you need to do is cut and sew! Priced from £7.49 to £14.99,

News_Layout 1 27/02/2015 09:36 Page 3



Brighten up your stitching with the new creative collection from The Makery. There is a whole range of colourful ‘makeaway’ kits, ribbons and twines to devour, we are especially coveting this sewing kit that’s great for beginners. Priced £14.95,, 01225 789909.

By the dozen

Add some colourful patchwork prints to your Easter tree with these cheerful egg decorations from The Contemporary Home. In pretty springtime fabrics, why not hide a dozen in the garden in place of chocolate eggs for a hunt kids and health-conscious mums will love. Priced £2 each,

Diary Dates 19th-22nd March Sewing For Pleasure NEC, Birmingham

16th-18th April Creative Crafts Show King’s Hall, Belfast

24th-26th April British Quilt & Stitch Village Uttoxeter Racecourse, Staffordshire

26th-1st April London Hat Week

needit! Perfect for spring, we adore this ’60sinspired button front coat by Coleen Rooney for in a fresh lemon shade. You too can channel Jackie O by stitching Burda 7072. Choose between a straight style with a cute collar and pockets, or a simple collarless variation. Available in sizes 6-18, visit www.simplicity

SPRING HABERDASHERY Basket of Flowers sewing kit, £2.95,

www.dotcom, 0161 480 8734.

Happy Easter ribbon, £2.99 per 5m reel,

Frocks That Rock


Sew La Di Da Vintage, 11th-12th April

Choose from Sew La Di Da Vintage’s ever-expanding range of patterns designed for different personalities and body shapes to make during this two-day workshop. Small class sizes mean everybody gets individual tuition so stitchers of all abilities are welcome and are guaranteed to leave with a completed dress and pattern to use again. Priced £120, visit


Bunny wood buttons, £4.99 for 10,


WE LOVE Coleen 60s coat, £79, www

Get the look

The Baker Street Quarter, London 07

Dear sew_Layout 1 26/02/2015 16:46 Page 2

sponsored by Minerva Crafts

Dear Share your crafty makes and stories with us to be in with the chance of winning a fantastic prize!

Oliver the owl

Sew issue 68

I started a dressmaking class and also buying Sew last April. With each magazine I am filled with enthusiasm about all the projects I want to do, but being a working mum I have very little time for my own hobbies. I love making clothes, but progress is slow. When I saw Oliver in the February issue, I just had to make him and managed to do so in less than a week! I’m now looking back through some of my earlier copies for more quick makes. Thanks for the inspiration! Michelle Roberts We’re so glad you found some ‘me’ time; Oliver looks dashing.

Star Letter Globe trotting

Husband material

Since winning my beautiful Bernina sewing machine in the Bamber Sewing Machines Design Competition I have made many things. But now I seem to have lost my machine to my husband after he asked me to teach him how to sew! He is a freelance driving instructor so I told him the principle of sewing is the same as driving, you just follow a line and put your foot down! He made a cushion cover and his next project is a garage tidy, with compartments for his tools. I have always wanted to pass on my skills, and now I have. So to all you would-be sewers out there, have a go as it is one of the most rewarding things you can do! Your imagination is your only limitation. Christine White

After learning sewing at school I thought that was as far as my skills went. Then my boyfriend volunteered me to teach in Uganda! I spent four weeks helping a community to learn basic He looks super happy with himself, you’ll have to get another machine and stitching skills. become a team! I decided to try out a pattern to test myself My friend is a long before I went and time subscriber of This month our Star created this Sew and recently Letter winner will receive ‘around the lent me a bundle of a bumper selection of back issues to read world’ dress. I’ve as I have been fabrics from Minerva had lots of recuperating from an people admire it and I have to Crafts worth £50. We operation. I thought admit, it’s one of my favourites, too! This year I’m also have £10 worth for I’d have a go at a going back to Uganda for six weeks to develop swimming bag for the runners up. For more my son’s birthday. their (and my) skills further! I can’t wait! stitching goodies, visit

Sewing convert

Hannah Creaney

What an amazing dress, and a very inspirational story!


I adapted the pattern from issue 36 and used a monkey logo from a favourite old T-shirt of his. I am pleasantly surprised with my efforts and my son loves his bespoke tote. I am now a Sew convert! Barbara Gritten

Welcome aboard Barbara, we hope you’re feeling much better now.

Star Prize

Dear sew_Layout 1 26/02/2015 16:46 Page 3

sew YOU



Draw inspiration from our trend boards




Layla Wiltshire I made the portable playmat from issue 68 last night.



Emma Harding I made this little girl’s dress this weekend.

@craftyboot @amulligancarroll @SewHQ I taught my four year old son Leo to sew, he made bags for himself and his brother.

@SewHQ I make ‘Glesga wifies’. Here’s a few from this week! I hope you like them. Sarah Mckenna I’m very new to sewing so I’m really proud of this tulip skirt I made.


Morag Christie I’m going to make some more of these for a craft fair, in brighter and flowery fabrics.

GET IN TOUCH Write in and share your creations, tips and views


stephanie.durrant@ sewhq

Twitter @sewhq

Dear Sew, Sew Magazine, 1 Phoenix Court, Hawkins Road, Colchester, Essex, CO2 8JY. 09

*SEW APRIL 15 ISSUE 70_SEW 25/02/2015 10:48 Page 10

The Love

fa Lifetime The HUSQVARNA VIKING• DESIGNER RUBY Royale ... sewing and embroidery machine is our heir to the throne, a true princess. It makes it easy and rewarding to create anything your heart desires! EXCLUSIVE FEATURES: • Experience more beautiful em:>roidery chan ever, even with challenging metallic threads. thanks to the innovative deluxe"' Stitch System. • Use the first in the Industry Dimensional Stitches to add applique fabric. • The largest e mbroide ry area In hs dass• . allowlng you co stitch spectacular designs with 1ust one hooping.

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Covermount dress_Layout 1 27/02/2015 15:37 Page 1



NEWLOOK 6184 ®



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4 NEWLOOK 618 ®


Sew&Learn This month we’ll show you how to... 3 Work pleats 3 Add facings 3 Make belt carriers 3 Insert a lapped zip

Your FREE New Look pattern is a stylish sleeveless dress with five variations. Each has a pleated neckline and waistline seam, then choose between a flared knee or below knee length skirt, or pencil skirt with a back vent. All versions have a centre back zip and three different belts included, so you can really personalise your outfit. We’ve stitched ours in a bold printed cotton, but why not opt for a silk for a spring wedding, or keep it casual with a lightweight linen?

5 styles to choose from...

Style A

1 Round neckline 2 Clasp belt 3 Flared skirt


Style B

1 Round neckline 2 Self-tie belt 3 Flared skirt

Style C

1 Square neckline 2 Waist seam 3 Flared skirt

Style D

1 Square neckline 2 Waist seam 3 Straight skirt

Style E

1 Round neckline 2 Kimono belt 3 Straight skirt

Covermount dress_Layout 1 27/02/2015 15:37 Page 3


Pleated neckline provides extra detail

Complete the waist belt using pretty metal clasps


We added a tulle petticoat underneath the skirt to give it extra fullness and volume.


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Pattern on test


We stitched view C of the Poppy dress using a bold floral cotton with a contrasting belt C R A S H C O U R S E ...


l Check the length of the skirt tissue pieces before cutting out in fabric and add or subtract more to create the hemline length you prefer. l If using a medium to heavyweight fabric, face the bodice with a lining material rather than the same fabric to reduce the bulk. l Staystitch the neckline before attaching the facings to prevent unwanted stretch as you work with the fabric. l Understitch facings once attached. Press the seam, then press the facing and seam allowances away from the garment. Trim the seam allowances to 6mm. Then sew, with the facing uppermost, close to the previous seam but through the facing and seam allowances only. Turn the facing to the inside of the garment and press again. l Use an invisible zip for the centre back, or a pretty surface mounted zip to create a feature.


on pleats Pleats are folds in the fabric that control fullness. They can be soft or crisp, depending on the fabric used and whether they are pressed or not.

3 There are three types of pleat: knife edge pleats all face the same direction; inverted pleats, where two folds are pressed towards each other to one placement line; and box pleats, which are two pleats turned away from each other creating a flat section in the centre. 3 Mark the fold line and the placement line (the pattern pieces will include these, ready to be transferred to your fabric), using a different colour thread/pen so you can quickly distinguish between them. 3 When making several pleats, snip-mark the lines within the seam allowance at the top and bottom of the fabric, with pins along the line in between if necessary. Again, use different coloured pins to distinguish between fold and placement lines. 3 Fold the fabric at the line mark along the length, then bring the fold to the placement line. Repeat for all the pleats, then hand or machine tack across the top to hold the pleats in place. 3 All pleats need pressing to set them. Use a press cloth to help prevent ridges from the fabric layers showing on the right side of the garment. For soft pleats, use a dry press cloth and apply a little steam hovering the iron just above the fabric. For crisp pleats, use a damp press cloth and lots of steam and the full pressure of the iron.


Staystitch the neck edges to ensure they don’t stretch out of shape when working.

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behind the scenes

Make-up touch ups anFdelouictfia it tweaks for model


LOVE IT... BUY IT! Poppy print

Pink floral

For a vibrant spring feel, designer Vie Millard used Wild Beauty Saffron printed cotton from the Rapture collection by Pat Bravo for Art Gallery Fabrics. Visit for stockists.

If you liked the print on the pattern envelope, try Sundborn Garden Red Floral Scroll cotton, priced ÂŁ13 per metre,, 0330 111 3690.

New Look 1467 is a stylish and versatile multi-garment pattern in five sizes. It includes a sleeveless yoke top, pull-on trousers and a skirt with a mock drawstring, and a smart collarless jacket with peplum detailing.

On sale 10th April 15

Dressmaking with May_Layout 1 27/02/2015 15:53 Page 1


Exclusive style advice with May Martin


Top pattern pick ... Burda 6772 Sizes 8-18

Top pattern pick ... Papercut Patterns Watson Sizes XXS-L

Why we love it... Princess seams create a flattering line down the length of the body to elongate an apple shape.

Why we love it... Detail in the upper body counterbalances broad hips. Double breasted styling accentuates the top line drawing the eye to the bodice.

The open neck style with a belted waist draws the eye to the waistline, which is great for pear shapes.


You may also like

Vogue 8884 Sizes 6-22 TOPSTITCHING DETAIL


The cape effect over the sleeves broadens the shoulder line and the collar draws the eye to the neck.

Omit the belt and add pocket flaps to create a more formal, streamlined and tailored garment.

Best of the rest Butterick 5819 Sizes XS-XXL WRAP VARIATION

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Stockist information For Burda patterns, visit, 0161 480 8734. For Butterick and Vogue Patterns, visit, 0844 880 1263. For Colette and Papercut Patterns, visit, 01787 269366.


Sewing Bee judge May Martin shares her dressmaking secrets Top pattern pick ... Burda 6901 Sizes 6-18

Why we love it... A smart style that can be made with or without a collar, achieving two different necklines. Peplum detail accentuates the waistline of an hourglass figure and focuses the eye on the contour of the body. Stitch in lightweight wools, bouclĂŠ or a pretty pastel tweed for spring.

Why not try? Colette Patterns Anise Sizes 0-18 CLASSIC SHORT LENGTH

Summer is on its way and a jacket or lightweight coat is a useful addition to your wardrobe. A smart style looks great with a pair of jeans and when teamed with a matching skirt or trousers, it can take you to an interview or important meeting in style. Princess seaming creates a flattering line down the length of the body to elongate and enhance an apple shape. These seams can be tricky as they are curved. Pin together putting your pins in at right angles and picking up a very small piece of the two fabrics you are joining together on the fitting line, which is 1.5cm from the cut edge. You will find that it is much easier to work with the curve and ease the two pieces together. Necklines have an enormous impact on the perception of the upper body. Keep collars small or flat to the neckline of the garment if you have a short neck. Jackets usually have button fastenings and some have collars; and it's really important to support your buttons, buttonholes and collars with interfacing. There are many products on the market and it can be quite confusing. The one you select should not overpower the fabric but support it and give it body. Put a piece of fabric against it. How do they work together? If in doubt, choose a lighter weight interfacing. If hems are not topstitched they should be completely invisible. Neaten the edge of the hem and turn up once and blind hem in place. Pressing can make or break the finished look of a garment, particularly the hem. Lay damp muslin over your hem and take the point of the iron just up to the neatened edge. This will prevent a ridge showing on the right side of the jacket. For your first project, choose a simple pattern without too many style lines. There are endless possibilities of the looks that can be achieved with clever combinations of fabric, style and colour. Until next month,

May Martin SUBSCRIBE TODAY! Subscribe today and get May Martin's Sewing Bible: 40 Years of Tips and Tricks for FREE, see p50. 17

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Simple Steps to... TOPSTITCHING

Quite simply, topstitching is stitching that is meant to be seen on the surface of the project. It can be functional, used to hold facings, linings and pockets in place, or purely decorative. It can also make seams more durable. For simple topstitching, use a thread colour to match the fabric and a straight stitch. Sew approximately 6mm from the edge, working from the right side of the project. Use the edge of the presser foot as a guide, with the fabric against the side of the foot. Move the needle to the right using the stitch width button to change the needle position. To make the topstitching stand out, use a contrast thread colour in a topstitching thread (which is thicker and so the stitches will be more pronounced) and a topstitch needle (which has a larger eye for the thicker thread). If you don’t have topstitching thread, attach your second thread spindle, and put two threads through the one needle. For an attractive finish, use contrasting threads and any decorative stitch. Try out the stitches on scraps of the same fabric and number of layers. To create two perfectly parallel rows of topstitching use a twin needle with two reels of thread, through the top. (The bobbin thread will then be taken up by both needles creating a wavy zig zag stitch on the underside). Sew with the right side uppermost. Edge stitching is the same as topstitching but sewn closer to the edge (2mm to 3mm from the fabric edge). Pockets are usually edge stitched in place.

1 2


3 4

This unlined jacket can be made with or without a collar and has separate pattern pieces for cup sizes A-D making it so much easier to fit. Finish the jacket with contrasting trim or bias binding for a really bold edge. Add statement buttons for a real on-trend look. Available in sizes 6-24.



50% off Simplicity 1421! Buy now for £4.05 plus 85p postage (RRP £8.15 plus postage). Visit and enter SEW1421 at the checkout. Offer valid 13th March – 10th April 2015.

If you liked our pattern of the month... Visit the link below for even more stylish patterns


Simplicity’s new nifty and compact Deluxe Storage Solution is ideal for containing all sorts of crafty items. Removable containers with recessed handles, snap lock closures and hinged lids can be used individually, or stacked, stored and wheeled into place on the wheeled trolley. Priced £119.99, the Deluxe Storage Solution is available from Simplicity stockists nationwide, visit or call 0800 214455.

More information at 18

Sewing Bee Pencil Skirt_Layout 1 27/02/2015 15:21 Page 1






A fitted skirt is the perfect blank canvas to showcase an amazing lace fabric, and with no front darts or back vent, there's nothing to disrupt the beauty of the overlay in this double layered garment. Play around with colour combinations or level of detail in the lace to create a unique item you can wear to any occasion.

Photography: Jenni Hare



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Lace fabric, 150cm wide, 80cm or 114cm wide, 130cm Medium weight satin lining, 150cm wide, 80cm or 114cm wide, 140cm Coordinating concealed zip, 23cm Very lightweight fusible interfacing, 20cm Coordinating sewing machine thread


Download the pattern from, print, and piece together. Trace then cut out all the pieces following the cutting guide and transfer markings. When placing the lace skirt pattern pieces on the fabric, carefully match up any horizontal motifs across the side seam. Lay the edge of the pattern just above the scalloped edge.

Dimensions: Size




























Carefully staystitch the waistline of the three lace skirt pieces, sewing 1cm from the edge. Repeat on the three lining skirt pieces. Make up the inner lining shell by pinning and sewing the darts into the two back underskirt pieces. Press them towards the side seams.




Cutting guide

1 Front facing, cut on one fold from lining and interfacing 2 Back facing, cut two from lining and interfacing 3 Underskirt front, cut one on fold from lining 4 Underskirt back, cut two from lining 5 Outer skirt front, cut one on fold from lace 6 Outer skirt back, cut two from lace A 1.5cm seam allowance is included throughout unless otherwise stated









“Make up the underskirt first, then fit it and transfer any adjustments onto the lace pieces. Lace fabric doesn’t like being unpicked, so this way you can avoid having to sew it before trying it on”


LOVE IT... BUY IT! Scalloped edged lace Classic and elegant, this is the perfect choice for this skirt, priced £7.99 per metre,, 01630 620387.


With right sides together, matching up the notches, pin and stitch the underskirt front to the underskirt back pieces at the side seams. Neaten the raw edges and press the seams open. Pin the centre back seam from the hem up to the bottom of the zip opening. Try the skirt on and check the fit. Make any necessary fitting adjustments, then transfer them to the lace pieces. Sew the darts into the two back sections of lace in the same way as for the underskirt. If the seam allowance of the darts looks bulky when pressed, follow the instructions for a hairline seam, (see Crash Course). Pin and stitch the outer skirt front and back pieces at the side seams. Neaten the raw edges and press the seams.

Lay the lace layer over the underskirt, both right sides up, making sure that the side seams and darts line up. Pin or tack in place. Hand tack around the opening for the zip and along the waistline, stitching 1cm from the edge [1].


Sewing through both skirt layers, line up the top of a concealed zip 1.5cm below the cut edge of the waistline and insert it. Tuck the bottom of the zip away from the seam and sew the centre back seam for 7cm below the bottom of the fastening, making sure you back stitch at each end of the seam [2].


Before you sew the rest of the back seam, it’s important to release the lace from the lining layer. Snip into the seam allowance of the lace, making

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CRASH COURSE... hairline seams


Subscribe to Sew to get your copy of The Great British Sewing Bee: Fashion with Fabric by Claire-Louise Hardie (worth £25, Quadrille), with forewords and masterclasses by May Martin and Patrick Grant completely FREE. See page 82!

A hairline seam is one that is stitched, zig zagged, then trimmed. This type of seam is a really good choice for most lace or sheer fabrics. As any seam and finish is visible through the lace, you need to use one that creates a light finish.


With right sides together, matching up the notches, pin and stitch the front to the back pieces at the side seams, using a 1.5cm seam allowance.




when you subscribe to Sew

Stitch the seam again about 3mm from the first, using a narrow zig zag stitch. Trim the seam allowance away close to the stitches.


Press the seam flat, then carefully to one side, making sure you do not overstretch the lace as you press.

sure you do not get too close to the stitches. Over stitch around the snipped edges by hand to strengthen the seam [3]. Pull the underskirt up and away, and machine the rest of the lace centre back seam below the snip. Repeat on the underskirt layer, sewing from the bottom of the zip to the hem [4]. Decide how much of the scalloped hem you’d like to see. As a general guide, the hemline of the lining should sit at the top edge of the lace scallop. However, you can have a shallower or deeper lace edge if you’d prefer.



Carefully iron lightweight interfacing onto the back of the facing pieces. This is optional, as if you have a very light lace fabric, the interfacing can make the facing noticeable. With right sides together, pin then stitch the front facing to the back pieces at the side seams, then press them open.



Neaten the raw lower edge of the facing with either a zig zag or an overlock stitch [5]. Attach the facing to the waistline, under stitch and attach to the zip. Hand stitch the facing to the side seams to finish [6].


Stitch it with... Brother Innov-is 20LE Stitch up garments like these in no time with Brother’s easy to use computerised machine from the Innov-is series. With 40 built-in stitches, there’s plenty of choice and the electronic jog dial makes selection simple. The automatic needle threader and quick set top loading bobbin make getting started quick and easy, and the LCD screen shows you everything you need to know, including stitch type and length. Slide type speed control and the start/stop button mean that the machine can be used with or without foot control. There’s also five styles of one-step buttonhole so you’re always spoilt for choice. Priced £329, visit or call 0333 777 4444 to find your nearest stockist.

Next month... Next issue we have a classic shift dress pattern from The Great British Sewing Bee: Fashion with Fabric, in sizes 8-20 FREE with your magazine. 21

DrapedTop(P) qx_Layout 1 27/02/2015 15:36 Page 1

Beginner Make




Jersey fabric Coordinating sewing thread Fusible hemming tape

Dimensions Custom size



First measure your hips. Cut a rectangle from jersey fabric with the width as half your hip measurement, plus an extra 8cm, by the length you would like your tunic to be, plus 3cm for the hem and 6cm for the facings at the top (9cm in total). This will be the back of the tunic [1].


For the front, adapt the back pattern so the top is 16cm wider (8cm either side), but the base and length should measure the same. Angle the side edges down to the base [2]. Cut this shape from jersey.


Lay the front and back pieces together with the right sides facing. The base and side edges should match together, the front at the top will be larger to create the cowl effect [3]. Stitch across each shoulder seam with a stretch stitch, using the diagram which indicates the seam allowance and the angle of the seams [4]. Stitch the side edges together with a 4cm seam allowance leaving a 23cm gap down from the shoulder seams for the armholes.


Open and press the large seams allowances to become the facings for the neck and armholes. Use fusible hemming tape to keep the facings in place. Fold and press a 3cm hem and either use hemming tape to secure, or a blind hemming stitch on your sewing machine.






Desired length plus 9cm

Half hip measurement


Half hip measurement









This loose fitting tunic is not only comfortable and stylish, but easy to stitch, too. It’s custom sized, which means no tricky pattern pieces to follow – simply use your own measurements to cut the shapes and stitch together. Fusible web tape is used for fuss free hemming and the facings are made from an extended seam allowance, so there’s no excuse not to get stitching!

DrapedTop(P) qx_Layout 1 27/02/2015 15:36 Page 2


C R A S H C O U R S E ...

working with jersey

3 Jersey fabrics are produced with either a one way or a two way stretch, this needs to be taken into consideration when choosing a pattern. 3 As knits stretch when pulled, an overlocker is best used to sew garments together, or your machine needs to be set to a stretch stitch. 3 Jersey is a great fabric to use for body hugging garments as no shaping such as darts need to be used, as it will stretch around the contours of your body. 3 It does not generally fray when cut, which means you don’t have to neaten the edges of the seams inside garments. This speeds up the making up time. 3 Fine jerseys have great draping properties, making them a brilliant fabric to use for details such as cowl necks.

LOVE IT... BUY IT! Geometric print Amanda used this bold John Kaldor Cannes fabric in Blue for our top, priced ÂŁ11.69,, 01283 210422. 23

Rara Skirt_Layout 1 27/02/2015 15:50 Page 1



White floral cotton lawn, 20cm x 137cm Rose print cotton lawn, 24cm x 137cm Pink print cotton lawn, 35cm x 137cm Regular or buttonhole elastic, 2cm wide, 55cm Button (if using buttonhole elastic)


Dimensions Custom sized

Cutting guide To customise the skirt size, measure from the child’s waist to the desired hem length of the longest ruffle (above or below the knee), then add 7.5cm to this measurement. This is the length of 137cm wide fabric you will need for the bottom ruffle. For the elastic, add 7.5cm to the waist measurement.



This easy-to-make tiered skirt is perfect for twirling at parties. You could mix up your fabric choices with rainbow shades, graduate the tones or use your little one’s favourite colours. Floral Liberty prints in popping hues are the perfect match for energetic tiny people and with an elasticated waist, there's plenty of growing room, too. 2




To make the top ruffle, cut 20cm x 137cm of cotton lawn. Cut 24cm x 137cm from a different print for the middle ruffle and 35cm x 137cm for the bottom one. Cut a 9cm strip off the top ruffle and put aside. Fold the top ruffle in half widthways, with right sides together, and stitch the edges to form a loop using a 1cm seam allowance [1]. Finish the seam and press to one side. Repeat for the other ruffle pieces and the 9cm strip to make the waistband.


To hem the top ruffle, fold over 5mm on one long edge and press. Fold another 1.25cm over and press again. Stitch all around the hem 2mm from the fold. Repeat with the other two ruffle pieces.

3 5


Work gathering stitches all around the circumference of the middle ruffle at a distance of 12.5cm up from the bottom hemmed edge. Leave long threads at both ends. Take hold of a set of thread ends and pull to gather. Ease the fabric along the stitches until the circumference is reduced to about 90cm long (or 45cm when the skirt is folded flat) [2].


Sew regular length zig zag stitches around the circumference between the tacking rows. Remove the tacking stitches. Repeat with the bottom ruffle, 15cm from the bottom edge. Insert the middle followed by the bottom ruffle inside the top ruffle loop. Align the top edges, pin in place and stitch together 1cm from the top edge [3].


If using buttonhole elastic, fold up 1.25cm to the wrong side of one long edge of the waistband strip and press. Make a 2cm


buttonhole 5mm from the top folded edge of the waistband, stitching through the folded edge [4].


Turn the skirt inside out and insert into the waistband loop, aligning the top edges (the non folded edge of the waistband). Pin and stitch together with a 1.25cm seam allowance. Trim to 5mm and finish the seam.


Turn the skirt right side out. Fold the waistband over the top edge of the skirt, ensuring that the folded waistband edge covers your stitching [5]. Sew 2mm from the folded edge all around the top of the skirt. Leave a 4cm gap if you are not using buttonhole elastic.


Machine zig zag stitch over the ends of the elastic to prevent fraying. Attach a safety pin to one end and insert the elastic into the waistband through the buttonhole (or through the gap if not using buttonhole elastic). Make sure it lies flat within the waistband.


If you are using buttonhole elastic, pull it out of the buttonhole by about 7.5cm. Adjust the other end of the elastic so that it sits just inside the buttonhole, and pin it in place. Secure the elastic, stitching through all the layers close to the buttonhole using machine zig zag stitch [6]. Sew a button in place, close to the buttonhole. Adjust the elastic to the desired length and push a buttonhole over the button.


If you are using plain elastic, pull both ends of elastic about 7.5cm out of the gap and tie in a knot at the required waist measurement (about 59cm for five to seven year olds). Slip stitch the gap closed.

Rara Skirt_Layout 1 27/02/2015 15:50 Page 2



If you are using plain elastic, leave some spare in the waistband so that in the future you can open the stitched gap, undo the knot and adjust the length, or even replace it, if a different size is required.


These projects are taken from Little Lady Liberty by Alice Garrett (£15.99, David & Charles). Sew readers can purchase a copy for £10.99 including free postage by calling 01206 255777, quoting SM115 before 31st May 2015.

LOVE IT... BUY IT! Liberty Tana Lawn Rosa A English roses in purples and pinks.

Liberty Tana Lawn Nina M Classic miniature floral print.

Liberty Tana Lawn Clare and Emily D A vibrant and bold patterned design.

For a fantastic range of Liberty fabrics, including the prints used for our ra-ra skirt priced £22 per metre each, visit 25

Fashion forecast_Layout 1 27/02/2015 12:39 Page 1

Fashion Forecast

Totally tropical



Remnant Kings has just had a tropical fabric drop! Here are Louise Clason’s top pattern picks to pair with the latest prints.

BECAUSE IT DOESN'T HAVE TO BE SUMMER TO WEAR FUN PRINTS! Who says that it has to be sunny outside to add a little touch of the tropical into your wardrobe. The Great British Sewing Bee contestants have wowed us each week with their striking fabric choices, and we want to get in on the action too. So be brave, be bold and dare to be different!

Keep it simple “Miette by Tilly and the Buttons is a great beginner pattern that can be made up in lots of different prints for varying looks. It's a true spring into summer staple.” GREAT

Two garment options “Colette Patterns' Laurel is a great basic, which is perfect for beginners and experienced sewers. With its simple shape it lets the fabric do the talking, making it ideal for our tropical prints. Plus you can create a top or shift dress style, so the opportunities are endless.”


Stitch with knits “This is a great introduction to a knit pattern if you’ve never tried one before. Moneta is very versatile and suits all body shapes, plus it comes with five collar variations to truly make it your own.”


Look sharp “Everyone needs a blazer, and this is our favourite pattern! By Hand London's popular Victoria makes up a treat and suits a variety of fabrics and styles. Pair with skinny jeans or a LBD to make a striking style statement.”

Stockist information

All patterns are available from Remnant Kings, 0141 418 0333.

Fashion forecast_Layout 1 27/02/2015 12:39 Page 2



A tropical print makes this a fun look

Cropped length option


1 Tropical viscose 2 Textured floral jersey in Turquoise 3 Liberty Fierce, colour B 4 Flamingos in mint 5 Palm tree polyester All featured fabrics are available from Remnant Kings, from £2.99 per metre,, 0141 418 0333.

By Hand London's Victoria blazer 27

Lauren_Layout 1 27/02/2015 09:32 Page 2


LAUREN GUTHRIE “Everything seems to start getting more colourful at this time of year”

Oakridge blouse by Sewaholic



Phoebe Tana Lawn in colourway M, £22 per metre,

SPRINGTIME WEEKEND GETAWAY There's nowhere better than Paris!

FAVOURITE WAY TO RELAX I really enjoy yoga

Nothing says spring to me more than the fresh new floral prints from the spring/summer Liberty Tana Lawn collection. Everything seems to start getting more colourful at this time of year, from the longer days and the bright flowers to what’s on my sewing table! I’ve been making some gorgeous blouses recently using the new Oakridge pattern by Sewaholic. It’s a classic style that’s ideal for this time of year as it has long sleeves if it’s still a bit cold, but also looks great with the cuffs rolled up for a more relaxed look. I’ve been using some of my favourite new Liberty prints to make up a few versions. A garment like this is perfect for lightweight lawn as it presses well and you can get a really neat finish. I love adding detail to garments with topstitching, such as around the cuff or at a neckline. I think it makes your handmade clothes stand out and look extra professional. It can be tricky to get it looking neat when you are first starting out, so here are my tips for achieving flawless topstitching. My first piece of advice is to press well as you work. A good steam iron is key, along with an ironing board that has a slightly padded cover. If possible, always sew with the right side of the garment facing you. The top thread usually looks better due to the way the machine forms stitches. Find a marker on the machine to act as a guide as you sew. Ensuring that the edge of the fabric is always lined up with a specific point on the foot or on the plate will ensure consistency in stitching, making it much neater. When sewing close to the edge, there will be less material under the foot. This can alter the way the machine feeds the fabric through as it’s stitching. Practise will get you used to how you should be guiding your fabric through the machine. On my Brother Innov-is 350, the default position of the needle is to the left-hand side of the foot, but when topstitching I always move it to the centre. This means that there is a bit more fabric for the machine to grip onto, making it easier to keep the stitching straight! We have lots of new workshops on our ever-growing calendar at Guthrie & Ghani over the next few months. Learn the tricks of the trade from professional shirt maker Rich Battye in a two day men’s shirt making class, or get to grips with plackets, collars and bust adjustments in the ladies’ class with Layla Totah. If getting patterns to fit you is always a struggle, then the draft a skirt or bodice block workshops with Alexandra Hughes can help solve your fitting nightmares. I’m also looking forward to being part of the judging panel at the National Dressmaking Awards at the Sewing For Pleasure show at the NEC in Birmingham on the 20th of March. I love meeting fellow stitchers and I’m really excited to see what all the entrants have made – I’m sure it will be tough to pick a winner. I hope to meet some of you there!

“I love adding detail to garments with topstitching”

Happy Sewing! Find out more, visit 28

*SEW APRIL 15 ISSUE 70_SEW 25/02/2015 10:49 Page 29

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Pattern hacking feature_Layout 1 27/02/2015 15:10 Page 2

You can do it!


What is pattern hacking?

Pattern hacking: The process of combining and adapting patterns

Seamstress and dressmaking expert Elisalex de Castro Peake from indie pattern house By Hand London demystifies the technique. “Pattern hacking, or the process of combining multiple sewing patterns to create something entirely new and unique, is probably the thing that excites me most about sewing. The main reason I started dressmaking was so that I could stop dreaming about wild and wonderful outfits that didn’t seem to exist in the shops, and start making them. “With the explosion of sewing blogs and indie pattern companies, certain designs and fabrics have taken on a cult status, and I’ve sometimes felt more of an urgency to sew the latest pattern as opposed to something more ‘me’. The way I see it, pattern hacks, hybrids, or lovechildren (as we like to call them at By Hand London HQ) bridges the exciting world of sewing pattern companies and the development of our own individual aesthetic. “When you put together, say, the bodice from one pattern and the skirt from another, then add to that the neckline detail from yet another design, your freedom of stylistic expression explodes with possibility. By thinking laterally when it comes to garment construction we can create a versatile and personal wardrobe, party frocks that we will want to pass down to our daughters, and statement pieces that really are unique – all the while learning more about pattern construction and alteration, how to make very different design elements work together and supporting multiple businesses in the making of just one garment!”

“Pattern hacking, or the process of mashing together multiple sewing patterns to create something entirely new and unique, is probably the thing that excites me most about sewing” 30

5 top tips for success

1 2

Cross reference the finished measurements of the various patterns you’re combining to be sure that seamlines match closely. If the bodice from one pattern has a waistline dart, and the skirt/trousers of another pattern has a similar waistline dart or pleat, you may need to move one ever so slightly so that they match either side of the waistline seam.


Train yourself to look at patterns with a design eye and imagine the various elements as a whole. Just because you like the bodice from one pattern and the skirt of another, it doesn’t always mean they’ll work together!

4 5

Be brave, but be cautious, too – always make a toilé of your pattern hack before cutting into your fabric. Check out what other sewists have come up with. The sewing blogosphere is an infinitely inspiring place! For more from By Hand London, visit

Pattern hacking feature_Layout 1 27/02/2015 15:10 Page 3


Try it yourself: Fashion formulas These pattern hack tutorials are tried and tested by the experts. Why not give them a go?

Cute crop top Visit Colette Patternsâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; blog for this simple hack to turn the bodice of the Hawthorn Dress into a summery top. Visit for a step-by-step how-to.

l ria uto eo t Vid

Pretty peplum By Hand Londonâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Elisalex shows you how to transform the bodice of the Holly Jumpsuit into an adorable button down peplum top using a free circle skirt app.

Dress chop

See the tutorial at www.byhand

Watch the tutorial at www.sewing

The Little Tailoress blogger, Ami explains how to crop the Deer and Doe Reglisse Dress into a sweet blouse in a handy how-to video.

One pattern... multiple ways! Tilly Walnes keeps it simple by altering the sleeves of her Mathilde Blouse from three-quarter length to a short and floaty variation for summer.

Blogger Em from Em Makes Patterns lets loose by extending the design to create an A-line dress with pleats instead of tucks.

Learn how at www.tillyandthe

See her hack at www.emmakes 31

Pattern hacking feature_Layout 1 27/02/2015 15:10 Page 4

Get involved! Sewing Indie Month Blogger Rhonda Buss tells us about judging the pattern hacking category in last year’s Sewing Indie Month’s competitions, why it was such a success and plans for this year. “Sewing Indie Month was created by Mari Miller of Seamster Patterns to bring attention to the growing independent pattern industry and the quality of their patterns. I headed up the pattern hacking category which focused on showing how a basic pattern can be used to create a unique design. “Most of the entries were simple but classic hacks, but all in all, they did a wonderful job of taking the pattern and creating something unique. We had almost 30 entries, but the winner was Siobhan of as voted for via my blog. “Sewing Indie Month is still in a planning stage for 2015, but they are hoping for the event to once again take place in May. It will be announced on blogs, Facebook, Twitter and other social media sources, so keep a look out!

Read more... The Great British Sewing Bee: Fashion With Fabric (£25, Quadrille) by the series’ sewing producer ClaireLouise Hardie includes full-size paper patterns needed to make 30 projects, with instructions for many ‘hack’ variations.

“In my own sewing practice, I make up a pattern, perfect the fit, then use that same one over and over in different fabrics, changing details like sleeves, cuffs, collars and hem lengths. This way I’m not repeating the fitting stage. It was this that made me want to encourage people to hack the designs in the book and try different variations. We’ve included at least one hack for most of the patterns, but it’s my hope that readers will take this idea and create their own designs.”

“Begin with something simple, like a different collar treatment, or reworking the sleeve” “I love wearing clothes that are unique and that stand apart from the crowd. Whenever I look at a pattern, I see what it can be rather than what it is at present. Taking a basic design and building on it is a thrill as it stretches my creative ability. If you have never tried redesigning a pattern, begin with something simple, like a different collar treatment, or reworking the sleeve. Before long you’ll realise that the possibilities of what can come from a pattern are endless.” Visit Pattern Hacking winner!

Hear more on pattern hacking from ClaireLouise at or visit her blog at

Over to you... Reader hack This week I upcycled my husband’s old T-shirts into dresses for my daughter. I used the Uptown/ Downtown Dress by Sew Straight Pattern Co. as a basis to work out the bodice/sleeves and then adapted it. You can find the pattern here /shop/sewstraight patternco Vicky Myers


Uptown/ Downtown Dress by Sew Straight Pattern Co.

Love that Fabric_Layout 1 27/02/2015 15:45 Page 2


Love that



“Flora, foliage and forest floor creatures make pleasing repeats on these dressmaking cottons” Steph Durrant, Sew Deputy Editor



3 5





1 Central Park Breeze voile, Gramercy collection by Leah Duncan for Art Gallery Fabrics, £16.60 per metre, 2 Big Blooms in Blush, Emma's Garden by Patty Sloniger for Michael Miller, £14 per metre, 3 Green cotton lace, £1.20 per metre,, 0207 794 5635. 4 Vega polycotton spandex (0001A), £8.99 per metre,, 0151 336 3939. 5 Jade Bumble Bee Peached poplin by Tula Pink for FreeSpirit, £11 per metre,, 0871 315 5432. 6 Selection of buttons, priced from £1.10 each,, 0207 794 5635. 7 Mushroom Frog in Pink, Far Far Away by Heather Ross for Windham Fabrics, £14 per metre, 8 Stems in Pink, Blooms and Bursts collection by Jen Da Silva for Studio e, £9.96 per metre, 9 Forest Floor in Ivory, Wildwood collection for Cloud9 Fabrics, £14.40 per metre, 33

Masterclass Apr15 qx_Layout 1 27/02/2015 16:03 Page 1



The author shows you how to make an adorable romper suit

Vanessa Mooncie

Sewing elastic, gathers and fastenings This cute romper has front-buttoned shoulder straps crossed at the back, an elasticated back waist, and snap fasteners at the inside leg for easy nappy changes.


6 months to 2 years 1.5cm seam allowance


Visit to download the patterns. Cut all the pieces from fabric as per the cutting guide. With right sides together and notches matching, stitch the bib facing and waist-casing facing together at the sides up to the small dot at the top edge. Press the seams open.




Join the centre-front and centre-back seams of the shorts. Stitch a second row over the first to reinforce the seam. Clip the curves and press the seams open. With right sides together, stitch the side seams of the shorts. Trim the seams and press open.




Run two rows of gathering stitches along the upper edge of the front and back of the shorts, working one row along the seamline and the other 6mm inside. Pull up the gathering stitches on the front and back of the shorts separately to fit the lower edge of the bib and waist-casing facings, matching the seams [1].


With right sides together, stitch the side seams of the skirt. Trim the seams and press open. Turn under and press 1.5cm on the hem of the skirt. Turn under the raw edge, press and stitch. Gather the skirt as for the shorts. Place the wrong side of the skirt over the right side of the shorts, matching the side seams. Adjust the gathers to fit and tack together at the top edge.

5 34



With the right side of the bib and waist-casing facing to the wrong side of the gathered edge of

the shorts, matching the side seams and the large dot to the centre-back seam, pin and stitch together [2]. Press the seam towards the facings. Remove the tacking stitches.


With right sides together, fold the strap along the line indicated on the pattern. Stitch along the edges, leaving the slanted end open. Trim the seam and clip the corners. Turn out and press. Topstitch close to the edges. On the right side of the waist-casing facing, matching the dots, tack the straps in position with the seams facing towards the centre, aligning the raw edges with the top edge of the waist-casing facing [3].


Press under 1.5cm on the lower edge of the waist casing. With right sides together, matching notches and the small dots to the side seams, stitch the waist casing to the waist-casing facing at the top edge between the small dots, sandwiching the straps between them. Press the waist casing up and the seam towards it.


On the outside of the garment, pin the pressed edge of the waist casing over the seam, matching the small dots with the side seam. Topstitch close to the pressed edge, then to the top edge of the waist casing between the two sets of small dots [4].


Cut a length of 2.5cm wide elastic to fit the back of your childâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s waist, adding 2cm. Use a bodkin or safety pin to thread it

Masterclass Apr15 qx_Layout 1 27/02/2015 16:16 Page 2

sew TUTORIAL through the opening at the waist casing. Adjust to fit, trim the excess elastic and stitch down at the side seams to secure the ends.


Turn under and press 1.5cm at the side seams and lower edge of the bib. With the right sides of the bib and the bib facing together, pin and stitch the armhole and top edges together, leaving the side and lower edges open. Trim the seams, snip the curves and clip the corners [5]. Turn out, then pin the pressed lower edge of the bib over the seam and topstitch. Topstitch the pressed side edges down over the waist casing, then close to the armhole and top edges of the bib.

ALL SEWN UP! Make a version for a boy by omitting the skirt.

Simple button and snap fastenings


Turn under and press 2cm on the hem of the leg edges. Turn under the raw edge, press and stitch to form a casing. Topstitch close to the outer edge. Cut two lengths of 6mm wide elastic to fit around your child’s leg, adding 5cm to each. Using a bodkin or a safety pin, insert the elastic through the opening in the leg casing. Adjust to fit and stitch across the ends.


Cut two 3cm wide bias strips to fit the length of each inner-leg edge at the front and back, adding an extra 2cm to each. Use to bind the front and back inner leg edges, turning under 1cm of the strip at each end and using a 6mm seam allowance [6]. Slip stitch the ends of the bias strips to the edge of the hem. Sew snap fasteners to the front and back inside legs at the medium dots. Work buttonholes in the bib front. Sew two buttons securely to each strap, indicated on the pattern by an ‘X’.

Next month...

Kirsty Hartley explains how to make a fun dress with perfect appliqué.


Check out Sew Adorable by Vanessa Mooncie (£14.99, GMC) for more classic garment patterns for boys and girls. Visit 35

Pyjama shorts_Layout 1 27/02/2015 16:05 Page 1



ONLINE Essentials Lightweight cotton, 100cm x 110cm Coordinating thread Cotton lace trim, 150cm Ribbon, 2cm wide, 150cm




Small, medium, large

What better reason to have a duvet day than these pyjama shorts? They are so pretty, you may just want to stay in them all day long! They’re easy to stitch, making them an ideal first garment and would make the loveliest present. Sew them in a soft cotton lawn for extra comfort and style.



Download the patterns from and print. Cut the pattern in half as indicated and widen or enlarge it in the middle section by the measurement according to your size. Fold lightweight cotton in half widthways, right sides facing. Pin the pattern pieces onto your fabric and cut out around them through both layers. Mark the buttonhole lines.


Zig zag stitch along the curved edges of each piece. Keep your stitching close to the fabric edge. Lay the pieces on top of each other, right sides together, matching up the edges. Pin in place. Using a straight stitch and a 1cm seam allowance, sew through both layers of fabric along one of the curved edges [1]. Reverse stitch at the start and end to secure. Open the seam and press. Repeat for the other curved edge.


Keeping the right sides of your fabric on the insides and the raw edges on the outside, fold the leg pieces so that the two seams you’ve just stitched are in the middle and lie on top of each other. Match short edge

A with short edge B on one of your fabric pieces and pin together. Repeat for the other side. Using a 1cm seam allowance, stitch all the way along edges A and B on both sides, in one continuous line of sewing [2].


Sew two buttonholes over the marks you made on the fabric. With the shorts inside out, turn the waistband over by 1cm then another 3cm towards the wrong side. Pin and press. Machine stitch all the way round, 5mm above the bottom of the fold to create a channel for the ribbon [3]. Turn up the fabric for each leg hem by 1cm, then 3cm towards the wrong side. Pin and press.


Stitch around both hems, 5mm down from the top of the fold. Position a length of trim around one of the legs on the right side, over the stitching. Cut so that the ends of the lace meet. Pin in place and machine stitch to secure. Repeat for the other leg. Finally, attach a safety pin to one end of ribbon and thread it in through one buttonhole. Wiggle the pin through the waistband until it comes out of the other buttonhole.



LOVE IT... BUY IT! Cotton lawn A lightweight fabric such as cotton lawn is perfect for nightwear. Kate used this Claire Aude Liberty Tana Lawn print, priced £22 per metre,




If you prefer, add a length of elastic with ribbon attached either side into the back of the waistband before you stitch it up. Secure the elastic at the sides and thread the ribbon through the buttonholes as described.

Pyjama shorts_Layout 1 27/02/2015 16:06 Page 2



designer Kate Smith runs sewing

workshops at her shop The Makery in Bath which she launched with her husband in 2009.

What made you start The Makery? I’ve always enjoyed the satisfaction to be had from making things myself. My husband and I moved from London to Bath in 2008 and we’d always talked about wanting to start our own business. We started planning The Makery together, and launched late 2009. We’re both very creative and had noticed the rise in popularity of sewing, and felt the time and place were both right for us to launch our shop in Bath.

Do you have a creative background? I have always made things ‘on the side’ to support my career and I spent 11 years working in the media industry as a producer, making commercials and trailers for films and games. I don’t think I would have had the knowledge or confidence to launch The Makery without having had the prior business experience that I had.

What’s your most popular course? Hmm, a tricky one. I guess the Learn to Sew workshops are perennially popular, so probably those ones!

Any advice for dressmaking newbies? Don’t beat yourself up if (when) you make a mistake or have to unpick some stitching. I honestly can’t think of many items I’ve made where I haven’t had to unpick at least a little stitching! Usually no-one can ever tell you’ve made a mistake, and it’s the best way to learn so you don’t repeat them!

What’s your favourite accompaniment to stitching? Ooh, I love taking hand sewing onto long train journeys. And Maltesers are my favourite munchie snack, but they don’t exactly mix well with sewing! Find out more at 37

How I made it_Layout 1 27/02/2015 09:31 Page 2



“I wanted to create patterns that make people feel good” CAROLINE SMITH REVEALS HOW HER PASSION FOR BYGONE ERAS LED TO THE CREATION OF SEW LA DI DA VINTAGE Designer Caroline Smith works in her picturesque studio Sew La Di Da Vintage, where she and her team produce vintage-style dress patterns and teach a wide range of workshops and courses. We discover how she helps her students create the outfits of their dreams.

and a sleeve in, I can make… almost anything?” Simple skills such as these all add to the freedom of creativity and show people just how much they’re capable of. Some of my students have even gone on to work at big names in fashion, and make the most amazing creations.

What did you do before setting up Sew La Di Da Vintage?

What’s your most popular course?

After studying fashion and eventually specialising in print design, I worked in London as a jeans designer before moving into cocktail dresses in the 1980s. This led to having a few shops of my own, designing and making bespoke wedding dresses, evening wear, and the odd outfit for garden parties at Buckingham Palace. As most of my designs have been vintage inspired, it followed naturally that my workshop and teaching space would be cut from the same cloth, as it were!

What do you most enjoy about teaching? I love that lightbulb moment when you can see the cogs going round before a huge grin spreads across a student’s face: “You mean now I can put a zip

The two most popular are Frocks that Rock, a two-day workshop using a Sew La Di Da pattern of your choice, and the Body Blue Print, a four-day course where you make a block to your own measurements and use it to adapt patterns so that they fit like a glove. We are expanding our range all the time; I think it’s important to listen to the public and respond to their needs.

What made you launch your own patterns? Having worked for years with women and girls spanning all ages, I felt I had a good knowledge of body shapes and issues. I wanted to create patterns that would make people feel good about themselves, with realistic sizing, flattering shapes, and easy to follow instructions.

What is your favourite fashion era? The 1920s and 1930s appeal to me with their whimsical, defiant feel. Skirts (and spirits!) went up and corsetry went out, enabling Chanel and Schiaparelli to explore a brave new silhouette. I also love the 1940s, with the strength of character that came from the war years, but the 1950s is my very favourite. It’s steeped in romance and femininity, but also striking and bold with a reactionary rejoicing in voluminous skirts, unashamed use of fabric, pointy bras and nipped-in waists!

What’s next for Sew La Di Da Vintage? We have exciting times ahead! We’ve updated our packaging and got several new patterns in the pipeline, plus we’ll soon be launching our new Little Miss & Me range for you and that special young person in your life. We’ll also be at the Twinwood vintage festival this year, where we’re hoping to have some very special events. For more details, keep checking our website, which we’re relaunching with a brand new design!

Caroline’s Top Tips l Don’t ignore paperwork. It doesn’t go away! l Try and be organised, or find someone to organise you. Block out days for specific tasks, such as Monday: admin, Tuesday: designing. l Do the most uninteresting thing first in the day, then the rest is plain sailing. l It’s important to keep your pot of creativity well stocked. Visit an art gallery, watch a kid’s movie, draw, paint, dance or whatever helps you relax!

For more from Sew La Di Da Vintage, visit 38

*SEW APRIL 15 ISSUE 70_SEW 25/02/2015 10:59 Page 39


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If you often sew oversized projects such as quilts, curtains or wedding dresses, then a long arm machine may be worth investing in. Often with a range of additional embroidery or quilting capabilities, these models have an extended space to the right of the needle allowing the capacity for stitching larger makes.

MODEL OF THE MONTH JANOME MEMORY CRAFT 8200QC This long arm model from Janome's Memory Craft line provides a great range of practical features at an affordable price level. It is ideal for stitching larger projects, with 28cm arm space to the right of the needle and a total arm length of 44cm. Fully computerised, it offers more than 200 built-in stitches with seven styles of automatic one-step buttonhole. It has the capacity to memorise stitch and alphabet combinations and the 9mm stitch width gives added creative options. The built-in AcuFeed system ensures precise fabric handling and there's a maximum speed controller, lock stitch feature and programmable needle up/down for optimum ease and accuracy.

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Machine spotlight_Layout 1 27/02/2015 15:47 Page 3



The Excellence 760 by Elna features 270 built-in stitches, with 11 styles of one-step buttonhole and three alphabets for personalising projects. It can memorise stitch combinations and elongate stitches up to five times normal. There are a number of automatic features including a lock stitch key and thread cutter, and the built-in needle threader saves time. The smart LCD information screen is ideal for editing and making selections. For clear vision while stitching, there are three LED lighting zones and three accessory storage areas for keeping all your essentials to hand.

This sewing and quilting model from Brother has a great selection of features which allow you to express your creativity. The bright, full-colour touch screen display offers user-friendly controls and on-screen tutorials. There are a number of decorative stitches available and crazy quilting designs for the avid quilter. Alternatively, create your own stitches directly on the LCD panel with My Custom Stitch. Other useful functions include the lock stitch key, automatic needle threader, seven-point feed and quick set bobbin. There's also a handy knee lifter for when working on larger projects.



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This specialist machine from Pfaff features a professional size workspace for completing any size quilting project and the entire work area is lit with bright LEDs for maximum visibility. It's powerful and precise, with up to 1,500 stitches per minute, however the speed can be controlled on the colour touch screen. The Powerquilter has a four spool thread stand and large capacity M-size bobbins. There's also a separate bobbin winder and needle up/down with one tap of the foot pedal.




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*SEW APRIL 15 ISSUE 70_SEW 27/02/2015 15:30 Page 43

Sewing Machine Sales & Service Tel: 0113 245 3156 Email:



SALES, SERVICE AND REPAIR Industrial, new and second hand Our back up service is second to none MKC Services, Unit 8, 30-38 Dock Street, Leeds LS10 1JF

PATTERN CUTTING FOR WOMENSWEAR SUMMER SCHOOL A step-by-step course for stitchers and teachers to learn how to make patterns for a variety of garments. Discover how fullness is moved and manipulated. Find out how to change necklines, adjust panels and fit to your own figure. Learn the core skills needed to develop your own designs or adapt from commercial patterns. Venue: Moor Hall Shropshire - the studio and home of Bobby Britnell Textile Artist. Taught by Judi Evans of Stroud School of Sewing. Date: 20th -24th July 2015

Cost: £400 for 5-day course Further course details and brochure via Bookings and payment via

Cliffords Sewing Machines Ltd 154 WESTERN STREET, SWANSEA SA1 3JY Est over 70 yrs, suppliers of Janome, Brother, Juki, Bernina, Elna, Husqvarna. New and reconditioned overlockers, embroidery machines, threads and accessories, we also provide service and repair to most makes. Our customers include domestic and commercial as well as major schools and colleges in the area. UK service centre for ELNAPRESS no matter how old or condition. Mail order service available....... Tel 01792 655928 | Fax 01792 410743 e mail web

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Jersey Maxi Skirt_Layout 1 27/02/2015 15:47 Page 1

Beginner Make



Many stitchers avoid sewing with knit fabrics because they have a reputation for being a little tricky to handle, however this simple jersey skirt can be knocked up in just a few hours. Access to an overlocker makes sewing seams even easier and weâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ve used fusible hemming tape for a quick and invisible hem. Go on, give it a go!

Essentials Jersey fabric Coordinating sewing thread Elastic, 3cm wide Fusible hemming tape

Dimensions Custom sized


Measure your waist and hips. Cut a rectangle from jersey fabric with the width as your hip measurement by the length you would like your skirt to be, plus 3cm for the hem and 3cm for the elastic at the top of the skirt (6cm in total).


Fold the rectangle in half lengthways with right sides facing, then pin the two raw edges together. Set your machine to a stretch stitch and sew with a 2cm seam allowance. Leave about 40cm at the base of the seam, which will become a split at the back of the skirt.


Lay the tube that has been created flat on a surface and

centre the seam, the two folded edges will become the sides of the skirt. Measure 20cm down from the top corners and place a pin on the two folded side edges at this point.


From these 20cm points, draw a curved line up to the top of the skirt on both sides; the measurement between the top of these lines needs to equal your waist measurement. Remember you are just looking at the back of the skirt so when calculating these lines, half your waist measurement. Cut off these sections and stitch them together with either an overlocker or with a stretch stitch using a 5mm seam allowance. Turn the skirt to the right side.


Soft jersey Amanda used the fresh and floral Buds Aqua knit fabric by Jeni Baker from the Geometric Bliss range by Art Gallery Fabrics. Visit for stockists.


Cut a piece of elastic to your waist measurement, plus 2cm. Lap the two ends over each other and stitch together making a loop. Position the elastic inside the top of the skirt 5mm away from the top edge and pin in position. Overlock the elastic to the skirt. The machine needs to cut 5mm off the skirt fabric but stitch through the elastic. Fold the top of the skirt inside on the edge of the elastic and make a few over stitches on the side and back seams to keep the fold in place.


Finally, fold and press the 2cm seam allowance around the split at the back of the skirt and fuse in place with webbing tape. Fold and press a 3cm hem and use fusible hemming tape to secure it in place.

Jersey Maxi Skirt_Layout 1 27/02/2015 15:47 Page 2



Many workshop venues offer overlocker hire if you don’t have one. Alternatively, finish seams with a zig zag stitch.


Overlocking seams provides a professional finish on stretch fabrics. With a four thread overlocker you can assemble and finish garments simultaneously with no need to use a sewing machine. An overlocker makes it easily to attach necks and cuffs to sweatshirts etc. Prevent fur fabrics from fraying by overlocking in single layers first, then seam on a sewing machine. Achieve a neat finish on fine fabrics by choosing an overlocker with a rolled hem capability.

Juki has a great selection of overlockers available. To view the range, visit or call 01206 563955. 45

*SEW APRIL 15 ISSUE 70_SEW 27/02/2015 13:00 Page 46



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Best of.. Indie Patterns_Layout 1 27/02/2015 16:19 Page 2


Wear with the Drawstring-neck Top pattern!

Best of...

INDIE Patterns

Our Top Choice THE ULTIMATE PENCIL SKIRT The Maker’s Atelier Sizes UK 8-18 Price £22.50

“I created this pattern because I wanted a pencil skirt design that worked with any fabric; that’s why I called it The Ultimate. It is in effect two patterns in one; a shaped pull-on style for stretch fabrics and a tailored look for rigid ones.” Frances Tobin, The Maker’s Atelier

The independent garment patterns on our make list! There’s a growing number of independent pattern designers on the market, each with their own unique sense of style, and there’s now more choice than ever available. Sew HQ could not be more delighted by this trend, so each month in this brand new feature we’ll be bringing you our top picks, as we meet the talented people behind the ranges and showcase the styles which need to be in your shopping baskets!

Why SeW loves... Works with any fabric. Creates the perfect pencil shape. Clear instructions on how to get a great fit. Printed on pattern paper not tissue, to use again and again. Beautifully presented in a card envelope.

We also rate UTILITY DRESS Cassandra Ellis Sizes UK 8-16 Price £8.50


“This slipover dress is both useful and beautiful. It’s a simple and elegant construction that can be belted or worn loose. It’s designed for every day whether at home or out and about.” Cassandra Ellis

Why SeW loves...

Download format; print and make straight away. Three lengths and two sleeve options. Make in cotton, linen, fine wool, or silk.

BILLIE JEAN DRESS Bluegingerdoll Sizes US 4-18 Price £14.50


“Billie Jean is a beautiful 1950s-inspired dress, with a touch of old Hollywood glamour. Featuring a fitted princess seam bodice to enhance the waist, unleash your inner bombshell!” Abby Horskins, Bluegingerdoll

Why SeW loves...

Clear, concise and easy to read instructions. Full-size paper pattern, printed on traceable paper. Two style options: figure hugging wiggle dress or full gathered skirt. Shop the range at 47

Bowling bag_Layout 1 26/02/2015 16:44 Page 1



Essentials Three fabric prints, 50cm of each Coordinating sewing thread Lightweight fusible interfacing Heavyweight interfacing Zip, 44cm Leather bag handles



27cm x 37cm (excluding handles)

This fully lined stylish holdall will certainly turn heads with its bold pattern and unique shape. Fill it with all your necessities, there’s plenty of room, plus two pockets for smaller items like your keys. We’ve used the Fenton House collection for Gütermann, but you could mix and match colours and patterns to make this a truly personal accessory for your spring wardrobe.



Go to and download the template. Print, trace onto card and cut out. Select three different prints for the outer bag, contrasting sections and lining. Cut two 7cm x 48cm pieces of contrasting and lining fabrics to make the gusset for the zip. Fuse lightweight interfacing to the lining pieces and trim to size, laying one of them horizontally, right side up on a work surface. Place the zip face up on top, lining up the bottom edges. Lay one contrasting section face down, to sandwich the fastening. Ensure there is 2cm of spare fabric at either end.


Use a zipper foot on your sewing machine to stitch the three pieces together, close to the teeth of the fastening. Unfold the layers so the fabrics lay wrong sides together and the zip sits along the top, press and topstitch 3mm from the zip. Repeat this process on the other side of the fastening and zig zag stitch the long outer edges on each side of the panel to hold it flat. Trim the short ends of the finished band to 1cm from the zip end.


Cut 13cm x 18cm of contrasting print for a small side pocket. Interface half of the wrong side, fold the fabric over it and press. Zig zag stitch around the three raw edges. Cut 12cm x 13cm pieces from the outer print and lining fabric to make the short side panel. Fuse interfacing to the wrong side of the inner print. Sandwich the closed end of the zip panel between the two pieces, making sure the prints are right sides together. Stitch across the end of the gusset.


Open out the fabrics so they lie wrong sides together and topstitch 3mm from the seam. Line up the raw edges of the folded pocket and the side panel and zig zag stitch to hold in place. Make a larger pouch from 13cm x 30cm of contrasting print, and a lined side panel of 13cm x 33cm for the other side of the bag in the same way.


Cut two 26cm x 31cm pieces of the contrasting print to make the internal pockets. Fold them in half widthways right sides together. Sew around the three raw edges leaving a 10cm gap in the middle of one side for turning. Turn out and press, folding the raw edges of the gap inside.



Using the template, cut two bag pieces from both the lining and outer fabrics. Fuse interfacing to the wrong side of each inner piece and trim to size. Position a pocket on the right side of each one and topstitch 3mm from the edge around the sides and base to hold in place. Find the centre of the zip panel and mark with a pin. Do the same on all four bag pieces.


Lay the bag lining right side up and completed gusset outer side up on a work surface with the outer bag face down on top, match the centre marks and pin in place. Pin the edge of the zip panel between the two bag pieces, working out from the middle and easing the fabric on the curve. Sew in place. Turn the fabrics right sides out, topstitch 3mm from the seam and zig zag the bottom edge to hold. Attach the other half of the bag to the zip panel in the same way. Turn the bag inside out.


Cut 14cm x 40cm of the outer fabric for the bag’s base. Pin and stitch to the bag, right sides together, making small tucks at the corners if necessary for a perfect fit. Cut 13cm x 38cm of heavyweight interfacing and iron to the centre of the wrong side of a piece of lining print measuring 17cm x 42cm. Fold the edges of the fabric over the interfacing and tack down.


Place the stiff lining piece over the bottom of the bag, wrong sides together. Pin in place, tucking the raw edges underneath. Slip stitch in place and turn the bag out. Pin leather handles to each side of the bag, ensuring they are level and the same distance from the centre. Sew them in place by hand with strong, thick thread and backstitch, passing through all the layers of the bag.


Add embellishment to the outer pockets for a quirky detail.

Bowling bag_Layout 1 26/02/2015 16:44 Page 2



Fenton Dream 3 Bold spots in a gorgeous plum.

Fenton Blossom 2 A modern twist on a floral design. We used the funky Fenton House collection for GĂźtermann. For stockists, email 49

Subs70_Layout 1 27/02/2015 15:47 Page 2


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Plus, 10 projects to make with your fabric

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Awards qx_Layout 1 27/02/2015 16:48 Page 2




BEST EXHIBITION/SHOW EXPERIENCE 2014 Winner: Hobbycrafts and Sewing for Pleasure, NEC, Birmingham Runner up: The Knitting & Stitching Show, Alexandra Palace, London 3rd Place: The Festival of Quilts, NEC, Birmingham

BEST BRAND OF HABERDASHERY Winner: Fiskars Runner up: Clover 3rd Place: Prym

BEST FOR SEWING WORKSHOPS/ COURSES Winner: Runner up: Sew Me Something 3rd Place: Lady Sew and Sew

BEST FABRIC BRAND Winner: Liberty Runner up: Moda 3rd Place: Michael Miller “It has always been the philosophy of Liberty to influence the public’s taste by giving them the opportunity to buy beautiful and affordable things. To receive an award for this is such a compliment and very gratefully received. A massive thank you to Sew magazine and all their readers for this accolade.” Emma Mawston, Head Designer, Liberty Art Fabrics


“The votes are in and we can now reveal the winners of the British Sewing Awards 2014! You voted in your thousands to give recognition to those deserved brands and individuals inspiring the nation to keep on stitching. As well as big names, we’re also pleased to be recognising the independent haberdashers from across the UK. A big thank you to all who voted!” BEST PATTERN HOUSE Winner: Simplicity Runner up: Vogue Patterns 3rd Place: Colette Patterns “Simplicity is absolutely delighted to have won the Best Pattern House award again. We constantly strive to bring sewists new pattern collections that entice, inspire and simply make you want to sew!” Wendy Gardiner, Simplicity

BEST NEW PRODUCT 2014 Winner: Fiskars Combo Rotary Cutter & Ruler Runner up: Janome Memory Craft 15000 3rd Place: Clover Puff Quilting Clips

BEST ENTRY LEVEL SEWING MACHINE BRAND Winner: Janome Runner up: Brother 3rd Place: Singer

BEST QUILTING/EMBROIDERY SEWING MACHINE BRAND Winner: Janome Runner up: Bernina 3rd Place: Brother

FAVOURITE SEWING PERSONALITY Winner: Kirstie Allsopp Runner up: Tilly Walnes 3rd Place: Patrick Grant

Awards qx_Layout 1 27/02/2015 16:48 Page 3


MOST DESIRABLE SEWING MACHINE Winner: Janome Memory Craft 15000 Runner up: Brother Innov-is V7 3rd Place: Bernina 880 “We love Sew and therefore to be recognised by the magazine’s readers in such a positive way means a great deal to everyone here. We are delighted that Sew readers have such a high regard for Janome products and would like to thank them for their continuing support.” Ron Stower, Managing Director, Janome

BEST SEWING BLOG Winner: So Sew Easy Runner up: Tilly and the Buttons 3rd Place: Plush Addict

BEST ONLINE RETAILER Winner: Plush Addict Runner up: Lady Sew and Sew 3rd Place: Croft Mill

BEST UK CHAIN STORE Winner: John Lewis Runner up: Hobbycraft 3rd Place: Fabric Land

BEST SEWING BOOK 2014 Winner: Love at First Stitch by Tilly Walnes (Quadrille) Runner up: The Great British Sewing Bee: Sew Your Own Wardrobe by Tessa Evelegh (Quadrille) 3rd Place: The Great British Sewing Bee by Tessa Evelegh (Quadrille) “Wow! Thank you so much to everyone who nominated and voted for me and Love at First Stitch in the British Sewing Awards. I’m over the moon that you love my book as much as I enjoyed creating it.” Tilly Walnes, Owner, Tilly and the Buttons

IRELAND Winner: The Cotton Shed, Craigavon Runner up: Craftswoman Fabrics, Carrickfergus 3rd Place: Windmill Fabrics, Saintfield


SCOTLAND Winner: The Cloth Shop (Remnant Kings), Edinburgh Runner up: Edinburgh Fabrics, Edinburgh 3rd Place: The Fabric Shop, Melrose WALES Winner: Busy Bees Patchwork, Newport Runner up: Calico Kate, Lampeter 3rd Place: Lee Mill Fabrics, Swansea NORTH OF ENGLAND Winner: Croft Mill, Colne Runner up: Just Sew, Penrith 3rd Place: Minerva Crafts, Darwen MIDLANDS Winner: Sew Me Something, Stratford-upon-Avon Runner up: Guthrie & Ghani, Birmingham 3rd Place: Karen Delahunty Sewing & Knitting Centre, Kenilworth “To have been voted for by our customers is wonderful and we are honoured to receive this award. I have a fantastic team and we know most of our customers by name as they come back time and time again.” Jules Fallon, Owner, Sew Me Something

SOUTH OF ENGLAND Winner: Lady Sew and Sew, Bucks Runner up: The Village Haberdashery, West Hampstead 3rd Place: Quilters Haven, Wickham Market

BEST FOR CUSTOMER SERVICE Winner: John Lewis Runner up: Plush Addict 3rd Place: Lady Sew and Sew

BRITISH SEWING AWARDS We asked these leading personalities and friends of Sew to nominate who they thought deserved recognition for their services to the sewing industry Zandra Rhodes: Services to Education Winner: London College of Fashion “I nominate the London College of Fashion because they have a practical course on dressmaking. To achieve the best from design, practical knowledge is essential. The couture industry requires the same level of construction skills as tailoring. Also, the re-emergence of apprenticeships such as the one at Newham College of Further Education has helped to secure the future of Savile Row. It is extremely important to highlight this issue, as I think more pragmatic courses must be introduced so the art of practical sewing does not become a dying craft.” May Martin: Best British Retailer Winner: Sewing Machines Direct “Sewing Machines Direct is an established British company based in Wrexham who have been supplying sewing machines for over 40 years. Russell and the team have supplied hundreds of sewing machines to my students over the years. They provide a reliable, friendly service advising on choice of machine if required and next day delivery to any chosen address. They respond swiftly to any problem and show endless patience answering technical questions. A remarkable company and a worthy recipient of this award.”

“John Lewis is delighted at winning Best UK Chain Store and Best For Customer Service. We endeavour to hold a wide range of the latest brands and models to ensure our customers can be offered the broadest variety of products.” Vanessa Bowerman, Buyer, John Lewis 53

*SEW APRIL 15 ISSUE 70_SEW 26/02/2015 10:38 Page 54

01792 468504 213 Oxford Street, Swansea SA1 3BG

At Lee Mill Fabrics we pride ourselves on our ability to source quality fabrics at low prices. We have OVER 10,000 FABRICS to choose from, making us one of the largest fabric stores in South Wales. Call us today and prepare to be dazzled!


Suppliers of mail order fabrics for over 40 years we source beautiful fabrics from Britain, Europe and rest of the world.

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10 Kits feature_Layout 1 27/02/2015 15:42 Page 1



Many of us enjoy creating something entirely original, however, it’s sometimes good to have an end goal already in sight and all the essentials at your fingertips! These kits have everything you need to make something beautiful. We have included makes for your home, your little ones and, of course, for yourself. Whether you are a beginner or an advancer stitcher, there is something for everyone. The only difficult part is deciding which one to try first!


Have your cake This embroidery kit would make a great gift for a birthday or wedding. The kit comes complete with embroidery threads in five colours to finish the project, as well as an alphabet so you can customise the name and date. The finished piece is approximately 24cm x 32cm. Priced £17.50,

Great for beginners!


Beautiful butterfly In an on-trend mint and coral colour combo, this swallow tail butterfly cross stitch kit comes with everything you require to make a beautiful piece that you can keep or give as a unique gift. Measures 8.9cm x 10.9cm. Priced £14.99,

For the more advanced stitcher


Are you feeling lucky? With a bold colour scheme and funky design, Emily Peacock has everything you need to brighten up your home. Turn this Lucky needlepoint kit into a pillow or centrepiece for your living room to bring a bit of positive energy your way. The kit comes in two sizes, 24cm x 69cm or 31cm x 91cm, priced £58 and £78,


4 Liberty Love

Create a fabulous quilt with this kit of precut strips of Liberty Tana Lawn fabrics. It comes with fully illustrated instructions and the finished quilt measures 96.5cm sqaure. This would brighten up any room in the house, or make a wonderful gift. Priced £35,

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Fabric flowers These three dimensional flowers would be a quirky addition to any bouquet, or would look stunning on their own as a table decoration. With two kits to choose from, all the materials are ethically made from recyclable materials. Priced £15,

Top collar

With this kit you get everything you need to make The Tallis collar in an amazing turquoise leopard print. Perfect for those who like creating their own unique fashion items, or enjoy customising their wardrobe, there are two versions to make, a rounded version or squared style. Priced £10,

For the little people REAL ! READER

7 9

Fancy pants


Everything you need to make your own set of pretty knickers! Including a fully graded reusable pattern in sizes 8-18, this delightful pack comes with clear instructions and diagrams. There are some gorgeous prints to choose from, you could make a pair for every day of the week! Priced £15,

First sewing kit Perfect for small fingers and to help little ones learn basic sewing skills, this friendly looking felt stegosaurus from is fun and educational. Priced £11.


“I tried the dinosaur kit because it was something I could make with my god daughter when she came to stay. The instructions were clear and we had a lot of fun!” Fiona Eyres, Sew reader

Bag it up This lovely bag is large and sturdy, with long webbed cotton shoulder straps. Use it for your shopping, overnight stays or your craft stash! There are two colour choices of thread for the wolf, and the instructions are clear enough for a beginner or first-time cross stitcher. Priced £22,


Pretty purses Create two purses with this pretty kit. Perfect for storing make up or beauty supplies, or keeping your pennies safe. Use the dainty Liberty prints provided for a real touch of class. Priced £14.90, 57

Pattern weights_Layout 1 27/02/2015 15:19 Page 1




Essentials Hand-dyed batik cotton, selection Cream cotton, 22cm x 30cm Toy filling Embroidery thread, green, yellow, lilac, pink, black Flower buttons, green, pink Split yellow lentils Scrap of pink felt, scrap

Dimensions 10cm x 15cm


TORTOISE PATTERN WEIGHTS These cute little tortoises would make a really irresistible gift set. Make them as a pair of pattern weights or individually as a pincushion. Each one has been patchworked from six segments of fabric to achieve the rounded shell shape, and padded with fibre filling and split lentils to add extra weight. The unusual hand-dyed fabric, embroidery and button detail add further interest to these irresistible little critters.



Go to and download the templates. Print and cut out. Pin the lozenge shape template to cotton fabric and cut out six sections, varying the shades. Pin the remaining templates to cream and trim two heads, eight legs and two tail sections. Pin the belly template to coloured fabric and cut one.


Place one lozenge with a different colour each side. With right sides facing, pin and machine stitch two together, then repeat adding the remaining shape to the other side. Stitch three more pieces together in the same way.


With right sides facing, pin the two sections together, making sure that all the points meet, and machine stitch leaving a 3cm gap at the base for turning. Finger press all of the seams open and turn out. Stuff the ball with filling and a handful of split lentils to add weight, then sew up the gap using small stitches.


With right sides facing, pin two leg sections together and machine stitch, trim the seam slightly, turn out and stuff with toy filing. Sew the remaining legs, head and tail together and stuff in the same way. Turn the tortoise over and pin the head, tail and legs to the underside. Hand sew firmly into place using back stitches.


Why not adapt the pattern and make a cute snail instead? 58


Press the edges of the belly section to the wrong side by 5mm. Pin to the underside of the tortoise, covering the raw edges of the limbs, head and tail and sew into place using neat whip stitches. Sew a flower button to the top of the shell using embroidery thread. Embroider star stitches into each segment in a contrasting colour.


Add features using French knots for the eyes and a back stitch for the mouth. Cut out two small circles from pink felt and stick each rosy cheek to the side of the face with PVA. Repeat as desired.

See for more FREE stitchy projects

Pattern weights_Layout 1 27/02/2015 15:20 Page 2



“Reduce the size to create smaller weights”


Hand-dyed fabric Bali Boutique hand-dyed batik fabrics give these tortoises a natural feel. For stockists, visit 59

Q&A 70_Layout 1 27/02/2015 15:49 Page 1

WHATEVER YOUR SEWING PROBLEM, OUR EXPERTS HAVE THE ANSWER! Send your queries to ////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

would really like to stitch my own maternity wear, but I’m not too sure where to start. Do you have any tips for creating comfortable garments that still have an element of style?


is an Australian indie pattern designer and mother of three. Her designs are poised between modern style and wearability, and her maternity sewing patterns have quickly become the most popular on the market. She also authors the popular blog providing free maternity wear sewing tutorials to expecting mothers.

Diane Hudson

Megan says It can feel daunting, but creating a stylish handmade maternity wardrobe is easier than you think! Consider the proportion and balance. If you wear volume over your torso, keep your bottom half fitted, and vice versa. Opt for sewing patterns that will give you the most wear throughout all trimesters, and can potentially be worn after your little one arrives. Ruching is wonderful for fitting in a bump, and disguising a postpartum tummy afterwards. Steer clear of fussy details. The key to looking stylish when you’re pregnant is simplicity.

“Knit fabrics are your best friends during pregnancy” I strongly recommend learning to sew with stretch fabrics, elastic and elastic thread shirring. Knit fabrics are your best friends during pregnancy as they fit around your bump and help you stay comfortable. I’m also a great believer in re-purposing old fabrics and clothing, especially over pregnancy. It’s a relatively short period of time, and buying a whole new wardrobe can be overwhelming and feel wasteful. Adding elastic or shirring to an old men's shirt, for example, can instantly create a stylish blouse or dress that can even be used when breastfeeding later on.


Megan Nielson

Q&A 70_Layout 1 27/02/2015 15:49 Page 2


love the look of patchwork quilts, but the quilting part at the end puts me off as I don’t know what supplies I need or techniques to use. Any advice please?


Christine McDermott

Dawn CameronDick

is a traditional quilter and Mettler Threads ambassador. Although a lover of hand quilting and appliqué, she also teaches machine quilting and has written two books on her signature technique, invisible machine appliqué. Visit www.dawn

Dawn says Hand and machine quilting essentially do the same job; it holds the backing, wadding and top of the quilt together. Hand quilting is portable and requires few supplies. All you need is a hoop, a Between needle size 9-10, and cotton thread in size 40 (the most popular). Mettler makes a poly-coated cotton and a 100% cotton in many colours. I prefer the all cotton 40 weight variety. To hand quilt your piece, simply work a running stitch (which is what a quilting stitch is) ¼” in from your seams or in any design you choose across the quilt. There are many books available with patterns or you can draw out lines yourself. Machine quilting does not require a special machine. As long as your model is in good working order you can successfully machine quilt. You will need to purchase a walking foot if yours does not already come with one (available for almost any machine as a separate attachment), a quilting needle size 90/14 for 40 weight thread, and a 40 weight thread. Using a thin wadding will help make your first attempts easier. Attending a workshop at your local quilt shop would also be invaluable. Just relax and enjoy the process!

“Hand and machine quilting essentially do the same job”

hat is wearing ease and how do I know how much is included in the pattern design?


Debbie Hackett

Elisalex says

“Looser fitting and drapier styles will have considerably more wearing ease”

Wearing ease, or just ease as it’s most commonly referred to, is one of those unnecessarily unclear sewing terms that can cause even a confident beginner to feel like a newbie! Simply translated, it refers to the extra inches factored into the drafting of a pattern (for both home sewing and ready to wear) to allow the body to move and feel comfortable while wearing the finished garment. Even very fitted bodices will have a finished measurement ever so slightly larger than that of your actual body measurements. Looser fitting and drapier styles will have considerably more wearing ease; while super tight garments designed to be made from stretch fabrics will have negative ease, meaning that the finished measurements will be smaller than your body measurements, allowing the garment to stretch and form to your body. To find out how much ease a pattern has, and thus get a better idea as to how it will fit your body, check out the technical information on the sewing pattern itself. As well as a standard sizing chart which outlines body measurements, most sewing patterns will provide a finished measurements chart. By comparing the finished measurements with your size, you’ll see how much ease your pattern has been drafted with.

Elisalex De Castro Peake is one third of the trio who set up indie pattern label, By Hand London. Based in the Capital, she loves the technical side of sewing and enjoys writing tutorials and sewalongs on the company’s successful blog. Read more at www.byhand 61

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Lunchtime Make





With large expressive eyes, sweet little April Bunny is sure to be loved by all. Made from soft felt and wearing a pretty pinafore dress, she’ll delight anyone who’s lucky enough to receive her this Easter. Why not present her a gift bag with chocolate eggs for a truly special gift?




• Turquoise cotton, 20cm x 30cm • Floral cotton, 8cm x 40cm • Cream felt, 30cm square • Pink felt, scrap • Fabric marker pen • Safety eyes, 15mm, two • Brown embroidery thread • Sewing thread • Toy stuffing • Small pom pom • Small press stud or button

Go to to download and print the templates. Cut out two heads from cream felt and sew the darts together with a narrow seam. Trim two outer ears from cream and two inner ears from pink felt. Sew in place. With the curved edges matching, tack the ears to one head, between the points marked A and B on the template. Draw around the body template on cream felt and cut out roughly. Pin to the remaining felt and sew through both layers following the marked line. Leave the neck edge open. Trim the seam allowance to 3mm and snip the centre of one side, along the dotted line. Turn right side out, ease the seams and stuff. Stuff, then sew the head in place securely, and the pom pom tail.


Draw around the bodice on the back of turquoise fabric. Cut out and pin to the remaining fabric, right sides facing. Stitch from C to C. Trim the seam to 3mm and turn out, using a knitting needle to ease out the straps. Press lightly. Fold 8cm x 40cm of floral fabric in half lengthways with right sides facing. Seam the short edges, clip the corners and turn out. Gather the top edge to 20cm. Press under one long side of turquoise fabric, 4cm x 24cm. With raw edges matching and right sides facing, stitch to the gathered edge of the skirt. Tuck in the ends and turn the folded edge to the reverse. Pin and stitch in place. Sew the bodice to the centre back of the waistband and add a press stud or button and loop.


1 62



We made April’s skirt from Gillie Wishes Cool from Art Gallery Fabrics’ Emmy Grace range by Bari J, £3.50 per fat quarter,, 01789 330588.

Stuart Hilliard_Layout 1 27/02/2015 09:38 Page 2

at home WITH

STUART HILLARD “I have decided to make Easter my big thing this year” THIS MONTH OUR FAVOURITE HOME STITCHER SHARES INSPIRATION FOR A SPRING CELEBRATION I got off pretty lightly during the Christmas festivities as I was entertained and fed from Christmas Eve till New Year’s Day. I didn’t cook once and I’m ashamed to say, I didn’t wash up either! Although I did give my mother in law two days worth of sewing machine tuition, so it all worked out in the end. As penance, I have decided to make Easter my big thing this year and go all out with the entertaining. I’ve never really ‘done’ Easter before, so I’m enjoying the novelty of planning for an entirely new celebration. I’m organising an egg hunt in the garden followed by an outdoor lunch for 20. I’m praying for sunshine but planning for rain, so I’m borrowing a gazebo for the weekend from a friend, and there’s always Charlie’s man cave if it really starts chucking it down. I’m hiding a mixture of chocolate eggs and fabric bunnies for the children to find. I just downloaded a simple rabbit shape from the internet, cut two shapes from hessian and sewed around the edge, adding a little stuffing. A length of ribbon round the neck and they are done! I’m covering a long tressle table with more hessian and raiding my china cupboard for every pretty glass and pottery jug I can find to cram with orange and peach tulips for the centre. I’ve already whipped up a batch of bright orange linen napkins to wrap around green handled cutlery. See Stuart’s Stash for a great stockist of quality linen. Tied with green ribbon, each place setting will look like a carrot – so cute! Here’s to a fun and hopefully sunny Easter!

“I’m hiding a mixture of chocolate eggs and fabric bunnies for the children to find”

Style Advice


Hessian, jute or burlap, as it’s known in the US, is a wonderful natural fibre made from the skin of the jute plant. Most of us have at least one of those eco hessian bags from the supermarket (I think mine came free with six bottles of wine!), but it’s fast becoming one of the trendiest fabrics for home décor, particularly for spring entertaining and weddings on everything from garlands and bunting to cushions, table linens and upholstery. Of course, on its own it can be rather coarse, it is what coffee sacks are traditionally made of after all, but when teamed with pretty pastel silks and ribbons it becomes rather elegant and wonderful. Scour the internet for printed grain and coffee sacks and cover an old stool or armchair for a look which is eco friendly and punchier than a cup of Java Joe!

Find more at

For the prettiest and craftiest spring centrepiece, make an Easter tree to adorn your table. Start with a good sized twiggy branch and spray it white. Get the kids making little pom poms in as many bright colours as you have scraps of yarn, then use a glue gun to attach them all over the branches. Guaranteed to keep children busy during the holidays and wow factor for all your Easter entertaining.

Stuart’s Stash

Top of my ‘to buy’ list this month was bright orange linen for my ‘carrot’ napkins. My favourite is this quality pure linen, priced £18.99 per metre from Linen washes up nicely, so these will be perfect for autumn and Halloween entertaining, too!

Set of three Easter bunnies, £16.94, Floral paperchains, £5.99, 63

HomeTrends_Layout 1 27/02/2015 09:29 Page 1


Easter Table

BRING ALL THE FUN OF EASTER INTO YOUR HOME Whether you are giving your home a makeover for spring, or decorating for a party, there is plenty of inspiration this season. Eggs, chicks and bunny patterns are great for fun makes, while light florals and detailed prints can make storage solutions and home furnishings stand out from the crowd. Pastels are perfect for this time of year, but don't be afraid to use less traditional, bolder colours too.

Clockwise from bottom left: 1 Japanese M Dobby Bunnies Pink, £9 per metre, 2 White rabbit buttons, £1.75 for five, 3 Cloudwork by Makower, £12 per metre, 4 Spring mini chicks, Urban Zoologie collection by Robert Kaufman, £12 per metre, 5 Easter Bunnies ribbon, 70p per metre, 6 Ducks on Yellow by Lecien, £15 per metre, 7 Rabbits and Hares in Sea Green, £11 per metre, 8 Luxury Hessian, £4.50 per metre, 9 Floral Dandelions, Suffolk Garden collection by Brie Harrison for Dashwood Studio, £13 per metre, 10 Linen Closet Bee by Makower, £10 per metre, 11 Chicks by Timeless Treasures, £14 per metre, 12 Lilac Gingham by Sevenberry, £13 per metre, 13 Pom pom trim in Lemon and Mint, £2.25 per metre, 14 Riley Blake Flower Patch Bees Multi, £12 per metre, 15 Roald Dahl Fantastic Mr Fox, £13 per metre,


HomeTrends_Layout 1 27/02/2015 09:28 Page 2

sew HOME

Use pastels to make spring-themed garlands and decorations

Fun prints make great accessories for little ones

Create storage solutions for all your Easter treats 65

Applique Hare Cushion_Layout 1 27/02/2015 11:04 Page 1






Essentials Pink patterned cotton, 35cm x 112cm Blue patterned cotton, 35cm x 112cm Cream boiled wool, 35cm x 70cm Tracing paper Cream sewing thread Embroidery thread, navy, deep pink, one skein of each Zip, 25cm, two Cushion pad, 30cm, two

We’ve used the reverse appliqué technique to make these contemporary Dimensions cushions featuring a pair of enchanting spring hares. The top layer of boiled 30cm square wool is cut away to reveal pretty patterned cotton underneath. For best results, choose a small print so that it won’t detract from the embroidery.



Cut a 33cm square of patterned cotton fabric and cream boiled wool for each cushion. Go to and download the template. Print and copy onto tracing paper using a pencil. Cut out the printed outline along the broken lines.


Pin the template to the centre of the wrong side of one boiled wool square, matching the straight side to the lower edge of the square. Draw around the outline with a sharp pencil. Cut out, then flip and repeat on the other wool square to make a mirror image. With right sides facing up, pin and tack to the cotton squares, matching the outer raw edges.


Oversew the edges of the wool around the heads with small stitches. Place the tracing, pencil side down, on one head. Redraw over the details to transfer. Flip the tracing and repeat on the other square. Fill in the solid areas on the eyes using three strands of embroidery thread and a crewel needle. Use navy thread on the blue head and deep pink for the pink. Outline the eyes and head, then stitch the details with stem stitch. Press the squares face down on a towel.


To make the cushion back, pin and stitch two 18cm x 33cm rectangles of patterned cotton right sides facing along one long edge, taking a 1.5cm seam allowance and leaving a 25cm gap in the centre. Tack the pinned edge between the stitching. Press the seam open. Lay a zip centrally along the seam, face down. Pin and tack in place.


On the right side, use a zipper foot to stitch the zip 6mm from the tacked seam and across the ends. Unpick the tacking and open. Pin the front and back of each cushion cover together with right sides facing. Stitch the outer edges, with a 1.5cm seam allowance. Clip the corners. Turn right side out and insert a cushion pad. Close the zip and repeat.


Don’t discard the cut-out heads, you can incorporate them into other sewing projects. 66

LOVE IT... BUY IT! Ditsy prints

True Blue

The small repeat of this Cherry print cotton poplin is perfect for these cushions. £6.99 per metre, 01254 708068.

Ditsy Light Blue from Dashwood Studio’s Flyaway range, would make a nice contrast to the pink print. £12 per metre,

Applique Hare Cushion_Layout 1 27/02/2015 11:04 Page 2

sew HOME

See for more Easter inspiration 67

Love that Fabric_Layout 1 27/02/2015 15:19 Page 1

sew HOME

Love that



“April showers are coming, so cosy up with weatherthemed patterns” Lorraine Luximon, Sew Editor



2 3 5

6 8 7



1 Cat with Red Umbrella by Timeless Treasures, £11.99 per metre,, 01254 708068. 2 Clouds from Petite Street collection for Dashwood Studio, £11.20 per metre,, 07900 828431. 3 Rainbow & Clouds iron-on patch, £1.49, 4 Rainbows & Unicorns by Michael Miller, £12 per metre,, 07854 820354. 5 Spring Showers Raindrops in Blue by Windham Fabrics, £12 per metre, 6 Dress It Up April Showers buttons, £2.45, 7 Sunshines from Rain or Shine? collection for Dashwood Studio, £11 per metre,, 01582 227808. 8 Pink Puddle from Rain or Shine? for Dashwood Studio, £11 per metre, 9 April Showers for Moda, £12 per metre,

Sew Personality - Alice Caroline_Layout 1 27/02/2015 15:20 Page 3



“My favourite thing is combining the different colours and prints of Liberty fabrics” ALICE GARRETT IS LIVING THE DREAM, AS OWNER OF LIBERTY FABRIC EMPORIUM, ALICE CAROLINE

Alice’s business grew out of a lifelong love of vibrant Liberty prints. As a child she would pore over her grandmother’s stash of quilting fabrics, and after a successful career in science she longed to rediscover her creativity. And so, Alice Caroline was born! Now working in her thatched barn studio surrounded by rolling Cotswold hills and the latest Liberty prints, with a book deal under her belt, life really couldn’t get any better! What did you do before launching Alice Caroline? I actually did a chemistry degree and PhD before launching Alice Caroline. I initially made and sold handbags and jewellery, mixed in with working in the local post office! I was also a full-time mum for a few years, but I longed to be creative again. My mum taught me how to sew when I was a child, and my grandma was an avid quilter, so it was in the genes, I guess!

What kind of things do you enjoy stitching? When I first started the business, I loved making bags and obsessed over the perfect dimensions, trying to create the right size to fit a copy of Vogue, plus other essentials! As a student I got into making dresses and now I stitch most of my summer clothes. At the moment I’m playing with combining Liberty fabric with heavier, winter weight fabrics like fleece.

How did your book deal come about? Twice a year I exhibit at retail shows, The Festival of Quilts at Birmingham NEC and The Knitting & Stitching Show at Alexandra Palace. Ame my now editor at David & Charles, saw my stand and asked if I would like to write a book, so it’s a bit of a dream come true!

What do you most enjoy about your business? There are so many aspects. But probably my favourite thing still is combining the different colours and prints of Liberty fabrics for

coordinated packs and bundles; basically playing with colour! I also enjoy designing and writing all the instructions for the kits on the website. I like the challenge of trying to keep in mind optimum fabric usage and ease of construction.

What’s your favourite fabric in the new Liberty Alice in Wonderland collection? That’s tricky as there are so many beauties! I do love Gallymoggers Reynard, though, as it features all of the characters from Alice in Wonderland. I particularly like the biscuits that have ‘EAT ME!’ written on them.

What’s next for you and the business? We have plans to move to bigger premises, so we’ll be continuing to expand our range of fabrics and kits. Excitingly, Little Lady Liberty is being translated into French in June, and an appearance on Create and Craft TV and at literature festivals is also in the pipeline. One day I’d love to write another book, too!

Shop the full range at 69

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DOWNLOAD TEMPLATES ONLINE Essentials Mustard patterned cotton Liberty prints, selection Plain mustard cotton Plain blue cotton Blue spotty cotton Lining fabric White circular coaster, 14cm Pink bias binding Mustard grosgrain ribbon Iron-on interfacing Wadding


Tea cosy: 25cm x 34cm Coaster: 12cm x 15cm


TEA PARTY SET Made in delightful Alice in Wonderland-inspired prints, this set will ensure you serve your favourite beverage in style! Teamed with spotty and retro print fabrics, it’s sure to bring a touch of occasion to a soirée. And if you like to indulge in biscuits and cake, then the napkins will come in very handy!



Go to and download the templates. Using the tea cosy template, cut two from mustard patterned fabric, the front piece will be shorter than the back. Cut two full size from lining fabric and two from wadding. Trim one 7cm x 37cm piece from Liberty grass print fabric, back with iron-on interfacing and set aside. Use the template to cut out all the pieces for the teapot and cup and saucer, using a selection of fabrics, and back each with iron-on interfacing.


Back a 14cm circular coaster with interfacing and pin it to the right-hand side of the main body of the tea cosy. Secure in place with bright pink thread. Iron on the reverse. Place all the teapot pieces as shown, using pins or acid-free glue to hold them in place. Stitch using a teal coloured thread. Add a decorative stitch to the teapot. Iron on the reverse. Repeat for the cup and saucer. Trace ‘favourite tea’ from the template onto tissue paper. Pin in place, stitch over the paper and then tear it away. Stitch the steam lines from the cup.

Make &Share


Fold 38cm of bias binding in half lengthways and run a line of stitching down it to hold it together. Pin across the bottom of the tea cosy front on the right side so that the line of stitching you have just sewn is 1cm from the raw bottom edge of the tea cosy. Stitch it across. Fold the bottom raw edge under and pin it across the front of the grass print fabric interfaced earlier, allowing for a 1cm seam. Secure in place by stitching across the mustard fabric just above the pink bias tape. Iron on the reverse.


Pin together a lining piece wrong side up then a piece of the wadding and the finished front right side up. Hand or machine quilt around the edges of the teapot, coaster, cup and saucer, just underneath the pink bias tape and around some of the flowers on the grass print fabric. Stitch around the curve just in from the edge and set aside.


To create the back, pin together the lining wrong side up then the wadding then the back right side up. Quilt across the pattern of the fabric and stitch around the curve. Place the front and back right sides together and make a mustard grosgrain ribbon loop. Place in between the front and back with the raw edges sticking


Create a napkin from two rectangles, French seaming them together. Use the template to cut out the cake pieces. Place as shown, stitching with teal thread. Embroider ‘mad hatter’s tea party’ wording to finish.

out. Stitch bias binding around the curved edge. Turn right side out. Starting at the back, stitch pink bias tape around the raw bottom edge.



Using the coaster template, cut two from blue spot fabric, reversing the template for the back. Set the back aside. Cut out the teapot shape in floral Liberty print fabric, the middle band in mustard and the two lid pieces. Back them all with lightweight interfacing.


Pin the teapot to the middle of the blue spot fabric leaving an equal border all the way round. Use an

acid-free gluestick to secure the middle band and lid pieces, allow to dry. Stitch all the details using teal thread stitching over it twice. Use the same technique as before to write the word ‘tea’. Iron on the reverse.


Cut a piece of wadding the same size. Pin the finished front right sides together with the back, placing the wadding underneath. Stitch all the way round with a 5mm seam allowance, leaving a gap at the bottom for turning. Clip into the curves, trim away the excess wadding and turn right side out. Iron flat and topstitch 3mm in from the edge using blue thread, closing up the gap. Quilt around the teapot to finish.

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Create and Craft are celebrating their birthday this year with a tea party theme throughout April! Make a cuppa and get in on the action at www.createand


ALL SEWN UP! Liberty prints Liberty Tana Lawn selection (610), ÂŁ30 for six fat quarters,, 01242 677755.

Use an embroidery hoop when stitching letters to hold the fabric taut. 71

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quilter’s CORNER


“I don’t put red in every quilt, but I often feel there’s something missing if I don’t” GET THE LATEST PATCHWORK AND QUILTING NEWS WITH OUR QUILTING AMBASSADOR “What’s your favourite colour combination when you’re quilting? Mine was red for years, but the more I look around my house, wardrobe and collection of fabric, the less I see! I’ve started to use it as an accent colour to perk up other combinations. A splash of scarlet brings depth to an otherwise insipid selection. Ruby instantly warms up chilly blues and looks fantastic with deep teal. Cherry red mixed with orange, sunshine yellow and lime green makes a zingy summer quilt. I don’t put red in every one I make, but I often feel there’s something missing if I don’t. Selecting fabrics for a quilt isn’t as simple as it used to be. Before, quilts were made from cottons that had been bought specifically for that purpose from my local shop, my choice dictated by their stock at the time. Online shopping changed all that. I can get any fabric I like, but there’s no guarantee it’ll be the colour I think it is. I have umpteen pieces of cotton that don’t really go with anything else, simply because the shade is not quite what it looked like on screen. Even when I have a stack of perfectly matched shades I tend to go off on a tangent. A hint of another colour will catch my eye and a whole new combination evolves. I tried keeping my fabrics stacked up in piles of the same colour, but that was as futile as alphabetising the DVDs so I gave up! My stash is a glorious mismatched rainbow, rather like an explosion in a paint factory. Picking random hues could give your quilt designing a burst of inspiration this spring, and if you’re still not convinced, stick a bit of red in there!”


Corinne Loves!

I’m always looking for a new storage solution for my stash, so this sturdy bag is perfect! It has a see-through lid so you can see exactly what’s inside. Priced £10.95, groves@stockist 0145 388 3581.

“Selecting fabrics for a quilt isn’t as simple as it used to be”

Quilter’s Exhibition Red Tractor Patchwork Cot Quilt,

WHAT I’M WORKING ON... This month I not only used one of my favourite colours, but also paid homage to much loved fairytale Little Red Riding Hood. This child’s quilt, made using a themed print, is perfect for a little one’s bedroom or nursery. You could change the fabric to include their favourite story, or create an entirely new colour scheme to make this a very personalised gift. Find out how to make this in the April issue of our sister magazine, Crafts Beautiful, out now!

Visit Crafts Beautiful at 72

The Quilt Museum and Gallery is celebrating the design and draughtsmanship skills of quilters through the ages at its exhibition All Shapes and Sizes, until May 9th. This stunning collection of quilts reveals complex, geometric designs that are pieced to perfection. The exhibition showcases a fascinating and varied selection of items from The Quilters’ Guild Collection including The Billings Coverlet dated 1805-1810, a Tour de Force of geometry. Visit the Quilt Museum and Gallery website for more information

*SEW APRIL 15 ISSUE 70_SEW 27/02/2015 14:55 Page 73

Inside Pride & Joy The Old Bakery Aldermaston Road Sherborne St John RG24 9LA

LUDLOW QUILT AND SEW Easy quilt patterns and tutorials for the beginner quilter


April Showers

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We stock: modern & quirky quilting cottons • natural waddings • dressmaking and soft furnishing fabrics • beautiful ribbons, trims and buttons • dressmaking patterns from independent designers • Auriful threads • haberdashery and much much more ~ visit us online at: email: 73

*SEW APRIL 15 ISSUE 70_SEW 26/02/2015 11:08 Page 74

On-line stockists of Liberty fabrics - Including Liberty Tana Lawn, Poplin, needlecord and Lifestyle.

‘Indie’ dressmaking and crafting patterns - Hot Patterns, Colette, Serendipity Studio, Sewaholic, Gather, By Hand, Christine Haynes, Kwik Sew, Bluegingerdoll, Cake, Victory, Vogue, Modkid, Tilly & the Buttons, Simple Sew, Eliza M, Papercut and more ....

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Hand Embroidery Courses based at Hampton Court Palace ●

Our Day Classes offer fun, small group learning where beginners are welcome (also in Exeter, Bristol, Rugby & Glasgow)

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We run a full-time BA (Hons) Hand Embroidery for Fashion, Interiors, Textile Art T: +44 (0)20 3166 6938 RCN 312774


*SEW APRIL 15 ISSUE 70_SEW 27/02/2015 13:06 Page 75

Making great things from your fabric since 1968 Top designers come to us because our quality is superb, our turnaround time is exceptionally fast and we have a passion for what we do we speak your language!

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01206 396167 @coveredbuttons 75

*SEW APRIL 15 ISSUE 70_SEW 25/02/2015 11:54 Page 76

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This design can be made with as few as two prints for a really understated, yet striking effect, but we’ve gone all out with five per block in a sweet floral colour scheme that’s perfect for springtime. We used the Primrose Garden collection from Riley Blake Designs and added a contrasting striped border to make the prints really stand out. 77

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Choose two prints and cut 11cm squares from each. Cut two 6cm x 16cm pieces from two more designs. From a fifth fabric, cut four 6cm x 11cm rectangles.


Join a 6cm x 11cm rectangle to one side of a square, right sides together with a 5mm seam allowance [1]. Open out and press flat so the rectangle sits at the bottom of the square.


Attach a 6cm x 16cm rectangle to the left side of the block in the same way [2]. Open out and press flat.



Make up three more mini blocks [3] and join these into a square



Essentials 16 prints from the Primrose Garden Collection by Riley Blake Designs, fat quarter of each Pale pink cotton sashing, 50cm White cotton backing, 150cm 20oz wadding, 150cm


Block: 30cm square Quilt: 104cm x 108cm Note: Use a 5mm seam allowance unless otherwise stated.

ALL SEWN UP! Alternate between intricate florals and plain cottons for each block to create a different effect. 78

to create each entire block, using the diagram as a guide for fabric placement.



Use three different pattern combinations and make four blocks of each. Put a striped fabric aside, to use as a border for the quilt. Cut several 4cm wide sashing strips of pink cotton and use these to join the blocks together, firstly in rows of three, then joining them into a rectangle. Add a pink overlapped border all round the quilt top.


Cut the striped print into 4cm wide strips across the pattern. Use these to make a second overlapped border

around the quilt top. Press the entire panel. Lay down backing fabric, wadding and the quilt top on a flat surface and pin the three layers together at regular intervals. Machine quilt them together in the ditch along the sashing lines. Quilt each block pattern if desired.


Fold the outer border back along the seam and trim the wadding to this line. Cut the backing fabric 2cm wider and bring up and over the wadding edge, mitring the corners and pinning in place. Turn in 5mm of the striped border before folding over the edge of the quilt and pinning to the back. Topstitch in the ditch, making sure the hem at the back is secured.

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Primrose Paisley Aqua

Primrose Main Red

Sweet little flowers on a bright background.

A detailed design with a retro feel.

A big bold print with red roses.

We used the floral Primrose Garden range by Riley Blake Designs. For stockists, visit 79

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his month's collections are both heavily influenced by nature. For Elizabeth Olwen, her Morning Song collection for Cloud9 Fabrics is inspired by spring, with beautiful flowered patterns. Maureen Cracknell draws upon the wilder aspects of the great outdoors, with rich earthy hues and Native American style design in her Wild & Free range for Art Gallery Fabrics. Both feature prints that are great for accessories, such as picnic mats or cushions to sit on while you enjoy dining alfresco, or you could make beautiful patchwork quilts.


Wild & Free Maureen Cracknell


designer Maureen Cracknell â&#x20AC;&#x153;Wild & Free celebrates my beautiful children and my lifelong love for Potter County, Pennsylvania. Each print explores the essence of a bohemian spirit, one who loves adventure and lets their hair down, kicks off their shoes and runs free!"

Love that FABRIC


Fletching Chant

For Cloud9 Fabrics, visit cloud9fabrics For Art Gallery Fabrics, go to

Morning Keepsake

Bold and bright pattern

We love!

Crimson Dance

Luminous Field


Folk Plaid

Great for picnic quilts

Patchwork fabrics_Layout 1 27/02/2015 09:33 Page 3




Morning Song Cloud9 Fabrics

Elizabeth Olwen â&#x20AC;&#x153;Morning Song is inspired by spring, when the earth comes back to life, the morning is lit by warm sun, and the birds sing their sweet songs. It speaks of simpler times, and days spent frolicking through fields of wildflowers. Each print in the collection is like a little sonnet dedicated to charmed and beautiful landscapes."

Rich Meadow Navy

Lush Lullabye Gray

Intricate floral

Dancing Vines Orange

Dotty Blooms Ivory

WORK COLLECTIONS Beautiful colour contrast

Breezy Floral Blue

Rich Meadow Ivory

This monthâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Pantone colours April's shades are warm and inviting

Yolk Yellow 17-2625 TCX

Coral 16-1539 TCX

Greengage 16-5431 TCX 81

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Lines are open Monday-Friday 8am-8pm, Saturday 9am-1pm *this is a UK only Direct Debit offer. Gift is only available to UK subscribers. Existing subscribers can renew using this offer. Your subscription will begin with the next available issue. Subscriptions are for a 12 month period including all gift subscriptions. Your free gift will be dispatched within 28 days of your payment being received (sent separately from the magazine). If your subscription is a gift, the gift and gift card will be sent to the donor. You can also subscribe via cheque or credit card. In the event of a gift being faulty or damaged, please contact us within 28 days of receiving the gift. Alternative gift may be supplied to the same or greater value thereafter. This is a limited offer and may be withdrawn at any time. Photocopies accepted. Cancellation policy applies refer online or contact customer services for more details. ^Please note: Digital subscriptions do not include the subscriptions gift, nor cover mounted gifts.

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BOOKMARK THIS We take a look at what the best sewing sites around have to offer!

Blog of the month DFABRICATE.BLOGSPOT.CO.UK Sewing Bee contestant Deborah set up her blog back in 2010, initially to record and show the things she'd been stitching. “Mostly I write about the clothes I stitch and anything I've learned along the way. I got to the point though where I was making a lot of dresses but felt a little lost about where to go next.” Step forward the Sewing Bee! “Although I never thought I'd get through, it looked like a lot of fun and I wanted to push myself. I had an absolutely fantastic time, and I now have a group of the closest friends you can imagine, who want to talk about sewing! It's also lovely that people have found my blog through the show. Hopefully it will inspire them too. In the future I'd love to teach, and have helped many of my friends on the path to dressmaking. I have some classes in the pipeline, but I would love to have my own teaching studio one day.” And as for her blog? “I don’t want to FOLLOW ON stray too far from what I already do, TWITTER, perhaps just a bit of a makeover!” @DFABRICATE Deborah Simms, dfabricate


www.thesewing Want to shop the fabrics, patterns and learn the techniques you coveted in the Bee? Then check out the Sewing Bee series 3 section here for an episode by episode archive and lots more!

PATTERNS Butterick's 4790 Walkaway Dress pattern caused quite a stir on the Sewing Bee's vintage week. If you want to get your hands on this and more styles, both modern and retro, you can shop it all here.

TUTORIALS Fancy trying your hand at a corset after being inspired by the Sewing Bee? Then bookmark corset extraordinaire Julia Bremble's tutorials, including everything from understanding patterns to creating channels.

SEW ONLINE Missing your favourite stitchy programme already? Then a visit to The Great British Sewing Bee hub is in order. Find out the latest contestant news here, plus all the exciting behind the scenes gossip from those in the know. 83

Easter treats_Layout 1 27/02/2015 11:13 Page 1



Essentials Pastel coloured felt, 20cm x 40cm, plus scraps Coordinating embroidery thread Narrow ribbon, selection Fusible webbing, 10cm x 15cm Polyester toy stuffing Decorative button


Rabbit: 10cm x 13cm Egg: 8cm x 10cm Flower: 8cm in diameter


EASTER TREE DECS A festive centrepiece is not just for Christmas, you can get creative with an Easter display in so many ways. These seasonal hand-embroidered decorations have a vintage feel about them, and can be made from any of the gorgeous pastel shades that are so on trend right now. Make yours double-sided, to give you two designs in one!


Download the templates from, trace the rabbit shape onto card and cut out. Place it onto felt and draw around the shape with a pencil, then fit the fabric into an the embroidery hoop. Using three strands of embroidery thread throughout, embroider a lazy daisy near the tail and use a straight stitch with a V either side in two sets to create a branch.

Make &Share

Stitch a chick-shaped decoration using the template with a similar embroidered design to the rabbit. Make up as before attaching ribbon to the inside for hanging.


Add French knots at the ends of the branches, repeating the pattern for the other side of the flower. Sew the same design across the chest and ear of the rabbit and stitch a French knot in black for the eye. Release the felt from the hoop and cut out the shape.


For the back, transfer the template onto contrasting felt, reversing it. Iron a small piece of fusible webbing onto the back of another piece of a different colour, and cut into three narrow strips using pinking shears. Peel off the backing paper, position across the rabbit and iron into place.


Fit the fabric into the embroidery hoop and work feather stitches across the bands in coordinating thread. Add little arrows and French knots across the main body. Release the felt from the hoop and cut the shape out. Sew a length of ribbon to the inside of the ear.


With wrong sides facing, pin the two rabbit sections together and sew around the outside in blanket stitch. Leave a small gap on the side and fill with toy stuffing, before closing up the gap. Sew on little bows at the neck either side to finish.



Transfer the motif for the egg onto felt and iron on three strips in a contrasting colour as for the rabbit. Work feather stitch across the top and bottom bands in coordinating thread, adding French knot details. Sew ribbon across the centre of the middle panel. Tie a bow and stitch to the middle of the egg. Stitch little arrows in between the stripes, adding more knots as in the picture.


Place the template for the egg onto contrasting felt, draw around the shape and cut out. Snip circles from two darker felts in various sizes. Sew them to the other side of the egg using star stitches in coordinating colours.






Sew a double loop to the inside of the felt egg. Pin wrong sides together and sew around the outside of the shape using blanket stitch, leaving a small gap on the side for stuffing. After filling, close up the gap.


Draw an 8cm circle onto felt and fit into an embroidery hoop. Cut six large and 11 small petals using the templates. Arrange the big petals over one circle and attach them using embroidered branches as before, working French knots into each one, plus several in the centre of the flower. Add a few more around the middle in a contrasting colour.

Trace another 8cm circle onto coordinating felt and fit into the hoop. Arrange the smaller petals, as shown, around the circle and sew into place. Cut out a circle of felt for the middle, place a decorative button on top and sew both to the centre of the flower. Cut out both motifs. Sew a loop of ribbon to the inside of one of the decorated circles and with wrong sides facing, pin the pieces together and embroider blanket stitch around the shape, leaving a gap for stuffing. After filling, close the gap.

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Cotton embroidery thread In a variety of colours, choose your favourite shades! Priced 72p per skein,, 0800 056 7811.

Colourful felt This felt can be cut into any shape you need, perfect for this make! Priced ÂŁ1.50 per sheet,, 01245 471690. 85

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Essentials Printed cotton, 10 fat quarters Turquoise cotton, fat quarter Pink and white felt, scraps Pink bias binding, 250cm Coordinating thread Coordinating ribbon Lace trim Coordinating pom pom braid Turquoise flat backed crystals PVA glue


Bunting: garland length 250cm, each pennant 17cm x 21cm Drawstring bags: 11.5cm x 19cm

BUNTING AND BAGS This pretty garland will make Easter time egg-stra special with sweet little rabbits and pom pom trim. Use it to festoon your hallway, or drape it above your kitchen table for when you tuck into your chocolate eggs. The drawstring bags can be filled with a variety of treats and are a perfect way to present a loved one with a gift this season.



Download the templates from and use them to cut out 10 bunting flags from the various printed fat quarters folded diagonally. Cut a selection of ribbons and trims for around the back and front of the flags. Pin and machine stitch them in place using matching thread.


Use small sharp scissors to cut out five rabbit backs from pink felt and five bunny fronts from white felt. Press in a 7mm seam allowance on the side of the bunting and position the bunnies. Alternating between pink and white on each different print, fix them into place with PVA glue. Using small stitches, sew around each shape.


Stitch the nose and mouth detail onto the rabbit fronts. This can be drawn on first with a fine felt pen, then stitched over using small black stitches. Sew a pom pom on each bunny back for a tail. Fold each flag in half with right sides together. Pin and machine stitch the long edge, turn out and press.


Position the top of each flag in bias binding, spacing them at 2.5cm intervals. Pin each one in place and machine stitch with matching thread. Glue turquoise flat backed crystals as eyes on the white rabbits and finish by sewing a pom pom to the end of each pennant.



Press 22cm x 23cm of printed fabric. Fold a double hem of 1cm and 3.5cm along one long side and press. Stitch as close to the edge of the first fold as possible, then sew two rows along the top of the bag to create a channel. Sew a length of ribbon 1cm up from the bottom of the bag.


Fold the fabric widthways and press. Cut out a rabbit from white felt, position it centrally on one half of the bag and sew in place. Take into consideration the seam allowance as the pouch will be folded and stitched along one side.



Fold the bag in half right sides together, stitch along the bottom and down the side leaving a small gap at the channel opening for the ribbon. Back stitch around the gap to reinforce the seam. Turn the bag out and thread a length of ribbon through the channel. Add turquoise crystal eyes and pink felt ears onto the rabbit to finish.


Snip the pom poms from a piece of white braid and sew them to the ends of the bunting as a quirky design detail.

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LOVE IT... BUY IT! Camden Market prints

20 different fabrics, perfect for colourful bunting! We used the sweet Camden Market Patchwork Palette by Cotton Patch. Priced ÂŁ15.75, Visit, 0121 702 2840. 87

Dog Bed & Toy_Layout 1 27/02/2015 11:05 Page 1




Essentials A suitably sized hamper, crate or drawer Fabrics, assorted Thread Elastic, 1cm wide Polyester filling


DOG BED & PILLOW Who says a dog bed can't be comfortable and stylish? By adding a pretty lining, you can transform a picnic hamper, wooden crate or similar into somewhere for your pet to snooze happily. What’s more, the lining is removable, so it can be washed regularly to ensure sweet dreams for everyone! You could also add a bone-shaped pillow for a fun and attractive touch.



Before you begin, clean the base of the hamper or box to be used for the bed. Also ensure that it is free from any loose bits, sharp nails, hinges or anything else that could harm your dog.


Measure the base length and width, then add a 1cm seam allowance to each side. Cut a piece of fabric of this size. Measure the depth of the box and add a 5cm seam allowance to the top edge and a 1cm seam allowance to all other edges. Cut four pieces of different fabrics to this size.


Stitch the sides to the fabric base [1], leaving 1cm unstitched at each end of the seams. Pin the corner seams together and sew to create a box-shaped lining. Neaten off the top edge with an overlock or zig zag stitch, then press over 5mm of fabric to the wrong side.


Lay one end of a length of elastic on the other end and pin. Check to see if it fits around the top of the bed, making adjustments if necessary, then sew the ends together to make a flat join.


Stretch and pin the elastic evenly around the top edge of the lining, then using a stretch stitch setting sew with a wide zig zag, pulling the elastic taught as you work. Place the liner into the bed, folding the elastic edge over the top to keep it secure.



Go to and download the bone template. Enlarge as desired, remembering to allow a 1cm seam allowance. Cut out two shapes from fabric and pin them together with right sides facing.


Stitch around the edge of the bone, leaving the seam open where indicated on the template. Trim the allowance and snip the seams on all the curves. Turn the pillow right side out and stuff with polyester filling, then sew the opening closed.


GET THE BOOK This project has been extracted from Pamper your Pooch by Rachelle Blondel (£9.99, Kyle Books), featuring 30 practical and fun dog accessories, from towels and coats to toys and more.

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LOVE IT... BUY IT! Dog fabric Make your bed in this striking Dalmations print by Makower, £9.98 per metre,, 0789 646 4376. 89

Susie's Stitch School 70 qx_Layout 1 27/02/2015 16:47 Page 1




Susieâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; s



Assisi embroidery 1 Perfect this technique and make a spring Scandi pillow

Assisi embroidery is a kind of reverse cross stitch, where the backgrounds are stitched and the main motifs left untouched. It originated in the Italian town of the same name. Holbein stitch is used to add finer details and flourishes, but in Assisi work itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s called Chiara stitch. Worked on an evenweave fabric, usually cream or white, the traditional colours are red, blue, green or gold for the backgrounds and black or brown for the outlines. Common motifs are mythical creatures, although flowers and geometric designs are also popular. For this stylish cushion, the Assisi embroidery is worked on bands of cross stitch fabric, which are then sewn to a plain cotton, and edged with ric rac.

Secure the thread on the wrong side of the fabric and bring the needle through to the surface to start the first stitch. Move a stitch length backwards along the sewing line, take the needle back through the fabric and then bring it to the surface at the end position of this stitch.


Moving back along the stitching line, take the needle down through the same hole as the previous thread. Bring it to the surface for the end position of the stitch. Repeat along the sewing line to create even stitches.

until all the cross stitched areas are complete. Thread the needle with a single strand of black and work the outlines and details in Chiara stitch or back stitch. Repeat with the other length of Aida.


When you have finished both strips, press them lightly on the reverse. Cut two 33cm x 38cm pieces of grey fabric for the pillow. Put one aside for the back section. Place the other flat on a work surface and position the two bands across the width of the fabric. Pin in place.

Essentials 16 count Aida, 5cm x 70cm Grey cotton, 66cm x 80cm Cushion pad, 30cm x 35cm Embroidery thread, red, black, one skein of each Tapestry needle, size 24 or 26 Coordinating sewing thread White ric rac, 130cm

Dimensions 30cm x 36cm




Go to, download and print the cross stitch chart. Cut 5cm x 70cm of Aida in half. Fold one half in two to find the centre, mark with a small stitch and place in an embroidery hoop. Thread a tapestry needle with two strands of red embroidery thread. Knot the end and take it down through the fabric at the edge of the band. You can snip this off once the first few rows of stitches have been completed.


cross stitches. Work in rows from left to right. Bring the needle up at the lower left hole of one square of the fabric and back down at the upper right hole of the same square. This forms a diagonal stitch. Continue making rows of diagonals.


Once you reach the end of the row, work back over each stitch with a diagonal that slants in the other direction. Work subsequent rows in the same way, making sure that the top stitch of each Starting at the centre of the charted design, cross lies in the same direction. Move the and working outwards, begin to work the fabric in the hoop as often as necessary


Cut ric rac into four equal lengths and pin on either side of the embroidery. When you are happy with the arrangement, stitch everything in place by hand or machine. To make the pillow, place the front and back pieces right sides together, pin and stitch around three sides with a 1.5cm seam allowance.


Clip the corners and trim off any excess Aida and ric rac that may be protruding from the seams. Turn the pillow out and press lightly, then insert a cushion pad. Fold raw edges to the wrong side and slip stitch to close.

Susie's Stitch School 70 qx_Layout 1 27/02/2015 15:38 Page 2


“Cross stitch is a very popular craft and it’s good to explore some traditional variations”

ALL SEWN UP! Why not use this technique to decorate pillowcases to create personalised bed linen? 91

Giveaways_Layout 1 27/02/2015 09:27 Page 1


April giveaways


Enter now for your chance to win these amazing prizes! Sewing kits

Easter haberdashery When it comes to stitching for Easter, there are so many possibilities. With pastel shades and cheerful fabrics, it’s sure to put a spring in your step. To help boost your supplies, we have three delightful bundles to give away. Each includes a fat quarter pack of 100% cotton Notting Hill prints by Gütermann and coordinating thread sets in fresh hues, plus a pair of pretty patterned embroidery scissors by Hemline and two reels of Berisfords Essentials ribbons, perfect for adorning your Easter makes. To enter to win one of three bundles worth over £50 each, tick the ‘EASTER’ box. For Berisfords stockists, email, for Gütermann stockists, contact, and email for Hemline.


to win!


to win!

Sewing Bee books The Great British Sewing Bee: Fashion With Fabric by Claire-Louise Hardie (£25, Quadrille) accompanies the third series of our favourite TV programme and includes forewords and sewing masterclasses by judges May Martin and Patrick Grant. Penned by the series’ sewing producer, Fashion with Fabric has easy to follow instructions and illustrations to aid understanding. There’s also a full-size pattern sheet for over 30 projects. We have four copies of the title to give away. To enter, tick the ‘BOOK’ box. Visit for more information.


to win!

Soak wash

Knicker kits Make your own fancy underwear with Flo-Jo’s knicker making kits. Each one contains a fully graded reuseable pattern in sizes 8-18 with clear instructions and diagrams, plus 100% cotton fabrics matched with frilly elastic and satin ribbons. All you need are basic sewing skills and a sewing machine with a zig zag stitch. They make great gifts, too! To be in with a chance of winning one of 10 knicker kits worth £12 each, tick the ‘KNICKERS’ box. Visit or call 0117 904 1498.

The Crafty Kit Company designs and makes adorable sewing kits and we’ve got two varieties to give away. The Patchwork Owl set contains all you need to make this sweet little fellow from printed 100% cotton fabrics – great for intermediate stitchers. Alternatively, sew a pretty yet practical pincushion which you can use again and again. Each comes in a sturdy, recycled cardboard tube and make great gifts. There are 10 kits available to win worth £9.95 each. To enter, tick the ‘KITS’ box. View the range at


to win!

Soak is a pure, gentle and deliciously scented way to wash the delicate items you care about most, especially handmade garments. It is designed with fabric-friendly ingredients that revitalise fibres so they look great and last longer. Flatter, the newest member of the Soak family, is a starch alternative for ironing and quilting. Plus, the mild formulation is easy on sensitive skin. All the fragrances are really light and clean, whether you enjoy Celebration, Yuzu, Fig or Scentless, you’re sure to find a favourite to make your washing and ironing experiences more pleasurable. One lucky winner will receive four 12oz bottles of Soak in each scent, plus four bottles of Flatter. To enter, tick the ‘SOAK’ box. Visit

Enter online at 92

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Tapestry kits

Cath Kidston books Patch by Cath Kidston (£16, Quadrille) combines traditional techniques with more contemporary designs and mixes Cath’s distinctive prints to create an inspiring title filled with irresistible projects. From simple machine piecing to complex, crazy patchwork, there are makes for all abilities. Bags, cushions and even a dog bed are among the 30 original makes on offer, all with clearly written instructions and diagrams. There are 10 books up for grabs, simply tick the ‘PATCH’ box to enter. Visit for more information.


to win!

Tina Francis combines her love of printing and stitching to design stunning tapestry kits. Each one contains everything you need, with canvas printed in the UK, needles from John James and wool from Anchor, plus full instructions. The Pavilion Tops design is one of Tina’s most notable, inspired by the domes in Brighton, where she used to live. Charley is influenced by illustrator Charley Harper and depicts an abstract, non symmetrical pattern. We have a Pavilion Tops and a Charley tapestry kit worth £60 each to give away to one lucky reader. To enter, tick the ‘TAPESTRY’ box. To view the full range, visit

The Makery bundles

Emily Peacock kit One reader sure will be ‘lucky’ to receive this fabulous needlepoint kit by Emily Peacock. This new offering by the well-renowned designer is worked on canvas with Appleton Brothers tapestry wools in counted cross stitch. The vibrant Lucky design featuring beautiful roses can then be stitched into a striking cushion to adorn a sofa, chair or bed. We have a large Lucky kit worth £78 to give away. To enter, tick the ‘LUCKY’ box. To view Emily’s full range, visit or call 07964 734978.

just tick the boxes! EASTER TAPESTRY



Kate Smith, author and co-founder of Bath-based crafting boutique The Makery has collaborated with Wild & Wolf to create a colour-popping range of kits and haberdashery. The packaging is simply delectable, whether it’s a reel of ribbon or fun kit. To celebrate the launch, we have two fantastic bundles worth £55 each to give away, which include Clasp Purse and Sewing Makeaway kits, ribbon reels in three gorgeous colours, plus two shades of twine. They’ll look stunning displayed in your sewing space! To be in with a chance of winning, tick the ‘MAKERY’ box. See the range at www.wildand or call 01225 789909.

To enter our giveaways, just tick the box that corresponds with the prizes you want to win and send your entry to us, to arrive no later than 24.04.2015. Mark your envelope: Sew April Giveaways, PO Box 443, Ipswich, Suffolk, IP2 8WG.





Only one entry per household please.


This competition is open to all UK residents aged 18 or over, excluding employees or agents of the associated companies and their families. One entry per person. The prizes detailed in each competition cannot be exchanged for goods, or towards the purchase of goods at any retail outlet. Entries must be on the coupon provided. It cannot be exchanged for cash, or replaced if lost or damaged. Illegible entries and those that do not abide by these terms and conditions will be disqualified. Prizes must be taken as stated and cannot be deferred. The decision of the judge is final and no correspondence will be entered into. CLOSING DATE 24.04.2015 Winners will be notified after the cover dated month, a list of winners will be available in writing on request from Rachel Tudor, 21/23 Phoenix Court, Hawkins Road, Colchester, Essex, CO2 8JY. Data Protection Your details will be processed by Aceville Publications Ltd (publishers of Sew) in full accordance with data protection legislation. All entries become the property of Aceville Publications Ltd, publishers of Sew. Aceville Publications Ltd and sister companies may wish to contact you with information of other services and publications we provide which may be of interest. Please tick here if you DO NOT wish to receive such information by Post Phone Email SMS . From time to time Aceville Publications Limited will share details with other reputable companies who provide products and services that may be of interest to you. Please tick here if you DO NOT wish to receive such information by Post Phone Email SMS .

What made you buy this month’s Sew? FREE New Look 6184 pattern Simplicity Style magazine Sewing Bee skirt download May Martin's expert advice I subscribe

Other ...................................................................................

What’s your favourite project this issue? Pyjama shorts Draped top Hare cushions Easter tree decs Other .................................................................................................................. Mr/Mrs/Miss/Ms/Other.............................................................................. Name.................................................................................................................. Address............................................................................................................. ................................................................Postcode........................................... Daytime telephone...................................................................................... Mobile number............................................................................................... Email...............................................................Date of birth......................

For full terms & conditions, visit 93

CNM_Layout 1 27/02/2015 15:34 Page 1

NEXT MONTH IN Patchwork pouffe


The Great British Sewing Bee – meet the winners! l May Martin on stitching a wedding dress l The latest indie patterns rated by Sew l

Girl ‘s appliqué dress

Easy sew headbands


We meet the Singer girls, the experts offer handmade wedding inspiration, and more.


Liberty pencil case

CNM_Layout 1 27/02/2015 15:34 Page 2

“Simplicity offers award-winning patterns, and this stylish option has not one but four great garments to make!”

Just for you! Great wear-all garments

All features are subject to change

PATTERN SIMPLICITY 1467 WARDROBE PACK l Sleeveless top l Loose fitting trousers l Skirt with mock drawstring l Peplum jacket






May issue on sale 10th April 95

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Lunchtime Make




SPRING WREATH This pretty no-sew decoration is quick to make and would look lovely hanging in the home this Eastertime. Give your garland a patchwork look by using tiny scraps salvaged from other sewing projects, or use a single print for all the leaves. This is a great project to get the family involved in too. Essentials


Cut 10, 20cm lengths of wire. Fold them in half and twist the centres, so that you have a loop at the top. Go to to download and print the templates. Trace the leaf outline 10 times onto fusible webbing. Cut out the shapes roughly and press onto the wrong side of patterned fabrics. Peel off the paper and place onto yellow fabric, slipping a wire loop between the two layers. Using pinking shears, snip each one out, just inside the edge.


Twist the wire stalks together to make the garland. Hold two leaves together so that the second one lies 2cm below the first. Starting 2cm below the second leaf, twist the ends of the wire together, then add eight more leaves in the same way.

• Plain yellow fabric, 30cm square • Patterned green fabric, 30cm square • Fusible webbing • Craft wire • Wreath • Buttons, four • Pliers • Pinking shears



Cut two small and two large double-sided flowers in the same way as for the leaves. Snip a small gap in the centre of each. Thread one or two 15cm lengths of wire through the holes in four buttons and twist to make a stalk. Push the wires through the flowers. Lay the garland around the wreath and secure with short lengths of wire. Arrange the flowers along the leaves and twist the stems around the garland to hold in place.


1 96



Amy Butler Violette prints would be perfect for this spring make, visit for stockists.

Start Right 70_Layout 1 27/02/2015 15:53 Page 1


START right

Machine Matters with

Wendy Gardiner


Flower stitch attachment The flower attachment has a large circular base with notched steps and an arm that is placed over the needle holder attached to a spring loaded clip that moves over the steps one by one as the needle goes up and down. To connect it, the presser foot shank is first removed so that the attachment can be fixed directly to the needle holder. On some models it is necessary to have a short shank adaptor too. A centre prong, moved left or right when the retaining screw is loosened, determines the size of the flower head stitched.

How to... create a flower stitch

Stitch perfectly circular little flower heads using this nifty attachment which can be fitted to most sewing machines.


Lower the feed dogs, set the needle position to the left and reduce the top tension on the thread to 3.5â&#x20AC;&#x201C;3. Note that the fabric will be moved by the flower stitch attachment.



As with any concentrated area of stitching, it is essential to stabilise and support the fabric to prevent it puckering. To do this, add interfacing or tearaway stabiliser to the underside of the material (or sew with two or more layers).


You can use a good variety of widthways stitches with the flower stitch attachment, but do check that the needle will not hit the side or the throat plate by turning the balance wheel on the right of the machine to raise and lower the needle through the stitch sequence. If it does, reduce the stitch width and try again.


To change the flower size, realign the centre prong with the +/- guide on the front by loosening the screw at the left back of the attachment. The nearer the prong is to the minus sign, the smaller the flower and vice versa. Once it is moved, tighten the screw.


You can use a twin needle too, just check that the width of your chosen stitch is no more than 5mm so that both will fit through the foot and the throat plate. Twin needles come with different gaps between the needles, so check the stitch choice. Insert the twin needle and thread with two different colours.


Bring the bobbin thread to the top and hold the tails behind the work. Select a widthways stitch such as zig zag, blind hem or three-step zig zag stitch and set it to the widest width. Sew slowly, taking care not to trap or catch the fabric so it can turn the fabric smoothly as it sews.

3 4

Return the needle to the left position, work a few stitches on the spot and remove the work to cut the threads. Make a centre to the flower by returning the needle to the left-hand position. Set the stitch to straight and continue to sew round the inside of the flower design. Work some with the right side of the fabric facing the throat plate so that it is the bobbin thread that shows.


You can stitch a larger flower and then a smaller one inside. Set the centre prong in the direction of the (+) and sew the outside pattern using a three-step zig zag stitch. Then loosen the screw on top of the device, raise the needle and presser foot level, and slide the large disc and the fabric to set the prong in the direction of the (-).


Lower the presser foot level, tighten the screw and sew the inside pattern. It does take practise to move the fabric and the large disc evenly but actually, smaller flowers stitched off-centre in the middle of the large flower can look good too!


Stretch blind hem stitch is formed with a small zig zag stitch and occasional larger zig zag going to the left. It is designed primarily to sew blind hems on knit fabric that still needs some stretch. 4 To create a blind hem, first fold the fabric hem allowance up to the wrong side, then holding it in place, fold it back on itself so that a single layer of hem allowance only protrudes about 1.3cm to the right, with the rest folded under the garment. Attach the blind hem foot and with the piece wrong side uppermost, place the fold up against the protruding right-hand toe of the foot so that the small zig zag part of the stitch will be formed in the single layer of the hem allowance to the right, and the larger zig zag swings over to the fold of fabric to the left, catching the garment and hem allowance together. Once complete, unfold the hem allowance and you will see the stitching is virtually invisible, with just a tiny ladder stitch to be seen on the right side of the fabric. 4 The stretch blind hem stitch is also perfect for decorative stitching and for using with the flower stitch attachment. Use a contrast thread to make it really stand out. You can also use it with a twin needle. 97

Templates(in mag) 70 NEW qx_Layout 1 27/02/2015 15:45 Page 2

templates To download more templates, visit


Designer: Lucinda Ganderton Page: 62 Shown at 100%





Cut two

BODICE Cut one



Cut two outer ears (one reversed) Cut two inner ears (one reversed)


Cut one




Templates(in mag) 70 NEW qx_Layout 1 27/02/2015 15:45 Page 3



Designer: Ellen Kharade Page: 84 Shown at 100%


Cut two


Cut two (one reversed)


Cut two (one reversed)

PETAL Cut six

PETAL Cut 11

© Aceville Publications Ltd. All projects, templates and patterns are for personal home use only and cannot be sold or used for commercial purposes. 99

*SEW APRIL 15 ISSUE 70_SEW 27/02/2015 13:07 Page 100

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**ALL SEWN UP classifieds_ALL SEWN UP 27/02/2015 13:14 Page 101

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**ALL SEWN UP classifieds_ALL SEWN UP 27/02/2015 13:14 Page 102

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**ALL SEWN UP classifieds_ALL SEWN UP 27/02/2015 13:16 Page 103

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Inspired by the Sewing Bee? As well as picking up your copy of Sew magazine at the supermarket or newsagent, there are plenty of other fantastic ways to keep in touch


Sew magazine is available on the Apple, Kindle, Android and Nook newsstands* as a single digital issue, priced £3.99 each, or as a full digital subscription** starting from £2.99 per month, which is stored in your phone or tablet so you can read it wherever your stitching takes you. *Compatible with Kindle Fire HD, Kindle Fire HDX, Barnes & Noble Nook, iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch. **PLEASE NOTE, DIGITAL SUBSCRIPTIONS DO NOT INCLUDE SUBSCRIPTION GIFTS OR COVER-MOUNTED GIFTS.


Pick up the latest copy of Sew for gorgeous projects for all abilities, including everything from dressmaking to quilting. Our experts make it easy with step-by-step masterclasses and we bring you the hottest fabrics and products.





For all the latest stitching news and gossip, as well as exclusive giveaways, like us at or follow us on Twitter @sewhq. Plus share your makes and you could be featured in Dear Sew!

Be inspired by our latest moodboards at With everything from the hottest trends in fashion and quilting, plus ideas for every occasion, you’ll lose hours pinning! 105

Join our sister crafting community at where you can check out what fellow stitchers have been making, or why not share your own handmade creations?


Visit our brand-new website at for even more free sewing patterns, fantastic giveaway prizes, Sewing Bee gossip, plus all your downloadable templates from the magazine.

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“The cupcake costume would have been awesome, but I needed another day!” SEWING BEE CONTESTANT ALEX FLOREA TELLS US ABOUT HER ON-AIR EXPERIENCES AND LOVE OF SUSTAINABLE FASHION I've always had a creative streak, making dresses for my dolls and later refashioning my mum’s old clothes into new outfits for me and my sister. I bought a cheap sewing machine and decided to teach myself to use it, and when I moved to the UK I found a lovely lady who ran workshops in her home studio and started taking classes. None of my family sews, my mum used to knit when we were kids, but no one else really did anything creative. I'm not sure how I got the gene really! I like to think of my style as clean, quite simple in construction, but with quirky details to set it apart. My idea of hell is anything messy, busy or frilly, but I love unusual combinations of fabrics and textures, like leather and chiffon, faux fur and leather. I like elongated silhouettes that make my pear-shaped body look willowy and tall. I’m not fashion driven in general, as I know what I like and what suits me. That’s why it’s great to be able to make things, they fit better and I can combine styles and details as I choose. I love Pinterest and spend a few minutes every day looking at new sewing patterns and squirrelling ideas for projects. I also follow creative blogs avidly. A lot of projects come from my own imagination or clothes I’ve seen in shops. My favourite dress is a combination of two patterns and two different types of fabric, which make it totally unique. Being a contestant on The Great British Sewing Bee pushed me to start a blog of my own. I knew there were stitchy people out there, but they all seemed too famous to reach out to! Meeting the fellow Bees, I realised how amazing these people are and how

great it is to tap into this fabulous community. We will be friends for life, we’ve been speaking almost every day since filming ended and try to meet in person as much as possible. What happened exceeded my expectations. It was a revelation how people from different parts of the country, of various ages and backgrounds can become such fast friends. Going out so soon left me disappointed with myself because I don't feel I made any garment I was truly proud of. I had fun making the tulle skirt and the harem trousers, and the cupcake costume would have been awesome, I promise you, but I probably needed another day to make them up to my standards! My blog is a great outlet to talk about my passion for sustainable fashion. My day job is in sustainability, so I am exposed to the ins and outs of how clothes are made and the incredible new technologies for recycling them. I try to make better personal choices and because I can stitch my own clothes, I am able to reduce my impact by buying less and sewing with more renewable fabrics. I have turned our spare bedroom into a sewing room, which at the moment looks like a battle ground! I try to keep things organised, otherwise I can never find anything. It’s my happy place, where I can spread my projects out on the floor, listen to the radio and go guilt-free creative crazy! The blog is at the core of my future plans. I want to continue to inspire as many people as I can. On a personal level, I’m challenging myself not to buy any new clothes in 2015, creating is now a necessity as much as a hobby! Teaching sewing to children could be on the cards; Heather Jacks’ work is very inspiring and I would love to get involved with something similar. Right now I am looking to find new ways to help save the planet, one stitch at a time!

“I’m challenging myself not to buy any new clothes in 2015, creating is now a necessity as much as a hobby!”

Find more at 106

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MO-1000 AIR

• Air Threaded Loopers • Automatic Needle Threader • Produces beautiful sharp curves for necklines and sleeves • Use 2, 3 or 4 threads to produce 7 different finishes including rolled hem • Wide Throat Area gives excellent visibility of the fabric whilst overlocking • Adjustable Differential Feed gives a professional finish even on stretchy or knit fabrics



£849 To find your nearest dealer : or Tel 01206 563955/574758

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Two stunning Computerised Long-arm Models We've taken all thf' best and easiest to use features from all our other models, added even more and packed them into these stunning long-arm machines, so it's no surprise the Memory Craft 8900QCP and the Memory Craft 8200QC have been a popular addition to our range. The sheer length of the arm space at 280mm (11") makes them ideal for those larger projects. With the built-in AcuFeed system for precise fabric handling, an easy change needle plate to enhance straight stitch performance, 9mm stitch w·dth, pattern elongation up to 5 times standard length a great range of stitches and alphabets, an automatic needle threader, a speed controller and a start/stop button if you choose not to use the foot control, you can rest assured these machines offer spectacular stitch quality at speeds up to 1,000 stitches per minute. There is even a remote thread-cutter port on the MC8900QCP! It doesn't matter whether you are quilting, dressmaking, crafting or making home furnishings, with creativity this easy you'll just wont to get started.



For further Information: Telephone 0161 666 6011 or visit

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Sew april 2015  
Sew april 2015