Clever Charlotte Finch Top

As an experiment I bought some scraps of Nano Iro double guaze on Trademe ( the New Zealand equivalent of Ebay). They were a bit pricey given how little fabric was contained but I was curious to try some double guaze without going to the huge expense of importing it.

Needless to say it is dreamy to sew with. Frays like crazy and a total nightmare to unpick but so soft and light as air.













It co-ordinated really well with the brown/purple linen I used for the Class Picnic shorts.

I decided to make a Clever Charlotte Finch top since I’ve made the shorts a few times and Elsa is going to grow out of this pattern soon. How dare she turn 7! How on earth could that be!?

I couldn’t have made a more silly decision. The Finch top is reversible and even though I used some lovely sofy pink linen on the back, lining the double guaze lost all the ‘light as air’ qualities I was just raving about. Mistake number 1.
















I also realised after cutting out a few pieces that I actually didn’t have quite enough and ended up having to piece the front – hiding it with a ribbon. Mistake number 2.

I then tried to make a buttonhole which was different colours on each side. Mistake number 3.

I’m not suprised Elsa has never chosen to wear this top. I don’t think I would either if it was in my wardrobe. Insert unhappy icon here.


Oliver+s Ice cream blouse

Here’s the next instalment of things I made a few months ago! I feel a little guilty posting something I made ages ago but not quite sure why.

I had an grand ideas of making Elsa a gorgeous designer-esque co-ordinated summer wardrobe. It was going to be pastels with loose floaty blouses and basic solid coloured go-with-anything bottoms. I got a certain way towards that goal as you will see in the next few posts but it was a long way from the extensive mix and match closet I had in my head!

Oddly enough I have had ideas of making a co ordinated winter wardrobe dancing through my head recently so maybe I’ll never learn.

The first ‘loose floaty blouse’ I made was the Oliver+s Ice cream blouse. Based on Elsa’s measurements I went with a size 5 and a size 7 length. It fits but I think it looks like it’s a bit small on her and I wish I’d gone with a size 6 or even 7 width.

Here it is with the class picnic shorts I’ve already shown you:















And here with a Frothy skirt from Make It Perfect. It’s a bargain $3 PDF download but I discovered almost as soon as I bought it I had a very similar pattern in one of my underused Ottobre magazines. Oh well. Inspired by this dress on the Oliver+s blog I wanted to make it double layered with a floaty organza layer over cotton. I thought the bubble skirt would help with the issue of hating heming organza but not sure it works that well. The organza has a gold metallicsheen to it so Elsa likes it very much.















I did actually manage to get some modelled shots. She wearing it here with some 3/4 Laguna leggings made in a ridiculously thin cotton lycra knit. Not the best choice for leggings, unfortunately. Spray starch was my best friend. But talking about these I remembered I made a Hopscotch top in the same fabric which missed being photographed. It’ll probably have stains all down the front of it by now!


Looks like her ballet classes are paying off, eh?!

Patterns: Oliver+s Ice cream top, Oliver+s Class Picnic shorts, Make It Perfect Frothy Skirt.
Fabric: Spotlight Japanese Lawn, Denim, Polyester Organza/recycled bedsheet.



Summer Shorts

I feel so ashamed to be writing this as I have neglected this blog to the point of extinction. I must confess that I had been considering abandoning it altogether.

Life has been choatic, busy beyond belief and crazy. Something has had to give. Work, study and the kids had prority.  The need to sew and create came close on their heels but would have been the next thing to go. Housework was haphazard and rushed. The obvious thing to drop seemed to be the photographing and blogging. So dropped it was.

I still tried to keep up with my favourite sites and watching other people’s creations on flickr and Crafty Mamas but felt curiously more detached from it all without posting my own creations. Somehow I felt less involved without sharing myself.

Rest assured I continued to sew. Not as much, and often not as elaborate but I still sewed. I sometimes even photographed. Not very well I must say, looking at the photos just recently. But at least I still tried, thinking life may settle to the point where I could start posting here again.

Now the Christmas dust has settled, school has started back, the university papers are over and there is a semblance of routine in our lives again. Maybe I can sneek a little time here and there to process photos and post. This is still going to be one busy year. Lucas has just started High School and now travels the 35km into town and back each day. I still have over 250 hours of practical work to do for my diploma and Mick’s new business is busier than ever.

Enough. Here’s some of the shorts I made for Elsa’s summer wardrobe:

Ice cream shorts from Oliver and S. I’ve never been that sure about this pattern. But have loved the finished article. Such a clever pattern with a lovely finish. Elsa’s only regret is they don’t have pockets.

These are a soft light denim linied with a soft cotton shirting. I had real trouble getting the facing to sit right and made a bit of a hash of one side:

I was so upset with myself that I made another pair straight away to practice the technique:

These are a lovely silky feeling linen from the Fabric Store in Wellington I bought as an off cut. Just heavenly. The colour is a gorgeous purplish brown. Much happier with these facings! I think in future I might try inserting piping to keep that turnover even. Ever tried it?

Here’s the back showing the scrap of Nano Iro double guaze I used to line the waistband. Wow, this stuff is seriously addictive. I have as yet resisted buying any more but I can’t tell you how much willpower that has taken!

Here’s the two pairs together. ‘Fraid I haven’t got any modelled shots at all.

These have been well worn this summer. Such a worthwhile sew.

Pattern: Class picnic Shorts, Oliver and S