Stitching Santa 2017 – The Sewing One – On Its Way

Hopefully, my parcel for my sewing partner in Sheila at Sewchet’s Stitching Santa will be arriving any day – I hope she isn’t tempted to peek before the big day.

This enamel pin is what I bought with my budget.

This little drawstring bag with I made with some cute Mabel Lucie Atwell fabric contains some little gifts.

Like these buttons….

…..and this sew on purse clasp…..

and a few little charms …..

The pinchushion whale made her way in there but I did take the pins out in case of postal difficulties.

A handmade needle case made with lovely Liberty, some 10 inch squares of their tana lawn cut from my stash and a fat quarter(ish) of the blue and red one all in a luscious Liberty bag.

I hope she enjoys her Christmas surprise.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Knit Two Together

Once upon a time, back when we called yarn ‘wool’ and there was often a little wool shop or  ‘kiosk’ in even the smallest of towns and independent knitwear designers were twinkles in their grandparents’ eyes, my Mum taught me how to knit.

Actually, I think she first used me as a living wool winder as I remember my early encounters with wool involved standing for a long time, arms outstretched, whilst a skein was converted into a ball.  Despite this unpromising apprenticeship, I took up the needles at a young age and have continued, on and off, ever since.

I don’t remember my maternal grandmother ever yielding a pair of knitting needles so I wonder what started my mother off on her lifelong hobby.

Perhaps it was this. ….

…..which  would have been just a little after the time she looked like this.

I wonder if she made those pompoms herself.

When I moved to France almost thirteen years ago Mum would come and visit several times a year as well as at Christmas and, what with my sister living in Spain, she was nearly always on her holidays which I hope compensated just a little for us not living next door.   Regular readers will know that, during these visits, all other activities were practically abandoned in favour of knitting and chatting together.

This is Mum with Mlle. Tialys the Elder who, while not having caught the knitting bug at the time of writing, is a dressmaker and cross stitcher and could probably be brought into the fold at some future stage.

She made this for her Nan as an early Christmas present.

Back in 2013 Mum was nominated for a voluntary carers’ award for visiting a housebound elderly lady every week – almost without fail – for  ten years.  She was 80 herself at that point but this was the sort of thing she did.   She wasn’t going to attend the award ceremony – being far too shy and modest – but I said I’d go with her and she agreed to go.  She received a framed certificate from the Lady Mayor and afterwards we had a traditional English tea (another one!!) in lovely gardens in the sunshine.

While I was in England caring for my Mum with my two sisters, I knitted this little scarflet for my Stitching Santa partner.

Even though Mum didn’t have the strength to knit herself any longer by this stage it still felt like a bonding experience as I’m sure she could probably hear the clicking needles and the quiet chatting  as my youngest sister began to knit a bear and my other sister started to knit squares for a blanket.  One of my nieces visited, saw the three of us companionably knitting,  and wanted to learn.  And so the passing on of skills continues.

I have to say – and I know she’d agree with me – that Mum never really progressed beyond ‘enthusiastic amateur’ status.  Mainly due to the fact that she hated ‘the sewing up bit’ and looked at me as if I were mad if I ever suggested anything as radical as ‘blocking’ a finished garment.  She was the Queen of UFOs (unfinished objects) – her loft was full of half finished jumpers, cardigans, baby clothes, etc. – but even those things she finished weren’t deemed good enough to wear or pass on to the new babies of the family.  The little baby jackets, cardigans and bootees we found cast off,  in both senses,  was poignant to say the least.  The joy for her though was in the choosing of the pattern, the yarn  wool and the actual knitting – if something decent came off the needles that was a bonus.

You may remember my recent post about the Ugly Christmas Jumper and how it came to be and I hope you will be pleased to know that it was finally finished (once I’d added proper ribbing to the sleeves and lengthened the body) and handed to ‘the nephew’ one week before Mum died.  I think he will treasure it forever.

It was a shame, as she loved Christmas so much, that she died the day before the first window of her advent calendar was to be opened, especially as there was a chocolate inside.

Family was everything to my Mum and I am so pleased that my sisters and I were able to be with her, in her own home, in the last few weeks of her life and could be there for her final, peaceful breaths as she had been there for our first ones.  I am finding that a huge comfort at this difficult time.


Wherever you are now Mum, I hope there’s lots of wool and chocolate and laughter.

10th September 1932 – 30th November 2017

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A Scrap Here and There

A picture heavy post today – and not so much of the rabbit* for a change – as I’m pressed for time and might have to go back over to the U.K. at the weekend to give my sister a little break in the care of our Mum.

It’s Kate and Gun’s ScrapHappy day so I’m joining in with some creatures made from scraps to show you.  Remember the dogs I was making for a garland to bedeck my stall with at the upcoming Christmas Fair in aid of the dogs retirement home?  Well there are now five of them and I think that’s how it’s going to have to stay as I’m not sure I’ll get round to making any others now before the event is upon us.

I still haven’t decided how I’m going to join them in a garland but it will come to me I’m sure.

I also made another whale pincushion and, even though you know it makes me feel bad to stick pins in it, I have.

Who says you can’t have a floral whale?

Sorry about my depth of field in the whale photo but you get the gist and this might be one of my Stitching Santa gifts.  (‘depth of field’ – get me and my fancy camera talk.  Unfortunately, I can talk the talk but can’t always walk the walk where photography is concerned.)

Talking of fund raising, I just received some new ribbons I ordered for the dog collars I make.  They are very nice quality woven ribbons and are very bright and breezy.  I love the Red Riding Hood one, so cute.

From the same company I ordered this lovely jersey fabric which I might make into a warm, snuggly dress for the winter – or a tunic if I haven’t got enough of it.

I saw the writing on the selvedge but ignored it

Kids indeed – what nonsense!  I’m not afraid to wear a swan dress.

I had a happy unbirthday today because the very generous Claire sent me a gift of this little pouch which is just the right size to keep a packet of mini tissues in.

Such gorgeous fabric and the little snap hook on the end will make it just right to clip into my handbag and save me rummaging in the depths when I need to dry a tear (or blow a nose).

I have a couple of knitting and crochet finishes to show you but they will have to wait until I’m back from the U.K. and have,  hopefully, participated in the Christmas Fair on the 25th of this month.  Everything is a bit up in the air at the moment and days, let alone weeks, must be taken one at a time.

* ‘Rabbit’ – short for ‘rabbit and pork’ which is cockney rhyming slang for ‘talk’.  Just in case you were wondering.

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Only 47 Sleeps to Go (or Thereabouts)

Yesterday, Sheila announced the results of the draw to see who would be partnered with who for the Stitching Santa  she is organising again this year.

Amazingly, I’m a bit ahead of the game for a change and, not so amazingly, I have decided to participate in the Stitching and the Knitting Santas again this year because I do both but, more to the point, I like getting gifts under the tree especially if they are crafty ones.

So, I’ve made a start with these gorgeous enamel pins from Jodie over at ricracsews

This one will be for my knitting partner (obviously)

and this one will be for my stitching partner.

(both photos courtesy of Jodie’s Etsy shop because I have already wrapped mine up)

Colours may vary as I haven’t decided which one I’m keeping yet (I have two of each in different colours 😉 and I’ll be wearing mine at the craft fair I’m involved with at the end of the month

These are the ‘purchased’ part of my gifts, now to decide what else to put in.

Are you participating this year (and if not, why not) and, if so, have you made a start or haven’t you given it a thought yet?

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The Tale of One Ugly Christmas Jumper and How It Came To Be

A bit of an explanation for those of you who might have noticed an absence of my usual waffle in the comments section of your blog posts.  I have been to the U.K. for a week but not for the usual fish and chips, underwear grab in Marks and Spencer and other frivolities.  Unfortunately my Mother is ill and my sisters and I are taking it in turns to keep her company while she receives palliative care at her home.  Logistically it’s quite difficult as I am in France, one of my sisters is in Spain and the youngest is in Wales which – though in the U.K.,  is still a 3.5 hour drive away from where my Mum lives.  Still, whilst it is still possible, she wants to stay in her own familiar surroundings so we are doing our best to make sure she has one of us there at all times.  I did take my iPad but screen time was sacrificed to quality time and, although I have certainly read most of your posts, I haven’t been commenting.  In fact, since I returned home yesterday I had just under 300 emails and had to be ruthless with the delete button – just so you know.

Anyway, despite taking a new crochet project with me and some small sewing bits to keep me occupied, it was all put aside in favour of ‘the Christmas jumper’.  This project was entrusted to Mum, just after she received her diagnosis, by my nephew.  I think he thought it would give her something to work on and keep her mind occupied.  She was actually knitting a rather lovely top for herself at the time but, as the sun shines out of his proverbial, as far as my Mum is concerned, all else was swept aside in her desperation to finish it for him and the boring stocking stitch began.

My nephew knows absolutely nothing about knitting and printed a very basic pattern off the internet and told her that was what he wanted.  Despite knitting for years, my Mum has never got the hang of intarsia knitting and the chart left her dumbfounded.  My middle sister was with her at that stage and decided to make the Christmas tree in felt and appliqué it on to the front.  It was, I am told, a disaster.  So, despite not even being a regular knitter herself, she came up with a separate knitted version of the tree, complete with pompoms for the baubles and star,  and sewed that on.  Mum completed the back before the extreme fatigue she is now suffering from kicked in, the same sister took some of the yarn back to Spain with her and did the sleeves and my task was to pick up the stitches and do the neckband and then sew it all together.

Et voila!

Could this be the weirdest Christmas jumper you see this year? It is like the Frankenstein of woolen wear – being made by different makers at different times and all of different abilities.  Unfortunately, my sister was unsupervised when she knitted the sleeves in Spain and so mistook k1, p1 rib for moss stitch so there is absolutely no difference between the width of the cuffs and the width of the sleeves.  I didn’t have time to do anything other than to sew it all together but it did occur to me that it might be worth picking up around the ends of the cuffs and knitting a proper ribbed piece on.  What do you knitters think? Would that work?  I know that the moss stitch piece would have to stay but we could call that a design feature.

He will be delighted to get this for Christmas.  No, really!

I am sure of  two things however:  it will be the only one of its kind and he will never wear it in public.

Did I mention he is 35 years old?

This is my old boy Taz – he turned 12 in September. He is in recovery mode.

The day before I was due to leave for the U.K. I had slept very badly because, not only was I very nervous about my trip not knowing how I would find my Mum and worried about my caregiving abilites but  I could hear the dogs marauding about downstairs in a restless manner.  I got up to let them out in case they needed to pee and then I noticed that Taz’s stomach was hugely distended and rock hard.  I thought it might be the very dangerous condition called ‘bloat’  which  happens when a dog’s stomach fills with gas, food, or fluid, making it expand causing it to put pressure on the other organs. I wondered about calling out an emergency vet – it was 5.30 in the morning – but suddenly he was incredibly sick and I remembered that I had found the dog food delivery ‘tampered with’ the evening before and a kilo of one of the two 15kg sacks stored downstairs suspiciously missing so I put it down to him gorging himself.  So, instead of rushing to the vet, I took my daughter to work at the normal time but, when I got back , I thought I’d take him to the vet anyway as he needed some more pills for his arthritis and let her have a look at his stomach – ‘just in case’.  Luckily I did because she did an echogram, saw his spleen was in a bad condition and decided to whip it out on the spot.  So, he lives to scent our lives with his gaseous emissions another day – while he was having the echogram the nurse was at the wrong end holding his feet still and had to run and fling open a window.  ‘Welcome to my life’ I told her.  Luckily, Mr. Tialys was on his way home from the U.K. to cover for me while I went to the U.K. and we picked him up at the end of the day.  We put him in one of the girls’ t-shirts instead of a buster collar and, just over a week later, he appears to have recovered well.

Just what I needed before setting off for a week of grappling with multitudinous medications and daytime television but I am now an expert in both.

Not being a daytime t.v. viewer myself I am amazed at what gets discussed, dissected and repeated over and over again between the hours of 08.00 and 17.00.  The worst of it is, because the target audience is obviously older the adverts are nearly all for life insurance ‘so your children aren’t burdened with your funeral expenses’,  fund raising pleas for cancer charities with images of patients and, as it was Halloween while I was there, numerous coffins and other death related paraphernalia – all very uncomfortable viewing when watching with an elderly, sick loved one :/   It was worse than an unexpected explicit sex scene coming up while watching with all the family round at Christmas time.

Still, there was always the Jeremy Kyle Show on to remind us that perhaps a more rigorous programme of contraception ought to be promoted amongst people who can shout at more than 90 decibels and use one swear word for every two ordinary ones in any given sentence whilst demanding to hear the results of the DNA test to prove who, out of a number of possible candidates, is the father of their unfortunate child.

Anyway, I’m back now.

 

 

 

 

 

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Tiptoe Through The Tunics

Remember I made a tunic for Madamoiselle Tialys the Younger recently? (If not it’s here). Well, I fancied making one for myself and it just so happened I had the perfect fabric already in my stash which doesn’t happen very often.

Not last time, but the time before that when Ali over at Thimberlina organised the Yorkshire Spoolettes meet up, she ran a competition for people who couldn’t attend to guess the total mileage undertaken by all the people who did.  By some amazing stroke of luck I hit upon the nearest mileage (in the international entry category) and Ali sent me some goodies.  I had said I wanted to make an Agnes top but she was very generous and sent me more than enough of this black and white stretch fabric so I thought I’d save it for something a bit more substantial than a t-shirt.

So I did and here’s what I made with it.

I made the same view tunic as before but with the straight hem instead of the pointy one.

In other tunic news, I’m currently having a rocky relationship with scuba fabric.  I thought I’d give it a whirl for a different style of tunic I wanted to make for Mlle T. and she chose the fabric (so don’t blame me!).

I bought this pattern which seemed simple enough but the Mademoiselle had other ideas.

She wanted bell sleeves so following Ali over at Thimberlina’s example ,although using a slightly different method,  I adapted it as requested.

I had a bit of a struggle with the neckline, back and front,  as it came out too gapey which might be due to the scuba fabric although the pattern does list ‘novelty knits’ as one of the suggested fabrics.  I’ve improved the neck problem a little by taking off the facing which I wasn’t keen on using anyway, reducing the back seam allowance and cutting the facing slightly smaller than it was before so I could stretch it round the neckline a little more which brought it in a bit though it’s still not perfect.  The sleeves and the bottom require hemming and I’m not sure how to tackle that yet – I’ll do some research.  I know I could leave it as it won’t fray and the hem of the tunic would probably be O.K. but the sleeves don’t look right unhemmed in my opinion as you can see the plain white reverse of the fabric which just looks odd.  (The trailing thread will be cut off though – I didn’t leave that as a design feature).

My conclusions about scuba fabric are that I don’t much like it.  I don’t like the slightly spongy feel and the vaguely ‘cheap’ look and feel of it – although there might be different qualities I suppose.  The designs are a bit ‘urgent’ too if you ask me.  I don’t like the floral one Mademoiselle chose – I think it looks frumpy but there you go.

I must try and get over my dislike though as she also chose this one 😮

I know what I’d like to do with it but I think the only way to get away with actually wearing it would be as a very fitted t-shirt with 3/4 length sleeves perhaps.  Any ideas or would you accidentally on purpose lose it at the bottom of your bin fabric stash?  How do you feel about scuba fabric if  indeed you have ever encountered it?  Is it just me?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Funny What Can Bring On An Attack of Nostalgia

Back in the misty mists of time when I was a teenager, I used to commute to school as my parents decided to move out of London and I wanted to keep going to the same school so I took a train every day.  As a result, all my friends were up in London and I also had a Saturday job so every weekend I would again take the train to London to work in the Kings Road in a trendy perfume and cosmetics shop and then, after work, I’d  pitch up at my friends house (smelling amazing) and we would start getting ready for the night life.  Sunday morning we would lie in and then, more often than not, we’d take ourselves off to Petticoat Lane market to spend our Saturday job money on new clothes.  Sunday afternoon we would lounge about watching old black and white films on the T.V. being horrible about the actors before getting ready to go out on Sunday evening, arrive home at all hours and then be almost impossible to turf out of bed on Monday morning for school .   Her parents must have had the patience of saints.  God bless you June and Harold.  I always sat at the back in French class on Monday so the teacher wouldn’t see that I was asleep.  If only I’d known where I’d end up living.   All this was done with my belongings packed in a carrier bag – usually a Sainsbury’s one although I must have purloined that from somewhere else as my Mum was more of a Tesco shopper then  – and I can’t think now why I never had a proper overnight bag at any time during this period.    Still, at least nobody could say I didn’t re-purpose before it was even fashionable.

Which brings me,  in an extremely roundabout, rambling and not even really relevant way, to this mini suitcase I’ve just made.

Another pattern I bought from Jodie at ricac Sews when she had a sale recently.  It’s called the ‘Small World Suitcase’ and I’m still trying to forgive her for planting that Disneyland ride song in my head again.  A particular form of torture inflicted on many parents and children over the years

Anyway, this is a pattern with slightly more to it than those little dogs, whales and stars that I bought –  a doggy further down to jog your memory about that.

It was fun to make but does involve a lot of interfacing.  Each exterior piece has two layers of mediumweight interfacing plus a layer of fusible fleece.  While the interior pieces have two layers of interfacing.  The cutting out of all those is a bit of a chore but worth it for the strength and solid feel it gives the resulting case.

The constructed exterior and interior turned inside  out to show their interfacedness (made up word).

The lining is hand stitched in and,  after I’d treated myself to an unexpected acupuncture session, I resolved to use those little pegs (aka wonder clips) next time instead of pins.

It turned out much bigger than I was expecting and I think this would take a couple of sets of undies, some cosmetics, a toothbrush, a nightie and a (smaller) teddy very nicely.

Much better than a carrier bag be it Sainsbury’s or Tescos.

It would make a project bag with a bit of a difference or a very cute bag for a little girl (or a big girl) – which is why I have another on the cutting table as we speak.  I have a Liberty fabric one in mind too which will come as no surprise to regular readers.

I’ve also made another ‘rabbit’ sewing box for my bunny loving client who commissioned  another two for Christmas gifts.  I’ve finished the first one and have the second one in production.

The wildlife enthusiasts amongst you will notice that these are actually hares but I love this fabric so much and I thought she wouldn’t mind a bit of artistic license.  I have promised to revert to bona fide rabbits for the second box.

Here’s the inside

Talking of Christmas gifts – which I sort of was – don’t forget that Sheila over at Sewchet is obviously bonkers  very kind and has decided to organise us again in another exciting Stitching Santa event this year.  Whoopee!  I don’t know what I like best – sending a parcel full of sewing related goodies (or knitting/crochet related if you prefer) to the recipient Sheila pairs me with or receiving a parcel myself.  If you haven’t signed up yet and want to participate this year, there’s still time – just click on the image below and it will take you to where you can sign up.  I sign up for the sewing and the knitting one because I like both and can’t choose – so I don’t.

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A Doggy Diversion

Last Saturday I was supposed to be helping out at a fund raiser for  Twilight the retirement home for old and disabled dogs here in France which I think I’ve told you about before.  It’s run by a British couple who take in dogs who would otherwise be spending the rest of their lives on a concrete floor at the back of a refuge somewhere being ignored by prospective owners – and that would be the lucky ones!  You can read about their work here.

Anyway, I wasn’t able to help set up on the Friday afternoon so arrived early on Saturday morning but our esteemed team leader and champion cake maker Deb was in a state because she had just found a dog on the side of the road which she thought might have been hit by a car as his eye looked swollen and red and he was holding his head on one side.  She wanted him taken to a vet to be scanned for a microchip and his state of health assessed but she couldn’t leave the venue and her husband doesn’t speak French so I went with him and the dog to find a vet open on a Saturday morning which happened to be the one right near my house that I’d left just half an hour before.

Here’s the little chap – a French bulldog who has definitely seen better days.

The waiting room was packed so I told Deb’s husband to leave me there and I’d call him when we’d been seen.

All the other patients seemed to be tiny little yorkshire terrier puppies and pristine white kittens waiting for their first vaccinations and there I was with this little fleabag straight from a horror film.

I sat up one end of the waiting room hoping that his gaseous offerings would not offend too many people.  They did.  A window was opened.  Many fleas were visible on his body where his constant scratching had caused him to suffer from eczema and lose his hair in patches.  I could sense people moving away from us and clutching their pets closer torn between sympathy and disgust.

I took him out to see if he wanted to do his ‘business’ in the vet’s garden and, when we went back inside and sat in the same seat, I noticed the floor was wet and could smell something that reminded me of flea spray.  The nurse had taken the opportunity in our absence to spray all around where we’d been sitting in case we infected all the others.  The shame! I felt like a pariah and he wasn’t even mine.  I did make it clear to the assembled pet owners when we first arrived that we had found him that morning but as he kept putting his little paws up on my knees and gazing at me adoringly, I’m not sure they believed me.

The good news is he was microchipped and, even more miraculously, we managed to get hold of his owner who met us back at the venue and I was prepared to give her what for but it turned out she seemed to be guilty of casual neglect – mostly due to lack of funds – rather than cruelty.  We would have preferred her to have signed the little chap over to us so we could then get him properly treated – that eye will probably need to be removed – but she promised me she’d go and at least discuss treatment with the vet.  I don’t think there’s any equivalent of the  P.D.S.A. or Blue Cross organisations where people with financial problems can take their animals for cheaper veterinary treatment although I might be wrong.

Anyway, I finally got back to the venue at midday and they obviously managed without me because we raised a nice amount for Twilight which was brilliant considering we were only really selling cakes, bric-a-brac, second hand books and clothes and holding a raffle.

I had pre-ordered one of Deb’s gorgeous ginger cakes which are always just the right sort of stickiness but I wasn’t keen on the label.

I’m more of a strawberry blonde.

So, a day of high and lows and I hope the little dog gets the treatment he needs for his eye and his skin and flea infestation.

Still, it could be worse, he could be a magpie.

 

75 euros if anybody wants me to go back to the junk shop and get it for them.

 

UPDATE:

The little dog has now been taken to the vet by his owner, his eye has been treated and he is no longer constantly scratching.  Perhaps we made the owner sit up and take notice and, in that case, I consider my two hours in the waiting room with a flea ridden, red eyed, farty dog time well spent.  Let’s hope she doesn’t allow him to get in that state again.

 

 

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Not Too Much Of A Stretch

 

Sorry for the pun but, after my last post where I painstakingly made a man’s shirt – albeit only a wearable muslin so far  – I fancied a bit of an easier project before I embark upon the ‘real’ shirt.

I bought this pattern in Minerva Crafts’ sale a little while ago as I thought it would be an ideal style for Mlle Tialys the younger to wear for work.

This is a close up of the fabric which is a sort of teal blue although, in all the other photos it looks more grey.  Birds seem to be everywhere on fabric and clothes at the moment – have you noticed?

I made view D with a sort of handkerchief hem (or whatever this sort of hem  is called) but with 3/4 length sleeves.  All done on the overlocker/serger apart from the zig zag round the neckline and the twin needle stitch around the hem and sleeves.

Perfect with leggings although it’s a thankless task making clothes for the younger as she’s not that interested and would stay in pyjamas all day if she could.

Ooh, hang on, she looks a bit happier here.  Maybe I’ll make another then.

I’m not sure about making the leggings on the pattern.  It seems like an awful lot of fabric and faff to make something that won’t look any different to something you can pick up for a reasonable price almost anywhere.  Unless, of course, I made them in some unusual fabric but then she probably wouldn’t wear them.  What do you think?  Would you/have you made leggings? Is it worth it?

 

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A Celebration of Concentration

Remember I told you I was making my first ever man’s shirt and, as that represented quite a challenge for me, I was going to take it slowly, make a muslin* which, in the best case scenario, would be wearable and follow a sew along by somebody much more adept than me in the shirt making field?  Well, I didn’t lie.

(* for the non-dressmakers amongst you, a muslin or toile is a sort of try out of the pattern to test fit etc.)

This is the Walden (or Negroni) by Colette and was recommended by many so I thought I’d give it a go.  I thought I’d go with the short sleeved version first as it will hopefully still be warm around here for a couple of months yet and used a locally bought, reasonably priced fabric for the muslin rather than cut into the Liberty tana lawn I’d bought specifically for the purpose shown below.

The man in question – aka Mr. Tialys – didn’t want any pockets which was fine by me so, with those out of the equation, plus no plackets on cuffs which the long sleeved version has, it was a little less daunting than it could have been.

So, some of the ‘challenges’ –

This is the back yoke and you can see that there are a couple of pleats incorporated in the body of the shirt.

This is one of the felled seams of which I am quite proud as it goes right round the armscye (or ‘armhole’ when I’m not speaking ‘dressmaker’).

Not too many buttonholes which I did on the machine anyway and, for the first time, I used my machine to sew the buttons on – which was fun.

You will be relieved to know that this is not a real person’s neck – not even one used in a scary cosmetics advert about ageing. It is, of course, one of my antique mannequins doing the modelling honours.

The kind of collar on the short sleeved version is called a camp collar :/  It’s a bit weird – having a button loop right up on that left hand side of the shirt front which would, if somebody wanted to throttle themselves, loop over a tiny button just under the right hand side of the collar.  As if.  However, I was being an obedient pattern follower so I did the loop but drew the line at a tiny button.

Reader – it fit!

 Just.

Excuse the tatty jeans but he was gardening or something when I forced him to model which, as you can tell, he feels supremely comfortable about 😉

Next time I will be sensible and make an XL which is what Mr. T. is in RTW stuff as he is very tall but the measurements on the pattern sounded enormous so I thought a large would do which it sort of does but with not much wriggle (or pretend pointing into the distance) room.

Anyway, I have decided that much as I love the idea of it when somebody tells me they ran up a dress in a couple of hours, I get much better results when I find something a bit of a challenge because when I concentrate, I slow down and don’t make as many mistakes.  I have ‘run up’ so many ‘easy’ tops and dresses on my overlocker and ended up throwing them away that I’m determined to treat every new thing I make as if I’ve never made it before and concentrate!

Having said that, I did make a tunic top in a knit fabric for Mlle. Tialys the Younger yesterday which I did fairly quickly but definitely not in two hours.  Photos to follow soon if I can persuade her to get out of bed allow me to take some photos.

Meanwhile, another shirt shot, another antique mannequin neck.

You are not going mad, these are the same doors as in the first photo but I was playing around with my photo editing and thought the turquoise colour in the first shot showed the fabric of the shirt up better.  The doors are actually red.

How about you? Do you find you sometimes mess things up when you think it’s going to be easy or you’ve made something so many times already you make silly mistakes through being over confident?  Or is it just me?

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