Memory Foam Pillowcase pattern

I have a couple of these weird and wonderfully shaped pillows – they’re really comfortable and (allegedly) prevent snoring.  I have no idea if this is true because hubby refuses to use his.  Apparently pillows should be pillow-shaped.

Anyhow, I’m using ordinary pillowcases on them at the moment but that looks pretty rubbish.  Is there a pattern out there for these types of pillows or perhaps one of you clever ladies (or gents) could give me some tips on how to design one myself?

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Frogs

It’s been weeks and weeks since I blogged last – we’re only just back online. 

I have to say it’s not been a brilliant start to the New Year – just before Christmas our poor house was diagnosed with dry rot.  It’s an absolutely horrible fungus thing that spreads like crazy and the treatment is pretty radical.  So basically, since Christmas we’ve been living on a building site while the builders hacked off infected plaster, ripped up floors and pulled out windows.  Anything of value has had to be packed in polythene to stop the phenomenal amount of dust getting into it.  So I’ve had no computer and no sewing machines for weeks!

The good new is the work is all finished bar the decorating.  The bad news is that it’s cost us a fortune (many thousands!) so hubby and I are thinking up ways of making extra cash.  Think I need to pull my finger out and start doing a few craft fairs …..

Anyway – frogs.  Check out this really fab fabric.  I picked it up in Butterfly Fabrics in Cardiff yesterday.

I’m going to make the bag in Issue 14 of Sew Hip magazine.  It looks nice and roomy, which is good because I tend to carry half a ton of junk round with me.  I’ll get hubby to take a pic of it when it’s finished.

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Can anybody help me?

I’ve just consigned my latest project to the bin!

I decided to make the high-waisted straight skirt from the free pattern in issue 4 of “Sew” magazine.  I checked the size guide in the magazine and decided to make the 14 as it gave the size to be 28″ waist and 38.75″ hips.  A little snug for me but figured I could let it out a little.

To cut a long story short, after stitching the back to the front I tried it on for fit.  It was WAY too big!  I did try taking in the side seams but I had to alter them so much the shape of the skirt didn’t look right.  In frustration I unpicked the zip and threw the rest of it in the bin.

So, is it the pattern or is it me?  Normally I would measure the pattern pieces before cutting out because from experience I know that the envelope back isn’t always accurate.  Annoyingly, I couldn’t this time as the pattern didn’t show any waist or hip placement markings and the pattern didn’t mention how high on the waist the skirt was meant to sit.

I will attempt this skirt again and just cut it to a smaller size, but if anyone has any tips on how to measure a pattern without the markings I would be really greatful.  Sew magazine gives fab free patterns with every issue but it looks as though they all have this same little problem.

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New Flickr Group created

I’ve created a new Flickr group today for fans of “Sew” magazine. Just click http://www.flickr.com/groups/sewmag/

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New and improved Doris

Bless her – the poor girl will be getting a complex.

Doris (my brand new Lady Valet dressform) is fab.  I love her to bits.  But her boobs just aren’t big enough.  When she arrived this week I measured myself and faithfully dialled those measurements onto Doris.  I proudly showed her off to hubby and said “look – she’s the same shape as me now”.

“Actually, she’s not” he said “you’re not that shape at all”.  Well, I suppose he would know.

I measured myself again and checked against Doris’s dials.  Everything seemed to be correct so what was the problem?

Then I realised – I’m an E cup and poor old Doris is about a B.  The measurements were right but the curves weren’t.  What to do?

Do what any self-respecting girl does – get a padded bra!

By the way – that rotten velvet bodice has been reconciled to the carrier bag.  I genuinely don’t think I’ll ever be able to sew with velvet again.

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Simplicity 3529 with design alterations

So here goes the story ………..

My friend Sheena had a bit of a fashion dilemma.  Hubby had a new job and they were due to attend his work’s Christmas party.  She wanted to look good in front of his colleagues but couldn’t find a thing to wear.

One morning she plonked a catalogue down on my desk and pointed to this dress …

tie-back+Emily+dress

tie-back+Emily+dress

“What do you think?” she asked. 

“The dress is quite nice” I replied “but I don’t think it’s your colour”.

“I’m not keen on the colour myself” she said “and I don’t really like the hem either, but it’s the only dress I’ve seen that’s anywhere near what I’m looking for”.  I spotted the price.  They want £89 for it???

So I said it. 

“I’ll make one for you” I told her “it’ll be the colour you want, the hemline you want and it’ll cost you a fraction of that one”.  I showed her Simplicity pattern 3529 and she loved it.

Misses Dresses
“The thing is” Sheena said “I’d really like it to be backless like the one in the catalogue, to show off my tattoo”.  Hmm, now this pattern doesn’t have a backless version so I was going to have to work out how best to do it.  This would be the biggest design alteration I’d made so I’d really set myself up for a  challenge.  But with a bit of help from my tutor Babs I managed it.
I created a toile first to sort out any “kinks” in my alterations (another first – I’ve never made a toile before).  Sheena and I also decided not to have a tie-back dress as the ties would just obscure her tattoo, defeating the point of having a backless dress.
Rosebuds - close up
Rear of dress
For more pics click here 

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Meet Doris

I’m so excited!  My latest sewing acquisition arrived today!  My very own Lady Valet dressform.

I’ve hummed and ha-ad about getting one for ages but kept telling myself it was an extravagance I really didn’t need.  How wrong was I??  I’ve been making a Christmas dress for a friend and have been using a dressform in evening class to work on it (post still to come).  I was sold!

So, I pooled my Christmas money (thank you family) and ordered one from Jaycotts on Christmas Eve.  Doris arrived this afternoon.

She’s already wearing a half-finished velvet top that’s been sitting in a carrier bag for about two years – maybe I’ll get it finished now.

I’ll keep you posted on how Doris and I get on.

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