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A Tilly and the Buttons Delphine Skirt – the first of many.

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It’s taken me way too long to make this Delphine skirt! I have had the book Love at First Stitch on my bookshelf for such a long time and whilst I have good intentions of making up all of the patterns, I clearly keep on getting distracted with other garments!

This week it’s my turn to write a post as one of the Sewisfaction Blogger Team, and so whilst I won’t go into great detail here, I will leave a link  to my full review on the Sewisfaction blog so that you can hop over there and read all about it.

I so love the fabric that I chose to make the skirt. It’s a medium weight Japanese cotton canvas fabric, and has a bold retro floral design set against a dark blue background.

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Other than shortening the length, I only made one change to the pattern, and that was to swap the invisible zip for an exposed one. I’m really loving these exposed metal toothed zips at the moment and want to add them to everything!

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So I’ll let you head on over to Sewisfaction if you would like to know more, and in the meantime, as the weather is freezing here at the moment, I shall be reaching for my cosy tights so that I can continue to wear my Delphine despite the temperature.

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Take care, and I’ll be back soon,

Kathy x

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A Spotty Tilly and the Buttons Cleo Dress

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It is very much ‘that’ time of the year now in England when there is no denying that Autumn is well and truly here. It’s cold, I want the heating on and most of my fabric shopping now is now cosy corduroys, soft jerseys and snuggly sweatshirting.

My Tilly and the Buttons Cleo pattern is also something that I reach for in the Autumn/Winter. Whilst I have seen many Summer appropriate versions of this – for me it is all about snuggly thicker fabrics teamed with long sleeved jersey tops.

My fabric choice for this Cleo is this stunning navy spotty corduroy.  It was very kindly sent to me by My Fabrics, and I couldn’t be more pleased with it. There are so many colour choices with this spotty corduroy, but as I kind of knew that I probably wanted to pair it with my red striped Tilly and the Buttons Agnes Top, I went ahead and opted for the navy blue. Along with the huge choice of spotty cords, there are several other patterned designs and a wide range of the thickness of cord – from jumbo down to baby cord.

I would describe it as a light weight corduroy, beautifully soft, but certainly with enough structure to make the perfect Cleo.

As with all my Tilly patterns I cut a size 4, and I made no alterations other than shortening the length of the straps by 2″

I added a pocket on the bib front, but chose not to place the optional pockets on the back of the dress as I didn’t want any attention drawn to that area!!

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This is the first time that I have used dungaree clips as a fastening for a Cleo. I always  opt for a button option, but I have had these clips in my sewing basket for a while now and thought that I would give them a go this time.

They are really easy and straightforward to use, really nothing to them at all – you will need a hammer however. Fortunately my husband was able to provide me with that!

To attach the clips, carefully mark out exactly where you want to place them.

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Pierce a small hole using an awl or other sharp point.

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Place the pointed part of the rivet through the hole from the back, and line up the button over the top. Make sure if your button has a design on it, that it is the right way up, as it is impossible  to twist it once in place.

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Gently hammer into place!

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Ta Da! That’s all there is to it, such fun and the good news is that you get to do it all over again on the other side!

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I hope you like the outcome as much as I do. I really like the pairing of spots and stripes together, also love the red and blue combo too!

Thank you very much to My Fabrics for providing the fabric for this post. This is something I am going to love wearing this season. I certainly have my eye on some of the other patterned cords at My Fabrics and you may well be seeing more of this again soon!

Take care, and I’ll be back soon,

Kathy x

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A Tilly and the Buttons Agnes Top

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There’s not a great deal to say about this pattern that hasn’t already been said I feel, but it is finally my turn to see what all the fuss is about with The Agnes top.

I picked up the pattern from Sew Crafty recently when they had a 50% sale on patterns. At the moment I am trying not to be tempted by sewing patterns unless they are on sale, so I was delighted to see this, as I hadn’t ever seen any Tilly patterns at reduced price before. Maybe I should have picked up more…  Anyhow it is a really great website with lots to tempt you with, so I would recommend that you head over there and take a little peek!

I know it’s been said before but this top really is a great wardrobe staple, and it is the perfect close-fitting jersey top to be worn under all those Cleo pinafore dresses that we all have! I chose to make a simple long-sleeved version, but there is also the option to choose cropped or ruched sleeves, and there is a ruched sweetheart neckline version too.

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Tilly patterns are a dream to sew. Beautiful quality thick paper pattern pieces are just the best to trace from, and the instruction booklet is just gorgeous as it has fabulous photos as well as thorough written instructions. You can’t go wrong! There is a huge amount of helpful information on the Tilly and the Buttons website too, so do check that out if you are a beginner. The skill level requirement for this pattern is described for ‘improvers’.

I chose a red and white striped jersey knit for this project (insert your ‘Where’s Wally/Wenda joke here)! I love it. I have a ton of striped fabrics in my stash at the moment so expect to see more very soon!

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It’s lovely and easy to cut out as there are only four pattern pieces in total. As for the sewing – this is super quick to make too. I guess that it took me about 30 mins to cut out (including tracing my  pattern pieces), and maybe about an hour to an hour and a half to sew up. Thumbs up for that!

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Stripes involve a certain amount of pattern matching of course, but it went pretty well I think.

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The length of the sleeves and body are nice and long – how I like it, but you can try it on before you hem either of them and shorten them if you prefer.

I could not be happier with this top, and I ask myself why it has taken so long for me to give it a go. I have lots more Agnes plans and like many of you will soon have several to choose from in my hand made wardrobe.

Take care, and I’ll be back soon,

Kathy x

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Tilly and the Buttons Coco Dress Pattern Review

Alright, I know I am a little late to this party, but I have finally made my first Coco dress. I have wanted to try sewing with knits for a while now and decided that this would be the perfect pattern to start with. I picked up this medium weight knit fabric from a recent trip to The Fabric Place in Nottingham (along with some other fabrics which will be making an appearance on the blog at some point)! It’s lovely. Originally I wanted a classic navy/white stripe in a ponte but this was the closest I could get and I’m so pleased with it. The stripe is still there but with a pretty detail to it.dsc04660

As usual there are different options available on the pattern, you can make a top or a dress on this pattern. Choose different necklines, sleeves, cuffs and pockets to make it just right. I chose to make the dress with 3/4 length sleeves and a plain neckline. I also decided against giving the sleeves cuffs as it is likely that this will be worn with a cardigan and I didn’t want any bulk. The amazing thing about choosing this option was that there were literally 3 pattern pieces to cut out! How simple and quick – result!

This was also the first time that I had cut out fabric for a dress using my rotary cutter (only ever used for a little bit of quilting previously). The stripes lined up beautifully despite the dress pieces being cut on the fold -so no stretching or shrinking had occurred during the pre-washing of the fabric. I was also pleasantly surprised that this fabric doesn’t fray! I was very aware of the stripe pattern matching at this stage, so took time to match up my notches. This dress can be made up using your regular sewing machine. I was thinking that the overlocker would surely be needed for a knit project but no, this was all done on the regular sewing machine. No fraying seams means no neatening of them too. Woohoo!

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The sleeves are finished by simply turning them under and zig zagging into place. The same goes for the neckline ( yep – no facings), and the hem. I like the way the sleeves are set into the dress, instead of sewing the side seam and shoulders first and setting them in, the top of the sleeves are stitched in first and the side seam of the dress runs right up the side of the dress and then down the sleeve. Very easy – kind of a cross between a set in sleeve and a raglan. I must admit I did find the sleeves a little baggy. Not a problem but I will make them slimmer the next time I make it.

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Take care with your pattern matching

This is probably the quickest dress to make that I have ever made. I wish I had made one sooner, I love to wear knit fabrics in the Winter months, but it hadn’t occurred to me to sew with it until now. It’s comfortable, cosy and it doesn’t crease – winner. I do love pockets in a dress and the pattern gives you the option of patch pockets, although these aren’t my preference maybe next time I will pop some in-seam pockets, I don’t think this would be too much of a problem. The length was perfect for me, I didn’t adjust this at all.(I’m 5’2″).

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Little details make all the difference

So, another winner from Tilly and the Buttons, and I’m not surprised that I love it. This is my third Tilly dress, do check out my previous posts on the Bettine and the Cleo. Again this is simple enough for a beginner, but should you need help there is lots of advice to be found on http://www.tillyandthebuttons.com/p/coco.html do check it out – it’s brilliant!

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Hope this helps those who, like me, were nervous to work with a knit fabric. I know I won’t look back now. Have you made a Coco? I would love to hear from you.

Thank you again for stopping by, take care and I’ll be back soon,

Kathy x

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Tilly and the Buttons Bettine Dress Pattern Review

This is a special dress. It is the only dress that I have ever made more than one of, and I don’t plan on stopping yet – there are many more ‘Bettine’s’ still to come, that’s for sure.

  • It’s very easy – no tricky fastenings like zips or buttons. No darts or setting in sleeves.
  • It’s quick to make up – I love seeing it coming together so quickly.
  • It’s comfortable – who doesn’t love an elasticated waist?
  • Pockets. Yes please. Enough said.

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I chose to make it in a navy patterned viscose. It has a lovely drape and a little stretch (not necessary for this dress though), and although I love the fabric it is quite lightweight and sheer. Upon reflection it may have been wise to have lined it. Still great though and very wearable. I also chose to make the version without pockets. I must have taken leave of my senses- my first Bettine was made with pockets and I love it. Note to self – all future Bettine’s to have pockets. I also decided to make the sleeves without the tabs and keep them plain, I prefer the sleeves like this.

It’s a dream to make. Excellent instructions are written so well and accompanied by great pictures take you through the whole process, and if you need extra help then head on over to www.tillyandthebuttons.com where there is lots more help and inspiration with suggestions on fabric choices, pattern hacks etc. It is also worth mentioning that I found the dress is true to size when made up.

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Did I make any alterations to the pattern? No, however I may take in some of the fabric from the hips next time. The skirt piece is cut with a lovely shapely curve which is ideal for my shape, but just a fraction too much so I will taper this in on my next Bettine. The final step of the instructions calls for a 4cm hem. As the unfinished length of the dress was perfect for me, I decided to just turn up a teeny tiny hem on this occasion.

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Would I make it again? Definitely! Two Bettine dresses are not enough! I may try it in a lovely jersey next time as I noticed on the Tilly website that there are some good tips and advice for making it up in jersey.

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Finishing touches.

 

 

It’s a super little ‘throw over the head’ dress, and a real winner in my eyes, so easy to see why this dress is so loved by so many!

 

 

 

I would love to know if you have made a Bettine, let me know your thoughts I would love to hear from you!

Be back soon, Kathy x