Monday, January 23, 2017

Coral necklace

There are a few coral outfits appearing in my wardrobe and I decided I needed a different style of necklace for them, so I headed back to Zilchbeads and found another inspiring spiral necklace using long Magatama 4x7mm beads, together with size 8 and 11 seed beads.

Photo from

The beads are quite cute, and I was told that one way they looked like a "boot" and the other way a "shoe" so when stringing you have to make sure that they are all facing the same way.  I chose the "shoe" orientation,

and I had fun making the earrings using both orientations,

and here is the full set!

They are getting quite a bit of wear this summer with my cold shoulder top and my watermelon frilled top.

Sunday, January 22, 2017

Cold Shoulder Top

Back in December during my first lot of toile preparation for Susan Khalje's classes I decided to make myself a new top for summer.

To start with I pulled out my TNT knit pattern, KS 3740 and then thought I would add the cowl from the ASG Cowl Neck Knit Top Sew-along, so I traced of a new pattern and followed the great instructions and had a new front pattern.

Then I dug out this fuchsia knit that I had purchased at The Remnant Warehouse that worked with this skirt that is an orphan in my wardrobe now that the knitted top no longer fits.

I merrily cut out my top, stitched the shoulders and overlocked the side seams and tried it on!

Did you notice above the words "no longer fits", well it was a complete disaster, partly due to the fact that I have gained some centimetres and the stretch of the knit wasn't what I thought it would be.  The top has now had its side seams unpicked and I am trying to work out a way to salvage it.

However I was determined that I would have a new top by the end of the year!

Back to the drawing board, this time I pulled out some Coral Cotton Knit that I purchased from Pitt Trading back in 2015.

First I checked the amount of stretch and it was better than the fuchsia knit, so I went ahead and cut out and sewed another top but this time I only basted the side seams before I tried it on.  A bit snug but wearable so the sleeves were basted in.

Looking in the mirror it was very apparent that I hadn't made the forward shoulder adjustment to my knit TNT pattern, and with the knit being rather thin it was really noticeable.

It took me a few days and then it dawned on me, what about a cold shoulder top!

I undid the top of the sleeve and then put it on, turning down what I thought looked good, pinned in it place and then took the sleeves out, stitching the new top hems on my coverstitch and then trimming the seam.

I hemmed the sleeves and then stitched the sleeves back into the armholes.  I added Lite Steam-A-Seam2 to the remainder of the armsyce

turned it under and coverstitched it in place.

After a few washes
Back to the sleeve pattern, I pinned what I had cut off and it was 6cm.  So for the next version I will create a new pattern and straighten the curve at the top 1cm of the sleeve so that I when I turn it to hem there is solid fabric all the way across.

The back view

2017 Stash Out: 1 m
2017 Stash In: 4 m

Thursday, January 12, 2017

Susan Khalje Couture Sewing School in Australia

I was so excited to find out that Susan Khalje was coming to Australia from the Australian Sewing Guild and you my have seen Kristy talk about it as well.

During her 2017 Australian Teaching School she is offering:
  • 7 day Classic French Jacket sewing class
  • 6 day Couture Sewing school
  • 3 day Guipure Lace skirt class
  • 2 day Couture Techniques class

I have always wanted to attend the Classic French Jacket class especially after reading about it on Melanie's blog and I had planned on heading to Baltimore sometime in 2017.

So February is going to be a busy month for me as I have enrolled in 3 of the classes;

  • Classic French Jacket, 
  • Couture Sewing school, and 
  • Couture Techniques class.

Kristy also pointed out that Bewitched is having a closing down sale and I made a bee line for there a few weeks ago and found some ink navy wool crepe for the dress I am planning and a wonderful tweed for my jacket.

The Couture Sewing school had me thinking hard on what to do for this as we are not people who go to balls, or fancy dinners and I don't have that very special birthday coming up soon either.  Then I remembered I had Susan's Crafty Class - The Couture Dress using V8468 and after seeing the amount of different looks this pattern can achieve, I have decided to use this pattern for this class.

For the Classic French Jacket class I have decided to use Susan Khalje's pattern -  The Classic French Jacket.

I have been working on my toiles for the last 2 months during my limited sewing time and have attended two Sunday afternoon classes with Anita from Studio Faro who has worked so hard with me to fine tune the fit of both garments.  Still one more round to go, but now I am more comfortable with the fit for when I meet Susan.

2016 Stash Out: 0 m
2016 Stash In: 4 m

Monday, January 9, 2017

2016 in Review

I am definitely late to the party this year,  but I do like to look at what I managed to achieve each year.

Gillian has again encouraged us to look at our Top 5 Hits, Misses, Highlights, Reflections and Goals for 2016.


Reptilian jeans, I love them.

Pleather top, I am so pleased how this worked out.

My BIL's Ducati Henley, I thoroughly enjoyed the process and how well it turned out in the end.


The rayon shell top is a fail, I do not like how it works with the top I made, probably wrong fabric choice.

The biggest fail and the one that completely took away my sewing mojo for quite a bit of the year was Burda 7286 Jacket, wrong fabric, gaberdine weave doesn't work with tailoring!!


  • I've travelled a lot this year, Armidale, Brisbane as well as Puyallup where I met Carolyn and Patti.
  • Attended 2 sewing weekends with my sewing buddies.


It was an interesting year last year, I seriously took up Continental knitting and am enjoying it immensely, there is a cardigan that just needs the buttons sewn on and it fits perfectly.

The bags I have made have filled a hole in my life both for travel and also at home.

My addiction to fabric has not been cured or curtailed, unfortunately more came in 42.95 than last year and less went out 20.1.  This does not include the bags.


I managed to complete 2 of my goals for 2016:

  1. Picking (Continental) knitting. 
  2. Entered the bag contest at Pattern Review.
I am carrying the other 2 across to 2017 as they are still projects that I want to complete e.g.
  • Pants
  • Lingerie

Finally, I would like to thank everyone who visits my blog, takes the time to comment and share my sewing, knitting and jewellery making journey with me.

Now for the collage of my makes for 2016.