Thursday, 21 November 2013

DIY - Festive Glitter Star Garlands

Today's DIY is something to get you in the festive mood making lots of glittering stars to style you're holiday setting.

You will need: 
Glitter fabric (available in the shop here or you can make your own with card, glitter and glue) 
3 metres of fine sparkly ribbon
Swarovski rhinestones and tiffany clasps available from creative bead craft. You can also use a bead or sequin here. 
Sharp scissors

Make a star template and draw out as many as you want to pack on your garland. We used 10 on each three metre garland and our stars measured 6 cms across.
Cut our with sharp strong scissors.

Next take your ribbon and mark 10 points to attach your stars, equally spaced. We left 40cms each end to tie.

Using the tiffany clasp attach the star to the ribbon from the back. Place the crystal in the clasp and fold over the prongs with fine nose pliers.
Alternatively you can sew the stars to the ribbon with a bead or sequin.

Repeat all the ways along and there you have your garland. Simple and gorgeously sparkly!

And if you don't have the time to make these sparkling garlands yourself, we can make them for you. Buy them online in silver or gold from our shop. 

Patterns - Peplum Bodice Top

Now available as a pattern download is the most fabulous peplum bodice. 

This bodice can be made in a few different ways from the simplest bandeau bodice to a strappy summer top to wear on the beach or a stunning cocktail bodice complete with peplum to wear with skinny jeans or a pencil skirt.

We made out sample in a black and white star print quilting cotton from Millie Moon and trimmed the edges with satin.

As always this pattern is very simple and easy to print and use on just five pieces of paper and there's no taping pages together either! All of the photographed instructions and a list of materials are included in the download. Don't forget we have a sale on Patterns until 1st December


Monday, 18 November 2013


As an introduction to our fabulous, easy to use downloadable patterns we are offering them for sale at just $6 until the 1st December. This allows you to try out our patterns and make something gorgeous for your Christmas parties this year!
Buy and download from our Etsy shop HERE. 

Thursday, 7 November 2013

DIY - Sewing Basics - Anchor Stitching

Anchor stitching is the term we use for finishing the edge of a neckline or hem where the lining has been placed edge to edge on the garment.

This little stitch stops the lining rolling over the edge and showing on the outer.

Anchor stitching can be done by hand with stab stitches or by machine. Simply open the garment out flat and push the seam where the lining meets the outer to the lining side. You can secure this by pressing.

Then, pulling the seam apart as you sew, stitch 1.5mm away from the seam on the lining side. This anchors the seam allowance to the inside and stops the curling.

Wednesday, 6 November 2013

Tools of the Trade - Pfaff Expression sewing machine

Our Pfaff Expression 2 sewing machine was purchased about 2 years ago and has been a wonderful addition to the studio.

We actually changed from an industrial singer machine to this domestic and although nervous about how it would perform, it hasn't let us down once.

The pros ..........

No oil needed which means no drips or dreaded marks on our dresses.

A really wide arm so that we can push big tulle skirts through and manoeuvre dresses easily.

Clip on feet that are very quick to change. The machine comes with a great set including a tiny and very easy to use zipper foot.

Clear top loading bobbin - the bobbins are different and more expensive than standard bobbins but they hold loads of thread and you can easily see when you're about to run out.

So many stitches. I only use the straight stitch or the zig-zag but if I had the time or needed to quickly embellish collars etc. the patterns are very, very pretty.
I do also use the button hole settings which are fantastic.

Movable needle position - this is so useful

Long stitch length - great for gathering.

It can handle fast sewing and goes through glitter, leather, denim with ease.

The IDT sewing system means your stitches are perfectly spaces, timed and even. I think this my favorite part of the machine knowing I don't have to spend endless hours working out why a stitch is skipping.

Cons .......

The one and only thing that's a downside of this machine is that it un-loops from the arm occasionally which when you sew as fast as we do is quite a mangled underside to your sewing. You can usually hear a massive clunk! The pros far out way this little problem.

There are a number of good places to buy online and Pfaff have been a very reliable make. GUR Sewing machines were brilliant to buy from online with a whole range of machines and prices.

Tuesday, 5 November 2013

DIY - Glitter purse and kit - How to make a purse

We have just launched our glittering purse kit and here are the instructions on how to make it step by step.
If you would like to purchase the kit to make this purse it is available in the shop here. 

Your will need: The purse kit (buy here) 
                          sewing machine
                          clear thread (we used maderia)
                          needle and thread
                          heavy duty size 100 needle
                          zipper foot

You will have : 2 glitter purse pieces, 2 silk lining pieces, 2 tab pieces, 1 zip pull piece, 1 small split ring, one zipper

Step 1:  Sew the zipper to the glitter purse piece. Place the tabs across the zip and sew one side of the zip to the purse piece.
Slide the zipper pull to the centre and sew the other side to the zip. Trim the ends of the zipper.

Step 2: Leaving a 2cm gap at the top, sew the silk lining pieces together all around the curved edge.

Step 3. Fold the top of the silk lining down one side and pin to the zipper. Now sew in place. Repeat for the other side.

Step 4: Now fold the purse together. Tuck the lining up inside and sew around the outer of the purse so it fits securely together. Go round the edges again with a zip zag to finish.

Step 5: taking the long strip of glitter for the zip pull. Fold in half and tuck through the gold ring. Stitch in place.

There is your finished glittering purse. To embellish further you can applique one side or add more sparkly gemstones.
Store away from the light and don't worry about any glitter coming off, it never seems to loose it's sparkle. I've been using mine for a year!

Patterns - The classic T Shirt Pattern

Time for another new pattern available for download. This is the super useful and versatile classic t-shirt pattern. 

The pattern comes in three graded sizes and can be made in stretch jersey or woven cottons and silks. We made our sample in a pretty white embroidered cotton with a black satin trim to highlight the neckline and keyhole back.

This is a great pattern for making little luxe t shirts in lace or silk too, try adding a collar for a smart day top or embellishing the cuffs.

The downloadable pattern comes with all three sizes and photographed instructions on how to sew the t shirt. Very easily prints on 5 pieces of A4 paper. Purchase from our Etsy shop here.