Tag Archives: circle skirt

Tania Dress

12 Sep

Aaaaaaahhhh! It’s Friday. I’ve just finished a whole week at my new job and I got to come home early. Life is sweeeeeeeet!

And also stressful. New job=stress. But we’ll stick with life being sweet.

Today’s post brings what seems to be the last of my summer makes.

I hadn’t planned it that way- I didn’t think ‘it’s officially Autumn now, no more bright florals’; naturally my crafting seems to have taken me in a different print and colour direction but we’re going out on an absolute sizzler I tell thee.


Just look how summery it is! Sleeveless, bright yellow and florals to boot. You can’t get more August than that.

‘But doesn’t all that skirt get blown up in the August breeze?’




It’s blooming shorts! Well, culottes to be precise.

Yup, these are the Tania culottes from Megan Nielsen, slightly modified from the original of course.

I don’t know about you, and possibly this is TMI, but sweaty thighs are just gross. I do not like the feel of them touching each other and shorts look atrocious on me. Thus far I’ve had to suffer through the summers with leggings or tights on. The first time I met my Brother in Law’s new girlfriend I was wearing tights- it was the second hottest day of the year. * I’m pretty sure she thought I was a mentalist.

So I thought and I thought. And then I remembered that I had a skirt/short thing at Brownies. Now what was that called? Ah yes, culottes. And didn’t Megan Nielsen release a culottes pattern? Yes she did. Available for PDF download? Fantastic. Get on it instantly.

Of course, my first pair of culottes were an absolute disaster. The fabric choice was awful- far too drapey and it made me look like I was wearing a sack.

I had another go with a gorgeous cotton lawn (which was the right amount of drapiness by the way if you’re looking to make these) but I only had 1 metre of 42″ wide fabric and couldn’t get them out long enough. Sure, they’re technically wearable but I don’t like showing off my underbutt.

3rd attempt, no wearable pair of culottes and I decided to make a dress instead.

And thank goodness it paid off.


So twirly!!

I lengthened these quite a bit. Not only am I not a fan of the underbutt, I don’t like have my thighs out on show either so I added about 6 inches to the length. I thought about adding length at the top of the waist too, to account for the waistband which I’d taken out but when it came to cutting I completely forgot. Luckily, the fabric had quite a bit of give to it so I didn’t look like Miley Cyrus for too long


The whole thing went together really quickly. The culottes have just 4 pieces that are nearly identical, which I sewed to a bodice of Simplicity 1803 which I’ve made so many times now that it’s a really quick make.

The fabric is this gorgeous rayon I got from a company on Amazon called IndianBeautifulArt

I don’t work for them, this isn’t an affiliate link or anything like that, I’m just always very happy to share when I’m pleased with something.

The quality of the fabric is brilliant, the price is decent and, considering it’s shipping from India, the shipping is incredible. It came in 4 days over the weekend, from India!!

The patterns can be a bit hit and miss so there’s not always something on there that I like but quite frankly that’s a good thing or else I’d be broke!

Hemming this thing was a pain in the arse. I wanted to wear it that evening to a work’s dinner but the sensible me decided it would be a good idea to let it hang since the hem’s on the bias. I mean, it was a good idea- I had to chop a load of fabric off- but still, I like instant gratification!

Despite that, I’m definitely going to make more. This particular version hasn’t got pockets, but I’m going to add them to future makes and it will be the most practical dress in the Universe.

Oh, and I know I said this was an end of summer dress but look what I discovered


Turns out it looks fab with tights too. Win win.

*Not factual information but all days feel hot when you’re wearing tights in the summer.


Twirly Teal

1 Apr

Happy Easter!!!

Hope you all had a fabulous time-4 day weekend isn’t bad is it?! (Although I get two weeks off so ha!)

Anyway, enough bragging. I made something new! And by something you know it’s a dress…

Here it is!


I got the fabric from my recent Walthamstow trawl, think it was £2 a metre or something ridiculous. I’ve still got about 0.5m-0.75m left! And no idea what to do with it. (Ideas anyone?)

The pattern is basically the Daisy Dress by Eliza M but I lengthened the sleeves.

The lining is soooooooooo gorgeously soft, and it drapes beautifully. I’m really pissed at myself that I didn’t pick up more in every colour. It was £1.40 p/m and comes in every colour imaginable. I wish I’d taken a photo of the lining before I attached because when I tried it on it looked like the most beautiful shift dress but so comfy to wear and I almost didn’t attach it. But I had to 😦


The ribbon belt is rubbish I know- it was all I had. If you can’t see it’s that really cheap feeling plastic-y type ‘ribbon’. I’m hoping to find a closer colour match in proper double-faced satin and then stitch it onto the dress, which obviously I didn’t do with this one because it SUCKS BALLS!!!

The hem was a ginormous pain in the arse. I’ve never hemmed lace before and it was horrible! I tried double turning it up and it didn’t press too well and looked bulky and gross, so ripped it out. Then I tried horsehair braid which was too heavy for the delicate lace so out that came too. Then I got out my rolled hem foot which seemed like the perfect solution except the lace kept getting stuck on the foot and after about 10 seconds that got annoying- so ripped that out too.

Before I continue I’d like to point out the hem totals nearly 5 metres!!!  So double turning it I did about halfway before ripping it out- 2.5m. Horsehair braid included sewing it twice so that’s 10m. The rolled hem foot I probably did about 0.5m. So that totals 13m of ripping out!! It took me over the whole of Ratatouille to take out just the horsehair braid! I nearly just cut it out and I’m so glad I didn’t because that would be the length of just a shirt at this point.

Finally, I went with bias tape. Seems like the obvious choice doesn’t it? DUH!!! Although I had to press and steam it like a bitch. It kept flipping up the other way so out came my tailor’s ham, or what I like to call my rolled up blanket, and I steamed and pressed the hem for about 30 minutes.

Finally though, I had something that, despite the tiny thread remnants, had an actual hem!!

Admire it, because almost a whole day went into that hem!


Usually with the Daisy dress I only do a 3/4 circle skirt rather than a full circle skirt but did a full one on this dress. Actually, I think a 3/4 would have looked better. But look how twirly it is!


Black Swallows Dress completion!

23 Jan

Woo! Another post!!

I’m going to post a disclaimer now: I am not good at posting regularly. Actually, correction, I’m not good at taking photos. IF I took photos more often I would blog more often. SO, if you’re one of those people that needs a post every Tuesday at 12pm this blog is not for you!

Onto the actual post then shall we?

I finally have photos of something I completed! Or, photo rather.



The pattern is Eliza M’s Daisy pattern , which may I add, I got on eBay for £2.75 OH YEAH!!!! I’ve used this pattern so much because it’s just so versatile- just a basic dress pattern that can be adapted to so many other things. E.g, the collar I added to this one (pre-bought, on eBay 😉 ) which I think adds just a little ooh-la-la to what is essentially a black dress. I am, however, going to unpick and restitch the collar because silly me didn’t pre-wash it and it shrunk meaning it’s a bit out of shape.

Anyway the pattern has proven its weight in gold if only for the circle skirt pattern. I know it’s like one of the beginner, really simple, sewing for dummies things to sew but having a pre cut pattern piece for a circle skirt that automatically fits is just so time saving!! And all for £2.75 😀

The other good thing about this dress pattern is because it’s so simple it’s very easy to grade up and down to get an absolutely perfect fit.

(I promise I am not, nor do I work for Eliza M!)

I would also like to post another disclaimer: The mannequin is for display purposes only. I picked her up at a shop that was closing down but she’s a couple of sizes smaller than me so all my clothes look baggy and don’t photograph well. However, we’ve already waited two weeks for a photograph so let’s be thankful there is one at all!! .

I thought also randomly you may like to hear about a murder mystery party I recently attended. I am female. My character was a man playing a masculine woman. So I was a woman playing a man playing a woman who likes to pretend she’s a man. WTF?!!!!

Here’s how I turned out, along with Mark who was playing a French poet.


Would you be surprised if I told you I was the murderer?!

chinelo bally

Dressmaker| Author| Blogger| Freehand cutter

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