Tag Archives: daisy dress

The Rushed Rat

22 Apr

Before we kick off, I really feel that I ought to explain the title.

I keep rats. I have 23 in total…



Ok so you’re back with me after the shock of keeping 23 rats (it’s actually not the most I’ve had at any one time!)… and I love them dearly. I’ve mentioned a few times that I sew pet beds, well they’re for rats (and other small furry creatures). Gosh, I feeling like I’m outing myself here!

My shop is called The Relaxed Rat. Bear that in mind, we’ll be back for it later.

As a rat lover I often attend rat shows….



….. Ok so you’ve dealt with the shock that rat shows exist. Yes, they do, and they’re just like Crufts! But on a smaller scale 😉

The day before going to a rat show I decided it would be a really fantastic idea to wear a dress with rats on it. I had the fabric which I got in the giveaway (yep, we’re still going with that!) but no clue what to do with it.

Now we put all of that into the mixing pot and it becomes: The Rushed Rat!


Shall we actually see the thing?

About 2pm I started designing my dress. I designed a dress that resembled none of the patterns I had in my arsenal. What a fantastic idea for a dress that has to be made quickly.

I had to sit and think for a while about what I was going to do- there was no time for a muslin. Should I risk this gorgeous fabric or do something tried and tested but ultimately not what I wanted? Or, give up on the whole plan and wear something already in my wardrobe?

Obviously I went for option A and risked it.

You’ll never guess which bodice pattern I used as my base. Yep, it’s the Daisy dress again! (Seriously, I should start a series on Daisy hacks!)

I didn’t have time for tissue paper, measuring or faffing so I just pinned the bodice to the fabric, but not on the fold as usual, and cut round it making the neckline a little higher and ‘v’ing towards the front and extending the centre front out by 2-3 inches. I cut the bodice back out, again raising the neckline, and then sewed them together at the shoulder seams.

From here I pinned the side seams together, put it on and faffed about with finding the centre front and making darts. Once I had all that down I had to sort out this collar.

You might recognise the collar fabric- it’s my old bed sheet making another appearance! Its debut was also as a collar- it just seems to be the right shade to match everything!

I used Butterick 5846 as the base for the collar but I had to extend it a little as my neckline is slightly different, then I drafted a facing for the placket and stitched it all in.


Look at the cute little ratties!

It’s not perfect- definitely could’ve done with the facing a little wider- but I’m pretty darn pleased with it! It didn’t take any faffing either, it all just sort of worked! I’ve covered that pretty quickly- that actually took me a couple of hours!

From there on it was pretty plain sailing. The skirt is just a simple gathered skirt, with pockets I might add! but I did mess up the sleeves a little.

I had to go out for a few hours (from 5.30-11pm) which made this plan even more ridiculous, so by this point we’re at about 1am. I grabbed the first sleeve pattern I found and just sewed it all in. Then when I came to try on the dress the sleeve felt quite snug. I looked at the pattern and it was for a knit dress.

Of all my sleeves to pick, why pick the one designed for stretchy fabric?!!

I shortened them a little because I felt like it would help with the snugness. It did not, and I miss the length of the original sleeves but this isn’t so bad. Then I used bias tape as facing (yellow because I had nothing else!) and double turned the hem. I did accidentally rip the fabric a teensy bit when opening the buttonhole (come on, it was 2am!) but I just zigzagged over it and I think it’ll be fine.

Cinderella did indeed make it to her ball, in her rat dress and the whole thing didn’t fall apart so I’d call this a success!

I love the contrast between the green and purple (which also goes perfectly with Agatha!) and I love the fact it has rats on it! I’m on the look out for more rat fabric and also considering stamping my own (I definitely have a rat Miette skirt in mind!)

Just to top it all off here are a couple of pictures of my babies:



Me and Annie after she won Best Pet!


Smiley Pippin




Some beautiful bubs.


Enough spamming now! They’re not so bad are they?


Simple Daisy Dress

12 Apr

Question: do you name all your items of clothing? Cos that is way too much effort- I can barely name my pets myself let alone all my clothes. Patterns with a name are simple- Miette 1, red Miette, Black Kelly etc etc, this amalgamation of stuff however needs to be referred to somehow so it needs a name.

I digress- here’s the actual thing I’m talking about



I won this beautiful cotton sateen from Fabric Godmother in the giveaway along with a copy of By Hand London’s Georgia pattern, I think with the intention of using it to make said pattern.

As lovely as the dress is it just isn’t my thing- cups to amplify the size of my boobs? figure hugging? short? Na-uh.

Unfortunately I just had way too many ideas about what to do with this fabric but nothing amazing. Eventually I decided I needed a new dress and I just hacked into it before I had any real idea of what I was going to do.

I knew with such a plain fabric I needed detail…somewhere. Whilst researching ideas for the Hollywood Sewalong I had seen a lot of yoke embroidery and this appealed to me. It doesn’t really work in my proposed Sewalong dress so I decided to add it here.

So I knew I was going for yoke detail- that required yokes. I have 2 patterns with yokes- 1 button down and 1 wrap. I wanted my dress to have neither of these features so it was drafting time!

By drafting I actually mean I chopped off  the top of the Daisy bodice and cut out the yoke section from my button down.

The skirt was tricker than I had anticipated- I draped this thing several times before I decided to go with the box pleats. I took photos too and sat for ages flicking between the 3 trying to decided which one looked best!


Box pleats?

Lots of little pleats?


After I had actually decided what to do the rest of the dress was pretty simple- I used bias tape as a facing for the sleeves and neckline and double turned the hem.

At this point I had 1 hour until I was due at a family do and I still needed to shower! I hadn’t started making the dress thinking I would wear it that day but I was so close to finishing it would seem a shame not to show it off.

I had a radical idea with the embroidery- there was no way I could fit that into an hour and shower so I cut 2 flowers out of some lace I had and stitched those on instead.

I originally planned to take those out and embroider afterwards but I actually really like them the way they are- they add colour, detail and texture to an otherwise plain dress so embroidery will have to come in elsewhere.

I have three confessions to make with this dress.

1. I didn’t change my overlocker thread. Infact, I rarely change it so everything is overlocked in white!

2. I played with white animals which left fur all over the dress and didn’t wash it before photographing it.

3. I totally didn’t plan for any kind of closure as I just got so carried away with sewing it but luckily for me this is stretch cotton so it slips right over. Phew!

Astoria in Aubergine

20 Oct

Today is very special- Makesphere’s first completely homemade outfit!


The cardigan is my Agatha which I can tell you is ridiculously warm. I’ve worn it a few times but ended up with it on/off/on/off all day as it’s just soooo hot. I hope it’ll be good for the upcoming months though when this British weather decides which season we’re in.

Anyway, I could go on about Agatha all day but you’ve already heard about that- so here is my next make; my Astoria dress. (The fabric was called Astoria, I’m not just making stuff up these days)


This is the Daisy Dress pattern by Eliza M. I really have very little to say about it- I’ve made the dress as is and with alterations about a billion times now as it’s just so quick and easy. It only has 4 pieces (5 if you use the facing or screw it up like me) and the trickiest thing about it is inserting the zip. Which, I might add, I’m getting pretty good at now! I used to dread putting zips in because somehow I managed to misalign the pieces during zip insertion but now I’ve been doing handpicked zips and it’s so much easier. They look much better too


The fabric is a normal cotton which I love using with circle skirts as they just have so much oomph and really stand away from my hips.


The only thing I’m a little disappointed with is the matching of pieces- I didn’t plan my cutting very well. I usually only do a 3/4 circle skirt but didn’t leave myself enough room on the fabric to do it in one go so I had to cut 1/2 and then 1/4 and sew them together. The issue I then have is there’s a seam down the back which lines up with the zip, no problem, but then there’s a seam elsewhere which doesn’t line up with anything and it’s just kind of sad 😦

I don’t think people in real life have time to notice these things though because nobody has come up to me and said ‘did you know your seams don’t match, loser’ so I can only assume they haven’t noticed.

I think as a sewist I always try to get things as close to perfect as possible incase I get ‘caught out’. If somebody asks me if I made what I’m wearing that immediately rings alarm bells because I’m thinking there must be some kind of giveaway, something that doesn’t look right but I don’t think non-sewists usually spend a lot of time looking at the darts on their clothes and measuring them so why would they on mine? Although that would also be weird if somebody randomly whacked out a tape measure and started measuring my bust darts.

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!


chinelo bally

Dressmaker| Author| Blogger| Freehand cutter

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