Monthly Archives: May 2017

Dartmouth top no 4 – Snakeskin Print

Here is another length of jersey fabric from Rosenberg & Son at the Sewing for Pleasure Show in March. I purchased 1½ metres of this Snakeskin print for a total of £6.00. I have no idea of the fibre composition but is probably a polyester/viscose/elastane blend. It is stretchy and very soft to the touch. The print is more appropriate for Autumn/Winter but I felt in the need of a ‘quick fix’ and the Dartmouth really does fit the bill.

Again as I had sufficient fabric, I opted for the full length sleeves. I had previously reduced the width of the long sleeves and the bodice pattern is now permanently 2 inches shorter than the original. As the fabric was so stretchy I opted to take 5/8th seam allowance and this has produced a slightly closer fit – but all good.

Having enjoyed this ‘quick fix’ I am now psyching myself up to get on with sewing some cotton blouses. Wish me luck!


2nd Baby Quilt – Blue & Yellow

I have several lengths of fabric and dressmaking patterns set aside for projects in May but for the first make of the month I have ‘indulged’ in a second heart-themed quilt for the Special Baby Care Unit at Winchester Hospital. It is again inspired by the cushion from Cowslip Workshops but this time worked in a Blue & Yellow theme.

Again I raided the giant box of scraps and using a smaller, more traditionally shaped die, cut 25 heart shapes from the various blue coloured printed cotton fabrics. This time I cut the backing squares at just 4½ inches square so that I could utilise some of the fresh-looking Lemon and White striped fabric. Also, this time I did not use HeatnBond fusible web. I simply pressed all the fabrics with a light spray of starch prior to die cutting the shapes.

The squares were stitched together with a ¼inch seam allowance and then I went in search of some wadding. I could not find sufficient wadding in the same fibre combination but, what I did find, was a length of pre-quilted White Broderie Anglaise polyester cotton in my stash. I have used this for the quilt ‘sandwich’ and am pretty pleased with the end result.

The quilting was done on the machine using a 3.5 stitch length, a quilting needle and walking foot. The design is a grid of straight lines approximately ¼inch from each joining seam. The binding was cut from one of the other remnants in my scrap bin. I cut on the straight grain 2½ inches wide with diagonal seams. The binding was pressed in half wrong sides together before applying to the right side of the quilt. I mitred the corners and turned to the reverse of the quilt before hand stitching in place. The finished quilt measures 20½ inches square.

I am pleased with this quilt which has provided me with a ‘holiday’ from jersey sewing and the delights of ‘fitting’ cotton fabrics. I am now invigorated and inspired to go on with some more dressmaking in anticipation of a long, hot Spring & Summer.