Take One Dress: Sew-along!

Wednesday, 26 February 2014


Look at this !  A fantastic sew along! 


Isn't this fabric gorgeous! And those beautiful pleats!
I'm so thrilled that Melody at Adventures in Domesticity has taken time to 'sew-along' with the Take One Dress monthly theme.

She was inspired by Natalie's vintage dress revealed here, and  has come up with something adorable; a two-fabric dress with 24 pleats. Stunning.
See here for more details on Melody's creation

I love sharing the inspiration and seeing the different directions it takes people. Share your sew along in the Take One Dress Flickr group, or email me and let me know. I'll share your creations here.

The Take One Dress journey is about to take it's next chapter.

 On Monday Jenya from While She Was Sleeping will show how this amazing Mad Men illustration,  has inspired her. Marta from Do Guincho set a fantastic February challenge with this lovely dress.


 Am I the only one who's excited about Monday...?



News update...! Time travel... and more!

Wednesday, 19 February 2014

There’s lots going on today! Here’s a quick bulletin… 

As-it-Seams goes back in time and 10,000 miles away 


I’m in sunny, warm Australia reminiscing about When I was Young! 
How I wish I could follow my blogpost to the Southern Hemisphere, it’s been so cold, wet and windy here!
I’m guest posting over at Sew Pony, as part of the lovely When We Were Young series. Guests are invited to recreate an outfit from their childhood and I went a little crazy. Follow me over here for details. 

Last Call for Votes in the Compagnie M Sewing Contest 


In case you hadn’t stumbled on it, there’s a sewing contest over at Compagnie M.
And there’s just 24 hours left to vote! 
Rather obsessively I have entered a blouse and a dress. There’s a judging panel, but votes also count for 20% of the result. I’d love it if you hopped over and voted by clicking on the heart icon near the title of each entry. There are lots of other great creations too
 You can see the blouse here 

And vote for the dress here 

Phew… time for a coffee…

The Louisa dress becomes a nostalgic blouse

Friday, 14 February 2014

 Did anyone remember that my New Year Resolutions were sew 'practical' and 'less experimental'?
No ? Neither did I, when I set about creating this blouse.


And when Marte announced her Compagnie M Sewing Contest, the part of me that can't resist a deadline kicked into action. (I'm a journalist - I simply do not function without a deadline.) And I had such a sense of vision about what I wanted to create, that I couldn't help but start cutting up this stone-coloured cotton linen blend.
I've entered this blouse in the contest - see here
Ever since I made my first Louisa dress, from Marte's simple and perfect dress pattern, where I added a front placket, I had pondered taking this idea further.


So, I extended the middle section of the Louisa's distinctive placket to run the full length of the bodice. I also wanted to add fullness, so created the placket with a separate piece with eight pintucks. With a bit of fiddling and thinking, I kept the Louisa's lovely pockets.


 I had a vision to create a very nostaligic blouse,  a little inspired perhaps by the children's clothes worn in the Cotswolds here in England 100 years ago.  A bit rustic, simple lines.
The back closes with a single button, and I moved the Louisa's split back further up and added eight pleats.


 The asymetrical collar was 'borrowed' from Straightgrain's Tinny dress. I made a size 5, cut large, and Missy is only 3 so this is a little big on her.
I sewed this like a demon over a couple of evenings, broke a couple of needles, stitched my finger etc... Then I faced a photographic nightmare. Missy has been ill this week, a fever and a cough, and not in the mood for pictures. And it has barely stopped raining for a second! Literally. There are homes just a few miles away where sandbags are their only defence against the surging River Severn. So work has also been busy for me - reporting on what's going on.
Then this afternoon, it stopped raining for five minutes (yes, really) Missy seemed a little brighter, and I lured her outside with sweets. But brushing her hair properly was a step too far. And we could really only stay out for a few minutes in her new blouse. There's a fierce gale blowing too! So these photos will have to do.




She wore it with a little cardigan and looked lovely later on - like a doll from an old photograph.

I've got this blouse and my first Louisa dress entered in Compagnie M's contest. If you like them please click over and click on the little heart thingy. There are some fantastic creations to browse through - and great prizes. Here's the link to vote for my first  Louisa dress. And to vote for the blouse click over here. I love to have your support! Thank you!! 


Take One Dress - La Gang a Nat to Do Guincho

Sunday, 2 February 2014

The first Monday of the Month - and that means Take One Dress! Take One Dress is the monthly series on As-it-Seams, offering a chain of inspiration to bloggers. (See here for details).
And I am so thrilled that Marta from Do Guincho said yes to the challenge. Marta  lives in Portugal and sews for her two daughters. They look like really fun girls, and she's one of those bloggers that I wished I knew in real life - playdates and sewing chats with Marta would be amazing!
She's also an architect and brings a real sense of vision to her sewing. I knew she would do something really interesting with the challenge posed by La Gang a Nat last month and, of course, she has...

My name is Marta, I blog at DoGuincho and I am delighted to be guest posting at As It Seams. Thank you Victoria for the invitation!

Last month Natalie, the girl being La Gang a Nat, not only made this lovely outfit for her little girl but also choose a superb vintage dress to be an inspiration for my creation.
Natalie’s dress had lots and lots of details I could use, but I decided to pick my favorites: color combination (pink/blue), big box pleats and contrasting zipper.


I’ve started by drafting my ideas on my sketch book (I knew from the start I wanted to use a lace zipper) but then a package from my friend Constanca arrived with these great vintage patterns she bought in New Zealand… One of them was just the right one for my outfit! Lucky me!



And I also already had the right fabric to make my Take One Dress outfit: a blue and white polka dot fabric from my grandmother’s stash. But this was not any polka dot fabric. Actually I had two pieces of fabric: one with “condensed” dots and another one with fewer dots per square meter. But the two of them together looked great.
As the fabric wasn’t enough to make a dress I decide to sew a tunic instead and match it with a pair of basic pink corduroy shorts (using the same self drafted pattern I've used for this denim shorts). I have to say I am in love with this outfit! It has just the right amount of vintage felling but it is also super comfortable! And now I fell like adding lace zippers to all my clothing!



Unfortunately Ines was not in the mood for a photo shot. These photos were taken under my bed sheets as this was the only way I could make her have fun while I was trying to take photos of her new clothes…







Well, choosing a dress to inspire Jenya, the great Russian/Australian blogger from While She Was Sleeping, was a lot harder than I thought. Especially because Victoria and Natalie had made such a great job choosing the previous dresses…
So I e-mailed Victoria asking her to give me some directions and she told me it could be anything! In her own words: “I don't mind what the next garment is, just as long as you think it's inspiring, it can be something you own, but I did also think it could be a historic outfit or film costume or anything really!”.
A film costume would be great, I thought. But a TV series costume would be nice too… I immediately though about Mad Men! Besides liking a lot this series, I love the vintage but modern filling of the costumes. So her it is! This is a dress for Miss Holloway (in a great illustration by Stanley Chow) but, Jenya, fell free to check out other Mad Men costumes and be inspired by them.


Happy sewing, girls!

 Marta! I love it. A box-pleat and exposed zip in one! Genius. Thank you so much for taking the creative story to the next chapter.
And I'm inspired by your Madmen dress - and excited already about Jenya's creation, due to be posted here on March 3. Follow As-it-seams on Blogger, bloglovin, facebook etc if you think you'll need reminding of the next installment !
And if you're inspired to sew along, there's a Take One Dress flickr group. And also let me know and I'll share your creations here!
See you March 3! 

Take One Dress....the journey so far....

Saturday, 1 February 2014

Didn't January seem like the longest month?
Especially as I was so excited about February, and the Next Take One Dress Creation,  which will be unveiled by Marta from Do Guincho on Monday. 

Take One Dress is the monthly series on As-it-Seams, offering a chain of inspiration to bloggers. (See here for details). I'm so excited to see what Marta comes up with. She's always interesting and inspiring.

And, there's new addition to the line-up! Heidi from the much-loved Elegance and Elephants will be filling the June slot. Welcome Heidi, and thank you so much for taking part!
The full Take One Dress line-up now looks like this -


  • January 6 - Nat and the Gang
  • February 3 - Do Guincho
  • March 3 - While She Was Sleeping
  • April 7 - Sew Pony
  • May 5 - Groovy Baby and Mama
  • June 2 - Elegance and Elephants
  • July 7 - As it Seams

Time for a quick recap... Here's how the chain of inspiration  so far:

November - Vintage dress bought in New York



which inspires

December - As It Seams Christmas Dress 



and  also inspires


January - Natalie presents her Take One Dress as inspiration for Marta at Do  Guincho...



Now Marta.... where will this take you? I am so intrigued to see the Do Guincho stamp on this!

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