Author Archives: Amelia Wray

Mersis Dress for a wedding?

Just before I moved, I decided to make a Mersis Dress I had been planning to wear to a wedding that was to take place this Summer (having been postponed from last year), but it has been postponed by another year – but at least I’m ready early and won’t be sewing the hem on the train on my way there!

This is the Mersis Dress by Pattern Fantastique – I totally lusted after their sequinned version and immediately knew it could be a good option for this crepe I had been hoarding for my wedding outfit. There were going to be two weddings last year but one did take place with only 20 people and the other has been postponed – you wait ages for a good wedding, 2 come along at once, swiftly followed by a global pandemic!

I was originally going to make the Zadie Jumpsuit, which looks amazing on everyone I’ve ever seen it on! But then I thought about the whole ‘having to get naked to go to the toilet’ thing and decided maybe a dress would be more practical for tipsy toilet trips!

I especially love the shape of the back neckline and I’m so pleased I decided to make this pattern. It feels really loose and relaxed on, but still looks chic I think, and has interest in the ginormous sleeves!

I made the size 10 with no changes – it’s such a loose fit all over that it’s not too difficult to fit but I wanted the shoulders and neckline to fit nicely and I think I made the right choice of size. The pattern goes up to a size 26, which is 51″ bust, 44″ waist and 54″ hip. It’s not the most inclusive set of sizes but they used to only go up to a size 16 so they have improved what they offer, so I felt okay about buying the pattern.

The crepe was something I bought from an instagram destash and there was 3m, which was lucky because being so long, this does take up quite a lot of fabric. I am 5’3″ and didn’t make any changes to the length, though I like that it sits a little longer on me than in the pattern images – I assume it’s drafted for the standard 5’6″, though I can’t find that info on the website. I definitely should have ironed the dress before I took these photos, though!

I don’t know if I’ve mentioned before, but I can be a bit slapdash with cutting out – I like to batch but out a few projects at a time and tend to do them a but quickly, especially if the fabric is a bit shifty, which this was. I definitely could have taken more care with the cutting out as some of my pieces ended up not quite fitting perfectly. The pockets also gape a little bit as I matched the notches instead of following my instinct to get them to lie flat, though I don’t think it looks terrible – it follows the line of the curved side seam.

I think I would be interested to make this pattern again, in a more stable fabric as a slightly glam summer dress. It could lend itself to some colour-blocking too, as there are some interesting seam lines. I also kind of want a sequinned version still…

Of course I might still change my mind about wearing this to the wedding by the time it comes around, but then I think I won’t possibly ever wear this, so I should stick to my guns. But sewing a new thing is always fun – and having an event as an excuse is my favourite thing…..

Knitting Baby Cardigans

I’ve recently got back into knitting, after making my hat I took a little break but then wanted to make all the things, like blankets and a Lauren Aston cardigan but I figured I couldn’t really justify buying yarn for new projects when I had a whole box full of yarn I’d had for years sitting there. I decided I needed to use a big chunk of what I already had before I was ‘allowed’ to buy new things (because once I learned to sew my knitting enthusiasm waned for years and I feared it would again, but with a very expensive stash sitting there!). I had a bunch of individual balls of acrylics so I thought ‘what better to make than baby cardigans for my 2 friends, one of which has had his son and the other is expecting later this month’? The pattern is one I’ve had for ages and now can’t remember where it came from but it’s so satisfying and quick to make – especially by the 6th time through!

So Ta Da!

I think this last one might be my favourite! Also they ended up a slight range of sizes because the yarns were slightly different weights I think – and I also think my tension is not very consistent. But this is good because then hopefully they will see the babies through a good few months, and maybe they’ll stretch and last even longer, who knows?!

My knitting enthusiasm is not waning yet – I made these cardigans between March and April – and I’m now knitting myself a jumper, which is taking shape considerably faster than the 4 years it took me to finish the last jumper I made for myself!

Refashioning a Shirt (sort of)

It feels like it’s been a while since I refashioned anything and this is definitely not the best, nor the most involved refashion I’ve done. It’s also been a while since I’ve updated this blog and the new wordpress editor is the actual worst thing I’ve ever been forced to use – at least before you could use the old interface but it seems they’ve removed that as an option. Urgh.

This is a shirt that my mum bought for my ex-partner and it was too big for him so he never wore it. Then I decided it was more in my colour palette anyway so I commandeered it and decided to take it in a bit as it was too big for me too. I definitely could have taken it in more though.

I did these alterations a while ago and I seem to have not written down the alterations I made. I took some length off the back by re-sewing the seam at the bottom of the yoke.

I also took off the sleeves, trimmed the shoulders on the shirt and the sleeves and sewed them back on – but they are still way too long on me so I should probably take them off again and take them in more but for now I’m just wearing it with the cuffs folded back and it seems to work fine.

The shirt is made from almost a flannel fabric so it’s pretty warm, which has been great with this never-ending cold weather we’ve been having in the UK. I think for next Winter I want some full-on flannel shirts though. My flannel pyjamas are so warm I want to live in them when it’s cold so, even though I already have a bajillion shirts, there might be some more on the horizon!

I feel like I want to be maybe a bit more adventurous with my next refashion project as I don’t tend to think hugely outside the box! And I’m inspired by the Sewing Bee to try some more outrageous refashions – though maybe not in only 90 minutes!

Moar Pyjamas

As I mentioned in my last post about the other pyjamas I made, I have another pair to share with you.

The fabric is some lovely brushed cotton from Fabrics Galore and I love the colours – the bright pink running through the blues really brightens it up!

As with all my other pairs of Carolyns, I made the size 8 and just shortened the sleeves and legs as I’m shorter than the pattern is drafted for. This is my fourth pair of Carolyns, so to be honest I don’t have much else to say about this pattern!

The buttons, as with my previous pair, were from Ray Stitch and thankfully they match the pink in the fabric really well.

This pair of pyjamas is a good compromise between the super warmth of the flannel pair and the much thinner cotton ones, so these are going to be great for ages yet, until the UK reaches it’s 3 weeks where it’s actually warm!

I know I’ve said this about jeans and about shirts but I think my pyjama wardrobe is definitely complete now – 4 pairs of Carolyns and 2 pairs of Lakesides. Until any of these wear out, I don’t think I need more sleep wear!