Buttons By Pigeon Wishes, The Speckled Collection

Hello Makers!

Let’s talk buttons! Maybe not the first thing on the list to get excited about when planning a project! Yet here at Pigeon HQ we’re hoping to change that and make choosing the right buttons just as exciting as choosing the right fabric!

We have once again relaunched our Etsy shop to sell directly to customers our collection of buttons, The Speckled Collection. You will see a certain familiarity in each button as certain colours and textures run through each button, they reflect the beauty of unpredictability and texture. I love how sewists are moving towards bold, solid fabrics and these buttons were sourced to compliment that.

 

The conception of all this came from Ana (cocowawa) a truly inspirational maker and pattern designer and even more specifically her pattern the Maple dress. I bought this pattern as soon as it came out, I had seen Ana wearing a sample a few weeks before and fell in love! The only cause to pause…..buttons. The pattern requires four prominent front closure buttons and while a million fabric ideas rolled through my head the lack of buttons to compliment was disappointing!

Amidst this I was starting a Fabric Wholesale business and while sourcing fabrics I couldn’t help but to look out for buttons, purely for myself and this pattern. The buttons I ended up finding were beautiful and the more I sourced, the more I wanted to make all I found available to everyone!

 

While setting up my wholesale business everything button related was put on hold. Being a wholesaler I was a bit conflicted/unsure of how to sell the buttons, it wasn’t viable to make them a wholesale product in the beginning, a bit of time (and brainstorming) was a blessing and lead me to launching the buttons as a Pigeon Wishes product.

I worked with an incredible illustrator, Georgina Baker, to bring the product to life with these beautiful backing cards. As a vintage lover I wanted the buttons to have a touch of keepsake specialness and to be easily displayable within your sewing area.

 

Putting a product (and really yourself) out into the public is scary. Self doubt always (ALWAYS) creeps in. The sewing community is known for being highly supportive of indie businesses and I’m very thankful to be on the receiving end of such encouragement.

Vlogging Solo, August Plans

If you’re like me, in the past few months you’ve been discovered and started binge watching sewing vloggers on youtube… for me, like blogging I’ve been watching, crushing and enjoying vlogs so much, I thought…let me give this a try.

If you’re thinking of starting a vlog, go for it! You don’t need a new camera or to invest loads of money on equipment. You just need to be comfortable talking to yourself out load :p

I literally made my video with a iphone propped up with some books and a random box. I edited it on a apple computer with imovie, again my computer is 5 years old and is on it’s last legs…apple products lifespan is not 20 years stong!!

I love blogging and think blogs will never die but videos are such a great medium and another way to connect with other sewing enthusiasts. I hope you watch and enjoy 🙂

Meg

By Hand London, Victoria Blazer

Hello and oh dear me it’s more than halfway through the year *inner cry* summer is fully here so I decided to make something for Autumn (there’s a logic there somewhere, I’ll tell myself I’m following the fashion season calendar).

With this project I’ve officially made three of my 2016 make nine. I’m shocked. My sewing plans so far have always been laid out in detail but rarely completed. I now have high hopes of actually finishing that list!

The Pattern

This is By Hand London’s Victoria Blazer.  One of the first patterns I bought, it’s been in the stash for ages and sewing this up brought back serious memories of finding sewing blogs and when I first started my sewing journey.

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The  Fabric

This is another Walthamstow, Man Outside Sainsbury’s find (yep ,the man deserves capital letters). Apparently this fabric was a Zara leftovers. I bought it in the week I swore off buying black fabric because I wanted to experiment with colour more but it was so lovely I couldn’t leave it behind.

I bought the lining fabric a while ago from a John Lewis sale and I regretted it immediately. Not really a lining fabric, it is 100% cotton and a bit heavy, I liked the print but couldn’t imagine it on a dress/skirt looking good on me. I’m now so glad I didn’t take it to a fabric swap because now it’s the reason I love this coat so much…..and why flasher pose will happen numerous times whilst wearing this coat.

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The Pattern

Why was I so scared? Why did I wait so long to sew this pattern? This is the perfect pattern for a jacket scared sewer to start with. The pattern was very easy to sew. It came together in a day and there are hardly any pieces to trace out.

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This patterns reminds me of why I loved BHL so much. Confidence builders. A brilliantly facilitating sew along and a modern, stylish pattern. This pattern company got a lot of new people into sewing (me included).

However, while I was blindly following their sew along, they didn’t include stay stitching or clipping the edge so my lining doesn’t peek out, means this is very much an amateurs attempt and has some flaws.

Also, the pockets are also very shallow, it feels like anything I put in them would fall out.

Adjustments

I made no adjustments and made a straight size 10.

Marilla does a fantastic post on how to add a facing to the blazer so the lining doesn’t show through, which I will definitely be using next time (my mum wants a blazer too, she bought the fabric and everything haha).

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Making something so wearable and easy to incorporate into my wardrobe has left me beyond exstatic and makes me seriously question my previous and future makes in terms of usefulness and practicality.

Plus finalllllllly biting the bullet and sewing something I was thought was too challenging has really boosted my confidence and makes me what to try really extending myself with sewing.

I wasn’t alone in making this jacket and the final push came from my lovely sewing partner in crime Gabby. You can see us making it up below, her version is just beautiful and I had serious fabric envy.

 

Wish you fantastic summer days

Meg xx

Tangoed, Charlotte Kan Tiedress

Hello, it’s been awhile but I’ve been on a Netflix, non sewing binge! Anyway, back in the sewing world Me -Made May is currently in full swing, I haven’t taken part because I know I just don’t have enough me made clothes, but this is was the first time I’ve taken a me-made with me on holiday. I can’t wait to have enough clothes I’ve made to wear a me-made daily and I am enjoying following (stalking) the MMMay16 tag.

These pictures are now far from the reality of where I’m currently sitting, although London is being especially lovely this week. These pictures where taken in Marrakesh and now I understand why so many artists where inspired by the city, it’s a vibrant, beautiful place.

The Pattern

This is the Charlotte Kan Tie dress, I’ve sewn this pattern before and I have it on my, ever increasing list, to sew up a winter version with longer sleeves. However, Charlotte updated the pattern from the previous one I bought and I gave it a look over and thought it would be the perfect pattern to stash bust with.

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Charlotte revised the patterns instructions and it is far more beginner friendly with less guess work than before and I even attempted the pocket, got to love a good pocket, which I didn’t before because it’s a bit of a complicated one and the previous instructions were too vague for me.

The fabric

I have no idea what type of fabric I used. It photographs as ridiculously orange, which it absolutely is. From a distance you can just see bright orange approaching. Which is why I chose a different fabric for the ties to try and tone down the colour…but which colour really matches with orange that tones it down!! I’m really on a mission to not buy fabric unless I really need it, so I went through my entire fabric stash and this burnt orange/brownish, sheer fabric was the best of the bunch. It’s not the most groundbreaking of colour combinations but it does make me feel less Tangoed.

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Fitting

I sewed up size small with no problems. Whilst making the bias binding the fabric stretched almost by double and I’m sure the fabric stretched whilst I was making this too. So this version is baggier than my last but I’m not too fussed about that. However, I am now going to always ask what type of fabric I’m buying so I won’t have these surprises.

Alterations

To further try and break up the colour and make the dress a little more interesting I added a seam at the back. This idea came from the layout plans given on the pattern instructions for people with narrow fabric.

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If anyone owns and collects Burdastyle magazine as much as me you know Burda always add a random back seam as a design feature and I felt the Burda spirit in me when I made this little change.

I also took 10 cm off the length of the skirt.

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Having not been able to sew for a few month, I’m now happily beside my sewing machine re watching Futurama while I sew. Bliss.

Knit Boxy Tunic, Kommatia Patterns

So, is it too soon for co-ords to make a comeback? My sewing is only fairly recently yielding wearable items so the co-ord trend, plus Ada Spraggs two piece setacular, came and went too fast for me to take part in it. I love the style. The uniform like cohesiveness and how it automatically cuts down time thinking about what to wear. Such a good trend!! I thought it would have the skinny jeans effect and never go away but it came and went in a season. It’s time for it to live again!…through me.

The pattern

This is Kommatia knit boxy tunic. I overlocked everything and I couldn’t be more in love with that machine. The instructions are more sparse and effecient and this pattern won’t hold your hand. At first I psyched myself out, I usually want a pattern that almost tell me how to breath through sewing! but the shape of this top is exactly my style. Big girl pants went on and it sewed up with only a few mistakes. Is this sewing progress?

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The skirt I just traced off a H&M jersey skirt I wore a lot. I put it together checking a bit online but mostly by guessing what to do. Sewing with knit fabrics gives me a feeling that nothing can go wrong, I would never have done that with a woven fabric!

When a friend told me the clothes looked straight out of Urban Outfitters, I was ecstatic, Urban Outfitters was my jam! These are the first clothes I’ve made that someone confused with RTW. I even got the ‘really!?! You made that..’ 🙂 #sewingwinning

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Fitting

This top is so comfortable but looking at the pictures I think going with a size bigger would have been a better bet. My measurements are size small but I usually always factor in my shoulders and go bigger. I thought jersey would be more forgiving!!

I didn’t adjust the length and it stops at the biggest part of my bum/hips, making pear shaped me pretty conscious of my arse if no tucked in. To wear this as a tunic I would definitely lengthen it. I’m 5″3 and would not be able to get away with wearing this with leggings only. For my next version (yep, I’ve already bought the fabric for a second one) I’m going to either lengthen or shorten it, so it hits a more flattering point!

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Untucked, sorry it’s hard to see where the top ends.

The Fabric

I only bought a metre of this fabric, I would have bought more but the price was so inflated. I got this when I was in France, sadly not Paris, after a two hour drive to the local fabric store. I wasn’t gonna leave empty handed.

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I need to thank my husband for the pictures, he’s even demanding a meet the team page on the blog to recognise his efforts. I think he’s right!