Friday, 18 January 2019

Eat, Sleep, Sew Repeats: Rust Viscose Elisabeth Blouse


Anyone in the Northern Hemisphere finding it near-impossible to get decent photos at this time of year? Yep, me too. I've finally managed to get some pics of this blouse that I made about six weeks ago, which is a relief because I've been itching to share it with you. The colour of the fabric isn't quite as orangey in real life, but it's close enough so that you get the idea. 


Pattern:

I was so in love with how my Elisabeth blouse Fabric Godmother ambassador project came out, that before it even got its first proper wear (I was saving it for Christmas), I bought some fabric to make another. I wanted to see what the Elisabeth blouse pattern by Republique du Chiffon would look like in a really drapey fabric (my first first was made in double gauze), so when this very reasonablly priced viscose twill arrived at Fabric Godmother, I bought the 2m required for this pattern. 

The size I'd picked first time round (a 40 I believe) was fine, so I cut the same again but added 5cm  length at the hem. Having made this pattern before, I knew to keep and eye out for the gathers where the front piece joins the shoulder yokes. When I made my green double gauze version, I found that the dimensions of the front piece resulted in less gathering along the shoulder area than around the neck, so I tried to condense the shoulder area gathers a bit more on this version. I did a good job on one side, but it looked barely gathered at all on the other so, although I'd already finished my seam allowances inside, I ended up unpicking and redoing it, which I'm please I did as it looks more gathered and equal now.


Fabric and buttons:

I'm a recent convert to viscose. Yes, it's a b*tch to work with: slipping around all over the place and creasing at the earliest opportunity. But it moves with such lovely fluidity and feels so slinky to wear. This twill-weave viscose is slightly thicker than the last viscose I worked with, which is why I thought it'd be perfect for a long-sleeved blouse that could be worn in cooler months than most viscose fabrics seem to be suitable for. 

I've had these buttons in my stash for at least six years. They are leopard printed shell and I got them from Sew Over It when I used to work there. I love them so much but had never found quite the right project to pair them with. It's made me so happy to finally get use from them. 


Thoughts:

I finished this blouse in time for going away at Christmas. With family get-togethers, house parties and an early celebration of Mr SoZo's 40th birthday, I knew I'd have plenty of opportunity to wear both my Elisabeth blouses, and wear them I did! I can report that the flow-y drape of this rust one was particularly good for having a dance in. Plus, they made me feel quite sexy in a prim, put-together kind of way when balanced out with tight fitting jeggings. Now that the parties are over with for a while, I've been trying various outfit combos to get them into daytime rotation. 

I probably don't need a third blouse from this pattern in my wardrobe, however if a slinky viscose with a bold print crosses my path that I fall in love with, I'll definitely keep this pattern in mind for yet another. 

Friday, 4 January 2019

Free Pattern Friday: Kids' Knit Skirt


Welcome to my monthly 'Free Pattern Friday' feature, where I road test a free sewing pattern or tutorial: sometimes a children's one, sometimes a women's one. I publish these posts every first Friday of the month, timed to provide inspiration for those of you who plan to get their sew on over the weekend. I firmly believe that, if you pick your projects carefully, sewing doesn't have to be a crazy-expensive way to clothe yourself and your family. Thanks to all the amazing pattern designers who have offered up their hard work for us to enjoy for free.

Happy New Year everyone!!! I hope you had a great Christmas/holiday period, and are feeling rested, relaxed and inspired for the year ahead. I'm feeling very excited about all the things I'm planning to achieve in 2019, so let me start by getting back on track with my monthly review of a free sewing pattern. 

Pattern type: 

I haven't tested a kids' pattern in a while, so let's talk about this simple skirt pattern by Small Dreamfactory that has the potential to be a great stash/scrap buster. It's a basic little A-line skirt style consisting of two pattern pieces: a front/back piece and a waistband piece. The author of Small Dreamfactory has published two blog posts relating to this skirt pattern which feature slightly different instructions, depending on if you intend to use knit or woven fabric (more on fabric choices in a bit), however the actual pattern files are currently accessible via the woven fabric post only. Thanks to Small Dreamfactory for sharing this pattern and their hard work for free. 

(image source: Small Dreamfactory)

Sizing info: 

The sizing range spans Newborn to 10Y / Euro sizes 56 to 140 (which relates to the child's height in centimetres). The sizing has been split into three documents: Newborn to 9 months, 12 months to 6Y, and 7Y to 10Y. I used the size 5Y with the size 6Y length for Dolores (aged almost five in these pictures). 

Fabric info:

So this is the confusing bit: this pattern is apparently suitable for both knit and woven fabrics (or 'jersey' and 'cotton' as they are referred to in the posts). I would definitely say it is more suitable for knit fabrics because I think it would be too tight if it were made in a woven: difficult to get on and off and potentially uncomfortable to wear. I reckon a nice, stable jersey would work well, as would interlock (which is what I used here). You could even go as thick as french terry or sweatshirt fabric, as long as it had a fairly decent stretch and recovery, but you'd probably want to use jersey or rib for the waistband. 


Findings: 

This is a lovely, basic, free pattern for making quick and easy little skirts, and because you add your own seam and hem allowances, the pattern can be printed on just two pages (for sizes Newborn to 6Y) or four pages (for sizes 7Y to 10Y). The instructions are brief, but illustrated, and take the form of a blog post so you can easily follow along on a smart phone.

Personally, I used the instructions as a guide and veered away from the described method of attaching the waistband. For my version, I inserted the loop of elastic inside my completed waistband, then pinned and stitched the waistband to the top of the skirt in one go, then the three raw edges are neatened together. My method is quicker and less fussy, IMO, plus avoids having a visible row of stitching through the waistband which could look a bit messy if it wasn't done carefully.

I also think it's worth emphasising that this pattern is for a really short style of skirt, and even though I picked a size up for the length, I'd probably lengthen this pattern further still for future versions.


Customisation ideas:

This simple skirt would be a fantastic canvas for all manner of customisation. Some ideas are:

  • applying pockets. Any pocket style could be added, but I'd be tempted to try a kangaroo hoodie-style pocket on the front
  • contrast fabric/colour waistband
  • appliques, iron-on transfers or stencils
  • add ribbon, lace, ricrac or other trim around the hem (remember that this might restrict the stretchiness of the skirt)
  • piping inserted into the side seams of a solid coloured skirt would look really sporty


Would I make it again?

If I had a small amount of knit in a solid colour, I'd definitely consider making my daughter another skirt using this pattern. I appreciate that this pattern goes up to size 10Y, and could easily be graded out further still. Free patterns for older children as not as easily found as free patterns for toddlers and smaller kids, so I might keep it on the back burner for when she's grown out of a lot of the others.

Tuesday, 18 December 2018

#2019makenine Plans And A New Pace


This will be my last post of 2018, so I'd like to say Happy Christmas (or whatever you celebrate around this time of year, if anything!) and Happy New Year. Thanks for visiting my blog during 2018, and I hope you'll pop back next year. I'll have the kettle on.

I've said it before and I'll say it again, I LOVE the start of a new year to reflect on what went well during the previous twelve months, and the chance to concoct some plans for myself going forward. Maybe it's because I'm an upholder, but I find creating resolutions and plans really fun, not stressful or something I immediately want to push back against. Sewing wise, I really enjoyed making a #2018makenine plan this time last year, and I got a lot out of executing it, so I've been very excited to make another. I understand that I don't *have* to complete each goal that I've set, but when I'm feeling uninspired or indecisive about sewing projects, I'm sure that it's going to be useful to have this grid to refer back to.

So pictured above is my #2019makenine plan! Like a genius, I've come up with a new angle this year (ha). I've selected nine pieces of fabric which are currently residing in my stash, and I plan to turn into wonderful, wearable garments by the end of 2019. Two of these pieces have been in my stash for only a couple of weeks, whereas one has been there closer to seven years. I've got a pretty clear idea of what I want to make from most of them, but I'm going to keep most of those ideas close to my chest as they are liable to change.

Here's the run down:

1) Mustard viscose twill from Fabric Godmother. One of my newer purchases, I recently made a top from this fabric in a different colour way, so I can vouch how lovely, drapey and soft (although liable to wrinkle) it is.

2) Lock and Key print African wax fabric from Goldhawk Road. I have tons of this crispy cotton, I may end up giving some away once I've completed my project. I've had this for three or four years.

3) Lightning print french terry knit from Girl Charlee UK. I've had this knit for less than a year, but my initial plan for it fell through. It's feels like quite a loose knit: floppy and drapey.

4) Ruffle print Liberty Tana Lawn from Sewbox.co.uk. I bought this from Sewbox at the GBSB live event last year. I had a great time: leaving my kids behind for a day and heading into London with my sewing-loving friend Rea, chatting to various sewing people at the event and picking up a couple of select goodies. I suppressed the urge to buy a print that featured sailboats instead of this one, and I'm pleased that I did because my love for this print has grown even more over the last year. It's a crime to leave it folded up in my airing cupboard.

5) Turquoise stretch denim from Fabric Godmother. I bought this about 18 months ago, and to be honest I can't really remember why I bought it (maybe sleep deprivation?). I don't dislike it, but I'm not in love with it, as I am with much of their current denim selection. Anyways, it's great quality so I'm going to use it to make a hopefully-wearable toile of some 'proper' jeans. I feel like taking a step beyond my jeggings journey, but taking all that I've learnt about fit and pattern tweaks with me.

6) Bird print viscose crepe from Fabric Godmother. This is another newbie, but I really don't want to waste it my letting it languish in the dark for long. Its drape and busy print is dictating a top pattern that is free of a lot of detail, but makes the most of its flowy movement. I'm pretty sure that this will be the fabric that gets used first.

7) Dark blue stretch denim from Ditto Fabric. I've had this for about 18 months also, and I'm praying there's enough for some dungarees.

8) Cream/navy striped knit. This is the piece that I've owned for about seven years. It's such great quality and the perfect Breton stripe, but it there's only a short length. I'm thinking of using this for some selfless sewing, otherwise I'll squeeze a short-sleeved t-shirt out of it!

9) Buffalo check coating from Fabric Godmother. I bought this maybe two or three years ago, and I'm not sure of the fibre content but it feels synthetic. It's good quality and pleasingly soft though, so it deserves to become a fabulous jacket using one of the vintage coat/jacket patterns that I've been hoarding.


A change of pace...

I announced, but a month ago, that I intended to continue my pledge to use up one piece of fabric per week (like I just did for a year). However, more recently, I've been having a change of heart. I have some new constraints on my time: a new part-time job, some of which I do from home, a toddler who has started to drop his afternoon nap, my recently acquired allotment that I will have to spend more time on when the weather warms up and the days start to get longer, plus an additional top-secret project (NOT another baby, before you jump to conclusions).

My rethink is also because I don't want to load up my wardrobe unnecessarily with piles of garments, and, I must admit, that the successful using up of a piece of fabric per week (even if the outcome was a useful and well-fitting item) occasionally eclipsed the enjoyment of making and wearing the actual garment, which feels wrong.

Sewing up one piece of fabric per week served me well for the last year. It gave me an over-arching project and my life a bit of momentum when I was generally feeling frustrated with the constraints of being a SAHM. But now that things have shifted a bit, the one-piece-of-fabric-per-week project has started to feel more oppressive (and wasteful) than engaging. Therefore, I'm going to implement a more considered, slow-fashion approach to my sewing for a while and see how that goes, which definitely sits more comfortably with my general ethics surrounding consumerism and possessions any how.

I'm mentioning this in part because this slower approach may result in a slightly reduced blogging output. I don't want you to think that my commitment to this blog is on the wane at all. This blog is still as important to me as it always has been, and there will be exciting things happening here in 2019, including the tenth Me-Made-May!!!

Friday, 7 December 2018

Free Pattern Friday: Washable Menstrual Pads


Welcome to my monthly 'Free Pattern Friday' feature, where I road test a free sewing pattern or tutorial: sometimes a children's one, sometimes a women's one. I publish these posts every first Friday of the month, timed to provide inspiration for those of you who plan to get their sew on over the weekend. I firmly believe that, if you pick your projects carefully, sewing doesn't have to be a crazy-expensive way to clothe yourself and your family. Thanks to all the amazing pattern designers who have offered up their hard work for us to enjoy for free.


I'm definitely still on the sustainable-sewing (or sewing for sustainability) kick that I begun a month ago. After the successful making and implementing of fabric handkerchiefs to cut down my families consumption of tissues (and the plastic that they come wrapped in), I felt it was finally time to try something that I've been planning to make for years: washable menstrual pads/panty liners. 

My initial research found that different people swear that a myriad of different fabrics are the best for the job, but having found this easy-to-use free pattern and tutorial by Luna Wolf (thank you, Victoria!), I decided just to get stuck in and have a go, and hopefully figure out my own preferences through experimentation. BTW, although this is a free pattern, there is a link on her site where you can buy her a cup of tea via Paypal to say thanks. Some free patterns are released as a way to encourage customers to buy some of a designer's other products. But Luna Wolf/Victoria doesn't have anything for sale, so this is a really nice way to show your appreciation.  


Pattern type and sizing info:

The Luna Wolf pattern/instructions actually includes patterns for five different types of pad: pantiliner, 8.5 inch pad, 9 inch pad, 10.5 inch pad, and 11.75 inch pad, along with fabric suggestions and step-by-step  instructions. Personally, I prefer wearing tampons during my period (small personal deviationI know that menstrual cups are the more sustainable option, however I had a bad experience with a moon cup and to be honest I'm afraid to try them again. As a compromise, I've started buying tampons from TOTM, as they are made from unbleached, GOTS certified organic cotton, and do not contain, nor are wrapped in, any plastic. The next step I'm about to take is to start using non-applicator tampons to reduce waste further. TMI? Don't care), but prefer using panty liners at the end of my period, and at other times through out the month. It's my consumption of these disposable panty liners that I'm trying to put an end to with this project. I hate to think about how many of them I've sent to landfill during my life so far, and I'm determined not to throw away any more. Long story short, I used the smallest sized pattern for these.  

Fabric info:

As I mentioned above, many makers of washable pads seem to have very strong ideas about the best fabrics and fibres for absorbency, preventing irritation, longevity and so on. The Luna Wolf pattern/instructions includes advice about which types of fabrics can be used for the topping, backing and the core, and how many layers you may need. I wasn't making pads for the heaviest part of my period, so maximum absorbency wasn't necessarily my goal. Therefore I decided to try mainly using what I already had to hand. I did, however, 'splash out' on a fat quarter of PUL, a type of breathable but waterproof fabric that is often used for washable nappies, that was mentioned by a lot of pads makers during my research. It cost £3 from Plush Addict, and I reckon nine small pads could be squeezed out of a fat quarter. 


My initial experiments can be seen in the picture above. The one on the left is formed from the following: quilting cotton topping, three layers of 100% jersey for the core, and quilting cotton and PUL for the backing. The one on the left is formed thus: 100% cotton jersey for the topping, plus three layers of the same for the core, and only PUL for the backing. Personally, I found the jersey better for the topping as it was slightly more absorbent and a bit softer. The PUL-only backing was fine but I preferred the heft and appearance of the extra layer of woven cotton backing. 


For my 'final' versions (pictured above), I decided on the following: 100% cotton jersey topping, three layers of brushed cotton for the core (made from a decommissioned pair of pyjama bottoms, see below), and PUL and woven cotton for the backing. 


Findings:

I have yet to try out the new batch of pads/liners during a period, however the first batch worked fairly well, so I have high expectations for the improved versions. The size and shape of the pattern seemed to work perfectly for me. When using the first versions, I could sometimes feel the 'wings' against my thighs, which hopefully won't be the case with the second batch as I've added an additional set of press studs to each. It did, however, feel great to be using a reusable product rather than a disposable one and I'd like to encourage anyone who has a period, uses pads or liners and likes to sew to try making something like this to cut down their waste.

Customisation ideas:

I'm not sure this is exactly the type of project to let your creativity run wild, however, here are some ideas for ways you may wish to try to alter/improve this pattern:

  • Experiment with different fabrics and fibres for the topping, core and backing. There are heaps of washable pads listed on Etsy, so that would be a good place to see what other people have used
  • I've heard talk of some people making pads with removable inserts, I'm not entirely sure of the purpose for this, possibly for easier laundering?
  • Stitch the core to the topping in a different way, creating a striped or check pattern perhaps?
  • If you don't have this type of press studs and clamp combo in your stash, try stitch-on press studs or buttons/button holes for fastening
  • One commenter on my Instagram post about this topic said that she found plastic press studs lasted longer than metal ones. I've used these metal ones on baby dribble bibs that have seen many washes though, and haven't had any problems with them

Would I make it again?

I'm guessing that my total of six pads may not be enough to see me through the month, so I may make more in the future. And if I do, I'm 95% sure this will be the pattern I'll use. These would also be a quick and fun project to give to a sustainably-minded friend who has made noises about switching to washable pads but has yet to take the leap (niche, I grant you). 

Have you made washable pads or liners? How have you found they fair compared to the shop-bought, disposable versions? Have you swapped all your period products over to washables?

Thursday, 29 November 2018

Finally, A Range Backpack


A backpack has been on my list of things to make for an embarrassingly long time. There have been  many trips to the woods, beaches, parks, playgrounds and so on with my kids where my shoulder bag/s kept getting in the way, and having my hands completely free would have made the experience easier and more fun (for me). The last straw came about six weeks ago when a friend and I took our little boys for a walk in the woods. I was carrying my usual shoulder bag and a cumbersome changing bag on my shoulder, and Frankie refused to walk, demanding to be carried round the whole trail. I decided that enough was enough, and later that evening I purchased the Range backpack pattern by Noodlehead that I'd been eyeing up, and set about collecting all the materials to create my ultimate backpack. 

(image source: Noodlehead)

Pattern:

Let it be known that working on a Range backpack project is no act of whimsy. There are A LOT of pattern pieces (even the front pocket has its own lining) and it requires at least three different fabrics plus fancy, profesh-looking hardware. Following the #rangebackpack hashtag on Instagram showed me that wildly differing looks could be achieved by the choice of fabric, and that it wasn't necessary to cut the pattern pieces from the fabrics that are suggested by the pattern (for example, the pattern suggests to use the same fabric for the lining and the strap pieces). 


However, I don't want to give the impression that it is not a great pattern nor an unnecessarily challenging project. The pattern is very well designed and thought out, with excellent and very detailed instructions. The pattern itself is given as dimensions rather than actual pattern pieces because it's comprised entirely of rectangles, and the designer has thoughtfully included a sheet of little square labels that you can cut out and pin to all your pattern pieces so you don't get confused by all the rectangles of fabric that you've amassed after cutting. I found these little labels particularly useful for planning which pattern pieces I was going to cut from what fabric as I was decided to not to follow every fabric/pattern piece suggestion, partly for aesthetics and partly because of fabric limitations. 

The cutting out part took about the same time, if not longer, than the actual bag construction part. Putting all the pieces together was straight forward and methodical, even with the painstaking pattern matching I'd signed myself up for. I made this bag in small instalments of time over a period of about a week, and it was thoroughly exciting to see the pile of rectangles slowly take shape into a 'real' bag!



Fabric and hardware: 

Because this project was going to be a bit more time-consuming, brain-taxing and financially costly than most of my sewing projects tend to be, I wanted to get this as close as possible to my Ultimate Backpack. The main way I was going to achieve a finished bag that was totally 'me' was through the fabric/colour choice. I scratched my head and poured over the hashtag seeking inspiration. Eventually, I found two remnants (some striped pique and some mustard denim) at Fabric Godmother, and I knew the hunt was over. What says 'Zoe's Style' more than navy/white stripes and mustard?! 

As I mentioned previously, I didn't tie myself to the fabric suggestions of the pattern. I wanted to use the heftier denim rather than a lining fabric for my straps, for example. However, the mustard denim remnant wasn't quite big enough to cut all the pieces I had hoped it would stretch to, and I didn't want to over-use the stripes, so it became clear that I'd need to introduce a third fabric. Luckily, my stash contained some scraps of lovely solid navy peachskin cotton twill that I ended up incorporating quite a bit, plus some spots-and-anchor print cotton for the lining. 



I was able to keep costs down further by turning to my stash for interfacing as well. The pattern suggests that you interface EVERYTHING, so I used up all sorts of weird scraps and leftovers of fusible interfacing for the various pieces. I decided against interfacing the lining pieces as I didn't want to bag to end up too stiff or heavy, and in the end I peeled the interfacing off some of the other pieces that I decided wouldn't need it.  

I searched the internet for a zip with an anchor or nautical shaped zip pull, but failed on that one, so ended up using a silver coloured metal teeth zip from my stash. The pattern calls for D-rings to fasten the closure, but I'd seen on Instagram that some people had swapped this for a hook/catch type fastening instead, which looked like it would lead to quicker and easier access. I found all the hardware I needed from U-handbag (owned by my lovely friend Lisa Lam) and ordered my swivel snap hook, D-ring, rectangle rings and rectangle sliders. 


Thoughts:

As you can see above, this bag performs its task of containing my stuff whilst allowing my hands to child-wrangle perfectly! It's surprisingly spacious as well; I can now carry water bottles/sippy cups, snacks, emergency-nappy-and-wipes along with my usual purse, phone, sun glasses case, fabric shopping bags, hand cream and so on without feeling loaded down. The front pocket allows for easier access to a hanky, keys and lip balm. 

However, as useful as I have found this bag so far, I still prefer to use my regular shoulder bag (made with my Anya shoulder bag pattern, of course!) when I'm walking around on my own or going shopping with the pushchair. My Anya bags allows for much quicker access to my belongings, and hangs on the handles of Frankie's pushchair better than this backpack does: the latter ending up a bit too low. 

But back to this backpack. For walks and adventures I feel I'm now set. And although this project cost quite a bit more than most things I make, by using sturdy materials and picking fabrics that fit my style to a T, I'm hoping this backpack has years and years of service in it. I'm sure that in terms of £s-per-use, it'll eventually work out to be a bargain! Now, I just have to get over the fear that it's going to get dirty...

Thursday, 22 November 2018

French Fanciness: The Elisabeth Blouse


Recently I was lucky enough to be asked to be a blogger/ambassador for Fabric Godmother, and was given free choice of pattern and fabric from their inventory. In exchange, I had to make up the garment (tough times!) and share my thoughts on the project in the form of a blog post. Lemme tell you, being given free reign on such a decision is pretty overwhelming! Anyways, eventually I realised that this gave me the perfect opportunity to channel my current main style inspiration: French sewers


I chose a combination of the Elisabeth blouse pattern by Republique du Chiffon and the Stardust double gauze in Forest by Atelier Brunette, and used gold ball buttons from my stash. You can find the post I wrote for Fabric Godmother here, however (spoiler alert), in short, I LOVE it!!! I never usually gravitate towards glitz or sparkle, but with Christmas and Mr SoZo's 40th birthday just round the corner, I think I've made myself the perfect semi-sparkly party garment. 






Thursday, 15 November 2018

A Year of Stash Busting, PLUS: Dutch Label Shop Discount Code


It’s been over a year now since I begun to really definitely actually start busting my fabric stash. I wrote about my plans back in March of this year to sew up one piece of fabric or reusable garment each week, but I'd actually started the previous October. Are you interested in finding out how I’ve got on?! Well, I'm pleased to announce that, yes, I HAVE managed to keep up with this challenge! Some pieces became time-consuming projects, others became swift and satisfying makes, like these four pairs of leggings for my daughter that illustrate this post. All of these leggings/jeggings were made using the free leggings sewing pattern by Petit Boo that I reviewed here by the way, and have all these pairs been worn many times since they were completed.


Truth be told, not all of those 52 pieces of fabric or garments came straight from my stash. My stash is big, but not so big that it contains a piece of every type of fabric I might like to sew with! So I have been purchasing new pieces of fabric here and there, but only with a specific project in mind, and very often for a specific pattern that's in my possession. This accommodation has worked well, because I have been turning lots of my languishing pieces of stash into useful garments, but I haven't felt frustrated because I wasn't confined to only using stash pieces this past year.


Using one piece of fabric or reusable garment per week may sound a lot to some, and you may be concerned that I have been sewing for the sake of it, or that a lot of this output ended up not getting worn. Thankfully, I've kept a list over the last year of everything I've used and what it became so I can address these concerns. Out of the 52 pieces used, only seven were a FAIL (and subsequently were given to a friend, sent to the textile recycling bin, or put back in the stash to reuse the fabric), the rest of the garments I've made have seen a good amount of use. Obviously I have reached for the pieces of stash that I've felt most inspired to use when the right project came to mind, so things may get trickier the deeper into my stash I rummage. But not allowing myself to buy fabric on spec means that I have given each purchase or acquisition of new fabric a great deal of thought, which has reduced FAILS considerably.


Truth be told, there's still a lot of fabric and reusable garments in my stash, but visibly less than this time last year. My sewing time may dwindle a bit in the future as a number of different activities and projects I'm involved in are going to start taking up more of my free time. However, for the foreseeable future, I'm going to continue with my one-piece-per-week challenge, and see how much more I whittle down my stash by creating fabulous and useful garments.


Stash busting update over: on to the discount code! Recently, the Dutch Label Shop generously offered me some store credit for their website to order myself some woven garment labels in exchange for a mention on my social media. Coincidentally, getting some new labels for my family's clothing was on my mind at the time, having just stitched tons of onto my daughter's uniform as she started school this September. The labels I had been using for my daughter's clothes were ordered through Etsy and are very cute. However, I've found that the printed design fades extensively when laundered, so I was musing on acquiring some woven labels to use instead. 

I spent an AGE playing about on the Dutch Label Shop website, designing and redesigning with their pleasingly user-friendly label designing function. Even sticking to the 'Basic' woven label option like I did, you can choose different sizes of labels, different colours for the background and text, different fonts and from hundreds of little logos. I particularly like how clearly you can see how much the different combos of elements will cost you for different quantities before you continue with the ordering process. I managed to make my store credit extend to four different sets of labels. Ta dah!!!!


Cute, non?! I LOVE them, and they make the garments I stitch them into look extra professional (see the My Little Pony leggings above). If you would like to design and order your own garment labels, you can get 15% using the code sozoblog15 (all lowercase) when prompted during the ordering process. This code will be valid for 60 days so you've got a couple of months to go and design yourself some adorable labels, starting from........NOW! Happy label designing!
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