Sonntag, 17. Juli 2016

New Simplicity Patterns

The new pattern collection by Simplicity is a real let down. There is not one pattern I want to buy. I mean they are not all horrible, but even overall they are a bit meh. And I am really disappointed that there are no new vintage patterns.


This wedding dress is a bit too simple in my opinion. I mean, I have nothing against simple wedding dresses, but you could take any dress pattern and make a wedding dress out of it. For this I don't need this pattern. And I hate shoulder free tops. But I have to say the strap design is really nice.

The new Dottie Angel pattern reminds me a lot of the aprons my Grandmother wears. Although I have to say I like it better than the last one. And the fabrics on the cover are really nice.

Doctor Who seems to be a huge topic at Simplicity. I have one of their releases from last year (the one with the corset and long skirt). I am not really sold on this design. I like the idea, but for my taste it is not costume-y enough. I would not identify the Dalek right away. The dress design is nice and would make a cute vintage inspired frock.

To be honest I think this is ugliest Doctor Who pattern I ever saw. Maybe it is only the photo, but I saw some much more nicer female Doctor versions on the internet. And I am a bit tired of the Simplicity formula corset top + skirt/trousers + maybe a bolero jacket = female version of anything nerdy.
I have no dog and I am not a huge dog fan either, but somehow I think these are cute, especially the one with the fez.

Again the corset and skirt formula. The styling on the cover is horrible. What is it with the red hair? I fear the storm trooper would be unrecognizable as a costume. And again I saw a lot of better versions on the internet.

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The DC Bombshell patterns are cute. I especially like Wonder Woman. At least I can identify the characters. Maybe it would be possible to use the pattern to make some vintage inspired pieces.

This pattern is cute, but I bet you could find a tutorial for free somewhere. Or simply make it yourself.

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These two are my favorite patterns from the new collection. I like that they are true costume patterns and no strange versions of well-known characters. I really would like to dress up my boyfriend as Joker.

Mittwoch, 15. Juni 2016

Outfit of the Day - Dirndl


Last weekend was the annual fair of my boyfriend's gun club. Gun clubs here in Germany are really traditional with uniforms inspired by traditional men's clothing and so on. So I took the opportunity to wear my dirndl out. I bought this dirndl second-hand, but it was not worn by the former owner. Although blue is normally not my color, I really love it with this garment. The pattern and the color give it a more modern and youthful touch.

Sometimes I wish I could wear dirndls more often, so I had a reason to buy more, but here in this region of Germany it is not really common. What a shame!

Mittwoch, 1. Juni 2016

Sewing Fiasco


Somehow this project was a failure from the start. I had the idea to sew the little one and myself a matching sailor outfit. A shirt and shorts for him and a dress for me. I had this cute boy's sailor shirt pattern for ages. It was the first Ottobre magazine I ever bought. For myself I had planned a 50s style dress with a simple sailor collar. So where did everything go wrong?

First the fabric I ordered was a far lighter blue than I wanted. On my screen it looked much darker and so I was a bit disappointed when it arrived. But well, I did not want to order more fabric from overseas and my local fabric store has not so many nice cottons, so wanted to work with what I had.

So I traced the patterns, constructed a sailor collar for myself with the help of a vintage pattern and began cutting the fabric. Somehow I really did not think enough about pattern placement, because of course I had problems that I did not have enough fabric. And it was all my fault because I made some stupid decisions while cutting. But well, in the end I had cut out all pattern pieces and could begin sewing.

Next my overlock machine hated me for ten minutes and I had to fumble with all the threads, but that was a minor problem. The shorts were easy to sew. It was very basic and I had no problems with it at all (okay, except that the waistband did not fit entirely on the pants, but that was an easy fix). So then I began sewing my dress and the shirt. For the dress I used a pattern from Gertie's Ultimate Dress Book. The designs in this book are amazing and I will do a review about it hopefully soon.

For the collars I wanted to sew on some white stripes. But of course I had no ribbon on hand and neither did I have a blue zipper. Ok, so a trip to the fabric store was necessary. The ribbon hated me and so I skipped it. Solid blue collar? Why not?
Somehow I was able to mess up the collar placement of the boy's shirt and of course only realized it, when I already finished the neckband. The collar on my dress looked also a bit strange, but not horrible. But when I tried on the top of the dress it was far too small in the waist, although I fit the measurements exactly. I let out some widths of the darts, which was okay.

So at this point I was a bit exhausted and unnerved, but had the will to go on. But then came the final straw. When I had sewed on the sleeves of the dress it did not fit at all. The arm holes are way to small. I have no big arms, so I do not understand, how this could happen. After I discovered this, I gave up. I was just tired of this project and had no desire to make all the fixes necessary. So I am honest, I put almost everything in the trash. Only the shorts and the skirt pieces are still alive. At least the shorts are wearable and I guess I can make something out of the skirt pieces (although it is not my color at all). I am not sure what I will do with the Gertie patterns. The projects in this book are really cute and maybe I will fix the patterns, so that I can make some of them. Because I really love the concept of this book.

So as you can see, even after years of sewing, sometimes things will not work out in the end. But to end this with a quote from one of my favorite movies:

As somebody once said, there's a difference between a failure and a fiasco. A failure is simply the non-present of success. Any fool can accomplish failure. But a fiasco, a fiasco is a disaster of mythic proportions. A fiasco is a folktale told to others, that makes other people feel more... alive. Because it didn't happen to them.

Drew Baylor in Elizabethtown

Sonntag, 29. Mai 2016

Soot Sprites Headband


I love the movies "Totoro" and "Spirited Away" and in both these cute little creatures called soot sprites play a (not so important, but who cares) role. These creatures are ghosts or spirits that are made out of soot (who would have guessed), hence the name.


I stumbled upon this tutorial and had to make my own headband. It was really easy. I used a glue gun for almost everything except the eyes, which where self-adhesive.

Now the only question is, when will I wear this?

Mittwoch, 25. Mai 2016

Vintage Party Dress


As soon as I saw this fabric by Michael Miller (it is called Glitz) I knew I had to make a dress out of it. It is a border print in metallic gold, how amazing!

As a pattern I used vintage Simplicity 4984, which I already made some years ago. After I finished this version I remembered why I did not wear the other dress very often. The top is very pretty, but also a bit restrictive at the arms. But okay, that's fine for a party dress (but not perfect, when there is a toddler around). I changed the skirt and simply gathered a large rectangle. I like the skirt much more this way.

It is a lot of fun to whirl around in this dress. Unfortunately it is not something for everyday wear, but I wore it last weekend at the diamond wedding of my boyfriend's grandparents (60 years of marriage, how awesome is that? And they are still happy and very healthy).


Dress - self-made
Hat - vintage
Stockings - What Katie Did
Shoes - Agnes & Norman

Mittwoch, 18. Mai 2016

Review: Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children, Hollow City and Library of Souls


This series of books started out really well. I read the first book in a couple of days. It was not the best book I ever read, but it was entertaining and the whole setting was promising. But from there it went downhill.

The story is about children with special powers, a bit like the X-Men. What makes especially the first book interesting are the old photos, which the author used to tell his story. The pictures are all real. The author found them at flee markets. The hero of the story, Jacob, discovers this strange world of these peculiar children with their powers and of course also discovers that he has some power himself. Nothing new, but in the first book it was all nice and well. It differs from other books with a similar story that it is not action-packed and the main story is set in the past.

The second book was okay. There were more peculiar children, but most of them only played a minor part in the story. What was interesting was to learn a bit more about the world the author created. But for my taste it was a bit dragging. And somehow the problems were solved too easily. It took me far longer to read the second book, but it was okay.

But the third book was downright boring and uninteresting. It took me ages to read and I just was not hooked. Somehow it did not bother me, what would become of the characters. Jacob was annoying with the development of his super-powers. And the worst was the end. Why was he not forced to make a decision? As with the second book, whenever there was a problem, there would come a rescue from nowhere. The characters did not really have to fight.

I read these books because of the upcoming movie and because of the good reviews I had really high hopes. Of course these are YA-novels, but that does not excuse the lack of character development. I was not attached to most characters and worse the third book left me cold. Not even the main villain was interesting. To be honest I can not recommend these books. And after I saw the trailer for the movie I fear even worse for this (despite director Tim Burton).

Mittwoch, 11. Mai 2016

A Bettine with Flamingos


Last summer I was on a hunt for all things mint green. I liked the color before, but somehow there were not many things to buy. And then I stumbled on this gorgeous fabric, after researching the Bettine pattern. I had to have it. Mint green and flamingos, perfect!


The sewing of the dress was easy. There are no closures, but an elastic in the waist. The fabric was a bit more difficult to sew than my beloved cottons, but it was okay. What I love about the fabric (besides the print) is, that it is so soft. I could touch it the whole day. After sewing the dress, I even have some leftover, so maybe I can make a blouse out of it.
I am not totally satisfied with the pattern. The skirt is a bit tight at the bottom for my liking. But overall I like the dress. Only downside is, that this really is a summer dress. And of course before I had finished this last year, summer was almost over. So I only wore it once last year. Hopefully I will get a bit more wear out of this dress this year. I already wore it twice!

The feather necklace is from a Mollie Makes Kit. I sorted through these kits last weekend and stumbled upon this necklace. It fits this dress so perfectly! It was a quick and easy make and I love the finished necklace.


Dress - self-made
Necklace - self-made from Mollie Makes 44 kit
Hair flowers - H&M
Earrings - can't remember
Shoes - T.U.K.

Mittwoch, 4. Mai 2016

Professor Astro Cat's Frontiers of Space


I finally got my hands on this great children's book. The German version was sold out for quite some time, but is now available again. And it is amazing.


The illustrations by Ben Newman have a nice retro vibe. They give the book a very unique feeling. The text was written by Dominic Walliman and I think, it is perfect. It is detailed enough to really teach children something new, but not overwhelming. The book discusses the planets of our solar system and research about space in the past and present.


Professor Astro Cat is a really charming book for children about space. There will be another book out next week (the topic this time is physics) and there is also an activity book. We also have the Ipad app, which is designed like the book and does not offer too much new (but it is quite entertaining and well made).

Sonntag, 1. Mai 2016

A Cherry Sorbetto


I made this Sorbetto quite a while ago, but never got around to make photos. For this blouse I reused an old Lolita dress I did no longer wear. Here is a really old photo, in case you are interested:


I thought it a shame to have this dress sit in my closet and decided to make a blouse out of it. I changed the neckline of the Sorbetto pattern and added some sleeves. Now it is a bit more complicated to get into, but I like it better this way. Until now I did not wear it more often than before, but hopefully now that summer comes and I have some more skirts to wear it with, this will change. To be honest, white is not my most flattering color, so this will never be a favorite, but it is cute and I like it.


Blouse - selfmade
Skirt - H&M
Tights - H&M
Boots - Ebay

Sonntag, 24. April 2016

New Simplicity Patterns

I know another pattern post, but it is not my fault, that all the big companies release their patterns at the same time. So here are my thoughts on some of the new Simplicity patterns:


I know Simplicity is huge with costumes, but a Lolita costume. Really? As a former lolita fashion enthusiast, I am a bit offended. This looks not like a normal lolita dress. With the deep neckline they destroyed the lolita aesthetic. Although I have to say, that the fabric choice is nice. The pattern would make a nice normal summer dress, but I hope this pattern does not inspire new lolitas. And I just don't want to talk about the ridiculous bonnet.


I really want to like this new pattern by Dottie Angel, because I have the first one and it is so cute. But to be honest, I do not. For me it looks like an accident. The pattern has an odd fit. It reminds me of something from those Japanese sewing mooks (of which I have some, but rarely make something from). The styling is also not very appealing.

A cute 1970s dress. The cut is really interesting. It is a very cute dress. Nothing I will make, but cute to look at.


I am a bit confused with this pattern. Who would wear such a thing? It looks like you threw on your grandmother's underwear, but not in a 70s romantic kind of way. Maybe I lack the imagination to see the potential of this pattern.


I have a deja-vu with this pattern. It looks almost exactly like the top from the new Gertie playsuit. This is a cute 50s pattern. I like that it has some variations. Other than that it is nothing spectacular and not very practical for everyday life.


The little one spotted this pattern, while I was browsing and wanted to let you know that these are "teddy". Now I probably have to buy this, only because of sentimental value (but these are really some cute bears, and they have clothes, too).


Lauren from American Duchess released her first patterns. Congratulations! It is a costume pattern for an Outlander dress. I have to admit I watched Outlander and was not a huge fan. The story is kind of lacking in my opinion. But to each their own. I know there is a huge fan base for Outlander so it made sense for Simplicity to release a pattern. The patterns are really nice. They are great for starters in historical costuming or people who only want to make a costume for an event. Lauren already announced a blog series about pattern hacks to make these more historical correct. I am really looking forward to this.


This pattern would have been my dream 10 years ago, when I was really in all things Japanese. It is a very nice cosplay pattern. There are so many characters who wear these kind of school uniform. You only have to adapt the pattern to your needs. Now I am tempted to buy this and make myself a cosplay.


This swimwear pattern is really interesting. It has built in pants. It is a shame, that it looks much better on the drawings than on the model. But this is a common problem with vintage patterns. The drawings on the envelopes are not even close to reality.


A pattern for little boys! And a vintage one! But the little one is almost too big for this. He would probably fit into the biggest size, but not for very long. Why are children growing so fast? But I will most likely buy this pattern nonetheless, because it is so darn cute.

Mittwoch, 20. April 2016

The new Butterick patterns Summer 2016

So yesterday I ended up checking the Butterick website and they had some new patterns. I am not a huge fan of Butterick patterns, because a) mostly the garments look strange on the models, b) they have weird fabric choices (but Simplicity is not better in this regard) and c) they just don't fit me so well (with Simplicity I can normally sew the garment with no alterations and I am lazy). But here are some of my thoughts on the new patterns:

Gertie has three new patterns in this collection. This one is almost a copy of the famous Sabrina dress. They even made a matching fabric in Gertie's fabric line. I really like Gertie and how far she made it, but I am no huge fan of her designs. Not because I find them ugly, but simply because they don't suit me. I wish I could pull off a halter less dress, but I simply can not. I think the bust part is a bit strange, but other than that this is an amazing dress for evening wear, but I would never make or wear such a dress, so I probably won't buy this pattern.

Gertie recently mentioned on her blog, that she fell in love with dirndls while being in Germany. This was already a bit visible in 6322, but this one is a normal German Trachten dress (Trachten meaning a kind of style here in Germany that is inspired by native costumes (like dirndls)). It has the typical silhouette of a dirndl, but lacks the blouse (or better said, the blouse is combined with the top) and the apron. And what should I say? I like it and could imagine making one up. So this pattern is a maybe.

The classical playsuit. I like the design and that you can mix and match the different pieces. But I have to say that I already have most of the pieces in other patterns. And I would like it better, if the top would be a bit longer. So I will save my money on this.

This is my favorite of the new patterns. It is not revolutionary, but I think it is so cute. And for once the dress looks fine on the model (although a bit big in the waist). I really like the little collar. And isn't the hat thing amazing? This would make a great everyday dress and when you want to dress it up, you can make the hat, too. I definitely want this pattern.

Lisette is now at the Butterick team. I would never have thought, she would design swim wear. This one is a cute bikini or swimsuit. Really retro inspired. The bow is a cute detail. As I promised myself to never sew swimwear again (because I just don't need it, it is a waste of time and money), I will skip this pattern. But I think, it would make a nice swimwear pattern if you are into this.

When I saw this dress on the overview site, I thought it was totally boring. I clicked on it nonetheless (not sure why, maybe because I thought it would make a nice basic dress, not that I have enough of these type of patterns) and then I noticed the back view - a wrap over back. What a great detail! It is a shame they did not use this as the photo on the overview page. The pattern reminds me a bit of this Simplicity one (because of the open back, but to be honest, the Simplicity version would be the designer one and Butterick like the one you could buy at H&M, nothing wrong with H&M, just saying). The Butterick dress seems to be a bit easier to make. And you could also made a jumpsuit. I could do without the elastic waist in the back, but other than that, I really like this pattern. Maybe I will add it to my stash.

A kind of child version of the aforementioned pattern, except that it is not a dress, but two pieces. Really cute and I bet many little girls would like it. But again not one pattern for little boys! Please Butterick there are boy's Moms out there who love to sew and want to make something cute for their little rascals.