Madiba Cushion Covers

I was given this Madiba Shweshwe fabric almost a year ago and I really wanted to make something special out of it.

Madiba shweshwe fabric from SA to make cushion cover
After a few measurements and plans, I decided to create 2 cushion covers. To make the most use of the fabric, I cut 1 length of fabric for each cushion  -50cm x 100cm. Added an invisible zip on the 50cm length side and then stitched together the 2 side seams. Total sewing time less than 1 hour.

The zip will be either at the top or bottom of the cushion, depending of how the cushion is placed on sofa. Front and back of cushion are the same print (but one is upside down)

Ta da! Don’t these look great!

Madiba cushion covers
Madiba cushion covers

Finished dimensions of cushion cover 48cm x 48cm – suitable for 50cm x 50cm cushion.

Green skirt with lining

This skirt I made last year at the end of summer. It is based on another pattern I saw on the Burder Style website –   Ida Maria high waisted skirt .

This pattern is a great basic skirt pattern which can be easily modified for other great skirt designs. Essentially 2 lengths of fabric approx 50cm x 70cm,  1 length of waistband fabric approx 80cm x 10cm and a zipper.

green African print skirt with zipper
green African print skirt with zipper

I modified the pattern slightly to include fixed pleats at the waist band rather than just gathered fabric along with adding lining to the skirt. The skirt has a zipper on the left side along with 1 press stud on the waistband.

green African print skirt with lining
green African print skirt with lining

Materials –
Africian print cotton fabric (about 1 metre)
Black polyester lining (approx 1 metre)
Zipper and press stud (popper)
Sewing thread

Reversible Skirt – Tutorial

I have been thinking about making a reversible elastic waist skirt for several months as I like the idea of 2 skirts in one …. perfect for travelling or simply to wear when you think you might change your mind half way through the day!

I initially got the idea for this skirt from I have made a few changes, along with making the skirt reversible.

I’ve put together a tutorial of how I made my skirt; however this may not be the best nor the preferred way to make the skirt -but it worked for me 🙂

1. Take 2 lengths of fabric approx 50cm wide by 115cm wide. I have chosen to use a blue fabric with white spots, and an African print with blue and green colours – it also has some spots, so I think it will complement the blue and white fabric

measure 2 lengths of contrasting fabric
measure 2 lengths of contrasting fabric

2. With each piece of fabric separately put right sides together and join each fabric together along the 50cm length – this is now the back seam

sew back seam
sew back seam
back seam of spotty material
back seam of spotty material

3. Put right side together of both fabric match the back seams, and flatten out material

matching back seams
match the back seams - right sides together

4. Keep the back seams matched and with right sides together, pin together the 2 contrasting materials at the hem (bottom of fabric at 115cm edge). Sew the fabric together with a 1.5cm seam.

sewing the hem

5. Iron fabric at hem to give a neat finish. Turn fabric to have right side facing out. Measure from the hem to the waistband (approx 47cm) and fold over the top fabric, continue around the top of the skirt.Then fold over the contrasting fabric to hide the rough edges. Pin both layers together

waistband measurement
measuring to mark top of ruffle on waistband

6. Stitch the 2 layers together close to the edge of the fabric.

stitching top of waistband
top stitching of waistband

8. Add 2 more rows of stitching going through both layers of fabric. First row of stitching approx 3cm from the top (if you want a bigger ruffle make this 4-5cm from the top). The next row of stitching is to hold the elastic…. mine is 2cm wide.

top ruffle and elastic stitching
top ruffle and elastic stitching

9. Lastly, at the back of the skirt, I unpicked a few stitches on the back seam, so i could thread the elastic through the waistband. I measured, cut, threaded and stitched the elastic before handstitching closed the small opening I made.

threading the elastic
threading the elastic through the back seam

The finished product!!

blue spots reversible cotton skirt
blue spots reversible cotton skirt
reversible skirt african print
reversible skirt african print





I love this skirt – the colours work really well, and it’s nice to see the contrasting fabric on the inside of the ruffle.
If I was to make the skirt again I would leave a probably do the waistband first, thread the elastic, and then do the hem – it might be easier.

Check out my blogpost for the reversible skirt I have for sale on Etsy

Sewing with Selina

Selina popped around to my place 2 Sundays ago for a sew and take home workshop. She had in mind to design and make a fitted apron with big pockets which she could use during her up coming summer festival activities.

After an initial lunch break (food is very important before starting a project!) then some serious research, design ideas, some umming and arring and help for a top website our afternoon make and take home session got under-way.

stitching pockets onto tool belt apron
Selina stitching pockets onto tool belt apron

Using blue curtain fabric,  purchased cheaply from a North London charity shop as the base of the apron (strong thick cotton fabric) mixed with a piece of wild geometric print cotton our aprons began to take shape.

At least half an hour  was spent contemplating on the perfect size for the front pockets, a couple of cups of coffee later we opted not to follow the suggested 3 front pockets, and created 4 instead.

pinning waistband onto tool belt apron
pinning waistband onto tool belt apron

Sewing and designing is quite a energy draining activity, so we did need to break for a delicious BBQ dinner. Following our dinner break our final pinning and stitching began. The hardest part was making the tie/waistband – we didn’t follow the website instructions for this – choosing to do it our on way!

The finished product - tool belt apron
The finished product

The finished products are fab – and fit for purpose.
Selina will be using both of these at her festivals when she is running Boutique Babysitting

Cute little skirt

cute skirt with pockets
"party skirt"

I used the following website as a tutorial for this “Milk Maid” skirt.
The use of bias binding on the pockets and around the hem is fantastic – as well as being contrasting in colour, it was easy to apply. I did try and make my own bias binding; however is was rather difficult and so much easier to buy !!
The tutorial was easy to follow, and I feel confident that I could make another one of these skirts in about 2 hours.
I really love this skirt – it’s very comfortable, the pockets are a good size and the African print design is bright and colourful.

I have modified this pattern and have made a similar skirt for sale on Etsy – May 2012 –