“Party Pant” for Etsy

This week I have been working on 2 pairs of “party pant” to sell in my shop on the Etsy website. The trousers are not yet finished, but here are some photos of the fabric I’m using and some steps in the construction.

orange african print swirl stitching
Stitching the side seam
green pink african print pockets
double stitching the pocket
sewing machine and party pant
my sewing machine and 2 party pant fabrics

Be sure to take a look at my shop on Etsy  http://www.etsy.com/shop/naomikay

Pattern drafting from item of clothing

dress pattern draft
tracing around the dress
pocket pattern
creating the perfect pocket pattern

During my recent searching of blogs and websites for sewing ideas, I noticed a few blogs describing how easy it is to use a favourite item of clothing as base to create a pattern from.

So here is my attempt to copy my tunic dress

I traced around the outside of the dress, added a bit extra so new dress wouldn’t be too  tight (as the current tunic dress is a bit snug) and added seam allowance of 2cm.  The paper I used for the pattern I saved from being thrown out – it had once been used to wrap some paintings my boyfriend had framed. (there is a use for everything, and I love to  recycle)

The dress has 3 pattern pieces to it.


summer dress
the finished product

– Front yoke x 2 for a lining
– Front
– Back
– Also facings for the front and back neckline, and for the arms)
– I added 2 internal side pockets along the seam and a fabric waist tie

The finished product does look nice, and I love the print of the fabric – yellow flowers with black, grey and white spots and stripes; however I was too generous with my extra allowances and as a result the dress is a bit loose. Before I wear it I will restitch the side seams and arm facings and make it a bit tighter.
I would happily make this style of dress again, but next time I will add a side or back zipper to enable a more fitted garment

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 http://www.cutoutandkeep.net/projects/crafty_tool_belt 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

Shopping for fabric

Goldhawk Road in West London is one of my favourite areas for fabric shopping. It’s a shame I don’t live locally any more.
There are nearly 10 fabric shops within 5 minutes walk (not including the ones in the Shepherds Bush Markets.  If the first shop doesn’t have what I’m looking for, one of the other shops will definitely have it.

I generally head to the store next to the cycle shop as they are usually very helpful, willing to bargain and this shopping expedition was no exception.

It’s all about summer and the need for bright, happy colours and interesting prints. With this is mind, I decided to look for African cotton wax prints, and I was in luck. I could have easily closed my eyes and picked any 4 fabrics; however this was not how I was going make my decision.

A big thanks to the guys who were patient with my requests and happily removed piles of fabrics in order for me to see a particular design….. 20 minutes later after my umming and arrring, I depart carrying 4 lengths of fabric (each about 5m) and feeling very happy with my purchase.
Here are some pics of my fabrics.

African print orange and whiteAfrican print blueAfrican print green yellow pinkAfrican print blue black white

See what I’ve made using these fabrics by visiting my online shop: www.madebynomes.etsy.com

reversible skirt : https://www.etsy.com/listing/99067219/custom-size-and-fabric-fully-reversible


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 – http://www.etsy.com/listing/99392888/elastic-waist-skirt-with-front-pockets