Geometric Cotton Sateen in Simplicity 8733

When travelling, how do you decide what to take with you? For us, we start with a hero piece or theme and then build around it. For Lauren’s trip to Europe in the depths of winter, the hero was always going to be the jacket—a magenta wool coat made from a Burda pattern. From there, we decided the base colour would be black, so all the shoes she took would match everything, paired with black tights and a black handbag. The base garments were decided as a pair of black pants and a skirt, and now the fun part: how to add some colour (that complements the jacket) and prints!

Fabric: Woven Stretch Cotton Sateen Fabric

Now, enter this geometric Woven Stretch Cotton Sateen Fabric from Minerva. We were looking for a fabric that had some weight to it, and as you know, we love a cotton sateen due to its lovely finish and the inclusion of some elastane for a small amount of stretch. This cotton sateen is made up of 95% Cotton, 5% Elastane, which was perfect. See more about this fabric on the Minerva website here.

Pattern: Simplicity 8733

The pattern we chose was Simplicity 8733 because of the simple bodice line that would not break up the geometric print of the fabric and the dramatic bishop sleeve.

Finished Make

Photo Credits

Photographer: James Christie Media
Pattern: Simplicity 8733
Fabric: Geometric Woven Stretch Cotton Sateen Fabric provided by Minerva

May Gibbs Gum Blossom Babies Fabric in Simplicity 9744

Growing up in the Australian landscape, it was difficult not to imagine little gum nut babies calling the eucalyptus home. This is the work of the stunning stories and illustrations by Cecilia May Gibbs MBE. She is best known for the book Snugglepot and Cuddlepie, which was published in 1918. Born in Kent, United Kingdom May Gibbs made her way to Australia in 1881 and called it home until she died in 1969 in Sydney. The legacy of her work lives on through her artwork and, recently, in printed textiles.  The May Gibbs team approached us with the opportunity to create something with their lovely printed fabric we jumped at the chance. 

Fabric: May Gibbs Gum Blossom Babies Organic Homespun Cotton

We got to choose from a selection from the May Gibbs collection, and we chose the Gum Blossom Babies Organic Homespun Cotton. The fabric is 100% cotton and 112cm wide.

The Gum Blossom Babies are shy little girls that can be found clustered together on the tops of the trees. The tender-hearted Blossoms, like the Nuts, love all the Bush Folk and take much interest in the goings on around them. They enjoy sitting with the Nuts to hear stories of great adventures and things unknown.

Pattern: Simplicity 9744

For our pattern selection, we wanted to pick a pattern with large pattern pieces and not too many pieces that would break up the fabric print. A new release of Simplicity patterns came out in Australia, and we saw this Simplicity 9744, and we knew it was the one.

This shirt dress has a half-button placket at the front with a spread collar. The bodice is all in one and features an inverted box pleats. We chose to create view A (without the tie detail) with a raglan sleeve that finishes above the elbow.

Finished Make

Photo Credits

Photographer: James Christie Media
Pattern: Simplicity 9744
Fabric:  May Gibbs Gum Blossom Babies Organic Homespun Cotton gifted by May Gibbs Official. This fabric is available through Spotlight Stores.

New Look 6694 Tartan Shirting Fabric Design 63 from Minerva

This dress treads the fine line between office attire and being a very fun outfit. Did we do a twirl in the work kitchen the other day just to test out the skirt? Yes, yes we did. We see more tartan dresses with feminine design lines in our future… 

Fabric: Tartan Shirting Fabric Design 63 from Minerva

This is Minerva Core Range Cotton Shirting Fabric in Design 63. It is a woven fabric that is 142 cm wide – perfect for getting creative with the pattern layout and making the most of those tartan checks!

Find this fabric on Minerva.

Pattern: New Look 6694

This is view A of New Look 6694. We’ve made this pattern a couple of times, including our Valentine’s Day version two years ago. We really love this dress for a couple of reasons. The bodice is really cool, as it wraps with a button closure – but unlike other wraps has a lovely higher neckline rather than a v-neckline which is typically common for wrap dresses.

Find this pattern on Minerva here.

Finished N6694

Photo Credits

Photographer: James Christie Media
Pattern: New Look 6694
Fabric:  Shirting Fabric Design 63 from Minerva

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Christmas Me Made Outfits 2023

Jingle all the way with matching family Christmas outfits! 🎄✨

Ho, ho, ho! Sending you a sleighful of Merry Christmas cheer from our festive family to yours!

If you’ve been following our creative escapades over the past few merry years, you’re in on our jolly family tradition. But if you’re a newbie to our yuletide adventures, welcome to the holly-jolly club! Drumroll, please… it’s time to unveil one of our all-time favourite family customs: the annual creation of matching Christmas outfits.

This tradition is as timeless as Santa’s naughty-or-nice list. Picture this: our Nan crafting Christmas shirts and dresses for our Grandad and parents before we knew the joy of unwrapping presents! If you have been following along for a few years you might, just might recognise these outfits. If not then enjoy! The fabric was purchased from Spotlight in about 2017 and sat waiting for two years before we made them into matching family Christmas outfits. This year there was enough fabric to create James a shirt and Fergus a bow tie.

So, here’s to family, festivities, and fashionable echidnas! May your Christmas be as bright and merry as our outfits. 🎅🎁✨

Lauren in Butterick 6556, Fergus in Two Sewing Sisters drafted doggy bowtie, David in McCall’s 4399,
Robyn in Simplicity 8840, Erin in Gracie Steel Adrift Shift and James McCall’s 6044

Erin in Grace Steel Adrift Shift and James in McCall’s 6044

David in McCall’s 4399 and Robyn in Simplicity 8840

Lauren in Butterick 6556 and Fergus in Dog Bowtie

Photo Credits

Photographer: James Christie
Dress Fabric: 
Patterns:
Lauren – Butterick 6556
Fergus – Two Sewing Sisters drafted doggy bowtie
David – McCall’s 4399
Robyn – Simplicity 8840
Erin – Gracie Steel Adrift Shift 
James – McCall’s 6044

Love these outfits? Check out our past Christmas outfits from 2022 Green Jocelyn Proust outfits, 2021 Liberty Print looks, 2020 Blue Jocelyn Proust wombats, the first time we work these outfits in 2019

SisterMags Patterns 68-8 Military style shirt dress

We were invited to preview the latest SisterMags pattern and explored the designs making the 68-8 Military Style Dress. The style is a straight-through dress that has a button-up placket front, a two-piece collar with pocket detailing.

Photo Credits

Photographer: James Christie Media
Pattern: 68-8 Military style shirt dress by SisterMags
Fabric: From the stash 

Lucca Dress pattern by Schultz Appar

We joined the pattern testing team for Schultz Apparel’s latest release. We were looking forward to creating the t-shirt as just last week we were reflecting on our top collection and commented about how we were looking for a great t-shirt pattern.  

The Lucca pattern is a dress
pattern with both modern and
vintage inspired details.
All options comes with a curved
front waist seam, a front button
closure and a faux-shirred back.
Options can be mixed and
matched.

Fabric

This pattern called for light weight woven
fabric and can be lined in the same fabric or another light lining fabric in the same fibres.

We created this Lucca dress in printed cotton from East Coast Fabrics. It was a white floral pattern with a green background.

Finished Lucca Dress

Photo Credits

Photographer: James Christie Media
Pattern: Lucca Dress Sewing Pattern from Schultz Apparel
Fabric: Green floral cotton from East Coast Fabrics

Two Sewing Sisters wear pattern test of Tetra Tshirt Top Sewing Pattern by Schultz Apparel in May Gibbs printed cotton jersey with black cullotte pants standing on the path showing a close up of the neck detail

Tetra T-shirt Top Sewing Pattern by Schultz Apparel in May Gibbs Jersey

We joined the pattern testing team for Schultz Apparel’s latest release. We were looking forward to creating the t-shirt as just last week we were reflecting on our top collection and commented about how we were looking for a great t-shirt pattern.  

The Tetra pattern is a perfect everyday
basic top pattern for knitted fabrics. The pattern includes two options; Option A is a cropped top with short sleeve and a lower turtleneck. Option B is a longer top with long sleeves and a higher turtleneck. Both options has a cute vintage
inspired lettuce hem at neck, sleeve
and hemline.

Fabric

This pattern called for light to medium weight knit fabrics/jersey fabric with at least 60% stretch made from fibers: viscose, modal, bamboo, Tencel, or polyester. We had the perfect piece which was a 1 meter remanent of May Gibbs jersey.

Cutting

As the pattern has a small exposed edge finish there is no seam allowance on the hem of the sleeve, bodice and neckband. It does include 1cm on the side seams and armhole seams. We constructed the t-shirt on our 4-thread overlocker.

Finished Tetra Tshirt

We like the fit of the bodice and sleeve shape of this pattern. Next time we make it we will make some modifications to include seam allowance so we can add a hem to the sleeve and bodice as we had trouble making the adjustments to our overlocker to get the lettuce hem design feature and double the width of the neck band to fold it in half to able to create a folded neck finish. As this one was a printed fabric the fabric rolled showing the white back of the fabric. We are looking forward to exploring more options in jersey knits with this Tetra T-shirt pattern.

Photo Credits

Photographer: James Christie Media
Pattern: Tetra Tshirt Top Sewing Pattern from Schultz Apparel
Fabric: May Gibbs printed cotton jersey from Spotlight Store

Frocktails 2023

It’s Frocktails time!  What an exciting time! Frocktails brings together local makers to celebrate their makes and enjoy a cocktail together. The event was hosted at The Bank on Collins and cocktail of the night was “Daylight Bobbin-ry” which was made with Jamaican Rum, Frangelico, Crème de Cassis, Dom Bénédictine, Cranberry juice and nutmeg. 

Is Frocktails the event where you can walk up and pat someone else’s fabric?  Yes, yes it is!  So why not wear texture?  We certainly leant into this with our fabric choices this year. 

From the left – Erin Butterick 6351 Crushed pleat The Fabric Lab, Lauren McCall’s 8213 tinsel fabric The Fabric Lab, Katelyn in By Hand London Flora tulle Spotlight, Eliza Know Me 2016 Spotlight, Robyn Vogue 1723 The Fabric Store

McCall’s 8213 in Purple Tinsel from Fabric Lab

Well it was love a first sight. Purple, sparkle, tassel, love. With the fabric purchased the next step was to decide how to best showcase this fabric. We looked to McCall’s 8213 for the bodice band and ties then gathered a tube of the amazing tinsel fabric onto the band.

 Butterick 6351 in a crushed pleat from Fabric Lab

Fabric Lab has an amazing selection of special occasion fabrics including amazing pleats! Erin found this sensational shot green in a crushed pleat. She stitched it up in Butterick 6351 with the elastic back waist and open draped section in the back bodice.

Vogue 1723 in georgette from The Fabric Store

Mum has created a stunning long-length version of Vogue 1723 in a stunning georgette from The Fabric Store that was lined in pongee lining to compliment the weight of the outer layer. Do you spot Dad there in his Stakes Day vest? That’s right, what a week, Frocktails was on the evening of Stakes Day, 8 events in 7 days!

Photo Credits

Photographer: James Christie Media
Pattern: Butterick 6351, McCalls 8213, By Hand London Flora, Know Me ME2016 and Vogue 1723
Fabric: Fabrics from Fabric Lab, Spotlight and The Fabric Store.
Millinery: Lauren J Ritchie Millinery

Looking for more Frocktails inspiration? Check out our 2022 Frocktails outfits here.

Matching outfits for Stakes Day 2023

Our family loves a matching outfit opportunity, and there is no better excuse than family day!  Stakes Day at Flemington is known as family day so here we go!  We selected our fabric for the year which was a floral polished cotton from Spotlight.  Mum created our outfit this year, what a task!  All five of us wore a garment in this fabric.  

From the left: James in a handmade tie, Erin in Butterick 6482, Mum in Vintage Simplicity 7083, Dad in McCalls 4321, and Lauren in Simplicity 8594

Floral Dresses Butterick 6482, Simplicity 7083 and Simplicity 8594

Photographer: James Christie Media
Pattern: Butterick 6482, Simplicity 7083 and Simplicity 8594
Fabric: Spotlight 
Millinery: Lauren J Ritchie Millinery

Looking for more matching family inspiration? Check out our 2022 Stakes Day outfits here or the matching Christmas looks here.

Oaks Day Vogue 9021 and Vogue 9328

Oaks Day is known as Ladies’ Day at Flemington Racecourse during Melbourne Cup Carnival.  The fashion features lots of florals and soft colours.

Vogue 9021

Lauren wore a vibrant green floral polished cotton from Spotlight in Vogue 9021.

Vogue 9328

Erin wore a gorgeous blue polished cotton from Spotlight in view E of Vogue 9328.

Photo Credits

Photographer: James Christie Media
Pattern: Vogue 9021 and Vogue 9328
Fabric: Fabrics from Spotlight
Millinery: Lauren J Ritchie Millinery