A post about sewing or charity shopping – you choose

Oh I feel like I’ve got lots to write today…

It seems to be the norm at the moment that I’m doing lots of sewing – and I’m loving it!  Now where do I start, yesterday morning we had time to fill before going up to my mum’s for the day to see one of my brothers and his family who were visiting for the weekend, what to do but go charity shopping!

We have 3 great charity shops within 5 minutes walk of our house (or 10 if I have children with me, stopping to look for ladybirds and walk on the walls by the side of the park) so went and checked them out.  Primarily I was on the hunt for pillowcases to make some more dresses (for Dress a Girl Around the World, in the UK send your dresses to Sew Scrumptious) but will always see what else there is on sale.  I’d seen a green floral double duvet case the other day and thought about it but wasn’t convinced that the fabric was thick enough (using fabric/pillowcases that are too thin would rob the girls of their dignity) so didn’t buy it.  However with new items to view and a basket full of pillowcases I got excited!  None of the pillowcases were really suitable, graphic 80’s prints or too starchy, they had a supply of plain ones and while I am very keen to have a go at stencilling some dresses like these by Amy, they are fantastic but I need to get some freezer paper and fabric paints first, so that will have to wait.

I did then find a double duvet cover, the fabric was a good weight and for £4 I thought it would be worth it.

As you can see the colours are reversed on the back/front.  So, yesterday afternoon I cut 4 dresses out with contrasting bands at the bottom as per one of the patterns here.  Today I have sewn them together, just need to cut or make some bias binding for the arm holes and ties.  I’m thinking that I will make the binding from the same fabric and add some pockets too.

Please note that for £4 worth of fabric I’ve cut 4 dresses and think I can get at least another 4 if not 6 – so if you’re thinking of making some dresses and can’t find pillowcases do look for duvet covers (especially double size!).

I also found whilst rummaging for fabric this lovely piece:

It’s a really soft needle-cord and will be perfect for something even though it’s only approx 90 x 40cm (yes, the photo is only a small sample of the larger piece!)

Last week I had a browse through the shops box of sewing patterns.  I really wanted to join in with the Spring Top Sewalong 2011 as I thought it would be a) fun to make a top and b) it would be even more fun to make a top for me.  However, not having sewed any clothes for me for a long time (I can though, made my own wedding dress) and not having any patterns that were suitable I already felt like I was on to a loser! I then read this post which was inspiring.  Believe or not I found the Simplicity 3835 pattern recommended in her post (out of print and not easily available), I was so amazed and peeked inside the envelope (which was marked for sizes 4 – 12) and to my horror discovered it had been cut to a size 6.  So even though it was only 50p I put it back, I’m not a size 6 and never will be.

The next day while in town and visiting the sewing machine shop I chatted with the fantastic assistants there about altering patterns and I decided I would go back into the charity shop and if the pattern was still there I would buy it – it was and I did.  To my joy when I got home and got all the pattern out of the envelope I found that while the pattern had been cut out the remaining paper was still there, so I have a couple of options; tape it back together or trace onto some new pattern paper with the correct measurements – hurrah!  Then as I write this I think about how American sizing is different to UK so I need to work out which size I should work to!  Don’t hold your breath on seeing the finished item!

Last but not least on the charity shop finds was this little tin which a lady put out while I was rummaging:

I think she might have put it next to me on purpose!  She had seen my 2 pottering around and maybe thought they needed them!  Bethan has certainly talked about having stars above her bed on a number of occasions in the past!  They don’t know I bought them, we’re thinking about putting them up without telling them and delighting (hopefully) in their surprise when they begin to glow!  The tin was sealed and the stars never used – I love someone else’s unwanted stuff!

I thought this was going to be a post about lots of sewing, but having read it through discover it’s mostly about charity shopping!  Oh well!  I’d love to hear what favourite fabric related or other recent finds you’ve made.

There’s more real sewing but it will have to wait as I have  Tuesday evening to prepare for and having read Joe’s blog post feel slightly nervous and sort of hope that the press can’t come till next month!

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2 thoughts on “A post about sewing or charity shopping – you choose

  1. Lovely finds, that reverseable material and the flower power piece are fab. Love the stars, Buster’s bedroom has a space theme and his entire ceiling is covered in glow in the dark stars, looks amazing when the lights go out, your little ladies will love them. I look forward to seeing your top one day soon. X

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