My Super Sweet ’16

After giving myself a much needed physical and mental break I am ready to tackle 2017 and get back in the creative groove. I have a post about my plans for 2017 lined up so keep an eye out for that to find out more about my sewing plans and what to expect from this blog and my vlog, but for now I wanted to do a round up of the year.

So here is a look back over 2016…

2016 Roundup | Dominique Major

Instagram: So 2016 has been quite the year for my love of Instagram and I have found it such a great creative outlet to share things with the sewing community. Here is my top 9 from the year and I am so happy to have reached over 1000 followers, which I know in the grand scheme of things is small but seeing as I started the year on about 200 I am so happy to be able to share my photos with all my wonderful new followers.

2016 round up achievements | Dominique Major

Work and things: After a rocky end to 2015 and start to 2016, one of goals for the year was to push myself further with my work so I am happy and proud to look back over some of the things I have done in 2016. Of course the biggest and most exciting has been making Suzy Magazine and seeing it going out into the world. It has been such a great way to the end the year and surpassed any expectations. I can’t wait for more Suzy fun in 2017. I have also been pushing myself to write for other websites. Earlier in the year I published  writing for The Huffington Post and most recently for  gal-dem magazine. Some of you might also remember the dresses I made for The Tuts’ music video, these were also on the cover of Bristol Live Magazine. I completed a Introduction to Pattern Cutting course at LCF and, of course, became part of the Sew Crafty Design team. Phew… I can’t wait to have a 2017 full of even more exciting opportunities.

2016 round up travel | Dominique Major

Travel: I had another year of wonderful travels with a VERY cold trip to New York in February and another summer trip to the US travelling from Vancouver to Seattle and finally down to Portland (somewhere that had been on my travel list for quite a while).

2016 round up me made | Dominique Major

Me Made Wardrobe: And, of course, my handmade wardrobe has really developed this year. Since the start of the year my small handmade collection has developed significantly and I am now actually wearing #memadeeveryday. I feel my skills have developed and while there are still many areas of improvement and ways in which my wardrobe can expand, I am proud of how much I have achieved in such a small space of time.

So that’s 2016 in a nutshell and I can’t wait for 2017 to be even more exciting!

Vintage Sewing Pattern Haul vlog

Two posts in one week?! Craziness!

Here is my latest vlog which is the second part of my holiday sewing haul. This time I talk about vintage patterns and some other sewing treasures. I hope you all enjoy!

Holiday Fabric Haul (and an update)

Hello guys!

I’m back! Sorry it has been such a long time. I had hoped to schedule some posts while I was away but holiday fun got the better of me.

But now that I’ve been back for a couple of weeks I’m finally back in the swing of normal life and back into the swing of getting my sewing in order. Particularly because with a change of season my wardrobe needs an update. So do expect regular posts to be back up.

For now while I work on getting them in order I have a new video over on my YouTube channel. It’s a haul video of all the fabric I bought while I was away. I do also have another video scheduled to go up this weekend so stay tuned.

Hope you enjoy the video and do let me know if there are any particular posts you are dying to see.

Sew Crafty Design Team – Francoise Dress

Hello there!

I’ve been having some trouble getting blog posts out there at the moment. Not for lack of ideas, I have ton of things I want to share with you and a bunch of new makes I want you to see, but I can’t get the photos. I know it’s nice to see photos of makes being worn but at the moment I have been struggling to get any pictures taken. So I do apologise I’m working on catching up with that!

But anyway  on to my make. So I have my fist make from my Sew Crafty haul and this is one which you would have seen me talking about in my July Haul video.


It’s the *Tilly and the Buttons Françoise dress in this *Dashwood cotton from the Bloom Collection!! Here is how it looks on….

I love the fit of this dress. Although it’s erring on the edge of being too short for bare legs. It’s just ok. But I think it will be a great transition piece as this dress will look great with tights and maybe even a roll neck underneath. With any summer sews I’m making at the moment, all I can think about is how I will transition them into autumn. I love the fabric and think it suits this dress perfectly especially if you’re looking for a patterned version that adds a bit of fun without being too in your face.

In terms of the actual sewing, I would say this is a pattern for the intermediate sewer. While the style of the dress is simple there are some features that could pose as tricky for a beginner sewer. However, that being said Tilly’s clear instructions as usual make things much easier. I did have to leave off the tab because I didn’t have any self covering buttons to hand and I wanted to wear it out. But I do have the tab made so this could always be something I add on after because I do like that design feature.

Overall I like this pattern, love this fabric and would definitely make this dress again. Out of the Francoise options I do prefer this sleeveless design but perhaps I’ll give the sleeve version a go next.

I have one more make from this haul to show you (it’s a sparkly one!) and you can see me talking about the Sew Crafty Dressmaking journal in my July Favourites video. Then I’m off to shop the Sew Crafty website for my next makes, so let me know if there is something that catches your eye and you think I should try.

So what do you think? Have you tried the Francoise dress? I’d love to know what fabric you made it in and how you found it so let me know in the comments below. I’d also love to hear your pattern recommendations.

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*Pattern and fabric gifted to me from Sew Crafty as part of the Sew Crafty Design Team but all views are my own.

5 Last Minute Summer Sewing Patterns

Guess what guys, summer is not over yet. Yes, if  you live in the UK most days it feels like summer never really actually came around. Sunny days have been few and far between which means summer sewing hadn’t really been a priority. (That’s probably why I’m panic sewing some last minute bits for my holiday!) But there seems to be a few sunny days left in this summer and we all know there’s always a last burst of sunshine in September.

So I wanted to do a round up of 5 last minute summer sewing patterns that are quick, work for warmer climates but can also be transitioned into autumn winter.

1. Adelaide dress 

Another great dress for layering. I’ve just sewn this beautiful pattern up in a slightly altered denim version perfect for summer travels but when I’m back and the sun is no longer around I want to get more wear our of it and  when sewn in the right fabric it is perfect for layering. My denim version could be worn with a striped top  underneath (I’ve just sewn multiple Nettie’s that would be perfect) and some ankle boots. Transition done!

adelaide.jpg

(Pink cord, Denim , Liberty cord

2.  Sudley dress 

I’ve just made this dress in a beautiful Liberty Tana lawn and I love it which has made we eager to sew others. I have a top version in the pipe line for my holiday but again I think this pattern, while beautiful, is also a great pattern to transition. It can be worn as it is now and when made in a beautiful fabric like a Tana lawn is breezy and cool but as the colder weather comes you can layer a jumper over and show off the collar detailing or add a cozy chunky cardigan over the top.  Make it in a blouse and wear it with shorts in the summer and under your Adelaide dress in the winter with thick tights and boots.

sudley.jpg

(Liberty, Rifle Co., Feather)

3. Françoise Dress 

Some of you may have recently seen my first Françoise dress and I think this makes a great summer to Autumn transition piece when sewn in the sleeveless version.

While this isn’t a super summery piece being sleeveless makes it easy to wear when the weather is warmer paired it’s some nice sandals. However this can be transitioned into A/W through the wonderful art of layering. When made in the right fabric this 60s style pinafore dress can easily be warn with a long sleeve top underneath or even better a roll neck and tights!

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(Cat, Dashwood, Cloud 9_

4. Bailen Slip dress

I spoke about this dress in my July Favourites video and it was the pattern that prompted me to think about this post. Slip dresses are great for warm weather. When made in a viscose, as I did with mine, they are light and breathable. Exactly what you need when it’s just too hot. But layer a polo neck or jumper underneath when the chill hits, they then add some colour to your winter wardrobe and help you embrace 90s chic. An easy (free!) pattern and versatile. I like a lot!

bailen

(Poppy, Tropic, Medalion)

5. Coco dress

I have a new found love for the Coco and I can see why it is a Tilly and the Buttons best seller. It is so easy to sew and so comfortable. Now knits might not be what you think of sewing in the summer but seeing as our summer’s aren’t hot hot the coco makes a great transition piece. It’s easy to wear without tights or sew a loose fitting top to wear with short or a denim skirt. I have sewn a long sleeve top version in the yellow stripe and a short sleeve dress in the black and i’ve only had the pattern for about a week.

coco.jpg

(Spots, Black stripe, Yellow Stripe)

What last minute summer sewing are you doing to transition into AW? Have you tried any of these patterns? Let me know if you have any fabric or pattern recommendations in the comments below.

(PS I am on holiday for two weeks so there will be fewer posts and I no videos though I do have so good ones lined up for when I’m back. Do check my Instagram to stay up to date with my travels and Handmade Holiday Wardrobe. You might even see some of these in there.)

 

July Sewing Favourites 

I have a new video for you over on my YouTube channel! Enjoy!


I’m also planning out a bunch of new posts so what kind of things would you all like to see both here as written content and over on YouTube in video form? I’d love to hear so let me know in the comments below. 

New Favourite Pattern? Butterick B5030

If there was ever an example of why you should never judge a pattern but its cover the Butterick B5030 would be that example. Ok, so it’s not the worst I’ve ever seen but it looks frumpy and lets say I had to use my imagination when buying it.


So the reason I bought this pattern and ignored the horrible cover is because I had a vision and this pattern was the closest I could find to bring my vision to life. As some of you will have seen in my previous post this vision came from the beautiful dresses over on Reformation. I wanted to make a modern take on the wrap dress. It’s a style I’ve never tried before because I’ll admit, I imagined it as a style for an older woman. But Reformation opened my eyes to it’s potential and I am so glad. While this design isn’t groundbreaking it’s the little changes that make it modern.

So first up the pattern.

pattern review butterick b5030 dominique major

The biggest change I had to make was the length of the skirt. Now I’m not short I’m 5ft 7 and even so I had to shorten this pattern A LOT! Just from looking at the pattern I knew it needed to be shortened. So when cutting the pattern pieces I shortened the paper piece straight away by about 4inches. Yet when I had completed my sewing, when I tried it on, it still came past my knees! Now it was fine, but I felt that this dress needed to be shorter to keep it modern so i then had to shorten it by about another 4 inches. Even now it’s short but its not indecent. Another change I made was with the gap in the neckline. In the images the neckline is quite reserved. I am not a big boobs on show kind of girl but again to keep the modern feel I felt it needed a lower cut. I’m happy with it. It does need a popper in the front to stop it gapping but I like the neckline and the amount of skin on show.

pattern review butterick b5030 dominique major


As you can see from the pictures I went for the sleeves on version C. Overall I could not be happier with this dress and with the changes I now know I need to make I can’t wait to make more and you will be seeing a lot more of this pattern.

pattern review butterick 5030 inspo dominique major

I have a new favourites video going up on my YouTube channel tomorrow so if you haven’t subscribed head on over so you don’t miss out! 

Have you tried the Butterick B5030? Do you have any suggestions for fabrics I could try next? Let me know in the comments below.