Adjusting a Vintage Dress

A year or two ago, I went to a great swishing event and came home with two vintage dresses. One in brown silk with white polka dots and another bright orange polyester shirt dress. It might sound like a horrid dress, but I felt it had potential and that every vintage dress has a journey to follow.

The orange dress stayed in my ‘needs mending’ bag at the bottom of the wardrobe for quite some time. The length just wasn’t right. Finally I got around to adjusting it.

I started by measuring the hem to see how much I wanted to take the dress up. Then I realised I would need to prepare myself for cutting vintage fabric. *Dread*.

Whilst on, I loosely pinned the hem of the dress and with a friend’s help, decided that just above the knee would be a much more flattering length.

Pinning the hem was actually the most tricky part of this little project as the dress didn’t behave and lay flat. Plus the iron hates this fabric!

I folded a double hem and pinned along the length.

Then I plucked up the courage and cut the excess! I don’t know if anyone else has the vintage cutting fabric fear, but I find it really scary!

I used my sewing machine along the hem being careful to hold the slippy fabric in place as I removed the pins.

The dress has a new shape now it is shorter and I know I will actually wear it now. I will accessorise with a skinny waist belt and gladiator flats if the Spring weather ever brightens up!

Have you ever adjusted vintage pieces? Please share your posts or stories.

Claire x

Cath Kidston Craft Evening

Last night I had the wonderful pleasure of joining 11 other crafty ladies in Cambridge for a Cath Kidston craft evening. At an absolute bargain of £2.50 for materials, tea and cake – it was an opportunity not to be missed.

Hugely excited and with my shopping list mentally prepared (15% off too!), I arrived to find the Cath Kidston girls Leanne, Jen and Natalie had prepared a lovely work space with fabric scraps, ribbon, jars, ric rac and all sorts laid out.

A wonderful coffee cake had been prepared and tea was served (in CK mugs, natch). We were ready to go!

As the ‘make’ is not revealed until the night, we were all in suspense as to what we would be creating. Jen soon revealed that we would all have our very own Kilner Jar Pin Cushion to take home at the end of the evening, courtesy of a tutorial from domestic godess Martha Stewart.

As we got stuck into our cutting, glueing and customising, people shared stories of their favourite local shops, craft groups and blogs. Some people hadn’t yet discovered the super Sheep Shop, so there was much excitement about their knitting group and crochet classes. I will be blogging about them in a couple of weeks, so watch this space.

The atmosphere was relaxed and friendly, with the CK girls sharing craft tips and their favourite ranges in store. We all had a thorough browse of the products on offer (the Cambridge store is HUGE!) and gushed over the Jubilee and London/Olympic ranges. CK really has some great things on offer at the moment if you are feeling truly patriotic.

An hour or two later, we had finished our pin cushion jars,  stacked up our purchases and assembled our creations for a group photo. Everyone had chosen a different way to customise and there was a great range including embroidery, buttons, ribbons and more.

I chose buttons and ric rac to decorate my jar and I absolutely did not superglue a button to my finger, honest!

When I arrived home, I couldn’t wait to share my creation and fill it with my bobbins.

It’s not flawless, but I love it. I couldn’t leave the shop without a little fabric splurge of course, but I managed to resist the buttons….

I’ve already got some projects in mind for this lovely pack of fat quarters and almost bought another book, but I still need to work my way through the projects in Patch and Sew.

All in all, a really fun evening with great hospitality from the CK girls. Have you been to any Cath Kidston events or craft nights? What are your faves from the range? Or maybe you have tried some projects from the books? Do share and link to your CK creations, I’d love to see.

Claire x