wiggle dress

日本語が英文のあとに続きます(text in Japanese below)

Hello!  I am happy  to finally share a new me-made item!  It has been a loooong while since I completed my last item, because I had been experimenting with vintage patterns.


This is made from the vintage pattern Butterick 2137 – view C. It is not the first time I made a vintage pattern but since the last time, I have gotten more picky with getting the right fit, and took a long time trying to adjust the pattern pieces to fit me.  All in all, with the multiple times dissecting /retaping the pattern/muslin testing, etc. and it took 4 weekends to complete.



My high bust measurement is closest to those of a Size 12 in vintage, and this pattern I own happens to be a Size 12!  According to the measurements, I should add more width to the bust and waist on a Size 12, but when I test-made a muslin without any changes, the bust was very roomy already (or the pattern has big armholes?)! I already read about the 50s and early 60s patterns having a larger bust, but one more thing I notice (and I haven’t found confirmation on the internet) is that the patterns are also made to have more room in the bodice back than modern patterns? I don’t know if this is  just me… The vintage patterns I have worked with seem slightly curved in the centre back seams (which I assume is to provide more room at the back) rather than a relatively straight line I see in the modern patterns I have used. I ended up straightening the back seam and decreasing the width of the bust line (instead of doing SBA), but I am not sure if this is the correct way to go about decreasing back /bust ease. If you have any tips on this issue, please let me know:-)

Despite all the time tweaking the pattern and the two muslins, the fit is not very good. As you can see from the pictures fabric is pulling in different directions since I decreased a bit too much at the bust and also at waist, while the tummy part looks roomy.


I like the kick-pleat detail!

I had in my mind a below-the-knee length from the start – but was not sure if it will be a flattering look on me. In trying to figure out skirt length, I came across this enlightening post on how to calculate your ideal skirt length! Very fascinating and interesting to see there is math behind it:-)  According to the post, a skirt length slightly above the knee works best for me, and it explains why I tend to choose skirts of that length! However, in the end, for this project I decided to stick to the below-the-knee length I had planned, for some variety in my closet. ***After looking at the pictures again I think I will hack off a bit more length!***


The neck is a little high – next time I would like to try a lower neck version of this dress.


The fabric is a lightweight Italian grey wool suiting I bought at the closing sale of Marunan fabric store in Shibuya.  It has a beautiful sheen and is lightweight enough for a dress. The lining is Bemberg rayon. They are both from my stash:-)


This is my sketch in Fashionary – I find it very useful not only for planning fabrics /projects, but also to keep track of the many changes to the pattern I make as long as how long each project takes me.


I love buying vintage patterns and while I am not very satisfied with the fit of this project, I am happy I finished it because there are still many vintage patterns I want to test!

Butterick 2137 – challenge somewhat conquered!


Quick facts:

Pattern: Vintage Butterick 2137 in Size 12

Fabric: Italian grey wool suiting / blue rayon Bemberg for lining


Lengthwise: Necklined dropped by 0.5 cm / back kick pleat moved down by 7 cm / added 0.7 cm length between bodice and skirt / chopped hem by 7 cm (to leave 4 cm  to hem)

Widthwise: Bust decreased by -5.6 cm / Waist +1.2 cm / Hip + 0.4 cm /move darts out 0.7 cm so they return to original position as they were before resizing)





こちらはヴィンテージパターンButterick 2137 - view Cから作ったワンピースです。以前もヴィンテージパターンを使ったことがありますが、洋裁を始めてから1年以上経つ今は洋服のフィット感にかなりこだわるようになったので、昔の体型のために作られたヴィンテージパターンを自分の体型にあわせるよう補正するのに結構時間がかかりました。週末にしか作業ができないため、パターン補正+仮縫い(x2)+本縫いで合計1ヶ月かかりました。

















Butterick 2137 (とりあえず完成!)


Grace Dressmaking さんの The Summer Dress Sewalongに参加する予定ですが、その際はヴィンテージパターンに再挑戦しようかな?皆さんもThe Summer Dress Sewalongに参加しませんか。

Quick facts:

パターン: Vintage Butterick 2137 サイズ12

生地:表地:イタリアン ウール / 裏地:ペンベルグ


ネックライン:0.5 cm 広げる / キックプリーツ 7cm下に動かす / 身頃とスカートの間に0.7 cmを足す/ スカートの長さを-8cm (ヘム=4cm)

バスト: -5.6 cm / ウエスト +1.2 cm / ヒップ + 0.4 cm 


yarn shopping in Vancouver with my knitting Sensei

(日本語は英文のあとに続きます。Text in Japanese will follow English)

While I was in Vancouver last month, I went on a yarn shopping tour with my knitting Sensei (teacher) – aka my Mom^^ aka my gardening Sensei

My mother knitted all the sweaters, mittens and scarves for my sister and I when we were young, so we had cute knitwear since we could remember. She also taught us how to knit with little plastic knitting needles for kids… unfortunately at that time we preferred more exciting games over knitting. She has even knitted for a designer knitwear label!

She has since then stopped knitting for awhile, but after I started knitting recently she also started to get hooked onto knitting again:-) Here are some of her latest creations. As a novice myself, I find it truly amazing how she can knit without a pattern, use up left over yarns in creative ways, coming up with patterns while she knits, knit even stitches that look like they are knit by machine, etc… incredible!


This grey one is an RTW which was taken apart and re-knitted by my mom (the ribbed sleeves were left as is). I like the “angle” detail!


Creative use of the one leftover skein of blue Malabrigo which I sent:-)


Here are the yarn shops we went to:

Three Bags Full
4458 Main Street, Vancouver, BC, Canada V5V 3R3
Tel : 604-874-9665

Urban Yarns
4437 West 10 Avenue Vancouver, BC, Canada V6R 2H8
Tel: 604-228-1122

Wet Coast Wools
2923 West 4th Avenue, Vancouver, BC, Canada V6K 1R3
Tel: 604-568-0011

Urban Yarns had the most extensive collection, including Malabrigo, Madelinetosh, Spud and Chloe… the list goes on and on. There is also the homegrown Sweet Georgia Yarns. After drooling in the shop for 20 minutes or so, I finally left with a skein of Swiss Silk by another local label Handmaiden (it is part of Fleece Artist). The colors in shimmery silks were all so beautiful, but at around CAD $40 for a skein of 400m, it was quite an indulgence so I only bought one skein to make a small scarf or wrap with. If you have not seen the Handmaiden site, please take a look! I guess it is because the silk is so shimmery, which makes the colours soooo beautiful…


My Mom and I really had fun at Three Bags Full! As I mentioned, I thought Urban Yarns had a more extensive selection, but Three Bags Full had a very inviting, local atmosphere, and a large sale bin:-) We ended up buying some beautiful yarns, at 30% off regular price from the sale bin.

Can you imagine these beauties were in the sale bin?


Ancient Arts BFL 4-ply fingering in Lodgewood Pine

With these beautiful yarns, I am currently working on Light Trails, the latest pattern by Suvi Sivola. The pattern is very well-written and I have had no trouble with it so far. I can’t wait to finish it and wear it before it gets warm! My knitting Sensei also bought the same yarns (in colorway Salal Jungle which is a brighter green) and is working on this pattern which I also find beautiful.

Can’t wait to go for more yarn shopping in Vancouver with my knitting Sensei again:-)!

Do you usually buy your yarns at a local shop or over the internet? If you have any recommended shops, please share!




その後はしばらく手を休んでいましたが、最近は私が編み物に夢中になってから母親も再度編み始めました:-) 初心者の私は、パターンもみる必要がない、パターンがなくても自分にぴったりなセーターなりカーディガンなり編める母親が本当にすごいと思っています。









Three Bags Full
4458 Main Street, Vancouver, BC, Canada V5V 3R3
Tel : 604-874-9665

Urban Yarns
4437 West 10 Avenue Vancouver, BC, Canada V6R 2H8
Tel: 604-228-1122

Wet Coast Wools
2923 West 4th Avenue, Vancouver, BC, Canada V6K 1R3
Tel: 604-568-0011

Urban Yarnsさんは一番セレクションが充実していました。Malabrigo, Madelinetosh, Spud and Chloe…その他のブランドもたくさんおいてあります。カナダのブランドであるのSweet Georgia Yarnsももちろんおいてある。店内で20分ほどいろいろみて悩んだあげく、同じくカナダのブランドのHandmaidenFleece Artistのサブブランド)のSwiss Silkを1点購入。1玉(1 skein @ 400m) がカナダドル$40で高めですが、シルキーで本当にきれいな発色がとても魅力的で思わず買いました。とても素敵なストールができると思います。


私たちが一番楽しかったお店がThree Bags Fullでした。毛糸のセレクションはUrban Yarnsほど豊富ではなかったが、それでもかなり素敵で十分に豊富なセレクションがあって、雰囲気がにぎやかで居心地がとてもよかったです。お店の億にある30%〜50%オフのセールコーナーもかなりセレクションがよかった!私と母親は結局、1人3玉ずつセールコーナーから買っちゃいました:-)



Ancient Arts BFL 4-ply fingering in Lodgewood Pine

この毛糸を使って、Suvi Sivolaさんの最新パターンLight Trailsを編んでいます。大変よく書かれたパターンで、いままで全然問題なく編んでいます。暖かくなる前に編み終えたいよ〜

ちなみに私の母親は同じ毛糸の”Salal Jungle”というもう少し明るい緑の毛糸を3玉買って、このとても素敵なパターンを編んでいます。



Mrs. Stylebook Spring 2014

The first issue of Mrs. Stylebook for 2014 is here!


As this is the spring issue, there is a lot of pastel colours! So pretty… as with the previous issue, there are featured designer patterns by Yuki Torii and M’s Gracy.




The designer patterns above come with drafting instructions only (no construction instructions). I quite like the pink trench coat (it looks so fresh), and I also like the “ivory and white” suit set on the left-hand side.

The featured theme of this issue is the skirts – tight skirts and flared skirts and include a variety of skirt patterns. As with previous issues drafting and construction instructions are available for almost all clothing in the magazine. It is also interesting that all the clothing are designed by a clothing designer and are available for sale (there is a listed price in the magazine).




My favourite section of the magazine is one featuring a one-week wardrobe for two types of styles, “trad” which refers to traditional British style/preppy, and “casual” which features the loose silhouettes one often finds in Japanese sewing magazines. I am a fan of the clothing and style featured in the “trad” section.




This is the “casual” wardrobe from the same section.


There are many other patterns featured including some by new designers. Here are a few…





There are three jackets with actual size pattern included. I quite like the mint green jacket! and lastly a cute bag!





I like the preppy style section and I like this magazine overall (it is by Bunka Publishing and usually has some good sewing tips included in the magazine – in this edition, there is a complete illustrated guide on how to make a skirt… i.e.. inserting zipper, making kick pleat, etc.). However, truthfully I was not overly excited by this issue – probably has very much to do with the fact that we just had two consecutive weekends of snow and that the temperatures are still too cold to imagine spring clothing^^;

How do you like this issue? Have you started any sewing for spring yet?

Mrs. Stylebook Spring 2014 is available at sew tokyo.

double silk dots dress

(日本語は英文のあとに続きます。Text in Japanese will follow English)

Hello. It has been awhile since I posted a piece of clothing I made for myself. The last few months I got quite hooked onto knitting and so it took me almost 2 months to finish this project.

Here is my version of the Anna dress pattern from By Hand London.

My “I want to wear this with red heels!” silky Anna!🎵

My first dress made truly following my measurements!

My stash-busting success Anna as well:-)


最近は編み物にハマり洋裁をしばらく手放してしまったが、ようやく新しいドレスを完成しました♪ By Hand LondonさんのAnnaで、このドレスを着たら、赤いハイヒールを入って出かけたいという気分になりました♪

As many people who used this pattern already commented, this is a great pattern, easy-to-follow and flattering! I can see the reason why one would want to make many versions of this:) The tutorials on the By Hand London blog were very helpful as well.



To be truthful, this is the first time I followed my measurements in choosing a pattern size in my 1 year+ of sewing history. I had always started to muslin with the smallest pattern size by default without measuring… with no reason for doing so! That practice resulted in items which are always a tight in the muslin stage (and hence I always had to make adjustments to the waist). This time I also made the smallest size to start – resulting in a muslin which was far too tight at the waist and also at the bust. Reading the By Hand London tutorials (which gave tips on whether to make a FBA or go up in size at the bust) prompted me to take my measurements and start over with another muslin.

洋裁を始めてから1年以上が経ちますが、自分のスリーサイズにあったパターンサイズを選ぶのは実は今回が始めてで、いままでは何となくパターンの一番小さいサイズから仮縫を作っていました。そうするとできたものがいつもウエイスト部分がきつくて本番のときはウエイスト部分を調整をいれなければなりませんでした。今回も仮縫いの段階で一番小さいサイズを作ってしまいました。ウエイスト部分だけじゃなくてバストもとてもきつかった。バストのサイズが合わない原因がバストのサイズよりも、カップのサイズである可能性もあるので、ドレスのカップサイズを調整をしなければならないこともある。そのBy Hand London さんのHPに載っているアドバイスをみて、バストかカップサイズ、どちらを調整するべきかを迷っていたのが、スリーサイズをきちんとはかってもう1回仮縫いを作るきっかけとなった。


Finally! I should have followed my measurements properly from the start ages ago. I was surprised to find that my measurements span across THREE sizes! I did not end up making a FBA as the second muslin using these new measurements fit well the way it was. Finally, a fitted dress in which I had breathing room! I had thought that a tight-fit was better than a too-loose-fit, but now I know I prefer to have this right amount of ease in my clothing. There were no longer endless adjustments I needed to make to the muslin to make it fit me… wish I had done this much earlier!


This dress was also a stash busting success – a total of 4 pieces + 1 lining busted! I ended up using two pieces of fabric for two muslins, and then two pieces of silk (sheer cream and black dot silk-cotton, underlined with white crepe de chine). The basting of the underlining took forever since there are so many pieces to this pattern! The dress was still too sheer on its own despite the double-layer of silk, and so I lined it with Bemburg rayon.



The only real problem I had (other than losing my patience several times during the whole handling silk / underlining with silk / French-seaming the double layer of silk as well as the lining) was when I was trying to hem the dress. I thought the best way to hem it was to use a rolled hem foot. However, due to the many French seams (double-layered as well), this did not work and I ended up hand-hemming the whole thing. Also, I followed Tasia‘s idea of tapering the edges of the hem at the bottom of each seam to avoid pointi-ness at the hem.



I used this dress as an excuse for buying more sewing notions… yay! Other than my new “sewing foot for thin fabrics”, I also got a rotary cutter which worked wonderfully for cutting these thin and slippery fabrics.



If I was to make another one again, I will choose a lighter interfacing or use no interfacing for the facing (the pattern did not call for any) – the one I used, though already lightweight, seems a bit too stiff to me.


Quick facts:
Pattern: Anna from By Hand London
Size: B – traced in between Size 8 and 10 / W – traced between Size 10 – 12 / H – size 6
Adjustments: cut off 6 cm from the hem
Fabrics: silk cotton with cream dots, underlined with white crepe de chine, lined with Bemberg rayon

パターン:Anna from By Hand London
サイズ:バスト サイズ8~10の中間  /ウエイスト サイズ10 ~12の中間 / ヒップ サイズ6


(日本語は英文のあとに続きます。Text in Japanese will follow English)

The other day I was in a sewing shop to pick up a zipper for my current project. I was careful to steer clear of the fabric section since I probably have a few years’ worth already, but I could not resist just walking down a few aisles of notions around where the zippers are… after all, a trip to crafts galore Yuzawaya in Ginza with 10% membership discount would not be done justice if I don’t even look… I ended up leaving with the zipper… and a bunch of useful notions… (happens to best of us at times, no?)



I bought this foot because I am working on a dress with thin slippery silk and the name of this foot in Japanese is “Presser foot for thin fabrics”. I tried to use it and it really works well! I wish I had owned this foot earlier or when I was sewing the outer shell of the dress! (by the time I bought this foot there is basically only the slippery Bemberg lining left to sew.) It is a sewing-life-changing discovery.



I tried to look up this foot up on my favourite book about sewing machine and related gadgets, “The Sewing Machine Classroom” by Charlene Phillips, but have not found any results… Does anyone know what this foot is called in English? According to the package, this “presser foot for thin fabrics” is suitable for sewing thin fabrics because the opening at the top for the needle is very small, so the shifting of fabrics in between each up and down of the needle is kept at a minimum.

この押えは英語で何っていうだろうと、知りたくて”The Sewing Machine Classroom“という本で調べてみたが、こういうのが載っていません。日本でしかないものかな?パッケージをみると、裏地に適している理由は、上の穴が小さいので縫うときは生地が引張られないからだそうです。


In my search for the name of this foot, I discovered an array of interesting looking feet in the book. Other than these “everyday” standard ones,



there are also these exotic-looking ones! How cool does that ruffler one look?! I hope one day I will have the chance to find it and try it:-) actually I hope the day comes that I can try all of these:-)



This book, a present from my hubby on one of his business trip, is amazing! I am always too impatient to read wordy instruction manuals and hence for a long time I did not know how to adjust the tension of my machine. However, this book with 160 pages has lots of photos like the ones above, which makes it fun to flip through and learn about sewing machines, its parts and things I could do with it to jazz up a project (ie. making special hems, ruffles, pin tucks, special buttonholes, etc.). I highly recommend it!

この”The Sewing Machine Classroom“という本は旦那が出張の際に買ってきてくれたが、とてもわかりやすくておすすめです。説明書を読むのが苦手でミシンを使えこなせてなかったが、この写真たっぷり載っている160ページもある本のおかげで少しミシンについて少し詳しくなったかなと思います。


I also bought a rolled hem foot for this dress I am working on, and can’t wait to try it! I don’t know why but these little discoveries make me very happy:-)

Are there any useful feet or other notion you recommend / think is nice to have?



welcome 2014 and a review of 2013

(日本語は英文のあとに続きます。Text in Japanese will follow English)

Happy New Year! I wish everyone a happy and healthy 2014.

I love reading everyone’s posts on their successes, failures and reflections in 2013 in terms of me-mades and have been looking forward to reviewing my own progress in 2013.

I started to sew at the end of 2012 and back then my very ambitious 2013 New Year Resolution was to not buy any clothes and make them all myself!

Let’s see how I did…


Total number of items made = 13

6 dresses
2 skirts
2 knitwear
1 pair of pants
2 bags (for presents)

I did stick to the not buying clothes resolution (except for several t-shirts) until the last month of 2013 when I bought a down jacket for a trip (I did try to google a pattern for a down jacket!) and also got a pair of pants and a top using a gift certificate which I received for Christmas (guess I had to:-)

Sticking so relatively stubbornly to my resolution despite my snail sewing pace meant that I was running out of things to wear for work (clothes were looking worn due to heavy rotation, clothing from years back which should stay in the closet until the “style/cut” comes back were prematurely put back into the rotation…)

Anyway, let’s take a look at what worked and what didn’t:



(from left: Belladone dress, Wing dress, Cheongsam #2, Alpengluehen cardigan, Laurel dress)

In the summer I rotated heavily between the Belladone and the Laurel (to the point I cut down on wearing the Belladone because it was looking overworn due to the delicate double-gauze fabric). The Wing Dress was one of the first things I made but due to super clear instructions it was well-made and endured a year of frequently being worn underneath suit jackets, etc. I am surprised to say this, but one of my most worn dresses year-round turned out to be the cheongsam which I was initially hesitant to wear out. In the summer I wore it on its own or with a thin cardi, and in the winter I wear it under sweaters and cardigans.  Lastly, the Alpengluehen cardigan is super warm and comfy, and I love the way it looks. I have been wearing it excessively since I made it.



(from left: Alpengluehen cardigan, Belladone dress, Laurel dress)

The Alpengluehen received many compliments from family and friends – perhaps one of the reasons is that I wear it out so often?! The Laurel was definitely the garment which looked the most like a non-handmade item and hence that was probably why it got paid compliments. Finally, my Belladone didn’t look as well-finished, but yet owing to the interesting design I got asked where I bought it:-)



(from left: Sudoku dress, Alpengluehen cardigan, airplane messenger bag)

The Sudoku dress required a lot of thinking since I had to alter the pattern quite a bit, I patiently finished a muslin, and the inside is also finished nicely…where did that patience of mine I had back then go??  The Alpengluehen: I love the color of yarn and buttons I chose. The airplane messenger bag was the first time I worked without any pattern/instructions and made something on my own!



(from left: Chardon skirtlacey sweater, skirt #2)

Nothing wrong with them, but I just rarely reach for them in the closet. The Chardon skirt would be more worn if it was not in linen (and hence wrinkled less) and of a slightly shorter length. The lacey sweater and the elasticated waist skirt #2 are just not very me I guess…



(from left: Editorial pants, Danielle dress)

I received very kind compliments on the Editorial pants from my wonderful fellow hobby seamstresses when I posted it. However, I have only worn them twice and think I will not wear them again. The gabardine material does not hold the crease, the buttonholes are fraying and there is a awkward bunching up at the crotch. I really need to buy of those pant patterns with super detailed instructions (ie. from Colette) to master how to sew a pant with zipper fly before challenging a Burdastyle pant pattern again). The Danielle dress was one of my first makes. I still like the silhouette but it is too tight across the bust and waist, the zipper pulled at the fabric at the back, not to mention that the tweed material is super itchy despite being lined.  Back then, fresh off the sewing machine I had proudly worn it to a work event… it was really an unforgettable experience to wear itchy fabric during a (already not so relaxing) work event!

**these are only the completed failures… there were also quite a few undocumented, unfinished failures which are somewhere in my closet…


It was my first complete year of sewing and my skills sharpened a lot in the year. Towards the end of the year, I became comfortable sewing without first using Chako-paper and a tracing wheel to trace the exact sewing lines onto the wrong side of each fabric piece first! This saves a LOOOTTT of preparation time and I am hoping that my sewing speed for 2014 would increase as a result!

Other learnings: I can now also line garments, make my own bias tape…


1) LESS THAN 100% is OKAY: I will continue to sew/knit as much of my own clothes as possible but will buy the things which I am not good at making yet (ie. pants) so that I can still look well-presented for professional situations.

2) PLANNING THE FABRICS: You know that stash I was talking about busting in a previous post? Well, it is almost 98% still there (horror!) Now I know the reason for this – I had bought most of these fabrics when I first started sewing – when I never thought about what my style is, what kind of fabric would make the garment look more professional, etc. I just bought a load every time I come across a fabric store/fabric online shop! Now a lot of the fabric are very nice and not cheap at all, but there are many which I don’t know how I can make into a garment I will wear. So my goal would be to plan more carefully, using a sketchbook to plan my projects and taping a piece of the planned fabric to it as inspired by Katie at What Katie Sews.  I have already bought a sketchbook and made some sketches… it is fun! I will also allow myself to acquire a bit of new fabric if necessary (gasp!) but only if I have a clear plan and pattern to make in mind!

3) MAKE 1 – 2 ITEMS FOR LOVED ONES: My Mom and husband are so supportive of my handmade quest so I have been feeling guilty I have yet to make them something (the only unselfish makes in 2013 were the mini messenger and airplane messenger for my sister-in-law’s kids).

4) MAKE A COMPLETE MUSLIN: I did that when I was relatively new to sewing, but it just took so much time and after I made the muslin I was too lazy to change small imperfections anyway… Recently I only do it half-way until I give up – making a muslin half-way does not really give one a picture of the fit of the garment and is actually a huge waste of time and resources.  In The Colette Sewing Handbook, Sarai Mitnick mentions that we should think of ourselves as both a custom clothier and the client – that we should spend as much time working to get the right fit as we do sewing. I will keep this in mind next time I am trying to cut corners with muslin-making!

On a side note, my sister-in-law who gave me the Burdastyle Handbook for Christmas last year (it was on my wish list and I was so happy!) gave me the Colette Sewing Handbook for Christmas this year! I had wanted it for awhile but was hesitant to buy it myself since I thought I already know the things that beginners – which the book is aimed towards – should know. I am so happy I got it since it actually contains a lot of tips and easy-to-understand advice on pattern alteration which are new to me!

Thank you for reading this long post and for reading my blog in 2013. I look forward to reading your posts in 2014!





2013年の私の目標は、洋服はもう買わないで全部手作りするというハードルの高い目標だったが、結局ワンピース6着とスカート2着、ニット2着、パンツ1着、バッグ2個と合計13点作り上げましたので、新しい洋服が少なく作ったアイテムをかなりヘビロテしてしまいました。また、職場で着れるものも少なかったので、昔に買った( 形が少し古臭い)パンツスーツをヘビロテする「羽目」に・・・2013年購入したのは、Tシャツ数枚と旅行用のダウンジャケット、クリスマスプレゼントとしてもらったギフト券で買ったパンツとカットソーのみだった。




(左側から:  Belladone /Wing dress / Cheongsam #2 / Alpengluehen / Laurel)

夏はワンピースのBelladoneLaurelをかなりヘビロテしていました。日本の洋裁本を参考して作ったWing Dressは、洋裁を始めたばかりの頃に作りましたが、本の説明がよかったので、丈夫にできたので一年のヘビロテに難なく耐えられました。Cheongsamは最初、外に着るのが恥ずかしかったが2013年は本当によく着ていました。最後は、Alpengluehenはあたたかく、肌触りがとてもよいので、寒くなってから毎日着たいぐらいよく着ていました。



左側から: Alpengluehen /Belladone /Laurel)




(左側から: SudokuAlpengluehenairplane messenger)

ワンピースのSudokuが、型紙をいじったりして手を加えないといけなかったので一番大変なプロジェクトでした。Alpengluehenは、2回目の大きな編み物なのによくできたと我ながら誇りを持っている作品です。Airplane messenger bagは初めて型紙なしで自分で考えて作ったものです。



(左側から: Chardon skirtlacey sweaterskirt #2)

スカートのChardonはもう少し短ければ(さらにリネンのようなしわができやすい素材でなければ)出番が増えると思います。Lacey sweater とskirt #2は特に何か問題があるというわけではないが、どうしても着る気にならないのは、私の好みでないだからかな。



(左側から: Editorial pants/Danielle dress)






1) 100%じゃなくても大丈夫:  なるべく手作りを続きますが、少し妥協します。パンツなど自分でうまく作れないものは買う。

2)計画を持った上で生地を買う:洋裁をはじめてから生地を大量手に入れて、その生地を使わなきゃ!と思いながらまた新しい生地を買ったりしました。その理由は、洋裁を始めた頃に買った生地が、計画性のないまま買ったもので実際に私の好みの服にはなれないものが多かったです。今後は、集めた生地をなるべく使うよう、What Katie SewsのKatieさんのようにスケッチブックに作りたい服をスケッチして、その服に使う予定の生地を貼ってきちんと計画することにチャレンジしてみます。これで少し成功したらご褒美としてまた少し新しい生地を♪

3)周りの人にも手作りアイテムを:義理の姉の子どもにはmini messengerairplane messengerをプレゼントしましたが、一番私の手作り「活動」を応援してくれている母親&旦那にはまだ何も作ってあげてません。今年こそ何か素敵なものを作ってプレゼントしたい。

4) 仮縫いは最後まで:いつも仮縫い用の生地を買って途中まで作ってからめんどくさくなって、そのまま本番に。仮縫いを途中までしか完成してないからフィット感も何もわかりませんし、時間と仮縫い用の生地代の無駄だけ。今年はより素敵なお洋服が作れるようこの大事なステップを完璧にしたいです。


2014もTomatoes and Jasmineをよろしくお願いいたします♪

2013 unselfish sewing project #2

I am on a bag-making roll  - after making the messenger bag for my niece, I made another one for my nephew who just started elementary school for his Christmas present. It was much more difficult to decide on what to make for my nephew who is 6 years old, since I only see him once a year and have no idea what he likes. I wanted it to be something he would find “cool” and use.

姪子にプレゼントするかばんを作ってから、かばん作りに夢中♪♪ 今度はちょうど小学校に入った甥にクリスマスプレゼントとして贈るものを。一年に1回しかあわないので、どういうのがよいかかなり迷いました。使ってもらいたいので、6歳の男の子におしゃれと思われるのが重要なポイントだった。


After experimenting with making several types of bags (this turned out to be an expensive present due to the experimenting) and not being satisfied with the end-product, I decided to draft my own pattern taking inspiration from those famous messenger bags from Manhattan. I applied the new bag making skills I learned from the previous messenger bag project, and it turned out exactly as I envisioned without any incidents!


The selfish aunt strikes again… should I keep it? I want it!!


maybe I will just buy some toys for my nephew instead… a bag in this color and this style is really something I would use! ponders the selfish aunt.



The front view – Liberty helicopter print in canvas!  And that was before I found out that helicopters are on my nephew’s Christmas wish list:-)



The back view – added a D-ring to make the length adjustable. HA!



I know this is getting obsessive but I have to introduce the side-views too!




and finally the inside lined with Japanese cotton canvas cow-print fabric from Nippori. I added a pocket using the other side of the cow-print fabric (it is not so visible in the picture but it is polka dots with milk bottles… how cool is that?)



All in all, it took around 7 hours of putting together after having worked out the pattern pieces. It was a fun sew and if you haven’t noticed yet, I am so proud as it is the first time I made something from scratch (without a pattern)!


Quick facts

Pattern: self-drafted

Flap: Liberty helicopter print cotton canvas
Outer fabric: Navy cotton canvas
Inner fabric: Cow-print cotton canvas

表地: リバティー帆布/紺色の帆布   裏地:牛柄の帆布

I am much into making bags now and am on the look out for some pattern books for bags (for adults). Any good recommendations?


2013 unselfish sewing project #1

Hello, it has been awhile. I hope preparations for the holidays are coming along well for everyone.

In my case, this year I have had more time than usual to prepare for presents and had even made some hand-sewn ones.

I had promised my family hand-sewn items over the year but have yet to fulfil any of the promises (sorry guys…) I usually decide on what to sew quite spontaneously, which means I end up sewing items which are not on my to-sew list. Christmas is a good time for me to become less selfish and more organised, and finally I am happy to show something I made for someone other than myself!

Voila, a messenger bag for my 4-year old niece.





The selfish aunt trying on the new bag and thinking… hmm, should I keep it? (just kidding)



Actually, if I change the plastic D-rings to something more suitable for adults it would make a cute purse, no? Or should I keep this one…? (again, just kidding)

Dリングの部分を子供用のプラスチックのものではなく、もう少しおしゃれなものにすれば大人用のバッグとしてぴったりだね!やはりプレゼントにすることをやめようかな?と悩む人 ….(笑)


My favourite part of the bag is the inside: Japanese cotton canvas fabric with cows which I bought in Nippori.



Quick facts

Pattern: Bag #7 from Simple and Design Clothing for Girls and Boys
Adjustments: none
Fabric: Liberty cotton lawn in Betsy Ann / denim linen / pink linen for corners
Lining: Japanese cotton canvas in cow print

While we are on the topic of unselfish sewing, I remember the only other time I sewed an unselfish project was last Christmas, using the same book, when I made a dress for the niece who will get the messenger bag this year.


The book…


This is the dress I made last year. Isn’t it cute?



At that time, I had only just started sewing and was nervous about sewing something for a present. However, the instructions were clear and the construction was easy, yet the finished project looked quite good! That must have been the point when I gained confidence and started to promise others in my family I would sew something for them.


This green dress and matching bag is what I originally wanted to make for my niece this year – I love that neckline detailing.



I also love this shirt dress! But eventually I settled on making her the little messenger bag shown in the picture below.



Here are some other items I want to make for my niece and nephew, though by the time I get around to making them they may have become too old for the items in this book…





I think this little raincoat looks so cool!


Did you have better luck in finding time to fulfil hand-made present promises this year?


This book is available at sew tokyo.

skirt #2

Just a quick sew from the Female magazine I wrote about in a previous post.

It is comprised of 12 panels and the waist is elasticated, but risk-adverse me had to make a muslin to test the fit and style anyway.





I am noticing since I stopped buying clothes that I am running out of bottoms to wear! Bottoms seem to not go through the test of time as well as tops do, at least in my case. So I will be on the look out for more simple patterns like this!

Quick facts:

Pattern: #20 skirt from FEMALE Magazine Autumn 2013 – size M
Adjustments: added 1 cm in length
Fabric: Kokka cotton voile

FEMALE 2013秋号に記載されてるパターンでスカートを作りました!こんなシンプルな形のスカートですが、実は合計13枚の布で構成されたデザインで縫い合わせるのが大変だった!しかもすべて袋縫いで。それでもウエイスト部分がゴムなので比較的に簡単に作れたかな。


FEMALE Magazine – Winter 2013

The winter issue of FEMALE magazine is out, yay!! Not that I need any more patterns, but it is hard to resist buying this magazine – as always, I love the styling and the magazine always has something I want to make.  I really need to speed up in my sewing!!


Anyway, let’s take a look!

Just as in the last issue, the main feature is the key trends for the upcoming season.

It is almost as if the editors of this magazine knew I wanted a simple classic jacket and a cute jumper…


and these wool pants! For some reason I really want to make some men style pants with tucks in grey wool suiting, and this pattern looks perfect!


Some separates you can make as a set – personally I love the peplum set especially in the fabric used in the magazine, and I think the 15-16 top and short set is also cute.




I also love this shirt. I know… it’s just a shirt with a bow – but it’s so cute, I love it! Especially with the tartan skirt.


This mini-flared skirt and dress are also useful to have. I am usually for straight mini-skirts but this year I love this flared silhouette- in fact I have a flared mini-skirt in the pipeline!


These chino pants look cool as well!


Coat patterns and jacket patterns:


I really like the simple coat on the left hand side. It looks so timeless and elegant.


Look at these dresses! So pretty! I especially like the one on the right hand side. #63 also looks very cute – if you look closely you can see the fabric is a cat face print!


There is more, but let’s end off with some accessories:

I have been dreaming about making such a clutch for awhile!! Hope I will get around to it now that I have a pattern:)




I can’t wait until the weekend to finish off my current project so I can get closer to making those cool wool pants in this magazine.  Are there any items you especially like in this issue?

This magazine is available at sew tokyo.