Blogger Network #29 – Scandi Christmas Lilou Dress

tilly-and-the-buttons-christmas-lilou-dress

Happy December everyone! It’s time for my latest Minerva Blogger Network project, and this month I’ve made a Tilly and the Buttons Lilou dress in red and white Scandi-style Christmas fabric! Perfect for all the upcoming Christmas parties, dinners and gatherings, don’t you think?

Click here to read more about my Lilou dress!

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Tartan Reindeer Megan Dress

tilly and the buttons christmas tartan megan dressWhen this post goes up it’ll be exactly four weeks until Christmas – just where has this year gone to? It’s also my first wedding anniversary this weekend which I cannot believe either. Time has raced past like Santa’s sleigh on Christmas Eve. But never mind that – onto the sewing!

This week I’ve made myself the ultimate Christmas Day outfit in the form of a reindeer print Megan dress from the Tilly and the Buttons Love at First Stitch Book. I’ve made this pattern a couple of times before – a baroque linen Megan dress here and a summer seersucker Megan here – and I really do like it. There are flattering darts on the front and back skirt as well as the bodice, little cap sleeves and a long zip down the back. I also know that I can cut my fabric straight from the pattern pieces and it’ll fit me perfectly! No other pattern company seems to cater for my measurements as accurately as Tilly does. Even the length of her dresses are perfect (normally I have to hack at least 5 inches off the bottom of everything!).

reindeer tartan megan dress love at first stitch

The fabric for my Christmas dress came from the Remnant House in Harrogate. I think I bought 2m of it and I’ve used nearly all of it for this dress. It’s a tartan cotton with embroidered reindeers and hearts all over it and I love it. It’s so festive and cutesy and will make my Scottish mother-in-law very happy! Unfortunately they don’t seem to stock this particular fabric on their website any more but here are a few festive alternatives:

love at first stitch megan dress

If you see me out and about in my reindeer dress this Christmas please can you compliment me on my pattern matching? Aside from a teeny misaligned stripe on the back I couldn’t have got this cut out more precisely! I love how the tartan stripes match up so well on my side seams and how they run straight down the middle from top to bottom. This was quite an easy fabric to pattern match due to all the straight lines in the tartan but it does always impress me when I get it right!

tilly and the buttons tartan megan

Have you made a dress for Christmas this year? Is it as festive as mine or have you gone more glitzy? Show me! I also recommend adding Tilly’s book, Love at First Stitch, to your Christmas wish list if you don’t already own it. I’m sure Father Christmas would be more than  happy to deliver it to you 🙂

Tilly & the Buttons Mimi Blouse

love at first stitch mimi blouseIt’s no secret that I love Tilly and the Buttons’ sewing patterns. If you’ve been a reader over the past couple of years then you may remember all my makes so far: a Coco top, a handful of Coco dresses in Christmas/stripe/aztec prints, two Megan dresses, a floral Francoise dress, some Margot pyjamas and a striped Mathilde blouse… I’m not sure my wardrobe could actually survive without Tilly these days. This week’s make, therefore, is no exception – this time I’ve made my first Mimi blouse!

The Mimi blouse is one of the first patterns I eyed up in Love at First Stitch but it’s taken me a little while to match the pattern with a suitable fabric. Last year my husband and I took a trip to Paris and I bought lots of 5€ fabric ‘coupons’ from Marche St Pierre. One of those pieces got turned into a Deer and Doe Bleuet dress and another has become my very first Mimi! What’s more fitting for a French-named blouse than a piece of Parisian fabric?!

tilly and the buttons mimi blouse

Because the fabric came from France (how very la-di-dah of me), I can’t direct you to an online source, but I can describe it for you. This fabric is very, very soft and drapey and lovely to cuddle up in. It has the feel of brushed cotton but is quite lightweight – perfect for the Mimi blouse! I’ve seen many variations of the blouse in various fabrics around the internet – a few cotton lawns, polycottons, linens, double gauzes, chiffons… it seems that anything lightweight will sew up well. I also love the colours of this fabric – navy blue and white – and love how the little flowers look like actual cotton plants!

tilly and the buttons mimi

The pattern itself is a fun one to make although perhaps a little fiddly if you’re a beginner. There are lots of details to contend with (which is great if you like a challenge or want to learn new skills) but, as usual, Tilly explains each stage perfectly and with lots of pictures. Features include a gathered yoke across the back and shoulders, pleated sleeves, narrow sleeve cuffs, set in sleeves, buttonholes and buttonhole facing plus a fab Chelsea collar. As long as you follow Tilly’s instructions word for word then you can’t go wrong, but there are quite a few steps to this pattern. The end result is definitely worth it though! You can see how much effort has gone into this blouse by looking at all the finished details – it’s absolutely worth slaving over!

tilly and the buttons love at first stitch mimi blouse

I really like my finished Mimi blouse. It fits me well (as do all Tilly’s patterns) and I didn’t have to make any adjustments. I cut the size 2 and it’s perfect for my petite frame! It’s such a comfy blouse to wear and I like the way it’s all loose and floaty. I wear mine with a little camisole underneath and I think it looks great. How about you? Have you ever made this pattern? Show me!

Mint Seersucker Margot Pyjamas

margot pyjama trousers from love at first stitchCan you call a pair of pyjama bottoms a ‘dressmaking’ project? This project is the first garment in Tilly’s lovely ‘Love at First Stitch’ book and is designed to be an introduction to sewing your own clothes. The steps for sewing the trousers (or shorts) together are simple and littered with little how-to’s and picture diagrams of what should go where. As a now somewhat seasoned sewist, following this pattern was a doddle, perhaps only made difficult by having to weed out the actual instructions from all the ‘beginners sewing tips’!

I used a lovely minty green striped seersucker fabric from Minerva Crafts for my pyjamas – this was actually the only fabric I bought from the Meet Up back in June! It’s lovely and soft and doesn’t really need ironing, making it perfect pyjama material – especially if you’re a bit of a fidgeter or, as Tilly puts it, like to do pilates in your PJs!

seersucker margot pyjamas, tilly and the buttonsThe instructions say that you can make a matching waist-tie for your Margot pyjamas using the same fabic, but I decided to use a piece of contrasting pink ribbon. There’s something about mint green and bright pink that just seems to work quite well! I also went a bit off-piste and added some elastic into my waistband as I wasn’t convinced that the ribbon would hold out. I made the size 3 by the way and they’re quite roomy, even though the pattern measurements are (supposedly) precisely my size.

margot seersucker PJs from Love at First StitchI don’t think I’ve got much else to say about this pattern as it’s so basic – my Margots went pretty much from paper pattern to ready-to-wear in a couple of hours. Have you made the Margot PJs? How did you find it?