She left the choosing of buttons to us which is a nerve-wracking experience for us but you can always return buttons if they are not right. Buttons are such a personal thing. We went with the nautilus shell buttons which are an artwork all to themselves.
Paula is such a regular with us we know her telephone number and address off by heart but it took a Pandemic to eventually get a photo of her! This photo was taken on the week she should have been in Milan then Lake Como, and here is one of the planned outfits for shopping in Milan, guess it will have to wait until next year now 😞
The fabric is an olive green wide chalk stripe linen and viscose mix, it’s a light to medium weight linen with reasonable drape whilst remaining stable enough for those stripes to stay straight.
Julie looking fantastic in this superfine stripe navy lightweight linen Zadie Jumpsuit. Such a great pattern that works on so many figures – Julie has made adjustments to allow for her hourglass shape (FBA, for example) and says she will do further tweaks next time (we can’t see anything that needs changing but we are our own worst critics)
Lock down sewing with a topical message “if you can read this you are too close!” hand embroidered down the leg in glow in the dark thread. The Linen is our perennially popular washed Damiel linen which has a heavy but drapey handle and works brilliantly for this style trouser. The pattern is self drafted from a basic straight leg long trouser pattern – Bess added fabric to the side seams and then darted the legs in at the bottom and on the knee. They are super comfy to wear and work on both hot and cold days (ie any British Summer day).
Kathryn wowed us with this super self drafted coat and dress combo made from lightweight Italian Linen. Soooo brilliant. We love ❤️ ❤️ ❤️
Angela made this fabulous shirt using a tried and tested (understatement of the week) vintage pattern from 1949 – it is Butterick 6020. Such simple and clean lines work so well with these modern Japanese prints. The fabric is Kokka linen and viscose mix – it’s a medium weight fabric with a fair bit of drape.
This is the @theassemblylineshop #talpuffshirt using a buttery soft black lightweight black linen. It so soft it almost feels like very fine wool. Susie is really pleased with it. The Assembly Line are so clever with their classic and slightly unusual designs. Susie is not one to usually see herself in a puff sleeve blouse but it’s not too puffy and loves the hidden cuff idea, and the envelope neck reminds her of all the easy to put on baby clothes her five children wore.
We love this fabulous peasant shirt made by Alexa using a supersoft washed lightweight white linen and embroidered with navy contrast zigzag stitching. It is the #roscoeblouseanddress pattern by @truebias . As well as the stitching being aesthetically pleasing it helps to keep this very lightweight woven fabric stabilised without using facings (like a heavy duty stay-stitch). Beautiful.
This is Christine here wearing the brilliant Kelly Anorak by Closet Case Patterns made using proofed limestone Linen that will repel the rain in a moderate shower and breathe nicely when it doesn’t rain. Perfect.
Linda made this fab unlined linen jacket with bound seams so beautifully you could wear it inside out. We love ❤️
Linda says: I have been amusing myself in my ‘social distancing’ by teaching myself Hong-Kong binding. The jacket is made from some gold linen I bought from you last year. The pattern is Harriet by Style Arc.
Bess made the pattern from her block for these trousers, but it is very similar to the Marcy Tilton for Vogue V8499 trousers. She added extra width below the hip and then darted them back in at the bottom. The fabric is a wool, linen and silk blend worsted suiting that is a delight to sew with (even when matching checks!) and is not at all itchy to wear so was made unlined. -With the thought it *might* be itchy Bess used a contrast cotton cartoon print on the inside of the waistband.
The Jacket is a leopard print TPU clear plastic that Bess sewed with bias binding so as not to be unstuck by the fabric not feeding properly through the machine (you can stop this happening also by using a teflon foot, or sewing with strips of tissue which are then torn off). The pattern is the Kelly Anorak by Closet Case Patterns (simplified a little). Bess made it for a festival (it looks brilliant at night with lights inside), but actually it’s fab to wear on the many rainy days we suffer in Devon. She didn’t bond the seams or do any special waterproofing, but finds it hold up exceptionally well- even to a downpour on a Welsh mountain!
Who doesn’t need a dress made up in the colour of a summer sky? This dress is BOUND to put you in a good mood, it is the Kay Unger for Vogue V1353 shown on the packet in a cotton sateen but works beautifully in a heavy washed linen. Made by Janet who is a brilliant dressmaker and we love everything she puts her hands to. She has lined it with Venezia.
Julie in Dubai wearing her fabulous Nani iRo japanese printed linen wrap dress which was a somewhat troublesome make due to accidentally overlocking a hole in the front panel and having to recut.. but she got there in the end!
Bess downloaded the free pattern from Alice and Co at the V&A Museum in a flash and made up this Mary Quant dress with little to no alterations (unheard of for her- she nearly died of shock), the pocket took the longest and this was the second go as the first one looked like a fried egg! She used bondaweb to applique the daisy and slowed down her normal sewing speed in the hope she could sew accurately (more or less!). The black is a fabulous piqué weave viscose (very similar to a viscose twill) and the collar and daisy is a lightweight linen (probably not the ideal fabric as it frays like the devil but the colours were right and it more-or-less worked so don’t knock it!
The wonderful Pamela here in her wrap front tunic top made out of a light – medium weight linen and viscose mix – a great blend that gets its drape from the viscose and the coolness and structure from the linen, it’s perfect for this top. We love the proportions of this tunic- the length, the little sleeves, the way Pam has used plain navy to define the wrap neckline. Superb!
Jane made up this old Karl Lagerfield pattern FINALLY after it lurking in the pattern drawer for nearly 20 years. The Linen is the Japanese designer nani IRO for Kokka. Jane had a bit of tweaking to get it right – too small on the bust but massive everywhere else – such as life goes with a pattern for the first time, but having been altered it is now PERFECT 😊
It’s got pockets!
It is lined in Venezia faced with extra light interfacing and there is a concealed zip up the back. The pattern is Vogue 1412 (long since discontinued but possibly available second hand).
Rudi the Siamese cat has to be in the photo too. Even if he didn’t get his ‘best side’.
This is Braenna wearing her self drafted yellow linen circular skirt dress; made all on her own in the summer holidays. Isn’t she amazing? We ❤️❤️❤️!
David seriously rocking this brilliant Chinese dragons and houses print linen and cotton mix shirt. It’s a self drafted pattern (by his lovely lady Alison). We ❤❤❤!
Jane wearing her superb self drafted shift dress made up in Japanese nani IRO printed linen. Lined in Venezia and piped with fine satin (self made) piping.
Isn’t it fabulous? And we ❤ the shoes too!
It certainly helps to be small when sewing with designer fabrics – this is the beautiful Nicola who squeezed this linen shirt out of less than a metre of cult poplularity Japanese nani IRO printed linen -good going when it’s so narrow and has a border to fathom placement. Nicola credits rookie luck but we think she has the eye for detail that makes for a superbly skilled dressmaker.
Sue (from French France) made this fabulous linen and Sorona mix shirt using the Closet Case Patterns ‘Kalle Shirt’, Sorona is a new fibre made from corn starch that we hope will take off because added to linen it adds a fabulous softness and suppleness (less creases! Yayy!!). Sue used a bias maker to make the spotty inside collar.
Bess made this fab linen jersey cardigan using her tried-and-tested t-shirt pattern that has been cut up the front. The trim is a sequinned rick rack. It is possible Bess’s life is complete now there is sequinned rickrack in the world. Continue reading Linen Jersey Cardigan with sequin Trim and Iron-On Patch
Pamela sent us this photo after a season of wearing this self proclaimed favourite dress made up from her stash of heavy linen. Aside from the generally pleasing aesthetics of a colour block dress you get to do some quality stash busting. Win/Win! For the best results use like fabrics (weight/drape) and make sure they are colour fast for the cleaning. It’s a good idea to use those colour catcher sheets you put in the machine as a precaution.
She made it up again in Green (which we love) but the yellow remains the favourite.
Bess made this heavy washed green linen coat on a weekend retreat by staying up practically all night for two nights and not skiving at all. She had even come prepared with her two grosgrain trims sewn to each other already and the pattern fully adjusted to fit and toile tweaked.
The linen had been pre-washed 5 times to eliminate excess dye that could leach onto the cotton grosgrain, and the dry clean only Liberty crepe de chine silk lining is also pre-washed (it’s okay).
There are no shoulder pads but a bit of semi-tailored interfacing around the chest area is used to improve the structure (along with cuffs, facings and pockets), all the trimmings were hand sewn so as not to change the drape.
The pattern is Vogue V1410 which has a wrap front rather than a front opening. The whole point of dressmaking is making exactly what you want* so of course these details are for us to alter!
*when I say we dressmake to get exactly what we want I mean within reason. We cannot alter patterns to remove a middle-age spread, or dropped shoulders, or [enter personal body hang-up here]. But we can dressmake to disguise these things.
Pauline made this fabulous denim jumpsuit using a 1970’s jumpsuit pattern from Simplicity (3322), she used a soft medium weight linen mix denim with floral painted buttons and hand embroidered pocket details.
Jacoba on the amazing Wahiba Sands in Oman wearing her printed linen and viscose tunic dress – the perfect fabric to cover up yet remain cool in the blistering heat.
Look at that blue sky ~looks out of window at drizzle ~ look it’s blue! Continue reading Red and Jade printed Linen and Viscose Tunic Dress
Shirley made this floral print linen and cotton shirt after a long hiatus in sewing (I’m wondering if this is Shirley’s sewing after a break how good was it before?!). Cut with a v-neck band and 3/4 sleeves, this shirt is a great Summer wardrobe staple.
Bess made this super fine linen dress with black bird print for her holiday in Tobago, it’s made using her basic block with just the shaping from bust darts and a centre back seam. Nicknamed the frigate bird dress as the print is similar to the ubiquitous birds of the Caribbean.
It is unlined and the neck is bound with super lightweight satin bias binding.
Elwen ready for her travels in her blue Irish Linen shirting weight smock dress. The yoke is a batik printed cotton. Armholes and neck are bound with bias and there is no zip.
Clair is Sunny Cadiz wearing her crewel embroidered Italian linen shift dress (her tried and tested pattern which Jane helped to fit many moons ago). We can’t emphasise too much how useful a good basic dress pattern is!
Whilst linen is notoriously creasy these heavy embroidered linens really don’t crease badly at all.
Sarah made up Vogue 9035 jacket pattern in this funky plasticised lightweight linen. She has used the reverse of the fabric for the cuffs and the hem panel on the back. Very clever!
Clair in Sunny Cadiz (okay, not sunny right now but it usually is!) wearing turquoise blue linen wrap skirt. The brown legs help. Fabulous.
Christie wearing her classic shift dress in this fabulous soft printed linen print. A well fitted shift dress is hard to beat, eh?
Lesley painted this brown linen dress using iridescent Markal Paintsticks and an Amy Butler stencil. I need to get myself some of those!
Elwen wearing her green Irish shirting linen dress to her brother’s graduation ceremony. She used Burda 6758 which she altered only in the bust (to make bigger), took in on the nape of her neck (it was gaping) and shortened it a bit (which was surprising as Elwen is tall). The bodice is lined in green cotton lawn, it was hand hemmed.
Chandra wearing her beautifully made reversible cotton skirt using a Liberty archive printed lawn on one side and plain blue linen on the other. The pattern is by Sew me Something and is called “Viola”.
Ruscha sporting her hand sewn silk chiffon shirt, which we at the Stone Fabrics headquarters are in awe of. She insists that it didn’t take that long to make and is a more enjoyable way to sew (she can sit in the garden and tinker away without noise). However it was made it is amazing. We love the mix of the two colour ways.
Also seen: linen and lycra stripey jersey skirt
Jane’s shirt made up once again in an embroidered and hand painted Linen from Italy. Jane was pleased with how economical this shirt was, getting all of it out of a metre (the facings were cut from the unpainted selvedges) -handy when the fabric is £85.00mt!
Jane’s amazing embroidered Italian Linen dress. This fabric is hand painted on top of the embroidery and doesn’t come cheap –it’s enlightening to discover what things cost when they are made properly and the artisans are paid a fair wage.
With such an amazing fabric you only need a very simple shift pattern, Jane used her block which just has bust darts, front darts and back darts so there was minimal chopping up of the pattern.
The fabric truly is stunning.
Not content with the £33mt fabulous blue Irish shirting weight Linen, Bess (with clearly too much time on her hands) hand painted spots all over it before making up this much loved A-line skirt.
There are belt loops sewn around the top and a length of picot edge petersham ribbon added as a belt.
The skirt is lined (Hong Kong style) with Cotton lawn and fastened with an invisible zip on the side.
Ann from classes wearing her floral printed ramie and viscose mix shift dress with frill hem. Ramie is a natural fibre similar to Linen, like linen it breathes well so is excellent to wear in the heat.
What’s the collective noun for linen shirts? For bullfinches it is a bellowing, I rather like that. A bellowing of linen shirts.
These are all made by Lesley using a discontinued Vogue pattern No 1476.
All the linens are light to medium weight, you can find more linens HERE
Bess wearing a white linen jersey raglan sleeved t-shirt with ‘modesty’ panel, and black viscose pique wide leg trousers.
Bess has a bit of a linen jersey obsession, this is the fourth (at least) she made of these tops in as many weeks. This was lined in a bandeau panel with a very stable white cotton jersey, the same jersey was used to bind the neck.
The trousers were made from a stash of Viscose, a slightly piqué weave cloth that drapes beautifully but has a lot of ‘substance’. There’s a fly and button closure and then ribbons that tie to the side.
Both patterns are fairly unrecognisable from their origins, but the trousers were Burda 8087 and the top is Burda 6990
Raspberry pink embroidered linen shift dress made by Pamela. You can’t really beat a shift dress, eh? Timeless.
Embroidering linen might not make it crease less, but it will look like it is not so creased.
Find more embroidered linen here
Lightweight red linen jersey made with double layer body (for modesty and flattery), made by Bess.
Bess on top of the world wearing linen jersey camisole and red and white spotty linen skirt. The camisole pattern was made by drawing round an existing vest. The front and the back are the same which makes it super easy to construct (no markings!), Soft elastic binding was used for the straps, Bess made a few of these for her holiday and got the making time down to 20 minutes. The skirt was made a few years ago (fabric long since sold out 🙁 ), due to the linen being so fine Bess lined it with white ‘Riviera’ lawn. Double belt loops were attached to hold a decorative saddle stitch grosgrain belt. She’s had a lot of use out of this skirt.
You can find lots of Linens HERE
Lesley wearing her fabulous box pleated hooded linen shirt with placket.
Fabrics and Notions:
Coral medium weight linen
Lightweight iron-on interfacing
Jane (the boss lady) wearing her laminated cotton pink spotty raincoat with stripe yoke and contrasting spotty lining with detachable hood, and pink linen fly-front trousers.
Fabrics and Notions:
Pink and turquoise spotty laminated cotton #3021
Pink and turquoise stripe laminated cotton #3022
Anbo spotty American printed cotton.
Separating turquoise chunky zip.
Dyed turquoise shell buttons.
Clear plastic back buttons.
Pink heavy linen
7″ Dress and skirt zip
2 x buttons
Viscose iron-on Interfacing
Jacket: (discontinued) Anna Sui for Vogue #2424
Trousers: Burda 2938
There is no interfacing or stabilising in this jacket as the laminated cotton is very stable. Jane rarely makes things for herself, or in this kind of fabric and has been frequently saying, “I’m really pleased with that jacket!”. It makes all this rain ALMOST bearable.
Lulu wearing vintage Vogue dress made with swimmers printed cotton and pink linen bolero, all made by Jane.
Fabrics and Notions:
Swimmers print cotton
Riviera cotton lawn lining
Pattern: Vintage Vogue V2960
Pink Heavy Linen
Swimmers print cotton