Kicking off Scraptember!

Greetings, Sewcialists! Morgan here, kicking off Scraptember. The theme this month is simple: use those fabric scraps that we all have to sew up something beautiful and useful!

Creating projects from scraps is a fantastic (and cheap!) way to get creative with colors, textures and shapes. Here are a few of my inspirations for this month:

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These tops from OAOA have cool pieced sections inset in simple garments.

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A tank like this would be great for larger scraps and would work well with a pattern like the Wiksten or Tiny Pocket tanks that so many of us have in our pattern arsenal.

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This Sass & Bide top plays with interesting trims in between larger blocks of color and print and would look great in a woven or knit.

Sewing scrap garments can be as experimental or as simple as you like. If you enjoy the structure of using a pattern, consider using scrap pieces to sew up one of these:

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Seamster Pattern’s Yellowtail Tank

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Vogue 1247

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Deer & Doe Centauree

Finally, one of my favorite ways to sew with scraps is by making undies! Why not use Scraptember as an excuse to crank out some useful and cute new underthings for yourself or your loved ones? Our very own Gillian got Scraptember jump-started by making a undies out of her knit scraps.

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I’ll be back soon with more inspiration! In the meantime, please do share your scrappy makes in the Sewcialist Flickr pool if you’d like to be included in the end-of-month round-ups. Feel free to add #scraptember hashtag if and when you post anywhere else in sewing blog land.

And share: what are your favorite scrap-busting projects and patterns?



Tribute Month round-up

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It has been great fun hosting Tribute Month here on the Sewcialists blog with Inge. I’ve discovered lots of great new-to-me blogs and hope you all have been suitably inspired.

Gillian from Crafting a Rainbow made this fun stripey summer dress in tribute to Alessa of FarbenFreude….

and Alessa made a great maxi dress in tribute to Gillian!


Kirsty of Top Notch took inspiration from Oona of Oonaballoona, Julie of Jolies Bobines and Debbie of Lily Sage and Co to make this scuba jacket.



Alison at Another Little Crafty Creation (that’s me!) made an embroidered maxi-skirt inspired by Carolyn of Handmade By Carolyn.

Cari from Cari Homemaker made a classy work dress inspired by Carolyn from Diary of a Sewing Fanatic.


Gillian again with this tribute to Heather at Handmade by Heather B scoop neckline in this floral dress.


Gina of Feminist Stitch made an Oona inspired maxi-dress for Oonapalooza but didn’t post in time so she decided to call it a tribute instead.


If Gina is entering her belated Oonapalooza dress, then so am I! This was made during the month but not blogged in time for the big round ups.


Another timeless shift-dress and another tribute to Carolyn from Marrie at Purls and Pleats.


Jenny from Rennous Oh Glennus made a lovely Shibori scarf in tribute to  “Morgan [Crab and Bee] and her lovely shibori experiments, Melanie [Poppy Kettle] and her mad hand sewing & couture skills and Sophie [Ada Spragg] and her outdoor, DIY photo taking courage.” 

I’m going to finish with a quote from Jenny, which I think sums up the sewcialist spirit this month:

“So that’s [our] little tribute to not just 3 superstars, but every superstar.  You all continue to inspire [us] whether you know it or not…. and whether I know it or not! You push [us] to consciously as well as unconsciously try new things and develop new skills. Thanks all you SUPERSTARS, you!”


Tribute August: who inspires eMHaTee?

Today I’d like to introduce you to Marlies, who blogs at eMHaTee.


Look at that gorgeous coat she made! We asked Marlies the same questions we asked Joanne and here are her answers:


What makes a sewing blog stand out in your blog reader?

I have a lot of blogs in my feed, on different subjects, for example sewing, crochet, home decoration and lifestyle. The headlines give me always the first impression on the subject of the blogpost. Clear and witty headlines make a blog stand out in my big list. Besides that I’m mostly a ‘looker’ not a ‘reader’, so pictures are very important to me. Clear pictures that show the garment are a must for me.

Which Sewcialists inspire you and why? What is it that is inspiring – style, technical skills, energy, etc?

First of all a big inspire to me is our lovely host herself; Inge from Her choice of fabric and pattern is equal to my likings so every make from her is a joy to watch! She lives nearby so her sewing’s are for the same climate. I always think it’s harder to sew for winter than for summer so I’m always looking for fall/winter attire inspiration.

Another big inspiration is Fiona from Chain Stitcher. She always has a nice energy in her pictures. She makes nice basics and that’s something I have to concentrate on more because that’s what you wear the most. Her monthly ‘indie pattern update’ is a very nice list of all the new sewing patterns to explore!

The third inspirational lady is Roisin from Dolly Clackett. This lady doesn’t need another introduction. I’m always looking for nice dress patterns, and because this lady makes them all, I can compare the different outcomes. Her daily Instagram pictures in her me-made-clothing makes me want to wear me made clothes every day too!

What are your favourite makes by your inspirational sewcialists?
All of Inge’s makes I could wear myself, so to pick one is a hard task. I picked this fabulous skirt because I love the outcome of this print with this pattern. I made a solid red Gertie skirt myself, and never thought of a printed one. And look how well it combines with cardigans!


Fiona’s dotted trench coat is so glamorous and well-made that that’s my favorite! A classic coat that can lasts for years, wow!


My favourite make of Roisin is hard to choose, her dresses are all beautiful!
I pick this one because it is inspiration for a dress I’m making to attend a wedding (soon on my blog) The placement of the fabric and the cut of the pattern are a perfect combination.

If you were going to sew in the style of one of those bloggers, what would you do?
I’m planning to make some winter-wardrobe-staples and I fell I love with Fiona’s White Russian sweatshirt from the new pattern company Capital Chic. Doesn’t that look stylish and comfortable?

It even looks great on a pencil skirt… that sounds as the best make for the coming winter!

How do other people inspire your sewing in general?
Other people inspire my sewing in the way they dress. They make combinations that I’ve never thought of, or they use color and print in a different way as I would do. That gives me new insight on how to build a garment in my wardrobe. I find these inspirations in blogs, in magazines, but also from people walking by on the street. In that way the world is full of inspiration!


Thank you Marlies for kindly letting us in on the sources of your inspiration (and for including me in it too, I am so honoured!) I’m looking forward to seeing your wedding attendee dress!



Tribute august: who inspires Joanne?

Hi there guys! Today I’d like to introduce Joanne to you. She blogs at Zoe Livana and she lives in the same town as me, which I found out through Map the Sewintists.




I asked her some questions about who inspires her in her sewing adventures and here are her answers:




What makes a sewing blog stand out in your blog reader?
I follow A LOT of sewing blogs. Some people read the news on their phones, and I’m the one always catching up on my blogs. What makes a blog stand out is often their photography and their sense of humour. I love a writing style that is honest, to the point, and personal. But above all, I love looking at all the pretty pictures, especially if I’ve let my blog reader pile up…


Which Sewcialists inspire you and why? What is it that is inspiring – style, technical skills, energy, etc?
This is a very difficult question because there are so many sewcialists that I follow and find inspiring. I’ve narrowed it down to a top 3, based heavily on the volume of posts they put out there, I think. They kind of give me a consistent stream of inspiration, so to speak.

Let’s start with Lauren of Lladybird. She is one sassy lady and I love her style! I mean, have you seen her hair? I think it’s amazing how quickly she can sew, and with great accuracy. She also seems to really know how to make clothes fit, which is an amazing skill to have. She tends to look good in pretty much everything she makes.

I also love Anna of Paunnet! She is also kind of sassy, but less outspoken than Lauren, except when she’s doing her pattern magazine reviews. I love her photographs and I’d wear just about anything she makes. I feel as though I can relate to her partly because she’s European, and partly because she is a fellow pear-shaped beauty. The only thing I find slightly annoying about her is that she often boasts that her size fits right out of the envelope. I do not have that luxury because my torso is much too long.
And last, but not least, Roisin of Dolly Clackett. I’m sure many of you have heard that she is Queen of the dresses, and that’s because she really is! What’s different about her blog is that she doesn’t just review patterns or post pictures of her makes, she has a really humorous and honest blogging style. She’s not afraid to get personal in her posts, and she sometimes talks about tv shows etc. Her blog titles are always witty (quotes?), which really makes me want to read her posts. And did I mention the DRESSES?? Her style is amazing and I want every single thing she makes! (almost). She makes such good use of novelty fabric and pairs it with beautiful dresses to really make both the fabric and pattern wearable, if that makes sense. I also love to make and wear dresses, so we have that in common.
What is your favourite make by your favourite blogger?
Lladybird: A Belladone for Bicycling (if any of you read my blog, you’ll know I’ve already made 3 Belladones and I’m not stopping…)
Dolly Clackett: (Sorry but I couldn’t choose just one!!) Poppy Heather dress and Extraordinary Garden Dress.
If you were going to sew in the style of your favourite blogger what would you do?
For Lladybird, I would have to go with some bicycling fabric, because she’s said on a couple of occasions that it’s her favourite. For paunnet, I would probably choose a solid fabric because she does solids so well. And I’d probably make a skirt because let’s be honest, I have enough dresses for now… Which brings me to Dolly Clackett. I’d have to make a By Hand London Dress because that’s one of her favourite brands, and I’d have to choose an amazing novelty print. I’ve actually made a dress in her style during Sew Dolly Clackett where sewcialists around the world sewed in her honour when she got married. How sweet is that?? The dress I made is by far the dress I get the most compliments on.

How do other people inspire your sewing in general?
When a new pattern comes out from an indie designer, I usually wait a little while to see what other sewing bloggers come up with before I make the decision to purchase the pattern. I really get inspired by fabric choices and finishes that other bloggers do. I feel like they really push my creativity. Like the Sew Dolly Clackett dress. I had ear-marked that fabric for a ‘boring’ pair of pyjama pants, and I’m so glad that I used it to make a dress.
Through reading blogs, I have also learned a lot about fitting and finishing techniques, more so than I could have learned from any sewing book. Maybe because blogs are so much more fun to read than a boring sewing book ;) I’m pretty fearless when it comes to sewing techniques in general, so I’m on board with trying just about anything once, as long as the instructions are clear.
Thank you Joanne for giving us a little insight on who and what inspires you!

Tribute August: more inspiration

Goodevening! Well, in my part of the world it is. If else: goodmorning, goodafternoon, choose whatever is the most appropriate :) Here I am with more inspiration for August Tribute month. I’ll tell you a little about who inspires me.


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First is someone I know in real life too: Antje, who blogs at Sewing – Vintage – Knitting. She is probably the most metriculous sewer I know, something I greatly admire. The detailing on her garments is always impeccable. Lace, bows, pintucks, they are all perfect. I’m not really a detail-oriented person but when I see the things she makes, I wish I was a little more. I love the latest dress she made, a red and white shirtdress.



Another blogger that inspires me is Tabatha Tweedie from Thread Carefully. She makes such pretty dresses, for herself as well as for her adorable little girl. I love her fabric choices and she has great fitting skills. I especially love this blue polkadotted dress she made:



Next is Smeida from SewMeow. She makes pretty dresses (among other things) that look pretty and perfect for everyday wear. And look at the Camí she made! Camí is one of my favourite patterns and when I see this one I totally want to make a fourth version of it. Also, check out the Bleuet dress she made, so pretty.



Can you tell I like dresses? :)


A fellow Japan-lover and next source of inspiration is Jenny from Rennous-oh-glennus. She made a pants block and turns it into some great fitting pants. She aaaalmost inspired me to try and make myself some real pants, other than shorts. If only I wasn’t so weary of the whole fitting proces. Please Jenny, make some more great pants to pull me over that line ;)




Kim from Reves Mecanique has also made some really inspiring garments. I love how she makes things in different styles and shapes and somehow it’s always very ‘her’. Besides her sewing adventures I love to read about her travels. Would it be ok if instead of a garment for Tribute August, I made a safari trip inspired by her? Look at her Watson coat, it’s stunning!



Last but not least someone that’s very inspiring to me is Sarah from The Creative Perfectionist (previously Rhinestones and Telephones). She has such a bright, fun style. She recently blogged about growing up and what that means to her style and I am so glad to see she got such fabulous comments on that post – wear what makes you feel pretty woman! The fact that she does just that inspires me. Plus: she is like the godmother of inspirational sewalongs, since she is the one that came up with the glorious idea of Sew Dolly Clackett!



Ok, enough about who and what insprires me. What about you?! Have you thought out a project yet? Decided who you want to put in the sewing spotlight? Please, tell us! Or, if you wish, you can keep it a secret and reveal it in the Flickr group when you’re all done!



Oonapalooza: One last round-up!

There were a bunch of great contributions right at the end of the month, so I thought we needed one last round-up!

Ebony’s shorts are amazeballs, and this picture is even amazeballsier!



Liza Jane added fringe to a kimono that she’d previously announced as a fail… and now it’s just perfect! She also use not just two but THREE fabrics for a really cute top. I want it!

Oonapalooza Inspired-Summer Wrap Pants Lekala 4024


Sew Pomona made these awesome flowy pants from a Lekala pattern!

As well, Amy from Sew Well made THREE Polly tops in Oona’s honour!

Little Green Orchids almost gave up on this maxi, but she made it work! (And it’s really pretty!)

There are even more makes over on Oona’s pinterest board, so go check them out!

This was a really interesting monthly theme, which turned up some unexpected feelings in both Oona and I! I’m so thrilled by what people have made though – I think everyone really took the challenge as intended, and took joy in amping up their normal makes. It also led us to August’s theme: Tribute month, where we invite you get inspired by ANYONE in the blogosphere! I’m really excited to see how it goes.

I’d also like to say thanks again to the people who have stepped up to be co-authors on the Sewcialist blog! It finally feels like the community effort I always wanted it to be. Thank you!  Inge and Alison have August’s Tribute month rolling, and Charlotte and Eileen have done great round-ups for Oonapalooza. Thank you!


Oonapalooza: Final Round-Up!

Hey there, Eileen here from Crafty Little Secret to bring you up to date on all the Oonapalooza action with a final round-up post! I can’t even believe all the beautiful, bright and bold Oona-inspired makes I’ve seen in the Flickr group and around the blogosphere last month. I think we all deserve a big pat on the back for finding our own answers to the question: What would Oona do?

(Sorry if I missed some of you, there were a few cases where sharing was not enabled and I couldn’t find a blog post to link up.)

1 Carmencita OonapaloozaCarmen of Carmencita B was at it again with this luchadore dress!

2 Caroline OonapaloozaCaroline of Caroline Paradigm Design made a bold and beautiful pleated Moneta.

3 Rachel OonapaloozaThese fun summer shorts by Rachel of Sew Rachel! make me wish I lived somewhere that got shorts weather.

4 Gillian OonapaloozaSewcialist Gillian of Crafting a Rainbow let her inner Oona take hold while having fun posing in her new Oona-inspired maxi.

5 Lelie OonapaloozaI am so amazed by all the beautiful bathing suits you ladies have been sewing up this summer like this Oona-inspired delight at A Bouquet of Buttons.

6 Kathy Sews Oonapalooza 6 Kathy Sews Oonapalooza2Kathy of Kathy Sews came up with two gorgeous Oona-ified makes this month!

7 Cari OonapaloozaFrom Oona’s own mouth about this tourist in Kalkatroona “ooooooh wiggly vavavoooom perfection! you look gorgeous, girl!”. Great job Cari!

8 Quirky Peach OonapaloozaQuirky Peach Sally lights up the beach in her Tropicana dress. One of my favorite things about Oonapalooza was just how much fun everyone was having posing in their makes!

9 Lori OonapaloozaI absolutely love the print on Lori’s dress. A woman after my Bohemian heart! Apparently the fabric is sold out so we will just have to content ourselves with coveting hers.

10 Lady Katza OonapaloozaRavishing in red, check out the details of this rosie Camino over at Peanut Butter Macrame.

11 Lisa G OonapaloozaI love the colors in Lisa’s Oonapalooza to the Max-i dress!

12 Melanie OonapaloozaMagpie Makery‘s Oonapalooza dress is a print explosion!

13 Natasha OonapaloozaAt the end of her blogpost about this fab skort, Tasha asks “Oona, or nah?”. Most definitely Oona.

14 Lorene OonapaloozaInspired by Oona’s wild side, Lorene of Goldpom drafted her own zebra print maxi skirt.

15 Sue OonapaloozaSue at A Colourful Canvas said it best: “[These pants are] what can happen when Oona whispers in my head!”. Keep whispering Oona, it’s working!

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAHey, that’s me! Oona’s signature ballsiness inspired me to take a risk with the print and making major pattern adjustments for this tangerine dream. I’m so glad I did, thanks Oona!

17 Winnie OonapaloozaI don’t think Oonapalooza would have been complete without a Scruffy Badger‘s take on the inspiration. Just like Oona, Winnie shows she is a wiz with pattern placement with this outfit!

18 Marmota OonapaloozaMarmota is stunning in stripes in her historial Oozapalooza outfit!

All Style and Substance OonapaloozaAnd squeaking in under the wire is a beautiful dress from All Style and All Substance!

Congratulations to everyone who participated in Oonapalooza, I hope you had as much fun as I did! I read a blog post today about natural vs. forced smiles and how much more beautiful we all look with our naturals smiles. I think that Oona’s greatest gift to us all is putting a big ol’ natural smile on each of our faces with the joy and exuberance in every outfit she makes.

Thanks Oona!

(PS. Check out  Oona’s ‘Palooza Pinterest board and her round-up of the ‘Palooza in Kalkatroona on Monday)