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April 17, 2017

Pocket time! Add pockets to the Cashmerette Turner Dress

We sewists have many advantages over poor Ready-to-Wear buying ladies, and surely one of the mightiest is: the pocket!

Yep, pockets are scarce in women’s clothes in stores; I do not know why (a handbag industry conspiracy?!). But, you can add them into almost any garment when you sew.

Turner Dress with pockets

So it was only natural to add one into my fave Turner Dress. Perfect for storing my phone while strolling around LACMA….

Turner Dress with pockets

I love this geometric windowpane Turner Dress that I made with ponte from Fabric Godmother. It’s gorgeous and thick and cosy, though watch out: it’s also really melty, so you need to use a very cool iron. That may or may not be a melted bit under my right boob…

And now, dear ones, you can have a Turner Dress with pockets too.

Turner Dress with pockets

To get the free Turner Dress pocket and tutorial on how to sew it, simply sign up to my newsletter below, and you’ll get the free downloadable PDF tutorial in an instant!

Already a newsletter subscriber? No problem, just re-enter your info, and you’ll get the download but we’ll make sure you only get the newsletter once.

Here is how the free download works

  1. Put your email address in the box above (it needs to be this box, not the general newsletter subscription one).
  2. You will be sent an email asking you to confirm you want to be subscribed: click the grey “yes” button.
  3. You will be sent a second email which has a link to download – the subject line of the email is “Cashmerette Turner Dress Pocket: Subscription Confirmed”.  Don’t see the email? Check your junk folder, and make sure you clicked on the confirmation email.

Cashmerette
April 15, 2017

Reminder: last few days to get 15% off “Pattern Hacking for Curves”!

If you’ve always dreamed of being your own pattern designer, then make sure you don’t miss the chance to get 15% off our new online workshop “Pattern Hacking for Curves: 1 Top, 10 Ways” – there are just two days left to our launch promotion.

Get 15% off with code “1TOP10WAYS” until midnight April 16th – click here and the code will automatically be applied.

Here’s what our students are already saying:

“This is dynamite information… take advantage of this if you can. This could be your sloper from which you can make anything your heart desires!” 

“Amazing value!” 

I can’t wait to see what you all make!




Cashmerette
April 13, 2017

A Lemony Turner in Havana

I’d be warned before, and never quite believed it. But it’s true: when you make your hobby into your job, something… shifts. Don’t get me wrong, I still LOVE sewing! And I do it all the time. But it’s not longer my “ahhhhh now I can turn off my brain from work” activity, because whether I’m making one of my own patterns or someone else’s I’m always full of thoughts about what to do for you guys next! And while it’s still very much fun, it’s also different.

So, I decided last year that I needed to aggressively try out new creative hobbies to find something else that would get me into “non-work” flow mind-mode. The one that’s stuck? Watercolour painting. And that’s how I recently found myself in Havana.

Cashmerette Turner Dress

I’ve been part of a watercolour class in Harvard Square for a while, and the instructor, Laura Quincy Jones, now lives part of the year in Havana. When she suggested a sketching and painting holiday, I jumped at the opportunity – Cuba’s been on my list for a while (as a Brit it’s always been accessible, although even Americans can now pretty much go without restrictions, in practice) and I’ve also fancied an art holiday for a while. (By the way, if you’re interested in painting in Havana, Laura’s organizing regular trips – you can learn about them here).

Cashmerette Turner Dress

When I wasn’t posing in front of adorably colour-blocked walls in my new lemony Turner Dress, I was sketching and painting my heart out. Havana is an artist’s paradise: full of bright pastel colours, crumbling facades and beautiful people.

Cashmerette Turner Dress

What to say about this Turner? Not much – it’s sewn straight from the packet, using a lovely lemon print from Art Gallery Fabrics that’s been popping up on tons of sewing blogs lately. It’s not surprising: it’s suuuuper soft, opaque and lots of fun.

Cashmerette Turner Dress

The weather was pleasantly warm while we were there, which made for fantastic painting and expedition weather. One day we went out to the rural area of Vinales, where we had an amazing lunch at an organic eco-farm and drew the distinctive hills:

But I was most entranced by the old city of Havana. There’s so much to see, from astounding graffiti, to beautiful architecture and the ever-present 1950s cars (they truly are everywhere):

Do you have a secondary artistic hobby to sewing, or is sewing your main squeeze? I had so much fun immersing myself in watercolours for a week – I may not be super good at painting, but I enjoy it so much and I felt like my brain calmed down for the first time in months. Let me know if you have any questions about Havana!


Cashmerette
April 10, 2017

Introducing Pattern Hacking For Curves (and, Springfield Top now in print!)

When I first learned to sew, I sometimes dismissed patterns for reasons like the hem length or neckline shape. As I learned more, I realized how foolish this was: the joy of sewing is that you can adapt any pattern to be whatever you want! In fact, that’s exactly how pattern designers work: they develop a great fitting base pattern, and then adapt it over and over again to make lots of different styles. The new Cashmerette online workshop, “Pattern Hacking for Curves: 1 Top, 10 Ways” will teach you how to take your well-fitting Springfield Top and turn it into ten different garments – and you can apply the techniques to any pattern, in any combination, which means the potential is endless!

Pattern Hacking For Curves

Pattern Hacking For Curves

Register now for 15% off – and extra bonuses

Register for Pattern Hacking for Curves now using code “1TOP10WAYS” and you’ll get 15% off (valid until 11.59pm EST April 16th) – and you’ll get extra bonuses including:

  • 30% off the Springfield Top pattern (PDF or print) – or any other Cashmerette Pattern, if you already have the Springfield.
  • A free downloadable cap sleeve pattern piece for the Springfield (which also works for the Upton Dress!).

Pattern Hacking For Curves

New Springfield Top printed pattern & new kits

Together with the launch of our new course, we also have two new things for you: the Springfield Top is now available as a printed pattern (no more taping!), and we have three new fabulous Springfield kits. All the kits are available with the printed pattern, with the PDF pattern, or as the fabric alone (perfect if you buy the course with the pattern discount).

Clockwise from top left we have: an amazingly drapey black and white rayon challis, a beautifully soft burgundy silk crepe de chine, a pink floral rayon challis, a grey and pink rose rayon challis,a fun blue and orange floral crepe, and last but not least a gorgeous arrow-print turquoise Pendleton silk.

Learn more about Pattern Hacking For Curves

If you dream of taking a well-fitting pattern and using it to create other garments you know will fit you – then this course is for you! Whether you’re a beginner or a more advanced sewist, this online class is full of techniques that will massively expand the potential of the patterns you already know, and grow your skill set.

In the course, I start with the Cashmerette Springfield Top, and take you step-by-step through how to draft and sew 10 new garments:

  • A swing knit tank
  • A ruffle-hemmed top
  • A princess-seamed top
  • A button-back or button-front blouse
  • A top with cap or tulip sleeves  – the course includes an exclusive sleeve pattern piece for the Springfield
  • A V-neck top with an all-in-one-facing which covers the neckline and armholes
  • A cross-over back top
  • A trapeze dress
  • A back keyhole top with a neckline facing
  • A top with a collar

Pattern Hacking For Curves

The techniques I teach can be applied to any sewing pattern, and include:

  • How to draft flat pattern alterations
  • Drafting a button placket
  • Creating a keyhole opening with tie
  • Drafting and sewing a neckline facing and an all-in-one facing
  • Converting darts into princess seams
  • Creating and sewing a collar of any shape
  • Adding a hem ruffle to any top
  • Adding cap sleeves to a sleeveless garment
  • Transforming a top into a swing dress
  • Converting a woven pattern into a knit

Once you’ve mastered these techniques, you can use any combination to “mix and match” and create totally new garments- how about a V-neck top with sleeves and a ruffle? Easy! Or a trapeze dress with a keyhole back and facing? No problem. Or a collared top with princess seams… done!

Pattern Hacking For Curves

Like our other Cashmerette workshops, Shirtmaking for Curves and Fitting for Curves, Pattern Hacking for Curves is an online workshop where I teach you in the comfort of your own home, at your own pace, any time. The course videos can be paused, rewinded or replayed at any time, and they never expire. There’s also the opportunity to ask me questions on each lesson, and get personalized feedback. It’s like having me with you at your sewing machine!

Pattern Hacking For Curves

I hope you enjoy the class! I’m excited about the wardrobe full of samples that I made… and I can’t wait to see what you make. What combination of features would be your dream top or dress?


Cashmerette
April 3, 2017

How to transform the Upton Dress into an Upton Skirt

Hey, chaps and chapesses!

For my recent trip to LA, I decided I needed to whip up a skirt with some amazing burnt orange and purple “painted” Liberty lawn I got at the mysterious cheap Liberty shop. I’m not much one for a ditzy print, but these chunky tulips called my name from the back of the basement.

I contemplated the skirt patterns in my stash but none really appealed and then I realised I should take a different approach: hack the Cashmerette Upton Dress into a skirt! And here it is, a hack of Upton Dress view A, the pleated skirt:

Upton Skirt Hack

Pretty fabulous, non? I paired it with a chambray Harrison Shirt, knotted at the waist like the carefree LA chick I am (ahem).

Upton Skirt Hack

This was a super easy hack, and very quick to whip up. I’m planning another pleated beauty with some amazing Suno burn-out silk I got on Emma One Sock, and also a version using View B, to make a gored skirt.

Once you have your copy of the Cashmerette Upton Dress, making an Upton Skirt is pretty easy.

Before you start, consider the size: the Upton Dress has a high waistband, which sits on the lower ribcage (your high waist). If you want your skirt to hit there too, make your regular size. However, if you want it to hit at a more traditional waist height, you need to consider whether your waist is bigger than your high waist. Mine is, by about 2 inches (the narrowest bit of me is just below my bust, and then I get progressively bigger towards my hips), so I sized up from my usual 18 to a 20.

Upton Skirt Hack

To get step-by-step illustrated instructions, simply sign up to my newsletter below, and you’ll get the free downloadable PDF tutorial in an instant! (Note, you need to already have the Upton Dress pattern, no pattern pieces are included).

Already a newsletter subscriber? No problem, just re-enter your info, and you’ll get the download but we’ll make sure you only get the newsletter once.

Here is how the free download works

  1. Put your email address in the box above (it needs to be this box, not the general newsletter subscription one).
  2. You will be sent an email asking you to confirm you want to be subscribed: click the grey “yes” button.
  3. You will be sent a second email which has a link to download – the subject line of the email is “Cashmerette Upton Skirt Tutorial: Subscription Confirmed”.  Don’t see the email? Check your junk folder, and make sure you clicked on the confirmation email.

Cashmerette
March 31, 2017

Dartmouth Sewalong Day 4: Side Seams and Hems

Today is the last day of the Dartmouth Top sewalong, and we’re almost done! We’ll start by sewing the side seams.

Pin the shirt together at the side seams, right sides together with the fronts on top to minimize any chance of missing a layer. Match the underarms and the notches.

Sew the side seam and sleeve seam in one go, starting at the hip, pivoting at the underarm, and ending at the end of the sleeve.

Press the seam allowance towards the back of the shirt and repeat with the second side.

The last step is to hem the shirt and the sleeves! Start by basting the two fronts together at the bottom edge. This is optional but makes hemming SO much easier, so I highly recommend it!

Next, press the bottom hem up by 1” and topstitch.

Repeat with both sleeves, hemming by 1”.

Give all the hems a good press and you’re done! We can’t wait to see what you’ve made. Share yours on social media using #DartmouthTop!


Cashmerette
March 27, 2017

Dartmouth Sewalong Day 3: Attaching Sleeves

Before attaching the sleeves, let’s baste together our shirt front to make it easier to manage.  For view A, place the front piece with the gathering on top of the other front piece, lining up the side notches with right sides facing up. Do the same for view B, but use the left hand front (as worn) as the top.

Baste the two fronts together at the side seams within the seam allowance using a zig zag stitch.

Now, let’s attach our sleeves. Place the sleeve on top of the body, right sides together and pin at the shoulder notch. Gently shape the armscye to match the shape of the sleeve cap and pin, matching notches.

Sew the sleeve in slowly, making sure there are no tucks or folds.

Press the seam allowance towards the sleeve and repeat with the second side. Next time we’ll be back to finish up our Dartmouth Tops!


Cashmerette

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