Introducing Willow + a surprise baby shower

Romper by Marta of Do Guincho

Hello! It’s been a long time since I last wrote a blog post and the main reason for that is the newest member of our family, Willow. She is over 2 months old now and we feel so lucky to have her. She turned up just three hours past her due date, which was a surprise since my boys went 12 and 10 days overdue. She was the smallest of my three babies at 6lb 8oz.

I have a few things lined up to share here. Finding the time isn’t easy but I am not in a hurry for the tiny baby stage to be over. Not long after Willow was born a few of my blog friends threw a surprise baby shower for me. I can’t really express how much this meant to me, the first few days after giving birth are such an emotional time and it made us feel so special to have so many people from all around the world thinking of us, all sending beautiful, thoughtful, handmade gifts. It also made up for my lack of sewing. Despite my best intentions all I managed before the birth was a hat!

Baby shower gifts

You can read about everyone’s items following the links below:

Row 1 –  T-shirt and trousers by Ines of La Folie Sewing Booth, Crochet blanket from Maria of  My Cozy Co, Romper by Marta of Do Guincho

Row 2 – Monkey by Nina of Fliegfederfrei, Leggings and top with hat by Nienke of Pienkel, Hat and trousers by Maartje of Huisje Boompje Boefjes, Twisted bibs by An of Straight Grain, Dress by Marte of  Compagnie M

Row 3 – Romper, cardigan and hat by Celina of  Petit a Petit and Family, Romper by Olu of Needle and Ted, Twisted tank and shorts by Annika of Näh-connection

It’s so nice that there’s such a range of sizes in the clothing as Willow will have handmade clothes for at least the next year. The photo at the top of the post shows Willow wearing her romper that Marta from Do Guincho made and it is so cute on her. Below she is wearing one of the adorable outfits that Celina made for her and doing her best teapot impression.

Celina from Petit a Petit's romper, hat and cardigan

In addition to the baby shower gifts I received some beautiful items from Abby of Things for Boys and Rita from Conversas de Hermanas.

Abby sent us this stunning quilt, which she has even stamped with a personal message for Willow. The quilting is amazing, has several of my favourite Alison Glass prints and I love the binding she chose. Thank you so much Abby, this is something Willow will be able to use for many years.

Quilt front by Abby of Things for Boys

Willow's quilt by Abby from Things for Boys

Rita sent me the sweetest romper and was so generous to include some matching fabric for me to make something for my boys. This is very close to fitting her so I better start making those matching items soon!

Romper by Rita of Conversas de Hermanas

A huge thank you to everyone I’ve mentioned above for making a special time every more meaningful.



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Titchy Threads: Biggest Sale Ever

Titchy Threads Autumn 2015 Sale

Hello, I’ve had a break from blogging for the last few months while we welcomed the newest member of our family. Willow was born at the beginning of August and it seems like the first two months of her life have just flown by. I’ll be back soon with a blog post about the surprise baby shower that many of my blog friends held for me. I was so touched by everyone’s kindness and generosity. It’s been wonderful dressing Willow in so many thoughtful handmade clothes, as well as using handmade blankets, quilts and soft toys.

I wanted to pop in today though to tell you about the Titchy Threads sale that starts tomorrow, running from Monday the 12th of October to Friday the 16th. Click HERE to head over to the pattern shop. It’s the biggest sale I’ve ever had, and I don’t run them very often, so make sure you don’t miss out. The discount goes down by 5% each day so the sooner you buy the more you will save. Stock up on all those patterns you’ve been longing to buy as the discount applies to your whole cart. If you’re taking part in Kid’s Clothes Week then you’ll have plenty of time to print and tape, so you’re all ready to start sewing the day it starts.

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How to: Add elasticated pockets to any bag pattern

How to add elasticated pockets to any bag pattern

In my last post I showed you Portside Duffle bag that I made for the Great Pattern Hack. My hack was to add a lot of interior pockets, including double elasticated pockets at both ends of the bag. Today I am sharing how I added these. This method could easily be applied to other bag patterns.

The pockets are made and sewn in place before the bag is pieced together. So let’s begin:


  • original bag pattern
  • paper for drafting pocket piece
  • additional fabric for pockets (plus interfacing if required)
  • 1cm (3/8″) wide elastic
  • regular sewing supplies

1. Draft pocket piece

Take the bag piece you will be attaching the pocket to. Here I am attaching it to the end of the bag lining. You can add these pockets to the outer or lining of a bag.

How to create elasticated pocket piece* Note that I chose to cut out two pocket pieces for each set of elasticated pockets. This is because the fabric was quite lightweight and I wanted nice sturdy pockets. If you already have a more heavyweight fabric you could use one pocket piece for each set of pockets. Simply adapt the tutorial by adding more at the top of your pocket piece for a hem allowance. You can then double fold to create the elastic casing.

2. Cut pieces, place right sides facing and sew

Cut 2 pocket pieces and interface if necessary. Place the pieces with right sides facing and sew across the top with a 1.25cm (1/2″) seam allowance.

Elasticated pocket tutorial - step 2a

Elasticated pocket tutorial - step 2b annotated

3. Press, fold over and stitch elastic casing

Press the seam and fold the pocket pieces so they are wrong sides facing. Sew along the top of the pocket, 1.25cm (1/2″) from the top edge to create a casing for the elastic.

Elasticated pocket tutorial - step 3 annotated

4. Mark centre on pocket and bag piece

If you wish to separate your elasticated pocket into two then mark the centre clearly on the pocket piece.

Elasticated pocket tutorial - step 4a

You also need to add a centre line to the bag lining piece you will be sewing the pocket to.

Elasticated pocket tutorial - step 4b annotated

5. Feed elastic through and secure ends

Measure the original width of the bag at the top of the pocket. Cut this length of elastic.

Feed the elastic through using a bodkin / safety pin. Once you have pulled through so the elastic has almost disappeared at one end, secure it in place by stitching (and backstitching) within the seam allowance.

Elasticated pocket tutorial - step 5a

When you have pulled the elastic through to the second end, pull enough elastic through so the top of the pocket roughly matches the original width of the bag. If you do not pull through enough your pockets may be baggy, if you pull through too much then your pockets will tend to pull on the sides of the bag lining.

Elasticated pocket tutorial - step 5b

6. Gather bottom edge to match bag piece

Sew two rows of gathering stitches within the seam allowance of the bottom edge. Pull the bobbin threads until the width of the pocket equals the width at the bottom of the bag piece, with nice even gathers.

Elasticated pocket tutorial - step 6 annotated

7. Baste pocket onto bag piece

Pin the pocket onto the bag, matching the sides and bottom edge. Baste in place within the seam allowance.

Elasticated pocket tutorial - step 7 annotated

8. Sew divider(s) into pockets

Lay the centre of the pocket as flat as possible and match the centre lines on the pocket and bag pieces. Pin in place and sew along the centre line you marked. I like to use a triple straight stitch here for a nice secure stitch. Make sure to backstitch a few times at the top of the pocket, for extra reinforcement.

Elasticated pocket tutorial - step 8 annotated

Elasticated pocket tutorial - ready to sew bag

Now your pockets are ready and you can sew your bag as normal. Once your bag is finished you will really appreciate the extra time you took to add these pockets.

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The Great Pattern Hack: Portside Duffle Bag

The Great Pattern Hack - Portside Duffle Bag by CraftstormingI’m very happy to be joining The Great Pattern Hack today*. This event is co-hosted by Michael Miller fabrics and Melissa from A Happy Stitch and is a two week celebration of bloggers, fabric, pattern designers and creativity that runs from June 29th to July 16th. Each day of the blog hop, a blogger will “hack” a pattern, using awesome patterns and brand new Michael Miller fabrics. Each blogger is using an existing pattern but making it their very own.

Portside Duffle Bag with interior pockets

This seemed like such a fun project to get involved in. Often when I come to make a pattern I can’t help but think of ideas to customise it. That is one of the best things about sewing – being able to choose every single detail and having control over the finished item. The variations you make can be as simple or as complicated as you like, it all contributes to having a one of a kind piece. I chose to make the Portside Duffle Bag by Grainline, which is part of the Portside Travel Set. I’ve wanted to make myself a bag for a while now and, with my due date fast approaching, a large duffle seemed like the perfect option for a hospital bag.

I knew immediately that my hack would be to add several interior pockets so I can try and keep my stuff organised. Unfortunately, it turns out that interior pockets are not that easy to photograph. In case you can’t tell the photo below shows a large patch pocket with a smaller built in zip pocket. On the other side of the bag there’s a larger zip pocket and at either end I added elasticated pockets (divided in two). I have a tutorial coming up on how to draft your own zip pockets.

Portside Duffle Bag - interior patch and zip pocket

Grainline Portside Duffle - interior elasticated pockets

The fabrics I chose to use were from the Indigo and the Seedling collections, both of which have some really interesting designs. I especially love those grumpy tigers! The great thing about Michael Miller fabrics is the amount of co-ordinates they have, which means you can normally find the perfect solid to match your print.

Outer: Yukie from the Indigo collection, Midnight Blue cotton couture

Lining: Mist cotton couture

Pockets: Growl in citron from the Seedling collection, Gold cotton couture

Portside Duffle Bag - Interior zip pocket

I’d heard great things about Michael Miller’s cotton couture but hadn’t had a chance to try it until now. It is so much lighter and softer than a lot of quilting cottons and would be wonderful for garments. I was aware that this wasn’t really the recommended fabric for the Portside Duffle so I spent some time investigating interfacing. I chose to use Pellon SF101 for all the outer and lining pieces, then to give the bag some structure I added ByAnnie’s Soft and Stable Stabilizer to every outer piece (except the outer pockets).

This is the first time I have used a Grainline pattern and I found it very clear straightforward to follow, except for the step where you create the shoulder strap. I figured it out eventually but next time I think I’d used a slider instead of two D-rings. I absolutely love the finished bag and really want to try and scale the pattern down to make a mini one for my boys to use.

I couldn’t leave you without a full picture of me and my bump, which hasn’t made an appearance on the blog yet. I only have a month to go now so I better go and start packing that bag! Thanks so much to Michael Miller Fabrics and A Happy Stitch for asking me to be a part of The Great Pattern Hack.

Portside Duffle Bag for the Great Pattern Hack

Here are details of all the others joining the blog hop. I’ve seen some amazing hacks so far. There will be lots of fabric and pattern giveaways – if you want to get involved then read more in this post to find out how.

The Great Pattern Hack team:
Monday 6/29 :: kick off with Jess Abbott from The Sewing Rabbit
Tuesday 6/30  :: Kait Witte from Making it Fun (Michael Miller Fabrics)
Wednesday 7/1  :: Flash Giveaway Day!
Thursday 7/2  :: Jane Kohlstein from Buzzmills
Friday 7/3  :: Me!  A Happy Stitch
Monday 7/6  ::  Rachael Gander at Imagine Gnats
Tuesday 7/7  :: Tamara Serrao at Kaya Joy
Wednesday 7/8  :: Betsy Blodgett from Indygo Junction
Thursday 7/9  :: Laura Titchener from Craftstorming
Friday 7/10  :: Kristin Timm from Skirt As Top
Saturday 7/11  :: Jessica and Ericka at Violette Threads
Monday 7/13  :: Celina Bailey at Petit A Petit and Family
Tuesday 7/14  :: Sanae from Sanae Ishida
Wednesday 7/15  :: Erin Sundet at Sewbon
Thursday 7/16 ::  Delia Randall from Delia Creates

Friday 7/17 :: Wrap up and Surprise Giveaway!!!

*I was given all patterns and fabric as a part of this blog event, but all opinions are 100% my own.

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A gold shandiin and a giveaway

Gold Shandiin tunic - front view

I have a gorgeous sparkly Shandiin tunic to share with you today! Back in April I had an amazing trip to Paris to meet several other sewing bloggers (you can read more here). We had some very generous sponsors for that trip, including many pattern companies. Today we are all sharing something we made with one of those patterns – you can see some sneak peeks of what the others have made further down the post. I also have a giveaway – one lucky winner will win a pattern of their choice from LouBeeClothing (you can enter at the bottom of this post). It’s a pretty tough decision to choose just one though!

Gold Shandiin tunic - back view

I chose to make the Shandiin tank and tunic pattern by LouBeeClothing. I’ve wanted to make one since Sarah first released it but didn’t really have a reason until now. The pattern comes in sizes 12-18 months up to 8 years. I took the sensible option of making my first one in the smallest size as a gift. Now I’ve made one though I think it would be so cute in newborn size for my summer baby, so you will probably see more in future.

Gold Shandiin - back close up

The Shandiin is a great basic tank/tunic pattern with a difference – the open back design really elevates it to a more special top. There are other features in the pattern that I really appreciate, such as hem facings and the option for a button up front. It’s well designed and was a quick sew that came together very easily. I was able to use some gold bias binding that I purchased from Anna Ka Bazaar in Paris, to highlight the gold in the main Cotton + Steel fabric I used. The contrast is a herringbone chambray from Robert Kaufman. I also used gold bias for the hem facing.

Gold Shandiin - hem detail

Overall, I love it and had to get some cute gold shoes to complete the look. You can see what everyone else made in the photos below – click on each one to be taken directly to their blog posts. I can’t wait to have a closer look at all of them. All of these ladies have a giveaway for the pattern designer they chose too.


So do you want to win one of Sarah’s patterns? All you have to do is enter using the options below. The more options you select the better your chance of winning. The giveaway is open until the 10th of July and the winner will be announced after that date. Good luck everyone!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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Safari Raglan now available + a summer sale

Safari Raglan Tee and Dress by Titchy Threads

Hello everyone! I feel like it’s a long time since I wrote a proper post sharing something I’ve sewn and I’ve really missed it. I’ve been short of energy throughout this pregnancy and I’m 33 weeks now. I’m looking forward to winding down a bit and sewing up a few things on my to do list. Starting this week I will be sharing a few things I’ve had photographed and ready to write about for a while.

One thing that I have been working hard on recently is the Safari Raglan Tee and Dress pattern (formerly known as the Rise & Shine Raglan). This is now available in my shop here. I first shared the T-shirt earlier in the year after it was featured in Love Sewing magazine. Since then I’ve added an A-line dress option, improved the pattern and increased the size range (6-12 months to 12 years).

Safari Raglan Options

The Safari Raglan has a comfortable fitting and is very versatile. Use it as an every day basic or custom design a one of a kind raglan. Choose from hemmed short or long sleeves, or for a raglan with a difference use your creativity to add some puppet sleeves that your children will adore. Suitable year round for boys and girls this includes all the usual detail you expect from a Titchy Threads pattern and is a great basic to have in your pattern library.

The little girl in the cover photo at the top belongs to Andreia from In a Manner of Sewing, who was a huge help with testing. If you take a look at her blog post you’ll see what an amazing job she did with stripe matching too. Several other testers who chose the puppet sleeve option were very creative with their designs:

Puppet Sleeve Inspiration for the Safari Raglan Tee and Dress

ROW 1: Ducks by Titchy Threads, Flamingos by Maria (

ROW 2: Hippos by Monica (, Puppy by Ari (, Cats by Nathalie

ROW 3: Cat by Katie and Raccoons by Rachael

Below is a dress version one I made with short hemmed sleeves, co-ordinated to match some adorable bear socks I bought. This is the first thing I’ve sewn for the baby, although I have a lot more planned.

Safari Raglan Dress

To celebrate the release, and the gorgeous sunny weather we’ve had in the UK recently, I’m having a summer sale. Get 25% off everything with the code SUMMER25. Take advantage while you can and stock up!

Titchy Threads Summer Sale

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Twisted Tuesdays Tour: Week 7

It’s the final Twisted Tuesday and today I have some great friends sharing their twisted trousers. There’s a bit of a floral theme to their fabric choices too.  I hope you’ve enjoyed seeing all the twisted outfits over the last seven weeks and that they have given you some inspiration.

First is Miren from Solo Sewing and lives in Spain. I had the pleasure of meeting Miren in Paris recently and she is so welcoming and easy to talk to. Her blog is full of beautiful sewing for her daughter, including this ‘not a birthday dress‘. I love that she chose to make something different to challenge herself. Miren has made a fantastic pair of Twisted Trousers, That pop of orange is so pretty against the pink. Read more about them here.


Next is Ines, one of the sweetest and funniest bloggers out there. Ines is the only one of today’s guests that I haven’t met yet but I hope to very soon. She picks the most amazing fabric and has a lovely laid back style. The outfits she sews always look like they came together effortlessly, like this beautiful outfit she made for herself. I’m sure it feels that way to you, right Ines? This isn’t her first pair of Twisted Trousers, but this might be my favourite yet. She’s paired them with an untwisted Twisted Tank, with a little twist! Read all the details here (with a funny surprise near the end).

Twisted Trousers - La Folie Sewing Booth

Last, but certainly not least, is Celina from Petit a Petit and Family. I’m sure Celina needs no introduction, but just in case, she is one of the creators of STYLO magazine, has incredible taste in children’s clothes, takes amazing photos and is a great friend too. I was lucky to meet her and her gorgeous kids when they visited England last year. Celina has used this stunning Nani Iro fabric for her twisted trousers, and if you read her post you’ll see that her and Ines have been plotting something fun.

Twisted Trousers - Petit a PetitSo that commences the tour. I would like to say a huge thank you to everyone who joined the tour and to everyone who has followed along.

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Twisted Tuesdays Tour: Week 6

It’s the sixth Twisted Tuesday already, with only one more to go next week. There are two bloggers from Europe and two from Australia this week, so it’s interesting to see how the different seasons are affecting their sewing.

First up is Kerry from Sutures and Sandpaper, who has two boys and a girl that she sews for. I am always impressed by Kerry’s colour combinations – and today is no exception as blue and grey is possibly my favourite combination of all. Kerry has also used three different Titchy Threads patterns for this post and I love the details she’s added and the pattern adjustment she made to one of them. You can read all about it here.

Teaser by Kerry of Sutures and Sandpaper

Also from Australia is Lainie from Maker*land. I first came across Lainie’s blog when she posted this gorgeous angel winged tunic and I then spent a lot of time looking through all her previous posts and just being blow away by her talent. Her work was recently featured in a book and she will soon be launching a ready to wear line – including some of those gorgeous wings. Lainie made two different tank tops for the tour, both with a circus theme, and I love them – head on over to her post to find out more.

Twisted Tank by Maker*land

Next we have Anna from Cal Joan y Mas who lives in Spain and amazes me with how much she sews for herself and her family. She also has a fabric shop with a very tempting selection and shares some great looking free patterns. Today she’s made a full twisted outfit with some really fun colours. Check out the full outfit more here.

Twisted Tank and Trousers by  Cal Joan

My last guest today is the lovely Erin from Our Family Four. She sews a lot for herself and her two children and recently shared (with the cutest announcement ever) that she’ll have a new baby to sew for in a few months. Erin always takes amazing photos of what she’s made and I loved her recent contributions to STYLO. I think a stripey bodice / floral skirt dress will be happening over here soon. There are more stripes on her blog today as well – one of my favourite prints for a Twisted Tank, read more over here.

All Striped Twisted Tank at Our Family Four

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Twisted Tuesdays Tour: Week 5

This weeks Twisted Tuesday guests all have their own unique style that I absolutely love.

First is Erin from Hungie Gungie, who blogs with her equally talented sister. Their recent STYLO features (one and two) were so fun and perfect for the high fructose theme. I am always inspired by Erin’s makes – how stunning is this dress. Occasionally she will throw in something unexpected as well, like this adorable flamingo. As you can see, Erin used the basic version of the tank and turned it into the cutest dress. She is also sharing a version of the Twisted Tank, over here.

Twisted Tank dress by Erin from Hungie Gungie

Trine from Groovybaby and Mama has impeccable style and the most amazing taste in fabric. I imagine Trine’s family must be the best dressed in Denmark, with everything she makes for herself and her children. Trine has used the basic version of the Twisted Tank and I just love the different mix of blacks and whites in this whole outfit – find out more details here.

Twisted Tank by Groovybaby and Mama

My last guest this week is Maria from La Inglesita, who I was lucky enough to meet in Paris recently. I was in awe of all the beautiful clothes she’d made herself and she sews equally lovely things for her children. Maria also has her own shop, with beautiful fabrics, patterns and really cool extras, like these fashionary books. You can also find some fantastic tutorials on her blog. Today Maria is sharing a twisted set of both trousers and a tank, read more over at her blog here.

Twisted Tank and Trousers by La Inglesita

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STYLO magazine: issue 04

STYLO 04 outfit by Craftstorming

The latest issue of STYLO magazine has just been released and it’s jam packed full of inspiration for spring and summer. STYLO is a kids fashion magazine where every single item shown has been sewn by the contributors. There are links for the patterns and fabrics used so you can re-create your favourite look or just used them for ideas. The co-editors, Celina and Jess, have outdone themselves once again and I am really proud to be a part of this issue.

One of my favourite features in the whole magazine was by Tara from Girl Like The Sea, so I wasn’t surprised to see one of her amazing photos on the cover. Congratulations Tara! You may also notice that her daughter is wearing a Twisted Tank in the photo. There’s a few other Titchy Threads patterns throughout the magazine.

STYLO 04 outfit by Craftstorming

When I was first asked to contribute I had so many ideas running through my head that it was difficult to narrow them down. I decided I really wanted to push myself a little and asked Casper’s girlfriend, Clementine, if she would like to take part. Fortunately she loved the idea and soon after I thought of the clementine fabric from Rae’s latest Small World collection, which Cloud 9 generously provided. Once that decision was made choosing the other fabrics to use was a lot easier and I even developed my first (solo) pattern just for girls.

STYLO 04 outfit by Craftstorming

I will be back soon with another blog post soon with a lot more details about the patterns and fabrics I used. For now though, make yourself a drink, sit comfortably and go and enjoy the magazine in full.

STYLO 04 outfit by Craftstorming

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