A Little bit of Mabel in My Life


Or the moral of wilfully choosing the wrong fabric for a project…

I’ve been itching to try out a Mabel (from Colette) for a while now, and luckily it fits in with my new sewing rules (more on that in my next post), so I can totally justify it. I purchased two lots of fabric to run a couple of these up in: one, a lovely burgundy/ wine coloured knit, the recommended fabric, and one a beautiful, kind of brushed cotton (with stretch), but clearly not a knit fabric. Although it was situated next to the knits… Hmmmm, what can I say?

So, this is the latter. I loved the fabric, it’s a kind of dark brown/black with a very subtle, lighter brown and blue abstract pattern. I knew it was subtle enough to go with lots of my present wardrobe (another of my new rules), but interesting enough to stand out: the perfect combination in my book 🙂

And it sewed up beautifully. As usual, Colette’s instructions were great. It took a bit of thought to figure out which way round (and which way up) to construct the waistband, but that could have been more to do with my two children also occupying my sewing space (aka our kitchen table), completing their homework: cue a constant stream of questions…

The rest of the instructions were really easy to follow. I opted for the pencil skirt version as I’d seen a few mini versions around and knew they’d be too short for me. I’m glad I did too, as even this version came up a little short. I’ll definitely add an extra inch or so to my next version.


I really liked the outcome, however because of my daft choice of fabric let’s say it’s a little ‘interesting’ getting it on…It does have stretch, but there was no way it was going to pull up over my hips, so over the head it was! And it just about pulls down over my bust, with a fair bit of wriggling. Oh, and getting it off requires two people, so not really one for consuming any alcohol in too late at night! Unless, of course I want to sleep in it… My husband helpfully suggested that a zip would have helped, he did have a point, but he quickly realised that pointing out the obvious wasn’t such a good idea 😉

It’s comfy once it’s on, so there’s that… But because of the relatively low stretch content, it does look like it’s pulling across the front a little and it tends to ride up whilst wearing it. Fingers crossed that in the right fabric this will be the perfect size and fit, as a real knit will have a lot more ‘give’, but I will include that extra inch in length. Second time lucky?



Another Simple, Girl’s Skirt

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Pleased with my stash-busting prowess of late, on my day off last week I reorganised my, now pleasingly depleted, fabric drawers. And it’s a good job I did, as I came across this little bargain I picked up in H and M in the sale last Summer. I was drawn to the fabric: a lovely mix of pinky/browny/grey butterflies. At just £3, despite the shapeless design, I knew it was worthy of an upcycling project and another skirt for my daughter seemed the obvious choice, as she was so pleased with the last one 🙂 I think the fabric was wasted on the original, it definitely shows it off more in skirt-form, at least to my eye anyway…

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Using her measurements from last week’s project, but adding two extra inches to the length this time, I measured and cut out, retaining the original hem. I then simply added an elasticated waist and it was as simple as that. I love this on her, it suits her colouring so well and the jersey fabric is really comfy, yet practical. As you can see she was more than ready to do a spot more modelling for me…

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She’s definitely the ‘clown’ in our family, who loves nothing better than making us all laugh 🙂

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She’s also set me another challenge: apparently she’d like a complete Mummy-made outfit to wear for her ‘own clothes day’ at school next week. Looks like I’ll be busy then…





You wait all year for one scarf, and then two come together in one week…

Or almost!

Work’s been pretty hectic this week, so something simple was required for my weekly making-fix. I’ve always dismissed scarf yarns as verging just a little bit on the naff, although, to be fair, not all of them. (And I love snoods, something I’ll definitely be having a go at now I’ve reawakened my love of knitting). I’ve been seduced by the novelty of such yarns before, but been disappointed by the results.

However I spotted this particular one in a lovely wool shop in Lydney, (The Forest of Dean), where I was visiting my in-laws a couple of weekends ago. It’s a yarn (or ‘tubular ribbon’ if you want to get technical) called ‘Voila’ by Adriafil, which requires nothing more than a crochet hook and a basic chain stitch, which even I could manage (I can’t crochet, though would love to try). It took me roughly an hour to construct and voila...


I love both the colour and the twisted effect of this. It’s similar in style to one that cost me a small fortune from All Saints a few years ago. My daughter’s quite taken with it too, so maybe I’ll be whipping another one up sooner than I’d planned…