For a while now I have been thinking about taking up sewing again. I say again as I loved GCSE Textiles which I chose over Home Economics. I think over the years our home economy has benefited more from what I knew about fabric than what I might have known about food, but that's for another day.
I had a fantastic teacher. Mrs Plummer was a designer and an artist and motivated us all to do our best and to develop an understanding and love for fabric, for cutting it up and sewing it all back together. As a result, there were several years when at least one item of clothing I wore every day was handmade. Believe it or not we still exchange Christmas cards and she sends me photos of her latest artwork. I love hearing about what she has been doing - it's 24 years since I was in her class! In the years since, I have sewn less and less clothing and more and more curtains and then, when there are only so many curtains you can hang, my trusty machine was retired for a while.
Recently, however, I have been getting frustrated with not finding clothes that I like or finding myself standing in a shop holding up some item of clothing and thinking 'look at how little fabric has been used here' or 'there are only a handful of seams in this - I could do that - in better fabric and maybe for less money'. Truth to say I was reminded of my sewing classes and my latent happiness in sewing when I watched some episodes of the Great British Sewing Bee - wow - I could never sew under pressure like that, but it was a great source of revision and motivation - each contestant was an inspiration to me.
So I bought the book, downloaded the patterns and found the fantastic Tilly and her blog - Tilly and the buttons. I couldn't pass her Mathide sewing pattern as it had almost everything I was looking for in a pattern for a top that was super wearable and just suited my style. So off went the sewing machine for a service and off went I for fabric. This is the result:
The pattern is excellent, so well laid out and the instructions are very clear - supplemented by photo tutorials on Tilly's blog. I found these so helpful in reminding me of techniques long forgotten. It is a top I will wear and wear and a pattern I will sew and sew again. Thank you Tilly!