Inspiration from all angles

I’ve got lots of bits and pieces on the go right now, and I’m finding that I’m being inspired by lots of little things – not just from the fantastic last few issues of pattern magazines (hello, August Burda!), but also some supplies which have found their way to me, like this amazing laser-cut eyelet zipper from my friends Alex & Liz, bought at the V&A shop!

Mine’s skirt-length and now I totally want to make a pencil skirt with an exposed zipper just so I can show this off! After I got mine, I’ve since seen that they’re available on etsy in a bunch of different colours, too.

Not long after that, I was approached by the owner of Lots of Buttons asking if I’d like to try their shop for free. My initial reaction was that the prices in dollars surely meant exorbitant shipping to the UK (boo!) BUT as it turns out, all the orders are fulfilled in Hong Kong so the shipping is the same anywhere in the world (great for the Antipodeans, too!).

So I picked out some basic black horn buttons (just like the ones my stash was missing for my black knit trousers the other week), and some gorgeous overlapping metal buttons I thought would go really nicely on a jacket. All in, these would’ve cost me $10 total (with shipping), which is like half the cost I pay to get nice buttons in central London, with a travelcard cost on top of that!

These arrived in 7 days, too, along with a discount code for my next purchase. I also really like that they seal off each button type in its own clear plastic bag, so you can see what’s inside without them all getting jumbled up together. Genius! So I went from being skeptical to totally pleased and very happy to recommend them in the space of about 10 days!

UPDATE! The owner of Lots Of Buttons has offered all FehrTrade readers a special 20% off code for the month of August! How cool is that? Use QB0VZADP0E4X at checkout (hint: it’s after the Paypal login bit).

I started a new project on Monday evening, finally sewing up a pattern and fabric combo that was very nicely sent to me by Kollabora to say thanks for beta-testing their new sewing, knitting, and jewellery community site! I could’ve chosen from a bunch of different patterns, but I thought I might as well choose something I’d not normally buy myself (always the best approach for treats!), and selected Simplicity 1873, a Cynthia Rowley party dress, paired with some luscious fuschia stretch cotton sateen from Mood.

The pattern I was sent only goes up to a 14, though, and I usually sew a Big Four size 16, so I’m crossing my fingers this one has a bunch of ease. Since I was sewing the largest size and the pattern was free, I threw all caution to the freaking wind and —GASP— cut the pattern tissue! (I know, right?) I usually trace absolutely everything!

Anyway, I may have created a monster, because, as it turns out, Nishi went totally wild for the offcuts of pattern tissue scrunched up into balls that I threw for her…

When I saw her reaction, I calmly took all my pattern pieces directly to my (closed door, kitten-proof) sewing room as I finished cutting them!

Also, I haven’t forgotten about my Jalie running skirt I sewed when I was sick – the weather turned cooler for the Olympics and it hasn’t been hot enough to run in it yet!

I’m itching to road-test this, though (hopefully for Saturday’s 15mi/24km long run), because I’m planning on making another as part of my fancy dress costume for the Bacchus half-marathon in early September, and I need to know if I need to make any changes before I start sewing that!

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