Monthly Archives: August 2012

August Meet (aka. FULL HOUSE!)

… and by “full house” I don’t mean the sitcom which made Mary Kate & Ashley Olsen famous.  Today was the August meet of the Burdastyle Perth Sewing Club.

Fifteen women came along to today’s meet, including 6 for the very first time – it was lovely to meet Amy, Kat, Sarah L, Joanne, Anna and Meg! We also welcomed back Sandra, Sarah W, Vanessa, Deb, Fleur, Helen, Leanne and Alyssa. This was a *big* turnout, particularly given 3+ of our “regulars” were missing – but it was so great to meet/see everyone there!

Four (or so) people were working on pairs of boxer shorts, a couple on quilts (as gifts for family members), and others on blouses, casual jersey tops, lingerie and more! Here everyone is – stretching Sandra’s Sewanista Fashion Workshop to capacity!

Fleur and Helen ::

Sarah, Joanne and Kat (in the foreground); Vanessa, Meg & Sandra (in the background).

At the meet it was also great to meet Meg, of independent pattern company Megan Nielsen  patterns. This [below] was the ensuing scene when Meg bought along some of her patterns to share – EXCITEMENT!

Expect to see some (more) newly sewn Kelly skirts,  Banksia tops and Darling Ranges dresses patterns around the Perth sewing community soon !::

Thanks to everyone who came along today! Hope to see you at the next meet on Saturday, 15 September.

Oh, and 2 final reminders…

  1. If you have a sewing project you’d like to share with the readers of this blog, let us know! Just send Sarah an email at with a couple of photos and a couple of paragraphs about your project (don’t stress, you don’t need to write War & Peace! ;)). We’d love to help share your sewing-awesome.
  2. If you have a blog which isn’t already included in our list of Perth sewing bloggers in the right-hand column, let us know with a comment below!

Alyssa’s butter ball beauty!

Yesterday Alyssa responded to a shoutout on the BSCPerth Facebook page (do you “like” us?) for more member contributions to be featured here on the blog. WOW! What an impressive contribution – Alyssa sewed A BALL DRESS! And not just any ball dress.. but A SPECTACULARLY GORGEOUS BALL DRESS! Check out the photos, and what Alyssa said about the project, below :)).

Basically it’s a ball dress that I made for a work ball. It’s made from shot silk only $15 a meter! (the cheapest thing i could find that would pull off as “formal”- I was a bit broke at the time).

The top half is from a vintage burda wedding dress pattern, and the bottom half sort of just got made up along the way. 

Here’s a photo of the vintage pattern on which the bodice was based (*gasp!* Those pleats!)::

And some photos of the finished product::



It’s not perfect but it worked- (I didn’t include enough “ease” through the bottom half i don’t think). Was meant to have an invisible zip too but that didn’t quite come out as planned as it was too bulky to do up. I didn’t have time to trouble shoot so I just turned it into “a not so invisible ‘invisible’ zip”. Aside from those two little bodgies i was fairly happy with it. I had lots of fun making it and wearing it too!

Alyssa has written more about the inspiration for the dress over on her sewing blog. You can even see photos of the dress “in action” over there too!

Thanks for sharing Alyssa!

Another French knicker pattern

In case anyone is thinking of making some vintage style French Knickers, I’ve taken a photo of the pattern in my book, Complete Dressmaking In Pictures. I’m not sure when it was published, but from the photos I’d guess mid to late 1940’s.


The pattern assumes that you have made a block and are developing the pattern from that, but as we’re just doing a knicker, you can use an a-line skirt pattern. The important part is actually the gusset and the distance of the split from the hip level, which is usually about 22cm below the waist. In this case 11 1/2″ (29cm) on the front and 12″ (30cm) on the back. The split is 6″ (15cm) long. This makes a knicker a modern woman may find baggy, and if you were replacing briefs with it, possibly so. However, as a modesty garment for flippy skirts in summer, you don’t want it too close.

I have drafted a size medium with a slightly closer fit, and I’ll have that one on Sunday as well, and I’d be more than happy to show everyone how to sew a gusset into a split, and for those who like living close to the edge, a lined gusset into a split also.


See you Sunday!