Tag Archives: By Hand London

The Jumping out of Summer Jumpsuit

I realize I might be going on a bit about this – but I loved our recent holiday to Mallorca! Of course, I had a suitcase full of newly made clothing with me, mainly because our summer here in Germany had been quite cool and so my plans of wearing all my new clothes all summer long had been frustrated.


Case in point is this crazy patterned jumpsuit. I only wore it once before showing off in an old castle overlooking the marina of Palma de Mallorca!


But when I did take it on its first outing it was to a worthy destination: the city of Bamberg’s rose garden. I know, this blog seems to be turning into a travel blog all of a sudden. But I’m sure normal service will resume shortly, once I’ve overcome the realisation that German autumn and winter is a 5-month-long reality against which resistance is futile…


The jumpsuit is a hack of one of this summer’s little frilly tops that Burdastyle was full of and the BHL Holly bottoms.


The bathroom question was solved by adding a back split and tie. Please excuse the bra – I didn’t have a strapless bra with me on holiday…


So with this I’m jumping out of summer and hope to be able to blog about my autumn sewing soon.

BHL Holly: Mission Accomplished

Flight Lietenant Said&Done here for one last mission: to hand over the controls of Team JumpingintoJune to Holly:

IMG_1636Yes Ma’am, this is Holly taking over!


If your are unsure what all this madness is about, look no further than here. This is what #jumpingintojune is all about.

IMG_1633This is my second jumpsuit for June, after going almost 46 years without any (well, come to think of it, let’s take off the first two years, there will have been babygrows involved…). I almost made the BHL Holly, just chickened out on the flatfront bottoms and added a pleat for extra tummy room. Only that I then decided tummy pleats aren’t think either so I sewed them down. Could have stayed with the straight Holly…


Yes, those legs are too long – I rather overestimated the height of my heals… There is a lot of silliness going on in the back croth to lower back area.

Wait, magic fix:


See, that’s a lot better. So while I wait for someone to bring me a cocktail  I’ll leave you to consider all the other jumpsuits (a summary post of which I’ll compile once I’m back from an impromptu holiday) that made the jump into June.









You didn’t really think I’d go quietly into the sunset, did you 😉 !

BHL Holly – Half Circle Skirt Hack: The “Don’t Dare to Jump Just Yet” Dress

#Jumpingintojune is coming closer and closer! Remember, some of use decided (some of us against better judgement 😉 ) to sew jumpsuits for June. If you are into this kind of thing there is till time to join – after all June has 30 jumpworthy days!

Here at Said&Done HQ I didn’t laze around cut and sewed my BHL Holly lumpsuit a couple of weeks ago. But of course it won’t be revealed yet – so to overcome my urge to show something Holly related I sewed a Holly dress.


Obvioulsy I used the BHL Holly bodice, UK size 14,  lengthened by about 5cm, and attached a half circle skirt to it. Same principle as the Impressionist’s Dress. The fabric is from deep stash, probably on of my oldest stash residents. This fabric was supposed to be all sorts of things in its time: A shirt, a shirtdress, some pajamas – but it never really made the grade for any of these projects. It has quite a crisp hand and so isn’t ideal for the Holly either, because she wants a soft drape rather than a crips hand, spoilt girl that she is. But hey, I quite like it for this dress all the same, even if the neckline isn’t as softly flowing as it could be. I had enough left to make Child 2 and Child 3 pajama pants and now I’m down to scraps on that fabric. A stash well busted!


So I am quietly pleased with myself as I swing out of May, only to ready myself to Jump into June.

In order to placate the Uncalled For Metaphor-Police I picked some flowers.


In the meantime it has actually been really cold, so the even thought of strappy dresses makes me shiver.

How are your jumpsuits coming on, if you are one of the June Jumpers? And who is too cold for the type of clothes they`d like to wear right now?

Jumping Right In: BHL Holly Muslin #jumpingintojune

Jumping right in – and jumping head first into problems! But ever your servant I thought I should aprise you of my delopments in the world of jumpsuits.

In the interest of sewing honesty this blog contains some graphic muslim images some readers might find distressing 😉 .

Well, I did a quick muslin of the BHL Holly trousers (is it trousers or is it pants now? I’m all confused, so I’m sticking with trousers, because that’s what I learnt at school ca 1980).

I tell, you this is the easiest pair of trousers you’ll ever sew! And in fact they fit really well, straight from the envelope (size UK 14, no changes at all).

Eingebetteter Bild-Link

There must be a cleverer way of making a belfie, but I’ve only just got the hang of normal selfies. Baby steps!

Anyways, the back is fine, I think, inspite the snug on the butt-ness the envelope scared me with.

Eingebetteter Bild-Link

The fit from the side is good too – BUT it’s very high-waisted and body-fitting across the tummy. And that is, well, my problem area. I really hate drawing attention to the tummy roll, so this is a no go for me.

Eingebetteter Bild-Link

The front fit might need a little bit taken out of the front crotch, but nothing drastic. But you can see the tummy problem again. Would never wear that! But that is no criticism of the pattern. In fact I’m impressed with the fit, it’s just that it clings to the wrong place for my shape.

I tried lowering the waistline so that is hits right across the tummy roll. That is a lot better, but still not great. So right now I’m wondering whether to use the Holly bodice and another pair of wide-legged trousers for the bottoms.

Maybe I could lengthen the culottes? They have pleats across the tummy and the added benefit of pockets. I see myself slouching next to some imaginary pool, cocktail in one hand, other hand in pocket, free jazz playing in the back ground. Nobody say that my interior monologue isn’t working!

So, where’s it at regarding your jumpsuits? Do tell!

BHL Elisalex/ Burdastyle 9/2007 # 116 Frankenpattern: The Siena Dress

Remember how I made the Amalfi dress especially to wear at Easter on the Amalfi Coast? Well, that didn’t happen – given that my dress was neither suitable for fog, nor for pouring rain, nor for the snowstorm that greeted my ascent of mount Vesuvio on Easter Monday.

Mind you, I was on a walking tour, so the bad weather wasn’t too bad once I had switched on the old frontier spirit: you get warm once you walk briskly enough, clothes will dry on the body, wool warms you even when wet and what gets wet will eventually get dry.

On the plus side, when I got to Tuscany a few days later to visit a dear friend the weather had turned warm enough to at least do some fabric shopping at the weekly market in Siena, thus using the get of of jail free card my stash diet rules had provided me with.

Let me tell you, there were a LOT of very nice fabrics at the market – but let me also tell you that they were asking Italian prices for them, so I only came away with 1.5 metres of a cotton pique that cost me more than any other fabric I had ever bought before. To be honest I was a little bit traumatised by the thought of ruining 50 euros worth of fabric by making a silly mistake, so the fabric stayed in my sewing room for days, untouched – not something that happens a lot at Said&Done HQ!

After much deliberation I decided on a frankenpattern of the BHL Elisalex bodice and my trusted skirt TNT pattern Burdastyle 9/2007 # 116.  I just love that skirt!

So, to cut a long story short, may I introduce the Siena dress:



I cut a size 14 for the bodice following my measurements, but the muslin showed there was quite a bit of gaping at the back neckline which I resolved by taking out two wedges angling from the shoulder blade at about the middle of the neckline down to the armscythe. Other than that the bodice fit well, I only took out a little bit under the bust at the princess seams to remove a little bit of extra fabric.

Because Italy was too cold for a lot of ice cream I caught up on my duty to Italian culture when back at home:



Oh yes, this neckline does fit!! Can’t quite be said about the invisible zip, which I did not manage to make disappear at the waist band where a double section of fabric just refused to bend to my exact specification. You can’t win them all, can you?!


And because I know you come to this blog for the splendid fotography ;-), here’s a style shot!

Before leaving for Italy I said I would eat ice cream and drink prosecco and I didn’t do either of these things – I felt more like grog than prosecco. So get this:


Prosecco at my local pizzeria! I feel quite like the cross-cultural ambassador!

So let me drink you you, dear readers who come to read this blog, to Italy – and to the Siena dress, of course!


The Beauty of Expectedness

Look, look, LOOK!!!!! Look what’s landed on my doorstep this morning:


You see, when the girls of By Hand London did their kickstarter campaign last year I helped fund them and as a reward I knew I was getting some of their goodies. So I knew what I was getting, no surprises there, move on, nothing to see.

But then: Isn’t this amongst the most beautiful sights in the world?

IMG_0843And then fabric!

IMG_0845Yes!! I was allowed to order 2 metres of their print on demand fabric! How very, very exciting. Originally I had thought that I would upload my own design, but quickly realised that designing my own fabric exceeded my skill and time set by far and so I plumped for their gallery pink flamingo fabric. I’m happy to report that the print is exactly like it looks on their site, print crisp and clear throughout the entire piece of fabric.

At first I was a bit worried when I noticed that the print does not go all the way to the selvages:


But then, of course, how can it, obviously the printer needs an area to grip the fabric while feeding it through its works. Doooh!

You do get a full 148cm width area of usable fabric, so I think that is perfect, no more worries.


So I think I’ll spend a very happy hour thinking about what I could turn this fabric into.


In other sewing news, my spring coat is coming on nicely.


That Peter Pan collar is a work of beauty, if I say so myself.


I’m at that (for me) tricky point where I prepare the lining for bagging. I always run into trouble at the bottom edge:

IMG_0839I dutifully leave 7 cm of the lining unattached to the facing, but when I turn the cloth I always get some sort of organised chaos.

Here, I just sewed as I thought was fit and it’s kinda working ok, but never as perfect as in a shop bought coat.

IMG_0840But how does this even happen??!!


I really, REALLY measured the lining to be 1.5cm shorter than the shell. I compared the lining to the shell before attaching it and yes, it was 1.5 cm shorter than the shell. I wasn’t drunk, I wasn’t tired, it wasn’t dark. So HOW CAN THE LINING NOW BE LONGER THAN THE SHELL? AND IF IT IS LONGER WHY ISN’T IT A UNIFORM AMOUNT ALL THE WAY AROUND? WHY DOES THE WORLD NOT MAKE ANY SENSE?

Philosophical questions, I know. So will I sit down to answer them or will I just cut off the lining to the required length?

I think you know the answer to that…

But just to make sure, please do take my little poll:

By Hand London Georgia: Again!


Following on from my slightly hysterical excitement about my first Georgia I suppose no-one is surprised I made another. In fact I had plans for months, but only got the right fabric a little while ago – which is as well because I can now enter this dress into the Indie Dress competition over at The Monthly Stitch.



I can’t say much more about the construction of the dress than I did last time. I sewed a size 10 grading out to a 12 from the waist straight from the envelope and the only change I made was lengthening the dress by about 5cm.

My husband even did some fancy stuff with the camera!


I just hope the nice weather is going to hold, because I feel with this dress, lots of al fresco cocktail sipping is in order!



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