Friday, 29 November 2013

Simplicity Review and Giveaway


November marks a year since I started the old (much maligned) blogeroo. I haven't been able to commit the time to it that I would like, and it's made me think back to why I started it in the first place. The main reasons were to:

Record my makes
My sewing/crocheting/knitting does indeed happen most days, but I hadn't anticipated how hard I find it to write in a (semi-)sensicle way and take photos.

To interact with and meet like-minded people
Reading blogs can be very inspiring, but even more so are sewalongs and meet-ups. There haven't been many meet-ups around these parts but I did venture down to the big London town in the first weekend of August. The Goldhawk Road meet-up, organised by Claire of Sew Incidentally, handily coincided with my birthday.

Photographic evidence courtesy of the lovely Dibs and the Machine.

That's me in the last photo clutching an oh-so-classy plastic bag..concealing my Salme Pleated dress.  What a fab day it was, meeting lots of new to me bloggers. The smile on my face was not just down to my swap spoils but to the lovely people there. 

To get free stuff!
OK I didn't really think this was a possibility. But a few months ago I found an email in my inbox asking if I'd like to run a Simplicity giveaway. Due to the lack of posting activity and the fact none of my blog posts so far had featured Simplicity patterns (though I have sewn with one), I was a bit flabbergasted to say the least. But with the chance to get a free pattern, oh and of course to give one away, I wasn't long to reply hell yes! 

And this is what I picked:

Stretchy pouch waist... the reason I snaffled as much jersey as I could get my hands on in London...Yep, I'm brewing up another bad boy/girl (it's a surprise).

Although Simplicity don't currently produce maternity patterns, they are the umbrella group for New Look and Burda, in the UK at least. I had the pick of Burda maternity patterns but settled on this skirt because it seemed straightforward to sew, and therefore more likely to get made. I'm aware Burda have a bit of a reputation for being short on instructions, and in my particular blobby state of mind, SUPER EASY also seemed a good idea.

Simon Cowell styling only for purposes of showing fit

The skirt takes very little time to make. It consists of two pieces which I could fit on a double fold of a wide piece of fabric. You simply gather the front piece for ruching, sew on a wide strip of elastic on the back piece (not on the I said, blobby state of mind), hem and bob's your uncle. 

The brown jersey is from my local shop The Gold Thimble. I asked for cotton jersey but from its slinkyness I would guess there is a fair bit of viscose in there.  I have a red version almost completed, using cotton lycra from Tissu fabrics, and if it wasn't for the tricksy twin needle skipping stitches I might have had photos of that too. 

I took these photos when I was 20 weeks and thought they made me look massive. You should get an eyeball of me now I'm 26 weeks! The skirt does tend to cling to lumps and bumps (as I guess it should!), but for comfort it's a definite winner.

And so to the giveaway....

Those kind folks at Simplicity very kindly offered not just one but three patterns for me to run a giveaway! And this is what I picked:

Option 1: Simplicity 2451

This is the other Simplicity pattern that I own and had already tried. The cover illustrations are pretty uninspiring but you don't have to look far in blogland for inspiration. I made view D in navy needlecord with plum lining and a Liberty yoke facing no less. Photos? sadly none, and no chance of fitting into it in my present condition! I have tinkered with the idea of making a maternity version with a lycra yoke though.

Option 2: New Look 6104

Hmm, bit summery this one, it's been a while since I chose the patterns. But another pattern that is popular and a great basic. Four Square Walls Blog has some lovely versions from One Week One Pattern.

Option 3: Burda 7020

Ah that's a bit more seasonally appropriate. I've definitely been swung by the leopard print styling on this one, a hang over from Jungle January perhaps. I've no reviews to base this choice on but it's up for grabs if it takes your fancy. 

To win, please leave a comment with your pick of one of the three patterns. Leave an email address if you don't have a blog, or if your email address isn't on your blog. You have until midnight GMT sunday 8th december. Good Luck! 

Thanks again to Simplicity for the Giveaway.


  1. Thanks for the giveaway Katy (and Simplicity). I have just realised that Simplicity 2451 is the skirt I saw made up on a stand at the knitting and stitching show, and loved, but they couldn't remember what pattern it was, and I haven't been able to work it out since! So thank you, I finally know what pattern it is, and please enter me to win that one :) I hope you are enjoying your blogging when you find time for it, at the end of the day the sewing is more important, or you'd have nothing to blog about, and anything you can do on the blog in a bonus on that, but just enjoy it, don't make it a chore :) your skirt is lovely, and good luck with your pregnancy!

    1. Hi Kelly, it's a really lovely pattern that would have totally passed me by had I not seen it on other blogs (House of Pinheiro and Did you make that? to name a few). I'll certainly toss your name in the hat and heck your chances are looking pretty good just now! The blog is a bit of a burden, which is a bit daft really! But I really enjoy reading other blogs, to which I now add in yours. And your last post has just spurred me on to get the Archer shirt and Scout tee, enabler you are! x

  2. I just found your blog and wanted to say hi, and congratulations on the baby! I so miss being pregnant, although every day with the boy is just brilliant. I'm not entering your competition because I'm an awful dressmaker, just wanted to say hello!