Just to be clear, I have been a bad influence on Dott, she has not been a bad influence on me!
Way back in the mists of time, I made a dress and a corset for Dott, from a vintage Dennis the Menace duvet cover. After a more recent conversation about making things from duvet covers (a topic always close to my heart), Dott bought this fantastic red and black one, and made herself a skirt!
It's self-drafted, pattern-matched at the side seams, and of course it has nice big pockets! Head on over to Dott's blog, to see more photos and details of how she made it. Isn't it brilliant?
Verity's new dress arrived today, and I'm pleased to see that she's very happy with it!
"My new dress made by Eternal Magpie has arrived! She's cleverly made it from my childhood duvet cover and it's very comforting as well as comfortable to wear and.... IT HAS POCKETS!!! Every dress should have pockets Though I've decided the belt doesn't suit me as a belt so now it's a scarf-tie-neck thing "
I do like Verity's ingenuity with the sash belt - I have to confess that they don't suit my shape either, which is why it's taken me so long to think of adding them as an option!
I've got two custom orders in the works at the moment (one from a vintage bedsheet and one from the customer's own fabric), but once they're done I'll go through my smaller pieces of fabric and make some sash belts to add to the website for you.
I was chatting to Sophia on Facebook recently, and she said that I'd inspired her to have a go at some clothing upcycling:
"Having admired the Eternal Magpie website and especially your beautiful dresses, I was inspired to pursue some clothing upcycling ideas which I previously assumed would be beyond my ability.
I am pleased to say, that today I am finishing my second upcycling project!
Thank you for inspiring me to have a go "
Isn't that lovely?
I've been having vague thoughts about putting together some easy upcycling tutorials, similar to these fantastic ones that I used to love in Jackie magazine in the 1980s. These pages have a lot to answer for, including my much-loved oversized men's tail shirt with ladybird buttons, painted Doc Martens and baseball boots... not to mention wearing a bowler hat painted with glittery puffy paint circles for no good reason. (Well, it was the 80s, so wearing a hat to hide my permed mullet was probably a good idea.)
Anyway, dodgy 1980s styling tips aside... would you like to see some upcycling and mending suggestions? I'm not sure I can illustrate them as fabulously as Jil Shipley did for Jackie, but I hope I can share a few interesting ideas!
This lovely nostalgic dress is made from Verity's childhood duvet cover which, in its turn, was made by Verity's mother using a pair of utterly fabulous sheets.
Unearthed from its home of many years in the attic, Verity sent it to me and asked for it to be transformed into a dress with a matching sash belt.
After a brief moment of nervousness when I showed this photo on Instagram, Verity soon recovered:
"...it's just occurred to me I'm going to be literally wrapped in my childhood duvet... how comforting will that be?!"
Isn't that lovely?
I always want my dresses to be comfortable, but I hadn't really thought about them being comforting as well. I'm looking forward to hearing from Verity once she's had a chance to try on her new dress - I hope that being wrapped in her childhood duvet lives up to her expectations!
This was such a fun project to work on! Dott shares my love of silly fabrics, and as a Physics Professor, she couldn't resist this fantastic SCIENCE print. On the side panels, the little stars glow in the dark. What could be more fun than that?
This was a bit of an experiment (pun sort of intended) to see whether I wanted to venture into making corsets again this year. I already had Dott's pattern from a corset I made for her about ten years ago. It only needed a little bit of updating, so it was a really good place to start.
It turned out to be snowing on the day the corset arrived at its new home, but that didn't stop Dott from going outside and having her photo taken! Even better, the corset turned out to match a skirt that Dott had made already - a black one with panels of a multicoloured blackboard print.
I'm still deciding whether or not I'm going to be making any corsets for the shop, but I'm definitely very pleased that I had the opportunity to make this one!