Water water everywhere, but not a drop to drink

I’m back. Sort of!

Limited amounts of time have begun popping up in which I can start enjoying sewing again (limited being the key word, there is currently a tiny person bouncing up and down against my leg as I type this opening) and I’ve been sewing muslins like I’ve got Attention Deficit Disorder.

Starting with Marfy 9814. One of the very first Marfy patterns I ever bought! It’s fecking gorgeous – the standup collar is divine, and even the 3/4 length sleeves look good (and I’ve always found these to make my proportions look very out of balance. Clearly I just needed something better drafted than a RTW jacket to make it look right on me).

Marfy 9814 – “This youthful jacket has a high neck and a tight fitting closure”. Suggested fabrics are matellas or faille.

I have no idea what catalogue/year it’s from, as I bought it from the McCalls website some 5 years ago. I had that new found hobby ‘fever’ and spent glorious hours trawling pattern websites for things I wanted to buy, when I discovered this page on the McCalls site.  This was back before Marfy had relaunched their website and ordering from them seemed too hard, so it was easy to justify paying a premium to bypass the difficulty.

Anyway – the jacket is divine. However my usual size 46 just doesn’t quite cut it at the moment (read – whilst I’m still breastfeeding). It’s a very close fit!

So it’s on temporary production hold, sad face.

I’m pretty gutted because this was my #1 choice for Susan’s couture sewing school next week…


Secondly and completely unrelated to muslining for Susan, I’ve sewn up a muslin of the OOP Vogue 1220. Same problem. Too much boob. I never even bothered with the front closure, as clearly this is another muslin that will need to wait until bubs is completely weaned. Shame because I really wanted a shirt dress for work – this one is really fabulous. I’m going to look forward to sewing it up somepoint in the future. In fact, I love all the Donna Karen/Vogue collabs, I was rather sad to see that is no longer continuing.


As far as muslins go, I thought perhap I’d be relegated to the bottom half of my body as an option then.

So I muslined Style Arc’s Darcy Pants. The only adjustment I made was to replace the crotch curve with that one from Style Arc’s Flat Bottom Flo pants (what a winner of a crotch curve for the pancake butted peeps like me!).

I didn’t like the elasticated waist look on me – so I pinned it out in the photo here. It’s too tight around my sizeable calves, but the crotch curve!!!!! You’ll have to believe me that it looked just as good from the back as getting a photo of that was way to difficult.


Except my brain forgot to process that an elasticated waistband doesn’t really align with the whole couture thing?


So I thought perhaps I’d try and meld together the top of another pattern that has a waistband and slanted side pockets (two features I wanted this to have). Lets just say that I’m procrastinating against doing that by writing this blog post. Which is a bit of an issue because I’ve got 4 days until I need to have a finished muslin for Susan’s class, and a first birthday party to navigate in between now and then.

Oh, and I nearly forgot – one more muslin has been made. I’m also doing another French Jacket class with Susan whilst she’s in Melbourne – Vogue 7975 of course, but with the sleeves from Marfy 9814 because I love them so.


I’m really excited about this one, and pretty confident that I won’t finish it in the week, so the plan is to leave the front princess seams ‘undone’ so I can adjust once the whole breastfeeding jag is up…

I’ve shortened this version (and not very well – the bottom hem lines don’t match up…) compared to my previous French Jacket, and in an everyday wearable fabric (which I already have and am super excited about!)

Wish me luck!




  1. So good to see you back in blogland Mel! Enjoy the 1st birthday party, and the whole process. The kids grow up far too quickly.

    Love your muslins, and had to laugh at the fact they don’t fit because of feeding. I went from a D to HH when feeding, I couldn’t even get tshirts to fit! I think your idea of morphing two patterns to have a fly and pockets is good, or could you find a suitable pattern and use the crotch curve that you know works?

    1. Thanks Mel, we will!
      D to HH! I went from C to E – I’ll admit, I wasn’t quite prepared for the increase to be so large!
      I think that’s exactly what I’ll be doing with the pants pattern, it makes much more sense to pick a pattern with the details I want up top then change the crotch curve (easy) and then think about adjusting the legs. Fitting is supposed to be top down, isn’t it?! :)

      1. You’ll get there! In the meantime, enjoy every day with your sweet girl. A wise woman told me that the stage you are in is the best one, and not to wish away the current one for one in the past or the future. I think it made a difference for me, and helped me focus on the moment. 😍

  2. So good to see you back and I’m am in awe that you can find the time to do 2 of Susan’s classes whilst she is here.

    I can’t wait to see what you finally decide on for the Couture Sewing School. I have signed up for 3 of her classes and can’t wait for February to arrive.

    1. Oh that’s super exciting to hear – I hpoe you’re doing the guipere skirt class! That was one I had wanted to do but unfortunately Susan just couldn’t fit in into her schedule whilst in Melbourne. What are you going to be sewing in the other classes?? I hope you enjoy the experience :)
      I’m very lucky in that in timed in well with bubs starting childcare before I go back to work in February ;)

      1. The guipere skirt is the only class I’m not doing. I am using Susan’s jacket pattern and V8648 dress that she uses in her Craftsy class as I can have a lot of fun with fabric combinations later on. Then 2 days of Couture techniques so a lot to learn but can’t wait.

  3. Welcome Back! You have been missed. Although it is challenge, sewing with a little one, for your own sanity find time every day to sew–it makes a world of difference.

    Sewing with Susan–sooooo jealous (although I am booked to sew with her in Baltimore in October). Susan will get any of your muslins to fit. Enjoy!

    1. Thanks Gina – it certainly is a challenge! But I’m loving having a little bit more ‘balance’ ;)
      Fabulous news about heading to Baltimore – have you decided what you’re going to sew?!?!?

  4. Calico for the win! So good to see you back in this space. Can’t wait to see what you make with Susan. Every woman’s body responds differently to breastfeeding… some boobs shrink, others return to their original size & some increase at the conclusion of feeding. I probably fell into the latter category (TMI?). Happy birthday to Miss 1.

  5. Nice to see you posting again. I started reading through your blog during the hiatus and am really looking forward to new posts!

    The Vogue 1220 looks great. Why not make it now and then again later? :-)

    1. Thanks Kamila – it’s lovely to see another new-to-me sewing blogger with such a love (even if inadvertant, like myself) of blue coloured fabric :) haha
      Goodluck with the ‘simplify’ mantra. I’ll happily admit I am queen of overcomplication ;)

      1. You get wonderful results from that “overcomplication.” I really appreciate how thoughtful you are about fit and construction details. Your posts about shirt-making made me feel less crazy about all my fretting over fit.

        Simplifying, too, has to happen to a reasonable extent ;-)

  6. The things you discover after you have kids! Enjoy your sewing time, it’s such a juggle to fit everything in once there is a tiny tot competing for your attention.

      1. And when they are less intense work they start stealing your sewing machine. I even got her one but she prefers my Bernina… at least she’s a discerning sewer I guess!

  7. YAY for blogging! I do appreciate the never-ending motion that is small children though :) So excited to see what you’re thinking of for Susan – not a dress in sight and oh-so-practical! What kind of fabric are you thinking?
    I’m going through the same muslin dilemma – I’m doing the Sydney Couture week (although I have to miss 1 1/2 days :( ). My ideas have changed so much…practical, elegant, clothing I’d wear all the time, fit issues I’ve always wanted to conquer (4 dart bodices, sleeve and armsyce fit)…and then I’ve delved into the patterns (oh, the Marfy dresses!) and looked at the fabric I have (swoon!) and what everyone else has done in the past and the fabulous factor rises quickly!

    1. oh – and I know not everyone would consent to it, but it would be lovely to see what everyone is making at all of Susan’s Aus classes! Perhaps we should make a # for instagram?

      1. Oh how exciting! Yes we should definitely come up with a hashtag, something lame like #SKAusTour? I’m terrible at coming up with these things, I know. What’s your IG handle?
        I admit I would probably take a completely different route were it not for the amorphous body parts right now. I would totally be sewing a gorgeous tailored jacket otherwise. I may still go that route… haha! Pants are something I just want someone with epic skills to fit. And if there is one thing Susan can do – it’s get the fit right!
        It’s bloody hard picking just one thing, isn’t it? My only advice would be to pick something because you love it :)
        I’ve got quite a few fabrics in my stash I could potentially use, so I’ll take them all along and see what she says. I’ve always struggled with matching the right weight/drape fabric to a pattern – another thing she’s great for helping out with!!

  8. So nice to see you back! I found that it was really important to get back to the things that make me feel like “Clio” rather than just “Mama” for my sense of self and sanity once I could come up for a little air.

    And yes, the whole nursing bewb thing really throws a curve (ha ha) into fitting the top half. And there is no telling where things will end up once the bub is weaned. (Good luck with that… ummm… were still working on it over here).

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