Hi, I’m Melanie!

Sewist, Feminist and Engineer.

I live in and love Melbourne, having moved here many moons ago from Country Victoria to start University.

Making beautiful and well-made things to wear, enhancing my fabric stash at every given opportunity, planning for things to sew and lurking many, many other sewing blogs for inspiration and appreciation are a few of my favourite things. Although admittedly, it’s a little lot harder to find time for sewing now I have a toddler to wrangle… and I’m still trying to find that balance.

You can contact me on poppykettle at gmail dot com (unless you’re trying to sell me something or asking me to promote something for you – nope! Also – if you ignore that request and decide to contact me anyway – you won’t be getting a polite reply).

Thanks so much for stopping by!


NL6735 7


  1. Hi Melanie,

    I am hoping you don’t mind me emailing but I am a bit behind the times regarding Twitter etc.

    If you need a claim to fame, I think it is that you have inspired me and many others to give Marfy patterns a go. I recently purchased 3 more patterns (3182, 3183 and 3167) and would like your advice please. I have been reading your blog post re: F2940 and I would like to know if you think basting the pattern onto the fabric is the best way to begin the whole process of making a Marfy garment?? A made a top like your gorgeous green silk one last year and I used Burda transfer paper and that was okay because the fabric was plain cotton. I also read ‘A Challenging Sew’ blog and I see Leisa also bastes due to her couture dressmaking skills. As I am writing this, I am really asking you the obvious; it is a brilliant idea even though it takes hours of extra work and it will be well worth it!!! Please can you confirm. I have only been sewing for 45 years so I really should be able to figure this out!!

    I hope you are well and sewing when you get half a chance.


  2. Melanie, I love love love your blog! i just found your blog after you commented on mine and I’m soo happy! That whole couture sewing school business is too fascinating! Will you do it again?

    1. Oh, you’re too kind! But I’m so glad you enjoy it – I’ve certainly been enjoying yours (and turning positively green at your knitting prowess). I would LOVE to do the couture sewing school again… one day. Probably not any day soon, though. But it’s an experience that will be with me for a lifetime!
      In the meantime, I’ll see you around the blogosphere ;)

  3. So do you work primarily from patterns or not? I love your blog, especially the kick-up skirt. I’m just beginning to learn the art of sewing, a lot because of your finished works. I am not sure where to start though. Do I start with patterns? Any advice is greatly welcomed. Thanks– Bess

    1. Hi Bess, yes – I do work primarily from patterns. I started out learning sewing by signing up to classes with an experienced teacher – the best way to learn as far as I’m concerned!

  4. Melanie as the last surviving pleat workshop in Melbourne it’s unfortunate you were not happy with the previous job. I have taken over the business recently and would like to try and redeem things so please do consider our services when you want to do something pleated. Regards Simon Specialty Pleaters 9397 7000

  5. Hi Melanie,
    I’ve just been reading through your tailoring section, which is fabulous (I’m in a personal tailoring section myself at the moment, and am working on a Claire Schaeffer jacket) – and I wondered if you could advise on where/how to get hair canvas (or an adequate substitute) in Australia? (a boring question I know, but good supplies are hard to come by). Everywhere seems to require a million dollars postage from the US…

    1. Hi Tess, where abouts in Aus are you? Clegs in Melbourne has it, and Tessuti does as well I’m fairly certain (Although it’s been a long time since I last bought any!!). If you call up, I’m sure either could post it to you :)

      1. Thank you!! I’m in Sydney, but I would definitely prefer postage from Melbourne than New York.(and thanks for the speedy response).

  6. Hi Melanie,
    I’m working on a button down collared shirt and was hoping you could spare some of your expertise. The shirt when worn keeps falling back at the neckline, shoulders seams move back too, so the collar dips back and the front neckline pulls up. Does that make sense?! LOL! Can you help with what is wrong with the pattern? I thought the neckline drop was not enough at the front, but that does not seam to be the issue.
    Any advise would be great.
    Mahopac, NY

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s