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Let’s all wear…shirts and shirtdresses!

We have lots of shirt and shirtdress patterns in stock at the moment and the lovely Alice (one of the newest members of our team) has put together a round up of them all for you with some top styling tips too! Take it away Alice!

Shirts are a staple piece when it comes to your wardrobe. They’re a perfect example of a versatile garment. Whether it’s for work, a summer’s day, a night out in town or a cosy day in, a shirt will work. Here at The Village Haberdashery, we have plenty of different shirt patterns to keep you inspired! From blouses, shirt dresses, tunics, all ages for male & female – you’re bound to find a pattern you wish to make over & over again.

This month, we’ve been looking at ways to jazz those shirts up. So we’ve put together this to inspire you to get shirt making.

Named Patterns – Helmi Trench Blouse & Tunic Dress

Named Patterns have such a classic, ‘high end’ look to them – they’re great for those staple wardrobe items. This one has two different options you could go for. The Tunic Dress features a concealed button closure & half sleeves. It’s a tad more advanced, so if you’re an intermediate sewer – why not give this a go! As its made up of two parts, we thought why not mix it up and use two fabrics, just to make it even more unique to yourself! The fabrics we’ve chosen are Menagerie by Rifle Paper Co – Watercolour in Multi & Menagerie by Rifle Paper Co – Champagne in blush metallic. You could even opt for a plain solid colour & add some personalisation with our Iron – On Glitter Sheets. We feel the two contrasting fabrics would really bring this shirt to life & make it perfect if you’re having a night out!

Grainline Studios – Alder Shirtdress

You can’t go wrong with a denim shirt. This pattern is made up of two different versions – View A, is a-Line, whereas View B is a gathered skirt at the back & sides. Its great for summer as its sleeveless but also perfect for winter as you can just pop on a cardigan! We may have gone for the black Stapleford Denim, however, with a pop of colour it can become quite striking. How about these Embroidery Transfers by Sublime Stitching. They’re so easy to use & with multiple usage you could place them over and over again! As they say ‘floral embroidery is a must!’. How about a floral pocket feature or a floral collar? You could even embroider a floral bouquet on the back of the shirt!

Closet Case Patterns- Kalle Shirt Dress

The Kalle Shirt Dress is a loose fitting shirt dress, great for all seasons! If you haven’t sewn a shirt before, this is a great pattern to choose. It gives you the option to choose what kind of collar you want & button style, making it a super personalised shirt! For this we’ve opted for Linen/Viscose Chambray – Denim Blue & added some pom poms! Pom Poms & trimmings are a great way to make something fun and look totally unique! We have so many options here at The Village Haberdashery from ready made pom pom trims to a wide of variety of ribbons, such as gingham, striped, grosgrain & satins of all different sizes! They would look great as a sleeve trimming or for the hem to give it a festival feeling! They work really well against this fabric, which almost has a ‘denim look’.

Colette Patterns – Aster Blouse

The shape of this blouse is lovely! Its classic & smart, yet casual. Great for any type of wear and style! If you’re a beginner or an experienced sewer – there is no holding back with this pattern! With three different options & a variety of techniques, you’re bound to find one that suits your wardrobe – as well as learning loads of new things along the way! We’ve gone for option 3, as the fluttered sleeves would look great with this fabric. The fabric we’ve chosen is Wonderland rayon by Rifle Paper Co – Painted Roses in Orange. Paired with a classic pair of skinny jeans & boots – perfect Autumn outfit! As the fabric is so detailed, not much embellishment is needed – just some great matching & bright buttons!

Megan Nielsen – Darling Ranges Dress

We cannot go without featuring some stripes! The fabric is Cotton Chambray – Blue Stripe. It’s lovely & light, and would create a simple yet effective every day staple shirt. Iron-on motifs are all the range right now with so many options available. You could go for a cute cherry or summery flamboyant flamingo! They make a great addition and so simple to use too. Or how about some machine embroidery if you’re feeling adventurous? We have some freehand machine embroidery classes coming up too, if it’s something you’re keen to learn. This pattern features so many options from a deep v-neck, high waistline, different sleeve lengths, pockets & darts! Great to be made over & over again.

Colette Patterns – Penny Dress

This Monstera in Midnight Rayon Lawn by Rifle Paper Co. (from their Menagerie collection) is utterly gorgeous which such a lovely drape, it’s a perfect fit for this pattern! The dress is an iconic shape and reminds us of the fifties – It definitely has that ‘Christian Dior’ feel! You could sew this dress in a shirting cotton or a rayon/lawn like we’ve chosen & it would be perfect for any occasion! The pattern features a sleeve-less option, a full fitted circle skirt & a high waisted waistband. You could mix & match to create the perfect shape for you! We’ve paired it with some neutral buttons here.

Tilly & The Buttons – Rosa Shirt & Shirt Dress

Rosa Shirtdress

This pattern definitely has western vibes! They both have so many different, awesome sewing features such as a pointed back yoke, roll up sleeves with optional buttons tabs, piping & buttons! (Hello, self covered buttons!). You can buy piping, or you could have a go at making it yourself. There are so many free tutorials nowadays, definitely make the most of them. As we’re feeling western when it comes to this pattern, we went for a cotton denim, in this lovely mustard shade – a great Autumn colour! Paired with the Jungle fabric from the new Menagerie collection to make the piping & self covered buttons. It would look awesome!

Cashmerette – Harrison Shirt & Lenox Shirtdress

It’s time to bust out the tailoring skills for this one! (sort of!) Both versions of patterns feature classic tailoring details such as button bands, two piece collar and princess seams! They’re patterns that can be made over and over for workwear or for a everyday effortless style! Did I also mention the Lenox Shirtdress has pockets?! A cotton lawn would look great for these patterns. With matching buttons, you can’t go wrong! We’ve chosen the stunning Cotton Lawn – Lily Brasilia by Lady McElroy and some elegant shell buttons.

Sew Over It – Vintage Shirt Dress

This dress shouts retro chic! Its one of those shirt dresses that you can put on, whatever the season or weather and look effortless! As it is so versatile, the fabric options are endless! Whether you wish to go for a lightweight cotton like we’ve chosen (this one is Blue Moon – Folkstone in Midnight), a rayon or a heavy denim – it’s a great pattern to make completely your own. Its definitely filled with a variety of techniques to keep you learning and refreshing, with pleats, facings, collar & buttonholes! Why not make a matching tie-up belt or use some velvet ribbon to give it that extra classy feel!

Walden by Colette – Negroni Shirt

As well as womenswear patterns, we also stock menswear! This shirt is a classic, modern man’s shirt, great to pop over a t-shirt or to wear with a pair of jeans & boots. The shirt suggests a variety of different fabrics to use, such as flannel, rayon and shirting! It also features optional collar suggestions too! I feel you can’t go wrong with this pattern. This Lawn by Rifle Paper Co. is super cool & smart! It features a repeating pattern, is super lightweight with a slight stiffness, yet holds its shape. Perfect to pair with some simple black buttons.

Merchant & Mills – The All State Shirt

I’m loving this shirt! It’s bringing back that retro, american fifties feel with its short sleeve & box fit. Is great if you’re looking for something a little different. The pattern features a pockets, back yoke & short side splits. The fabric we’ve chosen is a little quirky, however, we think would work well! Its a cotton chambray (Chambray Boulevard Prints – Southwest Stripe in Indigo), with a directional print. If you’re feeling a little adventurous, directional prints are a great next step with sewing or even just making menswear itself!

I hope we’ve left you feeling super inspired to have a go at making some shirts for yourself, a friends or a partners wardrobe! Share your photos & makes on Instagram or Facebook with #thevillagehaberdashery! We’d love to see what you create!

Thanks Alice! I’m totally inspired to get shirt making now!

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Lovely things our customers have made

Time for another round up of lovely things our customer have made! Don’t forget to share your own makes with us on Instagram using the hashtag #thevillagehaberdashery

We were totally wowed by @fosterquilts Snake quilt! The perfect selection of Kona Cotton Solids.

@lizzieb262 made this Jumpsuit using our Carolyn Friedlander fabric and we think it is amazing!

@lollyinlala is enjoying the sun while wearing her Papercut Patterns Anima Pants in our Viscose/Spandex Jersey fabric. They look super comfortable!

How adorable is this little outfit made by @girlswear in some of the Rifle Paper Co. Wonderland fabric!

We love this jumpsuit dress by @sarahyjbj in our Flamingo Popcorn Crepe fabric!

@e_boden has made these cute little drawstring bags from our Feather Palm Cotton Lawn. We especially love the embroidery detail.

@jesshartdesign looks fab in her Tilly and the Buttons Mimi blouse in our Frolic 100% organic cotton batiste.

Isn’t this dress by @tinabella83 just stunning. It is a mash up of the Deer and Doe Sureau bodice and a McCalls skirt in Gertrude Made‘s Outback Wife fabric.

@nixdolman has made these handy zip pouches using our metal zips and fun quilting cotton prints!

@londonlettice has her summer wardrobe sorted with this tunic dress in Artizan Splash cotton lawn!

Our Hoooked recycled t-shirt yarn works so well for jewellery crafts. @kbated has used macrame for this lovely piece.

 

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Tutorial: Patchwork Rainbow Cloud wall hanging

Earlier this week we posted the images of our Great British Summer Outing shop display and as promised, here is the tutorial for how to make the patchwork cloud that features in it.

Patchwork Cloud Tutorial

I have to admit, when I was making this I was just kind of making it up as I went along! As this is a project you can make in any size I have not given and exact measurements.

What you will need:
A plain grey fabric for the background and the backing. (I used Manchester Yarn Dyes – Steel)
Long strips of fabric in rainbow colours (skinny quarters of Kona Cotton Solids work great for this)
Co-ordinating thread
Wadding or Toy Filling (whichever you prefer)
General sewing supplies

Patchwork Cloud Tutorial

1. Draw your shape out on a piece of paper making sure it is about half an inch larger than you want the finished cloud to be to allow for seam allowances.

Patchwork Cloud Tutorial

2. Cut out your shape. This is now your template.

Patchwork Cloud Tutorial

3. Draw 8 evenly spaced lines out to mark out where your rainbow stripes will go.

Patchwork Cloud Tutorial

4. Cut out long strips of the coloured fabrics twice as wide as the rainbow stripes, plus 1 inch. Don’t worry too much about the length, just make sure they are a bit longer than the lines you have drawn on your template. Then iron these strips in half longways. This automatically finished one of their edges.

Patchwork Cloud Tutorial

5. Find matching threads for each of your colours. (It is up to you how fussy you want to be about how well they match).

Patchwork Cloud Tutorial

6. One at a time, layer your stripes by overlapping them in ‘rainbow order’. You are aiming for the visible parts of the stripes to be the same width as the lines you drew on the template.

Patchwork Cloud Tutorial

7. Top stitch them together 1/4inch from the fold of the top piece. I used the 1/4inch seam foot on my machine to help with this.

Patchwork Cloud Tutorial

8. You should end up with a block of coloured stripes with a neat fold at one side and raw edges at the other.

Patchwork Cloud Tutorial

9. Cut half of your main cloud front fabric in half diagonally so you have a piece for either side of the cloud. (Make sure you leave enough for the backing). Overlap the bottom side of the rainbow over the corresponding diagonal main cloud front piece.

Patchwork Cloud Tutorial

Patchwork Cloud Tutorial

10. Top stitch 1/4inch from the fold to join them.

Patchwork Cloud Tutorial

11. Place the raw edge of the rainbow right sides together with the other corresponding diagonal side of the main cloud fabric. Stitch with a 1/2inch seam and press the seam towards the cloud.

Patchwork Cloud Tutorial

Patchwork Cloud Tutorial

12. Your should now have something that looks something like this…

Patchwork Cloud Tutorial

13. Place your paper cloud template on top and pin it down.

Patchwork Cloud Tutorial

14. Cut around your template to get your final shape.

Patchwork Cloud Tutorial

15. Cut out a second cloud shape from your cloud backing fabric. Place your cloud backing and cloud front right sides together and pin. Sew all the way around with a 1/2inch seam allowance leaving a gap for turning and stuffing. You will need to pivot at the corners.

Patchwork Cloud Tutorial

16. Clip the curves and snip into the troughs and turn right sides out. Press.

Patchwork Cloud Tutorial

17. Fill with toy stuffing or wadding and sew up the gap. You can also top stitch around the whole shape if you like or even quilt it.

Patchwork Cloud Tutorial

18.You can then hang up your cloud with invisible thread if you wish or use it as something else… a cushion perhaps?

Patchwork Cloud Tutorial

The sun and the raindrops are made simply by cutting out two of each shape, placing them right sides together, sewing around them leaving a gap and then turning to the right side and finishing. Easy!

We would love to see your versions of our rainbow cloud. Share your makes with #thevillagehaberdashery.

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A close up on our ‘Great British Summer Outing’ vignette

As we all know, here in Britain the weather isn’t totally reliable and if it isn’t raining, wait a bit and it probably will rain! However, nothing stops us going out what ever the weather and having a good summer family outing. This vignette is inspired by days out when I was little, usually dressed up in a raincoat or dungarees and always with my welly boots on!

Three Girls

Our young Mum is wearing the Tilly and the Buttons Cleo Dress in Cotton/Spandex Denim Buxton.

Tilly and the Buttons Cleo Dress

This is such a simply pattern to make and is super easy to personalise. I have stitched one of The Make Arcade’s Mini Cross Stitch Kits onto the front pocket for this one, but you could sew on some fabric patches, do some freehand embroidery, or even add some intentional distressed parts to the fabric if you like. Dungaree buckles and Jean buttons work so well on this dress.

Tilly and the Buttons Cleo Dress

I had really good fun with the top stitching on the pockets!

Tilly and the Buttons Cleo Dress

Tilly and the Buttons Cleo Dress

Tilly and the Buttons Cleo Dress

Our littlest girl is dressed just like Mum with her dungaree dress. The pattern is the Two Stitches Frankie pattern and is so cute!

Two Stitches Frankie Dress

 

Two Stitches Frankie Dress

I couldn’t resist adding the Unicorn Mini Cross Stitch to her front pocket.

Two Stitches Frankie Dress

The shape of the skirt is just perfect and the elastic section at the back means fitting is very easy.

Two Stitches Frankie Dress

I have replaced the bulky dungaree buckles with little flower buttons for a more dainty look.

Two Stitches Frankie Dress

Our other little one is very cozy in her Amy Butler – Little Splashes Hooded Raincoat. Fabric is the adorable Magical Summer Unicorn in Mint and Gold PVC. Keep an eye out for a top tips for sewing with PVC fabric post coming soon.

Amy Butler Little Splashes Raincoat

Amy Butler Little Splashes Raincoat

The coat is lined in brushed cotton to make it extra snuggly!

Amy Butler Little Splashes Raincoat

I just love the pleated pockets with the little flaps.

Amy Butler Little Splashes Raincoat

Amy Butler Little Splashes Raincoat

Hanging above in the shop we have the Great British Summer weather cloud! Rain + Sun = Rainbow!

Rainbow Cloud

The coloured fabrics are all Kona Cotton Solids and the cloud is Manchester Yarn Dyes in Steel. We will have a tutorial for how to make this on The Daily Stitch in the next week or so.

Rainbow Cloud

We hope you enjoyed reading all about our ‘Great British Summer Outing’ vignette and are having a fantastic summer time… even when it is excellent weather for ducks!

Ducks

Rain boots

What are you making to wear out and about this summer? Tag your makes with #thevillagehaberdashery. Happy Sewing!

 

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Summer quilt inspiration

We’ve seen some fun summer-themed quilt ideas in our Instagram feed lately and thought it would be fun to do a little round up of favourite patterns and inspiration!

Ice Cream Quilt

This seriously delicious ice cream quilt is by Lindsey Neill of Pen + Paper Patterns for issue 50 of Love Patchwork & Quilting. It’s made with all Kona Cotton Solids which could totally be customised (although we LOVE Lindsey’s colour palette here). This quilt just makes me smile!

Cotton and Steel Beach Chair Block

Last year Cotton and Steel released a free beach chair block pattern that is so cute and playful! Make a whole quilt of these or even just a cushion or a bag to get you in the spirit of summer!

Purl Soho Beach House Quilt

I’ve never forgotten this beach house mini quilt from Purl Soho that was created based on a picture! The project is really just inspiration and a tutorial for creating a quilt based on a picture of your own – there isn’t a pattern for this quilt. So it’s not for everyone and is definitely for the more adventurous and patient quilters, but, just, wow! I love this so much!

Sliced by Slice of Pi Quilts

Another Instagram find was the Sliced Quilt by Slice of Pi Quilts, which is just one big, bold, mouth-watering wedge of watermelon in quilt form! So summery and bold. Make a mini to hang on the wall or a throw to picnic on!

Anchors Away by Tula Pink

Tula Pink’s free Anchors Away pattern is awesome if you’re into the nautical theme. There are a lot of cool versions out there but one of my faves is this grey and aqua quilt by Jade of Stitch Mischief. Check out the rest of her gorgeous seaside photos of this quilt on her blog!

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Our favourite resources for sewing with double gauze!

We love cotton double gauze because it is floaty and soft, lending itself to both special garments and beautiful quilts.

Double Gauze

In recent years double gauze gone from something you can only find in highly-coveted Japanese fabric collections (perhaps you’ve heard the name Nani Iro?) to being produced by some of the biggest quilting fabric manufacturers in the industry (perhaps you’ve heard of Cotton and Steel?)

Nani Iro Double Gauze

But it’s still new to many of our customers and every time we share a picture on Instagram, we get questions! We have a few favourite resources to share and we wanted to put them all in one place to give you the courage and inspiration to try double gauze if you haven’t already.

Parallels double gauze

First, start by watching this video by Cotton and Steel. They produced it when they launched their first double gauze collection a couple of years ago. It has sewing tips and suggestions and is going to make you want to get started straight away! Sorry – it’s driving me crazy but I can’t get this video to centre!!

Next, check our our own blog post Tips for dressmaking with double gauze by Jenni Smith. It’s extremely comprehensive and you’ll get to see more pics of the cute Tilly and the Buttons Bettine Dress Jenni made with our double gauze!

Tips for dressmaking with double gauze

Finally, Colette Patterns did a blog post on double gauze with even more information, plus lots of cute pattern ideas too.

Colette Double Gauze

Are you inspired? Yes? You can find our current selection of double gauze (and we add new prints all the time!) right here.

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Six tips for choosing the right yarn for your knitting project

The lovely Allison and Rachel from Yarn in the City have been writing some yarn-focused blog posts for us to help inspire you with your knitting and crochet projects. We get so many question in the shop about what yarn to use for certain projects so the ladies have created this post to answer all those queries…Take it away, ladies! 

Yarn in the City

One of the things that we love about hosting our yarn-y events is introducing makers to the amazing world of yarn! There’s nothing more satisfying than seeing a knitter or crocheter’s eyes widen at the creative possibilities in front of them. But all that choice can come with a price in that it can be easy to get overwhelmed with too many options.

The biggest pitfall with all that choice can be choosing the wrong yarn for your project. Too often we’ve seen people get swept away by a gorgeous hank of yarn without a plan, hoping that “the yarn will tell me what it wants to be!” That’s all well and good sometimes, but it might be better to have an idea of what to look for in a yarn so that you make the perfect pairing right from the start?

We’ve come up with a list of questions to consider when planning your next project to help things go as smoothly as possible:

Choose the right yarn for your project

Who is my project for?

Just like an advertising executive will want to know who an ad is targeted at, you have to know your audience. Knitting for yourself or your Grandma is different from knitting for your toddler! A couple of things to consider:

  • What will the item be used for? A blanket for a new baby is a different kettle of fish from a cozy shawl for an ill friend.

  • Is the recipient going to handwash the item if needed or will they throw it in the machine with the rest of the laundry?

Take into account the personality of the person you’re making for – if they’re not likely to appreciate cashmere in their special holiday gift, do you need to splurge on the yarn?

Choose the right yarn for your knitting project

Why am I making this project?

A lot of us like to show our love for the special people in our lives by making them something. Holidays, birthdays, special anniversaries – they’re all great reasons for starting a new project. The big question to ask yourself here is how much time you have before the big day. Do you want to knit sweaters for your whole family for Christmas? Are you making a shawl for your friend who’s getting married? Think about how long other similar projects have taken you and if you realistically have enough time to make it to the finish line. Don’t forget that you’ll have to be done a few days before your deadline so you have time for finishing and blocking!

Choose the right yarn for your knitting project

What is my project? What is the gauge or tension?

Garment? Accessory? Toy? Other? Just as it’s important to know who you’re knitting for, knowing what you’re making can have a HUGE impact on your choice of yarn. Are you wanting to make a delicate lace shawl? Then maybe that super soft chunky yarn isn’t the best choice. It would be great for a blanket or last-minute accessory gift though! Is the project a sweater? A fluffly single-ply yarn will wear more easily and pill at friction points under the arms where the arm brushes against the body, so maybe it’s better saved for a project that will get less abrasion and wear, like a hat or cowl.

Check the gauge or tension given in the pattern to help figure out which weight of yarn is required.

A note about gauge and weights of yarn:

The weight of a yarn refers to how thick the yarn is and every yarn label generally provides a range of recommended needle or hook sizes. With many different yarn producers around the world, different size yarns can vary in what they’re called depending on where you are. We’ll get into this more in our next guest post!

Choose the right yarn for your knitting project

What is the fibre content of the recommended yarn in the pattern?

The combination of fibres used in a yarn contribute to the characteristics of the fabric created and how it will wear and drape. This is good information to have if you’re not able to find the exact yarn used in the pattern, as choosing a yarn with a similar fibre content can have the same desired look and feel in the finished piece. Knowing the fibre content is also important if you need to make any adjustments for climate or allergies/sensitivities to any fibres.

Choose the right yarn for your knitting project

Does my project need to be machine washable?

Remember our question about who you were knitting for? After all the hard work you’re going to put in it’s important to know how the project will be cared for. Is your recipient not great with the idea of hand washing or a busy mum who just wants to be able to chuck it in the laundry machine with everything else? Whether or not your project needs to be machine washable will be an important factor in your yarn choice. Don’t worry if you fall in love with a yarn that isn’t machine washable though – taking extra care by hand washing can be simple and easy thanks to no-rinse detergents like Soak that will keep your project looking like new for a very long time. And don’t we all want our projects to last as long as possible?

Choose the right yarn for your knitting project

Is budget a consideration?

Of course we all wish that budget were no object! The reality is though, that good quality yarns are not inexpensive. Yarns blended with cashmere, silk and alpaca will also cost more because those fibres are more expensive. A yarn that is commercially produced on a large scale will also cost less than a special skein of yarn that is hand-dyed by someone earning a living wage.

Choose the right yarn for your knitting project

Hopefully by answering even some of these questions you’ll help narrow your choices and find the perfect yarn for your project!

Thanks Ladies!

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One paper pad, eight easy papercraft projects to try!

We have these totally lovely paper pads available in so many themes and motifs, but what should we make with them? The possibilities are endless but the super talented Laura Howard is here today to show us eight fun and easy papercraft projects you can make at home with just one pad! Take it away Laura!

Craft paper pads

Today I’m sharing some fun and easy ideas for crafting with paper and card.

Eight easy papercraft projects to try

This post was inspired by a range of gorgeous paper pads available from the Village Haberdashery’s shop. Each pad includes 30 sheets of co-ordinating paper and card (15 sheets of each), which all have a grid of squares on the back so you can easily cut straight edges.

Eight easy papercraft projects to try

I chose to work with the marbled paper pad – aren’t these patterns lovely?

Eight easy papercraft projects to try

As you can see, as well as the detailed marbled designs there are also some plain sheets in soft, ombré colours. You could use the papers for all kinds of fabulous crafty projects, but I’ve put together a few simple ideas to get you started!

1. Greetings Cards

I love sending handmade cards to my friends. Everyone loves a bit of proper post, and there’s nothing quite like a handmade card. Use simple shapes and geometric designs, layering patterns to create some stylish cards. Click here for some Greetings Cards Templates to recreate my designs, or draw your own.

Eight easy papercraft projects to try

Cut and fold a sheet of card to size (remember if you’re using the card from the pad there will be a grid of squares on the inside) or decorate some ready-made blank cards.

Use the card as a template to cut out a section from one of the ombré pieces. The subtle colour variations make a great backdrop for adding some bold shapes. Stick the paper to the front of the card with a glue stick, lining up the edges neatly.

Then cut out your chosen shapes and stick them in position. You can use layers of the plain paper to create frames for the shapes (like the heart) or just layer the patterned papers on top of each other.

If you want, you can use a fine pen to draw around the shapes to make them really stand out – but make sure you have a steady hand! (Can you spot where mine slipped?)

Eight easy papercraft projects to try

2. Envelopes & Notecards

As an alternative to making handmade cards why not make some handmade envelopes? These are lovely to send but they also make a great gift: make a set of five or six envelopes with co-ordinating notecards, add some plain address labels and tie them up in a bundle with a bit of baker’s twine ready for gifting.

Eight easy papercraft projects to try

Find an envelope you like the shape of or search online for some printable envelope templates. If you’re going to be making lots of envelopes, I’d recommend gluing the shape to a piece of card (part of a cereal box would be perfect) to make a sturdy template.

Trace the envelope shape onto the back of one of the patterned paper pieces. Cut it out and use a ruler and one blade of a pair of scissors to carefully score along the fold lines. Fold the paper into an envelope shape and use a glue stick to secure the edges. You can use more glue to close the envelopes later when they’re ready to send, or add a couple of strips of narrow double-sided sticky tape to the edges of the flaps.

To make the co-ordinating notecards, just cut rectangular pieces of card slightly smaller than the envelopes so they’ll tuck neatly inside.
Eight easy papercraft projects to try

Eight easy papercraft projects to try

3. Gift Wrapping

Pretty craft papers also make lovely wrapping paper! Use them to wrap small, special gifts or cut shapes from leftover scraps to create patterns on plain parcels.

Eight easy papercraft projects to try

I used the lid of a glue stick as a template to cut lots of identically sized paper circles, which I glued in a row across the parcel. You could cut different sized circles, glue them in rows or dot them at random, or explore different shapes like stripes and triangles. Get creative and turn a plain package into something fabulous!

Eight easy papercraft projects to try

4. Gift Tags

Another great way to make use of scraps of pretty paper and card is by making gift tags. Cut out lots of different shapes, layer colours and patterns, and see what you come up with!

Eight easy papercraft projects to try

Cut out a rectangle from one of the card sheets, punching a hole near the top and adding some string, twine or yarn to create the tag (or just decorate some plain ready-made tags!).

I added bands of plain and patterned paper, cutting them slightly wider than the tag and trimming them neatly to size once I’d glued them in position. I then added some card and paper circles in contrasting patterns to complete the designs, punched the holes and added some string.

Eight easy papercraft projects to try

5. Paper Chains

When was the last time you made paper chains? They are such fun to put together and make wonderfully colourful party décor.

Eight easy papercraft projects to try

Eight easy papercraft projects to try

Cut several sheets of the decorative paper into strips about 3cm wide (each sheet of paper makes 10 strips). Bend one strip so the two ends meet, securing them with a piece of clear sticky tape. Add a second strip interlinking with the first, and continue to build the chain mixing patterns as you go.

You can use one strip of paper per chain link, or make a chain like the one pictured with two strips placed together so the inside and outside of each loop is patterned.   

Eight easy papercraft projects to try

6. Bunting & Garlands

Bunting is a summer party classic! It’s so easy to whip up a length of bunting or a modern garland to decorate your space… then when the party is over it can be disassembled and the pieces returned to your crafty stash.

Eight easy papercraft projects to try

Use the Bunting & Garland Templates to cut out lots of bunting flags or circles from paper or card. Use a large, sharp sewing needle to poke two holes in each piece (at the top two points of the triangles or at opposite sides of the circles).

Use the needle to thread the flags or circles onto a long piece of sewing thread, yarn or thin twine. Double up the circles (as they tend to spin when hung up) and double the bunting flags if the back of the bunting will be visible when you hang it.


Eight easy papercraft projects to try

7. Party Food Toppers

Let your guests know what’s in your party treats with these colourful toppers. This is such a simple idea but a practical and pretty one.
Eight easy papercraft projects to try

Using the Food Topper Templates, cut circles from one of the less busily patterned card sheets to create labels for sandwiches, cupcakes and other party foods.

Add the important info in pen, and attach a cocktail stick to the back of each circle with a piece of sticky tape. You could also cut extra paper circles to scatter on the table-top for extra Instagram-ability!

Eight easy papercraft projects to try

8. Gift Boxes

If you’re giving a small gift, make it extra special by making a gift box. These boxes would also be perfect for wedding or party favours. Scrunch up some pretty tissue paper inside the box then add your gift.

Eight easy papercraft projects to try

Eight easy papercraft projects to try

Use the diagrams provided as a guide to drawing the box templates (one for the box itself, and one for the lid). If you’re just making one box, you can draw the template directly onto the back of the decorative card. If you’re planning on making lots of boxes you’ll save time by making some re-usable templates you can quickly draw around.

Draw and cut out one box and one box lid. I’ve designed the templates so both shapes will fit onto one sheet of card, but you can mix and match the patterns as you like.

Use a ruler and one blade of a pair of scissors to carefully score along the fold lines. Crease all the folds then use a glue stick to add glue to the four flaps (on the patterned/colourful side of the card) and carefully assemble the box and its lid.  

Eight easy papercraft projects to try

Thanks so much for these great ideas Laura! 

Eight easy papercraft projects to try

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Let’s all wear…food!

(I don’t mean let’s all have a massive food fight!) We have so many fun food related prints in stock at the moment just waiting to be stitched up into some amazing outfits. Here are a few ideas to work up your appetite!

This super cute strawberry print from Sevenberry would make the most adorable Geranium Dress! (I actually have some stashed myself to do just this!)

How about an Oliver + S – Art Museum Vest in this fun banana print (also by Sevenberry) for all those little monkeys out there!

A super sweet and simple sew with more Strawberries… the Two Stitches Frida Dress and Swing Top would work great with this quilting cotton from Riley Blake. (And it’s in the sale too!!!)

The most perfect Seersucker with Pineapples to make a summer dress…. the Christine Haynes Lottie Dress perhaps?

The Grainline Studios’ Willow Tank would be perfect in this cute apple print from Cotton + Steel.

And finally… Cocktails! Dressed up with the Sew Over It Eve Dress, or could be more casual with the Closet Case Patterns – Kalle.

Don’t forget to share your food outfits with #thevillagehaberdashery we can’t wait to see what you make!

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Top tips: Pattern matching stripes and plaids!

So you have found the perfect sewing pattern, and you have found the most perfect plaid or striped fabric but you are dreading getting all those lovely lines to match up! These fabrics are such a popular choice at the moment and look so good, don’t be put off by the pattern matching. Here are our top tips for matching those lines!

how to pattern match stripes and plaids

1.  Make any sizing alterations to the pattern and test with a muslin first. Once the pieces have been cut out any alterations will ‘mess up’ all your hard work with the matching! Always make a muslin!

2. Decide what falls in the centre of the garment. Depending on the type of plaid/stripe you will need to make decisions on which way up you want the pattern to be and which ‘line’ falls in the centre. As a general rule, it is best to place the most dominant colour or the one you want to be featured in the centre of the garment.

3. Make sure that your pattern is running in the same direction for all the pieces you cut. Sometimes plaids can look different when placed different ways up. Unless you are creating a contrasting section, you will want all your pieces to be placed in the same direction on the fabric.

4. Never cut on the fold! Most of the time stripes and plaids turn out slightly uneven and it is so difficult to get the pattern to sit straight when you can only see half of it. Lay your pattern piece on the fabric and draw around it in a water soluble pen, pencil or tailors chalk and then flip it over to do the other side. This way you will be able to get it perfectly in line.

5. Always mark the reverse of your pattern pieces. Sometimes it is not always clear which is the right and wrong side of a striped or plaid fabric and there is nothing more frustrating than spending all that time lining up your pieces to then not be able to work out which way up you intended them to be! It is also a good idea to mark the top/bottom of any square or rectangular pieces.

6. Prioritise the matching on a garment as follows: front and back, sides and shoulders. Seams that run down the front and back of a garment are the most noticeable so match these first. Then look at the side seams and shoulders which are not quite as essential.

7. Don’t be afraid to draw on your paper pattern pieces. This can help a lot. Once you have one piece ready, draw the pattern lines to help line up the next piece. Also adding the seam lines to your pattern pieces can help you to see which line/section of the print you need to be matching too.

8. Use the bias to create contrasts. Sometimes it is good to break the pattern up a little with a bias section. Turn your pieces so they sit diagonally on the fabric like we did with the waistband and pockets on our Sylvie Dress.

9. Take your time when cutting out. This is the most important step in the pattern matching process. Make a mistake here and you will be kicking yourself further down the line! Find a time to cut out your pieces when you can really concentrate without interruption and your results will be top!

10. Use plenty of pins to match up that pattern before sewing. You don’t want to spend hours getting all your pieces cut out to then rush the sewing bit! Pin each line together before sewing and take it slow on the machine. A walking / even feed foot may help with thicker fabrics to stop them shifting about.

I really hope these tips have given you more confidence to work with these amazing fabrics. As long as you take your time and really think about the placement you will be pattern matching like a pro in no time!

Don’t forget to show us your ace pattern matching with #thevillagehaberdashery

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