Flo-Jo Boutique

Saturday, 27 June 2015

Top # 64 by Merchant and Mills

Yesterday I decided to actually make what I said I was going to make weeks ago, which is this modern take on the fisherman's top by Merchant and Mills. We stock a range of their patterns and this one caught my eye, as it's perfect for the temperamental British summertime weather and will look great made from a variety of fabrics. 

I've chosen to use up some of my fabrics and am going to use a crisp white cotton (£4.50pm) for the top part and a contrasting band on the bottom using our monochrome cotton floral print (£7.50pm) (I used this originally for a gathered, high waisted skirt). Hopefully this will add a feminine touch to this versatile smock. 

First cut out all your pattern pieces to the size you need them, then lay them onto your fabric.

Top tip: trace out your size onto dot and cross paper (£1pm) so that you can use all the sizes on your patterns at another time.

Pin your pieces down and cut them out. Don't forget to transfer all the markings and notches.

Pin your top front pieces, right sides together at the centre seam and sew 1.5cm seam allowance.

Zigzag stitch or overlock to finish the edges and press open.

Top stitch on the right side of front top, if desired. I did it in white so it was subtle but it would look lovely in a contrasting colour (if your confident that you can sew in a straight line!)

Pin your front top, to your front bottom, right sides facing, making sure you match up the corners of the pockets and notches carefully.

Once pinned, sew carefully making sure your lines are straight, as this will be where your fabric joins at the front and you want your pockets to be level.

Zigzag stitch or overlock to finish the edges.

On the wrong side, press your pockets downwards and pin the pockets in position at each corner and re-sew over the pocket lines, these lines will be seen on the front so make sure you choose a suitable colour and sew carefully.

This is the pocket from the front now held in place with your second stitch line. They can hardly be seen which I like with this fabric, but would like to try a bright colour thread too, to emphasise them.

Onto the back, pin the back top pieces with right sides together at the centre seam and sew.

Zigzag stitch or overlock to finish the edges and press open.

Top stitch on the right side of back top, if desired.

Pin your back top and back bottom right sides together and sew.

Zigzag stitch or overlock to finish the edges and press open.

On the front, with right sides together pin your front sleeves to your front arm holes. Making sure you match up the notches carefully and pin with the curve of the sleeve.

Sew using straight stitch and then zigzag stitch or overlock to finish the edges.

Repeat with the back sleeves. Taking care to match up the notches.

Next, with right sides together match up the front and back sleeves along the top edge.

Sew using straight stitch and then zigzag stitch or overlock to finish the edges.

Then, with right sides together match up the front and back sleeves under arm and side seams. Make sure you match the notches carefully as the point under the arm can end being a bit bumpy if not done well.

Sew using straight stitch and then zigzag stitch or overlock to finish the edges.

Iron on your interfacing to the wrong side of your neck facing. Zigzag or overlock the outer edge.

With right sides together match up the facing into your neckline and pin.

Sew in place and then clip to allow the facing to sit flat against your skin.

Edge stitch just above your seam so that it helps to keep the facing flat. Try and get this stitch line as close as possible.

Press facing into place.

Turn up your sleeves. I doubled mine up with quite large chunky cuffs, as I wanted them to be a 3/4 length turn up, all the time. Press, pin and sew in place.

I found the sewing quite hard as my machine was too wide for the sleeve to fit on so in the end I did them by hand. I'm not sure if this is because my seams were inaccurate or I hadn't turned the sleeve up enough to the wider part of the sleeve, or if my machine is just fat. So let me know how you get on?!

Turn up, pin  and sew bottom edge hem. Then finally press everything!!!

Voila...one fisherman's top ready to wear whilst I sit on a deck chair in my living room, sipping cider and pretending I'm at Glastonbury like all the rest of the Flo Jo team!!!

What have you been making this weekend?

Have a good evening.

Fran xx

Sunday, 21 June 2015

Beginners Dress Making

Back again for July, is one of our most popular courses! This time with a new pattern: The Camber dress by Merchant and Mills.

This is a simple shift dress with a tapered A-line silhouette and short fitted sleeves for an easy-wear classic.

The course is run by our very talented, sewing guru Nancy on Tuesday evenings 6.30-9pm. The first session will be Tuesday 7th July for 4 weeks. 

Cost £90

If you're keen to learn how to make your own clothes, then this course is a perfect introduction to commercial patterns, adaption, marking out, construction, seams, finishing and fitting. 

For more information or to book visit our website or call: 0117 9041498

We hope to see you soon! 

Saturday, 20 June 2015

Summer School- Beginners Sewing

MAKE A SKIRT- 2 day course

Tuesday 7th and Wednesday 8th July: 10am-3pm £90 inclusive

Day 1: learn all the basic techniques you will need to make a skirt, how to thread a machine, wind a bobbin, use a sewing machine, seams, using a pattern, how to sew in a zip and much more

Day 2: using the skills from day 1 you'll learn how to make a skirt that fits you perfectly and is made from our fabulous fabric. 

At the end of the 2 days you'll have a well made skirt that you'll want to show off to all your friends and make again (we hope anyway). As well as having all the skills to continue being creative and making your own clothes!

Some pencil skirt inspiration from Love Sewing magazine, The Great British Sewing Bee and Pinterest

To book or for more information visit our website or call us on; 0117 9044198


We are happy to have supplied this pretty floral Riley Blake fabric- Floriography to Love Sewing Magazine. They've turned it into a classic English Tea dress. 

You get the free dress pattern with the magazine. So why not pop in, choose some fabric, pick up the magazine and get making.

Sewing is even better this summer with an extra 20% off Riley Blake prints  on our website until the end of July. 
What will you make?

Thursday, 11 June 2015

Cloud 9 fabric and a new lining

The other day I relined a bag with this wonderful Cloud 9 fabric called "across the pond". We have a whole shelf full of Cloud 9 and Echino fabrics which are great for making bags as some of them are a slightly heavier weight. Or you could use any of our wonderful cotton fabrics to make pretty much anything!
This bag has still got some wear left in it so it would be a shame to stop using it just because lining looks like below...
 To make the new lining fit the bag, unpick the side seams and the bottom piece to use it as a pattern.
Trace off your pieces and cut them out in your new fabric.
 I copied the mobile phone pocket and ironed on some interfacing to make it a bit steadier in between two pieces of fabric.
 Fold the seams in and stitch into place.
 On the other piece of the bags side I measured and marked out a space for a pocket with a zip.
 It was a really tricky to pattern match this print but I'm quite happy with how it turned out.
The last three seams to put the lining together is to sew the sides seams and then pin them to the bottom piece of the lining.
All that is left to do is to attach the lining to the bag and it looks almost better than it did as new. I love how well the blue and green in the print fits so nicely with the brown leather. Now all you need to do is find a bag to reline!

About Me

My photo
Bristol, United Kingdom
Flo-jo Boutique is the creative baby of Delia and Erika two seamstresses from Bristol specialising in lingerie and vintage styled garments. Designers of sewing kits and creators of sewing parties their shop in Bristol and online shop are home to a gorgeous range of quality fabrics and haberdahsery, craft kits, books and handmade gifts.