Essential sewing keeping me clothed and sane

SWAP ’14


I’m finished sewing and have just a wee bit of knitting stuff to do. There are some absolutely fabulous collections this year – totally unique, distinctive wardrobes that a personal shopper at Sak’s Fifth Avenue or Harvey Nicks would be really hard pushed to match.

SWAP ’14 is nearly concluded, we have until the 30th April to complete all sewing,  and here for your enjoyment (criticism, amusement, undisguised horror, whatever) are some photos of the final set 3 – the blue/green spectrum. I’ve made all three patterns previously so I didn’t encounter any nasty surprises but I did try to add some new twists to each item.

Yes, there is a big blue fish looking slightly incredulous behind me. I’ve cropped out the tourists! We (the locals) battle others (the tourists) to have photos taken with the fish…..I won and they slunked round the other side!



Jacket is Vogue 8887, made in royal blue fleece and lined with the poly satin blouse fabric. I sewed the jacket edges wrong sides together and then trimmed off the excess seam allowance. This means the raw edges are on the outside but will not fray because it is fleece.


I also made a small brooch with the same buttons that were used for the white shirt. This jacket is supposed to be cut on the bias but I reckoned with a stretchy fleece it wouldn’t make that much difference and cut it on the lengthwise grain. I sewed patch pockets to add to the casual look.


I wore this this evening and you know what people complimented me on  – the brooch! Geez, the effort you put in and all people see is a couple of odd shaped circles of fabric with a few buttons sewn on that took you all of 10 minutes and they think it’s brilliant – I ask you!


The blouse is Kwik Sew and is now OOP. Made many, many times before. This version is sleeveless (to conserve fabric for the lining) and I shortened the tie considerably and turned it into a small bow tie instead.


Jeans are the rub-off from my Armani’s. I’ve lost count how many times I’ve used this pattern. It all started with Kenneth D. King’s Craftsy Jeanius class and I reckon the number of pairs of jeans I’ve made has more than paid for the initial cost of the class. This time made in apple green denim with 2% Lycra and boot cut shaped legs. To show everyone who owns these jeans, I sewed my label to the money pocket on the outside.



You sure?


You’re absolutely certain you have made 3 X 3 + 2 wildcards? Really?

Have you not forgotten something?




28 thoughts on “SWAP ’14

  1. Love it all!! The collection is so bright and fun.

  2. You look fab. So does the fish (now I know where you are from) and your jacket co-ordinates very well with it.

  3. Totally love it all!

  4. nice ensemble – good luck with the swap.

  5. Wow, so bright and fun! Most people wouldn’t even think to make a brooch like that, so it is a very clever idea!

  6. congrats on making the finish line! I love the big fish, and my DD1’s comment on looking over my shoulder: “Cool trousers.”

  7. I think you got the compliment because you looked fabulous but the observer couldn’t quite put their finger on why … the brooch was something easy to focus on; a conversation piece.

    There should be an award for those who break out of the mould and brighten our cities. Like free coffees…

    Love the fish!

  8. Hi. I’m new to this blog (Mrs Mole recommended you to me) and I’m very, very impressed! You sew beautifully, and the way you put things together is fantastic. Well done.

  9. Dazzling, Ruth…you sure can cheer up a gloomy day and I bet that fish never looked better! Weird how folks zero in on one aspect of your outfit…the one that took maybe 15 minutes to sew…buttons…who knew? Love the blouse and lining matching and that belt is perfect!

  10. Seriously great ensemble Ruth – you are prolific! Love your color combo and great sense of style. I bet your “fitted blouse” will look great with these jeans + blazer, too! 😉

  11. Absolutely Brilliant collection Ruth – all the best for the competition.

    • Hi Jacqui – I think SWAP is more of a challenge rather than a competition. It doesn’t really matter who wins – we all do because we have a coordinating wardrobe.

  12. Oh this is lovely. Especially the blouse fabric. I think you are going to win this year. Where the blouse fabric from?

    • Thanks Kate. The fabric is a poly satin print from Craftswoman Fabrics in Carrickfergus (local shop). I couldn’t afford the delicious printed silks at £50p/m.

  13. Oh Ruth, I am in love with this collection on you. It is such fun! The Armani jeans in acid green are wonderful. I recently picked up some orange jeans at a consignment shop…my husband has said NOTHING about them (which is his way of saying WTH?). Love all of this post.

  14. Pingback: SWAP | corecouture

  15. Pingback: Linton Green 1 | corecouture

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