Monday, 2 June 2014

Pro bono - Kimono

Julia Bobbin Silk Kimono

I don't know when - I don't know how - I don't know why, but I suddenly came over with the urge to own a silk kimono. 

Then I stumbled across this online tutorial over at Elle Apparel and I fell in love. Basically you could say her awesome and free tutorial is a 'pro bono - kimono'. Yes I love it because it rhymes. Sorry not sorry.

I just feel like a lady wearing this thing youknowwhatI'msayin?!!

Julia Bobbin Silk Kimono


Using this tutorial I was able to create this little beauty in two hours, that inludes the time it took to cut it out. Whhhhaaaaat?!

It's a great pattern for the beginner seamstress and the perfect accessory to pretty up any outfit.

Julia Bobbin Silk Kimono
Julia Bobbin Silk Kimono

I used about 1.15 metres of a stunning designer silk that I purchased from The Fabric Store in Melbourne. Have you seen anything as beautiful as this? I mean come on, it has gold leaves through out the pattern! My heart!

Julia Bobbin Silk Kimono
Julia Bobbin Silk Kimono

Instead of cutting the measurements out directly onto the fabric, I made pattern pieces first on paper and then used those to cut out the fabric.

I also used french seams to piece the kimono together instead of just serging the edges. It takes longer, but it makes the delicate fabric look neater on the inside. This quick to make kimono would be even faster how ever if you just serged all the edges together.

Julia Bobbin Silk Kimono
Julia Bobbin Silk Kimono

I also attached the sleeves flat onto the bodice front and back before I joined the side seams together. I then sewed the side seams of the bodice and the sleeves all together in one go. This makes it easier to work out the positioning of the sleeves.

Julia Bobbin Silk Kimono

I love this look, and I especially love how fast and easy it is to make! I already have ideas for more as they are the perfect way to glamorise any outfit.

Harry and I also had a great time taking photos in the park. This guy just loves being outside.

So anyone else have a craving for a kimono? You're not alone! Have a great week everyone!

Julia Bobbin Silk Kimono
Julia Bobbin Silk Kimono

Sunday, 18 May 2014

Vintage and Pink - Butterick 5603 Strikes Again!

"You're not going to believe this, but Julia Bobbin has done something different and made a vintage dress!" 

Said no one, ever.

Julia Bobbin - Butterick 5603

Yes that's right, I make a lot of vintage. You're more likely to find a 50's ball gown in my closet than a pair of jeans (though I do love them!). And people, I don't think it's ever going to change. Wearing vintage for me is like putting on a pair of sweat pants at the end of a long day; it just makes me feel comfortable.

But don't freak out, I love my modern too, and my next few blog posts are a delicious mix of 'now' clothes.

But I digress ...

Julia Bobbin - Butterick 5603

Here's one of my most recent dresses, just in time *cough* for my Mad Men Challenge that wrapped up weeks ago.

It's Butterick 5603 in it's original form. Does that pattern ring a bell? It might be because I've used this pattern FOUR times already to make a pencil skirt version.

Julia Bobbin - Butterick 5603
Click on the following to see the blog posts: 1. Yellow,  2. Black and White, 3. Red, 4. Blue

The first step is admitting you have a problem ...

Details Details
Butterick 5603 Version B. I stitched this up in a size 14.
I used a quilting cotton that I purchased from Spotlight a while ago.

I used an invisible zipper and inserted it down the centre back instead of the side. I didn't see anything wrong with this until I realised half way through my cutting that the back of the skirt does not have a centre back seam. Oops. I ended up slashing it down the centre back with a tiny allowance and it worked ok. Phew!

I also did a FBA (Full Bust Adjustment) on the bodice which definitely helped.

Instead of making facings I used bias binding to edge the neck and sleeves as the dress isn't lined.

Julia Bobbin - Butterick 5603

It's fair to say I like this pattern, seeing as I've borrowed from it five times. This however is sort of the first time I've really made the pattern, as I made it without styling alterations. I love how the gored skirt and fitted bodice give a flattering and feminine shape.

The little ties at the top of the shoulders add to the sweetness of this dress and the full skirt is fun and swirly.

The dress is teamed with a burgundy pair of heels, and a nice full petticoat, which makes such a difference when you're wearing a full skirt!

I finished off the look with my favourite lipstick at the moment 'Siam' by Nars. I was overcome with 'I have to have this colour' when I read the fabulous review by my girl over at Muskstick Mao who knocks this colour out of the park!

Julia Bobbin - Butterick 5603

Hooray for another finished project!
Have a look at your me-mades. Do you have a pattern that keeps repeating itself? Your favourite go-to? I'd love to know!

Julia Bobbin - Butterick 5603

Sunday, 4 May 2014


Julia Bobbin - A 1938 Vintage Sweater - It Cannot Fail to Please; Susan Crawford 

I might be now 100 years old, but I've finally finished my second knitted garment.

Let me introduce to you the 'It cannot fail to please' sweater/jumper by Susan Crawford. It's a reproduction of a stunning original knit pattern from 1938.

Julia Bobbin - A 1938 Vintage Sweater - It Cannot Fail to Please; Susan Crawford

I'll always be a sewing girl at heart, but goodness gracious I am loving this knitting thing! There is something truly harmonious about wearing something where you have actually made the fabric, and it has taken you more than 80 hours!

Julia Bobbin - A 1938 Vintage Sweater - It Cannot Fail to Please; Susan Crawford

It's not something that you just chuck on over your head when you want to wear it, you almost need a freaking ceremony. Or at least someone to throw rose petals at you while you get dressed.
My poor husband.

Pattern Details
It cannot fail to please by Susan Crawford.
Originally from 1938.
This bad boy is sewn with with U.S. size 1 and 3 needles so it takes a loooooooong time, but small stitches just look so neat and pretty don't you think?

Julia Bobbin - A 1938 Vintage Sweater - It Cannot Fail to Please; Susan Crawford

4 ply Rowan wool in Raspberry (8 skeins).

Size and Fit
I made this in the medium size and dang it, it's a little bit too big! Not noticeably, but enough to annoy me. Since knitting my first ever cardigan the Miette, I've come to realise that I'm a loose knitter. That and I really need to swatch better.

I used slightly more yarn than the pattern said I would need and after I wet blocked I realised that the sweater is just a bit too big. The shoulders are too long, and it's a little bit boxier than I would have liked around the midriff. This pattern would look better on a smaller bust (not much I can do there) but overall I still think it looks pretty great!

Julia Bobbin - A 1938 Vintage Sweater - It Cannot Fail to Please; Susan Crawford

The only change I made was to make the sleeves in a small size as I have pretty thin arms and the sleeves are quite full.

Julia Bobbin - A 1938 Vintage Sweater - It Cannot Fail to Please; Susan Crawford

This was my first time wet-blocking and I can now completely understand why people were harping on about it's merits! It completely relaxes the seams, sets the stitches and makes your knitting look so much better! Check out this before and after:

Julia Bobbin - A 1938 Vintage Sweater - It Cannot Fail to Please; Susan Crawford
You can see this pic and more on my Instagram

See how much flatter and even the pattern is? Genius!

If you are on Ravelry, you can check out more details about my sweater here.

I am in love with the beautiful leaf pattern of this garment. I finished making this top a few months ago and at the time I was so glad to be done with it. Now I miss knitting the repetitive leaf pattern. It's just so pretty and classic looking don't you think? I'm also a lover of all things vintage so I was naturally drawn to this pattern from 1938.

Julia Bobbin - A 1938 Vintage Sweater - It Cannot Fail to Please; Susan Crawford

I love the the puffy sleeves and the square shape of the neckline. Looks so pretty with a brooch or a flower!

Julia Bobbin - A 1938 Vintage Sweater - It Cannot Fail to Please; Susan Crawford
Julia Bobbin - A 1938 Vintage Sweater - It Cannot Fail to Please; Susan Crawford
Julia Bobbin - A 1938 Vintage Sweater - It Cannot Fail to Please; Susan Crawford

I teamed the sweater with my black pencil skirt, a gold brooch and raspberry heels. Oh and red lipstick too of course!

Julia Bobbin - A 1938 Vintage Sweater - It Cannot Fail to Please; Susan Crawford

Even though the fit isn't 100% I'm really proud of how it turned out and I'm in love with the style! Susan Crawford has quite a few patterns from this era and I already have about ten that I want to make! Though it's from a different era, I feel like it's the type of sweater that Joan from Mad Men would appreciate, don't you think?

Julia Bobbin - A 1938 Vintage Sweater - It Cannot Fail to Please; Susan Crawford


Thanks to everyone who commented on my Billie Jean Dress post. These three lucky winners were randomly selected and have each won a fabulous vintage brooch curtesy of Ruemiraldi!

SewDiane from Sew Far Sew Good
Nat from Sew Outnumbered
Debra from The Vintage Counterfeiter

Congratulations ladies! I'll be in touch with you shortly via email to organise delivery.

Here's a little cuteness for you on your weekend; a dress I made for a dear friend's beautiful 4year old daughter. A self drafted, fully lined dress with a tule underskirt for a perfect little Snow White. Is she not the loveliest thing you've ever seen?

Julia Bobbin, snow white

Happy sewing everyone, and May the Fourth be with you :)

Tuesday, 22 April 2014

Billie Jean Dress + Vintage Brooch GIVEAWAY!!

Ok firstly, it is IMPOSSIBLE to make this dress with out having Michael Jackson stuck in your head for over two weeks.

You're singing it now aren't you ...

You're welcome.
Julia Bobbin - Billie Jean Dress by Blue Ginger Doll Patterns

A while ago the wonderful Abby from Blue Ginger Doll Patterns sent me this fabulous Billie Jean dress pattern to try out. I loved it as soon as I saw the cover image. A vintage dress reminiscent of Mad Men times? Yes please!

Julia Bobbin - Billie Jean Dress by Blue Ginger Doll Patterns

This pattern was extra special for me because not only is this pattern company an indie company, the owner creator is from the same area that I grew up! True story! Since this pattern was released Abby has been busy creating a whole bunch of other gorgeous patterns (the girl clearly doesn't sleep). I'm lusting over this one at the moment.

Julia Bobbin - Billie Jean Dress by Blue Ginger Doll Patterns

I made this dress in a lush jacquard that I purchased from good old Spotlight a zillion years ago. As soon as I looked at this pattern I knew I was using this fabric.

The dress has princess seams in the bodice and a scoop neck on the front and back.

Julia Bobbin - Billie Jean Dress by Blue Ginger Doll Patterns

I had some fit issues on the bodice which I worked out, though I really should have done a full-bust-adjustment (FBA) as it's too tight across the centre of my boobage which is giving it a bit of square shape. Meh; the pattern of the fabric helps to hide it. Though I am counting on the ol' bobby-ta-ta's getting smaller once my 15 month old stops breastfeeding (yes, that's right).

I used an invisible zipper down the centre back as that was what I had in my stash.

I also used pleated the skirt waist instead of gathering it so that it would be a little flatter on my belly.

Julia Bobbin - Billie Jean Dress by Blue Ginger Doll Patterns

I love the cut of this dress and it's classic style. If you're a lover a vintage it's a great easy pattern that you can dress up or down. I wore a petticoat underneath to give the skirt some fooph and I love the 1950's effect!

For endless vintage inspiration, you can check out my Mad Men Challenge post here.


To WIN one of the three brooches above from the Ruemiraldi store simply comment on this post.

All people who leave a comment will be in the running to win and three lucky people will be announced the winners.

Entries are open to everyone from anywhere in the world
Entries close on Friday, May 2nd, 2014
Three random winners will announced in a blog post on Saturday, May 3rd, 2014.

Thanks for stopping by; I hope you all had a lovely Easter!

Tuesday, 15 April 2014

Winter Street Dress

The Winter Street Dress - Julia Bobbin

When the days get shorter and the mornings get colder you know that moody little winter is about to come and rain on your parade. (get it?!) What better way to pull yourself out of winter depression than to make yourself a nice dress. Take that winter!

Introducing the Winter Street Dress by Deepika, the seamstress behind

When Deepika asked if I'd like to be a pattern tester for this new bad boy I was both thrilled and a little scared. I'd had such success with my recent first ever knit project where I made two awesome tops. But how would I go making a whole dress in stretch?

I need not have worried because this pattern was easy, fast and looks good too. Hooray!

The Winter Street Dress - Julia Bobbin

Pattern Details
I cut bodice in a size 6, the waist a size 4 and the skirt a size 8.
The dress is sewn with knit/stretch fabrics, unlined and notion free (celebrate!!) The bodice is made for a C cup.
I used a heavy weight ponte knit in a perfect navy blue.

The Winter Street Dress - Julia Bobbin
The Winter Street Dress - Julia Bobbin

I cut the sleeves at the required length for the frill variation but just didn't add the frill. I really like the sleeves this length.

I accidentally attached the neck binding as a facing rather than  a border along the neck, but it still looks good and I might even prefer it this way!

If I make this again I will lengthen the bodice as it sits above my natural waist. I'm pretty short in the torso too, so if you have a long bodice definitely add length.

My mistake
Have you spotted it yet? I accidentally sewed the hem on the freaking outside.  I would have made a few sailors blush by my outbursts when I realised my mistake. This has since been fixed, but not in time for the photos. Lesson: Drink more coffee.

The Winter Street Dress - Julia Bobbin
The Winter Street Dress - Julia Bobbin

I am so loving this breezy world of stretch sewing!
I love how there is no gather at the sleeve heads, and I love the simple but flattering shape of this dress. It is such a comfortable dress to throw on and would be perfect for work or on the weekend. Thanks Deepika for a fabulous pattern!

The Winter Street Dress - Julia Bobbin

Sunday, 6 April 2014


If you stop and listen carefully you might be able to hear it. A faint high pitched squeal that's not dissimilar to the sound a jacket potato makes when you put in the oven to bake and forget to poke holes in it (really creepy if you've ever experienced it). It's the sound of me squealing with excitement all the way from Melbourne, Australia. Why?



If you've been following on Instagram you may have already seen me reveal a few gems.
But now it's time for the whole ENCHILADA!

So sit down, put on some red lipstick and enjoy!

Click on the buttons below to see all your inspired creations for each character:

Is your outfit missing? Please email me if your outfit is not showing!

Stay tuned for next week's blog post; we have some fabulous vintage brooches from Ruemiraldi to give away. 

It is FREAKING ME OUT how awesome these creations are! This is always my favourite time of the year and I'm continuously inspired by this community. Thanks to everyone who took part in the challenge; you all look fabulous!