Friday, 27 February 2015

Made By Me #125

I didn't get chance before the rain last Sunday to take photos of this dress so I thought I would hang out with Violet in my sewing room for a few snaps.  The fabric is part of the Lime Twist collection and it was the lime that attracted me, it feels so fresh and Spring like.  I'm still very much in Winter mode though and think it looks great with black opaques right now but it will really come into it's own when the sun comes out to play.

The fabric was supplied by the lovely ladies at Elephant In My Handbag who I learnt last week are going to be stocking Cotton and Steel!  EEEPPPPP!!  I cannot wait to see which fabrics they have chosen.  If you haven't already make sure you check out their selection of fabrics and make good use of the discount code in my sidebar.  Oh and whilst you're at it be sure to enter their Dashwood Studio giveaway.  You can win 6 metres of fabric including some of the Cuckoo's Calling collection.

I'm really looking forward to the weekend.  Char and I are making a trip to London to coo over fabric.  We are hitting up Goldhawk Road and are going to attempt a few other destinations as well as getting a look at the the new Orla Kiely x Clarks range in all it's glory.  I will try not to stroke them all ;)  If you have any must visit fabric destinations let me know!

Dress: Made by me using Floral Ditsy Print by Makower*
Pattern: Emery by Christine Haynes 

Whatever you're doing this weekend make it a good one!


Wednesday, 25 February 2015

Wednesday Wants

Whenever I think of Joules I always picture the pretty floral dresses they are famous for so was delighted to see this spotty gem tucked up amongst them. If this bright pink cannot chase away the winter blues I am not sure anything can.  The gorgeous colour teamed with the uber flattering shape make this a must have in my book.  Spots are for life guys!

 Dress: Joules

Isn't she pretty?!  The baby blue chiffon mixed with the lace panel make for one cute dress.  It's perfect for a Spring wedding, only thing I am not sure about is the white waistband though I guess that makes it pretty flattering.  The length is spot on for my tastes too!

 Dress: Elise Ryan

Uttam Boutique have done it again! Just when I think they have peaked they go and make something even more beautiful.  I loved their Bluebell print dress but seriously this is absolutely stunning!  I actually had to catch my breath when I first spotted it in the new arrivals at Aspire Style.  So beautiful!  Don't forget you can save 10% at Aspire Style with code 10milliondresses until 10th March.

 Dress: Uttam Boutique


Tuesday, 24 February 2015

H&M Home

I really hate the word haul so instead I will tell you I have been having a little splurge over on H&M Home in recent months and now the last item has finally arrived (after being on back order since the end of December!) I can share it all with you.  I have shared some of the items on instagram already but have been so impressed with my recent purchases I decided they deserved a blog post too.  I love H&M homeware, nothing is over priced and is of comparable quality to items sold elsewhere for sometimes a fair bit more.  The only think I don't like is waiting, if an item is in stock it arrives quickly but if it is on back order be prepared to wait and for the dates to continually change.  I would personally prefer if the item was unavailable to buy until it is ready to ship but ho hum, worth it when it does arrive.

I have loved copper since I saw how it worked in the Nashwhite salon but couldn't find the right pieces to introduce it to our living room.  I think it looks wonderful with the orange and grey colour scheme we have going on, it adds a lovely warm tone.  I have purchased a few bits but tried to keep it subtle so the room doesn't become all about the copper.  I went for these copper candlesticks and finally decided what to put on the wall! I bought a hanging mirror from BHS and painted the frame copper and hung it with the mirror and frame I picked up from H&M along with a little hanging frame I found in M&S.  Even though I have waited two months to hang all four I still haven't decided what to put in the frames, any ideas? Unfortunately none of these items are currently available on the H&M website but I am sure they will be back!

 Candlesticks (£5.99 & £6.99)

 Oval Mirror (£12.99) & Large Frame (£6.99)

I came over all Pinterest and purchased this large jar with the intention of filling it with fairy lights.  I found these cute micro star lights here.

To brighten up our spare bedroom I decided to inject lots of colour to work with the black and white and it ended up feeling a bit tropical.  So I moved my pineapple candles from the hallway (bought from asos) and decided the cactus candle added the perfect finishing touch!  When I get round to it I will share the changes we have made, I love the end result.

H&M is awesome for cushions.  I especially love their velvet cushions as they are really hardworking and come in the most amazing colours.  The other two cushions are a kind of canvas and are a great way of adding colour for a tiny price tag.

Teal (£4.99) / Grey (£6.99) / Pink (£3.99) / Yellow (£3.99)

I've put most of my more fancy/decorative vases into storage preferring to go for something simple.  I was using a glass vase but didn't like that it didn't look that great as the water discoloured.  Thankfully I spied this white ceramic vase which is a very similar shape and perfect for a bunch of daffs.  You really cannot beat a bunch of daffodils, so cheerful!

I have also been loving the homeware at Asda, I picked up this cute lemon chopping board and salad bowl recently both of which were a bargain price.

Chopping board (£4) / Salad bowl (£5)

I share my favourite purchases over on instagram frequently, there is a link in my sidebar and my username is amilliondresses.  Have you been buying homeware recently?  Link me up to your top finds!


Friday, 13 February 2015

Made By Me #112

I made this dress with Valentines in mind though to be honest I will be wearing it all year round and love that it matches my favourite manicure.  I adore anything covered in hearts or heart shaped and never need an excuse to wear them!  I got the fabric on sale at Frumble but unfortunately they have now sold out and I haven't been able to find it elsewhere online to link you up.  I am actually looking forward to the big V day this year, I am going to meet some of my lovely blogger friends for lunch during the day then getting home to a meal that Gray will hopefully have cooked (I'm working on that one!) before snuggling up on the sofa and watching a film.  I much prefer a night in than a meal out on what can be the most forced, unromantic day of the year!

I am happy that the evenings are starting to get lighter and I am no longer driving home in the pitch black but cannot wait until I can get home whilst it is still light enough to snap some photos in the garden.  It is so hard fitting them in over winter and it feels like it has been really dark and gloomy forever.  I'm ready for more light now thank you.  Saying that the light wasn't great when we took these photos on Sunday afternoon.  Guess that also means it is almost time to get out in the garden and sort it out after winter.  Not sure I am ready for that yet!  Such a daunting task for two people who are really not green fingered, I might just stick to re-painting the garden furniture and leave the rest to Gray ;)

One thing I am really excited about is the new Orla Kiely collection from Clarks.  I am counting down the days and trying to decide which ones I really have to own and in which colourways.  They never make it an easy decision with so many cute styles.  I think I have narrowed it down to the tan Bibi (but the pink and yellow are awesome too, I am trying to be practical here) and the Betty.  Drooooool.

Dress: Made by me using Heart Print fabric by Timeless Treasures
Pattern: Emery by Christine Haynes 

Whatever you're doing this weekend make it a good one!


Wednesday, 11 February 2015

Wednesday Wants

My pals over at Aspire Style have again offered up a 10% discount code for readers of a million dresses in celebration of the arrival of the new season Emily and Fin collection that has just landed.  You can see my favourites here.  They have also worked with Emily and Fin on three new exclusives which are now available to pre-order.  My favourite is this spotty Lucy dress, I love the combination of colours and the size of the spot is just perfect.

I thought I would also share my top picks from the other fab brands they stock.  First up is this fruity little number from Sugarhill Boutique.  The style of this dress is right up my street and I adore the cherry print.  I really love the elbow length sleeves and the cute little collar. One cute dress!

 Dress: Sugarhill

Just look at the print on this gorgeous dress from Closet! It is absolutely perfect.  I have spent hours browsing for tropical prints and haven't been able to find anything half as pretty. I love that it is a cotton sateen, the weight is means it drapes beautifully.

Dress: Closet

The 10% discount code is 10milliondresses and is valid from now until 10th March.  Happy shopping!


Monday, 9 February 2015

Made By Me #118

I cannot tell you how excited I was when I saw the new Cotton and Steel collection, I was pretty worried that I wouldn't love it as much as I loved the first one. I shouldn't have worried, it is equally as marvelous.  The worst bit was the wait from seeing it and being able to touch it!!  I had vouchers from Gray's family for Christmas so I pre-ordered four of the fabrics from The Village Haberdashery and was gutted to just miss out on the quantity required of this yummy viewfinders fabric.  There are only a couple of stockists in the UK and one is considerably more expensive than the other and I was determined not to pay the £10 extra for 2.5 metres worth so I decided to try ordering it from my favourite Etsy shop Miss Matatabi and keep my fingers crossed that customs were kind.

Miss Matatabi is run by Francis and based in Japan, as well as stocking Cotton and Steel she stocks all sorts of Japanese goodness all of which are a lot less than buying the same fabric here in the UK.  For example the cheapest I can buy 2.5 metres of the C&S quilting cotton in the UK is £30 plus p&p and I managed to get this print for just £25 including p&p and thankfully no customs charges.  I have since ordered one of the cotton lawns which has worked out at £32 inc p&p and would have been £40 plus p&p in the UK.  Another good thing about using Etsy is sometimes you can get free delivery, just look out for offers on websites like My Voucher Codes before ordering. I may also have sneaked back online and ordered one of the fab barkcloth prints too ;)  I got a sample of the barkcloth in my last order, it is a lovely weight and I am so excited for it to arrive!

Dress: Made by me using Cotton & Steel Viewfinders
Pattern: Emery by Christine Haynes 
Shoes: Office

Where are your favourite places to shop for fabric?


Thursday, 5 February 2015

Outfit Planning - A Day At The Races

Oooooh I do love a good challenge!  I love putting together outfits with an event in mind even if I may not actually be attending the event in question.  I especially love doing this for other people as it means I am not limited by the shapes and styles that suit me personally.  William Hill are looking forward to March and Cheltenham Ladies Day and have set me a little challenge to create a weather appropriate outfit.  Now I don't know if the fact that today is threatening snow but I have decided to err on the side of caution and include both a coat and a fur muff in my outfit, allowing you to stay both warm and look stylish.  Always a win/win in my book.  I hate being cold and tend to moan an awful lot if I am!

My starting point for this outfit is the dress.  I have gone for a dress that will look great with black opaques but if it is unseasonally warm will look equally good with bare legs. I was drawn to the bold leopard print and I love the mix of colours.  I would love to be able to wear something this shape but being pearshaped with a tummy it is something I wouldn't feel comfortable in so am forever in envy of someone who could rock this dress.

Dress: asos

The next thing I sorted was the coat, I was looking for something warm but smart and in a colour that would compliment the dress.  This wool blend trapeze coat in the most gorgeous shade of blue fits the bill perfectly.  It's not too pastel that it fights against the black accessories I have chosen.

Coat: asos

Next up I decided on a pair of shoes.  I think a wiggle dress needs a heel but no one wants open toes when stood outside at the races in March so these shoe boots are the perfect inbetween in my books.  They have a concealed platform so should be fine to stand around in.

Shoes: asos

Okay so I am getting to the point where I am thinking I really need this outfit myself, the bag is perfect!  Just look at that pom pom!  It's really versatile and made from leather so will be a hardworking addition to any wardrobe long after any event.

 Clutch bag: asos

I resisted the tempatation to add all the fur, I wanted to add a collar and a cute hat but realised that I was probably going too far!  I have added this fur muff though as I think it adds a bit more glamour and will do a great job at keeping your hands warm!

Fur muff: asos

I am going to get checking those Ladies Day odds Cheltenham 2015!  Are you planning on going to the races this year? What do you make of my picks?  How do you decide which horse to back?  Do you do check their form, pick your favourite name or go by the jockey colours?!

*In collaboration with William Hill*


Wednesday, 4 February 2015

Wednesday Wants

I really love this time of year for all the pretty new dresses that hit the high street.  After the dark evenings and frosty mornings we have been having of late they really do feel like a burst of spring, kinda like the happy little daffs in a vase on the kitchen table that smile at me every morning.  I also love a company that send you a little treat for your birthday especially Boden who sent me a £10 voucher.  I put it towards a new pair of my favourite slippers and couldn't resist a peek at their new arrivals whilst I was browsing.  I love the Ava dress, this colourway feels so fresh and vibrant.  I love the retro print but would ditch the belt, I just don't like wearing them.

Dress: Boden

Just when I think I have seen it all from asos they come along with this.  I am swooning over here!  The shape is just perfect and I adore the embellishment, it turns what would otherwise be a pretty but overly plain dress into a showstopper for me.  I don't often go for block colour, preferring a cute print, but cannot get this dress out of my head.

Dress: asos

Talk about one extreme to the other, from sophisicated glamour to all out in your face HOLOGRAPHIC SEQUINS!  OMG.  Honestly though although this dress is far to short for my tastes who wouldn't fall a bit in love with that bodice and the way the sequins fall through the skirt, the placement is genius.

Dress: asos

I also really, really love the print on this dress so if you know of any similar fabric please let me know, I would as always prefer cotton though but the larger the spot the better!


Monday, 2 February 2015

Made By Me #120

I'm a bit sad it is Monday already.  I had a weekend to myself and instead of sitting behind the sewing machine as planned I spent most of my time feeling sorry for myself and trying to sleep off a persistent headache.  I did sew three dresses though so all is not lost.  After some advice from Ant, one of the GOMI commenters, I have moved the bust darts down and shortened the waist darts.  I had no idea that they weren't where they should be and no one had said 'Hey Sarah, great dress but your darts are a bit high love'.  I'm always open to constructive criticism, however do you learn otherwise?!  I don't have a sewing teacher to correct any mistakes I may make.

I cut my fabric out at work during my lunch breaks so had already cut the three I sewed at the weekend out ready with the darts marked in the higher position so just moved them down an inch or so.  I need to alter my pattern now too to reflect these changes.  I've also tried to stand straighter as I have a habit of pushing my hips forward when taking blog photos which makes the waist look like it is higher at the front.

I have been looking forward to sewing up this fabric since it arrived from Elephant In My Handbag, I absolutely adore the print! It has a lovely retro feel to it and is making me long for brighter, warmer days.  It actually started snowing whilst taking these photos!  Thankfully it was only a little flurry, I have managed to miss all the snow so far this year.  Looking forward to rocking this dress with my sunnies later in the year but in the mean time I will make do with a pair of opaques and a bobble hat.

Dress: Made by me using Suitcases by Fabric Freedom*
Pattern: Emery by Christine Haynes 
Shoes: Office

Don't forget you can save 10% at Elephant In My Handbag, details and code can be found in the sidebar :)


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