english girl at home

A Sewing & Knitting Blog, Made in Birmingham, England


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Red Quilted Linden

Linden Sweatshirt

It’s been a really busy week, so this is just a quick post with another Linden Sweatshirt.

This quilted Linden was started with the leftover fabric from this quilted jacket, however I didn’t have quite enough so ended up going back to Barry’s for an extra 1/2 metre! Not such successful stash busting… The ribbing WAS from my stash, and is from Minerva.

Linden Sweatshirt

I sized down to size 0 for this version, and did my usual trick of cutting the neckline band approximately one size larger.

Linden Sweatshirt

These photos were taken in my favourite local park, Cannon Hill. The red grasses growing by the water there happen to match my sweatshirt pretty well;)

Linden Sweatshirt

I’m wearing one of my favourite necklaces in these pics. This Snoopy necklace was my mom’s; when I was a kid, our house was burgled and my mom’s jewellery taken, but this Snoppy necklace wasn’t stolen as my mom had given it to me and it was around the neck of one of my soft toys:) This is Snoopy in his pilot gear, although for many years I thought he was wearing a nice headscarf. See what I mean?

Linden Sweatshirt

We took these photos a few weeks ago – it was bright but still pretty cold; here is how I was dressed as soon as we finished taking photos!

Cannon Hill Park

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Floral Woven Linden & Snowdrops

It’s time for this week’s Linden! I will be posting makes from some different patterns soon, but still have a few Linden’s from a recent binge to show you. It’s probably a first for me, as I very rarely use patterns multiple times, but this pattern is so quick and easy (and so good) that I couldn’t resist. I normally struggle with OWOP, but I’m ready for this year’s now!

Floral Linden Sweatshirt

Last Sunday I visited a ‘snowdrop weekend’ at a (relatively) local church, St Leonard’s in Beoley, with my family. We walked around the grounds, which are currently scattered with snowdrops, and had tea and cake inside the church.

I wore my latest Linden, made in fabric from Barry’s. I have completely forgotten what the label on the bolt said about the composition of this fabric. It’s a heavy weight woven, with a slight one-way stretch. The right side of the fabric has a slight pile.

Floral Linden Sweatshirt

Construction wise, I actually made Version A with a few tweaks. I left of the bottom band, instead turning and hemming. I originally cut the full-length sleeves, but realised they were very tight and so cut a length off the bottom and hemmed them. I think they’ve ended up slightly longer than the sleeves from Version B. I also had to significantly lengthen the neck band (which is made from the main fabric); I originally cut the neckband one size larger than the body of my Linden (which I have done for all of my versions to prevent pulling at the neckline). However, in this fabric, with limited stretch, I couldn’t actually get the sweatshirt over my head… So I re-cut the neckband, estimating the extra length, and reattached. It now fits fine.

St Leonard’s Church Beoley

The one issue with making the Linen in a very stiff, non or limited stretch, fabric, is that you may have excess fabric sticking up at the back neckline. However, once I’d attached the neck band, I found that it pulled in the fabric effectively and that the neckline lies flat.

St Leonard’s Church Beoley

The fabric used has a large scale floral print. I centred the print on the front, but cut it at an angle on the back. I didn’t attempt print matching (as you can see), partly because I never do, and partly because I didn’t have enough fabric to attempt it with such a large-scale print. I would definitely get told off on Sewing Bee… (I’m loving this series by the way, although it seems to get harder every time).

Floral Linden Sweatshirt

The Linden is worn here with a beloved RTW skirt and shirt from Oasis, both of which I have had for many years (incidentally, both were gifts from my Nan). I take good care of my clothes so they tend to last a looong time.

Floral Linden Sweatshirt

My brother and his fiance’s miniature dachshund, Rupert, was with us at the church for a run around the grounds. Phil snapped him, as well as me, in his new threads.

Rupert the miniature Dachshund

Rupert the miniature Dachshund


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Linden in Brussels

Linden Sweatshirt, Grainline Studio in Brussels, Belgium

This is my first Linden Sweatshirt by Grainline Studio. Worn here with my beloved floral Dr. Marten’s, which were a birthday present from Phil.

Linden Sweatshirt, Grainline Studio in Brussels, Belgium

I actually ordered this fabric to test a different pattern and used my leftovers to make this Linden. I didn’t have much of the jersey left so I cut the sleeves and back in my ribbing fabric, and used the jersey for the front and cuffs. The ribbing actually works pretty well as a main fabric:)

I totally copied Amy in my fabric choices! This is a flecked wine-coloured stretch jersey from Minerva Crafts. They currently have it back in stock and it’s on offer. It’s ideal for sweatshirts as it’s a decent weight, with a bit of stretch. It does seems to pill though as I’ve already seem some pilling on this sweatshirt.

Due to living in Birmingham (and approx. 15 minutes drive from Barry’s Fabrics) I haven’t previously ordered much fabric online, but sweatshirt suitable jersey – especially in plain colours – isn’t something I’ve had much luck finding in the Birmingham fabric shops, so I’ve been placing a few online orders – in addition to my regular trips to Barry’s of course…

Linden Sweatshirt, Grainline Studio in Brussels, Belgium

I made this in size 2 (which is closest to my actual measurements in the pattern instructions). I’ve since also tried cutting the pattern in size 0 and both fit me fine. The 0 is good for a close fit, but the 2 is better for a comfy sweatshirt or with a stiffer fabric (I’ve just started making a needlecord Linden, not sure how it will turn out yet).

You can see the fabric is pulling a little at the neckline. I’ve increased the length of the neckband on the versions I’ve made since (going up a size or two on the neckband pattern piece) and that has worked fine to prevent this.

Linden Sweatshirt, Grainline Studio in Brussels, Belgium

I love this pattern. Once you have the pattern cut out it takes about 30 minutes to make a sweatshirt!

These photos were taken in Brussels Park during our holiday to Brussels and Paris back in November. Happily, the park was on the route from our apartment into the city centre so I collared Phil to get some photos on our walk into town one morning. The park has a rather gorgeous bandstand that I had to get a few photos in.

Linden Sweatshirt, Grainline Studio in Brussels, Belgium

Linden Sweatshirt, Grainline Studio in Brussels, Belgium

Linden Sweatshirt, Grainline Studio in Brussels, Belgium


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Archer Shirt Meet December Rain

I finished my Archer Shirt this morning and wanted to get some pictures. That meant stepping outside with a brolly to get some natural light. Welcome to the UK in December Archer Shirt!

As mentioned in a previous post I made this shirt in one and a bit days (just the buttons and buttonholes completed on the second day, e.g. today). I followed the sew-along posts from the Grainline Studio blog throughout. There’s nothing better than a photo of what something should look like to help you spot when you’ve gone wrong! It still took me a little while to puzzle out some of the steps, but this is my very first shirt. I think I would have struggled if I’d had only the instructions included with the pattern, which expect a degree of prior knowledge,  as a guide but with the support of the sew-along this is a relatively straightforward make.
Grainline Studio Archer Shirt
I cut a straight size two and the fit isn’t bad, I think the slouchy style rather suits the plaid and makes for a proper lazy Saturday shirt. I might try a size zero for my next Archer, especially If I go for a more office appropriate fabric. The size two is a little long in the arms and a touch big on the shoulders for me. This fabric is a 100% cotton plaid and it feels so soft and cosy. Because I wanted to get this shirt completed in a day (to meet the Archer appreciation deadline) I went with just the one pocket and with version A of the shirt. Next time I’ll give view B a try.
Grainline Studio Archer Shirt
Somehow (perhaps I allowed too large a seam allowance) I did find that when I came to attach the collar to the shirt the collar band wasn’t quite long enough! That problem was easily solved by putting a small tuck in the yoke. The only other issue I had was nothing to do with the pattern – for some reason when I came to make my button holes my sewing machine absolutely refused to play ball. In the end I gave up trying and sewed the buttonholes by hand. They certainly aren’t perfect but as another first for me not terrible either.
Grainline Studio Archer Shirt
The small green buttons used on the shirt are also handmade. I made them using polymer clay and a button mould purchased from MoldMuse on Etsy.
Grainline Studio Archer Shirt
Happy New Year everyone. I’m going spent the day slouching in my new archer, watching Home Alone and playing computer games:)


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Last Minute Archer Appreciation

So on New Year’s Eve I haven’t been busy finishing off party wear, I’ve been sewing an Archer Shirt by Grainline Studio – just in time to make it during Archer Appreciation Month (and it really is just in time!). I purchased, washed and cut my fabric yesterday and did all the sewing in one day (not too shabby, especially as it’s my first shirt, I’m definitely getting quicker). As you can see the shirt isn’t quite finished – the buttons & buttonholes are still to do but I’m almost there now. The fabric is a 100% cotton plaid purchased from Barry’s Fabrics.
Grainline Studio Plaid Archer
Not a bad final project for the year. It’s been a busy year for me – each seems to be busier than the last. Craft wise – I started sewing clothes again (largely inspired by the Great British Sewing Bee), my Etsy shop sales increased, I did my first ever craft fairs, and I started knitting (I haven’t finished a project yet but will do soon). I also started a new job (in August) and began travelling abroad regularly for work for the first time. Hopefully next year I’ll squeeze in even more. Phil treated me to a mini sewing machine for Christmas so I can do some sewing when overseas so no doubt that means more sewing projects:)

Happy New Year everyone, and happy Archer Appreciation Month too!
Grainline Studio Plaid Archer