3 sheets to the wind – more sheets to follow

….. this time last year I started the blog, pretty much ‘just to see what happened next’.  I had a few ideas in mind, and the core being –to make clothes by re-making old clothes, and for these to be well made – as in they would be everyday, wearable, and long lasting (slow fashion)  I was also a good challenge for me to focus a bit more on my pattern drafting skills which were becoming as ad-hoc as my sewing (another set of bad habits to undo).  

I was always making things growing up, and from about 14 or 15 I started making my own clothes at home (as opposed to the ones-made-never-worn from Domestic Science/Home Ecc in school).  The fabric for my own home-mades invariably came from the linen cupboard, in the form of white sheets – later dyed charcoal due to heavily diluted black dye!.  
A lot of Irish linen cupboards and hot presses had these sheets tucked away, they would have been hand-me-downs, bottom drawer, and wedding presents and on the 70s arrival of printed and coloured bed-linen (known here as ‘american sheets’) they were relegated to the back of the press.  These white sheets are regularly in charity shops and I regularly buy (and I have to stop myself acquiring excess at times!).  A lot are these are the old sheet sizes so have to be remade, and the quality of the cotton is so lovely. 


Last summer was a fine summer (as opposed to today being about 17degrees and heavy rain), and I wanted to try out a pattern using up some charity shop sheets.  I made this, using a halter pattern I had been playing about with, but using and extending the same darts was a bit clunky looking (not easy to see but I tried to continue some french darts to the back on a diagonal) so I left it to one side meaning to try another halter top, and I also had a rethink about my ability to keep white bodices clean……  I did like the overall construction, ie making the 4 parts of 2 fronts, and 2 backs and sewing together.  It reminded me of a dress idea I also like from a favourite book ‘The Art of Sewing – Shortcuts to Elegance).  The book is on loan to a friend but I will insert a photo here of this ‘dress from triangles’ when I get it back.


Meanwhile, here is the opener – chapter 1 from ‘The Art of Sewing ‘The Creative Touch’, which give instruction on refashioning clothes, embroidery, and crochet and knitting.



I don’t know if anyone has these books, – they are a series of about 10 or 12, and are on Amazon at various prices so I am thinking of getting some more.   I got my two (shortcuts to elegance and the creative touch ) from a charity shop a long time ago.  They are good fun, and informative -the sewing instruction is excellent, and the photos sufficiently dated to be entertaining, and the models are not photoshoped so thats an added bonus!  




I am planning a few more sheet dresses and have ordered some indigo dye to try our some shibori techniques.  The halter pattern has altered a lot – the v neck now a square neck, and the hemline is moving.  

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5 thoughts on “3 sheets to the wind – more sheets to follow

  1. Lynn says:

    You are an excellent dyer, as well as an excellent seamstress. When I dye, things often come out streaked. I love those old, beautiful sheets, too–but they are not much use to me in white.

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  2. Eimear Greaney says:

    Thanks Lynn, I have never used real indigo before so I am hoping its as easy as the description, it still has not come in the post….. but I am making some white sheet dresses while I wait! the real appeal was apparently it will dyd shed-loads (or sheet loads!) for just one lil' pack so heres hoping.

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  3. Eimear Greaney says:

    Thank you very much Aimee, I am starting to make some more sheet dresses and the shibori dye has arrived in the post (so I will be making a lovely mess next week) – and seriously hoping its as easy as the instruction says it is………….. and that the cats stay out of my way or they will be sporting a braveheart look…………..

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