Sunday, 7 June 2009


I have long coveted a Clothkits pattern to make up. Unlike many it's not something I remember from my childhood, (mother sewed a lot for us but as this was in the mid-80s she missed Clothkits's heyday by a few years) it was last year when they had their major relaunch that they first came to my attention. For one their prints are just so gorgeous! Bright colours and retro styles, right up my street! The other thing that appealed was the whole "kit" idea. Now anyone who knows me well knows that I love a kit... of any kind; fajita dinner kits, pamper you kits, nail kits, craft kits, kit kits just any kind of kit! I even like the meals you get on planes because they're like a little kit. Clothkits's kits just looked perfect but until now I had resisted as they just seemed rather expensive and we are poor as church mice! A nudge from a lovely friend and a well-timed sale meant I finally submitted and ordered their Stop! Traffic Lights Frock Kit for Papaya.

The kit arrived the very next day and was suitably pleasing in it's kitness. Inside the tissue paper was not only the printed fabric but also the buttons, thread and lables I would need to make it up.... oh and the all important instructions!

Clothkits designs come all ready printed onto the fabric. Every piece was there, even the lining. You then just cut it all out (you don't even have to leave selvage around, it's all been worked out for you!) and sew it up. Easy peasy!

It really was easy peasy too! I can only ever sew in the evening once the children are in bed and then I have to do it on the dining table so must clear away before morning. I was therefore very grateful that the dress just took the one evening to complete, bar the hem which I needed Papaya to model it for!
It was so super simple, no matching of notches, the pieces just fit together. It makes you wonder why we ever bother with patterns and all that nonsense!

The only sticky point I had was with the back of the dress where the halves of two cars had to be matched. The instructions didn't tell you to do it, so it wasn't until I turned the dress right way out that I noticed the problem. It looked okay mismatched but I couldn't bear it! At that point I couldn't unstitch the whole thing so I had to try and restitch from the inside to even it up. I did my best and if you don't look too closely it's pretty good.

I decided to forgo the buttons that came with the kit and instead used some poppers (matching the yellow colour to the road lining) for ease of dressing.... and because I'm not much good at buttonholes ;) Here is my Papaya modelling it, I reckon the poppers work well with the modern print on the dress.

I am now properly addicted and have my eye on more of the range, including maybe a skirt for me. I still reckon they're pretty expensive so had better start saving up!


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