A Spring Journee at Makers Festival

Each year Norwich is host to Norfolk Makers Festival at The Forum which showcases so many different crafts and skills including embroidery, painting, knitting, printing, weaving, sketching, sewing, quilting, spinning, crochet, paper craft, cake craft, wood craft...you name it they probably do it.  

This year was no exception and our community sewing group Norwich Sewcials were asked if we would like to take part again - well of course who wouldn't want a creative day out! 

Not only that but we also had the opportunity of exhibiting some work. Gasp. Cue several months of panic that whatever I made would not be worthy or good enough. (Have a word with yourself luv.)

The brief was 'stepping into spring time' and after several failed attempts at making a Vogue dress (not even worth writing about) I reverted to a tried and tested pattern - McCalls 8110 Journee.

While I am happy with the outcome this was NOT an easy or pleasurable journey. The pressure of making something 'to be seen' absolutely got to me. I procrastinated for weeks, sewed seams the wrong way round which had to be ripped out and restarted and basically - it wasn't all that fun. It was probably a bit of a vanity project as I was so chuffed that someone wanted to display our work I felt that 'no' wasn't an option and it would feel nice to display. It was, but probably not worth the unnecessary anxiety. Lesson learnt.

Now that it's all finished and rounded up I can actually enjoy the make! After it was returned I popped it on for a little photoshoot in the sun. 


The fabric is some embroidered tulle from eBay (as is the belt). The hot pink dress is made from the Greenstyle cami tank lengthened to knee length. The best bit of this is that the cami has an inbuilt shelf bra and foam inserts so no bra straps on show under the tulle. Fabric for the slip dress is 'luxury' stretch viscose from Minerva (bought not gifted). I ended up with the 'luxury' version as a previous order failed and then I couldn't find a colour match anywhere else so I had to re-buy the entire length. Another faff!

The dress is being borrowed by my sister for a summer wedding so at least it's getting some wear in the wild!

The Makers Festival itself was good fun - we had our own stand showing different dressmaking techniques but we also got to have a go at the other activties available. 

There were some great lino printing templates with Hatchley at Stellabox who talked us through the process. I do want to get one of her kits or do a workshop at some point now!

I also really enjoyed story stamp printing with Julia Triay whose work was so delicate and reflected endangered nature. Plus I tried indigo dyeing for the first time with Jen at Fibre Workshop who knows about everything natural fibre and sheep!

A great initiative by The Forum and worth attending to learn something new if you're in the area.

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1 comment:

  1. Well done, your dress looks really special. Lovely that it’s going to get worn at a wedding, it deserves a special day out!
    I sympathise with the stress though, and agree completely…I’m currently preparing work to display for my final grade at art college and I’m so stressed by the thought of having to display my work that I keep prevaricating and just daren’t start!