Category Archives: Magazines

La Maison Victor: Dolores skirt

Today I’m the first stop-off on a blog tour for DutchBelgian sewing magazine La Maison Victor, to promote the launch of the magazine in an English edition – hurrah! Each blogger on the tour, covering Australia, the UK, USA and Canada, received a copy of the magazine and selected a project to make up.

Previously only printed in Dutch and French, I have actually bought a couple of copies of La Maison Victor from the continent before because it’s got such a nice fresh, modern aesthetic. This inaugural English edition is no exception; above is a list of all the patterns that come included in this issue.

If you’ve been put off sewing from pattern mags because of thoughts of the dreaded Burda tracing sheets of nightmares, La Maison Victor thankfully provides a much more user-friendly experience. Yes, you still need to trace off as the pieces overlap, but each pattern is extremely well-labelled with which pieces you need and which sheets to find them on, and the pieces are additionally colour-coded per pattern so it’s really foolproof.

I went over the lines for my size in black marker to make them show up better, then traced onto dot-and-cross paper; it didn’t take long at all. The sheets aren’t huge, which does mean some pattern pieces span two sheets and need to be taped together, but this size is much easier to manage when tracing in a small apartment.

Also unlike Burda, every pattern has comprehensive and nicely-illustrated instructions. I didn’t really follow them as the project I chose is pretty simple but they are there to fall back on if needed. All the usual fabric and sizing recommendations are here too.

I chose to make the Dolores skirt pattern, a midi-length button-through skirt with an A-line shape and gathers into a fixed waistband. It was a super speedy afternoon type of make! I did make a couple of tweaks to the pattern: I narrowed the waistband a little and added some curve to it, as straight-cut wider waistbands don’t sit well on my frame. I also took about 4 inches off the length, and left off the pockets as I thought they might add unwanted bulk, although the pattern does include a way to anchor them into the front waistband which always help stop side-seam pockets from flapping about.

The pattern pieces all matched up perfectly and the only real fitting to do here is at the waist. I always seem to overshoot and make fixed waistbands a bit too large; I shifted over the top button here to make it snugger, hence the slight twisting, but I will go back and do a better fix; perhaps adding some elastic into the back waistband to keep it snug.

I used The Fabric Store‘s Clover rayon crepe which they kindly sent me to try out a while ago. Poor-quality versions of this crinkly, springy sort of crepe can shift off-grain if you even look at them funny (or worse, be PRINTED off-grain so you’ve got no chance at all), but luckily this one was very well-behaved and I was able to keep the print pretty much aligned. I double-interfaced the waistband to keep it firm, along with the button band, and had to trim along the hem to even up where it dropped on the bias at the sides. Otherwise it was very easy to work with and perfect for this pattern: it’s so light and swishy!

The Maison Victor site and online shop will be launching in English soon; for now you can buy the magazine online here (along with individual patterns and fabric kits) and find in in selected supermarkets and WH Smiths. I look forward to seeing projects from the other makers on this tour – including fellow Brits Thrifty Stitcher, Handmade Jane and Petite Passions coming up this week – and seeing more patterns from this mag in the future!

New Love Sewing… featuring yours truly


A bit of an announcement time for UK readers! So its very exciting to finally be able to talk about something I’ve known about for a while – that my lovely fellow blogger and pal Amy of Almond Rock is the new editor of one of the UK’s top sewing magazines, Love Sewing. Personally I’m super happy for Amy to get her teeth into this amazing new role, and selfishly I’m excited too because with Amy’s focus and knowledge of dressmaking I know the magazine’s in good hands going forward to cater to all levels of sewing experience and interests.


Amy took the time to answer a few questions ahead of her inaugural issue being out today, so here’s a chance to get to know the new editor a bit better.

What made you apply for the role of Editor?

I saw the link shared by The Sewing Directory and my heart leaped. I had been working in publishing for 8 years but this was my chance to combine my professional skills with my sewing passion. I don’t know how many of you have picked up Love Sewing, but it’s so colourful and joyous and has great contributors. I knew once I got in the door I could really make targeted change to improve the experience for everyone. And I’ve been working with my art editor to make some small design tweaks that we’re pretty chuffed about too.

Do you think the magazine can cater for sewists who have moved beyond the beginner level?

I’d love it if someone who doesn’t normally read Love Sewing picks up an issue and is impressed enough to buy again! The Simple Sew patterns we include as our free gift won’t always be massively challenging because we want them to be approachable to all skill levels but we want them to be great designs that people are drawn to wearing. I’m really excited about August as the pattern is a 2-in-1 for a cool cross back blouse and a great little jersey top. I want to mimic this inside the mag with as many varied (but achievable) dressmaking projects as possible without compromising on the home or accessories projects everyone loves. The September issue is jam packed with dressmaking content and going forward I am working with the fantastic columnists and feature writers to get thought-provoking articles, in-depth fitting tutorials and the best sewing advice around whether you’re a total newbie or a fully established sewer.

Any plans to give up your blog?

Hell no! I love that my blog is my own little territory for sharing my projects and chatting with the sewing community directly. Although my sewing time might be a little more squished these days by a longer commute I still have finished garments to share and projects in progress. No one wants a magazine full of my face heheh.

What are you working on at the moment?

I’ve got a shirt for my partner that is long overdue and a two shirtdresses for myself – think of all the buttons! There’s also a nearly complete Sutton blouse waiting for a hem. I’ve also got high hope to whip up a birthday dress for myself as I’ll be 31 at the weekend and would like a fancy frock to wear out to dinner. Hmmm that sounds a bit ambitious right? I love having multiple projects on the go and I’m happy that after 5 years of sewing I’ve gotten quite speedy at the machine when I put my mind to it.


Here’s the cover for the September issue, which is out today. And by the way – that stripy top on the cover was stitched up by me! I’ve been taking on a couple of commissions because I don’t actually need all that many more clothes for myself, but my desire to sew all the time is still very much alive. So it’s a nice way to keep me occupied, practice my skills, and earn a bit of cash – for more fabric, obviously.


It’s pretty sweet to see something I made professionally modelled and photographed! The crossover-back pattern comes free with the issue, and the candy stripe chambray is from Maud’s.


I also submitted some photos of my sewing room to their regular Sewing Room Sneak feature, and the article appears in this issue. Exciting times. Will you be picking up the new issue of Love Sewing?