By Hand London Tamzin Dress

I love all aspects of sewing and to pattern test is a great opportunity but I also feel a little apprehensive about being trusted with someone’s baby. That you should look after it nurture it as if it was yours but also add your influence and creative interpretation so it can reflect you too.

Tamzin Dress

With my first version I pattern test I like to stay as true to the pattern as I can but remembering there will be new skills to learn that could be tricky or different. I learn something new with each make.

Version 1 FABRIC Sew Me Sunshine

This was my first attempt and I must say something’s didn’t go quite to plan. First my fabric choice as beautiful as this fabric is it wasn’t that easy to press the pin tucks into place. Hence I did it my own way and I pleated the sewn them flat using a contrasting cotton colour.

Different and effective!

When it came to adding the front facing I went on auto mode and done this the conversional way, folding the facing in over. In hindsight due to the nature if the fabric I think it was a happy accident.

I did have a few hiccups but overall I was very happy result. I love it.

Would you change it ?

Feeling I let down the pattern testing process I needed to do better next time…

Version 2 FABRIC My late Aunty Dorothy’s stash (she was an amazing seamstress – I channeled this into my make)

Crisp linen that pressed into place and sewed up a dream. I got to grips with the pin tucks.

I have a habit of sewing as I cut out;

1- so I don’t loose pattern pieces

2- when it’s plan fabric I can tell which is the right side

3- because I’m to excited to get sewing,

As I was making this I was thinking top to toe pink linen was maybes going to be a little to ‘Little House on the Prairie’ for me (showing my age here!) so I had a lightbulb moment of making it into a top. First thoughts were automatic to use the skirt pattern but the pleats were spaced to far apart. The sleeve pattern piece however was perfect omitting the sleeve head bulb (think that’s the correct name?) and cutting on the fold worked perfectly

Sharing it on stores inspires Esthers @ninetostitch on of the muses for this pattern to create her lovely version.

I also loved Elisalex’s embroidery version. I would love to created something but knew I didn’t have the timescale for the pattern testing window so I opted to add brocade from my stash.

I have accumulated a lot so it also felt great finding a purpose for it. I really happy with this version I mastered the pin tucks, but still I had another idea curating in my mind at 4am…

Version 3 FABRIC Fabric Godmother

At around this time there was a sponsored post with a beautiful dress that I knew I could hack using the Tamzin pattern and the Sage Brush Sleeves from The Friday Pattern Company

I omitted the pleats in the skirt using the same width, my fabric was a little thicker than I had previously used and this resulted in the waist being to full and unflattering for me.

So pass me the seam ripper. I reduced it by a third and I was much happier with the fit.

I do normally avoid gathers for this reason but as you can tell I’m a little bit in love with the outcome of this pattern.

So three is enough? No way onto …

Version 4 FABRIC Selvedge and Bolts

Have you got a fabric in your stash you are waiting to cut but you need the right pattern a and tested pattern? Well I had some and even after testing and giving feedback I still hadn’t made this dress as per the instructions.

It’s like choosing your favourite child but I this is mine (did I say that out loud) even Elisalex agreed (we all secretly squeal with delight when you receive a lovely comment from the queen of beautiful dresses adds a comment on a IG or just pic… don’t we?) Or just me?

The pattern placement gods were on my side when I cut the neckline piece.

It matches my Sew Over It London Sorento Jacket perfectly. I can feel another blog coming on for this jacket too.

To my final, for now!

Version 5 FABRIC Liberty

I have been searching for the perfect fabrics to create a mixed print dress. Those sponsored links again!

Inspirational pic

On a recent visit to London I found the ‘perfect fabric’ Liberty’s. Well to be honest I found lots of ‘perfect fabric’ But I choose to take home 1.3 metres of the small print (0.3 because it was the last in the roll. 1.5 metres of the large print. I knew it was going to be another version of the Tamzin Dress but I at the time I did think I only had enough for a top as Libertys fabric is narrow in width.

I am finding these days when purchasing fabric I have a plan in mind so I know approximately how much material I will need. This saves on cost and any wastage.

This project involved a lot of head scratching and in the end I decided the best thing was to sketch a plan out. Something I will definitely do again in the future. Plus I have a reference to how I did it. For the eagle eyes I changed my mind about the print placement and did the opposite.

I started with the bodice then estimated how much fabric I would have for my sleeves. My original plan was to use the Sage Brush sleeves again but after allocating the fabric for the tiers I didn’t have enough to left, however the Tamzin sleeve fit on the larger print but it was going to be short. To combat this I added the smaller print and used the pin tucks to blend the two fabrics seamlessly.

Sewing liberty fabric is a dream. I’m not sure if it’s because you have invested financially, it feels so special and indulgent working with it. It came together really quickly but by now it was my 5th !

This is another dress of dreams as Jennifer Hudson lyrics

When you can wear what you feel,
What do you want to say?
Now love is a little number
That you can wear each day…

Thank you to By Hand London for trusting me with your patten.

Thank you to my Leggylad for being the best insta husband and taking pics without to much persuasion.

If you still here Thank you for reading to the end. Now what are you waiting for you need a Tamzin in your life 1,2,3,4 or maybes 5 !

Liberty Theo Blouse

I’m Jen a creative from the North East of England. Main occupation is Hairdressing but Sewing is my close second activity to peruse. I love florals and jumpsuits. Body Measurements 36/30/39 Height 5ft 7inches.  I’m an intermediate Sewist I did find some of the instructions hard to follow.


As soon as I seen this pattern I knew it had to be part of my life. I bought it just before Christmas so lots of our lovely independent material shops were doing discounts so I bought this beautiful cotton Lawn from Material  Girl Laura. It was a perfect match for this pattern.


I had previously made the Liberty Florence Palazzo Suit and I had problems with the sizing on the upper body, so I took this into consideration and cut out the size 16 which allowed an extra 2 inches over the bust. This was a wise move and it fits perfectly.


I found the hidden placket difficult to understand from the instructions so I followed my intuition and it looks right so I moved onto those amazing sleeves.


When I tried the blouse on without the sleeve placket it felt to short, so next time I will lengthen the body of the sleeve. This time I improvised by adding the 2 inches to the cuff. It worked out ok but the circumference around the wrist area felt to wide so I have sewn my buttons on a diagonal to nip in the excess in this area.


I finished of with the Kylie and The Machine label’s ‘Perfectly Imperfect’