Hello and welcome to Sewgirl website and blog.
My name is Fiona Hesford and I’m passionate about inspiring everyone on the planet to sew!
Based in sunny Worthing on the south coast of England with my gorgeous husband Marko and cute little cat called Madame Mabelline (Mabel for short). My children are all grown up now and fled the nest, so I devote my time to teaching sewing, writing projects for magazines, appearing on Sewing Street TV and producing dressmaking patterns and kits under the Sewgirl brand.
I like to design everyday clothing and accessories that I want to wear myself, in fact I rarely buy clothes from shops anymore. Wearing something that you have made yourself is very satisfying. Obviously, it takes a bit of practise, improving with every project, but choosing your own fabric and pattern style, means you have something totally unique to you. Its a way of discovering yourself and learning new skills along the way.
This blog and website, is a place dedicated to show you, with clear photos and text, how to make Sewgirl patterns, along with pattern hacks, tutorial films and fabric suggestions. Think of it as a helping hand to assist you along your sewing path. By the way, if you subscribe to this blog, you will be notified whenever I post something like a new pattern, technique tutorial or info.
Whether you have been to one of my workshops or embarking on a Sewgirl pattern, this blog aims to help you through the sewing process, to make your experience more enjoyable.
If you are interested in purchasing a Sewgirl pattern, please click the SHOP button in the menu which will take you to the Etsy shop.
Happy sewing ! X Fiona
Angela (bottom row far right) in the 2022 series of The Great British Sewing Bee wearing a Sewgirl Frida Top!
All contents of this blog are protected by copyright. Please ask permission if you wish to use or copy any of the images and text. Thank you x
28 thoughts on “About”
Do/can you supply material with the trouser pattern?
yes Ive an Elsie Trousers kit available if thats of interest. Heres a link…
Hope that helps
Hi. I love your pattern ‘The Fiona Set’ given away free with ‘Simply Sewing’ Can’t wiat to make it up but I’m puzzled by the fabric requirements:
“Fabric, 140 cm (55in) wide: Long sleeve version 2mx140cm.
” ” Short sleeve version 2.5mx140cm Is the long sleeve version therefore the dress with 2 tiers – if so, why do you need more fabric than the short sleeve version – the top with 1 tier?.
Fabric requirements for 112 cm wide shows Long sleeve version 3.4 mtrs
” ” Short sleeve version 2.9 mtrs. That’s why I’m guessing the short sleeve version is the top.
Help! Thanks! Jenny
yes Ive just had someone else email me about this. I have to say- its an error by the magazine (not me!) , but Im happy to help.
So it should read:
LONG SLEEVE (DRESS) VERSION: 2.5m (140cm wide) or 3.4m (112cm wide) fabric.
SHORT SLEEVE (TOP) VERSION: 2m (140cm wide) or 2.9m (112cm wide) fabric.
Thanks for your comments- I am in the process of making myself one, I think its going to get a lot of wear this summer.
All the best and sorry about the mistake – this happens extremely rarely – Im expecting to be contacted by lots of people !!
Fiona at Sewgirl x
After cutting out your pattern following the outer lines. You place and pin the pattern on the fabric according to the layplan. You then cut around the outer edge close to the outer line of the pattern. You don’t add anything on. Then when you sew, your stitch lines should be 1cm away from the edge of the piece you have cut, unless the pattern tells you otherwise. This is what we call seam allowance. I hope that makes sense. Sewing the correct
Seam allowance is particularly important when sewing a hat because fit is crucial, so try to be as accurate as possible.
I wouldn’t say this pattern is a beginners level particularly, it’s for sewers with some previous experience. You might need a bit of previous experience practising with simple cushions or an easy tote bag to get the hang of things first.
Hi there. Oh yes I do have that Dolores pattern, I’m happy to post a copy, but Im afraid it will cost £12.00 (and Im not making a penny from it).
If you are happy to go ahead please send payment to my paypal account address shown below, forward me your delivery address and I will get it off to you direct from the printers in the next few days. Hope that helps Fiona x
ps thank you for your nice comment!
Paypal address: email@example.com
Are you selling the pattern for the Dolores dress that was in Love Sewing no 79?
I love it – just found it on Google.
Thanks for getting in touch. I’m not selling it yet I’m afraid. I do get quite a few enquiries about this one , so I think I’m going to include it in the Sewgirl collection but it won’t be til the Autumn.
All the best
Fiona at Sewgirl
so the approx. finished bust is 134cm for size 22. Where the tier joins the top it measures approx 138cm. Then the first tier measures 172cm all around, but you can easily add some extra on the width and make it a bit more gathered if you feel like it would improve the look for you. The second tier is much fuller so you really don’t need to worry about this one, but again you can add on the width if you want. Hope that helps.
I cant think why we didnt put finished bust on this pattern, must have got overlooked. I always recommend making up a toile (top bit only would be ok) in advance if you really want to be sure.
Hope that helps
That is brilliant, Thank you very much for such a quick reply.
You will have to scale down the flap to be in proportion with the bag. Maybe if you scale down by percentage on all bag outer and lining pieces. You could still keep the pocket and straps the same size. So for example if the bag outer measures 35cm wide and 40cm long make it less 28% less on both would make it 25.2cm by 28.8cm, then you can scale down the flap in the same way. These measurements are roughly speaking as I don’t have the pattern to hand at the moment. But I hope this makes sense. Hi
All the best with it x Fiona
Sorry this is no longer available I’m afraid. Best regards Fiona at Sewgirl
It’s a good idea to mark with a ruler, the 1cm stitch line which runs parallel to the dart cut edge, so your dart point will extend further into the body front. Take a look at the Peggy top blogpost. There are clear photos of the same dart construction there.
Hope that helps
Hi Fiona love your patterns, would like to try making the Pippy pjs but l am size 22/24, any chance you may extend the sizing up to larger sizes in future. Please please ?
thank you so much for your feedback. With Pippy PJs, I tried to include as many sizes as possible on this pattern (which is generously sized) to fit on two sheets. The issue I have is that I cant get more than two large format sheets into the envelope as these are sturdy paper patterns, not tissue. I use paper, because I dont have to purchase thousands of patterns up front, like with tissue. I run a small scale business and like to try things out.
Im wondering if a digital download would be of interest to you?
Failing that, its not too difficult to size up a pattern. If this is of interest I can send you a Youtube tutorial about it.
I hope this is of some help
all the best and have a great weekend
Fiona at Sewgirl x
Hi Fiona – Is your Make Me Next Boxy Top pattern available anywhere? Even just the line drawings would be helpful. I am looking for a pattern with a square front neckline & deep V back & yours sounds perfect, but I can’t find more than a photo of the front.
Any help would be so appreciated!
Can you email me a pic of it to firstname.lastname@example.org and I’ll see if I still have it
Good morning 🙂
I am a proper newbie to sewing but just about to embark on the Suki Kimono. I have traced the pattern for a Medium and as I wanted it a bit longer I have extended the length to XL. I would also like to lengthen the sleeves but just would like your advice on this please. Do I keep the width of the arm piece to a M and just extend the length to XL or extend the width too? Stuck at home with COVID so just waiting for my fabric to arrive hopefully today 🤞
Many thanks indeed
Just keep to the medium size line and extend the line straight downwards to meet the horizontal line of the size XL . You don’t need to extend outwards.
Remember to extend the band to the XL too.
Hope that’s clear?
I think it looks nice in longer length btw
Thank you Fiona x
Just a query re Martha skirt. Does the waist band need buttons , how does it close?? Thanks
Martha Skirt has a facing instead of a waistband, fastens with a centre back zip and sits below the waistline (about an inch). I find It’s much more comfortable to wear than with a waistband.
Hope that helps
Fiona at Sewgirl
My Bibi pattern cam with pieces1 and6 missing
Are you Ruby McCormack? Please confirm and I will send missing pieces today – I did email you about this error and have been waiting for confirmation from you. So sorry about this. Fiona x
Thankyou for letting me join
Hello. Do you have the instructions for the Summer Tunic please? I have the pattern which I would like to make, but it seems the instructions were in an old edition of Love Sewing Magazine issue 3? I wondered if they were anywhere as a pdf that I could download? Thank you x
If you email me at email@example.com I can forward on the pdf instructions