Made-by-Me in Tasmania


Great Lake, Miena Tasmania

Great Lake, Miena Tasmania

I’ve been away for a week in Tasmania. Just a quiet week, not too much sightseeing as I’ve been to Tasmania five or six times now! The holiday house is located in the central highlands of Tasmania, it’s in a little town which is basically composed of little holiday houses and very few permanent residents, it’s trout fishing country so many are shacks more than houses - quite quirky and charming in their ramshackle way.

It was nice to have a slower holiday, it helps you stop and see the little things that you might otherwise zoom by…

Pretty little flowers in the park at Cressy

Pretty little flowers in the park at Cressy

Little Australian bush flowers

Little Australian bush flowers

Most of the clothes I wore on holidays were made-by-me. I’m never sure if it’s the novelty factor of wearing my made-by-me clothes or just that they are nicer than my RTW that means they are always my first choice in the morning. The nicest thing happened in Deloraine, Tasmania. I was wandering along the main street, wearing my Lonsdale with red flats and my Whole Wheat slung over my arm. A little elderly lady was sitting in her car, she flung open her car door and stopped me to tell me how gorgeous she thought my clothes were – that I was ‘quite the picture’. Once I explained I made my clothes, we then had a lovely chat about how much she adored making her own clothes too. That was a real holiday highlight for me!

Maria Denmark Day-to-Night Top and Whole Wheat Cardigan from Ravelry

Maria Denmark Day-to-Night Top and Whole Wheat Cardigan from Ravelry

My MariaDenmark and Sewaholic clothes got a lot of wear – and my Whole Wheat cardigan, my first knitted project in YEARS was in regular rotation.

Sewaholic Lonsdale and Whole Wheat cardigan

Sewaholic Lonsdale and Whole Wheat cardigan – in King Solomon’s Cave, Mole Creek Tasmania. It’s 9 degrees down here all year round! I’m cold but not quite freezing in this picture…

We took some lovely pictures in the caves but WordPress keeps reverting them to the wrong orientation. *sigh* patience required.

Maria Denmark Birgitte Top and Yasmin Yoke Skirt

Maria Denmark Birgitte Top and Yasmin Yoke Skirt. I made this top from a $1 skirt from a second-hand stall

You will notice a new little skirt has popped up. This is the Maria Denmark Yasmin Yoke skirt.. It’s a simple make and very easy to fit as you go along. I’m not thrilled with this fabric although I like the pattern. The fabric is a butter suede and while it looks and feels lovely from the outside, it’s a bit ‘sticky’ on my skin – it really needs to be linted (note to self: remember that when you use the blue butter suede in the stash!). I think I will try making this up in some lightweight demin, it’s very easy to wear as it doesn’t sit too high on your waist.

I also made up a black/white stripey top from Maria Denmark’s Birgette pattern. I cheated on this t-shirt. I made it from a $1 skirt I picked up at the school fete. It was a long tube skirt and too big for me. I cut the body pieces so the skirt hem was the t-shirt hem. I also have not bothered to hem the sleeves. I don’t think this sort of stark stripe is my thing, it’s a bit harsh. Anyway for $1 I’m not too perturbed – I love the t-shirt pattern, I like the negative ease.

We saw lots of little creatures in Tasmania. It really is the place to see Australian wildlife, once you get away from the towns and cities. On the way to house on the first night we saw four Tasmanian Devils, a Spotted Eastern Quoll, countless wallabies, two wombats and more – meaning we had to drive slowly to avoid hitting them! No doubt they were driven to the roadsides in search of food as much of the country we drove through once we got the to Great Western Tiers which has suffered in the recent bushfires.

A little echidna trying to mind his own business

A little echidna trying to mind his own business

Mother Nature can be harsh…

Maria Denmark day-to-night dress, take 2 - side view

Maria Denmark day-to-night dress, take 2 – side view

Maria Denmark day-to-night dress - take 2

Maria Denmark day-to-night dress – take 2

The above dress is my second Maria Denmark Day-to-night dress – I found this amazing knit at Lincraft, it’s a rayon knit, lovely and light (and it was half price in the recent sale). It was intended to be a Sewing Cake Tirsmisu – and while there are so many lovely Tiramisu’s out there in the blogsphere, I’ve yet to find a fabric that screams Tiramisu to me. SewImpatientLizzy!

I’ve worn this dress a lot, out and just around the house, it’s so comfortable and flattering. And yes, it really takes about 60 minutes to make!

Whole Wheat Cardigan was a star of the trip – thank you Rachel for your encouragement! My cardigan is not quite perfect, in fact I’ve nicknamed it my Amish Cardigan – I once read that the Amish always incorporated one mistake into their quilts as only God is perfect. I am very much not perfect so I incorporated many mistakes! :-)

Sewaholic Cambie and Whole Wheat cardigan

Sewaholic Cambie and Whole Wheat cardigan. This is waaay to early in the morning for me. PLus I didn’t take a hair dryer away – yes! A real holiday!!

I nearly finished a cardigan for my daughter – I’m knitting the sleeves now and then just the button bands to go. This pattern is Langston from Ravelry, a really sweet little cardigan. I knitting it with a Paton’s wool called Romance. It’s a yummy merino/cashmere blend and I picked it up at Lincraft just before I left for holidays. It was marked down from $9 a ball to $3.99 – like it’s meant to be. I started it once I got through airport security with my needles, I was worried some nasty airport man would make me rip the knitting off!

Langston from Ravelry

Langston from Ravelry

I’ve learnt so much about knitting in the last month. Thanks to YouTube and Google, I’ve mastered cables, SSK, the Magic Loop technique and more. If you can knit plain and purl stitches but think that knitting a cardigan or jumper is beyond you – it’s not true. I watched several YouTube videos and have vastly increased my knitting abilities. Don’t underestimate yourself. If you are determined you can do anything!

Ravelry has been a relevation to me. It’s like facebook for knitters and crocheters, an amazing source of inspiration, patterns (lots of free ones at that!) and more. It’s free to join so if you are curious go and have a look! And you can friend me – my name is SewBusyLizzy (yes I’m imaginative!).

I arrived home to the most amazing package from Blogless Anna (go and check out her adorable parrot blouse). I’m actually speechless – she sent me some fabric which she picked up at The Fabric Store’s recent sale. She said she got it home and realised it wasn’t her. So she sent it to me – it’s SoSewBusyLizzy that I’m refraining from wrapping myself up in it and rolling about on the floor. Thank you Anna – I adore it!! I have a couple of ideas how I’m going to use it… once I stop patting it.

More on that in my next blog post – along with a couple of sewing goodies I discovered at the Evandale Market in Tasmania. Plus I got a couple of really exciting emails while I was in Tasmania as well! Watch this space :-)

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77 thoughts on “Made-by-Me in Tasmania

  1. Lady, you are looking fierce in your me made wardrobe! Some totes sassy frocks and separates happening and your whole wheat is delightful :) Loving that youtube and google have shown you the way. Now if I can just finish this cowl…

  2. Your clothes are lovely. I’m off to check out the cardigan pattern, its very pretty and something I would like to attempt. Looks and sounds like you had a nice holiday. I hope I’ll visit Tasmania someday, have been wanting to for a while :)

  3. You have some great items – it much have been great to have them as your first choice of clothing! I am traveling to Adelaide in September and am working on a lightweight wardrobe so I can fill me cases up with Australian goodies!!!

    And . . .I am twotoast on Ravelry – I’m like you, if you have a name that works, why change it – I have just ‘freinded’ you!

    • Ooooh I’ve never been to Adelaide! It’s supposed to be gorgeous.
      I’m off to London in April – I’m travel light there … and heavy on the way home!
      Look forward to seeing your Ravelry makes!

    • There is a little mistake in the lace on one shoulder, it’s not really noticeable except to knitting gurus. It’s enough to annoy me – but it’s such a beautiful little cardigan to wear I’m OK with that :-) Thanks for the encouragement, I never would have got there without you cheering me on in the early stages!

  4. Sounds like my kind of holiday. I love your knitted sweater, it’s beautiful! I found you on Ravelry, and ‘friended’ you. I’ve just recently signed up as I am trying to teach myself to knit.

    • Email me if you have any questions, it’s hard sometimes to get over a ‘hump’ sometimes if you type it out, it helps ‘think’ it out. I found knitting help and the stitch witch youtube stuff really helpful.

    • I was really excited! It wasn’t something I expected which makes it really nice!
      The cardigan was perfect for the holiday. A nice cover-up on cooler days without being too warm.

  5. sounds like you had a lovely holiday! love that the woman stopped to give you a compliment! so sweet! The day 2 night dress really suits you! it is perfect!
    I like the story of the Amish! I had no idea they did that! Learn something every day! :) Your cardi looks beautiful though!

  6. I love the story about the lady stopping you in the street, it’s such a rush when a stranger compliments you on a self made item! Great dress and cardigan too!
    We went to tassie about 2 years ago and would love to go back, it’s a beautiful place.

    • Tassie is just gorgeous, I’m lucky enough to get there quite often these days as a result it’s become a quiet getaway and I don’t feel the urge to rush around the place. Although I will go to see The Nut at Stanley next time!

  7. Oh you make me laugh! Loving the holiday wardrobe. We went to Adelaide for a few days and I packed all dresses which was a mostly made-by-me wardrobe. I couldn’t have done 12 months ago. It’s great to see progress…

    • Isn’t it great! I opened my holiday drawer of clothes and laughed. It was a pile of made-by-me’s barring my jeans, which I can’t see the point of making at the moment as they fit me so perfectly right out of the shop. And I ADORE that fabric you sent me – I can’t thank you enough. I love you more than Santa Claus xox :-) but not in a creepy stalky kinda way!

      • I’m so pleased it’s found the right new home. Sending fabric to a sewist is like giving crack to an addict, but much less harmful. Simple pleasures. Can’t wait to see what you make it into as well as all your thoughts on what it might have been. Enjoy the patting!

  8. Hello LIzzy, I love your blue swirly dress! so Pucci-esque :) In reply to yoru query, I don’t have any experience with the Minoru, but I’m sure you could make it up in any fabric you like! The thing to remember about waterproof fabrics like ripstop nylon is to not use pins in the body of the garment, as the pinholes will be permanent; make sure to pin only within the seam allowances. Good luck!

  9. Your pictures are always so thoughtful- the green of the cambie matching the leaves, the twists of the tree mirroring your day to night fabric print. Gorgeous you in gorgeous environments. It sounds like a good time was had by all from echidna to hubby!

    • We do try to find interesting backgrounds that match! Good pick up!
      Although caves presented a challenge with the Lonsdale :-) it just had to speak for itself.
      Hubby got two days of fly fishing in – unfortunately the trout are not playing nice this summer. However he’s back there in April while I’m in London!

  10. Oooh! I love the little echidna! Sorry, cute animal distraction. I love the cardigan, so pretty, and really dresses up the Lonsdale and Cambie to make them more elegant. :-) It looks like you visited a beautiful vacation spot, I’m so jealous!

  11. Your outfits are all so gorgeous! I’m not surprised that the lady paid you such a nice compliment! The cardigan looks great! You’re right– Ravelry is such a great resource! Knitting is way, way easier in the internet age (as is, oh, everything!). I haven’t done much knitting lately, but this really makes me want to.

    • The worst thing about Ravelry is it wants you to make waaaay too many things. Little wonder hardcore knitters end up huge stashes of wool. I’m being good and buying for a project as I need to start it!

      • That’s so smart! I find that I’ve got a horrifying amount of yarn accumulated for “future projects”, but the bulk of it is single skeins (or maybe just a couple skeins in one colorway). I don’t know what I was thinking! Let’s just chalk it up to the folly of youth…

        • I was very good on holidays I found a beautiful alpaca wool shop, glorious hand dyed skeins. They were quite expensive (would have cost at least $100 to buy enough for a small cardigan/jumper) I almost got just one skein but stopped myself, I love scarves but it rarely that cold where I live! I got Clover knitting needles and stitch holders instead. Not so beautiful but practical. I’m soooo old!!

  12. Wow that red suede skirt is gorgeous! Even though it doesn’t feel quite right it certainly looks right! And that cardigan is amazing, I thought it was rtw at first glance. Great job on knitting it!

  13. I love the “on location” photos of your me-mades. It’s always great to see how people wear their hand made clothes in real life. And yes, Ravelry is just the bomb!

  14. Beautiful scenery, gorgeous clothes. I’m convinced you’re the superwoman of sewing (and knitting)! I always leave your posts thinking ‘I have to make ______’. This time it’s a stripey day-to-night top that I need to add to my list. I’m glad you had such a relaxing vacation!

    • LOL that made by giggle ;-)
      The day-to-night top is great. It’s not an expensive pattern and it’s a very fast make once you get the hang of the elastic and how to attach it. Plus you only need about 70cm of fabric!

  15. Such a lovely ‘newsy’ post, with lots of interesting snippets and pictures! You write as beautifully as you sew! I particularly like that Dsy to Night pattern…I keep seeing great versions, like your dress and wonder if I really need another cowl pattern….I think I do…

    • Thank you, my husband said the same thing about the post!
      I love cowls so I think you can never have too many. Sew Squirrel wrote a good review of the pattern the other day. It’s probably my most worn item at the moment.

  16. I really like the Maria Denmark dress. I have just discovered her patterns and have made the Kimono tee. I think I may be a convert.

    Your knitting makes me want to complete my own very long project!

    • Her patterns are nicely drafted and classic. I love that about them.
      I’ve got another cardigan in the queue now. I found some lovely variegated blue wool at Bendigo Woolen Mills site, so much affordable than what I’ve seen elsewhere. Only $10 for 200g ball at the moment.

  17. Everything looks great, including Tasmania (but anywhere without snow looks great to us UK peeps just now!). I love your cardigan. As much as set-in sleeves are a faff to, um, set in, they definately add more structure to a cardigan that raglan sleeve in my opinion. Also loving your Yasmin Yoke Skirt. I bought a New Look (I think) a-line skirt pattern before I came across Yasmin, and Yasmin is much nicer.

    • Yes set-in sleeves define my shape better. I always feel slightly droopy shouldered in raglan sleeves.
      I’ve got some close-up pictures of Yasmin that I must post because you are right, it’s a nice little skirt. Simple but classic.

  18. Wow, great photo’s Lizzy. I’m glad you saw lots of animals on your holiday. We’ve watched the news, it was all such a mess. I noticed on your $1.00 T-shirt that the stripes on your sleeves line up perfectly with the bodice…..wow, see if I tried that it would be a mess.

  19. WOW – you have inspired me to wear more of my handmade clothes. I don’t know why I have a thing about wearing something I made myself. Ravelry is a great website – will look you up on there. Are you coming to London for some fabric hunting? Hopefully it will warm up by the time you get here. It is currently minus 10 here.

    • I’m sure it will be warmer I’m arriving mid-April.
      I used to have a thing about wearing my homemade clothes, then realised that most people can’t tell – in fact they tend to ask where you got them from as they look unique!
      Yes, there will be plenty of fabric tourism in London, and potentially Paris and Madrid!

    • It is very versatile. Looks cool with jeans or pretty with the dress. I think the colour is what makes it so wearable. I’m making a little bolero style cardigan in grey for work.

  20. My goodness. You look absolutely adorable and I love all the pictures. The Day-to-Night dress is super fantastic!
    I believe that it actually is the Persians who always weave in a small mistake in their carpets (but the Amish might so the same:-))
    Oh, and guess what my user name on Ravelry is ;-) (hint – I’m not very inventive w names eitehr)

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