so thats what SWAP means –

Bitty plans have never been a favourite place of mine, and currently my work room is full of them – the chaos annoys me.  The embroidery machine is set up as I am planning an Irish dancing waistcoat for my nephew and trying to figure how to get the design digitised.  My nieces class costume (‘traditional’ Irish dance dress that is worn in group dances) had to be altered and now done and sits at the back of the door – it was an interesting one as the dress has been through a lot of dancers and altered each time (one side seam is an inch out), however it is still hanging in there, and my lengthening of the skirt is just another in the chain.   A half finished coat sits on the mannequin with the paper pattern for the lining pinned on top.  The work table has an upcycle embroidery idea for a one-euro top (photo finish below), and I have a  plaid skirt taken apart and knit cardigan project sitting waiting to start……..


The Irish dancing waistcoat did throw things off a bit as it was a recent ask, and I want it out of the way so I can focus on the other pieces.  However, as I pulled the embroidery machine extension out, it was a good time to stitch up other samples as I want to add some embellishment to a few pieces .

While trying to see if I could get a textured black and or black velvet in the charity shops for the waistcoat and embroidery sampling, I did get this little black top for a euro in the ‘clearance’.  I was going to use it for the waistcoat sampling but the pile is not that deep and as the cut of it is rather cute, I thought I would do some embroidery on it…….and I am rather fascinated by Susanne Bisovsky so I did this motif


So admist the chaos – I have also put my sewing ‘plan’ on the wall (I also just figured with the help of google what this SWAP is in sewing blogs today……………..) – so once the Irish dancing stuff is ‘one the way’ I can get around to including these………….(edit – SWAP Sewing with a Plan….. )

winter 2016 sewing plans

  1.  the red coat – it will be a basic re-cut of a raglan sleeve coat
  2. black bobble a-line dress – this will be made from a cardigan coat – which I hope sews according to plan
  3. vogue top and cigarette pants – I will see if I can pick up black pants in the charity shop to re-cut using my pattern as I have gotten so much wear from the denim ones
  4. purple tunic and skirt – I will remake these from a purple suit…. not in a hurry to make these for a while – these have moved to bottom of list for the moment
  5. sew house seven sweater and plaid skirts – I have a sweater dress and hope to make the toasty sew house seven sweater – and some plaid which I embroidering
  6. vogue blouse 7789 peasant style – I hope I have sufficient fabric for this
  7. a crochet sweater…….I have a pattern
  8. another crochet sweater without a pattern

Now I wonder how much of this plan will go accordingly………………….






15 thoughts on “so thats what SWAP means –

  1. fabrickated says:

    I like your Sewing with a Plan, but I love your machine embroidery. That is amazing and I have no idea how you did it but it is sensational. How vibrant the black makes the colours looks. I would also like to know more about the Irish dancing outfits – I will have a read some of your older posts.

    Liked by 1 person

    • theupsew says:

      Ah thanks – this time last year I only got the machine,so I could make a solo dress for my niece (the steepest and most stressful learning curve of my life) -
      I have only really made one ‘solo’ dress and added a skirt to another and will be doing a new dress in the coming year. I have done little else with the embroidery machine – I had made an evening bag for my sis for christmas and some gift bags…..but its hard to figure a way to apply them in a ‘fitting’ way (for my tastes) and currently I buy the embroidery motifs as the software design is another separate bought and taught beast entirely. I am now sampling off some pieces to see if I can incorporate it more – and also finding out how to work within the confines of what I have – which on the plus side is giving me more of an understanding of the process and I will hopefully be better able for the technical aspects when I come to the second dress – cant beat the empirical experience!


  2. Linda Wilson says:

    So what is the SWAP?
    Anyway Eimear that list is vast!! I’d get muddled on where to start first.
    The embroidery, looks lovely, I know I said that before, it finishes the top beautifully!
    We have a new embroidery machine at work and I am about to try to figure out how to use it? I realise there are pre-programmed designs, but I saw students design their own then, blah blah, not in my knowledge yet, stitch them from the machine, or attempt to, because that machine was broken?? Still so many sewing things to learn, maybe that’s what makes it all so interesting!

    Liked by 1 person

    • theupsew says:

      I probably should have put the Sewing with a Plan in there but I assumed everyone knew but me (may edit and update this post yet, as I touch type I tend to type as I think and edit seems to go missing). The embroidery machine was so new to me last year and it was a steep learning curve with the dancing dress. Using and editing the downloaded motifs was useful as it gave me a better feel for the machine. there is a simple stitch converter which will digitize a design and there is complicated software which seems to do it better and I may look to using these sometime…..I am starting to use the machine more now but I think I am still very conservative – I am off to the knit and stitch show this week so may learn a few bits there too – totally agree on the keeping learning bits, new challenges keep it fresh……

      Liked by 1 person

    • theupsew says:

      Well – I doodle out a plan to keep me focused and pull out the ‘before’ items and then find out there is insufficient fabric…… but I like to have a ‘plan’ pinned to the wall, an attempt at order !

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Linda Wilson says:

    Eimear, I think I’m so behind on the blogging that I now only see what comes in on my feed, so you’re keeping me informed. I only just noticed the jeans refashion winners too! Loved them both but preferred the top, the dress looked great but a bit over complicated for me.
    At least I’m still finding the time to sew, maybe I’ll find some time to write about it too?? Happy sewimg 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  4. wrong doll says:

    I was going ri ask about the SWAP but hen read the comments above. That machine embroidery is just beautiful and I love your pencil drawings. You’ve got a stellar plan to springboard from there. I know what you bean about bitty – sends me into meltdown – I can only focus on one project at a time so I’m super impressed at all the balls you are juggling.

    Liked by 1 person

    • theupsew says:

      Thank you Aimee, pinning the plan to the wall helped a bit, as did clearing the ‘before’ pieces that were not going to be used back to the cupboard – I don’t go to the charity shops for the moment as its far too easy to pick up more, and I dont exaggerate about the amount of ‘good’ fabrics in there. I am now hoping my head wont be too turned by the knit and stitch show….I am thinking of going this weekend and have visions of myself coming home with the makings of a 10ft tapestry or something….

      Liked by 1 person

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