Tuesday, 31 March 2015

Easy DIY Summer Top From a Scarf

Today I'll be sharing a DIY for making a large vintage scarf into a floaty top, perfect for Summer. I shared the first one I made on one of my first blog posts.  It took me less than half an hour to make so I think that anyone with some sewing experience could make one, the only tricky thing is working with a slippery fabric. I got both scarves, for my original top and the one I made for this post, from my Grandma but they usually cost less than £5  at vintage shops and markets.

For this DIY you will need:
  • A large, rectangular silk scarf
  • Pins
  • Thread in a colour to match the scarf, unless you want the stitches to show up
  • A sewing machine, you could sew this by hand but it'd take much longer and wouldn't be as strong
  • Scissors- preferably pinking shears which cut out in a zig-zag shape as they stop the fabric fraying so much
  • An overlocker, if you have one 
  • Tape measure/ruler

Making the head-hole 

I cut-out a 28cm head-hole but if you want a different sized one than just change the measurements. 
1. I started by finding the middle of the scarf both ways. I folded it in half horizontally and put a pin in the centre, before repeating this but vertically. I then halved my head-hole measurement (to get 14cm) and measured 14cm either side of the centre, and put a pin in.
2. You then need to cut along the part of the scarf where your head-hole will be.

3. It should look something like this. 

4. To add strength, and to stop the fabric fraying as much, I sewed along the head-hole with a zig-zag stitch on my sewing machine, If you have an overlocker then this step would be slightly easier. 

5. You then need to fold over a small hem and stitch along it, with the raw edges on the wrong side of the scarf. You could alternatively use bias binding or lace to edge the neckline, if you wanted to make it more interesting. 

Making the 'sleeves'/ arm-holes

1. For my top, I measured 20cm up from the bottom of the scarf and pinned up until the 20cm mark- to create the arm-holes.

2. Sew up to this point on both sides of the scarf to create arm-holes and you're done- I told you it was easy!

Here is the top I made for this post- I styled it with my H&M high- waisted jeans, which I think will look better in Summer instead of the awful rainy weather we've been having recently. The one I made last year did cause me problems though as France was quite windy and I kept accidentally flashing people so I wouldn't recommend wearing this in windy weather, but I think it'd be great for on the beach. 

If you make this top remember to tag me on social media so I can see it!
Twitter- @hollyoliviablog
Instagram- @hollyoliviacreates

Until next time, 

Holly Olivia x

Tuesday, 24 March 2015

Quick and Tasty Gluten-free Lunches

Sorry I haven't posted on here in a while, I was all set to write a DIY summer top post when I ended up ill from some not very gluten free- 'gluten free' cereal. Hopefully I'll have that post up for next week, but instead I'm sharing two of my favourite easy gluten-free lunches which I'll make on days when I don't eat lunch at college.

Chicken, basil and sweetcorn pizza

I've never found a recipe to make recognizable gluten free pizzas, so I just use pre-bought pizza bases. I usually buy the Morrison's ones, but used one from Sainsbury's for this, which are bigger. I haven't noticed much difference in taste between the different options though. 
I either just use passata sauce or make a pizza sauce by combining garlic, herbs, passata and cornflour for the sauce. I then added cheese, chicken pieces, fresh basil and sweetcorn. These pizza bases only take about 15 minutes to cook and are really quick to make!

Of course you can change up the toppings, but I've really been enjoying this pizza topping combo recently- it also tastes much better with black pepper. 

Avocado toastie

Avocado seems to be the 'in' food at the moment, so I was curious to taste it. I used a Marks and Spencer's gluten and wheat free baguette, although I usually use Sainsbury's. The M&S one cook in about half the time, although I think they are more expensive. I drizzled the bread with olive oil and garlic, then oven baked them for a while so they crisped up. I mashed avocado with salt and pepper to make a paste and then added chopped cherry tomatoes and tuna.
This is also a really nice lunch with chicken instead of tuna. I cook the toasties until the toppings have gone slightly golden brown, before adding black pepper.

I'm also taking part in the Simplicity bloggers sewing competition for the 'vintage' category making a 60s top- so right up my street. I'm going fabric shopping soon so will hopefully have some new posts about my handmade clothes. 

Until next time, 

Holly Olivia x

Saturday, 7 March 2015

Recent snapshots

I haven't had the chance to do any sewing recently, so only have some photos I've taken in the past week to share on here. I am not sure when I'll make another garment, it tends to be very expensive and take up a lot of time, which are two things students like myself have a lack of. 

Images 1-3 
Last Sunday I had a walk along to Tynemouth market to take some photos of the architecture for my photography course. The idea is to put them into black and white and make a grid of them, so you can explore visual relationships between lines, shape and space. I think the photos look really nice in colour as well though. 

Image 4
I finish early on Wednesdays so hopped on the Metro and went to the Baltic Gallery  to sign up for their Art Mix club for 14-19 year olds, who are interested in art. I really love the building, which used to be a flour mill, and I'm looking forward to going to the events for the Art Mix, which you can find more about here. 

Images 5-6
In the style of Dear Photograph, I took these photos, also for my photography course using my parent's wedding photos. I really like how they turned out and find it amazing to see how little the Church has changed in the 18 years that they've been married. 

In other news- I was featured on Tilly Walnes' blog with the Mimi Blouse I made from her book! You can see the post here. I am really grateful that she featured my make on her blog as it had drawn a lot more readers here, which can only be a good thing.  

Until next time, 

Holly Olivia x