Summer Wardrobe – make your own with help from Stitching Kitchen

up cycled sonny

We have had some sunny days (and some less sunny days) and now I am really thinking about my me made summer wardrobe.  I have been in a lucky position as I have been planning which patterns to stock in the studio, which garments will work as 1/2 day or full day workshop and also have bought fabrics for these garments too!

So here is my plan for summer 2024 – a range of key pieces to work with your existing wardrobe and build your sewing skills too!

Starting at the top …..  I have selected two sleeveless tops – the Beatrice top from Jalie which is a knit fabric pattern and the classic Ogden Cami by True Bias which is suitable for light weight woven fabric.

So far I have made one wearable toile for the Beatrice Cami version which worked well and I am going to make more – perhaps trying out the studio coverstitch machine Pfaff Admire Air 7000 next time!

Beatrice Cami Top   The top comes with two views – the cami version which I made and a vest top both views can be extended to a simple dress so there is plenty of scope with the pattern and if you would like to have the chance to make this top in the studio Lindsey will be teaching the Beatrice top in the Sew a vest top workshop on 27th July in the afternoon.

beatrice vest top and dress

The next top is the Ogden Cami by True Bias, Ogden cami cover

I am looking forward to making this one with one of the Viscose Printed Lawn Fabrics which are available on the website and are £4.50 per half meter.

Next thinking of dresses…. I am after a maxi dress and I loved the Fleetwood Frock by Sew different which we offered as a workshop last year.  I am still to make one but I loved the result from this lovely lady last year!

finished Fleetwood frock at Stitching Kitchen As she has created hers from a lovely blue polka dot in a mid weight cotton it is difficult to see the lines of this sun dress so I have added the line drawing too.  You can purchase this pattern from our website here ‘Fleetwood Frock Pattern’ 

This pattern suits a woven midweight or light weight fabric.  The viscose lawns above would work well as would a cotton chambray like the ones we have in the studio in red of teal priced at  £5.00 per half meter.  They are pictured below:


The other dress I have picked out for the summer is the Stevie by Tilly and the Buttons.  This pattern is ideal for beginner dressmakers as it has a simple construction with no zips or tricky fastenings.  I have made this one several time and it is a great quick make which can also be made as a dress.  Join Helen who is teaching this as a learn to sew your own clothes workshop on 22nd June.

We are offering fabric and haberdashery bundles for this workshop to make life easy for you.  This top and dress would also work well in the chambray or viscose lawn.  If it is your first garment I would probably suggest the chambray as it is a more stable fabric for a beginner.

I tend to wear shorts or trousers a lot during the summer, I have turned to the ever easy to follow patterns from Tilly and the Buttons for both options.  I suggest you make the shorts from the Esti Co-ord, these shorts they are an easy fit and make and totally suitable for beginners.  the construction is very similar to the Jaimie PJs if you have been to that workshop in the past.

In terms of fabric a light to medium weight woven is ideal so I would choose from the chambrays listed above or perhaps one of the cotton lawns we have in stock which are pictured below:  


If you would prefer a pair of wide leg trousers which are totally on trend this year then I would suggest Thea – pick a slightly heavier weight fabric for these and give yourself a weekend as the construction is a little more complex with a front fly zip and hip pockets – don’t worry the instructions are excellent and if you have any questions drop in to the studio or email us for help!

Tilly and the buttons

For summer I have picked out some Ramie fabrics, which will allow you the comfort of linen with a lower price point! Ramie is a similar fibre to linen but grows like a weed in china – hence the lower price point! These are priced from £7 per half meter and we have them in three shades:

If you are more of a skirt girl then we have an excellent workshop coming up where Helen will be teaching how to draft and make a circle skirt to your own measurements – a great addition to your dressmaking skills portfolio and no pattern required. You can book your place and a fabric bundle using this link: Circle Skirt and join us on Saturday 10th August.

As an alternative if you can’t make the date or live too far to visit the studio a pattern with a similar full skirt vibe is the Shepherd Skirt from Merchant and Mills and this pattern would suit one of the ramie linen fabrics above. The pattern comes in two size ranges so you will need to check your hip measurement and purchase the skirt pattern to suit your body.

One last recommendation for the summer – the Sonny Jacket by Tilly and the Buttons. So far I have made this twice, once was an up cycle project and I used three pairs of jeans to create Sonny number one! The second one I used some green dead stock corduroy which we have in stock in the studio. I love this jacket, it is oversized so not much fitting needed, the faux flat lock seams are really smart and if you want to try the prairie collar option it can be really girly too. I know Tilly also offers a PDF download for a lining pack if you want to take the finish to the next level.