Make a Pair of Knickers from a Vintage Scarf

Day one of my crafting adventures and I'm meeting my new best friend the Janome sewing machine and learning to sew a pretty pair of fancy pants at the Create Place.

The Create Place, 29 Old Ford Road, Bethnal Green, E2 9PJ. Tel: 020 8980 2092

The Create Place, 29 Old Ford Road, Bethnal Green, E2 9PJ. Tel: 020 8980 2092

I recently popped into The Create Place in Bethnal Green to meet Jill Robertson the creative driving force behind the project. The little workshop space is super sweet & I really like their ethos from the free drop in craft mornings for locals to meet up and make stuff to the shelf full of sewing machines that have been donated by people in return for free classes. Whilst I own a sewing machine, it’s long been sitting in it’s dust jacket on my shelf so I thought first things first I should pop myself on one of their beginner’s sewing classes.

Selecting fabric from a vast array of second hand scarves & fabric offcuts.

Selecting fabric from a vast array of second hand scarves & fabric offcuts.

One hangover-free Sunday morning I embarked upon a day of learning lingerie making with Sara McNab. Not quite the beginner’s course but I’m always up for a challenge! Sara had brought along a bag of fabric offcuts kindly donated by Boudicca and a selection of vintage scarves from the Charity shop next door for us to turn into a pair of fancy pants. Choosing which fabric to use was one of the most difficult parts of the day! I eventually decided upon a navy and white polka dot silk scarf and a cherry red offcut to make a contrasting waistband. Ooh la la.

Cutting out pattern pieces from dot and cross pattern paper.

Cutting out pattern pieces from dot and cross pattern paper.

From the moment we started Sara was showering us with useful tips about cutting on the bias, how to pin pattern paper and all about the ‘weft’ and the ‘warp’.

A goblet of Maltesers provided a tasty treat upon completing each stage of the project.

A goblet of Maltesers provided a tasty treat upon completing each stage of the project.

I cut out my pattern – ensuring I cut clockwise so not to cut the paper and blunt the fabric scissors.

It's not often you'll catch me ironing!

It's not often you'll catch me ironing!

I then discovered this handy little implement called a bias tape maker which folded over my cherry red offcut and made it into the neatest little waistband.

Many hands make light work.

Many hands make light work.

Now for the most tricky part… sewing together the frilly trim and elastic onto the edges of the knickers. I learnt that zig zag is the best stitch for attaching elastic to fabric and wearing high heels to a sewing class does not aid the use of a foot control.

I think this was nearing the time for a cuppa and a slice of cake.

I think this was nearing the time for a cuppa and a slice of cake.

This is the frazzled expression you’d also probably pull if you had to keep unpicking unruly stitches. Poor Katie.

Ta da! One fine pair of fancy pants made by my own fair hands.

Ta da! One fine pair of fancy pants made by my own fair hands.

Six hours and one lovely Gallery Cafe lunch later and I had my very own hand made pair of silk panties just in time for Valentines Day. I picked up many a technique all of which are transferable to many other sewing projects. I also learnt how to do a French seam which is great to create a professional finish if you don’t own an overlocker.

This is the smiling face of one very patient lady.

This is the smiling face of one very patient lady.

This is the lovely and very patient Sara, you can contact her here for information on future classes. The Create Place run many other arts and crafts workshops which I highly recommend. And no, that’s not Sara sewing my knickers, I did all of it myself. Honest.


4 Responses to Make a Pair of Knickers from a Vintage Scarf

  1. OakGem says:

    That’s just too much fun!

  2. laura says:

    They look ace 🙂

  3. Pingback: Round ‘Em Up! | Serendipity Cupcake

  4. elle says:

    They look gorgeous! Can I ask you where did you get the pattern from?

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