Say Hello to Nina Lee London!

Here at Sew Creative HQ, we have had an exciting delivery; the Nina Lee London patterns have landed and we are so excited about them!

Hailing from London, Nina Lee's patterns celebrate all that is great about our capital. Each of her patterns is named after a London landmark or iconic location, from Camden to Mayfair, there's bound to be somewhere you recognise.

We have now got five of Nina Lee's best selling patterns in stock and this week on the blog, we are going to show you each of pattern in detail, how we've made and styled them, as well as some design hacks that you could make to the patterns.

In this post, we will take you through the Nina Lee Camden Skirt and Dress pattern. Camden is the home of cool and we really think that this pattern has earned it's namesake. The pattern comes with the option for both an A-line skirt and a V-neck pinafore dress. The pattern includes wonderfully large pockets on both versions (these are optional if you're not a pocket-lover), back zips, a princess seamed bodice on the pinafore and a four piece skirt (which means you can almost always squeeze it out of just 1 metre of fabric!).

Camden is designed with sturdy woven fabrics in mind. Think denim, heavy linen, cotton canvas, corduroy and drill. It needs this kind of fabric so that the skirt holds it shape, without it, the skirt wouldn't hang right. Either view made up in our indigo denim, which has a little bit of stretch, would make for a super comfy and versatile wardrobe staple. Made up in our stonewashed linen, the pinafore version would make for a chic work dress, paired with a blouse or t-shirt. Or for a touch of glam, why not try the skirt in a duchess satin or a faux leather?

(L-R) Khaki Stonewashed Linen, Ex Designer Cotton Check, Navy Stonewashed Linen

Lets have a look at some makes!

This version was made by our lovely Alex in a glorious rust coloured bull denim from her (extensive!) stash. She only had 1 metre and had been pondering what to make with it, but when she saw the Camden, it was a match made in sewing heaven.

When it comes to finishing the seam of this skirt, you have a number of options. As both the front and back pieces are split into two panels, there are more seams than usual to work with. You could easily overlock or zigzag these seam allowances, but Alex went for something a little more fancy, and used a Hong Kong finish. A Hong Kong finish is where you bind the raw edges of your seam allowances to keep them from fraying and finish them off. On this skirt, Alex used the same fabric that she lined the pockets with - doesn't it look gorgeous?!

While we're on the subject of lining the pockets,, the pattern tells you to use a lighter weight fabric for this than for the main skirt. You could use up some scraps from other projects, but this is also a great opportunity to use up those fat quarters of beautiful quilting fabrics that we all buy, and never get used. In this example, Alex used a cotton which is printed with library cards, a sweet detail that really adds some personality to this skirt.

The bodice on the pinafore version is another opportunity for using some pretty cottons from your stash. The pattern can either be fully lined or faced, and if you are using a heavier fabric for the main body as suggested, it's a good idea to use a lightweight fabric for the lining and facings, to avoid bulk and unwanted lumpy bits!

(L-R) Metallic Spot Cotton, Space Pugs Cotton, Black and White Paintbrush Effect

The waistband on the skirt comes together like a dream, it is also is nice and wide (a flattering feature), and is made up of two separate pieces. The benefit to this versus a folded waistband is that you get a nice clean seam at the top of the waistband which can be pressed really well, this is especially true when using a heavier weight fabric.

(L-R) Terracotta Soft Cord, Navy Soft Cord, Mustard Soft Cord

Overall, Camden is a chic and versatile pattern, which will be a real workhorse in your wardrobe. Here at Sew Creative, we've become a little bit attached to this pattern, so much so that Alex has FIVE different versions of the skirt!

Be more Alex, and get on the Camden bandwagon!

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