Saturday, 27 February 2016

Anti-Trident Rally with the Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament

Hey everyone! How are you all? 

A little bit off my usual sewing topic today, but I am so excited about my day I felt I should share it with you. I went down to London to take part in the Anti-Trident rally organised by the Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament. 

Trident is essentially the British nuclear arms programme, which the government plans to replace at a cost of over £100 billion. This money could be used to pay 150,000 nurses working for the NHS, fund A&E departments for 40 years or build 1.5 million new, affordable houses, but instead it is being wasted on expensive weapons that we don't need. In a time of austerity, the leaders of our country should be focusing on creating jobs in the industries that matter, like the healthcare system, not using a fancy, updated version of Trident to boost our country's ego. 

As a History student, it honestly appalls me that there are still some people out there who seem to have learnt nothing from our past mistakes. The one and only time nuclear weapons have been used in war - Japan 1945 - hundreds of thousands of innocent civilians were killed, and the effects of the radiation can still be seen to this day. The nuclear warheads carried on Trident submarines are eight times more powerful than the bombs dropped on Japan - the devastation firing such a weapon would cause is unimaginable. 

Today's rally began at Marble Arch, where 60,000 people met to march together to Trafalgar Square in protest of Trident's renewal. In addition to the Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament, we were joined by the Socialist Workers Party, the Labour Party, the Scottish National Party, Plaid Cymru, the Green Party, groups fighting against racism and sexism, refugees, religious organisations, student nurses and doctors whose university funding has just been cut, those fighting against austerity and many others. To see so many people of all different backgrounds coming together with one voice to fight for the same cause made me feel a part of something really important, something worth fighting for. It was such an uplifting, amazing experience. 

Nuclear weapons are immoral, they are weapons of mass destruction, they are illegal and they are dangerous. They are also not the norm - the vast majority of countries are nuclear weapon free, why should Britain be any different? Nuclear weapons can go wrong - thousands of lives are threatened by them. 

Join the fight. Let us stand together and oppose these weapons. Argue for peace, cutting war not welfare, books not bombs, NHS not Trident. We can only affect change if we work as one, all supporting the same cause - global disarmament. 

Speakers such as Nicola Sturgeon for the Scottish National Party, Leanne Wood for Plaid Cymru, Caroline Lucas for the Green Party and Jeremy Corbyn of the Labour Party all stood and opposed the renewal of Britain's nuclear weapons programme. I had an amazing day campaigning against these weapons and listening to such inspirational speeches, but our work will not be complete until the government agrees to scrap Trident. Make a stand, get out onto the streets, begin campaigning! It's everyone's fight, and the nuclear weapons of this country will not be renewed in our name. 

Say no to nuclear weapons, say no to Trident! 

Thank you for reading, and I hope you are all well and have a fabulous weekend. 

Beth x

Tuesday, 23 February 2016

Pyjama Top

Hello everyone! How are you?

I've been having a mixed couple of weeks, but mostly good. I've cut out the pieces to make a velvet By Hand London Kim dress, now I just need to find the time to sew it all together! I don't expect I'll be able to get anywhere with it until next week though, as I am going down to London for the Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament's Anti-Trident rally this weekend, which I'm quite excited about! 

So, whilst I'm waiting to sew up a new project, I thought I'd show you one I completed a while back instead. 

This is the Sewaholic Renfrew pattern, which I used to make a pretty quick and easy pyjama top. The fabric I used (which came from Abakhan in Chester) is a really soft, cosy knit which is actually being saved for a Megan Nielsen Briar. However, until I can get round to printing and assembling my PDF copy, I wanted something really simple, so to the Renfrew I turned! I ended up squeezing this make out of something ridiculous like a quarter of a metre of fabric, just to ensure I have enough left over for the Briar! I shortened the hem by quite a few inches to save fabric, but it doesn't bother me at all - this is hands down the comfiest pyjama top I've ever worn. 

I made my usual Size 0, opted for short sleeves and used some scraps to make a teeny patch pocket, which I think is really cute. I can't claim credit for the shorts, which come from Fat Face (my guilty pleasure), but I do think they go together quite well. 

That's about it really! This was a really quick make, put together in about an hour and a half (including cutting out!) and I am really pleased with the final result. It makes a nice change from the Seaworld t-shirt I usually opt for, which I've had since I was ten! (I also recently watched the documentary Blackfish, which has on some levels ruined my childhood memories of Seaworld, but I do still love that t-shirt). 

As always, thank you for reading, and what's on your sewing table please? 

Have a great week everyone, 

Beth x

Sunday, 14 February 2016

The Valentine's Day Dress (which didn't get worn on Valentine's Day...)

Hey everyone! 

In my last post I mentioned I was planning on sewing a dress for Valentine's Day. Truth be told, I'm not really a big fan of Valentine's Day, I find all the lovey-dovey celebration a little too much for my slightly socially awkward personality. However, this year my boyfriend talked me into going on a triple date with two of his best friends and their girlfriends, so I felt as though I should make a bit of an effort. 

Having said that, once the dress was finished, I did a complete U-turn on what I wanted to wear! Isn't that always the way? So this dress wasn't actually worn on my date tonight, but I'm still mentally referring to it as the Valentine's Day dress. 

This is the Babydoll Dress from Christine Haynes' book 'Skirts and Dresses for First Time Sewers'. I made it up in a floral patterned needlecord (yes, my current obsession with corduroy shows no sign of stopping yet...) and made the smallest size, as per usual. 

A word of warning: this dress runs large. I know the style is supposed to be somewhat oversized, but when I came to put it on I felt like I was wearing a tent! Luckily, a belt easily fixed the problem. I also shortened the full length sleeves, as I felt keeping them as drafted would be a little too much. 

I was a little unsure about the shoulders at first, they are very 'poofy', but after some consideration I decided I actually quite like them. They're a bit of a change from my usual style. I also asked a friend if he thought it looked nice, and he said 'I like the way the shoulders look' with no prompting from me, so I'll take that as a win. 

Overall, I'm really pleased with the way this dress turned out even if I didn't actually wear it for what it was planned for. It's also my first completed sewing project since early January, so a nice simple way to ease me back into making :) 

Thank you for reading, and I hope that wherever you are, whatever you're doing and whoever you're with, you have a lovely Valentine's Day, whether you're in a relationship or not. 

Beth x

Thursday, 11 February 2016

Geneva Raglan

Hey everyone! How are you all?

I am completely snowed under with uni work at the minute. I've just worked my way through about five hours of seminar reading and I'm still nowhere near done. I've vowed I'll get a dress finished before Valentine's Day (I'm going out on my first ever Valentine's date - eep! I'm a little nervous!) but I'm not sure I'll get it made up in time. Fingers crossed! 

Still, I thought I'd take a bit of a break from reading up on early English castles and the Civil War to show you another completed project - the Geneva Raglan top from Named Patterns. 

Shamefully taking direct inspiration from Rachel of House of Pinheiro's beautiful version, I made this up in a triangle print ponte de roma from Girl Charlee and a charcoal grey ponte from Guthrie and Ghani

This top was a breeze to make, I didn't encounter any problems with sewing it up or fitting - hurrah for quick and easy sewing projects! I made up the smallest size (as is usual for me) and it fits really well. Next time, I think I'd use a fabric with a little more stretch for the sleeves, as the ponte I used is quite thick, but it's definitely wearable. 

I'm not usually one for wearing jeans, but this top is perfect for when I fancy a change from the dresses I'm usually wearing. It's seen quite a bit of wear since I finished it a couple of months ago so, overall, success! 

Thank you for taking the time to read. I hope all your sewing projects are going well :) I've been a little detached from the blogosphere recently - the unread posts on my reader are mounting up, but I catch up when I can. I love seeing everyone's finished projects! 

Have a great week everyone, hope you are all well. 

Beth x