Monday, 7 July 2014

Maid with love

Hi everyone!

         This wasn't a post that I had planned to do - but I am so proud of myself after two days of sewing that I just wanted to share....

     My daughter's school is doing an end of term show and in it her class are doing a Victorian feature. She has been cast as a maid and mentioned to me that she needed a mob cap and apron. I said I would like to make them for her....I am not sure what happened next, but she then somehow suggested I make all nine mob caps that were needed by the class....never one to shy from a challenge (and despite the fact that I had never made one before) I decided to give it a go...

    But how do I make one? The instructions I found on the internet were not very helpful and I got very confused so I went to a sewing expert - my dear friend Julia....she saved the day by finding me a step-by-step guide to making a mob cap that even I could understand. My daughter's teacher then asked me if I could make aprons too....Sure I can make them too.....I think!!!

    So yesterday I sat down to make all 9 mob caps and 4 aprons (I had done 5 last week) Cutting out 20" diameter circles was fun :o) How do you make an accurate circle pattern? Turns out there was a 20" cymbal as part of my husband's drum kit and that cymbal is currently staying in our living room at the moment - so I took the opportunity to use that!

      Once the 18 circles were all cut out it is just a case of sewing two together, leave a small gap and turn inside out. Then sew a circle 2" from the edge (leaving a gap - I forgot on three of them!) and then sew a complete circle about half an inch in from that. Thread elastic through the gap and feed it through the narrow strip made by the two circles of stitches and sew together at the end and - you have a mob cap!

 I decided to make it easier (?) for myself my doing each stage through all the mob caps, sewing all of them, then turning all of them, then ironing all and so on and so on......I tell you, by the time I was threading the elastic through No.7 I was really sick of them!!!!

     The apron was much easier and I am afraid I did it in a way that will make all talented seamstresses cringe....

I simply cut the material so it had a seam already at the bottom. Folded over the side edges once (yikes!) and stitched them. I folded the top over leaving enough space to thread the ribbon through, gathered up the material slightly and then sewed across the ribbon to secure it in place. Not a technically correct job, but it looked nice.

     My daughter complained about the white shirt that had been requested as part of the maid's uniform. She said it was too boyish and she hated it. I know her passion for pretty things, so I suggested we glam it up a little with some lace. Using some lace from my craft stash I sewed it onto the cuffs and collar.

 The skirt was one of mine that I didn't like anymore - It was brown so I dyed it black and took it in...again not a technically correct 'taking in' and I won't explain what I did for fear of hearing screams of horror reactions! fitted her and that was a huge relief!

     I certainly went through some rough patches. I can sew, I know some sewing bits and pieces, I can work a sewing machine, but I am in no way a seamstress (I really wish I was - my daughter would love me to make clothes for her) Halfway through making the mob caps my vintage singer sewing machine decided it was going to throw a wobbly and began making an awful mess of the bobbin stitches...a couple of hours were spent just unpicking the horrible tangled mess.

    Despite the problems I encountered (and it is all a learning experience) I loved making these items for the school and I am really proud....proud that they will be used in future plays by other children and I am proud that I made them despite not knowing how to. However, the best moment (to repeat the word 'proud' yet again) was when my daughter gave me a huge hug and kiss and said "Mummy, I am so proud of you for making them so brilliantly"

      So that is my daughter's costume (and 8 more mob caps and aprons) made in time for the performance on Friday. Some of you may wonder why my daughter looks a bit sad in some of the pictures - she isn't. She is just a very serious student of history who likes things to be correct. She knows that Victorian's didn't smile for photos and she insisted that it wouldn't be right for her to smile in these Victorian themed photos.....

  .........didn't last long though......!!!

    Thanks so much for being here to see my attempts at sewing......hope to see you soon!

 photo temp3_zpsf37f8b2d.png
Follow on Bloglovin


  1. Oh, I am sure Victorians smiled too - only they didn't on photographs due to the fact that a 20 minutes smile could get quite spooky (and exhausting too). ;)
    What a lovely photograph of a lovely maid! And what a brilliant job, Laura!
    Consider yourself nominated for the best-mom-in-the-world-award!

    And good to know that Julia can save from sewing problems of all kinds! ;)
    Well done, you!

    Hugs and my best regards to the lovely maid,
    Claudia xxx

  2. Well done Laura,what a task to take on! Glad it all worked out and everyone was happy with the results,you are very brave to do it :)

    Your daughter looks very authentic too :)

    Donna xx

  3. We'll done Laura! Good on you for having a go even though your weren't to sure about it. They turned out brilliantly and so you should be so proud, Karen.x

  4. Well done you! I remember (happily) when my daughter was in the school production of Annie playing Molly and I had to make her a little orphan costume. I was relieved that it had to look ragged - I don't know what I would have done if I'd had to clothe the rest of the cast! You must feel so proud of yourself and her, as it looks fabulous and authentic too. Now my daughter is nearly 21, I can hardly believe how the time has flown! Julie Ann xxx

  5. Oh very nice indeed. Good to have at least one person in the family who can sew! (Makes mental note..... :-))xxx


It is always lovely to see people visiting so I would love to hear from you. Please leave a comment for me - Thank you!