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Sirdar Noah's Ark Knit Along Part 4 - Zebras!

MEASUREMENTS 
Height (approximately) 18cm, (7in) Sitting down 
MATERIALS 
F039 Sirdar Cotton DK, White 501 (M), Black 500 (C) 1 100g ball 
Shade 520 for hooves of both Zebras 1 100g ball 
Pink Zebra shades 509 (M) and 528 (C) 1 100g ball 
1 pair 3¼mm (UK10 - USA3) Knitting Needles
ABBREVIATIONS
mm millimetres, cm centimetres, in inch(es), g grammes, k knit, M main, beg beginning, C contrast, p purl, inc increase(ing), rem remain(ing), rep repeat, st(s) stitch(es), Tbl through back of loop, tog together, DK double knitting. St-st stocking stitch. 1st Row. Knit. 2nd Row. Purl. Rep these 2 rows
ZANY ZEBRAS 
FRONT/BACK (BOTH ALIKE) 
BODY 
Using M, cast on 24 sts. 
Working in st-st (throughout) proceed as follows:- 
Using M, work 4 rows. 
Using C, work 4 rows. 
Rep last 8 rows once more. 
Using M work 4 rows.
Using C, k2tog, knit to last 2 sts, k2tog. 22 sts. 
Using C, purl. Using M, work 2 rows. 
Using C, k2tog, knit to last 2 sts, k2tog. 20 sts. 
Using C, purl. 
Rep last 4 rows once more. 18 sts 
Using M work 2 rows. 
Using C, Knit. 
Using M, work 3 rows.
 Using M, (k2tog) 9 times. 9 sts 
Using M, work 3 rows. 
Cast off. 
MAKE UP 
Join side edges of Back and Front and stuff. 
HEAD 
Using M, cast on 14 sts. 
Working in st-st (throughout) proceed as follows:- 
Next Row. Inc in every st to last st, k1. 27 sts. 
Next Row. Purl. 
Next Row. Knit. 
Next Row. Purl. 
Next Row. (K1, inc in next st) 13 times, k1. 40 sts. 
Work 3 rows in st-st.
Using C, work 2 rows. 
Using M, work 2 rows. 
Using C, work 2 rows. 
Using M, work 4 rows.
Next Row. (K1, k2tog) 13 times, k1. 27 sts. 
Work 3 rows . 
Using C, work 8 rows. 
Next Row. (K2tog) 6 times, k3tog, (k2tog) 6 times. 13 sts.
Break off yarn and thread through rem sts
MAKE UP 
Join side edges of head together and stuff
EARS (Make 2) 
Using C, cast on 10 sts. 
Working in st-st (throughout) proceed as follows:- 
Work 8 rows. 
1st Row. K2tog, knit to last 2sts, k2tog. 8 sts. 
2nd Row. Purl. Rep last 2 rows once more. 6 sts. 
Rep 1st row once more. 4 sts. 
Next Row. (P2tog) twice. 2 sts.
Next Row. K2tog and fasten off. 
MAKE UP 
Join side edges of first 8 rows together. 
ARMS (Make 2) 
Using M, cast on 12 sts. 
Working in st-st (throughout) proceed as follows:- 
Work 18 rows. 
Using C, work 2 rows 
Using M, work 2 rows. 
Rep last 4 rows twice more. 
Work hand as follows:- 
Change to light grey. 
Work 6 rows. 
Next Row. (K2tog) 6 times. 6 sts. 
Break off yarn and thread through rem sts. 
MAKE UP 
Sew side edges of hand and stuff, continue to sew side edges of arm, stuffing as you work along the seam. 
BASE 
Using M, cast on 18 sts. 
Working in st-st (throughout) proceed as follows:- 
Next Row. Knit. 
Next Row. Inc in 1st st, purl to last st, inc in next st. 20 sts. 
Next Row. Inc in 1st st, knit to last st, inc in next st. 22 sts. 
Beg with a purl row, work 5 rows in st-st. 
Next Row. K2tog, knit to last 2sts, k2tog. 20 sts. 
Next Row. P2tog, purl to last 2sts, p2tog. 18 sts. 
Cast off. 
LEGS (Make 2) 
Using light grey cast on 14 sts. 
Next Row. Inc in 1st st, knit to last st, inc in next st. 16 sts. 
Next Row. Inc in 1st st, purl to last st, inc in next st. 18 sts 
Next Row. K7, (inc in next st) 4 times, k7. 22 sts. 
Next Row. Knit. 
Working in st-st (throughout) proceed as follows:- 
1st Row. K8, k2togtbl, k2, k2tog, k8. 20 sts. 
2nd and Every Alternate Row. Purl. 
3rd Row. K7, k2togtbl, k2, k2tog k7. 18 sts. 
5th Row. K6, k2togtbl, k2, k2tog, k6. 16 sts. 
7th Row. K5, k2togtbl, k2, k2tog, k5. 14 sts. 
8th Row. P4, p2tog, p2, p2togtbl, p4. 12 sts. 
Break off light grey and join in M. 
Work 2 rows. 
Using C, work 2 rows. 
Rep last 4 rows twice more. 
Using M only, work 22 rows. 
Cast off
MAKE UP 
Sew sole of foot together to knit ridge row. 
Continue to sew side edges of hoof and stuff. 
Sew side edges of leg stuffing as you work along the seam. 
Final Make Up 
Sew base to cast on edges of Back and Front inserting legs to body front and sewing through. 
Sew head to neck edge of body. 
Sew ears to each side of back head. 
Embroider eyes working a centre French knot with a straight stitch to each side of the knot. 
Embroider nostrils as shown. 
Sew arms to neck edge of body. 
Cut 8 lengths of light grey yarn 40cm long to make a twisted cord tail, Make a knot leaving a 3cm fringe and cut across straight. 
Fasten to lower back of Zebra. 
Cut 8 lengths of yarn 10cm long and fasten together, sewing to centre of head, to form head tuft.
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Fabric Friday - The Spanish Influence

Today's Fabric Friday is all about Extravagance! Specifically our Spanish Dress Fabrics
These are the fabrics a sewist would dream of using one day, and it's easy to see why! Choosing just a handful was difficult but I just managed, so here we go.
Starting at the calmer end of the scale we have our Woven Print Spanish Dress Fabric Cream & Indigo Blue. A lovely woven polyester with a gorgeous drape, covered in Mandala-like print in Navy Blue, on Cream. Any garment made in this fabric will be instantly gorgeous.
Next, a fabric than can be described as nothing short of divine! Our Woven Jacquard Spanish Dress Fabric
Just look at that! This is pure elegance in a single fabric. The woven Paisley just cries beauty and the way the light catches the ivory is just exquisite! Also available in white, this also falls under the category of our Couture Bridal Fabrics, and is already on my Dream Wedding Pinterest board!
Moving onto one of the slightly more outlandish Spanish fabrics, our All over Sequins on Lace Spanish Dress Fabric in Black is subtle and over the top at the same time!
Now it may seem contradictory for a fabric to be called subtle and over the top at the same time, but this fabric manages it. Out of the corner of your eye, a simple black fabric but as it moves and you move with it the sequins spark into life and create a wonderful elegance! Not for the faint of heart, great for those wanting to make an effortless impact.
These are my top 3 from our Spanish Fabric range. I am waiting with deep anticipation for an event where I can use ANY of these fabrics!
Have you ever used any?
@minervafabrics on Twitter
@minervacrafts on Instagram
minervafabrics.com on Facebook
minervacrafts.com on Pinterest
Katie B x
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Q&A with Chelsea of SewDarnNeat

Hello everyone! 

We have a lovely tutorial for your today from Chelsea at SewDarnNeat. We have collaborated with Chelsea in the past on several tutorials on her blog using our products. We are really excited to welcome her to contribute to our craft tutorials here on the website very shortly, so we thought you might like to meet her by way of a Q&A here on the blog first :)

So here goes...

Can you tell us a little bit about you and your blog?

My name is Chelsea and I’m a 20-year-old Math student from Wales. My blog is Sew Darn Neat. It’s my space where I share my homemade home decor and clothes (and everything in between). I’ve been blogging for less than a year but loving every minute so far.

When did you start crafting and what inspired you to start? What was your first project?

As a child I was always crafty, I loved saving up bits of rubbish and turning them into my treasures. I’d save up toilet roll inners, egg cartons and sweet wrappers and make all sorts of creations with them. Every once in a while I would pick up knitting needles with the ambition to make a scarf. I religiously got bored with it after a short time and only ever made a bookmark!

When I was around 10 years old I asked Father Christmas for a sewing machine which I fortunately received. I was so excited! We opened the box and couldn’t find a manual. Back then YouTube wasn’t really a thing so it wasn’t easy to find instructions online. The sewing machine stayed in the box for a while and eventually made its way back to the shop for a refund.

Around September 2014 I was going into my second year at University, I decided I wanted my Uni room to look nice and cosy so decided to make bunting. I guess this was my first sewing project, I bought a fat quarter bundle, white ribbon and white lace trim and hand sewed it all together. The bunting has followed me into my third year at uni.

The feeling of self-satisfaction after making the bunting was great and so I wanted to sew some more. A crafty friend asked me if I had ever watched the Great British Sewing Bee, which I had not. I found the episodes for series 1 and 2 and watched all of them in two days! Christmas 2014 came along and I received my current machine (Ditsy) and my sewing journey began…

What is your favourite craft?

My favourite craft has got to be sewing but crochet must be a close second. I’ve been sewing almost a year now and love that it is an endless learning journey and that I will only get better with time and practice, in fact I have seen some improvement already!

Within the last month or so I’ve had a stab at embroidery (quite literally), which I’m quite enjoying.

What do you love most about crafting?

Doing my degree can be very stressful at times, the work is difficult and there is a huge workload. Crafting definitely helps to relieve that stress, I find it very therapeutic. However, my favourite thing about crafting has got to be when someone complements me on what I’m wearing and asks where I got it. Nothing beats that feeling of pride!

Do your friends or family craft along with you?

My sister has adopted my Nana’s old machine and will sew with me when I’m home from uni. This past summer we spent a day sewing lined tote bags together (tutorial) which was so much fun. Also, I made bunting with two of my friends in the summer. They seemed to really enjoy it and being able to watch someone else enjoying your hobby is a wonderful feeling. Being able to share the experience with others is great.

Who do you make things for?

I have to confess… I’m a selfish sewer. I love making clothes for myself. Does that make me a bad person? I am also a self-confessed fabric addict. I feel attached to all of my fabric and hate to be parted from it, which is probably the main reason I sew for myself. When I’m not sewing for myself I love to sew for my niece and nephew (1 and 3). I made my nephew some pyjamas for his third birthday and he LOVES them, he still wears them even though they have become too short for him. Every time I go to visit and he is wearing his pyjamas he gets excited telling me that his 'Aunty Che Che' made them for him.

What made you decide to start to blog about your crafting?

I got my sewing machine December 2014 and started blogging within a month. I wanted a way to document every item that I created which blogging allowed me to do. I also wanted to engage with the online sewing community, they are such a friendly bunch of people.

Do you have a favourite snack when crafting?

Snacking and sewing aren’t two things that happen simultaneously for me. In fact, I usually completely forget to eat! Many a time I have started sewing before breakfast and stopped around teatime having completely skipped lunch. Oops!

What 3 sewing or craft items/tools could you not live without?

My sewing machine (duh!), pins (to lessen the amount of mistakes I make) and seam ripper (to fix the mistakes that are inevitable).

What are your favourite fabrics to sew with any why?

I haven’t ventured out too much yet. 99% of the time I sew with Cotton/Polycotton. It is a great fabric to begin learning to sew with! However I think I need to start challenging myself a bit more fabric wise.

What is your favourite product on the Minerva Crafts website and what would you make with it?

So many to choose from! I recently made a nurse costume with supplies from Minerva Craft. I made a nurse hat out of felt, there is such a great selection of beautiful looking felt fabric on the website. Keep your eyes peeled for a new felt creation from me coming your way!

How many projects do you have on the go at one time?

Usually just one. I like to finish a project before starting another. Sometimes if I lose my mojo with a project I will make something fun and simple to get my mojo back.

What’s your favourite thing you have ever made?

My proudest make is probably my gingham dress. It was the first time I had *successfully* made anything to fit the top half of my body and love the outcome!

What is your latest WIP (Work in progress)? Do you have a photo?

Another set of pyjamas like this pair for the “Wrap Pyjama Fairies” charity I co-run. We make wrap style pyjamas and gowns for children undergoing heart operations. Feel free to join in on Facebook.

Do you watch TV or listen to music while you craft?

I generally listen to music when I sew and love singing my heart out. But when I’m feeling a bit tamer, I love watching films snuggled in a blanket while I crochet.

What/who do you go to for inspiration before you start crafting?

Cliché answer but Pinterest is my go to place for inspiration, every time!

Do you have a crafty tip you would like to share?

When I’ve finished sewing a buttonhole on my machine I pop a pin at both ends of my buttonhole, perpendicular to the buttonhole (covering my bar tack stitches). Then I put my seam ripper in the centre and work my way outwards. The pins stop you from cutting too far and cutting through the end stitches.

Do you follow other blogs? If so which blogs?

I love The Pineneedle Collective, Danamadeit and Tilly and the Buttons!

Do you have any advice for new bloggers?

Short and sweet: Do what you enjoy and don’t be afraid to experiment!

Could you sum yourself up as a crafter in 3 words?

Dedicated, Determined and Addicted.

Thanks so much for that Chelsea! It was lovely to get to know you a little better! As mentioned above Chelsea will soon be creating a sewing tutorial for us here at Minerva which we are very excited about so be sure to pop back to see that! And to find out more about Chelsea's creations and other sewing projects be sure to pop over to Chelsea's blog to see more.

Until next time,

Vicki x

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Pattern of the Week Kwik Sew 3835 - Racer Back Top & Pull On Pants

Our Pattern of the Week this Week is for Gym Bunnies and Lounge Lizards alike with Kwik Sew's Racer Back Top & Pull On Pants
Now as you might imagine, this is designed for Stretch Knit Fabric but only the waistband and cuffs on the trousers need to have 50% stretch, the rest can be a Knit Fabric with little or no stretch so this really widens the field! 
Moving on with a stripe pattern, our Broad Stripe Stretch Viscose Jersey Clearance Dress Fabric is a fabulous fabric that has almost unlimited uses...
...with splashes of colour...
..and not limited to grey contrast this is a great fabric for this pattern and so easy to tailor to your style! 
I need a pair of pull on trousers in this fabric. Who doesn't? I am always looking for an excuse to use this Hawaiian Palm Trees Print Stretch Jersey and for me this pattern is crying out for it! One of our Team for the Minerva Crafts Blogger Network used this and mentions how lovely the drape is and how easy it is to care for. Perfect house/sewing trousers me thinks!
Another suggested fabric is Stretch Velvet, so our Stretch Velour Jersey Dress Fabric in Navy Blue is perfect for this 
 Vest tops are a staple in many a wardrobe, even through the colder months. How many of us have really boring vests piled in our drawers? No more I say! With the racer back and a shelf bra lining, the top itself is wonderful and you can play with fabrics to make your sports wear the prettiest in the gym,or your lounge wear surprise visitor proof ;)
Our John Kaldor Large Floral Stretch Jersey Dress Fabric is perfect for this, I think. So many customers rave about the John Kaldor Fabrics and it is so easy to see why with prints like this and quality to match.
If you're looking to steer away from prints, our Plain Viscose Stretch Jersey Dress Fabric Raspberry Pink is a good example of so many of our plain jerseys. A smooth viscose blend with a rich colour, Lovely! 
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Sirdar Noah's Ark Knit Along Part 3 - Giraffes!

MEASUREMENTS 
Sitting down to top of head 23cm (9in) approximately
MATERIALS
F039 Cotton DK 507 (M) 505 (C) or 504 (M) 508 (C)1 100g ball each 
1 Pair of 3¼mm (USA3) Knitting Needles 
Small amount of black DK for eyes and nostrils 
ABBREVIATIONS
cm centimetres, mm millimetres, in inch(es), DK double knitting, M main, C contrast, g grammes, k knit, p purl, inc increase(ing), rem remain(ing), 
rep repeat, st(s) stitch(es), tog together, tbl through back of loop. st-st (Stocking Stitch) 1st Row. Knit. 2nd Row. Purl. Rep these 2 rows. 
M1 – Make 1 stitch. Pick up loop between last and next stitch and work into the back of this loop

BODY 

Back and Front (Both alike) 
Using M cast on 30 sts. Working in st-st (throughout) proceed as follows:- 
* Work 8 rows. 
Next Row. K2tog, knit to last 2sts, k2tog. 28 sts. 
Rep from * once more. 26 sts. Work 5 rows without shaping. Next Row. K2tog, knit to last 2 sts, k2tog. 24 sts. Rep last 6 rows 7 times more. 10 sts. Work 3 rows without shaping. 
Break off yarn and thread through rem sts and fasten off. MAKE UP Using C, Swiss embroider random spots as chart. Join side edges of Back and Front and stuff.
MAKE UP 
Using C, Swiss embroider random spots as chart. Join side edges of Back and Front and stuff
HEAD 
Using M cast on 14 sts. Working in st-st (throughout) proceed as follows:- 
Next Row. Inc in every st to last st, k1. 27 sts. Work 3 rows without shaping. 
Next Row. (K1, inc in next st) 13 times, k1. 40 sts. Work 5 rows without shaping. 
Next Row. K2, (k2tog, k3) 7 times, k2tog, k1. 32 sts. Work 3 rows without shaping. 
Next Row. K1, (k2tog, k2) 7 times, k2tog, k1. 24 sts. Work 5 rows without shaping. 
Next Row. K3, (k2tog, k1) 6 times, k3. 18 sts. Next Row. Purl. Change to C, Next Row. K3, * m1, k2, rep from * to last 3 sts, k3. 24 sts. 
Work 7 rows without shaping
Next Row. (K2tog) 12 times. 12 sts. 
Break off yarn and thread through rem sts and fasten off.
MAKE UP 
Sew side edges of head together stuffing as you work along. Close cast on stitches at back of head
LEGS 
(Make 2) Using C cast on 14 sts. 
Next Row. Inc in 1st st, knit to last st, inc in next st. 16 sts.
Next Row. Inc in 1st st, purl to last st, inc in next st. 18 sts. 
Next Row. K7, (inc in next st) 4 times, k7. 22 sts. 
Next Row. Knit. 
1st Row. K8, k2togtbl, k2, k2tog, k8. 20 sts. 
2nd and Every Alternate Row. Purl. 
3rd Row. K7, k2togtbl, k2, k2tog, k7. 18 sts. 
5th Row. K6, k2togtbl, k2, k2tog, k6. 16 sts. 
7th Row. K5, k2togtbl, k2, k2tog, k5. 14 sts. 
8th Row. Purl.
Change to M. 
Work 18 rows in st-st. 
Proceed with knee shaping as follows:- 
Next Row. K4, (m1, k1) 6 times, m1, k4. 21 sts. Beg with a purl row work 5 rows in st-st. 
Next Row. K4, (k2tog) 7 times, k3. 14 sts. Beg with a purl row, work 23 rows in st-st. 
Cast off. 
MAKE UP 
Sew base of hoof and side edges of leg together, stuffing as you work along. 
Roll a round piece of stuffing to give the knee section definition. 
EARS 
(Make 2) Using M cast on 20 sts. 
Work 6 rows in st-st. 
Next Row. (K2tog) 10 times. 10 sts. 
Next Row. Purl. 
Next Row. (K2tog) 5 times. 5 sts. 
Break off yarn and thread through rem sts and fasten off. 
MAKE UP 
Fold ear in half and sew side edges together. 
HORNS 
(Make 2) Using C cast on 7 sts. 
Work 4 rows in st-st.
 Next Row. (K1, m1) 6 times, k1. 13 sts. 
Next Row. (P2tog) 6 times, p1. 7 sts. 
Break off yarn and thread through rem sts and fasten off. 
MAKE UP 
Roll side edges of work to form horn shape and sew in place to keep the shape firm. 
ARMS
(Make 2) Using M cast on 12 sts. 
Working in st-st (throughout) work 38 rows. 
Change to C. 
Work 6 rows.
 Next Row. (K2tog) 6 times. 6 sts. 
Break off yarn and thread through rem sts and fasten off. 
MAKE UP 
Sew side edges of arm together stuffing as you work along. 
BASE 
Using M cast on 16 sts.
 Next Row. Purl. 
Next Row. Inc in 1st st, knit to last st, inc in last st. 18 sts. 
Next Row. Purl. 
Next Row. Inc in 1st st, knit to last st, inc in last st. 20 sts. 
Next Row. Inc in 1st st, purl to last st, inc in last st. 22 sts. 
Next Row. Inc in 1st st, knit to last st, inc in last st. 24 sts. 
Beg with a purl row work 6 rows without shaping in st-st. 
Next Row. P2tog, purl to last 2 sts, p2tog. 22 sts. 
Next Row. K2tog, knit to last 2 sts, k2tog. 20 sts. 
Next Row. P2tog, purl to last 2 sts, p2tog. 18 sts. 
Next Row. K2tog, knit to last 2 sts, k2tog. 16 sts. 
Next Row. Purl. 
Cast off. 
FINAL MAKE UP 
Sew base to cast on edges of Back and Front placing legs to front cast off edge of base.
 Sew head firmly to gathered neck edge. 
Sew arms 6cm down from neck. 
Sew horns to centre back of head just above back head seam. 
Fold ears in half at cast on edge to form a pleat, sew ears 1cm forward of horns and to side edges of head. 
Using colour of your choice embroider eyes working a French knot with a straight stitch to the top and bottom of the knot. 
Make 2 small straight stitches in the nose section to indicate nostrils. 
Cut 8 lengths of M 40cm long to make a twisted cord tail. 
Make a knot leaving a 3cm fringe and cut across straight. 
Sew tail to centre back, 1cm up from base seam
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Fabric Friday - Darling Dancewear

IT'S FRIDAY! Although the Team behind the screens here at Minerva HQ will be beavering away over the weekend we still have cause to celebrate; not only because we have the best jobs in the world (clearly) but it's also Fabric Friday!
I thought this week I'd shine light on the brightest range of fabrics we carry here at Minerva - our Dancewear Fabrics!
Now Lycra and other such fabrics may strike fear into the hearts of many, particularly if you grew up in the era of Home Exercise Videos, but it is a surprisingly versatile range of fabric! Our Hologram Floral Print Stretch Jersey is pretty darn nifty if you ask me. I really like the idea of foil print fabrics as they add a dimension of depth with the way the garment would catch the light, particularly on a jersey which would have a flow and drape to it!
Another range of fabrics that really caught my eye this week were our All Way Stretch Lycra Fabrics. As a bit of a dressing up nerd I always have my ear to the ground for super stretchy fabrics with a good colour range, and this certainly fits the bill, but what got me this week is that this fabric is great for Swimwear, too! Lady Sewalot did a lovely Emerald Green Bathing Suit for the Minerva Crafts Blogger Network and it really widened my field of vision for this fabric. We all have our preferences for our bathing suits, and by using this you can really tailor to your needs! Whether you'd like a bit of ruching over your bumpy bits, a longer leg short to cover the knees, or just something bright and fun! There's a metallic version, too, if you're feeling brave ;)
If you're going to be sewing with any of these, or any stretch fabric really, you can utilise the opportunity to use the Seraflock Stretch Thread!
Now this isn't a stretch thread in as much as it itself stretches, but a stretch thread in that, once sewn up, will stretch with the fabric. Perfect if you don't have a stretch stitch on your machine as you can just sew a standard straight stitch as normal! (though a bit of experimentation may be required to see if you machine likes it in just the spool, just the bobbon, or both!)
So that's my Fabric Friday, a little list of fabrics that've jumped out at me this week. Be sure to keep your eye out for Halloween posts, too!
@minervafabrics on Twitter
@minervacrafts on Instagram
minervafabrics.com on Facebook
minervacrafts.com on Pinterest
Katie B x
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Pattern of the Week McCalls 6466 - Lined Evening Dresses & Flower

Hello Hello Hello!
Our Pattern of the Week is a WOW as well as a POW!
This is a real Mix and Match Pattern and is truly stunning
Look at that! 4 Bodices, 2 Midriffs, 4 Skirts and a Flower in one sewing pattern. It' like a GCSE Maths Exam Question! Though don't fret, we've done the working out, 64. 64 different dress combinations! This teamed with recommended fabrics of Satin and CrepeSheer Fabrics for the Draping Bodices, and Tulle for the huge skirt, gives you the chance to create something truly special.
If you want to recreate this astounding garment our Bridal Tulle is amazing for many reasons. For me though its amazing elegance and 108" width make it a winner. Match with our Shimmer Crepe for a stunning evening dress.
If you fancy an 80s throw back, try the Puff Ball variation as a chance to play with some amazing Sheer Fabric!
 
Our Floral Ribbon Embroidered Georgette Dress Fabric is begging to be teamed with this voluminous addition and the bright colour choices are the cherry on the cake for the big impact of this dress!
What about the seemingly boring straight skirt?
Our 100% Silk Satin Print Dress Fabric in Navy Blue is most definitely he fabric for this, teamed with our 60" wide Double Georgette Dress Fabric this will be the understated bell of the ball
Moving on to the flared skirt, time to introduce a crepe and our Large Spot Print Soft Dress Fabric Black & Cream is the one for me
With a contrasting midriff, a true winner
Wondering how to use the flower embellishment? From this sketch, less certainly isn't more!
Most certainly an excuse to experiment with Sheer Border Fabrics to mirror the detail of the bodice!
At just £4.38 this week, this is another great way to get adventurous!
As always, share your makes!
Katie B xo
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Fabric Friday - Five Fiendish Favourites

Hey Guys!
Welcome to a new feature on the Minerva Crafts Blog - Fabric Friday! Each week I'll showcase a handful of fabrics that have caught the eye of the gang here at Minerva HQ
With Halloween just around the corner this week is taking a Spooky theme! 
WARNING - This post contains terrifyingly bad puns!
Let's start with our Halloween Foil Print Jersey 
Choose from Wild Witches...
...or Ghastly Ghosts to create a Spook-tacular outfit! I really like the idea of teachers making this up into a garment and wearing it at School discos! Also, great for parents wanting to get into the spirit of things!
Another fabric worthy of any fantastical Witch or Warlock is our Sequin Satin Fabric
 
Available is a wide range of colours, this fabric is perfect for making costumes, or backdrops to ghoulish gatherings! Great for anyone wanting to make an impact but not breaking the bank.
Speaking of Ghouls...
A customer brought this to our attention with an idea to team our Gothic Skulls Design Nylon Lace with a lining fabric for a Spooky Ghost with a twist! Simply, but better than just a bed sheet!
I think this fabric would top off any Ghastly outfits, as the edges look like they're coated is ash or dust, adding the fiendish final touch to your outfit. 
So that's my Five Fiendish Favourites for the First Fabric Friday! Be sure you keep your eye on the blog for more Halloween Inspiration!
Until next time!
Katie B x
 
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Stylecraft Halloween Cosies Free Knitting Pattern

After casting off, one stitch will remain on the right hand needle which is not included in the instructions that follow.
ABBREVIATIONS
St-st (Stocking Stitch) 
Row 1: Knit. 
Row 2: Purl. 
Rep these two rows 
K2tog – knit two sts together. 
K3tog – Knit 3 sts together
 
Ghost 
You will need – 
1 pair of 4mm (UK 8, US 6) needles, Large sewing needle and 1 ball each of Stylecraft Special DK in Black and Cream. 2 buttons. 
Tension 22sts X 30rows on 4mm needles 
Instructions 
Using 4mm needles and cream cast on 46sts. 
Next row (RS): Knit. Rep last row 5 times more (6 rows in total) Cont in st-st for 20 rows. 
Next row: Knit. Rep last row 5 times more (6 rows in total) Cast off loosely. 
Button loops - Using a crochet hook make a chain to length needed. 
Tie off and secure. Sew up seam. 
Make up 
Using photographs as a guide, using correct coloured yarns doubled up embroider features on cosy. 
Sew on buttons and button loops.
 
Cat 
You will need – 
1 pair of  4mm (UK 8, US 6) needles, Large sewing needle and 1 ball each of Stylecraft Special DK in Black, Lime, Fondant and Cream. 2 buttons. 
Tension 22sts X 30rows on 4mm needles. 
Instructions
Using Black, Knit as for Ghost. 
Cat ears Using 4mm needles , cast on 10sts. 
Next row: Knit. 
Next row: K4, K2tog, K4. 
Cont to Knit, dec 1 st in middle of work until 1 st rem. 
Secure last st. Sew up seam. 
Make up 
As ghost.
 
Monster 
You will need – 
1 pair of  4mm (UK 8, US 6) needles, Large sewing needle and 1 ball of each Stylecraft Special DK in Black, Lime and cream. 
Main yarn (MS) – Lime 
Contrast yarn (CS) – Black 
Tension 22sts X 30rows on 4mm needles 
Instructions 
Using 4mm needles and M yarn, cast on 46sts. 
Next Row (RS): Knit. Rep last row 5 times more (6rows in total) Cont in st-st for 16 rows. 
Next row: K4 in CS, K6 in MS, K3 in CS, K4 in MS, K6 in CS, K4 in MS, K3 in CS, K6 in MS, K4 in CS, K3 in MS, K3 in CS. 
Next row: P3 in CS, P3 in MS, P4 in CS, P6 in MS, K3 in CS, P4 in MS, P6 in CS, P4 in MS, P3 in CS, P6 in MS, P4 in CS. 
Rep last 2 rows once more. Using CS yarn, knit one row. 
Rep last row 5 times more (6 rows in total) Cast off loosely. 
Button loops - Using a crochet hook make a chain to length needed. 
Tie off and secure.
Make up 
As ghost
 
Pumpkin 
You will need – 1 pair of  4mm (UK 8, US 6) needles, Large sewing needle and 1 ball each of Stylecraft Special DK in Spice and Black. 2 buttons. 
Tension 22sts X 30rows on 4mm needles. 
Instructions 
Using Spice, knit as for Ghost. 
Make up 
As ghost
 
Pumpkin Tea Pot Cosy (make 2) 
You will need – 1 pair of 4mm (UK 8, US 6) needles, Large sewing needle and 2 ball of Stylecraft Special Dk in Spice and 1 ball of Lime. 
Tension 22sts X 26 rows in patt on 4mm needles
 Instructions
Using 4mm needles, cast on 47 sts. 
Row 1: K1, *K2, P2; rep from * to last 2 sts, K2. 
Row 2: K1, P1 *P1, K2, P1; 
rep from * to last st, K1. Rep rows 1 & 2 until 45 rows are complete. 
Next row: P3tog, *K1, P3tog; rep from * to end. K1. 23sts. 
Next row: K2tog to last st. K1. 12sts. 
Thread yarn through rem sts and secure tightly.
 Leaf 
Using 4mm needles, cast on 2sts. 
Next row: K1, inc 1 st in middle of row K1. 
cont to knit every row inc 1 st in middle of work until 10sts. 
Next row: Knit. Next Row: K4, K2tog, K4. 
Cont to Knit, dec 1 st in middle of work until 3 st rem, K3tog. 
Secure last st. 
Stalk 
Using 4mm needles, cast on 3sts. 
Next row: Knit 
Next row: slip sts onto left hand needle and Knit.
 Rep last 2 rows 4 times more.
Cast off.
Make up 
Place both pieces together; sew side seams at the top and bottom leaving an appropriate gap for the spout and handle. 
Stitch leaves and stalk to gathered top edge.
 
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Pattern of the Week Butterick 4443- Sew Easy Dresses and Belts

It's Pattern of the Week time! This week features a perfect pattern for those looking to venture in to making party Dresses!
Butterick 4443 features SIX views, including a 3 bodice variations,trims, belts, all sorts! What they all have in common is a lovely just below-knee length and close fit around he bodice.
Views A and B are the Strapless Bodice views, with varying trim. Certainly overtly the Party Dresses of the pack, I can see these at weddings and most certainly in Woven Stretch Jacquard Dress Fabric Gold.
The high cotton content of this Jacquard make it fit with this pattern well, and would hold structure of the skirt well. Perfect for the simplicity of View A with it's Baroque Patterned Texture. It also has Lycra so will give and take with all the dancing (or expanding stomachs) of the up and coming season! 
If you're looking to replicate the crisp lines of View B, Jardin Stretch Cotton Sateen Dress Fabric would most certainly be the way to go
I'd swap the Black for a lovely Navy for a slightly more gentle contrast.
View C, D, and E are the sleeveless bodices with various trims and necklines. These are more Summery Garden Party to me so I can only see these in gorgeous florals such as Floral Print Liberty Cotton Poplin Dress Fabric in Bright Pink
or even our Black/White Zebra Animal Print Cotton Poplin Fabric! (I think this would be super jazzy) 
View F is the lovely Sunny Day dress with the gorgeous sleeves. 
To me this cries bright and breezy so a lovely cotton lawn like our Floral Print Liberty Cotton Lawn Dress Fabric in Blue & White
What I really like about this pattern is you an take any of the factors and mix and match to make your perfect dress. When you read the recommended fabrics of Lightweight LinenCotton, Cotton Blends and Gingham, it can seem a bit of a limited range but actually you can move from a structred brocade to a light weight lawn and still be within the pattern requirements. A true testament to the lovely nature of cotton, really! You could even use a Poly/Cotton Georgette! I'd love to try this pattern with this Dimensional Floral Cotton & Georgette Dress Fabric
At just £4 this week, you can really get adventurous with this lovely simple and easy pattern. If you do, let us know! Get on ye olde social media
@minervafabrics on Twitter
@minervacrafts on Instagram
minervafabrics.com on Facebook
minervacrafts.com on Pinterest
See you Sew-n! (I do not regret this pun!)
Katie B xo

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