My Toasty Talvikki Sweater

talvikki 1
Talvikki sweater in quilted jersey

Sweater tops and sweatshirts have been all over my Instagram feed in the last couple of months, with loads and loads of Toaster sweaters dominating, just the way the Linden did  last year.  I bought the Talvikki sweater on its release with the Pulmu Pencil skirt to make for the daughters.  I figured this was the time to make the Talvikki for me, using the quilted navy jersey bought in South Africa when looking after my mum.

talvikki 3

According to the size table the 48/50 should be cut.  I checked the finished measurements and looked at others online before deciding it would be way too big on me, too baggy, and that was not a look I wanted.  So I cut the size smaller and it seems to have worked!  This particular version is straight from the pattern, I’ve changed nothing.

talvikki 2

The darts look fabulous radiating from the raised neckline and I love the hemline with split side seams.  The instructions are dead simple and the sweater makes up pretty quickly too.  I used the overlocker for all the construction, and twin needled the hems.

talvikki 4

Changes to be made next time…  If I find another lovely fabric to make another version there are two things I’d change.  The neckline on me is too narrow for the height, it could do with being 3-4 cm wider to be properly comfortable on me.  Then there is the length of the sleeves.  They’re a little too long for me, for now I’ve just turned them up like the model has in the photos (this should have been a hint..)  I will be taking my seam ripper to the hem stitching and shortening the sleeve by 3cm.  Unfortunately I forgot that I’d turned up the cuffs on the sleeves when these photos were taken!

talvikki 5

But there will be another one, I really like wearing my Talvikki sweater and have had compliments from friends and family which is always nice.  In fact, I’ve worn it so much that the fabric is starting to pill – not nice.  Now to find suitable fabric, but it won’t come from the stash, there’s nothing in there that’s suitable.  I’ve got a couple of tops to make next, and a pair of Morgan jeans that’s been sitting on my cutting table since the pattern came out.  I’ve got a lot to catch up on from last year!


Catching up

Blue skies and palm trees are my view at the moment

Greetings from the Southern Hemisphere!  I had so wanted to be able to show you the Named Pulmu Skirt finished in all its glory just after the toile post, but I’m afraid things happened and it’s languishing at home while I’m 10 000 miles away.  The black crepe looks fabulous and the skirt shell is complete, but I totally ran out of time to make the lining and finish off.  One more day would have done it!

Holiday packing included my little Bernina

I had a week in Cornwall at the end of September, where the weather forecast wasn’t all that favourable.  So I decided to take my sewing machine and a couple of projects to while away the time when it was too miserable to stand on beaches or roam through pretty gardens.  The dining room of the holiday flat became my dedicated sewing room and I actually did make some progress.  The weather wasn’t as bad as the weatherman had made out.

My sewing room for the week in Cornwall
Pulmu skirt shell complete, awaiting lining and finishing off

One thing I did manage to finish, finally – was Daughter No2’s crochet granny square sampler blanket.  I must have spent around 10 hours sewing in all the ends on the back, mind numbing work, but made easier in the end by a pretty view and a few glasses of wine.  It’s only a year late, but she’s forgiven me and the blanket has pride of place on her bed at Uni.

A real labour of love, the finished granny square sampler blanket

In the meantime, and before I even started the Pulmu toile, I made another pair of Birkin Flared jeans – for me, of course!  This brings my total to 4.

I was pretty impressed with my seam matching this time, no ripping out!

The fabric was a lightweight denim with 2%stretch from Croft Mill Fabric.  It’s a beautiful dark indigo and is fantastic to wear. I didn’t bother fighting with topstitch thread (again) and stuck with the navy blue ordinary thread.  I found a cute button in the stash and voila, a new pair of jeans for me.

The button is far more olive green, but it’s proved impossible to get the colour right.

They’ve been so comfortable, I wore them for 21 hours on a long haul flight from the UK to South Africa and didn’t bat an eyelid.  They kept their shape, I didn’t have a saggy butt or baggy knees and, most of all, they didn’t dig in for all that time sitting in an uncomfortable aeroplane seat.  Where do you find this fabulous fabric?  It’s called “Formality” and can be found, in low stock now, at Croft Mill Fabrics.

First wear!

The pocket linings were cut from one of Husband’s shirts.  He managed to shrink a couple in the wash so the sleeves are now way too short.  I held onto the shirts thinking the fabric would come in handy somewhere (it’s not only lengths of fabric that I hoard).  So my pocket bags are pink and stripey!

Jazzy pockets!

So these jeans are with me down south and I’m loving them in my travelling wardrobe.  I just hope I don’t wear them out before heading back to the big cold, because it would be a shame not to be able to take full advantge of them throughout the winter in the UK.

Birkin Flared Jeans in Cornwall (note the photobomber behind me)

I made this pair slightly longer than my others, not such a good idea when wearing with flat shoes (and in the mud) but perfect for boots when I get back to colder weather.


We all had a fabulous time in the sun and on the beautiful Cornish beaches. I’m always sad to say goodbye.

But three days after getting back from Cornwall I was on a plane and heading south.  I’m with my parents while my mum recovers from a double hip replacement, so there’s precious little sewing going on, although the withdrawl symptoms are great!  I was just getting ready to start sewing for autumn and winter, and now my summer wardrobe is having a second outing to the South!

In the end only one piece for mum, the rest is mine! 🙂

I have made a fabric purchase while I’m here (and I honestly cannot say it will be the last, sorry pledge!!).  I was looking for fabric for tops for my mum when I found stuff that just wouldn’t let me pass without purchasing.  But, it will all be used for winter clothes the minute I get back, if not before!

So I leave you with a little bit of South Africa, and hope I’ll be able to do a little sewing very soon!

Elephants at Inkenkwezi


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