Saturday, March 7, 2015

Handmade Dress Swap

Ok I'm quite excited. It's taken me a while to get this going as I've been thinking about how to do it to include more people and make it a wonderful time of sharing and celebrating handmade!

Firstly, I'd love for you to share this around. Even if your not taking part, if you think it's a great idea then I'd love you to share the link or image on social media. The more handmade goodness being made and shared the better this world will be, don't you think!

I'm having dreams of this being an annual thing, or even more often. Imagine your wardrobe growing each year with handmade clothes made just for you! Anyway, let's see how this one goes before I start getting too excited!

So what am I talking about?

I'm asking you to join me in a handmade dress swap. Zara and myself exchanged handmade dresses for each other and want to do it again and thought you may too! The dresses in the pics are what we made for each other!
This means, you make a dress for someone else, and in return they send you one too. No money is exchanged, or judgemental looks on how detailed yours is, it's about taking the time to make a one of a kind handmade dress and send it to someone doing the exact same thing for you. It's celebrating the           art of sewing, celebrating sharing and giving, and celebrating handmade!                            

know some sewers out there are not very confident in making clothes for others. So I'm not going to force you, but I do encourage you to take a bold step and try. Perhaps see this as a good way to practise and push your sewing skills.

For other sewers, dresses are not on their radars. Skirts yes, but not dresses. Then good news, I'd love you to join in too!

And then for some, they love the idea of wearing handmade, supporting handmade but sewing is not a skill they have got or are even interested in. If you would like to be part of swapping a handmade dress, then you can still sign up. I'd ask that you buy and support someone else's handmade business or skill and send a handmade dress not made by you, but by someone else! This may sound uneven,as the price of buying a dress is a lot more than making one, but I want this to be open to people who don't mind buying one, knowing they will receive one and be part of this handmade loveliness! It's your choice! You can choose to do this through an independent business, someone you know who you can pay to make a dress or even a fellow swapper who might be more than happy to make yours while they make one for their partner for some sort of payment! Have a think!

This swap is not about doubting your ability. If you have the skill to sew two pieces together and make a simple a-line dress, then hooray! If your going to get the patterns and zips and buttons and trims, then hooray! It's all welcome! 

I'm a big fan of using opshopped material or vintage sheets, so I encourage you to make your garment with these fabrics too. But if you'd rather head to spotlight, then go ahead! A vintage sheet can turn even the most basic dress or skirt into a stunning piece!

If this sounds like something you want to be a part of, then please leave a comment with your email address below in the comments. Once sign up closes, I will email you will some very important questions that are not there to make life difficult, but instead make this swap the best it can be! These are the questions so you can see what will come next and have a think if this is for you!

Blog or IG:
Are you happy to post overseas?
Are you going to make or buy your garment?
Will you be sending a dress or skirt?
Are you happy to receive a bought garment? It's ok if you don't want that!
Are you happy to receive a skirt? Again, if you just want to make a dress and have someone make one for you, then just say so!
Will you be making/buying to size or do you need a similar/matching sized partner?
What is your size? This is so I can match you up and your partner knows what to cater for!

Ok so sign up will end FRIDAY 27th March that gives us a month to gather more sewers to join our fun!)
Have your garment in the mail no later than FRIDAY 5th JUNE. That gives you up to 2 months to make your dress. You can of course send it earlier!
Share on line your progress and what you receive! You can use the hashtag #handmadedressswap to see what everyone is up to!
And please share this swap around, the more swapping the happier we will all be! What a pretty world we will live in!
Once you have your partners details, whether email or social media, contact them and have a look at their interests. Find out if there are colours, lengths etc they hate on them selves so you don't end up sending something they will not wear. Get to know each other!

It's fun though to keep it a surprise. I shared with my partner that I don't like pastels on me. That's it. She said she likes anything. I knew from her blog she is a vintage sheet lover so made hers out of a lovely fitted sheet! Get creative!

Now for some cheeky stuff...
I'm not asking that everyone who joins this swap needs to follows my blog, but I'm asking that you share the image or link on your blog, IG, Facebook or even an email to someone you think might love this! I will also run a giveaway with the names of people who shared this post or image to win a dress made by me. Just let me know you have if your not going to use the hashtag online! 

If you have any questions please please please don't hesitate to ask! You can email me at


  1. What a fabulous idea! I'd love to join in!

  2. Brilliant idea I'm in

  3. Brilliant idea I'm in

  4. Love this! Count me in!

  5. Sign me up! gcehanley[at]

  6. I'm in! teaandrainbows [at] gmail [dot] com

  7. Oh I'm definitely in! debra(at)stitchingrules(dot)com

  8. Fantastic idea! Would love to join in!

  9. Fantastic idea! Would love to join in!

  10. I LOVE this idea! Count me in!!!

  11. Please add my name to the list Missy x

  12. I'm in!!!!!!!

  13. I'm in! Thenerdyseamstress[at]gmail[dot]com

  14. I'm in! Thenerdyseamstress[at]gmail[dot]com

  15. I love this!!!
    Thanks a ton.

  16. This sounds great but I'm worried about sizing. Would we have to make to specific body measurements or just a standard dress size 10,12 etc. I never have any luck trying to work to actual sizing.

  17. YES Taz, Good on you for orgnaising this swap. I can see you've put a lot of thought and time into it so more people can join in, which is amazing!.
    I'm in for sure. zara-117(at)hotmail(dot)com.
    i'll try and find some easy dress patterns to share too.

  18. I'd love to be part of this

  19. This sounds like such a fun idea. Count me in

  20. What a great idea. I'd love to give it a go! :)

  21. I'd love to give this a try!

  22. Yes please !

  23. Oh sounds so fun. Count me in.

  24. Hi Taz, have finally gotten around to plugging HMDS on blog. Sorry it took me so long x

  25. Keep forgetting to say.... please include me!! Sounds great!