September and October: A Year of Zero Waste Sewing

Hi Everyone,

A Year of Zero Waste Sewing – A year of exploration, making and musings on zero waste patterns and clothes is a book project I started nearly 2 years ago (Mr H says it should be called TWO Years of Zero Waste Sewing). I’m experimentally publishing the book in instalments as zines. The first one is complimentary – read about this project and download your free copy here.

September and October are now ready and in my shop. They’re $AU5 each (+tax).

Here’s a bit about each one:


October discusses sleeves and armholes, a topic thoughtfully suggested by Emily of Empty Hanger Patterns. It has ideas for fitting together sleeves on a layout, tapering sleeves, suggestions for armholes, and most importantly about taking the opportunity to be creative.

Read Stefanie Kroth‘s zero waste story – you may remember her book Zero Waste Nähen which got reviewed here last year.

Ask Lizzy shares what inspired her (I mean, me) to work with zero waste fashion, and what to do when you’ve laid a printable zw pdf pattern on top of the fabric – should one use one’s fabric scissors to cut through fabric and paper?


In September, read about bias cut and zero waste. Bias cut clothes have a reputation for using more fabric and creating more scraps than those cut on the straight grain, and in most cases this is true. However, zero waste bias cut clothes have the potential to use even less fabric than regular non-bias cut garments – I show some ways to approach zero waste layouts.

Victoria Konash shares her zero waste story, from a teen sewing unwanted clothes into new ones, to her #10ZeroWasteDresses project.

Ask Lizzy suggests good items to start with when making zero waste patterns, and how a fashion business might transition to zero waste.

There’s a pattern in this instalment. It’s a bias cut wraparound halter top, which can have a skirt added to turn it into a dress. It comes in 17 sizes, to fit a 76.2cm/30″ bust to a 157.4cm/62″. I’ve done more smaller sizes and fewer bigger ones with this pattern, but if you require bigger sizes please drop me a message. The pattern has an accompanying YouTube sew-a-long. I think a beginner sewer would be fine to make this.

Here’s a gallery of makes:

In a vintage cotton, worn by me.
The top wraps around the waist and ties at the front.
Here’s one laid flat. The top is lined and is made from two squares of fabric, one for the outside and the other for the lining.
If you add a skirt, it turns into a wraparound sundress, like this one in cotton lawn.
(Weather permitting, I think this might be my Christmas Day dress.)
But what if you live in the Northern Hemisphere and it’s now too cold to wear sundresses? Relax! It also works well in baby cord or similar fabrics.

So…the end is nearly here for this zine project, with 10 zines finished, November at the editors, and December underway. Thank you so much for enthusiastically supporting this zero waste adventure!

Cheers! Liz

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