Friday, December 28, 2018

Designin' December

My latest two garments are a linen skirt with an inverted pleat. The pattern is from So Sew Easy and is the Wear Everywhere Skirt.

My major make this month has been the shirt I entered into the Designin' December Challenge . The original was in a local shopping centre and I made my copy using fabric I have been saving/hoarding  for nearly 20 years and a Kwik Sew Pattern #3027. I modified the pattern slightly by leaving off the pockets and adding the sleeve tabs.

I'm very pleased with the results of my copy and although the original wasn't very expensive, I made this one for next to nothing.

Friday, November 16, 2018

Pants and more Tops

In June I made a pair of Style Arc Margaret Pants. These have a similar fit to the famous Barb pants and in August another pair Style Arc pants, Linda this time. I have made a few Linda pants but I narrowed the leg to match the Barb width on this pair.

Next off the sewing machine in September was Kwik Sew 2694 in black jersey. I made view B which is an empire style, but the seam under the bust seemed too loose so I stitched a length of narrow elastic into it which pulled it in closer to the body.

In October I finally tackled the Itch to Stitch Bonn Shirt again. I had been fiddling with the pattern on and off all year determined not to let it defeat me. I cut a size larger added a forward shoulder adjustment and a rounded back adjustment and cut it out. I used some black and white spotted cotton that was going begging because the black turned the white greyish when I prewashed it. Good enough for a muslin.

I sewed a 1cm back seam and removed 1/2 inch from the lower back and 1/4 inch from the side seams at hip level. A little dart either side of the back seam removed some back neck gaposis and I made the sleeves elbow length.

The finished result is amazing. So different from my first muslin and definitely wearable. Even the greyish white spots look OK. I'm very happy with it.

Next I made Kwik Sew 2694 again. View A this time. I used a printed Rayon knit with blue scribbles. It's a nice top and fits well but I'm not too sure how well it will wear as a top made in a similar fabric last year turned into a shapeless rag when it was washed. However I will wear it as long as it lasts and as I love wrap tops I will make it again in nicer fabric.
That's all for now.  I have another skirt and a shirt to come, so until next time - keep sewing.

It's been more than 12 months since my last post and well and truly time I wrote about the sewing I have done since then. I must confess, first, that I have spent more time reading other's sewing blogs and following Facebook groups than sewing myself but I have made some progress the last few months.

After the disaster that was my last effort (see previous post) I rather lost interest in sewing for a bit but in January 2018  I spotted the Sew So Easy On Safari Skirt pattern and knew I had to have it. It was just what I needed to boost my enthusiasm. I downloaded the PDF stuck it together (I hate PDF patterns) and made the skirt from a remnant of khaki stretch gabardine. It's a lovely skirt, fits well and is comfortable to wear. It was made for the January MAGAM but didn't get posted on the Facebook page.

Blouse tucked in for display only which makes it look lumpy

In May I made Vogue 8151 a pattern I have had for many years. This time I made view B, crew neck and 3/4 sleeves. The fabric was a 1 metre blue knit remnant from Knitwit that I have had for 13 years. The neckline is a bit high for me and needs to be lowered a little as it cuts across my throat which I don't like. It's a nice top which fits well but needs a forward shoulder adjustment as well. I really need to start doing that as a matter of course. I would also make it with long sleeves instead of 3/4 next time. No photo but it looks a lot like the pattern illustration
Next up was the Tessuti Monroe Top. A free PDF pattern. This time I paid for a hard copy to be posted to me. Did I mention I hate PDF patterns.

I'm not sure when I made this top but it was sometime in winter (June/July?). Another remnant this time, pink and grey striped knit that I have had for around 14 years. It was the first piece of knit fabric I ever bought and sewed and I have saved the remnant ever since. There was just enough to make the body and turtleneck of the Monroe and for the sleeves I chopped up a t-shirt belonging to my husband which he no longer wore.

Well I seem to have opened the floodgates but I still have more to show so I'll leave them for the next post. Excuse the photos on Myrtle but she models the things so much better than I and if I waited for pictures on me they would never get shown.

Sunday, October 22, 2017

It's been a long time

It's been a long time since my last post and I haven't done a lot of sewing since. That is not to say I haven't been trying.

I started off in March with a shirt from Itch to Stitch. Itch to Stitch Bonn Shirt & Dress  Fortunately I made a muslin out of some old curtain lining but my rounded back and forward shoulders made a mess of how it fit in back, so I dug out my Palmer/Pletsch book and  looked up how to do a rounded back alteration. Slash and spread, add bits of paper, alter the muslin. That looks about right. I cut another muslin using some blue poly cotton then took a break to make something else.

 First I made Style Arc's Simone cardi.

I just love this pattern. I made it in grey and it turned out just as nice as my previous navy one. I don't have a photo but it is the same fabric as my next project. The top below. Style Arc's Amy knit top.

It's a wee bit short and the neckline is a little low, but I like it. I wear it with a short sleeve tee underneath.The photos aren't the best but they are up.

The day after I took these photos I had a stroke and finished up in hospital. Only for three days and without any major after effects but it shocked me to say the least. The  biggest problem I have now is double vision. For a while I had to wear a patch over one eye to enable me to see straight. Now I have a plastic-stick-on-prism-thingy over one lens of my glasses which helps me see fairly well but it's not perfect. The double vision may clear up or it may not only time will tell. But I'm managing.

That was in May and it took me a while to get back to sewing but I finished up my muslin and tried it on. Wahh! It's beautiful but it doesn't fit. What went wrong I'm not sure. I cut the size to fit my measurements, perhaps it was the centre back seam I had to put in. It doesn't even fit Myrtle so there is something definitely gone awry.

Too small across the shoulders

Curve in back seam for fit.

Neck band seems too small.

I plan to cut the next size up (in a muslin of course) and see how it goes.

Wish me luck!


Monday, January 2, 2017

Happy New Year

I haven't done a lot of sewing since October but I did manage a pair of shorts in November and a summer top in December. As getting photos up onto my blog is why I don't post frequently I have photographed both the top and shorts together.

The shorts are Style Arc Amanda shorts in stone bengaline. I got the pattern from the Style Arc Etsy shop and bought the bengaline from their website. The Etsy shop patterns come in three sizes but you still need to print out a single size, so I got 10, 12 and 14 and printed out my usual size 10. I have purchase two or three patterns from the Etsy shop but I must say I prefer my paper pattern posted from Style Arc. I don't enjoy sticking all those sheets together and you do get a freebie when you order from the website.

All that aside the shorts came together easily and I am mostly pleased with them. They are a very slim cut and I possibly could have used the size 12, but they do fit and the stretchy bengaline makes them very comfortable. In a less stretchy material they would need to be a bit bigger. They have a wide yoke and elastic waist with two patch pockets at the back. The slim cut suits my skinny legs.

The top is another PDF download. This time from Itch to Stitch which is a pattern company I discovered on Facebook. I have bought three of Kennis Wong's patterns and have downloaded her free Petal Skirt as well. The top is the Vienna Tank top and has a woven yoke with a knit body. I didn't have a piece of knit big enough for the body without cutting into yardage set aside for other things so I made the entire top with a lightweight voile(?) at least that's what I think it is. It was a one metre border print I got from Spotlight a few years ago and has been sitting patiently awaiting its turn.

I used the border for the lower portion of the top and the mainly white top part for the yoke and the binding. 

I really like this top. It will need a few tweaks next time I make it due to my body shape (the back of the armholes needed a dart to stop them from gaping) but that was easily fixed and I will adjust the pattern for next time. The lightweight fabric I used makes it perfect for the hot weather.

I'm going cruising again next week so my sewing will stop again for a little while, but I will try to be more consistent this year than last. I have a lot of patterns and fabric waiting and I need to do something with them.

Wishing you all a Happy Sewing New Year.

Saturday, October 29, 2016

Giving "Barb" another go.

After a lengthy break from sewing I am back. I rested on my laurels for a bit after my successful jacket and then couldn't quite make up my mind what to do next. While I was still deciding I had cataract surgery for my left eye in September. After a week or two getting used to being able to see more clearly I started going through my patterns and fabric trying to settle on something. So much stash, so many decisions. Dither, dither.

First off I tried Style Arc Skye woven top as a muslin. I used a piece of white Damask tablecloth material I bought cheaply from Spotlight eons ago as it had a small flaw. It was 1 metre by 240cm wide which was ample for this pattern. Because I find it very difficult to just throw something together it was finished with the overlocker and all the facings understitched etc. etc. (I was hoping it would be a wearable muslin).
Excuse the wrinkles

When I tried it on I was not impressed so I tossed it aside in disgust. However a few days later I had another look at it and decided it wasn't as bad as I had originally thought. If I make it again in future it will need a forward shoulder adjustment, softer fabric and the neckline lowered a little in front. Well it was only a muslin after all and it might soften up after washing. Meanwhile it is loose and should be cool on a hot day at home.

The MAGAM theme for October is "ONE" so next I dragged out the Aubergine Bengaline I purchased from Style Arc as a pattern and fabric bundle. The pattern is for their Margaret Pants, but I mainly bought it to get the Bengaline and chose to make another pair of  Style Arc Barb pants instead. I first made these in 2014 in some stretch gabardine which didn't stretch very much and didn't get much wear. In fact they were most uncomfortable to wear and finished up in the charity bag.

This time, I extended the back crotch seam to match the seam on the Linda pants which I have made twice and love. That plus the fact that the Bengaline has more stretch was the perfect answer. I added a little more to the waistband length to accommodate my lack of waist but that turned out not to be necessary as the Bengaline is quite stretchy so I took the extra out again.

The final result is quite acceptable.  I need to tighten the elastic in the waist perhaps, but I wore them to lunch on my birthday and they were very comfortable. The colour was called Aubergine but it looks more like a very dark burgundy in real life.
 While I'm using Style Arc Patterns I thought my next item might be a pair of Amanda shorts in Stone Bengaline. I bought this from Style Arc last months and got 2 metres and after I have made the shorts there should be enough left for another pair of pants. That's the plan anyhow. I downloaded the pattern from Style Arc's etsy site and I have taped it together and cut it out. That is as far as I have got.
I had my right eye cataract done last week so I'm hoping things will be a lot clearer from now on. It's amazing how different colours are now.

Friday, August 5, 2016

July MAGAM finished Burda 8390 Jacket

It seems like months since my last post but it's really only just over one month. After I damaged my overlocker (see previous post) thus putting it out of action for two weeks, I couldn't overlock the edges of the boucle fabric which was unravelling at a great pace. I tried zig-zagging the edges but this was too hit and miss and likely to take too long so I pressed on hoping the lining would contain the fall-out. The interfacing helped to hold the fabric together in places but it's not interfaced everywhere so I swept up threads and lint and hoped for the best.

I tried the unfinished shell on a couple of times and wasn't too sure about the shoulder width but chose to ignore it. After the jacket was finished and moments before I started to slip stitch the lining to the hem I decided the neckline was too low at the back and the shoulders were definitely too wide.

I turned the whole thing inside out, unpicked the centre back seam, the facing and the lining at the neck edge and pinched out a 1 inch dart 4 inches long and stitched it. Then I cut through the centre of the facing and sewed a 1 inch seam. I folded the lining into a bigger ease pleat resewed the neck seam. Turned the whole lot back to the right side, steam pressed it to death and it worked!!
Invisible dart

Now the jacket sits nicely nearer the base of my neck, the shoulders are where they should be and the darted section curves over my rounded back making the whole fit much better.  The only other thing I could have done was make the jacket a little longer, but it will do.
Fuzzy picture of the lining

To insert the lining I followed the instructions for Vogue 7975 which were a little more comprehensive than Burda's. To insert the separating zip I used the same instructions as for my husband's jacket and am happy to say this one went in perfectly too.

The zip isn't really bumpy

This is the real colour

Myrtle modelling front

and back
Finally a mirror shot of me wearing my new jacket. I wore it out shopping today and was very happy with it.

I might sew something simple next but haven't decided what yet. I could use a new pair of black pants as my Linda's are getting a bit old and I have some black Bengaline in the stash and some aubergine Bengaline also. We'll see.
I can smile

Cheers for now.