Saturday, December 29, 2012

The inspired skirt

Way back in September, Rhonda posted some inspirational photos from the Etro collection.  The following day I was out "getting thread" - my usual excuse for popping into Fabricland.  Of course, I had to browse through the fabrics, if only to determine that there was absolutely nothing there that needed to come home with me.  High on a shelf, almost hidden from view was a velveteen that for some reason reminded me (vaguely -very vaguely) of the fabrics in the Etro collection.  It was love at first sight.  I bought a metre.  A straight skirt  - sort of 1940's length...
Now, a new skirt would require a new top.  Black would be the perfect thing to set off the print.  Two black tops were cut - one in a knit, one in silk.  That was back in September.  Then came the chaos, and the two black tops sat quietly waiting for their turn to come to life.  The poor skirt feels forgotten, hanging in the closet.  Finally the knit top (one seam at a time) did come into existence.  Stay tuned, because very soon the two will come together and actually get worn!  (About time!)
Not to forget...  The lovely Denise of The Blue Gardenia asked me to remind everyone about the amazing sale of her gorgeous vintage patterns.  Click here for the details. 

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Uh-oh! Pattern accumulation

I finally did it!  I ordered patterns from Club BMV.  I've been avoiding this for a long time, but I finally succumbed.
I've done my part over the years in over-accumulation of  patterns, and I was trying very hard to use what I already have.  There are still quite a few patterns in those drawers that have never been used.  A shame, really.  Every time I would see someone using a new-to-me pattern, I would convince myself that I already have something similar.  No need to buy.  I did wait for the pattern sales at Fabricland to purchase the few new patterns that I really wanted.  No more pattern sales at Fabricland, at least not like there used to be.  Just recently I was pondering over the catalogues when I went in for thread.  Came home without patterns.  Decided to browse the Vogue patterns on-line, and what do they have - a 75% off sale!  OK - I'm just browsing.  I don't really need anything at the moment.  But, but, but...  So if I make up new rules about pattern accumulation...  1. I must have fabric on hand, or in mind for the pattern.  2. I must actually use these patterns, before I purchase more patterns.  Well, you guessed the rest of the story - out came the magic plastic card, and I clicked my way to four new patterns.
Perhaps you might be wanting to see what I ordered - whether you do or don't - here they are.
Vogue 8854
I saw this sweater on someone's blog (sorry! can't remember who's) and I was in love.
Vogue 8847
Vogue 8699
Vogue 7937

I've been dreaming of the skirt with the flared back hem.
So there you have it.  Now let's see if I manage to stick to my rules, or ... I just might become a pattern-buying maniac.
Question - do you buy patterns with a definite project in mind?  Or - do you just like to buy whatever strikes your fancy with no particular reason?  Just curious about how others approach pattern buying.

Monday, December 24, 2012

Monday, December 17, 2012

Life just keeps on getting more interesting

My 100th post.  I was going to do something special.  I always have phenomenal plans ... and then ...  Two months have zipped by and all I have to say is - life got a whole lot more interesting.  My mother moved in.  My daughter and I were just settling into life together, when my mother sold her house and moved in with us.  This had been talked about theoretically.  When it happened, it happened all too quickly.  My daughter moved in with a suitcase and a few boxes - a fairly easy matter of sorting things out.  My mother moved with almost the entire contents of her house.  Thank goodness for large garages!  I emptied, cleaned and painted one bedroom.  Sewed new curtains.  All of this happening at rather breakneck speed.  Then the stuff started descending.  I don't do well in chaos.  Not well at all.  To add insult to injury - my sewing room was the only place to stash my stuff that had to be cleared.  More mess to deal with.  My game plan is to deal with only one area at a time.  Priorities had to be set.  When I finally couldn't live without sewing at least something - I cleared the cutting table (large flat clear surface where it is so easy to set down a box or two or...) and enough space at the sewing machine to at least be able to some rather mundane stitching.  I'll just keep on sorting and tossing and organizing a little at a time.  I've now come to realize that this is not going to come to an end any time soon.  My diplomatic skills are being stretched to their limits.  There is finally a glimmer of hope that I will be able to get my car into the garage soon.  Thank goodness that we haven't had any major snow as yet - I hate having to clean off my car in the mornings!
Ah, yes, sewing.  That's what this blog is supposed to about - not about the trials and tribulations of everyday life.  In September I made a skirt, cut two tops to go with.  So far - the tops are somewhere... in pieces...  I'll find them and sew them up eventually.  The doublefaced wool coat that I started in the spring... also somewhere... need to clear some more space to be able to deal with it.  Finished projects - yes, some things did get done start to finish before the "avalanche".   A quick skirt for my daughter...
Made this from the free Hot Patterns download that I used for my kooky skirt.  I used a "suiting" fabric and I lined this.  (DD is not a big fan of wearing slips.)  A plain and simple addition to a wardrobe that is going to need some serious revamping.
I even managed something for me - modeled by Taya, here.
A cape/poncho - don't know what to call it.  This is from Kwik Sew 3543 that I used previously for my class samples.  The pattern calls for polar fleece, which requires cutting out and no sewing.  I had this cozy wool/mohair piece, which needed a little more work to bring it to a finished state.  I added 1 inch on both sides to allow for hems.  I fringed the hanging edges.  (That really does make a mess!)  And I fashioned a facing to finish off the cut-out in the middle.  Now that the weather is really too cold for such attire out of doors, my plaid creation has moved to the computer desk, where it keeps me nice and toasty while I work.
In retrospect, it was not so brilliant a move to clear out my wardrobe as brutally as I did, given that sewing hasn't been happening at quite the anticipated rate.  Guess I'll just keep on plugging along, doing the best I can under the circumstances.  Moral of the story - never make serious plans!
Now that I've written this post, I feel that I can once again try to get back on track with reading blogs and commenting and being inspired by all the lovely things that everyone else makes.

Monday, October 15, 2012

Just a quick update

Just when I think that I'm getting a handle on organizing my life  - things start to happen.  Just when  I plan my schedule to include not only sorting and fixing of cold weather wardrobe, but also plenty of new items - my family "intrudes".  My daughter has moved back from B.C. to return to school.  We're still in the process of getting her sorted out and "moved in".  Well, at least I won't have any more guess work when sewing things for her - she'll be right here!
I'm really no further on a real game plan for fall and winter sewing than I was when I started pulling out the "winter woolies".  I've been diligently fixing and steaming and pressing, so that every piece that goes into the closet is in real wearing order.  Unfortunately the jackets with the shiny elbows did not rejuvenate themselves while hanging out in the garment bags over the summer.  Neither did hooks and buttons re-attach themselves to their proper places.  I was very sad to have to let the jackets go, and all that maintenance work has seriously eaten into the time for more interesting sewing.  "Real sewing" so far has been quite boring, but at least there is some accomplishment.
I finished the rest of the "cherry pies" for my niece.
While moving the winter fabrics into "rotation order", I once again wondered what in the world I would make out of this plaid piece of mohair.  Then I promptly decided not to deliberate yet again, and made it into a lap blanket by binding it on all four sides.
the blues are a much better match in real life
While it was still much warmer weather I used up some remnants and made a few tank tops...
then I churned out some very boring, but very useful t-shirts with a variety of sleeve lengths and necklines.
There have also been some more interesting projects in the works, but those I'll leave for later.
On Friday we were in Toronto at the Creative Festival.  I must have been in the wrong mood, or way too tired, but somehow I didn't find all too much to get terribly excited about.  My daughter, on the other hand, was thrilled with such an array of beads as there was.
We did meet a new friend, who was promoting his own wares...
and my daughter just had to have her picture taken under this street sign.
Hopefully I'll have something a little more interesting to show shortly.

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Thank-you for all the lovely comments!  When I stay away from blogging for any length of time, it is always such a pleasure to find such encouraging comments on my return.
I'm awful - unlike so many of you, who reply to each and every comment - I just cannot seem to figure this bit out.  I apologize.  I do, however, try to answer questions that really do require an answer, in some way or another.  To that end...
Yes, Sue, I did make the rose on the bag.  It's made from the same fabric as the red "lining" of the dress.
I finally managed to get to the sewing shop - with camera in hand - to take pictures of my class samples!  (I'm in and out of the shop all too often - camera stays at home.)
Group shot
People love to see something different from time to time when they come to the store to sign up for classes, so I feel obligated to keep churning out different versions of the same Pamela's Patterns pieces.  I did cheat a little - the skirts are from a previous  time.  I just wasn't quite motivated to do absolutely everything over again - just the pieces that I had fabric for.
The hats and mitts - those are for a beginner class that comes as a package deal - buy machine and classes to learn to sew and this is what the boss wanted as the project.  The pattern for these is Kwik Sew 3543.  Can you tell that I did not pick the colours for these hats?  Way too bright for me, but they do stand out rather well in the display.
The pants - cheated again.  A pair that was already made up.
OOP - available on etsy
The piece that took the most work was the blouse.  (for Fitting you Top class)  The pattern has been sitting in the drawer for probably far too long.  Copyright 2003 - rather well aged.  Honestly - I was afraid that it would be a horror to fit, and every time I pulled it out, I shoved it right back in.  Time to face my fears.  I'm supposed to be teaching a class, and I'm afraid of a pattern?  (I think that I have become overly critical and overly paranoid, and if I just got over it and got on with it, I would accomplish so much more  - and that probably applies to so much more than just the fit of my clothes!)  That front panel with the gathers - it's a bizarre curved thing.  There is no side seam - just one of those all-in-one side pieces that defy altering.  To make a long story short - I just cut the pieces as is, then took in at the tops of the princess seams and went from there.  I was ready to hate this blouse.  I actually like it, once all was said and done.

Definitely not a blouse for those mornings when dressing in a rush.  It takes time to do up 12 buttons with loops!
The back is cut on the bias.  The side panels are on straight of grain.  (That hanger is too large for my shirt!)
In case you didn't get it from the last picture ... the stripes are perfectly chevron-ed on the back seam.  Sometimes things work out well!  Cutting out this shirt was a bit of a horror.  Initially I cut two layers together, thinking that all the stripes were perfectly aligned.  Not so!  Thank goodness for too-big pieces of fabric - every piece (not quite, but almost) had to be cut again to line up all those darn uneven stripes.  OK - so who's brilliant idea was it to use this striped fabric?  Next time that I deal with stripes, I will definitely take the time at the outset to cut in a single layer.  Promise.

Sunday, September 16, 2012

This and that

Where did August go?  And for that matter, where did the first half of September go?  Life has been crazy and somehow (as usual) blogging suffered.  I have the greatest plans for what to write, then the post doesn't happen, and the longer I stay away, the more difficult it becomes to actually start blogging again.  I have been "lurking" a bit, but I have come to realize that a lot of my inspiration for sewing actually comes from seeing and reading all the lovely blogs, and I really, really do miss the interaction.
I believe I left off last time as I was leaving for camp.  I made my daughter a few pairs of elastic-waisted shorts, with promises of "we'll take pictures in camp".  Right!  This is the only shot I managed.
Not much to see of the shorts.  Coming off a 12.5 mile hike, we're just not in the mood for picture-taking.  And later - I had my hands full feeding the crowd.
My niece was getting married the week-end after we got home.  We had a shower to host.  I made an apron and a hot pad that masquerades as a cherry pie.  (Of course, I was making these the night before the shower!)
I promised to "bake" more cherry pies, just as soon as I get to them.
I made the wedding cake.
 Never again will I make cheesecake for a wedding!  We almost had a disaster.  My eagle-eyed cousin noticed that the cake was starting to lean.  Turned out that it had started to melt, and the bottom layer could not hold the weight of the top layers.  Cake cutting got moved up the schedule to RIGHT NOW, and we whisked the cake off to the refrigerator.  Disaster averted.  I was lucky to have my two chefs from Vancouver on hand to help with this fiasco.
And then there was the issue of what my daughter was going to wear to the wedding, since nothing that she brought with her was even remotely a possibility.  Can't look worse than the cousins from Montreal, now can we?   I remembered that I had a dress hanging in the basement that had been sewn for a class sample (make your own prom dress, or some such thing).  I was going to give it away, just as soon as I stripped off the antique jet beads.  Good thing that didn't happen.  I took in the side seams, added straps (my daughter will not wear strapless), which also required stripping beads then adding them back and was done three hours before the wedding.  (Not bad?!)  And again - too busy with the cake and all, and no picture was taken with my daughter looking gorgeous.  She was kind enough to pop the dress on the day she was leaving, so the overall look is less than spectacular.
On the day, she certainly did not have bra straps showing!  Oh - even had a matching bag.

This week I need to head over to the sewing store with my camera and take some pictures of my class samples.  Perhaps by October I'll be able to actually concentrate on getting my wardrobe needs taken care of.

Friday, July 27, 2012

Kooky skirt

I've been painting the living room/dining room.  Bits and bites of sewing have been happening, but nothing too involved.  When you're covered in paint (will I ever learn to paint without dripping?), taking a break in the sewing room just isn't a very smart idea.  I did want to show you this skirt that I'd finished a little while back.  I'm still not sure whether I "love" it, but it's certainly getting worn.
I was browsing in a shop when I spotted a skirt with a hem like this.  It appealed to me for some reason, and I just had to have one.  I used my hands to "measure" the tucks at the hem.  Once I was home, I rooted around for the gauzy black cotton in my stash, and the pattern for the Bossa Nova Swishy Gored Skirt by Hot Patterns, which I'd downloaded.  I lengthened it to the ankle, made the tucks, stitched them at the seams and added a batiste lining before stitching in the elastic.
As we were driving around doing errands the other day, my daughter spotted someone on the street wearing this style in white (which is the colour of the RTW skirt in the store).
Now I'm off for a week of "vacation/slave labour".  I volunteer in the kitchen at a children's summer camp in Illinois.  I'm hoping that the weather is just a tad cooler than it has been - definitely no AC in the kitchen!

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

And now for a little bit of colour

The skirt fabric was inherited from a friend quite a while ago.  It could only be a skirt.  Can't imagine what else I'd make from such a bold print.  Problem was - a skirt needs a top, and nothing seemed to go with it.  White and cream looked hideous.  Black didn't work either.  A few weeks back I was in Fabricland, and there on the 75% off table was this rather muddy dark green bamboo voile.  A little bell went off in my head - that's almost the same green as what's in the peacock fabric.  Went home, checked the print.  Sure enough - should work.  I really was taking my chances, because it was quite a few days later that I went back for the green fabric.  My thinking being - if it's meant to be, it will be there.  Sure enough - so ugly no one else would want it.  It's also a rather odd fabric.  Bamboo knits are soooo soft and wonderful.  This is also bamboo, but much, much crisper than linen, and about as sheer as handkerchief linen.  No-one at the store seemed to know what would happen after the fabric was washed.  There's only one way to fine out.  My green fabric was put through the washer and the dryer.  Still as crispy as ever.  Rather wrinkly too.  It almost feels rough to the touch - definitely not a "cozy" fabric.
For the skirt I followed Sherry's instructions for her Miranda skirt - more or less.  The mathematical part of my brain must have gone on holiday.  For some reason I could not calculate the pleats.  Perhaps it's because I use inches for sewing, not centimeters, and calculators use decimals, and it all gets really, really confusing.  Could also be that I did my usual scan through the instructions without actually reading all the information.  I persevered.  Three tries later I had even pleats.  No side seams needed - this print runs along the selvedge, though it's not actually a border print.  One invisible zipper and one waistband later, and we have a skirt.  Would this mean that this is Javanese fabric?
What kind of a top can one make from very crispy fabric?  The only thing that I thought would work, was a shirt.  (Obviously - that's what I made.)

McCalls 5433  is getting to be a "TNT" for me.  (Now apparently OOP! - does this mean that my shirt is now out-of-date?)  I widened the 3/4 sleeves just a tad, because the last time I made these, they turned out rather snug - not impossible to wear, just impossible to roll up once they're on my arms.  Sort of annoying - having to remember to roll up the sleeves before putting on the shirt.  Left off the collar - just because.  Didn't put in all the buttonholes - it's summer I will never, ever be buttoning this thing up to my neck.  Besides, I've seen shirts done this way - so it's not just my crazy laziness.  Oh! - I actually made french seams - but only on the sleeves.  Don't want anyone seeing ugly serging when I roll those sleeves up!  I added tucks.  Why, oh why do I come up with these make-work-projects when I'm dealing with cranky fabric that refuses to cooperate?  Two tries to get more-or-less straight tucks.  The first try got cut off and chucked.  I finally resorted to my cranky sewing machine - the one with the fancy 1/4 inch foot.

Still not perfect, but I really didn't want to stitch 10 more tucks.  The tucks were sewn before I cut the fronts of the shirt.  I just measured to make sure that they would fit the space between the seam and the dart.  I know - cheater's method, but it works.
Now I'm working on this that and the other thing in spits and spurts.  I do wish that I could get back to designating myself a "sewing day".  Unfortunately, there are too many "other projects" at the moment, so the only way sewing is going to happen, is in bits and pieces.  There is progress, and that's the main thing.

Wednesday, July 4, 2012


Not to be morbid, but the real reason for the addition of this dress to my closet is just to have something to wear to funerals in really hot weather.  Not that there are any on the horizon, though one never knows.  Of course, there certainly other events where this dress can go - with suitably mood lifting accessories.
Simplicity 2473
I made up this pattern last year - sleeveless with the A-line skirt.  This time around it's the short sleeves and straight skirt.  Should have been quick and easy, but I decided to underline the eyelet with cotton batiste.  Double the cutting, the basting, the...  Not the fastest thing in the world, despite the fact that I didn't do anything "interesting" - like piping or some such thing.  Oh - I didn't underline the sleeves.  (How daring - skin peeking through sleeves!)  Despite the underlining, I think that I'll still be wearing a slip - a half-slip at least.  The skirt is still a bit too see-through.  Should be rather wearable, even in the hottest, muggiest weather.
... and just for the sake of adding one more picture - the back view.  Invisible zipper - I managed to line up all the intersections of seams - on the first go, no less!  Yeah!
May-be I do need to wear this somewhere soon, or it will forever be labeled "for funerals only" in my mind and will never see the light of day, and there was just far too much effort put into this dress, to have it remain hidden in the closet till it is hopelessly out of style.

Saturday, June 30, 2012

Summer class samples

My, how time does fly!  I haven't posted for half a month or so!  Not that I haven't been sewing.  Guess I have some catching up to do.  I'll begin with where I left off, which would be my samples for summer classes.
Now, it just isn't in the least appealing to look at flannel pyjamas as the beginner sewing project in the heat of summer.  Right?  Needed to remedy the situation.  Here's what's hanging in the store now.
Kwik Sew 3553
I was in a great hurry and managed to have the wrong settings on the camera, so the colour's off, but you get the general picture.  I cheated.  I used my usual no-side-seam-pj-pants pattern because otherwise I would not have been able to fit all the pattern pieces on this border print.  I also left off the pocket - I didn't want a "blob" in the middle of the print, and there definitely was not enough fabric to even begin thinking of matching the print.
The other sample is Pamela's Patterns Pamela's Favorite Bias Skirt.
Colour is way off here.  Not grey at all - it's sort of half-way between navy and royal blue.
This is such an easy skirt!  Takes almost no time to make up.  I did hang it for 2 days before hemming.  Then came the problem - not a soul to mark my hem.  What to do?  The solution that I came up with was this:  I hung the skirt on that same hanger that you see here against the door of the old wardrobe that lives in my sewing "studio".  Sort of like having it on a table, but hanging up.  I found the shortest spot.  Measured it with a yardstick, then measured from the top, sticking pins all the way around. (took forever!)   Marked the pinned spots with a marker and cut off the unevenness (is that a word?).  Serged the edge and turned it up and topstitched.  I was a little worried about my marking method, but as you can see - an even hem.
According to the instructions you're to make a narrow hem turned up twice, but with the weight of this fabric I was afraid that it would be too thick.
This skirt won't come home for a few months, so I've been thinking that I should make one to wear now.  On the other hand - there are already so many projects lined up....

Monday, June 11, 2012

Kwik Tops

I ended last summer in mild frustration over the Sorbetto top that everyone seemed to have no problems churning out in multiples.  I too wanted an easy sleeveless top to whip out at a moment's notice.  For some reason the darn thing was giving me fitting problems.  Making a SBA made the dart into a rather odd little sliver that made no sense.  Eliminating the dart altogether made for strange side seams.  Fall came along and sleeveless tops were rolled up and forgotten.  Enter warm weather 2012.  Browsing through my patterns I found this:
Kwik Sew 2498
I'd previously used View C for an heirloom sewing class.  This time I thought I'd try View A.  Very similar to the Sorbetto.  I made a muslin.  (quilting cotton - probably destined for gardening wear)
Oops!  Guess I didn't iron out all the wrinkles!
A tweak for SBA and a bit added at the hip, and we have a top that fits.  I think the trick here is that this style has no dart, which made it easier to fit for me.  Don't know that this would work for someone with a large bust.  For me - the flatter the better.  The instructions have you turn under a quarter inch around the neck and armholes and stitch.  Not very durable, in my opinion, so I opted for bias "facings".
And in quick succession I managed to churn out two more ...
This one in lace over charmeuse with charmeuse binding.  (I did want a lace top!)  And ...
plaid dotted swiss.  Not enough fabric to match at the side seams and manage to get both pieces on the fold, so I added the bias strip to sew into the centre seam.  (I was cutting bias for the edges anyway!)
Then came the mess.  I started pulling out all sorts of smaller pieces of fabric that would fit this pattern.  Littered up the whole sewing room.  Then decided that 3 of the same top one after another was quite enough for now.  There are other items on the agenda.  The mess was corralled into a plastic tub with the pattern, so that when the mood strikes me yet again for a simple top - I won't have far to dig.

Monday, May 28, 2012

Chocolate Caramel Explosion

Last year (when I bought this pattern) I thought that it would be just the perfect addition to my wardrobe.  This year - I'm not so sure.  It's the Alice and Olivia peasant blouse the red one.
I dawdled with the sewing.  There's not much that's really difficult with this blouse.  I actually followed the instructions, and yes, I made all french seams on the inside.  Guess you could almost wear this one inside out!  Mine is a cotton/silk voile.  Feels lovely.  Now I'm not so sure about the "explosion" pattern.  It does match (and sort of work with) my wide(r) brown linen pants.  That's about all that it goes with.  I think that the pants should, perhaps be much more narrow.  New dark brown pants?  Probably need to happen at some point before the end of the warm weather.  This isn't something that could be stuffed under a cardigan or a jacket.  Guess I've kept you in suspense long enough...
I did pull the elastic at the neck a bit tighter than prescribed - felt like the neck edge would fall of my shoulders at the least hint of movement.  The waist is on a drawstring - seems to me that it would be better with elastic, having the ties only for show.  The fabric is rather slippery, especially as "spaghetti strings" - I can just see having to retie that bow at the waist at least every 15 minutes.  I'm not crazy about the casing in the sleeves - it's just a tuck inside.  Makes the flounce hang in a "different" fashion to what I've come to expect.
As I look at the picture - no, actually, as soon as I put the pants under the blouse on Dummy, I thought that there might be hope for this blouse.  It's one of those items that I really have to wear for some hours before I can really decide if I like it or not.  Just standing in front of a mirror to see if something fits, doesn't really truly tell you if something is comfortable to wear.  For me, comfortable is something that I don't have to think about the whole time it's on me.  Some minor changes might have to be made.  Something tells me that tomorrow night's beginners' sewing class is not the right time to try out this blouse - I pretty well have to be a whirlwind at those classes, just to make sure that no-one goofs too badly.  Now - lounging around someone's backyard with wine glass in hand - that's more the appropriate time.

Thursday, May 17, 2012

A Tale of two shirts

No, I had no intention of copying Gail, but I also decided to sew shirts.  It was still too cold to really get into "summer sewing", but the long sleeves make these imminently more wearable at this time of year.
I decided to compare shirt patterns, to see what I liked best - to know for next time.  The patterns ...
 Vogue 2634 and McCalls 5433.  In some ways similar, in some ways not.  The McCalls is more fitted, due to the vertical darts, so I suppose if I wanted to make it a blousier fit, I could just omit those.
The white print is the McCalls.  The gold is Vogue.  Both fabrics are voile, though the gold is much crisper than the white.
McCalls has a sewn-on front band.  The Vogue is simply turned under twice at the front edge.  Much faster to turn under a straight edge and press it down than sewing and topstitching a separate band.  So - if speed is crucial - Vogue wins.
Collar stands ...
I quite definitely prefer the McCalls - it's wider, easier to place and sew the buttonhole.
Cuffs ...
I prefer the McCalls, which ends flush with the edge of the opening.  That cuff extension always bothered me - looks a little too homemade?  There is not too much of a difference in the width of the cuff, but the two buttons do make the cuff sit more neatly on the wrist.
The McCalls sleeve is a two-piece.  Don't quite understand why.  Not like it's really fitted, as a jacket.  Though, I suppose, if one has arm-fitting-issues this would make the process easier?  Both patterns have the seam at the back of the sleeve.  Why?  No placket.  Just turn under the seam allowance and stitch.  And what is one to do with the raw edges that happen at the top of that opening?  I cam up with a less-than-perfect solution ...
a long bar tack across all the raw edges.  I do think that this needs rethinking.  Perhaps next time (and there will, I'm sure, be plenty more next times) the sleeve could be redrawn to place the seam at the underarm.  A placket sewn on to avoid those nasty raw edges.
I attempted pictures of me wearing the blouses ... outside.  It seems that I am finally getting the hang of camera settings indoors, but not for outdoors.  Very, very bad photos.  I'll try again when I make pieces that go with the

Wednesday, May 9, 2012


It's too cold to really get excited about summer clothes.  I'm definitely sick of the winter woolies, though a certain number of them does get pressed into service to keep me warm enough to function.  Thought I'd work on items that can get worn now, because I'm all about instant gratification - sew and wear.
Another shirt dress - this time it's Vogue 8028.  Seems it's OOP, but still available.  I made this up a few years back, so no surprises in the fitting department.  The fabric is a rayon challis that my sister-in-law bought to make a skirt.  I managed to squeek out the dress, but no collar and only three-quarter length sleeves.

The belt is a rather ancient one that I made many years ago, in suede.  Nothing terribly inspired about this dress.  It's pretty well "out of the package".  Sometimes that's the way it is.  It does work rather well with the jacket that I made a while back, that also has three-quarter sleeves.
It's difficult to pair necklines with this jacket.  A regular collar looks dumb, so I'm rather happier with just the standing collar.
Of course I put pockets in the side seams.  Now I can jam my hands into those pockets when I shouldn't be waving them around.
And, of course. a little snap at the waist to keep everything in place and lined up.