Sunday, 22 September 2013

My increasing wish list

There are so many great patterns out there and little time/money to buy and make them all.  The patterns currently heading my wish list are:
The Dakota shall collar dress from named clothing,
The Aubepine dress, the newest pattern from deer and doe,
Tania Culottes by Megan Nielsen,
and last but not least, the Mccalls misses shirt M6035,

Four patterns, that's not unreasonable right?  Until I think about the stack of patterns that I have sitting at home waiting to be made, some I even have the fabrics for!  Just look at all of these:

I have no idea what this pattern is or where it came from but its so cute.
Victory pattern's Nicola in this fabric:
Simplicity 5862 in a wool fabric.  Its kind of like this one by Miche from Buttons and birdcages.
Simplicity 5424.  I love this whole outfit, with the exception of the trim on the shirt collar.  I need this look in my life.
Style 4280 in this awesome cotton jersey
Butterick 5373.  This is a really recent acquisition and has jumped straight to the top of my to make list.  I just need to find the right fabric.
 I haven't tried making any pants yet but these look like they would be great and I could use up some of my scraps.

I would need to be really brave to try this coat.  I'm not convinced my skills are anywhere near good enough to cut into this beautiful cashmere and wool fabric
This basic A line skirt in this fabric:
The lady skater dress in this fabric:
Gosh that's a lot.  I really need to get sewing!

Saturday, 14 September 2013

My first Indie Pattern

Reading so many amazing sewing blogs has meant that I've been introduced to all these great indie patterns, which has been wonderful but also really, really bad for my bank balance.  However, despite buying a number of patterns that I've been really excited about I haven't actually got round to making any of them yet.  So last week I bit the bullet and just got on with it.  The one I started with was the Maria Denmark Edith blouse.  I love this style of shirt and as it only requires a metre of fabric I had (almost) the perfect fabric for it.  The fabric is a metre of this beautiful pink quilting cotton that I picked up a couple of years ago in Paris, it was so lovely that I couldn't resist but as I wasn't doing much sewing at the time, it has sat in my stash ever since.  I took it out a couple of months ago as I needed 25cm for a quilt that I'm making (anyone see the problem appearing).  The more I looked at the fabric, the more I knew I wanted an item of clothing made from it, enter the Edith blouse patten.  I laid out my pattern pieces and was just able to squeeze them into the 75cm that I had left, (with a little piecing for the collar facing), yay!

The pattern came together quite easily, although the instructions do assume a bit more knowledge than I was comfortable with.  It was fine but I did definitely need to go and consult the sewing books/google a little more than I would have liked.  However, I'm really pleased with my end result, especially as this is certainly one of the most structured things (particularly most structured collar) that I've made.  See what you think:

Sorry about the creases, I had been wearing it all day.

I extended the waist a little on this as clearly my waist is not as narrow as others with my bust size and I needed an extra couple of cm so that I was able to breathe, however, this came off without a hitch. The shirt is a bit shorter than I would usually choose but a) I totally forgot to add any length when playing around with the pattern and b) I would not have had enough fabric left to add it anyway.  This is what was left of my fabric once I was done cutting:

The pattern is a pdf, I love the instant gratification that this provides but I did not love having to add seam allowances to this one.  I have not invested in a tracing wheel and carbon paper as yet and so was laboriously adding them with my ruler and french curve.  Maria is really clear everywhere on the pattern publicity that you have to do this and I bought the pattern anyway, I loved it that much, however, I still want to know what is the point on not including a seam allowance on a pattern?

This is definitely a pattern I will try again, however as we appear to have jumped into a super cold autumn, I need some winter appropriate clothes so maybe the Edith dress in a wool crepe?

Wednesday, 11 September 2013

Parasols in the park

I found this amazing fabric in a shop on Goldhawk Road, I took one look at the umbrellas and I had to have it.  I knew I wanted to have a dress made from this fabric, but which one?  I had this pattern in my stash:

One super short 1970s (I think) tennis dress, Style 4588.  I decided to make version 1.  I love this dress, but it needed some serious length to be added.  This dress pattern is short, which is why it comes with a pattern for matching knickers! I was hoping to add enough length so that the general public didn't get to see my knickers, matching or otherwise.  I added a good 15cm but even so this the dress is still not the most modest in my collection.  I never play tennis but I do cycle a lot and usually like my dresses to at least vaguely cover me while I'm cycling, this one doesn't!

The pattern came together without too many hitches but as the fabric was so thin, I had to line it.  However, I got lazy and decided that I was just going to double the pieces rather than create a proper lining, the inside definitely does not have that lovely sleek look of a properly lined garment.

I had only purchased 2m of this fabric and it's directional so I didn't have quite enough for the whole dress.  There is a little patch where I've had to add a bit to one of the front pieces.  I don't think it's really obvious unless I show it off though.

Can you spot the piecing?

The sleeves and the belt are made from an old shirt of my Dad's, I'm impressed by how perfectly this old shirt in my stash matched the main fabric.

I was desperate to finish it quickly as I wanted to wear it during a trip to visit my sister in Paris.  I got most of it done, except for the hem which I ended up finishing it in the sun in the Butte de Chaumont (Parisian park). 

This is what my sister got on with while I was completing my sewing:

Some photo's in a friends garden:

Things to change for next time:
I'm not sure I love the neckline, I think a v or scoop neckline would be better on me next time
Finish some bits better, especially in the sleeves where my pinked and folded hems are obvious
Add some more to the length
Maybe pinch some excess fabric out of the back (although I don't currently know how to do this)

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