Thursday, December 27, 2018

Merry Christmas - catch up

Merry Christmas all! Hope you all had a great festive season and are enjoying holidays still. I'm back at work tomorrow for a bit but we also have some holidays coming up soon too. I'm going to run through the last few things I've made. Some for gifts and some for me. Some were made a couple of months ago and some just yesterday, but in the interests of documenting what I've made and getting it done, this is a bit of a dump. I know there is one dress I haven't finished yet and also a skirt I don't think I have a photo of. The skirt is just a purple ponte knit skirt in an a line shape. Quite useful and when I do get photos I'll show how I've put the waistband on. Better way than the stitch and flip on the grey skirt below.

I finished up the last two purse from the lambskin leather I bought last year. I do have a clutch purse I've prepped and couldn't find, but my treat to myself was to tidy (and find the floor) of my super small sewing room on Christmas eve and I found the prepped pieces. So that will be sewn up for a friend later today hopefully.

I found this pants pattern at the op shop and reminded me of a pattern that had lots of beach wear options and I made the same pants for my pregnancy with some modifications.  They really are a 1 hour sew ...very easy.

I made them from a denim tencel remnant for a friend who lives over the road from the beach. I was debating whether to leave them plain or with little bobbles, big bobbles (not shown) or the lacy stuff. I think the lacy stuff is a bit juvenile ... I like the little bobbles, but what do you think? I'm really not sure.

This is the Japanese drape pattern book one piece t-shirt that everyone made about 8 years ago. It's been cut out for about 3 at least and in my finish all the UFOs it got made up. I think I fill it out a bit too much to show the drape, but I was surprised how nicely it did fit. It's made up of a remnant of lovely cotton (it could be bamboo?) knit that was op shop bought years ago. This isn't really my colour though so thought it was a good one to test. I'd change the pattern a bit if I made it again - like widen it out at the hips a bit.

This skirt is also made from a remnant. It's double sided with a darker charcoal on the other side but no matter how I tried I couldn't get a short waterfall jumper out of it so a skirt it was. This is the stitch and flip elastic which isn't as nice a the band on the other knit skirt not yet shown, but it was a super quick sew and a perfect work skirt. What a great flounce!

This photo shows the darker colour too and the just cut edge.

This is the worst photo, but my drowned rat look of the rashie set used for aqua aerobics. I wear a sports bra underneath. I feel like I'm wearing pjs in this paisley and not sure it's not a bit too little girl, but I get many compliments on it and it will wear out quickly enough anyway. I also really dislike dark, dark colours for rashies as it makes it doubly hot.

These are some shorts I made from a remnant also for a little girl.  I had these beads in my drawer an thought they added a nice touch.  This is a lovely rayon but it did run a bit (from Spotlight).

Pattern is below. One I bought at the local church op shop. It's great for a little girl pattern and super quick to make. I've got two little girls I've sewn for this year. I love sewing for little girls. They love that you made it for them and I'm hoping to interest them in the sewing too!

This is the dress that's not finished. Made of two pieces of remnant rayon I bought at Spotlight.. not my favourite colours but good to test a Burda pattern. This is a little label I made for myself with my Bernina sewing machine. Not that I don't know who I am and there is no one else here who wears dresses but you know, it was a practice run of the letters on the machine.

On my last day at work before Christmas, I hopped on the bus and it was done up with angels! It was such a lovely surprise and a lot of work. The buses here have a competition for best decorated bus but this is only the 2nd time I've been on one!

Our over done Christmas lunch buffet. The dessert buffet was nearly as big too. We are still eating it! But delicious and sure beats cooking again and again!

I realised I hadn't gotten my friend's husband a gift. Another remnant that I originally thought would be a shirt for Alex but he didn't like it... what's not to like. Lovely cotton and SHARKS! Anyway this the husband of the friend who lives across the road from the beach so perfect. I can't work out how to do the button holes on the Bernina yet so the fly is operational but the buttons are sewn through both layers at this point unless I figure it out and change it later.

This is the pattern I used. It's a on piece pattern and it whips up in an hour including cutting out. It was an op shop find but I think it's still available and it is very useful as it comes in all sizes. I made all of Alex's sleep shorts using this pattern.  I also lengthened it and made a friend of mine a long pair for slouching pants (without the fly) out of some rayon I bought on sale at Spotlight 6 months ago. It was black with small skulls all over... perfect for my friend. They were gifted on Christmas day with no elastic and no hemming as I needed him to fit them, but wanted to give them to him on the day. Anyway he'll come over for a finish up and a coffee in the next few days.  I'll try and get a photo.  

 This the a jumpsuit made from the pattern below. It's for a dress, but I sewed up the top and the shorts and joined them. Instant jumpsuit. Cherry rayon bought from Janie's online fabric shop; I bought this a couple of years ago with some other rayon. The prices are right but this one the red ran and I had to colour remove it, and the other rayon was old and when I work the New Look culottes, they torn about 20cm down the leg. Not happy after all the work. Not sure I'd buy there ever again.

This pattern was bought at the church op shop too... just a few weeks ago and it came at the perfect time for 8-10 year old girls I sew for. I only have patterns for little girls so that was a lucky score.

Now relaxing finally watching the rerun of Spicks and Specks Reunion show with my new plastic gift Birkenstocks for my aqua. Love them! Lucky me. (there's some red linen that may become a Ogden cami copy dress)

Thanks to all for reading, commenting and supporting our love of sewing. It really is appreciated. (oh and I still cannot work out how to reinstate my google to comment on blogs so I'm saying stuff it just won't let me comment!)

Saturday, December 1, 2018

New rashie and a gift

I've made a new rashie set again from McCall's 7417. Usually I've made the shorter rashie twice before and I add a band (I'm short waisted so it fits to my waist like this). I wasn't paying any notice and realised I cut the long one and then only had enough fabric for the shorter pants. I have just scraps left now... maybe enough for a kiddy bikini triangle top but not pants. I bought a metre of this fabric from East Coast Fabrics for $15. It's  a lovely lycra and one of the heavier ones. I bought two more at the same time (July school holidays) but they are a thinner lycra so I'll see how that sews up soon enough.

 You can just see the seam lines above. I have some mint coloured lycra and thought I'd make some 'piping' but in the end I didn't have enough time. My last spotty rashie (did I even show that one? or take a photo of it even? Now it's faded and nearly dead). I always put bands on the sleeves and on the waist of the shorter one but the hem on this one was just done on the coverstitch.

I put a band on the pants too. Just sewed up with zig zag and as I couldn't find my rubber elastic I just used some I got at Aldi. The key to the elastic if it's the covered stuff, is that it shouldn't narrow when you stretch it. This was nice quality and the right width. 

When I cut the band, I put elastic in the middle of the band and sew it on, then fold the band and sew it on the pants (with the overlocker) with the zig zag stitch facing the inside. This keeps the waist band firm and secure. I made the size medium and the top is a bit wide at the hips (that's new!) and the pants are also not as firm fitting as I'd like but they are good overall. I do admit that I feel like I'm wearing pyjamas due to the print/colour but I do like the set a lot... perfect for aqua aerobics with a sports bra on. Also I get sick of trying to put the sunscreen on my back!

I also made up a little zip purse for a friend's sister. This was promised 12 months ago. This narrow piece was leftover from a cushion cover said friend asked me to make for her sister for Christmas last year. This scrap was left over and I said I'd make something up with the scrap. I was looking for something else (still not found - leather prepped for a gift for another friend) and I found this so whipped it up.

It's not perfect as the fabric was so twisted up and skewed (the whole piece my friend bought was printed off grain - I would have returned it... well, I probably wouldn't have bought it actually - due to skew and I'm not a Dr Who fan).

The lining is from a dress I made about 10 years ago and the last tiny scrap made a secret surprise pocket! I know my friend's sister will love this even though it's not perfect.I've got some Christmas things I'd like to make but not sure how much I'll get done. Anyone doing Christmas sewing? What are you making?

Saturday, November 17, 2018

Vogue 9253

I was coveting this pattern for a while and waited for the pattern sales...once, twice ... it was never available but on the third sale, I got it. Amy very kindly and generously (she's like that) did offer her copy should I never get one.  Love my Spoolette sewing sisters!

My (blood, non sewing) sister does lots of great op shopping and bought this dress ... adult version of the pillowcase dress. It was huge and very long for me so I picked it apart one tv night and it was enough fabric to make this dress if I slimmed down the skirt and make shorter sleeves. Both modifications were fine with me because a) too hot to have the long sleeves now, b) not sure the full skirt wouldn't make me look huge and c) I was testing this pattern out for a beautiful silk my friend brought back from Vietnam for me a few years ago (and keeps asking if I've made anything yet). It is white with flowers and very beautiful but only 2 metres from memory and I wanted to see if it would fit. I immediately bought some nude colour silk lining from The Fabric Store .... also waiting patiently.

 I unpicked and used the bias strip on the back neckline as the pattern has you do. That was convenient and so easy when it was permanently 'pressed'. Oh another thing, with large lengths of rayon instead of ironing it, I usually wet it and hang it and it kind of irons itself. In our warm weather it only takes about 30 minutes to dry and took out all the folds and sewing marks.

I used the neck/shoulder tie for the belt but I sewed it into the side seams.... for some reason the pattern tells you to sew it on the outside... not sure why you would do that... if you sew it in the seam allowance you can use the tie on the back or the front. If you sew it on the outside you could only tie it one way. 

The front is very low and I love the look on a smaller busted woman, but for me that is a wardrobe malfunction waiting to happen so I sewed it up about 10 cm but think I'll close it up a bit more to make it more respectable. The back also needs about 8cm taken out of the shoulder area, even though I made the size 6 top. I have VERY narrow back and shoulders and this is a very loose dress.

I haven't had much time lately. My Mum has been unwell again and doing some housekeeping stuff  takes up my meagre weekend. I also had a week off sick... I did manage to sew a few seams here and there between lying on the bed listening to true crime podcasts and coughing my guts up.

Oh, today a lovely friend (sewing friend) and I went out on an impromptu coffee then talked ourselves into going to The Fabric Store.. we couldn't get a park so popped into some op shops around there and I got a few great things. Then I went and picked up another Bernina Active 240 that was a bargain on Gumtree again. I guess I could keep it as a back up but I'll sell it along with many other machines I have to get myself a new lounge I think.

Thanks for the nice comments re my linen cardi. Till next time.

Thursday, November 8, 2018

UFO finished - New Look 6315

So another UFO finished. I made the cardigan. At first look, it's very similar to most waterfall cardigans (I've made 2 different Kwik Sew ones) but this one differs because it has a band  around the waterfall and hem. I cut this out 18 months ago and even though I really wanted to make it, it frightened me for some reason. It was that band and I'd read a review on Pattern Review and the person said it wasn't a good pattern and she wouldn't recommend it. Anyway, I loved the colour and fabric and thought get it done and donate it.

Plus I made a mistake cutting it out... at the collar part I cut into a smaller size, realised and stopped but then I had this slash. So I zig zagged a little  grosgrain ribbon on it and put a little fray check and the result is not invisible but I don't notice it at all. In fact I had forgotten all about it until I saw the photos again.

The fabric is some linen knit I bought at Darn Cheap Fabric $2 per metre table. Such a bargain and it is amazing fabric. It is a fabulous colour and the slightly brighter blue you see is little sparkly specks.

Sorry, really bad photos again. I wore it today and meant to take a photo of it with a nice white cotton top under it and some cargo pants. It looked much better that over this dress.  The fabric has a nice weight but the band really adds to this and really finishes it off very nicely - it rolls over to the front which I like. Considering this was the part I was avoiding and even considered leaving it off, it's my favourite  part. It really finishes it off very professionally.

Back view...with a dress it's very unbalanced but with pants it looks so nice. The one thing I have to fix is the length of the sleeves. I have to cut off about 8 cm. Shame as the coverstitching finish was perfect. I even washed it in hot water as I thought it would shrink for sure so I didn't cut it before then, but nope, it's kept it's size which is a good thing. I love this cardigan. It's perfect for air conditioned office or movies etc. I thought I took a video of how I slip some little ribbons through the slot in the foot of the overlocker to give the shoulders stability, but I can't find it. I cut the hanger ribbons off everything but keep them as it's useful for this job.

So I recommend this pattern - I'm so glad I bit the bullet and made it up. It was a pretty quick sew up too. I love the fabric too... one of my favourite things I've made. (and practical for a change!)

So I have loads still to show you. Thanks for all your comments... apparently I can't even reply to your comments on my own blog! So till next time.

Tuesday, November 6, 2018

Candy stripes - FO - finished object

 I cut this top out probably 2 years ago out of a remnant of cotton knit I bought at Spotlight. It has a little yoke at the back, bands on the wrists and a neck binding with pleated bodice. I bought a knit top that was a sample from a pop up shop more than 10 years ago for $5 and it fit so perfectly around the neck, shoulders, arms and length I unpicked it and used it as a pattern for this top. The original was black and the bands on that top was woven. (I don't like to wear black on the top but I did wear the original top out).

You can just see the yoke above. I love how the neck binding is on the bias. The cotton knit was so easy to sew and it is a pleasure to wear.

 Do you see the error? (other than my irregular coverstitching - the thread was catching on something) I put two pleats on one side and three on the other - the original had 3 I think. I used the actual fabric pattern but I think I'll transfer it to paper and tidy it up so I don't do this again. Also look how wonky those pleats are.  I'm not too fussed as this was really to see if the pattern would work (does) and heck I won't be wearing it for ages as it's so hot already and it was a test. Another thing out of the UFO pile. (I look at these photos and I think I might pull the pleats apart and fix that up - it just bugs me). When I bought that bargain Bernina it didn't only come with an overlocker but it came with a walking foot and I used it last night to sew up 2 more leather purses and it was so good. More on that later.

Just off the top of my head, I have 2 dresses (1 UFO), 2 skirts (remnants) , a linen knit waterfall cardi (UFO) (gorgeous) and another top (remnant) to show you. Plus I made another 2 leather purses and I have another one cut out but I can't find the leather pieces (am tidying up my sewing room as we speak). That's the end of the leather I bought a little under 12 months ago. I've also made an effort to put all the random pattern pieces away in their envelopes (no mean feat with so many patterns).

Oh and I still can't comment on most blogs??? A few I can however, and I'm just not sure why so while I may have some comments I can't post them.

Sunday, October 14, 2018

Part 2 Catch Up - sorry another long one.

So, here's part 2 of the catch up of what I've made. Before I go on though, I just want to say I can't post any comments on most blogs! I don't know why so even though I want to most blogs are not showing my user name or whatever it is. Just so you know. If anyone knows why please let me know.

Now I made another of this Vena Cava dress, Vogue 1228 with polyester crepe like chiffon that I got from one of the Brisbane Spoolette meet ups a couple of years ago. It's got that great print and the big circles are flocked.  I really love the square neckline. I use the same slip that I wear with the other one I made.

This is the front. I took a deeper pleat at the front and back than I did on the last one and the fit is a little better. It's a bit shorter. As with both dresses I didn't add the sleeve extensions. My arms are way shorter than the model's and this is long enough for me. 

And side view. Sorry work bathroom pics.. it seems like it token pics from the lift or toilets lately... with walking shoes too!

 Next we move onto the annual Brisbane Spoolette's High Tea in April. As usual I was talking so much I only took a few photos. The event and group gets bigger every year. This and Frocktails are highlights of my year. It's incredible how much I enjoy meeting up with all the Spoolettes every event. We did out pattern and fabric swap. I was so good and took stuff and came home nearly empty. Such is my lack of need for anything more - I took no fabric but 3 patterns I think.

I wore my Simplicity 8296. It is lovely rayon, read about it here. This is with my friend Sarah. The fabric of her dress was so lovely. Lately it seems like we only get this annual outing to catch up!

This is a Burda 7517 dress I made. I don't have a photo of the pattern envelope but it has lots of reviews on Pattern Review. It's a pretty basic dress but I did remember that the neckline was very high, which really bothers me so I lowered it by about 3 cm. I made it from a lovely cotton fabric that my son picked out in Centrepoint Fabrics in Auckland a few years ago (maybe 7). It was $3 per metre and it is the loveliest cool cotton to wear and is soft but not wrinkly. . I put some grosgrain ribbon ties but I cut them much shorter than what they are here, as the length bothered me. It looks like a vague city scape and I cut it so the big yellow block wasn't near my face as my skin tone and yellow don't go well together. I would like to finesse the fit on this because it's a quick easy make, and would make a great go to for a work dress. Maybe with a FBA for this pattern and make a smaller size overall when I have time... ha ha ha.

So this dress pattern and dress below was started about 15 years ago when I bought the fabric. I had cut out view B and had made up the skirt with fabric and interlining, and the bodice lining was made and the  fashion fabric ruched and tacked on. It was cut out before I had my son and I've gained weight since then but I could still get the skirt part on but I unpicked it all and let out the 1.5cm seams to about .5cm so I'd have eating and drinking room. The eating and drinking room was needed for the Spoolettes Frocktails. It was such a great event. I had to miss last years so I was so pleased to go again this year.

This photo is in my bed room. I had no scraps of either the lining or the fashion fabric left or around ... it's just too long ago to remember. This meant I had to finish the top somehow and make straps. I used a very average quality satin bias binding that I had and finished the hem with a rolled hem on my overlocker in red.  The fabric is a mesh with the flowers like decoupage on it. I just love, love, love the fabric and although it's not perfect, made and worn is better that in a plastic bag tucked away.

This photo of of me and Alice in her AMAZING Nicola Finetti Vogue 1471 - photo screenshot from someone's instagram - as usual did not take enough photos. I was trying for weeks to choose a pattern and fabric from my embarrassing stash but nothing really grabbed me for some reason so also as usual, I found this in the old UFO box and though why not. I had the Friday off so finished it up then. I just really love that fabric so I'm glad I've got it to wear this summer. I'm also wearing my Burda coat I made in 2010 and still love. As luck (really not planned) would have it, I had a hairdresser appointment that day so my hair even looked ok!

There were so many really beautiful dresses there this year and many new people. Such a joy to connect with others who sew. Amy and Colette did a great job organising and the venue was terrific. Plus excellent food (really I'm fussy and it was really good) and the drinks were of good quality - none of that cheap stuff! Well done (again) ladies!

I've also delved into bras again. So far I've made the Shelly from the course I did.. I wasn't very pleased with the course but live and learn I guess. This is the Kwik Sew 3300 partial band bra. I prefer a partial band as I'm so short waisted I find these more comfortable. It's the size 10 DD. That's the largest size and it's a bit small. I made this out of scraps and harvested straps to test the fit and size and I can wear it all day and it's comfy to a point. I think the bad channelling and harvested wires are not good quality and so dig in, but it's a good start. I've got another Kwik Sew partial band pattern I'll try too.

I used the band from the bra I made in the course made it about 3 sizes smaller and tried cups from Porcelyne patterns... both these did not fit although I measured twice and they are both too small and both a bit pointy. They had a sale and I think I got two bra patterns for US$6 pdf. The 4 piece red cup is one I bought and the other one is one of the free patterns she has. I also bought the Christine sports bra but I haven't tried it yet.

Sorry they aren't good photos but they were a quick way to check for fit. I'll persist here. I am determined to make a bra that fits eventually.

 Lastly I have made some new pyjamas from my trusty Burda 2711. This is a great pattern that I'm going to make in a linen for summer. I move the darts to fit better.. a bit lower and shorter and I extended the back crotch curve about 2 cm.

I used a cotton bought from Spotlight that I made a dress out of probably 6 years ago. I really liked that dress but not sure why I got rid of it?? These were made of the scraps. The top is cut on the cross to use up all the fabric and it was the only way to make it fit. I made self bias binding and actually measured the length of the straps so they don't fall off. The last ones I made I didn't think about it at all and use the length offered in the pattern. I am really short from shoulder to underarm and when I look I think they are too short but they fit perfectly. I'm really pleased to use this fabric and to have new pj's. The last ones were wearing through.

I'm working on some more UFO's and finished up some Burda "Hudson" pants in French terry from the fabric sale I go to. More on that later.