Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Check please! I'm feeling Rigel.

Hello! Well, almost all my Christmas-related gift sewing is now done, and I thought I'd squeeze in blogging these two projects! Here are the Rigel Bomber by Papercut Patterns, and another Closet Case Files Nettie Dress (leaping far into the lead as my most made pattern).

There's little to say about the dress - I sewed it up on my normal machine and then serged the hems, which gives a nice finish inside. The sleeve is extended to make a slight cap, for which I followed Beth's instructions. This fabric is a mystery knit from the excellent Misan Fabrics stall on Berwick Street. I picked up two metres for a bargain £10, and still have enough left over after this dress for another project - I'm toying with making a matching Morris Blazer!

The jacket is probably my most ambitious make so far, and took me the longest. It was quite a few firsts - first full lining and welt pockets, both of which I'm fairly happy with, although something went awry at the lining stage and there seemed to be an excess of it. I wonder if I did something weird at the pattern cutting stage in fact, as the main fabric seems too long at the back too, and bags right over the ribbing to the point that it's hidden... which seems unlikely to have been the intention.

I followed Katy and Laney's excellent instructions for lining the jacket exactly. As a result it's nice and warm as well as looking much sharper.

I'm happy with the way this project worked, but the result on me... not so much! I think it's the raglan sleeves. I'm quite a square shouldered person, and these sloping sleeves just make me look hunched and weird. So, it's a success, but I think will be gifted to someone who it will actually suit! I'm going to hunt out a bomber pattern with normal set in sleeves, and have another go.

I'll sign off here for 2015 with one of my favourite drawings from the inimitable Charles Addams!

Happy Christmas! See you in 2016!

Friday, December 18, 2015

Skirt refashion ---> Roberts Collection top!

About eight-ish years ago, when I still thought Urban Outfitters was the bee's, I found an 80s-style skirt there that I LOVED. The shape was never quite me, flaring out and pocketed at just the right place for maximum frumpiness, but I loved the fabric which was an ikat, dynamic chap - before I knew what ikat was (not sure I've got it right even now, but I'm nearing the ballpark). 

Once I started sewing, I had a hankering for more of the same fabric, and a few searches on eBay unearthed a couple more skirts at bargain price. When I bought Marilla Walker's Roberts Collection recently, having been inspired by Katy's top and dungarees from the set (and everything Marilla makes), I thought it would be a good match for my precious UO skirt refashion!

And I think it is! The top is the top half of the Roberts Collection jumpsuit. I made a couple of alterations - taking out my normal tapering wedge from the shoulders, and about 2" out of the back. It also had to be a little shorter out of necessity, fabric-wise. 

I'm thrilled with this top! I think it looks nice tucked or untucked. And combined with the other, original RTW skirt it makes a good set, and takes away from the troublingly frumpy look of the skirt.

So, a dress-looking-thing and a top, from one pattern - bargain! I can't wait to have a go at the dungarees next, and then the jumpsuit!

*Also - Swedish Tracing Paper side note fun! I used it for the first time for tracing out these pattern pieces, and I'm mad about it! I was using normal tissue paper or dot and cross before - no longer! I don't know about sewing with it, and have no plans to try, but for tracing patterns, keeping them, non-wrinklingness... I just love it. I think it's worth paying a bit more for this stuff, for sure. Although actually I'm not sure it's much more than dot and cross anyway.*

Ooooo! What a jolly fake dress!

Saturday, December 5, 2015

Denim Anna/Emery dress

Hello! I hope you are well!

It's been a while since my last post - I haven't had as much time for sewing lately as I'd have liked, but happily Christmas break is approaching, and I'm going to have a sewing ORGY!!! I say:

If the serger's overlockin', don't come a knockin'! 

Or something.

I sewed this dress up about a month ago, but was so seriously underwhelmed by it that I almost thought I wouldn't bother blogging it - but hey, I like cataloging these guys and don't want to miss any out! This is a blend of the By Hand London Anna Dress bodice with Christine Haynes's Emery Dress skirt. I don't know what about this isn't doing it for me - in my head I was totally into it. I'm feeling very denim-y at the moment, but I think me and flouncy skirts don't get on much.

Anyway, it was a simple sew - I'd already made some alterations to my Anna bodice pattern, bringing in the slash neck by a couple of cm on each side - a wide slash doesn't do much for me, plus it really annoys me to keep having to push bra straps out of the way. So this feels better, and I really love the shape of the bodice - I definitely have more plans in mind for this. 

A mistake I made was to make the facings out of the same denim - it's too heavy a fabric I think, so next time I would definitely make them from thinner cotton. But apart from that I'm happy with how it all sewed up - I just don't think the result suits me. Never mind, it's nicely finished so can go charity shop-wards and, as ever, was a learning experience!

I will hopefully be back soon with the finished Rigel Bomber that I'm halfway through. I'm making it up in this same denim - I'm aiming for the usual Molly Ringwald Pretty in Pink vibe, crossed with Neneh Cherry circa Buffalo Stance - current fashion aim

See you soon!