Once you choose hope, anything is possible.

Wednesday, 18 April 2018

Ivory Broderie Anglaise Wrap Blouse - Butterick 4395

I used some ivory broderie anglaise from deep in the stash for this pretty wrap blouse.
Being ivory it should work with a lot of pieces without the starkness of white.

I made View D with shorter sleeves due to fabric limitations. I had 2m of fabric, but only of a narrow 115cm width.
I cut a size 18. I cut both ties full length, I slightly angled the back to get a narrower back neck and wider hip. I feel the upper back is slightly too tight so wouldn't do that again. I like the shaping from the back darts. I added 1/2" to the front neckline to reduce gaping and its quite a modest wrap, probably helped by the fact that I don't have a large bust. The sleeves inserted beautifully with no puckering with just the usual ease stitching, so very pleased with how well drafted they are. There's an awful lot of narrow hemming on this and I was getting a bit bored with that by the end, but it does give a nice finish. I like how the wrap is on the striaght grain as this seems to help with it not gaping.
My fabric is semi-sheer and full of holes, so I'll probably wear a camisole underneath, especially for work!

Tuesday, 17 April 2018

SWAP thoughts - another try at balancing the pieces

Here I've split into layers, tops and bottoms, and want to see if I can make almost all the combinations work together.

OK I have 3 teal pieces, 3 brown pieces, 1 ivory item and two prints (3 garments). You might not want to wear the sheer cardigan over the lace tee but otherwise any combination seems to work, thoough I probably wouldn't wear all the teal pieces together!

Simple teeshirt style blouse

I made this simple t-shirt style blouse using my current favourite New Look 6216. I flared it out slightly at centre front and back by angling the pattern piece slightly away from the fold and cut it out of a linen mix woven.
It seems to have worked out OK though it needs a little press. I just overlocked the hems, turned and topstitched with the straight stitch on the sewing machine.

I originally made a skirt in August 2015 using this fabric, so hopefully now have a dress look with the two together.
I am also planning a wrap blouse, but may run out of time and energy before I get to that point!

Monday, 16 April 2018

More SWAP thoughts

Still thinking about how I could assemble the SWAP.
I looked at each colour and the prints, and tried to imagine a capsule where things played well together.

Here are the individual plain colours and the prints and what I am currently thinking.
Burgundy items
Teal items
Brown items
Prints which could be in SWAP.
Other prints which I am not going to use as they also contain a non-SWAP colour.

Here's a set which could work, all the tops (except the plain brown) can work with all the bottoms, and the cardigans each work over multiple tops. I have decided that 'sheer' could be my trend (there's a list in the rules) and the brown burnout items have a bluish section which works with the teals quite well. It may need a little more teaking....
Ann suggested I should include this one. It contains teal, brown, black and gold. Is that allowed in a print?
It does go with all the bottoms but only with plain cardigans.
Maybe the most variety is obtained by print tops, plain bottoms and cardigans.

Sunday, 15 April 2018

Possible SWAP Items

Have I made enough things to satisfy the rules?

Choose two neutral colors
I choose chocolate brown and teal
Add one accent color and two prints OR two accent colors and one print
I am adding an accent colour of ivory and two prints
Make at least three garments from each neutral color
I have made a lot of brown garments so should be OK there, and teal is not too bad either
Make at least one garment from each accent color
I only have one accent colour of ivory and have a single garment, an ivory tee, this is the minimum but does meet the rules
Make at least one garment from each print
I need to pick two of my print garments
Remaining two garments may be made from any one or combination of your neutrals, accent(s) and/or print(s)
probably more brown things then
Create multiple outfits of at least two garments that work for your personal style
Each garment must work with a minimum of two outfits
Will need to give this a try but should be doable

Thursday, 12 April 2018

New Look 6216 simple ivory tee

I've used the simple tee from New Look 6216 again.
This is a very simple and basic top which should be really useful in my wardrobe.
I used a mystery ivory knit from the fabric resources. This isn't a proper white (which is too bright for me) but is my version, slightly softened and not too yellowy.

I seem to make at least one ivory tee every year, and by the next year I need to make it again.
They get worn and washed a lot and seem very prone to getting stained so I need to keep replacing them.
I've got a lot of use from this pattern!

Wednesday, 11 April 2018

Thread colour change - to ivory...

Yes I've decided that after a lot of garments (24 apparently) sewn up with dark brown thread I really fancied a change. So I'm going to thread all three machines (sewing machine, overlocker, coverhem) with a new thread colour which is going to be Ivory.
I then plan to sew at least some of these....
- an ivory tee - could be in SWAP
- an ivory and brown print floral knit top - could be in SWAP
- an ivory/pink/taupe leaf print linen woven tee
- an ivory/pink/taupe leaf print linen woven wrap blouse
- an ivory sweater knit cardigan - could be in SWAP
- an ivory/pink/taupe floral knit print top
- an ivory and taupe stripe knit top - could be in SWAP
- a turquoise leaf print knit top - could be in SWAP
- a blue and brown animal print knit top - could be in SWAP
- an olive leaf print knit top

I may have to stop before then to replenish the thread as its getting a little low. I think 'Buy ivory thread' needs to go on my to do list somewhere so I don't stop mid flow.
I may also throw in a few home dec type things like cushion covers and shortening curtains.

Friday, 6 April 2018

Fixing Previous Makes

I find it really hard to get myself to go back and fix previous makes, even though I know I'm more likely to wear the item if I invest just a little bit of time tweaking them.

I have mentally done with brown now I've noticed as I just cut out a simple plain ivory tee. However I need to do some rework on a few items before I change the brown thread and I have reworking stuff sort of boring.
However maybe if I post it here it will encourage me to do something?

So brown tie dye cardigan - shoulder is too wide and the sleeves are a strange 3/4 length hybrid. Task - remove sleeves, narrow shoulders slightly, cut new sleeves in a classic full length and insert them instead.
And the lace sweatshirt has a wobbly topstitched neckline that probably needs a skinny neckband adding to draw it up.
This one shows on the garment, but not when worn, maybe I need to wear it and wash it to see if it is still a problem later.

 I'll go and cut a sleeve for the cardigan and see how that goes.

I altered the cardigan, and will wear and wash the top to see how that goes.

Thursday, 5 April 2018

Animal print type tee

I've carried on sewing with brown as this print was more brown than ivory and I'm pleased with how it came out.
I used my home made pattern again. You can read here more about how I made it if you are interested.
This fabric has been in the resources for a long time and so I can't recall when or where I bought it. It was absolutely beautiful to sew, though has very little stretch and I hugely enjoyed an evening in my clean and tidy sewing room with three machines all in a row and a DVD of a film playing on my little TV. I need to acquite some musicals or box sets to watch in there (no aerial or internet connection).

I was planning to switch over to ivory next, but maybe I should fix the tie dye cardigan before I do that. I'm going to narrow the shoulders and put new standard long sleeves in. I could then reuse the sleeves in something else or put them to one side and call it a day on brown.

Monday, 2 April 2018

New Look 6216 panelled tee

Whilst sorting through the fabric I came across a small remnant of ivory and brown leaf print fabric. I put it with the plain brown end of the tie dye brown fabric I used for this top to make a simple tee using New Look 6216 View C.
 I cut the neckband from the print also.

Here's the result.
I plan to wear it with dark brown skirt or trousers and a coloured jacket or cardigan.

Tuesday, 27 March 2018

Sorting the Fabric Resources

I have a lot of fabric.
I consider it to be resources - ie for using rather than a stash or collection.
However I want to have a sort through of it and only put the better colours and fabrics for me into the new cupboard.

There are a couple of resources I am drawing on
The first is a Craftsy course by Nancy Nix Rice I watched on the free weekend which is called.

Sew to Flatter: Plan Your Best Wardrobe

In this Nancy uses a personal colour swatch to help a sewer sort her fabric stash.
She uses small swatches, but I think I would just have my swatch available and compare the fabrics to it.

The other is a post by Wendy Ward where she works through using the fabrics you have, starting with a cull.

Shop Your Stash – 4 Easy Steps

 There are various blogs of people sorting through their fabric but they don't really add much more to the story I find.

Any way here is my plan.

Step 1 Empty the shelving, move the shelving out (done)

Step 2 Vaccum, construct the new cupboard (in progress)

Step 3 Sort through the fabric thoughtfully, fold neatly and put the keepers back in the cupboard.

I split my fabric into 3 main categories and I think I will continue to use them.
They are :- knits, wovens, home dec/craft

I am planning to have approx 1/3rd of the new cupboard for each of these, however I'm not quite sure how that will work out as I have 4 shelves (giving 5 compartments) each in a 1m wide cupboard and a 0.5 metre wide cupboard.
Probably I will put knits on the higher shelves, wovens on the lower shelves and home dec and crafts in the other cupboard.

I plan to compare all the garment fabrics to my Sophisticated colour swatch from Imogen Lamport, focussing particularly on my signature colours.

And prioritise fabrics which blend well with the swatch going back in the cupboard.
Others may go to one side to be overdyed, and lots will go for donation.

I'm making some enquires re donations, but its proving slightly hard work thus far!

Sunday, 25 March 2018

Sewing Room Overhaul

No sewing going on at the moment, but I've cleared off the old open shelving in the sewing room and moved it to the garage for storage there (more what its intended for).
I have had this in use for 6 years and its moved house with me so happy now to upgrade it to something nicer.
I am going to replace it with a PAX cupboard from Ikea which I hope to get on Monday.
It is deliberately slightly smaller and therefore I will be sorting the fabric back onto it and choosing some to release. Need to find some local options for that in Derbyshire / South Yorkshire / Nottinghamshire which might include local sewing groups and scrapstores.

Wednesday, 21 March 2018

SWAP thoughts

Reviewing where I am up to on SWAP and where I need to go next.

Now you may remember the rules say:
Choose two neutral colors
Add one accent color and two prints OR two accent colors and one print
Make at least three garments from each neutral color
Make at least one garment from each accent color
Make at least one garment from each print
Remaining two garments may be made from any one or combination of your neutrals, accent(s) and/or print(s)
Create multiple outfits of at least two garments that work for your personal style
Each garment must work with a minimum of two outfits
I have decided I am going to choose
Brown and teal as my neutral colours.
One accent color of ivory and two prints.

I had a look back through the things I've sewn already to get some items for this.
Let's pick 3 brown items, 3 teal items and 2 print items and see what that looks like
I need to have at least one ivory garment as this is my accent colour, I could in fact have just a single ivory item, and add another each from brown and teal. Let's add a brown skirt and a teal jacket - then I have a core 4 of each colour.
I think that works OK and they all meet the minimum of 2 outfits rule.

Or I could have more ivory items, or more brown or teal items not yet sewn.

Monday, 19 March 2018

New Look 6216 plain trousers

I made lots of alterations to the back of the New Look 6216 trouser pattern and sewed it up in this stretch gaberdine from the fabric resources.
The fabric is quite stiff but maybe will soften with washing.
I don't think I've quite got the crotch curve correct, or maybe I need a bit more length at the back waist, anyway they are good enough but might get improved further.

Sunday, 18 March 2018

March Fabric Purchases

Having sewn 52 metres, I decided it would be OK if I bought a few. So I went along to Economy fabrics and came home with some elastic and these fabrics. I have plans for all of them, so lets see if they come to fruition!
Click on the photo to see it larger
1. Far left is a sweater knit that is also stretch lace. Or maybe its a sweatery stretch lace. Anyway you get the idea it is stretchy, it is lace, and it has that furry pile of a sweater knit. It has stretch across the fabric so should be OK for a cardigan of some sort for choir. (Black is not in my palette but is the uniform for choir).

2. Second left is a lovely soft cotton fabric, very light but not sheer at all which will be lovely in the summer for breathable PJ pants.

3. The 3rd fabric is a cotton knit with almost no stretch. I like the pretty aqua colour and it will be some sort of loose knit top which doesn't need the stretch factor.

4. In the centre is a lovely viscose jersey tie dyed in a grey-green on a cream background. The green is darker in some places and lighter in others. This is going to be a top and the scraps should play nicely with another fabric in similar colours.

5. Jersey stripe in pale grey and dark grey, its less high contrast than the classic black and white. Casual top and maybe accents on something else.

6. The dark grey (maybe slightly greenish, maybe not) is very lightweight (microfibre) but a good yardage length. I'm planning a maxi raincoat to wear over long cardigans.

7. Far right is a burgundy sweater knit with no stretch. I'm not quite sure how a knit has no stretch, so this may not be garment fabric. But it reminded me of the colour of a favourite worn out jacket I had to get rid of, so I'm planning a cardigan jacket, though may need to use a pattern for a woven unless the fabric softens up a little.