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Tuesday 31 March 2015

Blue trousers

These trousers are a taper leg with pockets and elastic/drawstring waist made from the same silky mid blue fabric as the top.
These are from an OOP pattern, New Look 6875 from deep in the stash, probably the same year I bought the fabric!
They are very loose and comfortable, though due to a slightly tapered leg won't work as I had thought they might with the legs rolled up and secured with a tab. I shall just hem them normally. I think these are the sort of thing you want on those hot days when you can't quite bear to touch yourself. Might not get too much wear here in the UK then!!

Monday 30 March 2015

Aqua crinkle skirt

This skirt is made from a tube of crinkle fabric with a short back split. I didn't use a pattern, it just something I came up with myself.
The back has elastic and the front self fabric ties. It can be worn as a long skirt or a knee length halter dress, adjusting the ties accordingly.
Its a lot of fun. The collection now looks like this (completed things at the top)

Saturday 28 March 2015

Spring Collection

It seems that my spring sewing which I started in earnest about a week ago has a fairly SWAP (Sewing With A Plan) collection look about it, so I had a read up on the SWAP rules and it is looking feasible.

I work full time and spend the weekends with my boyfriend, so the only sewing time is after my evening meal on a week night. On this basis I have picked simple styles which I can sew up in a couple of evenings as this is the only way to have any chance of being done before the end of April. Just to add a bit to the time challenge we are away on holiday the Easter weekend and the following week as well.

So far I have managed to make 4 tops and cut out a 5th one.
I've made 1 bottom, have a skirt and trousers partly constructed and another pair of trousers cut out.
I have the fabric and patterns for the ponte knit skirt and jacket but have not started those yet.

In terms of a twist to a few garments the plans are

- the long aqua skirt converts to a sundress, this is by wearing the top band above the bust, pulling the drawstrings over the shoulder and buttoning them to the back. when worn as a skirt this is long and has a dawstring waist.

- the print top can be worn either with a plain print front and scooped neck and a higher buttoned back, or can be turned around, the button section turned down to be a sort of collar. The button is recycled from an old silk shirt which wore out.

- I might add tabs to the mid blue trousers so they can be rolled up into 3/4 length.

Friday 27 March 2015

Aqua crinkle tee

This is the same blouse pattern as the navy linen and blue viscose, this time from a crinkle fabric which I suspect is a polycotton. Should be really good for travel as you just screw it up to pack it.
This works well with the little pop of turquoise in the print.

My Spring plans are now looking like this

Thursday 26 March 2015

Print cropped trousers

They were supposed to be culottes but they just look like cropped wide leg trousers to me.
I do love the print though, it works with the navy linen top, the mid blue top and the marled top but is a little strange with the gold stripe top I have to admit!
I'm ignoring the fact that it snowed this morning and just carrying on sewing my fun colours.

Spring Wardrobe Plans

I have been thinking about how my Spring wardrobe might pan out, and its looking something like this.

The navy, blue, ivory and stripe tops are already made. The other items I have suitable fabric for navy, blue and print trousers plus navy jacket and skirt, also aqua and print tops.

Does this look like it would work, and does it remind you of anything ;-)

Wednesday 25 March 2015

Mid blue top

Another top for the Spring collection. Also from New Look 6217 though here I cut both front and back on the fold for a deliciously drapey effect. The fabric is from deep in the stash, and is I think a viscose (rayon).
Here's the top
Here's the pattern.

Tuesday 24 March 2015

Spring wardrobe: white/taupe marl draped top

Here's another piece in my Spring wardrobe.
This piece is made from what I suspect is a linen knit, it is white with a taupe marl and behaves more like a thin sweater knit than a jersey. It does have lovely drape though.
I bought it unlabelled as a remnant from the local roll end shop so who knows how it will wash and wear.

I've used the same draped top pattern as the gold stripe version, which I did by laying the top out, cutting round it and then cutting the front neckline.

Dark navy ponte - thoughts

I bought 4m of lovely dark navy ponte, or doubleknit yesterday from the Monday Market Man.
Its lovely and the colour matches the dark navy sections of my print fabric.
I bought 4m so I could make several pieces, so I am thinking about how best to make use of it.
First up I definitely want to make the Vogue 7898 skirt in this fabric.
(Imagine it in dark navy)

I also want a soft cardigan jacket of some sort.
And then I need to have a think about what I would wear - a ponte dress, ponte trousers, a simple top of some sort? Should I try and but some more fabric whilst he has it so I can make a whole wardrobe? Particularly as navy is so hard to match
I've tried making black ponte trousers twice and they look like jog pants to me, so am a bit dubious, though I could try the free download pattern from StyleArc I have somewhere.

Saturday 21 March 2015

Wheat chenille chair

Back in 2012 I bought this second hand office chair to use in the sewing room (picture from the shop)
Today I recovered it in a wheat coloured chenille upholstery fabric and its much more suited to my decor.
I choose to have things in neutral colours these days, adding pop with pictures, vases, candles, books etc.
I'm really pleased with this project, which I did done the other end of the room whilst DBF was watching the earlier rugby matches.
I did not take any in progress shots.
DBF helped me take the chair apart so I could recover it, and then I put it back together again myself.
We separated the wheels, seat and back from each other.

The moulded back was attached by 4 plastic notched prongs, which fitted into 4 holes in the back of the padded part. We only could tell this once DBF had wrenched it apart using sheer force, once recovered I just lined the prongs up with the holes againand pushed firmly until it clicked in.

These prongs were spaced across the back, in the middle not too near the edge.

Thursday 19 March 2015

Draped top finished

Now with added neckband and a little bit of pressing.
I have changed one thing from the original pattern. Rather than having the hole for the arm coming out of the shoulder seam, I cut a slit down the fold, cover hemmed it both sides and added a little dart at the bottom. This makes the two shoulder/sleeve seams the same length rsulting in a more balanced finish.

Hopefully a photo of me wearing it this weekend if I remember to ask DBF.

Wednesday 18 March 2015

My take on the Great British Sewing Bee Drape Top

The last episode of the Great British Sewing Bee season 3 featured a draped japanese top.
It is apparently taken from the book Drape Drape 2 and is garment no. 4.
I have ordered a copy of the book and it is in the mail to me, but has not yet arrived.
So I decided to take a dolman sleeve blouse pattern, my classic tee pattern, some pins and a piece of fabric and try to make my own version. It looks like this so far and just needs a neck band adding. It looks quite nice on, and actually a lot less crazy than you might imagine.
The fabric is off white and gold lurex stripes and should work well with jeans or white trousers.

Tuesday 17 March 2015

New Look 6875 relaxed trousers

I've cut two pairs of trousers out from this pattern. It has a relaxed fit, slightly tapered legs, front slanted pockets, an elastic waist with tie. I think this would make a great casual trouser for Spring Summer.
One pair is denim blue viscose, the other is the navy and white print from a few posts ago. I also cut a top from New Look 6217 from each fabric and some elastic waist culottes (based on a Burda pattern) from the print. I've not sewn a stitch yet, but once I get going they should be quite quick to sew up.

I will share (hanger) photos as I go and maybe something better when I get to the end.

Monday 16 March 2015

Ivory guestroom head board

The old headboard for the bed which is now in the guest room, was a dark brown faux suede, which went well in the old house which had dark wardrobes.
In the new tiny guest room I am trying to keep things as light and plain as possible to give a feeling of space. So we recovered the brown headboard with two layers of ivory cotton upholstery fabric, just stapled into place at the back. It is not exciting, but it is light and plain and seems to work well.
The current home made curtains are autumn gold with a leaf motif, but again too heavy for the room, so I picked up these white ones embroidered with a tiny yellow bud on sale at Dunelm. Ex display and full length, so will need shortening, but hopefully they will also be light and airy whilst also blocking the light since they have an integral blackout lining.

Thursday 12 March 2015

Navy print fabric

I pulled this navy print out of the stash (its cropped from an old photo I took in Nov 2012 the last time I thought I might sew with it) and think this Spring its time may have come.
I'm hoping it would work well as a top and either skirt/trousers which could be worn together for a dress/jumpsuit look or separately with other pieces in solids which pick out the colours.
If I go that route I will share.

Sunday 8 March 2015

Roll End Fabrics

I also took a trip this week out to the local roll end shop. I wanted some plain cream upholstery fabric to recover the brown headboard in the guest room and replace the autumn gold curtains with something lighter and more neutral.

I bought 6m of the plain cream fabric (top). It has a slightly open weave so will need a backing when recovering the headboard, and curtain liners when it is used for the new curtains. Any leftovers can be bags or cushions for the craft sale.
The fabric at the bottom is a remnant of white and gold jersey which will make a fun tshirt for the summer.

Saturday 7 March 2015

Bookcase curtains

My only actual sewing this was was something I am calling bookcase curtains.
I have a plain white bookcase which ended up in the living room. It had been in the study/guest room but had to come out once the bed went in. Since it houses folders, manuals, magazine and bankers boxes plus a wire basket of padded envelopes it wasn't too pretty and  for a while I had a throw over it.
I then had the idea to add a twist and fit curtain rod into the top shelf and hang some simple ivory curtains from it. These work really well and reduce the visual clutter in the room.
This is quite a nice idea if you have a bookcase like this storing fabric which you want to protect from the light, though you might want to use something a little thicker than the cotton curtain lining fabric I have used here. You could also have pretty items on the higher shelves and have a curtain just for the lower shelves, used to store plainer things.

I overlocked the fabric all the way round the edge, stitched a narrow hem up each side and a slightly deeper one at the bottom. The top has a 3" casing with a row of stitching 1/2" from the top. The top row of stitching creates a little ruffle above the pole to close the gap at the top.

The Great British Sewing Bee: Fashion with Fabric

On Thursday my order of the new Great British Sewing Bee book arrived.
 It looks quite good (much better than the first one which I also have, I didn't bother with the second). Without much thought I could imagine making
- Casual trousers
- Silk woven tee
- Lace pencil skirt
- Vintage inspired blouse
 So that would appear to be a hit fairly quickly as those are all real clothes. I did enjoy Thursday's challenge, and was reminded of some chunky chocolate brown lace I've been planning to make into a skirt for a long time. Maybe this Autumn its time will come!

Friday 6 March 2015

Monday Market Man and other adventures

I went to see the Monday Market man on Monday lunchtime looking for t-shirting for my Auntie.
He didn't have what she wanted, but the poor man was there in nasty snow, sleet, wind and cold and didn't have lots of customers so I bought some knit fabric for myself instead.
The fabric on the left is black/white/teal leaf print. I wondered if I could get a simple skirt and a top from this.
I could wear them together for a dress look, but also separately with black, white or teal pieces.
The fabric on the right is more for a night shirt or PJs and if mum likes it I will make her a night shirt from it.

I then moved onto to the fabric shop in the indoor market, still looking for my Auntie, but again bought for me.
This is 1m of linen knit. I previously bought 1m of this same fabric from somewhere else, but then cut baby trousers from it, meaning it wasn't big enough for the planned t-shirt for me. Now I should have enough with both pieces together to cut out a long sleeved tee to wear with jeans.