Black Lives Matter

Thursday, 28 February 2019

Character costume

My friend B has been invited to a Murder Mystery party, where each of the guests has a character. Hers appears to be a nun though it later turns out she is not. So she wanted a nun costume with a few wrong bits to give the hint.

She is a much smaller size than I am, so I took a few measurements and chose styles which didn't need a lot of fitting.
For the main dress we used Simplicity 8055, cutting a 10 in the upper body, flaring out to a 12 at the hips.

I added 14 inches to the length of the dress and 9 inches to the length of the sleeves. This gave a long dress with long sleeves.

I added self drafted godets in a contrast red fabric at B's request. There is one in each side seam and a third in the centre back.

For the white collar, I made a polo neck poncho from a white knit fabric, using Simplicty8376 as a starting point.

I traced off the upper front and back and extended the shoulder line and added a curve. I also cut the neckband much deeper than the pattern to give a polo neck (turtle neck). I finished the edges with overlocking.

I thrifted two necklaces and combined them to make a neckpiece.
I made a headdress from a square of fabric with one corner cut off and the opposite corner rounded. This was stitched to a headband sized to B's head.

It was a lot of fun making this and I have edited the post to show B wearing the outfit. The party is in a few weeks time.

Saturday, 23 February 2019

Using Husqvarna Viking 190 selectronic

In May 2016 I bought a second hand Husqvarna Viking 190 for £45 from a charity shop.
Whoever donated it had thrown away the special bobbins it uses and I had to research to find which ones to buy.
This sort of put me off using it, but recently I wanted to switch between two different thread colours a lot and decided to thread it up and use it. I'm glad I did as its absolutely lovely to sew with.
It works well except for the light (the pincatcher was already attached)
One needle plate, a standard foot and the bobbin case were on the machine, and the items above were included in a small bag in the accessories area. The item at the top right seems to be some sort of  foot on a bent wire with a screw to attach it.
Here are the bobbins I bought for the machine. They are Hemline bobbins for Husqvarna machines made before 1990 (not the green ones) and the models are listed on the back of the packet if you zoom in a bit. They work really well and have enabled me to use the machine so I am happy enough with that.
I managed to find the manual, interestingly here it is called the
Operating Manual for Husqvarna sewing machines OPTIMA 180 & 190.

Thursday, 14 February 2019

Quick homestyle sewing projects

I've completed a couple of quick homestyle projects.

Bottom of small pouf
I used the original base I cut for the Closet Case Floor Pouf, cut a plain top the same size and used some large upholstery scraps to make 4 side panels. It's about 15.5" high. (It was originally taller but I cut it down to a better size).

Top of small pouf
I've skipped the piping and you can see it does not look as smart. This time I've filled it with an old beanbag (still in its cover) which makes it much lighter and easier to move.

** A couple of thoughts on the original pouf after using it for a few days. It is really heavy. I used stretch denim for 3/4 of the panels. They stretch out in use and the pouf distorts a bit. The covered button looks good but is really hard underneath my legs.

The second project is so easy its hardly worth mentioning, but I find it so useful, so others might too.
It is a long thin bag for holding rolls of Christmas wrapping paper (holiday gift wrap).

It has a squared off base and a ribbon loop for hanging. I hang it on a hook in my understairs cupboard. It is a simpler version of the cream one I originally made in 2014, which was not large enough for all my rolls of paper.

I've now got Christmas gift wrap in the tartan bag and birthday/plain in the cream bag which avoids them getting squashed and makes it quicker to find the right paper for the task.

Friday, 8 February 2019

Teal Simplicity 8175 Midi Skirt

I used Simplicity 8175 as the starting point for my skirt, but its not an accurate review of the pattern.

I had some fabric left from cutting out the Burda Teal trousers which looked very skirt shaped to me. Of course there was not enough to fully cut this pattern with its curved waistband and so on so this is what I did.
Used the main front and back pieces, but cut the front on the fold and added at the upper edge where the deep shaped waistband would be (removing seam allowance of course). Marked darts to go back to the original shape.
Used the pockets from New Look 6216 (which are one piece) which I cut from lining and then added a strip of teal fabric just for the pocket opening (stitched on top).
Added a full lining, moved the split to the back as I had cut the front on the fold.
Cut a narrow straight waistband, which I did need to piece at the end for the underlap.
Invisible zip inserted at the back between the skirt and lining, and a button and buttonhole on the new waistband. Omitted the tie belt.
It is now a very classic lined skirt, though in a midi length.

I started this a couple of weeks ago and it was interrupted by the PR Sewing Bee, so good to have got back to it and got it finished.

With the Ink coloured knit top
 Side showing pocket
 Back showing zip and button
 back on hanger
 Front on hanger
 Lining back
 Lining front

I also went back and altered the teal knit trousers by removing the waistband, cutting off excess length and reattaching waistband. These fit better now but are still very casual.

Here's all the teal pieces so far.

I did wonder about even more so dug through the fabrics
top left - knit fabric in 2 shades of teal could be a casual tee
top centre - stripe woven could be a blouse
top right - light background with teal print for a knit top
bottom left - ink satin (so not really teal!)
bottom right - dark teal knit already used for a tee (could be a dress)

Thursday, 7 February 2019

Prima Magazine April 2010 Blazer/Jacket

For a long time I subscribed to the UK women's magazine Prima as it had a free sewing pattern included. These are often simple to sew and many have a Kibbe Natural vibe to them.
Although I ceased my subscription last year I still have a back catalogue to access.
(They are often available on ebay in the UK)

I couldn't find this anywhere on line so have scanned my own copy. I'm planning to sew it up in an INK stretch woven fabric

The patterns are printed on both sides of a single sheet of newspaper but don't overlap so are easier to trace than Burda. They are normally sized for 10-20. A short set of instructions (with pictures) and a layout diagram are also printed on the pattern paper (sometimes inside a pattern piece).
This would be a step up from my simple cardigan jackets without being too complex, so I am going to give it a try. I'm impressed that it has a two piece sleeve and seprate pattern piece for the undercollar.

Tuesday, 5 February 2019

INK Knit Top

Ink knit top, made from New Look 6735 . Very much a supporting act, but the shape and neckline work well on me and with one of my self made necklaces.

The necklace was made in August 2016
Here's this little collection so far

Monday, 4 February 2019

SWAP 2019 and Spring 6PAC - INK colourway

My next project is underway and it is in the INK colourway. This could be imagined I suppose as navy blue but its got a slightly teal edge to it and is very dark. It reminds me of the colour of the Blue-Black Parker Quink Ink in bottles we used for our fountain pens at secondary school in the early 1980s.

I am currently working on the INK knit top which is New Look 6735, the only pattern I have loved so much I have bought it twice at full price.

INK is about as bad as sewing black on dark winter evenings and presumably will photograph like black as well, but I'll still share it.

P.S. I did not pass through into Round 3 of the PR Sewing Bee but that's cool (if slightly disappointing) as it lets me go back to sewing up my plans.

Closet Case Ultimate Scrap Busting DIY Fabric Floor Pouf - finished

I covered a button blank with a scrap of thin denim and sewed it to the middle of the pouf.
Plus I fed it lots and lots of scraps, a test garment, and old dressing gown and a threadbare towel.
It now looks like this.
It is really heavy but great to sit on, put a tray on but mostly to put your feet up on. Its large enough that both DBF and I can get our feet on it at the same time.

Note: it is really heavy once stuffed with scraps so does need carrying with both handles when trying to move it!

Friday, 1 February 2019

Closet Case Ultimate Scrap Busting DIY Fabric Floor Pouf

Before I started on the PR Zipper challenge I was working on the Closet Case Ultimate Scrap Busting DIY Fabric Floor Pouf.

The directions say to sew using a 3/8" seam allowance but the pattern piece has 5/8" marked. I went with 3/8"  but my top section came out larger than the bottom. So I would suggest making the top first and then cutting the bottom to fit (then if the seam allowances are a bit off it'll still fit).
Also do make sure you sew pieces together to make 2 halves, I ended up with 3 thirds and it was tricky to do that last seam!

Mine is almost finished. Its 4 inches taller then the original (and somewhat wider due to the seam allowance thing). I added two handles, which are great for moving it about.

I plan to add a covered button to the centre to hide the mess where they don't meet neatly. And I will be adding lots more scraps (don't worry I have them!) to fill it out and make it nice and firm.

However this is what it looks like so far.
The plain dark blue denim was taken from actual jeans. These were thicker and had no stretch. all the other denim turned out to have some stretch which made the sewing quite interesting.
The floral denim was some jeans I sewed for myself but did not wear much because the floral was a bit much.
The light denim and grey looking denim are the right and worng sides of some 'reverse' denim that is pale on the right side with dark on the wrong side. The threads are indigo and off white but read as shades of grey here. The handles are in the floral denim. The base is in the dark side of the light denim. The zip on the base came from an old coat and is very chunky.
The inner lining is made from an old sheet and some cord from an old blind. Lots of recycling going on in this project.
I will share again once I've done the central covered button and fattened it up by feeding it even more scraps!