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Wednesday 15 December 2021

Fabric Christmas Tree

 I used the free pattern from Patterns 4 Pirates to make this cute stuffed fabric Christmas Tree.

I went for a classic green for mine.

I might raid the bead box to add some decorations.

Wednesday 1 December 2021

Rainbow Quilt finished

 The binding is on and I am declaring the rainbow quilt to be done.

It has a plain darkish blue as the backing, which I then also used for the binding.

I did audition some other fabrics for the binding but they seemed to compete rather with the coloured squares.

Tuesday 9 November 2021

Finished Hiking Trousers

The Hiking/Travel trousers have been finished a few days, then worn for 2 days and put through the wash and dried.

They have 8 pockets. 2 zipped front pockets, two jeans style pockets (extra deep), 2 back pockets with velcro closure and two leg pockets with button and flap closure.

Today I replaced the webbing on a Craghoppers belt with elastic to hold them up when the pockets are full.

Elastic belt through loops

One of the front zipped pockets (open)

Front zipped pocket closed

Back pocket with Velcro closure

Inside out showing the nested front pockets

The front of the trousers (realistic colour)

One of the buttoned leg pockets

The back of the trousers.

Sunday 31 October 2021

Trousers with lots of pockets

I like pockets in my trousers (pants) and notice that I pick some of my self sewn trousers over others because of the pockets. I also like stretch woven fabric over other fabrications.

I don't actually have a pattern which has all the attributes I would like, but I thought I could add extra pockets to a simpler style like my old favourite New Look 6216.

I'll make the pockets on the pattern have a smaller opening and a larger pocket (as I did on the black pair), and perhaps try adding a cargo pocket on the leg and/or back pockets as well.

Saturday 30 October 2021

Autumn Collection - starting with three pieces

It seems ages since I did one of my seasonal collections, so here goes with Autumn 2021.

The colour palette for this is dark brown, pink and ivory.

Bottoms - these will be trousers with an elasticated waist and lots of pockets.

Dark and slightly lighter brown strips with a pink pinstripe. It is printed onto the fabric rather than woven in and has some crosswise stretch.

I have 3.2 metres of 160cm wide fabric, which I seem to have bought 10+ years ago from Abakhan Fabrics, probably from the Mostyn, North Wales shop, but possibly from Manchester or Preston.

Top - simple scoop necked jersey top.

Pink background fabric with lovely blossom print. Stretch in both directions.
There is just 2 metres of 150cm wide fabric which I bought locally when I lived in Chesterfield, probably from the stall on the open air market, sometime pre pandemic.

Layer - woven coatigan
This is a blanket style fabric in dark brown, a lighter brown and cream. I've already overlocked the edges and washed it, so it is ready to go. Will definitely have big pockets and be of a reasonable length.

2.1 metres of  135cm wide fabric from deep stash, so maybe another old Abakhan buy.

Tuesday 26 October 2021

Rainbow Quilt Top - pieced

 Finished sewing the last seams on the quilt top today, and tried to get a photo.

I'm pleased with how it came out. Next steps are to get some wadding and make up the layers but that can wait a bit.

Saturday 23 October 2021

New Sewing room - photos

 Here is my new sewing room layout, it has been a little awkward to include the futon and work round the wall lights without blocking the powerpoints.

Futon (for extra guests) used to chill out (strips for the rainbow quilt are in order on the top of the back of the futon). The futon was at OH's apartment, we took it apart and then reassembled it here - very fiddly to do.

IKEA Pax cupboard with shelves from old sewing room. Also taken apart (though when we packed up my house in July) and reassembled in the new room.

In the corner I have an Ikea Kallax with inserts. We bought the Kallax shell new from Ikea, but the inserts were used via Gumtree.

The sewing room is on the side of a long narrow single storey house, so the view out the side is of the fence and neighbour's lean to. No curtain rail yet, but plan to add one for guests at some later point.

Here I have a fixed table (Ikea Melltorp from several moves ago) and a drop leaf table (Ikea but also from Gumtree) used for the computer and the sewing machine.

The monitor and laptop are on arms on a metal pole screwed to the back of the table. They can be pulled forward for use, or pushed back when I want more sewing machine space. Also good for watching iplayer/itvhub/Youtube whilst sewing.

I used these in my old home office when working from home during lockdown, and eventually found which box I had packed them in!

Wednesday 20 October 2021

Rainbow Quilt - the squares

 Here are the squares (multiple of each. mostly 6, but varies slightly).

The fabrics at bottom right are the plain blue for backing and the postage stamp print for the border.

Next thing is to work on the layout the the different fabrics within the colour zones

Friday 15 October 2021

Rainbow Quilt design V2

I have now cut out a lot of squares from the fabrics I showed earlier, plus a few extra used just to bulk things out a bit.

Generally I cut 6 squares from each fabric though some are less and some are more.

I have more squares than I need, so a bit of wriggle room for aesthetics.

I then revisited the design and tweaked it to reflect better the numbers of each colours I have cut.

I've split the 'turquoise' category into a lighter greener one I've called 'Aqua' and the brighter more obvious ones in 'Turquoise'.

Next thing is to find a place in the house large enough to sort the colours out and see what the placement is like!

Tuesday 12 October 2021

Rainbow Quilt - progress

Things are progressing well at the new house, we've had our first overnight guests and the large cupboard is now up in the sewing room.

There are still other things to sort out but its really feeling like home!

Things are also progressing on the Rainbow Quilt plans.

A rifle in the fabric boxes and some additions from mum and auntie means I have got a rainbow of fabrics.

I also found a large piece of plain medium blue which can be the backing.

I decided that my quilt will use 4 1/2 squares - 16 x 20 (64” x 80” - 160cm x 200cm)

My first version of a possible design.

The colour blocks will be made up of different fabrics.

Wednesday 15 September 2021

New Home

 We have moved into our new place, trying to merge the contents of my old house and OH's apartment.

As you can imagine there are boxes everywhere and no sewing has happened yet.

We got internet access finally today which is great.

Tuesday 24 August 2021

Planning a rainbow quilt

We get our new house on 1st September, though the sewing room will probably not be operational until at least mid September.

As well as the 6PAC, I also want to make a simple rainbow quilt with 6 inch squares in a pattern something like this (found on pinterest).

Or maybe smaller squares with this layout

Either way should be fun.

Tuesday 3 August 2021

New 6PAC Sew Along from ejvc

 New 6PAC sew along (Autumn 2021) – The Fabulous Dr. E's Fabulous Blog (wordpress.com)

I usually can't resist a 6PAC!

Having packed up all the fabric for moving, it was apparent how much I have.

So anything I sew really does need to come from the existing resources.

There was one combo I noticed whilst I was packing up.

Some stretch suiting in a cool brown with fine pink stripes, and a lovely knit fabric with a pink ground of blossoms and brown stems.

At least there I would have a top and trousers which co-ordinate, and then see where I go from that starting point.

Going forwards I want to be more mindful of the details, maybe zipped pockets in 'normal' trousers. I'm definitely in the 'pockets are good' camp.

Saturday 31 July 2021

At the apartment

We're now living at OH's apartment, and have been here over a week.

Quite a few open containers of stuff came here, so we've repacked those into proper boxes for the next move. Most of the stuff from my old house is packed up in storage.

Not quite sure when we'll get to move to the new house, hopefully sometime in August. There's a query about a Tree Preservation Order which might delay things a bit.

I've been thinking about sewing room layout for the new house and making some sort of cover for the old futon which will go in there for extra guest sleeping.

More news when there is some.

Thursday 1 July 2021

Moving house so there will be a pause

Just over 2 weeks and my house contents will go in storage and I'll move to live at OH's apartment. Then at some later point (hopefully not too long) we will move into our new home.

No sewing but a lot of packing up.

I'll be back once I have moved!

Tuesday 22 June 2021

Cami top for PJs

 I used an OOP Butterick Pattern 6985 for a cami top to match the trousers.

I made my straps a bit wider and cut on the straight grain rather than the bias.

Makes for a good set for hot weather.

I think I'll call my SWAP 2021 done now.

On the left is the lined wool trouser suit and off white blouse - worn once for an interview.
The desigual fabric tee is a fun piece.

On the right the pilates outfit of tee, pants and hoodie.

In the centre 2 pairs of summer PJs in pink and white.

Tuesday 15 June 2021

PJ pants from Simplicity 1668

 Here's some simple PJ pants I made using the trousers from Simplicity 1668.

I made quite a few alterations.

1. Raised the back waist slightly.

2. Changed the back crotch to be more of an L then a gradual slope and slightly extended the back crotch length.

3. Removed the grown on elastic casing, which I replaced with a waistband piece.

4. Added buttonholes at centre front of waistband to allow drawstrings to come through.

5. Instead of the full elastic waistband I cut a slightly shorter piece of elastic and added drawstrings to each end. This gives the stretch of elastic, but the adjustability of drawstrings and is my preferred finish for PJ pants. 

6. Shortened the leg length by 11 inches (28cm) to give a 3/4 length pant leg (as these are summer PJs)

7. Added a lace trim to the hems.

Thursday 3 June 2021

Desigual fabric jersey top

 Often on holiday I like to buy a few remnants of fabric to sew up once I get home.

I can't remember which trip this fabric was from, but it's a remnant of what seems to be desigual jersey fabric.

I've made a basic 3/4 length sleeve t shirt using New Look 6735, but cutting the body a little looser.

Its got a lot going on but I really love it.

Here's how that might look in the SWAP

Sunday 30 May 2021

Cami from GBSB Sustainable Style

 I've made this cami top to wear with the pink PJ trousers.

As I had very small scraps of the pink leftover, I could only manage the straps in the pink, so used an off white cotton (a remnant of curtain lining) for the other pieces, with some pink embroidery, pink stretch lace and a ribbon bow to further pick up the pink.

The pattern used is the Cami from the Sleep Set in the GBSB book Sustainable Style.

I sized up as using a woven not a knit, and added a little narrow elastic across the back.

Monday 24 May 2021

Returning to SWAP 2021

SWAP 2021  has now been extended to the end of June, so I thought I would revisit my original plan.

You  have the option to do either..

  • FULL MONTY - make all 11 garments.  One garment may be previously sewn, one may be purchased, and one may be sewn up before the official sewing start date.
  • HALF MONTY - make 6 of the 11 garments.  One may be sewn up before the official sewing start date.  Make up the remaining items from your existing wardrobe; one may be purchased.   

I always want to do the full 11 piece collection, so let's assess the situation.

Made so far:-

Lined wool jacket, and matching lined wool trousers, ivory viscose tie neck blouse.
Hoody panelled tee and panelled yoga pants.

Then more recently 2 of the 4 pairs of PJ pants co-ordinate as well.

I've been wearing these with plain RTW t shirts, but cotton camisole tops would be better when the weather heats up.

So 2 cami tops and a previously made jacket could fill the brief. Hmmmmm.

The scraps from the bright pink PJs are so tiny they are unusable, but I do have a bit of the fabrics with pandas and stars.

Lets see how things develop.

Monday 3 May 2021

Indigo - the blue bear


Here's Indigo, a blue wool bear made from Simplicity 8044 an Elaine Heigl design.

He's very cute and was easy to make.

I think he needs a tartan waistcoat.

Wednesday 28 April 2021

Capsule wardrobe for casual wear in navy, rose and teal

I've been thinking about a Capsule wardrobe for casual wear, based more on things I have previously sewn and thought others might find it of interest.

Neutral - something you are happy to wear for trousers, ideally of a similar depth to your hair colour.

I'm going to pick Navy as my neutral and not be too strict about matching shades of navy.

For simplicity in this capsule I'm going to have all my bottoms as trousers and all in navy.

Navy pull on jeans

Navy yoga pants

Navy stretch woven trousers

A bit more variety in the layering pieces

Navy cardigan or hoodie

Rose Pink cardigan or jacket (a flattering pink for my colouring)

Teal cardigan or hoodie (a flattering blue/green for my colouring)

And then various knit tops in navy, teal/turquoise and rose. 

Trainers (running shoes) in plain black (as blue seem hard to find), a digital watch, simple stud earrings and a small silver pendant.