Wednesday, 16 April 2014

Floral Matching Skirt and Top (Sew U Pattern)

 I've been searching for fabric with a border print for sometime and this one fitted the bill. Although, I had no idea of what to make with it at first, but a little soul searching later coupled with lusting after a matching skirt and top set and this is what I came up with.....

 I knew I had to make use of this border print so with a quick sketch at hand of how I wanted it to roughly look and using patterns from the sew u home stretch book. I set about sewing up my matching outfit. 

  The patterns I used were the skirt front/back and waist band along with the bodice front/back and sleeve pattern. I made very few adjustments, only shorting the sleeve and shaping the skirt's hem width.
Once it was sewing up I toke an additional inch off the length of the hem, same for the bodice and some off the sleeves length too, just to neaten the look up. It's amazing what a few inches here and there can do for an outfit.

  This outfit did satisfied my curiosity about owning a matching set, whilst getting in some much need sewing experience with stretch fabric.
 Realistically I'm not sure if I would wear this outfit as a whole, I'm not sure what it is exactly about it that makes me feel this way, maybe it's just a bit too match-y match-y for my taste so it will probably get more wear as separates.

Tech info:
Pattern: taken from sew u home stretch book
size: small
make again: Hmm verdicts out on this one
fabric: eBay from the Minerva crafts shop
Time taken: 3 to 4 hours

It's going to be quite round these parts for the next two weeks or so whilst I go off on my Holibobs but until then here are some out-take photo's! what is it with men and taking photo's.....??
'doing the robot'

'heading for the gurning championships'

Have a lovely Easter x

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Monday, 7 April 2014

Sewing Fashion Trends: Jumpsuits

I've always loved the jumpsuit ever since I was a teenager, when I owned a denim one and seen as the jumpsuit has been gaining momentum for the last few seasons I'm dying to own another one or two. Luckily for us sewers forward thinking pattern company's have also got on the bandwagon, so there's quite a selection of designs to choose from.

Here are my picks......

I've got my eye on the vogue DKNY pattern but for now I'm going to be making up this suedesays simplicity pattern  2222 .........

I purchased it back last year but after seeing the new jumpsuit patterns available, I wished I'd waited - never mind! I do plan to lengthening the legs and possibly add sleeves which should make it more exciting. Did I mention I'm also making it up in tiny multi-coloured polka-dot fabric!!!

On another note-  How Brilliant has this years Great British Sewing Bee, Been? I can't believe it's already the final tomorrow! Who do you think will win?

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Monday, 31 March 2014

Mad Men Challenge Completed!

I've been hoping to take part in the mad men challenge since it was first started. Finally on the third attempt I've got round to it, so I'm feeling super happy with myself right now :)

 I decided to make a dress which was ' inspired' by the mad men show. The pattern on my fabric is probably a bit vivid and not exactly 60's, but I loved the fabric and thought what the hell!

I'd like to think I kept to the 60's theme with the pattern though and in creating a similar style to what Betty Draper wears, I choose a wiggle dress. The pattern has bust and waist darts, a center back seam and a vent. It was a freebie from sew magazine a while back called the Tiffany dress (an in house pattern design,  issue 16. October 2010).

I didn't toile the pattern but I  measure the pattern comparing with my own measurements, to get a good fit. It sewed up quickly but the down side was gaping at the front and back neckline. I tried to fix this as best I could by adjusting the shoulders and back center seam and also by lowered the front neckline. This all helped but it didn't get rid of the problem completely!
Not one for blaming my tools but I have had fitting issues before with in house patterns from sew magazine, so I think it's more poor pattern drafting rather than body ones, if you get my drift?!

This dress called for lining but I decided to do a facing it instead. I under stitched along the neckline and armholes and turned the facing through to the right side at the shoulders.
I also choose to hand stitched the hem.

 Facing tips: When I do a facing on a garment that asks for lining. I trace around the original pattern where I want the facing to be. In this case it was around the top half of the dress to just under the bust, transferring any darts or parts of darts in the process. Then instead of sewing the darts in the facing which would create bulk, I fold them out of the paper pattern taping them in place this creates a facing with the right shaping but no added bulk. With the darts folded out of the paper it can make the paper pattern bumpy around the dart point, but I try to press it as flat as i can when cutting it out on the fabric.

Another tip with facings is once they are sewn-in I like to anchor them in place by hand stitching it in a few areas, usually at the side seams and if it's partially covering darts I place a few stitches on these areas too which all help to keep the facing from moving around or rising up.

Tech info:
Pattern: Tiffany dress from sew magazine
Fabric: Stretch Cotton sateen
Size: U.K 12
Time to complete: around 6 hours
Adjustments: I created facings instead of lining and shortened the dress by 6cm. I did have to alter the shoulders and lower the neckline due to gaping.
Make again: Yep!! I love the style and fit

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Wednesday, 26 March 2014

March WIP's

 I'm attempting to do a little production style sewing, in hope that I can sew more clothes this way. So far so good!
I'm only taking small steps but by having two garments in the sewing process and one cut out ready to go. I feel I'm moving through projects a lot quicker.

This months sewing projects.....

1. Matching top and skirt combo
Feeling inspired by the border print fabric I bought, I'm creating a matching two piece that will hopefully look something like the sketch I made.

2. Mad Men challenge dress
A bit wacky and maybe not so 60's inspired fabric, but I hope the wiggle dress design itself will scream 60's

 3. Bombshell Dress
 I think I must be in the running for taking the longest time ever to make this dress!! but I'm on the home straight. Lining is boned and ready to be attached then it's the waist stay, skirt vent and hem and then I'm finished!!!!

What are you sewing this month?

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Friday, 21 March 2014

Sorbet Burst Spring Collection

Feeling inspired by pantone's spring colour report, I decided to do my own collection based on them.
Sticking to a fairly relaxed vibe I sketched designs that I would like to see in my own wardrobe. The maxi skirt is a bit wayward but everyone needs an eccentric piece don't you think?

As for spring I'm dying to bring out my warmer weather clothes but it's still too cold. I don't know if your like me but I pack my summer clothes away for winter and vice-versa . I think I'll start with a winter wardrobe purge ready to make room for the summer ones!

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