Friday, 25 February 2011

Dress or top? B5562 view D

I'm so pleased this top has recently been reviewed by Shannon, Lori, Sharon and Amanda. All of their reviews were very helpful, so this is my last fabric stash contest entry on PR review.


This grey version is a toile. I used the medium size and the fabric is a medium weight poly/wool/spandex blend knit. It has two-way stretch and I inserted elastic in the seam casing on the shoulder wrap piece. I found the fit needed lots of slivering off, so the next version is a small. The sleeves were too wide as Shannon found so I've taken out three inches out of the wrist width to the elbow.

The grey fabric was bought from Pitt Trading in San Souci early last year, in the hope of making into something last winter. It's now coming to the states with me today, in my hand luggage.

The second version is still view D but a dress and is the small size. The shoulder wrap piece is still the same length but I've placed the gathers above the bust point.

The fabric was bought from knitwit early last year and I'm actually stoked that I've now ploughed through each piece I bought at the time.
So now my sewing machine is taking a break while I fabric shop next week.
Cheers and bubbles everyone.

Monday, 21 February 2011

Sunburn Sunday

I'm glad I didn't finish this dress until today because my skin would have been red raw today. Yesterday the average temp at Dolls Point was at least 33C and humid. I did have some sunblock on and I stayed in the shade but there was enough glare that I did get some unwanted colour. Thankfully it wasn't much and my skin will heal up today.

So there are still some green fabric pieces in my stash but this cotton piece was from the 'great Melbourne fabric shopping trip' of 2009. Again I've used M2241 but I've extended the facing to add body to the bodice. Here's a version I made earlier.

Since I've been give the great honour of brushing DN's hair, I decided to plaited the shoulder straps by cutting out six straps instead of two shoulder straps.
I think this piece was bought at Rathdowne Fabrics (Aust Project Runway). I have to figure out a solution to support the bodice better but in reality I'll usually wear with this swimmers.

Sunday, 20 February 2011

Winter pieces

Today we spent the day in the heat with family and friends because it's going to be my last summer blast for a while.
Our weather has been humid so these new pieces were made with the intention of having some warm layers for the US trip. I'm not wearing any of these pieces because we've just had  a hot/humid weekend (33C). These are my winter colour pieces that will be staples with dark jeans.
This green top is the merino wool knit. It's bulky enough to be an outer layer.

What you'll notice is the centre front gaps forward. My solution was to make this fit with gather stitches. Below is the effect the additional gathering stitches had on this top.  I used Kwik sew 3617 view A but then did the gathers because view B has ruching neckline. Now for the purple top story...

Because view B has ruching, I decided to make view A, but with the ruching on View B. I used the same fabric length but I had to leave one seam unfinished so I could get the elastic in the gathers to sit correctly on my shoulders.

The skirt is a leftover piece of cord that I bought from The bias binding was store bought. The reason for the front split was because I didn't have enough fabric to get the front and back cut from one piece but there was some fabric wide enough for part of the front. That's why there's a front leg split. Now to get boots to match. I hope there are some left in the stores when we get to the US.

Sunday, 13 February 2011

Maggy London b5173

Spot the difference. Can you see how I've changed this dress? 
This version has no sleeves. The reason being is the armhole was way too high. I've lowered the armhole by 3cm. By the time I did this, the sleeve didn't fit and I've finally run out of this static-rich fabric. I took Wendy's advice and sprayed the fabric with anti stat but it just kept sticking to itself. I cut the dress out on the carpet because it stuck to the carpet really well. The other issue is that it was just too humid to do anything else.

The front tab has been shortened. When I initially constructed the front, it was so far down my front that it was pointing to my tummy. Not a flattering look. I moved the gathers to my bust area but that wasn't enough to overcome the tummy arrow effect. The remaining front gathers were converted to an inverted pleat.

BTW: DH was not put off by the gathers at the bust area...
From the line drawing, the front neckline does point to the tummy, so I should have done a bit more planning.
 This time the side view is a bit less voluminous and if I was taller, that wouldn't be an issue. The back fits really well.

The original adjustments were sway back adjustment, I took some of the volume out of the skirt by straightening the side seams. If I do this again, I'll have to redraft the centre front and raise the front neckline. I'll also buy better quality fabric too:) 

Another simplicity 2369

This time I did a couple different things since last week's version. This fabric has been in my stash since the purple purchase frenzy in 2009. I think this was a local purchase because there were no emotional attachments that came to mind.


This style was really fun to wear to work in the eggplant/brown print so now i'm on the look out for great buckles. So the fabric is a dark print and there's still heaps left. I decided not to use the same fabric as the facing. I've used black underwear elastic. My initial idea was to use white FOE, but I wasn't brave enough to use this contrast. I will next time. Anyway, the black elastic was easy to apply, soft against the skin and keeps the neckline from flipping open.

The drawing shows the belt at the front but my belt tends to hide to the side. That I can live with while I search for some great belt buckles.

Kwik Sew 2111

I've had a piece of black ribbing fabric that I first bought from at least four years ago. I decided to use this to trial an old kwik sew pattern that I was given ages ago. I have some green merino wool knit that I want to make up, so I thought I would test out this pattern with the black rib knit. Thankfully my sewing buddies were around yesterday and they saw how oversized this pattern was and watched my slice out the bulk from every area except the neckline.
All I really wanted was a basic outer wool knit layer with a zipper neckline. From the amount of altering/sashing I did with the scissors yesterday, this pattern is going to charity, or will be used for fleece fabric. The fleece idea was Alison's suggestion.
Today I spent the morning unpicking and added a rib/elastic hem and rib hemmed sleeves. The overlocker was handy getting this bit of sewing done. I also redid the neckline finish so the edges are now neatly finished. I also interfaced the collar for a cleaner finish. Now I'll give this top a wash and hopefully it will shrink a bit. It will not be worn out of the house - promise.

The merino knit has a lot less give so I have to rethink this a bit more and choose a better pattern. What I now know is how to make this top up with an invisible zipper.

Maggy London b5418

This dress took a bit of time to pull together. There was no way I was going to attempt b5418 in one night. With the amount of gathers in the bodice, I would have had the quick un pick as my third hand. I've tried to style this dress with blue and black shoes.

Below are the front pleats. The vertical pleats fold over the side horizontal pleats. 
Below are the back neckline pleats.
The pic below shows how this dress would be great for someone who's pregnant. There's lots of room at the front. To overcome this volume, experiment and extend the front vertical gathers. With our humid days, I'm sticking with this version for the time being.

The fabric is from Knitwit and has two-way stretch. The other great thing with this dress is it has a 'foundation piece' under the bodice to give some support. The straps have pleating and should be wider on my shoulders, like the picture but they didn't work out that way.

When you wear the short version with flat heels, it's a basic beach dress so this style is adaptable, depending on the wearer/occassion.

The only adjustment was the hem length, so really this is a toile.

charity pillow cases

The charity sewing for Puyallup this year is pillow cases. Below is the last piece of quilt fabric, now a pillow case. I think this will be a girl pillowcase.
Here are the three that I've produced today. The blue ones have no trim and I'm assuming these will be a hit with young soccer fans.
These will be three of hopefully a million pillow cases that are provided by the people who visit Puyallup this year. If I have any spare time, before our trip, I'll try to make a couple more pillow cases.

Saturday, 5 February 2011

summer skirts

Here's the skirt story. This story is still about clearing out my fabric stash. We've also had a very hot week and it's still in the 30's tonight.

The skirt pattern is the leftover piece from the summer dress I made the for church part of the wedding last week. It's my favourite Butterick 3597 and it's not lined. The top is also a left over piece of the teal/green cardi M5978.
This skirt was a remnant piece from from a couple of years ago. I've used a Hessian trim to get the length to right spot so I can wear strap sandels with this skirt.

This skirt isn't lined and I've eliminated the centre back seam to keep the bold pattern continous on both sides of the skirt. This is a stretch woven cotton.

I've tried to place the grey parts of the print on the skirt, but you definitely can't ignore the browns.

The top I made a few years ago.

Views A + C - Butterick 5525

This top is really easy to make after one trial. This week I made it in both views A and C

The red version was fun because I fixed the neckline and played with the fabric pattern print, so the sleeves had the same print. I'll get to the skirt in another post.
Then I decided to make up view C in a print, just in case the pleats were too much. The neckline sits better but doesn't make the pleats too prominent. I lengthened the pleats by 3 cms so they act like darts.

Wraped up - simplicity 2369

I couldn't let this week go by without finishing the first toile of this dress. The fabric is from Knitwit direct and I chose this fabric because of the dark all over pattern. The raglan sleeves threw me a bit but I realised I needed to take some fullness out of the front piece as my roll shoulder adjustment. 

The fabric pattern is large so I didn't bother trying to match it up. This length is going to be my dress length. The buckle was purchased at Jimmy's buttons in Melbourne. The neckline facing is used as a feature instead of being sewn on the inside of the top. I think doing this in a contrasting colour would lift a plain knit fabric too. There's some spandex in the fabric so it should keep it's shape over time. Basically none of this dress was bought in Sydney.

Tidy up

This is my first go at making a belt. This is a dress that I made some time ago but I wasn't sure about the fit or the belt. The dress is Butterick 5277 and I've used a stretch woven suiting fabric. The dress is lined but in our hot and humid weather, I'll be using a soft poplin lining in future.
 I've done a bit of adjusting to this dress because it didn't fit too well. It was billowing and a bit sack-like, so that forced me to finally make the belt. I've used a simple silver buckle with no rivets. There was some old waist band stiffening in my stash, so that's what I've used inside the belt.

Below is the final one-shoulder dress. It was good for the heat that we had last Sunday. It was comfortable and fun to wear.


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