Sunday, March 30, 2014

Odds Ands Sods

With tickets to a rugby match and nothing to wear, drastic action was called for.  When I say nothing to wear, I mean that leaving when the sun is shining and arriving home after dark, kind of nothing to wear.  Of course sleeves were in order and given my local team wear red and black, it helped to be wearing the correct colours. 

I had a metre of grey cotton lycra from my stash that had been waiting for a project whereby it was brightened by a contrasting colour.  I also had leftovers from this dress and this became my inspiration for a new tee.  I decided that a long sleeve stretch tiny pocket tee was in order. 

I used the Tessuti Lola Tee as my pattern just lengthening the sleeves.

I had seen a rtw tee with a floral back and plain front so I decided to replicate this style and added the tiny pocket for interest.

I think this style will be my go to for winter so there will be more on my to do list as the weather cools.  Now I just need to find more fabric combinations.


Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Classic Black and White

Since the demise of my colour blocked dress, I have been determined to replace it.  Rather than use the same pattern though, I took advantage of Vogue's online sale prior to Christmas and ordered the very popular Vogue 8805.  After seeing a similar dress on someone in black and white, I was sold on this combination and what luck, I had the perfect fabric in my collection!  The white was left over from this top and the black crepe was yet another op shop acquisition.  Both are lovely but mystery crepe fabrics with very nice draping qualities.  

As usual with Vogue patterns, I cut the dress to size 10, grading to size 12 through the hips.  This actually had to be run back in to size 10 after the fact though as it did not sit nicely.  I found the neckline too high as well and had to lower it by 1cm.

While I love this dress, it is a little snug through the thighs and hips so is not ideally suited to a sitting down all day kind of dress on an hourglass or pear shaped person.  It will definitely be made again in one form or another though!

Monday, March 17, 2014

A Souvenir from Jaipur

I mentioned late last year about my daughters trip to India and my hopes for a piece of silk on her return.  She did in fact return with silk in the form of a beautiful scarf for me, and also a genuine Pashmina which I am looking forward to wearing as the weather cools.  She also picked up a couple of beautiful Saris, one of which was gifted to me to make something for myself out of.  It isn't silk but neither did I expect it to be when a Sari uses an extraordinary amount of fabric.

It was actually purchased in this street at The Pink City which is very different to the type of malls I am used to.

The fabric is a beige spot with red spot borders on either side and two additional borders at one end, both in complimentary red spot prints.  The fabric is a light weight crushed satin and while the fabric is lovely, the way I have styled it definitely is not!  There is definitely an art to wrapping a Sari!

I pondered the fabric I had been gifted for a few weeks before deciding on Vogue 1371, a Tracy Reese pattern.

Beige is a colour I like but unfortunately it does very little for my skin tone.  My challenge was how to incorporate the beige without it being close to my face.   My solution was to cut the front and back skirt panels from the beige spot fabric and the bodice and side panels from the different red spot panels.  To add interest, I used small amounts of the beige in the shoulder panels and facings, most of which are not seen anyway.

For some reason, this pattern stipulates shoulder pads, but with visions of 1980's power suits indelibly etched on my brain, I could not bring myself to include them.  Instead I cut four shoulder facings instead of two.  I also left off the fussy neck bow.

This dress is not designed to be lined but because of the filmy weight of my crushed satin, I felt I needed some stability as well as protection from being a little see through.  I decided to line it using some bemsilk from Lincraft.  The bodice I interlined using the bemsilk and for the skirt I made a separate lining.

Typically of Vogue's designer patterns, it produces nice results.  I probably wouldn't make this dress again but only because I have no need for two very similar dresses in this style but I can see this dress being a keeper for a very long time.

Sunday, March 9, 2014

Nothing But Truffle!


Some of my readers will know that in Christchurch, we have had a 100 year storm this week which caused widespread flooding, gale force winds and very cool temperatures.  Those same readers will then realise that this photo was not taken this week.  In fact it was taken at the beginning of February and my blogging is actually that far behind...tisk tisk!

I had this very vibrant stretch cotton sateen in my stash since spring and loved the semi flourescent graphic print.  I had my heart set on a simple shift of some sort that would make the fabric the star of the show.  I borrowed Colette Sewing Book from the library and traced the Truffle dress.  During the intervening months I kept coming back to this pattern despite considering others.

This project was actually conceived one Friday afternoon in January.  Friday's are not usually days I take on a new project due to my weekends being characteristically chaotic.  Friday's at best are usually used for those, 'my brain can't focus on a large project, lets make a token top' kind of projects.  So why I decided to start on a new dress, I am not sure!

Now, let me just say, that what looks like a simple dress turned out to be anything but!  I must have unpicked every seam at least twice.  I do know I inserted that darn zip 3 times due to fitting issues.  To add insult to injury, at my final fitting, the neckline gaped, not just a little, but seriously.  I had cut the dress to size 4, when I am usually a size 6, so I thought fitting wise, I should be relatively safe.  Short of cutting a new bodice, which I did consider overnight, the only way I could see of overcoming it was to add darts.  Now I am not terribly happy with the dart but master 10 assures me that my dress is perfect.  In his words, 'most mums can't even make a dress and wouldn't notice the darts'.  Hmmm I think I may have used a similar line on him at some point in time!

Now, advice from small people aside, I have learn't something from this experience, Colette patterns just do not suit my shape.  Which begs the I make up the skirt pattern that I haven't yet tried and has been gathering dust for close to a year or do I just move on.

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Trackies.....well sort of!

I wanted a pair of comfy pants for sitting around in the evenings on our pending camping trip.  I don't 'do' track pants but do like yoga pants.  I have had Kwik Sew 3443 in my pattern stash for a couple of years now, unused, so this was my starting point.  

What can I say, despite my happy looking photo, I am suitably unimpressed.  I made these up in a very stretchy heavy lycra knit and made view A.   There were just ridiculously big everywhere so I cut the waistband off and virtually started again.  I laid my Jalie Jeans pattern on the trousers and this became my new leg shape.  Out of the small amount of leftover fabric I cut a wide foldover waistband.  I added elastic to the waist seam and concealed it with top stitching.   

The pants are still a little too big around the middle but, hey, they were made for Christmas camping and these were super comfy to wear after all those waist increasing Christmas goodies.

Sunday, March 2, 2014

End of February Round Up

Did you notice a theme emerging in the above photos?  I assure you that all of the citrus and white goings on were not intentional!

This month is going to look far less productive and far more frugal than the reality because every little bit of spare time I have had has been used for sewing and not blogging.  Adding to my issue has also been a lack of internet for a large part of the month.  Hopefully in the early days of March, I will catch up.

End of February Wrap Up

Floral Denim Skirt
Fabric $10.00
Pattern (used before) $0.00
Zip $0.00
Lining $2.00
Total $12.00

White Burda Top
Fabric remnant $0.00
Pattern $13.50
Total $13.50

White Style Arc Top
Pattern $13.59
Fabric $5.00
Total $18.59

Orange Scout Tee
Pattern (used before) $0.00
Fabric remnant $0.00
Total $0.00

Urban Safari Dress
Fabric $15.00
Pattern (used before) $0.00
Total $15.00

Total February Me Made $59.09

Total RTW $110.00