Friday, July 31, 2015

Stash Busting Morris Number Two

Meet my second Grainline Morris Blazer.  Once again, I shopped my stash and came up with another piece of ponti sourced at the op shop.  This piece has been gathering dust for several years so it is nice to finally find a use for it. It was a really small piece at around one metre which necessitated some planning.

Once again I omitted the centre back seam but this time I took the actual seam into account when cutting it.  Due to my sway back I cut the jacket slightly offsquare making it narrower at the centre back hip.  I interfaced the front facings with stretch iron on interfacing and carefully slip stitched the facings to the front.  I say carefully because unlike my last jacket which was a marl, this fabric showed every stitch if I wasn't careful.  

I didn't bother with the sleeve facings, instead just turning and hemming.  I added extra length to the sleeves to enable me to do this.  Because of my lack of fabric, I had to cut the sleeves in two pieces.  I added a seam to my sleeve about 15cm from the cuff and top stitched it to look like a design feature.

 I love this jacket and it has seamlessly fitted into my wardrobe.  It will be just as useful as an extra layer for the spring.

Thursday, July 30, 2015

Better By 3

You may have seen on Instagram a few weeks back, my frustrations with Deer & Doe's Plantain tee.  I made the pink on up first only to find out that my cozy merino poly prop had a massive neck and was anything but cozy even with a scarf.  I thought about leaving it as it was but fortuitously I purchased way more of the fabric at The Fabric Store than I actually needed so was able to cut a new front and neckband.  This did make my size 6 version a smidge tighter but I was lucky enough ease as to not make it too tight.  For the new neckline I used Tessuti Alexa, a favourite of mine which is the perfect depth for the depths of winter.

Being of the 'one is never enough' opinion, I then set too and made two more in cotton lycra.  The first in practical white and the second in classic navy and white stripes.  Both are made from a lovely heavy weight cotton lycra from Fabric Vision.

Some might say a tee shirt is a tee shirt, and there is certainly a lot of Indie tee patterns to choose from but what I particularly like about this one is the fitting bodice and gentle flare at the hips.  It doesn't cling and ride up like some are prone to do and on a 8 shaped body it gently skims the hips.

All three tops are now in regular rotation and could well be my new favourites.

Sunday, July 26, 2015


After the success of my first McCall's 6992, there was always going to be a second.  Some of my eagle eyed  readers would have spotted this top pop up in Me Made May.  It has taken me this long to take a photograph.  Every time I have worn the top, guilt has crept in until last week I finally did something about it.  Now these photos don't actually show the lovely metallic thread that runs through this fabric but it was the best that I could do.

I bought the fabric at Fabric Vision, on their sale table.  It is a sweater type knit with a silver metallic thread running through it.  Just like last time, I cut the top to size 10 but to mix it up a bit I added two exposed zippers in the side seams.

There is not much more to be said about this pattern except that there will be more, in fact there has been more.  I just have to get the recipient of my latest version to stand still long enough for me to photograph her!

Sunday, July 19, 2015

My Image 2011/2012 Top

I am about a week behind with posting my makes at the moment which explains the snow.  This photo was taken last Saturday at Lake Lyndon.  It has been cold but snow doesn't lay around for days on end.  It is usually here today and gone tomorrow which is how I like it best.

I braved the cold to photograph my latest My Image make.  This one is from Autumn/Winter 2011/2012 which has been around a while now.  I got a little carried away and ordered all of the back issues of My Image magazine because I like so many of these patterns.  This pattern is one of the few that I have seen made up previously and it received quite good reviews.  I do like a good cowl neck top but there is always the risk of the facing flipping out or the neckline plunging too low.  This top has neither.

To test the merits of the pattern though, I used a couple of 
coordinating fabrics from my remnant stash.  I cut the top to a size 36 and graded to a 38 at the hip.  It was really quick to run up and I am rather pleased with the results.  To avoid the whole facing flipping out issue, I slip stitched the facing down.  I am wearing my new top in these photos with a thermal underneath because of the location, but for normal wear, I will not bother.  Will I make this pattern again? When I find more suitable fabric, definitely!

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Grainline Morris

This pattern appealed to me from the moment it was released.  It is no secret that I love a good cardigan and this jacket is just a step up from a cardigan.  It is comfortable, can take me anywhere from work to weekend and looks good as well.

I bought my medium weight stretch interfacing on Saturday morning and had the jacket finished by the end of the day with a few activities thrown in the middle for good measure.

I used a piece of op shop ponti that was in my stash and cut the jacket to size 6, grading out to size 8 in the hips.  In my haste I didn't notice the centre back seam and couldn't understand why my back hem facing wouldn't fit.  My solution was to stitch a faux seam up the back.  I hand stitched all of the facings to the jacket
and this was the most time consuming part of the whole project.

I am really happy with this jacket.  I love the casual feel of it, and the fit.  It is the perfect stash buster and I am now busy shopping my stash for more potential Morris jackets.

Sunday, July 12, 2015


I have caught the Grainline Cascade bug which has been doing the rounds at my house.  I love the casual vibe of this style of coat and it suits my lifestyle perfectly.  I did however want something shorter than my other coats, not jacket length like view A, but somewhere between both views.  I tried Courteney's size 8 on and decided it was a little too wide across the shoulders for me but I did like her length.  For mine I envisaged a tiny royal blue or grey spot lining but Lincraft had neither so I settled for a tiny black and white spot.  I wanted my lining to be slightly different to Courteney's, but oh well, we will just have to make sure we don't wear them together.

To break up the blue plaid a bit, I eeked out the yoke and hood from the remaining grey wool left over from 'M's' Cascade.  I used the same cord, toggle and leather arrangement that Courteney used as well.  The zip was rescued from an old project.  Like Courteney's coats, I interlined it with flannel shirting.

Now that I see this coat finished it very much reminds me of something very Kiwi, the Swandri or Swanni which is loved by farmers up and down the country.  The Swanni is a bit of a Kiwi institution, know more from practicality than for fashion.  I don't know whether that is a good or bad thing!  I am hoping mine is less farm and more urban!

These photos were taken yesterday at Lake Lyndon.  It had been snowing here for the previous few days which made for some great school holiday tobogganing fun.

Monday, July 6, 2015

More Blankety Goodness

Moving on from the blankety goodness of my Tessuti Sydney jacket, I have made another blankety jacket that hits the winter warmer spot.  My inspiration for this jacket came from a couple of lovely lady's, the first being Nikki from Styling You and her lovely Blue Bungalow jacket/cape and the second a couple of days later came from Lara over at Thornberry.  Her Lekala 4114 was what pushed me over the line.

Lekala are patterns that appeal to me on price point and they are sized to my exact measurements.  The one thing that holds me back a bit is the lack of photographs.  I am a person that needs a good visual before taking a leap.  Their new upload your project feature, hopefully will take care of that and I will certainly be adding my latest project to their site.

The fabric I chose was a lovely wool blend from The Fabric Store that I picked up on sale a couple of weeks ago.  It was originally purchased for a Grainline Cascade but I changed my mind when I realised it may have been just a tad too busy.  I had 2.5 metres of it so actually cutting into it for a project that required much less than that was a big ask.  I do not like wastage in any form, so the fact I have a metre left over does bother me slightly.  Despite this, the resulting jacket is now one of my favourites.

I lined it with a piece of op shop pongee lining in light grey.  To finish it and to stop it falling off my shoulders, I added a hook and eye at the neck.

The actual pattern placement was the biggest part of this project and I am quite proud of how it worked out.  You can't really tell it has separate sleeves due to the expert pattern matching, if I do say so myself!

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Grainline Cascade, Take One and Two

It is incredible how the onset of exams can motivate a sewing frenzy in my house.  Courteney while clearing her head between her Uni exams, decided that she would make not one but two Grainline Cascade coats.  The only problem was that not unlike a good book, once the project was started, it had to be completed and stat!  In all fairness, it was really only one coat that was an exam diversion, the second was a reward for exams well and truly done.

Coat one was made for her significant other.  He had been admiring them since last winter but being a penniless student, couldn't actually justify purchasing one.  Courteney hatched a plan to make him one with some heavily discounted Lincraft wool.  The wool she chose though, wasn't quite heavy enough to keep out the cold in a New Zealand winter so she dragged out our roll of flannel that my husband very proudly bought at an auction for mere penny's five or six years ago.  The flannel provided the extra warmth that the jacket would have lacked.  To add extra warmth, rather than line it with satin, Courteney chose a cotton shirting in a light grey and purchased a rtw flannel shirt which she cut up to line the hood and make the zip panel.  For some reason, flannel in decent prints proved elusive so this proved to be the best option.

Grainline Cascade is designed for women but this pattern is actually quite gender neutral and by straightening out the side seams proved to be a great fit.

Did I mention it was a bitterly cold week last week?  Yes, this is a lake "M" is standing on!  It isn't quite where I live but about an hours drive away, in the Southern Alps.  With all of this snow on our doorstep, it isn't really surprising, I have been feeling the cold!

Now, version two, was made for Courteney herself.  I could probably count on the fingers of one hand the number of things she has made for herself and I did point this out to her mid project.  Her reasoning is, she sees all of the flaws in the things she makes; don't we all!  On this occasion though, she was undeterred and the resulting coat I would proudly wear myself.

Once again she interlined the coat with flannel.  The length was cut somewhere between version one and version two.  She made the coat to a size 8, hoping to be able to fit layers underneath.  In these photos they are both wearing lots of layers underneath, it was so cold, although this actually wasn't the plan.

Courteney used some of the grey wool left over from "M's" coat for the yoke and hood.  For the lining she decided on black cotton with a small white spot from Lincraft.  The spots add a feminine touch to an otherwise gender neutral fabric choice.