Saturday, December 31, 2016

New Look 6459 Take Two

I am playing blogging catch up today and just in time I have come to the end of my 2016 makes.  There is one more that I have forgotten about but this will need to wait for the new year.  

I hinted the other day that there would be more culottes made using New Look 6459 so here is version two.  

I initially visited Spotlight with the intention of making my second version in Linen but couldn't find a weight and colour that I liked so ended up walking away with something completely different which often happens.  

The fabric I chose is a lovely light weight suiting fabric in the most lovely shade of olive green.  The tag said wool suiting but I struggle to feel any wool in this fabric.

I made no changes to my previous version.  Even the length is identical.

I love the resulting pants and they have been on regular rotation as part of my work wardrobe.  They even became part of my Christmas day outfit of choice due to weather being cooler than expected.

McCall's 6886 Version 3

You know I have struck gold when I repeat a pattern but making a third version is elevating it to a whole new status.

McCall's 6886 will go down in history as one of my favourite patterns ever.  It is up there with Vogue 1247 which is very high praise indeed.

My current version of this very popular dress is made of some Spotlight Scuba Knit  bought from their sale table.  This fabric is so bright that I initially had reservations.  I love the fabric but am not used to wearing such vivid colours and all at once.  I do however love the resulting dress.  I lengthened the sleeves to three quarter length as a spring version and because it was made for an evening dinner.  I also felt the scuba knit was more suited to spring wear than summer due to it's weight.

Not surprisingly I love the resulting dress and with the right accessories and tights to tone it down will transition well into next autumn as well.

Thursday, December 29, 2016

New Look 6225

One thing my wardrobe was really lacking for spring/summer is work appropriate tops. 

When Lincraft has a 40% off sale at the beginning of spring I snapped up a few pieces of lovely rayon and new New Look 6225 would be earmarked for one piece.

I played with layout for a while before giving up on any hopes of pattern matching and just ran the sleeves lengthwise.  This was a necessity due to buying too little fabric.  I rather like the resulting effect.  What I don't like however, is the fit of this one.  If I was to make another, I would need to alter the pattern .  It tends to gape a bit at the back hip.  I think I actually need to go down a size.

While I wouldn't call this top a fail, I certainly wouldn't rate it a favourite.  The fit in the neck and shoulders is nice but the width lets it down.  The pattern does however have potential.

Wednesday, December 28, 2016


Okay, I don't know whether you would technically call these culottes or palazzo pants, but I made myself a pair of comfortable summer appropriate work pants using New Look 6459.

I did a lot of research before buying this pattern because this type of pants is not really suited to a 8 shaped short woman.  The reason I chose New Look 6459 was because they legs were not too wide and the front sat flat with no pleats or obstructions.  Despite all of my careful research I did think that this may end in failure especially after starting the wearable muslin you see now.  In fact I had already thrown the whole thing in the corner in disgust but I just couldn't shake the idea of wearing this style of pants.  I rescued them, let them out a bit and shortened them and hey presto I actually like them!

I made them up in some op shop navy suiting that has been in my stash in abundance for quite some time.  I even perfected my invisible zip sewing in the process.  This was out of necessity rather than desire.  I think I may have put that darn thing in and ripped it out 3-4 times before I was happy.  I still have a little work to do though because that pesky zip has come unstitched at the bottom with constant wear.

Now these may not be the most attractive of styles on anyone but I really do love the resulting pants.  So much so that I have since made a second pair.  I also have a hankering for a third in linen but I really don't know whether I could handle all of those wrinkles!

Monday, December 19, 2016

Formal Attire

Last week my youngest son graduated from primary school. In the new year he will begin high school.  Before school finished for the year, all of the year 8's from his school attended a leavers dinner.  The theme was Hollywood.  He had been planning what he was going to wear for most of the year.  Initially he requested a suit but buying or making a suit for one wear was rather wasteful so I promised him a waistcoat.  The black was his choice.  

We found the trousers at the op shop.  They were either new or had only been worn once or twice.  They were too wide in the leg for my sons narrow frame and also needed quite a bit chopped off the length.  It is a good thing I can sew really!  The shirt, shoes and tie were bought new but these will all be used again; the shoes and shirt for school and every young man needs a black tie in his wardrobe.

I found the black wool suiting for the waistcoat on a clearance table at Lincraft.  The satin was a remnant from my stash.  I didn't have quite enough to line the inside so the fronts are lined with with a lighter weight grey satin remnant found in my stash.

The pattern was also in my stash and left over from a project I made for my sons school quite a few years ago now.  It is Burda 9812.  

I cut the waistcoat to a size 11 but lengthened it to a size 12.  As I was making it up I had concerns that it may be too short so I made the seam allowances on the shoulders and hem a scant 5mm which lengthened the entire waistcoat 2cms.  I also lowered the neckline around 3cms in total.

I wasn't too sure how to deal with the tie at the back of the waistcoat.  The buckles are quite hard to find and I recalled this from my last waistcoat sewing effort a couple of years ago.  I suddenly realised one night that baseball caps used to have this sort of buckle to adjust the back.  Modern ones don't tend to have this closure.  I did find one around the house but it was a favourite so not able to be sacrificed on this occasion.  A weekend trawl through the $1 shops and I found exactly what I was looking for and in silver.  It did cost $6.99 for the hat but it was worth it to get it looking just right.  The final touch was some stash buttons.

I thoroughly enjoyed this project.  It is quite the departure from my usual sewing projects and the recipient was very enthusiastic about the whole project which helped immensely.  I don't think it will be the last time I make a waistcoat.

Tuesday, December 13, 2016

Burdastyle 06/2016 112 Dress

Burdastyle 06/2016 112 first caught my attention when we were well and truly intrenched in the cold days of winter.    It appeared on the shelves of my local bookshop a couple of months later in August or September and was quickly snapped up.  There is so much to like about this issue!  First on my list though was always going to be this dress with it's cut outs.  The fabric I chose is a palm print cotton satin that I picked up from Cotura Fashions.

Because I really love this fabric, I was a little weary of ruining it so my first step was to make a muslin.  I used a bit of useless taslon from my stash so this muslin was never intended to be wearable.  I had read the only review I could find for this pattern by The Clothing Engineer.  I did find that although the dress fitted well, the cutout at the back didn't sit as well as it should so for my final version I removed it altogether.    In doing so I think I may have inserted and removed the zip a total of 3 times!  For someone who was inexperienced at inserting invisible zippers, I have certainly nailed it now!  The other change I made was to omit the neck band and use a bias strip instead.  It did take a little fiddling to get it to sit flat but I think it was probably easier than trying to get the tiny neckband to sit correctly.

The bodice called for lining and it took a while for me to work out how I would achieve this in the stretch fabric.  The cotton sateen would have been too bulky as a lining.  I found a piece of stretch georgette in my stash and this worked perfectly.  I particularly wanted a stretch lining to go with my stretch cotton sateen.

I wore my new dress to my husbands office Christmas function at a Waiheke Island Vineyard a couple of weekends ago.    It is really nice to wear and in omitting the cutout at the back, the dress will transition nicely to a work dress further down the track.

Saturday, December 10, 2016

Sewaholic Oakridge Modified

 In mid spring Lincraft had a 40% off sale and while I was whiling my lunch break away I came across some lovely rayon prints.  Oh what to choose!  These prints were something that had been on my radar for quite some time.  They were the perfect blend of modern and boho and in such a luxurious weight which is quite unusual for Lincraft.  There are treasures to be had at Lincraft if you are in the right place at the right time!

This fabric had no sooner made it's way home than it was on my cutting table.  This time though, I knew that the rather busy fabric was more suited to a subtle style than a busy design.  Since I really like the cut of Sewaholic Oakridge, this was my starting point.  I began to wonder how it would work without a front placket.  A quick experiment with my existing tops made with this pattern and I was sold.

I did feel that the pattern would work well with a higher neckline so this time round I raised it 1.5cm.  I also included a small opening at the front for interest as well as to get it over my head.    I cut a facing for the opening and used a bias strip to bind the neckline and create the ties.  I then simply hemmed the sleeves at my desired three quarter length and added some beads from my stash to finish the ties.

I love the finished blouse.  It is the perfect office blouse and also works well with bootleg jeans for a modern boho look as worn above.

Thursday, December 8, 2016

Selfless Sewing

In the winter months Courteney bought herself some printed sweatshirting from Spotlight to make a Papercut Undercover Hoodie like mine.  

After a few months of taking up valuable real estate in my fabric cupboard though, somehow she had convinced me to make it up for her.

She chose some cotton sweatshirting and ribbing from my stash and we used this to break the rather vibrant print of the main fabric. I paid extra attention to the pattern matching on the pocket and you would hardly know it was there.

While I was polishing my Mum halo, I also whipped up a new tee shirt for her using some sale table knit fabric from Fabric Vision using my favourite tee shirt pattern, Tessuti Alexa.

Now that I have delivered on a couple of promises it is time to get back to sewing for me!

Tuesday, December 6, 2016

End of November Wrap Up

End of November Wrap Up

Silk McCall's 7284
Pattern $20.00
Fabric $18.00
Total $38.00

Sophie Bikini
Pattern $22.49
Foam/Channeling $20.00
Underwire $4.00
Clip $4.00
Elastic $2.00
Fabric (remnant) $0.00
Lining (remnant) $0.00
Total $52.49

Hot Patterns Coverup
Fabric $2.00
Pattern (free) $0.00
Beads (from stash) $0.00
Total $2.00

Liberty McCall's 7284
Pattern (used before) $0.00
Main fabric (gifted) $0.00
Liberty fabric (remnant) $0.00
Total $0.00

Burdastyle Knit Top
Fabric $6.00
Pattern $16.00
Total $22.00

Silk Cotton McCall's 7284
Pattern (used before) $0.00
Fabric $34.00
Total $34.00

Striped McCall's 6886
Fabric $22.00
Pattern (used before) $0.00
Total $22.00

Total Me Made $170.49