SEWING GOALS

Screen Shot 2015-01-10 at 1.29.12 pmPretty much I just have one sewing goal this year:

  1. SEW

I have not done a lot of sewing at all in 2014 and I want to change this in 2015. I want to finish a few WIPs and also start some more garments that I have thoughtfully decided upon, instead of making something on impulse then not wearing it because it doesn’t fit my style.

On the Colette Patterns blog, the Coletterie, they are doing an extension to their popular Wardrobe Architect series of last year where Kristen will be going through all the steps outlined in the original series of posts and building her new wardrobe through 2015. I am intending on following along and creating a wardrobe of garments I love, love wearing and that fit my style and look great along with removing garments that I just don’t dig anymore.

What are your sewing goals for this year?

Update

Sorry for the silence folks. It is not because I haven’t been busy, it’s because I haven’t made anything relevant to this blog for some time.

I created this blog, and a lot of you I’m sure follow because of the clothing that I was making on a regular basis. Due to my work on my bags and amigurumi for my Etsy store, making clothing for myself has kind of gone on the back burner. I have been knitting, but no sewing of clothing of late. My time during the day is spent on orders and stock items for my store, and I didn’t create this blog to necessarily share those things, it was for the clothing and my handmade wardrobe. Of course I encourage you to follow on with my handmade bags and toys via my Facebook page, or my Etsy store (button in the sidebar or here) if you’re interested in those things but I want this blog to remain mostly what I’m making for my own wardrobe.

Having a completely handmade wardrobe is still something I aspire to, but due to other paid orders for my bags etc and also my not having an outside the home job, time and funds are scarce. I am also actively trying to lose weight (separate blog here if you’re interested) and as such, I am a bit loathe to spend time and fabric (especially some beautiful stuff I got with birthday money) on clothes that I may only get to wear for a short time.

And finally, having said all that, there are at least three to five items I have on my mind that I hope to be making shortly. I’ve decided that I miss creating my own clothes and that I want to carve out some time and use up some fabrics from my stash to do so. These are:

  • Colette Zinnia ver 1 skirt – I was able to buy some black rayon shirting to make this from with birthday money. I want to make one just like Sarai’s here. I have printed and assembled the pattern ready to cut the fabric.
  • Colette Ginger skirt, ver 3 waistband – I have some black and white fabric I bought op-shopping on my honeymoon that I want to make this from. I still have my pattern from my previous make so I’m ready to cut the fabric.
  • By Hand London Polly top (a free pattern, oh yeah!) – Just printed the pattern ready to assemble. I’m not sure which fabrics I’ll use for this one, it doesn’t use a lot so I guess I’ll just dig through and see what I can find.
  • 2 x Sewaholic Renfrew tops – I got some nice jersey in black and green with a Spotlight voucher I received for my birthday. I’ve decided I found the fit on ‘my size’ (based on my measurements) to have a little too much ease for my liking so I’m going to go down a couple of sizes for these two makes. This way I can wear them longer even if I lose weight. I will be making the short sleeve variant, with the scoop neck option. Oh yeah, my overlocker got serviced and they managed to get perfect tension! Yay! So we’ll see how I go on these items.

I also have a couple of knitted sweaters that I have yet to blog about so I just need to take photos and I can talk about those.ย There are some fun things on the horizon so stay tuned! ๐Ÿ™‚

WIP Wednesday

So, my WIPs this week have mainly consisted with working on my sister’s dress for her AGM on Saturday and some knitting and crochet.

Here’s L’s dress so far:

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You may remember that I was doing a pattern hack on the Colette Patterns Laurel. After being very despondent about this ever being finished and actually being good, I’m pretty happy with how it’s turning out. ๐Ÿ™‚ย All I need to do now is hem and apply bias binding to the neck and armholes. Unfortunately due to my overlocker being a douche, the outside looks WAAAAAYYY better than the inside. I think perhaps I need my overlocker serviced or maybe a new one as Mr. MyMuddlings suggested. Love him. โค

The lace on this dress is so pretty. Everyone who saw the lace when I was buying commented how lovely it was. We initially were going for a different lace that was a little more gypsy-esque but I saw this one and suggested it instead and I definitely think we made the right choice. ๐Ÿ™‚

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On top of working on this dress I have also been working on some crochet and knitting.

The crochet I’ve been working on is Freshstitches‘ Blair the Ghost Bunny amigurumi. She’s just adorable! You can find my project page on Ravelry here. All I have left is the little ghost costume to do. I’m about halfway through this.

In regards to knitting, I’ve mostly been working on my Ishbel shawl by Ysolda Teague (I think you’ll only be able to see this link if you’re a Ravelry member). I’m making it from some lovely soft and drapey viscose fingering weight yarn I picked up cheap at Spotlight. They’ve had tons of great yarns on special lately and I’ve been stocking up. I got a few different colours of the viscose yarn and also quite a few balls (one colour enough to make a sweater!) of some superwash wool from Panda. Love sales at Spotlight! ๐Ÿ™‚ You can see my Ravelry project page for Ishbel here.

Good news too that after having my birthday a couple weeks ago, I was given a Spotlight voucher and also some cash so these have been put towards purchasing fabric to make up some of the items I blogged about for my Summer Wardrobe a few weeks back. From what I have purchased I will be able to make two Renfrew tops (in black and green), Tania culottes, Cascade skirt and a bonus item of a Colette Patterns Zinnia skirt. I will be making version 1 of the Zinnia in a black rayon shirting. Can’t wait to get started on these items! ๐Ÿ™‚

P.S. I’ve finally put some of my handmade things up on Etsy. You can check them out here. I’ll have more up next week when I’ve finished the dress!

This coming week will have my backlog… ;)

Okay so I have a backlog of clothing that I have made and not blogged. This will be remedied!!! Yesterday I had a mini photo shoot to get pics of some of my makes. I realised after all was packed away that I didn’t photograph my Sewaholic Renfrews!!! So those will likely just be photographed flat now. Most of you will have seen them before so mine won’t be anything much new. ๐Ÿ˜‰

Anyway, onto today’s item: Colette Pattens Sorbetto with Sleeves! I believe this is my third rendition of this pattern, but the first with sleeves. ๐Ÿ™‚

IMG_0458When I first made this top (back in summer) it was my go-to top for going out! It was just so easy to wear and teamed well with jeans or skirts.

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I made this version from a cotton lawn I got from Spotlight. I used the size 16 pattern and did a 1 inch full bust adjustment. It’s a little small on me at the moment as I’ve put on a bit of weight but I’m working on that so it will fit perfectly (or be a little big!) soon. ๐Ÿ™‚ I made self fabric bias binding for the neckline and drafted my own band sleeves using Gertie’s tutorial found here. I constructed this Sorbetto the same as with my others using French seams on the shoulders and sides. However, I didn’t use French seams on the sleeves as the tutorials I looked at confused the heck out of me so I didn’t bother. I just sewed them in as normal and pinked the seam allowance.

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My only issue with the making this top was thatย I didn’t measure for the band sleeves properly so they were a little short. I just covered the remaining raw edge with a little of my bias binding to cover all the raw edges. This doesn’t look so awesome but it worked well. I’ll be more careful next time I draft my sleeves.

There was a slightly devastating turn of events with this top too unfortunately. As I was pinking the seam allowance on the sleeves, I accidentally nicked the actual sleeve with the tip of the shears!!! ๐Ÿ˜ฆ Cue much swearing, crying (I’d been sewing all day and was tired and up til that point this top was perfect!). I did a bit of a fix by putting some fusible interfacing into the hole and ironing it over so it stuck the hole down. I don’t think this fix will last forever and I’ll likely need to redo the sleeve or darn the hole at some stage but it works for now. ๐Ÿ˜ฆ

Overall, I’m very happy with this top. I know when the weather warms up again it will go back into regular rotation. And I can’t wait! ๐Ÿ™‚

Stay tuned for more posts shortly getting through my backlog. ๐Ÿ™‚

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FO: Colette Ginger Skirt

Let me start off by saying: “I LOVE THIS SKIRT!!!” ๐Ÿ˜€ I didn’t pick the right fabric but I love it anyway.IMG_0337

Before I start the description part, a pat on the back for me. I actually used the tripod to take pictures on the DSLR!!! ๐Ÿ™‚ Go me! I’m not so great at the posing part (gonna do a thorough Google on poses for the larger lady) and I haven’t got any makeup on today and I’ve been wearing the skirt all day and it’s all creased but thems the breaks. The pics are better than iPhone selfies in a mirror! ๐Ÿ˜‰ (Like a five-year-old “and… and… and…”) ๐Ÿ˜‰

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This is the Colette Ginger skirt. I love Colette Patterns and want to make ALL their things. ๐Ÿ™‚

Now I adore this fabric. The retro feel is awesome. It’s a Montreal Drill from Spotlight which I picked up at 50% off the discontinued price. I got like 4 metres for $12. Bargain! I also have quite a bit left but as it’s drill, I can only really make skirts or pants out of it… Maybe I’ll make another skirt with a one piece front/back and a side zip. Any other suggestions for a drill material?

I’m sure everyone’s said it before but I’ll say it again, this skirt was a cinch to put together. With four panels and a waist band, it couldn’t be easier! ๐Ÿ™‚ I cut a straight size 18 with no adjustments. I used view 3’s waistband as I didn’t like my chances at stopping the shaped ones from getting all bunched and ruining the look. Turns out I was right! ๐Ÿ˜‰

I overlocked my seam allowances but I did them separately and open. Not sure if this is a legitimate way of finishing the seams or if you’re supposed to overlock them together and press to one side? My overlocker was playing silly buggers and I couldn’t get my tensions right. After it being perfect on my last few knit items it was very frustrating. I changed the thread to black and couldn’t get the tension back in. I finally got the front side looking nice but the back was weird loose loops… I’ll have to keep fiddling. Anyone have a failsafe method of adjusting an overlocker?

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I used a ‘contrast’ (can it be called that as it’s also in blues?) fabric for the waistband facing. This was also a discontinued fabric at Spotlight at 50% off. $2.50 a metre, oh yeah! More retro fabric! ๐Ÿ™‚ Again, sorry for the creases. I put the thickest ย interfacing I have in that waistband and it’s still all creased. I think the next one I make I’ll reduce the waistband to half ย the depth. I stitched the waistband down using the ‘stitch in the ditch’ method so you can’t even see the stitches on the right side. The line isn’t that straight from the inside but that’s okay. Only you and me are gonna see that! ๐Ÿ˜‰

By the way the colour of the skirt is most like the above and below pics, in case you were wondering. ๐Ÿ™‚

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I don’t have an invisible zipper foot so I’ve just used a standard zipper (I trust them more anyway, never had an invisible zipper on any clothing that hasn’t broken!). I’m not sure what you call my method of installing a zip but I just basted the pieces together above the circle then sewed in the zip and unpicked the basting. Is this a lapped zipper? Or is that when the zip only has one side of fabric over it? This one is centred. Dunno, doesn’t matter. ๐Ÿ˜‰ย Unfortunately while installing the zip I oversewed the bottom (not sure how) and as I was a bit frustrated with the make (because of other things, not the pattern!) so I’ve just left it there. You can’t see it on the dark blue side so I’m not really worried. I was a bit disappointed by the positioning of the circles anyway so I can’t say this skirt is perfect.ย On that topic for a moment, I did try to match the circles at the middle front and back seams but the placement was fairly random and I just couldn’t manage it. I got frustrated and in the end decided to “Embrace the Randomness” (a line that has stuck with me, thanks Karen!).

Here’s how I styled it today, a bit frumpy but IT’S SO COLD today!!! ๐Ÿ˜‰

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And by the way, I’m not trying to be too cool for school with my glasses, I have Transitions lenses and they transitioned in the afternoon light. ๐Ÿ™‚ Also in reality my top is a bit more blue than the purple that it’s coming up as.

So that’s my Colette Ginger. On my sewing table now I have my cut out pieces for a Simplicity Lisette Portfolio dress. Hopefully will start the sewing part soon. If I can put the knitting down that is!!! ๐Ÿ™‚

Laurel Top!

Okay, so I got some pictures. Not very good, no natural light, it’s late, I’m not wearing makeup and had been up since 4am so don’t judge me!!! lol

SANYO DIGITAL CAMERAI look a bit high don’t I?

I’m pretty pleased with this top. I made a straight size 14 working off my high bust measurement but did an FBA of 1 inch (2 inches overall). It was my first attempt at setting in sleeves and overall it wasn’t too bad of an experience.

SANYO DIGITAL CAMERAHard to see, but this is my sleeve cap. There’s a couple puckers.

I had a couple issues inserting the sleeve but this mainly came down to the fact that I have large arms (well, let’s face it I have large everything lol) and I realised that the size 14 sleeves probably weren’t going to be wide enough for my arms so I reduced the seam allowance but then this meant I had to ease a larger circumference into the same arm hole size. Well, actually, a slightly smaller armhole size than the pattern due to the FBA. I did pretty well. I managed to get them in with only a couple puckers along the very top in the same spot so it looks intentional. ๐Ÿ˜‰ Kinda like a small puffed sleeve. ๐Ÿ™‚

Overall very happy. Easy to follow pattern, as most Colette patterns are and I’ve worn this at least twice a week since I made it.

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Sorry for the creases!

I just managed to scrape this one in for the Laurel contest. Not that I’m even slightly convinced I’ll get anywhere but you gotta be in it to win it right?!! Besides I’ve seen so many gorgeous Laurels in the flickr group but my favourite so far has been House of Pinheiro’s Laurel. This girl really pulled out all the stops to create something unique. Good luck to all the entrants and I can’t wait to see who they’ve picked as winners!

My first Laurel!

Okay, so I’ve been a bit quiet on the blog front. I’ve been consistently unwell since the honeymoon (a cold, not anything else!) and just haven’t been motivated to blog. I have still been sewing though. ๐Ÿ™‚

I finally made the Laurel. Actually, I’ve made two; one dress, one top. I’ve also made another Sorbetto top with cap sleeves. At this stage I only have pictures of the dress so I’ll share. ๐Ÿ™‚


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This dress was the first pattern I’d done a full bust adjustment on. I did quite a bit of pattern adjustment on this; not all positive. Read on… ๐Ÿ˜‰

Initially, I graded the pattern from a size 12 at the bodice (from my high bust measurement) to an 18 at the skirt. I lowered the neckline by 2 inches as usually (as I’m big busted) high necks don’t look so hot. Then I did the FBA, adding 2 inches. I was concerned about the arm hole after doing the FBA as it seemed to get smaller and sharper at the front edge of the armscye. Anyone else have this problem?

After putting everything together with French seams, I tried on the dress. As suspected, the arm holes were really high and quite tight. The back was also a little tight, probably should have done a size 14. I also sewed the zip in and when I did it, I didn’t catch the seam allowances so there were holes between the zip and the dress. I also had HEAPS of fabric pooling at my sides. I guess a two size grading + FBA isn’t a good recipe.

So to fix it, I just sewed up the centre back (I could still get it on without the zip) and sewed up the sides until it fit a bit better. Unfortunately this destroyed most of my pretty French seams but now I get a better fit. I also deepened the arm holes. I still have heaps of fabric at the front and the arm holes cut a little but I’ve learned a lot of lessons from this make and I still love the dress so I’ve worn it twice since I completed it last weekend. It’s also made out of fabric I thrifted on my honeymoon so there’s happy memories attached to it too. The dress is quite comfortable (apart from the slight cutting at the front of the arm holes) so I’ll definitely wear it tons more. I might cinch with a belt though to alleviate the bloaty look of the extra fabric. Pity it’s moving towards winter here in Oz so I’ll need to pop it away for next summer soon. ๐Ÿ˜ฆ

So here’s me wearing it, along with my new post-wedding hair. You have no idea how much a relief it is to have A LOT less hair. Will need to invest in some scarves for winter though! ๐Ÿ˜‰

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My first item of clothing!

So you’ve seen my sneaky peek of the lovely denim blue and pink polka dot voile. Now the unveiling of my dress!

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So this is me! ๐Ÿ™‚ Excuse my smexy bra. ๐Ÿ˜‰ Actually, the dress wasn’t quite finished when this photo was taken (I still had to hem it and take in the sides but it doesn’t look much different now. It’s a Colette Patterns Hazel dress. I’m a total beginner (having only sewn the pin cushions and little bags) and I found the pattern so easy to follow and I pulled this together fairly quickly.

I cut the pattern and fabric and started the dress’ construction in one day. I think I got up to gathering the skirt the first day. I had a few issues getting the dress together (not to do with the pattern or instructions) as I seemed to keep managing to sew parts of the dress to parts of the dress that shouldn’t be attached. I was stoked when I realised I’d sewn part of the bust in the bodice to the skirt, not! Lots of unpicking during the making of this one but it all came together in the end! ๐Ÿ™‚ In about a week.