Monday, April 26, 2010

Long weekend sewing

I've officially finished my SWAPs, save for one button and some pressing. The photos will have to wait until next weekend as I don't want to look at those garments any more.

This weekend I moved on to some other sewing. I spent a whole day tracing patterns and cutting out, so you'll see some of these fabrics a few more times.

First up is BWOF 05-2009-103 dress. I've made this before and it's a no brainer. This time, however, I self faced the bodice rather than just hem. it gives the neckline a much nicer shape. The fabric is a rayon jersey from Fabric.com that I got for $1.95 a yard. This is one of the cheapest dresses I've made in a while. The yellow in this dress matches exactly the yellow wool I used to knit this cardigan a while ago. Serendipitous, considering they were purchased 10 years apart!

Next up I made this skirt, which is BWOF 12-2009-112. I was on the lookout for a simple skirt that was a little more interesting than my usual pencil skirt and as I'd already cut out two high waisted skirts on the same day, I thought I'd try this. It's a really simple skirt to make and is way more flattering than I expected. I'll probably make it again in a better fabric. This is a remnant of a poly suiting I bought many years ago. It was expensive and wears well (I made pants from it years ago) but I don't like the way it feels. I didn't line this skirt because I was lazy, but I have a slip to go under it.

At the same time as I bought this grey suiting, I also bought 4meters of what I think is a wool/poly blend menswear suiting. These came from Fine Wools Direct when they were still in operation and are really love fabrics. I've cut quite a few garments from the wool blend. First of all us these pants, which are BWOF 05-2007-112. I think I may have struck gold! They fit straight up! I spent a lot of time looking at my rear end in the mirror and as far as I can tell, there are no weird wrinkles anywhere. Of course, I have yet to finish them; they aren't hemmed, there are no buttons and as you can tell, they aren't pressed. But I'm cautiously optimisitic. If they aren't a perfect fit, they're not too far off it. I've cut a high waisted skirt and a vest from this same fabric. You can't see it, but they fabric is largely black, with a bright blue thread through it. I'll try and get better photos next garment.




Last garment of the day is another Kwik Sew 3338. I bought two yards of this fabric from Gorgeous Fabrics and I've also cut a dress from an OOP DKNY Vogue pattern. I don't normally wear blue, but something about this fabric caught my eye. It's brighter than it appears here.




Monday, April 19, 2010

What was I thinking ... again?


This is a work-in-progress shot of my coat. It's even more wrinkled than before. All I need to do is hem the lining and attach it with little bar things, sew the button on and press the life out of it. At the moment it just looks like a sack. I'm not feeling the love, but maybe after I've finished wrestling with it I might grow to like it a little. I have learned something interesting with this project; do not mix faux leather with other fabrics. Ever.

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Unofficial month of tops ...

Whilst I didn't officially join Faye's Month of Tops because I haven't finished my SWAPs and I really need to concentrate on those ... I found myself fondling some SWAP garment remnants that just hadn't made it back into the cupboard. Monday night I cut these out while I watched television. It really makes a diference having loads of things cut out and ready to sew.
This is Kwik Sew 3338 with short sleeves in extra small. I sewed this up before I went to the gym this morning.

This is also KS 3338, exactly as above. I sewed this one when I came home at lunch time.
This final one is BWOF 05-2008-103 top, but with the symmetrical drape of 104 dress because I liked it better than the assymetric drape of the top. The buckle is shell and I'm not sure where I got it from, most likely the op shop.
While the first two are inoffensive tops that will see lots of wear at this time of year, I'm not feeling the love with the last one. I'll try it on again in the morning when I'm not hot and sweaty and just a little bit grumpy. It's supposed to be autumn and it was still around 32 degrees celsius today. Tomorrow I get to work on the faux leather bound buttonhole ...

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Buttons and more ...

I finished my black and white boucle skirt yesterday. It's a very old New Look pattern that I bought at the op shop easily 8 years ago. It has three styles, including an inverted box pleat, or this one, which has 6 gores. There are no darts, the back and front side gores have gentle curves that make this sit perfectly. There are about 8 sizes in the envelope as as this was pre-loved, someone had cut them all out, which meant that when I cut this out earlier in the year I managed to cut the waistband from a size smaller than I actually needed.
So I improvised by sewing a black tab and button on the inside. Not the greatest fix, but at least it's wearable. This is See the World in Black and White boucle from Gorgeous fabrics and there is still a jacket to come. I made a sheath from the same fabric for my SWAP.
Today I bought some buttons for my coat. The left one is the one I wanted, a large concave matte black button. The second one I bought just because it was interesting, even though I am sure I will stick with my original plan. The bound buttonhole will be black faux leather and the inside collar stand is black faux leather. Still not sure about the tabs on the sleeves.
Here's a close up of the second button. It's clear resin with lace set into it. I'm not sure what I'll do with it, but the right project will present itself in the fullness of time.

Monday, April 5, 2010

Quick fix ...

This is Vogue 8604, made for some quick satisfaction. I made this to go with the Style high waisted skirt I made a while ago (seen here rescued from the laundry basket for this photo). They are a little matchy matchy alone, but with a vibrant top underneath, it will look OK. I like the jacket with a black long sleeve t shirt over jeans for a relaxed weekend look.


The black buttons I picked for my white coat turned out to be navy blue in the cold light of day. Very obviously navy blue. I need better lighting in my sewing room. As I am making bound buttonholes, I can progress no further until I visit the store and buy buttons tomorrow.

Fortunately, I have several things cut out and ready to go and I made this last night after I got home from a torturous easter lunch. Today I am making a skirt, which will go straight into heavy rotation as work wear.

Sunday, April 4, 2010

Sunday sewing ...

As I mentioned yesterday, I am working on my final SWAP garment. Originally I had a red frock coat planned, but the red of the coat fabric is too orange compared to the red Vogue dress, so I went for plan B. Last winter I cut out a winter white wool coat to go with my vanilla choc orange theme and never got around to making it. I pulled it out on Friday and got started. It's BWOF 09-2007-104 coat. I made the jacket version of this a couple of years ago and I love the swingy, retro feel it has. When I sewed the shell, it looked so WHITE and lab coat like, so I started messing around with buttons to see if I could bring it to life.

Here it is with some red buttons I'm dying to use for something. Not convinced about this.
Here is it with some lovely square white buttons I found at the op shop for 50c. Way too boring.

I like the idea of one big button and I've seen a very large red one at my local fabric store. This is the largest button in my stash and it's a pinky orange and still too small, but you get the idea.

Then I pulled out these black ones. They came in a 1kg bag of buttons I bought from All Buttons Great and Small in Sydney. Every time I go there I buy a bag in another colour. I painstakingly sort them out and find some real gems in there. So many buttons I've used in recent years are buttons I would never have bought, but they turn out to be the absolute perfect choice. These are like large daisies and complete the retro look. I even have a couple of smaller ones I might put on the sleeves.

While I was contemplating this combination and thinking about bound buttonholes, I realised I have no idea where the scraps of this wool are as I cut it out a year ago. My eyes lighted on a length of black faux leather that was sitting on the bed (leftover from a costume I made for a party). I'm going to do the buttonholes in black faux leather. I've also cut an inner collar stand from the same faux leather. I may also add tabs on the sleeves, but I'll see how it looks once the buttonholes are done. I'm not entirely in love with this project yet, but once the collar goes on I may feel differently.

Shannon posted a lovely shot of Simon on her blog, so I thought I'd give a you a shot of Molly asleep on the floor yesterday afternoon. She was right next to where I was cutting out the striped shirt and I had to step over her all afternoon. Molly's mother was a lemon beagle and it seems that they like to sleep on their backs.

Saturday, April 3, 2010

Bradmill shirt ...

From this very old and very soft 70's era sheet


came this shirt.



After seeing all the magnificent things that Peter has made from sheets, I thought I'd give it a go myself. I found this sheet for $1 at the op shop and as the colours blend perfectly with Grant's SWAP, I decided to make a last minute substition and make this. Buttons and thread are from stash (buttons 20c at the op shop) and as I have enough sheet left for another shirt, it was a very cost effective exercise. Thank you, Peter, for the inspiration!

When I was cutting it out this morning, I noticed this cute little label. It's a Bradmill sheet, made in Australia. The label has a B on one side and Bradmill on the other.

I decided it would make for a touch of irony if I stitched the label back into the seam, like some designers do. You can see it sticking out in the first picture.


I've also sewed the shell of my final SWAP coat, but it's late and I'm tired so you'll have to wait until tomorrow for those pics to upload.

Happy Easter to you all and NSW residents remember that daylight saving ends tonight.

Friday, April 2, 2010

Vogue 2899

I finished this last night. I haven't pressed it yet as I'm thinking of shifting the position of the drape, but otherwise I'm very happy with how this turned out. I thought it was a really complicated pattern, but it was actually very easy to put together. There is a concealed strap under the front drape which affects the way it sits in the back. This is the first time I've put a zipper in a knit and that went fine. I cut a size 8 because my pattern only went up to that size and I was worried it would be too tight, but it actually fits perfectly, making me wonder if I should be cutting an 8 in all Vogues patterns. It would certainly explain why the tops are always too big. The hip ruching that I thought would make me look fat is actually very, very flattering. As always, it doesn't look very flattering on Vera and it really does need a good press. Next up is my final SWAP garment.