Friday 27 April 2018

Venus Kimono


I've been sticking to my good intention of sewing some beautiful clothes, and I'm having a ball. To date, I've made four new garments, not bad for someone who would leave their machine sitting for months on end without lifting the cover off to use it.  My first non-clothing make was pyramid pattern weights; I've always wanted to make these but was never sure if I would actually use them. As you can see from the photos, I'm getting quite a bit of use out of them, but still using pins as a security measure (just humour me, pleasssee lol!)  This leafy grey georgette material from Sew Hayley Jane is being made into the Venus Kimono by Annie from Sew This Pattern.  This kimono was constructed from three large pattern pieces. All the main sewing consisted of French seams (a process I'd never tried before.) I found these very nerve-racking to complete, but after sewing a few,  I settled into the technique easily. The second technique that was new to me was a rolled hem. I found this extremely hard and fiddly, even though I was using a rolled hem foot. The foot just wanted to suck up more material which resulted in a puckering effect. The slippery material I was using didn't help one bit, but I persevered, and the result was stunning. Oh, before I forget,  if you ever get a chance to buy one of Annie's patterns, please do as they are awesome; they are fantastic to follow, they have clear instructions and are just a dream to construct. This is the first pattern I have purchased from her, and I've gone on to buy two other styles (I will blog about these soon). 

Sunday 22 April 2018

Nadine Blouse

A bit of eventful sewing today I couldn't put my collar in. Don't know what happened but I was a whole inch out.  This was before I'd even started on the cider.  Eventually, I realised my mistake; I had cut the piece too small.  (Edit: after going back and looking at the pattern again it seems I did cut out the right size. So odd it would be a whole inch out). So, with no more material left* I had to patch the back of the collar (7th picture) not ideal, but hopefully, no one will notice. Then, I noticed my mannequin was leaning to one side, think she's been sneaking my drink. Managed to rectify her, and straighten her out. Nearly finished just buttons, hem and armholes to do.
*The retailer of the fabric messaged me to ask if I would like extra material to fix my collar. I kindly declined, as I had already patched the collar, and couldn't face taking it off again. Thank you Adam Ross Fabric for the kind offer. 

Bumblebee Top

Boy, this material has been sitting in my stash for what seems like forever (actually only a year, but that's long enough).  So why was it sitting so long? Well, sometimes I go through this rigmarole of loving a print too much, that I then become scared of cutting into it because I think I'm going to muck it up. I know, stupid right? Well, this very fabric had that effect on me, hence why it stayed out of harm's way until a suitable pattern came along. So, a year later that pattern did indeed come along! Say hello to the perfect pattern the Gypsy Swing-top by Annie of Sew This Pattern. I knew as soon as I saw the pattern that the bumblebee fabric would be ideal.  So armed with the pattern and my one metre of fabric, yes, I was going to try and squeeze this pattern out of one metre, and I nearly got away with it.  I even dropped down a dress size; well, I need to lose weight anyway was my thinking. But even dropping the dress size, I just couldn't squeeze the bias out of the length for the armholes or the ties at the back. I did think about using navy bias binding (shop bought) except, I think deep down I knew that was going to look naff.  Now, I didn't buy this material it was gifted to me through a swap.  I wasn't even sure the print was still available, and yes, I had cut out all the other pieces.  So, I thought why don't I do a search online and see what comes up.  First half an hour I felt deflated, everywhere I tried it came up 'NOT AVAILABLE'.  I was ready to give up and go down the road of shop bought bias when I thought why not try eBay and see what that brings up.  Well, I found one lone seller with cream, pale blue and a grey version and then I saw a navy version. They had one metre of the navy in stock, so I snapped it up. I wasn't even sure if that was going to be enough (I just felt smug that I'd actually found some, go me!) we are talking about cutting something on the bias here, weird angle and all.  Anyway, to stop me stalking the postman, I set about sewing up to the point where I would need to put in the bias (the whole time I'm sewing, I'm thinking please let the metre be enough, please let it be enough, please). Well, as you can see from the pictures the metre of fabric was indeed enough.  Looking at the top now I think using the same material instead of shop bought bias was the way to go. And, do you know I was also pleasantly surprised when I pulled the top over my head to try it on, because even though I dropped down a dress size the top does fit me, perfectly, and it will look even better when I lose some weight.  It was fate I tell you, fate. It was meant to be!
Oh! Before I forget here is a quirky little piece of information about me.  When I'm sewing, I nearly always tack or baste hems and other pieces together first before machining.  The weird part though; I have to use red thread, no other colour will do.  It has to be red (did you spot it, in the photographs?