Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Wardrobe Contest 2015 - piece 4 ... almost

I apologise for the break in transmission, I seemed to have dropped out of the blogosphere once again... anyway a very quick catch-up post.

I was on a roll with my wardrobe contest entry and my fourth piece was another Burdastyle blouse 06/2013-119  However I decided to play with this one.  I added some pin-tucking to the front and that took a little playing with the fabric.  I also choose to use more feet in my collection and made flat-fell seams.  This also added time to the make.  Anyway this is as far as I got before stalling.

As you can see no buttons or buttonholes.  Also the sleeves have been basted in but I am not happy with them so will be re-doing them.

So why the wardrobe contest entry fail?  Well I had sewing that became a bit more important.  I am going to a ball this week-end and needed a new frock.  So I have been making muslins madly and after quite a few changes I was able to cut my fabric... gulp!

The dress has progressed since cutting stage and is almost finished.  I did get way-laid by having a sewing week-end in Tamworth with some of the girls from Pattern Review.  We had a great week-end and did get help to pin my hem (Thanks Sharon!

So that is where I am currently up to - hand stitching - hemming and stitching on the decorative bow at the shoulder.  I hope to blog more about my sewing week-end but will leave you with a picture of a sign outside a lovely little cafe in Geln Innes where we stopped for lunch on the drive down to Tamworth.

Ciao kittens... pretty gown pics soon...

Saturday, April 11, 2015

Wardrobe Contest 2015 - piece 3 - Burdastyle 09/2011-128

My third piece, another top but this time a button-up blouse.  This is a pattern I have wanted to make for ages and I wish I had made it sooner as I really like it.   It is Burdastyle 09/2011 -128 called "Straight Ahead".

I love the simple lines but interesting details that makes this an interesting sew as well as lifts the top out of being too simple.  I think I will have to make another one soon in a plain fabric.

The only real alteration was to shorten the pattern.  That sucker is seriously long!  I did shorten a little more than I might normally but I was constrained by the amount of fabric I had.
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Every top in this contest is either fabric from a remnant bin or a left-over from something else I have sewn!  A real left-over wardrobe!

I love the set-in collar at the back that lines up with the level of the pleats at the front.  Hard to photograph in this fabric though.

The fabric is a Japanese cotton (lawn?) from Spotties.  Fairly stiff so not the best choice for the pleats in this top.  I am hoping it may soften with a few washes.  When I make it again I will try for a softer fabric.  I like how this one coordinates with my central piece, the cardigan.

So the full review is linked here

See you soon kittens, one more top to go...

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

2015 Wardrobe Contest - piece 2 - Ottobre 02/2015 #1

This is my second finished piece in my entry for the Wardrobe Contest on Pattern Review. It is again from the latest women's Ottobre issue 02/2015.  This time pattern no. 1 "Grain Field Top".  Can't quite get the connection of the name to the pattern.  any clues??

As this is part of my contest entry I haven't got the official photos yet but have got some on Diana.

This top is lovely.  The fabric was bought from a remnant bin - a cotton/silk blend and has been one of those pedestal pieces I was afraid to cut into.  I love the fabric, the colours, pattern and the way it feels.... yummy!

I have reviewed this pattern here, so won't repeat a lot of it here.  The basics are I lengthened the top, used a button/ loop closure at the back seam instead of an invisible zipper and had problems with the fit around my upper back.... boo hoo!, I thought it would end in tears, but I managed to fix the issue well enough by letting it out a little at the side seams.  Lesson learnt - when it is a pedestal fabric then muslin it or add extra to the seam allowances!!

I also love how it goes with my RTW cardigan that the wardrobe is based on.

Ciao kittens... another top soon... on a roll!

Monday, April 6, 2015

2015 Pattern Review Wardrobe Contest... off and running

I seem to be in contest mode.  My last post is the dress I entered in the Best of Patterns contest (voting open until the 9th of March) and now I have got all enthused to join in the 2015 Wardrobe Contest.

I have put together a story board.

The patterns are all Ottobre, Burdastyle and one Hot Patterns.

Their is one piece that can be made before time or RTW.  I chose this RTW cardigan and have planned the wardrobe around it.

My first top is Ottobre 02-2015 #10 and you can see it under the cardigan. I used a piece of Silk crepe de Chine leftover from this dress.

I have written a review here about this top.  My only other tips I would add are that I used tailors tacks to mark the neckline pleats and for the narrow hem at the front neckline, I turned it 5mm, stitched and then did the same again.  I also used a bit of spray starch to make it behave itself.

The top was shortened by 1" and sized up one size at the hips as it is a close fit at the hips. Take care if you are a pear shape with this top.  

Overall I really like the top, it was a quick make and the pleats give it a bit of interest.

I also like how the colours in the fabric match with my cardigan.

Ciao for now kittens, mad flurry of sewing happening so there may be more posts sooner than later...

Saturday, April 4, 2015

March Dress - Kitschy Koo Lady Skater Dress goes to Tea

Well the plan had been for a frock a month, but February's frock didn't happen.  However I did get one made for March.

This dress is the Lady Skater Dress by Kitschy Koo.  I had plans to make this dress as part of my frock-fest so when it happened that this pattern was one of the ones included in the "Best of" patterns contest it seemed to be the right time to make it.

I also had an invitation to attend the Brisbane Social Sewist's High Tea and it seemed right to have a new frock for it.  I didn't get any photos at the High Tea (bad blogger!) but we had some time before it started so we went to New Farm Park in Brisbane and got these photos.

I would have liked a narrow gold or aqua belt to wear with this but this gold circles belt is the best option I could find.  It is cute though!

The dress has a little twirl factor going on...

but I may be getting to old to twirl as I got quite giddy...

I have reviewed this dress in detail on Pattern Review so all the details about the sewing of it can be found in the review - here.

And for those of you who can vote, I encourage you to check out all the entries - here.

Ciao kittens... more contest sewing up next.

Saturday, March 7, 2015

Burdastyle 06/2013 #119 Floral cotton blouse

I recently made 06/2013 #118 (Japanese lawn blouse) and really liked the pattern, but felt I needed to improve some areas of my sewing.  The standing collar was not perfect and had a bit too much bulk in it and I wasn't happy with how I set the sleeves in.

So at my last trip to Brisbane I picked up a lovely floral cotton (from the Fabric Collection) and decided to make it again.  However this time I used the sister pattern #119.   The differences are the collar with stand (quite a different shape to the stand in #118) and plain hemmed sleeves.  That made sense to me as I like the casual look of the sleeves rolled up  (which is how they show it styled).

Well this time I paid a lot more attention to the sewing (or maybe practice makes perfect) and I am super happy with the finish on this blouse.  Check out how this collar sits...

It was a bit different shape to other collars I have made but wow! so happy with how it sits! Can I say it again?  Look at the collar from the back...

Once again I did add a strip of fusible interfacing on the facing where the buttons and buttonholes go.  I also added the top button this time and made sure I sewed the top button so the inside stitching (which shows) is a tidy cross.  I raised a discussion about that top button on Pattern Review.  Sometimes I leave it off as I would not be doing it up and wondered if it made it look home-eccy-miss-becky.  Got a good response and now I feel confident to leave it off if I choose to.

Ok the compulsory modeled shots...


and maybe another way to wear it layered...

Pretty happy with the sewing this time...

Oh and out of interest I googled floral tops and look what came up - this "chiffon blouse". The fabric is a dead ringer for this cotton.  (If you want to compare look at the top photos on Diana as my DH had some arty lens on the modeled shots so the fabric is not so clear).

Ciao kittens... back soon with another frock...

Monday, February 23, 2015

Active wear... Rashie - Fehrtrade Surf to Summit top

We have bought kayaks recently and the few times using them so far, I decided we needed better sun protection.  

I decided I would like to have a rashie with a zipper and a swim short (Jalie) as a set (with an existing bikini top) and then I could swim after a kayak session or use it at the beach.  However I decided to make the rashie for DH first to try the pattern out.    DH also wanted the top with a zipper, as it makes it easier to pull on and off and if it is really hot you can get a bit of relief half opening the zipper.  Thankfully the Fehrtrade Surf to Summit top was released about the time I started looking for a pattern for the rashie.

I love that there is so many options to personalise this pattern. I made this top with blue for the main body and sleeves and black for the side panels, neck facing and zipper shield.

The zipper I bought was a chunky plastic zipper slightly longer than what the pattern called for, so I had to lengthen the zipper placket about an inch and also make the opening a little wider to accommodate the chunky zipper.  This was not the easiest thing I have sewn but I think it was lack of experience on my part and nothing to do with the pattern.  I did a lot of basting and quite a bit of unpicking too.

I was concerned about getting the fit right as DH is broad in the shoulders, slimmer at the waist, but with a gut (tummy). This is the fit on the back.  

I suppose it could be more fitted at waist level, but this fit is comfortable and does not accentuate the tummy.

The only change I made to the pattern was to shorten the sleeve by about an inch.  The muslin ended up with only one long sleeve due to lack of fabric but I assumed his arms were the same length. :)

I offered to cut the sleeve to the same length and he could use the muslin too, but he declined... don't know why...

The swimwear fabric is quite expensive, but I have looked at prices for RTW rashies with zips and this top would have cost me half the price, so worth doing I think.  Plus then we are not limited to the colours and patterns in the RTW ones.

Ciao kittens... moving away from active wear for a little while now...  back with some pretty floral fabric next...