January 29th, 2016
I bought two metres of scuba fabric a couple of months ago. And when it arrived I was like, WTF am I going to do with this? I really hadn’t got a clue. It appeared to be a lot thicker and more structured than I was hoping for. So it went on my stash pile to be pondered over while I worked on other things. I liked the idea that it wouldn’t fray and so I wouldn’t need to finish the seams, which helps to make any project that bit quicker. So I was a little disappointed after washing it to see that the grey side was starting to fray a bit and coming away from the foamy bit in the middle. I had thought I might have a go at making another Strand coat but after seeing the fraying I really didn’t feel like going through all the effort to finish the seams, so I scrapped that idea.
I eventually settled on making it into a Trapeze top, I thought it would make a fairly good one and might be nice and warm for the winter. So I cut out the fabric.
I didn’t cut out the neck facing in the end as decided it wasn’t needed. I put the back together and then attached the front to the back, tried it on to see how it was looking so far and hated it. The front was sticking out down the middle and looked really weird. There was a possibility that it would lay better once I’d put the sleeves in but I wasn’t overly convinced. So I left it for that day and thought about it a lot. What was I going to do?
I got up next morning, tried it on again thinking maybe I’d been wrong and it didn’t look that bad, but no, I was right it looked horrible. I took it off hung it up and decided I’d put it down to experience and bad judgement and just scrap it.
Then something inside me said if you don’t care about it you might as well experiment with it. I tried it on back to front and it sat a lot better on me like that. Was sticking out at the back now but didn’t look as bad like that. So I decided to attempt to turn it into a jacket/cardi.
I unpicked the centre back seam, stitched the seam allowance down to make the edge look nice. Put the sleeves in, tried it on again, yep think I can get away with it. I turned the neck in on itself to neaten the edges, that worked quite well and then did the same with the hem and the sleeve hems.
And BINGO, there was a jacket/cardi thing!
There will now follow lots of pictures, as I’m really really happy with this.
Hem looks uneven here but its not. Have thought about adding pockets, but for now I’ll leave it alone. Thats another thing I love about making my own stuff, I can evolve it as I see fit, whenever I like.
The back, that was the front.
I stitched the shoulder seams down so they would lay flat. Quite like how it looks.
Not the best pictures, but here’s me wearing it.
Its so comfortable to wear, I love the sponginess of the fabric, makes it feel light but its also warm.
My Husband said it was elegant in its simplicity. And the edge to edge styling of it does give it a somewhat smart and elegant feel. I think it can be smart or casual myself depending on what else I wear it with.
And I’m so glad I didn’t scrap it and just throw away the £36 I spent on the fabric. So all in all feeling a little smug with myself right now.
January 22nd, 2016
I didn’t properly blog about the first tartan Trapeze top, so I’ll make up for it by blogging about the second.
First thing I’ll say is, pattern matching tartan is a BITCH! Really really is. I thought I’d been so careful to get my edges to meet up so that the centre back seam would at least match. But when I looked at it after sewing the centre back seam I was greeted by this…
Just ever so slightly off. Now I am not always a perfectionist when it comes to my sewing, but I did contemplate unpicking and doing it again ( I know some people out there would not be able to tolerate this at all ). However I looked at the fabric and the stitches and well I just had a feeling that the fabric wouldn’t stand up to the unpicking. It does have a tendency to fray. So I left it as it was. All I can say is thank goodness I can’t see it when I’m wearing it. I will say that the first one was a bit better at the back as it matched at the bottom, but went off kilter half way up, which was weird.
The sides didn’t fair much better either.
So close with this side! However they do look much better once the sleeves are attached.
I have at least got the red stripe running down the centre of the sleeve, on both sides too.
When its on the stripes look pretty good running across the sleeves and the bodice, so I’m quite happy with that.
I zigzagged the bottom rather than do a hem, as its not so easy on this shape. And luckily it seems to work really well.
So all in all, I’m very happy with this top. Its my first make of the New Year, so off to a good start.
January 8th, 2016
I’d like to share with you the lovely goodies that I got for Christmas.
First up is this gorgeous M&M mug, which I’ve wanted for so long now. Not that I think I’m an actual Seamstress, but its nice to dream.
As you can see its sitting on top of the M&M Workbook. And as others have said it is a beautiful book full of beautiful clothes. Now whilst I might not be capable of making all of them yet, I definitely have my eye on some of the projects. Watch this space.
A friend bought me some items from there too. I just love the packaging.
I was very surprised to receive the second Great British Sewing Bee book. This is my fave series so far. Some great looking projects inside too. And very excited to have the Clothkits pattern. Can’t wait to give that a go, however I suspect it won’t be as easy as it looks.
Lots of new and exciting things for me to try, I wonder how many I will complete. I must try and do new things this year and not to make too many multiples of one pattern. Yeah right!
January 1st, 2016
My very favourite thing about 2015 was that I learnt to do sleeves. Yep thats right sleeves. A dear friend bought me the Mathilde pattern by Tilly and the buttons.
And I have since made 22 variations of it, having adapted it to suit me and even turned it into a dress.
Here’s a few examples in case you’ve forgotten.
This was the first one.
Made it a little longer.
Turned it into a dress.
made it with short sleeves.
And a short sleeved dress.
I’ve most certainly had good milage from that pattern.
After making the first two long sleeved tops, I can’t quite believe what I did next. I made a bloody coat! Where the hell did I get the idea that I could make a coat? Oh yeah, I can do sleeves now… Luckily for me I spoke to the lovely Michelle in Merchant and Mills about the Strand coat and she gave me the idea to make it in boiled wool. You don’t need to do facings, hems or finish the seams as it doesn’t fray. This made it a whole lot easier. Don’t be fooled though it still had its challenges. I learnt how to do tailors tacks and pockets, I love the pockets on this coat and am particularly proud of them.
The lovely Strand coat pattern.
A beautiful wearable coat, made by ME!
I think for me the coat has been a major highlight and achievement. I sort of peaked early on in the year.
The next thing I made of which I’m very proud was an apron, I love this apron so much. Makes me happy every time I wear it. Which is a lot.
Particularly happy with the curves on it.
There we are…
I shortened jeans for the first time, which also made me very happy.
I discovered I don’t like working with jersey when its more complicated than a simple rectangle top, but do love the finished product.
A top made with a jersey viscose concoction. Nearly killed my love of sewing!
I met some very lovely sewing peeps at La La Rookh.
Of course it looks a little different now after the name change.
Anna on the right and Lexie on the left.
I also met up with the lovely Ruth from poppyinstitches.
I went on holiday to Barcelona for ten days and wore something I made every day.
Holiday wardrobe, full of my handmade goodies.
I bought some new patterns, of which I’ve only tried the Merchant and Mills Top 64 so far. And hated it. Think I made it well just hate the top.
I then decided I was finally ready to have another go at the M&M Trapeze dress pattern. And promptly made three…
In cotton canvas, bit different but I love it.
Then in denim. Again love this, have worn it quite a lot already.
In party dress form. Sorry for the bad lighting.
And then came the Trapeze top…
Loving it, yes I am. And there will be more…
And that was actually my last make of 2015.
But I don’t want to forget that I did appliqué for the first time too.
And thats about it. I’ve been quite lucky in that most of my sewing projects have been a success this year. I just hope it will continue into the New Year. I got lots of lovely sewing goodies for Christmas so have many new projects to try. Fingers crossed all goes according to plan!
My blogging might slow down a bit in the new year as I tackle new things that might take me a little longer to complete. I wish I had the nerve to stop and take pics as I sew, so I could blog about the different processes of a make, but I’m either in the zone and forget to stop or I don’t want to jinx it by blogging about it too soon. But we’ll see.
And to anybody that reads my little blog, thanks for reading &
A HAPPY NEW YEAR and love and best wishes for 2016 XXX