Saturday, October 15, 2011

Finished Project: The Emergency 'Interview Blouse'

Pattern: Sewaholic Pendrell Blouse (yes, my last 3 projects have been Sewaholic patterns)
Fabric: Lightweight Cotton Sateen (Spotlight)

I had an interview this week and I decided I had NOTHING TO WEAR!! I suggested to my husband, the night before the interview, that I would sew something and he refrained from laughing but it was obvious he thought I was either joking or had completely lost it. But I did it. I figured this took me 3 hours sewing time. I had already sewed two muslins the weekend before.

The first muslin I made was the size 12 and it was enormous!! My bust and waist measurements were slightly bigger than the 10 but smaller than the 12 so I cut the 12. I went back and cut the 10 tapering down to an 8 over the hips and it was a pretty good fit.

I used french seams throughout -- the fabric was light enough. It was a bit bulky on the seam that includes the sleeve cap but as it didn't need to lay flat it was ok. It sits nicely out although I would wear a belt I think. I should have done a sway back adjustment but didn't have time. Tucked in or using a belt, this shouldn't matter.

The pleated sleeves were very easy to sew -- I looked up the sewalong to see how Tasia did them. My big mistake on this pattern was that I didn't cut the size 10 for the sleeves, I just cut the biggest size!! So this is a size 10 blouse with size 16 sleeves. Oops!

This top was so comfortable to wear and I felt really confident. It is unlined and will be lovely in the hot weather.

Excuse the creased state of my skirt. This was after the interview and after doing the school run. Miss Six snapped a quick picture with my iphone. 

Finished Project: Crescent Skirt Mark 2

Fabric: Skirt - Light Cotton Sateen; Lining - black cotton batiste

The sateen is very soft and drapey. I used batiste for the lining so the skirt would still be light and cool for summer...but not see-through in the sun.

This is my second Crescent Skirt. The first was way too big around the waist and although I took it in it still is too big and the zipper comes down (what's with that??). 

I made this two sizes smaller and held up the waistband and the side seams were spot-on. I decided to baste in the zipper to see how it fit for sure and it was too big. I couldn't figure this out until it finally occurred to me that my back is one, maybe two sizes smaller than my front. I have a sway back and a ahem protruding bottom. I do have mild scoliosis. My back actually is very concave. So I just tweaked the back waistband pieces and got a pretty good fit. To fit my sway back I usually take a horizontal tuck out of the back -- it didn't occur to me I needed to take out width. Yes, I know you all could see that coming but it took me a while to figure it all out. 

I finished the centre back seam with bias binding and I think I finally got it! This is the third garment I have bound the seam for and the other twice was less than satisfactory. This time I lined up the binding opened out with the seam edge and sewed on the fold. I then trimmed the binding and seam by half and folded the binding over. Then I stitched on the other side. I didn't have to worry about whether I caught in both sides. I love this seam finishing.

For the lining I just folded the seam allowance over and stitched it down. 

I think next time I sew a skirt I am going to try a lapped zipper. I'm not 100% happy with how my zippers are looking. But I am happy with this skirt. In Autumn I'll wear it with tights and a cardigan.

Friday, October 7, 2011

Stash Building

I went to Spotlight to get a zipper for my crescent skirt, which I'm making out of a light sateen. I actually went to Lincraft during the week and can you believe they didn't have a black zipper in anything even close to the length I wanted? I would have thought black dress zippers were kind of a basic bread and butter stock item.

I'm actually considering getting some zippers online because I'm not sure I'm sold on the Birch brand which is all you can get at Spotlight. Hubby suggested I buy YKK because he knows zippers...hmmm...apparently he does which is weird.

Anyway, I "ducked" into Spotlight for a 99c zipper and got stuck at the sale table. Sometimes (mostly) Spotlight sale tables are very missable but sometimes you get lucky. Today I bought some very cheap polyester fabrics, mostly. They were $3-$5 per metre. I have been wanting to practice with some chiffon and what better way than to start with fabric that costs a sum total of 10 bucks? I have my eye on the Taffy top which is in the forthcoming book from Colette patterns.

My haul from left to right: Red double georgette; dark and light chocolate with mustard yellow polyester chiffon; a vintage looking (I think) off white polyester chiffon with burnt orange and cornflower blue flowers; and a mystery (cotton drill?) fabric in bright terracotta - it doesn't have any stretch which is a shame but it matches really well with the blue and orange floral chiffon so maybe it will be a meringue??

And finally, the cheapest of the lot, a really strange satin with an eagle/floral/mask motif and a black border. It is kind of like one of those psychologist images where you have to say what you see. It was $3 a metre and I'm not sure what I will do with it or if in fact I like it?

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Fashion Inspiration: Kate Spade

Kate Spade has certainly gotten a lot of publicity from Glee with Emma Pillsbury parading many of her designs. I just love Kate Spade's take on vintage with a modern twist.

Take a simple sheath dress in a bold, fuschia floral, add matching fuschia shoes with unexpected colour pop turquoise tights to stop it being too matchy-matchy and you have...YES PLEASE!

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Pattern Lusting

As usual, I've been drooling over patterns and fabric more than I've been sewing. I got it into my head that I'd look great in a long-sleeved 1940s dress with shoulder pads -- I think it is the same part of my brain that has me convinced I'd rock a 1970s jumpsuit and not look at all like Muriel from Muriel's Wedding.

Source: via Jane on Pinterest

Source: via Jane on Pinterest