Kana’s Standard II – A Rusty Jacket

Right, I am finally ready to show you my Japanese Jacket. I had been hoping to get pictures of it on our little Cornish break, along with the cropped trousers from the last post, but it was way too hot for that!! In the end, I had to give in to the weather and just go for it. The jacket is the perfect layering piece for those typical English “summer” days, or slightly breezy days, and when Autumn finally arrives, I have no doubt that it will get a lot more wear. I visited Daughter No2 in her new flat in the Jewellery Quarter in Birmingham last week, and on a little walk we found the perfect place for photographs. I love the feel of that area and I’m happy to see so much regeneration of the old workshops, warehouses and industrial spaces. The colours the Victorians and Georgians used are pretty fabulous too!

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Kana’s Standard II Jacket A9

First of all, the pattern. In the Kana’s Standard II book, the sizing is in Japanese sizes up to 13. On checking the measurements for that size band I realised that if I graded up two sizes I’d be in the right ballpark, without having to redraft. Time saved! So off I went and graded the tops pattern, A. Basically there is one standard pattern with various little differences, length, sleeves, sleeve width and sleeve length. The jacket is A9, with a longer version that has pockets to make a coat, A10. There is a section of photographs of all the different versions of Top A, styling shots all featuring the author wearing the clothes from the book.

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Images from the book featuring the author wearing the jacket
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Order of work, cutting layout and instructions

I did a quick “wearable toile” of A1, just a simple top with short sleeves, to check the fit. Width was more than enough, if not a little too much for a top. (Need to remember to take in the sides or reduce the width across the shoulder before using the pattern again) But it needed length across the bustline for a fuller bust than the books will ever cater for!

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I added 3cm in length, creating a bust dart in the front side to allow for the fullness, this was then rotated to the waist and then removed in the side seam, so it’s dart-free. I also widened the sleeve by 2cm, I have fuller upper arms than the pattern allows for. In the summer this is not so bad, because of all the allotment work, digging, etc. My arms shrink in the summer, but when winter comes again, I don’t want clingy sleeves. Those were the only adjustments I decided were needed.

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The pattern pieces fitted perfectly on the remaining rusty coloured linen. I thought briefly of binding the seams on the inside with bias, a Hong Kong finish, but as I really, really wanted the jacket for the Cornish trip and was up against the clock, left that and just overlocked everything instead. The pattern is quick to make, even without English instructions. The diagrams are clear, marked with numbers that indicate the order of work. Seam and hem allowances are marked in the cutting layout in the book, and it’s all metric. For some translation of the instructions, there is a handy page on this website which I used.

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I am very happy with the finished garment, the colour is perfect, just as it was with the pants! For now I’m rolling the sleeves up a bit. I could probably make them more a 7/8 or 3/4 length for the summer, I’m always pushing up long sleeves, even in the winter! For the closure I used the last of the dark bronze snaps I got for Daughter No2’s orange coat last winter. Sewn on with buttonhole stitch, they’ll not be getting pulled off in a hurry.

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I’m already making plans for more of these, possibly using some pinstripe wool suiting (and making a lining pattern) to make a winter version… The loose casual feel of the jacket is something I really like, although hubby would prefer me to wear something more fitted. Not in the summer!!

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I’m off now to complete some more of the Burda challenge 2018 patterns on my list, July’s edition this year is a bit good, better than last month in it’s offerings!

Rust

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My favourite colours, this is a wall of Cornish slate. I love the rusty tone with the dark navy & the greys

I broke my “please don’t buy any more fabric” ban last month.  There I was innocently catching up on my blog reading when I came across a rather delicious looking pair of culottes in the most amazing colour by SewManju.  The colour was exactly what I’d been looking for all year, and linen to boot!  After asking which fabric shop she’d managed to find that beautiful fabric – and getting a reply – I managed to snaffle the last 3m!

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Burda cropped wide leg trousers 102 05/17

And I’m a very happy sewist-bunny, this was just the colour I was missing for my palette for this summer (and many to come).  It was instantly washed, dried and ironed, ready for cutting.  I decided not to faff around with different patterns, but to make another pair of cropped wide legged trousers using pattern 102 from Burda 05/2017.  I already have two summer pairs, and another two in winter fabrics. It’s a pattern I can make in an afternoon – so I did!

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Out and about in St Ives in my lovely new trousers!

Usually I make the pocket bag linings from a contrasting fabric, something from the scrap box.  Then I use that same fabric for the waistband facings.  But the fabric I really wanted to use was only enough for the facings, so the pockets are all just linen.  The waistband facings are in a pale greyish blue and white flower print Liberty poplin.  Only tiny bits of that left in the scrap box now!  The buttons for the pocket detail are vintage ones found in the depths of the button box.

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Vintage buttons for detail, Liberty poplin for waistband facings
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Walking on Porthmeor Beach

I truly, deeply, LOVE the colour!  It goes with everything else I have, navy tees, white and black and grey tops, all done!  So far I’ve only had a couple of cardigans in this shade of paprika/rust/cinnamon/copper.  It’s really hard to put a lable on it!  So, even though I had two cardigans in the right colour, I decided I needed another “top half”.  And I had just the right pattern for the linen left after cutting the trousers.

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I decided to make a pattern up from the Kana’s Standard II book, the jacket “A9”.  I’ll show it to you soon, it’s just been way too hot for another layer….

So that’s another project for this year’s Burda Challenge, and a huge thank you to SewManju for helping me to accquire this perfect fabric <3<3

 

 

 

 

All About the Tees – Part III

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Meet my new favourite 3/4 sleeve tee shirt, the Uvita from Itch to Stitch.  It might just be the fabric that’s got me so in love, but I have a feeling it’s a combination of perfect fabric and pattern, a pattern that just so happens to be free! The fabric is actually navy and ecru, but looks so dark it’s almost black.

The fabric is viscose/modal and elastane blend from Montreux Fabrics, but sadly they seem to be sold out of this particular stripe.  It’s soft and drapey and has a silky touch.  It can get caught on things, when using the overlocker I had to cover the screw tops with magic tape because they were catching on the fabric.  I notice that my recycled coffee sack shopping tote has left its mark too.  The fibres are caught in the tee shirt fibres.

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So, that pattern.  I love the length, I cut the size 12 and added a 3cm FBA on the half to the front.  The sleeve length is just right for me, they don’t ride up to past my elbows and I don’t feel the need to push them up either.  There is a full length option for the cooler weather.  I was initially unsure whether the neckline would work on me, but after making and wearing the Basic Instinct Tee with the crew neck, I realised this would work just fine.  I love the loose fit on the body and the length is just right.

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I have to admit something here, I actually made this back at the end of May – photographed it early June…  So why is it only blogged now?  Because I’ve been too busy wearing it and loving it! 🙂  It has been in constant use, the navy goes with pretty much every other item in my wardrobe, so if it’s the first tee I see in the morning, I wear it!  Even better – it doesn’t need ironing!  That means it is back in the wardrobe far quicker than some of the other things I’ve made.

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I really will be making more of these, even the neckline worked brilliantly, (I had my doubts) the fabric behaved itself and stayed flat – no rolling.  A real winner in my book!  Please stay tuned for all the things I made in June and now need to blog in July!

 

 

 

 

 

It’s all About the Tees – Part II

More T-shirts!  These are the first of the “new to me” patterns.  I’ll start with the Grainline Lark Tee.  I bought this pattern a year or so ago, but have only made one tee from it, and that was for a friend!  I had the PDF pattern, and sent the copyshop off to the other half to print for me at the office on their nice big plotter.   It was about time to use the pattern for myself, I went with the short sleeve, v-neck version.

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Grainline Lark Tee

I traced the 12, based on my high bust measurement, and made a FBA as described on Maria Denmark’s website.  There’s only one thing that’s constantly bugging me, there is a fold of fabric that ends up looking like I need to dart it out at the armhole.  I have already done that in paper, but the little bugger is still there!  Any tips, tee shirt gurus??  The fabric for this one came from the NEC, I forget exactly which stall.  I love the graduated sizes of the white and black stripes, it’s a viscose/modal jersey, soft and drapey and lovely to wear.

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I’m really happy with how it all turned out, I have to admit I was a little worried going with such a “small” size!  But it worked!  The sleeves are the perfect length, and I like the fit on the body, especially the looseness around the waist and hips.  The instructions are pretty good, the neckband went in very well too.  I just need to remember the seam allowance on this pattern is very, very small, only 6mm!  I forgot that on the first seam, and sewed the shoulders at 1cm instead…  It doesn’t seem to have done any damage, even the sleeve head went in ok.

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The second tee for today is one I know I will be making loads more of!  I downloaded the Basic Instinct Tee from Sasha at SecondoPiano – finally!!  I’d seen lots of versions of the tee on Instagram (just search the hastag #basicinstincttee) and really liked the relaxed fit that everyone was achieving.  While a fitted tee is great, I like a loose one more for the summer.  I had one more blue and white striped jersey from Montreux Fabric to use, this one has a cool double thin white stripe on a navy blue ground.  The fibre content is polyester/viscose, I try not to buy polyester, but the stripe was too good to pass up!

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Basic Instinct Tee

Sasha has written brilliant instructions, and has spent a lot of time making sure her tee can be made with lots of different stripe patterns, and that those stripes will line up everywhere.  If you take the time to do it..  I have to hang my head and say I ignored those bits of the pattern and instructions and just ploughed on (I really really wanted to wear this tee – fast).  I promise that the next one I do I will definitely follow the stripe matching instructions.  The pattern is simple, round neck, short sleeves and relaxed, loose fit throughout.  It’s incredibly comfortable!  I don’t usually go for high necklines like this, I don’t like the feel of fabric so close to my neck, but this is just fine, even for a fusspot like me!

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I made the XL, no FBA, no adjustments – next time I think I’ll size down, see how it goes.  It all went together incredibly well, great instructions and very well drafted pattern.  I highly recommend this pattern, subscribe and you’re in business!  This is the perfect pattern for allotment tees, the loose fit means more comfort in the heat & the round neck keeps the sun off me.  I have to make lots and lots more!  Thanks Sasha, for a brilliant little tee pattern!

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There they go again, I just cannot keep my hands out of my pockets!

I have one more tee to show off, and I still cannot decide on my favourite!  I think I might need to get a few plain coloured tops now though, there are enough stripes!  What’s your favourite t-shirt pattern to make?

 

 

Give the Flowers a Chance

Still catching up on what we made in May here!  You would have read in the last post about the trousers that Daughter No2 and I were both working away on her “fix it” pile, and making some new things.  While I was happy to make for her (and always am), I knew we both had to be sewing to get it all done in the short amount of time we had.  So while I made that last pair, I tasked her with another.

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Trousers 120 03/2017

The trousers Daughter No 2 made are the cropped trousers, #120 from March issue of  Burda.  She’d ideally had had them as they are, fabric and all, but I had nothing like that in the stash!  However, I did have a floral print slightly stretchy cotton that she’d chosen a couple of years ago at one of the exhibitions at the NEC.  It was duly allocated to this pattern and we were off.  I traced the 38 again, based on her hip measurements, and we used the toile to refine the fit.

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She did all the toile sewing, while I pinned and marked and instructed.  So she can sew, but she’s not confident at all in doing it on her own.  But leave her alone in a kitchen for a couple of hours and wait to see what comes out!  We all have our talents, right?  Anyway, as before, we had to take the waist in a lot, just smaller than the 34, changed the crotch curve and depth, took in the inseams front and back down to the knee, and reduced the width of the outside seams this time too.  They came in 0.5cm starting just below the hip yoke pocket, down to the knee.  They were just a little baggy there for her.

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So, a lot of adjustments and unpicking, but all worth it before sewing in the nice stuff!  The pattern has slits at the hem, hip yoke pockets, a shaped waistband and invisible zip.  The shaped waistbands are really helpful to perfect fit, and I usually cut the back with a centre seam, rather than on the fold, so there’s more room for adjusting.  Which is just what we had to do in the final making up!  The stretch cotton had too much movement, so I had to pin a bit more out of the centre back, changing the back seam slightly.

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Hip yoke pockets

She’s done a fabulous sewing job here, and didn’t loose her cool that much…  I know these are going to be well worn over the summer, she’s even bought new shoes to go with them!  Workng together, we also managed to finish that fit it pile, and she went back to Birmingham with a bulging suitcase.

It’s all about the Tees – Part I

When summer comes calling, I love wearing my t-shirts, easy to pull on, easy to wear, it’s a no-brainer, really.  When Montreux Fabrics announced on Instagram that they had a very short 50% discount off all jersey deal, I had to get some, despite having bought a decent amount of fabric at the NEC in March, some of it from them! I also had a stripe binge on, I love stripes!  And blue.  Especially in the summer, when my wardrobe staple colour of shades of greys turns to shades of blues.  Once washed, dried and ironed, they languished for a bit while I finished up other projects – and tried to decide which patterns to use.

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I have a couple of patterns I’ve bought for tees, and my own block.  The fit on the Birgitte Basic tee is hard to beat, for me, anyway.  I followed Maria’s instructions for the FBA and have ended up with a tee pattern that’s pretty darned good.  So I decided two of the pieces would be Birgittes, one V-neck and one scoop.  A couple of years ago I raised that scoop neck when I made some contrast colour tees, I like the height of that new scoop, especially if I’m going to be on the allotment, bending over…

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I started with the V-neck, using a blue and white random stripe fabric – no pattern matching required!!  Composition is Micro Modal and Elastene, it feels nice and cool to the touch.  As all my adjustments were already done, all I needed to do was cut and sew!  In hindsight, I should have payed a little more attention to exactly where all those stripes were going, but it’s too late now!

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Birgitte Basic Tee from Maria Denmark

The second tee, scoop neck version was made using a navy blue and white stripe, which also comes in a red/pink.  The fibre content is Viscose and elastane, and it’s another lovely fabric, lighter than the first.  This time all stripes were pinned, I pinned the fabric together before cutting out, checked the stripes going across and lined up a white stripe at the underarm on the front, back and armhole pieces so it would all line up.  I even pinned every second stripe (front and back) together and basted with the sewing machine before heading to the overlocker!  Those suckers were NOT going to move…

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And it worked!  I always pin and then sewing machine baste the neckbands on t-shirts, I don’t trust myself enough with the overlocker to ensure everything is straight all the time, it’s much easier to maintain seam allowance width on the sewiing machine!  So I stitch with the machine, then overlock.  I use a 4mm twin needle for topstitching the neckbands, it looks better than the narrower one.  I have a 2.5mm twin needle that’s used for hems.

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Scoop Neck version of Birgitte Basic Tee from Maria Denmark

All in all, a very successful pair of tees to wear this summer (and for the forseeable future).  I managed another three tees, using different patterns, all new to me.  Stay tuned to see them and find out how I got on!

ps:  The links are just there for you to find what I used, no money has or will change hands!  Or fabric…

 

Blue Diamonds

Making a good start on that long list of items for Daughter No 2, she’d identified a couple of pairs of trousers she really really wanted, and had allocated fabric from the stash!  The tracing was done and when she came home for a week, I decided to get making, but with conditions…

She helped me in my allotment in the mornings (vitamin D and excercise) and then in the afternoon, we would sew together.  She’d also made a pile of summer clothes that came out of the loft that needed attention.  So we had our week’s worth of work laid out!

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Burda trousers 113 08/2017

 

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The first pair of trousers is  113 from Burda 08/2017.  The fabric chosen to make them up came from ( I think) Ditto Fabrics, a good few years ago now.  Daughter No 2 is slightly pear shaped, narrow waist and broader hips.  There is usually a 2 size difference, so I traced the equivalent of the 38, going by her hip easurement.  It’s a petite pattern, so I lengthened it:  1cm in the crotch depth, 1.5cm between the hip and knee and another 2cm between the knee and the hem. That should make it the right length for an “average” height person. Then I toiled and made the fitting adjustments on her to get the waist perfect.  This was especially needed as the waistband doesn’t sit on the natural waist.  But one thing didn’t quite work out.  The length!!!  The photo in the magazine clearly shows the model’s ankles and bottom part of her leg below the hem of the trousers, that was not happening with ours!  You would expect Burdastyle to photograph the petite garments on petite models, yes??  I think they have used their standard height tall people here, there’s no other way to get the length they have, because even on shortening the pattern again (except for the crotch depth adjustment), it still wasn’t as short as on the model in the picture.  And at 1.76cm tall, you cannot call Daughter No2 “average” height…

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In the end we kept the length as it was originally traced, and narrowed the waist to just below the size 34.  I took a bit out of the centre back to accomodate her posture, scooped out the crotch line and changed the shape of the curve – also a posture adjustment, and took in the inside seam, front seam by 1cm and back seam by 2, all tapering back to normal by the knee.  I also added pockets!  You need pocketses, so I drew up a pattern for inseam pockets, nice deep ones that ones phone won’t fall out of…

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Inseam pocketses for the win!

diamonds

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I really love the finished pants, the colour of the fabric is turquoise with very dark blue diamond shapes, it looks black, but it’s not!  I like that Daughter No 2 is confident to change it up with different shoes, and tops.  I hope they get lots of wear this summer!  That was a May Burda Challenge project, but as it’s only been blogged now in June, I’m calling it for June instead!