Fancy Pants vol 1

This is a post that’s been a long time coming! Apologies to all those who saw the first posts of the year and thought,” Yay, there’ll be something each week now!” – yeah – sorry! But, nevermind, at least the sewing is happening, even if the recording and photoographing and reporting are on the tortoise side of slow! Without further ado, I’m kicking off the Fancy Pants January this year with the Worker Trousers from the Modern Sewing Company. I’d been after a new pair of trousers with a slightly rounded, cocoon shape for a while and settled on these after looking at the Shop Pants and comparing the two. In the end, the Worker Trousers won out and I purchased the PDF.

The slightly smug look of someone who rather likes her new jeans!

Starting in early December with this, I traced the 16 and 18, knowing I’d need the bigger size for the waistband, but that the smaller would be fine for the hip measurement. I toiled the 18 straight, and made adjustments from there. The waistband ended up staying 18, but the pants graded down to the 16 about 7cm or so down from the waistband. I made them up in a beautiful soft cotton twill in a light putty colour from Croft Mill Fabrics.

The fabric is perfect for these trousers, it has body but is soft and so yummy to wear. The zip and button are from the stash. On wearing them, I realised they were a bit too baggy for me. Also, the pockets are huge! I’d struggle to reach the bottom of them, with the result that if you put something small into these pockets, you will battle (if you have short arms) to get it out in a neat, ladylike way! Now I like a decent sized pocket, but these are just too deep. I’ve enlarged the seam allowance and probably ended up with going down to the 14 now in the outside leg seams, and I’ve adjusted the inside leg seam, taking in an extra 1cm. I’m much happier with the shape and fit now, so it was time to make another!

New Year’s Day was declared a sewing day! I took a length of denim out of the stash, bought from Clothspot when they closed down. I cut the waistband at 16 the legs at 14, grading from the hip to the wasitband to match the sizes. I also shortened the pocket by 5cm. It’s still generously sized, but not ridiculously deep. These adjustments have made the pants just perfect now, I love these pants and am wearing them on constant rotation!

The instructions are pretty clear, there’s plenty of hand holding if you haven’t made trousers before, but I wasn’t impressed with the zip instructions. I suppose I’m so used to the way Burda do their fly zips that the miriad of different ways the Indie pattern companies have to describe how to insert a fly zip bewilders me. I like a centre front line on my pattern, but, saying that, the zip does come together ok, just don’t use your bias binding to bind all the edges of the guard, etc and then still expect to do the snipping in the instructions. I didn’t do any snipping, just sewed a short seam on the crotch line first, then added the zipper and all its gubbins. It’s so much easier!

None-the-less, I like the neat insides with the binding, I cut up an old cotton shirt of Mr W’s for the pocket bags and the bindings, it’s soft and creates no bulk. On the subject of pockets, the back patch pockets are a good size too! I always end up popping my phone into the back pocket, so it’s nice to know it doesn’t fall on its side or stick out of the top.

So, will I be making more? I think so. I fancy a pair or two in linen for the summer, they’ll make a good addition to the wardrobe with the Teddy and Kew Pants. Unfortunately I don’t have photos of the beige pair (I’m lucky to have got these!), but I will endeavour to get some at some point, especially as I’ve made another pair of Fancy Pants and another have been cut out and are awaiting assembly as I type! I have three days of January left, no problem…..

Welcome to 2023!

I’m feeling positive! The last three years have been iffy, to be polite, and it’s time things felt a little more normal around here. I haven’t done any New Year’s Resolutions, they never stick, but I have decided to do some things. A while ago I had what I called “My Year of Doing New Things”, and I liked it, so I’ve decided to do it again.

But not just new things – following up on current (old) things too, like keeping this blog up to date. I always struggle with the photo taking part, so will endevour to use my remote on the camera more! This month I’m joining in with the Sew Fancy Pants and Sew Japanese In January challenges. I desperately need new trousers and jeans, so this is the perfect push. I bought a nice pile of fabrics form Croft Mill last year that was supposed to be my autumn/winter wardrobe – I’m still working my way through that!

On the doing things new, I recently joined a friend on a basic book binding workshop, and loved it! I want to take the techniques I learnt and make a series of little books to use to track my allotment planning and planting. I’ve also subscribed to an Instagram account to learn weaving! It’s not willow and large basket weaving, but foraging from your garden and hedgerows and making small things, little grass baskets and bowls, etc. I’m excited to learn all these new things.

I also want to do more with natural plant dyes – I grew a few plants on the allotment last year to use, but didn’t really get stuck in the way I should have. Let’s hope this year will be better! I hope to see you around, I always find reading details about people’s sewing easier on a blog than on an Insagram post – and you get bigger photos!!

Here’s to a successful 2023 sewing (and other craft) year!

Wardrobe Basics – Trousers

When you live in trousers, they’re not simply a wardrobe basic, they’re an essential item!  I decided to add some pleated trousers to this year’s Autumn/Winter wardrobe, and have finally made something from one of the Burda magazines from this year.  Burda have, unfortunately, not exactly been exciting this year.  Only a couple of patterns have caught my attention, and until August, none caught it enough for me to actually bother to trace.  But this pair is different, it’s 119 from August 2021.  What caught my eye was the small pleats on the front, the neat waistband and tapered leg.

Trousers 119 Burda August 2021

I traced the 44 and 42 and made an adjustment to the height of the waistband.  While I liked the neatness of it, I also knew I’d prefer a slightly deeper waistband.  I toiled the 44, but started grading towards the 42 from the hip down.  The toile was successful, I only had a couple of adjustments to make.

  • Not making my usual shorten the length adjustment – this style should be slightly cropped, but it’s heading to winter and I don’t want cold ankles!
  • Altered the CF line – straightened it a bit so it was 5mm further out at the top, giving me an extra 1cm overall.
  • Took in the inseam by 1cm front and back from crotch to knee.
  • Made the waistband 1cm deeper.

mocha 1

mocha 3

The adjustments have worked well, I like the fit on these, so will be making another pair soon.  I will, however, make them a little longer.  The length looks good, and while it’s not freezing, they’re fine, but I want a longer pair!  So the next pair will be 3cm longer.  Looking at the photos, I think I need to take in a bit more on the inseam, it looks a bit baggy there, but I also need to remember that these are not supposed to be skintight!

mocha 2

collage mocha 1
In-seam pocket details

In toiling, I realised there’d be a lot of bulk at the waistband from the pockets, so I cut a pocket facing for the back pocket piece and rifled through the stash of scraps for a lightweight bit of pretty cotton.  I found I had just enough to cut the rather-large-for-Burda pockets from the pretty stuff, and only tiny bits leftover to head into the stuffing bag.  These inseam pockets are a really good size, phone in one and mask and card wallet in the other, with space to spare for hands!

mocha 4

The trouser fabric is a cotton twill in Mocha bought from the Rag Shop in August, I don’t think they have any of that colour left now.  It’s Kobe cotton twill, and it’s also one of those fabrics you need to be sure to wash inside out.  I washed the trousers after the first wearing without turning them inside out and the creases formed while washing have lost a bit of colour.  This means that all folded edges will lose colour too.  I wouldn’t mind if it was a cheap, £7/m fabric, but it wasn’t.  I haven’t bought a Robert Kaufman fabric before, and it might be joining Lady McElroy fabrics in the “avoid” pile due to colour fade.  It’s beautfully soft though, and lovely to wear.  Just watch the colour fading.

mocha 5

collage mocha 2
Detail shots

I wore these for the first time on a long weekend trip to York, they were very comfy to wear traipsing round the city all day.  They’ve since been worn a few times and I really do like the pattern.  I know Burda don’t have the best sizing these days, they used to go from a 34 to a 46 in the “everybody” section of the magazine, but these are just 36-44.  I feel they are trying to save money by reducing the sizes available, the number of patterns in the magazine and the quality of the magazine paper itself.  It’s a shame, as the old magazines were fabulous!  Perhaps a revisit of those older magazines is in order.

mocha 9

79a991f0-8f45-4e7f-a58c-38700fb06608
York Minster behind, trousers worn with silk Burda top made in 2018.

In the mean time, I’ve traced a jacket pattern from the August issue to toile, I have a retro (90s) pair of Burda trousers to show you and I have Lander pants to make for both girls – not to mention a VikiSews blouse for daughter no1 and a Bellatrix blazer for each of them.  Thank godness the garden and allotment have stopped shouting for my attention!

Stash Busting Tops

I thought I’d get started early on the Autumn and Winter sewing, helped by my purchase of some fabric on Instagram from a sewist who was destashing!  I bought three pieces, two of which were perfect for sweatshirts of some description.  I knew immediately that I’d be making another LB Pullover from Paper Theory with the one piece, a mustard French Terry with a white tulip print.  I have many of these tops now, it’s so quick to make, can be sewn in both woven or knit fabrics and fits over just about any tee or blouse I have.  It’s perfect to go over the Olya Shirt too!

stash tops 3

There was just one metre though, which meant I could either have short, 7/8th length sleeves which would leave my wrists chilly, or make a plan with piecing and have warm arms!  In the end, warmth and comfort won out and I made a plan to lengthen the sleeves.  I cut the full length I was able with the fabric available, and just cut what was left + hem allowance out of left over bits.  It’s worked to make it look like I have a cuff – but if I’d had just a smidge more fabric, I’d have cut that section so that it was doubled, and had a real cuff that I could have folded back if I’d wanted to.

stash tops 4

However – I did not have enough and I am very happy with my new top, already worn on many, many occasions!  I never thought I’d be wearing mustard, never mind a fabric with a print like this, but I like it.  It’s cheerful and bright and works with my colouring despite my initial misgivings! (I thought I would make the top for a daughter – not me…)

The second top is the Fibremood Vera, made from the magazine bought earlier this year as an experiment.  I acutally liked a couple of the patterns, but this is the first one I’ve managed to get made up.  The fabric is a grey sweatshirt fabric, with tiny flecks of colour in it.  It’s warm and snuggly and just the right sort of boxy.  The sleeves are 3/4  in length, next time I’ll lengthen them.  They’re also fairly wide – wider than expected.

stash tops 2

The neck on the Vera is interesting, part of why I decided to make this pattern up.  It is faced  so makes it thicker than the rest of the top, but it would be interesting to use up leftovers or even pipe that joining seam.  One thing I’d change next time with the neckline is to lower the front a bit.  You can see in the photos that it’s too high in the front for me, and it gets more annoying as the day goes on.  Another change would be to shorten the top slightly, only about the depth of the hem.

stash tops 1

I made the Large, based on bust measurements, and for this version did not make an FBA.  I might do one next time, but it doesn’t need much.  The pattern was easy to trace and the instructions are interesting – they’re all diagrams!  You can go online and get more detail if you think you need it, but these were ok for me.

annika 1
Style Arc Annika top

One more stash bust – this time a Sewing Leftovers project.  I’d made a Uvita top from some lovely soft stripey jersey and had about half a metre left.  I decided to make the Annika top from Style Arc.  I bought this paper pattern aaaaages ago, on one of their Etsy sales.  It’s one of the mulit-size patterns, they only way I’ll buy a Style Arc pattern.  The top has a jersey top half and woven bottom half, sleeves included.  So, I used the stripey blue an white jersey for the top part and some blue poly georgette that has been in the stash for a very long time for the bottom part.

annika 2

I shortened the jersey section because I didn’t like where the join hit me, and removed the shirt hem shape too.  This made the top too long on me and just didn’t work.  I like this top though, might need a small FBA again for another time, but it’s perfectly wearable like this.  Style Arc instructions are brief  but you don’t need too much detail to make this pattern.  I made the 14, but I think the 12 would fit better at the neck and shoulders, so maybe a FBA on the 12 would be a good idea for next time!

annika 3

That’s it for stashbusting so far, I’m glad I was able to use up these fabrics and make something useful!

Sewing Japanese in January

Finally!  I have finally, after two and a bit years, made a pattern from the book “Basically 7 Dresses”.  Except that it isn’t a dress.  But nevermind, it’s done, and I like it!  In my first Work in Progress Wednesday of the year, I shared the beginning stages of the project, toiling and making the alterations to the pattern.  I needed a bit more time than I thought to find a fabric to make it up in though, it turns out my stash consists of less usable-to-me fabrics than I first thought!  But I won’t go into that now.

sjin 1
Blouse from Basically 7 Dresses and Kana’s Standard trousers

I did decide on using some of a 3m piece of cotton voile bought from Seasalt a while ago.  I love the muted blue background and off white seagulls, perfect combination for a summer top – which means not so good to photograph in the middle of winter – brrr!  As it’s a lovely drapey, thin fabric, I’ve used French seams throughout, and stabilised the top collar and facings with some fine sheer fusible interfacing.  I also opted for lightweight shell buttons, although I really wanted to use some of the vintage glass ones in my button drawer!

collage sjin
Blouse details

sjin 2

I went through the trouble of doing a FBA on this, but now it’s finished, I wish I’d added less across the front, it has lost some of the shape and definition. However, I’m sure that when it’s hot and humid in the summer, it’ll be fine.  Right now though, it lets the draft in!  I also think it’ll look better in a plain fabric, to be honest I feel this has gone dowdy – fast!  Something to think of for next time, the facings in the armhole have a tendency to flap out when putting it on – might not be such a problem for someone with skinnier arms.  So I’ll topstitch the facing down around the armhole instead of just catching it at the shoulder and under arm seams.

sjin 4

Once the top was done, I realised I might want a new pair of trousers to go with it.  And I had just the piece of left over cotton twill in a nice dark navy in the stash.  The fabric has a lovely sheen to it, and is super yummy to wear.  To go with the theme, I chose to make another pair of the trousers from Kana’s Standard, book number 1.  The pants are in section B, and I decided on the longest, narrowest version of those, style f.  Now this version has straps attached to the top, making braces – I left those off.  I had to retrace my pattern, goodness knows what I’d been doing with the last tracing, it was a mess! 

sjin 5

These are the size 13 – the biggest size in the book – and they are perfect.  I had previously graded the pattern up 2 sizes, then spent the last two years making the pants that used that pattern two sizes smaller!   The elastic in the back waistband makes them rather comfy!  I can see these being worn loads in both season’s wardrobes, rolled up at the hem, they’re fine for summer.  By making the longer length, they are also perfectly sized for my short legs!  The hem breaks nicely on the top of my foot, so I can wear them in winter without my socks showing.  They’re also well stocked with good sized pockets, two hip-yoke pockets in front and two patch pockets in the back.  Practically perfect pants!

sjin 3
Distracted by the blackbird tossing all the leaves out of the gutter while racing down the gutter at speed!

I can’t wait for the weather to turn – I know we still have to survive February, but the signs are there, snowdrops are up, hellebores are flowering and the daffs are showing pointy green growth.  But I’m getting itchy to plant seeds and get gardening again, I just want to be outside in the sun!

Work in Progress Wednesday 1/2021

Welcome to another year of Work in Progress Wednesdays!  Now, this will not be a regular, every Wednesday occurance!  Sometimes you’ll get a few in a row, then there’ll be nothing for a month or so, all depends on what I’m working on, and whether I remember to take photos as I sew!!

IMG_3774
The book title translates to “Basically 7 Dresses”, written by Aoi Koda

Anyway, I’m working on my next Sewing Japanese in January project, so thought I’d show it from the beginning.  I have decided to make a version of the cover dress from the book, Basically 7 Dresses, by Aoi Koda.  There are 7 basic patterns in the book, each having different variations, she calls them lessons.  I loved the cover dress from the beginning, it’s lesson number 4.  But, not really being a dress person, figured I’d make one of the variations and turn it into a blouse/top and keep the simple look with the collar.  I’m also not gathering the peplum, it’ll be as if the skirt was chopped short, no gathers for me!

collage 7 dresses
Line drawings and info for the dress, with picture of the peplum top variation and more line drawings

This book does not have seam allowances included, except for the largest size, which, as it happens, is the size I traced!  The 15, which translates to bust 98cm, waist 70cm and hip 105cm is the closest to me, I’ll just need a FBA.  But – toile first because there’s usually a lot of ease in these patterns and I might get away with not needing much extra.  The finished width at the bust on this one is 112cm, which on a 98cm bust would be roomy, and less so on me! 112cm gives me 6cm of ease, so I’ll check whether that looks right, and feels right in the toile before I continue.  ps, I seriously recommend downloading Google Translate onto your phone for using Japanese patterns, just aim your camera at the text and voila!  Translated instructions!

collage translated

With the first, “straight out of the envelope” – as it were – toile, things aren’t going to be as easy as expected.  The fronts just meet, I need more depth in the armhole, and finished length needs to be about 5cm below the current level (which included the hem).  Ok, so the remaining ease wasn’t going to be anywhere near enough!  Shoulders and side seams are all ok, neck feels right, so it’s all in the front.  Time for that FBA.  Now, if you’re after how do to one with a French dart, Maven Patterns have one on their website for their French Dart dress.  It works in the same way as an underarm dart, just in a different place!   So I calculated I’d need 6cm across the front, meaning a 3cm FBA.  Once done in paper, I toiled it…  The result was a pointy, unenthusiastic dart that didn’t point to the right place.

collage 7 dresses 2
Toile of size 15 without any alterations. That dart was already raising my eyebrows!

So I traced another front and rotated the dart to the underarm position, then did the same FBA and rotated the dart back to where it was supposed to be again.  With fingers crossed, I unpicked that unsuccessful front, cut another two and stitched them onto the back.  Much better this time!  I’m happy with the ease, the reach across the bust, etc.

collage 7 dresses 3
Just the bodice fronts and back, to check the dart before going any further

Back to the paper and I added 1cm of depth across both front and back from the centre armhole, altered the front peplum piece to accommodate the FBA width and lengthened both peplums by 8cm.

collage 7 dresses 6
Pattern alterations, smoothing out the armhole after the fba, the large dart created by the fba and the extra 1cm depth added across front and back.

I quickly cut those out of the toile fabric and added them to the bodice, and I’m happy!  The length, once the hem is turned up will be fine, the bodice fits nicely over the bust and the shape is good.

collage 7 dresses 4
Checking out all the angles

collage 7 dresses 5
I like position of the join between upper and lower bodice, the flare on the lower half is ok too.

Now I have to find fabric… Shopping the stash for this one, no fabric purchases allowed this month!

Sewing Japanese in January

I have plans!! I need a push to get my sewing off the starting block this year, like a lot of us I think. I love the idea of starting the year with a couple of challenges, and this one is my first.  I have made one item already (admittedly, I only needed to finish it this year, having started it at the beginning of December). But I’m claiming it for Sewing Japanese in January 2021! I also want to make another pair of trousers from the Kana’s Standard book, and finally get to use a pattern from a book bought back in 2018.

But today I have another beautiful, big sleeved blouse in my wardrobe. I bought the spotty viscose from Rainbow Fabrics, it’s lovely and drapey!  I decided to make another version of the blouse I made in October from the Asuka Hamada “Sweet Clothes” book.  This time, I altered the pattern front before cutting, I had decided to make a small FBA, just to make the fit a little better.

asuka spot 3
Top E from Sweet Clothes, by Asuka Hamada

 Now I’d love to say I’ve devised a brand new method of making  a FBA without a dart, but I’d be lying.  There’s a very good method I use in the book, “The Perfect Fit” available from Amazon and I’m sure, other sellers too.  Here’s an extract for you:

img_3604

img_3605

It’s a dead easy method, and works well without having to fiddle about with adding darts and then trying to get rid of them again. I had decided that 1.5cm over the half bodice would be enough for me, while I didn’t need masses of room over the front, but a little more length in the front would be nice, so  I added 3cm in the length.

asuka spot 2

In order to save a little fabric, I cut the back in two with a French seam in the centre.  This meant I could cut the font and back next to each other on the fabric, and then placed the sleeve on the cross grain (because it’s so wide!) with the bias for neck and narrow cuff pieces filling in the banks spaces.  This means that from my 2m originally bought, I have enough to make something else!

asuka spot 4

I love the way this version drapes, the first one being cotton voile is a little crisper, and the sleeves keep their blousiness better.  That doesn’t mean I don’t like the way they are in the viscose though.  I could live in viscose all year, it just feels so luxurious. 

I made this blouse in the same way as the first, ignoring the elastic in the narrow cuff and using the revised neckline.  I like the extra length in the front the FBA has given me, and the little more room across the bust is an improvement.  Very happy with this, and it’ll be worn a lot, even if ironing those big gathered sleeves is a pain!

asuka spot 1

Now I really need to toile the patterns I’ve traced, and figure out what adjustments they need.  Also, those pants, they’re so quick to make!  In the mean time, and totally unrelated to Japanese sewing patterns, I’ve added more vintage patterns to my Etsy shop, I need to make a concerted effort to empty at least one drawer to make space for the modern PDF patterns I keep buying!  So help a gal out won’t you, see if I’ve got anything you fancy.  I’m adding constantly, so keep going back.  It takes a while to go through each and every pattern to make sure all the bits are  there.

 

Shweshwe Zadie Jumpsuit

spotty zadie 9

Me again!  I might finally be back in the UK, but the sewing is s.l.o.w.!  I haven’t quite got back to “normal”, because life isn’t normal.  Mr W moved his office into my sewing room while I was away and he had to work from home.  Now that work can happen at the “proper” office, but only twice a week, he’s still firmly ensconced in the sewing room.  It’s hard to find room for sewing machines and ironing amongst the computer, A3 files, boxes of samples and other paraphanalia a busy architect needs.  Not to mention the constant phone calls, with and without video…

spotty zadie 19

So the sewing has been happening on the dining table, cutting out on the living room floor.  It’s not ideal, and I’m still itching to sew more, but I think we all need to get used to life as not-normal.  It’s been weird to have continual company nowadays, instead of being on my own all day!  But, I do actually have something I made to show you.

spotty zadie 7

Back in June, there were a couple of “challenges” I thought I’d join in with, the #JumpingIntoJune sewalong encouraged the making of jumpsuits, and Stephanie at Sea of Teal was promoting sewing with prints for June’s Sew Your Wardrobe Basics.  So, on the last day of June I cut and started a print jumpsuit.  Not so much jumping into June as jumping out of it!

spotty zadie 14
Pockets – nice BIG ones!

I do love the Zadie Jumpsuit, it’s so comfy to wear, and quick to make.  This version is the size 16, with no FBA!  I had realised with the last summer version I made last year, that with the FBA the waistline seam sat too low.  So I reversed that adjustment and just made the smaller size.  I’m happy to report that it’s all worked, fits properly, doesn’t gape, and the waistline is in the right place.

spotty zadie 1

The fabric is a cotton shweshwe print I bought in South Africa in May.  This isn’t the Da Gams Three Cats fabric.  It had “Cheetah Shweshwe” in the selvage, but I can’t find much info about it.  It’s wider than the Da Gama fabric at 150cm and slightly stiffer, but that will go with washing.  It’s no stiffer than the blue linen used for my first Zadie.  I love the spotty print, it caught my eye in the fabric shop immediately, and straight away I knew I wanted to make the Zadie Jumpsuit with it.

spotty zadie 15
Got to love a spotty print!

This isn’t the end of my Shweshwe journey, I bought another piece for myself which will become a nice new pair of Carolyn PJ pants, and lots of pieces that I bought for making things for the girls.  Now I just need the time to make it all up!!!

The Great Module Sewalong Challenge

You’ve seen the three tops in the form of Tee-shirts that are required in the challenge, but I have another!  I wanted to make a top from the February Burda, top 119.  I bought a metre and a half of grey marl sweatshirting with French terry back from Fabworks and boy was it the right fabric!!  Lets just say that I’m wearing that top whenever it’s clean and dry.  I traced the 42 and didn’t do a FBA, which, in hindsight, I really should have done.  There’s definitely upward pulling going on which a FBA would have prevented.  Ah well, next time!  I lengthened the body by 5cm and am definitely happy with that decision!  It would have been way too short otherwise.

 

collage grey top
Burda top 119 February 2020

module 3

The fabric is perfect for the style, it holds the shape really well.  The only thing I’d change for the next time would be to reduce the height of the collar.  I’m wearing it folded over all the time – for me it’s just too high, so could do with 2-3cm shaved off on each side.  But apart from that, this is a great top!  I love with my 3/4 sleeve Uvitas, I like the colour and pattern popping out of the sleeve and just below the hem.  Looks like I’m talking myself into making another…

module 4

module 12

Now for the pants…  These are the one item I’m not that sold on, and might will have to find a replacement for.  The pattern I chose is 107 from August Burda 2019 – which states it’s designed for fabrics with and without stretch, and which, in the magazine, they’ve made in ponte.  So I bought 2m of viscose ponte in pistachio from Fabworks and set to work.  Making a fly front, hip yoke pair of trousers in ponte was an interesting project.  I like the colour, but I wonder if it shouldn’t have had a little more oompfh.  Nevermind, as it is, I don’t think this pattern wasn’t necessarily designed for ponte fabric.

module 11
Burda pants 107 August 2019

module 9

I cut the 40, as the previous pair I made in wool in the size 42 are too loose.  But still I needed to take these in an extra 2cm on each side seam and 4cm in the back.  The waistband was interfaced with stretch interfacing, and still halfway though the day I’m having to yank them back up into place.  If, and this is a big if, I make this pattern again, I’ll remove a centimetre or two from the crotch depth, and make a 38 in a knit, possibly the 38/40 in a woven.  I love the pleats at the hem, that detail is just fabulous, but the rest of the garment just isn’t working.  It’s such a shame!!  I think I’m going to have to open the waistband up and insert some elastic, or possibly even grossgrain ribbon.  It just needs to stay up!!

module 13

DSC_0210
Hem and button details

So, three successful tees done, one sweatshirt top and one pair of dodgy trousers.  I have toiled the “topper” part of the challenge and have identified at least another 3 pairs of trousers that would fit the bill for the bottoms.  They’re all Burda patterns and will need to be traced, but at least I’m finally finding something in the latest magazines that I want to make!

February Wardrobe Basics

When Stef announced February’s theme I knew I’d be taking part!  I love stripes of all shapes and sizes – and directions!  I had thought the best thing to do would be to combine last month’s denim jacket and the stripes from this month – in the denim jacket!  The denim I have has a herringbone pattern, so effectively, it’s stripes, right?  I managed to get the second toile of the pattern fitted and checked earlier this month, but as I was too busy making coats, didn’t make the alterations to the pattern.

I then got distracted with other striped fabrics!  I love stripey tees, so decided I’d have a few new ones for the summer.  I started with a piece of organic cotton lycra from a local store – white with narrow black stripes.  I knew I wanted to make the Basic Instinct Tee from Sasha at SecondoPiano.  She has a clever formula on the pattern that helps to line up all the stripes on the shoulders and side seams – if you have a stripe pattern of the correct repeat.  Thankfully, this stripe fitted the 6mm repeat, and my shoulder seams are just perfect!

module 5
Organic stripe jersey in the Basic Instinct Tee

IMG_20200211_181726_773
The most perfect shouldeer seam stripe matching ever!!!

Then I got stripe-happy and ordered some fabrics from Montreux Fabrics and cut another Basic Instinct Tee from the black and white stripe.  Unfortunately this pattern repeat wasn’t suitable for Sasha’s clever formula, so I had to choose between lining up the side seam stripes, or the shoulders.  I couldn’t have my cake and eat it too.  But I tell you, keeping stripes lined up on viscose jersey is tricky!  I ended up using a ton of pins and then basting by hand.  Machine basting just didn’t work, the stripes all jumped and danced around and got all out of balance.  If you have a machine with a walking foot you just might be better off!  Anyway, I was satisfied with the matches I got, and more than happy with another comfy Basic Instinct Tee.

module 7
Another Basic Instince Tee

IMG_20200218_095919_380

For my third tee, I chose the Stellan Tee from French Navy.  I like the boxy shape for the summer, and the curved hem is a cool detail.  The fabric is viscose jersey again, but has more weight than the black and white.  I decided to try to get all the stripes lined up on this one, and marked the intersection of the shoulder seam and stripes on the pattern so I could match them.  And it worked!  There is only one stripe on the shoulder because of the pattern repeat and the angle of the shoulder, but it doesn’t matter, it lines up!!

module 6
the Stellan Tee

stellan
Just one matching stripe, but I can live with that!

So – I have managed to fulfill the challenge brief and stock up on good tees for the summer, but I still want to get that denim jacket made….  if there’s time!  These three tees also tick the box of the three tops required for the Great Module Sewalong.  I made a pair of trousers to go in the module, but although they’re comfy and all, they aren’t right.  Why?  Well…  Let’s leave that for the next post, shall we?

In the meantime, let’s see if I can get that denim jacket done by the end of Saturday!!

 

Making and Books

I like making, and I like books.

The Insouciant Stitcher

Creativity beats Insanity

Fabric Engineering

Creating a well-fitting wardrobe, piece by piece

Yet Another Unfinished Project

Crafting better mental health by sewing myself happy. Slow fashion, conscious consuming and an effort to live a more ethical life.

A Tailored View

The thinking behind a project

Poundcake

a lot of cake and a little frosting

Sew Everything Blog

Always sewing. Sewing Everything. Sharing the Sewing with Everyone

Your Stitches May Vary

sewing, making, and mental health.

sew VeraVenus

"A modern make on vintage style."

The Easy Blues

craft, diy, natural dyeing

Creating in the Gap

Forever sewing

Love, Lucie

Where hands and minds are rarely still

U&Mii

Adventures of a plus size renegade seamstress

allsewpetite

Create beautiful bags with confidence!

tales of the sewing city

slow sewing, creativity, and a fabric obsession

Mainelymenswear

Be your own luxury brand !

Marsha Style

PDF sewing patterns & sewing blog

Buttons and Trims

Sewing - Learning - Making

Designed By Danita

"Seams" like I've been sewing forever!

the curious kiwi

Happily immersed in sewing nerdyness…

KJ Sews

Sewing and more

nelnanandnora

Faith, family and creativity

Sew My Style

Forever sewing

Offsquare

A refashion and sewing blog

Tailored by Kate

My sewing record

The Notions Tin

Forever sewing

Girls in the Garden

Forever sewing

The Savvy Sartorialist

Fashion, Lifestyle & Travel by Trish O'Sullivan

Needleswift

Sewing lessons in Lindfield, West Sussex

Just another blog

Permanently sleep deprived. Trying to make a lot of stuff.

jess sews clothes

blogging my homemade wardrobe

nomadiccharacter

Forever sewing

The German Edge

Forever sewing

Make&Wear - sewing-knitting-making

An Irish sewing, knitting and making Blog