New dress: Colette Penny shirtdress for spring

You may recognize this dress if you follow the Sewcialists blog as I made it for the currently running “Stripes” theme month. I ended up with two garments for the post in the end (you can read why on the original post here) but I wanted to also post about them separately with a bit more on the construction and sewing, since the original post was meant more as a summation and I didn’t want to bore the pants off people stopping by for a bit of picture-fun.

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This fabric was REALLY hard to get good pics of with little natural light available!

Continue reading “New dress: Colette Penny shirtdress for spring”

New blouse: Deer & Doe Melilot blouse in 3 min. lawn

This is one of my favourite projects ever. It might even be right at the tippy-top. I made this blouse as part of the Sewcialists stripes theme month and you can read about that on the original post. Here’s a slightly more detailed post about the construction, both to remind myself of the details and also for anyone else who may find it useful.

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I really love that this project ended up being the perfect marriage of pattern and fabric, since you never really know how the picture in your head is going to translate into reality. The fabric is a beautifully light lawn from the 3 min. range from Japanese manufacturer Kokka. I bought it in a sale from Miss Matatabi and would have loved to have bought the entire collection, but it’s a fairly decent price, albeit absolutely justified in the quality. I adore watercolour-type prints and this collection has some stunners. Continue reading “New blouse: Deer & Doe Melilot blouse in 3 min. lawn”

Indie garment patterns that use quilting cotton

Have you ever looked for a list of garment patterns for which you can use quilting cotton?

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I’m consciously trying to work through some stash fabric and, as a relatively new sewist, I have the inevitable stack of bright, fun and attractive quilting cottons that are just that bit too stiff and unyielding for many garments. It’s a common problem for us newbies and I have an impressive array to get through. Sadly, I’m not in any rush to make a quilt, and there are only so many cotton clothes you can make a little boy (they just ain’t that practical). Home décor is definitely an option, but there must be more I can do with cottons than make napkins for aunties, right? Continue reading “Indie garment patterns that use quilting cotton”

New dress: Sunny dress for #sewmystyle January!

It feels a little odd to be making a summery dress in January, but it’s actually quite a pleasant experience. It’s a bit like walking past a patio heater at a Christmas party – if you close your eyes you can almost believe it’s the middle of June. Although don’t close your eyes while sewing a dress. That’s definitely not advisable.

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The Sunny dress from Friday Pattern Company is the first pattern for #sewmystyle2018 and is a fast and simple make, with lots of opportunity for customising. I was excited to make this for two reasons: 1) I’ve been itching to make a t-shirt dress for ages, even though I suspected it wouldn’t suit my midriff too well (I was right – ah well) and 2) I’ve been wanting to try a Friday Pattern Company design for quite some time as well and it was a good little test. They have some really great patterns in their repertoire, possibly aimed at the slightly younger market, and this has given me some warm and fuzzy feelings about trying some of the others.  Continue reading “New dress: Sunny dress for #sewmystyle January!”

New jeans: Closet Case Pattern Morgans

Woowoowoo!!

I did it! I made a pair of jeans and squeezed them into 2017 (and squeezed into them in 2017) by the skin of me teeth. Hemming occurred on December 31st, heh heh. They were on my #makenine list for last year and I was determined to get them done, if only to please myself, since there was no other real reason. I made this somewhat easier to accomplish by signing up for a jeans workshop at Drygoods Design here in Seattle, which ran over three evenings and then I finished them up at home. I had intended to post them pretty soon after, but then decided to wear them for a few weeks and see what happened, so there is a little time-travelling going on in this post… just so’s you know.

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New sportswear: a Christmas Linden and two types of leggings

Here’s a little summary post for anyone with fitness resolutions and/or a need for leggings. That is definitely me and so a few weeks ago, on the spur of the moment, I decided to whip up a few pairs of leggings using Megan Nielsen’s Virginia leggings pattern, which I already made and loved, as well as a new-to-me pattern, which is free, and that is the Patterns for Pirates Peg Legs leggings (try saying that after a few beers).

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Continue reading “New sportswear: a Christmas Linden and two types of leggings”

New test: Blue Dot Coffeehouse Pants

During 2017, I really wanted to try making some trousers, or at least dip my toe into  trouser-fitting waters. I closed the year with Closet Case Patterns Morgan jeans (yet to be blogged), which definitely got me in there, but the first opportunity that came along and got me started was a call for testers in September from the lovely Diane at Blue Dot Patterns.

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The Coffeehouse pants/trousers are a very straightforward pair of cropped wide-leg trousers that are best made in a light-medium weight fabric. In my opinion, they’re a perfect pair of trousers for a beginner, because they get you familiar with all the basics of putting a pair together without introducing too many fancy design details. The added bonus is that I really like them! In all honesty I wasn’t expecting to, since trousers are notoriously hard to find even in ready-to-wear, and I’ve never been too successful with “floaty” trousers. The chances of my finding a decent-fitting pair right away were slim, but it worked! In the pics I’m wearing them with both a regular-length Kyoto tee and a cropped Astoria sweater to show the effect of both types of top. Continue reading “New test: Blue Dot Coffeehouse Pants”

New menswear: Ottobre Family 7/2017 Cloud Gray sweatshirt

This was my second make from the Ottobre Family 07/2017 magazine after my men’s briefs and was also a Christmas present for my other half. And you know what? This was such a satisfying sew.

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In essence it’s a fairly straightforward men’s raglan sweatshirt, but it had a few small details that made it a lot of fun. Firstly, it has an open shoulder dart to reduce bulk and add shaping, which I haven’t come across in the raglans I’ve made so far. Secondly, to cover up the dart seamline and just generally to embellish the sweatshirt, you’re instructed to use an embroidery stitch when you topstitch the seams. Continue reading “New menswear: Ottobre Family 7/2017 Cloud Gray sweatshirt”

Top 5 Reflections, Goals and Highlights bumper edition

This will be my last Top 5 post for 2017 and is a little collation of the last few topics in Gillian’s Top 5 series, which you can read all about here. These comprise my sewing reflections, non-sewing highlights and a few goals for next year. I tend to be the sort of person who thinks “Who on earth would be interested in my highlights?”, but I enjoy reading other people’s, so there’s my answer, I suppose. You can also read my posted Top 5 sewing hits and Top 5 sewing misses should the need hit you (and we all know which one is more fun to read ;))

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Sewing reflections

Wardrobe progress: I’ve been sewing for about 2 years now and one of my “goals” from a year ago was to try and make more garments that coordinated, rather than just the stuff I like that doesn’t match anything else in my wardrobe. I think I’ve been fairly successful in that with the completion of a number of wardrobe basics, including the Scout tee, Lindens and various cardigans . Most days I wear at least one, if not two me-made items and that will only increase now I’m making the likes of jeans.

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