chit-chat · sewing

{ ON THE CUTTING TABLE } Berrylicious…

Firstly, thank you to all of you who sent such lovely comments about the Cloudy Day dress. Wow, you guys really are diggin’ on the contrast piping huh! I wore the dress yesterday & I have to say, it felt amazing to wear something that I know I will { NEVER } see anyone else wear, ever. One of the biggest ups to me-mades. 

We are still very much in summer albeit slightly cooler than the past few weeks with a flutter of wind every now & then. You know what that means – so Im starting on with some autumn sewing while I still have the chance. Im thinking things that I can wear with tights & later with boots…so Ive started with Vogue 8827 because Im usually all about jeans & blouses over the colder months but this coming autumn/winter, I definitely want to try & wear more layers.

I found this viscose jersey in a lovely berry shade so I think this is going to become the V8827. Im going to go boring with this one & keep it simple without any contrast trim. I think the cooler months offer opportunity to accessorize with gloves & scarves so Im going to leave it as such. Im also going to go with the 3/4 sleeves option with only side extending into the draped front…{ VIEW C with 3/4 }….I just hope I have enough fabric!!

V8827_cutting

In other news, Im having to start with a new german language course which is going to take six months….starting 2nd September. I passed my first german exam in June however the next step is the next step so bugger it, Ive gotta buckle down.  A girls gotta do what a girls gotta do.

I cant say Im looking terribly forward to being stuck in a classroom for six months but I am looking forward to meeting new folk….oh, & learning more german. { Y A Y }!! Its pretty full on monday to friday but at least wednesday to friday is only half day-ish { LUCKY ME } I still get some time to sew in the afternoons providing I dont have “homework”. 

Ive also been having some fun with my new dyes…..but more on that another time 😉

Have a good weekend lovelies x

 

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pattern review · sewing

{ VOGUE 2923 OOP } Clouding around blouson…

Another one of those patterns I have been wanting to make for ages but I was fraught with fear to cut into the “real” piece of fabric until I saw what it would look like on me so I decided to make a wearable muslin…I know, { ME MAKE A MUSLIN }…so I used this poly-cotton blend that I have love for..but not that much love for ifyouknowwhatimean. The pattern specifies a “moderate stretch only” & since rules mean absolutely blow all to me, I decided to wing it with the polycotton which doesnt give as good an idea on the final drape, but definitely gives me enough green light to go on & cut the real deal.

Im quite keen to sew the little jacket included in this pattern too – I like the wavy extended collar down the front & I love that its unlined with a two-piece sleeve…right up my alley. With all the success Ive been having with DKNY lately, Im convinced the jacket will be a hoot.
Anyway, here’s the deets on the blouson – V2923_top_front

V2923_back

{ DESCRIPTION } V2923, now OOP, DKNY loose-fitting, blouson, pull-over with keyhole back opening, thin shoulder straps and elastic waist.

{ FABRIC USED } Poly-cotton blend in black with print. Can you see these are flowers ? Sure you can…then why do I keep saying cherries….dang, must be because Im eating cherries in copious amounts at the moment!

{ SIZING } I cut my usual size for this & it absolutely fits like it should. It is loose-fitting & adjustments can be made to straps.

{ INSTRUCTIONS } I did not use them…therefore I completely forgot to make the keyhole feature to the back – alas, I couldn’t care a less I forgot it.  I sewed the sides using french seams which worked really well & gave such a clean finish to the inside.

{ CHANGES }   Besides the change in suggested fabric, the only other change I made was using black satin ribbon for the straps instead of making it with the same fabric.

{ LEVEL OF DIFFICULTY } * Super easy!

{ TIME } Start to finish, 1 hour.

{ SUM IT UP }  Easy, comfortable, simple – can be made with your eyes closed to be honest.  A great little top that can be worn alone or under a blazer for work – quite versatile really. Because I used the poly-cotton instead of a stretchier, more drapey fabric the blouson is a tad billowy at the bottom but I kinda dig that I can really eat in this & not have to worry about tummy bulge..or at least thats my story!V2923_front_blazer

Also, I think this top could quite easily fit into any maternity wardrobe…with the elasticated waist & the lovely drape, it would absolutely make space for growing tummies & boobies.

Oh & before I forget – I know Ive been reviewing a lot of OOP patterns recently & if your’e anything like me, I have choice words when I cant get hold of an OOP – drives me batty…something to do with being a gemini I think. So if that is the case with you, here are my sincerest apologies { SORRYYYYY }. There, now I feel better.

Thanks for stopping by x

pattern review · sewing

{ VOGUE 2091 OOP } “Hang my head in shame” dress…

I am embarrassed to say Ive had this V2091 pattern, now OOP, since 2001 & never made it…hence the title!

But the shame ends there peeps. V2091_front

This little number is gorgeous in every way – comfortable, easy to sew & versatile. What more could we want from a pattern right. & since this is my first me-made LBD, I couldn’t be more satisfied with the result.

Im not sure why it took me 12 farkin’ years..since it requires no zip or button or any of that crap, it really is probably one of the most rewarding 1 hours Ive ever spent in front of my  Sapphy.  { YEEHAA }. The last DKNY pattern I sewed was the V1027 & I fell head-over-heels for that one so Im thinking I may be developing a serious crush on these DKNY numbers.V2091_backSo below, the details of whats & hows :

{ DESCRIPTION } DKNY Pullover, tapered dress with right side pleats

{ FABRIC USED } Black cotton knit jersey – 2 way stretch

{ SIZING } I cut the 12 & decided to wing it. Sizing turned out great – no thanks to the stretch & the spanx!!

{ INSTRUCTIONS } Easy, simple. Had me snookered for a second at the construction of the darn cap sleeves but otherwise A-OK.

{ CHANGES } None – however next time I do plan to increase the width of the shoulders slightly.

{ LEVEL OF DIFFICULTY } * Super easy, this is beginner frockery at its { BEST }

{ TIME } 1 hour, no serious!

{ SUM IT UP }  Easy, comfortable, simple, classy, casual but can be dressed up ….in one word { MAGIC }.V2091_boatneck

V2091_front1

I look forward to making many many many more of these. Im thinking I should be trying View C next.

Thanks for visiting lovelies…trust you all had a fabulous weekend x

pattern review · review · sewing

{ VOGUE 8550 } Red Pea Coat, this girl is on fire…

For those of you that have been following my blogging journey for a bit, you’ve probably seen me talk about the red Vogue 8550 pea coat that has been haunting me since I started way back when in late 2010. Im not proud to say I started so long ago, the truth hurts. I had terrible trouble with the sizing (of which Vogue referred to as ‘ease’) &  lost interest which so happened to (thankfully) co-incide with our relocation out of Holland so the sad pieces were boxed up. This box did not make the “cut” to our move to the UKso it stayed at home & waited patiently while we completed our work on the island. I should have known the pattern would give me nothing but trouble, the moment it arrived I noticed page 3 of the instructions  missing. It took a few weeks for it to be sent on. Was it a sign of things to come ??….

Anyway, fast forward 2 & some years  –  January I mentioned the red coat had been retrieved from its box & lovingly pressed, ready to tackle once & for all. I trimmed, re-measured & marked but then all the other sewing got in the way & I quickly realised this coat was going to have to be nursed, slowly & calmly…inch by inch…

Im proud to say, its { DONE } & Im so proud of myself for buckling up & getting it finished. (Ok ok, its missing its buttons…but more on that later).Vogue8550_front

Buckle up – a kinda long review but here are the details & more info on the process :

{ DESCRIPTION } Vogue Divine Details – fitted, lined coat with front & back tucks, standing collar, princess seams, full length sleeves and shoulder pads. Above mid-knee length, button closure and belt.

Vogue8550_back

{ FABRIC USED } A medium weight red wool found at Schröder Stoffen in Rotterdam, Holland. It was quite expensive but I loved this particular shade of red. I had been looking for a red wool to make another coat (using the V8438 pattern I had sewn before) but after seeing the V8550 in red, I was sold.

At first I was quite tempted to use a “WOW” lining, something wild & unexpected, but once I finished constructing the outer, I realised the red is { WOW } enough & my SIL had gifted me with this black fabric & I thought would be perfect for the lining so I went ahead & used it. I did however use the red thread to stitch the lining up which adds a very subtle accent to the black & ties the two together.Vogue8550_lining_front

{ SIZING } This was my biggest headache & I have left my original Pattern Review WIP as it was so it can still be read. I very rarely do muslins because I find they sap me of the excitement of making the real thing. Ive been sewing for long enough to know which measurements are important for me & I thought I had gotten quite comfortable with the Big 4 sizing that cutting my usual size would be ok. I was kinda wrong. This was grossly { HUGE }. I immediately thought I had farked up with my cutting so I double checked all the pieces had been cut the right size before contacting some other sewers/bloggers who I thought may have sewn this coat to enquire if they had similar problems. Unfortunately, no-one had sewn this so I had no sewcialist assistance . I then contacted Vogue directly. They came back saying the pattern had a “fair amount of ease on a FITTED coat but that they did not think there was anything wrong with the sizing”. So I got on with chopping, trimming & wasting expensive fabric to fit. Its not the ease that annoys me, its the fact that the pattern does not mention the ease at all. Anyway, moving swiftly on…

{ INSTRUCTIONS } Overall the instructions are not bad however some steps were not as clear as I thought they could be. Nearing the end, I battled to make sense of how the lining fits to the wool at the front seams. I gave up & constructed the way that I thought made sense.

{ CHANGES } The only little change I made was to the pockets. Instead of having them lined & sitting on the inside of the coat, I sewed them into the wool layer but did not bring them through the lining….in other words, they sit between the lining & the outer. I did this because I dont like pockets flapping on the inside of my coats. The pattern called for the lining to be made with the same pieces as the outer however instead of tucked like the outer, rather just pleated in. At first I thought all this extra fabric on the inside would be quite bulky however once pressed & stitched down, it gave a good weight to the inner & supports the wool well.

The coat has no loops/guides for the belt/waist tie! WTF am I meant to do with the tie when I take the coat off? I eeeked out every last bit of red wool to make the tie so I really hope I dont lose it in an absent minded outing…I might still go back & make chain loop guides…

{ LEVEL OF DIFFICULTY } ***Although it took me so long, it was not because of the level of difficulty per se. The tucks have a fair degree of complexity, even with the markings, however apart from the tucks, this is a standard princess cut coat. It was not an easy sew, but I dont think it was an advanced sew either.

{ TIME } HAHAHAHAHAHAA really!?  I normally keep a time card for kicks …I kicked this time card into the bin!!

{ LESSONS LEARNT } Take your time. I was eventually having nightmares about the coat but I knew if I rushed it would end up being a rubbish looking garment.

{ SUM IT UP } This is a lovely coat, the tuck detail is gorgeous & Im so pleased I finished it….all 2,5kgs of it!! Initially I had my doubts about whether it would keep me warm enough in the winter but once I joined the lining & felt the weight, I knew this would be a great winter coat… & I do love the RED. I had purchased big red buttons in Holland before I started but once it came time to use them, they just looked too big & the coat felt kinda clown-ish. Im hesitating with sewing them on until Ive managed to make a trip to Komolka to see if they have something slightly smaller & more suitable. Once the holes are cut, they cut so I need to be 100% sure.

I have hemmed the coat but I have not attached the lining to the wool as yet – the reason you ask? Well, Im not 100% happy with the darn shoulder pads. I feel like they are limp & lacking in the stiff department. I think Im going to change the shoulder pads. Im sure on my next trip to Komolka, I will have luck with finding alternative buttons & shoulder pads.

I might also go ahead & move the pockets from the side seams to the princess seams. I know this sounds crazy but the side seams seem too far back for me to get to the pockets. I may also just remove them completely!!

In hindsight, the problems with the sizing was almost two-fold. I still think the pattern has way too much ease however I also think my choice of wool did not help, especially with the extended periods where the WIP sat on Poppy pleading for attention. Even though this was post-tuck production, I think the wool may have stretched slightly adding to the list of problems.

I would recommend V8550 especially if you love the tuck details however, I would urge you to make a muslin first just to make sure of the sizing. I know I know, me advising making a muslin – I must be drunk! I think this coat would look amazing done in cream, but I dont think Im gonna be the one to make it!

This image clearly explains what got me through some painful & frustrating moments { Nespresso Vanilla Infused coffee }coffee_break

& elation at finally finishing! I had made a deal with myself that I would finish this before starting on something new….Im so excited to start fresh 🙂Vogue8550_elation

{ related posts }

chit-chat · sewing

{ WIP’s } Slowly slowly catch a monkey…

V8550_WIP

Ive been feverishly working to get “a certain project” completed – all my time & effort of the last week has gone into it…almost, almost done.

Home stretch.

Cant wait to share.

 

This morning I woke up with sore throat, the sniffs blah blah….so Ive been feeling sorry for myself most of the day!

I should have smelt the rat on Wednesday when my head was pounding. I put it down to the stress of Tuesday.

You see my lovelies, I had my first German exam on Tuesday & I PASSED. Ecstatic does not begin to describe…

 

I also managed to finally get the tripod & wireless remote for my camera sorted – I know!! Ive only been talking about it for 6 months. So look forward to better pics of my me-mades.

 

See, Im catching monkeys left, right & centre.

chit-chat · sewing

{ VOGUE } New offerings, part II

Vogue have released their part II of new offerings for spring/summer 2013.

Im crushing on 5 of the new patterns ..vogue1348vogue1354vogue8898vogue8904vogue1357

{ All images from Vogue Patterns }

V1348 is a Tom & Linda Platt number – very basic but with the right print could look amazing. Last year I purchased a dress from Zara which was cut exactly like this however the only difference is the back zipper only went up to around the level of the middle back which I personally prefer more – gives the dress some added interest. I see this dress being a stunning LBD, uncomplicated & chic.

V1354 is a grecian style maxi from Anne Klein with stacks of potential. I love the cut of this & I love how inexcusably feminine it is. Prints or plains will work with this dress, short or long but it does look like alot of work all that gathering.  Had this been 4,5 years ago, I would totally have picked this dress for my beach wedding.

V8898 I guess we’ve seen before but for some reason this just looks effortless, both to wear & to make. Casual evening wear or to the office, this pattern is going to sell.

V8904 – funny, when I saw this Marcy Tilton I immediately thought of Mimi G 🙂 This is so her style & I bet it wont be long till we see her in this. Its simple & fun, in a rather sophisticated kinda way…i think. I would love to make it in black too.

V1357 I find this Rachel Comey kinda flirty & fun. The blouse is super cute & I love the centre pleat in the skirt.

So, these are my picks from the new collection. See anything you like ?

Thanks for stopping by & have a good sunday x

 

sewing

{ FABRIC BUYING DIET } Never…

I could never { EVER }  go on a fabric buying diet. I simply love the stuff too much.

And I dont buy fabric every day or even every month – but when I see something that I love & can visualise it as a garment, then I will indulge in a metre or two. Sales do help with persuasion.

A few weeks back, I indulged

With this soft cotton floral from Komolka in Vienna, floral_komolka

and this black & white stretch something something from Stoffwelt in Wiener Neustadt, b&w_fabric

and more recently with this floral silk from the Wenatex Haus der Stoffe in Salzburg, floral_wenatex

oh & this cotton “oil painting” masterpiece panel also from the Wenatex shop in Salzburg..oil_wenatex

The florals are destined to become maxi dresses (see Mapping a Maxi), & the panel directly above I think I might use for the front of V1174 which is a Cynthia Steffe strapless number from Vogue which Ive been coveting for some time. I would leave the back in plain black but carry through the contrast piping to tie it all together. Im thinking a deep magenta or purple piping!! What do you think??V1174

Id better go & get on with the muslin for the maxi…yes, Ive picked one 🙂

Thanks for stopping by x