Tuesday, 25 February 2014

Smarty pants

2014_02_badgeHaving not yet suceeded at meeting the Monthly Stitch's January challenge of a new skill, I figured I needed to get these jeans finished before the end of February, as the challenge was a pair of pants.

I mentioned a couple of weeks ago that I pre-washed a pile of fabrics that I’d bought cheaply off Trade-me.  One of them was this rather uninspiring sort of yellowy oatmeal colour with a checked texture and really stiff feel.

Before I wrote it off for muslins I cut off a couple of metres and tried dying it black.  I used the washing machine ‘cos that seems to agitate it better than I can, and it ended up rather large to fit in a pan on the stove top.  My burn test had suggested it was a natural fibre, and it certainly took the colour.  

The final result wasn’t black, more a sort of dark greyish blue colour, and while the colour covered all the fabric, there were definite blotchy bits.

Since my plan was a pair of jeans, neither of these problems deterred me; it was a very acceptable jeans colour, and I figured a few blotchy bits would be OK on jeans.

I did hit a small road block when it came to choosing an embroidery design for the rear pockets, so thanks to everyone who helped me out of that one; the gecko was a clear favourite, so geckos it was.

Since I spent about 37½ cents on this fabric (plus $4 for the zip) I didn’t need to have great expectations for this garment.  Despite that, I actually like these jeans.  They are snug, but feel surprisingly comfortable and the blotchy dye job actually works.  I’ve been working on jeans for a while, so I didn’t have to do any fitting and I’ve already made all the required adjustments to McCalls 5892; my basic jeans pattern.

In this photo I’m also wearing a Colette Sorbetto made from another trade-me purchase and left over from a black blouse that I made for a recent funeral – a double take already!  The Sorbetto is a great pattern for small amounts of fabric and an easy top for the warmer weather, and it’s FREE.  Other than my usual FBA and adding a little length I didn’t have to make any alterations to this pattern and the result is really easy to wear – more indie love!

Thursday, 20 February 2014

My guilty secret

I’m sure that many of you, like me, are guilty of sewing over pins.

No matter how many times I’ve been told of the error of my ways, sometimes it is just easier to keep two pieces of fabric firmly together until I’ve finished sewing them.

I know that I risk breaking my needles, that it effects the quality of the stitches and is a “bad” thing to do, but I defy the sewing police by secretly doing it anyway.  

I recently managed to get to see the “The Great British sewing Bee Christmas Special”, and spotted this…
Great British Sewing Bee Christmas Special screen shot
Needless to say I was shocked!  This was shown on British TV without any parental warning and at a time when young children were likely to be exposed to this travesty!  British TV has obviously sunk to a new low.

And the offending sewist?   

None other than May Martin!

Does this mean that I can come out into the open and admit my shameful secret?   

Is anyone else prepared to come out of the closet and admit to sewing over pins, now that May Martin has done so in public?

Saturday, 15 February 2014

Miss Bossy

Ok, I’ve not done well with the monthly challenge so far this year.  January started with a new skill and I decided to draft a jacket.  There’s a reason I have never done this before – it’s hard!

I took inspiration from one of Alexander Wang’s jackets for his first Belenciaga collection:

Not only do I like the look of this jacket, but I thought the absence of collars and lapels would simplify the drafting. 
I’m currently on my forth muslin for this, and although I haven’t given up, this is not going to qualify as a January challenge.
Pants for February may yet still happen – although it’s so warm here at the moment I’m struggling to feel much enthusiasm for pants.  I have made another pair of Tania culottes, so they may have to do.

I need to up my game for the March challenge.  The original idea was to sew a pattern that we have had for a while, but haven’t got around to sewing yet.  Mel decided that was too simple, so added a twist.  We have to let you chose the pattern!

So here are three patterns that I’ve been meaning to sew for a while.

Simplicity 3640 – I think that this must be out of print as I can’t find it on the Simpilicty web site. 

I bought this pattern because it uses machine embroidery when Mum first suggested that I might use her embroidery machine more than me.  Although it’s not a particularly exciting design, it is something that I will get use out of, rather than yet more working clothes for when I get a job. I’d use a stretchy polar fleece and this would also double as a diving suit to wear under my dry suit in the winter.  I’d probably use a marine type design like this one for the embellishment.
Urban Threads

Vogue 2752 – again, I can’t find this Guy Laroche pattern on the web site so it may also be out of print.   

I can’t remember when I bought it, but it was the jacket with the curved front that caught my eye.  

I’d probably use a plain black or navy fabric for this.

Finally Butterick 4790…

…which practically everyone has sewn up, and I love the look of, but I’ve somehow never got around to it.  I’d probably use this print, 

'cos I’ve got heaps of it and this dress needs heaps.
So, vote away!  I can’t wait to see what I’m going to sew in March

Which pattern would you like me to make?
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Friday, 14 February 2014

The cavern of indecision.

Sorry to Hi-jack this idea, but I’m stuck in a cavern of indecision here.

February – Pants: I decided to sew a pair of jeans with a cheap trade-me purchase that I tried to dye because I hated the colour.  It came out a bit blotchy, but I figured that jeans would be ok a bit blotchy.

Anyway, that’s not the indecision bit. 
I’ve always put a simply embroidery design on the pockets of my jeans, and I seem unable to chose which design to use this time.  I’ve sewn up four bum pockets and really need your help to chose one.
They've all been pinned to the finished size.

The first one is a simple heart:

 Or a Gecko...

Or a scuba diver...

 Or finally, a girly option of daisies...
Please HELP ME !

What design should go on my pocket?
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