Friday, February 12, 2016

Jalie 3462 : Cora leggings

These leggings have no fit adjustments.....Seriously - no adjustments!! They would have to be the best fitting leggings I've ever made and I didn't have to mess around with them at all. I'm in love <3

So, the pattern - it has great seam lines and is perfect for colour blocking. It has a built in pocket that's easily enough to hold an iPhone 6. The waistband is nice and wide and is reinforced with elastic. They have a gusset and the inner seamlines wrap more towards the front so you don't get chaffing from the seams.

I did shorten them, I wear 3/4 leggings in winter and summer so didn't see the point in making them full length. I will be making the shorts later for wearing underneath dresses to banish the dreaded chub-rub.

Pattern details;
Size CC
Shortened by 7-8"

Fabric details;
Front fabric is from Rathdowne - its a Seafolly stretch lycra that was meant to be for swimwear. Its thin but opaque enough you don't get show through.
The back fabric is a black matt lycra from GJ Discount fabrics.

The stretch really does matter in these pants - they have a lot of negative ease and rely on having a 4-way stretch for size and comfort.

I used the lightening bolt stitch on my crotch seams (I'm always terrified of it splitting open at the gym!) and then overlocked all the other seams. I'm trying to get over my coverstitch issues and so used it as decorative stitching on the back seams and for hemming.

Not much more to say - there will be many more pairs sewn by me and I am on the lookout for the brightest, craziest lycra I can find!

Monday, February 8, 2016

Victory Patterns 1002: Ava Dress

I seem to be going back through my old patterns lately and sewing them up! I made this as the blouse a couple of years ago. I always wore it with a wide belt though as it had a tendency to poof out on my stomach so I got rid of it in the big wardrobe cull of 2015.
This time I wanted to correct the things that bothered me with the first version - added a waistband to eliminate the poofyness, used smaller bias binding to make the binding sit smoother, got rid of the darts and added princess seams. Otherwise its a fairly similar colour palette - purple ponte and a basic black lace!

Pattern details;

Size 14
Added 1" FBA
Changed darts into princess seams
Added the waistband.
Dropped the neckline by 1"
Left out the zipper (hooray for ponte!)
Sewed the side seams last and took it in by 1/2" each side.
Took 1.5cm out of the bodice length (once the skirt was added the weight dropped it all too low)
Made the length somewhere in between the short and long length.
Added pockets from the Burda dress I last made

Ponte from Clear-It
Lace from the salvos (its just a cheap Spotlight one though)

Insides are all serged and I reinforced the shoulder seams with some selvage since the dress is quite heavy

I like how unpretentious this dress is in regards to sewing the lace, no fanciness, just sew it up like any other fabric. For someone who's still a little scared of lace I like how basic it is. No couture techniques here, just serge it all up and no worries!

I'm really happy with it, its a pretty dress that I can still wear with a shrug to work. And I am so much happier with the fit now compared to my first attempt!

Daughter approved!

Wednesday, February 3, 2016

BurdaStyle FS/2014 : Smocked back dress

I've been eyeing off a dress at City Chic for ages and planned on copying it, right down to the colour. But after I started to muslin this pattern I decided I liked the muslin fabric enough to finish it!


Pattern details;
Burdastyle dress download
Size 44
1" FBA
Omitted the front button band
Gathered the skirt instead of pleats
Cut the same pattern piece for front and back skirt (the back skirt is very straight and I wanted more flare)
Left out the facings and used bias binding
Added a waistband.
Added the top bias band. I did trial it on the top edge sitting up and also folded down but liked it a lot more folded down.

Fabric details:
Sateen from Spotlight - I bought this years ago and then fell out of love with it and its sat in my muslin bin for ages.

Because the sateen is so thick I stitched channels for 6mm elastic instead of using shirring thread. It makes a heavier more stable elastic panel but its quite comfortable to wear. You do have to watch that its not too tight though as the last dress I did this on it tended to collapse and crease when wearing, but I overfitted it and this time it seems to be sitting fine.

I really like the pockets, having them built into the front skirt makes it really easy to sew the side seams up last.

I'm still not completely convinced by the straps, I had planned on doing adjustable ones but thought I'd try out the double straps, they may get replaced later though!

Insides are all serged and bias binding at the top edge.

Now to make the next version in navy with buttons!

Saturday, January 30, 2016

True Bias 4101: Hudson Pants


These have to be the ultimate weekend pants, they are just so relaxed and comfy. I've been wanting a pair of casual trackies for a while and it came between these ones and the StyleArc Shelby pair. But it was this review of the 3/4 ones by Cookin' & Craftin' that made me download the pattern straight away!

 We are off to Japan this year (!!!!!!) so I've been quizzing my daughter about what everyone wears and flicking through the La Farfa magazine she brought me back after her student exchange last year. The biggest thing that's stood out to me is that you don't see many women wearing tight leggings, Amber took some over for sports and said she was the only one wearing them. So I'm on the hunt for comfy pants that I can walk in around Japan, wear to the Karate seminar we are attending and still look neat but that are a looser fit than I might wear normally.

These fit the bill perfectly and I plan on making many more :)

Pattern details;
I graded up to a sz 20 (my fabric has bugger all stretch in it)
Scooped out the front crotch curve
Added 2" of rise to the centre back, grading down to nothing at the side seams. I did this by 3 horizontal cut and spreads like what is shown in this great post (number 9 of alterations).

The main fabric is a terry that I got at a garage sale. The black highlights are a Ponte from Spotlight.


I love the pocket details, I added some topstitching to keep the bulky seam under control.

Anyway, great pattern with a couple of adjustments and really quick and easy to sew.

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Simplicity 1783: pants


They may be boring, basic and black but I live in cropped pants at work over spring/summer. So while I had this pattern out for the denim skirt I thought I'd make up the pants too.

Not much to say, I've made these a couple of times before (1 and 2).

Pattern details;
Size 18
Pull-on waistband
Added pockets to the front and back.
Took the legs in for a more fitted look.
Added cuffs with a side split as I ran out of fabric and the legs were too short. Used this tutorial for the side splits

Fabric Details;
Bengalene from Spotlight

Sunday, January 24, 2016

Simplicity 1783: Denim Skirt

My last version of this skirt stretched out over time and I donated it in the last big wardrobe cleanout. For a skirt I didn't wear that often I've really  missed having it.

This pattern needs bugger all fabric, I squeezed this out of just over 1m of denim leftover from a pair of jeans. This denim is thicker than my first version and sits a bit stiffer but it wears well and I know it will soften up with a few more washes.

I made the skirt a pull-on, not just because I'm obsessed with pull on bottoms at the moment, but the first waistband stretched out at least a couple of sizes and at least with an elastic waistband I don't have to worry about that happening again!

Pattern details;
Size 18
Tilted waist adjustment - removed 2" from front rise
Changed the vent from the front to the back

I really love the vent on this pattern, very easy to sew and sits really nicely while wearing.